Select Committee on Foreign Affairs Appendices to the Minutes of Evidence


Memorandum from the International Bar Association

  1.  In its role as a dual membership organisation, comprising 16,000 individual lawyers and 180 Bar Associations and Law Societies, the International Bar Association (IBA) influences the development of international law reform and helps shape the future of the legal profession. Its Member Organisations cover all continents and include the American Bar Association, the German Federal Bar, the Japan Federation of Bar Associations, the Law Society of Zimbabwe and the Mexican Bar Association.

  The IBA's Human Rights Institute works across the Association, helping to promote, protect and enforce human rights under a just rule of law, and to preserve the independence of judiciary and the legal profession worldwide.

  2.  Following reports of threats to the independence of the judiciary in Zimbabwe and an increase in attacks on the legal profession, in March 2001 the IBA organised a high-level delegation to investigate claims that the rule of law was in danger.

  3.  The delegation held meetings with representatives from all spheres of the legal profession. The conclusion of its report was that the legal profession in Zimbabwe was in "grave peril." The IBA recommended measures to avoid the complete collapse of the legal profession and the urgent policy changes which needed to be made to stop the already existent climate of fear and lawlessness, from taking over the country. (See Annex 1.)


  4.  Since its mission in March 2001, the IBA has kept a vigilant watch over developments in the situation of the legal profession in that country. The IBA has developed an ongoing project for the legal profession in Zimbabwe, working with the Law Society of Zimbabwe to develop a continuing legal education programme. The programme also has a capacity building aspect to it, to enable the Law Society to support its members to the highest professional standard and encourage high ethical standards. The Law Society of Zimbabwe has been a strong and independent body throughout this difficult era in Zimbabwe and is seen as a non-partisan professional body, which has fought to retain the rule of law and the independence of the judiciary.

  The IBA itself is an independent and non-political professional body. This submission essentially has a dual focus to:

    (a)  Detail the attacks on the judiciary and legal profession in Zimbabwe and the external pressures encountered by judges and legal practitioners in carrying out their professional duties; and highlight the impact that a year of constant pressure, attacks and undermining by the Executive has had on the profession as a whole.

    (b)  Analyse the legislative amendments which were implemented by the Executive preceding the recent Presidential Elections on 9, 10 and 11 March, and highlight the significant impact that those changes had on the outcome of the elections, and continue to have on the legal profession and civil society.[21]

  5.  During its extensive meetings with members of the legal profession in March 2001, the delegation noted the concerns of the lawyers and judges, many of whom expressed their concern at the possibility that the Government may pressurise independent and highly respected judges to resign and replace them with judges more favourable to the ruling party line—effectively "packing" the bench. The delegation, which consisted of the Former Chief Justice of India, Justice Ahmadi; Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court Judge Justice Byron; the then Co-Chair of the IBA's Human Rights Institute, Lord Goldsmith QC; Former Counsel to Nelson Mandela, George Bizos SC; Judge Andre Davis US; and Ashwin Trikamjee, IBA Human Rights Institute Council Member, were assured during meetings with officials that there were no plans to pressurise judges to leave, and that no "packing" of the bench would take place. President Mugabe himself was informed by the delegation during its meeting with him that they had heard from members of the legal profession that the Government had it in mind to move to increase the numbers of judges in the Supreme Court in the hope that the actions taken by the Government would be validated by judges compliant to the Government line. President Mugabe "assured us that there was no such intention. We were very pleased to receive that assurance".[22]

  6.  The IBA has observed that over the last year the Government of Zimbabwe has placed consistent, unfair and deliberate pressure on judges, in particular those in its highest courts, the High Court and the Supreme Court. This has resulted in many highly respected and independent judges seeking early retirement or leaving the country. This, coupled with the increase in the number of judges being appointed to the Supreme Court, has led many members of the international legal community to believe that there are clear signs that the Government has now totally reneged on its assurances to the IBA in 2001 and may be perceived as realising the "packing" of the bench with judges who make more palatable decisions.

