Hansard: JS: Unrevised hansard

House: Joint (NA + NCOP)

Date of Meeting: 11 Aug 2015


No summary available.








Members of the National Assembly and the National Council of Provinces assembled in the Chamber of the National Assembly at 14:04.


The Deputy Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces took the Chair and requested members to observe a moment of silence for prayer or meditation.




The MINISTER OF WOMEN IN THE PRESIDENCY: Chairperson, members of the National Council of Provinces, hon members, distinguished guests, two days ago, we converged in Zamdela, Sasolburg to celebrate the 59th anniversary of the 1956 women’s march under the theme: Women United in Moving South Africa Forward. The massive character of the celebration of the National Women’s Day was the best way of paying homage to the generation of 1956. Unlike other national days that we celebrate, National Women’s Day is the only day with a baseline and our commitment this year was to live up to a standard set by the generations of 1956. I am proud to inform Parliament that over 25 000 women celebrated the 59th anniversary of this important historic day.


This indicates the power of women to mobilise and be a force for leadership and change, as reflected in the theme of Women United in Moving South Africa Forward. We must remember that social awareness and advocacy is a key component of government’s strategy and the national day’s events provide all of us with an opportunity to rededicate ourselves as South African women and men in partnership, to move the gender struggle forward.


Let me take this opportunity to congratulate the newly elected leadership of the biggest and the oldest women’s organisation in the country, the ANC Women’s League, under the leadership of Minister Bathabile Dlamini. [Applause.]


Since the turn of the last century, women have emerged as primary catalyst for protest against apartheid colonialism. We need to recognise the stalwarts that confronted colonialism, apartheid, pass laws, land dispossession and all. The role played by women in the history of South Africa cannot be complete until we take a journey that begins from the era of Manthatisi, Mkabayi kaJama, Mantsopa, Queen Modjadji, Charlotte Maxeke and her ilk, through the generations of 1956 and beyond.


We further pay tribute to women leaders of the 1950s in the caliber of stalwarts such as Amina Cachalia, Dorothy Nyembe, Albertina Sisulu, Rahima Moosa, Adelaide Tambo, Frances Baard, Bertha Gxowa, Rita Ndzanga, Sophie De Bruyn, Izithwalandwe Lillian Ngoyi, Helen Joseph, Ray Alexander, Ruth Mompati, Gertrude Shope and many others who stood the test of time.


As we celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Freedom Charter, women continue mobilising behind the banner of the Women’s Charter and the Freedom Charter. Women across decades have organised and fought valiant struggles through of women organisations, trade unions, faith-based organisations, organisations of professionals, youth organisations of and student organisations of.


Our commitment as this Ministry is that women’s issues and gender equality can no longer be a focus only in August. Hence among others, we have launched a #365 days campaign; strengthening an ongoing partnership and regular dialogues.


With effect from June 2015, we have an approved organisational structure endorsed by Minister of Public Service and Administration also completed a skills audit and matching and placing our staff into new structure and we have focused our strategy to the National Development Plan, NDP.


Our approach to the link on on-going work for women on socio-economic empowerment and gender equality in all the programmes of government, private sector and civil society. Whilst we have made achievements, there are still many challenges facing us in particularly rural women like access to energy and water, which continues to make them vulnerable to violence and sexual abuse. This also consumes women’s time and prevens them from being fully economically active.


South Africa has significant legislations reforms, developed and implemented policies and programmes based on the Constitution incorporating the Bill of Rights, which seeks to promote and protect women’s rights at home, in communities and in the workplace.


Women’s Month is a time when we not only celebrate, but reflect on progress both the achievements and the challenge we face in our struggle for women’s empowerment and gender equality. It is therefore befitting that as we celebrate these 59th Anniversary, we pause to reflect on the progress made since the dawn of democracy and assess our achievements in the realisation of a truly non-racial, non-sexist, democratic and united South Africa.


It is against this background that the President has launched the first report on the status of women. We hope that the report will be used by all stakeholders to identify the gaps and seek measures to close those gaps to improve the socio-economic empowerment of women. Our approach is to ensure that women’s empowerment is a societal programme that requires an active citizenry. This will be monitored and made public annually through the report on the status of women during Women’s Month.


The report has made significants recommendations, which the Department of Women will be engaged on, and evaluating the impact of, as well as monitoring progress.


The economic cluster, the report says it must ensure that fast-tracking of women’s economic empowerment through addressing ownership of land and property, access to finance, equal pay for equal work and unpaid labour. The report also identifies the low rate of participation by women in the economy.

It reports that a need to generate and disaggregate data in terms of race, gender, geography and other critical factors.


A need to monitor and encourage young women and girls into fields of studies previously regarded as male domains like the academic disciplines of science, technology, engineering and mathematics, Stem fields. But today in the gallery, I want to take this opportunity to introduce to you a rising star, who is with us joining us today, Ntokozo, who is 12-years-old, a Grade 6 learner who represented South Africa at the World Championships of Performing Arts in Los Angeles and won a gold medal, silver medal and a bronze. [Applause.] There she is. [Applause.] She also received Champion of the World ... {Applause.] for her sterling performance in dramatical drama. It reflects that it is possible, and the sky is the limit for our teenagers for your girl children, and takes this opportunity ... [Applause.] to also thank women from the film industry and the arts and creative industry who have join this debate today. It’s a reflection of South Africa’s moving the women’s agenda forward in ensuring that they participate or they become at the centre of our economy.


Increase support to women and girls that drop off from education due to family commitment and pregnancy by providing social support. The report includes the Early Child Development and care facilities for the sick to release these women and girls from care work.


It reports that the rate of new HIV/Aids infections particularly amongst young women between ages of 14 and 24 needs to be addressed.


Accessible and affordable child care facilities have been identified, which need to be in place in order to promote women’s participation in the economy.


This year, we celebrate the 59th Anniversary against the milieu of the celebrations of the 60th Anniversary of the Freedom Charter. We must use the occasion of the 59th Anniversary to chronicle the immense contribution of women in the drafting of the Freedom Charter and in the struggles for liberation.


Our Women’s Month of 2015 is a build up towards the 60th Anniversary of the women’s march and is aimed at achieving the following, and making sure that we are able to as a country to mobilise our women in diverse and united. The intention is to educate the nation about the role of women played in the emancipation of the continent, to document the correct stories of “Herstory” of South Africa, to celebrate women who have made it in all spheres of life in South Africa; to honour and celebrate the girls of 1976 and the role played by young women in the liberation struggle; to unite South African women in diversity; and to celebrate the struggles of the women over decades and to rejuvenate our commitment to strive for a society that is truly non-racial, non-sexist, united, democratic and free of all forms of discrimination.


The Women’s Month 2015 therefore kicks started mobilising and celebrating, which will go out throughout 2016, and that will culminate into various festivities of the 60th Anniversary of the women’s march. Our mobilisation of women is part of the African Women’s Decade and we will continue to mobilise around the African Union theme: “2015 The Year of Women’s Empowerment Towards Africa Agenda 2063”.


This theme shows that the African Union’s commitment to put women at the heart of the developmental agenda of our continent through, among others, the African Women’s Decade 2010-20 and the Africa Agenda 2063.


This commitment is consonant with the work of Samora Machel, former President of Frelimo when he addressed the First Conference of the Mozambican Women on March 4, 1973 when he said, and I quote:


The liberation of women is not an act of charity. It is the result of a humanitarian or compassionate position. It is a fundamental necessity for the Revolution, a guarantee of its continuity, and a condition for its success.


In conclusion, today as we move South Africa from a premise that empowerment of women to participate will be fully in our economic life and development across all sectors is essential to build stronger economies that create jobs and improves lives of ordinary people. The economic empowerment of women is a prerequisite of reducing poverty in our country and dismantling patriarchy. Therefore, a radical economic transformation without the full inclusion and empowerment of women is unsustainable. I thank you. [Applause.]


Mrs D ROBINSON: Hon House Chair, members and guests, much has been said and written about the status of women in recent days. Mass meetings, marches, conferences, theatre productions have all pointed to the fact that women form the backbone of society, that much of the constitutional freedom that has been achieved can be attributed to the spirit and resilience of women through the ages, resisting unjust policies and initiating campaigns to bring about a just society with equal rights for all.


We pay tribute to the brave women who marched to the Union Buildings in 1956 to demand an end to the demeaning pass system. We pay tribute to the indomitable women of the Black Sash who pricked the consciences of many who lived a blinkered existence in the suburbs, ignoring the plight of their fellow Africans, through their silent protests and valuable voluntary work in advice offices, assisting those who were victims of the pass laws, the forced removals and the unjust laws.


Before I carry on, I would like to draw your attention to an example of how patriarchal and stereotypical attitudes are still so prevalent in our society today. On Women’s Day, Bic SA released a “Happy Women’s Day advert” that, said “Look like a girl. Act like a lady. Think like a man. Work like a boss.” While the justified outrage so brilliantly expressed on social media has highlighted why this statement was so problematic, the company released an apology that displayed an utter lack of understanding of why this advert was so offensive. I am happy to say that the DA will be reporting Bic to the Advertising Standards Authority. [Applause.]


Now let me continue. It must be said that progress has been made since then: in public life, the business world and in politics, but let’s take a closer look. Women are well represented in the world of politics, with 41% of seats in the National Assembly and the Cabinet belonging to women, while 40% of Deputy Ministers are women. However, despite the ANC’s commitment to equal representation, only one premier of the eight ANC-led provinces has a female premier and there are very few female mayors in the municipalities. Is it any wonder, then, that the ANC Women’s League declared not too long ago that South Africa is not yet ready for a female president? The idea that a country has to be “ready” for a female leader is insulting. This notion plays straight into the hands of the patriarchs and only serves to compromise and undermine the efforts of female politicians and gender equality activists in all parties.


But what about the situation of ordinary women - those struggling to make a living? It is the families of those slain at Marikana that come to mind. The pain of the widows and families who were robbed of breadwinners, husbands and fathers, with no justice, no compensation, while some people continue to study reports. Does this not smack of exploitation, of a president and government dragging their heels and ultimately delaying justice, protecting some of the big names in power structures and condoning the action taken by the police who unleashed such brutality?


When it comes to reducing the inequality in our country, we need to do the right thing every day. Otherwise, Women’s Day and Women’s Month are a sham.


As economic growth stagnates and job losses increase, so people become more desperate and gender violence and abuse increase. This is the reality for far too many South Africans.


The President has said that if we are to succeed as a nation more women should participate in the micro and macro economies. But how does he plan to aid this? How effective have the many plans that the Department of Women have been tasked with overseeing been? The President has also in the past taken a strong stand, saying that women should not be disrespected or discarded and should not bear the brunt of patriarchy and gender inequality. Yet one can’t help but remember the rape charges against the President, which resulted in a young woman going into hiding. On women’s rights, the leader of this country seems to talk left and walk right.


The government has committed to implementing gender-responsive budgeting, which aims to ensure that government planning, programming and budgeting contribute to the advancement of gender equality and the fulfilment of women’s rights. It entails ensuring that policy to combat gender equality is effective, that allocated funds are sufficient, and that the implementation of associated initiatives is sound.


Considering the great need to ensure that women in South Africa are empowered to reach their full potential, the policies and the implementation thereof of the Department of Women need to be interrogated and investigated, so we may determine if headway is being made.


It is for this reason that the DA will call on the Parliamentary Budget Office, mandated to provide independent, objective and professional advice and analysis to Parliament on matters relating to the budget, to investigate if and how effectively gender-responsive budgeting is being carried out. The aim here is to check whether money allocated to implement policy is spent as allocated, who the money reaches, and whether this funding has been used effectively to change negative gender patterns in society.


The fact is that while jobs are in jeopardy, while structural sexism hinders growth and empowerment, while patriarchal attitudes prevail despite what is said, there will be no progress. Only freedom, fairness and opportunity for all can bring about unity of purpose, which can take South Africa, men and women, forward to prosperity.


If more women are empowered to participate in the economy in order to earn a living for themselves and their families, giving them dignity, independence and self-worth, it will bring about a more prosperous South Africa. I thank you. [Applause.]


