thinking beyond

Communiqué to the CUT Community: Women's month celebrations

Dear CUT Community

Women across the globe have a long history of oppression and inequality. In South Africa, August is dedicated to commemorating the 1956 march of women to the Union Building against the pass laws. They took it upon themselves to demand equality in a world that undermined their advancement. Therefore, Women’s Day draws attention to significant challenges that women still face, such as inequality, gender-based violence and femicides.

At CUT, we commemorate Women’s Month in honour of these courageous women from all walks of life who protested against social injustice and discrimination. We believe that we can neither achieve our Vision 2030 without advancing the development of women at CUT, nor build the future we want without their full participation in leadership positions. For this reason, we strongly believe in empowering and encouraging women to step up and occupy leadership positions. 

The Next Generation Women in Leadership (nGenWiL) Programme bears testament to our commitment. This initiative aims to connect CUT female employees with influential and experienced female mentors from different parts of the country, specialising in various fields, to help develop and prepare them for leadership positions, and to promote gender equality. We also invest in the advancement of women as the future of academia.

The CUT Council and Management have also commissioned the Commission of Gender Equality (CGE) to conduct an independent study that focuses on female employees in order to assist the university to promote and protect gender equality, and free the CUT community from all possible forms of gender oppression. Through the nGenWiL Programme and the current study by the CGE, CUT demonstrates its genuine stance on gender transformation.

South Africa is currently faced by a plague of gender-based violence, where we see women being sexually violated and brutally murdered. At CUT, we strongly condemn these acts of gender-based violence, and stand against the abuse of, and harm to women. CUT celebrates all women, and acknowledges the vital role they play in the advancement of our society.

As part of CUT’s 2020 Women’s Day Celebration, our Institutional Renewal and Transformation Unit has arranged a virtual session titled “I am Generation Equality: Realising Women’s Rights” on 18 August 2020 at 17:00. This panel discussion will include the voices of strong and influential CUT women. Keep an eye on our official and social media communication channels for more information about this event.

As we commemorate Women’s Month, let us join hands in uprooting all forms of discrimination, and treat each other with dignity, fairness and respect, whilst promoting a culture that embraces inclusive diversity and equality. Let us create a university that is free from gender inequality, and be an institution that supports and promotes female empowerment.

May you all be blessed! E se e ka Ramasedi a ka le hlohonolofatsa! Mag julle almal geseënd wees!

Prof. Henk de Jager
Vice-Chancellor and Principal

Download the VC communique, 11 August 2020 (PDF)

Uploaded: 12 August 2020
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