South Africa Cabinet Spokesperson, Williams express fears over her daughter living in South Africa

Acting Director, Government Communications and Information System, GCIS, who doubles as the South African cabinet Spokesperson, Ms Phuma Williams has lamented the ongoing violence against women in the country, saying that she becomes apprehensive each time her daughter steps out of their home, fearing that she might be molested or might not even return home.

Speaking on Tuesday during the official commencement of the Media Engagement Tour of African journalists organized by the GCIS, Williams enjoined African journalists to support South Africa in the ongoing campaign against rape and violence against women. She also charged the media to be fair in their reportage, citing instances where rape cases were reported just against the victim, while the criminal was seen as a hero.

According to Williams, the African project cannot be realized without a true collaboration with the African media, hence the need for the first-ever African Media Tour where journalists from 10 African countries, including Nigeria converged on the country. According to the AG Director, African media would be able to tell the story of Africa better, hence the need for the event.

She said, ‘’Something has to be done to raise the awareness against the issue of rape and violence against women. We cannot be comfortable as men while we wake up daily to the most horrific stories about women. The most recent is the yesterday own where a 21-year-old was attacked in her study in a college, brutalized and murdered, and that’s the extent of the crisis we have and I think we want to say that as journalists and communicators, we need to do something in our various countries to raise the awareness; that it cannot be correct that as a continent, we still have some sectors of our society that feel unsafe. I’m not sure that it’s a similar problem in your country, but certainly, in South Africa, we have a serious crisis of women feeling unsafe.

‘’I generally panic when my daughter goes out for social activities. I will keep my phone opened because I always fear that she might not come back, and I don’t think it’s an environment that we want to bring up the girl-child,’’ she said.

Speaking on the effort of President Cyril Ramaphosa, the cabinet Spokesperson disclosed that the president was committed to ensuring that the girl-child or women in South Africa were safe and protected against what appears like a patriarchal society.

Speaking on the allegation of xenophobic attacks in South Africa, Ms Williams faulted the media for fueling the xenophobic issue by reporting the wrong stories. According to her, media reports on foreigners in the country were unfair, as foreign nationals involved in crimes in the country have local collaborators, hence it was wrong to have reported that only Nigerians or other countries were drug dealers.

Williams said, ‘’There are so many foreign nationals that are contributing to the development of the country and I had expected the media to report that aspect too. For me, I still want to see a journalist that will showcase a professor that is doing a very good job in some of our universities; I mean a foreigner.’’

Earlier at the event, Michael Currin, Acting Deputy Director-General, Intergovernmental Coordination and Stakeholder Management, had introduced top officials of the GCIS to the media delegates.

One of the highlights of the event was the presentation by Africa Check, after which the delegates were taken on a tour of the Freedom Park in Pretoria.

South Africa Cabinet Spokesperson, Williams express fears over her daughter living in South Africa South Africa Cabinet Spokesperson, Williams express fears over her daughter living in South Africa Reviewed by JNJ GLOBAL GIST on November 27, 2019 Rating: 5

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