SA’s men are all about adding insult to injury

2017-11-05 06:13
Avantika Seeth

Avantika Seeth

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It is not a new story. A man is accused of rape. The woman is blamed.

When singer and former ANC MP Jennifer Ferguson alleged that SA Football Association boss Danny Jordaan had raped her 24 years ago, Jordaan remained mum for more than a week before his legal team finally released a statement refuting her claims and challenged Ferguson to face him in court to prove his guilt.

On Friday morning, Ferguson was interviewed by 567 CapeTalk breakfast show host Kieno Kammies.

Calling the statement a “patriarchal script”, she said she wanted Jordaan to take ownership for his actions.

When City Press published Jordaan’s denial of the allegation online this week, some shocking reader commentary emerged:

• “I am not saying he did or not, but recent rapes are worse because even the break of virginity can lead to such accusations, #my opinion”;

• “Such rapes are called consensual when it’s a high-profile person, watch the space”;

• “Mara why keep quiet for so long and talk now”;

• “Nowadays even prostitutes can claim rape if you can’t give them money, meaning money can buy everything”;

•“If I was [Jordaan] I won’t agree to anything that woman is saying. People must stop saying Danny took time to respond. It is his choice to respond. Maybe even after a year is within his right”; and

•“I thought rape was reportable within 24 hours not 24 years...”

These comments were all posted by men – according to their profiles – and have shed light on the enormous arrogance characteristic of the majority of men in our country, and perhaps the world over.

Our society is dominated by patriarchy

The most high-profile case illustrating this is that of axed Hollywood executive Harvey Weinstein, who has been accused by dozens of women of having made unwanted sexual advances dating as far back as 30 years ago.

In June, a momentous ruling was passed by the Johannesburg High Court, allowing sexual assault claims to be reported by victims at any time, rather than only within a 20-year time frame.

Up until Friday morning, Ferguson was still unclear about whether she would institute charges against Jordaan.

But perhaps the new ruling, which challenged section 18 of the Criminal Procedure Act, can act as a driving force for many victims to now come forward, confident in the knowledge that the law is on their side.

Despite what may happen between Ferguson and Jordaan, one thing is clear: social media serves as a stark reminder that our society is dominated by patriarchy.

Most men will defend each other, forcing women to find the strength to swim in stormy seas.

Read more on:    safa  |  danny jordaan  |  jennifer ferguson  |  rape

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