Research and Advocacy Unit, (RAU)

Background

The violence against women in Zimbabwe's oppressive regime is amongst the toughest across Africa. Women are victims of police and other security forces' brutality that has led to torture, disappearances, and displacement. This violence has been ordered by the regime, which doesn't take any concrete measure to stop violence and to protect women in Zimbabwe. Thousands of women are reportedly tortured, beaten, raped, and subjected to inhuman treatment and humiliation. Violence is used as a political weapon against women, especially those who fight for their rights. Although Zimbabwe has signed the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Gender and Development Protocol, the regime has never respected its commitments.

Campaign

RAU has produced Hear Us: Women Affected by Political Violence in Zimbabwe Speak Out, which asks the government of Zimbabwe and the Southern African Development Community (SADC) to implement clauses of the Gender and Development Protocol. Additionally, RAU uses the video to sensitize Zimbabwean women to stand up for their rights. The initial training for this video was conducted at the end of September 2008, and the video was completed in March 2009.

Latest Updates

Following an additional training in February 2010, RAU is working to produce a second, evidentiary video that will be used in Zimbabwean courts and at the SADC Tribunal to push for the prosecution of perpetrators of rape during the 2008 election period.

For more information on this partnership, please contact Bukeni Waruzi, Program Manager for Africa and the Middle East.

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