Zimbabwe National Council for the Welfare of Children
We have learnt with great shock and sadness of the death of a 12 year old boy, Christpower Simbarashe Maisiri in what is suspected to be a political motivated violence (Daily News, Monday 25 February 2013,p1 and News-day February 25 2013, ‘political violence returns’). A hut where five children were sleeping was petrol bombed killing one child beyond recognition with four other children escaping. The father of the said dead boy is believed to be vying for the MP’s position under MDC-T in the upcoming elections.
This case comes into light after much publicity by political leaders campaigning against political violence. Also in support to the campaigns, a code of conduct was drafted where political parties were committed to abstain from violence. The code by the parties in the inclusive government also requires them to publicly call for tolerance while denouncing political violence.
The government of Zimbabwe bears a responsibility for preventing and responding to violence against children and for upholding the principles of the Convention on the Rights of Child and the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of Children to live their lives free of violence. ZNCWC urges the government, politicians and the public to abide by the provision of the two documents to ensure safe environment for our children.
Violence against children is never justifiable and we strongly condemn the acts of political violence especially on children. We greatly commend the media houses and journalists who are working to ensure that such acts of brutality are published. In complementing this noble move, Civil Society organizations are campaigning for peaceful referendum and non involvement of children in the acts of political violence.
We however encourage the police to meticulously investigate these cases exercising much professionalism and refraining from favoritism also bearing in mind that their role is to protect citizens.