23 February 2009


Despite the recent formation of an uneasy coalition government in Zimbabwe, concerns continue for the well-being of human rights defenders such as Jestina Mukoko who was abducted from her home by security forces in November.

Few observers express any confidence that the power sharing agreement between Robert Mugabe and Morgan Tsvangirai will last let alone bring any measure of justice to the long-suffering people of Zimbabwe.

For close to two months Jestina was missing, with the police flatly denying holding her or having any knowledge as to her whereabouts. She only resurfaced thanks to intense international and local pressure on the government of Zimbabwe from ordinary people outraged by her treatment.

She has still not been charged with any offence yet continues to be held in a maximum security prison.

Since then a story of beatings, torture and abuse while in secret detention has emerged, with until recently, the police continuing to deny her access to medical care.

As Zimbabwe Peace Project's Director, Jestina worked hard to advance the cause of human rights and democracy in Zimbabwe. She spoke for many who were voiceless.

She is but one example among many, of a person who is paying the price for taking a stand against an oppressive government. Such people deserve our support.

You can take action to support Jestina Mukoko by visiting the Africa Action website.

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