Press Release
August 07, 2017

Tackling VAW requires collective action

Government, the private sector, civil society organisations and all sectors of society need to combine efforts to end Violence Against Women (VAW) in South Africa, says the Centre for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation (CSVR).

The call comes after a series of shocking incidents of VAW reported in the media including the brutal murder Karabo Mokoena and the gang rape of a 22-year-old in Johannesburg.

It is estimated that at least one woman in every three has been beaten, coerced into sex, or otherwise abused in her lifetime. These incidents take place in spaces where women’s general life occurs, both public and private,” said CVSR Gender Specialist Nonhlanhla Sibanda-Moyo.

It is time for the country to have a well-coordinated national response plan that clearly defines the priorities of all government sectors responsible to aspects of fighting violence against women and then holds each to account.

“This would ensure that VAW is consistently under the microscope and different departments, civil society organisations and the private sector would have programmes that proactively address VAW,” said Sibanda-Moyo.

The CSVR also noted current media coverage of a couple being assaulted by six men at a KFC drive-through in Montana, Pretoria, as well as reports of Deputy Minister of Higher Education and Training Mduduzi Manana’s assault of a woman at a club in Johannesburg over the weekend.

These reports come soon after the #MenAreTrash social media campaign where we saw men organising marches against violence, different government departments calling for various meetings to discuss solutions, civil society organisations and women’s rights groups taking action. It is clear that talk is not enough,” said Sibanda-Moyo.

Sibanda-Moyo said South Africa had made some progress through policy changes, specific programmes, and to an extent, coalition building, to improve women’s access to justice.

However, the lack of collaboration and a comprehensive national strategy that coordinates all efforts, funding issues and organisational isolation affects the effectiveness of efforts towards combatting VAW,” she added.

Issued by the Center for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation.