A delegation of AfriForum, who returned from a weeklong fact-finding mission in Zimbabwe this week, said that human rights violations in Zimbabwe are continuing unabatedly under the Mugabe regime, in spite of the implementation of a unity government in this country. AfriForum’s delegation also found that the South African government does not lift a finger to assist South African citizens who fall victim to the Zimbabwe regime’s human rights violations.
According to Kallie Kriel, executive director of AfriForum who was part of the delegation that went to Zimbabwe, discussions were held with people who fell victim to violent attacks and theft in Zimbabwe and who did not receive any assistance from the Zimbabwean police. Kriel said that the victims of human rights violations are afraid the Zimbabwean police will arrest them if they dare to protect themselves and their property.
Kriel further said that AfriForum’s delegation obtained a great deal of information from South Africans in Zimbabwe regarding the South African government’s unwillingness to offer them protection. According to Kriel, the South African government stands by idly while its citizens’ farms and possessions are stolen in Zimbabwe and while some South Africans are jailed. The information that has been obtained will be useful in AfriForum’s two planned court cases in which the South African government will be taken to task over its failure to fulfil its duty towards South African citizens living in Zimbabwe. AfriForum is compiling a report that will set out the details of several human rights violations against South African citizens in Zimbabwe.
AfriForum’s delegation also attended the annual conference of the Commercial Farmers’ Union of Zimbabwe (CFU) in Harare during the fact-finding mission. At the conference the CFU officially recognised AfriForum’s role in helping to bring about justice in Zimbabwe by bestowing an honorary award on Kallie Kriel and Willie Spies, AfriForum’s legal representative.