Minister Shabangu on the occasion of the media launch of the Rhema Ministries’ Campaign against Violence to Women and Children, The Palazzo Hotel, Fourways, Tuesday, 25 July 2017
On behalf of the Department of Women, I am pleased to join the National Religious Leaders Council; Rhema Family Churches and the International Federation of Christian Churches as you launch the campaign to end violence perpetrated on women and children.
Indeed, the church, together with other agents of socialisation such as families, schools, friends and the media has a critical role to play in transforming our society. It is mainly from agents of socialisation that identities and ideas about what it means to be a man or a woman in society are formed.
Peaceful, affirming and loving homes teach girls and boys what it means be a good human being. Likewise, homes where violence is rife raise very violent girls and boys.
For this reason, it is important for religious institutions to join the struggle against gendered violence. It is also for this reason that the Department of Women supports this campaign and many others that seek to eradicate violence of all forms.
We need to define government as the focal point of social justice that has the structural capacity to respond to demands to end gender-based inequalities. Our success depends on sustained and strong efforts from other institutions such as churches and their role in socialising and constructing social beings.
Gender-based violence is a complex matter that cannot be solved by government alone.
It is because of these complexities that we extend our support not just to church formations, but to all corners of our society. These include civil society organisations, the private sector, community-based organisations, friendship circles, academic institutions and even individuals who are not affiliated with any institution.
When we form strong alliances between government and agents of socialisation, we are likely to succeed in changing minds.
Already, there are many men, in many organisations and as individuals, who are taking up the call and marching forwards to say not in my name. This is not a new phenomenon.
Our support and other alliances across different sectors will not only change the lives of women, but the collaboration will demonstrate the very essence of democracy � which is that basic human rights can be efficiently delivered if government and society work collaboratively.
Source: Government of South Africa