  7.  The IBA has issued many statements when it has considered that the independence of the judiciary has been under threat. One of the most recent statements (see Annex 2) issued by the IBA, concerned the resignation of a highly respected Supreme Court Judge, Justice Ebrahim. The judge announced his resignation on 2 March 2002 shortly after presiding over a Supreme Court ruling that the General Laws Amendments Act had been enacted illegally. Following this decision on 27 February 2002, Justice Ebrahim brought his 12-year career as a Supreme Court Judge to an end, without explanation. Minister for Justice, Patrick Chinimasa, in a report in the Herald newspaper, confirmed that Justice Ebrahim would be leaving in May. No reason was given for his resignation. Justice Ebrahim had ruled to reject legislation proposed by the Government that required greater restriction of election monitors and which increased the powers of State election officers. President Mugabe signed a decree on Tuesday, 5 March, using presidential powers that overruled the judgement laid down by the Supreme Court. In so doing the President exploited Article 158 of the Electoral Act (see Annex 3), to allow himself sweeping powers to circumvent Parliament and the courts.

  8.  The statement was released on 8 March 2002, almost exactly a year to the day since the IBA delegation first arrived in Zimbabwe for its initial investigation into attacks on the profession and threats to the rule of law. In just one year the judiciary has seen the resignation of its Chief Justice Gubbay, Judge McNally (Supreme Court), Judge Ebrahim (Supreme Court), Judge Devittie (High Court), Judge Bartlett (High Court) and Judge Chatikobo (High Court). All the aforementioned judges were of high standing greatly respected, not just in Zimbabwe, but also throughout the region and had a worldwide reputation for independence.

  9.  The resignation and departure of many reputable and long-standing judges has left the legal profession feeling demoralised. Many of those advocates fighting cases for clients in the courts know that on politically sensitive cases, such as those involving land or electoral disputes, certain judges may be appointed to preside over the case, making a fair outcome for their client unlikely from the outset. The decisions made by the courts set, of course, new legal precedents, and could leave a difficult legacy for the legal profession and have far-reaching repercussions for civil society. This has already started to manifest itself. It is perceived by some that the Judge President allocates the more politically sensitive cases to those judges that he believes will be sympathetic to the Government's position. The Judge President is also alleged to have allocated himself to cases of sensitive nature. Chief Justice Chidyausiku is also reported to have selected those of his judges who are of a more compliant nature to preside over both Constitutional and sensitive political cases. Dissenting judgements are now increasingly few and far between.

  10.  The courts in Zimbabwe have been invaded by alleged war veterans on a number of occasions. Following the invasions of the courts by war veterans, the Government has been reluctant to criticise the actions of the war veterans, which has again enhanced the feeling amongst lawyers, prosecutors and judges that they were in a vulnerable position. The government has continued to fail to act to protect or stop threats made by war veterans against judges and the legal profession over the last year. The situation has in fact worsened, with many Ministers themselves making public defamatory statements to the press criticising particular judges, and thereby inciting reprisals. Judges have had no choice but to resign.

  11.  The Government has, on a number of occasions, publicly questioned the ability of white judges to be independent. The Executive has suggested that there was a black/white divide, but the pressure is not exclusively placed on white members of the judiciary, but rather has been consistently placed on those judges, both white and black, as a result of their independent decisions. The resignations have come from both white and black members of the judiciary, all of whom have a reputation for fearlessly laying down the law without discrimination or bias.

  12.  The Zimbabwean Government has repeatedly shown disregard for the independence of the judiciary and rule of law and has completely failed to comply with the assurances it made to the delegation in 2001 regarding the protection of judges and compliance with court rulings. The Zimbabwean Government has failed to implement any of the recommendations made by the delegation and has not acted, as it is required to do under section 11 of its Constitution, to protect members of the legal profession and judiciary. (See Annex 3.)

  13.  The threats have not only been made to judges, but anyone who criticises any action or policy of the Executive. The Law Society of Zimbabwe's President, Sternford Moyo, who is internationally renowned for his strong defence of the judiciary and legal profession, has been the victim of a vicious and public attack in the State-owned newspaper, the Herald, by Minister Jonathon Moyo. This attack follows Sternford Moyo's final year report which was delivered to the annual meeting of the Law Society Council in which he stated:

  "Recently, the number of Supreme Court Judges was increased from five to eight. During its visit to Zimbabwe, the IBA obtained assurance that the Supreme Court was not going to be packed. A perception of a desire to pack the Supreme Court has developed among some of our members as a consequence of the increase in the number of Supreme Court Judges."

