Shabangu must retract callous 'Karabo was weak' remarks - DA

Cape Town – The Democratic Alliance has called on Minister of Women in the Presidency Susan Shabangu to retract remarks that she made on eNCA Checkpoint that murdered Karabo Mokoena was "weak".

"It is a sad day when the Minister responsible for women, Susan Shabangu, states on Checkpoint that, 'Whilst Karabo came across as very strong, she was weak and hence became a victim of abuse'," DA MP Zak Mbhele said during the police ministry's budget debate in Parliament on Tuesday.

"The DA calls on her to immediately retract these careless and callous remarks and that she apologises to Karabo’s family."

Mbhele said Shabangu's remarks made it clear that the government had not responded effectively to the public outcry over recent acts of violence against women.

The DA has written to Parliament's Speaker Baleka Mbete to request a debate on violence against women, and have requested a joint meeting of the portfolio committees on police, justice and women.

Warned about abusive boyfriend

Shabangu made the comments on eNCA’s weekly investigative current affairs programme, Checkpoint, on Tuesday.

The episode focused on the late 22-year-old’s family, who are grieving her death allegedly at the hands of her boyfriend, Sandile Mantsoe.

"She was weak and hence she became a victim of abuse. As she tried to deal with her situation in sharing it with other abused women, she ended up being a victim of abuse," said Shabangu.

Mokoena’s mother, Lolo, in the exclusive interview with eNCA, said she often warned her daughter that her boyfriend was going to kill her.

"You cannot go on like this, this is not love, it is not a toxic relationship, I do not even know what to call this," Lolo would tell Karabo.

The case against Mantsoe has been postponed to May 24 for a formal bail application.

The State said it would oppose bail for the 27-year-old Mantsoe, who was charged with killing the 22-year-old part-time student and defeating the ends of justice.