Media Release For immediate Release: 09 November 2016 To: Editors, Producers and Reporters CGE celebrates International Human Rights Day The year 2016 marks 20 years since the adoption of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, similarly, it is also 20 years since the promulgation of Act 39 of 1996 that gave birth to the Commission for Gender Equality. Indeed, this year’s International Human Rights day is celebrated with lots of milestones having been achieved. As South Africans, we have so much to celebrate, moreso as a human rights institution that has been established to help strengthen and deepen democracy. 22 years since the advent of democracy has seen significant protocols, treaties, conventions that are geared into safeguarding the rights of individuals being signed and ratified. South Africa also started with the initiative of putting in place mechanisms to safe guard the rights of women and children, by establishing structures such as the Child Protection Unit (CPU) in 1986. The CPU was later expanded to become Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences Units (FCS) in 1995. The specialised Sexual Offences Court was first introduced in South Africa as a pilot project aimed at improving the adjudication of sexual offences in 1993 at Wynberg Regional Court in Cape Town. The court was considered as an intervention mechanism to prevent secondary victimisation that was suffered by the victims at the hands of the criminal justice system. The National Crime Prevention Strategy (NCPS) was another milestone that came out of the collaboration of government and the Civil Society to curb the scourge of crime, which was mostly exerted to the vulnerable groups due to their minority status both economically and socially. The NCPS led to the establishment of Victim Support and Victim Empowerment Programmes which were aimed at empowering victims and preventing revictimisation. The Strategy was adopted in 1996. The Commission also acted as friend of the court (amicus curiae) on the Bhe Case, where two laws (Black Administration Act and Instestate law of Succession Act) explained briefly hereunder should be declared unconstitutional and further that Instestate Succession Act must apply to Blacks living under customary law. The Commission in preparation for the country periodic reporting in 2010 facilitated the Mock trial where the two members of the CEDAW Committee were invited to assist the country on what to expect during the time of reporting at the Commission on Status of Women (CSW) session in New York. One of the CGE’s initiatives was making follow ups on country reservations on the African Protocol, engaging with the parliament and requesting withdrawal of reservations. One of the Commissions milestones is the convening of the Employment Equity Hearings, which were geared towards holding the Public and the Private Sector organisations accountable in terms of the implementation of the Employment Equity Act. Similarly, the convening of investigative hearings with Institutions of Higher Learning to ascertain the extent of progress made and the challenges faced in promoting gender transformation. The CGE’s Legal Department has introduced a robust approach to complaints handling and litigation. Moreover, all provincial offices are accredited with their respective Law Societies as Legal Clinics In the recent constitutional court case of Modjadji Florah Mayelane v Mphephu Maria Ngwenyama and Another, which centered on the issue of validity of a man’s marriages if his first wife is not aware that these have taken place, or has not accepted these, the CGE was amicus curiae and assisted the court in assessing the case from a gender perspective. The CGE joined as amicus curiae in the landmark case of Bhe and Others v Magistrate, Khayelitsha, and Others (Commission for Gender Equality as Amicus Curiae); Shibi v Sithole and Others; South African Human Rights Commission and Another v President of the Republic of South Africa and Another 2005 (1) SA 580 (CC) wherein the Constitutional Court confirmed the orders of the High Courts declaring the rule of primogeniture in customary law of succession as inconsistent with the Constitution and, therefore, invalid The CGE also participated in another heralded constitutional case, Shilubana and Others v Nwamitwa (National Movement of Rural Women and Commission for Gender Equality as Amicus Curiae) 2007 (5) SA 620 (CC), traditional authorities are allowed to develop customary law in accordance with norms and values of the Constitution. Through its complaints handling mechanism the CGE’s Legal Officers have also assisted the South African Police Services (SAPS) in rescuing young girls from forced marriages such as in the case which occurred in Mpumalanga. Through the research department, in the past 20 years, the commission has conducted countless research projects to generate knowledge and to monitor the implementation of different frameworks that protect and promote gender transformation and compliance