  Minister Jonathon Moyo as a result of this report, stated in the Herald that:

  "Media reports attributed to the ever-partisan president of the Law Society of Zimbabwe [LSZ], Sternford Moyo, allegedly calling for constitutional reforms to "prevent the packing of the Supreme Court with pro-Government judges" are, if true, clear proof that the LSZ, under Sternford Moyo, has become an anti-Government, anti-black and pro-British sponsored opposition to African nationalism in Zimbabwe. The import of the LSZ position is that the bench should be `packed with anti-Government judges' who are presumably white and steeped in Rhodesian jurisprudence like the departed Anthony Gubbay and his fellow travelling racist judges who laboured in vain to hijack the court for partisan interests on behalf of the British and unrepentant white commercial farmers in the MDC".[23]

  14.  The above allegations against Sternford Moyo made by Minister Moyo are defamatory and contemptuous in nature and should be immediately retracted by the Minister. The IBA is shocked at the personal attack made against Sternford Moyo, who is a lawyer of high standing and greatly respected by his clients and members of the profession. Reports have been received that Sternford Moyo's offices suffered a petrol bomb attack two months earlier. The IBA remains extremely concerned for Mr Moyo. No measures have yet been taken to ensure the safety of Sternford Moyo, despite a written request by Mr Moyo to the appropriate authorities for protection.

  15  The IBA is extremely concerned to learn of the public criticism of the Law Society of Zimbabwe's President, Sternford Moyo, by Government Minister Jonathon Moyo. The IBA condems the allegations as defamatory and requests that an immediate withdrawal of the comments by Jonathon Moyo is carried out[24].


  16.  International law protects the right of every citizen to vote and requires governments to facilitate the exercise of this right both legally and practically. The IBA is concerned that the Zimbabwean Government has not only failed to facilitate the exercise of the right to vote but has in recent months promulgated legislation that inhibits that right. Endorsing the UN's assertion that "freedom of expression, assembly and association are essential conditions of the right to vote and must be fully protected",[25] the IBA contends that the recent legislative changes infringe each of these fundamental rights, which are enshrined in the Constitution of Zimbabwe[26] as well as various international treaties to which Zimbabwe is a signatory.

  17.  In particular, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights ("ICCPR"),[27] to which Zimbabwe acceded on 13 May 1991, protects the right to vote (Article 25), freedom of expression (Article 19) and freedom of peaceful assembly (Article 21), allowing governments to pass laws restricting such rights only in limited circumstances as strictly necessary, such as for the protection of national security or public order. General Comment 25 describes the close relationship between the freedoms of expression and association and the right to vote, with the result that undue restrictions on fundamental freedoms will seriously jeopardise the democratic process.

  18.  In addition, the Southern African Development Community ("SADC") has stated that "one of the fundamental principles of multi-party democracy and political development process is that there should be freedom of association and expression".[28] In order to fulfil this, the SADC has recommended that the sanctity of the freedom of association and expression should be protected and strictly adhered to.[29]

  19.  In the run-up to the March 2002 presidential elections, the Zimbabwean Government introduced a number of new laws and legislative amendments, notably:

    (a)  Public Order and Security Act 2002 ("POSA").

    (b)  Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act 2001 (Access to Information).

    (c)  Electoral (Amendment) Regulations 2002 (Nos 12 and 13) ("Electoral Regulations").

  20.  As detailed further below, these new laws significantly impact the exercise of fundamental human rights and freedoms in Zimbabwe, attacking the heart of freedoms of expression and assembly and placing obstacles in the way of the conduct of fair elections.


  21.  Article 20 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe echoes the international norms enshrined in the ICCPR when it provides that ". . . no person shall be hindered in the enjoyment of his freedom of expression, that is to say, freedom to hold opinions and to receive and impart ideas and information without interference." Although this right may be restricted where necessary "in the interests of defence, public safety, public order, the economic interests of the state, public morality or public health" or "for the purpose of maintaining the authority and independence of the courts or tribunals or Parliament," such restrictions must be of a type "reasonably justifiable in a democratic society".

  22.  The freedom to "receive and impart ideas and information" encompasses freedom of the press. The international community has long recognised the need for an independent and pluralistic African press. The Commonwealth of Nations, of which Zimbabwe is a member, has also issued statements and declarations, such as the Harare Declaration[30] and the Statement on Freedom of Expression[31] ("CSFE"), exhorting member countries to encourage democracy through the presentation of diverse points of view in the mass media. In particular, the CSFE states that journalism should remain an unregulated profession and notes that journalists operating in good faith "should not become the object of emergency laws or other public security provisions". The laws enacted by the Zimbabwean Government fall short of these principles on a number of counts.

