Human Rights Watch – Corruption undermining South Africa’s progress

The 2014 Human Rights Watch World Report released yesterday is stark reminder of the erosion of human rights under the leadership of President Jacob Zuma.

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According to the report, which documents and analyses the state of human rights in Africa and the world, South Africa is still struggling to address “increasing demands from its citizens for the realisation of economic and social rights as well as respect for fundamental civil and political freedoms”.

While government has been relatively successful in the provision of social services, financial mismanagement and corruption have seriously undermined progress.

Some of the violations mentioned within the report are of particular concern and require immediate attention:

• Growing disaffection with local government, increasing poverty levels, and unemployment contributed to a resurgence of threats of violence against, and attacks on, property belonging to refugees, asylum-seekers, and migrants in the Eastern Cape and Gauteng provinces.

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• Growing concern about the conduct and capacity of South Africa Police Services (SAPS) regarding the use of force.

• The continuous obstruction of justice for the 44 people slain at Marikana due to the delays within Farlam Commission of Inquiry.

The simple fact is that under President Jacob Zuma South Africa is no longer a bastion of human rights. Service delivery has slowed down, largely as a result of pervasive corruption.