in the country. Different issues such as Land Rights, Widowhood, Victims Charter, monitoring of 365 Days National Action Plan have been researched. The Commission also introduced a standard Gender Barometer Web-based monitoring tool that has been used to monitor compliance of different departments and municipalities on their implementation of gender regulatory frameworks. The department has also devised the strategy of developing the Policy Briefs out of the published research projects, which are presented to the Policy Makers and Accounting Officers within the departments in the form of Policy Dialogues. This is a good initiative as it enables the Commission to present their findings to the Policy Makers for positive reaction. The Commission through the Department of Public Education and Information (PEI), employ different advocacy strategies to reach the communities at their grassroots levels. The rational is to sensitise members of the communities about the regulatory frameworks that are in place to protect them and the strategies to be followed to access such frameworks. The PEI Department carries out its functions through conducting dialogues; conducting information sharing sessions; conducting seminars, conferences; conducting workshops; conducting community radio interviews; campaigns; road-shows; capacity building and exhibitions. All these are done in order to educate, capacitate and raise awareness about gender equality and human rights issues. There are a number of interventions that the PEI department is exploring in addressing the strategic objectives, namely :Gender based Violence schools education programme during youth month, Women’s empowerment programme during Women’s month; 16 days of Activism programme ,Human Rights and Gender Equality Programme during Human’s Rights Month, Cultural and Religious intervention programmes ,Joint coordinated programme on Lesbians gays, bisexual, transgendered and Intersex persons, Joint coordinated programme on GBV in Institutions of Higher Learning and Partnership with South African Local Government Association (SALGA) on gender equality The Commission has been working with men since its inception in order to achieve gender transformation and gender justice. “The CGE came to a realization that in order to challenge patriarchy and its toxic consequences it in needed constructive male engagement, encourage men to be positive role models and care givers and work with various men formation”, Said Mr. Mfanozelwe Shozi, the chairperson of the Commission for Gender Equality. We urge members of the public who have knowledge of and information on acts of gender based violence, human rights violation on the basis of gender and abuse to call our Toll Free Number 0800 007 709 to report such cases. ENDS, Issued by: Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) Date: 09 December 2016 Contact Person: Javu Baloyi Tel: 083 579 3306 The Commission for Gender Equality is established in terms of Section 187 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.
Press release For Immediate Release: 02 December 2016 To: Editors, Producers and Reporters CGE GAUTENG OFFICE HOSTS OUTREACH AND LEGAL ADVISORY CLINIC On the 3rd December 2016 the Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) in Gauteng will host outreach and legal advisory clinic in Alexandra at 10h00. The Commission for Gender Equality is an independent state institution established in terms of Chapter 9 of the Constitution Act No: 108 of 1996 of the Republic of South Africa. The powers and functions of the CGE are outlined in the Commission on Gender Equality Act, No 39 of 1996 (CGE Act). Section 11(b) of the CGE Act requires the CGE to develop, manage or conduct public information and education programmes to foster public understanding of matters linked to the promotion of gender equality, as well as the role and activities of the CGE. Through the CGE’s mandate, the Department of Public Education and Information is the information hub of the CGE. This department ensures that the CGE remains relevant and accessible to the public at large. The CGE continues to fulfil its mandate of information dissemination and advocacy in relation to human rights and gender equality. The event on Saturday will reflect activities undertaken by the education officer, legal officer and stakeholders. The focus is on; to raise awareness and educate people about services available for victims of Gender Based Violence and Intimate Partner Violence, to bring closer to the public services for the purpose of generating complaints, to establish good working relationships with stakeholders. The Gauteng Provincial Office strives to be proactive and take a lead in fostering positive relationships with stakeholders. ENDS, Issued by: Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) Date: 02 December 2016 Contact Person: Zanele Ncwane Tel: 082 529 6937 The Commission for Gender Equality is established in terms of Section 187 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.
