by Siviwe Zibi
The 16 Days of Activism Against Women and Child Abuse is an international campaign that was started to help raise awareness and assist women and children to speak out against gender-based violence. The campaign starts from 25 November to 10 December annually, it’s been running for more than 25 years in South Africa yet femicide rate is still on the rise.
On the eve of 16 Days of Activism campaign, Precious Ramabulana a 21-year-old student from Capricon TVET College was found dead in her residence off-campus in Botlhokwa after being raped and stabbed 52 times.
The 18-year-old Gomolemo Legae was stabbed several times on Sunday before she was doused with petrol and set alight while she was still alive.
Kgaugelo Tshawanae went on vacation and never came back, her burnt body was found inside her Mini Cooper in the bushes on 24 November 2019 in Mapetla Section, Mmakau. Tshawane reportedly failed to come back home on the 24th of November 2019 after a vacation at Hartbeespoort dam with friends.
I can go on and on the list is unending, all these horrific acts of gender-based violence took place during the period 16 Days of Activism Against Women and Children, that clearly shows it is not enough, more needs to be done. South African women live in fear as femicide continues to be on the rise. A woman is murdered every three hours in South Africa. The 16 Days of Activism Against Women and Children campaign doesn’t carry weight at all, it doesn’t bring any transformation instead, the femicide rate is disturbingly high.
The campaign has utterly failed, the thousands of Rands spent on 16 Days of Activism could rather be spent supporting shelters for abused women and children and the victims of gender-based violence.
If you are struggling with domestic violence or any form of abuse please reach out to the following organisation. Victims can call the toll-free number on 0800 428 428 (0800 GBV GBV) and you will be able to speak to a social worker for assistance and counselling. Callers can also request a social worker from the command centre to contact them by dialling *120*7867# (free) from a cellphone.