Ministers snub ACHPR chair

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HARARE – Chairperson of the African Commission on Human and Peoples Rights (ACHPR) Advocate Pansy Tlakula expressed her disappointment at the end of her visit to Zimbabwe yesterday after failing to meet government ministers who she had prior appointments with.

Tlakula arrived in Zimbabwe from South Africa on Monday on a four-day working visit facilitated by Misa-Zimbabwe meant to engage government, the parliamentary committees on Media and Human Rights, the Human Rights Commission and civil society groups.

While she managed to meet other stakeholders, she said her appointments with Information minister Christopher Mushowe and Information Communication Technology minister Supa Mandiwanzira could not materialise.

“In all fairness, the meeting with the ICT minister was confirmed but just as we were about to meet him at his offices, we were told that he had been called for a meeting at State House,” Tlakula said.

“We were told to wait for him but had to leave without seeing him. As for the minister of Information, while we had an appointment with him for 2pm, his office phoned sometime in the afternoon to say we should have come at 10am. I am not sure but maybe there was a communication breakdown with those arranging the meetings.”

Speaking to the media later, she said the whole the advocacy visit has been successful and looked forward to continued engagement with all stakeholders to in support of the promotion and protection of freedom of expression and access to information in Zimbabwe.

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