rights

Teachers Demand Mugabe’s Audience

The Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (PTUZ) has written to President Robert Mugabe to request a meeting with him to register displeasure with current education minister, Lazarus Dokora.

The teachers’ trade union group accuses Dokora of unilaterally introducing potentially destructive policies within the country's struggling education sector.

Dokora is further accused of plans to shift schools sporting activities to weekends as well as to roll out CCTV camera installations in classrooms as a ‘spying’ measure on teachers.

Gauteng to Intensify Fight Against Child Abuse

With more than 32 000 cases of child abuse recorded in the past decade (2004 and 2014), the Gauteng Department of Social Development in Gauteng vows to intensify the fight against the abuse of children.

In light of this year’s Child Protection Week, running from 1 - 7 June 2014, MEC for agriculture, rural development and social development, Faith Mazibuko is launching a campaign under the theme, ‘Working Together to Protect Children’ and sub-themed, ‘Each For All and All For Each: Communities protecting their own’.

SAHRC Warns Against Corporal Punishment

The South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) is concerned that there are still schools that administer corporal punishment despite it being illegal.
 
The rights body says that the practice is contrary to the country's constitution and international human rights standards.

Addressing the opening of its two-day conference on the subject at Parktown in Johannesburg, SAHRC chairperson, Lawrence Mushwana, says corporal punishment in schools infringes on the right of a learner to basic education.

Mandela Foundation Mourns Angelou

The Nelson Mandela Foundation has paid tribute to the United States poet and author, Maya Angelou.

In a press statement, the organisation spokesperson, Danielle Melville, points out that, "On behalf of our board of trustees and staff, the Nelson Mandela Foundation mourns the passing of Maya Angelou.”

Melville says the late former President, Nelson Mandela, met Angelou in Cairo, Egypt in 1962, while he was garnering support for the armed struggle and undergoing military training.

SA Legally Bound to Educational Reforms

Activists have urged the government to be legally bound to extensive education reforms.

The application due to be heard in the Western Cape High Court will determine whether the government will have to submit regular reports to the public protector, the South African Human Rights Commission or the Auditor-General detailing how it is remedying its alleged failures to comply with the Constitution’s requirements on the right to basic education.

NGO: Malawi Women Have No Land Rights

Malawi’s Nsanje Kuchene Women Forum has said despite women being the major agricultural producers in the country, they remain largely absent at all levels of policy-making, project formulation and management of land.
 
The forum's president, Mary Namalomba, notes that under Malawi's formal law, women and men have the right to own land, individually or jointly with others, and the Constitution prohibits gender discrimination.
 

NGO Condemns Death Threats Against its Staff

The World Wildlife Fund has condemned ‘death threats’ against two of its staff fighting oil exploration in a Democratic Republic of Congo nature park just weeks after the park's director was shot.
 
In a press statement, the organisation points out that, “Unidentified callers have threatened the personal safety of two employees working in the city of Goma."
 

OUTA Warns People Against SANRAL

The Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance (OUTA) has warned Gauteng e-toll road users to think before being ‘seduced’ by roads agency SANRAL’s latest offer to register for e-tags.
 
In a press statement, OUTA spokesperson, John Clarke, points out that, “SANRAL is desperate to get the over 1.3 million non-compliant freeways users to play on their turf by signing their terms and conditions.”
 
OUTA’s comments follow SANRAL’s announcement that the grace period for e-toll road users to settle their accounts and benefit from the discount had been extended.
 

SANEF: Info Bill Must Go to ConCourt

The South African National Editors’ Forum (SANEF) calls for the Protection of State Information Bill to be sent to the Constitutional Court for ratification before it is signed into law.

In a statement to mark International Press Freedom Day, SANEF’s chairperson, Mpumelelo Mkhabela, says a public interest defence clause in the Bill would truly enhance the ability of media to assist in the fight against corruption.

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