The Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission (ZHRC), one of the five independent commissions under the Constitution, has strongly condemned the use of live bullets by the Zimbabwe Defence Forces (ZDF) on protesting opposition supporters. ZHRC which was created by section 242 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe to protect, promote and enforce human rights and freedoms, said that there are other constitutional methods of enforcing order. However, it made it clear that it did not condone acts of violence.
We publish the statement in full below:
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STATEMENT FOLLOWING DEMONSTRATIONS BY THE MDC ALLIANCE ON 1 AUGUST 2018
The Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission (ZHRC/Commission) joins the nation and other peace-loving Zimbabweans in condemning, in the strongest sense, the use of live ammunition and excessive force on unarmed protesting citizens by the army on 1 August 2018. Regrettably, we understand there was unnecessary loss of fives and property. Whilst the Commission does not in any way support violence, hooliganism and vandalism by the protesters, constitutionally there are better ways of managing protests without infringing on the citizens’ right to life, which must be jealously guarded by all State institutions at all times. The ZHRC urges that the army be only deployed when necessary for the maintenance of law and order and in strict compliance with the relevant legal provisions and internationally accepted standards including restrictions on the use of live ammunition against protesters.
Further, the Commission calls upon political leaders and related stakeholders to exercise restraint and call upon their followers to respect peace and avoid violating the rights of others.
The Commission wishes to express its sincere condolences to the families of the deceased and equally wishes the injured a speedy recovery.
The Constitution of Zimbabwe is the supreme law of the Republic of Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe's latest constitution was voted for and approved in a referendum of 16 March 2013. Before the current constitution, Zimbabwe used a constitution negotiated at the 1979 Lancaster House Agreement as Zimbabwe... Read More About Constitution of Zimbabwe
The Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission (ZHRC) is a national human rights institution which was established under section 242 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe. It is an independent Commission whose main mandate is to protect, promote and enforce human rights. Read More About Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission
The Zimbabwe Defence Forces is the grouping of security forces in the Republic of Zimbabwe under which the Zimbabwe National Army (ZNA) and Air Force of Zimbabwe (AFZ) fall. The Commander in Chief of ZDF is the president of Zimbabwe, Emmerson Mnangagwa and Commander is... Read More About Zimbabwe Defence Forces