Nksz M S KHAWULA: Mhlonishwa, umlando wale lizwe usinike amaqhawe amaningi abantu besifazane ababamba iqhaza elikhulu ekwakheni leli lizwe lethu noma kwakukhona amadoda amaningi awayengafuni ukuthi abesifazane babeneqhaza kuleli lizwe. Umphakathi wethu unobudedengu bokuthi uphakamise abantu besilisa ngemisebenzi yabo, ngamanye amazwi bakhohlwe ngabantu besifazane uze ucindezele phansi abesifazane. Lobu ubudedengu obabangela ukuthi kwakudala laphaya indlovukazi uNandi akhishelwe ngaphandle ukuze ubukhosi bakhe bakwaZulu - kodwa noma kunjalo yena wasikhulisela kakhulu iSilo samabandla, iSilo uShaka kanjalo naye kuyaziwa ukuthi wasuka kuNandi.


Lobu budedengu obabangela ukuthi kwaziwe imisebenzi ka-John Langalibalele Dube, umuntu wasemzini, kodwa kungakhulunywa lutho ngemisebenzi kaNokuthela Dube owayesebenza kakhulu ekusekeni Uhlange. Lobu budedengu bubangele ukuthi kugqame igama lika-Nelson Mandela ngaphezu kwegama likaWinnie Mandela obambe iqhaza elikhulu emzabalazweni wenkululeko. Abesifazane abaningi abafana noVeronica Sobukwe bayilwela inkululeko yethu ngaphezu kwamanye amadoda akhona lapha ePhalamende. [Uhleko.] Uma sikhumbula iqhaza elabanjwa ngabesifazane ababefana noLilian Ngoyi neqembu lakhe, masingakhohlwa ukuthi babengalwi no-dom pass kuphela kodwa babelwela ukukhululwa kwabesifazane ekuphathweni kabi ngamalungu noma amabhunu nabesilisa njalo.


Masikhumbule ukuthi noma sinamaqhawe abesifazane alwe nobandlululo sasiphila kumphakathi odlwengula abesifazane. Ngokwezibalo sinabantu abayi-144 abadlwengulwa ngemini eyodwa. Masingakhohlwa ukuthi KwaZulu-Natali kanye naseMpumalanga Kapa izingane zamantombazane ziyathwalwa zithandane nabantu ezingavumelananga nabo zize ziyolala nabo ngokocansi ngale kokuthi lo muntu uyaphila, mdala noma unjani. Masingalibali ukuthi siphila kumphakathi onabantu abaningi abangasebenzi iningi labo yintsha nabesifazane.


Mhlonishwa, iningi labesifazane abahlala emakhaya abanamazi, abanagesi futhi bahamba indlela ende ukuya emthonjeni ukuyokha amanzi, bayadlwengulwa, abanikwa mihlaba ngamakhosi uma bengabafelokazi. Ngemuva kweminyaka engama-21 sikhululekile yihlazo leli – nilalele njalo. Yihlazo lelo. Kulo hulumeni kaKhongolose kuncane kabi okwenziwe nguhulumeni ukukhulula abesifazane.


Kuleli Phalamende esikulo uSomlomo wayalela abesilisa ukuthi bashaye abesifazane njengathi nje, abesifazane abangamaLungu aleli Phalamende, futhi kunoNgqongqoshe abaqhubeka nokwenza abesifazane abangane. Umsebenzi wabo ukuvikela abesilisa nje kuphela. UNgqongqoshe uNomvula Mokonyane, uNgqongqoshe wezaManzi Nokuthuthwa Kwendle, wathi la bazovikela uMongameli ngisho nangezibunu. Yihlazo lelo. [Ubuwelewele.] Ngimbonile-ke vele mina la sigcina egqoke ingubo enombala ophuzi nomhlophe, edunuse phambi kukaMongameli. Nginaso leso sithombe. [Ubuwelewele.] (Translation of isiZulu paragraphs follows.)


[Ms M S KHAWULA: Hon Chairperson, according to history, this country produced a lot of women leaders who played a remarkable role in building our country even though there were a lot of men that did not want the women to play a role in this country. Our community makes a mistake of praising men for their contribution and forget about the women, in other words they oppress women. This is the conduct mistake that led in Queen Nandi to lose her title of chieftaincy in kwaZulu – despite that she single-handedly raised His Majesty, it is also known that His Majesty, King Shaka, was of Nandi.


This mistake resulted in knowing about John Langalibalele Dube’s work, my in-laws, but nothing was mentioned about Nokuthela Dube’s work who played a huge role in the establishment of Uhlange. This mistake caused Nelson Mandela’s name to be popular over Winnie Mandela’s name who played a huge role in the struggle for freedom. A lot of women like Veronica Sobukwe, fought for our freedom more than other men who are here in Parliament. [Laughter.] If we remember the role that was played by women like Lilian Ngoyi and her group, let us not forget that they were not only fighting against “dom pass” but that they were fighting to free women from being abused by the members or Afrikaners and men in general.


Let us remember that even though we have women leaders who fought against racism, we lived in a society where women were raped. According to statistics, 144 people are raped in one day. Let us not forget that in KwaZulu-Natal and in the Eastern Cape girls are forced into marriage (ukuthwalwa) and get involved in a love relationship with people that they do not have an agreement with and have sexual intercourse with them without any knowledge of their health status, their age as well as other related issues. Let us not forget that we live in a society that has a high unemployment rate, and the majority of these people being the youth and women.


Hon Chairperson, most women who live in the rural areas have no water and electricity, they walk long distances to fetch water from the natural sources of water, they get raped, and the chiefs do not give them the land if they are widows. After 21 years of freedom, this is a disgrace – are you listening. This is a disgrace. This ANC-led government has done little to liberate women.


In this Parliament, the Speaker instructed men to assault the women like us, women who are Members of this Parliament and there are Ministers that are continuing to befriend women. Their only job is to protect the men. Minister Nomvula Mokonyane, the Minister of Water and Sanitation, said here that they are going to protect the President even with their buttocks. That is a disgrace. [Interjections.] I saw her the last time we were here, she was wearing a yellow and white dress bending over in front of the President. I have that photo. [Interjections.]]



Ms M S KHAWULA: Abesifazane be-ANC azange babanake abantu besifazane. [The ANC Women’s league have never stood up for women.]




Ms M S KHAWULA: Siyacela ukuthi nazi ukuthi njengoba sikhona njengabesifazane la asikakhululeki ... [We would like you to know that as we are here, as women we are not yet free ...]


The DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON OF THE NATIONAL COUNCIL OF PROVINCES: Hon Khawula. Hon member, your time has expired.


Ms M S KHAWULA: ... siyabonga. Ngiyaxolisa. [Ihlombe.] [... we thank you. I apologise. [Applause.]]


The DEPUTY CHIEF WHIP OF THE MAJORITY PARTY: Deputy Chair, the hon member made a false statement about the Minister of Water and Sanitation, she must withdraw that. It is unparliamentary because the hon Minister did not do that.

Mr M S MBATHA: On a point of order.


The DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON OF THE NATIONAL COUNCIL OF PROVINCES: Can I make a ruling on the matter that has ... [Interjections.]


Mr M S MBATHA: Point of order.


The DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON OF THE NATIONAL COUNCIL OF PROVINCES: Can I make a ruling on the matter that has just been brought to my attention.


Mr M S MBATHA: Point of order.


Mr M N PAULSEN: Hon Chairperson, when you make that ruling you must go and check that statement was made in this very House ...




Mr M N PAULSEN: ... we are not going to have the ANC ... [Inaudible.]


The DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON OF THE NATIONAL COUNCIL OF PROVINCES: Can I make a ruling on the matter that has just been brought to my attention.


Mr M S MBATHA: Yes, but I rise on a point of order, Chair.


The DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON OF THE NATIONAL COUNCIL OF PROVINCES: ... and the ruling is such that ... [Interjections.]


Mr M S MBATHA: Shut up wena! Chair, on a point of order.


The DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON OF THE NATIONAL COUNCIL OF PROVINCES: ... the ruling ... [Interjections.] ... Hon member, can you allow me to make a ruling.


Mr M S MBATHA: Okay. Shut up!


The DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON OF THE NATIONAL COUNCIL OF PROVINCES: The ruling in so far as – order, hon members! – What the Minister wore on a particular day I did pick it up but I do not know the context in which it was raised. Can you allow me then therefore to satisfy myself on the context in which the dress code or whatsoever that the Minister had on and then make a proper ruling on that. Thank you.

Nksk P C SAMKE: USekela Sihlalo weNdlu yeengwevu, uMongameli ohloniphekileyo ophakathi kwethu namhlanje, amalungu ahloniphekileyo eNdlu yoWiso-mthetho, iqumrhu lamaphondo kazwelonke, amalungu aphuma kumaphondo ngamaphondo, manene nani manenekazi, kwiminyaka nje engaphantsi kwesibini, uMqulu weNkululeko ubudibanisa amashumi amathandathu eminyaka wamiselwayo kwingqungquthela eyayiseKliptown ngomhla we-1955.


Lo mqulu wadibanisa iimfuno zabantu ezaziqokelelwe ngamawaka waka amadoda nabafazi abathi bazinikezela ukuqokelela ezi mfuno. Abazange balinde ezindlini, koko bazibandakanya nomkhosi owawuqokelela ezi mfuno. Kungoko uMqulu weNkululeko ugxininisa ingakumbi kwemiba yokhuseleko lwabafazi nabantwana.


Emva nje konyaka lo mqulu uphakanyisiwe yingqungquthela yaseKliptown, abafazi balithathela phambili idabi loqhankqalazo olwalulwela umthetho wokuphathwa kwamapasi ngokuthi nabo bangenelele. Unyaka we-1955 nowe-1956 ibaluleke kakhulu kwimbali yomzabalazo yeli lizwe. Kulo nyaka wamashumi amathandathu wamiselwayo uMqulu weNkululeko, kubalulekile ukuba sikhe sijonge emva sizibuze umgama osele siwuhambile ukuphumeza iimfuno zabantu boMzantsi Afrika.


Abantu bazidwelisa iimfuno zabo besithi baya kubona ngazo xa ifikile inkululeko. Kubalulekile ke ngoko ukuba sizigocagoce sikhangela umgama osele siwuhambile ukufezekisa iimfuno zabantu. Lo mgama sakuwuqwalasela ngakumbi ukuqinisekisa ukhuseleko lwabafazi nabantwana kule minyaka ingamashumi amabini ananye enkululeko. Le mvelaphi yeentsuku ezilishumi elinesithandathu isuka kumazwe aphesheya, apho yamiliselwa khona ukusuka kumhla wama-25 kweyeNkanga ukuya kumhla we-10 yoMnga. Kufuneka sikhumbuzane ngokhuseleko lwamakhosikazi nabantwana ukuze sikuncothule neengcambu ukuphathwa gadalala kwamakhosikazi nabantwana.


Siye sangenelele sililizwe loMzantsi Afrika ukuqinisekisa ukuba oomama kunye nabantwana bayalufumana ukhuseleko. Isivumelwano seli phulo senziwa ngomhla we-1998 njengenye yeendlela ezibalulekileyo zokuthathela ingqalelo ukuqinisekisa oomama bakhuselekile ekuhlaleni nakuzo zonke izenzo ezigwenxa zokuphathwa gadalala kwabo. Nanjengoko siqhubeka nomxholo othi ... (Translation of isiXhosa paragraphs follows.)


[Mrs P C SAMKE: Hon Deputy Secretary of the House, hon President present today, hon members of the August House at large, National Council of Provinces, hon members from different provinces, ladies and gentlemen, in just less than two years, Freedom Charter was completing sixty years since its establishment in a conference that was held in Kliptown in 1955.


This document combined people’s needs that were collected by thousands and thousands of men and women who committed themselves to collect them. They didn’t wait in their houses, but they joined the masses that were collecting these needs.  That is why the Freedom Charter emphasises more on issues of women and children safety.


