politics

African Land is a Profitable but Potentially Dangerous Investment

Photo courtesy Global Justice Now/FlickrSlicing up Africa: Activists cut into an African-shaped cake outside of the British government’s Department for International Development (DFID) to protest DFID’s role in facilitating the acquisition of African land by large multinational conglomerates.

SA Urged to Arrest Bashir

The Southern African Litigation Centre (SALC) says it has written an open letter to the South African ministers of Justice and of International Relations and Co-operation, asking that South Africa abide by the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court 27 of 2002 (the ICC Act).
 
SALC executive director, Kaajal Ramjathan-Keogh, states that South Africa's own law and its membership of the ICC obliges it to apprehend Sudan’s president, Omar Hassan Al Bashir, if he attends the African Union summit next month.
 

Diplomats Meet to Discuss Xenophobia

International Relations Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane will meet ambassadors and diplomats from other African countries to discuss the latest wave of xenophobic attacks in the country.

Five people have died during violent confrontations in KwaZulu-Natal since this month, and thousands have been displaced.

A peace march was held in Durban on Thursday, 16 April 2015, attended by thousands of people, including Premier Senzo Mchunu, religious leaders and celebrities.

Masses to Support Letsie, Thabane

According to Nthakoana Ngatane, masses are expected to protest in the Lesotho capital Maseru when the Constitutional Court hears an application in which the Attorney-General is suing King Letsie the third and Prime Minister, Tom Thabane.

Ngatane says that Thabane advised the King to appoint the President of the Court of Appeal, a move the Attorney-General describes as unconstitutional, because coalition partners in cabinet were not consulted.

Media Urged to Give Women Voices

Women Parliamentarians in Zimbabwe have urged the country to promote females in politics in order to bridge the gap between them and their male counterparts who hold the bulk of positions of authority in political parties and government.

The women decried lack of media attention and accused some sections of the media of always pulling them down through stereotyped coverage which portrayed them as less influential in the administration of the country.

Calls for transparent, Accountable Political System

The Constitutional Court will hear an application by a non-governmental organisation seeking to determine whether Parliament has failed in its constitutional obligation to get political parties to disclose the source of their private funding.

Currently, political parties are not obliged to disclose their funders and the applicant in the matter, My Vote Counts NPC, is calling for a more inclusive, transparent and accountable political system.

Forming the basis of its case is the constitutional right to access information and the right to vote.

Mugabe Urged to Address Rights Concerns

Amnesty International says that there is an urgent need for the African Union (AU) to take more concrete steps to effectively address the massive human rights violations resulting from the many conflicts taking place in several parts of the continent.
 
The organisation states that President Robert Mugabe should use his time as chairperson of the AU to restore stability in parts of the region that have been ravaged by conflicts.
 

Hate Speech Ahead of Zambian Election

President of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Council of Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) monitoring Zambia’s election, Lewis Mwape, says his organisation has noted with concern increasing levels of hate speech among several political leaders.

Mwape states that tribal talk and branding of political competitors is retrogressive and does not only deter democracy but also threatens national security.

He says the council has also observed that ambitious promises have heightened in the campaigns.

YALI Criticises NGOs Political Stance

The Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) has expressed concern that some non-governmental organisations (NGOs) in Zambia are getting involved in partisan politics and active campaigns for political candidates.

YALI governance advisor, Isaac Mwanza, says even if he believes in the right of NGOs to be critical of government and politicians, he also believes that civil society organisations must avoid the temptation of engaging in active partisan politics that favour one candidate against another.

Civil Society Warned Over ‘Regime Change Agenda’

Zimbabwean civil society has been urged to drop the ‘narrow’ ‘regime change agenda’ and refocus on political, social and economic reforms which have a direct bearing on the lives of Zimbabweans.

This recommendation was made by Dr Pedzisai Ruhanya, director of the Zimbabwe Democracy Institute (ZDI), a local political think tank, in its recently published policy document titled ‘Priorities for Civil Society-Donors Engagement in Zimbabwe’.

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