Dept of Women supports CGE's investigation into Hlaudi Motsoeneng's 'wife' gift

Kenosi Machepa says actions of Mudzi wa Vhurereli ha Vhavenda are solemnly regrettable

Investigation into claims that SABC boss was given a wife as a gift welcomed

19 Jun 2014

The department responsible for the championing of women rights supports the Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) for instituting an investigation following reports that Hlaudi Motsoeneng, the acting chief operations officer at the SABC  received ‘wife' as a gift alongside a cow and its calf from Venda chiefs and  traditional leaders and activists.

This practice purported under the guise of tradition and culture by a lobby group called Mudzi wa Vhurereli ha Vhavenda is solemnly regrettable. The use of women as gifts as if they were livestock is a serious regress and an insult to the gains of 20 years of democracy and freedom, particularly the contribution of women.

Colonialism, harmful cultural and religious practices promoted patriarchy and the oppression of women and apartheid further entrenched discrimination based on gender and laws that oppressed women.

"Since 1994, remarkable progress has been made in raising the voice of women through the creation of participatory spaces and structures. As the department responsible for the championing of the rights of women, we cannot sit back and allow women to be treated like secondary citizens with no acclaim to human rights," explains spokesperson Kenosi Machepa.

Cultural and traditional practices are part of South Africa's rich heritage but should not be abused to advance personal interests. Chiefs and traditional leaders should partner with government and support its efforts to anchor women and youth into the forefront of socio-economic transformation.

The 10 girls that were paraded are at the prime of their life and should be guided and parented to empower themselves with education and scarce skills needed to move South Africa forward and advance the rights and empowerment of women.

In the next five years, the Ministry of Women will be prioritizing the championing the mainstreaming of women's rights and socio-economic empowerment across all sectors.

This is our central message as we move South African women forward - nothing about women without women.

Statement issued by Kenosi Machepa, Head of Communication, Department of Women, June 19 2014

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