'We walk because we have to fetch water and wood, otherwise we will die, but then many men have died because of the big sickness (HIV). Many of us are sick, maybe because of the big sickness but we do not know as we will just get sicker walking to the clinic and we cannot read what they give us about HIV. All these important people that come to us to vote must ask us what we want… I just want a wheelbarrow to put the water in and for the rapists to be put in jail.'
'Many things are changing, we [women] are the people here, men are gone or died so we must talk to the councillors and see if we can be drivers of carts …' [laughter]
'When I go to the traditional healer I do not stop getting pregnant but I know the clinic can help me – but it is far and I am scared I will get raped.'
'… if we have taxis to take the children to school it has to be drivers we know as they may be criminals that will rape the girls.'
This monograph addresses the challenges facing policy and its implementation in respect of women, development and transport by concentrating on selected sites in the rural Eastern Cape province of South Africa.
A key indicator in social, political and economic development, transport is not simply about mobility and infrastructure, but also about socio-cultural roles and responsibilities that impede the development of women and girl children. The study provides original perspectives, via established methodologies and through the use of time-use diaries, on the important social, economic and cultural barriers that confirm women’s negative experiences as effects of patriarchal power.
Insights gained during the research are directed towards not only transport infrastructure in the Eastern Cape, but also to poverty alleviation, gender mainstreaming and intervention in respect of violence against women, a direct experience of the transport-and travel-related activities of women. This rich empirical evidence is reinforced by appropriate recommendations to provide valuable impetus for national policy and planning.