The African continent has demonstrated commitment to promoting gender equality and the empowerment of women. Almost all countries have ratified the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women. Other milestones include the African Union’s declaration of 2010–2020 as the: 'African Women’s Decade!'
The protocol states that every woman has the right “to the recognition and protection of her human and legal rights.” It includes articles on equality in marriage, access to justice and political participation, protection of women in armed conflict and the provision of education, training and health care.
South African women also have to contend with extremely high rates of rape and domestic violence. Women are obviously protected by the full range of rights guaranteed in the new Constitution - the rights to life, dignity, privacy and others.