JOHANNESBURG – Oprah Winfrey arrived in South Africa on Thursday for the Dignity of Women event organized by the Nelson Mandela Foundation.
As part of a series of events to mark the five-year anniversary of Nelson Mandela’s death and 16 days of activism against gender-based violence – an international campaign to challenge the violence women suffer – the American personality was set to give a keynote speech at an event that aims to foster dialogue on how to create a society that addresses the plight many women and young girls face.
“The event will focus on how we purposefully create a caring society that prioritizes women and adolescents and creates the conditions for a dignified life, in a society like South Africa where the murder rate of women is three times the global average and 68.5 percent of women have experienced forms of sexual violence,” the Mandela Foundation explained on its website.
The event, hosted by South African journalist Redi Tlhabi will see Winfrey table a conversation with Josina Z Machel, Mandela’s stepdaughter who was blinded by a former boyfriend, and Zoleka Mandela, Mandela’s writer and activist grand-daughter.
Mandela was a keen advocate for women’s rights and once said that “the cause of women’s emancipation is part of our national struggle against outdated practices and prejudices. It is a struggle that demands equal effort from both men and women alike.”