Restoration of Human Rights Zimbabwe wishes to express concern over the deteriorating human rights situation in the country which stands in sharp contrast to the government’s new dispensation mantra. What is particularly worrying to us as ROHR Zimbabwe is that Zimbabweans in their generality came out to celebrate the fall of former President Robert Mugabe whose 37 years in power was marked by wanton disregard of people’s freedoms and rights.

This not so new dispensation has continued to read from Mugabe’s script against its loud reformist claims.

Under President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s rule, Zimbabwe has slowly receded to the old dispensation with state security agents arresting, detaining and assaulting civil society activists

Just early this year, over one hundred people were bundled up in residential suburbs of Harare, Bulawayo and other smaller towns, assaulted and detained in connection with the violence of the January 14 shutdown.

Leaders of the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Union (ZCTU) who had called for the stay away were arrested and charged with treason for organising a stay away.

To this day, the state continues to hunt down those linked to the January 14 national shutdown despite clear evidence of the violence and destruction being an inside job within the ruling party.

In May, seven civil society leaders were arrested upon arrival at the Robert Mugabe International Airport from Maldives where they had gone to attend a workshop. They have since been charged with plotting to subvert a constitutional government.

Last week, the country woke up to the news that Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (ARTUZ) President Obert Masaraure had been abducted and dumped after being assaulted by suspected state security agents.

While Zimbabwe attempts to embark on international re-engagement, the human rights situation speaks of a country not ready to move away from its past.

ROHR Chairperson, Ephraim Tapa condemned the government saying the deteriorating human rights situation comes against a backdrop of high hopes and optimism created by the advent of the second Republic and President ED’s pronouncements.

“If anything, it would appear things have changed for the worse compared to Mugabe’s Zimbabwe,” said Tapa.

He called on President Mnangagwa to walk the talk and allow a culture of human rights and political tolerance to grow.

Inserted by ROHR Zimbabwe Information Dept