Bathabile Dlamini: Women abuse must become taboo

The minister was speaking at Constitution Hill at the launch of an app to curb abuse against women.

ANC Women’s League President Bathabile Dlamini addressing the crowd at the league’s gathering in Germiston. Picture: Twitter/@ANCWomensLeague

JOHANNESBURG – Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini says the media must not be selective in its reporting on gender-based violence.

The minister is speaking at Constitution Hill at the launch of a mobile application to curb abuse against women.

Dlamini made headlines this week after she told the Sunday Times that there were some in the African National Congress (ANC) who were much worse than Deputy Higher Education Minister Mduduzi Manana but later declined to identify them.

Speaking to delegates on Tuesday morning, Dlamini said gender-based violence must never be tolerated.

“Women abuse must become taboo. It must be that no one feels that they can get away with it because they are friends of the media.”

Dlamini said leaders in the ANC need to come clean on issues of women abuse.

She stopped short of saying who in the ANC was responsible for the abuse of women.

Instead, she referred to the case of Reeva Steenkamp who was killed by her boyfriend Oscar Pistorius in 2013, saying there was enough evidence but no justice.

She said the change should start with the judiciary.

“And we should not allow situations where this happens and nobody accounts. Someone has to account for the lives of women that are lost on daily basis.”

Dlamini said the case of Manana, and women abuse in general, is not about targeting individuals.

She said it was about fighting patriarchy and violence against women.

“Once you start doing that, men are going to close ranks. And therefore, ours is to fight patriarchy and violence against women.”

The minister said it’s time for leaders in the ANC to come clean on these issues.

“The time has come for them to know that if they want to be our leaders, they should be clean when it comes to the issues of women.”

Dlamini also said that political organisations shouldn’t use the subject of violence against women to gain popularity.

(Edited by Leeto M Khoza)