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MDC worried by NPRC, ZHRC silence

By Staff Reporter

Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) says it is worried that the various independent commissions such as National Peace and Reconciliation Commission (NPRC) and the Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission (ZHRC) are silent in the wake of abductions, persecutions and rampant human rights violation against defenceless civilians by the state.

According to Section 233 of the Constitution, some of the objectives of the independent commissions include (a) to support and entrench human rights and democracy, and (b) to promote constitutionalism.

In a statement, MDC national secretary for healing, peace and reconciliation Blessing Chebundo said the silence is both surprising and worrying as some of the violations are gross.

“We are surprised and worried by the conspicuous silence by the country’s independent institutions for peace against these continued gross human rights violations,” he said.

Prior to the banned MDC demonstrations ZHRC and NPRC had issued statements against people who were threatening to crush the demos adding that people have a democratic right to peacefully demonstrate against the hardships currently being faced in the economy.

However, various people including Tatenda Mombeyarara and Samantha Kureya Gonyeti) have since been abducted, beaten and tortured since the banning of the demos but the two commissions are yet to issue a statement condemning the acts.

The police have also banned all the proposed demos by MDC through issuing of Prohibition Orders which have gone on to be upheld by the various courts in the country.

The European Union delegation to Zimbabwe has since issued a statement expressing their concern over intimidation, harassment and physical attacks on human rights activists following the banning of MDC demonstrations.

“The Zimbabwean constitution guarantees the right to personal security from violence and prohibits physical or psychological torture,” read part of the statement.

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Daniel Chigundu

Daniel Chigundu is a male journalist in Zimbabwe and has been practising since September 2009. He used to the editor for The Business Connect (newspaper) in Harare, has his own news website Tourism Focus which is biased towards the tourism sector. Daniel is also working with Magamba Network on their project called Open Parliament where they do live coverage of Parliamentary activities on Twitter and Facebook. He is currently the secretary-general of the Zimbabwe Parliamentary Journalists Forum, is a member of Zimbabwe Small Broadcasters Association and a board member of Digital Communication Network. He holds a Diploma in Communication and Journalism from the Christian College of Southern Africa (CCOSA), a certificate in Youth leadership training from the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung (FES), a certificate in Citizen Journalism from Magamba Network and is currently a first-year student at Zimbabwe Open University studying for a Bachelor of Arts Honours in Ethics and Organisational Leadership.

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