Front Page Publications

A Basic Income Grant: Do we need it?

Section 27 of the Bill of Rights asserts that
“Everyone has the right to have access to social security, including, if they are unable to support themselves and their dependants, appropriate social assistance, and the state must take reasonable legislative and other measures, within its available resources, to achieve the progressive realisation of each of these rights.”1

Environment Digest 6: Shedding Light on Eskom’s Unbundling

Eskom is the largest producer of electricity on the African continent, and is amongst the world’s top utilities in terms of power generation capacity. It owns and operates a number of coal-fired, gas-fired, hydro-electric and pumped-storage power stations, and one nuclear power station.

BP 472: The Global Compact on Migration

The United Nations observes 18th December as World Day of Migrants. In his 2018 speech on that day, Secretary General Antonio Guitteres made reference to the migration phenomenon as a “powerful driver of economic growth, understanding and dynamism and opening for millions of people to seek new opportunities, benefitting communities of origin and destination alike.”

Submission on the Expropriation Bill

The Catholic Church holds to the principle of the universal destiny of all goods and thus, though private property must be respected at all times, and there can be no arbitrary dispossession of property, all forms of property ownership exist within a context where “the right to private property must never be exercised to the detriment of the common good” (Pope Paul VI, Populorum Progressio, #23).

Response: 2019 Budget

Last year’s Budget speech recognized that government had dug the economy into a large hole as a result of years of mismanagement, corruption and free-spending; and that it was time to stop digging. Not long after delivering the speech the then Finance Minister, Malusi Gigaba, was transferred to the Home Affairs portfolio and replaced by Nhlanhla Nene – a safe pair of hands from the Trevor Manuel/Pravin Gordhan school of finance ministers.

Environment Digest 5: “National disaster”: the recent drought period

South Africa is a largely dry country, with considerable climate and topographical variation. Under normal circumstances, the south western part of the country receives its main rainfall in winter; the southern coast receives rainfall throughout the year; and majority of the rainfall is received in summer in the eastern and northern parts of the country.

Submission on the Prevention and Combating of Hate Crimes and Hate Speech Bill

It cannot be denied that crimes motivated or exacerbated by hatred occur in South Africa. We think immediately of certain xenophobic attacks, carried out for no reason other than the ‘foreignness’ of the victims; and of ‘corrective rape’, which stems from the perpetrator’s intolerance of the victim’s sexual orientation. It is correct that the criminal justice system should take cognizance of this, and that those who make themselves guilty of such crimes should be punished.

Response: The 2019 State of the Nation Address

In last year’s State of the Nation Address, President Ramaphosa – only a week or so into the job – made a number of commitments. Among the most important were: Taking decisive steps to comply with the directions of the Constitutional Court concerning social grant payments, which were then in a critical situation due to incompetent leadership and a minister who had ignored the Court’s earlier rulings…

Digest: The Catholic Church and Elections in Africa

The recent elections in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) have shown, once more, the important role of civil society in fostering a democratic culture. But above all, the voice of the Catholic Church challenging the provisional results announced by the National Independent Electoral Commission resonated far beyond the DRC’s borders.

BP 471: Trafficking in Persons

There are two days specially designated on the UN Calendar with regard to the scourge of trafficking in persons (TIP). The first, observed since 2010, is 11th January, which is designed to develop awareness of TIP; the other, closely related, is the World Day against Trafficking in Persons, which is observed on 30th July.

Digest: The Catholic Church and Human Rights

Since the end of World War II, human rights have become one of the foundations of the international order and a cornerstone for policy-making and advocacy. Drawing on her long tradition of social teaching, the Catholic Church fully supports this new orientation of international relations, and has further developed her own doctrine of human rights.

Family Digest 22

Adoption is a legal process whereby a person assumes the parenting of a non-biological child from that person’s biological or legal parent or parents, and, in so doing, permanently acquires all rights and responsibilities, along with filiation, from the biological parent or parents. It thus involves the permanent transfer of a child from one set of parents and one family to another.

Refugees Digest 30

In the days leading up to Christmas when, in the Christian tradition, note is taken of the itinerancy of Mary and Joseph in compliance with a political imperative, there was a flurry of policy discussions on issues of migration. Pope Francis pointed out that the Holy Family shared the ‘anguish of persecution’ and that the little Jesus reminds us that half the refugees in the world are children.

Submission: Compensation for Occupational Injuries & Diseases Amendment Bill

This submission is made on behalf of the Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference (SACBC) by the Catholic Parliamentary Liaison Office (CPLO). The CPLO is an office of the SACBC, tasked with liaising between the Church and Parliament/Government, commenting on issues of public policy, and making submissions on legislation.
The CPLO welcomes the opportunity to comment on the Compensation for Occupational Injuries and Diseases Amendment Bill, which has important implications for employees that do not often get the same treatment as those employed in other sectors.

BP 469: Political Violence in KwaZulu-Natal

After 25 years of democracy, political violence remains one of the greatest challenges that continuously undermine South Africa’s constitutional state. The province of KwaZulu-Natal accounts for the majority of political violence that occurs in South Africa and, especially around election time, fear and anxiety loom as political assassinations increase.

Response: International World AIDS Day

On 1st December South Africa observed the 30th Annual World Aids Day. This year the theme was ‘Know your Status.’ This is an important consideration as it is estimated that about 9.4 million people living with HIV/Aids worldwide do not know their status. On the other hand, positively, statistics show that 75% do know it, equating to 19m people, compared to 67% in 2015.

Submission on the Draft Regulations on the Registration of Births and Deaths

The Catholic Parliamentary Liaison Office welcomes the opportunity to comment on the Draft Regulations on the Registration of Births and Deaths. We confine our comment to the question of ‘confirmation of birth’ documents that the Department proposes to issue to ‘foreign’ children. Nothing in the draft regulations explains or justifies the proposal to provide such children with a different, and inferior, form of birth certification.