‘Kings on the street’ re­spon­si­ble

Pretoria News - - METRO - VIRGILATTE GWANGWA [email protected]

PA­TRI­ARCHY em­pow­ered men to feel like “kings on the street”, and that was one of the rea­sons the coun­try faced so much gen­der-based vi­o­lence.

This was ac­cord­ing to those who par­tic­i­pated in the work­shop ti­tled We Are for Women, hosted by the Em­bassy of the United States and Dads in the Pic­ture.

They gath­ered at the Es’kia Mphahlele Com­mu­nity Li­brary in the event that co­in­cided with the 16 Days of Ac­tivism for No Vi­o­lence against Women and Chil­dren.

“Cul­ture has un­con­sciously given men the visa to walk away from their fam­i­lies be­cause some cul­tures say a child be­longs to the mother.

“Due to this, young men who grow up with­out a fa­ther in their lives have anger which may not be to­wards an in­di­vid­ual, but so­ci­ety in gen­eral,” said Me­shack Kekana, founder of Dads in the Pic­ture. Kekana said he of­ten heard young men vow that they would grow up to be­come the best fa­thers, bet­ter than their fa­thers.

“But I ar­gue that you can never be bet­ter than your fa­ther if you don’t know him,” he said.

He told the men gath­ered that they needed to start play­ing their part in rais­ing young men at home and not on the streets.

He said that if to­gether they vowed to stop vi­o­lence against women, the is­sue could be solved in the next three gen­er­a­tions. “We will (then) have 0% gen­der-based vi­o­lence and I am say­ing this will take three gen­er­a­tions be­cause we will not win this bat­tle by one gen­er­a­tion. The cur­rent gen­er­a­tion needs all the sup­port they can get so that the third gen­er­a­tion stands a chance to win the bat­tle.”

Speak­ing to the Pre­to­ria News on the side­lines of the event, Kekana said good fa­thers con­sti­tuted about 20% of fa­thers in the coun­try. He said the num­ber of good fa­thers was over­shad­owed by ab­sent fa­thers.

As­sis­tant cul­tural at­taché at the em­bassy Kiera Em­mons said the work­shop was part of their ob­serv­ing 16 Days of Ac­tivism for No Vi­o­lence Against Women and Chil­dren.

THOBILE MATHONSI African News Agency (ANA)

ME­SHACK Kekana, founder of Dads in the Pic­ture, ad­dresses the We Are for Women work­shop at the Es’kia Mphahlele Com­mu­nity Li­brary yes­ter­day. |

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