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Govt to consider ratification of African Human Rights Court
By Kundai Maponga
ZIMBABWE will consider ratification of the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights, Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Honourable Ziyambi Ziyambi has said.
Speaking at a sensitization workshop held by the African Court on Human and People’s Rights (AfCHPR) delegation which was on a working visit in Zimbabwe Ziyambi said the country will consider ratifying and making a declaration to the protocol.
“The objectives of this meeting hinges on three crucial tasks being… encourage the government of Zimbabwe to ratify the Protocol to the AfCHPR on the establishment of an African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights which came into force on January 25, 2004,” Ziyambi said.
Zimbabwe is currently in the eye of a storm after being accused of violating human rights through alleged abductions of human rights activists and opposition political party players.
The country is yet to ratify the protocol which if ratified will open Zimbabwe to litigation at the African Court.
The minister said the workshop will be useful in helping Zimbabwe to make the Protocol valid.
“Resultantly, I believe that this sensitization workshop will assist in mapping a way forward for Zimbabwe to seriously consider ratifying the Protocol and of course subsequently deposit a declaration as required,” he said.
However, Ziyambi said it was not an easy ask for Zimbabwe to ratify the protocol because it involved multi-stakeholder consultations.
“Ladies and gentlemen, without pre-emptying what is going come from other esteemed speakers, it is my opinion that the roadmap for Zimbabwe at arriving at a decision on whether to ratify or to make any commitments concerning the Protocol rests on multi-stakeholder consultation and participation,” he said.
President of the African Court Sylvain Ore from Tanzania, Justice Tujilane Chizumila who is the Judge of the African Court, judges of supreme and high courts in Zimbabwe, representatives of non-governmental organizations, national human rights institutions, members of human rights among others attended the workshop.
Ore was on a two-day visit in Zimbabwe. This visit could see Zimbabwe ratifying the Protocol.