Press release For Immediate Release: 18 November 2016 To: Editors, Producers and Reporters CGE URGES MEN TO TALK AND STOP MALE SUICIDE On 19 November 2016 the Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) will be joining hands with South African men as well as with men representing more than 60 Countries to celebrate International Men’s Day under the theme “Stop Male Suicide”. International Men’s Day focuses on raising awareness on men’s and boy’s health, improving gender relations, promoting gender equality, and highlighting positive role models. This year’s theme seeks to highlight the dangers that men are faced with in terms of suicide. Research has shown that the suicide rate is worse for men than women. Globally, male life expectancy at birth in 2015 was 69 years in comparison to 74 years for females. the Commission for Gender Equality calls for men to “speak out” about the challenges they face in life. The voices of men should be heard, their positive role and contributions in our society must be recognized, men are humans who must be affirmed and accorded an opportunity to learn from various experiences. Men must be encouraged to deal with mental challenges that tend to result in suicide. The CGE is also cognizant of the fact that patriarchal upbringing has killed the softer side in men to engage on crucial issues as consequence die in silence. CGE is encouraging men to talk about suicide as help is always available. In addition, any marginalisation of men could also have a ripple effect on the boy child who could assume suicide is the only solution when faced with challenges or difficulties. Therefore, society needs to embrace men, recognize their value, understand their needs and make an effort to both support them in realizing that they are an important component in the home, in society, in the world and have a meaningful role to play. Therefore, suicide is not an option. In a society where the stereotype exists that “men don’t cry “has resulted in circumstances where men have been subjected to ridicule when they talk about domestic abuse and sexual violence in their homes. Due to some of these constraints many men have either continued or worse perished in silence. The CGE is of the view that platforms should be created for men and their diversity of viewpoints to engage on various topical issues in order to help address suicidal tendencies. We also call upon the police to be sensitive to men when they report issues of abuse instead of laughing or mocking them. The Commission for Gender Equality throughout the 16 Days of Activism will also embark in legal clinics and outreach programmes that are geared into capacitating and educating men about issues relating to eliminating violence against women and Children. We assist men establish their own Men's Forum wherein issues such as suicide could be discussed. ENDS, Issued by: Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) Date: 18 November 2016 Contact Person: Javu Baloyi Tel: 083 579 3306 The Commission for Gender Equality is established in terms of Section 187 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.
To: Editors, Producers and Reporters Invitation to the Public Investigative Hearings: Transformation in the Private Sector
To: Editors, Producers and Reporters Invitation to the Public Investigative Hearings: Transformation in the Private Sector Date: 24 – 28 October 2016 Time: 10h00 – 16h30 Venue: 120 De Korte Street, Parktonian Protea Hotel, Braamfontein, 2017 RSVP: Javu Baloyi. Javu@cge.org.za or 083 579 3306 On the 24- 28 October 2016, the Commission for Gender Equality (CGE), will host “Public Investigative Hearings: Transformation in the Private Sector”. In accordance with Section 11(1)(a)(c) (d) and (e) of the Commission for Gender Equality Act of 39 0f 1996 as Amended, the CGE is obliged to investigate both the public and private sector to ascertain the extent of transformation in their respective workplace. In accordance with its powers as outlined in the CGE Act, the CGE seeks accountability from the Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) from the private sector for the slow pace of transformation in the workplace, and inadequate promotion of persons with disabilities, gender equality and women empowerment. The purpose of the hearings in part is contained in the CGE Act that compels the Commission as per its monitoring role to hold public hearings with all organs of the state, the private sector and civil society in order to raise awareness regarding these obligations and demand accountability, identify challenges and develop recommendations to ensure the realisation of gender equality in the workplace. Some of the objectives of the Hearings To ascertain the vulnerabilities and risks experienced by women in their respective workplaces.
- To ascertain the general level of non-compliance by employers with obligations flowing out of specific provisions in labour legislation aimed at promoting equality or affirming the rights of women.
- Ascertain reasons why employers fail to comply with obligations aimed at promoting gender equality in the workplace.
- Identify obstacles faced by women in the workplace which existing legislation fails to address.
