POLITICAL VIOLENCE REPORT
2 June 2009
A report by the Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum
Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum
Political Violence Report: April 2009
The trends of human rights violations in the country have remained predominantly the same as
violence on commercial farms as well as the clampdown on student activists continues. Cases of
inter-party violence were also recorded in the month of April; a sign of continued political polairisation.
The figures for the monthly totals show an increase in the number of violations as compared to March.
April recorded a total of 204 violations as compared to 155 in March. There were increases in the
number of violations of freedom of expression, association and movement with the month of April
recording a total of 53 violations as compared to 30 in March. The figures for cases of assault also
rose in April where 17 cases were recorded as compared to seven in March. Three cases of torture
were also recorded in April.
The increase in the number of violations recorded in April can largely be attributed to the upsurge of
violence on commercial farms around the country despite the SADC Tribunal ruling as well as other
rulings that have been passed by the local courts. A Ministerial fact-finding mission, led by the
Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara and comprising representatives of the three principals to the
Global Political Agreement (GPA), was set up to investigate the situation on the farms. The Deputy
Prime Minister and his team visited farms in the Chegutu area and ordered an end to the disruptions
on the farms. However, this was disregarded by the invaders as seen at Mount Carmel farm where
the owner Ben Freeth, his wife and his employees were chased off the farm as soon as Mutambara
and his team left.1 The continued disregard of the rule of law on the commercial farms has seen not
only the commercial farmers being harassed but also their employees who have been increasingly