Report Gender Discrimination & Abuse: 0800 007 709
.
Viewing posts categorised under: Press Statement

Gender Commission welcomes the SCA School Fees easing on single parents

Posted by Immanuel Makonko in Press Statement | 0 comments

Media Release   For immediate Release: 22 January 2018   To: Editors, Producers and Reporters     Gender Commission welcomes the SCA School Fees easing on single parents  The Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) welcomes the landmark decision by the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) that will see relief provided to thousands of single parents in public schools. This is against of the backdrop of the Western Cape High Court’s judgement that the South African Schools Act hold parents jointly liable for the payment of school fees. The judgement from the Western Cape High Court was placing the burden on single parents who have separated or divorced from their partners. In cases where these partners did not contribute, it became very difficult for single parents to afford paying the school fees.   The Commission believes the effort of Michelle Saffer is not only commendable in challenging the Western Cape High Court judgement, it is equally a welcoming news to those that are in the same predicament of not affording school fees due to their separated or divorced partners not contributing. Women are in majority in bearing the brunt of having difficulty in paying school due to their socio-economic conditions.   It is therefore critical that this declaratory order by the SCA that confirms that Section 40 (1) of the South African Schools Act 84 of 1996, provides for joint and several liabilities of parents, fee exemption applications can be processed in terms of the Act and the Regulations to enable single parents separated from their partners or divorced to have their applications assessed in relation to their own personal circumstances not on combined income.   The CGE believes this will go a long way to alleviate the plight in particularly of women who are at most at the receiving end of this lack of support from separated or divorced partners. Underpinned by difficulty in accessing maintenance money which could be tedious and overbearing, the Commission believes this judgement will be a welcome relief for single parents if implemented effectively.     The Commission is calling on the Department of Basic Education, Provincial Departments of Education, District Officials and School Principals to ensure that the SCA judgement is implemented. Due respect and consideration should be given to those who ask for exemption. This judgement will affirm the rights of both male and female single parents in ensuring that they provide for the education of their children without having to seek assistance directly from their separated or divorced partners.   The Commission believes that the lack of implementation of the South African Schools Act not only affects gender equality but women who at best do not know where their ex-partners work, let alone the addresses where they live. If this judgement is effectively implemented it will help restore the dignity of many women who are constantly asked about their partners’ whereabout in situations wherein they cannot afford to pay school fees.   The Commission for Gender Equality Act 39 of 1996 Section (11) 1 gives the Commission powers to monitor and evaluate policies and practices of organs of state at any level, organs of state at any level, statutory bodies or functionaries, public bodies and authorities and private businesses, enterprises and institutions in order to promote gender equality and may make any recommendations that the omission deems necessary. It is therefore critical that the CGE monitors the effective implementation of the judgement in ensuring that women in particular are less dehumanized by those that refuse to do right by them. The CGE will ensure as mandate by the CGE Act take necessary steps to ensure compliance with the law.   Ends, Issued by: Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) Date:  22 January 2018 Contact Person: Javu Baloyi Tel: 083 579 3306 The Commission for Gender Equality The Commission for Gender Equality is established in terms of Section 181 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa in order to promote respect for gender equality and the protection, development and attainment of gender equality.  

