press releasePlans are afoot to economically improve the lives of women of Dimbaza in addition to the programmes that Eastern Cape (EC) Government is currently implementing.
This was revealed by EC Premier Noxolo Kiviet on her interview with SABC radio during the commemoration of this year's Women's Month held in Dimbaza on Friday, 17 August 2012. "Social Development and Special Programmes is already funding three projects in this area, using the old factories that were once closed. Our aim is to open a big market that will create u huge number of jobs for women of this area (Dimbaza), using these firms. We are soon going to visit three oversees countries to go and learn best practices that we can replicate hear in Dimbaza for women development, although it is still too early to mention them," Premier Kiviet revealed.
Earlier on the day of the commemoration, the Provincial executive council, led by Premier Kiviet, visited the projects that are funded by the Social Development and Special Programmes. The two projects that were visited, Dimbaza Household and Uyehova Uthembekile, are trading on cleaning chemicals and sewing respectively. The aim of the visit was primarily to identify areas of improvement. "We need more women to initiate projects of this nature and get funding from government to kick start their projects," Premier Kiviet said.
For this financial year, the Department of Social Development and Special Programmes has allocated an amount of R22.7 million targeting to fund 55 women initiatives in order to combat poverty and promote income generation ventures set to benefit 825 households in the province.
The theme for this year focused on addressing poverty, unemployment and inequality on women. "Addressing unemployment, poverty and inequality: Together contributing towards the progressive future for women", says the theme.
In her address, Premier Kiviet conceded that the national report indicates that in the country's public service, women hold 35% of all senior managerial positions. "In our own province we must be proud of the fact that out of 140 515 public service employees 98280 of those are women, which amounts to 69.9 %," she said.
However, Premier Kiviet is concerned about the percentage of women representation in senior management level. "I am concerned at the slow progress that the provincial administration is making to achieve 50/50 women representation at Senior Management level. Currently we have 847 Senior Managers in the administration and only 283 of those are women (33.4 %)," she added.
She added that she has instructed her team to speedily approve employment equity strategy. "In 2014 we want to see a completely different picture in this regard."
She expressed her anger and disappointment over the abuse of children by their own mothers, alluding to an incident of a woman from Mdantsane who left her kids unattended for days. "I commend the swift action taken by MEC (for Social Development and Special Programmes) Pemmy Majodina to ensure that the affected children are saved from their unfit mother," she said. "I urge our communities and especially woman to report incidences of child neglect to social workers, so that they can receive help before they become further abused by opportunistic criminals."
To overcome poverty, unemployment and inequality, Premier said, we need a strong education system. "One of the most important tools that will assist us to achieve economic emancipation is education. I watched with admiration reports in the media about two young women from our province, who are literally making waves in their chosen careers," said Premier Kiviet.
The two women are Xoliswa Bekiswa from Zimbane Village in Mthatha who is one of few marine pilots in the country and Oyama Matomela, who is the first female pilot produced through the Department of Transport's bursary scheme. "I mention the wonderful stories of these two young women because through education they have achieved their dreams."