Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) is calling upon government to act against torture, make it criminal offence and take adequate measures to stop this crime.
In a statement, the ZLHR have suggested that the criminals should be charged in mainstream courts of law and punished by judicial officers with appropriate penalties as it is an international crime.
ZLHR has also disappointed by the delays in the justice delivery system in courts, hence urging the government to promptly act since there are a number of victims who waited for long for their cases to be heard.
“In Zimbabwe,torture has long been a problem and for several years, ZLHR has documented numerous cases in which state security agents have tortured people,”
“In the notable absence of political will to reform laws and institutions fuelling torture and as an organisation committed to seeking justice for all victims of torture through litigation and other forms of redress,ZLHR calls upon;
Government to criminise torture, prosecute all cases of torture, ensure full accountability of all perpetrators and guarantee redress and rehabilitation to victims including taking adequate measures to prevent all forms of torture and inhuman or degrading treatment. Government to ractfy and domesticate the Convention against Torture,Cruel,Inhuman and Degrading Treatment and its Optional Protocol.Government must investigate and prosecute those responsible for torture and other ill-treatment and ensure that all acts of torture are offences under its criminal law. Government to honour payment of compensation awards granted by courts in favour of victims and survivors of torture. Government must accept the outstanding request for a fact-finding country visit by the United Nations special Rapporteur on Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment,”
ZLHR is today commemorating the International Day in support of victims of torture. They are fighting against other cruel and inhuman acts, degrading treatment or punishment.