Gender Commission condemns the alleged incident of assault by PE Doctor

Posted by Immanuel Makonko in Press Statement | 0 comments

Media Release For immediate Release: 17 January 2018 To: Editors, Producers and Reporters    Gender Commission condemns the alleged incident of assault by PE Doctor   The Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) has noted with dismay media reports indicating that a well-known Port Elizabeth (PE) Medical Doctor, Mfundo Mabenge has allegedly assaulted Abongile Bulo, a 16-year-old teenager at a church function.   The Commission categorically condemns all forms of gender violence. The Commission is extremely disappointed that someone whom society revere due to the nature of his profession and supposed to be exemplary has allegedly done something that is very unfortunate and unwarranted. The Commission is calling on Dr. Mabenge to unequivocal apologise to the Abongile, the church and the country, if the allegations against him are true. The CGE is also calling on the church that he belongs to, to suspend him with immediate effect from all duties pending the outcome of the investigation in the matter.   This is reprehensible and inexcusable especially coming after the backdrop of the 16 days of Activism of No Violence against women and children wherein the Commission and like-minded institutions were focussing on greater efforts in ending violence Against Women and Children.   The CGE believes the church based on the severity of allegations in a country where rampant abuse of women and children has reached alarming proportion will act with speed to ensure that justice is served for Abongile and other women who have been victims of gender based violence throughout the country. The Commission will be monitoring the case to ensure that justice for both the alleged perpetrator and the victim is served. We urge members of the public who have knowledge of and information on acts of gender based violence and abuse to call our Toll-Free Number 0800 007 709 to report such cases. ENDS,   Issued by: Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) Date:   17 January 2018 Contact Person: Javu Baloyi Tel: 083 579 3306 The Commission for Gender Equality The Commission for Gender Equality is established in terms of Section 181 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa in order to promote respect for gender equality and the protection, development and attainment of gender equality.

Gender Commission supports COSATU and SACCAWU strike at Shoprite

Posted by Immanuel Makonko in Press Statement | 0 comments

Media Release For immediate Release: 21 December 2017 To: Editors, Producers and Reporters     Gender Commission supports COSATU and SACCAWU strike at Shoprite   The Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) has noted with keen interest media reports indicating a call for a nation-wide strike by the South African Commercial, Catering and Allied Workers Union (SACCAWU) and Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) at Shoprite. The CGE supports the strike. This support is informed by the Commission’s own studies on gender transformation that looked at the retail sector. The CGE believes there has been minimal progress in addressing gender transformation in the workplace.   Women in our country continue to face persistent marginalisation from power and influence. This can be attributed to a range of factors including the influences of South Africa’s colonial history and dominant patriarchal paradigms.   The CGE is calling on the Department of Labour to conduct an immediate investigation on the failure of Shoprite to address issues that have been in the public domain impacting on the well-being of women workers. Lack of access to safe and reliable staff transportation for women who work extended trading hours is a major problem. Women are left to fend for themselves thus being exposed to activities that negatively affects their human dignity. Gender transformation and women participation in the managerial level remains unaddressed in South Africa’s workplaces.   The CGE appeals to leaders of the industries to be cognisant of women’s basic human rights and labour rights such as maternity leave and provision of adequate and suitable health and safety protective gear. Women workers are increasingly vulnerable and ILO standard on the Equality and Equity is not adhered to. Trade Unions should continue raising women worker rights in the workplaces. We implore the private sector to strongly consider and share Good practices inter sectorally and across the economic sectors on women employment.   The CGE in the new year will approach NEDLAC with an intent to partner with them in pursuing meaningful dialogue between social partners around issues of gender transformation and women discrimination in the workplace.             We urge women workers who experience discrimination in the workplace to report such cases using the CGE Toll-Free Number 0800 007 709.   ENDS   Issued by: Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) Date:  21 December 2017 Contact Person: Javu Baloyi Tel: 083 579 3306 The Commission for Gender Equality The Commission for Gender Equality is established in terms of Section 181 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa in order to promote respect for gender equality and the protection, development and attainment of gender equality.

