OCTOBER 2019 commits to providing support and opportunities for the empowerment of the affected individuals and communities. Recently, in the Standard on 30 June 2019, the Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum (2019) published a list of 28 victims who are owed over USD100 000 in damages by the government of Zimbabwe. Such victims still hope to find support from the NPRC. Many survivors and victims are having to depend on the benevolence of non-state actors. The Briefing highlighted to the NPRC that it is important that it be seen to be supporting victims. The NPRC was encouraged to publicize any such interventions so that victims can make use of them. The Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission has been generous enough to provide a Complaints Handling Mechanism via their website. This could be one option for the NPRC. The NPRC’s Secretariat The NTJWG welcomed the new additions to the NPRC Secretariat. To get the new members up to speed, the NPRC convened an induction session in Nyanga from 7 to 10 August 2019. Continued updates on the capacity of the Commission will be welcome. According to the Commission’s strategy, the priority of this pathway will be to strengthen the operational, institutional and human capacities of the NPRC. For the NPRC to achieve its mandate, there is no doubt that it will require substantial amounts of resources including time, money, human intellect. The NTJWG commends that the Executive Secretary and the other departmental staff are now in place, enabling the NPRC to roll-out its five-year strategic plan. This staff structure could as well be publicized including a dedicated page on the website to give the NPRC a visible face as the peoples’ commission. Liaison with Stakeholders According to the NPRC Strategy (2018), the NPRC recognizes active numerous peace actors, especially at the community level. This shows existing and ongoing projects, programs and activities, which may already use the same strategies that the Commission might also employ. NTJWG has attended some of these engagements. The NTJWG acknowledged its nomination to the Victim Support Committee. However, the NTJWG highlighted that it is adequately represented by one of its stakeholders the Counselling Service Unit (CSU) with wealth of knowledge and experience in working with survivors. ensuring that they do not end being associated with some notorious perpetrator groups. NTJWG has received some concerns about the fact that some political parties in the Midlands have infiltrated the committees and survivors seem not so comfortable to participate and the NPRC was encouraged to investigate the issue. NTJWG recommends an information briefing on the Peace Committees – what are they, how are they composed, role and structure. The issue of inclusion of survivors remains key. Placing victims and survivors at the center of this work also requires ensuring that victim’s rights and views are fully respected in the implementation of the transitional justice process (Guiding Principles for TJ Policy and Practice in Zimbabwe, 2015: 20). This includes the use of victim-sensitive procedures that guarantee the victim's safety and dignity and the development of specific capacities to assist, support and protect victims and witnesses (U.N, 2010:6). The NPRC shed more light on the establishment of the PPCs indicating the intention to have a national peace committee cascading down to the PPCs then other peace committees at district, ward and village level. NPRC Role in National Dialogue Stakeholders have joined the call for inclusive dialogue. NTJWG noted that the NPRC had started consultations on a framework for national dialogue. The NTJWG chairperson expressed concern over the fact that it appears this noble initiative has stopped and the NPRC is now only focusing on POLAD and requested clarification of this issue. The Chairperson of the NTJWG shared with the NPRC the guiding principles, virtues and values for an effective national dialogue. Recently, stakeholder expressed concern at the exclusive nature of the POLAD and wondered if the NPRC as the co-chair agreed with this exclusion. NTJWG has over the time called for an inclusive national dialogue. Conclusion The NTJWG would like to congratulate the NPRC for work it has embarked on beginning Julyinto October this year. The NTJWG hopes that the NPRC takes into consideration the Working Group’s recommendations and concerns around its work. The NTJWG looks forward to continuously engage and work closely Inclusion of Survivors in Provincial with the Commission to build public Peace Committees (PPCs) confidence.The NTJWG remains committed to The NTJWG acknowledged that the establishment of the Provincial Peace Committees is an innovative intervention that helps decentralize the work of the NPRC. It was however noted that there is not much information on how these committees are expected to function on the ground, strategies for inclusion and supporting transitional justice in Zimbabwe and hopes that actors concerned will address the issues raised in this briefing with urgency. Suite 4, Number 1 Raleigh Street, Harare, Zimbabwe. Tel:+263 242 770170. Email: info@ntjwg.org.zw www.ntjwg.org.zw REF PS09/2019NTJWG

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