Recent multiple incidents of Intimate Partner Violence and Gender Based Violence has brought thousands of woman from all over South Africa together. Schools and universities across the country are engaged in protests and marches, with many more being planned for the rest of the week. Petitions are going around are going around calling for stiffer sentences including the death sentence.
Anger, frustration and tears over these incidents which include the kidnapping of a little girl has brought solidarity to all. On the other hand solidarity of a different kind sees our country embroiled in xenophobic attacks. It is indeed a very dark period for all South Africans. Most disheartening is that the apex is at the culmination of Woman’s Month. We have just spent a month encouraging and empowering woman and young girls to stand up against GBV and any form of abuse.
Where have we gone wrong? What could we have done differently? What do we do in future?, are the questions many citizens and activists are asking themselves. We have spent many years making lots of noise in marches and protests during 16 Days of Activism, Woman’s Month, Child Protection Week etc. We will continue to do so but is it enough? Are we being heard? Is our message being understood? Sadly the rising statistics indicate it is not enough.