Gender Equality pays Tshwane University of Technology courtesy visit following the death of a student

CGE pays TUT a courtesy visit following the death of a student

The Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) Acting Chairperson Ms Nomasonto Mazibuko led a delegation on Monday which met with the Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) Management, led by Vice -Chancellor, Professor Tinyiko Maluleke following the brutal killing of TUT student Ntokozo Xaba.

“The Gender Commission is here to offer our sincere condolences following the untimely death of Ntokozo Mayenzi Xaba”, said the Acting Chairperson Ms Mazibuko. Ms Mazibuko went on to point out that the Commission will also take the opportunity to check on the progress made by TUT, since it appeared before the Commission’s gender transformation hearings a few years ago. The discussions between the CGE and TUT were candid, cordial and focused on finding effective and lasting solutions to the GBVF and transformation challenges faced by higher education institutions. The conversation also explored best practices in dealing with GBVF.

Following the presentation and subsequent questions of clarity by the CGE, the Commission indicated its pleasure with the enormous progress made by TUT in ensuring that they implement recommendations made by the Commission. The CGE is particularly pleased that the university has taken into consideration the latest codes in addressing sexual harassment in the workplace by incorporating bullying and intimidation. The university has also subjected its curriculum into scrutiny so as to ensure it doesn't reinforce patriarchal attitudes and social norms.

The CGE has taken note of the strides made by TUT in the establishment of programmes geared towards increasing the number of women in the professoriate and the deanery. The various efforts of the institution to raise awareness, consolidate and harmonise policies and provide tangible support for victims were noted.

While noting the good work of the institution around the protection and support mechanisms for female workers and female students, the CGE cautioned the institution not to neglect programmes focused on men and members of the LGBTIQ+ community. The Commission further encouraged the institution to create initiatives and programmes designed to tackle linguistic and cultural practices, which perpetuate toxic masculinity and a sense of entitlement to female bodies among males- and body autonomy.

The Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Maluleke pointed out that the reason 98% of their application and admission work is done online is to avoid students being victims of nefarious acts, like corruption and allegations of demands for sexual favours. The CGE and TUT subsequently agreed to continue working in partnership wherein the former would assist the university in capacity building. Although, the CGE was immensely pleased with the progress, it was agreed that a follow-up engagement to look at other interventions in detail.

“We want to sincerely thank this important institution of democracy for seeing to it that TUT is not left behind when it comes to gender transformation. We do

not take this visit for granted. We are especially appreciative of this visit, which comes at a time of grief, following the death of Ms. Xaba, who was an A student. We take solace and courage from your visit. We will always subject ourselves to CGE’s scrutiny. We look forward to a deepening and strengthening of our partnership”, concluded Prof. Maluleke.

Source: Government of South Africa