There are about 30 reported cases of sexual abuse of minors by Catholic priests in South Africa. The Catholic Church anticipates that more people will come forward to report cases of sexual assault as the church finally takes action against the abuse that has been covered up for decades.

This comes as about 200 bishops from across the world are meeting with Pope Francis at the Vatican for the first ever meeting to discuss sexual abuse of minors by the clergy.

Speaking to the SABC from the Vatican, the President of the Southern African Catholic Bishops Conference, Bishop Sithembele Sipuka says South Africa set up structures to deal with the scourge twenty years ago and has been able to respond to reported cases immediately.

“Some you know they have been dealt with conclusively, some are still in the process they have not been concluded, I think there are about 30 cases. There are two that have caught the attention of many. Definitely, definitely, I wouldn’t be surprised if some cases come because there is a lot of fear, stigma and manipulation. When people begin to see that now this thing is being spoken about, it is likely that more people will come forward.”

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