United Nations Secretary General Antonio Gutteres says he is concerned about the human rights abuses in Zimbabwe and has called on the government to open inclusive dialogue with all the political players in the country.
Guterres’ call come after neighbours South Africa have already named two envoys who will be dispatched to Harare to discuss the deteriorating situation following wanton arrests of political activists, lawyers and journalists opposed to the Emmerson Mnangagwa administration.
In a statement the United Nations said: “The Secretary General has been following with concern the recent developments in Zimbabwe. He urges the Government of Zimbabwe to ensure the protection of all fundamental human rights, notably the freedom of opinion and expression and the right to freedom of peaceful assembly and association, in accordance with Zimbabwe’s human rights obligations.
“He also calls on political actors and civil society to resolve issues peacefully through inclusive dialogue.”
This comes after South Africa President Cyril Ramaphosa, who is also the African Union chairman, indicated that he will be sending that country’s former Security Sydney Mafumadi and Baleka Mbete, a former Speaker of Parliament to Zimbabwe in an effort to resolve the political logjam bedeviling the country after a disputed July 2018 election.
Main opposition leader Nelson Chamisa of the MDC Alliance has refused to recognize Mnangagwa as a legitimate President arguing that he won the election instead.
Although the two protagonists have publicly said they are willing to engage, but no breathrough has been found yet with Chamisa refusing to be part of the Political Actors Dialogue (Polad) which Mnangagwa maintains is the only platform which he can engage the 42 year-old leader.