rights

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.

MSF Criticises Govt Over ‘Operation Fiela’

Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) says that South African government’s treatment of foreign nationals through Operation Fiela, while publicly denouncing xenophobia, is a ‘festering contradiction’.

MSF is concerned that the raids by the police, military and the Department of Home Affairs in [the] wake of the xenophobic violence erodes trust and exposes a contradiction.

Tanzanian Govt Threatens NGOs

The Tanzanian government has threatened to ban all religious institutions and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) whose leaders are found ‘meddling in politics’.

Home Affairs minister, Mathias Chikawe,  states that from 20 April 2015 government is conducting a thorough vetting to know the religious institutions and NGOs [that are] meddling in politics.

Meanwhile, the country’s Christian and Muslim leaders have declared their intention to campaign for a ‘No’ vote in an upcoming constitutional referendum.

Botswana Arrest Journos Over Story

Officials from the Botswana corruption watchdog have raided the offices of the Botswana Gazette and arrested its manager, editor, journalist and lawyer in what appears to be a continuing effort by Botswana government to clamp down on the private press.

The arrest comes eight months after the detention of the editor of the Sunday Standard, Outsa Mokone, under sedition charges, causing veteran journalist, Edgar Tsimane, to flee to South Africa, saying that he fears for his life.

SANEF Meets National Police Commissioner

A delegation of the South African National Editors’ Forum (SANEF) leaders is set to meet with the National Commissioner of Police‚ General Riah Phiyega.

The meeting was convened as a result of ongoing discussions between the police and SANEF over relations between the media and the police.

The meeting will discuss in detail the ongoing and increasing harassment of journalists by police at crime scenes and community protests.

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