Maverick Citizen


Civil society watch, 8-15 August

Civil society watch, 8-15 August
Michaela Minnaar (26) takes part in a protest against Femicide organised by a group of women in Parkhurst. According to the orginisers Anny Botha, Jessica Joy Steyn and Allas du Plooy they want to peacefully and spontaneously protest to create awareness for the suffering women face on a day to day basis. There has been a public outcry after the murder of UCT student Uyinene Mrwetyana in Capetown. (Photo: Gallo Images / Alet Pretorius)

This week, organisations turn their attention to women as leaders, race dynamics, fake news and the struggling events industry.

It promises to be an engaging week of discussion across a variety of topics. Plan your participation with this guide.

This week’s highlights

On Wednesday 12 August, Nelson Mandela University will be hosting its second annual Women in leadership dialogue. This year’s dialogue will honour the memory of Dr Charlotte Maxeke.

The event will be hosted by Olwethu Madiya from the Charlotte Maxeke Residence. Speakers Insaaf Isaacs from the University of Cape Town and Equal Education’s general secretary, Noncedo Madubedube, will discuss the authenticity of a woman as a leader envisioned by equality and lifting the next generation of women. Join the dialogue by registering here.

This past weekend saw the launch of the #LightSARed campaign to support the events and arts and culture industry which has been severely affected by Covid-19 and the lockdown.


On Friday 14 August, the Society, Work, and Politics Institute (SWOP) is hosting a webcast titled Mode of self-reporting: the artist and social justice.

The webinar will focus on the role of the artist in the cultivation of social justice and explore how the artist as an individual is involved in a method of self-reporting, an accountability to themselves and a creation of culture. There will also be a viewing of a short film by Simon Gush, who provides a self-report of his life during the Covid-19 lockdown.

Reflections will be given by Gush (artist and filmmaker), William Matlala (photographer: labour and trade union activities), Sibulele Gcilitshana (performing artist: musical theatre), and Isaac Dumi (literary writer).

Register for the webinar here. Alternatively, you join the webinar live on Facebook or YouTube.

Over 25 years since the advent of democracy in 1994, South Africa remains a country where extreme wealth exists alongside widespread poverty. This inequality is borne disproportionately by black people. It is because of this historical legacy and current exclusion that the state has an obligation to provide alternative accommodation to occupiers who would become homeless if they are evicted.

On Tuesday, 11 August, join the Socio-Economic Rights Institute (SERI) for a policy briefing on their launch of temporary alternative accommodation.

The webinar will reflect on experiences and lessons from current alternative accommodation sites and consider a proposed approach to municipal provision of alternative accommodation. 

Speakers include Khululiwe Bhengu, Alana Potter and Lauren Royston from SERI, Seana Nkhahle from the South African Local Government Association, Seth Maqetuka from City Support Programme, and Siyabonga Mahlangu from the Inner City Federation. 

On the same day, the South African Food Sovereignty Campaign, the Rosa Luxemburg Foundation, and COPAC are holding their fourth virtual workshop, concluding the series on moving towards a food sovereignty future for South Africa.

This week a practical and theory workshop will be taught by permaculturalist John Nzira. You will learn how to maintain your food garden. You can join the workshop live on Facebook.

At 12pm, join Daily Maverick senior journalist Rebecca Davis in conversation with author, journalist, and filmmaker Mark Gevisser as they discuss how the issues of sexuality and gender identity divide and unite the world today and how the digital revolution has globalised queer identities in his latest book release, The Pink Line.

The Disability Unit at the University of Johannesburg (UJ) invites you to its first disability talk of 2020. The event, titled Disability and Sexuality, will take place at 1pm.

Speakers include Bafana Masilela (psychologist), Zama Khoza (researcher on gender-based violence, sexual violence, and black masculinity), Eric Mhlanga (disability assistive technologist), and Leoni van der Merwe (UJ lecturer). Email [email protected] if you want to be part of the discussion. Alternatively, you can watch the webcast live on Facebook.

At 3pm, join Africa Matters for a virtual dialogue on race dynamics. This conversation will be led by Lovelyn Nwadeyi, one of Mzansi’s top 100 influencers, and University of Johannesburg lecturer Tuliza Sindi who will discuss #BlackLivesMatter and Afrophobia.

