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Human Rights Day Statement
Human Rights Trust of Southern Africa (SAHRIT)
December 10, 2001

We are joining other civic organisations and stakeholders in commemorating the Human Rights Day.

The Human Rights Day is an occasion for stakeholders to reflect on the extent to which internationally agreed human rights standards are guaranteed in each state party. The states in southern Africa should make more effort to ensure that all human rights are enjoyed by all citizens.

We take this opportunity to call upon SADC member states, civic organisations, the media and other stakeholders to strive to eliminate poverty, corruption, inequality, fear, intolerance and all other ills of society. Above all, efforts to create a safety net for victims of HIV/AIDS should be doubled. HIV/AIDS has created serious security and developmental challenges for the region. The plight of the sufferers, orphans and the communities in the face of the disease calls upon immediate intervention at local, national, regional and international level. Never before has the need for everyone to act been so desperate. The region needs to act now.

SAHRIT also welcomes the adoption of the SADC Protocol Against Corruption by the heads of state and government in August 2001. We call upon all the stakeholders at national level to play their part in the implementation of the protocol. In particular, civil society and the media should work tirelessly to secure government commitment to the implementation of the Protocol.

Phil Matsheza
Executive Director
Human Rights Trust of Southern Africa

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