The Rep

People speak out, act against social ills


To mark Women’s Month, in our Page 6 feature “Your Voice” this week we asked local residents what they thought society could do for women in the midst of the gender-based violence scourge.

In the responses (see below), some said more men needed to get involved in the fight against GBV.

One just needs to look at the horrific events of the past several days as reported in the media across the country for evidence.

Of course, it is a well-known fact there are many more horror stories that don’t make headlines.

Meanwhile, a group of women from Mlungisi made it clear they did not need men to get their anti-GBV message across as they demonstrat­ed outside the magistrate’s court in Komani on Tuesday (see picture, right, and story on Page 2).

While they would have liked their male counterpar­ts there to call out the perpetrato­rs of GBV, they had more than enough power to do it on their own.

They made a very strong statement at that, submitting a petition to the court calling on the magistrate to keep a man charged with rape locked up.

The women’s pertinent question: “What have women done to men [that makes them so violent and abusive]?” was sadly unanswered by men.

It’s sad men were not there to try to provide the answers. While still on the subject of men, there was no shortage of them at a soccer tournament at the Thobi Kula Indoor Sports Centre field last Sunday. In fact, you can find them there every Sunday.

Now, you are probably wondering what is so interestin­g about men playing soccer, something they do all the time.

Well, there’s an interestin­g twist to this team of men and, while it may come as a shock at first mention, it is premised on a positive idea to save them and others from falling victim to alcohol abuse, at least on Sundays.

Ordinarily these men would be found crammed into taverns on Sunday afternoons. But now they have something constructi­ve to look forward to.

They compete in soccer tournament­s every Sunday in eight teams attached to taverns in Mlungisi. Some can no longer play in official competitiv­e leagues due to age and these “tavern tournament­s” keep them active and away from drinking.

Both the tavern owners and their patrons deserve a pat on the back for their efforts. The former can do better and throw some financial support into the events.

To all women, continue to show your strength in the fight against gender-based violence.

We at The Rep wish you a happy and safe Women s Month.

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