Statement on the Detention of GALZ Employees

Gays and Lesbians of Zimbabwe (GALZ) strongly condemns the continued detention of its employees, Ellen Chademana and Ignatius Mhambi who were taken into custody on Friday 21 May 2010; their continued detention amounts to a gross violation of their human rights as enshrined in the constitution.

We believe the pair are being victimised as a direct result of GALZ making a submission to the Constitutional Parliamentary Committee (COPAC), despite the call for submissions for this process. We ask the question, is government asking for participation so as to clamp down on individuals and organisations that contribute to the process?

We also condemn and deplore the continued abuse of power by law enforcement agents in using POSA and AIPPA to victimise, harass and raid the homes of human rights defenders.

GALZ calls upon:

  • Law enforcement agents to release Ellen and Ignatius from custody or that they appear before a court of law as their prolonged detention is a violation of their constitutional rights.
  • Law enforcement agents to uphold the rule of law and respect for human rights by ensuring that Ellen and Ignatius have access to justice.