Johannesburg - On Friday, afternoon a group of about 50 members of the ANC Women’s League (ANCWL) gathered at Constitution Hill to picket against gender-based violence (GBV).
It was the start of the #ANCBlackFriday campaign, focusing on the fight against GBV in South Africa.
The campaign aims and encourages people from all provinces and regions to come out and picket outside courts and police stations across the country in a bid to fight the scourge and for police stations to be better equipped to handle cases of GBV.
Speaking at the gathering was former cabinet minister Nomvula Mokonyane, who said 39 regions across the country were taking part in the campaign.
“We have 39 regions of the ANC and all of them are picketing, including our branches that are picketing outside courts and police stations.
“The Joburg region chose Constitution Hill, supported by us at national level because the Constitutional Court is the highest court in the land that ensures that every South African upholds values as enshrined in the Constitution, that women’s rights are human rights.
“Secondly, South Africa belongs to all those who live in it. We all have a right to life.
“We cannot have women dying at the hands of men and not do anything about it.
“Ours is to take a stand,” she said.
Regional executive manager of the ANC in Joburg, Tania Old-John said their actions are as a result of the January 8th Statement, and that changes need to be made in the country’s justice system to fight GBV in the country.
“This is taken from the January 8th Statement, that across the country, this is what we need to do because gender-based violence is a pandemic.
“We, as women, need to take the lead and not let this rest.
“Violence against women has always been there but nothing has been done.
“We will be picketing every week on a Friday.
“GBV must be taken seriously in our courts. If we carry on making our voices heard, maybe our laws will change,” said Old-John.
She said all weekly provincial pickets were expected to have at least 50 participants led by ANC provincial champions against GBV, Provincial Executive Committee and or Regional Executive Committee (REC) members between 1-2pm and that regions were encouraged to have their own individual pickets led by RECs.