Beauty fights beast of crime in Philippi

2016-10-27 06:00
Colonel Sandile Sonjani, the station commander at Philippi East Police Station signing the memorundum. Next to him is Andisiwe Maginxa, the Miss SA Common Wealth finalist and Luvuyo Zahela, project coordinator for CESVI.               PHOTO: mBONGISENI mASEKO

Colonel Sandile Sonjani, the station commander at Philippi East Police Station signing the memorundum. Next to him is Andisiwe Maginxa, the Miss SA Common Wealth finalist and Luvuyo Zahela, project coordinator for CESVI. PHOTO: mBONGISENI mASEKO

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A Miss SA Common Wealth finalist was at the forefront of a march against women and child abuse in Philippi on Tuesday.

Andisiwe Maginxa, 29, who is also a social worker at a shelter called Siyakuzenzela, which caters for abused women and their children, led the peaceful march from Khanyisa Centre to the Philippi East Police Station.

This was part of her initiative for a social responsibility project, which is linked to her position as a finalist in the competition.

The march was supported by other four Hub Partners based at Khanyisa Centre, including Mosaic, Blue Sky Recycling Project, Inyanda Youth Network and Ons Plek, under the leadership of Cesvi Foundation.

They marched via Marikana and Lower Crossroads before reaching the police station.

It all started with a candlelight ceremony, in memory of the women and children who lost their lives due to domestic violence and children who lost their lives due to child abuse and neglect.

Maginxa read and handed over the signed memorandum to Colonel Sandile Sonjani, the station commander.

Among the demands on the memorandum was that all perpetrators of domestic violence be brought to book and that cases to be fully investigated to ensure successful prosecution, for the police to put more effort in areas where there is high prevalence of crime; for the police to work together with all stakeholders in the area to ensure that domestic violence is rooted-out and also that the police and investigators work hard in lobbying for a no free bail stance against perpetrators.

Maginxa will be representing the province in the finals to be held in Gauteng on 24 November.

She said the competition is about encouraging girls not to lose hope, regardless of circumstances they grow-up in.

“I was raised by my aunt, because my parents could not afford to maintain me since they were unemployed, but I did not lose hope. I want to be a role model to them so they will know that they can achieve anything in life. I chose a career in social work, because I like helping the community. We see many women per week who are abused. I wanted to enter for Miss South Africa, but I was told that I was late(for the entry),” Maginxa said.

A 35 year old woman, who wished to remain anonymous, said she took a decision to leave her abusive husband after 10 years of marriage.

“I hid the fact that I was beaten-up and verbally assaulted by my husband all these years, but I then took a decision to run away from home about two weeks ago.

I am now staying in a shelter with my three children. He would beat me up if there is no money and he treated me like a madam when I had money. I kept on forgiving him, because he told me that he was dealing with his anger problem, but there were no positive results coming forth,” she said.

She took away their two girls aged 12 and 6 and also their baby boy aged 3.

Sonjani said violence against women and children is “escalating” in the area.

“We deal with no less than 60 cases of women and child abuse every month. We also find that it is becoming common for victims of domestic violence to withdraw the cases. That gives perpetrators an opportunity to repeat the crime.” he said.

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