By admin | December 10, 2015
In November a committee of the UN approved a motion recognising the role of human rights defenders and the need for their protection. This will go to the UN General Assembly in December. It was agreed by 117 votes for, 14 against and 40 abstentions.
Those against, led by China and Russia argued the terminology is loose, who is, who defines a human rights defender? They argued no individual or group can be above the law and why should human rights defenders be singled out for protection.
Some members of the UN see human rights as largely a western Read the rest of this entry »
Civil society groups call for rural women not to be neglected in the implementation of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals
By admin | October 15, 2015
25 civil society organisations, including ACTSA, issued a statement on the International Day for rural women( 15 October) calling on African governments to ensure rural women are the central focus for sustainable development.
The statement said the social and culture factors which prevent rural women’s access to, control and use of land should be addressed. Discrimination has to be overcome,”” rural women in sub-Saharan Africa produce most of the food in the region and yet, due to discrimination Read the rest of this entry »
By admin | August 25, 2015
Welcome to August’s issue of ACTSA’s E-update with a brief rundown on key issues from across southern Africa, in addition to a summary of what we’re getting up to at the moment.
Hope you find it interesting and informative. Gives us feedback by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
News in brief
Swaziland: Unfair Trial, Arbitrary Detention and Judicial Impropriety in Swaziland Read the rest of this entry »
By admin | August 20, 2015
More than 500 representatives from a range of Southern Africa civil society organisations met in Botswana on 15 and 16 August and developed and presented a communique to the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Heads of State and Government. The communique was received by the SADC Deputy Executive Secretary. It covers seven thematic areas:
1.Tax Justice and the Fight against Illicit Financial Flows
2. African Solidarity, Migration and People’s movement
3.Governance, Democracy and Human Rights
4.Cross-border traders, small-scale farmers
5.Trade Negotiations and Agreements
7.Agricultural Finance, Seed Sovereignty and Climate Justice
The whole document is available here: Gaborone SADC People’s Summit 2015 Communique Document
By admin | July 22, 2015
In 2009, the United Nations declared that 18th July, Nelson Mandela’s birthday, would be named Nelson Mandela International Day, in recognition of his contribution to peace, reconciliation and justice. The UN called upon people to donate 67 minutes, one for every year that Nelson Mandela gave to public service, to support voluntary and community activity.
Unsurprisingly, South Africans took to this with huge enthusiasm, and there are now so many events that the celebration has been extended over the whole of July. There will be celebrations across the whole country. People have been sewing blankets to keep people warm on the cold winter nights, and nights in the mountains of South Africa are cold. People have been collecting books for libraries in remote rural areas, and in the impoverished townships. People have been raising money for community projects. And all this is done in a spirit of celebration of the life and legacy of an incredible man.
And people the whole world over have thrown themselves into the celebration. This year, for instance, there will be a poetry slam and live art demonstration in Denver, USA. In Napier, New Zealand, they will be raising funds for a community project. In Hanoi, Vietnam, they will be donating blood. In New York, there will be a commemorative event at the United Nations. In Owerri, Nigeria, they will be celebrating through fundraising.
In London there will also be a celebration. On Friday 17th July, there will be a concert at South Africa House, to raise money for the Nelson Mandela Children’s Foundation, where young South African artists such as Mi Casa and Toya Delazy will be performing. On Saturday 18th July, Mandela’s birthday, there will be a festival of music and arts at the South Bank Centre. So, just wander along the river by the Royal Festival Hall, and look for the sculpture of Mandela’s head.
In Glasgow, we will be sending a large container of children’s books (I am guessing at 40,000 but we will not know until the day) to schools and public libraries in Eastern Cape Province, South Africa. Mandela himself was born at Mvezo, near Qunu, in the Eastern Cape, and retired to where he was born. He is now buried there.
Our volunteers have been sorting and packing these books for several weeks now, and there are still thousands to be packed with only four days to go.
The container will leave City Chambers, George Square, Glasgow at 2.30pm on Saturday 18th July. It will be sent on its way to the Eastern Cape by Sadie Docherty, the Lord Provost. This will be followed by a Civic Reception in which the guests will be entertained by Charlie and the Bachelors, a local jazz band, and Magnus Walker, a young baritone, will sing “Nkosi Sikelel’I Afrika”.
This year, the world is celebrating Nelson Mandela’s legacy in style. And in 2018, it will be the centenary of his birth, so start making your plans now. Mayibuye I Afrika!
By admin | July 15, 2015
The Supreme Court ordered the release on bail of Mario Masuku and Maxwell Dlamini after they served nearly 15 months in jail. They were not brought to trial. The charges against them have not been dropped and they are banned from attending and addressing political rallies.
Read the full article here:
By admin | July 6, 2015
Judge Thokozile Masipa, South Africa’s second black woman High Court judge who became internationally known when she presided over the trial of Oscar Pistorius expressed concern about the South Africa government ignoring court rulings at a lecture in London on 2 July jointly sponsored by Action for Southern Africa (ACTSA), the Human Rights Law Association of Britain, the Constitutional and Administrative Law Bar Association and hosted by Hogan Lovells business and human rights practice.
John Battersby, a well-known journalist and editor, attended the talk and wrote this article for South Africa’s ‘Business Day’ news website: http://www.bdlive.co.za/national/law/2015/07/03/masipa-voices-concern-about-state-ignoring-court-rulings
You can also read the full text of the talk here: http://www.timeslive.co.za/sundaytimes/stnews/2015/07/05/Read-Judge-Masipas-full-speech-here
By admin | July 1, 2015
National Union of Mineworkers Statement: http://www.cosatu.org.za/show.php?ID=10588
Lonmin mining company statement: http://www.lonmin-farlam.com/
Bench Marks Foundation statement: http://www.bench-marks.org.za
By Mark | December 26, 2014
I first met Peter Brayshaw in 1968 at the London School of Economics. It was at the Freshers’ Fair. Peter was staffing the stall of the Anti-Apartheid Movement, and I was making an application for membership of the student group. In those days, Peter’s commitment to internationalism concentrated on two causes – the liberation of Southern Africa and the liberation of Read the rest of this entry »
By Mark | November 3, 2014
Keynote address by Tyotyo James, 1st Deputy President of the Congress of South African Trade Unions, to Action for Southern Africa (ACTSA), formerly the Anti-Apartheid Movement
1 November 2014
Thank you for inviting me to address this important gathering, celebrating the 20th anniversary of democracy in South Africa. I bring greetings and best wishes from the National Office Bearers and 2.2 million members of the Congress of South African Trade Unions – COSATU.
I must begin by thanking all those in the Read the rest of this entry »