After a year this document was introduced in a conference that was in Kliptown. Women joined by protesting against pass laws. In 1955 and 1956 in the history of the struggle of this country. In this 60th year since Freedom Charter was established, it is important to look back and ask ourselves how far did we go to fulfil needs of the people of South Africa.


People make lists of their needs telling themselves that seeing them will be the evidence of their freedom. It is important therefore to do introspection and look at how far we went to fulfil their needs. We look more by ensuring women and children’s safety in the twenty one years of democracy. This background of sixteen days of activism comes from overseas, where it was established from 25th November to 10th December. We must remind ourselves about the women and children’s safety so that we root up women and children abuse.


We intervened as the country of South Africa to ensure the safety of women and children.  The agreement on this campaign was done in 1998 as one of the important ways to take into consideration that women are safe in the communities and in all bad practices. As we continue with the theme that says ...]


... count me in: Together moving a non-violent South Africa. Forward.


Kufuneka sizame ukuncedisana nomthetho, ngokuthi silwe nabo baphula umthetho ukuze sikhuseleke sikwazi ukuhlala intlalo eyiyo engenabugebenga, sisebenzise ubuchwepheshe bala maxesha, amaziko eendaba, oomabonakude, ezenkcubeko, ezenkolo amasiko nezithethe zakowethu.


Emva kwenkululeko sibona abafazi bengamaxhoba ezihange nezibhoxi kwiindawo ngeendawo esihlala kuzo kweli loMzantsi Afrika. Eli ixesha lifuna ukuba abafazi baqinise imiqolo ukuze babambisane norhulumente ukulwa ezi meko. Sizibonile kwaye siyazazi iziganeko zokuthwalwa kwamantombazana. Ezi zinto ke asizithethi kuba siziva kunomathotholo, sizibona ngokwethu kwaye urhulumente, ingakumbi women’s caucus ePalamente, kufuneka incedisane nabantu ekuhlaleni kuliwe ukudlwengulwa kwamakhosikazi. Lo mkhuba akufuneki siwubukele sihleli kude ebantwini, masibe yinxalanye nabantu phaya ezantsi khon’ukuze nabo babe yinxalenye yaloo ntshukumo.


La maphulo siwabona eququzelelwa, ingakumbi kwezaa ndawo sihlala kuzo, ngamakhosikazi akomkhulu edibene kunye nabahlali. Loo nto itsho isinika amandla okuba sithi sisekhondweni lentshukumo yamakhosikazi ekulweni ukuphathwa gadalala kwabafazi kunye nabantwana. Abafazi bama ngeenyawo ukuze bambisane norhulumente ukulwa neziganeko zokuhlaselwa ngolunya kwabafazi kwilali yaseTholeni eGcuwa.


Sasiyinxalenye yaloo nto, siyi women’s caucus sincediswa yiMultiparty Women’s Caucus yePalamente ukuqinisekisa ukuba abantu bayohlukana nokuthathelwa izibeleko zabo. Urhulumente wancedisana nabo ngokuthi afake isikhululo samapolisa kula mmandla waseTholeni. Okwesibini kukho inkundla ukuqinisekisa ukuba amatyala ayaxoxwa, ukuze abenzi bobubi abaphatha gadalala abantu basetyhini bagwetywe ngoko nangoko.


Ezi zinto ke asizithethi kuba siziva, sizithetha kuba sihlala phakathi kwabo aba bantu ukuze abantu bancedisane nathi. Asibhalelwa ncwadi sisoloko siphakathi kwabo ngalo lonke ixesha xa kusenzeka ezi zinto singumbutho kaKhongolose sincediswa ngurhulumente okhokelwa yi-ANC. [Kwaqhwatywa.]


Iziganeko zokuhlaselwa kwabafazi kukhutshwe izibeleko phaya eMbizana sasikhona singala makhosikazi kwaye sasiyinxalenye ekuqinisekiseni ukuba abaphuli-mthetho baya thathwa basiwe phambi komthetho bagwetywe, nangoku ke bagwetywa. Sithetha ngezinto esizibonayo phaya kweza ndawo sihlala kuzo, nesizivileyo ukuze zixoxwe apha ePalamente ukuze kuphume izisombululo eziphuma ebantwini kuba singaba bantu, “bathi abantu.” [Kwaqhwatywa.]


Sicela umgeni kuba olu xanduva sithetha ngalo lokuphathwa gadalala kwabantu abangoomama asilulo uxanduva lukarhulumente kuphela. Ukuba phaya kwiindawo esihlala kuzo sithatha inxaxheba sibe yinxalenye, singohlukana nokuphathwa gadalala, nabantwana bethu benziwe amaxhoba besenziwa yonke into esingayithandiyo singoomama. Simele ke sisebenzisane siqinisekise ukuba amapolisa kunye noluntu enza iipolice forums ukulwa nalo mkhuba.


Ndiqinisekile Sekela Sihlalo ukuba oomaNgoyi, oomama uHelen Joseph, ooDorothy Nyembe, ooSophie de Bruyn, ooAdelaide Thambo, ooAlbertina Sisulu, nooRahima Moosa namanye amakhosikazi omzabalazo alele ngoxolo ngenxa yomgama esele siwuhambile ukuqisekisa ukuba ukuhlukunyezwa kwabantwana kunye noomama yinto yayizolo. Ukuba bekuvumelekile kule Ndlu okokuba ndivume le ngoma eyayivunywa ngoomama uSisulu, oomama uHelen Joseph xa babecula benze umngcelele ukusinga ePitoli besithi:


Bafazi! Ziintombi, ze-Afrika. Bhinqani izikhakha, ifile. i-Afrika! Mayibuye! [Uwelewele.] [Kwaqhwatywa.] (Translation of isiXhosa paragraphs follows.)


[We should try to work in line with the law, by fighting with criminals in order to be safe and live a better life without crime, using the nowadays technology, news media, televisions, culture, religion and our customs.


After democracy we see women as victims of perpetrators and criminals in different places where we live in South Africa. This time need women to be strong and work together with government to fight these things. We have seen and we know the incidents of abduction of girls. We don’t talk about these thing because we hear about them on radios, we see them and government, especially Parliament women’s caucus, must work together with the communities to fight the rape among women. We mustn’t be at a distance while this wrong behaviour is happening, we must be part of it in the grassroots level so that they are part of this movement.


These campaigns are coordinated especially in our communities, by women from royal families and those from the community. This gives us power to say we are following women’s movement in fighting violence against women and children. Women stood up and to cooperate with government to fight the incidents of brutal attacks of women in Tholeni Village in Butterworh.


We participated in that, as women’s caucus with the assistant of Multiparty Women’s Caucus in Parliament to ensure that people are free from losing their wombs.  Government helped them by building a police station in Tholeni area. Secondly there is a court to ensure that cases go to trial, so that perpetrators who violate women get arrested as soon as possible.


We do not talk about these things because we hear about them, we talk about them because we are always among them so that we help each other. We as ANC with the help of the ANC led government are always with them every time when these things happen, so no one is writing a letter to us. [Applause.]


We were at Mbizana as women when incidents of women brutal attacks where women’s wombs were removed and we participated to ensure that criminals are taken to court and get arrested, as a result they got arrested. We talk about things that we see in the places where we stay, and those we heard about so that they get debated in Parliament so that we get a solution from the people because we are those people, “people say.” [Applause.]


We must challenge this responsibility of challenge against women. It is not government’s responsibility only.  If we participate and get responsible in our places, we can get rid of violence and our children will be free from being victims of bad behaviour that we hate as women. We are supposed to work hand in hand and ensure that police and community form police forums to fight this wrong behaviour.


I am certain hon Chairperson that mama Ngoyi, mama Helen Joseph, Dorothy Nyembe, Sophie de Bruyn, Adelaide Thambo, Albertina Sisulu, Rahima Moosa and other women who were in struggle rest peacefully because of the work that we have done to ensure that violence against children and women is something of the past.  If I can get permission in this House to sing this song that was sung by mama Sisulu, mama Helen Joseph when they sung in their march to Pretoria and saying:

Women, Daughters of Africa. Wear your traditional dresses, it is dead.  Africa must come back. [Interjections.] [Applause.]]


The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Mama uSamke, order! [Interjections.]


Sicela nithethe mama singaculi. [Uwelewele.] [Kwaqhwatywa.] [Mama please speak, don’t sing. [Interjections.] [Applause.]]


Mrs L L VAN DER MERWE: Chairperson of the NCOP, our guests in the gallery, today we pay tribute to the great icons of 1956. We celebrate the fact that here in Parliament and in boardrooms across our country, women’s voices are stronger than they have ever been before. But in homes and communities, women still bear the brunt of poverty, violence and abuse. Teenage pregnancies are common. The fact that women still earn less than men also means that we will not achieve equality in our lifetime.


A recent Ipsos study tells us that less than half of the population believes that government is handling gender-based violence adequately. But, we do not need a survey to tell us this; it is patently clear. Gender equality may be a work in progress, but when it comes to gender-based violence, we are by far not working fast or well enough. In part, it comes down to money, but it is also a matter of political will.


The annual budget of the Department of Women in the Presidency is barely half of what we have spent on Nkandla. The Commission for Gender Equality is underfunded. Underfunding undermines all the progress we have made so far, because we continue to scale back on women’s empowerment programmes.


At this stage, I would do things differently. The millions spent on Women’s Day festivities would be better spent supporting NGOs and safe houses that do the actual work of assisting vulnerable women.


Money spent on large delegations to international conferences would be better spent on practical programmes, like distributing sanitary towels to school girls who cannot afford them and therefore, miss months of schooling.


We know that, if you educate a woman, you educate a family. We cannot therefore, continue to turn a blind eye to our inferior education system which continues to fail our young women. They are left with limited opportunities in a struggling economy that sees 50% of our young women unemployed. These obstacles to economic emancipation widen the gap of gender inequality.


But finally, we must ask ourselves: Are we women united in moving South Africa forward? That is hard to believe when the Department of Women recently suggested in a tweet that victims of domestic violence should be further punished when they withdraw their cases.


It is equally hard to believe when women in this House treat each other with disdain and disrespect – behaviours which have come to characterise our conduct in this House.


It is even harder to believe when leaders attack the Public Protector for doing her work without fear or favour. Where is the unity and the female solidarity then? Let us stop using language that demeans women.


Clearly, we must move beyond the rhetoric and fanfare that has come to characterise Women’s Day. Let us do what is required by ensuring that we continue to build a South Africa in which the rights of women are upheld, honoured and respected. But, it starts by investing in women, because they will empower the next generation. I thank you. [Applause.]

Mr A M SHAIK-EMAM: Hon Chairperson, members of this honourable House, guests in the gallery and members of the media, let me start off by paying tribute to the many women in our midst who sacrificed much to create a better and equal society for us to live in.


When women rally around a common goal and vision, they can change the course of history. We saw that on 9 August 1956, when more than 20 000 women of all races marched to the Union Buildings, led by the struggle icons of the time – Lillian Ngoyi, Ruth First, Rahima Moosa and Sophia Williams, amongst others.


The protest against the carrying of the dompass shook the Apartheid government of J G Strydom to its very foundation. And, the slogan ‘you strike a woman; you strike a rock’ has reverberated through our history from that day onwards as a testimony to the power of women united.


They were loyal and committed to the cause of liberating African women from the chains of social ills. Some of them never enjoyed the fruit of their struggle because they are no more, but they fought the good fight of setting other women free. They were forced into fighting a hostile and heartless system without being provided with weapons. Their only weapon was their voices, but they were undeterred and fearlessly spoke truth to the powers that were at the time.


Let me acknowledge and pay tribute to the role played by our own women including, very importantly, the mothers. We are all here as a result of a mother. My leader and President of the NFP, Zanele KaMagwaza Msibi, and other women such as our various MECs, Ministers, Deputy Ministers, Chairpersons, members from education, the media, judiciary and all other fields, are playing a pivotal role in the success of this country.


We are truly blessed in that we have woman of the highest intellect, integrity and morality. The question often asked is: Are we ready for a woman President? This is an insult to women.


