18 May 2017
The South African Democratic Teachers' Union (SADTU) notes with great shock, an escalation in acts of abuse of women with specific reference to the latest reported incidents where young women were murdered and one gang raped in the Johannesburg Central Business District.
SADTU wishes to express its deepest condolences to the families of the young women and girls across the country who continues to suffer the indignity of abuse and death at the hands of bigots who have no respect for human dignity and life. SADTU further extends its heartfelt condolences to the families of Mandla Hlatswayo and his friend Chomchom who died at the hands of merciless criminals as they tried to exercise their civic responsibility to protect the young women who were being robbed.
These incidents are a constant reminder of the need for society to intensify the struggle for the total emancipation of women, the respect for human rights and our responsibility to ensure the attainment of a non-sexist society.
Whilst SADTU recognises the reality of the impact of psycho-socio factors such as unemployment, drug and substance abuse which contribute to the nature of the violent society we are, we rejects these as an excuse by any means for the brutality meted out to women and girls generally.
SADTU rejects any suggestion that women and girls must live in constraint and have their rights to freedom of movement limited because of the fear of abuse at the hands of males. SADTU further rejects the patriarchal approach which sees women and girls as inferior and objects of abuse by men regardless of the material conditions under which this abuse occurs.
SADTU calls upon society and men in particular to stand up, reject this backward tendency, take steps to fight this scourge and assert the human rights of women.
SADTU calls upon its members to continue efforts particularly in schools and the communities in which our members work to provide support and education particularly to young men and boys on the need to respect the human rights of women and girls. We also urge our members to provide assistance to law enforcement agencies and provide and/or facilitate the provision of any information which can help in apprehending these heartless criminals.
ISSUED BY: SADTU Secretariat
General Secretary, Mugwena Maluleke: 082 783 29 68
Deputy General Secretary, Nkosana Dolopi: 082 709 5651
Media Officer, Nomusa Cembi: 082 719 5157