The fiftieth anniversary of the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights prompts a re-examination of the links between 'development' and the range of ecomic, social, political, and cultural rights enshrined within it. Chronic poverty is a flagrant denial of what the international community once hailed as the basic rights and fundamental freedoms on which our humanity and security must rest. The papers in this collection consider, among other entitlements, the rights to food, adequate housing, safe employment, protection from sexual assault, and popular involvement in political processes which shape the lives of poor communities.
Firoze Manji, a Kenyan with more than 30 years experience in international development, health and human rights, is Director of Fahamu, an organisation committed to using information and communication technologies to support the struggle for social justice in Africa. He is editor of Pambazuka News, a weekly electronic newsletter on social justice in Africa.