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This article participates on the following special index pages:

  • Strikes and Protests 2007- Save Zimbabwe Campaign

  • Women's Coalition condemns torture and violence in Zimbabwe
    Women's Coalition
    March 21, 2007

    View Save Zimbabwe Campaign index of images and articles

    The Women’s Coalition of Zimbabwe (WCoZ) is a network of prominent women rights activists and women’s organizations with national structures. The WCoZ is a forum where women meet to engage in collective activism on issues affecting women and girls in Zimbabwe. Its central role is to provide a focal point for national activism on women and girl’s rights. WCoZ brings females from diverse backgrounds to collectively advocate for the attainment and enjoyment of their rights. The organisational members of the Coalition work in diverse fields including health, legal aid, access to education, gender based violence, torture, skills training, poverty reduction, research, property rights and governance issues.

    WCoZ is horrified by the levels of violence currently prevailing in Zimbabwe. Recent shootings and petrol bombings have left women, like Mrs Tambare, living with the trauma of losing a loved one. Some of the injuries the women activists sustained are potentially life threatening, and that goes for the female police officers. Other cases of violence include;

    • The alleged torture of opposition and civic activists in police custody, among them six females, Sekai Holland, Grace Kwinje, Machuma and Memory. 
    • The harassment and injury of mourners at Gift’s funeral
    • The petrol bombing of two female police officers, (Pretty Mushonga and Busani Moyo) who are currently hospitalized.
    • The arrest of 15 women who were visiting a colleague who had been released from prison.
    • A high presence of the police force in residential areas and their harassment of women.

    The police in any democratic state is responsible for protecting all citizens regardless of their political affiliation and gender. Zimbabwe, as a member of the UN body should subscribe to UN Conventions on torture and degrading treatment for its citizens. We are therefore perturbed by the activities of the police which are not in tandem with their role of protecting citizens but have rather become synonymous with the fear induced by the colonial regime police.

    Women’s Coalition strongly condemns political, state and all other forms of violence especially that perpetrated against women in their diversity. Experience has taught us that any upheavals in society usually affect women more gravely than men. Women suffered such violence during the liberation war and in the post independence era. Repressive legislation like POSA and AIPPA have limited the freedom of assembly and of expression in our society, further shrinking the little space women had for determining their future.

    We are the mothers of this nation, responsible, through birth, for bringing children into this world. We would therefore want to bring children into a country where there is:

    • Absolute respect of human rights for all, especially for women and girls
    • Good governance at all levels and by all institutions
    • Respect of democratic values and norms

    We once again urge the government, as the custodian of the constitutional guarantees, to promote the above values. This goes for all political and civic activists in Zimbabwe. We should not allow dirty politics to divide us. Rather lets hold the flag high, hold free and fair elections, restore Zimbabwe to its former glory and get rid of this culture of violence.

    Visit the Women's Coalition fact sheet

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