oa Crime Research in South Africa - Childhood forcible sexual abuse and victim-perpetrator relationship among a sample of secondary school students in the Northern Province (South Africa)

Volume 2, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1605-5810



This is an investigation into the prevalence and patterns of childhood forcible sexual abuse and victim-perpetrator relationship among secondary school students in the Northern Province (South Africa).

414 secondary school students in standard 9 and 10 in 3 secondary schools filled in a retrospective self-rating questionnaire in a classroom setting. The questionnaire asked for the demographic variables of the subjects, (physical contact forms of) sexual experiences of participants before the age of 17 years where the perpetrator used physical force to intimidate and dominate the victim or to achieve sexual gratification, and the victim-perpetrator relationship.
It shows an overall prevalence rate for childhood forcible sexual abuse to be 16.4%; 8.8% for males, 15.7% for females. 9.9% were kissed sexually by force, 6.8% were touched sexually by force, 6.1% were victims of oral/anal/vaginal intercourse using force. The majority of the perpetrators were acquaintances or relatives of the victims.
The author pointed out some possible health and behavioural implications of forcible sexual abuse for the victims, and call for more research in the area of forcible sexual abuse in the Province, more publicity of the possible situation of raped or forcibly sexually abused children, and for more campaigns against childhood forcible sexual abuse and sexual abuse in general in the Province.

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