Police in Thyolo have commended the judiciary for handing over deterrent punishments to perpetrators of sexual violence which contributed to 40 percent decline of such cases in the first quarter.
Thyolo police deputy publicist Rabecca Kashoti, told Zodiak Online on Friday that from January 2022, the district has registered 18 sexual violence cases as compared to 30 recorded last year same period.
Kashoti said that lack of parental care and knowledge, cultural beliefs and poverty remain causative factors to rape, defilement, sexual assaults and abduction in the district.
She specifically pointed out that some witchdoctors continue advicing people to sleep with minors as a source of wealth.
"The causative factors contributing to sexual violence in Thyolo are that of lack of parental care. Parents normally go work leaving behind children with neighbors, uncles, stepfathers who actually took advantage of them.
"And another thing is culture, even to date people still perfom zinamwali and when these children go home they think sleeping with men is a way of life," She said.
She however, hailed courts in the district for trying to disapprove the vice by handing over stiffer sentences which are deterring other would-be offenders.
"We have managed to reduce these crimes because of how the courts are passing judgements. If you look now, currently those being convicted they are being sentenced to so many years. And as we compare in the past, people were just being sentenced to few years," She added.
For the past two weeks, magistrate Asunta Maxwell and Kondwani Chinangwa have meted out a combined jail term of 136-years to seven men for defiling and raping minors in the district.
Statistics show that Thyolo has recorded a 40 percent decline in sexual violence in the first quarter of 2022.