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Deputy Minister of Human Settlements South Africa: Zou Kota-Fredericks

This week we talk to the Deputy Minister of Human Settlements, Zou Kota-Fredericks. We discuss the human settlements portfolio in respect to women, not just from a beneficiary perspective but as economic participants in the human settlements value chain. Whether this is women directly working in the construction space to build infrastructure, or owning companies operating in this sector or those employed by peripheral departments that contribute to achieving the goals of human settlements i.e transport, town planning, etc…. We emphasise the importance of getting more women into the work place stressing the role of quotas to help level the playing field. Additionally, we speak about elements to help capacitate women, such as access to finance, developing their skills set, improving their education and implementing gender positive legislation. We raise the issue of transforming cultural stereotypes surrounding women which may prevent them from realising their full potential and for there to be greater acknowledgement of the domestic unpaid work performed largely by the female population to keep households running.

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