  23.  The POSA makes it an offence to cause disaffection among the police force or defence forces (section 12), to publish or communicate false statements prejudicial to the state (section 15), or to undermine the authority of or insult the President (section 16). Each of those crimes is punishable by substantial fines (ranging from Z$20,000 to Z$100,000) or imprisonment for periods of between one and five years.

  24.  The Government could claim that the purpose of the restrictions of freedom of expression in each of these provisions is in the interests of public safety and order, as permitted by the Constitution. In each case, however, the restrictions go far beyond what is strictly necessary to achieve these ends.

  25.  The prohibition against causing disaffection among the police or defence forces is drafted so broadly that it is likely to stifle any alternative political views being expressed to members of the police or defence forces. Any actual or threatened instances of breaches of discipline or disloyalty in the police or defence forces may conceivably be blamed on anyone who expresses such views.

  26.  The standard of proof required for the other offences also is very low. Falsity of statements prejudicial to the state may be established by mere risk of the possibility that the statement is false. Potential prejudice may be established by the mere risk that the statement would have the effect of promoting or inciting public disorder or violence or endangering public safety. Similarly, making any statement about the President where there is a "risk or possibility" of causing feelings of hostility, hatred, contempt or ridicule of the President attracts liability under the Act, stifling criticism or negative comment.

  27.  The Privacy Act contains additional restrictions of freedom of expression, which are particularly aimed at the press. The Act prescribes the offences of "abuse of journalistic privilege" and "abuse of freedom of expression", each punishable by fines of up to Z$100,000 or prison terms of up to two years.

  28.  "Abuse of journalistic privilege" is deemed to have taken place if a journalist "spreads rumours, falsehoods or causes alarm and despondency under the guise of authentic reports," potentially imposing liability for a negative reaction to what may be true and accurate reporting. The curiously-titled "abuse of freedom of expression" offence prevents the use of the mass media for the purposes of "denigrating, bringing into hatred or contempt or ridicule or to excite disaffection against the President, the law enforcement agents or the administration of justice in Zimbabwe".

  29.  Such subjective curtailment of the freedom of the media to report and comment on the incumbent regime cannot reasonably be justified on the grounds of public safety and order. Rather, the Privacy Act offences seem designed to stifle free comment by the press.

  30.  The imposition of criminal penalties and potential prison terms for offences under both the POSA and the Privacy Act are unnecessarily harsh and disproportionate to the crimes. The threat of incarceration for publicly criticising the Government and President appears designed to eliminate free expression on these subjects. According to recent reports, the Government has continued to enforce these laws since the election, with three journalists working in Zimbabwe arrested and detained under the laws in recent weeks.

  31.  Although restrictions on the right to free expression for limited purposes are recognised by the Constitution of Zimbabwe and international norms, in the case of these laws the restrictions go far beyond what is necessary to preserve countervailing individual and social rights. The provisions have the potential to create an atmosphere in which opposing political views are suppressed and legitimate press commentary is discouraged.


  32.  In similar terms to the ICCPR, Section 21 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe enshrines the freedoms of assembly and association, particularly in relation to political activity. The Constitution does contemplate that laws may be enacted infringing those freedoms in the interests of public safety and public order unless such laws are shown not to be "reasonably justifiable in a democratic society".

  33.  In our view, the regulation of public gatherings by the POSA, introduced on 23 January 2002 in the run-up to the Zimbabwe Presidential elections, goes beyond what is reasonably justifiable in a democratic society for the reasons given below.

  34.  Four clear days' written notice is required before holding any public gathering. This does not allow sufficient flexibility for political parties or associations to respond to political developments and hold meetings spontaneously or on short notice. The concept of "public gathering" is not defined and therefore potentially the organiser of any meeting of a group of two or more persons should apply to the regulating authority in order to have the gathering approved. Section 19(2) of the POSA specifically extends the regime to private meetings, which clearly goes beyond what is necessary in order to regulate in the interests of public safety and order.

  35.  The POSA gives the regulating authority the power to prohibit public gatherings in order to avoid any public disorder or breach of the peace. These concepts are not defined and effectively give a wide discretion to the Government to control public gatherings purely on the basis of a perceived threat of public disorder or breach of the peace. All appeals from decisions of the regulating authority are to be made to the Minister. There is no requirement that such appeals have to be determined within a specified period and, therefore, there is a real possibility that delays could occur in seeking to overturn an order prohibiting a political gathering.

