KwaZulu-Natal Prime Minister Sihle Zikalala called on men to be the foundation of society by supporting the generational equality agenda, while supporting the empowerment of women.
“It is our sincere desire that we have men eager for peaceful paths, respectable men who use amicable methods to resolve the urgent problems facing our families and our societies,” Zikalala said.
The Prime Minister called on men to fight patriarchy, end gender-based violence (GBV) and end child abuse.
Zikalala said the province and country need men who will be role models for boys, who will grow up to respect, embrace and appreciate women and girls for who they are and not for what they can get. of them.
“The underlying message is that we must work together to ensure that the relationship between men and women reflects unity, collaboration, partnership and harmony.”
He stressed that men should openly discuss with each other the challenges they face, explore their fears and anxieties, and pay attention to their dreams and aspirations.
“Men also need other men and women to be a shoulder to cry on. They are just humans and also have the support and care of others. We need to get rid of these myths that ‘men don’t don’t cry. ”We don’t want to create a society of men who feel their voice doesn’t matter, who think no one is taking their concerns seriously.
“It is very important for men to talk about issues that affect their mental, psychological and physical well-being so that they are resolved before they get worse. Real men come together to do positive things that will make them feel better. build and strengthen them. “
Importantly, Zikalala said that it has never been the culture of traditional Zulu society or many African societies to suppress women and relegate their role to second-class citizens.
“Our history teaches us that women were revered and even worshiped. Before the planting season, our ancestors performed rituals for the goddess of fertility and agriculture.
“It is truly a shame and a shame that today our mothers, sisters and daughters are suffering at the hands of men and boys. Something has really gone wrong. This is not a society we can do. be proud, ”he said.
He urged the amabutho to be exemplary towards young boys by teaching them the real values, real characters and responsibilities of being trustworthy men.
“Amabutho is the foundation and strength of the Zulu nation, for the whole nation relies on its defense in times of war. As we face this devastating war in the form of gender-based violence and feminicide (GBVF), we rely on amabutho’s guidance, war tactics, discipline and determination to win the war against GBVF, “said Zikalala.
On Sunday, the Prime Minister joined the community of Mbumbulu, south of Durban, to commemorate International Men’s Day under the theme “Better relations between men and women”.
Joined by MEC Social Development, Nonhlanhla Khoza and member of the provincial legislature, Bishop Vusi Dube; traditional rulers and religious leaders, among others, the prime minister urged men to be the warriors who will be remembered for restoring humanity and the dignity of women.
“Please stand up and be counted in the fight against this scourge which is a scourge on our hard-won freedom and democracy. [and] communities, ”he said.
(With contributions from the South African government press release)