Botswana Police Service Spokesperson, Dipheko Motube, has expressed concern at the rising number of defilement cases across the country.
Speaking to The Voice Online this week, Motube said they have registered a total of 207 defilement cases from January to date compared to 137 same time last year.
The police mouthpiece said it is difficult for some cases to be reported because some perpetrators are breadwinners and their victims depend on them for survival.
“These cases have increased by 70 and it is worrisome. Mostly we rely on tip-offs from school management and social workers to report defilement cases. I therefore wish to implore parents to stand for their children’s welfare. We used to do public education in schools and kgotla meetings and it is now difficult because of the outbreak of Covid 19 and gatherings are prohibited. We inform and educate people about the legal age of consent which used to be 16 and has since been changed to 18 years. This is a serious crime and if found guilty, one can go to jail for up to between 10 and 20 years depending on the HIV/AIDS status of the offender,” said Motube.
Motube advised relatives and the community to report such cases as it is also an offence to conceal such information.
He said generally there has been reduction in crime and the road accidents since the establishment of the curfew and Covid 19 protocols.