14 – 18 May
“He who has health has hope; and he who has hope has everything.” – Arabic Proverb
Tuesday 15 May
Executive Director Mark Heywood will be giving a talk on Constitutionalism, Policy and Activism in South Africa at the A! Youth Activism Workshop. This is an opportunity for youth to learn and engage seasoned activists and connect with fellow youth activators from various provinces.
Deputy Director Umunyana Rugege and SECTION27 Health intern Zain Razvi will attend a debate on Innovation and Intellectual Property hosted by the Department of Trade and Industry at WITS University. This follows the final Intellectual Property (IP) policy having gone to parliament last week. With approval imminent, the process of drafting a bill & registrations would begin.
Special note: On Tuesday 15 May at 16:15, the Minister of Health Dr Aaron Motsoaledi will present the Health Budget Vote before the National Assembly.
Wednesday 16 may
Mark Heywood will participate in a workshop of STATE CAPTURE, STRATEGIES AND TACTICS; CIVIL SOCIETY ORGANISATIONS IN 2018 chaired by Corruption Watch chairperson Mavuso Msimang at Webber Wentzel. The panel he will participate in will reflect on the ability of Civil Society Organisations to mobilise the public to support and participate in CSO programmes, while reflecting critically on claims to represent public interest. It will examine reforms – in both CSO functioning and that of the key institutions of our democracy – capable of strengthening the public accountability of key public and private institutions.
Wednesday 16 May – Thursday 18 May
Field Researcher Patrick Mdletshe will be attending a meeting on best practices organised by President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) on the following programmes:
(1) Community Health Worker Programs that Support HIV Prevention and Treatment Services and
(2) Reaching High Risk Men with HIV Prevention, Testing and Treatment Services
Friday 18 May – Saturday 20 May
Mark Heywood will be participating in two panel discussions at Franschhoek Literary Festival. On Friday he will be on a panel titled When we’re teetering on the edge of chaos, we can try to cling to the status quo or find ways to move on with Sizwe Mpofu-Walsh and chaired by Peter Bruce. On Saturday Mark’s panel is titled In this time of distrust and betrayal, how do we find our own ethical compass to navigate a way through an often-leaderless landscape? His discussants will be Ralph Mathekga and Sisonke Msimang to be led by Ray Hartley.
Spotlight will publish the next in the #Health4Sale series which looks at corruption in various provinces and its impact on health. The next part will reveal details on a multi-million Rand medical equipment contract awarded to a company which is supplying anaesthesia machines and theatre beds that break within weeks or are too inferior to risk using. The first six parts in the series can be read at www.spotlightnsp.co.za Spotlight will also publish a feature on the great work Community Health Workers have done in eradicating serious scabies in four Eastern Cape villages. Mark Heywood and Thuthukile Mbatha’s critical reflection on Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights will also be published this week.
The week that was:
On Thursday 11 May 2018, SECTION27’s Vuyokazi Gonyela chaired a meeting between UNAIDS Executive Director, Michel Sidibé and leaders of women activist groups where they discussed the organisation’s response to the allegations of sexual harassment levelled against Luis Loures. Activist groups staged a picket outside the Pan African Parliament where Sidibe was speaking on Wednesday 10 May resulting in the meeting on Thursday. The women challenged Sidibé to get his house in order in relation to dealing swiftly and decisively with sexual misconduct. They demanded to see action being taken against offenders rather than defending them. They insisted that care for the alleged victim’s well-being should be placed ahead of organisational processes. Sidibé assured the gathering that he would take their demands to heart and immediately implement the five point plan he announced in February.