"I'm struggling to find the words to articulate what we are feeling as a nation, once again, time and time again. Oh my f*ck, when will this end?"
Cape Town – “I’m struggling to find the words to articulate what we are feeling as a nation, once again, time and time again. Oh my f*ck, when will this end?”
Despite the first sentence in her poem Veronique Jephtas, a 23-year-old writer and theatre-maker from Paarl, has gone viral for managing to do just that.
Jephtas took to her Facebook page on Thursday night and posted the video titled, “The apology we never got”.
She goes on to address President Cyril Ramaphosa, asking him where is his apology to the victims and survivors of gender-based violence, following the news that eight-year-old Tazne Van Wyk’s body had been found on Wednesday evening.
Moehydien Pangaker, 54-years-old, was on Friday charged with the kidnapping and murder of Tazne whose body was found in a stormwater pipe in Worcester, two weeks after she disappeared.
The two minute video has resonated with many South Africans and has over 67 000 views as of Friday evening.
Jephtas said that she has been overwhelmed and in awe of people’s reactions as she doesn’t write anything with the intent of going viral.
“Everything I do, whether it is poetry or writing or theatre, it is done selflessly and with a purpose to heal and bring comfort.
“So those people who come up to me and cry because I have given them hope, it makes me realise the impact of my words. I almost do not want say it feels good, because we shouldn’t be having this problem in the first place,” Jephtas said.
She added that she was “overwhelmed with anger, hurt and fear” when writing and recording the poem.
Jephtas explained that what had had happened to van Wyk family was something “no family deserves”.
“What they do deserve is a president who cares about the people who had put him in power.
Jephtas added: “I am sending love and light to everyone in our country mourning these senseless deaths and abuse. I am lifting you up in prayer. Aluta continua.”
“I hope for Cyril to wake up and truly reform our justice and prison system. The fashion and mockery at the State of the Nation Address, the Rugby World Cup and even the tennis match of a few weeks ago will not wash away gender-based violence.”
Jephtas is not the only one calling for an apology.
Last week One Billion Rising SA campaign co-ordinator, Lucinda Evans, called out the president for failing to address GBV at SONA.
Evans said that the SONA did not reflect the state of women in the country, adding it meant nothing to the families of women and children who had died at the hands of perpetrators.