Co­lour­ful march a­gainst vi­o­len­ce

Mossel Bay Advertiser - - News - Cor­nel­le Car­stens

Bra­ve men took to the streets in high heels in Mos­sel Bay, sho­wing their sup­port for the 16 Days of Acti­vism A­gainst Gen­der Ba­sed Vi­o­len­ce on F­ri­day, 23 No­vem­ber.

The march do­wn A­dri­aans A­ve­nue, A­sla Park, was sup­por­ted by re­pre­sen­ta­ti­ves from va­ri­ous s­ta­te de­part­ments, chur­ches, NGOs, bu­si­nes­ses and mem­bers of the com­mu­ni­ty.

"To­day we say no to vi­o­len­ce a­gainst wo­men and child­ren. I am we­a­ring heels. I am out of my com­fort zo­ne, to say count me in," said Vuyo M­fum­be, a youth de­ve­lo­per and acti­vist.

A­not­her mar­cher, S­te­phan Wes­so, soon fol­lo­wed suit, being ap­plau­ded by his fe­ma­le col­le­a­gues as he don­ned a pair of la­ce­co­ve­r­ed high heels, hol­ding his pro­test pos­ter high.

C­ler­gy­men re­pre­sen­ting the Con­gre­ga­ti­o­nal and Cat­ho­lic Chur­ches wal­ked up front, al­ongs­i­de the he­ad of the Mos­sel Bay Cor­recti­o­nal Youth Cen­t­re, Z­we­li So­fut­he.

The march en­ded at the T­hus­ong Cen­t­re, w­he­re spea­kers ad­dres­sed the par­ti­ci­pants. Ma­na­ger of the T­hus­ong Cen­t­re, Nom­zi Ji­ka said t­hat it is im­por­tant to in­vi­te all men to join the cam­paign. "We must be­ar in mind t­hat not all men are a­bu­sers. Let us count them in." She cal­led on the Jus­ti­ce De­part­ment to gi­ve re­a­lis­tic sen­ten­ces in an at­tempt to curb gen­der-ba­sed vi­o­len­ce.

Co­lo­nel Una Saay­man, de­pu­ty com­man­der of the Da Ga­mas­kop po­li­ce clus­ter said sta­tis­ti­cs on ra­pe ca­ses re­por­ted at the 11 sta­ti­ons in the clus­ter, are a­lar­ming.

"In ma­ny ca­ses, the thre­ats are no lon­ger unkno­wn par­ties but far too of­ten pe­op­le kno­wn to the victims. "It shows how sick our so­cie­ty has be­co­me."She ur­ged e­ver­yo­ne to speak out and pro­mo­te a mes­sa­ge of ca­ring. "If we ca­re for one a­not­her, we will not hurt one a­not­her."

She al­so com­men­ted t­hat bul­lying at schools is a form of vi­o­len­ce t­hat the com­mu­ni­ty should be con­cer­ned a­bout. She ur­ged pe­op­le to be kind, to do good and to li­ve a hum­ble li­fe in sup­port of the 16 Days of Acti­vism cam­paign.

The march con­clu­ded with the sig­ning of pled­ges in sup­port of the cam­paign.

Mar­chers sang gospel son­gs as they pro­cee­ded do­wn A­dri­aans A­ve­nue. C­ler­gy­men ta­king the le­ad, al­ongs­i­de the he­ad of the Mos­sel Bay Cor­recti­o­nal Youth Cen­t­re. INSET: Vuyo M­fum­be bra­ved A­dri­aans A­ve­nue in t­he­se high heels to show so­li­da­ri­ty with victims of gen­der ba­sed vi­o­len­ce.

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