KZN Health MEC Ms Nomagugu Simelane-Zulu's Women's Day Message

09 August 2020

Today, we commemorate Women’s Day at a unique and unprecedented epoch in our country, as we face up to a new and invisible enemy that is COVID - 19.

Even as Government does its best to fight this scourge, and calls upon the public to play its part, our present is characterised by anxiety, fear and loss of lives as the epidemic takes its toll in our country.

But, even in these times of adversity, it has been encouraging to witness many truly remarkable acts of bravery, resilience and the triumph of the human spirit – particularly where women are concerned.

As a Department that is one of the biggest employers of women, and is also central to the health and wellbeing of women in this province, it is only fitting that we should take a moment to appreciate our female health workers and ordinary women.

We take our hats off to honour and salute all the women throughout the value chain of health in our province: from the frontline staff in the medical field - including nurses, doctors, allied healthcare workers, support staff, general workers and officials in our District Offices and at Head Office - to Community Care Givers and all Community-Based Teams on the ground.

We are humbled by the selfless efforts of our mostly female health workers on the frontlines of the battle against COVID - 19 that thousands of South Africans have recovered from this deadly virus, and lived to tell the tale. We recognise your efforts. We appreciate you. We know we would never win this war without you.

To all those health workers that we have lost along the way, who became casualties of COVID – 19 while in service of their country and her people, we will always remember you as our heroes. May your souls rest in peace, and your families be comforted.

To all the brave women who continue to soldier on, we urge you to remain strong and follow the precautions.

Do not let your guard down. Please make sure you properly use available Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) provided to you.

Always remember: any person or location within the workplace, in public, or at home, is at all times potentially infectious.

We also pay tribute to the millions of ordinary women who put on a brave face every day in the face of a lot of adversity and turmoil that, unfortunately, still defines the reality of being a woman in South Africa.

Even with COVID – 19 wreaking havoc in our society, we should not lose sight of the many other ailments that have not stopped bedevilling our society – particularly women, as well as the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and Intersexual+ (LGBTQI+) community.

We have a dire and urgent responsibility to make ours a country that is protective of all its women, which nurtures them, and allows them to spread their wings and fulfil their potential.

We owe that to the memory and legacy of Lilian Ngoyi, Helen Joseph, Albertina Sisulu, and many other women of virtue who dared to stand up against the grinding machinery of Apartheid, so that we could one day reap the handsome fruits of freedom.

Viva Mbokodo, Viva!!!

Issued on behalf of KZN Health MEC Ms Nomagugu Simelane-Zulu

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This page last edited on 11 August, 2020

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