Women in the forefront

Gugu Ndima

Gugu Ndima

Nomzamo Madikizela-Mandela, Ellen Kuzwayo, Helen Joseph, Florence Mophosho, Sophie de Bruyn, Albertina Sisulu, Lilian Ngoyi. These names are encrypted in the history books.

These are some of the women who fought for truth and justice to ensure that we are equal to our men in the political arena.

They did not seek material reward and short-cuts to the limelight. These are women who upheld the dignity and immeasurable strength of women.

The foundation was laid with pain, perseverance as well as sincerity towards the masses.

There was no need to prove how significant women were, but it was evidenced in their actions.

The government has been instrumental in advocating the emancipation of women and ensuring their participation in the mainstream of the economy.

The question is, why haven't we taken charge in the political framework?

Our country is going through an interesting transition with regard to the formation of the breakaway party from the ANC.

We seem to be marketing tools, but we aren't actively involved. Women are the major volunteers in voting campaigns and administration, but are absent in senior leadership positions of political movements.

Looking at the use of women's expertise in movements, business and society, the government has been very strong in advocating the involvement of women and their full participation in the mainstream of the economy.

As much as the intentions were good, unfortunately it does not curb the perpetual exploitation by some of the laws.

Most women have been used as fronts in business as well as in politics.

This is quite disturbing considering that women have played a major role in emancipating and liberating this country.

Women are mostly breadwinners in homes and ensure the stability and functioning of households.

Black economic empowerment should not be about meeting quotas and placing people on boards. We need to challenge the discrepancies of BEE and what its objectives are.

There are countries that have shown that women can lead in a male-dominated circle.

As much as policies have been devised to ensure that we are part of the transition, we need to take charge and show that we are capable of representing ourselves.

The aforementioned women had no feminist agendas, they just wanted to serve the country. Let's bear in mind that this was during the time when women were oppressed.

They defied the laws and made history, and that is why today we can relish their successes.