18 June 2012
A campaign to encourage South Africans, especially pupils, to take a stand against bullying and sexual violence at schools was launched in Soweto on Youth Day.
The campaign will encourage pupils and teachers across the country to take the “Ubuntu Pledge” to uphold the values of South Africa’s Constitution, including human dignity, non-racism and non-sexism.
By taking the pledge, South Africans will also commits to fostering “an atmosphere of mutual respect both inside and outside of the classroom,” to embrace “boldness, loyalty and honesty” – and to report any wrongdoing.
A partnership between Proudly South African, the Department of Basic Education and the Department of Women, Children and People With Disabilities, the campaign was prompted by the raping of a Soweto girl by a group of youngster in April, an incident which drew nationwide condemnation.
Speaking at Saturday’s launch, Proudly South African CEO Leslie Sedibe said South Africans should not accept “abhorrent crimes as a way of life in our country.
“It goes against every gain of our humanity,” Sedibe said, adding that people needed to send a message to young people that abuse and violence was not acceptable and would not be tolerated.
Also speaking at the launch, Deputy Basic Education Minister Enver Surty said young South Africans should take the lead of the 1976 generation, who had pride in themselves and stood up for what they believed in.
Celebrities such as Yvonne Chaka Chaka, PJ Powers, Baby Jake Matlala, and Miss SA Teen Celeste Khumalo, have joined as partners in the national campaign, and will serve as role models during visits to schools around the country.
Other partners of the national campaign include the National Prosecuting Authority, the Film and Publication Board, Crime Line, POWA, Princess of Africa Foundation, SHOUT, Orlando Pirates Football Club, Zinto Activation Group, and the International Federation of Christian Churches.