‘Economic crisis fuelling human rights violations’

ZIMBABWE Human Rights Commission (ZHRC) chairperson Elasto Mugwadi yesterday said the majority of citizens are having their socio-economic rights violated as government is failing to provide safety nets to cushion the poor in light of the economic turmoil inflicting the country.

BY TAFADZWA MUTACHA/ KUDZAI MUCHENJEKWA

Speaking to NewsDay on the sidelines of a national conference on human rights and access to justice organised by the Legal Resources Foundation (LRF), Mugwadi said enjoyment of rights could not be separated from the economic situation in the country.

“When we are talking of enjoyment of human rights, you cannot separate that from economic development, especially with our current situation and the economic challenges that we are facing,” he said.

“There are so many rights, especially socio-economic rights, that are being violated in this country and the approach of the State in terms of the Constitution is progressive realisation of such rights. A right that may need to be addressed now will have to wait because there are no resources for up to 20 years and the damage would have already been done.”

He urged people to put the just-ended elections behind them and focus on working together for economic development.

Addressing the conference, the president of the Commonwealth Judges and Magistrate Association, Justice Charles Mkandawire said there was need to make justice accessible to all.

“Access to justice has largely been affected by corruption and people now neglect courts because of corruption. Most people who are in need of judicial services come from marginalised communities continue to be sidelined when they are the ones who most need it. There is need for a set of guidelines that enhance human rights and promote access to justice in Africa,” Mkandawire, who is also a Malawi High Court judge, said.

He noted that access to justice in Africa was being stifled by a raft of issues, including corruption.

The two-day conference is focused mainly on key human rights issues confronting Zimbabwe and strategies to address these issues in the next five years.

Running under the theme Enhancing Human Rights and Access to Justice in Zimbabwe, the conference saw civil society organisations and State institutions exploring opportunities for collaboration in advancing human rights and access to justice in the country and shaping advocacy strategies.

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3 Comments

  1. Ordering people to put the just ended elections behind them is the worst human rights violation by someone who is supposed to be the primary defender of human rights Mugwadi. You have always sounded captured.

  2. shunguhadziurayi mangarayi

    So you think continuing talking of election which are now water under the bridge will develop our country? Well you can continue but that is the most backward way of thinking because only 2023 shall we have another election. After all who told you that the Zim human rights is an extension of mdca? Who captured Mugwadi? Because he is talking of developing the country tha is why you are saying he is captured? If he had talked of your destruction demonstrations they yu say he is right. Zvimbwasungata hazvife zvakatonga nyika

    1. Well, you and him shall continue talking about development and moving forward till eternity without action on the ground. Why? Because you can never develop an economy or move forward as a nation when the vast majority of the people are in silent protest against their rights having been trampled upon. Anyone with even just the quarter of the brains of a goat should be able to get that through his/her skull easily. People are not robots. They have a heart, mind and soul such that when hurt the villain and accomplices can’t simply order the victims to put it behind and join them in order to subject them to further abuse. Ko zvino maelctions zvaakapera and done deal saka wamuri kuudza kuti handei mberi ndiani? Endai mberi nemiti nemhuka dzesangozve makanyarara.

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