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Civil society abductions in Zimbabwe decried by Transparency International in Africa

This press release is issued by:

  • Ghana Integrity Initiative
  • Transparency Ethiopia
  • TI Kenya
  • Center for Public Integrity (Mozambique)
  • TI Nigeria
  • TI South Africa
  • TI Uganda
  • TI Zambia

The Transparency International (TI) movement in Africa, leading the fight against corruption, condemns the kidnappings of human rights activists in Zimbabwe and calls for the government to work vigorously towards their release and to release any citizen being held for exercising their right to protest. TI further denounces the blatant misuse of power by the government of Zimbabwe, which is one of the root causes of the current humanitarian crisis.

Human rights and other civil society activists speaking out against the abuse and mismanagement driving the humanitarian and political crisis in Zimbabwe are increasingly becoming targets of repression. In recent months, the country has witnessed a series of abductions and disappearances of activists.

Prolonged detention, without contact to the outside world, is a not only a breach of human rights but a betrayal of the freedom which was fought for under great sacrifice in Africa. The TI movement in Africa strongly believes that civic protest in the face of impunity and political intolerance is the duty of every Zimbabwean and every African.

This protest is vital, as government malfeasance also bears a great human cost. Instead of fighting easily preventable diseases such as cholera, killing dozens of Zimbabweans daily, public resources are being diverted to serve personal or narrow political purposes. And a complete lack of accountability is undermining humanitarian assistance for the suffering population.

TI calls upon the political forces in Zimbabwe to swiftly finalise and implement the power-sharing agreement and to collectively work for the improvement of livelihoods of Zimbabwean citizens.

Further, TI expresses its solidarity with the people of Zimbabwe, and those members of civil society who have demonstrated courage and determination. TI implores other actors, particularly business and religious leaders, to exert more pressure on the government and to support civil society. Only a concerted effort can have a hope of restoring Zimbabwe to the prosperity and freedom it once enjoyed.

We also call on bodies such as the Southern African Development Community (SADC), the African Union (AU), and the United Nations (UN) to exercise stronger leadership, and spare Zimbabwe further deterioration, by pressuring President Mugabe to reconsider his current approach. In the meantime we call on the people of Zimbabwe to remain vigilant and united. We encourage them to reject all forms of oppression and to seek peaceful avenues to reclaim their fundamental rights and freedoms as enshrined in the UN Charter.

For any press enquiries please contact

TI Kenya / Felgona Atieno
T: +254 20 2730324/5 or 2727763/5
T: +254 722 296389 or +254 733296389
Fax: 254 20 2729530
E: [email protected]

TI Zambia / Goodwell Lungu
T: +260 211 290080
Mob: +260 977 455455