Inequality, poverty and the failure to deliver quality public services such as health and education threaten to undo democratic gains in the region. In response, the Democracy & Social Justice programme seeks to strengthen the political voice of marginalised groups advocating for socio-economic rights and the equitable use of state resources to address injustice.
Realising substantive gender equality in South Africa, Namibia and Zimbabwe has been challenging. Lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people and communities in the region remain disadvantaged, stigmatised and excluded from many aspects of economic, political and social life. Public and political awareness-raising and the prevention of gender based and sexual violence are therefore core focus areas of our work. We also partner with key civil society actors as well as public and religious thought leaders to effectively challenge homophobic policies, legislations and attitudes.
Faced with on-going development challenges compounded by the imminent threat of a warming and unstable global climate, sustainable development considerations have never been more compelling in Southern Africa. The Sustainable Development programme seeks to facilitate platforms for civil society, policy makers, decision makers and other stakeholders traditionally left out of the mainstream discourse to ensure that the interconnectedness between humans and nature is understood.
In South Africa, a severe water crisis, fuelled by climate change, laid bare the hyperbole of “a well-run, global best practices, World Design Capital bla bla” Cape Town. Instead of relying on window dressing, Cape Town should learn from cities that are serious about climate change mitigation and adaptation. Nazeer Sonday argues that we have the farmers, and a population concerned about its food. What we lack is political leadership.
On the 7th of February 2019, the French energy company Total announced a ‘significant gas condensate discovery’ some 175 kilometres off the southern coast of South Africa. The find was described by Total, as ‘a new world-class gas and oil play’.On the very same day South African President, Cyril Ramaphosa, stated during his annual State of the Nation Address, that the find ‘could well be a game-changer for our country and will have significant consequences for our country’s energy security and the development of this industry’. This brief report critically evaluates these claims and assesses its likely environmental effects.
Southern Africa has a rich diversity of natural resources and yet most of the region's countries are characterised by high levels of poverty and inequality. Together with our partners in South Africa and Zimbabwe we seek to engage all relevant stakeholders, from local communities to national decision makers, in order to help realise the sustainable, fair and transparent management of natural resources in the region.
With the assistance of our project partner, the Centre for Natural Resource Governance, communities affected by gold mining in eastern Zimbabwe came together to formulate a Community Protocol taking a stand against destructive mining impacts.
This component of our work aims to inject questions of human rights, sustainable development, good governance and gender equality into discourses around African international relations and global governance. We are especially interested in South Africa’s and other emerging powers’ roles on the continent and beyond.
This Joint Submission encourages governments to voice their concerns in order to reorient the Guidance toward a more internally consistent and balanced document that clearly sets its objective as sustainable development of the host country with fair and equitable allocations of risks and rewards, rights and responsibilities between the contract parties.