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This article participates on the following special index pages:

  • Strikes and Protests 2007- Save Zimbabwe Campaign

  • Solidarity statement from the Botswana Civil Society Coalition on Zimbabwe (BOCISOCZ)
    Botswana Civil Society Coalition (BOCISCOZ)
    March 20, 2007

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    At a meeting held on Tuesday 20 March 2007, we, BOCISCOZ, comprising The Botswana Council of Churches (BCC), The Botswana Council of Non-Governmental Organisations (BOCONGO), The Botswana Secondary Teachers Trade Union (BOSETU), DITSHWANELO – The Botswana Centre for Human Rights, The Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA) Botswana Chapter, The Concerned Africans Association (CAA), The People to People Coalition of Zimbabwe (PPCZ), Amnesty International Botswana, The International Socialists Botswana, The Disability HIV/AIDS Trust (DHAT), The Botswana Congress Party (BCP), The Botswana National Front Youth League (BNFYL), The Bible Society of Botswana, Kgolagano Theological College, The Lutheran Church, Tirisanyo Catholic Commission, The Dutch Reformed Church, The Evangelical Fellowship of Botswana, The Kweneng Rural Development Association (KRDA), Lifeline Botswana, The Botswana Community Based Organisations Network (BOCOBONET), The Botswana Network on Law HIV and AIDS (BONELA), The Botswana Unified Local Government Service Association (BULGASA), The Botswana Teachers Union (BTU), Habitat for Humanity Botswana, CORDE, and The Botswana Scouts Association, wish to express, in the strongest terms, our condemnation of the recent events which led to the arrests and brutal attacks on civil society members in Zimbabwe.

    We recognise that:

    • there is increasing shrinking democratic space affecting faith-based, civil society, political, media and human rights organisations
    • the crisis in Zimbabwe has serious security implications for the country and the Southern Africa region, as suggested by reports of desertions from the Zimbabwean security forces
    • the serious lack of good governance and respect for human rights has led to the collapse of the rule of law. This is evident through arbitrary arrests and detention, assaults by the security forces on citizens and the flouting of court orders by those in authority. The current policy of ‘silent diplomacy’ used in the SADC region in dealing with the Zimbabwe question, has proved to be ineffective. It can no longer continue to go unchallenged as a valid policy which guides inter-state relations in the region.
    • the number of undocumented migrants from Zimbabwe into neighbouring countries, including Botswana is increasing. This is due to the economic hardship faced by the ordinary citizen.
    • there have been recent robust parliamentary debates in Botswana concerning the Zimbabwean crisis. We are heartened by this welcome development and believe that it will further strengthen calls for the reclaiming of democratic space in Zimbabwe.

    BOCISCOZ commits itself to continuing to take forward the movement to provide solidarity with the citizens of Zimbabwe. This we will do through various activities, including the rally on Thursday 22 March 2007 (GSS Grounds, 4:30p.m.), until there is positive change in Zimbabwe.

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