The Democratic Alliance (DA) may make good on their threat by asking the Commission of Gender Equality to deal with a complaint it tabled about one of its members who was thrown out from a council meeting “because she was wearing pants.”
The opposition party’s Langa Bodlani has since demanded an immediate apology from the speaker of the Council‚ Ms LB Modisha.
Bodlani said in statement, “During a council meeting of the Ephraim Mogale Local Municipality last week‚ DA Councillor Conny Lentsoane fell victim to African National Congress (ANC) sexism when she was illegally removed from the council meeting because of her outfit.
“Lentsoane’s outfit did nothing to derogate on the decorum of the council. The decision to remove her for wearing pants is a bigoted decision which borders on sexism and should have no place in a constitutional democracy.”
Bodlani said if the speaker fail to send in her apologize, it will take the matter to the Commission of Gender Equality.
“In the event that this apology is not forthcoming within 48 hours‚ the DA will escalate this matter to the Commission of Gender Equality.
Sexism in all its manifestations does not have a place in our democratic dispensation. It is very worrying when these prejudices are meted out by political leaders who are supposed to uphold our Constitution.”
Bodlani also lamented that as a result of her senseless removal, the voters who elected Lentsoane as their DA councillor, were denied representation on a number of important items scheduled for the day. These included Lekgotla Resolutions, salaries of managers and Land Use Applications
Last year‚ the DA chief whip in Mpumalanga, Jane Sithole’s fashion taste raised eyebrows. Sithole’s black dress which only exposed her shoulders, was considered ‘inappropriate’ by legislature member Vusumuzi Windvoël.
Though, Legislature speaker Thandi Shongwe ruled that “the dress was not in line with the decorum of the house”, she later spearheaded a march to the provincial legislature to demand an apology from ANC politicians who likened her dress to that of a prostitute.
The DA says it will always protect and promote the rights of all South Africans.