politics

SADC and SA’s Mediation Efforts Commended

The former Kenyan Prime Minister and head of African Union Election Observation Mission (AUEOM), Raila Odinga, has applauded the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and the government of South Africa for their commitment to bringing peace and stability in Lesotho.

Odinga points out that the AUEOM encourages the electorate to exercise their democratic rights and civic responsibility but participating actively and peacefully in tomorrow's election.

AU Summit: The Men in Hats With their Backs Against the Wall

As African leaders meet this week for their bi-annual African Union (AU) summit in Addis Ababa, the world will be watching to see whether the continent is united and pro-active in solving its own problems. The question is whether leaders can find common ground on strategies to fight terror groups like Boko Haram and to deal with the implosion of Libya. Will the AU be willing take the unpopular step of imposing sanctions on South Sudan’s belligerents?

Voters’ Hope of Resource Growth

Mozambicans voted in elections on 15 October 2014 in hopes of escaping years of poverty and conflict by tapping into the country’s huge energy resources.
 
With more than 10 million voters registered to take part in the elections for a new president, parliament and provincial assemblies, foreign donors and investors hope the ballot will help to bury old animosities still lingering from a 1975 -1992 civil war fought between the Mozambique Liberation Front (FRELIMO) and its old foe, Mozambican National Resistance (RENAMO).
 

Women Grossly Under-Represented in International Politics

Strategies to increase women’s participation in politics have been advanced through conventions, protocols and international agreements for gender mainstreaming, but they are yet to prove effective in achieving gender parity in the highest government rankings. The latest data from the Inter-Parliamentary Union show that globally, women account for an average of about 20 percent of parliamentary seats.

Thembelihle and the Criminalisation of Dissent

“We did not just wake up and throw stones, the protest was planned, then police came and started shooting to disperse us,” says Bhayiza Miya, a community activist in Thembelihle, Gauteng. Miya is referring to the community’s 2011 protest, which led to him being arrested five times. During one of these arrests, the 46-year old father was arrested with his five-year old daughter who was kept overnight in a police holding cell with him.

Angolan Refugees Return From DRC

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) says that tens of thousands of Angolans living in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) are set to return home, for some after more than 50 years in exile.

UNHCR spokesperson, Celine Schmitt, points out that a first group of 500 people left Kinshasa by train and are expected to stay overnight at a transit centre in Kimpese in the southeast on the way to the border.

50/50 by 2015 Remains an Elusive Dream

It may have been just a four percentage point drop in women’s representation in parliament in the May 2014 South African elections. But that drop sent tremors across a region hoping to at least show some progress on this front by 2015, the deadline year for the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Protocol on Gender and Development, signed here in 2008.

On 9 August - Women’s Day in South Africa – it is a sobering thought that we not only let ourselves down by failing to reach gender parity in one key area of decision-making: we took all of SADC down with us.

Lacking Political Will Compromises Strong Constitutional Frameworks

Gender equality and women’s rights are guaranteed in most Southern African constitutions but these do not result in substantive equality for women. Among other struggles, women remain unequal, under-represented at all levels of decision-making and experience high levels of gender based violence (GBV). These conditions obstruct women from realising their human rights.
 

Learners Cause Chaos in Jo’burg CBD

Learners who trashed the Johannesburg City Centre during a protest blame supporters of the Economic Freedom Fighters for the scuffle with vendors and shop owners. 

The march led by the Congress of South Students (COSAS) deteriorated after their memorandum of grievances relating to improvement of school conditions was handed over to the Gauteng Education MEC, Panyaza Lesufi.

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