SABC 3 screened a Special Assignment documentary about Dr Wouter Basson's involvement in the SADF's notorious chemical and biological weapons programme that was initiated in the early 1980s and took viewer back through the TRC Hearing into the programme, followed by Dr Basson's criminal trial and finally his disciplinary hearing before the South African Health Professions Council for professional misconduct.
Dr Basson was found guilty of having violated every code of medical ethics. He awaits sentencing shortly.
On February 19, 2014, Judy Seidman and Nomarussia Bonase visited with the Marikana widows in Pretoria for several hours at their request.
Judy shared the short film that she had produced of the workshop with the widows. The widows felt that the video accurately reflected their ideas and they requested that it be shown widely.
They also suggested that further video installments be produced to tell their stories, especially as they are still treated as mere observers of the Farlam Commission proceedings. Each widow received a copy of the DVD.
Khulumani is anticipating participating in a multi-country comparative study into the needs of individuals and their families injured as a result of political violence in South Africa. Previous studies conducted by the Political Science Department of the University of Surrey have focused on identifying the needs of victims of the 'Troubles' in Northern Ireland and of their carers. One respondent in that study pointed out that “People who suffer from injuries are made to look like beggars if we need help. Doctors and government say it’s our past and we have to move on. This is our present.”
Khulumani members continue to take action towards transforming their lives.
This past weekend we did the induction and orientation of trainees for the Khulumani Project for Achieving Food Security through implementation of the Kumnandi Social Franchise at KOSMOS Guesthouse in Pretoria.
On 29 November 2013, the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development published in the Government Gazette a set of draft regulations for community rehabilitation.
The period for public comments closed on 31 January 2014. Khulumani welcomes the range of submissions from concerned organisations and individuals who expressed their views about the ways in which these regulations largely fail to afford to victims of apartheid atrocities, the human rights protected in both South African and international law.
In the many tributes to former President Nelson Mandela since his passing on 5 December 2013, attention has focused on Mandela's stated mission of liberating both the oppressed and the oppressor from the impact of racist rule in what has been interpreted as a "triumph of forgiveness". Sadly the relationship between oppressor and oppressed remains largely untransformed at this time of Mandela's passing.
It is true that Mandela emerged from prolonged imprisonment without rancour and set about trying to unite people across social boundaries. This commitment led Mandela to compromise some tenets of the Freedom Charter that he had helped to construct. One of the political necessities Mandela faced was that of "sealing a deal with global capital" - a deal that has contributed to deepening poverty, widening inequality and the economic exclusion of almost half the country's population, all realities that Mandela abhorred.
Rhodes University establishes the Neil Aggett Labour Studies Unit in ISER to deepen knowledge of the Eastern Cape labour market through understanding the changing face of labour organisation and the world of work, through examining the consequences of national and provincial policy choices for people in the poorest parts of South Africa, and through contributing to initiatives to improve employment and conditions of work in the province.