Posts Tagged ‘elections in Zimbabwe’

NGO Forum Highlights Recent Pattern of Suppression in Zimbabwe

April 15, 2013

Having two days ago referred to the scathing attack on human rights defenders in Zimbabwe by two academics, it is perhaps fitting to give some attention to the a NGO forum recently held in Banjul where over 50 of Africa’s top human rights advocates discussed the current shrinking space for civil society in Zimbabwe. The event, held on the sidelines of the NGO Forum in advance of this week’s session of the African Commission on Human and Peoples Rights ACHPR, convened a expert panel that included Dzimbabwe Chimbga (ZLHR), Susan Mutambasere (NGO Forum), Mabassa Fall (International Federation for Human Rights), FIDH, Hassan Shire (Pan-African Human Rights Defenders Network), and Wade McMullen (RFK Center). “Zimbabwe’s troubles from 2008-9 have returned,” noted Chimbga, “Over 400 human rights defenders have been targeted by the government in various ways in recent months.” The panel found systemic repression of civil society in violation of Zimbabwe’s international obligations. Several key issues were brought to the fore in the ensuing discussion, including the need for solidarity across the African continent and international community in advance of the impending elections in Zimbabwe. In response, pledges of solidarity, information sharing, and technical support came from across the region, including from human rights advocates in Kenya, Malawi, Senegal, South Africa, Swaziland, and Uganda. In particular, the discussion highlighted the need of SADC to both monitor and ensure that Zimbabwe’s electoral environment is free and fair in the months leading up to the vote.  As a result of the side event, a resolution was passed by the entire NGO Forum, requesting that the African Commission more effectively engage on the issue of Zimbabwe.

via RFK Center, ZLHR and NGO Forum Highlight Recent Pattern of Suppression in Zim | The Zimbabwean.