Access To Justice At A Tipping Point In South Africa

Moving Into A Space Of Action

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The cost of securing legal representation and filing of court papers can be expensive for many Africans, particularly disadvantaged groups. As a result, many people in this region are unable to, or are reluctant to seek justice to remedy any wrong. In many African countries, the justice system is inadvertently designed to create barriers to disadvantaged groups or persons seeking justice for the violation of human rights. Given the universal level of poverty in the region, high costs of securing legal representation may discourage many people from using the formal justice System. The situation can be very dicey for vulnerable and marginalised groups, including people living in the rural areas. 

In the wake of various Incidences of violence against women- particularly the rape and Murder of a 19 year old UCT Student Uyinene Mrwetyana- and the week long xenophobic violence incidence in Johannesburg, we are left asking whether Justice exists and whether it plays a role in addressing these gruesome violation of Human right. If it does, how?

Just recently, we had a case where Jade September was treated unlawfully by correctional services, the very people who are supposed to assist us in our endeavor to uphold the law. Judge Fortuin’s ruling, in an attempt to protect September’s dignity and human rights, may be the positive tipping point and action that South Africa needs.

ACTIVATE! Change Drivers through its interconnectedness and inclusivity sector will be hosting a formal dialogue on Access to justice in South Africa. This is part of a series of 6 dialogues hosted across the country with young people, civil society and Community members to determine the structural difficulties in accessing Justice for victims of violence as well as marginalized groups. This is an attempt to find ways in which we can work together in addressing the issue of Access to justice for South African and promote Human rights. The community of Gauteng and members of the media are invited to come and join the conversation:

Date: 19 October 2019

Time: 09h00-16h00

Venue: Nelson Mandela Foundation- Johannesburg

For more information contact:

Nkokheli Mankayi

Cell:  078 375 4707

Email: nkokheli@activateleadership.co.za

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