Another GBV Council not the solution to crisis – Utilise existing measures adequately

“South Africa does not need yet another council in the fight against gender-based violence,” said Tshepi Mmekwa, Gauteng Action Centre coordinator at Action Society. “The proposed National Council on Gender-Based Violence and Femicide will be just another project to create more money-grabbing opportunities for cadres of the ruling party.”

The Minister for Women, Youth and Persons with Disabilities, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, announced the National Council on Gender-Based Violence and Femicide (NCGBVF) Bill to the National Assembly late last year. The bill seeks to establish a multi-sectoral, independent and non–partisan statutory body, which will provide strategic leadership on eliminating gender-based violence and femicide in South Africa.

Despite implementing the Domestic Violence Act, National Strategic Plan on Gender-Based Violence and Femicide, GBVF Fund and the National Task Team on Gender-Based Violence and Femicide, the latest crime statistics show 11 women murdered, 18 attempted murders of women and 48 women seriously assaulted daily.

“The GBVF Fund allocates funds to underperforming and politically aligned non-profit organisations with no real intention of solving the crisis,” said Kaylynn Palm, the Western Cape Action Centre’s coordinator. “Another council will be nothing more than wasteful expenditure.”

Action Society calls for rejecting the proposed bill to introduce another measure against gender-based violence (GBV). The existing services, members, councils and government employees should be adequately utilised. If the bill does pass, it should be amended to allow the private sector to appoint roleplayers to lead the council from a grass root level, which will be more effective and actually deliver the intended results.

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