Byline: Levhuwani Matumba

Ncumisa Mdlankomo was one of the women who scooped an “I am A Woman I have A purpose” Award for 2020.

The annual awards held to recognize women who make a difference within the community were announced online due to the COVID-19 lockdown.

Ncumisa impact the society in different ways and when asked what the award meant to her, this is what she said “Much as it got me excited but it keeps me up at night because it challenges me to do more and serve the community like never before and I have a heart for women and youth.

I feel what I’m doing currently is not enough and it will never be enough.

I still need to do more by educating women and youth to rise and start businesses in order to do away with domestic abuse and be independent.

Besides hosting women empowerment seminars, she conducts and facilitates entrepreneurship seminars.

This mother of two(2)  from the dusty streets of Qunu in the Eastern Cape is qualified and worked as a Civil Engineer for years before she became a lecturer in the TVET Sector GS College.

According to Ncumisa, the challenges she faced in the past inspired her to host annual events, one of them being  Pearls of great Worth events where women come together and empower each other in different aspects of life

“During our events, we talk about how we tackle our daily challenges and issues around domestic violence and even beauty and hair as it forms part of womanhood

When asked for an opinion on the government contribution to empower women, she said “I think the government has and is doing enough to seek to empower women, some of the challenges revolve around the processes used to access funding.

If the structures that are handling these services can loosen a bit on the requirements, things can work better.”

She further elaborated on the need to need to build confidence in women because companies are forced by the government to support women-owned businesses but women don’t come forward to access these services.

Ncumisa specifically acknowledged SEDA for helping and supporting women-owned businesses and availing themselves to the community.

“They even attended one of my events and used the platform to educate women on how to access their services.

Responding on rape and domestic violence, she said rape is one of the biggest demons our country is facing, something that kills our nation and it does not only affect women but men as well remembers these women have brothers,  sons,  husbands, partners who are also affected when women are raped

“This is a societal matter that needs unity and working together of political leaders, religious leaders, traditional leaders, government, and everyone who lives in this country to try and come up with a solution to this issue.

Everyone has to play their part, families should start preaching and showing love to each other  so that we do away with angry communities

We need men’s dialogue that will address men.

Women should also be educated more on their rights and reporting these rapes on the issue of women with disabilities, Ncumisa said the government has tried fitting the disabled people into employment equity but it’s not enough.

“There is no monitoring in the companies to check if they do abide to this policy.

People with albinism are the most neglected individuals in the working industry and I believe if they can be treated fairly and be given an opportunity to prove themselves this will not only make them also feel part of the society but it will also educate those who kill them to know  that they are also humans, so I think our government has to lead by example.”