Lonmin Example of 'Exploitation', Says NGO

The Bench Marks Foundation says the violent situation at Lonmin's Marikana mine is an example of exploitation by the mines.

In a press statement, the organisations points out that, "The benefits of mining are not reaching the workers or the surrounding communities."

It argues that lack of employment opportunities for local youth, squalid living conditions, unemployment and growing inequalities contribute to ‘this mess’.

Malawi Commemorate 20 July Protests

Malawi’s civil society groups are planning to hold commemorations for the 20 people killed during mass protests against late President Bingu wa Mutharika’s rule on 20 July 2011.

Chairperson of the organising team, Moses Mkandawire, has been quoted by the media as saying that the event will take place at Katoto Freedom Park in Mzuzu on 20 July 2012.

Mkandawire points out that, “The main aim is to preach messages of reconciliation and forgiveness on the day. We appeal to Malawians to put on red attire on the day.”

Pro-Democracy Protests in Swaziland

Swaziland labour and student activists have pushed on with pro-democracy protests in Africa's last absolute monarchy despite a court blocking planned demonstrations.

Anti-government protests have mushroomed over the past year amid deepening frustration among impoverished Swazis, over a crippling financial crisis under the reign of King Mswati III.

“Nothing has changed, we are going ahead with this week’s protests,” explains Vincent Dlamini, secretary general of the National Public Service and Allied Workers Union.

SASCO Supports the COSATU March in Defence of the Poor and in Defiance of Neo Liberalism

Consistent with our bias to the working class and the poor, South African Students Congress (SASCO) Gauteng pledges its unconditional support for the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) on 7 March 2012 general strike against the labour brokering system and the impending roll out of the e-tolls in Gauteng. We believe that both labour broking and the e-tolling system are products of a neo-liberal offensive by capital (with the aid of collaborators in government) to accumulate at the expense of the South African working class.

Labour Brokers

DENOSA Calls on Nurses to Join COSATU March on Labour Brokers

The Democratic Nursing Organisation of South Africa is once more calling on all nurses who will be available to join the countrywide marches scheduled for Wednesday, 7 March 2012, organised by our giant federation, the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) demanding the banning of Labour Brokers.

We reiterate that the COSATU campaign to ban labour brokering is part of the federation’s broad Jobs and Poverty campaign launched in 1999 and further implements one of the resolutions that came out in the COSATU 10th National Congress on ‘decent work and labour brokering’.

Call for Risk Benefits for Councillors

The South African Local Government Association (SALGA) has warned that councillors face a risk of public violence and therefore need risk benefits.

SALGA spokesperson, Milisa Kentane, points out that the escalation of violent protests has not only seen the damaging of personal property, but has caused financial and psychological trauma, injury, and the loss of lives.

Occupy Movement for COP17

Inspired by the Occupy Wall St movement, protesters calling for ‘climate justice’ are set to gather at the opening of UN climate talks in Durban, according to organisers.

Patrick Bond, professor at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, points out that, "A meeting at the 'Speaker's Corner' will be called, an assembly," referring to a spot near the venue of the COP17.

Bond, who is associated with the largely youth-driven initiative, states that, "Negotiations have begun with the city on an authorised protest space."

CSOs Plan New Protests in Malawi

Malawi Civil Society organisations have notified the police and city councils across the country of their intentions to carry out protests against President Bingu wa Mutharika's government on 21 September 2011.

However, cracks have developed within the civil society organisations as one organisation, Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace (CCJP), announced its withdrawal from participation in the protests.

Stop Repression of Anti-Government Protests

Human Rights Watch (HRW) has urged Angolan authorities to immediately end the use of unnecessary and disproportionate force against demonstrators.

The rights group also urged the country to ensure the protection of demonstrators and journalists covering anti-government protests against violence.

The organisation also expressed concern that more than 30 demonstrators arrested by the authorities are still being held incommunicado, their whereabouts unknown.

Activist Arrested During Protest

13 activists from Restoration of Human Rights Zimbabwe (ROHR) have been arrested for protesting outside Zimbabwe’s High Court against ongoing human rights abuses in the country.

ROHR says that the activists were protesting against the continued incarceration of eight MDC-T activists who have remained behind bars since they were arrested on 29 May 2011.

The activists carried placards calling for impartiality by police and judicial officials in dealing with opponents of Robert Mugabe and ZANU PF.


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