1st August 2021
On Saturday 31st July 2021, the Scotland Branch of the UK Chapter of ROHR Zimbabwe held their monthly meeting via zoom. The meeting was chaired by branch Vice Chairperson, Olivia Chamboko. Meeting commenced at 1400hrs
Minutes compiled and typed by Alvina Chibhamu
Register of Attendance:
Vongayi Mufara, Alvina Chibhamu, Olivia Chamboko, Harriet Ndlovu, Edineth Mtengwa, Collen Ndlovu, Malvern Dengu, and Delina Mutyambizi.
Apologies: – Masciline Mzondiwa
Olivia welcomed everyone to the meeting and everyone in turn introduced themselves and their respective branches. She then temporarily handed the meeting over to branch Chairperson Alvina to officially welcome two new members of the Scotland branch. Alvina updated that Edineth Mtengwa and Collen are now fully paid-up members of ROHR. They were encouraged to observe and learn as it was their first meeting but also to engage and feel free to ask questions.
- Adoption of minutes/Matters arising from last meeting
- Human Rights Violations in Zimbabwe
- Register to Vote Campaign
- Finance Update
Olivia called for the seconding of minutes from the last meeting. They were confirmed to be correct and were adopted as a true record. Alvina recognised there were no other outstanding matters arising from the last meeting apart from the Campaign, which will be updated at Agenda item 3.
Human Rights Violations (HRVs) in Zimbabwe
Vongayi Mufara and Masciline were on the rota for recording the HRVs for the month of July and they reported the following:-
– 4th June- release of two political prisoners.
– 14th June- Alice Guvheya- Chitungwiza resident trust protested against unprocedural demolition of houses.
– 16th June-Kudzai Mushonga, a Zimbabwe Prison Services (ZPS) civil servant has been suspended from service. President Mnangagwa was present at the erection ofthe Mbuya Nehanda statue and Kudzaiwrote on his facebook page that he wished everyone kneeling to the should go mad – he is accused of insulting the President. This violation extends to all of us who are posting on Facebook with our views -there’s no freedom of expression.
Register to Vote Campaign
Alvina updated that we are still in talks with Rufaro Kaseke about our #RegisterToVote2023 campaign. Vongayi also fedback that she has been in touch with the printers in Zimbabwe and has put forward the designs, colours and costings to the group. After all deliberations were made, we decided to go with the initial order of 200 t-shirts in different colours of our ROHR Zimbabwe logo and that would be well within our budget for a start.
We are yet to action the other points on posters and languages on videos. To be discussed further
In light of deportations that are ongoing, members were encouraged to continue advocating and campaigning for the safety of those who are in danger of being deported. The UK Chapter of ROHR Zimbabwe has written letters to Priti Patel, Boris Johnson, Kate Hoey and James Duddridge with regards to the deportation and removal of Zimbabweans from the UK. The climate for deportees in Zimbabwe is less than favourable and there is no guarantee of their safety. Their lives are in danger as they risk all manner of interrogation, torture, disappearances or death upon landing in Zimbabwe. “The government of Zimbabwe has a well-documented record of killing activists and perceived enemies of the state. Zimbabweans in the diaspora are generally perceived to be enemies of the state in Zimbabwe”.
Members were also encouraged to ensure they engage their lawyers or refer someone for legal representation when needed to avoid the risk of running around too late after a deportation order has been issued. Other advice was around keeping people informed of your whereabouts if you needed to go for reporting at the home office or to check in with someone after to let them know you are ok. Most members have availed themselves for support and checking in with each other occasionally to make sure no one is left out.
Harriet gave a finance update and encouraged members to continue fundraising within their communities.
Any other business
Next branch meeting date announced for 28th August 2021.
All agenda items and any other business having been exhausted, Nicolate Gwati thanked everyone for attending and declared the meeting closed at 1500hrs.
To view pictures taken at the event, follow this link.
By: Information & Publicity Department