DA calls for action on officials in Bhisho sex-for-jobs scandal: The Herald

‘ We have girls who are raped so violently they will never be able to have children

AS the country marks the last day of the 16 days of activism of no violence against women and children, Eastern Cape DA Women’s Network (Dawn) chairwoman Celeste Barker called on Local Government MEC Fikile Xasa to act against government officials implicated in the Bhisho sex-for-jobs saga.

Picture: FREDLIN ADRIAAN ACTION STATIONS: DA members, from left, Sindiwa Ngqondela, Genevieve Cannon, Celeste Barker, Penny Naidoo, Anne du Plessis and Amore Kruger at the ‘rape rights’ DVD launchAddressing the media at the DA’s provincial headquarters in Port Elizabeth yesterday during Dawn’s “rape rights” DVD launch, Barker said society should have a zero-tolerance policy towards violence against women and children.

The sex-for-jobs scandal, which implicated senior government officials, rocked the provincial government in June with claims that some senior managers were demanding sexual favours from interns in exchange for jobs.

Legislature speaker Noxolo Kiviet has investigated the claims and will be submitting a report to Xasa by the end of this week.

Barker called for sex offenders to be named and shamed. “We call for a register to be published of the names of the men who rape and abuse our women.

“We have girls who are raped so violently that they will never be able to have children.

“Dawn calls on our provincial government and all its departments to lead by example.

“We will never accept sex for jobs, not under any circumstances. Dawn believes the time has come for radical action.

“We demand that rape be escalated to a crime of the same status as paedophilia in South Africa.

“Let’s have a national data base of murderous, maiming rapists and protect our babies, girls and all the women of this province from being treated like cattle or pieces of meat,” she said.

Barker said the DVD would be distributed to all Dawn members.

The DVD provides medical and legal tips and information on how to lay charges with the police, she said.

Barker said Xasa should immediately make the contents of the sex-for-jobs scandal investigation public if the government was serious about protecting women.

Xasa said he would get the report by the end of this week.

“I will have to study it and look at the recommendations. We will know what action to take once we have studied the report,” he said.

“Yes, of course this is an internal matter but I also understand it is of public interest and we will notify the media and the public of what will happen.

“I am hopeful there will be a recommendation with measures of ensuring this does not happen again because this is ruining the government’s name.”