Policy dialogue to place GBVF under the spotlight … again

The Minister in the Presidency responsible for Women, Youth and Persons with Disabilities, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, will this week host a policy dialogue on the prevention of gender-based violence and femicide (GBVF).

The two-day session, which gets under way on March 26, will serve as a platform for policymakers, stakeholders, and experts to review the existing GBVF prevention policies.

It will also provide an opportunity for stakeholders to share insights, research findings, best practices, and lessons learned from global best practices on GBVF prevention initiatives.

National pandemic

“The exchange of knowledge by stakeholders will help to inform and enrich policy formulation and also raise awareness about the prevalence and consequences of GBVF among policymakers, government officials, civil society organisations, and the private sector,” said the department in a statement.

Dlamini-Zuma will be joined by the EU’s ambassador to South Africa, Dr Sandra Kramer, and head of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Gender Unit SADC Secretariat, Phemelo Maiketso.

President Cyril Ramaphosa pronounced GBVF a national pandemic based on its magnitude and severity, resulting in the development of a comprehensive national GBVF prevention strategy aimed at reducing incidences of GBVF.

The national strategic plan on GBVF was adopted in 2020 as a society-wide programme to end GBVF.

Six pillars of a strategic plan

The plan has six pillars, including accountability, coordination and leadership; prevention and rebuilding; justice, safety and protection; response, care support and healing; economic power; and research and information.

In August 2023, President Cyril Ramaphosa spent a day listening and talking to young men and boys about GBVF.

His audience, from schools across Gauteng, had gathered at a movie theatre at Maponya Mall in Soweto. 

Ramaphosa was there to lend an ear to their challenges and see how he could assist them in not being part of the men who abuse and kill women and children.

The dialogue formed part of Ramaphosa’s presidential indaba.

The effect of broken families

Throwing questions at the president, the young men highlighted the impact of broken families and how this has had a bad effect on their attitudes towards women.

Ramaphosa told the indaba that the government understands how broken homes have resulted in a broken society that has normalised the scourge of GBVF.

He said it was time for society to redefine masculinity.

“When I declared GBV a pandemic in the midst of Covid-19, it was because of these GBV cases that happen in the most intimate spaces, like homes,” said Ramaphosa. – SAnews.gov.za

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