Report: 2012 International Conference on Transitional Justice

This picture shows the transitional justice roadshow, an initiative by the Forum to engage Zimbabweans.

Another activity of the Forum is a transitional justice roadshow to engage Zimbabweans in discussions about truth, accountability and rehabilitation of survivors.

Here, the Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum presents the report on the 2012 International Conference on Transitional Justice in Zimbabwe which took place from the 4th to the 6th of October 2012. The conference brought together various stakeholders to deliberate on the way forward for transitional justice in Zimbabwe.

Since its inception in 1998, the Forum has worked with victims of organised violence and torture to try and find redress.  In 2003, over 70 civil society organisations from Zimbabwe and experts from the region gathered at a symposium held in Johannesburg on Civil Society and Justice in Zimbabwe and made recommendations for the inclusion of survivors in the transitional justice discourse. The 2008 Transitional Justice Options for Zimbabwe Workshop in Harare laid down the minimum demands for civil society on transitional justice. Since then, transitional justice discussions have taken centre stage at the community and policy levels, thanks to the work of civil society organizations as well as of the Organ on National Healing, Reconciliation and Integration.

The 2011 Transitional Justice National Survey carried out by the Forum found the language of different players may differ but the substance is the same: Zimbabwe wants a comprehensive, permanent end to impunity; Zimbabwe wants to say ‘never again’ to violence; and Zimbabwe wants to respond to the just needs of survivors of organized violence. How to arrive at these noble goals was the subject of discussion at the International Conference on Transitional Justice. For the first time in the country’s history, members of government and civil society came together to deliberate on these questions that shape the future of all Zimbabweans. Thereport’s  findings are spaces that need to be expanded upon in the search for solutions.

This report outlines the presentations from seven countries that participated in the conference–Rwanda, Uganda, Germany, Liberia, the Philippines, Kenya and South Africa–and also includes reflections from local and international experts on possible strategies for transitional justice in Zimbabwe. Above all, the report captures the deliberations by all participants on the way forward for Zimbabwe, including the conference’s six specific action points on which Zimbabwe must focus.

In presenting this report, it is the hope of the Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum to admit everyone into the deliberations that took place at Nyanga and also into the inter-generational conversation on truth, justice and accountability for all Zimbabweans.

You can also access part two of the video.


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Design and development supported by HURIDOCS.