Monthly Archives: May 2014

Comments Off on South Africa 20 years in the (OAU) African Union

Human Rights Institute of South Africa (HURISA) and Southern Africa Trust (SAT)

South Africa 20 years in the (OAU) African Union 

We over 90 Participants Representative made of, Human Rights Defenders, Activist and Various Civil Society leaders gathered at the Human Rights Institute of South Africa (HURISA) and State Of The Union Coalition (SOTU) event commemorating South Africa’s 20 years of freedom, human rights and democracy and the launch of the State of the Union Coalition Report on South Africa’s Compliance with the AU Instruments, including engaging the South African State officials and representatives from Chapter Nine Institutions to reflect on South Africa’s compliance with its AU commitments, on 20-21 May 2014, Constitutional Hill, Braamfontein.

We pledge our solidarity support to the “Bring Back Our Girls” Campaign and implore the AU States to double strength efforts to protect African citizens against militias, terrorist attacks engulfing countries of the region and call for robust actions to find the over 270 Nigerian Young Girls and bring them back home in peace.

We acknowledge the milestone achievements made by South Africa in the advancement of the African legal architecture and noted carefully the government’s commitment to build a culture of human rights, through ratification of the AU Instruments, including the fourteen (14) AU Instruments prioritised by the State of the Union Coalition.

We are deeply concerned about South Africa’s lack of compliance with its African Union obligations to popularise all AU mechanisms as all these remain unknown by the majority of the population of South Africa. The Government has made little progress with regard to implementation, in particular, the African Union Charter on Democracy Election and Governance was not complied with or considered before and during the 2014 election to manage political intolerance and service delivery protests;

We further note with concern South Africa’s inaction to promote access to justice by failure to make Article 34 (6) Declaration to allow individuals direct access to the African Court;

We are alarmed about the failure to implement the Africa Mining Vision (MVA) to protect the mining community against the flagrant violation of their labour rights by the multinationals and private sector.

Commending the government for championing the Comprehensive Africa Agricultural and Development Programme (CAADP) which expires in 2015, however we express our disappointment with the slow pace to sign the Compact agreement in which a plan of action committing the government to eliminate hunger, reduce poverty and food insecurity affecting many people in South Africa.

We are alarmed by South Africa’s long overdue periodic reports, despite the civil society urging the Government to submit all its outstanding periodic reports on the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights, the Protocol on the Rights of Women in Africa to the African Commission on Human and People’s Rights. We remain concerned about the lack of progress to address the Youth’s dilemma experienced in high unemployment, teenage pregnancy, poverty, rampant use of tobacco and substances which causes TB, lung cancer and inequality as espoused by the African Youth Charter

We further commend the South African Government for crafting ten (10) pieces of legislation to protect nature, and natural resources as stipulated under the Revised Africa Convention on Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (RACCNNR) before this AU Instrument entered into force.

We are concerned with the high level of Police brutality, resulting in the increased killings and injuries sustained by innocent people in South Africa especially, during service delivery protests, since the inception of freedom and democracy in 1993. Regulations of Gathering Act the instrument adopted to effect gatherings is not properly implemented and there’s a huge contradiction with the Constitutional provisions promoting and protecting the right to freedom of expression, association, assembly, demonstration, picketing and presentation of petitions.

We are also concern about the delays in the following,

  • Implementation of the human rights education which has been incorporated in the schools curricular, as well as and domestication of African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child to end torture, and harmful traditional practices
  • Ending of informal settlement as deadline to do so in 2014,
  • Ending of pit toilet, bucket toilet system by 2010
  • Inequality in funding of political parties including lack of promoting transparency and obligation to disclose, as well as respect the autonomy of the Civil Society Organisations and Human Rights Defenders,
  • Implementation of Maputo Protocol to address the pervasive gender based violence, rape and brutal murder of women
  • Weak parliamentary debates, including of appointment of unskilled and unqualified public servants,
  • Human Rights Education including, awareness raising, sensitisation of police, civil society, trade unions, youth, political parties, NHRIs and others sectors about AU human rights Instruments as well as repeal of laws that perpetuate stereotypes, inequality against women, stigma and patriarchy in the society
  • Civic education to the media, access to information, and use of the ACHPR Model Law, especially for people living in rural area, people with disabilities
  • Equal treatment and respect of Traditional Institutions recognised by communities
  • Use of Local Observers and SADC Mission in national elections

We call upon the Government:

–          To take all necessary steps to implement its regional and constitutional obligations, in particular to submit the periodic report under the ACHPR and the Maputo Protocol, and to sign the Compact for full implementation of CAADP;

–          To take all necessary steps to make Article 34 (6) Declaration to allow individual access to the African Court;

–          End pit toilet, pit toilet as deadline has passed to do so by 2010

–          End Informal Settlement by 2015

–          To recognise CSOs as a catalyst that monitors governance issue and human rights accountability in the country ;

–          To foster human rights and civic education, particularly by ensuring that the human rights curriculum at schools is effectively applied ,

–          Incorporate human rights provisions in the RGA

–          Enact law for promotion and protection of HRDs and ensure marches, protests, demonstrations public participation are fulfilled, respected, promoted and protected

–          To improve public sector management, employment of skilled competent official, to expedite service delivery

–          Obligation of political parties to comply with legislative obligations,

–          Respect of the autonomy of NHRI to function fearlessly, without favour, impartially and without prejudice especially the Public Protector

–          South Africa advocated – AU – SADC Level

Thus done on 21 May 2014

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Comments Off on Human Rights Institute of South Africa Commemorates Africa Day 25 May 2014

Immediate Media Statement

23 May 2014

 

Human Rights Institute of South Africa Commemorates Africa Day 25 May 2014


Attention: Editors and Reporters

 

Africa Day is observed as the day that marks the founding of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU) on 25 May 1963. The Day was originally called Africa Freedom Day and it aroused out of the efforts of the African Leaders, political and human rights activists who attended the First Conference of Independent African States in Ghana on 15 April 1958. The African Union was established in South Africa in 2002 July 9 after the launching of the Constitutive Act.