  36.  The regulating authority may also prevent any public demonstrations within any police district for a period of up to one month purely on the basis that it considers that orders prohibiting specific public gatherings would be insufficient to prevent public disorder in that area. This power clearly goes beyond what is necessary in the interests of public safety and order to prevent effectively any public disorder. Any public demonstration relating to any subject whatsoever could be prohibited within the relevant district for a prolonged period of time. It is difficult to ascertain a basis on which such a blanket prohibition could be justifiable.

  37.  Breach of the POSA provisions can give rise to fines or imprisonment of up to one year. In our view, a prison sentence is a disproportionate consequence for a failure to comply with a regulatory regime. In any event, if any actual harm is caused at a public gathering, a separate criminal offence would have been committed and an appropriate punishment would apply.

  38.  Section 29 of the POSA specifically contemplates that it may be lawful for a person to be killed as a result of the use of reasonably justifiable force for the purpose of apprehending persons present at a banned public gathering. This provision implies a policy on the part of the Government that any non-compliance with the public gathering provisions may have dire consequences for those involved.

  39.  In the opinion of the IBA, the provisions of the POSA referred to above are, on any reasonable interpretation, excessive and disproportionate for their stated purpose of maintaining public order and safety and infringe the Constitution of Zimbabwe as well as generally accepted international standards of civil liberty. As recognised by the SADC in the Windhoek declaration, there is a close connection between the freedom of association and the proper conduct of the democratic process. The regulation of public gatherings and, in particular, the requirement to give notice of meetings and the ability for the Government to prohibit meetings, as well as the consequences of non-compliance in terms of jail terms and the potential use of force implies an intention to impede freedom of assembly in Zimbabwe in relation to public gatherings and demonstrations not approved by the Government.

  40.  Although the regulating authorities are required to have reasonable grounds for their decisions, in light of the fact that all relevant appeals are made to the Minister, the administrative process could easily be abused to prevent public gatherings and demonstrations even if they could have no adverse effect on public order and safety. The cumulative effect of the provisions and of the Government's powers in relation to those provisions could well lead to a reduction in freedom of assembly in Zimbabwe with a consequent adverse impact on the ability to hold political gatherings and meetings. Unjustifiable regulation of the essential political process of assembly can only have an adverse effect on the integrity of the democratic process in Zimbabwe.


  41.  Article 25 of the ICCPR and the Constitution of Zimbabwe provide for every citizen's right to participate in his or her government. This means that governments have a duty to facilitate an electoral process that is free, fair and open and in which every citizen has an opportunity to participate by voting. As described in the UN's General Comments on Article 25, freedom of expression and freedom of assembly are basic conditions necessary for the conduct of free and fair elections. By promulgating the POSA and the Access to Information and Privacy Act, which unduly restrict those freedoms, the Zimbabwean Government compromised the quality of the electoral process.

  42.  In the Electoral Regulations, the Zimbabwean Government set further obstacles to the conduct of free and fair elections. A particularly concerning aspect of the Electoral Regulations is that, when the Government originally passed them as amendments to the Electoral Act, Zimbabwe's Supreme Court ruled that several of the amendments were unconstitutional. Notwithstanding that ruling, the Zimbabwean Government resurrected those amendments in the form of regulations shortly before the election took place.

  43.  Several provisions of the Electoral Regulations restrict the number of journalists, polling agents, monitors and observers who may be present at any polling station. For example, monitors must be appointed and accredited by the Electoral Commission from among members of the Public Service and may face additional accreditation requirements, including possibly being required by the Electoral Commission to attend an approved course on electoral law and procedure. All others are denied access to the polls unless they have been accredited as observers, for which an individual must, among other requirements, pay an accreditation fee and furnish the Observers' Accreditation Committee with an invitation. The regulations also specifically allow electoral officials to proceed with tasks related to opening and closing the ballot boxes and counting votes in the absence of any election agents, polling agents, monitors and observers.

  44.  These provisions pose several problems. First, the Electoral Commission and the Observers' Accreditation Committee are composed entirely of individuals appointed by the incumbent government, not by parliament. This gives at least the appearance, if not also the effect, of impropriety in that the incumbent government granted itself control of the purportedly independent observer process. Second, the level of accreditation and other requirements, particularly as they were prescribed with so little time left before the election, created obstacles that prevented anyone outside the Zimbabwean Government from adequately assessing the conduct of the elections. Third, the fact that the poll officials are specifically granted the power to conduct the election without supervision seems to confirm the suggestion that the Zimbabwean Government was unwilling to allow the transparency necessary for free and fair elections. In addition, the provision of possible criminal liability for violations of the related code of conduct seems unwarranted and excessive.

