South Africa-Gender-Summit

Ramaphosa urges mindset change to end S/Africa’s GBVF ‘pandemic’

APA-Johannesburg (South Africa)

South Africa needs to be united in the fight against gender-based violence and femicide (GBVF) as government, civil society, and other organisations cannot address the “pandemic” alone, President Cyril Ramaphosa said on Tuesday.

GBVF is rampant in South Africa where 855 women and 243 children were killed between April and June 2022, according to recent crime statistics.

Addressing the second Presidential Gender-Based Violence and Femicide Summit in Johannesburg, Ramaphosa said the country was faced “with an immensely difficult task to turn the mindsets of the men of our country around.” 

He noted that the majority of those who committed GBVF crimes were the country’s men who needed to be taught good values that would enable them to learn to respect women.

“These are men who are intoxicated often with their sense of masculinity, intoxicated with the sense that they are superior to the women of our country, and intoxicated with patriarchy believing that they are much more important than the women of our country,” the president said.

He added: “This is the task that we have on our hands, and this is a task that we need to win together to reach out to boys and young men to develop masculinities that value respect, understanding, and accountability.”

Ramaphosa called for the mobilisation of resources required for effective behavioural change programmes that link up with efforts of social partners in communities to address the attitudes and actions of men.

He also emphasised the need for organising dialogues targeting men in every part of society, including the workplace, schools, colleges and universities, government agencies, municipalities, and in every community as part of this mindset change programme.

NM/jn/APA

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