09th December 2016
ATTENTION: Editors and Reporters
The 10th of December 2016 marks the 20th anniversary of the signing of the South African Constitution by then President, Nelson Mandela. On this day, the world will commemorate International Human Rights Day, observed annually in remembrance of the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights by (the newly formed) United Nations General Assembly on 10 December 1948. This proclamation was the first global expression of human rights and is globally recognised as one of the first major achievements of the fledgling UN.
This day should be a day on which South Africans reflect on the significance and values of human rights contained in our Constitution.
The Commission is a state institution established in terms of Chapter 9 of the Constitution of South Africa to support constitutional democracy and is mandated in terms of section 184 (1) (a-c) of the Constitution to “promote respect, monitor, and assess the observance of human rights in South Africa”. In the last 20 years, the Commission, established to support constitutional democracy, has been working tirelessly to ensure that the aspirations of the Constitution are realised.
The Commission will be participating in a number of events in commemoration of this national and international day of significance.
The Commission’s Acting Chairperson, Commissioner Mohamed S. Ameermia, will be representing the Commission at a commemoration of the 20th Anniversary of the signing of the Constitution at the Sharpeville Sports Ground. The Commission will also be present to conduct advocacy and information sharing on human rights, the constitutional protections provided to everyone, and how people who feel their rights have been violated can approach the Commission.
President Jacob Zuma will deliver the keynote address and other notable speakers at the event include: Mr David Makura, the Premier of Gauteng Province, Adv. TM Masutha, the Minister of Justice and Correctional Services, and Councillor B Modisakeng, the Executive Mayor of Sedibeng.
The Commission will also participate in numerous events throughout the nine provinces in commemoration of International Human Rights Day.
Issued by the South African Human Rights Commission
Gail Smith – Spokesperson, SAHRC
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