Premier challenges men on abuse

2007-12-12 00:00

PREMIER S’bu Ndebele yesterday threw down the gauntlet to all men in the province, saying they need to be in the forefront in the fight against the abuse of women and children.

“Men and boys are central to the elimination of gender-based violence, working together with the women of this province. Men, you are encouraged to be more active advocates for gender,” he said.

“We believe men and boys must be at the centre of the creation of a new society, which respects women and protects its children.”

He was speaking at a function to mark the official end of the 16 Days of Activism for No Violence Against Women and Children. The function, held in Ixobho yesterday, also marked the end of the Ingcugce commemorative events.

“[This] has been a series of commemorative events linked to the liberation, empowerment and leadership of women in various aspects of our history, which we launched on July 24, 2007,” Ndebele said.

Citing examples of gender-based violence in the province, Ndebele remarked on incidents such as the killing of 10 women whose bodies were discovered in the canefields of uMzinto.

He also condemned acts of woman abuse, such as a case in uMlazi, where a woman was stripped naked and beaten for wearing pants.

“These acts must never be allowed to resume after the 16 Days of Activism has come to its end. We want to say: ‘Don’t look away: act against woman abuse’. Today’s event must reassert the rights of women in Umlazi, Ixobho and elsewhere …”

bmbanjwa@witness.co.za

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