During 2014, OSF, together with Atlantic Philanthropies and the Ford Foundation, set up a special fund to advance constitutionalism in South Africa for a ten-year period.
The Constitutionalism Fund was launched in 2015 with a Local Selection Panel.
In May, the fifth national democratic elections took place – the first ‘born free’ election, where young people born after 1994 were eligible to vote for the first time.The ANC won 62.15% of the national vote, and the Democratic Alliance (DA) increased its national support to 22.23%. The EFF, the newest party, became the third-largest party in South Africa with 6.35% of the vote. President Zuma was sworn in for a second term. He soon became embroiled in a number of other cases involving corruption allegations against him.
In March, Public Protector Thuli Madonsela found that upgrades to the President’s home were not permissible and that he should ‘pay back the money’.
In a matter involving 17 million social security beneficiaries, the Constitutional Court ruled that the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA)’s contract with a private provider, Cash Paymaster Services, was illegal and invalid and had to be remedied.
OSF-SA developed a three-year strategy with four grant making programmes: promoting public- and private-sector accountability; advancing civil society and promoting socio-economic rights; protecting the free flow of information and freedom of expression; and strengthening Justice and Equality. A Research and Advocacy Unit (RAU) was established to carry out high-agency work on social auditing and extractives industry transparency and accountability.
In addition, funds were contributed to the Multi-Agency Grant Initiative, a grant making mechanism that aims to strengthen the voice and agency of local communities and other role-players in civil society.
The Open Dialogue Series held four dialogues on the National Elections, State of the Nation Address, the Budget Speech, and South Africa’s response to discriminatory LGBTI laws in Nigeria and Uganda. In addition, OSF-SA hosted ‘Vociferous Wednesdays’, a series of panel discussions in collaboration with the Daily Maverick and the Book Lounge.
The inaugural OSF-SA Grantee Meet-and-Greet was held in December 2014, providing room and time for interaction between the Board, staff, and grantees.
OSF-SA’s work continued on extractive sector transparency, ensuring the right to health and education as levers for other socio-economic rights protections, supporting public-interest litigation, and building a robust civil society. In addition, during 2014, OSF-SA in partnership with AfRO and OSISA, provided its first financial and technical support to host the annual Alternative Mining Indaba (AMI) in Cape Town, support that continued in later years.
Yasmin Carrim was appointed as Deputy Chairperson of OSF-SA.
2014 grants: 78.