Meetings have been disrupted in various parts of the country, to the extent that the Portfolio committee has not been able to gather much by way of the people’s views on the Bill. There is no sane citizen of this country who would like to stop the work of this noble committee.
The only people who are anxious to stop this work are those that have a track record of violating the people’s rights. In Zimbabwe, we all know that it is Zanu (PF) and elements of the security forces that have been in the forefront of violating the people’s rights.
Zanu (PF) is aware that once the Bill is passed through Parliament it will give the Human Rights Commission the authority to investigate all acts that may be deemed to constitute violations of human rights.
The fact that the Zanu (PF) leadership has persistently called for the next elections to be held this year is testimony that the violent political party is desperate to ensure that the proposed Bill does not see the light of day before the elections are held. The primary intention is to grossly violate the people’s human rights by employing violence during the election campaign in order to ensure a Zanu (PF) and Mugabe victory at the polls.
Such a victory is very unlikely to be attainable under a peaceful and non-violent political environment. The Zanu (PF) hoodlums are therefore being hired to obstruct the process of gathering the people’s views on the Bill, so that the Human Rights Commission will remain a paper tiger with no teeth. That way, those of a violent nature will be free to make use of violence and intimidation against supporters of the MDC-T and other parties without fear of the law.
Zanu (PF) is also afraid that some of the views of the people of this country may reflect a deep desire for the Human Rights Commission to be empowered to investigate human rights violations dating as far back in the history of this country as 1980. This will mean that the Commission will have to delve into the sordid business of the Gukurahundi massacres of 1982 to 1987 during which “madness” more that 20 000 lost their lives.
Also greatly feared are the murders and tortures that were inflicted upon the people of this country by the war veterans, the militia and some security agents during the 2008 presidential run-off election campaign. The Zanu (PF) leadership is therefore desperate to ensure that the proposed Bill and the Human Rights Commission will remain in limbo.
But the days when Zanu (PF) used to have its own way with the laws of this land are long over. The proposed Bill will have to be gazetted and then debated in Parliament, where it will be passed into law whether the former liberation party likes it or not.
The people of this country are determined to stop the Mugabe party from any further abuse of the people’s rights at any time, elections or no elections. We urge the Portfolio Committee to stick to its mandate and ensure that the proposed Bill will be passed into law as soon as possible. Hoodlums must not be allowed to stop good laws from being passed by the legitimate structures of the state.Post published in: Opinions & Analysis