South Africa: Racism still rife in South Africa

Cape Town, South Africa (PANA) – Twenty years since the advent of democracy and the birth of a non-racial South Africa, racism is still rife in the country, so says the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) which noted that it has received 500 racism-related cases over the past year.

Addressing the media in Johannesburg on Thursday, SAHRC Chairman, Lawrence Mushwana, said these amounted to 45% of the complaints received by the commission.

He noted that many of the complaints are related to educational institutions.

Mushwana said the commission will embark on a national hearing following circumstances around racial incidences at various universities which suggest a need to take another look at transformation issues.

Recently, two white students allegedly drove over a black student as he was walking on the pavement and later beat him at the University of the Free State (UFS). In another case being investigated by the SAHRC, staff at the Dr. Viljoen School in Bloemfontein were found guilty of using hate speech towards black pupils.

The commission made various recommendations for the school and the Free State education department to follow and to report on to curb racism in local schools.

And just last week, the SAHRC focused on Cape Town, saying the city’s sanitation arrangements violate the dignity of poor people living in shacks. It said the city violated the human rights of people in informal settlements - particularly black Africans who made up most of this population - by “unreasonably” providing chemical toilets as a long-term measure.  

However, Cape Town Mayor, Patricia De Lille, disputed the findings and said the city was being unfairly targeted.

The commission is the national institution established to support constitutional democracy. It is committed to promote respect for, observance of and protection of human rights for all South Africans.
-0- PANA CU/VAO 31July2014

31 july 2014 13:21:48




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