21 March marks a special day on South Africa’s calendar, Human Rights Day. While the public holiday that it brings is appreciated, it’s a day to look back and reflect on our country’s history and recognise the importance of basic human rights for all.

Enshrined in South Africa’s Bill of Rights is a collection of rights that every person is entitled to under the law. Some of these are acted upon when a person uses their mobile phone, while some are enhanced by this. TECNO and itel look at which human rights these are, and how technology is changing the way these are looked at.

The Right to Personal Privacy

The Bill of Rights expresses that a person may not have the privacy of their communications infringed upon. In the hyperconnected world in which we live, where interactions via SMS, calls, WhatsApp messages, emails, and other digital forms of communication facilitated by your phone come into play, this right is valuable to protect not only you but your personal data as well. When used for nefarious or criminal means this right can be infringed upon, but for everyday communications this human right is essential.

The Right to Freedom of Expression

Often done through social media in today’s digital world, this right promotes the fact that a person has the freedom to say or write whatever they want, and to receive information that they choose. When using your phone, you can go onto any platform (social media or otherwise) and express yourself, with whatever musings or beliefs you choose to share, or look through what others have to say. However, the one major restriction that goes along with this, is that whatever is expressed must never violate someone else’s rights or break the law in any way. This restriction has led to many a debate in grey areas as to what is actually protected under the Right to Freedom of Expression and what infringes on other people’s rights.

The Right to Education

The growth in access to mobile devices connected to the internet has enhanced this right contained in the Bill of Rights. With youth spending so much time on their devices, it doesn’t just have to be time spent on entertainment or social media. Outside of the classroom, there is a plethora of educational materials online to browse through, including many free courses, tutorials, and videos that can be used to learn and upskill. And it’s not just limited to children. Adults can also continue their educational journeys with these resources and continue to grow and develop.

TECNO and itel wish you a peaceful Human Rights Day, whatever you may be doing to celebrate and reflect on this very special day. Keep an eye on TECNO’s Facebook page for news about the latest goings-on, updates and competitions.