‘Assist Zimbabweans in tornado-hit South Africa’


THE Matabeleland Institute for Human Rights (MIHR) has called on the government to investigate whether there are any Zimbabweans based in South Africa affected by a tornado that hit that country and assist them.


Several people were injured after a roof collapsed at the Phumulani Mall in Thembisa
Several people were injured after a roof collapsed at the Phumulani Mall in Thembisa

A tornado hit South Africa early last week, leaving a trail of destruction, reports from the neighbouring country say.

MIHR said it also received reports of people resident in Thembisa, confirming that their rights to “access to shelter, clean and safe water, food and clothing have been compromised due to the tornado effects”.

“We call on the government of Zimbabwe, through the South African consul and the ministry of Foreign Affairs, to liaise with the South African authorities to investigate the number of Zimbabweans, whose rights have been affected by the tornado and offer them requisite technical, material and psycho-social support and right’s needs.

“We call on the Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission to compel the Zimbabwean government to fulfil its duty to protect and promote citizens’ rights by investigating the numbers of Zimbabweans affected by the tornado and offering them necessary rights assistance,” MIHR said.

The organisation said the Constitution compels the government to protect, promote and fulfil the rights of citizens such as shelter, and clean water.

MIHR is an independent human rights watchdog that exists to monitor, promote and protect the rights of the people of Matabeleland. The human rights watchdog said Parliament and parliamentarians should also push the government to institute investigations on the number of affected Zimbabweans, if any.

“We call on Parliament, especially the thematic committee on human rights and parliamentarians from Matabeleland to compel the ministry of Foreign Affairs to issue a public statement on the number of Zimbabweans in South Africa affected by the tornado and measures being taken by government to ensuring that these citizens have their rights needs addressed.”