• Fundraising to Create Shelter for OVC

    RA1SE - ONE for Good Causes will this year - along with a number of volunteers - will be raising funds for its project in Zambia, in partnership with Lusaka’s Youth Organisation for Orphans.

    The project entails the construction and finishing of three houses and an administration block, a water reservoir and a farm and also intends to make the home as self-sustainable as possible, while providing opportunities for the orphans to learn new skills.

    Once the works are completed, 40 orphans, aged between seven and 18 years will be able to reside in the home on a permanent basis.

    To read the article titled, “Zambian orphans to be given shelter through NGO project,” click here.

    Malta Independent
  • SANEF Condemns Journalist Arrest

    The South African National Editors Forum (SANEF) has expressed shock at the detention of a journalist, Sandiso Phaliso, by police in the Western Cape.

    In a press statement, SANEF media freedom committee chairperson, Adriaan Basson, points out that, "This behaviour by officers of the South African Police Service is completely unacceptable."

    Basson is of the view that Phaliso’s freedom of expression has been infringed by this incident, when he tried to expose officers neglecting their very basic duty of protecting communities.

    To read the article titled, “Western Cape journalist's arrest unacceptable, says SANEF,” click here.

    Times Live
  • Part of the Sexual Offences Act Unconstitutional

    The Western Cape (WC) High Court has declared section 50(2) of the Criminal Law (Sexual Offences and Related Matters) Amendment Act (Sexual Offences Act) unconstitutional.

    The applicant, who admitted to raping three minor children while he himself was still a minor, was sentenced in terms of the Child Justice Act and his name was entered into the National Register for Sexual Offenders in terms of section 50(2) of the Act.

    The court found that section 50(2) is invalid and inconsistent with the Constitution to the extent that it does not allow a court to decide whether a child offender's details should be entered into the register, or provide the opportunity for a child offender to make representations.

    To read the article titled, “Western Cape High Court declares part of the Sexual Offences Act unconstitutional,” click here.

    Times Live
  • Nigeria’s Homophobic Laws Criticised

    The South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) urges South Africa to add its voice to calls for Nigeria to review its homophobic legislation.

    SAHRC spokesperson, Isaac Mangena, states that, "Since 18 January [2014], dozens of people have already been arrested in Nigeria in terms of the new law."

    Mangena further adds that, the South African government should seek to exert influence over other African countries to follow good human rights practices.

    To read the article titled, “South Africa should speak up against homophobic laws: SAHRC,” click here .

    Times Live
  • Mswati Criticised Over Rights Violations

    According to the 2013 Freedom House Report, Swaziland remains the last supreme autocratic monarchy on the continent and this has led to citizens facing various human rights violations under King Mswati III’s government.

    The report finds that the parliamentary elections held in September 2013 have had no impact on reforming the escalating human rights and humanitarian crisis facing the country.

    According to the United Nations Programmes on HIV/AIDS, one of the many violations for which the king has been openly criticised is the government’s negligent approach to its HIV/AIDS programme. 

    The country that has the highest HIV/AIDS rate in the world of 26 percent.

    To read the article titled, “Eating cow dung while Mswati lives large: video,” click here.

    Times Live
  • Mozambique Urged to Recognise LGBT

    As gay Americans make headlines fighting for their marital rights, in Mozambique, and many other countries in Africa, the battle looks different and is much quieter.

    Danilo Da Silva, executive director of the Mozambican Association for the Defense of Sexual Minorities (LAMBDA), points out that, the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community is afraid of losing the people they love, of being rejected and being an outcast.

    Da Silva's says LAMBDA is the sole LGBT non-governmental organisation in Mozambique, a country twice the size of California, with a population of over 25 million.

    To read the article titled, “A fight for recognition: The LGBT community's battle in Mozambique,” click here.

    Huffington Post
  • De Klerk Not Pressured to Release Prisoners

    The F.W. de Klerk Foundation has denied that former president, F.W. de Klerk, was under pressure to release all political prisoners, including the late former President, Nelson Mandela, from prison.

    F.W. de Klerk Foundation, executive director, Dave Steward, who was the director-general in De Klerk's office at the time and government’s spokesperson, says De Klerk’s says the reason why government released political prisoners is because the apartheid policy had failed.

    He says there would have been a catastrophe if the prisoners were not released.

    To read the article titled, “De Klerk was not under pressure to release political prisoners: Foundation,” click here.

    SABC News
  • Bill Raises Gay Alarm

    The Women Empowerment and Gender Equality Bill has been criticised in Parliament for not making provision for the advancement of gays and lesbians in the workplace.

    This emerged on 30 January 2014 during the second day of public hearings on the bill, which is being sponsored by the Department of Women, Children and People with Disabilities.

    In its submission, the Legal Resources Centre argues that the bill should not limit issues of gender equality and inequality as being issues between men and women, and girls and boys.

    Meanwhile, the Triangle Project, an organisation that campaigns against discrimination against lesbians, gays, bisexuals and other sexual minorities, objects to the bill's definition of ‘gender’ as unconstitutional.

    To read the article titled, “Bill raises gay alarm,” click here.

    Times Live
  • SA Criticises HRW Report on Policing

    The Ministry of Police says the Human Rights Watch's (HRW) 2014 World Report is ‘generalising and subjective’ in its assessment of the police.

    In the report, HRW says: "Serious concerns remain about the ongoing conduct and capacity of the South African Police Service, both in terms of the use of force in general, as well as the ability to deal with riots in a rights-respecting manner."

    Police Minister, Nathi Mthethwa's spokesperson, Zweli Mnisi, says the report created the impression that the police used the same approach and operational plan for all for public protests, and created the impression that all police were brutal.

    To read the article titled, “We are a caring govt - despite human rights report,” click here.

    Mail and Guardian
  • Human Rights ‘Taking a Turn for the Worst’ - NGO

    Human Rights Watch (HRW) has issued a ‘warning’ to the South African government, that human rights are ‘taking a turn for the worst’ in the country, citing attacks on the free press and escalating police violence as the main reasons for the regression.

    HRW’s Southern Africa director, Tiseke Kasambala, says that while South Africa remain a ‘beacon of hope’ on the continent, its human rights legacy is gradually being eroded.

    "There is an increasingly violent reaction to peaceful protests in South Africa. It seems that every time there are protests in South Africa, the police are heavy-handed, and use excessive force. We want to see President [Jacob] Zuma and his government make clear that the police must abide by international standards, and use proportionate force," explains Kasambala.

    To read the article titled, “Lethal force: SA warned on human rights,” click here.

    Mail and Guardian
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