Latest resources

Submission to Parliament: Virtual public participation and recommendations for enhanced virtual public access to the work of Parliament
Author: Keathela
Published: Jul 07, 2020

This submission follows two previous substantive communications relating to the functioning of the legislatures during the national disaster that were sent on 25 March 2020 and on 10 April 2020. These communications, the substantive issues raised, and our offers to support Parliament in its efforts to operate as a public forum serving the interests of the people of South Africa, have been met with silence from your respective offices. What follows is an assessment of how we have experienced the recent efforts of the National Parliament in migrating to full time virtual meetings, and proposals for enhancements in the mechanisms to be used to ensure that no citizen is left behind.

The Right to Food of Students in Tertiary Institutions in South Africa
Author: Ebenezer Durojaye and Oluwafunmilola Adeniyi
Published: Jul 02, 2020

In furtherance of its Access to Food for Students' Project, the Socio-Economic Rights Project at the Dullah Omar Institute recently released a booklet on The Right to Food of Students in Tertiary Institutions in South Africa. The Access to Food for Students' Project forms a part of the Governance programme at the Centre of Excellence in Food Security (CoE- FS)

Webinar on Municipal Budgeting and Planning During COVID-19: Key issues and observations from the Webinar
Author: Jaap de Visser and TC Chigwata
Published: Jun 11, 2020

The first of a series of webinars on local government and COVID-19, hosted by the Dullah Omar Institute and the International Budget Partnership, took place on 04 June 2020, in partnership with the South African Local Government Association. The webinars aim to promote best practices pertaining to transparency and responsiveness in local government during the era of COVID-19.

Author: Jaap de Visser and TC Chigwata
Published: Jun 01, 2020

A municipality’s Integrated Development Plan is a five-year strategic plan, where the many interests, wishes and preferences of a municipal community are mediated and put into action. The municipality’s budget allocates resources to this plan. Each year, municipalities review their IDPs and pass a budget for their financial year, which runs from 1 July to 30 June.

OPEN LETTER: Effective legislative oversight, transparency and engagement during the national state of disaster
Author: Dullah Omar Institute
Published: Apr 10, 2020

On 25 March 2020, a group of civil society organisations working towards open and accountable legislatures, with a vested interest in promoting participatory democracy sent a letter which sought to engage Parliament prior to the period of lockdown. Despite making several recommendations to ready the institution and legislatures to continue their work into the state of disaster. The response from the legislatures was weak. Following a lack of response to the original letter, these organisations and others have today written again to the leadership of national and provincial legislatures appealing to them to ensure transparency, effective legislative oversight, and public engagement during the national state of disaster. The organisations have also again offered to support the legislatures as they grapple with some of these difficult, but critical questions.

Open letter: Oversight and participatory democracy during the COVID-19 National State of Disaster – the legislatures role
Author: Dullah Omar Institute
Published: Mar 25, 2020

11 CSOs working towards open and accountable legislatures have sent an open letter to the Speakers of Parliament and the Provincial Legislatures, and to the Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces to encourage measures to support their functioning within South Africa’s Constitutional Democracy during this time of crisis and uncertainty. Even though elected representatives should not meet physically due to the lock-down and social distancing, they and the legislatures, continue to have an important democratic role to play, to exercise oversight over the executive and to ensure that the experiences of people most marginalised in our society are taken into account in planning and implementation during this period.

Author: Jaap de Visser and Samantha Waterhouse
Published: Feb 13, 2020

This paper first examines the legal framework for the appointment and dismissal of board members to state-owned enterprises.

Paying Lip Service to Access to Justice?: A review of African Countries’ Voluntary National Reviews on SDG 16.3 to the High Level Political Forum on SDGs 2019
Author: Robert Nanima and Ebenezer Durojaye
Published: Feb 06, 2020

The United Nations High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development is an annual event where countries take stock of their progress towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals. This report evaluates the status of the Voluntary National Reviews of selected countries in Africa and the extent to which they show progress in achieving SDG 16.3 on Access to Justice.

Measuring transparency, public participation and oversight in the budget processes of South Africa’s metropolitan municipalities
Author: Dullah Omar Institute & IBP South Africa
Published: Dec 05, 2019

The Metro Open Budget Survey (Metro OBS) is modelled on the global Open Budget Survey (OBS) initiated by the International Budget Partnership in 2006. The OBS is an independent, comparative assessment of budget accountability: transparency, oversight, and public participation. The global OBS has been conducted six times and evaluates national government budget processes in 115 countries across six continents. The Metro OBS goes a level deeper by applying the OBS methodology to local government, and assesses five of the eight metropolitan municipalities (metros) in South Africa: City of Cape Town, City of Johannesburg, City of Ekurhuleni, eThekwini Municipality, and Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality. In 2018, IBP South Africa in partnership with the Dullah Omar Institute piloted the Metro OBS across the same five metros. The questionnaire used in this pilot was developed by adapting the 2017 international Open Budget Survey for the South African local government context. After using the 2018 pilot to test and refine the methodology, we rolled out the project in full from the beginning of 2019.

