Sun. May 19th, 2024

During a recent parliamentary session, Minister in The Presidency for Women, Youth, and Persons with Disabilities, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, faced scrutiny from the opposition regarding the government’s actions amidst a concerning rise in femicide rates in South Africa.

In response to questions raised by Nazley Khan Sharif regarding the escalating femicide rates, Dlamini-Zuma emphasized that combating gender-based violence and femicide (GBVF) requires a collective effort from all sectors of society.

Dlamini-Zuma highlighted the approval of the National Strategic Plan (NSP) on GBVF by Cabinet in March 2020, coinciding with the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic. The plan’s implementation, overseen by an Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) on GBVF, involves monthly coordination and monitoring by the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development.

She noted positive outcomes resulting from collaborative initiatives across various sectors, including the implementation of 100-day challenges by the END GBVF Collective and the involvement of the faith sector in prevention efforts.

In addition, Dlamini-Zuma outlined the launch of the private sector GBVF Response Fund in February 2021, aimed at leveraging resources and responsibilities of stakeholders outlined in the NSP.

The establishment of Rapid Response Teams (RRT) at district and local municipalities and the appointment of GBVF technical monitors in provinces further bolstered efforts to combat GBVF.

Dlamini-Zuma underscored the importance of the National Council on GBVF Bill in strengthening the national response to GBVF, emphasizing key principles such as coordination, multi-sectoral collaboration, and institutional autonomy.

Looking ahead, she outlined plans to monitor and enforce accountability to NSP targets, including monthly progress reports, quarterly presentations to the President, and scorecards assessing sector department performance.

In conclusion, Dlamini-Zuma reiterated the government’s commitment to addressing GBVF as a national crisis, emphasizing prevention strategies and the need for a whole-of-society approach to eradicate femicide.

The ongoing efforts, she emphasized, aim to ensure the safety and freedom of women, children, and LGBTQIA+ individuals across all levels of society.

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