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What the ACDP is petitioning for:
The African Christian Democratic Party calls on the Government of the Republic of South Africa to henceforth officially and publicly declare that, in accordance with Section 31 of Bill of Rights in the South African Constitution, Churches registered as Non-Profit Organisations and/or Non-Profit Companies (Public Benefit Organisations):
1. Will be deemed to be Essential Service Providers, even during a State of Disaster, such as was declared in South Africa as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.
2. Will have the same rights as other institutions recognised to be Essential Service Providers, while strictly adhering to all the necessary restrictions and precautions that apply.
3. Have the right to minister to the spiritual, psychological, emotional and physical needs of their members and community.
4. May participate in feeding schemes, and the supply and distribution of groceries, shelter and other essential items to their members and the underprivileged in their communities.
Section 31 of Bill of Rights in the SA Constitution says:
Cultural, religious and linguistic communities
31. (1) Persons belonging to a cultural, religious or linguistic community may not be denied the right, with other members of that community—
(a) to enjoy their culture, practice their religion and use their language; and
(b) to form, join and maintain cultural, religious and linguistic associations and other organs of civil society.
(2) The rights in subsection (1) may not be exercised in a manner inconsistent with any provision of the Bill of Rights.