Statement for Human Rights Day 2019

GALZ joins the world in commemorating Human Rights Day in 2019 under the theme Youths Stand Up for Human Rights.

 This year’s theme is of paramount importance as Youths need to be effectively included and championing Human Rights and the development discourse, as they constitute more that half of the world’s population and 42% of Sub-Saharan Africa is below 25 years. This provides a basis for the need for Youths to Stand Up for Human Rights

 GALZ applauds the courageous efforts of men and women who fought and continue to fight for the attainment of human rights for all human beings in their diversity. A special applause is made to “unsung heroes” in particular individuals and communities whose fight for human rights is hardly recognised and appreciated.

GALZ acknowledges the efforts of the State in ratifying the Convention on Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) however more needs to be done in implementing recommendations from other treaty bodies such as the Universal Periodic Review. We note the slow pace of finalising Bills before Parliament as an impediment to the enjoyment of human rights by all people.

GALZ notes with concern the curtailment of the right to demonstrate as guaranteed in the Constitutions. Citizens should be able to express themselves freely and petition Government without harassment.  GALZ therefore calls on the State to comply with the Constitution on this and other matters on human rights

In line with the theme, Youth Stand Up for Human Rights, GALZ laments the limitations around enjoyment of rights by Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex youths on the basis of their perceived sexual orientation, gender identity or expression.  The violations are physical, structural, economic, political and social. These are characterised by bullying in schools, loss of employment, poor social services delivery, exclusion in social and development spaces and generally being treated as second class citizens.

GALZ calls on Government to strengthen the capacities of Independent Commissions for them to be able to fully discharge their mandate.

GALZ encourages LGBTI Youths to stand up, demand and exercise their rights as guaranteed in the Constitution of Zimbabwe/ /ENDS