Equality

The state of play in the al-Bashir saga

By Angela Mudukuti On September 16, the North Gauteng High Court denied the South African government leave to appeal in the case pertaining to Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir. Al-Bashir is wanted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) for crimes against humanity, genocide, and war crimes. After a United Nations (UN) Security Council referral of the…

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News24 right to axe online comments

Earlier this month News24, the country’s largest online news publisher, took a decision not to allow readers to post comments on all but a few select articles. According to its editor-in-chief Andrew Trench, too many commentators insisted on “pushing the boundaries of free speech”, with the result that comments “tediously drift towards hate speech at…

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It’s never too late to learn another South African language

Two months ago I decided to learn to speak isiXhosa. This is a big thing for a 53-year-old — some might say impossible. Others might say it is unnecessary. They might be right in strictly practical terms. I don’t need to speak isiXhosa. Very, very seldom do I have to communicate with someone who speaks…

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The more things change, the more they stay the same: The curious case of black women and queer life at UCT

By Zethu Matebeni The last few months have stimulated long overdue conversations and action in higher education institutions in South Africa. Rhodes Must Fall, over and over again. The concrete structure may be gone from the steps of the UCT upper campus, but its shadow remains — blocking the same path that leads to possible…

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Why the new sustainable development goals won’t make the world a better place

The world’s governments are preparing to finalise the sustainable development goals at the United Nations this month. It is set to be a major international event, and the goals will be ushered in with tremendous fanfare. They are widely regarded as a historic step toward building a better world, and toward eradicating poverty and hunger…

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Let’s call a spade a spade, the EFF is marching towards a socialist dictatorship

It was an ordinary February morning in 1989, for most in Berlin, but not for 21-year-old East German Chris Gueffroy. It would be his last day alive. The cold metal force from a border guard’s gun would rip through his jacket and shirt and pierce his heart — pouring deep red warm hope out onto…

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Luister, you can keep your Oxford scholarship

By Mark John Burke Three years ago, I sat around a dinner table as one of 10 national finalists for five very prestigious scholarships to Oxford. Across from me sat a professor who insisted: “We need to do away with Afrikaans completely. It is the language of the oppressor. We need to start with universities.”…

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#Luister: Black skin a burden in Stellenbosch

How does it feel to be a problem? — WEB Du Bois Stellenbosch University’s exclusionary language policy has once again made it into the news. It’s an open secret that the university has been hostile towards students who question the policy and more importantly, the town is hostile to black people who live in the…

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My name is Tim, I’m a racist and I’m running for president

A non-practising one. Probably best to make that clear right up front. “You cannot teach a racist to change,” says Rusty Bedsprings on an online forum, “you can only show him that his bigotry holds no power”. Wrong. You can and it does, big time. This is the whole point: Racism has South Africa by…

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Let’s blame poor African leadership for Mandarin in our schools

By Sandiso Bazana Reading the Times Live article about the introduction of Mandarin in South African schools made me question the vision that African leaders have of Africa and whether they see Africa prospering on its own — have they given up on the ideal once proclaimed by leaders such as Dr Kwame Nkrumah, Léopold…

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