Closing remarks by Inyathelo Executive Director Shelagh Gastrow at the Inyathelo Autumn Academy in May 2012.
In 2007, when discussing support for human rights organisations, South Africans would have focussed on those involved in second and third generation rights as there was a strong belief that basic human rights as outlined in our constitution were secure. However, recent events have dispelled this myth. In November 2007 Polokwane took place and since then we have seen attempts at erosion of our basic civil rights. We are also going through a period with little decision making taking place and a major shift in philosophy relating to the definition of our democracy. We are currently seeing an erosion of confidence that our constitutional democracy is secure as sustained attacks on the judiciary, the constitutional court and the press are taking place.