On Thursday, 3 October 2019, the Executive Mayor, Cllr Stevens Mokgalapa hosted a night vigil under the theme "United in Reclaiming our Space".
The recent spate of violence against women is an indication that gender-based violence in South Africa is not abating and that the incidence is increasing. The aim of the night vigil was to speak out against gender-based violence and to encourage communities across all genders, to show solidarity with victims and survivors of gender-based violence, and to highlight the City's response and plans to end this social ill.
"This gender-based violence night vigil is no small accomplishment as this is the first response to gender-based violence at this scale, being led by any municipality in the country. We are a caring and responsive government, one that is intentional about campaigning the cause for women and children. We have seen and heard enough in the news and from loved ones about how lives have been devastated by violence being meted out by men," said the Executive Mayor.
The Mayor announced that the City of Tshwane has committed itself to –
(1) signing an anti-gender-based violence pledge;
(2) strengthening the gender development task team through the gender unit and the multi-party women's caucus; and
(3) implementing a gender policy in collaboration with the Department Of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (CoGTA), in order to advance gender mainstreaming efforts in the city of Tshwane and throughout our communities.
He proclaimed, "Tonight, the City of Tshwane pronounces the start of the 365-Days of Gender-Based Violence Action Plan."
"The City takes a stand that #NoMore will violence against women and children exist under our watch.
#NoMore will gender-based violence, sexual harassment or discrimination of any kind make a home in our lives.
#NoMore will we protect individuals we know to be causing harm in our communities.
"Gender-based violence stops today! Right now!" concluded the Executive Mayor.