Premier Stan Mathabatha is scheduled to lead the provincial commemoration of Human Rights Day on Tuesday at Maklerekeng Sports ground, Ephraim Mogale, Sekhukhune District. He will deliver a keynote address during the commemoration. Human Rights Day will be this year be commemorated under theme ‘The Year of OR Tambo: Unity in Action Advancing Human Rights’.
In South Africa the day is celebrated on 21 March, in remembrance of the Sharpeville massacre which took place on 21 March 1960. This massacre occurred as a result of protests against the Apartheid regime in South Africa.
According to a press release issued by the Provincial Government Spokesperson, Phuti Seloba, institutions such as the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) will be in attendance. SAHRC is an institution established to support constitutional democracy which is committed to promote, respect for, observance of and protection of human rights for everyone without fear or favour.
As part of the day’s celebrations President Jacob Zuma will reportedly officially hand over the memorial grave site of Steve Bantu Biko to the Biko family.
During his budget speech tabled in the Legislature on yesterday (Thursday) Mathabatha said Human Rights Day also provides government with a unique platform to reflect on the progress made over the past 23 years of democracy in restoring the human dignity of the black people in general and Africans in particular.
“Our freedom and democracy have obviously brought an important spotlight on the category of human rights, commonly called the socio-economic rights. These are the right to education, right to housing, right to decent standard of living and the right to basic healthcare,” he said, adding that, government has and must continue to commit more resources towards programmes that seek to promote and ensure access to these important basic rights.
Stor: NELIE ERASMUS