Written by: Pearl Kupe
Article source: JOY! Magazine

South Africa has one of the highest gender based violence (GBV) statistics in the world. They are so high that they have been compared to countries that are at war. President Cyril Ramaphosa announced a state of emergency in September 2019 to enable Parliament to urgently address the matter.

Statistics SA drew up a Crime Against Women in South Africa report that shows that femicide – the killing/murder of women – is five times higher in South Africa than in other nations. In simple terms, a woman in South Africa is five times more likely to be killed by a man than in another nation. This prompted a social media hashtag #AmINext to go viral. It’s alleged that statistics are actually much higher because of under reporting by women due to fear, intimidation, and other related reasons. South Africa is not unique with its high GBV statistics. This is a global trend that must be addressed immediately. Any nation that wants to prosper economically, socially, politically, and otherwise must treat its women well.

Biblical response
It is appalling that many men who abuse women are professing believers in Christ. Some are even pastors and leaders in the ministry. Such men are not only expected to refrain from such behaviour, but should model the appropriate behaviour and treatment of women to others. 1 Timothy 5:2 instructs men to treat older women as mothers and younger women as sisters, in all purity. 1 Peter 3:7 instructs husbands to live with their wives in an understanding way, and show honour to women. Colossians 3:19 instructs husbands specifically to love their wives, and not be harsh with them. 1 Timothy 3:1-7 instructs ministers and leaders to be above reproach.

The solution
The solution is not just in tightening legislation. As a lawyer/former Prosecutor, I’ve found that we also need to teach non-violence and educate different stakeholders to bring change. Let the body of Christ get involved in changing wrong mindsets and dysfunctional culture.

For training on gender-based violence for the body of Christ and communities, contact Pearl – pearl.kupe@gmail.com or Christine – comms@gfwe.africa

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Date published: 11/01/2020
Dr. Pearl Kupe is an attorney & International consultant to world leaders & International organisations. Pearl is the President of Global Forum for
Women Entrepreneurs.Email pearl.kupe@gmail.com

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