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CCS and ASONET Seminar: SA Legislation on the Socioeconomic Rights of Refugees and Asylum Seekers

Speaker: Daniel Byamungu Dunia
Date: Wednesday 12 June 2019
Time: 13:00-14:00
Venue: CCS Seminar Room A726, Level 7, Shepstone, Howard College, UKZN

The South African government is ambivalent in its protection of refugees and asylum-seekers. The Refugees Act does not expressly cover the right to public relief and assistance and the right to healthcare. Refugees and asylum-seekers in South Africa struggle to access social welfare, health care and housing because current legislation is not clear on what socioeconomic rights they are entitled to.

State officials tend to treat refugees and asylum-seekers as ordinary immigrants who are temporary residents in South Africa and who should be excluded from social welfare. This is, however, contrary to South Africa’s commitment to protect all people who live in the country, as expressed in the preamble of the Constitution, as well as refugees and asylum-seekers, as expressed in the Refugees Act.

This seminar will deal with the question of whether and to what extent refugees and asylum-seekers are entitled to socioeconomic rights and benefits in view of the Constitutional values of human dignity and equality as well as the standards of same treatment and more favourable treatment in the 1951 UN Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees.

Speaker Bio:
Daniel Byamungu Dunia is the Secretary General of Africa Solidarity Network (ASONET ) which is a civil society organisation promoting social cohesion with the aim of ending xenophobia and xenophobic attacks in South Africa. Daniel is also Provincial Coordinator of the Right2Know Campaign, KwaZulu-Natal.

 Other seminar programmes
 WISER Seminar Series 
 UKZN History Seminar Series 
 The Wolpe Trust 

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