Men stand up against abuse

Pretoria: Minister in the Presidency responsible for Women, Susan Shabangu, says she is encouraged by the growing number of men who are getting involved in the fight against the abuse of women and children.

The Minister was addressing the International Men’s Day (IMD) event held in Soshanguve, north of Pretoria, on Saturday.

IMD is an annual international event observed on 19 November. It is a day designed to focus on men’s health, improving gender relations, promoting gender equality and highlighting positive male role models.

It is also an occasion for men to celebrate their contributions to the community, family, marriage and child care.

Minister Shabangu said while men are primarily looked up to as the nurturers of boys, women should also be involved. She said both parents have the responsibility of raising children.

First Lady Tobeka Zuma said men must be part of the solution to end women and child abuse.

“Not reporting abuse means you are part of the problem,” she said.

She called on fathers to spend time talking to their sons.

“Fathers should not only spend time reading newspapers. They should give themselves time to spend with the boy child. Real men don’t abuse.”

She also expressed concern about young men who rape and kill elderly women.

“It is disturbing to read in newspapers about young men raping elderly women,” she said.

One of the men who attended the event, Ephraim Baloyi, told SAnews that he is going play his part to encourage other men to respect their wives and not abuse them.

“Men are supposed to love and take care of their families. They should not abuse their children. Men who abuse their wives and children should be locked up in jail,” he said.

Minister Shabangu also used the occasion to call on police officers to take seriously the plight of men who are being abused.

“We all human beings. We all feel the pain,” she said.

IMD is also in line with the “#CountMeIn: Together Moving a Non-Violent South Africa Forward” theme adopted during last year’s 16 Days of Activism Campaign.

SOURCE: SOUTH AFRICAN OFFICIAL NEWS

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