GOVERNMENT IS CONCERNED ABOUT INITIATION DEATHS
By MP Staff Reporter
According to our sister news agency, news24, Deputy President David Mabuza addressed, the sixth annual Opening of the National House of Traditional and Khoi-San Leaders at the Good Hope Chamber, Parliament, Cape Town on 24 February 2022.
Mabuza told the traditional leaders that the government remained concerned about the continued incidents of death of young people who participated in customary initiation, particularly in the Eastern Cape.
“Customary initiation should serve as a rite of passage for our young people, and as such, it is a practice that should embrace evolving methods of modern science to prevent any loss of lives”, said Mabuza.
He said part of the ongoing dialogue with traditional leaders was how these schools could be used “to shape the young boys into agents of change in combating gender-based violence and femicide”.
“We believe that the programme is very critical to ensuring that the boy-child is raised respecting and protecting women. The Traditional Men’s Parliament that is led by the National House also remains critical in the advancement of moral regeneration initiatives. Gender-based violence undermined “all our efforts of building a united and prosperous society. The measure of any nation is how women and children are being treated. We cannot be a society that regresses and has no regard for the rights of women. We raise these issues sharply as we do, comfortable that members of this House possess distinct wisdom that is drawn from the people in various makgotla and izimbizo held within their communities”, said Mabuza.
He further denoted that, “in our view, traditional and Khoi-San leaders must stand up and fight all that divides us as a people. We should work together as partners in efforts of building a united South Africa. Such a fight must also be directed at the cancer of racism, tribalism and regionalism that is rearing its ugly head.” However, he admitted that some of the issues traditional leaders have raised in the past took too long to deal with and resolve but assured them the government’s “commitment is unwavering”.
Typically, Ramaphosa appointed an Inter-Ministerial Task Team to respond to issues raised by traditional leaders. Mabuza chairs this team. This task team will endeavour to address all the issues raised by the institution of traditional and Khoi-San leaders over the years to advance development in their respective communities.
“As I have already acknowledged, some of the issues have taken long to resolve. However, we are confident that the process we have chosen will bear fruits. That is why we appeal to all sections of this institution to afford the unfolding process, space and opportunity to work on the issues at hand”, concluded Mabuza.