- Ascertain the needs of women in the workplace which require affirmation
- Make relevant recommendations to the relevant institution to enforce compliance employment equity.
- Mercedes Benz South Africa
- Pick & Pay
- Rhodes Food Group
- Big 5 Construction
- Tiger Brands
- Vermeulen Build It
- Oos Vrystaat Kaap Bedryf Bpk
- Hall and Sons
- Mafikeng Toyota
- RCL Foods
- EH Hassim Builders World
- Jonnson Workwear
- Moorddrift Diary.
Media Release For Immediate Release: 08 October 2016 To: Editors, Producers and Reporters CGE’s response to the rape of Hluhluwe Man by three Women The Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) is outraged about a case involving the rape of a Hluhluwe man by three women. Through its mandate, the CGE is obliged to monitor cases of this kind in a bid to ensure that adequate interventions are made by the CGE and other institutions, where possible. The Chairperson of the Commission for Gender Equality, Mr. Mfanozelwe Shozi had this to say about the rape of the Hluhluwe man: “I am very sad that we experience yet another rape (regardless of who is involved). It should be noted that this happens at the time when the CGE, the State and NGO’s have taken measures to ensure that there is public awareness through Public Education and Outreach programmes that are geared towards raising awareness on matters of gender based violence in our society. This case and many other similar GBV cases should compel stakeholders with specific interest in this matter to work together in order to root out the scourge of gender-based violence in our society. As a society, we should have zero tolerance for such acts regardless of who the victim is”. According to Sexual Offences Act and Related Matters Amendment Act 32 of 2007, any person who unlawfully and intentionally commits an act of sexual penetration with a complainant without the consent is guilty of offence of rape. Rape is rape regardless of who is the perpetrator of such a heinous crime. The Commission for Gender Equality is encouraging men who are raped to report such acts and speak out against them and society should also be alert to the fact that boys and men do also get sexually violated. The CGE wants to dissuade the circulation of the video that shows the Hluhluwe man being raped by these three women. It is against the law to distribute pornographic content through social media or any other form without following legal prescripts. Such act is punishable by law. The CGE has also learnt that this rape case well be heard at the Hluhluwe Magistrate Court on 25 October 2016. The CGE will closely monitor the case as part of its internal court monitoring process to ensure justice is done and seen to be done. ENDS, Issued by: Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) Date: 08 October 2016 Contact Person: Javu Baloyi Tel: 083 579 3306 The Commission for Gender Equality is established in terms of Section 187 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. ENDS, Issued by: Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) Date: 18 March 2016 Contact Person: Javu Baloyi Tel: 083 579 3306 The Commission for Gender Equality is established in terms of Section 187 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.
Press Release For immediate release: 10 October 2016 To Producers, Editors and Reporters CGE Presents Annual Report before the Portfolio Committee on Women in the Presidency On the 12 October 2015, the Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) will be doing a presentation on its Annual Report (AR) for 2015/2016 before the Portfolio Committee on Women in the Presidency. The purpose of the presentation is to report on its activities and account for the performance against the strategic objectives as set out in the Annual Performance Plan which was tabled in Parliament at the beginning of the financial period. According to Section 181(5) of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, state institutions supporting democracy are accountable to the National Assembly, and must report on their activities and the performance of their functions to the Assembly at least once a year. This forms part of the oversight responsibilities of the Portfolio Committee for Women in the Presidency and provides the CGE with an opportunity to share with the committee the progress it has achieved towards the realization of the long term strategic goal as well as account for funds appropriated by parliament for the financial year under review. It will be sobering to note further that the Annual Report to be presented is accompanied by the Commission’s first “Clean Audit” opinion by the Auditor-General of South Africa, following a series of three unqualified reports in the past three-year cycle. “It will also be an opportune moment to engage with Portfolio Committee members on numerous critical matters such as the strategic direction to be pursued in the future, a need for alignment of national policies such as the National Development Plan with the constitutional imperatives to promote gender equality and fundamentals such as the addressing the untenable level of gender based violence and other gender related matters. The Commission is looking forward to and is grateful for this opportunity to engage with the Portfolio Committee on Women in the Presidency”, according to Mr. Mfanozelwe Shozi, Chairperson of the Commission for Gender Equality. Issued by: Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) Date: 11 October 2016 Contact Persons: Mr. Javu Baloyi Tel: 083 579 3306 The Commission for Gender Equality is established in terms of Section 187 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.
