Human rights groups in Zimbabwe have reported president Emmerson Mnangagwa to the United Nations (UN) and the African Union (AU) over “increasing human rights abuses.”
The Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR), the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Southern African, and the Human Rights Defenders Network have dispatched a letter to UN special rapporteurs and their AU partners.
They accuse Mnangagwa’s administration of abusing the courts to punish dissenting individuals who are mostly opposition politicians, activists, and journalists. Reads the letter in part:
_We write to call your attention to the disturbing trend in Zimbabwe of weaponising the criminal justice system to stifle dissent and suppress the activities of human rights defenders (HRDs) and journalists._
Journalist Hopewell Chin’ono, MDC Alliance spokesperson Fadzayi Mahere, MDC Alliance deputy chairperson Job Sikhala, MDC Alliance youth member Makomborero Haruzivishe, and the Zimbabwe National Students Union (ZINASU) leader Takudzwa Ngadziore are mentioned in the report as some of the victims of alleged human rights abuses.
Haruzivishe is currently serving a 14-month jail term after he was convicted by a Harare magistrate of inciting public violence.
ZLHR spokesperson Kumbirai Mafunda and New York Times correspondent Jeffrey Moyo are also on the list of haunted journalists after they were attacked and or arrested by law enforcement agents.