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on the Save Zimbabwe Campaign
March 20, 2007
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In the past two weeks, the nation has been under serious tension
due to the brutal violent response by the state machinery to stop
peaceful Zimbabwean citizens from attending a prayer meeting organized
under the auspices of the Save Zimbabwe Campaign. That extreme and
disproportionate response resulted in the death of two innocent
citizens, Gift Tandare and Itai Manyeruke both of Highfields. We
have just learnt about the death of Itai Manyeruke on Wednesday.
We are sending our condolences to their families. It also resulted
in the arrest and brutal assault on leaders of the Save Zimbabwe
Campaign who were on their way to attend the prayer meeting.
We wish to put
it on record that the meeting organized on March 11 2007 at Zimbabwe
Grounds was intended to be a prayer meeting coordinated by the Christian
Alliance as chair of the Save Zimbabwe Campaign. The Christian Alliance
has taken lead to ensure that the Save Zimbabwe Campaign becomes
a platform where prayer is encouraged. As Christians it is our obligation
to minister to people in ways that reduce anger and frustration
and building hope. Prayer is one of the tools that we believe will
bring healing and transformation in a peaceful manner in our nation.
As the Christian
Alliance, we are non-partisan. And we therefore value and respect
the Save Zimbabwe Campaign as a non-partisan platform seeking to
bring together various religious and civic groupings and political
formations within our country, so that we can all engage each other
in finding a lasting solution to our ongoing national crisis.
We call upon
the ministers of Home Affairs and of Defense to ensure that the
Zimbabwe Republic Police and the Zimbabwe National Army are there
to protect all Zimbabwean citizens and to remain apolitical. The
assault and torture of arrested citizens by the state agents without
due process of the courts is a serious human rights offence by the
A major concern
for us is the rapid shrinking of religious space where the state
has taken upon itself to re-define who should be allowed to hold
prayer meetings and who can attend it. We call upon the government
to stop interfering with freedom of worship and association within
the church in Zimbabwe. It is sad to note that on March 11, many
church services in Highfield, Glen Norah and Glen View could not
take place due to the excessive use of force by the police and the
CIO who went about interfering and infringing on people's
God-given rights of movement, assembly and association. This development
has resulted in the State creating a very hostile and threatening
situation of anguish and hopelessness.
It is the duty
of the state to ensure that people live in an environment where
socio- economic and personal security is guaranteed for all citizens.
We have been
encouraged by the response of church bodies in the SADC region like
the South African Council of Churches, who have called upon SADC
to ensure that freedom of association and worship in Zimbabwe is
respected. We also applaud the response of the African Union that
has expressed concern over the deteriorating conditions in our country.
We the people
of Zimbabwe want peace, prosperity, human dignity which are our
God given rights. We are also looking forward in the near future
to reconcile with all our relatives and friends who are scattered
in the diaspora due to harsh economic and political conditions prevailing
As we enter
into the period of Easter we call upon all Zimbabweans to get into
prayer for the nation, only God can save Zimbabwe. As the Christian
Alliance we sense a renewed urgency for the speedy and peaceful
resolution of our national crisis to avert looming disaster. We
believe the time has come to engage in meaningful and productive
dialogue with all stakeholders for the sake of this nation. May
God save us from these trials and tribulations that we are facing
for this short time.
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