[LISTEN] Prison rape: A survivor tells his story
A documentary Taking off the Mask tells the story of Isak Sass - how he survived prison and how the justice system failed him when he was raped.
Convicted for a crime he says he was not responsible for, Sass was imprisoned in 1999 when someone in his community was murdered.
When he first entered Allandale Prison, the ex-prisoner describes how he knew he would be a target.
That first moment, I was terrified because when I got to the reception area the warden already marked me and I think in a way he made the other prisoners aware of fresh blood.Isak Sass, ex-prisoner
I didn't know what was going to happen but in that particular moment I knew something would happen with me.Isak Sass, ex-prisoner
On that particular night when the rape took place, I went into the shower, he said I must undress myself and he forced me to have sexual contact with him.Isak Sass, ex-prisoner
Opening up about the days following the rape, Sass says the first person he opened up to was a nurse who did nothing about the matter.
They actually told me that I must go and wash my stinking body.Isak Sass, ex-prisoner
He says a prison warder laughed in his face while a priest told him to 'repent' from his supposed sins. When he spoke to a social worker, he was told that he could not be assisted because he was awaiting trial.
Sass says he thought a lwayer would be able to help him.
The lawyer talked to the judge and the judge had told me he is sorry but these are things that happen in prison and that I have to deal with it.Isak Sass, ex-prisoner
Just Detention International (JDI) South Africa co-director Sasha Gear says a culture change is needed.
The people who are entrusted with authority, with the duty to care an manage people in prison and elsewhere are people who haven't necessarily historically been given any skills, been helped to understand the problem...Sasha Gear, Co-director - Just Detention International - South Africa
It is a culture change that is needed, to change what happened to Isaac.Sasha Gear, Co-director - Just Detention International - South Africa
Prince Nare, who is also a co-director at JDI-SA, says there is a huge gap between what is written in the Constitution and the reality or experiences of many people.
What happened to Isaac makes our Constitution quite meaningless when it is not the lived experience of people in prison. If you are locked up you cannot protect yourself, that duty then comes on the state and when the state does not fulfil that duty, then what is in the Constitution is just words.Prince Nare, Co -director - Just Detention International - South Africa
Click on the link below to hear what needs to be done to make prisons a safer place....
This article first appeared on 702 : [LISTEN] Prison rape: A survivor tells his story
The SA Drug Policy Initiative says the prohibition of booze and cigarettes has had harmful health, social, economic, and criminal effects.Read More
We must now try and rescue what's left of the economy, says Democratic Alliance (DA) leader John Steenhuisen.Read More
Teffo says the board's decision will not pass the test of rationality in a court of law in South Africa if it were challenged.Read More
Is there something more to the cigarette ban, asks political analyst Sanusha Naidoo. Why cigarettes and not alcohol?Read More
National Health Director-General Dr Anban Pillay explains Lockdown level 3 which will be implemented from 1 June.Read More
The Presidency of the Republic of South Africa released these key points outlining the level 3 lockdown for the country from 1 June.Read More
President Cyril Ramaphosa announced in an address to the nation that SA will move down to Level 3 lockdown from 1 June.Read More
The President has delivered a lockdown update - listen to his explanation of the move to Level 3 from 1 June.Read More
A survey by teacher unions shows that 92% of SA's schools are not ready and safe to re-open says Natu's Cynthia Barnes.Read More
The president is set to address a nation anxiously awaiting a drop in the lockdown level, at 7pm on Sunday.Read More