  45.  Section 158 of the Electoral Act gives the President sweeping powers to circumvent Parliament and the Courts. This was the section used by the Government in the build-up to the Elections to regulate the conduct of the elections. The abuse of this power is evident in the fact that one of the candidates, who, for obvious reasons, has more than a general interest in the election results, makes up rules and regulations that favour his side rather than creating a level playing field for a game whose rules should be well known by all well beforehand. The section was used to promulgate regulations at 1600 hrs on 8 March 2002, when the election was due to start at 0700 hrs the next day. It was used to nullify the judgement laid down by the Supreme Court which had annulled as unconstitutional the General Laws Amendment Act. The section itself is unconstitutional and should be removed.

  46.  Some of these regulations may seem individually reasonable, however, a) their extensive nature, b) the fact that they were enacted so close to the date of the election and c) the fact that they granted too much power to appointees of the incumbent government suggests an attempt to unduly influence the conduct of the election in favour of the incumbent government.


  47.  The right of every citizen to vote for the leaders of his or her country is one of the fundamental aspects of a democratic and free society. Any effort by a government to unjustifiably restrict the exercise of that right compromises the legitimacy of that government, as well as any pretence to membership in a global community of democracies. Freedom of expression, freedom of association and a fully functioning system of independent journalists and monitors are each essential to the conduct of a free and fair election. It is the task of every government to provide its citizens with legislation fully protecting these freedoms and fully supporting the work of journalists, monitors and other essential actors. A vote cast in an atmosphere in which these freedoms and systems are restricted is not a full vote. The IBA is concerned that the legislation described above evidences an effort by the incumbent Zimbabwean Government to unduly influence the outcome of the elections in a manner that infringed upon the basic human rights of the Zimbabwean people.

  48.  The IBA feels that the independence of the judiciary has been violated and extensive damage has been done to the legal profession. The IBA contends that as a result of the persistent pressure exerted on the judiciary by the Zimbabwean Government the rule of law is on the brink of collapse, and the legal profession is in grave danger of further reprisals as the Zimbabwean Government pursues its own objectives.


  1.  An immediate and urgent review of the Constitution is carried out and all legislation recently brought in by the Government reviewed within the context of the Constitution and relevant international standards.

  2.  The Government withdraws any defamatory statements made against members of the legal profession, including the President of the Law Society of Zimbabwe.

  3.  An independent Electoral Commission is set up to oversee elections and the opinion of such a body accepted and upheld as is the norm in any democratic society.

  4.  Threats made against any judges or other members of the legal profession are investigated immediately and measures taken to ensure their safety.

  5.  The alleged "packing" of the benches must be investigated and, if found to be true, must stop and measures must be taken to ensure a fair, independent judiciary is in place.

International Bar Association

May 2002

21   The IBA invited a group of international legal experts from the law firm, Sherman and Stirling to carry out an analysis of the legislation which has been pushed through Parliament by the Zimbabwean Government in recent months. The IBA would like to express its gratitude to the experts for their contribution to the project. Back

22   Report of Zimbabwe Mission 2001, International Bar Association, 23 April 2001. Back

23   Article titled "Bid to Dilute Sovereignty Slammed", Herald newspaper. 18 April 2002. Back

24   Since submitting this report to the Foreign Affairs Select Committee the IBA was shocked and outraged to learn of the arrest and detention of Sternford Moyo and Wilbert Mapombere. For further information and the IBA's statement on the situation please visit Back

25   "The right to participate in public affairs, voting rights and the right to access to public service (Art. 25)." CCPR General Comment 25 adopted by the Committee at its 1510th meeting (57th session) on 12 July 1996. ("General Comment 2.5"). Back

26   Adopted 18 April 1980, as amended. Back

27   International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, adopted and opened for signature, ratification and accession by General Assembly resolution 2200A (XXI) of 16 December 1966, entry into force 23 March 1976 in accordance with Article 49 (Zimbabwe acceded 13 May 1991). Back

28   "SADC Parliamentary Forum-Norms and Standards for Elections in the SADC Region", Adopted by the ASDC Parliamentary Forum Plenary Assembly on 25 March 2001, Windhoek, Namibia. ("Windhoek Declaration"). Back

29   Windhoek Declaration, Part 2, Paragraph 3. Back

30   Harare Commonwealth Declaration, 1991. Back

31   Commonwealth Statement on Freedom of Expression, 1998. Back

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