South Africans have been called on to submit their inputs on the National Action Plan to Combat Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerances (NAP) by the end of today.
Wednesday marks the last day for the submissions, Minister of Justice and Correctional Services, Michael Masutha, said on Tuesday.
It is envisaged that the NAP will form the basis for the development of a comprehensive policy framework to fight racism. The plan provides the basis for a public policy against racial discrimination that will assist in giving effect to South Africa’s international human rights obligations.
It is also envisaged that the NAP will provide for specific outcomes and a technical guiding framework for government’s policies, programmes and strategies to combat racial discrimination, and is a step towards complying with the obligation to give effect to the constitutional value of equality and non-discrimination.
Once finalised, the NAP will be valid for five years and renewed on an annual basis.
“The NAP is not intended to replace existing laws and policies but rather to be complimentary to the existing legislation, policies and framework which address equality, equity and transformation,” Minister Masutha said in a statement.
The draft NAP was approved by Cabinet on 9 December 2015 and has been made available on the departmental website for public comments since 18 December 2015.
Consultations have been held countrywide by the department to solicit the views, inputs and comments of all sectors of society so that a comprehensive and inclusive plan is developed.
The draft NAP will be submitted to Cabinet for approval during the course of the financial year.
Meanwhile, Minister Masutha has condemned the incidents of racism that continue to persist in the country, particularly the most recent of which occurred at Pretoria Girls’ High School.
He urged the nation to find a solution to these and other forms of discrimination and intolerances by making their comments to the draft NAP.
Pretoria Girls’ High School made headlines this week for its discriminatory hair policy, especially towards black pupils.
Various sectors of society and parents have thrown their weight behind learners who staged a protest against the policy.
Education MEC for Education, Panyaza Lesufi, visited the school on Monday and suspended all policies on how pupils can wear their hair.
Comments and inputs can be submitted via email to [email protected].