Gauteng launches GBV response plan

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MEC for Community Safety in Gauteng, Faith Mazibuko has launched the Gender-based violence Response Plan in Johannesburg.

The plan is expected to inculcate methods in which the scourge that bedevils South African communities can be done away with.

Stakeholders, including community members and law enforcement agencies, engaged the MEC on the challenges in fighting the societal ills on Sunday, which also marked International Women’s Day.

The plan was announced by Gauteng Premier David Makhura during his State of the Province address two weeks ago. It is expected to give effect to President Cyril Ramaphosa’s Emergency Response Plan (ERAP) on Gender-based violence and femicide.

Mazibuko unpacked the five pillars underpinning the response plan with hopes to curb the scourge of Gender-based violence in the province.

In 2019, the SAPS reported that Gender-based violence offences were perpetrated against over 45 000 women and over 8 000 children in Gauteng alone.

Mazibuko says: “As Gauteng Provincial Government together with society, we’re able to assist one another on how to focus more on prevention. That’s one thing that we believe needs to happen. The second one is care – how do we go about caring for the victims and the survivors and the third one is on enhancing the legal framework.”

“There’s various laws that exist within our country’s system but to what extent are all these laws and policies actually assisting our people. The other one is one economic empowerment – we believe that women need to be empowered so that they’re able to stand on their own. The last one is strengthening the criminal justice system. If the criminal justice system is strengthened then I’m 100% sure we won’t see women forever complaining that,” she adds.

Feminist author and board director at POWA Rosie Motene calls for more to be done to fight GBV:

The Commission for Gender Equality, which is tasked with promoting respect for gender equality and the protection, development and attainment of gender equality welcomed the plan and says it will play an oversight role in the process.

“The Gender Commission will assist the Gauteng province in terms of making sure that these areas are implemented so we will play that oversight and advice role. So we welcome these five areas and we are saying that in those five areas, we strongly feel each area should be looked into. There should be campaigns and we will be part of those Gauteng campaigns,” Chairperson Tamara Mathebula says.