Women are good enough to be Deputy Ministers, Chairpersons, to rally support, to mobilise and to do everything else, but when the time comes to talk about leadership, they are not good enough. We are saying as the NFP, this is not good enough.


Against this background, we commend the government for acknowledging the role played by women during the struggle by declaring August Women’s Month.

Of particular concern to the NFP is the effect of women’s inequality on future generations of women. The high number of deaths in households to HIV and tuberculosis leaves the growing stain of children left to fend for themselves. This puts particular strain on older female children as it result in young girls heading households, causing them to lose out on opportunities which should have been spent ... [Interjections.] We call on all woman to unite and take their correct and rightful place in society and lead this country. Thank you. [Applause.] [Time expired.]


Ms C N MAJEKE: Hon Chairperson, hon members, in spite of progress reported in the Report on the Status of Women in South Africa, most rural women and girls are still facing more obstacles in gaining access to public service, social protection, decent employment opportunities, markets and other institutions.


The voice of rural women must be recognised in policy-making in order to end discriminatory practices and ensure their access to land and other productive resources.


When women are empowered and can claim their rights, if they gain access to land and leadership opportunities, then economies grow, food security is enhanced and prospects are improved for current and future generations.


Rural women are key agents for achieving the transformational, economic, environmental and social changes required for sustainable development.


But, limited access to credit, health care and education are amongst the many challenges they face. These challenges are further aggravated by global economic crises around food and climate change. Empowering rural women is key, not only to the wellbeing of individuals, families and rural communities, but also to overall economic productivity.


Until women are seen as equal human beings by society, the eradication of gender-based violence and empowerment of rural women and girls will not be successful.


Resources used yearly during the national Women’s Month should also be used to introduce preventative measures which will help prevent women from being victims of human trafficking, patriarchal systems, and social and economic ills.


In the words of the then secretary-general of the United Nations, Kofi Annan, who said:


Gender equality is more than a goal in itself. It is a precondition for meeting the challenge of reducing poverty, promoting sustainable development and building good governance.


Indeed, pathways out of poverty for rural women should include measures designed in such a way as to reflect the complexity of gender rural livelihoods.


Policies intended to address rural poverty should include education, land and credit measures, as well as active labour-market policies and social protection, and should be introduced in an integrated manner that understands their interdependencies and which foster synergies. I thank you. [Applause.]


Dr P W A MULDER: Chairperson, the subject of this debate is worded, Women united in moving South Africa. I always thought Women’s Day is to honour the struggle of all the women in South Africa in the past and present, today, as they are still struggling. However, the ANC clearly sees it differently and celebrates only ANC women and their struggle. Let me quote from the Star of yesterday:

The ANC Women’s League’s deputy president, Sisi Ntombela, who was one of the programme directors, had earlier successfully turned a national Women’s Day event into an ANC rally. Among the songs sung was, The Free State belongs to Zuma. This is Zuma-land, they sang.


I don’t mind seeing it at an ANC gathering, but not at a national Women’s Day. What about the other women who struggled in our history? Let us take an example. The slave women of the 1800s are also important. What about the Afrikaner women in 1900 and their struggle? In 1900, my Mulder grandmother was in a British concentration camp, where many women and children died. My grandmother refused to call it the Anglo-Boer War or the South African war. She called it the English war, because according to her, the British wanted and caused the war as part of colonialism and British imperialism.


At the end of that war in 1902, 160 000 Afrikaner women and children were in those British concentration camps. At the same time, 130 000 black people were in British concentration camps. An amount of 32 000 Afrikaner women and children died in those concentration camps. That is 10 times more than the number of men that died on the battlefield. An amount of 20 000 black women died in those concentration camps. Surely, they also had their struggle.


Emily Hobhouse, a British woman, who assisted the people in the concentration camps and conveyed their plight to the world, wrote a book on this. The book’s title was, The Brunt of the War and Where it Fell. She dedicated it to all South African women. I want to read a part of the dedication. She said and I quote:


I dedicate this to the women of South Africa whose endurance of hardship, resignation in loss, independence under coercion, dignity in humiliation, patience through pain and tranquillity amidst death, kindled the reverent appreciation of the writer and has excited the sympathy of the world.


I think that it is still true today.


Ons herdenk vroue vandag, onder andere, 1956 se optog na die Uniegebou. Dit was belangrik, maar daar was ook ander optogte. Op 4 Augustus 1915 het 6 000 vroue in ’n optog ’n petisie gaan oorhandig by die Uniegebou, namens 40 000 mense, om te vra vir die vrylating van generaal De Wet en ander Afrikanerleiers. Saterdag, 22 Julie 1940 het 10 000 vroue na die Uniegebou marsjeer en ’n versoekskrif daar oorhandig.

Kom ons herdenk al hierdie geleenthede en al hierdie vroue se stryd. Vrouedag sal net tot sy reg kom as alle vroue, hulle stryd en hulle swaarkry tans en in die geskiedenis herdenk word. Ek dank u. (Translation of Afrikaans paragraphs follows.)


[Today, we commemorate women, amongst other things, the march in 1956 to the Union Buildings. This was important, but there were other marches as well. On 4 August 1915 6 000 women marched to hand over a petition at the Union Buildings, on behalf of 40 000 people, to ask for the release of General De Wet and other Afrikaner leaders. On Saturday, 22 July 1940 10 000 women marched to the Union Buildings to hand over a petition.


Let’s commemorate all these occasions and the battle all these women fought. Justice will only be done if Women’s Day commemorates all these women, their struggle and their hardship, presently and in history. I thank you.]


Ms B S MASANGO: Chairperson, the unity of women in South Africa is well documented. The very day being celebrated today embodies the power of women uniting across all walks of life, against a system that ensured that women were second citizens in this country. Their selfless resolve carried the strength and impact it had because of their unwavering unity. But today, we see that unity being eroded by the ANC, who once formed part of this important struggle.


Whilst uniting against a system contributed towards the liberation of this country, going forward, we need to unite beyond politics for causes that will ensure that women are truly free.


Take legislation for example. There is no shortage of laws that seek to protect women. However, women abuse is at its highest, at the moment, in the Republic. Women at all levels and from all walks of life need to unite for the implementation of laws that protect them.


It has been said that women are the custodians of children and they bear the extra brunt of child abuse, while there is sufficient legislation to protect children from abuse. It is estimated that one out of every six women is assaulted in South Africa. In at least 46% of these cases, the men involved also abuse the children living with the woman. Collective action of a united front is required to ensure that established laws and structures are actively protecting women and their children.


As the newly elected president of the ANC Women’s League and the current Minister of Social Development, I hope Minister Bathabile Dlamini will put aside the ANC‘s internal issues and truly champion combating women abuse, as she stated this weekend.


Women also need to unite for their education. Although strides have been made, women academics are still losing out to their male colleagues at South African universities, especially at senior levels. Unity is needed here to up the participation of women in education, throughout the levels.


Sihlalo, ngiyethemba ukuthi uNgqongqoshe wezeMfundo eyisiSekelo uzolithatha leli thuba analo manje lokuthi anyuse izinga lamantombazane angena ezikoleni kusukela amabangeni aphansi ukuya kwaphezulu. (Translation of isiZulu paragraph follows.)


[Chairperson, I hope that the Minister of Basic Education will take this opportunity that she has been given in order to improve on the number of girls that start school from primary to high school.]


While there still seem to be challenges for women to participate in politics, the continent over, a conference I attended last year on Gender in Politics and Political Parties signalled positive signs of the impact women would have through politics for their development. At this conference, it was concluded that: African countries are not short of good law and policies, but we lack the political will to implement them; cultural factors continue to work against women; focused plans need to be developed to avoid tokenistic appointments during elections to meet quota requirements, as we so often see here in the Republic through the ANC; monitoring of countries’ adherence to international instruments they sign needs to be enhanced to ensure that democracy, in its best form, is practiced on the continent; and political parties need to ensure that their constitutions are reviewed to demonstrate clear principles of gender sensitivity.


The Democratic Alliance Women’s Network has been proactive to combat issues that face women in our society. We do so by promoting the empowerment and development of women and build their self-confidence to stimulate and activate real initiatives. We also promote consciousness of accountability, patriotism and unity through participation in every sector of society.


History will judge us very harshly if we spend the time and space we have to fight for personal gain at the expense of women, who need us to assure them that we are striving towards women becoming full participants and benenciaries of the democracy ushered in by women, over the years.


It is always said that “Wathint’abafazi wathint’imbokodo” [You strike a woman, you strike a rock]. I always wonder if we are the rock that the saying says we are as women of the 20th century.


In conclusion, I would like to salute our strong women leaders who face daily challenges and obstruction by those who are threatened by their gender and intelligence. I thank you.


Mrs C DUDLEY: Chairperson, something that has been troubling us for the longest time in South Africa is the prevalence of Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder, FASD. Now this disorder, with its far-reaching effects, is entirely in the hands of women themselves but the existing impacts on children and society is in all of our hands. It is a disorder that is 100% avoidable if women give up alcohol during pregnancy and when there is even a chance that they could become pregnant. The Foundation for Alcohol Related Research, FARR, states that, FASD is the most common birth defect in approximately 60 to 72 000 children born in South Africa per annum. And the World Health Organisation says that FASD is the leading cause of mental retardation in South Africa.


Now FASD is an umbrella term for a spectrum of permanent conditions which result from exposure of an unborn baby to alcohol when the mother drinks during pregnancy. Often affected children and adults appear physically normal, they have a low to average IQ but they display behavioural abnormalities. Because of this, they are likely to be judged more harshly than those with more obvious intellectual impairment. They are also more prone to anger and frustration resulting from people’s unrealistic expectations. That includes parents, caregivers, teachers and the justice system.


A United States of America study found that FASD affected people typically have a disrupted school experience - earn suspensions, expulsion or dropping out and many embrace alcohol and drug taking. They often get into trouble with the law and are charged or convicted of crime. They may also exhibit inappropriate sexual behaviours and suffer from sexually transmitted diseases and HIV. The Home of Hope in Cape Town where I spent time recently provides professional training and awareness workshops on AFSD. They are calling for social workers to be made aware of the importance of making inquiries at the beginning of the child removal process with regards to alcohol use during pregnancies by getting information from the mother or from neighbours and families.


More training is required for professionals to recognise and understand the long-term effect of FASD, and many organisations working with FASD could be utilised for this purpose. It is important to note that although FASD causes permanent brain damage, affected children respond positively to interventions.


The ACDP calls on the Department of Social Development and Health for increased diagnostic services and a central database so that relevant training can be accessed. The ACDP also calls on government departments to improve antenatal education on risks of drinking during pregnancy and to prioritise FASD prevention and treatment.


Women are empowered when they avoid any possible damage to their children through alcohol consumption. Children with behavioural problems add to the stresses and strains in families, communities and government budgets including social development, health, education, safety and security, justice and correctional services to name just a few. Thank you. [Applause.]


Dr Y C VAWDA: Chairperson, hon members and guests in the gallery, please allow me to acknowledge the presence of our supreme forces irrespective of whatever our perception might be. I greet you all with As-saalamu-alai-kum [Peace be with you.]. The rights of women or the lack thereof has been defined and categorised in many different ways. The underlying intention in denying the rights of women has always been to utilise abuse, to establish and to maintain power and control over women in society. One of the greatest challenges facing women in much of the world is the gap between their legal rights and their ability as individuals to claim them.


National constitutions are increasingly likely to guarantee gender equality, but this is in many ways compromised when they also simultaneously recognise the authority of parallel legal systems based on custom, religion or ethnic affiliation. The right of women to own, manage, enjoy and dispose off property is central to their financial independence, and maybe critical to their ability to earn a livelihood and to provide adequate housing and nutrition for themselves and for their children.


Many women in South Africa, working in different professions and especially among them being our domestic workers, continue to earn well below a living wage, work in poor conditions and are treated badly. In South Africa, sadly, the huge socioeconomic discrepancy rears its ugly head once more as we see increasingly it is the women who are suffering most as a result of this discrepancy.


