File picture: Phill Magakoe.

Following the recent spate of abuse, rape and killing of women and children the ANC’s Youth and Women’s Leagues in KwaZulu-Natal have called on President Cyril Ramaphosa to declare a state of emergency while advocating for the chemical castration of rapists.

The youth league on Tuesday held a march and candle lighting ceremony to protest the killing of women and children. 

Delivering his memorandum to the leadership of the eThekwini Municipality, the league’s deputy chairperson Sibonelo Mtshali said that Ramaphosa should heed women’s calls for a state of emergency.

“The government has an obligation to develop the administration of a state of emergency. We demand that government prioritise resources and funds on an integrated approach that will address the issues of violence against women and children holistically,” Mtshali said.

He added that the government should initiate programs to socialise men because they are the perpetrators.

“The youth league and other sectors have opened the debate on chemical castration. There are women who have demanded the death sentence and we think it is our obligation to protect the Constitution. We have stated categorically that our experience has taught us that it is a violation of human rights to give power to the state to kill its citizens,” Mtshali said.

Nonhlanhla Gabela, ANC Women’s League secretary in KZN, said that the league now had a youth desk to deal with issues faced by young women.

“As women in South Africa we are not free in schools because we are being raped and killed, we are not free in churches... instead of priests preaching the word of God they are raping us, we are not free in our communities because our brothers and sisters are being raped. 

“We are not free in our own homes because our uncles, fathers and brothers see wives and girlfriends in us. We are not free even when with our husbands, we are not free in government departments, you go to a post office to pick up your parcel and you end up being raped and killed. We are not free in taxis, because the driver sees an object and not a human being,” Gabela said.   

She said that government should stop treating women as statistics and repeatedly counting the number female deaths at the hands of men and that this was why they wanted President Cyril Ramaphosa to declare a state of emergency.

“We are asking that rapists and murderers not be granted bail, they should not receive parole and should rot in jail. We are calling for rapists to be chemically castrated. We hope that the president can help us with that,” Gabela said.

Political Bureau