SALGA in partnership with Gender Links, the European Union , Commission for Gender Equality, SA Women In Dialogue, UN Women launched the SA Gender and Local Government Election Report ( post the Aug 2016 elections) yesterday in Pretoria, Menlyn, at SALGA’s National Offices.
Women’s representation in local government increased from 39% in 2011 to 41% in the 3 August 2016 local elections, falling short of South Africa’s regional and international commitments to gender equality.
The launch event was attended by former Independent Electoral Commission Chair Dr Brigalia Bam, gender experts and activists, and various political parties who participated in the recent 2016 local government elections. Political parties remain instrumental in the fight for equal gender representation for women in government and society at large.
Having emerged from a successful SALGA 2016 National Conference and as alluded to in the Johannesburg Declaration, SALGA has noted with concern failure to achieve the 50/50 representation of women in the local government sector.
SALGA has noted with concern the failure to address Gender Equality despite the much-vaunted call for 50:50 equality of representation, particularly at ward level. SALGA further calls for all political parties to respect and advance the imperative of gender equality.
SALGA re-commits itself to achieve gender equality through its new Strategic Plan 2017 -2022 which was adopted at the 2016 National Conference.
South Africa is a signatory of several United Nations conventions that were created to remove barriers that are faced by women. The South African government initiated a number of reforms aimed at ensuring greater women’s participation in politics and to support the 1996 Constitution that entrenches gender equality as a fundamental human right.
SALGA is commemorating the 16 Days of Activism for No Violence Against Women and Children in partnership with Gender Links, Commission for Gender Equality, South African Women in Dialogue, European Union, and United Nations Women. In this regard, parallel launch events will take place during 16 Days of Activism in order to lobby and advocate for multiple strategic efforts to empower women and end violence in South Africa.
Distributed by APO on behalf of Republic of South Africa: Department of Government Communication and Information.