‘Five Years of Building Safer Communities!’
On Saturday 29 June, the SJC held its 5th Annual General Meeting (AGM). The AGM was an important milestone for the SJC – a time both to celebrate and reflect on the development of the organization over the past five years. The SJC has changed substantially since it was formed on 16 June 2008 when a group of activists came together to respond to the xenophobic violence of the time that left more than 60 people dead and thousands displaced. Since then, it has grown into one of South Africa’s most prominent grassroots social movements.
The past year has seen major victories for the SJC, notably the implementation of a janitorial service for flush toilets and the establishment of a Commission of Inquiry into Policing in Khayelitsha. Both had been long standing demands and key elements of our sanitation and safety work. However, the potential successes of these wins have been obstructed. The City of Cape Town has failed to fulfil its commitments to develop a policy and plan for the janitorial service and the Commission of Inquiry has been stalled due to litigation by the Minister of Police and SAPS. There is clearly much work to be done.
At SJC’s AGM in 2012 it was resolved that specific elements of our governance structure needed to change in order to better fulfil the objectives of the organisation. For the first time the General-Secretary and the Deputy General-Secretary were to be employed on a full time basis. At Saturday’s AGM, this arrangement was formalised when a new Secretariat was elected to a two year term and the SJC Constitution was accordingly amended.
Phumeza Mlungwana was unanimously re-elected as the organisation’s General-Secretary. Phumeza joined the SJC three years ago. During this time she served as the organisation’s Chairperson, the project manager of Imali Yethu (the SJC’s budget monitoring project), and the interim General-Secretary. Phumeza has been a key leader in the SJC’s development and achievements over the past three years.
Dustin Kramer was unanimously elected as Deputy General-Secretary. Dustin is a founding member of the SJC, and served as the organisation’s Treasurer from 2008 until 2011. Dustin has a strong background in research, finance and management and has been a respected SJC leader since its establishment.
Andrew Ardington was unanimously re-elected as Treasurer. Andrew is a founding member of the SJC and is the longest serving office bearer in the organisation – having served on the Secretariat since the organisation began in 2008, first as Co-Chairperson and then as Treasurer since 2011.
Danile Mehlo was elected as Chairperson. Danile is a member of CT branch and has been an SJC member for the past two years. Danile is currently enrolled as an engineering student and has been involved in various student leadership roles.
Xoliswa Mbadlisa was elected as Deputy Chairperson. Xoliswa is a member of BT branch. Xoliswa has been a leader in civil society organisations in Khayelitsha and a branch chairperson in the SJC. As the newly appointed Deputy Chairperson she envisages that the organisation and its branches will continue to grow from strength to strength.
As General-Secretary, Phumeza will be the primary political representative of the organisation and will oversee all programmatic coordination, partnership development and oversight. As Deputy General-Secretary Dustin will support the General-Secretary and ensure that effective finance and operations systems are developed and will oversee human resources, management, and fundraising. The Executive Council will discuss co-opting additional Secretariat members where necessary.
We would like to thank our outgoing Secretariat members, Nompumelelo Mantangana (Sis Mpumi), Vuyani Mngqete, and Gavin Silber for all their work and dedication in leading the SJC to where it is today. We wish them all the very best in their future endeavours.
As we mark five years since the establishment of the SJC, we are confident that we are well placed to build on our achievements thus far. We would like to thank all those who have supported our work over the years. Together, we will continue to build safe and dignified communities and face the critical challenges of the coming months and years.
For more information please contact:
Phumeza Mlungwana 0744178306
Dustin Kramer 0836740552