Maverick Citizen

CIVIL SOCIETY WATCH 27 MAY — 31 MAY

This week — SA heads to the polls, public awareness about tobacco dangers and refugee protection discussion

This week — SA heads to the polls, public awareness about tobacco dangers and refugee protection discussion
Wednesday, 29 May 2024 is voting day for the highly anticipated national and provincial elections in South Africa. (Illustrative Photo: Gallo Images/Foto24/Cornel van Heerden) /IEC Logo. (Photo: Flickr)

Voting day for the highly anticipated National and Provincial Elections in South Africa, exploring the potential problems with, and impact of, the White Paper on South Africa’s human rights approach to migration, and informing the public about the dangers of using tobacco.

Monday 27 May is special voting for the 2024 national and provincial elections.

A special vote allows a registered voter who can’t vote at their voting station on election day to vote on a predetermined day before election day. In the 2024 national and provincial elections, special voting will take place two days before election day on 27 and 28 May, from 9am to 5pm.

“By law, special votes can only be cast on the dates specified in the election timetable and no exceptions can be made. Voters are urged to check their registration details and confirm the location of their correct voting stations ahead of election day by using the following channels:

Voters are reminded to bring their valid South African identity document (ID) when voting: either a green barcoded ID book, smartcard ID, or valid temporary identity certificate (TIC).

Read more in Daily Maverick: Elections 2024 news hub

Also on Monday at 12pm, the Consortium for Refugees and Migrants in South Africa (Cormsa) and its member organisations will host a press conference to discuss the recently released White Paper on Citizenship, Immigration and Refugee Protection, towards a complete overhaul of the South African immigration system.

The conference, taking place at the Parktonian Hotel, Braamfontein, Johannesburg, will explore the potential problems with and impact of the white paper on South Africa’s human rights approach to migration, amid the upcoming South Africa 2024 elections

Discussion points include:

  • Key provisions of the white paper and their potential implications for migrants and refugees in South Africa.
  • Concerns regarding the alignment of the white paper with South Africa’s human rights commitments.
  • The potential impact of the white paper on the 2024 elections and the future of immigration policy in South Africa.
  • Open letter (a call to withdraw the white paper) from Kopanang Africa Against Xenophobia (Kaax).

Speakers will include a panel of experts on immigration law, human rights, and policy analysis from human rights and immigration advocacy groups and organisations.

RSVP to [email protected] by Monday 27 May 2024 before 10am.

On Tuesday, 28 May at 5pm, the Flow Forward Annual Lecture will take place at Wanooka Place Auditorium in Parktown, Johannesburg.

“The Flow Forward Annual Lecture serves as a platform for bold discussions, innovative ideas, and principled partnerships to drive positive change in global menstrual health. This year’s event, “10 Years, Where Are We Now?”, will critically examine the progress made in menstrual health advocacy over the past decade and chart the course for future initiatives,” read the press statement.

The challenges for menstrual health have been significant in South Africa and globally, with barriers such as limited access to affordable menstrual products, inadequate sanitation facilities, and cultural stigma surrounding menstruation. According to the South African Journal of Child Health, in South Africa alone, an estimated 7 million girls cannot afford to buy period products, and according to the University of Stellenbosch, about 30% of girls miss out on school due to menstruation-related issues.

“At the Flow Forward Annual Lecture, we aim to challenge taboos, foster education, and inspire change. Through engaging panel discussions, interactive workshops, and insightful keynote speeches, attendees will have the opportunity to deepen their understanding of menstrual health, explore innovative solutions, and contribute to a more inclusive and stigma-free society,” read the event description.

Attendance is free, and all are welcome to join the conversation on menstrual health advocacy. For more information and to register for the event, click here.

2024 elections

Wednesday, 29 May 2024, is voting day for South Africa’s national and provincial elections

“Get ready to exercise your democratic right on May 29, 2024! It’s voting day for the highly anticipated National and Provincial Elections in South Africa. Join millions of citizens across the nation as we come together to shape the future of our country. Make your voice heard, your choice count, and your vote matter. It’s your democracy, own it!” read the statement from the  IEC.

Friday 31 May is World No Tobacco Day

The annual observance is intended to inform the public about the dangers of using tobacco, the business practices of tobacco companies, what the World Health Organization (WHO) is doing to fight the tobacco epidemic and what people can do to “claim their right to health and healthy living and to protect future generations”, according to the WHO information page on the event.

Also on Friday, at 1pm, the South African Depression and Anxiety Group (Sadag) is hosting a talk on “Navigating the diverse approaches in therapy”.

“There are numerous therapeutic approaches, each with a unique theoretical foundation and techniques. Some common modalities when it comes to therapy include cognitive-behavioural therapy, psychodynamic therapy, mindfulness-based therapy, and humanistic approaches like Person-Centered Therapy. Researching these modalities can help you understand their principles and determine which ones resonate with you,” according to the event description.

The talk will be streamed live on Sadag’s official Facebook page

💼📝📌

Section27 is hiring a Legal Researcher who is passionate about human rights and eager to challenge inequality.

A curriculum vitae accompanied by a motivation as to why you are interested in the position should be sent to [email protected] by 31 May 2024.

Read more here.

Section27 is seeking two LLB students for a winter internship to gain practical experience in law, advocacy, contribute to research, and support clients.

Applications can be sent to [email protected] and the deadline is 3 June 2024.

Read more here. DM

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