What is the role of the ANC Women's League?
Ntsiki Mazwai2497 views | Sat, 11th of July, 2020
What is the role of the ANC Women’s League
I find myself deeply confused on what exactly the role of ANC Women’s league is in our society. This is a group of women which has been elected to protect and establish rights and freedom of expression for women. ANCWL is meant to be a body that women in South Africas can turn to in times of struggle and pain. It is meant to be a body grooming young women into leaders and ensuring that women are always spoken for. We live in a deeply patriarchal society that warrants that we have a strong force behind women to ensure our protection against toxic masculinity.
In simple terms, we expected ANCWL to be a group of superheroes leading the feminine agenda in our society. During lockdown there was a five hundred per cent surge in gender-based violence. It is reported that fifty one percent of women in relationships are facing violence. This essentially means that gender-based violence has had a bigger impact than COVID 19 in our lives. More than bringing a virus, this lockdown has exposed that the femicide in South Africa is a serious issue which needs serious attention. We can no longer sweep our filth under the carpet because there is nowhere left to walk.
To the ladies in the ANCWL: Why are we women fighting alone when you have a platform to be our voice? What are you getting paid for? Nahla nje nasonga izandla when women are dying and being raped in our country. Why have you normalised what is going on? When do you take responsibility as our leaders and help us fight? You women are so far removed from what we are going through, is it because your bellies are fed that you do not care about the state of women in South Africa.
There has been almost daily social media rage about a new woman raped or killed every day. Where has been your voice during the #MeToo campaign. Here the temperature was perfect for you to tackle some issues on a policy level but you’re just sitting there doing nothing for us. #MeToo is a campaign where victims are ready to name their offenders BECAUSE the justice system is designed towards protecting the perpetrator. There was a gender-based summit in 2018 where the president made a declaration, this is on your government website, you didn’t even bother to follow up so we are still where we were before the conference. You don’t care about that declaration because women are not your passion and you are just there to occupy jobs and serve yourselves akere? Women in this country are no longer crying, they are dying. They need your voice behind them.
I see you are now completely oblivious of the Lerato Moloi case. A model who tweeted about her celebrity rapists and is now being taken to court. What kind of a system is this, which silences women and deflects from the actual crime? We are creating a breeding ground for men to use the legal system to silence us and continue raping women. What kind of system is this which protects the rich and powerful who can manipulate the legal system to protect them while they continue to rape? Why are we living in a society which has normalised rape and sees nothing wrong when even infants are raped?
Have we really degenerated into such a sick society that we no longer stand up against rapists and murders? That they can do as they please in society because victims are women and therefore its not really a problem?
I am just so deeply disgusted and saddened that we do not have a women’s league there to protect us. We are on our own. The most glaring thing about our society is the need for another 9 August 1956 moment where we women take it to the streets but this time not against the government, but against our men. Because what is happening right now yi bullshit yonke nje eUnacceptable.
I will not be silenced as a woman. I refuse to live in a society where when a woman says she has been raped, we protect the rapist. The government committed to specialised sexual assault courts we are still waiting. Rapists have now found a way to silence victims by simply denying the story and going to lawyers and silencing victims in the name of defamation. We cannot be ok with this.
Our justice system has proven to be ineffective for women what is the ANCWL stance on this and how do we move forward?
My biggest concern with the ANCWL is that we only hear from you when internal lover politics arise and not when we need you.
#MeToo is ALL our problem because if we don’t mobilise and make it clear that rapists are not acceptable in our society then truly, sending our daughters out into the world daily, will be a game of Russian Roulette.
Again, I ask, ANC Women’s League where are you? And where is your voice? Because what is happening in South Africa is certainly not normal and you are the women elected to provide leadership and direction.