Countries around the world marked International Human Rights Day on 10 December 2013.
Chief of the United Nations Human Rights, Navi Pillay, states that the fundamentals for protecting and promoting human rights are largely in place, the focus now is in implementing these standards when there is a gap in political will and financial resources.
Pillay also notes that the past 20 years have seen a number of failures to prevent atrocities and safeguarding human rights.
To read the article titled, “Africa: World Marks Human Rights Day,” click here.Source:All Africa
A group of activists have staged a silent march at the country's main World AIDS Day event in Piet Retief, Mpumalanga.
Made up of representatives from a number of human rights organisations, the group marched with an aim to draw attention to the issues facing people living with HIV/AIDS.
"The intention is not to disrupt the event, but to make sure that people remember that the AIDS epidemic is still going on. We want to highlight the fact that there are still people who are dying without treatment. So, we want to make sure that World AIDS Day focuses on real issues, that it does not become a political event with no significance for the people who live with HIV," explains AIDS activist, Mark Heywood.
To read the article titled, “Mpumalanga Activists March to Highlight HIV/AIDS Plight,” click here.Source:SABC News
African Union’s (AU) chairperson, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, says the union is worried about the growing trend of unconcern towards electoral processes among young people in democracies across Africa.
Speaking at a gala dinner to mark the 160th anniversary of Adams College, Dlamini-Zuma states that it is essential for young people in Africa to become active in shaping the future they are to inherit.
She has encouraged the youth to participate in elections and policy development initiatives aswell as to hold their governments accountable.
To read the article titled, “Growing apathy towards electoral processes in Africa worries AU,” click here.Source:SABC News
Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) has expressed anger towards Transport Minister, Dipuo Peter’s announcement of the beginning of e-tolling on Gauteng’s highways on 3 December 2013.
Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance (OUTA) chairperson, Wayne Duvenage, states that the e-tolling system is bound to fail, as it is inefficient, irrational, and would enrich overseas companies at the expense of South African motorists.
Duvenage says that OUTA believes the most equitable way to pay for the maintenance of highways would be through a fuel levy.
To read the article titled, “Public fury over e-tolls date,” click here.Source:Fin 24
The South African Informal Trader's Forum (SAITF) has announced plans to take the City of Johannesburg to court over the removal of informal traders in the Johannesburg central business district (CBD).
In a press statement, SAITF states that the court action followed weeks of speaking to the city in order to find solutions to the evictions of traders.
"The City of Johannesburg, in its clean sweep operation, removed illegal and legal traders regardless of whether one was in possession of a permit, lease or not," it states.
To read the article titled, “Informal traders to take City of Joburg to court,” click here.Source:Mail and Guardian
The One Voice Hawkers' organisation has demanded the return of former Johannesburg mayor, Amos Masondo.
One Voice spokesperson, Zakes Ramotolana, states that the current mayor, Parks Tau’s mother used to sell tomatoes for a living, however, the mayor has now turned his back against street hawkers.
“Under former mayor Masondo, the hawkers were treated like proper business people … we demand that Masondo comes back and Tau must resign," argues Ramotolana.
To read the article titled, “Organisation wants Masondo back,” click here.Source:News 24
The Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance (OUTA) says the Gauteng e-tolling controversy offers President Jacob Zuma the opportunity to indicate to government officials what he means by consultation.
OUTA chairperson, Wayne Duvenage, states that they agree with the president’s notion however are let down by the actions displayed by the authorities in ignoring the views of the people.
Zuma told residents in Soshanguve that South Africans want to be engaged continuously and have strong views about how they want to be governed.
To read the article titled, “Outa wants Zuma to act on e-tolls,” click here.Source:Fin 24
Abahlali baseMjondolo, the shack dwellers’ movement, declares politicians unwelcome in Durban’s informal settlements until such time that the housing needs of the poor are addressed.
The movement’s general secretary, Bandile Mdlalose, states that the shack dwellers are tired of the lies they hear from politicians and have to send a message that they are not wanted in their areas.
He was responding to protests by Kennedy Road residents, following eThekwini mayor, James Nxumalo’s visit where he handed out meat parcels to the poor.
Abahlali believes the mayor’s visit was an insult to the residents of Kennedy Road informal settlement who were yet to receive houses promised to them years ago.
To read article titled, “Give us houses not meat, mayor,” click here.Source:IOL News
If energy companies and the ruling African National Congress (ANC) are successful, the Karoo a semi-desert wilderness, will soon be home to scientists and geologists mapping out shale gas fields touted as game-changers for Africa's biggest economy, and determining whether fracking will work here.
The fracking process is incurring challenges from multiple opponents - pro-fracking activists assert that a lengthy legal fight is inevitable.
"After the licence has been granted, there is going to be legal battle after legal battle after legal battle," states chairperson of the Karoo Shale Gas Community Forum, Vuyisile Booysen.
To read article titled, “Water, wealth and whites - SA's potent anti-fracking mix,” click here.Source:SABC News
CIVICUS: World Alliance for Citizen Participation has warned that Africa will not be able to realise the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) because of corruption.
CIVICUS head of policy and research, Mandeep Tiwana, points out that the MDGs are eight time-bound goals which provide concrete, numerical benchmarks for tackling extreme poverty in its many dimensions.
Tiwana states that these includes targets on income poverty, hunger, maternal and child mortality, disease, inadequate shelter, gender inequality, environmental degradation and the Global Partnership for Development.
He further says inequalities are not an African problem but it is a global problem, adding that these are some of the serious issues our leaders need to address.
To read article titled, “Corruption seen as hindrance to MDGs in Africa,” click here.Source:SABC News