Thursday, February 28, 2013
South African Women's Minister Lulu Xingwana has apologized for saying that white Afrikaner men were raised to believe that women and children were their property
She was speaking to an Australian broadcaster about the Oscar Pistorius murder case. The comments have been condemned by Afrikaner groups, who want her fired. The presidency said that no individual group should be blamed for violence against women, which affects all communities. Pistorius denies deliberately shooting dead his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp saying that he thought she was an intruder. Xingwana said: "Young Afrikaner men are brought up in the Calvinist religion believing that they own a woman, they own a child, they own everything and therefore they can take that life because they own it." After her comments were widely condemned, she said that she withdrew them. "It has become clear to me that my comments may have offended some members of our community. I would, accordingly, like to retract these remarks and apologize unconditionally [for] them," she said. Both the Afrikanerbond and the Christian Democratic Party called for Xingwana to be fired. Freedom Front Plus leader Pieter Mulder said: "If the same generalizations had been made about young black men, who per capita commit the most murders in South Africa, the minister would have been the first to have screamed racism and unfair generalizations." South Africa has one of the world's most violent societies, with an average of 50 murders and 175 incidents of sexual violence committed each day with the vast majority being committed by black males.