NPRC Makes its First Public Appearance
Following the gazetting of the National Peace and Reconciliation Commission Act (NPRC Act) the NPRC held a press briefing at Munhumutapa Building this morning.
In attendance were the Directors of CCJP, ZPP and ZimRights, Fr. Chiromba from NTJWG, Fr. Mukonori from the Centre for Peace Initiatives in Africa, among other civil society leaders and journalists. The NPRC used the opportunity to address the stakeholders and introduce themselves, highlighting that they are ready to roll out consultations leading to a strategic planning which will include stakeholders.
Responding to questions, the NPRC said they are due to meet with the Vice President Mohadi to discuss the issue of the appointment of the Chairperson to Commission. Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum Executive Director Blessing Gorejena said it is a constitutional crisis for the Commission to operate without a Chairperson.
The NPRC said they were not clear on their timeframe as to when the ten year clock will start ticking. On how far back the Commission will go, the Commissioners said they will try to go as far back as is possible and necessary to understand the conflicts but paying attention to the needs of the victims.
On the adequacy of the law, Commissioners acknowledged that no law can ever be adequate but they will try to make use of the regulations to fill in the gaps especially on the issues of protection of victims and witnesses. Responding to Jestina Mukoko’s question on how the NPRC will reconcile the law that creates full time commissioners and the utterances by the Minister of Finance that Commissioners must be part-time, Commissioner Musanhu said they have made presentations to the effect that the NPRC is different from other Commissions because it is a temporary commission hence its Commissioners need to do so much in a limited time.