Photo: Albin Hillert/WCC

Photo: Albin Hillert/WCC

Members of the media are invited to attend a press briefing on Monday, 9 December 2019, by a high-level delegation of the World Council of Churches, which will be in the country on a social-justice mission to South Africa from 7-12 December 2019.

The South African Council of Churches (SACC) is hosting this visit by the World Council of Churches (WCC), which will include members of the WCC’s Churches’ Commission of the Churches on International Affairs, whose Moderator is Rev. Frank Chikane.

This important visit by the WCC is aimed at learning about two critical matters that have increasingly plagued our country, especially in recent months, that is: gender-based violence and femicide; an incidents of violence toward foreign nationals.

“South Africa has been in the headlines of the global media in recent months over the scourge of gender-based violence, femicide and attacks on foreign nationals. The churches of the world, through the WCC, have heard and wish to hear from us and various stakeholders how we see the situation and what we are doing about it, so that they can accompany us in any efforts we may be making,” said Bishop Mpumlwana, General Secretary of the SACC.

“South Africa has a very special place in the history and the heart of the WCC and its leadership, also today. The struggle for justice and human rights and dignity in the WCC Program To Combat Racism, contributed to change the reality in your country, but it also changed the churches worldwide. South Africa has been a lighthouse in the world for how to work together for truth, justice and peace, as churches seeking unity. Today we learn how the people in South Africa and in the neighbouring countries struggle again with violence and economic and racist injustices, and it is time to visit again as pilgrims of justice and peace,” said Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, General Secretary of the World Council of Churches.

To kick-start the official meetings with stakeholders, the delegation will make a courtesy call on H.E. President Cyril Ramaphosa, and some Cabinet Ministers from 08:30 to 09:30 at Lakes Hotel, in Benoni on Monday 9 December 2019.

Date: Monday, 9 December 2019 

09:25 Press Photo Opportunity with President Ramaphosa;
09:30 – 10:00 Press Briefing

Venue: Lakes Hotel & Conference Centre, 1 Country Lane, Lakefield, Benoni;
Tel: 011 421 5310.

R.S.V.P: All media are welcome. Please complete and submit your confirmation to attend using this link:

Media Briefing:

There will be a brief photo opportunity for the media to take photos of the President with the WCC delegation immediately after the meeting. This will be followed by a media briefing held by the WCC and SACC, to share with members of the media their week’s programme and planned engagements, which will include meetings and activities with some government officials, civil society organisations, activists, Chapter 9 institutions, church leaders, and members of the public. This programme is organised in order to learn as much as possible about the state of gender-based violence and femicide, as well as the migration issues facing the country, from the perspective of various members of society. After the press briefing, the WCC delegation will have a more detailed session with the Minister of Home Affairs, Dr Aaron Motsoaledi, who has offered to discuss in more detail the issues of migration and refugee seekers’ management.

Historic Visit by WCC:

The WCC visit is truly a momentous occasion as it is the first time in many years that a high-level delegation of the WCC has come officially on a justice mission to South Africa. The WCC first came in this manner after the Sharpeville massacre of 1960, and held the Cottesloe Conference, which created the Beyers Naude breach, leading to the formation of the Christian Institute in 1963. The only other time that the WCC had a justice visit to South Africa was to support the SACC when the apartheid government hauled the Council before the Eloff Commission in 1982, to try and prove that it was not practicing a Christian ministry. The world church came in support of the SACC. This was during Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu’s time as General Secretary of SACC, from 1978 to 1985.

For more information and interview requests contact:

Ms Moagisi Sibanda
Director Communications and Programmes
South African Council of Churches (SACC)
Tel: +2782 295 1581
Visit us online:
Follow us on Twitter: @OfficialSACC

Ms Marianne Ejdersten
Director of Communication
World Council of Churches (WCC)
Tel: +41795076363 (WhatsApp)
Visit us online:
Follow us on Twitter: @oikoumene