Research report on public finance oversight: the provinces
Author: Karel
Published: Dec 03, 2019

The Putting the People in ‘People’s Parliament’ Project (PPiPP) works to increase the participation of civil society organisations in legislatures, particularly at provincial level, including through increasing public knowledge on the role of legislatures and legislature processes. One important aspect of this is oversight of public finances. In line with that objective, this report constitutes a first attempt to understand public finance oversight processes, in theory and practice, at the provincial level. To do so, it first discusses national legislation and processes, then examines the corresponding situation at provincial level (in Gauteng, the Eastern Cape and Western Cape). The drafting of provincial money bills amendment legislation presents both an opportunity to reflect on and improve these processes, but is also a risk in as much as it could cement failings of the status quo.

Isishwankathelo seEngcebiso ezenzelwe umZantsi Afrika ezivela kwiKomiti yeZizwe eziManyeneyo yaMalungelo eZoqoqosho, eZentlalo neNkcubeko
Author: SERP
Published: Aug 08, 2019

UMnqophiso waMazwe ngaMazwe waMalungelo eZoqoqosho, eZentlalo kunye neNkcubeko (uMnqophiso) sisivumelwano samalungelo abantu samazwe ngamazwe sombutho waMazwe aManyeneyo (i-UN). Samkelwa ngomhla we-10 kuDisemba 1966 saza saqalisa ukusebenza ngomhla wesi-3 kuJanyuwari 1976. Lo Mnqophiso ukhusela intlaninge yamalungelo ezoqoqosho, ezentlalo nenkcubeko (amalungelo ezentlalo nawoqoqosho). Uhlangene noMnqophiso waMazwe ngaMazwe waMalungelo eZoluntu neZopolitiko (International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights - ICCPR), nowamkelwa ngaxeshanye, lo Mnqophiso usisiseko somthetho wamalungelo abantu wamazwe ngamazwe kwaye watyikitywa ngamazwe ali-169 ehlabathini liphela. Onke amazwe aseAfika, ngaphandle kweBotswana, iMozambique neSouth Sudan, atyikitya kwaye ke ngoko abophelelekile kulo Mnqophiso. UMzantsi Afrika wawutyikitya lo Mnqophiso ngomhla we-12 kuJanyuwari 2015.

Opsomming van Aanbevelings vir Suid-Afrika deur die Verenigde Nasies se Komitee oor Ekonomiese, Maatskaplike en Kulturele Regte
Author: SERP
Published: Aug 08, 2019

Die Internasionale Verbond oor Ekonomiese, Maatskaplike en Kulturele Regte (die Verbond) is ’n internasionale menseregteverdrag van die Verenigde Nasies (VN). Dit is op 10 Desember 1966 aanvaar en het op 3 Januarie 1976 van krag geword. Die Verbond beskerm ’n wye reeks ekonomiese, maatskaplike en kulturele regte (sosioekonomiese regte). Saam met die Internasionale Verbond oor Burgerlike en Politieke Regte (ICCPR), wat terselfdertyd aanvaar is, vorm die Verbond die hoeksteen van internasionale wetgewing oor menseregte. Dit is reeds deur 169 lande regoor die wêreld onderskryf en bekragtig. Alle Afrikalande, met die uitsondering van Botswana, Mosambiek en Suid-Soedan, het die Verbond bekragtig en is dus tot die handhawing daarvan verbind. Suid-Afrika het die Verbond op 12 Januarie 2015 bekragtig.

Summary of Recommendations for South Africa from the United Nations Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
Author: SERP
Published: Aug 08, 2019

The International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (Covenant) is an international human rights treaty of the United Nations (UN). It was adopted on 10 December 1966 and came into force on 3 January 1976. The Covenant protects a wide range of economic, social and cultural rights (socio-economic rights). Together with the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), which was adopted at the same time, the Covenant forms the cornerstone of international human rights law and has been ratified by 169 countries around the world. All African countries, except Botswana, Mozambique and South Sudan, have ratified and are therefore bound by the Covenant. South Africa ratified the Covenant on 12 January 2015.

Report back: International Conference on 2019 National and Provincial Elections
Author: Jacob
Published: Jun 19, 2019

On 25 April 2019, the SARChI Chair, Dullah Omar Institute, and Department of Political Studies (UWC) held an International Conference focusing on National and Provincial Elections of 8 May 2019. The key questions at the conference were: Populism, provincialism, womxn, and election credibility The national and provincial elections of 8 May 2019 are regarded by many as the most important since the first democratic elections of 1994. Four key questions were addressed by four panels of experts, with some placed in an international comparative perspective. This event was part of a series of roundtables on human rights and democracy.