30 May, 2014

Where do women belong in South Africa?

By Thandi Bombi

The Government has been sending mixed messages to the country in the weeks that have followed the national elections. 

Once the Premier lists for the provinces under the ANC were released, it was clear to everyone where the ANC thought women belonged. 

In that process; three female Premiers lost their positions and two of these were lost to men. 

The women however, were not discarded but rather placed in the positions of speakers in the provincial legislature. This means seven out of the eight ANC Premiers are of the male species.  

Can we really blame the ANC though? 

A decline in electoral support for the party in provinces in the 2014 election would have played a huge role in the selection of the person set to steer the provinces toward the 2016 polls. This is just an indication of what the ANC believes is the reason they are losing votes.

So the answer to the first question posed remains unanswered, but, what we do know where women don’t belong, and that is on ANC Premier Lists.

Is there really a place for women in a country where men feel the need to ensure that their women stay in line or pay the consequences?

Oscar Pistorius for example sits under public scrutiny for shooting his girlfriend. Headlines are quick to mention what a hero Pistorius was and still is to some. How he is suffering from so much anguish because of what has happened. How hard Gerrie Nell is being on him. 

We are bombarded with YouTube links to “Oscar in tears” or “Oscar Breakdown”. All this to a man that may or may not have murdered his beloved partner.

Where is Reeva Steenkamp in all this?

Dead… Buried… Forgotten.

Regardless of whether he intended to or not, the woman suffered and that has been overshadowed by Pistorius’ need to restore his amazing reputation. 

Closer to home we have lost another woman. Amanda Tweyi (21), a 3rd year BSc student at Rhodes University is believed to have been shot and killed by her boyfriend Nkosinathi Nqabisa. 

Although we can only speculate as to the events leading to this young woman’s death, it is clear that there was some kind of violence against her as a woman. Even though Nqabisa is unable to explain his way out of the murder charges, one still wonders what is it Tweyi did, for him to feel the need to put her in her place… Where she belongs.

So…Where do women belong in South Africa?

I am yet to figure that out but so far it seems they belong under the leadership of a man or in the grave.

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