Noxolo Kievit (Picture: Supplied)
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Johannesburg – Traditional leaders in the Eastern Cape
must find solution to initiates’ deaths, Premier Noxolo Kievit said on Friday.
“One issue we urge you to discuss with vigour and
find lasting solutions on, is the death of initiates in our province,” she
She was speaking at the opening of the Eastern Cape House
of Traditional Leaders.
“When we should all be celebrating the practice of
our old age custom, we find ourselves every season having to deal with a dark
cloud of deaths that is claiming [the] lives of our young people.”
She said parents who sent their children to initiation
schools lived in fear, because they did not have the slightest clue whether
their children would come back alive from the mountain.
“We commend the growing levels of co-operation to
confront this scourge, which threatens the identity of the people of this
The government had decided that communities must be
prepared for effective management of the period of ulwaluko (an integral part
of the Xhosa culture that signifies the transition from boyhood to manhood).
She also called on traditional leaders to help in the
fight against moral decay.
“We must stop breeding rapists, as well as women and
child-abusers, and also we must close ranks to leave no place for these
culprits to hide within our communities.”