Quote of the week

[Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro] possesses, however, few of his predecessor’s resources, lacking not just oil revenue but Chávez’s surplus of charisma, humour and political skill. Maduro, unable to end the crisis, has increasingly sided with the privileged classes against the masses; his security forces are regularly dispatched into barrios to repress militants under the guise of fighting crime. Having lost its majority in Congress, the government, fearing it can’t win at the polls the way Chávez did, cancelled gubernatorial elections that had been set for December last year (though they now appear to be on again). Maduro has convened an assembly to write a new constitution, supposedly with the objective of institutionalising the power of social movements, though it is unlikely to lessen the country’s polarisation.

Greg Grandin
London Review of Books
28 February 2011

Equal Education late-coming campaign to be launched by Zwelenzima Vavi

Equal Education will be running two campaigns in this month of March.

1. The Late-Coming Campaign

The first is the Late-Coming Campaign. This is aimed at encouraging young people in school to take their education seriously by arriving to school on time, ready to be taught and ready to demand a better education. This campaign is one of the campaigns that young people run in their schools together with the school community and the larger community.

Last week we started this campaign in Khayelitsha, going door- to- door speaking to parents about how they can help young people in this campaign, and explaining the importance of time, pacing, and teaching and learning, and how these factors are interconnected.

The door- to- door campaign had a lot of support from parents who wanted to take part.

This week, Mr Zwelinzima Vavi of COSATU will be launching the Late-Coming Campaign together with Equal Education at Chris Hani High School, Khayelitsha on the 2nd March at 07:00 am. He will be motivating young people and teachers to take part in this campaign and will also highlight the importance of attending school on time.

 2. 21st of March Concert and March

On the 21st of March, Equal Education is organising a march and concert and hopes to bring about 15 000 people to the Grand Parade. The event will start at 12:00pm and the march at about 2:00pm. The marchers will reach Parliament at about 3:00pm and hand over a Memorandum. The demands of EE are: We need Norms and Standards for School Infrastructure, implementation of the settlement for the Mud schools, school infrastructure and libraries. We demand better school infrastructure and libraries for all schools.

This week a draft Memorandum was sent out to civil society formations for endorsements. Freshlyground and DJ OSKIDO will be the main performers for the Concert. Local artists, including Sound Masters and Un- Decided, will perform for the 15 000 people at the gathering. The main aim of this Concert is to celebrate Human Rights Day, but also to highlight the plight and struggle of the majority of South African children who are not afforded a better education. Hence, we are marching for Quality Education for all later on the day.

EE members will hit the streets, schools, churches and train stations mobilising for the march for Quality Education. They will be leafleting, delivering posters, collecting signatures for the petition on late-coming and sending letters to organisations and individuals.

 For more information contact Yoliswa Dwane at 021 387 0022/ 3 or 072 342 7747

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