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1/13/2014

Global Mondays Weekly Lecture Series - Global Legal Advocacy: Promoting Human Rights in Zimbabwe

William H. Gates Hall
117
12:30 PM - 1:20 PM

"The Role of NGOs in the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights in Zimbabwe"

Charles Mutasa, Barer Fellow; LL.M. Candidate in Sustainable International Development, UW School of Law

Hosted by the Barer Institute for Law and Global Human Services and the Graduate Program in Sustainable International Development

In African countries such as Zimbabwe, NGOs are generally viewed as the bedrock of democracy as they play a watchdog role over government with the view of promoting good governance, human rights and sustainable development. This presentation is a critical appraisal of the role and effectiveness of the strategies used by local NGOs to promote human rights in Zimbabwe. Despite the difficulties associated with an unfavorable operating environment, which includes government’s defiance of court orders, politicization of state institutions and continuous harassment of human rights defenders, the NGOs have remained resilient and made significant achievements in promoting human rights in Zimbabwe. The presentation will also briefly looks at the interface between the local NGOs and the African human rights regional bodies in their attempts to address the human rights challenges Zimbabwe is facing. It concludes by looking at the successes and challenges faced by the NGOs and suggest a way forward.

Charles Mutasa is a Zimbabwean who has studied political science and development studies up to Masters level. He has over 16 years of experience working for international and national non-profit organizations in Africa in the area of governance, human rights, health, poverty and general development policy. Charles work in the fields of policy research, analysis, consultancy and advocacy focuses on the importance of linking human rights and the rule of law issues with other sustainable development issues especially economics and politics with the goal of contributing to Zimbabwe’s transitional justice issues.