SECTION27 is a public interest law centre that seeks to influence, develop and use the law to protect, promote and advance human rights. Our name is drawn from the section in the South African Constitution which enshrines everyone's right to health care, food, water and social security.
On 16 and 17 September 2010, over 60 members of civil society organisations and trade unions met to discuss their work and their efforts – independently and through the South African National AIDS Council (SANAC) – to strengthen the national response to HIV and to achieve the goals of the National Strategic Plan (NSP). The aim of the meeting was to define a new agenda going forward for civil society activism both within and independent of SANAC and to focus on our human right to health.
In response to a call for input on the Green Paper: National Strategic Planning, the ALP recently made a submission to the Presidency and Parliament’s Ad Hoc Committee on the Green Paper on National Strategic Planning. The ALP’s interest in making this submission stems from its commitment to defend and enforce human rights and to ensure that the state discharges its constitutional obligations in accordance with its democratic mandate and the rule of law.
We welcome the opportunity to comment on the draft NSP 5-year plan. Although we are aware that the Chief Director: HIV/AIDS and STDs has requested only short inputs (“not essays”) the complexity of the plan, and its importance to South Africa, has required the detailed response below. In addition, whilst working on this submission a further draft (dated 14 November 2006) has been made available. However, most of the points we deal with below remain relevant.