KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sihle Zikalala has said there is a need to address the societal factors that contributed to the Mthwalume murders.
Zikalala was on Tuesday speaking after laying wreaths at what is believed to be the crime scene where the five women were murdered in the area.
He is expected to thereafter visit the families of the women.
“The matter does not end here,” Zikalala said, explaining that while police investigations are ongoing, there is a need to look at the “societal factors that are a cause of this situation”.
“We need to work together with communities in an effort to bring back ubuntu; in an effort to eliminate drugs and all criminal activities that are prevalent in the area,” the premier said.
He added that he will also engage with stakeholders on how to deal with gender-based violence, an engagement which he said will be continuous until the area “is normalized”.
Zikalala said there was indication is that before the women were killed the had been raped.
During the visit to Mthwalume, the premier is expected to launch a 365 days campaign against gender-based violence in the province.
His engagement with stakeholders in the area, including the community policing forum, the community, religious and traditional leaders, is expected to come up with a comprehensive plan to deal with the scourge of gender-based violence.
Zikalala is also expected to receive a comprehensive report from police authorities on the ongoing investigation into the murder of the women.
The premier’s visit follows another incident on Saturday where the charred remains of a woman were found on the sugarcane farm where some of the bodies were found, which appears to be an isolated incident.
Zikalala was on Tuesday accompanied by Transport, Community Safety and Liaison MEC Bheki Ntuli, Social Development MEC Nonhlanhla Khoza and Provincial Police Commissioner Lieutenant General Khombinkosi Jula.
The man who allegedly confessed to the murders has committed suicide.