At 4.30pm, the Southern Centre for Inequality Studies (SCIS) invites you to their annual inequality lecture. Join Professor Ravi Kanbur (Cornell University) as he discusses Inequality in a global perspective. A recording of the webinar will also be available on the University of the Witwatersrand’s website thereafter.

On Thursday 13 August, the Mail & Guardian invites you to join Minster for Basic Education Angie Motshekga, Nkosinathi Moshoana  (Youthstart Foundation), and Martin Sweet (MD of Primestars) as they discuss what can be done to mitigate the effects of Covid-19 on this year’s matric cohort.

The webinar will provide updates, discuss challenges, explore the alternative multi-platform learning approach, and address how public-private partnerships in education can assist under-resourced matric learners to get through this challenging time. Register for the webinar here.

At 12pm, join Daily Maverick associate editor Marianne Thamm and Emmy-award winning BBC news correspondent Andrew Harding as they discuss his latest book release, These Are Not Gentle People.

Harding’s book is an account of a true courtroom drama set in Parys. It exposes the depth of collective guilt and injustice and the corrosive personal cost of a country still violently divided while it is essentially free.

Fake news might be an old problem but there are new-world solutions to tackle it. At 3pm, join authors, journalists and writers as they deep dive into the state of media and discuss the fake news epidemic and Artificial Intelligence (AI) as the potential remedy.

The event, hosted by Synthesis, will be facilitated by author and radio host Howard Feldman. Speakers include Ferial Haffajee (Daily Maverick), Mandy Wiener (journalist, author, and host on 702), Tiana Cline (freelance Business Tech journalist), and Archana Arakkal (Synthesis).

Protesters demonstrate against Gender Based Violence (GBV) on Nelson Mandela Day on 18 July 2020 in Soweto, South Africa. According to media reports South African citizens have taken to the streets to protest against the lack of public safety especially for women who are frequently murdered, kidnapped and raped. (Photo: Gallo Images / Fani Mahuntsi)

Do not forget that at 2pm, the Call to Action Collective will be hosting their sixth virtual workshop in a 12-week series on the National Strategic Plan on Gender-Based Violence and Femicide (NSP-GBVF). The workshops are held every Thursday until 23 September.

Missed the previous webinars? Catch them here. You can also subscribe to receive weekly updates on the webinars, including presentations and speaker bios.

This week, Welekazi Stofile (programmes director at Tshwaranang Legal Advocacy Centre) will discuss the passing of laws in South Africa. You can register here. Alternatively, the event will be streamed live on Facebook and Twitter

At 14:30, the AIDS and Rights Alliance for southern Africa (ARASA), in collaboration with CoAct, will be hosting the fourth webinar in what concludes a series of four 90-minute stand-alone webinars on harm reduction and drug policy in southern and east Africa for community activists, people who use drugs, policymakers, and other stakeholders.

This week’s webinar will focus on drug policy and will be moderated by Mat Southwell from CoAct and will feature experts from southern and east Africa, including guest speaker, Maria-Goretti Ane Loglo from the International Drug Policy Consortium. Register for the webinar here.

At 5pm, Uviwe Child and Youth Services hold their 103rd annual general meeting. This year’s theme is Don’t let Covid-19 leave our children behind and will focus on their #LeaverNoChildBehind campaign. You can register here.

Friday brings you the fifth in our series of Solidarity Webinars, organised jointly by Maverick Citizen, Lawyers for Human Rights, Liliesleaf Farm, and the Rosa Luxemburg Foundation looking at issues of migration in the context of the Covid-19 crisis.

This week’s webinar is titled Movement of people, global communicable disease, and climate crisis. Speakers include veteran activist Kumi Naidoo and Grade 12 climate activist Raeesah Noor-Mohamed. For further information or to join the webinar contact [email protected]

Those interested in the performing arts can kickstart their weekend with a seminar hosted by the South African Guild of Actors and the Department of Sport, Art, and Culture. The seminar, titled Your acting career is your business, will take place on Saturday 15 August, and feature Rowan and Danielle Studti who will unpack how your acting career must be run like a business. Register here. DM/MC

South Africa is full of activists whose voices and campaigns need to be heard, and we want to report on all of them! So, wherever you live, if you have virtual events or meetings which you think other activists ought to know about, write to us at [email protected] 

Also, please sign up for our weekly newsletter here.


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