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Zim ranks lowly on rule of law index

ZIMBABWE is one of the countries that trample on the rule of law and tolerates impunity, according to the latest World Justice Project (WJP) report which ranked the country 100 out of 102 countries.

Wongai Zhangazha

According to the report — The Rule of Law Index 2015 — Zimbabwe was only ranked ahead of Afghanistan and Venezuela, while Denmark, Norway and Sweden were ranked first to third respectively.

The report relies on over 100 000 household and expert surveys to measure how the rule of law is experienced in everyday life around the world.

Performance is assessed through 44 indicators organised around eight themes: constraints on government powers, which measures the extent to which those who govern are bound by law; absence of corruption measures the absence of corruption in a number of government agencies; open government measures look at how a government shares information, empowers people with tools to hold it accountable and fosters citizen participation in public policy deliberations; and the protection of fundamental human rights.

The other themes are regulatory enforcement which evaluates the extent to which regulations are fairly and effectively implemented and enforced; order and security measures concerned with how well society assures the security of persons and property; civil justice which measures whether ordinary people can resolve their grievances peacefully and effectively through the civil justice system; and criminal justice that evaluates the criminal justice system.
A set of five questionnaires based on the index’s conceptual framework were developed by the WJP team and translated into several languages and adapted to reflect commonly used terms and expressions.

On the theme of constraints on government powers which also measures the extent to which transitions of power occur in accordance to law, Zimbabwe was ranked 101.

On absence of corruption, the country was 92nd while on open government it came last at 102.

Zimbabwe fared better at 78 out of 102 countries on order and security which looks at various threats to order and security including conventional crime, political violence and violence as a means to redress personal grievances.

The other rankings were protection of fundamental rights (101), regulatory enforcement (100), civil justice (79) and criminal justice (72).

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