Despite thousands of South Africans taking to the streets in different parts of the country on Friday 7 April to protest President Jacob Zuma's recent cabinet reshuffle and the consequences it has had on the South African economy, the African National Congress Women's League called on South African women not to march. Instead, they have called for the women of South Africa to focus on available initiatives that will improve their lives.
The league's Toko Xasa said women must focus their energy on participating on things that will build them. The ANCWL came out strongly in support of Zuma despite calls for him to leave office. Speaking about requests for Zuma to step down, Xasa said that "the ANC remains the organisation for the people and we look forward to seeing more women participate in the economy through programmes introduced by the president".
She said calls by Zuma for radical social and economic transformation would benefit women. "As the ANCWL we look forward to women mobilising and taking part in the economy," Xasa added.
Asked what message the league would give women in light of the various marched organised against Zuma, Xasa said women should not associate themselves with marches that won't help them.
On Thursday, Zuma delivered a keynote address at the third Presidential Local Government Summit held in Midrand. During his speech, he reiterated his call for radical social and economic transformation in favour of the poor.
He said at the centre of municipalities' social transformation activities, there must be the provision of social protection to the vulnerable; in particular women and children, the eradication of poverty, and the building of social cohesion and social solidarity.