"In a stressed-out society like ours, violence seems to be a first option response to conflict. We need to defuse this."

The scourge of femicide in our country is reaching epidemic proportions and as women’s rights advocacy group Ilitha Labantu pointed out, society has yet to wake up to how dire the situation is.

The sentencing of property mogul Jason Rohde to an effective 20-year jail term for killing his wife will give us some faith in the justice system. However, stopping this cancer before it reaches the courts will require a gargantuan effort from all of us. President Ramaphosa, in his State of the Nation Address, referred to the conference that was held on abuse against women and children, and committed the government to implement the recommendations made there. 

However, those who attended the conference have already pointed to the fact that he was vague on the details.

All of us need to reassess our inter-gender relations. The way in which we interact with our partners, lovers, girlfriends and wives. In a stressed-out society like ours, violence seems to be a first option response to conflict. 

We need to defuse this. Those who promised to love and cherish one another need to teach their children to respect one another. 

Parents need to lead by example in their behaviour. If a relationship doesn’t work out, people should have the courage to move on without resorting to violence.

* Edwin Lombard, News Editor.

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