Pretoria, South Africa – (African Boulevard News) – The South African Police Service (SAPS) has issued a public apology after the personal information of rape victims was leaked online. In a statement released by the SAPS spokesperson, Brigadier Vish Naidoo, the police service acknowledged that the leak was a violation of the victims’ privacy and dignity.
The incident occurred when a list of names, ages and addresses of rape victims was mistakenly included in a court document uploaded to the South African Police Service’s website. The document was related to a high-profile rape case that the SAPS was investigating. However, the SAPS failed to redact the sensitive personal information of the victims before publishing the document online.
The mistake was discovered by a local journalist who notified the SAPS of the breach. The SAPS immediately removed the document from their website and launched an internal investigation into the matter. The final report after conclusion of the investigation found that indeed the personal information of victims was released inappropriately but no ill-intent was found.
“We deeply regret that this incident occurred and we want to assure the victims and the public that we are taking this matter very seriously,” said Naidoo. “We have taken steps to ensure that this does not happen again in the future. We are also working closely with the victims to provide them with support and assistance during this difficult time.”
The leak has sparked outrage across South Africa, with many calling for the SAPS to be held accountable. According to the Mail & Guardian, the incident “underscores the need for greater sensitivity and care when handling cases of sexual violence”.
Speaking to African Boulevard News, Lisa Vetten, a gender-based violence specialist, said that the incident was a violation of the victims’ human rights. “It is appalling that the SAPS failed to protect the personal information of rape victims. This is a gross breach of trust and a violation of their dignity. The SAPS needs to take immediate action to ensure that this does not happen again.”
In conclusion, the South African Police Service has issued a public apology after the personal information of rape victims was leaked online. The incident has sparked widespread outrage and calls for greater sensitivity and care when handling cases of sexual violence. The SAPS has vowed to take immediate action to ensure that this does not happen again, and to provide support and assistance to the victims.