The root of all forms of this discrimination against women in this country is found in this discrepancy. A discrepancy that sees women and their children denied access to proper housing, proper water and sanitation, education, good health, living wages, food and nutrition and this list sadly just goes on and on and on. And it is pertinent to know that this discrepancy is growing daily in this country.


Today we claim to have achieved freedom and democracy. We celebrate 20 years in democracy. How can we, when rape has become a way of life - more than 150 women report rape to police everyday - when South Africa’s murder rate is seven times higher than the global average? And it is very often women and girls who are the victims of such.


Women still get paid far less for doing the same job with men, not for any other reason, except that they are women and not because men are better. When we say there is unemployment, what we actually really mean is that there are women who are unemployed to a great degree in this country. Majority of low paid workers are women, and yet they make up 46% of total labour force in this country. Until these social ills and many more are addressed, we have not arrived, we are not yet free, all of us, not only women and girls but men included.


Let there be no doubts in the minds of any hon Members of this Joint Sitting as to the importance of redressing this huge socioeconomic gap that exists in this country. This will not only serve in the best interest of the poor, but also in the best interest of all the people of this country, including women and their children. And since we are all in agreement that the rights of women in this country have not been fulfilled, and women are in the majority, then we are in agreement that the rights of the majority people in this country have not been fulfilled; a very sad indictment indeed - 21years into the democracy that so many women fought so hard to achieve.


When the rights of women are established then women will be happy and when women are happy society will be happy. It was two women who stood by the side of the Prophet Abraham ... [Time expired.]


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Hon member, your time has expired.


Dr Y C VAWDA: Allow me then please to conclude by wishing the women of South Africa well during this month. I say to the women, rock the world ladies. I salute you! [Applause.]


Ms M R SEMENYA: Mosepetšantlo yeo e hlomphegago, maloko ao a hlomphagago, baetapele, Ditona tšeo di lego gona mo, Motlatšamopresidente wa maloba, ke tšea sebaka se go le dumediša gomme ke re: “Happy Woman’s Month. [Interjections.] Go banna ke re go basadi ba lena ... (Translation of Sepedi paragraph follows.)


[Ms M R SEMENYA: Hon Chairperson, hon members, our leaders, hon Ministers, former Deputy President, I take this opportunity to greet you and say: “Happy Woman’s Month. [Interjections.] The men will pass the message to their wives ...]


... “Happy Woman’s Month”. Members of the august House, it is known that historically, African women have been the tillers of the land and are in control of household food production. It is therefore, important for this democratic dispensation to reinstate the critical role and status of women in ensuring food security. The participation of women in the agriculture sector should be expanded throughout the value chain for meaningful participation and the realisation of gender parity as we honour the spirit of the women of 1956. Those were the women who took a stand in the coalface of the oppressive and segregationist regime of apartheid to say it is crucial to ensure that the women’s voices are heard at all levels in decision-making and on the fields of crops.


Rena basadi ba Afrika Borwa, ge re bea leswao la segopotšo sa Freedom Charter ya rena, re swanetše go gopola letšatši la 17 Aporele 1954, letšatši leo basadi ba Afrika Borwa; maswarathipa ka bogaleng, bao ba bego ba etilwe pele ke Mme Charlotte Manye Maxeke le boLilian Ngoyi, le ba bangwe go tšwa ka merafe ya bona; ba ilego ba kopana, ba boledišana gomme ba ngwala lengwalo leo le bego le tšweletša dikakanyo tša bona ka ga Afrika Borwa yeo ba e hutšago. (Translation of Sepedi paragraph follows.)


[As South African women, when we remember the Freedom Charter we also remember 17 April 1954. It is the day on which South African women; brave women, led by Mme Charlotte Manye Maxeke, Lilian Ngoyi, and others; met, discussed and wrote The Charter which expresses their visions and aspirations about South Africa.]


Therefore, let me pause and welcome the members of the body of Women in Agriculture and Rural Development that seeks to mainstream gender issues in agriculture and land policies, programmes and projects throughout the three spheres of government.


Bao ke basadi bao re rego ba swere thipa ka bogaleng. Ke bona bao ba bonago tšatši ka tšatši gore naga ya gaborena e dula e le ye tala. Re a le dumediša bomme. Re nyaka go tšea sebaka se re amogele pego yeo e adilwego ke Mopresidente go laetša maemo a basadi ba rena ka mo gare ga naga le gore go tloga mola re tšeago maatla, re le mmušo wo o etilwego pele ke ANC, re kgathile tema ye kaakang go kaonafatša maphelo a basadi le go bona gore kgatelelo yela basadi ba bego ba gatelešwe ka yona, e dutše e le batho le bona, e fedišwe. Lehono ge re eme mo pele ga Ntlokgolo ye re thabetše ge Molaotheo wa rena o gatelela ditokelo tša basadi. (Translation of Sepedi paragraph follows.)


[Those women were brave. They were the kind of women who made sure that things go well in the country each and every day. I would like to greet all the women. We would like to welcome the President’s report about the conditions of women in the country. Since the ANC-led government came to power, what strides have we made in improving the lives of women and eliminating the oppression they suffered? Today we are happy because the rights of women are clearly pronounced in the Constitution.]


Empowerment of women is a prerequisite for achieving inclusive growth. Women farmers represent more than a quarter of the world’s population, and generally comprise on average, 43% of the agricultural workforce in developing countries.


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Hon Semenya, please wait. Hon members and guests, the noise level is very high. Please!


Ms M R SEMENYA: In South Africa, the agriculture sector employs about 16% of the total number of employed women. It is important to reiterate the call of the government to ensure that women working in farms are given the adequate level of remuneration, as well as access to decent working and living conditions on farms. This should be inclusive of access to basic services such as electricity, water and sanitation as well as adequate housing. Given the historical injustices of the past, there are still many rural women who are unable to exercise full control over access to land. This is because in many instances issues of land are vested in local traditional leadership that values and promotes patriarchy at the expense of rural women. Given the fact that land reform and food security are inseparable, it must be said that we welcome the proposed 50/50 ownership model that will see farm owners ceding 50% of their land to certain categories of farmworkers will also enhance women’ s contribution to food security initiatives.


The prioritisation of empowerment programmes that target rural women through agriculture and rural development is a key component of addressing food insecurity as well as improving the status and livelihoods of rural women. The role that women play at the household level is also crucial in the translation of agricultural produce into food and nutritional security, which carries impact on several other development outcomes such as health and education. It is a known fact that when women control additional income, they spend more of it than men do on food, health, clothing and education for their children. This has positive implications for immediate well-being as well as long-run human capital formation and economic growth through improved health, nutrition and education outcomes.

The year 2015 has been declared by the African Union as the Year of Women’s Empowerment and Development towards Africa’s Agenda 2063. In the New Partnership for Africa’s Development Conference for Women in Agriculture in October 2014, South Africa joined the continent on reiterating its commitment to inclusive agricultural growth and transformation, and resolved to support and facilitate preferential entry, participation, and procurement of women and youth in gainful and attractive agribusiness opportunities.


Enabling women to achieve their productive potential requires many of the same reforms that are necessary to address constraints facing small-scale farmers and rural people in general, but additional care must be taken to ensure that women’s farming concerns are taken into account in the design and implementation of policies and interventions. In democratic rural South Africa today, the vast majority of food production that is attributable to women makes them the principal agents of food security and household welfare.


It is important for South Africa to continue to strive towards ensuring gender equality in the agriculture sector by removing discrimination and structural inequalities, improving access to production inputs, market opportunities, and financing as part of the broader radical transformation agenda of the government of the day. Looking beyond Millennium Development Goals and taking into consideration the post 2015 agenda; goal 2 states that government should reinforce policies and programmes that seek to end hunger, achieve food security and improve nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture. Furthermore, this goal seeks to double the agricultural productivity and the incomes of small-scale food producers, particularly women, amongst others by 2030. The House must note that this is in line with the targets envisaged in the National Development Plan of expanding agricultural production through comprehensive support to small-scale farmers, which is inclusive of rural women.


Notwithstanding the significant contributions women make to agriculture and household food security in South Africa, they have limited and inequitable access and control of proper productive capabilities and productive resources. It is this gender gap that the ANC-led government is working tirelessly to narrow in terms of the various policies and programmes that address the issues of access to land, production inputs, innovation, implements, as well as finance. The AgriBEE Fund has advanced agricultural finance ... [Intrjections.]


La ka la mafelelo ke la gore re nyaka go tšea sebaka se go hlohleletša mmušo gore o tšwele pele go fa batho dilengwa ba leme gore go be le dijo mo nageng ya rena. Ke a leboga. (Translation of Sepedi paragraph follows.)


[Let me conclude by saying that we want to encourage the government to continue providing people with the resources they need to plough and produce food in our country. Thank you.]


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Hon members and guests, please, let us give the debate the respect it deserves. The noise is disturbing. Continue, hon Ntshayisa.


Mr L M NTSHAYISA: Hon Chairperson, I was a little bit intimidated when one of the hon members - a woman - said, “Are you also debating in this women’s debate?” But now I am okay.


When celebrating Women’s Day, 09 August, we should call for women to unite and move this country forward. We should remember the contribution these women made towards the freedom of this country. The then President of the apartheid regime should be really shaking in his grave if he could hear names like Lillian Ngoyi and Helen Joseph being called and if he could now see again that great march by the women to the Union Buildings in 1956. That was a united effort on the part of women, and it was a great achievement indeed. These women were prepared to die for their country. You strike a woman, you strike a rock! You be careful; you will die.


In Latin we say, Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori [It is proper and good to die for one’s fatherland.] These women were sick and tired of carrying passes wherever they went and telling who they were. So they had become more determined than ever, and they had taken over from where we were perhaps supposed to have taken this initiative.


Women have a lot of leadership qualities and courage, and these should be used relevantly. We should fight together. Women, in particular, should fight abuse by men and other women of course. They should fight rape together. They should no longer be crying babies; we should no longer talk of “no woman no cry” now. They should be determined and fight these social ills and evils. Women should now be united and take up the gauntlet and challenge these economic and social evils that are facing our beloved country. It is their united effort that can help ease the economic strain in our country.


Women are neither leading from the front nor from behind, but they are now just at a strategic position - in the middle - whereby they can reach each and everyone. These people can lead, manage and give proper guidance ... [Interjections.] [Time expired.]


Mr M KHAWULA: Hon House Chairperson, the IFP pays tribute to the courageous inspirational women of character, who dared their passive regime and marched to the Union Buildings against the pass laws in 1956. This great event marked the remarkable turning point not just in the manner with which the National Party government looked at South African women, but also in the manner the general populace of our country looked at womenfolk. This was a great contribution towards the struggle for liberation in Africa and in South Africa, and also a great contribution in a struggle for emancipation of women in Africa and the world.


The IFP has always believed that the democratic government of our country post 1994 needs to have within its administration a ministry dedicated to women matters and a ministry dedicated to youth matters. The IFP believes that such departments need to be allocated meaningful budgets from the national fiscus in order for them to aggressively deal with empowerment issues pertaining to each of these sectors.


It is well and good that our country has dedicated department of women, but it is regrettable that the department has a budget smaller than even some budgets allocated to some homesteads in the country. This does not reflect the kind of image and respect that our government must accord to the women of South Africa.


Women statespersons throughout the world have proven to be better leaders than their male counterparts when given a chance. For example, it is during Dr Nkosazana DLamini-Zuma’s term that the African Union, AU, has developed Africa Agenda 2063 Vision and Priorities. Women managers generally have proven to be better managers than their male counterparts when given a chance. For example, the office of the Public Protector has had many public protectors before, but it has only been during Adv Thuli Madonsela’s term that it got known throughout the country.


Academic statistics also show that girls persevere much better than boys in their school life. This can be noted in always the greater number of girls than boys in the matric candidates of each year in the country. In other words, if women had been given fair and equal opportunities in human history from the beginning, we would be having a better world than we have today. This also says that if South African women had been given equal opportunities earlier on in the history of our country, we would be having a better South Africa than we have today.


