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Women’s league calls for national day of mourning

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The ANC Women’s League has called for a national day of mourning today to highlight the plight of gender based-violence and femicide.

Leighandre 'Baby Lee' Jegels Photo: Facebook

THE ANC Women’s League has called for a national day of mourning today to highlight the plight of gender based-violence and femicide.

The league has called on citizens to demonstrate their anger by dressing in black and to hold demonstrations in their respective areas.

It said that the aim of the mass demonstration is to mourn the deaths of women who have lost their lives due to gender-based violence and to also send support to the survivors.

The Women’s League added that it also wants to send a united message to President Cyril Ramaphosa in order for him to declare the scourge of gender-based violence a state of emergency and for the the security cluster to come up with a plan on how to address the problem.

The call comes after South Africans expressed their shock and outrage with the ongoing violence against women and children following the deaths of University of Cape Town student Uyinene Mrwetyana, South Africa boxing champion Leighandre Jegels and may other women who have lost their lives at the hands of men.

Many took to social media to express their anger.

Some people and political parties, such as the Inkatha Freedom Front (IFF), have supported a petition for the death penalty to be imposed on those who are found guilty of gender-based violence and femicide.

The provincial convener of the Young Women’s Desk, Xoliswa Xabendini, said demonstrations will be held at three districts in the Northern Cape.

“We will be holding demonstrations in the ZF Mgcawu, Frances Baard and Pixley ka Seme districts. We will be picketing at various points to send out our message. The safety of women needs to be treated with urgency. We are not safe at school, church, or in our own homes and have to constantly worry about not becoming a statistic,” Xabendini said.

She said the law authorities needed to ensure harsh sentences to the perpetrators of such crimes.

“The perpetrators of these crimes are even afforded bail. That sends the message that these crimes are just trivial.”

Xabendini also called on men to take a stand. “We cannot only as women be outraged about this. We need the men to stand with us. We are not the ones who are raping and killing ourselves. The men in our society need to speak out against these atrocities.”