Gender Commission shocked at the assault of a gender activist

Posted by Immanuel Makonko in Press Statement | 0 comments

Media Release For immediate Release: 17 January 2018 To: Editors, Producers and Reporters   Gender Commission shocked at the assault of a gender activist   The Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) is shocked at the alleged assault of a gender activist, Pamela Mabini who has been leading marches against sex assault-accused Pastor Tim Omotoso, The Commission condemns the alleged assault by Jongisizwe Mali that has left Ms Mabini with serious injuries.  The Commission is also saddened by the allegations that she was assaulted or attacked for her stance against the sexual and physical violence that is directed to vulnerable women and children.   The Commission is calling for those who witnessed the alleged incident to cooperate or better still volunteer information with the police since a case of grievous bodily harm (assault GBH) has been opened. In this endeavour, they will not only be supporting Ms Mabini but all survivors or victims of gender based violence who at times are left alone to face the ordeal of being assaulted or attacked.   The Commission is also calling upon the South African Police Services to conclude the investigation speedily and to ensure that the perpetrator is punished if the allegations are true, including paying for the damages of Ms Mabini’s cellphone that got broken during the alleged assault. The alleged attacker should be given the maximum sentence for such a crime as a lesson to many who would be prone to assault or threaten gender activists or any women and persons for exercising their constitutional rights. Ms Mabini should be applauded for spearheading and leading the voices against one of the serious crimes that is committed against humanity on a daily basis, not attacked. The Commission will be monitoring the case to ensure that justice for both the alleged perpetrator and the victim is served. We urge members of the public who have knowledge of and information on acts of gender based violence and abuse to call our Toll-Free Number 0800 007 709 to report such cases.   ENDS,   Issued by: Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) Date: 17 January 2018 Contact Person: Javu Baloyi Tel: 083 579 3306 The Commission for Gender Equality The Commission for Gender Equality is established in terms of Section 181 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa in order to promote respect for gender equality and the protection, development and attainment of gender equality.    

Gender Commission Calls to an End to Child Marriages

Posted by Immanuel Makonko in Press Statement | 0 comments

Media Release For Immediate Release: 13 December 2017 To:  Editors, Producers and Reporters Gender Commission Calls to an End to Child Marriages The Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) is seriously concerned at the increase of underage marriages in the country. The recent report by Statistics South Africa on underage marriages in South Africa points to a bleak future to many young girls particularly in KwaZulu-Natal, Gauteng and the Eastern Cape, however, the phenomena is not limited to these provinces only. We are also equally aware that the underage marriages tend to increase during the festive season(s) due to availability of extra cash from bonuses. The CGE is also concerned at the incidence of underage arranged marriages within certain religious communities. Underage girls below the permissible age of 18 are either engaged to be married by their parents, or are actually married in contravention of the law.  As a result of such practice which normally takes in rural communities and some churches, girls below the age of 18 are either abducted, committed or forced into marriage in violation of their Constitutional rights and the South African legislation, with disastrous impact on their education, health and emotional well-being. The CGE has (in the past) worked with the SABC and the police in Mpumalanga in rescuing a 13-year-old from being married off to a Sangoma. The Commission has also assisted a family of a 12-year-old in Gauteng from being married off. In KwaZulu-Natal, the Commission together with the National Prosecution Authority (NPA), the South African Police Services (SAPS) and the Department of Social Development have worked together to help plenty of young girls from being married off. Unfortunately, we could not save one young girl who, after being forced into a marriage whilst she wanted to further her education, committed suicide. In Eastern Cape, we have worked with traditional leaders particularly in the Lusikisiki area to help stop the scourge that was going on unabated. Lots of young girls were saved through this intervention. Underage marriages are illegal and it is incumbent upon all of us as citizenry to ensure that we end them. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Goal 5 talks about the empowering of young girls. This can only help if we ensure that child marriages are stopped. Parents, guardians or those who facilitate these marriages must be arrested and face the full might of the law. Various leaders where underage marriages are reported to be taking place must cooperate and empower citizens to practice within the Constitutional ambits. Those who are licensed to marry should desist from contravening the Constitution by marrying children. Any licensed marriage officer participating in marrying in underage girls must face the full arm of the law as this is in contravention of the Constitution and prohibited under the Marriage Act.  The Department of Home Affairs officials must ensure that those they marry are of age. The CGE is making a clarion call to members of the public who have knowledge of and information of underage marriages and acts of gender- based violence and abuse to call our Toll-Free Number 0800 007 709. Issued by: Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) Date:   13 December 2017 Contact Person: Javu Baloyi Tel: 083 579 3306 The Commission for Gender Equality is established in terms of Section 181 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa in order to promote respect for gender equality and the protection, development and attainment of gender equality.