The IFP leader, Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi and the IFP, respect and value the contribution that the women make in society. In its Convention for a Democratic South Africa, Codesa, delegation in the early nineties, the IFP had women of great honour who contributed immensely in shaping the future of this country. Whilst becoming a project that went wrong later on in life, Mrs Zanele KaMagwaza-Msibi was moulded and projected by uMtwana wakwaPhindangene and the IFP. To all the great ladies who have walked in the aisles of this House before, we say to them, “Well done”. We recall the women of respect who served South Africa in honour and dedication. I thank you. [Applause.]


Cllr N HERMANS: House Chairperson, hon members, ladies and gentlemen, our country will always be indebted to the women who participated in the 1956 march and whose actions set the tone for gender equality and empowerment in a democratic South Africa.


The Women’s Day in South Africa represents an affirmation of the contributions that women have made in the struggle against colonial and apartheid oppression historically. It is a recognition and acceptance by the nation that the country’s attainment of political freedom and democracy in 1994 was also as a result of heroic struggles waged by women. The day also symbolises a commitment to continue the struggle against patriarchy and the achievement of a nonsexist society as an ultimate goal.


Since 1994, a lot has been achieved in realising equal democratic participation of women in society particularly with regard to participation in the political sphere of the country. To this effect programmes and legislation have been put in place including the establishment of the Department of Women in the Presidency.


In June this year, South Africa proudly hosted the African Union, AU, Summit, the 25th Ordinary Session of the African Union Assembly. The AU theme, “Year of Women’s Empowerment and Development towards Africa’s Agenda 2063” occupied the summit and the heads of state debated on it. Notwithstanding this progress, we have to acknowledge that there are still many challenges and barriers towards the realisation of full gender equality.


The SA Local Government Association, Salga, has identified the need to support the national developmental goal of women’s empowerment and gender equality at a local government level, by ensuring that there is a continued advocacy through the establishment of the Salga Women’s Commission. The women’s commission seeks to co-ordinate, promote and advocate for gender appropriate strategies and practices within member municipalities. One of the specific objectives of the Salga Women’s Commission is to evaluate the representation of women within the local governance structures through ongoing lobbying and advocacy, and the furtherance of the fifty-fifty campaign.


The upcoming 60 years anniversary of the 1956 women’s march in 2016, provides a critical opportunity to assess progress, review policies and programmes, and positions gender equality and women’s empowerment at the centre of the country and global agenda. This calls for women to reflect on battles won and envision a substantial war to further entrenching the transformation agenda on women’s economic empowerment, rights and equality.


It is similarly imperative that as Salga we continue to reflect on the representation and participation of women in the local sphere of government as we prepare for the 2016 local government elections. The annual gathering of the Salga Women’s Commission, to be convened in September this year, will provide a platform and opportunity to reflect on the challenges we need to address in order to ensure that gender equality and women empowerment policies in local government are translated into substantive improvements in the lives of women.


As Salga we take note of the glaring gaps and regression in women’s representation within the South African political landscape following the previous local government elections. This adds credibility to the argument that, to achieve gender parity, the country cannot rely on voluntary quotas.


We therefore would like that there should be, special measures enforced by legislated quotas that will ensure that women occupy key decision-making positions - also strengthening the regulatory frameworks that have been put in place ensuring that they are effectively implemented, enforced, monitored and evaluated; women empowerment programmes to ensure increased representation and participation of women in local government; gender budgeting to ensure that sufficient and effective budgeting process support the implementation of gender equitable processes; and also working together with a broad range of community and interest groups to address social, religious and cultural beliefs, assumptions and practices that remain as barriers to women empowerment and gender equality.


In conclusion, let us remember that the empowerment of women can only be successful if government, business and civil society work together to move women forward. Africa will only advance when women are fully incorporated into the development strategies and decision-making processes. The National Women’s Day is a cause to celebrate our veterans of 1956 who fought against discrimination.


We want to say as Salga: Wathinta abafazi wathinti imbokodo! [You struck a woman, you struck a rock!]. [Time Expired.] [Applause.]


Dr L R MBINDA: Hon Chair, the PAC is excited to debate the matter of women united in moving South Africa forward. It would have been nice for this debate to have been led by a woman on our side; unfortunately we do not have that luxury. Now a man has to find his feminine side. More importantly, we enter this debate from a point of asserting the African culture of equity. It is as critical to debug the myths around womanhood in Africa and in African history. Equally important we enter this debate as the PAC with the posture of our mission to eradicate exploitation in all its manifestations.


The PAC views the struggle for liberation as incomplete without emancipation of women. Emancipation of women to us means providing the context for a female individual to reach their full potential. Therefore the fight against women abuse, rape and domestic violence perpetuated by husbands, domestic violence perpetuated by children, domestic violence perpetuated by fellow female members of the family are all an integral part of the struggle for liberation.


They are all part of the fight for freedom and the right of women to claim their soul as their own. Going back to African culture, we equivocally reject any notion that portrays African culture as exploitative. There are many foreign concepts that have been brought to the African culture, put out there as African culture, but that are exploitative. The African culture has always acknowledged equality of the male and the female gender; it only ascribed separate roles in general. But there are critical incidents in history which highlight that on specific individual levels, every person is allowed to reach their highest potential. Hence you find many female generals – such as Queen Nzinga in Angola, Mkabayi in Azania, and Queen Asantewaa in Ghana.


Without us missing the point of this debate, we talk of an individual freedom because you cannot build unity with damaged individuals. If the women of this nation have to take this nation forward, they must first assert their right to claim their soul as their own because it is only when an individual is fully developed that they can interdepend on another individual. This country will remain poorer if the unity of women is weaker, particularly women unity against exploitation in political, social, economic and spiritual facets.


The PAC calls on this nation to take mental health seriously, particularly the preventative element of mental health to assure self-awareness, empathy and a general understanding of the world. Lastly, this nation will remain bankrupt as long as women are not free or not united. Thank you. [Time expired.]


Ms D CARTER: Hon Chair, to our mothers, sisters, daughters, friends, colleagues and comrades, we are here to commemorate and honour the more than 20 000 women of all races and ages that marched together towards the Union Buildings in 1956, in protest against the pass laws that proposed even further restrictions on the movement of women.


Hundreds of thousands of women throughout South Africa had put their names to a petition indicating their anger and frustration at having their freedom of movement restricted. The women sang freedom songs such as Nkosi sikelel’ iAfrika, however, the song that became the anthem of the march was: Wathinta abafazi, wathinti imbokodo! [When you struck a woman, you struck a rock!]


When we sing our National Anthem it should remind us of the remarkable strong women that paved our way to democracy. In the signed petition, these women stated that they shall not rest until they have won, for their children, the fundamental rights of freedom, justice, and security.


We have come a very long way since 9 August 1956. We have freedom, or do we? We still have families living in shanties. What about all the service delivery protest around the country? We still have the sick, the old, the poor and the uncared for. Breastfeeding mothers are still being discriminated against. Sanitary wear is still not freely available - a health system with no dignity. We have an education system that is not working. All children should have the same rights and access to the same education as they are all the future of our beloved country.


One in four people go to bed hungry. One in two people have a chance of being raped in their lifetime. A person is raped every 36 seconds, and a child every 24 minutes. A child! One in four people find themselves in an abusive relationship. A woman is killed every six days by their intimate partner; a child is abused every eight minutes; one in four girls and one in five boys, and I repeat, one in four girls and one in five boys under the age of 16 have been sexually abused. Human wellbeing - mind, body and spirit - is a fundamental right and is critical for a well-functioning society. Women must say, no, to being tokens.


Cope wants women in positions not because they wear a dress but because they are the best person for the job. We as sisters, daughter, mothers, grandmothers, great-grandmothers and wives have a responsibility to South Africa. From our wombs, our loving care, we have a responsibility to bring into this world and mould leaders - fine leaders - and professionals for the future. Let us unite. Wathinta abafazi wathinti imbokodo! I thank you. [Applause.]


Ms L L ZWANE: House Chairperson, His Excellency the Deputy President in absentia, Ministers, Deputy Ministers, hon members of this august House, perhaps before I say what I think I need to share with you, let me take this opportunity to congratulate the Women’s League of the ANC ... [Applause.] ... on successfully holding their congress and electing their new leadership. We want to congratulate the new president of the Women’s League, the Minister of Social Development Bathabile Dlamini ... [Applause.] ... and all the members of the national executive committee of the Women’s League. We want to believe and we pray that all women, irrespective of whether they voted for her or not, are going to rally their support behind her because women have to unite to take South Africa forward. [Applause.]


Let me also address an issue here that refers to us as hon women of this House. You know, we are nurturers, we are teachers and we are mothers of our families. We are wise. We are leaders in our communities, and I think there is a specific manner in which we address ourselves and address the House. As a woman, you don’t just come to the front and stand and talk about issues that are embarrassing to the nation.


There are issues, very serious issues that we need to be addressing as women. Our children are involved in drugs, in substance abuse. There is teenage pregnancy. There is poverty. There is a need for us to develop economically. But for some women to come and take the podium, in front of the President, in front of old women who have always taken the lead in the struggle and are highly respected, in front of hon members of this House ...


Kukhona la abefundisi. Kukhona ngisho amakhosi futhi sithathe ithuba sikhulume ngezinto ezingakhi, izindaba zokudunusa ... [Ubuwelewele.] [There are preachers here. There are also chiefs and we took time talking about unconstructive things, issues about showing of buttocks ... [Interjections.]]


That is not on. That cannot be accepted. [Interjections.] That is not how we are going to bring up our children. And that is not the kind of legacy we want to leave behind. [Applause.] That is not the history we want to leave behind. [Interjections.]


Ms M S KHAWULA: Sihlalo wami. Ngiyanithanda niyahlonipha. Inyanga yethu ngempela le. [Ubuwelewele.] [Hon Chairperson.I love you because you have respect. This is truly our month. [Interjections.]]

The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Hon Khawula, on what point are you rising?


Ms M S KHAWULA: Bengithi ngizama ukulungisa umhlonishwa olaphaya phambili. [I was trying to reprimand the hon Member there in front.]


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Hon Khawula ... Hon Khawula ... Hon Khawula ... [Interjections.]


Ms M S KHAWULA: Bona, yonke into engiyikhulumayo wayisho umhlonishwa, uNgqongqoshe. Wayegqoke ingubo ephuzi enemigqa. Nginayo ngisho efonini. [Look, all that I said was said by the hon Member, the Minister. She was dressed in a yellow striped dress. I even have it on my phone.]


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Hon Khawula ...


Nksz M S KHAWULA: Uma ngabe nithi akudunuswe, nathi siyayisho indaba yokudunusa. IsiZulu ukudunusa. [Ubuwelewele.]


USIHLALO WENDLU (Nksz M G Boroto): Mhlonishwa uKhawula, lokho akukona ukukhalima okuphambukile futhi bengithi ngiyakuvala mama kodwa awufuni ukungilalela. Ngicela uhlale phansi. Usitholile isikhathi sakho sokukhuluma. Qhubeka mama uZwane. [Ubuwelwele.]


Nksz L L ZWANE: Nalomkhuba wokungahloniphi, kufuneka siwubheke. [Ubuwelewele.] (Translation of isiZulu paragraphs follows.)


[Ms KHAWULA: If you talk about showing buttocks, we will also talk about showing buttocks. That is isiZulu word. [Interjections.]


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Hon Khawula, that is not a point of order and I wanted to stop you hon Member but you don’t want to listen to me. Please sit down. You had your time to speak. Proceed hon Zwane. [Interjections.]


Ms L L ZWANE: This tendency of disrespectfulness should be looked at. [Interjections.]]


When the presiding officer calls on us to respond in a certain fashion, we need to show respect because we are teaching our children out there. [Applause.] [Interjections.] And there is another issue I want to address: the issue of always lamenting the fact that the ANC, when it holds Women’s Day celebrations or celebrates August month or whatever celebration relating to women, tends to focus only on women that belong to the ANC. Yes, they led the struggle for the emancipation of women. [Applause.]


