South Africa has become a hell hole for women living in it in the last couple of months. The killing, abducting and raping of many women has caused a constant state of fear amongst them.
Women have been making it to newspaper front covers for all the wrong reasons. Horrific stories like that of Karabo Mokoena’s murder along with the abducting and raping of women in the country have been increasingly appearing in newspapers therefore causing a sense of concern in communities across the country.
While some men and women sit in fear with their pepper sprays and hash tags, a group of citizens, both male and female, have decided to take a stand against violence towards women.
The group of citizens has decided to send a message by having a march on the 27 of May 2017. The presence of police escorts made it safe and possible for the group to send a clear message to the men and women in Johannesburg.
The 3km march started off at Park Station, proceeded to Noord Street, Lilian Ngoyi (formerly known as Bree) street and came to a halt in De Korte Street, Braamfontein.
The marchers had straight forward messages; “It Ends Now!”, “Protect Our Women!”, “I Cannot Remain Silent Anymore!” and “Seskhathele (We’ve had enough)!” Along the way, more citizens who felt just as strongly about the issue at hand joined the march while talking about their experiences. One of them was Palesa Mdlhejwane. She mentioned how a man once harassed her while everyone in the city watched with no intention to help.
“A man once told me that he will smell my vagina by force.” She explained.
The march was led by a woman named Asa and her two friends Heidi and Lola.
“Quickly after Karabo Mokoena’s death was announced on Social Media by her uncle, a debate on ‘Men Are Trash’ suddenly sparked and men and women spent hours and days debating the hashtag. We wanted to move away from just talking, yes men are trash – what are we going to do about it? So we decided to act.” Said Asa.
When askedif they would form a support group for woman, Heidi replied, “that is exactly what we as women need. Women need to know that they are heard and they can get support where it is needed. So many of them don’t know where to go or where to begin when they want to talk. They fear being judged, blamed and victimized.
“We need to stand together. As week as one feels when alone, just like twigs, we are stronger together”
These women have made it possible for women to send out a message and are planning on having another march soon.
They are looking to increase the number of women marching and may be contacted on the following email address: Asa88.email@example.com