/Summary of Violations
Heal Zimbabwe recorded a total of 58 human rights violations in 20 districts in the second half of the month of June (17 – 30 June 2018). Five categories of human rights violations that include intimidation, destruction of campaign material, forced participation to political gatherings, assault and partisan distribution of food aid. Intimidation recorded the highest number of human right violations recording 87.93% (51 cases) four cases higher than to the previous report which recorded 78.33% with 47 cases. Destruction of campaign material recorded 5.17% (3 cases), forced participation to political gatherings recorded 3.44% (2 cases), assault and partisan distribution of food aid both recorded 1.72% (1 case). Heal Zimbabwe observed that the human rights violations recorded in this report emanated from (i) ZANU PF community meetings (ii) Presidential proclamation of the elections and rerun dates, (iii) political party rallies (ruling and opposition) and (iv) food handouts from the Department of Social Welfare.
Heal Zimbabwe is greatly concerned by the continuous prevalence of human rights violations as the nation prepares for the July 30 elections. Intimidation recorded the highest number of cases with 51 cases, four cases higher compared to the previous report which recorded 47 cases. Intimidation to Heal Zimbabwe erodes the gains of peaceful co-existence achieved through social capital within rural communities and directly hinder citizens to freely express themselves and participate in democratic processes. The organisation established that intimidation manifests taking the format of threats and reminders of past electoral violence (chaotic 27 June 2008) and threats of rerun violence if ZANU PF loses the elections. Other notable threats issued include withdrawal of food aid and evictions from villages. Issuers of these threats include ZANU PF leaders, traditional leaders, war veterans and MDC supporters. Victims ranged from opposition supporters and ordinary citizens. Heal Zimbabwe continues to call for peace and tolerance ahead of the general elections. The continued prevalence of human rights violations is worrisome as it impedes peaceful coexistence and free expression of citizens’ rights in democratic processes.
Source: Heal Zimbabwe
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