But if there are other women, we don’t know where they are. We don’t know who they are. Bring us their credentials. [Interjections.] We are going to study the credentials of their struggle for women’s emancipation and determine whether or not they are worth being included in the list of women to be celebrated. [Applause.] [Interjections.]


There is also the issue raised by the hon Khawula: she said that Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, the Chairperson of the African Union Commission, is the woman who has come up with a plan, Agenda 2063. This attests to the fact that, if you want a job done, give it to a woman and it will be done. [Applause.]


Lastly, hon Carter, on the issue of the system of education that is in a state of disarray, as you claim: Don’t be too quick to judge us. We are trying to mop up the mess of the apartheid system of education. [Interjections.] [Applause.] That went on and on and on over a number of years. [Interjections.] And it should take us a number of years to effect the corrections. [Applause.] So be patient; we shall get there. We need financial resources. We need human resources, and all the resources needed to correct the situation that was messed up by the previous regime. [Interjections.]


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Order, hon members! [Interjections.]


Ms L L ZWANE: Wathint’ imbokodo. [Ubuwelewele.] Wathint’ abafazi. [Ubuwelewele.] Wathint’ imbokodo. [Ubuwelwele.] Uzofa. [Ubuwelewele.] [You strike a rock. [Interjections.] You strike a woman. [Interjections.] You strike a rock. [Interjections.] You will die. [Interjections.]


On 9 August every year we celebrate Women’s Day in South Africa, a public holiday that pays homage to the women of our nation: the mothers, the wives, the sisters and the daughters who fought tirelessly against the tyranny of the apartheid government.


Inaugurated in 1994, along with a free, democratic South Africa ...


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Hon Zwane, take your seat please. Hon Khawula?


Ms M S KHAWULA: Ngiyabonga, yazi u-Agasti ngathi ungangaphela. [Thank you, I so wish that August doesn’t come to an end.]


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Hon Khawula! [Interjections.]


Ms M S KHAWULA: Bengifuna ukwazi ukuthi izingane zikamhlonishwa uZwane zifunda kwesiphi isikole, kulezi ezizimele noma lezi zomphakathi na? [Ubuwelwele.] [I want to know the school where hon Zwane’s children attend, is it private or public schools? [Interjections.]]


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Hon Khawula, I think now you are really out of order. [Interjections.] Order, hon members! Hon Khawula, please don’t do that again. You’re really getting out of order. Continue, hon Zwane.


Ms L L ZWANE: Thank you, Chairperson.


Angisenazo izingane ezifundayo. Zonke ziyasebenza. [Ubuwelewele.] [Ihlombe.] [I no longer have children who attend school. They are all working [Applause.]]


Inaugurated in 1994, along with a free, democratic South Africa, the public holiday commemorates the 1956 protest led by Lilian Ngoyi, Helen Joseph, Albertina Sisulu, Sophia Williams-De Bruyn and many other women leaders who were part of that great march.


They took a decision to rise up against the legislation that required black South Africans to carry a pass book, which was a special document that infringed on their freedom of movement during the apartheid era. Approximately, 20 000 women from all over the country took to the streets of Pretoria – many ... listen ... many carrying the children of their white bosses on their backs - to stage a peaceful march to the Union Buildings.


After dropping the bundles of petitions that contained more than 100 000 signatures at Prime Minister J G Strijdom’s offices, they stood in silence for 40 minutes. A song was composed in honour of this momentous occasion: Wathint’ Abafazi Wathint’ imbokodo! Thanks to these brave women, gender equality is a constitutional imperative today and our capable government has launched many initiatives to empower women in a number of areas.


This was an inspiring display of political strength, female solidarity and inner fortitude. The march of August 9, 1956, is both a reminder of the great women who helped us mould South Africa and the trailblazing women who continue to lead, taking South Africa forward.


We also wish to welcome the report by his Excellency President J G Zuma on the progress that our government has made with respect to developing women and placing them or deploying them in appropriate positions of authority and decision-making, recognizing, however, that there is still a lot to be done.


For example, our government has made tremendous progress. If you remember that during the apartheid era, or prior to 1994, there was a mere 2,7% representation of women in Parliament, but today the representation stands at about 42%. And the majority of these women in Parliament are from the ANC ... [Applause.] ... a party that has actually demonstrated seriousness in terms of ensuring that women are equal to their male counterparts.


And to that extent, our government also made significant progress, after the first democratic elections, in empowering women in all spheres other than politics - in the public sector and also in the spheres of the civil service.


Our government has put in place legislation or pieces of legislation that create an enabling environment for women to develop and to improve their participation in the economy of the country. This very same government has prioritized the provision of basic services in rural areas.


If you provide electricity, you are addressing an issue in terms of which women will never ever go to the forest to fetch wood in order to make food for their families. That is basically what you are doing. If you provide water, tapped water, then you are saying that women are no longer going to carry 25 litres on their heads from the river and go up the mountain just to make food for their families. That is what the government of the ANC has done. [Applause.]


Education is another field that is very critical and very important in advancing gender equality and gender justice. And, to this extent, we appreciate the efforts that have been made by our government to ensure that there is improvement and that there is a turnaround from the system of apartheid education to the system that we are currently running.


In that regard, we can never thank our government enough for creating funding avenues and funding schemes like the National Student Financial Aid Scheme, the NSFAS, because it has enabled a lot of children, a lot of girls, to be able to access education, to be able to access Technical Vocational Education and Training, or TVET colleges, to access universities, something they would not have been able to dream of at any time in their lives. Through the NSFAS, they have been able to acquire knowledge, to acquire the skills they need to begin to run their businesses, if they so desire, and also to begin to make a meaningful input in the economy of the country.


Hhayi, ngilinde, ngiyeza, ngisayothatha ezami. [Ubuwelewele] [No, wait for me, I’m coming, I’m going to prepare myself. [Interjections.]]


The only area where we may need to pay focused attention is the area of science and technology. There could be a number of reasons why we still find that female learners are still trailing behind male learners in a number of schools in this regard. This could be attributed to the preconceptions that science subjects and technology subjects are difficult.


It could be the teaching methods that we need to review and look at. It could be the environment which our girl-children come from in that they normally do not get support from their parents, who also believe that science subjects are meant to be taken up by male children. But we are making steady progress and we are seeing an increasing number of female learners keen on studying science subjects.


There is no two ways about it. We just have to delve deeper and get more knowledge in the fields of science and technology, particularly technology and information because if we are going to run our businesses effectively as women, we need to be techno savvy. We need to be able to use technology.


Ayiphele lendaba yokuthi sibe nomakhalekhukhwini ... [Kuphele Isikhathi.] [This thing of having cellphones must come to an end ... [Time expired.]]


Ms N I TARABELLA-MARCHESI: Hon Chairperson, the 1956 march to the Union Buildings by South African women, was born out of frustration with fundamentally unjust, degrading and humiliating situation. Yet, it seems that the role women played in building our democracy is not recognised or continued as this new dispensation is failing our women even today.


Although women occupy high positions in government, Gender Mainstreaming as the strategy for promoting gender equality by ensuring that the goal of gender equality is central to all activities, remains a serious challenge and the consequences are visible especially in our economy. According to the most recent Quarterly Labour Force Survey the expanded definition of unemployment for women it sits at 39% and for men it is 31%. We need to ask ourselves: what have we accomplished?


Hon Speaker, this Government ratified the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action in 1995. This agreement necessitated the establishment of effective and functional machinery for the advancement of women and provided for the establishment of Gender Focal Points (GFPs) in each of the national departments. By signing this, we made a firm commitment to the mainstreaming of gender within the public service. Yet, Hon Minister, how are we supposed to track the progress of Gender Mainstreaming when we ask about the position of these GFP at the various government departments but are too often met with vague responses? Yes, they are there but the majority of them hold very low positions. They are actually not given enough power to make sure that there is gender mainstreaming in the departments.


In essence, there is very little will expressed by the departments and including your department, Minister to seriously drive this issue.


For example, agriculture remains a key driving force for economic development. Presently, most inhabitants of Limpopo and Mpumalanga depend on agriculture directly or indirectly as their main source of livelihood, the majority of them being women. These women grow mangos, amarula and avocados yet their produce is not sold in their local supermarkets. This is one of the examples Minister that can actually provide a perfect opportunity to train these women in agro-processing and packaging, which could result in job creation in their area.


As we have already heard from hon Carter that she gave us a list of gender-based violence statistics. Hon members it is well known that the scale of gender-based violence in South Africa is enormous and alarming. Recently, I lost a school friend who was burnt alive by her ex-husband and suffered a horrible brutal death. This is just one of the recent cases of gender-based violence.


In his state of the nation address last year, with a backdrop of countless national policies, strategies, plans and programmes to combat violence against women, which have yielded few results, President Zuma reminded the nation that the National Council on Gender-Based Violence was set up to co-ordinate government’s efforts to address rape and domestic violence. He said,

We urge this co-ordinating structure to make the campaign of fighting violence against women an everyday campaign.


The sole purpose of this council was to create, implement and co-ordinate a National Strategic Plan, NSP, which could be used as a key roadmap to align the country around strategic priorities, and to create an accountability mechanism for government’s performance to address the violence against women.


Yet, in July 2014, hon Minister Shabangu indefinitely suspended the work of the Gender-Based Violence Council and the development of the NSP, four months before it was meant to present its final draft of the NSP. This is not what we expected form a department that is meant to champion the rights and protection of women.


In conclusion, our women are once again deeply frustrated with a society that is deeply unequal yet this Ministry seems unwilling to do what needs to be done. We need to channel the spirit and will of women who marched to Parliament in 1956 if we ever hope to make a meaningful impact on reducing the inequality in our society and violence suffered by women.


I just want also to highlight the issue of hon Khawula.

Mama Khawula, njengomntu omdala ukuba ngaba andinxibanga kakuhle ndicela ukuthi undibizela ecaleni uthi ndicela unxibe kakuhle ntombi yam. Ungumama, nguwe umntu ekufuneka usixelele indlela yokunxiba neyokuziphatha njengaMalungu ePalamente. [Kwaqhwatywa.]


USIHLALO WENDLU (Nks M G Boroto): Enkosi mama. (Translation of isiXhosa paragraphs follows.)


[Ms Khawula, as a person with experience, if I am not appropriately dressed, I would appreciate it if you could call me aside and say, “my girl, would you please dress appropriately”. You are a mother; it is you who has tell us how to dress and behave as Members of Parliament. [Applause.]


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Thank you, ma’am.]


Ms N I TARABELLA-MARCHESI: It is sad that today ... [Time expired.] [Applause.]


Dr H C CHEWANE: Hon Chair, on a point of order:


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Yes hon member, order hon members.

Dr H C CHEWANE: Chair, I thought you would have made a proper ruling initially when hon Zwane made the same remarks that she is making. [Interjections.]


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Hon member, ...


Dr H C CHEWANE: The point that I want to raise is that Mam Khawula made reference to a Minister who spoke in defence of the president about using izibunu [buttocks] in Parliament. [Interjections.] Mam Khawula was not out of order and you should have sustained that order but it is repeated here and you keep quiet [inaudible.]. You need to protect all of us here in Parliament. You should have sustained the initial order that Mam Khawula ...


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Hon member, please take your seat. Please take your seat and let me address you. Stop pointing. I want to address you, please take your seat. Please take your seat.


Dr H C CHEWANE: Because if there is anyone ...


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Please take your seat.


Dr H C CHEWANE: Hon Speaker, but I am on a point of order.


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): No, no, no, no, there is no point of order.


Dr H C CHEWANE: No, but I am not going to be intimidated here.


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): No, no, no, there is no point of order. That is a point of debate.


Dr H C CHEWANE: I rise on a point of order and I think I need to be protected to finish my order.


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Please sit down, please. I want to address you. Please sit down. Hon members order. Hon member, that was not a point of order to start with. The ruling was done on hon Khawula’s utterances by hon Tau and he said that he will come back to that. So, yours is not a point of order that is a point of debate. There is nothing here that we have to talk about at this stage. Can we continue, please?


