It has been have revealed that Chief Pandelani Singo of the vhaVenda Tribal Authority has been illegally issuing warrants of arrest and fining unwed pregnant women R850 since 2008 .
This patriarchal practice has forced many young mothers and families in Venda’s Mandala Village to approach loan sharks and trade their SASSA cards to get loans. Some women have even had to flee from the village to avoid being punished.
As South Africans we know that customary law continues to play an important role in the lives of many rural South Africans, but traditional leaders should not abuse this authority by claiming powers not traditionally held under custom. Situations such as this one highlight the vulnerable position that women often occupy in traditionally male-dominated institutions and structures at a time when South Africa is attempting to achieve equal rights regardless of sexuality and gender.
 Fines for pregnant women, Glacier Nkhwashu for the Sowetan 7 April 2015