Report of the 2014 International Human Rights Day Commemorations - 10th December 2014 Amphitheatre, Bulawayo I. Introduction and background On the 10th of December 2014, the Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission (ZHRC) and its partners joined the Global Community in commemorating the International Human Rights Day. The International Human Rights Day is commemorated globally each year on 10th December. The commemorations were held at the Bulawayo Amphitheatre under the International theme “Human Rights 365”. According to the office of United Nations Office for the High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNOHCHR), the theme encompasses the idea that every day is Human Rights Day. It celebrates the fundamental proposition in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) that each one of us, everywhere, at all times is entitled to the full range of human rights, that human rights belong equally to each of us and bind us together as a global community with the same ideals and values. The UN General Assembly proclaimed 10th December as Human Rights Day in 1950 to bring to the attention ‘of the peoples of the world’ the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) as the common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations. This day marks the first global recognition of rights to which all human beings are inherently entitled as codified in the UDHR of 1948. The UDHR includes 30 Articles whose provisions have been adopted in international treaties, regional human rights treaties and national constitutions including the Constitution of Zimbabwe. ZHRC, as the National Human Rights Institution (NHRI) with the constitutional mandate to promote, protect and enforce fundamental human rights and freedoms (S243 of the Constitution) in Zimbabwe, assumed a leadership role in commemorating the International Human Rights Day. The commemorations were a strategic platform that ZHRC and its partners used to enhance visibility and promote awareness of fundamental human rights and freedoms in the country. The commemorations of International Human Rights Day brought together various multi-sectoral stakeholders to showcase themselves, their products and services. The event also enabled the ordinary person to access information on fundamental human rights and freedoms from the ZHRC, various Government Ministries, Civil Society, Independent Commissions and other organizations. The decision to hold the commemorations in Bulawayo was motivated by the need to increase awareness of human rights to other areas of Zimbabwe and in particular, taking into consideration the principle of non-discrimination spelt out in international, regional and national laws including the Constitution of Zimbabwe. II. Purpose of the Commemorations As a new National Human Rights Institution (NHRI), ZHRC sought to partner with other Organisations and Government Ministries/Institutions to enhance visibility and educate the public about its work and mandate as well as raise awareness of fundamental human rights and freedoms. This was achieved through various platforms such as the mass media, a march for human rights, exhibitions, drama, poetry, songs and dance, music, solidarity messages, speeches and a keynote address. Further, the ZHRC and partner Government Ministries and Organisations Page 2 of 19

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