News

Going forward by looking back: New MPs offered a ‘lesson plan’ to navigate oversight pitfalls
Author: Alicestine October
Published: Jun 03, 2019

The new batch of MPs sworn in recently have their work cut out for them if civil society organisations have their way. To assist them in their oversight role and championing the ideals of a People’s Parliament, a civil society grouping now offers MPs a ‘lesson plan’ on how to navigate the pitfalls that almost swallowed their predecessors in the 5th Parliament. A coalition of civil society organisations called Parliament Watch will provide all incoming committee chairpersons, party chief whips and the Speaker’s Office with a report on key findings based on three years (2016 – 2018) of monitoring MPs in the previous parliamentary term.

50% women cabinet no ‘feminist force’, experts say
Author: Alicestine October
Published: Jun 03, 2019

Many praised and welcomed President Cyril Ramaphosa’s first ever 50/50 gender-balanced cabinet recently, but certain gender activists had some reservations about what this means for real feminist governance.

Civil Society groups call on EFF to focus on VBS scandal and reflect on race baiting
Author: Women and Democracy Initiative
Published: May 30, 2019

We the undersigned civil society organisations are deeply disturbed by the recent threats and intimidation directed by the EFF, South Africa’s third largest political party, against civil society groups partners such as the Ahmed Kathrada Foundation (AKF), a fellow civil society organisation. In a similar vein the EFF party leadership has attacked journalists writing about financial scandals which implicate the EFF leadership instead of focusing on the substance of investigations by the journalists.

Remand of detention has severe socio-economic impact on families - ACJR research
Author: Jacob
Published: May 29, 2019

Remand detention is disproportionate and increasing in the Western Cape, such that over five years, 10 percent of adult men can be expected to be remanded. The extent of remand detention in the Western Cape is likely to have a severe financial impact on especially poorer communities.

Prof Dee Smythe joins DOI Advisory Board
Author: Jacob
Published: May 27, 2019

The Institute is proud to announce that Prof Dee Smythe, Professor of Public Law the University of Cape Town, is joining its Advisory Board.

Parly Committees’ performance on SASSA and SABC marginally improved, but still weak
Author: Alicestine October
Published: Apr 17, 2019

Parliament Watch, today released a Scorecard reflecting selected portfolio committees in the National Assembly’s poor to average performance. The Scorecard based on committee performance in 2018 also includes selected committees in the Eastern Cape Legislature. It focused on the Portfolio Committees on Social Development, Communications, and Police and how they handled three politically hot issues. These were the social grants crisis in the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA), the SABC-crisis and the issues discriminatory police resource allocation.

New research to help fix the fail in SOE governance laws
Author: Jacob
Published: Apr 08, 2019

South Africans are no stranger to loadshedding and increasing train passenger woes that can be linked to the capture of strategic State-owned Enterprises (SOEs) like Eskom and the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa). These institutions over the years turned into places where it was a free for all to steal money and board appointments became proxies for the creation of opportunities for looting. Given the prevailing ills of state capture there is a need for greater transparency and quality in these board appointments.

Round-table pays attention to women’s representation during elections
Author: Jacob
Published: Apr 02, 2019

The Socio-Economic Rights Project hosted a roundtable discussion on elections and service delivery on 2 April 2019 at the University of the Western Cape. This roundtable provided an opportunity to for social justice activists, advocates, academics, community-based organisations, non-governmental organisations, policy makers and stakeholders to enter into a meaningful engagement centred on elections and service delivery.