Written by: Pearl Kupe
On Thursday 23 January, 2020 I attended a meeting that was hosted by the Department of Basic Education(DBE) & UNESCO. It was not the consultation meeting that was requested by the Body of Christ, but was in fact an information and lobbying session of religious and traditional leaders. The programme objectives of the meeting, were to:
- inform and clarify the CSE in the Life Skills and Life Orientation
- advocate for community, parental, religious and traditional leaders support for implementation of CSE in School, and
- motivate for open intergenerational dialogue between parents and their children and their children on sensitive sexuality topics.
The speakers from DBE & UNESCO were extremely condescending and patronizing and assumed that none of the Religious leaders had read any of the CSE content and that they did not understand the process. Many of us who attended had not only read the CSE documents but have worked for UN organizations and clearly understand the agenda of UN in regard to CSE.
Although the meeting was intended for religious and traditional leaders, many participants were young activists from NPO’s dealing with HIV/AIDS, and sexual abuse or LGBTQ representatives.Some were sexologist authors of books dealing with sexual pleasure. Their area of expertise lay in teaching people on how to pleasure themselves sexually. They were very vocal in their support of CSE and very aggressive and intolerant towards the views of non-supporters of CSE. One of the issues raised by activists was that they felt there was “not enough LGBTQI information included” The response was to say that this request would be take on as a recommendation.
Requests from us to consider African solutions for reducing HIV/AIDS & teenage pregnancies were met with disdain. Uganda was presented as a nation that won the fight against HIV/AIDS by promoting abstinence and faithfulness. Requests to also give Christians an option to opt out of CSE based on “freedom of thought, belief and religion” principles were also rejected outright by the DBE DDG Granville Whittle who said that those who did not align with CSE must remove their children and send them to private schools.It was clear that the Body of Christ had only been invited to rubber stamp decisions that had already been made.
A final request to involve the Body of Christ in every CSE consultation was also not addressed.
CSE is extremely problematic and does not take into consideration the fact that most children are abused by ADULTS, and in some cases teachers themselves. The real focus of governments should be to deal with criminal adults elements who take advantage of school children and to empower parents to teach their children on sexuality according to their worldview and values.
Believers who were vocal in their stand against CSE included Rev. Kenneth Meshoe-ACDP , Errol Naidoo-Family Policy Institute and representatives of FOR SA.Theuns Pauw also represented Africa Enterprise.
The final great disappointment was in the large number of religious leaders who came forward to express full support for CSE and many who even volunteered to become CSE Ambassadors.
The DBE and UNESCO team plan to continue lobbying for CSE in the provinces and roll out CSE in the schools nationally.
It is incumbent on all parents to take primary responsibility to teach their children on sexuality.Proverbs 22:6 is an instructive scripture in particular to parents. As a group of concerned parents and citizens we are introducing FSE (Family Sexuality Education), a program that will empower parents to teach and train their own children in line with the Kingdom principles and values as we continue to trust God to lead us in this battle for the protection of our children.
Please contact email firstname.lastname@example.org and also join our Facebook page-#WeShallNotBeSilent for more information on FSE.
Date published: 11/02/2020
Pearl Kupe-Attorney & International consultant to world leaders & International organizations & International President-Global Forum for Women Entrepreneurs. Email email@example.com
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