Men urged to call out other, abusive men at Khayelitsha march

Men must not let other men get away with being abusive, and should call each other out on it instead, said one of the men participating in a planned march in Khayelitsha, Cape on Monday.

"We seem to think that it [an abuser] is just a monster from this alternate universe, but it is men that we know," said Ndumiso Madubela, who is part of the Desmond Tutu Foundation's The Men's Dialogue.

"These dialogues bring men together for honest discussions on how to avoid violence against women and children, and to create a widening network of men who will stand up for them when they are confronted.

"Violence is very rife now, and it will get out of hand," said Madubela.

READ Suffer little children: The missing, the lost and the dead

Madubela was part of a group of around 60 people who marched under the banner, "Men united against violence against women and children" from the Andrew Losaba Methodist Church in Sizani Street.

They carried banners that read "Real Men Don't Rape" and "Youth United Against Violence Against Women and Children".

Thando Hermanus said during the march: "As men we are saying no to gender-based violence.

"Whether it is child molesters or sexual abuse - we are taking a stand in Khayelitsha. Report it," urged the activist.

READ: Two life sentences for murder, attempted rape of Rene Roman

Western Cape Health MEC Nomafrench Mbombo said the abusers were often people who were known to the victims, but people did not say anything.

"These are the men we share babies with. These are the men we share children with. Why are you so quiet?" she asked.

"Go for a walk when you are angry," she suggested.

Community Safety MEC Dan Plato said the recent hefty prison sentences meted out by the courts for attacks on children should serve as a deterrent to men and that that they should not even "unzip their zips".

"If men don't want to listen, the court will deal with them nowadays," he said.

On August 20, 52-year Andrew Plaatjies was handed two life sentences for the murder of Rene Roman and for attempting to rape her.

In that judgment, Western Cape High Court Judge Robert Henney made it clear that the life sentence would apply even if a man did not go through with the rape, and that attempted rape was enough to put a man away for life.

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