Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex, on their first visit to South Africa makes a historic statement for women and the colored race. “On one personal note, I want you to know that for me, I am here with you as a mother, as a wife, as a woman, as a woman of color, and as your sister,” She made the comment during a talk at the Justice Desk Initiative, a program designed to discuss child protection and women empowerment.
As reported in the Telegraph, this would be the first time the Duchess would refer to her mixed-race since she became part of the royal family. Prince Harry had earlier expressed their delight to be in South Africa. “It was incredibly important to my wife and me to begin our trip to South Africa here in Nyanga with all of you,” He said.
Meghan Markle is on a 10- day royal visit to South Africa alongside her husband, Prince Harry, and son, Archie. She was dressed in a stylish but simply cute black and white print wrap gown and freely mingled with the locals. She excitedly told the dancers, “I am here with you, and I am here for you and thank you for showing us your Ubuntu – spirit of togetherness.”
Before Meghan’s speech, Prince Harry had commented passionately on the subject of violence against women. He says, “I wanted to ensure that our first visit as a family, with my wife by my side, focused on the significant challenges facing millions of South Africans, while acknowledging the hope that we feel so strongly here.”
Reports show the spate of abuse against women as attaining a frightening proportion with 66,992 violations from April 2018 to March 2019. President Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa declares it a “national crisis.”
Prince Harry commenting further on the issue says, “No man is born to cause harm to women. This is learned behavior and a cycle that needs to be broken,”. Prince Harry urges restraint and change in attitude. He says; “So now, it’s about redefining masculinity; it’s about creating your own footprints for your children to follow in so that you can make a positive change for the future. To me, the real testament of your strength isn’t physical … Your strength is in your spirit, which for me means honoring and protecting my wife, and being a positive role model for my son.”
The couples’ comments and joy were greeted with an equal show of affection and applaud. Residents and well-wishers thronged the venues to receive and celebrate the royal family with performance and hugs from the young. The royal couple’s first stop was in Nyanga, in Cape Town, a community notorious for its high spate of murder. Some refer to Nyanga as the murder capital of South Africa, in some circles.
Meghan had an opportunity to speak with girls who were once victims of rape and abuse to stay strong. She says, “respect, dignity, and equality.” She witnessed first-hand, females attending training on how to protect themselves from abuse. Organizers of the training were the Nyanga’s Methodist Church. The motto: When you strike a woman; you strike a rock.
Convener of the Justice Desk, Jessica Dewhurst, commented on Meghan Markle and the couples’ speech. She says, “To hear Meghan say she was standing here as a woman of color sent shivers down my spine. To be totally honest with you, when I heard that they wanted to say something I just thought it would be a ‘thank you for having us and goodbye.’ But they tackled some real issues, here.
Meghan Markle’s’ public acknowledgment of being a woman of color and support for abused women speaks volumes. Meghan appreciates and stands by her roots.
The royal tour continues with visits to several exciting locations. Their trip to any site attracts massive turnouts and celebrations in South Africa.
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