Date: 29 September 2016 Time: 09h30 – 14h00 Venue: Nutting Guest Lodge, 10km away from Mbombela Municipality RSVP: Charity Khoza email@example.com or 013 755 2428 On the 29 September 2016, the Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) in Mpumalanga will be hosting a Public Hearing on Women in Traditional Councils. The purpose of the hearing is to share good experiences and address challenges that are still affecting women in tribal councils particularly the role of Queens/Amakhosikati in promoting development in their respective communities. The hearing is also informed by the complaints the Commission has received from some of the Queens/Amakhosikati about their role in Traditional Councils. The CGE is hoping to enhance working relations as per a Memorandum of Understanding that was signed with the Provincial House of Traditional Leaders. The MOU further aimed at assisting the Tribal Councils to create a conducive environment for the Queens/Amakhosikati to perform their duties by ensuring that the communities benefit from development programmes. The Commission for Gender Equality therefore invites members of the media to this hearing.
Tomorrow, 12 July 2016 the Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) will be hosting a delegation of the Mozambican Human Rights Commission as part of their study tour to South Africa. The purpose of the visit is to learn how gender mainstreaming is promoted through the work of various institutions including parliament and the Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) amongst others. The visit is also underpinned by the need to glean key methodologies that can be replicated in Mozambique to mirror the successes of South Africa’s progress toward gender equality. In their engagement with the CGE, the delegation will be briefed on the CGE Mandate and programmes, including how the different departments of the CGE carry out their work to fulfill the CGE’s Mandate. The outcome of this engagement between the CGE and the Mozambican Human Rights Commission is for both institutions to share experiences and ideas in order to learn from each other. “This visit is an opportune moment for the Commission for Gender Equality to learn from the Mozambican Human Rights Commission and broaden the scope of gender mainstreaming within SADC and beyond. This visit by the Mozambican Human Rights Commission follows previous study visits to the CGE by delegations from other African countries such as Kenya, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Egypt and Malawi. Such visits not only help us learn from each other but also strengthen cooperation and collaboration between us”, said Mr. Mfanozelwe Shozi, the Chairperson of the Commission for Gender Equality. “The CGE believes that choosing South Africa as one of the destinations for the study tour is an affirmation of the important role that we play in helping to deepen and strength democracy not only within South Africa but also throughout the region”, added Mr. Shozi. ENDS Issued by: Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) Date: 11 July 2016 2016 Contact Person: Javu Baloyi Tel: 083 579 3306 The Commission for Gender Equality is established in terms of Section 187 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.
The Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) is disappointed at the judgement handed down against Oscar Pistorious today by Judge Thokozile Masipa. The Commission is of the view that the crime of murder perpetrated by Oscar Pistorious was of such a grievous nature that it warranted, at least, the 15-year minimum sentence as prescribed in the Criminal Procedures Act. The 6-year sentence imposed by Judge Masipa is therefore woefully inadequate given the nature of the crime committed, and in our considered view, fails to convey the necessary message of deterrence against perpetrators of similar lethal violence going forward, especially against women. In a country where at least four women are killed by their intimate partners and outcome like this belittle the experiences of the victims of gender based violence. We say this notwithstanding Judge Masipa’s unequivocal statement that the murder of Reeva Steenkamp was not a case of gender based violence. The Commission is particularly pleased that our Judicial System allowed for self-correction as evidenced by the Supreme Court of Appeal’s decision to change the conviction of Pistorious from culpable homicide to murder, and referred the matter back to the trial court for re-sentencing. Nonetheless today’s Judgement was disappointing.