Celebrating those who struggled for our human rights

2019-03-13 06:01

ON March 21, South African’s observe Human­ Rights Day, remembering an essential part of our history. This day commemorates the 1960 Sharpeville massacre which saw 69 people killed and 180 wounded, this according to the Parliament of the Republic of South Africa website.

According to reports, the massacre occurred when police fired on a peaceful crowd that had gathered in protest against the Pass Laws.

This day marked an affirmation by ordinary people, who rose in unison to proclaim their rights. It became an iconic date in the country’s history as a reminder of the citizen’s human rights and the cost paid for it.

Fifty-nine years later, the country is nearing 25-years into democracy, but the events of the day stay fresh in the minds of the citizens of South Africa.

WHAT ARE HUMAN RIGHTS?

Human rights are rights that everyone should have simply because they are human.

In 1948, the United Nations defined 30 articles of human rights in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. It established universal human rights on the basis of humanity, freedom, justice, and peace.

South Africa has included indivisible human rights in the Bill of Rights, Chapter 2 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996.

The articles of the Constitution can only be changed by a two-thirds majority in Parliament, which means it is difficult for anyone, including the government, to take away the basic rights of a citizen.

The Bill of Rights, preserved in the Constitution, is the cornerstone of the constitutional and representative democracy.

The Constitution, as the country’s supreme law, means that no laws may be passed that go against it.

The Bill of Rights also comprehensively addresses South Africa’s history of oppression, colonialism, slavery, racism and sexism and other forms of human violations.

The Bill of Rights embeds the rights of all people in our country in an enduring affirmation of the democratic values of human dignity, equality and freedom.

Speaking on what human rights mean to them, resident Marie Pillay said: “Denying a person of his or her human rights is denying a person of his or her dignity. A human’s dignity is one of the most important parts of a human life.

“Having an official Human Rights Day brings home the fact that not all persons were granted their basic human rights.

“It has to be celebrated that there had to be a struggle to achieve this basic dignity.”

ON March 21, South African’s observe Human­ Rights Day, remembering an essential part of our history. This day commemorates the 1960 Sharpeville massacre which saw 69 people killed and 180 wounded, this according to the Parliament of the Republic of South Africa website.

According to reports, the massacre occurred when police fired on a peaceful crowd that had gathered in protest against the Pass Laws.

This day marked an affirmation by ordinary people, who rose in unison to proclaim their rights. It became an iconic date in the country’s history as a reminder of the citizen’s human rights and the cost paid for it.

Fifty-nine years later, the country is nearing 25-years into democracy, but the events of the day stay fresh in the minds of the citizens of South Africa.

WHAT ARE HUMAN RIGHTS?

Human rights are rights that everyone should have simply because they are human. In 1948, the United Nations defined 30 articles of human rights in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. It established universal human rights on the basis of humanity, freedom, justice, and peace.

South Africa has included indivisible human rights in the Bill of Rights, Chapter 2 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996. The articles of the Constitution can only be changed by a two-thirds majority in Parliament, which means it is difficult for anyone, including the government, to take away the basic rights of a citizen. The Bill of Rights, preserved in the Constitution, is the cornerstone of the constitutional and representative democracy.

The Constitution, as the country’s supreme law, means that no laws may be passed that go against it.

The Bill of Rights also comprehensively addresses South Africa’s history of oppression, colonialism, slavery, racism and sexism and other forms of human violations.

The Bill of Rights embeds the rights of all people in our country in an enduring affirmation of the democratic values of human dignity, equality and freedom.

Speaking on what human rights mean to them, resident Marie Pillay said: “Denying a person of his or her human rights is denying a person of his or her dignity. A human’s dignity is one of the most important parts of a human life.

“Having an official Human Rights Day brings home the fact that not all persons were granted their basic human rights. It has to be celebrated that there had to be a struggle to achieve this basic dignity.”

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