Cultural, religious & linguistic rights
30 September 2003
The government has announced the appointment of 18 members of the Commission for the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Cultural, Religious and Linguistic Communities.
The commission is provided for in terms of the Constitution as one of a number institutions to strengthen democracy in the country.
In February 2003, South Africans were invited to nominate people to serve on the Commission. A total of 196 nominations were received, and a selection panel chaired by Professor CN Marivate selected and interviewed 54 candidates, eventually submitting 26 names to the President, who then appointed 18 commissioners.
The commissioners are broadly representative of the cultural, religious and linguistic diversity of the country, and include men and women who are committed to nation building.
The members of the commission are:
- MD Guma (chairperson), executive director of the Ecumenical Service for Socio-Economic
Transformation of the Anglican Church.
- M Bethlehem (deputy chairperson), president of the SA Jewish Board of Deputies.
- BB Mgcina, a traditional healer of the Zifozonke Traditional Healers Association.
- ON Mndende, a researcher on African traditional religion at the Icamagu Institute.
- MD Jobson, training co-ordinator in gender and human rights for All Africa Women for Peace.
- MKS Ntlha, general secretary of the Evangelical Alliance of SA.
- M Soni Amin, an adherent of the Hindu Vedanta Ramakrishna Mission of SA.
- S Dangor, lecturer in Islamic studies at the University of Durban-Westville.
- MAE Dockrat, lecturer in Arabic and Islamic studies at Rand Afrikaans University.
- JCH Landman, part-time lecturer in philosophy and ethics and member of the Afrikaner Alliance, as well as a director for the Foundation for National Minorities.
- TSC Magwaza, programme director of gender studies at the
University of Natal and a researcher on Zulu culture and the Shembe religion, as well as general secretary of the Southern African Folklore Society.
- SE Ngubane, professor of isiZulu at the University of Natal.
- LP Boshego, lecturer in African languages at the University of South Africa and chairman of the Sesotho sa Leboa National Language Body.
- DKK Mboweni-Marais, language practitioner and provider of professional language services.
- M Le Roux, director of performing arts development and education at the Artscape Theatre Centre, and chairperson of the Western Cape Cultural Commission.
- H Gouvelis, businessman and member of the Federation of Hellenic Communities of SA.
- WA Boezak, minister of religion and member of the National Council of Khoi Chiefs of SA.
- WRJ Langeveldt, project manager of the Barendse Griqua Trust, chairman of the Khoi-San National Trust, and member of the National Khoi-San Language Board.