Residents confront police during evictions at the Marikana land occupation in Philippi East last month. Twelve protesters arrested at the informal settlement have been in custody for four weeks, pending their bail hearing on Friday. A new report by SERI concludes that the criminal justice system is being abused by the state to quell "legitimate" dissent. Photo Daneel Knoetze.Criminalising protest and dissent

A new report by SERI profiles a community protest in Lenasia, Gauteng, and concludes that the criminal justice system was "abused" in order to intimidate activists and protesters. A look at similar cases in Cape Town seem to support this finding.

Sep 18, 2014
Daneel Knoetze
Photo courtesy of Equal Education.Fighting for decent toilets in Gauteng schools

On 13 September Equal Education marched in Johannesburg for decent school sanitation in Gauteng. Brad Brockman, the organisation's General Secretary, explains the campaign.

Sep 16, 2014
Brad Brockman
Photo by Tim Flack (C). Reprinted with his permission. All rights reserved.People with HIV should be able to fight for their country

There is no reason people with HIV shouldn't be soldiers, says Tim Flack, who served in the navy and is the Western Cape representative for the South African National Defence Force Union.

Sep 16, 2014
Tim Flack
Terry Bell.Political abuse & arrogant dogma

Deputy defence minister Kebby Maphatsoe this week withdrew his claim that public protector Thuli Madonsela was a “CIA spy” and apologised for the statement. But the issue continues to reverberate throughout the body politic.

Sep 15, 2014
Terry Bell
Memorial to Steve Biko outside the East London City Hall. Photo by Bfluff (Wikipedia handle) under CC BY-SA 3.0.From Steve Biko to Thuli Madonsela

This week the Public Protector was called a CIA agent. The ruling party’s tactic of labeling its critics foreign agents is counterproductive, has a bloody history and is damaging the country, writes Ayanda Kota.

Sep 10, 2014
Ayanda Kota
Terry Bell.Constitutional misunderstandings

Our justly praised Constitution and the institutions it created have taken something of a verbal battering over the past week and more — and often for the wrong reasons. In the process, the office of the public protector has become something of a surrogate battleground for the opposing factions in Cosatu.

Sep 8, 2014
Terry Bell
Premier Helen Zille. Photo source: City of Cape Town website.Premier Zille: wrong – again

DA leader and Western Cape premier Helen Zille has again entered the HIV prevention arena, telling us we are failing to deal with HIV because we don’t have the right approach to taking personal responsibility for sexual behaviours.

Sep 4, 2014
Francois Venter
Young learners demand minimum standards in schools during a march arranged by Equal Education in 2013. Photo by Zodwa Sinkempele.Education as an elixir for freedom

In 2010 there were 3228 matrics in Khayelitsha’s 19 high schools. They achieved just 44 ‘A’ symbols between them, in all subjects.

Sep 4, 2014
Doron Isaacs
From left to right, Dan Plato and Helen Zille receive the report into policing in Khayelitsha from commissioners Kate O’Regan and Vusi Pikoli. Photo by Masixole Feni.Khayelitsha Commission findings: what now?

The conclusion of the Khayelitsha Commission has left many people asking “what now?” writes Ayanda Nyoka.

Sep 3, 2014
Ayanda Nyoka
Daryl Impey. Photo by Flickr user Petit Brun (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0).Daryl Impey: a very unusual case

Daryl Impey’s exoneration on doping charges brought relief to many cycling fans. But, ponders Shuaib Manjra, there may be much more to this story.

Sep 2, 2014
Shuaib Manjra