The ANC Women’s League (ANCWL) believes patriarchy was at play in Tshwane after violent protests erupted against the selection of mayoral candidate Thoko Didiza.
ANCWL president Bathabile Dlamini said some of the placards hoisted during protests showed the depth of patriarchy and power relations in the society at large.
“Some of the placards I have seen, even carried by a woman, suggest that comrade Thoko slept her way through to make it into the mayoral candidacy. There are those who still believe women get into positions through such ways,” Dlamini told reporters in Johannesburg.
“The country still has a long way to go in dealing with patriarchy, tribalism and so on, it is not only women in politics who are oppressed … all women suffer opression.”
The league was behind Didiza, who was a “tried and tested” leader and rose through the ranks of the ANC, said Dlamini.
She said women members of the ANC in Tshwane had told the ANCWL over the weekend that they accepted Didiza’s candidacy.
Secretary Meokgo Matuba shrugged off reports that Didza had been set up for failure in Tshwane.
“We strongly believe the ANC will win Tshwane. Comrade Thoko was not set up for failure, it is important to note that this is not about the individual, but the ANC. If we lose a municipality, it would not be because of the individual, but the organisation, the African National Congress,” said Matuba.
The league called for a 50/50 representation of women for the local government polls on August 3.
Dlamini said the ANC was the only party that had a policy of 50/50 representation in the country.
“The Constitution does not provide quotas to ensure adequate representation of women in elected public bodies, nor are there any legal quotas established for national, provincial and local government elections,” said Dlamini.
“The ANC is the only political party in South Africa that has 50/50 representation in its policy frameworks. This should be commended and we are pleased with the commitment of the ANC and its outcomes for its candidates.”
Three women, including Didiza, have been named by the ANC as metro mayoral candidates for the polls.
“This is a tremendous achievement because in this administration, there were no female candidates in our metropolitan municipalities,” said Dlamini.