Democratic Alliance press statement by Helen Lamoela MP, DA Shadow Minister of Women, Children and People with Disabilities
01 August 2012
Today marks the beginning of Women's Month. As we honour the women of 1956 who marched on the Union Buildings to protest against the pass laws, we acknowledge that some of the worst challenges faced by women then still persist for women today.
The DA challenges the Minister for Women, Children and People with Disabilities, Lulu Xingwana, to show us that she is serious about promoting and realising the rights of vulnerable and impoverished women. With an average budget of R142 million per year to coordinate and monitor the direct delivery of programmes to support, empower and develop vulnerable groups, Minister Xingwana consistently fails in achieving her mandate.
The statistics paints a bleak picture about the challenges faced by women in South Africa:
Every 25 seconds a women or girl is raped;
every six days a women in South Africa is murdered by her intimate partner;
we are experiencing a spike in violence against elderly women, with two deplorable incidents of violent sexual attacks against grandmothers in the last week; and
over 160 000 schoolgirls fell pregnant between 2008 and 2010, with many of the schoolgirls being in grades 3, 5 and 6.
This situation warrants a Ministry who is actively championing and protecting the rights of women and young girls.