rights

GBV Hinders Women’s Freedom - Chipatiso

According to Linda Musariri Chipatiso, it seems incongruous that South Africans celebrate Women's Month, yet stories of conflict and gender-based violence (GBV) flood today's headlines.

In her article titled ‘Gender Violence Still Hinders Women's Freedom’, Chipatiso argues that, “Whether it is the abduction of girls in Nigeria, the unending trial of Oscar Pistorius or the young woman raped and murdered last over the weekend because of her sexuality- the horrific immediacy of violence is all too apparent.”

UN Slams Abuse of Albinos

A United Nations (UN) expert has condemned the abuse of young albinos in government care centres in Tanzania, a country where many are killed and their body parts sold as lucky charms.

Alicia Londono, of the UN human rights office, says that after a spike in killings in 2009, the government placed youngsters in children's homes in a desperate effort to defend them.

Londono points out that, “It was a protective measure, and welcome at the beginning,” adding that, “But the conditions are appalling. They are overcrowded, hygiene conditions are very poor.”

SAHRC: Number of SA Schools Declines

The South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) says that despite a growing school population, the number of South African schools has declined.

In its new report, the SAHRC says that approximately 2 000 schools have been closed down between 2000 and 2012.
 
SAHRC’s Carmen Abdoll, points out that most of the schools are in the Free State, and believes there is a risk that pupils in those areas are being disadvantaged.

Madonsela: SA, An Unequal Society

Public Protector, Thuli Madonsela, has described South Africa as one of the most unequal societies in the world.

In a speech delivered at the University of Stellenbosch, Madonsela says the country is one of the most unequal society despite the constitutional promises which include the substantive notion of equality.

"Compounding the situation is that poverty and unemployment have worsened and also the fact that, that too follows the contours of racial, gender and other forms of structural inequality or discrimination," she explained.

Gauteng Tolerant to Gays - Survey

A survey has revealed that, Gauteng residents are becoming increasingly tolerant of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, asexual, queer and other sexual orientations (LGBTIAQ).

Gauteng City-Region Observatory (GCRO) executive director, Professor David Everatt, points out that at least 71 percent of the 27 493 respondents believed that the LGBTIAQ+ community deserved equal rights.

In a press statement, Everatt states that, “37 percent strongly believe that homosexuality is against the values of their community while 56 percent disagree that it is…”

Call for SADC States to End Rights Violations

Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights, Amnesty International, and Human Rights Watch believe the Southern African Development Community (SADC) should address human rights violations among its member states as part of measures to improve the lives of its people.

The three rights organisations draw attention to serious human rights concerns in Angola, Malawi, Swaziland, Zambia, and Zimbabwe as the regional body prepares to host its 34th Summit of Heads of State and Government from 17-18 August 2014 in Zimbabwe.

Ban on Uganda’s Anti-Gay Law Welcomed

The joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) has welcomed the decision of Uganda's Constitutional Court to strike down a law banning the promotion of homosexuality punishable by life imprisonment.
 
The anti-gay legislation was deemed null and void by the court on the technicality that it was not passed by a required parliamentary quorum.
 

Call to Make Rights Central to US-Africa Summit

The Human Rights Watch (HRW) says United States (US) President, Barack Obama, should ensure that human rights concerns are a major focus of the US-Africa Leaders Summit.

The organisation argues that rights concerns should not be relegated to meetings in the margins of the summit, which is hosted under the theme ‘Investing in Our Future’ from 4-6 August 2014 in Washington DC.

MSM Recognised For Fighting Homophobia

Mpumalanga’s Gert Sibande District recognises 24 leaders from the local community of men who have sex with men (MSM) for making a difference in their communities and fighting homophobia.

The Anova Health Institute, in partnership with the Department of Health and national associations of people living with HIV, launched the HIV prevention Boithato Project where MSM are provided with condoms, water-based lubricant and MSM-friendly HIV testing spaces.

Govt’s ‘Forced Birth Control’ Criticised

Thirty students - 13 of them women - will fly to India today to study pharmacy and ultrasonography but not before 11 young women were implanted with Implanon, a matchstick-size rod inserted in the arm to prevent one from falling pregnant.

One student was advised against taking the contraceptive due to an existing medical condition. Another said she ‘was not ready for it’.

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