ROHR Zimbabwe Combined Manchester & Liverpool Branches Meeting Saturday 9th August, 2014 Report

10th August, 2014

On Saturday 9th August, 2014 Restoration of Human Rights (ROHR) Zimbabwe human rights activists from Greater Manchester and Crewe in the UK converged at 72 Brattice Drive, Swinton, M27 8WG Manchester for a meeting of the combined Manchester & Liverpool Branches which started at 2:00 pm.

Attendees included Pythias Makonese (Chairperson and from Crewe), William Shoriwa (Organizing Secretary), Chipiwa Stella Makaranga (Activist), Chenai Mudzamiri, Rejoice Chimedza, Gilbert Gumbo, Chris Deda, David Ngwenya (Treasurer and from Bolton), Irene Kamdefwele, Ruth Chitsanzo Goba (host) and Lorraine Mudjgiwa (Co-ordinator – North – UK Chapter).

Apologies were received from Petronella Mahachi (Secretary and from Liverpool), Delina Mutyambizi (Treasurer in the National Executive) and Tichapondwa Shoriwa

The meeting was also attended by a member of the Board of Trustees, Panyika Anselm Karimanzira (International Spokesperson) who updated the meeting on current human rights situation in Zimbabwe as well as the universal activities of ROHR Zimbabwe. He also dwelt on the dire situation unfolding at Chingwizi Camp where flood victims are being subjected to abuse by state apparatus, the resurgence of violent farm invasions, especially in Matebeleland and Masvingo, the unemployment induced demonstrations (mainly in Harare) and the attendant Police brutality as well as the harassment, arrest and persecution of vendors trying to earn an honest living and the general absence of rule of law in Zimbabwe. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights was discussed in considerable detail and so were the Aims & Objectives of ROHR Zimbabwe. This was in line with the ongoing theme “Who is a human rights activist” and especially for the benefit of new members.

The meeting was interactive with everyone participating in the proceedings. As has become standard practice, the issue of the way forward for the Manchester & Liverpool Branch in its ever important role of providing material and intellectual resources to the people on the ground in Zimbabwe was revisited and deliberated upon. Also discussed were the potential themes and subjects for the branch’s next batch of petitions and the targeted audience and modalities for same.

There was also a lively question and answer session during which everyone present contributed to the ensuing debate on a wide range of topics, including ROHR Zimbabwe’s ongoing involvement with and impact on the activities on the ground in Zimbabwe. On the basis of the progress made so far with regards to securing permission from relevant authorities (Greater Manchester Police and City Council), the meeting set a target of September as the month to resume vigils / demonstrations in Manchester

The meeting then proceeded to elect Ms Chenai Mudzamiri as the new Information & Publicity Secretary, Chris Deda as the Deputy Information & Publicity Secretary, Irene Kamdefwele as the Deputy Organizing Secretary and Ms Rejoice Chimedza as Fundraiser 3, both in the Manchester & Liverpool Branch Committee. The resultant substantive Branch Committee is as follows;-
Chairperson:- Pythias Makonese, Vice Chairperson:- Mavu Chinyani, Secretary:- Petronella Mahachi, Vice Secretary:- Sithembiso Sibanda, Organizing Secretary:- William Shoriwa, Deputy Organizing Secretary:- Irene Kamdefwele, Information & Publicity Secretary:- Chenai Mudzamiri, Deputy Information & Publicity Secretary:- Chris Deda,  Fundraiser 1:- Ruth Chitsanzo Goba, Fundraiser 2:- Mishell Chirunga, Fundraiser 3:- Rejoice Chimedza, Activist 1:- Chipiwa Stella Makaranga Activist 2:- Hedwig Tabikira, Activist 3:- Artwell Pfende with Panyika Karimanzira and Delina Mutyambizi playing mentorship and supporting roles.

The meeting reaffirmed the new committee’s immediate task as being that of steering the revitalization of the two branches and the resumption of the Manchester and Liverpool Vigils and petitions.

The meeting ended at a around 5:30 pm.

To view pictures taken at the event, click here or follow link below.

By: Information & Publicity Department