On Thursday 28 November 2013 the AWETHU! Peoples’ Platform for Social Justice was launched at a founding workshop held at the Braamfontein Centre in Johannesburg with round table discussions on the issues concerning people and the actions people are taking to address them.
The platform is envisaged as providing a vehicle to connect and amplify the voices of people and movements committed to social justice and political accountability.
The Transitional Justice Institute at the University of Ulster in Northern Ireland has published a set of guidelines, the Belfast Guidelines on Amnesty and Accountability as a resource for all role players involved in brokering or implementing peace agreements.
The guidelines have been authored by a group of resource persons led by Louise Mallinder and Tom Hadden and deal with issues of who should be held accountable for international crimes and human rights violations and whether the use of amnesties conflicts the duty of states to prosecute. Download...
The sister of an anti-apartheid activist who died in detention in the 1980s hopes that one of his interrogators will finally be brought to book, 32 years later. Neil Aggett's sister, Jill Burger, wants former security branch policeman Stephan Whitehead brought before a court to explain his "brutal behaviour".
Khulumani joins colleagues in raising the alarm on the evidence that the disclosure of information in South Africa is at an all time low.
In the week that President Zuma assented to the Protection of Personal Information Act, the PAIA Civil Society Network (CSN) published its evidence of the increasing difficulties in accessing information from organs of the state.
The PAIA CSN Shadow Report for 2013 reveals that "openness and transparency by information holders both in the public and private sector have decreased from the already worryingly low levels of compliance recorded by the PAIA CSN in previous years."
The Marikana Commission of Inquiry that was established "to investigate matters arising out of the tragic incidents at the Lonmin Mine in Marikana, in the North West Province" in August 2012 which led to the deaths of approximately 44 people, with more than 70 persons being injured, and approximately 250 people being arrested" currently continues its work towards the stated objectives of Truth, Restoration and Justice. http://www.marikanacomm.org.za
The delegation from the Neil Aggett Support Group arrive at Johannesburg Central Police Station (the former John Vorster Square) on November 27, 2013, at 11:00 to meet there with delegations from the Food and Allied Workers' Union (FAWU) and from Khulumani Support Group.
Mr Douglas Ntuli from Khulumani Support Group had opened the way for the laying of charges by explaining the purpose of the delegation and securing permission for the charges to be presented to the Station Commander, Brigadier Rajion.
The website of the Foundation for Human Rights www.fhr.org.za is currently carrying an interview with Catherine Kennedy, Director of the South African History Archives, about SAHA's work on engaging educators and learners on 'the road beyond the TRC' - the road that we all need to walk to complete the 'unfinished business of the TRC'.
Khulumani participated in the SAHRC seminar on Human Rights and Law Enforcement, 20 November 2013, against the background of its organising of a commemoration of International Day in Support of Survivors of Torture on 26 June 2013 with a focus on police brutality against the Clay Oven community in April this year. **NEW UPDATE BELOW**
On Wednesday November 27, 2013, the 32nd anniversary of the death in detention of Dr Neil Aggett, Khulumani will be joining the Neil Aggett Support Group and the trade union that Neil served, FAWU, as criminal charges are laid against Neil Aggett's torturer, Stephan Whitehead who failed to apply for amnesty at the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.
The charge will be laid at the Johannesburg Central Police Station (then the infamous John Vorster Square) where Neil took his own life in what the judicial inquest into his death termed an 'induced suicide'.