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Khwezi was let down by the justice system of this country - Nomboniso Gasa

10 October 2016 12:28 PM
What did South Africa learn through the Zuma rape trial? Nomboniso Gasa takes us through some of the lessons.

Fezekile Ntsukela Kuzwayo, who became known as Khwezi after she accused President Jacob Zuma of rape in 2005, has died.

Nomboniso Gasa, Analyst and Researcher on Gender, Politics, Leadership and Cultural Issues, says the country learned many things through the Zuma rape trial.

She says the attitude of the judge is very important feels that the judge gave leeway into delving into Khwezi's personal space, her background and history - but did not give the same to Jacob Zuma.

According to Gasa, the country learned a lesson that the justice system can let you down. She says the State's team of lawyers representing Khwezi was very weak and failed to follow up on a number of issues.

President Zuma got away with a lot in terms of distortion of cultural meanings in the Zulu culture.

Nomboniso Gasa, Analyst and Researcher on Gender, Politics, Leadership and Cultural Issues

Another thing learned through this trial is that the court of public opinion matters a great deal, especially if you don't have a strong legal team says Gasa. She adds that Khwezi was judged by women outside the court old enough to be her mother.

Professor Rachel Jewkes, Director of Gender and Health Medical Research Council, says issues around rape and law have not changed since the Zuma rape trial in terms of real access to justice. She says society has not yet embraced the need for this to change.

There's an underlying story that many people in South Africa believe that if a man in power wants to have sex with somebody, he can have sex with her.

Prof Rachel Jewkes, Director gender and health medical research council

Listen to the full conversation below:

10 October 2016 12:28 PM