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on violence, instability and victimization of civil society leaders,
the media and ordinary citizens
Zimbabwean civil society organisations
April 01, 2011
We as Civil
Society Groups strongly condemn the resurgence of violence accompanying
ZANU PF's rush to lections. The violence, typical of ZANU
PF campaigns is characterized by beatings; displacing of over 140
Mbare and Epworth residents; charging of 45
civil society activists with treason for watching a movie; detaining
CSO leaders and raiding
their offices; burning
newspapers; looting foreign
African owned shops; and invading
have not been spared. In events reminiscent of the bloody June 2008
Election Run-off," former and fake liberation war combatants
have been deployed in communities to coerce them into voting for
As Civil Society, we
lament the inaction of the police in maintaining law and order,
leaving citizens to be brutalized and business looted. Demonstrations
against foreign businesses have taken a xenophobic tone, which should
not be tolerated by any right thinking nation, especially one whose
citizens have been victims of similar attacks.
Police inaction vindicates
Zimbabwean's demands for non-partisan policing and the need
for security sector reforms to guarantee the security of citizens.
We note with disappointment
that the country's security has not intervened to protect
citizen's rights and interest in keeping with its constitutional
mandate. We note with concern that Zimbabwe's 7th Parliament
has done little to repeal repressive legislation and create an enabling
legislative environment for opening democratic space.
We demand that
the Zimbabwean Government:
its primary responsibility of protecting its citizens through arresting
the violence and ensuring that perpetrators of acts of violence
and intimidation are brought to book.
2. Desist from
targeting Civil Society actors going about their work, through unwarranted
police action and interference.
xenophobic and racist attacks which are being carried out under
the guise of indigenization.
their political followers in order to maintain peace and stability
in the country.
diversity and freedom of the media to operate without any hindrance.
6. Ensure the
transformation of the state media especially ZBC, into true public
service news outlets, which reflect all shades of Zimbabwean opinion.
the urgent repeal and amendments to repressive pieces of legislation
such as Public
Order and Security Act, Access
to Information and Protection of Privacy Act, Criminal
Law (Codification and Reform) Act and other laws that impede
rather than facilitate Zimbabweans' full enjoyment of their
reform state institutions, such as the judiciary and the security
sector, in order for them to execute their duties in a professional
and non-partisan manner that puts the country ahead of partisan
We urge the
Southern African development Community (SADC) and the Facilitator
of Political Dialogue in Zimbabwe, President Jacob Zuma to:
a road map that countenances these worrying developments against
ZANU's rush to rigged elections without reforms in 2011.
2. Urge ZANU
PF to stop violence and intimidation.
3. Note that
the developing crisis in Zimbabwe poses a potent threat to regional
security through mass migration of displaced people.
consider calls by Civil Society for a close and permanent monitoring
presence in Zimbabwe, as talk of election continues to gain momentum
amongst political actors.
that given the situation on the ground, key reforms should take
place ahead of talk of elections. A Road Map to Elections will lay
out clear benchmarks for the holding of democratic elections. The
Road Map should, among other things, deal with violence and intimidation
of citizens, remove impendent to freedom of expression such as repressive
laws and unprofessional and partisan conduct by the justice and
6. Urge the
African Union to come good on its promises of an assessment mission
to Zimbabwe in the 1st quarter of the year to assess Zimbabwe's
readiness for elections.
We urge Zimbabweans
restraint and desist from used as instruments of violence, or being
provoked to justify further crack down on citizens, the media and
perceived ZANU PF opponents.
2. Stay firm
in their struggle and pursuit of a democratic dispensation that
will restore their human dignity, economic justice and guarantee
the civil liberties eroded by years of tyrannical rule.
to the above Statement
in Zimbabwe Coalition
Institute of Southern Africa (Zimbabwe Chapter)
3. Centre for Public Accountability
Teachers Union of Zimbabwe
Progressive Residents Association
Youth Development Trust
10. Elections Resource Centre
Human Rights Association (ZimRights)
Initiative for Democracy in Zimbabwe
16. Youth in Politics
for Community Development in Zimbabwe
18. Platform for Youth Development Trust
and Lesbians in Zimbabwe
20. Coalition Against Censorship Zimbabwe (CACZ)
21. Bulawayo Arts Forum (BAF)
23. Christian Alliance
24. Ecumenical Support Services
National Students Union
27. Zimbabwe Farmers Union Development Trust
International - Zimbabwe
Civic Education Trust
Lawyers for Human Rights
31. Zimbabwe Young Women's Network for Peace-Building
32. Doors of Hope Development Trust
Monitoring Project of Zimbabwe
Association for Non Governmental Organizations
of Human Rights
38. Youth Alliance for Democracy
39. Chiredzi Community Development Agenda
and Men of Zimbabwe Arise
41. Zimbabwe Youth Movement
43. Build a Better Youth Zimbabwe
Harare Residents Association
45. Non Violence Action Support Centre
Students Christian Movement
47. Catholic Commission
for Justice and Peace in Zimbabwe
48. Zimbabwe United Residents Association
Elections Support Network
Human Rights NGO Forum
Coalition for Debt and Development
Poets for Human Rights
53. Institute for Young Women Development
54. Youth Agenda
55. Women in Politics
56. National Association for the Care of the Handicapped
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