Gender Commission enters as amicus curiae in the DA v RSA Government

Posted by Immanuel Makonko in Press Statement | 0 comments

To: Editors, Producers and Reporters Gender Commission enters as amicus curiae in the DA v RSA Government On the 5th December 2017, the Commission Gender Equality (CGE) has applied to the High Court of South Africa Gauteng Division, Pretoria to admitted as amicus curiae (Friend of the Court) in the DA Vs RSA Government (Grace Mugabe matter). Having presented its arguments before the court, the CGE has been admitted as amicus curiae in the DA Vs RSA Government (Grace Mugabe matter) under case number 58755/17. ENDS, Issued by: Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) Date:   07 December 2017 Contact Person: Javu Baloyi Tel: 083 579 3306 The Commission for Gender Equality is established in terms of Section 181 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa in order to promote respect for gender equality and the protection, development and attainment of gender equality.

WHAT ARE THE CURRENT AND FUTURE REALITIES YOUNG PEOPLE ARE FACING ON SOCIAL MEDIA IN THE CONTEXT OF GENDER BASED VIOLENCE?

Posted by Immanuel Makonko in Press Statement | 0 comments

WHAT ARE THE CURRENT AND FUTURE REALITIES YOUNG PEOPLE ARE FACING ON SOCIAL MEDIA IN THE CONTEXT OF GENDER BASED VIOLENCE?   On the 08th December 2017 at the Protea Hotel Pretoria Manor from 10h00-15h00, the Commission for Gender Equality (CGE), Film and Publication Board (FPB) and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) is collaborating on a dialogue to address the current and future realities facing young people on social media in the context of Gender Based Violence (GBV).  The dialogue will be hosted 8 at the Protea Hotel Pretoria Manor from 10am.   The dialogue coincides with the 16 Days of Activism for No Violence against Women and Children campaign and it aims to unpack how social media may desensitize young people to gender based violence.   We have seen a rise in violent content posted online especially content on GBV.  Social media has made it easy to create and upload content which may go viral in seconds.  We have noticed that people would rather take a video of a violent act instead of assisting the victim.  A study that was previously commissioned by FPB to assess the impact that specific classifiable elements have on young people showed that young people are desensitized to violence and horror.   CGE has also conducted a study which has revealed that society has normalized gender based violence especially violence against Lesbians, Gays, Bisexual, Transgendered and Intersex (LGBIT).  Some of the issues that were identified include the rape and murder of young girls and discrimination in the workplace on the basis of sexual orientations. South Africa is rated amongst the worst societies when it comes to violence against women and children.  Violence against women and children does not end with physical violence; other forms of violence include emotional and psychological violence which have no visible scars but have long effects on victims and survivors.  These can be worsened through constant exposure to similar themes on social media and other forms of entertainment media.  Furthermore, content exposure can lead to children being desensitized and normalizing such behavior.   ENDS,   Media enquiries: Ms Manala Botolo Acting Manager Communications and Public Education (FPB) Manala.botolo@fpb.org.za 082 860 6748   Mr. Javu Baloyi CGE Spokesperson Javu@cge.org.za 083 579 3306   Ms Ziyanda Ngoma Programme Specialist (UNFPA) Ngoma@unfpa.org 0722990868

