Diakonia council honours bishop

2010-08-25 00:00

HIS commitment to human rights has won a local church leader a prestigious award.

The Diakonia Council of Churches recently presented the Right Reverend Rubin Phillip, Anglican Bishop of Natal, with the Diakonia Award for devoted service to human rights, justice and democracy.

Bishop Phillip was honoured at the annual Diakonia Lecture and presentation of the Diakonia Award ceremony at the Durban City Hall in early August, a press statement said.

The Diakonia Council noted his involvement with the anti-apartheid movement as far back as the 1960s, his advocacy and involvement in the Zimbabwe crisis and his solidarity with the shack dwellers’ movement Abahlali baseMjondolo.

The council said the award is also to thank Phillip for “his devoted service to human rights, to justice and to democracy through many long years — from the days of the struggle against apartheid to the struggle against poverty, corruption and injustice”.

In his acceptance speech, Bishop Phillip dedicated the award to shack dwellers, especially those from Kennedy Road and all those who have stood in solidarity with them.

He urged politicians to fulfil their electoral promi­ses, warning that the church will continue to pressure them to deliver.

“The municipality must provide water, electricity and adequate housing to shack dwellers. We will continue to knock at the doors of politicians until the situation is resolved. If we could host the World Cup, why can we not provide water and electricity to a handful of shack dwellers?” he asked.

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