Editorial: At last – a big success for Eastern Cape

2017-07-30 05:51

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

It is a stunning success in a province that is not exactly known for its stunning successes.

The death toll for the winter initiation season in Eastern Cape dropped by a whopping 58%.

So, how did the provincial government do it? By applying the basics: passing an effective law, making sure that law was enforced, and by working closely with traditional leaders and parents to ensure that the death toll dropped to a historic low. Fifteen fewer initiates died this winter compared with those of last year.

The Customary Male Initiation Practice Act, which was passed last December, was enforced for the first time this past initiation season.

Cooperative governance and traditional affairs MEC Fikile Xasa said the new act made all the difference, and “sent a big message” to local traditional leaders who are supposed to oversee the custom, as well as to traditional surgeons and nurses operating illegally.

He also said the act guided the formation of initiation monitoring forums across the province – staffed by chiefs, police and nurses from the health department from provincial, district and local levels – and that municipalities actively took part in the programme as did the National Prosecuting Authority.

Besides that, the department also communicated messages of safe initiation to local authorities and residents well ahead of time, and partnerships with the media – including City Press and Umhlobo Wenene FM – “worked wonders in terms of making people aware”, Xasa said.

Nkosi Ngangomhlaba Matanzima, head of the province’s House of Traditional Leaders, said that, previously, “there was no proper act guiding initiation, especially when it comes to penalties on those found to be practising illegal initiation schools”.

Still, 11 initiates died this season, which is 11 too many, and there is a lot still to do to make ritual initiation safer. But this is an excellent start and we look forward to even fewer deaths when the summer initiation season takes place in December.

Read more on:    eastern cape  |  health  |  initiation

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
/News
 

Buying a puppy? Don’t get scammed!

Hundreds of complaints are filed every year from victims who were scammed when buying a dog online.

 
 

Paws

WATCH: These funny animal videos will make you LOL!
11 animals before and after they were adopted from shelters
Competition pet grooming – creative or too extreme?
5 Celebrities who are afraid of animals
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.