HEAL ZIMBABWE AFRICA DAY STATEMENT

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Heal Zimbabwe joins the rest of Africa in celebrating Africa Day. Africa Day is the annual commemoration of the 1963 founding of the Organization of African Unity (OAU) which later become the Africa Union (AU). This year’s commemorations are taking place after the African Union launched Agenda 2063, which is both a Vision and an Action Plan. It is a call for action to all segments of African society to work together to build a prosperous and united Africa based on shared values and a common destiny.

Under this agenda, African leaders laid down a vision and ideals to serve as pillar for the continent in the foreseeable future. The Agenda strives to enable Africa to remain focused and committed to the ideals envisaged in the context of a rapidly changing world.

One of the Aspirations of Agenda 2063 aims to achieve a peaceful and secure Africa where mechanisms for peaceful prevention and resolution of conflicts will be functional at all levels. As a first step, dialogue-centered conflict prevention and resolution will be actively promoted and a culture of peace and tolerance must be nurtured in Africa’s children and youth through peace education.

Agenda 2063 also compels member states to seek to further the ideals of this agenda by promoting dialogue centered conflict prevention and resolution mechanisms. For Zimbabwe, this can only be achieved when the government swiftly sets up the National Peace and Reconciliation Commission (NPRC) which is a constitutional commission with the mandate of developing mechanisms for early detection of areas of potential conflict and disputes and to conciliate and mediate disputes among communities, organizations, groups or individuals. Such a step will work positively towards the attainment of the objectives of Agenda 2063. This will also compel Zimbabwe to affirm its commitment to the fight against human rights abuses that include torture, abductions and intimidations.

On the occasion of this years’ commemorations, Heal Zimbabwe urges the government to celebrate Africa day by putting timelines on making the NPRC functional starting with the immediate tabling of the NPRC replacement Bill before parliament. This is a direct contribution  to the African Union vision of Agenda 2063, which  aims at  achieving  a peaceful and secure Africa where all mechanisms for peaceful prevention and resolution of conflicts will be functional at all levels.

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