The South African Communist Party (SACP) has called for the integration of gender transformation in the school, college and university curricula. The party said this at a briefing in Johannesburg following a three-day meeting of its Central Committee.

The high incidences of murder and rape of women in the country has put the issue in the spotlight. The SACP has called for the proper socialisation and treatment of all children in fighting gender-based violence and the strengthening of institutions.

The SACP says it will also make proposals to government about improving the criminal justice system and the provision of support to survivors and the families of women who have been murdered

“It’s been correct to focus on the girl child, but now it is equally important to focus on the boy child because your main perpetrators of violence are men and we need to combat this early by focusing on the boy child. This must find active expression in every household, community and other social settings. The CC (Central Committee) has called for the integration of gender transformation in teaching and learning content in our school, college and university curriculum and syllabi,” says SACP General-Secretary Blade Nzimande.

The party has characterised the violence that has rocked Gauteng as a reflection of a Southern African Development Community (SADC) region in distress. The party says while law enforcement must be the most immediate response to the looting and violence being witnessed in Gauteng, economic growth and development in the region are the only sustainable solution.

“ At that time that labour was commuting with trains, as Bra Hugh’s famous song on Stimela, between the rest of the region and the mining hostels, now that labour is no longer in mining hostels. It is labour that is staying with us in our own informal settlements, right inside South Africa as some kind of economic refugees… now anywhere in the world when you have massive migration of the poor to seek to access same services of other poor communities that are settled you are actually lighting a powder keg,” Nzimande said after the Central Committee meeting.

The SACP has rejected the prescriptions of the Economic Strategy paper that Treasury released two weeks ago, saying it undermines the country’s sovereignty. The SACP’s leadership says the paper closely resembles the one written by the elite Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) on South Africa in 2017.

The party has also taken issue with the process followed in releasing the paper – saying as a part of the African National Congress (ANC)-lead tripartite alliance it did not see the report before its release on the eve of the World Economic Forum in Cape Town last week.

“Releasing a paper like it unfortunately does not contribute to this urgent need to try and develop a consensus amongst the widest possible sections of South Africa… that is the most unfortunate part, we also think by the way that the manner in which this paper gets released is also against the effort led by the President of Thuma Mina and of consulting all stakeholders in society sometimes a policy by the way is only as good as the buy in it receives from society.”