Ayanda Dlodlo on GBV: ‘It is more dangerous to be a woman in SA than anywhere else on the planet'

“How does a country of brave and courageous people not find justice and peace for its women?” asked minister Dlodlo

31 August 2021 - 10:00 By cebelihle bhengu
Public service and administration minister Ayanda Dlodlo. File photo.
Public service and administration minister Ayanda Dlodlo. File photo.
Image: Moeletsi Mabe

“We have the highest rates of femicide and gender-based violence in the world. It is more dangerous to be a woman in SA than any other place on this planet.” 

These are the words of public service and administration minister Ayanda Dlodlo, who on Monday highlighted the plight of women in SA who continue to bear the brunt of high levels of gender-based violence. 

As Women's Month draws to a close, Dlodlo asked how it is that SA, a country that has made great strides in the empowerment of women, is among the countries globally where women are unsafe and live in fear daily. 

“How does a country of brave and courageous people not find justice and peace for its women?” she asked. 

Delivering a keynote address during a Public Service Women in Leadership event held in Pretoria on Monday, Dlodlo said the murders of Nosicelo Mtebeni and Babita Deokaran are some of the known recent incidents of GBV that have intensified calls for justice and protection of women.

“In this month of women, we buried Babita Deokaran, who was assassinated by cowards who feared to face the wrath of the law having stolen millions from the Gauteng health department. Here was a woman who was steadfast in fighting for the heritage of our children — a government free of corruption,” said Dlodlo.

Six suspects appeared in the Johannesburg magistrate’s court on Monday in connection with the murder of Deokaran. They are facing charges of murder, attempted murder, conspiracy to commit murder and possession of unlicensed firearms.

Deokaran died last Monday morning in Winchester Hills, south of Johannesburg. She was a key witness in an investigation run from Gauteng premier David Makhura’s office into personal protective equipment (PPE) tender corruption.

The matter has been postponed to September 13 for bail applications.


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