 

Human Rights Institute of South Africa (HURISA) recognises this significant day in which the efforts and human rights struggles of all Africans are remembered and honoured. HURISA joins the people of Africa in the continued struggle for the attainment of human and people’s rights in all African countries. In celebration of this historical occasion HURISA recalls the re-joining of South Africa into the OAU/ AU on 23 May 1994.  As this occasion marks 20 years on South Africa in the AU, we also observe the 10th Anniversary of the AU Peace and Security Council, which South Africa played fundamental role.

 

HURISA partnered with and Southern Africa Trust (SAT) to commemorate this historical era of freedom, human rights and democracy to launch the State of the Union Coalition Report to give reflection on South Africa’s Compliance with the AU Instruments and engaged the South African State officials and representatives from Chapter Nine Institutions on South Africa’s compliance with its AU commitments, on 20-21 May 2014, Constitutional Hill, Braamfontein.

 

Over 90 Participants attended made up of representatives of human rights defenders, activist and various civil society leaders, women, youth, children, governance, political, legal, faith based organisations. The participants pledged their solidarity support to the “Bring Back Our Girls” Campaign and advocated for robust actions to bring peace and security in Africa.

 

HURISA, SAT and participants at the Con-hill meeting are calling South Africa as a key peace role player in Africa and Dr Nkosazana Dlamini- Zuma as the Chair of the African Union Commission to increase concerted efforts to foster a culture of unity in Africa in the search and return of the over 270 Nigerian Girls abducted by the Boko Haram militia.

 

We remind South Africa including all AU Member Sates of the resolution of the African Commission on Human and People’s Rights at its 55th Session held on 28 April – 12 May 2014 in Luanda- Angola calling all African States to take the necessary measures to combat terrorism particularly by initiating joint actions aimed at preventing all activities relating to the financing, sale and transfer of weapons to terrorist groups.

 

 

Issued by HURISA Advocacy and Media Liaison Officer

 

Adv. Sipho Mantula

Tel: 011 333 1730

Cell: 0847815587

Email:rasgideon@hurisa.org.za

www.hurisa.org.za

Category: Post gallery

Immediate Media Statement

Comments Off on Immediate Media Statement

Immediate Media Statement

19 May 2014

 

Observation of Africa Week- 19-25 May 2014: HURISA and SAT are hosting event from 20-21 May 2014 Looking Back at South Africa’s Participation in the African Union since 1994

 

Attention: Editors and Reporters

The Human Rights Institute of South Africa and the Southern Africa Trust, with support from the State of the Union (SOTU) Coalition invites members of the media to a one (1) and half day commemorative dialogue focusing on the forth-coming launch of the SOTU report (201`1/12) on South Africa’s compliance with the African Union instruments, to be held in Constitutional Hill, Braamfontein.

The Africa week dialogue will mirror the 20 years of the South Africa’s participation during the then Organisation of African Unity (OAU now African Union (AU) since May 23 1994, launch of the State of the Union- SA report (2012/13), reflect on the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance (2007) in the light of the recent South African General Elections of 2014 and convene an evening media critical debate and freedom of assembly/protest exhibition.

The central objective of this commemorative dialogue is to engage in a critical analysis made by the South African Government since its homecoming to the African Continental diplomacy of the African Union and its compliance with the fourteen (14) African Union legal instruments with a specific focus on the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance (2007).

We anticipate the commemorative dialogue will identify challenges and recommendations relating to the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance through robust and intense discussion.

Details of the dialogue are as follows:
Date: 20- 21 May 2014,
Time: 9:00am – 16: 30pm
Venue: Constitutional Hill, Human Rights Conference Centre, Johannesburg

The anticipated speakers will emanate from Department of International Relations and Co-operation, Department of Justice and Constitutional Development, Independent Electoral Commission, African Peer Review Mechanism Secretariat, Law Society of South Africa, SADC Lawyers Association, Centre for Human Rights, Institute for Global dialogue, Electoral Institute of Sustainable Democracy in Africa , Southern Africa Liaison Office and various national civil society leaders.

The evening media debate and exhibition of news photography from the Mail and Guardian will focus on freedom of assembly in South Africa. Images of historic (pre-1994) and contemporary (post-1994) protests will be juxtaposed to show how far the country has come in protecting free assembly, while also drawing attention to the concerning trend of violent clashes between citizens and police. Human rights activists and a political analyst will engage the participant’s.

Media Debate and Exhibition Details

Date: 20 May 2014,

Time: 6:30pm: 21:00pm

Venue: Constitution Hill, Women’s Jail, Johannesburg

Issued by HURISA Advocacy and Media Liaison Officer

Adv. Sipho Mantula

Tel: 011 333 1730

Cell: 0847815587

Email:rasgideon@hurisa.org.za

Category: Post gallery

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