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T
he Kanga and the Kangaroo Court – Reflections of The Rape Trial of Jacob Zuma (Jacana) was well received when it was published in 2007 but the time then was not quite right.


South Africans were not yet ready for full-throttled feminism. And besides, back then the ANC Women’s League had captured the national narrative – and feminism is not part of the DNA of its political lexicon. Motsei’s book exposed the systemic cultural, religious and social root of violence against women in South Africa.

Motsei does not spare Zuma. She does not fall for his false victimhood. That he was somehow set up by political rivals. It is an excuse that politicians still use now, 10 years later. Marius Fransman, suspended ANC Western Cape Leader, has also cried political conspiracy.

Of Zuma’s excuse, Motsei writes;

“As a former head of intelligence in the ANC, he must have been trained to be highly suspicious of untoward sexual attention, especially at the time when he was allegedly facing a political conspiracy to oust him from the presidential succession race. Despite all of this, his training and experience in political intelligence, being an elder, a husband, father and a leader purporting to uphold traditional values, Zuma chose to have unprotected sex with the complainant. Political conspiracy or not, his choice to engage in sex was in his hands alone.”

She adds,

“The choice between 10 minutes of instant gratification and 10 years in the highest office of the land was his and his alone. After all, there is no greater power than the power of choice.”

Zuma, however, she says, cannot be condemned in isolation;

“It is a reflection of the prevailing thoughts, attitudes and perceptions of broader society.”

Ten years later at the IEC, four young women made a choice. It is one that has irrevocably altered and commanded the national narrative, grasped it back from the sycophants blowing idiot winds.

In the slipstream of FMF and RMF, a new generation of feminists has emerged. Women and men who are no longer prepared to allow the endemic culture of rape in this country to continue unchallenged. In April, students at Rhodes University embarked on a controversial campaign to name and shame men who had been accused of rape and abuse. The idea was to make spaces uncomfortable and unsafe for abusers and rapists, and not the women who are their targets.

On Women’s Day, the ANC, which seems to have the political intuition of a squashed peanut, blundered forth after last week’s protest, sending out President Jacob Zuma to deliver a keynote speech at a Women’s Day ceremony at the Union buildings.

Behind the scenes Zuma’s human shield, Minister of State Security, David Mahlobo, as well as the rest of the security cluster must have had a tough time identifying potential feminist disrupters in the crowd. It’s a job they are going to have to keep at, because we are everywhere and we are men, women, black, white, old and young.

The four young #RememberKhwezi protesters have brought meaning back to Women’s Day and closed the circle of activism that the women of 1956 began to stake out so long ago. These young people are the true heirs of liberation and truth.