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Amnesty Chief Urges Return To Rule Of Law After Mugabe Fall

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By Staff Reporter

Harare, November 22, 2017 – AMNESTY International secretary general Salil Shetty has called on Zimbabwe’s new leadership to place greater commitment towards returning the country back to the rule of law following the fall of long serving President Robert Mugabe on Tuesday.

Mugabe’s rule finally ended in spectacular fashion when the military stepped in a week before and forced him into tendering his resignation insisting his continued rule was nolonger in the best interest of the country.

Zanu PF has moved with speed to reinstate sacked Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa as party leader who was widely expected to take over from the former President.

Responding to the news of Mugabe’s resignation, Shetty said Zimbabwe should take the opportunity to restore the rule of law.

“After more than three decades of violent repression, the way forward for the country is to renounce the abuses of the past and transition into a new era where the rule of law is respected and those who are responsible for injustices are held to account.

“During 37 years of President Mugabe’s leadership, tens of thousands of people were tortured, forcibly disappeared or killed. President Mugabe condoned human rights violations, defended criminal actions of his officials and allowed a culture of impunity for grotesque crimes to thrive,” Shetty said.

Shetty said much of the progress that had been achieved by the country over the years was wiped away by Mugabe’s often punitive policies.

“Although Zimbabwe invested heavily in social services in the early years of independence, much of this progress was wiped out by later events such as the Operation Murambatsvina forced evictions campaign of 2005, which destroyed the homes or livelihoods of 700,000 people.

“The people of Zimbabwe deserve better. The next generation of leaders must commit itself to upholding the constitution, living up to Zimbabwe’s international human rights obligations and treating its people with dignity and justice,” she said.

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