The announcement by the KwaZulu-Natal health MEC Sbongiseni Dhlomo this week that 12 female students selected to study pharmacy in India will be injected with Implanon (a contraceptive) is utterly appalling.
Such a shocking violation of the constitution under our Bill of Rights perpetuates gender discrimination based on the crude criteria of womb politics and apparent ignorance of women’s reproductive rights.
It is an absolute indictment of the South African government’s commitment to gender justice and terrifyingly reminicent of slave master’s control and abuse of slave women’s bodies in South Africa.
The DA supports the constitution and therefore demands that MEC Dhlomo revokes his discriminatory decision and initiates an anti-rape and gender justice programme befitting to August in South Africa which is, after all, the month in which we celebrate women’s rights!
If this decision is not revoked then the time has come to declare August 2014 a month of mourning for these students – and all vulnerable women in South Africa – who are subjected to physical violation by men without informed consent. — Celeste Barker, DA MPL and DA spokeswoman for health Eastern Cape