South Africa: In Search of Policies On Sexual Harassment? Don't Ask Most SA Political Parties

Zizi Kodwa and Pule Mabe

Though ANC spokesperson Pule Mabe has been cleared of sexual harassment following an internal hearing, one of the party's resolutions in response to the matter has been to decide to adopt a sexual harassment policy within three months. That's right: The 107-year-old ANC, 25 years in power, does not yet have a sexual harassment policy -- and it appears that this may the norm for South African political parties.

Daily Maverick asked seven local political parties -- excluding the ANC -- to supply their sexual harassment policies.

Only two parties responded with the relevant policies. Another refused to give comment. The other four did not respond to the request -- and a scan of party documents available online shows no sign of the four parties having drafted or implemented a sexual harassment policy.

What motivated our investigation was the announcement by the ANC on Monday that a "grievance hearing" into allegations of sexual harassment against party spokesperson Pule Mabe had produced the recommendation that "the ANC should within three months adopt a sexual harassment policy, and do training for all its management and staff in offices throughout the country on this policy".

The panel considering the allegations against Mabe found...

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