Welfare Bodies to March Against Low State Subsidies

Social welfare bodies helping abused women, children, the disabled and the elderly will march to protest against low state subsidies and the gap in salaries between staff in the government and those in NGOs.

Against the background of the government’s insistence that it is focusing on poverty reduction, NGOs in Gauteng say subsidies have not increased since 2004, adding that there is a 37 percent gap in salaries between government social workers and those employed by NGOs.

Call for the Inclusion of CSOs in Ward Committees

One approach to get more assistance to ward councilors, who have borne the brunt of the frustrations, is to offer them stipends and reshape ward committees to include civil society groups and sectors such as churches, local business and sports bodies.

This is according to Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Deputy Minister, Yunus Carrim.

Carrim, delivering a public lecture hosted by the Wits Graduate School of Public and Development Management and The Weekender, conceded there is a growing disconnect between government and people.

CSOs Petition Against NGO Bill

Zambian CSOs are planning to petition President Rupiah Banda not to assent to the Non-Governmental Organisations (NGO) Bill.

The CSOs are also challenging chief government spokesperson, Lieutenant General Ronnie Shikapwasha, to tell the nation what consultations were made and the submissions taken into consideration from CSOs when the Bill was amended.

NGO Report Criticises Zim Unity Government

The Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition is to issue a damning report, highlighting the shortcomings of the seven-month coalition government.

According to the Coalition’s Programmes Manager, Pedzisai Ruhanya, the report, ‘Can Apples be Reaped from a Thorn Tree: The Inclusive, Exclusive and Elusive Government’, criticises the inability of the inclusive government to deal with issues of transitional justice.

Ruhanya says victims of last year's political violence are still crying out for justice and yet no attempts are underway to address this.

Donors Prefer Channelling Funds to CSOs

A report entitled ‘Development Cooperation Report 2007-2008,’ published by the Ugandan government with the assistance of the United Nations Development Programme, shows that most donors in that country provide support through civil society despite the government's efforts to persuade them to do so through the budget.

According to the report: "The proportion of support to Uganda administered outside the government is significant. In some sectors, it exceeds 90 per cent of the total funding from development partners."

OneLove Campaign March in Venda

The OneLove Campaign march held by student activists from the University of Venda and celebrities was well-supported, with more than 350 people attending the event. This is according to Peter Mudimeli of the Soul City Institute.

Mudimeli says that, “The aim and objectives of the march were archived. The OneLove Campaign in South Africa created a solid partnership with major stakeholders in the region and a has laid the foundation to work with other NGOs working towards the same objectives to network and support each other’s events.”

Food Security Assessment for Zimbabwe

The Zimbabwean government and NGOs have embarked on an assessment of the food security situation, after initial studies showed that most households will require assistance from around December this year.

Provincial administrator, Felix Chikovo, says that the assessment will give government and its development partners sufficient time to plan for the projected shortages.


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