Gender Commission condemns the alleged incident of assault

Posted by Immanuel Makonko in Press Statement | 0 comments

To: Editors, Producers and Reporters    Gender Commission condemns the alleged incident of assault   The Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) has noted with dismay media reports indicating that Member of Parliament, Honourable Mervin Dirks has allegedly threatened to assault a fellow member of Parliament Ms Thozama Mantashe.   The Commission categorically condemns all forms of gender violence. The Commission is extremely disappointed that someone who has pledged allegiance to the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa goes against everything that he agreed to abide by. The Commission is calling for Honourable Dirks to resign as the Member of Parliament, if the allegations against him are true.  The CGE is also calling on the Speaker of parliament to suspend him with immediate effect from all duties pending the outcome of the investigation in the matter.   This is reprehensible and inexcusable especially coming during the 16 days of Activism of No Violence against women and children wherein the Commission and like-minded institutions are focussing on greater efforts in ending violence Against Women and Children.   The CGE believes Parliament based on the severity of allegations in a country where rampant abuse of women and children has reached alarming proportion will act with speed to ensure that justice is served for Ms Mantashe and other women who have been victims of gender based violence throughout the country. The Commission will be monitoring the case to ensure that justice for both the alleged perpetrator and the victim is served. We urge members of the public who have knowledge of and information on acts of gender based violence and abuse to call our Toll-Free Number 0800 007 709 to report such cases. ENDS,   Issued by: Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) Date:   01 December 2017 Contact Person: Javu Baloyi Tel: 083 579 3306 The Commission for Gender Equality The Commission for Gender Equality is established in terms of Section 181 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa in order to promote respect for gender equality and the protection, development and attainment of gender equality.

Gender Commission hails historic Bill on Paternity Leave

Posted by Immanuel Makonko in Press Statement | 0 comments

To: Editors, Producers and Reporters   Gender Commission hails historic Bill on Paternity Leave The South African Legislature has once again demonstrated that it is sincere in its’ endeavours towards the promotion, development and attainment of gender equality in South Africa when the National Assembly approved the Labour Laws Amendment Bill, yesterday.   This proposed legislation is intended to amend the Basic Condition of Employment Act of 1997 with a view to provide parental, adoption and commissioning parental leave to employees. It is encouraging to observe that this goes further than simply providing for the opportunity for an employee to qualify for parental, adoption and commissioning parental leave. It is a meaningful piece of proposed legislation because it also amends the Unemployment Insurance Act of 2001, so as to provide for the right to claim parental, adoptive and commissioning parental benefits from the Unemployment Insurance Fund.   The Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) welcomes the Labour Laws Amendment Bill because it sends a clear signal that the Legislature has a good understanding of the gender related inequalities which continues to impede the socio-economic development of vulnerable groups in South Africa. In this regard, the innovative nature of Bill will be realised on promulgation because this is when certain groups such as parents who cannot conceive but have the option of surrogacy can take steps to fulfil their dream of becoming parents of their own children.   It is a case of ensuring substantive gender equality because many individuals are prohibited from fulfilling their desire of starting a family because they are unable to access leave benefits and also face financial constraints associated with surrogacy and adoption. Therefore, on promulgation Bill will not only remove the discrimination against parents who rely on surrogacy when it relates to leave benefits but such parents will also be able to access UIF benefits as well. This dual implication of Bill will bring about meaningful changes to the gender equality landscape in South Africa.   This Bill will in particular encourage men to be involved in the upbringing of their children. It will also assist men in understanding that care work is their responsibility too and not that of women only.  This Bill will go a long way in ensuring that fathers bond with their children in substantive meaningful ways.   In approving the Bill, the National Assembly is one step closer in enacting one of the most innovative and progressive pieces of legislation in the world and should be applauded for being one of the most gender responsive legislators that modern society has witnessed. Such circumstances augurs well for the people of South Africa.   The CGE regards the Labour Laws Amendment Bill as an important piece of legislation that will go a long way in the promotion of gender equality and will monitor future develops herein closely.   ENDS,   Issued by: Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) Date:   30 November 2017 Contact Person: Javu Baloyi Tel: 083 579 3306 The Commission for Gender Equality is established in terms of Section 181 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa in order to promote respect for gender equality and the protection, development and attainment of gender equality.

CGE Calendar of Events 2017

Posted by Immanuel Makonko in Press Statement | 0 comments

Calendar of Events 2017