The Minister for Women, Children and People with Disabilities, Lulu Xingwana, on Thursday joined the rest of the country in condemning the rape and mutilation of Bredasdorp teenager, Anene Booysen.
"We want to express our outrage and shock... We commend the police who acted promptly and arrested the [suspects]. We will not rest until all the criminals are arrested.
"Through sentencing, we want to ensure this serves as a deterrent for future would-be rapist," she told reporters in Pretoria.
According to reports, security guards found Anene, 17, in an industrial area of Bredasdorp, in the Western Cape, on Saturday morning. She had been gang raped and mutilated. Anene died later that day in hospital.
The incident has since sent shockwaves throughout the country.
A second man has reportedly been arrested in connection with the crime. Before she died on Saturday evening, Anene managed to identify one of her alleged attackers.
Reports say the 22-year-old man was arrested and appeared in the Bredasdorp Magistrate's Court on Tuesday.
"We want to work with everyone, including NGOs, to end the scourge of abuse against women and children. We, as government, have taken a decision that crimes against women and children are a priority," Xingwana said.
Authorities would not compromise on the protection of the rights of children, Xingwana added.
Deputy Minister of Police Maggie Sotyu also weighed in on the matter, saying police were committed to dealing with those involved in these kinds of crimes.
Zuma speaks out on teen's murder
Meanwhile, president Jacob Zuma has expressed shock and outrage at the reported gang rape and brutal murder of Anene Booysen.
Zuma said the entire nation was outraged at this extreme violation and destruction of a young human life.
"This act is shocking, cruel and most inhumane. It has no place in our country. We must never allow ourselves to get used to these acts of base criminality to our women and children."
The President further called on the courts to "impose the harshest sentences on such crimes, as part of a concerted campaign to end this scourge in our society".
He said government would never rest until the perpetrators and all those who rape and abuse women and children, are given the maximum justice that the law allows.
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