The ZHRC also received complaints of members of the military allegedly indiscriminately harassing and beating up civilians in some suburbs in Harare. The Commission dispatched monitoring and investigative teams to assess the situation in Kuwadzana and Warren Park in Harare as well as in Chitungwiza following these reports and confirmed that indeed members of the public were being assaulted by people in military uniforms who were moving around the suburbs in military trucks. Of concern to the Commission is the fact that that there seems to be no office taking responsibility over the deployment of soldiers into communities and streets. On the contrary, the Zimbabwe Defence Forces and the Government have incredibly denied this deployment. This poses an even bigger danger to communities as it appears that the ‘soldiers’ beating up civilians are not accountable to anyone. The Commission would have expected prompt investigation and prosecution by the relevant authorities if it is true that the assailants are impostors and/or rogue elements acting without official deployment. The ZHRC however welcomes the consistent calls by the incumbent President for peace and harmony in the country, and the promise to set up a Commission of Inquiry into the death of civilians on the 1st of August 2018. ZHRC awaits the setting up of the Commission of Inquiry and the conclusion of investigations. The families that lost their loved ones should be adequately compensated and/ or assisted in other ways by the State as promised. After the announcement of the results, the ZHRC received and continues to receive complaints of intimidation/ harassment and threats to citizens perceived to have voted for the opposition, those who acted as polling agents for opposition1 candidates or stood as parliamentary or council candidates in both urban and rural communities. From the investigations undertaken to date, the ZHRC has established that there is hunting down and harassment of polling agents for independent candidates and opposition political parties, resulting in bodily and emotional harm as well as damage to property. Some of the victims, including women, have fled their homes for fear of political persecution. The Commission has received and confirmed a report on the burning of the homestead of an MDC Alliance polling agent David Chimanga in Mutoko East Constituency, and has since dispatched an investigative team to find out more details and assist the family to get appropriate support and redress. The ZHRC is also concerned by the use of different social media platforms to convey hate speech and messages that have the potential of causing unrest in the country. Given the above facts and the current unstable situation prevailing in the country, the ZHRC makes the following recommendations: To the Zimbabwe National Army The Commission reiterates that all army deployments must be done in terms of the laws and Constitution of Zimbabwe and all members of the Zimbabwe National Army must be accounted for and warned not to attack civilians in order to stop further harm to members of the public. 1 Those who are not members of the ruling party.

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