Human Rights In South Africa Continues To Be Problematic As Farm Murders And Genocide Ignored

While the focus in South Africa over the last few weeks has been over the racist remarks of real estate agent Penny Sparrow and the questionable remarks of Standard Bank economist Chris Hart, the real human rights violations in South Africa have been largely ignored.

The African National Congress (ANC) controlled government under President Jacob Zuma is currently pushing for restrictions on free speech over the alleged racist comments by both parties while continuing to ignore farm murders and white genocide. Attacks against farmers have continued, and murders among citizens, as well as farm murders in South Africa, have risen for the fifth straight year in a row.

Sowetan Live reported that South Africa faced several human rights challenges in 2015, including the xenophobic attacks against immigrants. Human Rights Watch also indicated that the findings on the 44 mine workers who were murdered caused disappointment to both the families and civil society groups involved.

“They said the commission ignored key evidence presented by mine workers who testified and instead relied heavily on police description of the events.”

Police were highly criticized as several high profile incidents were highlighted in 2015 as police brutality and the use of excessive and disproportionate force were brought to the fore. While the excessive force of the police was criticized, Human Rights Watch recommend that the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) be deployed to stem the tide of xenophobic attacks in South Africa.

As previously reported in Inquisitr, Human Rights Watch released their report for 2015 on human rights violations in South Africa. While farm murders and white genocide were ignored, the report focused on xenophobic attacks against immigrants, as well as lack of education for 500,000 disabled children. The underreporting of rapes and crimes against women were also cited, which relates to a lack of trust among victims towards the police, as well as an ineffectiveness on the part of the South African government and South African Police Service (SAPS) to stem the tide of crime against South Africa’s citizens.

Human Rights Watch soundly criticized South African government leaders for statements they said were highly inflammatory and may have led to the increase in attacks against immigrants. A second flare up of tensions among South Africans and immigrants occurred in October in Grahamstown when 500 people were displaced. While the rights of roughly four million white South Africans were ignored, Human Rights Watch commended the South African government for improving coordination on rapes and violence against LGBT.

“The Department of Justice and Constitutional Development has taken significant steps to improve co-ordination between government and civil society in combating violence (including rape and murder) against lesbians and transgender men.”

Voice of America also reported that 2015 was a bad year for human rights violations in South Africa. Human Rights Watch pointed out that many African governments, particularly in East and Central Africa, imposed new restrictions on their opponents, a move the South African government is taking by imposing limits on what it considers to be hate speech on the topic of racism. New restrictions also occurred against journalists and rights activists.

Ethiopia, Angola, Zimbabwe, and Swaziland were also cited in the human rights report released by Human Rights Watch for ignoring reform on draconian laws that suppressed the political opposition of the respective governments. Zimbabwe, like South Africa, has had a problem with farm murders, and President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe has called for an end to white farmers in his country as well as the expulsion or genocide of whites.

[Photo by Pixabay]

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