NGOs

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.

ECA Concerned About PAP Construction

The Environment & Conservation Association (ECA) has expressed concern about the “litany of mistakes” that led to the development of the Pan African Parliament on a wetland in Midrand.

ECA chairperson, Nicole Barlow, says that, “A simple look at C-plan 2 and a Google Earth shot would've told any first year student that there was seepage wetland covering most of the site upon wherethey intended to build the parliament.”

NGOs Urged to Fight HIV/AIDS Stigma

The Ghanaian deputy upper regional minister, Lucy Awuni, has underscored the need for NGOs working in the areas of HIV/AIDS to focus more on behavioural change for society to treat people living with HIV/AIDS with compassion and respect.

Speaking during the Ghana AIDS Commission Small Grants Disbursement to Local Partner NGOs in that country, Awuni noted that many people fail to report to health facilities because of the stigma attached to HIV positive people.

Call for More Grants to Alleviate Poverty

The National Working Group on Social Security has called on government to increase the number of people accessing social grants to alleviate poverty.

In its recent submission to the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC), the coalition’s Isabelle Frye, who is also director at Studies in Poverty and Inequality Institute, pointed out that, “President Jacob Zuma acknowledged that social grants remain the main effective form of poverty alleviation.”

NGOs Criticise KZN Social Welfare Budget

Welfare NGOs say the KwaZulu-Natal Social Welfare budget is creating a widening gap between better-paid state social workers and those employed by nonprofit organisations.

Network of Welfare Organisation Directors chairperson, Shelagh Hurford, says the entry level for social workers in NGOs is about R8 270, while social workers employed by the state get about 17 percent more than this plus their occupational-specific dispensation (OSDs). NGOs with only a five percent increase in their subsidies cannot compete.

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