Hon Deputy Speaker, hon Ministers, hon Deputy Ministers, distinguished guests in the gallery, and ladies and gentlemen, over the past 20 years the ANC-led government has been hard at work creating legislation to empower and develop the women and girl children of South Africa. I stand here at this podium to relate one of the good stories of the ANC, that of the continuous protection and promotion of gender equality through pieces of legislation. Today in this House the progressive realisation of a minimum of 50% representation and the active participation of women in positions of decision-making and structures such as boards has been realised. This has been done through the creation of the Women Empowerment and Gender Equality Bill as a means to propel South Africa forward by upholding the strategic objectives of the ANC-led government of nonsexism, nonracialism, unity and democracy.
Through this Bill the aspirations of our own Ntate Nelson Mandela will be realised. He once said:
Conditions of women of this country must be radically changed through empowerment to enable them to participate meaningfully in all aspects of life as equals with other members of the society.
Today I want to tell the whole world the shameful story of the DA. This party does not agree with equal representation of women. South Africans, listen to what the DA says on clause 9(1), which compels private business to ensure a minimum of 50% representation of women. The DA says the 50% requirement contained in the Bill amounts to a top-down manipulation to achieve so-called equality. Oh, what a shameful statement! Is that not so, hon Lamoela?