The Deputy Minister of Human Settlements, Hon (MP) Zou Kota-Fredericks has launched the Transformation Charter on the 8th of March at the Cedarhood conference hall in Woodmead.
The charter coincided with the commemoration of the international women’s day. Although this was marking an international day, South Africa’s great heroines like Lillian Ngoyi and Sophie Du Bruyn were celebrated for their contribution in advancing the rights and lives of women.
The charter seeks to address issues of equal economic opportunities in the human settlements value chain. The main targeted groups are women, youth, people living with disability and military veterans.
The Deputy Minister emphasized that women were the key pillars of society. She further said women must be celebrated and be given equal opportunities economically. She added that she was quite happy that NHBRC (National Housing Builders Registration Council) had appointed a woman as the acting Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Thandiwe Ngqobe.
The Deputy Minister said the main aim of the charter was to close the gap between the poor and the rich. “If you teach a woman you teach the world,” said. She encouraged collaboration amongst women in construction and also all Government departments along with their entities to join the NHBRC and the Department of Human Settlements in ensuring that this venture became a success.
The Acting CEO of the NHBRC, Thandiwe Ngqobe indicated that the number of women in construction was not yet at satisfactory level. This male dominated industry was now about to see the difference after the charter was signed, she said adding that women will be the women.
Since 1994 women in the industry have seen an increase of representation of 45 percent and they plan to make sure their presence is felt. The CEO congratulated the management of NHBRC for having more female employees.
The NHBRC through one of its partner institution, the Gordon Institute Business for Science, trained one 1 800 women from different backgrounds who now are making huge differences in their own communities.
The NHBRC made a commitment that it would give 50 percent of work contracts to women. Another 24 percent will be given to the youth and five percent to people with disability while 10 percent will go to military veterans.