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COVID-19 undermining efforts to eradicate poverty: UN
17 October 2020, 11:01 AM

As Saturday marks the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, the United Nations (UN) says that the COVID-19 pandemic is pushing millions into extreme poverty and is undermining efforts to eradicate poverty by 2030.

The day has been observed every year since 1993, when the United Nations General Assembly, by resolution 47/196, designated the day to promote awareness of the need to eradicate poverty and destitution in all countries.

Fighting poverty remains at the core of the Millennium Development Goals.

In April Oxfam said that the fallout from the coronavirus spread could push around half a billion people into poverty.

The UN says the pandemic demands solidarity and strong collective action.

 

We want justice across the board: Cele
17 October 2020, 8:50 AM

Police Minister Bheki Cele has highlighted the importance of government acting tough on the perpetrators of crime. He was speaking after the bail application of two murder suspects in the Senekal Magistrate’s Court in the Free State on Friday.

Sekola Matlaletsa and Sekwetje Mahlamba are accused of the murder of 21-year-old Brendin Horner and their bail application has been postponed to Monday and Tuesday next week.

Cele says the families of victims of crime deserve justice irrespective of their colour or creed.

“We want justice across the board. It doesn’t matter where you died whether you were shot and killed in Mandeni taxi rank, Khayelitsha, Mamelodi as Jabu was killed on Monday, the chair of the taxi association. Whether a young man killed young Horner here, we must forever fight for justice.”

In the video below Minister Cele speaks to SABC News

Tensions arose ahead of the appearance of the two murder suspects in court.

Police managed to prevent a scuffle between the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) supporters and farmers.

EFF leader Julius Malema says suggestions that criminals have been targeting farmers are a gross exaggeration. He was speaking outside the Senekal Magistrate’s Court in the Free State on Friday.

Members of various political parties protested outside the court. Malema says it’s unfortunate that farm attacks have been racialised.

“There is no farm murders in SA. There are no white farmers being killed in SA. In SA there are women being killed, there are children being killed. Those are the people who deserve our special attention, not the privileged white old racists who are unable to adjust to the new conditions because they are used to being called baas baas.”

In the video below, EFF appeals to members to face racism head-on:

Meanwhile, the Freedom Front Plus (FF Plus) has lodged a complaint with the Human Rights Commission (HRC) against Julius Malema and the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) for singing “Kill the Boer” in Senekal.

In the video below, farmers urge government to address farm murders:

VIDEO: Weekly Global COVID-19 Wrap, 16 October
16 October 2020, 12:33 PM

In this week’s Global COVID-19 Wrap, SABC News captures highlights from all corners of the globe, as the number of confirmed infections worldwide continue to rise.

Currently, the COVID-19 cases worldwide stand at over 39.1 million with more than 29 million recoveries and deaths at 1 103 111.

In South Africa, the number of confirmed cases surpassed the 698 000 mark. Whilst the death toll has risen to 18 309.

On the rest of the continent, 52 African Union Member States have so far reported 1 621 853 cases; with 39 150 deaths and 1 336 611 recoveries.

Below are COVID-19 stories making headlines around the world:

Most US LGBT+ students face homophobic or transphobic abuse
13 October 2020, 1:12 PM

Almost all LGBT+ students in the United States have heard offensive remarks about their sexuality or gender identity with comments such as “that’s so gay” regularly bandied around playgrounds and campus cafeterias, researchers said on Tuesday.

Just under 99% of lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender students aged between 13 and 21 reported hearing disparaging comments about their sexuality or gender identity, according to a new study published by GLSEN, a national LGBT+ education advocacy group.

Almost 92% said the remarks had made them feel “distressed”, said the 2019 National School Climate Survey, which surveyed 16 700 LGBT+ students between April and August last year.

“At my school, it’s very taboo for teachers especially to talk about LGBT issues,” said Aiden Cloud, a 17-year-old student at a small, conservative private school in Nashville, Tennessee.

“Even though there are a lot of queer students at my school- just as there are at any school – there’s a very big lack of visibility. It feels very isolating,” said Cloud, who identifies as genderqueer or neither exclusively male or female.

Discussing LGBT+ issues in schools has become a global cultural flashpoint, with some parents in Britain last year protesting against the inclusion of sexuality and gender identity in the curriculum.

The GLSEN report, which surveyed students in all 50 US states as well as the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, American Samoa, and Guam, found homophobia was rife within educational establishments.

Almost 97% of respondents stated that they had heard the phrase “no homo” at school, while more than 95% reported hearing homophobic terms such as “dyke” and “faggot”.

About 69% said they had experienced verbal harassment because of their sexual orientation, while just under 57% said they had also been called names or threatened because of their gender expression.

Eleven percent of LGBT+ students said they had been physically assaulted, or “punched, kicked (or) injured with a weapon” because of their sexuality, the report noted.

Just under 10% reported the same experiences due to their gender expression, it added.

“This is a very significant wake-up call about how the progress we’ve won is directly under attack,” said Eliza Byard, the executive director of GLSEN, formerly the Gay, Lesbian &Straight Education Network.

“Where we are now is so different from where we were 20, 25years ago in terms of how better things are. On the other hand, where we are is clearly still unacceptable,” she told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

Bail application continues in Deacon murder case
13 October 2020, 9:41 AM

Two of the four people accused in the double murder of a Polokwane businesswoman and her mother will on Tuesday hear the verdict on their bail application in the Polokwane Magistrate’s Court in Limpopo.

The matter was postponed last week to allow the defence to prepare its arguments after the state submitted arguments opposing bail.

The victims, Lizette Deacon and her mother Hettie were murdered in their home in Welgelegen in Polokwane last month. Their bodies were discovered inside their abandoned car near the R37 off-ramp, outside Polokwane.

The state is opposing bail arguing that accused number two, Casper Mudau, is a flight risk. Mudau who is a Zimbabwean national is suspected of being in the country illegally.

The state also argues that accused number three, Sophie Mmako, has provided the investigating officer with more than two residential addresses.

Mmako is also suspected of being the mastermind behind the attack. The four accused are facing charges of house robbery, kidnapping and murder. They have been remanded in custody.

In the video below suspects appeared for the murder a few weeks ago:

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