Court Orders Release of Lawyer and Editors

The Supreme Court in Swaziland has ordered the release of human rights lawyer, Thulani Maseko, and editor, Bheki Makhubu.

Maseko and Makhubu were convicted of contempt of court and sentenced to two years in prison in March 2014.

According to the Southern Africa Litigation Centre (SALC), which has supported their case, their release follows an appeal against their conviction, which was not opposed by the directorate of public prosecutions.

Zim, NGOs Bicker Over Diamond Sales

The Kimberly Process Certification Scheme intercessional plenary meeting took place in Luanda, Angola, this month with Zimbabwe and some Western nations and human rights groups renewing their hostilities.

Resource Exploitation Watch chairperson, Tafadzwa Musarara, and some government insiders are accusing the West of trying to block trade in Zimbabwean gems alleging that they might be laundered through the sale of diamonds in the United Arab Emirates which is under intense scrutiny.

Trafficked Children Returned Home

A South African minor is said to be suffering from malaria after allegedly being abducted and trafficked to Malawi.

A delegation led by the Minister of Social Development, Bathabile Dlamini, together with Interpol will be heading to Malawi to bring home the relatives.

Dlamini says the case highlights the need for society as a whole to be vigilant about the trafficking of children.

SAHRC: Medical Waste Incinerator Violates Rights

The South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) has found that EnviroServ’s regional medical waste incineration facility in Bloemfontein compromises community members’ right to a clean environment.
The SAHRC investigated after residents complained that the company’s incinerator has been billowing out large volumes of smoke during the day and night for the past two years.
The commission argues that as a result, the air in the area is polluted, affecting the health of residents in the area.

Child Protection Week Launched

The Department of Social Development has launched the Child Protection Week, a period in which all are encouraged to ensure that children are protected from all forms of abuse, neglect and exploitation.
Foster Care Child Welfare’s Edwin Mutambanengwe, says that South Africa is making good progress in protecting children.
Mutambanengwe is of the view that government is directly involved in ensuring the protection of children.

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.

Zim Govt Stifling Media Expression: Amnesty

Rights group, Amnesty International, says the Zimbabwean government's continuing stranglehold on community radio in the country is stifling media expression.

In a press statement, the organisation’s director for Southern Africa, Deprose Muchena argues that, "Despite promises and laws enacted more than 14 years ago to free up the airwaves for much needed community radio services, the government of Zimbabwe has failed to deliver on its promises and commitments.”

Call to Rethink of Operation Fiyela

Human rights activists, Lawyers for Human Rights (LHR), has secured a court order in the Johannesburg High Court halting the deportation of those held at Lindela repatriation centre for two weeks.

After LHR secured a court order allowing its lawyers access to their clients late‚ Johannesburg police station commanders refused to comply with it over the weekend.

SAHRC Probes Dlamini for Hate Speech

The axed president of the student representative council at University of the Witwatersrand, Mcebo Dlamini, is being investigated by the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) after several complaints were laid with the watchdog.

SAHRC spokesperson, Isaac Mangena, confirmed that after a number of complaints the commission was investigating whether Dlamini’s comments were tantamount to hate speech or incitement to violence.


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