SECTION27’s Week Ahead: 31 August – 4 September 2020

“Fighting the good fights starts with foregrounding values that matter and then having the empathy that gets adversaries even to change their minds. Human rights lawyer Faranaaz Veriava strives to hit this mark.”

Ufrieda Ho, in an article about SECTION27 head of education rights programme, Dr Faranaaz Veriava.

Many businesses have returned to work with the easing of the lockdown from level 3 to level 2 on the 18 August 2020. SECTION27 staff will continue to work remotely.

Our advice desk will only conduct telephonic consultations. The numbers to call or WhatsApp are 060 754 0751 or 067 419 6841.

The public interest organisations legal support hotline continues to be available to the public to contact regarding rights violations: 066 076 8845. 

[WEBINAR] Addressing child hunger and food insecurity: the National School Nutrition Programme and beyond


Despite the success of recent litigation to ensure the right to basic nutrition for learners around South Africa through the resumption of the National School Nutrition Programme (NSNP), serious obstacles remain to ensuring food security and combating hunger across the country. And while the NSNP case was a significant victory for the rights of learners to basic nutrition, child hunger is a complex phenomenon with many causes and lasting effects.

Beyond the National School Nutrition Programme, what other interventions can we advocate for to realise the right to basic nutrition and combat child hunger? 

Journalist Kathryn Cleary will moderate a discussion between Sasha Stevenson ​​​​​​​(Head of Health Rights programme at SECTION27), Kath Hall (Children’s Institute, UCT), Prof Haroon Saloojee (Division of Community Paediatrics, Wits), Sibongile Teffo (Community Leader for Equal Education in Limpopo) and Tevin Mahlangu(Community Leader for Equal Education in Gauteng). 


The SECTION27 #Run4SocialJustice fun run takes place on 12 September! Signup for a 5km or 10km run, plan your running route and connect with us on social media using the hashtag #Active4socialjustice #SupportSECTION27. Proceeds from the race will go towards our fight to address inequality and our advocacy for the right to basic education and healthcare. Signup here.

#OurNSP: National Strategic Plan for Gender-based Violence and Femicide Webinars 

Members of the SECTION27 team continue to support the work of the Call to Action civil society collective working to combat gender-based violence and femicide. This week, the topic is: The Gender-Based Violence & Femicide Fund: Key Considerations. More details are included in the graphic below:

Register here:

South African Education Law Association Webinars

Members of SECTION27 are participating in and engaging with upcoming webinars hosted by the South African Education Law Association (SAELA).
Webinar #1
Title: International Perspectives on schooling and Covid-19.
Panel Chair: Dr. Jaco Deacon – President SAELA
Panel Members: Mr. Bill Thro – General Counsel at the University of Kentucky, USA; Dr. Manjola Lumani Zaçellari, Aleksander Moisiu University of Durres; Mr. Reggy Govender – Deputy Principal at Northwood School, KZN, South Africa
Date: 1 September
Time: 15:30    
Webinar #2
Title: The Best Interest of the Child and the Child’s Voice during Covid-19.
Panel Chair: Prof. Mariëtte Reyneke – Deputy President SAELA
Panel Members : Ms. Karabo Ozah – Centre for Child Law, UP; Dr. Faranaaz Veriava – SECTION27.
Date: 3 September
Time: 15:30
After registration, your unique attendance link will be mailed to you.
If you need any technical assistance or questions please contact Megan ( or Paul (

“The African continent and access to medicines and treatment during Covid-19”

On 3 September 2020, SECTION27 Executive Director Umunyana Rugege will participate in an online discussion with media houses convened by Konrad Adenauer Stiftung Media Africa on “The African continent and access to medicines and treatment during Covid-19”.

The Week That Was

National Strategic Plan for GBV and Femicide

For Week 8 of the National Strategic Plan webinar series, SECTION27’s Head of Communications Nontsikelelo Mpulo explored “Lessons from other Councils.” Key to this presentation was learning from the successes and challenges of other councils like NEDLAC and SANAC, in order to make sure that the NSP for Gender based Violence and Femicide can realise its impact meaningfully.

You can read her presentation from the session here.

Friday Activist – Faranaaz Veriava: Always ready to take on the good fight

In the latest of Maverick Citizen’s “Friday Activist” series, Ufrieda Ho shone the spotlight on SECTION27 head of education rights programme, Dr Faranaaz Veriava. In the article below, Faranaaz reflects on principles, family and what gives her the energy to keep fighting for human rights.

Work together to get children fed, now – Sasha Stevenson

Head of health rights programme at SECTION27 Sasha Stevenson writes about the need for the Department of Basic Education and provincial education departments to get their act together and properly ensure that eligible learners can access school meals through the National School Nutrition Programme (NSNP). With better communication, access to scholar transport and safety protocols in place, more learners could access the NSNP – benefiting children themselves, and also entire families across the country. Read more:

Drop in DR-TB detection points to “crisis” in SA’s TB response
Scientific modelling suggests that an extended lockdown may result in an increase of deaths from TB in future. One of the reasons for this is the decrease in testing against drug resistant TB. Read more from Kathryn Cleary:…/drop-in-dr-tb-detection-p…/
Disability grant delays take heavy toll
During the strictest phases of South Africa’s #COVID19 #lockdown, the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) effectively stopped accepting new #disabilitygrant applications. Elri Voigt explores what happened and speaks to two applicants on the impact the disruptions have had on their lives.…/disability-grant-delays-t…/
1.3m switched to new ARV, but weight gain is a concern
New antiretroviral (ARV) medicine dolutegravir is cheaper to produce, less prone to resistance and has fewer side effects than other ARVs on the market. But it does have an Achilles heel – the dangerous side effect of weight gain. Read more:…/1-3m-switched-to-new-arv-…/
Self-managed abortions set to give women more autonomy
It is estimated that around 50% of abortions in SA are #backstreet#illegalabortions. Some abortion providers now believe that one solution to the problem of unsafe and illegal abortions is self-managed abortions #SMAs. Here’s what self-managed abortions entail: