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Work underway to implement gender summit resolutions – Ramaphosa

Government convened the two-day summit in Centurion, Tshwane, together with civil society organisations in an effort to find ways to end the scourge of abuse against women in the country.

Zulaika Patel, the organiser of the silent protest outside the Pretoria Magistrates Court on 30 November 2018. Picture: Abigail Javier/EWN

JOHANNESBURG – President Cyril Ramaphosa says that work is underway to implement the decisions of the inaugural Presidential Gender-based Violence and Femicide Summit held in November last year, including preparing the National Strategic Plan to combat gender-based violence.

Government convened the two-day summit in Centurion, Tshwane, together with civil society organisations in an effort to find ways to end the scourge of abuse against women in the country.

In his State of the Nation Address (Sona) on Thursday evening in Parliament, Ramaphosa said that violence against women and children had reached epidemic proportions.

The president said that ending gender-based violence in South Africa was an urgent national priority, and therefore, government would be at the forefront of campaigns to include men and boys “as active champions in the struggle against gender-based violence.”

“Every day, South African women are faced with discrimination, abuse, violence and even death, often by those they are closest to. Over the last year, we have started to address this scourge in a more serious and coordinated way,” he said.

Ramaphosa also announced that government will allocate funding in this year’s budget to support the decisions taken at the summit.

“We are expanding and dedicating more funds to places of support, such as the Thuthuzela Care Centres and Khuseleka Care Centres.

“We have been working to ensure the better functioning of Sexual Offences Courts,” he said.

Ramaphosa also touched on the challenges facing the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBTQI) community in the country, saying that government will improve the quality of services in shelters and ensure they also accommodate members of LGBTQI community.

He added that government would strengthen the national hotline centre that supports women who experience gender-based violence, as well as the functioning of specialised SAPS units like the Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences Units to better improve their administrative and record keeping capacity at all levels.

WATCH: #GBVSummit: Activists display underwear during Ramaphosa’s speech

READ: President Ramaphosa’s Sona 2019 full speech

State of the Nation Address... by on Scribd

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