TEN civil society groups have petitioned Local Government minister Saviour Kasukuwere to stop the ongoing demolition of illegal structures in urban centres, particularly Harare, without providing alternative accommodation for the affected families.
BY STAFF REPORTER
Part of the petition, copied to Parliament and Harare City Council, read: “No person may be evicted or have their home demolished without an order of court after considering all the relevant circumstances… We condemn the arbitrary demolitions without due process of the law.”
Some of the organisations which signed the document included Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum, Amnesty International, Civic Education Network Trust, Counselling Services Unit, Gays and Lesbians Zimbabwe, Justice for Children, Media Monitoring Project of Zimbabwe, Media Institute of Southern Africa and Non-Violent Action and Strategy for Social Change.
The groups said while they did not condone unlawful acts by citizens who occupy undesignated land, the government should ensure that an impartial court considers all the relevant circumstances.
They also called on police to expedite investigations into illegal land dealings.
The petition comes in the wake of demolition of scores of houses in and around Harare with the government and the local authority claiming they were illegal structures.