VULINDLELA STADIUM, MSUNDUZI MUNICIPALITY
Women United In Moving South Africa Forward
- Hon Speaker, fellow delegates, Ladies and gentlemen and all protocols observed.
- As we commemorate National Women’s day in South Africa, I want to extend my gratitude to one of South Africa’s women of strength, who is passionate about women issues, our Leader, the Leader of the Minority Front, The Hon ST Rajbansi for allowing me the opportunity to be a part of this Women’s Day Celebration and to contribute to our theme for 2018, WOMEN UNITED IN MOVING SOUTH AFRICA FORWARD.
- The Minority Front believes that the key word in the theme is unity. Human rights issues for women should always be addressed on the same page and we should not fail to speak in one voice.
- I urge women to take unity to a new level. Always remember that, ‘unity is strength.’ We as women need unite and speak in one voice and ensure that we protect and defend our rights regardless of our political ideologies. When united, women can do wonders. Our aim is to eradicate poverty and the emancipation of social ills that women constantly experience.
- In 1956 women marched across the colour line to bring closure to our long drawn battle against racism. More often than not, women are in disunity, which does a great disservice to woman who are the majority voters, yet fewer women sail to elected positions in all spheres of government.
- Hon. Members, Gender based violence has become a serious issue. The Minority Front calls for the end of injustice and all kinds of mistreatment towards women as we approach the 2019 general elections.
- THE MINORITY FRONT SAYS THAT THE VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN MUST STOP HERE.
- The hidden epidemic of violence against women must be highlighted today because if we compare our issues in the 1950s, those were simple common bread and butter issues, such as, housing, food prices, and permit issues. In this modern day South Africa, women are faced with harsher challenges of economic exclusion, financial systems that perpetuate their discrimination and limited participation in political life. Lack of access to education and poor retention of girls in schools ,gender – based violence ,harmful cultural practices and the exclusion of women from peace tables are posing major barriers of achieving gender equality in South Africa by 2030. We cannot miss SDG5
- In these next 12 years to 2030, we women must be at the forefront of transformation in, therefore our contribution to social change can only be achieved through political representation.
- In keeping with our 100 years commemoration of a great leader, NELSON MANDELA .HE BELIEVED THAT THAT WOMENS RIGHTS ARE AN INTEGRAL PART OF A FREE SOCIETY. MADIBA STATED AND I QUOTE; FREEDOM CANOT BE ACHIEVED UNLESS WOMEN ARE EMANCIPATED’’
- Leadership positions in politics were previously dominated by men, and women’s entry into the sphere has been included in South Africa’s globally acclaimed narrative of triumph.
- Violence against women in politics is not a new phenomenon. Women who seek political power have always faced resistance. Yet as more and more women around the world run for office, claiming their right to equal participation, the backlash has intensified and become more visible. Over the past two decades, dozens of countries have adopted legislative quotas and parity laws to ensure women’s political representation in a context of structural inequality. While the limitations of such measures have been widely debated, it is undeniable that they have enabled more women to enter politics than ever before.
- The problem of violence against women in politics is thus not limited to one country or region of the world or to women undertaking one type of political activity. While it has long existed, this problem appears to have emerged with greater force in recent years as the number of women in political office has grown. One possibility is that having more women as political actors may simply multiply the sites of potential violence. Alternatively, women’s greater political voice and visibility may appear threatening to those concerned with preserving the status quo, exacerbating tendencies towards violence as a means to forestall change. Finally, greater discussion of the need to enhance women’s political participation may be fostering greater consciousness worldwide regarding inequality in political life – in turn, casting new light on dynamics that have been occurring for many years. Whatever the reason, greater attention to this phenomenon has become evident in recent years, raising questions about how this problem should be understood and tackled at the level of political practice. Our Leader, the Hon. Mrs S. Thakur – Rajbansi will debate this key area at another sitting and give the MF recommendations on Legislative and Electoral Reforms.
- This year marks 62 years since about 20 000 women from all walks of life marched to the Union Buildings in protest about both gender equality and gender equity.
- Hon. Members, True equality is not the superiority of a woman, but the equal status of men and women.
There are still many difficulties facing women in society and many challenges that women have to face on a daily basis – increasing brutality and violence against women, cultures and traditions that keep us subservient, work places that pay women less for the same job that a man does, sanitation indignity, poverty, and unemployment, to name a few. These are built on structures that were designed to dominate and discriminate against women. We need to redesign these structures for ourselves. Redesign them for a fair and just system.
- Hon members, We need a collective effort because men and women bring different, complementing qualities and, as a united effort, this will prove to be more powerful to overcome any dysfunctional current structure. We need to come together as societies, business and religious leaders, civil society organisations, and even individuals to bring about an end to gender inequality.
- Although there have been great strides made to close the inequality gap, there is so much more that has to be accomplished to truly free women, and if we experience small victories, one day at a time, we will reach complete gender equality, hopefully by 2030, where our voices will be heard, loud and proud!
- FINALLY I LEAVE YOU WITH A QUOTE FROM ANOTHER GREAT FORMER PRESIDENT, BARACK OBAMA “WITH PASSION AND COURAGE WOMEN HAVE TAUGHT US THAT WHEN WE BAND TOGETHERTO ADVOCATE FOR OUR HIGHEST IDEALS ,WE CAN ADVANCE OUR COMMON WELL BEING AND STRENGHTEN THE FABRIC OF OUR NATION.”
Debated by: Hon. Vimmi Ramdass-Bachu
Date: Wednesday 8 August 2018