Dr H C CHEWANE: Hon Speaker, the point that I am making is that hon Zwane scored political points at the expense of hon Khawula to say that hon Khawula is speaking about izibunu in Parliament in front of hon members and I am saying that you as a Speaker you are allowing the same debate to continue with the different speaker there. You should have sustained the order ...




The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): I am not going to allow you to continue hon member. We are not in a debate now. Please sit down; we want to continue with the debate.


Nksz M S KHAWULA: Kodwa ake achaze kahle ngoba angizange ngiyisho le nto mina. [Ubuwelewele.] Cha, ukhuluma into angayazi. Uma engasazi isiZulu... Angikaze ngisho ukuthi kunomuntu odunusile la. Angayikhulumi into angayizwanga nokuthi kuthiweni. Ukhuluma into angayazi. (Translation of isiZulu paragraph follows.)


[Ms M S KHAWULA: Can she please clarify that because I did not say that. [Interjections.] No, she is saying something she has no knowledge of. If she does not know isiZulu ... I never said there was someone showing buttocks here. She must not talk about something she did not understand. She is talking about something she has no knowledge of.]


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Hon Khawula, I think you heard hon Tau when he was making a ruling.


Ms M S KHAWULA: Kodwa cha, angishongo ngale ndlela ayibeka ngayo. Angishongo ngale ndlela ayibeka ngayo. Mina anginandaba nomuntu ukuthi ugqoke kanjani la, mina angiyibekanga kanjalo. [But no, I did not put it the way she is putting it. I do not care how a person dresses here, I did not put it that way.]


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Hon Khawula, please have your seat we have heard you mama; please sit down.


Ms M S KHAWULA: Kodwa ngicela uyilungise ke leyondaba ngoba ngithe nginobufakazi. [Can she correct this issue because I said I have proof.


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Please sit hon Khawula. Order, hon members order. Hon Khawula, I am not going to take any point of order on this matter. Please sit.


Mr M KHAWULA: I am not on this matter hon Chairperson. Hon House Chairperson, on a point of order, two Khawulas spoke here. I think you need to be specific about which Khawula you are talking about. [Laughter.]

The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Okay no, it is fine hon Khawula. Fortunately, everybody knows who we are talking about.


Nks N N MAFU: Sihlalo, malungu ahloniphekileyo eziNdlu zombini zoWiso-mthetho, iindwendwe zethu ezibalulekileyo, ingakumbi amalungu ephiko lamakhosikazi le-ANC ahleli phaya phezulu, ababukeli emakhaya, ingakumbi amakhosikazi athwele idyokhwe yengcinezelo ngokwesini, ubuhlanga nesizwe.


Sithi halala kwiinkokeli zombutho wamanina kaKhongolose ezonyulwe kule mpelaveki sisuka kuyo zikhokelwa ngumongameli, uBathabile Dlamini. Sinethemba lokuba idabi loomama liza kuhamba ngesingqi esiphezulu. (Translation of isiXhosa paragraphs follows.)


[Ms N N MAFU: Chairperson, hon members of both Houses of Parliament, our honoured guests, particularly members of the ANC women’s wing of the ANC seated up there in the gallery, viewers at home, particularly women suffering under the yoke of gender, racial and tribal oppression.


We congratulate the leaders of the ANC Women’s League who were elected over the past weekend, led by the president of the league, Bathabile Dlamini. We hope that women’s struggle is going to be intensified.]


Women emancipation is a struggle to eradicate the ideology

of domination that permeates oppressive and cultural practices on various levels, as well as the commitment into reorganising society, so that self-development to people can take precedent. If you understand this, then you would agree with me that critical political consciousness based on the ideas and beliefs as articulated by the ANC is very important.


Women are human beings who are capable of participating fully and equally in every realm of human endeavour. When women are held down, all humans are held back. Women can only be liberated through revolutionary transformation, which otherwise is called women emancipation, through powerful motive forces in that revolution. If you want to understand the motive forces, the strategies and the tactics of the ANC, Chapter 5 sections 190 to 21 explains what the motive forces are. But in particular, clause 118 must be read.


A sustained programme of action against gender oppression is of primary importance to the entire progressive forces because; it is the practice that most people experiences, whether their role is that of a discriminator or they are discriminated against; exploiter or exploited. It is the practice of domination which most people are socialised to accept before they even know that other forms of group oppression exist.


Women emancipation is the crucial step in the struggle to eliminate all forms of oppression. It is the integral part of our daily struggles. The leaders who do not support women emancipation are the enemies of the revolution. Here, I am reminded in particular of the Premier of the Western Cape, who was supposedly a woman, but when she was supposed to appoint members of her Cabinet, she appointed a boy’s choir in her Cabinet. [Interjections.]


Often, when the crisis period has passed in the progressive countries, all sexist parties re-emerge, antagonism develops and political solidarity weakens. Gender activists need to be on the lookout for this ... [Interjections.]


Ms D KOHLER: House Chairperson, I rise on a point of order!


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Hon Mafu, please take a seat!


Ms D KOHLER: The rules of this House entails that in any sitting, members should respect this House. The member referred to the Premier as who was supposedly a woman! The implication is that the Premier of the Western Cape is a man. Is this really what we want to hear at that podium on this debate? I am shocked and I would like this person to withdraw, please!


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Thank you very much ... [Interjections.]


The DEPUTY CHIEF WHIP OF THE MAJORITY PARTY: Hon Chairperson, Premier Helen Zille is not a member of this House. The Rules apply to the members of this House; she is not a member of this House!


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Hon members, wait! Let me rule on this matter. We are sitting here as a Joint Sitting and it includes the provinces. [Applause.] Now, would hon Mafu withdraw the word, supposed to be a woman? Please, Hon Mafu, just that part! Please withdraw!


Ms N N MAFU: Draw! Drawn, Chair!


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Thank you very much!

Ms D KOHLER: Chair!


Ms N N MAFU: Gender activists need to be on the look out ... [Interjections.]


Ms D KOHLER: I rise on a point of order! Mam, she said, draw, that is not withdraw; that is a drawing that the toddlers would do!


The CHIEF WHIP OF THE NCOP: (Dr H E Mateme): Hon Chair, order please!


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Hon members, there is another point of order here! Hon Mafu, please sit!


The CHIEF WHIP OF THE NCOP:( Dr H E Mateme): Hon House Chairperson, may the hon member also withdraw the phrase, this person! Thank you.


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Which hon member, hon Chief Whip?


The CHIEF WHIP OF THE NCOP :( Dr H E Mateme): Hon Kohler-Barnard.

The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Thank you. Sit down! Hon members, we have been having a good debate, let’s not spoil it. Hon Mafu, I have asked you to withdraw, would you please do that?


Ms N N MAFU: And I have! I have, Chair!


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): I heard you saying, I withdraw!


Ms N N MAFU: Ndiyarhoxisa! [I withdraw!]


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Thank you very much! Can you please sit! Can you please sit! Hon Kohler-Barnard, please stand! Did you refer to the hon Mafu as, this person?




Ms D KOHLER: I did indeed! I don’t know what her title is! But I will say that I apologise, I should have called her, that member!


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Thank you, seat down! You have apologised. Thank you! Continue hon Mafu! Order, hon members!


Ms N N MAFU: Gender activists need to be on the lookout for this. Otherwise, the legacy of women emancipation which was championed by our stalwarts like, Helen Joseph, Frances Baard, Mme Lesia and many others, is threatened. We must keep our eyes on the ball at all times. The Madiba legacy debate, last week in this House, is a perfect example of how old sexist patterns can re-emerge if we are not guarding against them.


As you all know, hon members, the speakers in that debate last week were all men. Any liberation which does not result in the emancipation of women will be, but the shadow of what would otherwise have been true liberation. As the President Zuma said in his address to the ANC Women’s League Conference that, “Unity will strengthen women emancipation.”


This was also echoed by the newly elected ANC Women’s League President when she said:


Women must take the initiative and demonstrate the power of solidarity. Let us stop feeling threatened by one another. We are not here as friends, we are comrades. Any struggle will be successful if the people involved have conviction and self-confidence. Struggle is a normal condition of all creatures in the world; all are in struggle; all struggle. Unity is a means towards struggle and as with all means, a little goes a long way.


The ANC always stresses that our diversity has to be embraced as our source of strength. As we always say: Unity in diversity. This reminds me of Bell Hooks who said:


We do not need to eradicate differences to feel solidarity; we do not need to share common oppression to end oppression. So great is the depth of the experience, culture and ideas we have to share with one another.


Chair, the National Development Plan, NDP, is anchored on fighting poverty, inequality and unemployment, amongst other things. Tackling poverty could become one of the issues that unite women from various backgrounds. Feminisation of poverty or the impoverishment of women is a worldwide phenomenon. As no woman faces the bankruptcy of an economic system, radical economic transformation must be championed by women.


We commend the ANC-led government on structures such as women in construction, women in media and all those other structures that try to deal with this transformation agenda. The President in his status of the women address in the South African economic report, which is available to everybody, must be read by all women. We have to remember that, when we talk about the Freedom Charter, the Women’s Charter is a precursor to the Freedom Charter.


The Women’s Charter was adopted in 1954. It is very important to note that it is that Women’s Charter that actually all the women from the FF Plus who wanted to participate; that was the platform for them to make their voice heard, because it was a platform for all women in South Africa. [Applause.]


The importance of parenting and struggle to end sexual oppression is the only one component of larger struggle to transform society and establish a new social order. I’m reminded of this fact that, rebellion is a stage in the development of a revolution; but it’s not a revolution. Rebellion disrupts the society and does not provide what is necessary to establish a new social order.


Just as some women in the opposition benches last week have threatened the nation that they will show their private back side, that is not revolutionary and it is not an act for the women emancipation. We have to redefine women’s identity and reclaim self-respect. We must not be seen as people who are saying things here in order for us to be seen as radicals. That is not radicalism. [Applause.]


As we build on the legacy of those who came before us, we must re-capture the attention and support the participation of many women who were once active, and some have lost their lives. Some of the issues highlighted here, will go a long way to try and unite those women and move South Africa forward. As Chief Albert Luthuli said, “The road to freedom is long and thorny but because our Cause is just, the glorious end – Freedom - is ours.”


In conclusion, I pay tribute to all the unsung heroines, the flowers of our revolution, whose names we would never known, who laid down their lives in order for us to enjoy this freedom. I pay tribute to all those women, particularly, in Duncan Village where I was born, who made the sharing of communal toilets look normal and acceptable; the women of Qumbu in the then Transkei, who carried themselves with pride, despite the challenges they were faced with in the rural areas; the women of Ekurhuleni in Gauteng, who faced challenges of urbanisation and unemployment on a daily basis and the women of South Africa in general.


I had to particularly site these women because I have passed in hands of all of them. Let me say in this particular time ...


... xa sisithi wathinta abafazi, ...


AMALUNGU AHLONIPHEKILEYO: ... wathinta imbokodo.


Nks N N MAFU: Malibongwe!




Nks N N MAFU: Xa ndiza kuhlala phantsi, i-DA xa isixelela ngokuxhatshazwa ngokwesondo, sikhumbula ukuba kukho ndoda ithile esingayaziyo ehleli kwezaa zitulo eyasuka yafumana isohlwayo kodwa ixhaphaze amakhosikazi. Ndiyabulela. [Kwaqhwatywa.] (Translation of isiXhosa paragraphs follows.)


[... when we say, you strike a woman, ...


HON MEMBERS: ... You strike a rock!

Ms N N MAFU: Praise!


HON MEMBERS: The name of women!


Ms N N MAFU: Before I take a seat, when the DA tells us about sexual abuse, we recall that there is an unknown man sitting on those chairs over there that was given a fine as punishment for abusing women. Thank you. [Applause.]]


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Order, hon members! At the conclusion of this very important debate, allow me on behalf of the Presiding Officers, to wish all the women of South Africa well and to express the hope that we will have a productive and a prosperous women’s month while together we are moving South Africa forward.


Debate Concluded.


The House Adjourned at 16:19.



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