HomePoliticsZim pulls out of AU human rights meeting

Zim pulls out of AU human rights meeting

Godfery Marawanyika

ZIMBABWE will no longer host the African Commission for Human and Peoples’ Rights meeting in November due to budgetary constraints, Justice minister Patrick Chinamasa has said. <

Chinamasa said government had informed the commission that it was no longer able to host the meeting.

“We are no longer hosting it,” he said. “We had indicated to them a long time ago that we wanted to host the meeting but because of financial circumstances we are no longer able to do so,” Chinamasa said.

Relations between Harare and the African Union (AU) have cooled recently because of government’s refusal to grant Tom Nyandunga, an envoy of AU secretary-general Alpha Konare, permission to assess the impact of its controversial Operation Murambatsvina.

Nyandunga was denied authority to assess the clean-up campaign as government claimed that it was not informed of his visit.

Nyandunga has said he will proceed to do a report of his findings while he was holed up in a hotel in Harare.

The United Nations secretary-general Kofi Annan sent a fact-finding mission to Harare headed by Anna Tibaijuka.

Tibaijuka later produced a damming report which was not taken lightly by the government.

The government has since responded to the Tibaijuka report, arguing that what was said by the opposition and civic groups was presented as fact while its own views were taken as mere allegations.

Chinamasa denied that government’s decision on hosting the commission had anything to do with the fallout from Tibaijuka’s report or Nyandunga’s failure to proceed with his mission.

“We told them (African Commission) of our position long before the Tibaijuka thing (report),” he said.

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