On 24 August women from all parts of the Free State Province descended to the City of Roses in Mangaung Metropolitan Municipality in commemoration of 2018 women’s month. The Department of Public Works and Infrastructure led by MEC Dora Kotzee held a very successful Women In Construction Indaba in Bloemfontein. The event brought together all women of influence in the construction sector, and new female entrants under one roof. Premier Sisi Ntombela and MEC Dora Kotzee with one of the recipients of R 25 0000 as a donation to her construction company.
The overarching objectives of the Indaba was to strengthen the relations of women in the construction sector, enable new female role players to enter the highly male dominated terrain and establish themselves as integral role players in the sector. This inaugural event was held under the Theme: “Women of Fortitude Women United in Moving South Africa Forward”.
These women of note robustly engaged on aspects of strategies to put women in prime position within the industry, how to run effective and financially viable companies, how to better understand sound financial management for their companies, as well as professional and ethical administration for the benefit of their companies.
The Indaba raised sharply the question of self-sustainability of Women led companies in the sector, building strong brand identity, surviving and flourishing in the competitive environment.
The Indaba also focused on how women can assist one another to deal with the broader challenges facing women in “this” male dominated industry.
Premier Sisi Ntombela, who was a guest peak at the Indaba had this to say: “Women are born leaders and history confirms that. Women of today must draw inspiration from the women like Mama Charlotte Maxeke, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, Albertina Sisulu and many others who stood for the development and the emancipation of women in society.”
“Their gallant fight against injustices of the past, apartheid in particular and oppression of women must serve as a reminder of the strength women possess. There are opportunities for hardworking women in the construction industry they must prove their worth through hardwork and dedication.” Premier Ntombela also lauded MEC Kotzee for recognizing the importance of empowering women and this commitment is reflected in the women representation in positions of senior management at Public Works & Infrastructure.
MEC Kotzee and Premier Ntombela donated R200 000 that was shared amongst 5 deserving women owned construction companies at the indaba. “We must occupy spaces that have been historically reserved for men and begin to bring down the pillars of patriarchy in society. The only way we can begin to change the status quo is to unite under a vision that seeks to build a better life for all South Africans irrespective of their gender orientation,” said MEC Kotzee.