MDC statement on victims of torture

MDC statement on victims of torture
Published: 26 June 2019 (193 Views)
Following the UN General Assembly Resolution 52/149, the Assembly proclaimed 26 June as the United Nations International Day in Support of Victims of Torture. Torture is a crime under international law which seeks to annihilate a victim’s personality and deny the inherent dignity of the human being.

As of 26 June 2019, Zimbabwe remains as one of two countries in the SADC region to not have signed or ratified the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment which requires states to take effective measures to prevent torture in any territory under their jurisdiction. The failure to sign or ratify the Convention is testament to the true nature of the ZANU-PF led Government which still uses torturous techniques to assert “authority”, instill fear and inflict punishment.

Despite the absolute prohibition of torture under international law and constitutional safeguards against torture, state funded torture remains rampant in Zimbabwe, used as an oppressive tool to intimidate and silence political opposition and Human Rights Defenders. In Zimbabwe, torture is being used by the Government and State Security agents as a vicious attempt at breaking our democratic will aimed at subjugating citizens to the ZANU-PF totalitarianism styled government.

The air of impunity for torturers in Zimbabwe is endemic, with victims being denied access to remedies as state led investigations are ineffective and the complicity of their fellow officers is rampant. Therefore, the MDC Youth Assembly in commemorating this day calls for the end of torture in Zimbabwe and the return to constitutionalism. We condemn the abduction and torture of Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe Obert Masaraure and others who have fallen prey to the torturous state machinery. We call for the immediate release of Last Maingehama and other unjustly incarcerated citizens who are being subjected to inhuman treatment in Zimbabwe's overcrowded prisons.

The current Zimbabwean crisis is a result of a confluence of above mentioned factors as well as a legitimacy crisis resulting from a stolen election which failed to satisfy constitutional principles of free, fair and credible, institutional and constitutional collapse, endemic corruption and continued gross human rights violations. The socio-economic collapse in Zimbabwe cannot be separated from the breakdown in the social contract between citizens and the government. The economic situation in Zimbabwe has clearly turned for the worst as E.D Mnangagwa and Mthuli Ncube have sent the nation into an economic free fall and we shall exercise our constitutional rights to demonstrate to protect the interests of fellow Zimbabweans. The crisis in Zimbabwe cannot be dealt by mere administrative adjustments, the fragile socio-economic environment requires an overhaul of the existing government and the failure to address these issues will result in the MDC Youth Assembly enabling this transition.

MDC Youth Assembly                     
Secretary for International Relations            
Takunda Tsunga

MDC Youth Assembly
Deputy Secretary for International Relations
Discent Bajila

- MDC Youth Assembly

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