“We are celebrating this day at a time when human rights in this country remain under siege despite the consummation of the inclusive government in February 2009,” said Tsvangirai in a statement read on his behalf by Deputy Minister Jessie Majome.
The statement was reading on the annual UN human rights day commemorations held in Harare Saturday.
Tsvangirai’s speech continued “while we have fared well as a government in improving basic social services especially health and education, ordinary citizens and human rights defenders in particular continue to be harassed and intimidated.”
The Prime Minister further revealed the country is experiencing gross rights violations a day mainly from elements linked to President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu-PF party.
“Since January this year alone, an average of over 20 rights violations either sponsored or abetted by the state has been recorded daily and this means we are still far away from experiencing the peace and the freedoms for which a brutal liberation struggle was wagged by brave sons and daughters of this land.”
Over a thousand people attended the commemorations which were held at the Harare Gardens.
But there was a conspicuous absence of Zanu-PF politicians during the otherwise lively commemorations, which were marked by song and dance by local young musicians among them Alexio Kawara, XQ, Freddy Manjalima aka Kapfupi and a host of other young artists.
MDC-T politicians, Nelson Chamisa who is ICT Minister and Home Affairs Co-Minister Theresa Makone also gave speeches during occasion.
Chamisa commended Zimrights and Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition, the organisers of this year’s commemorations, for keeping the state under the check on issues of human rights observance.
Minister Makone on her part, lashed out at the predecessor Zanu-PFgovernment for allegedly violating human rights by parceling out land to Zanu-PF loyalists at the expense of other Zimbabweans.