The Law Society of South Africa (LSSA) is deeply concerned about developments in Zimbabwe and it strongly condemns reports of human rights violations in that country.
It is very disturbing that lawyers, who are the people who are supposed to ensure that these rights are upheld, become victimised for representing clients seeking justice such as in situations of the basic right to freedom of expression. Lawyers should be able to practice without fear, favour or prejudice.
‘Lawyers should be given the freedom to represent their clients without the fear of intimation, arrest or being removed from the case. We also strongly support freedom of expression and believe that the arrest of journalists cuts off access to vital information, disrupts the free flow of information and hides human rights abuses from the public,’ says LSSA President Mvuzo Notyesi.
Mr Notyesi adds: ‘We stand with our colleagues in Zimbabwe who are defending the Zimbabwean people’s freedoms throughout the country where people may have been unlawfully arrested.’
The LSSA also calls on the South African government to step in and help restore order in Zimbabwe.
ISSUED ON BEHALF OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE LAW SOCIETY OF SOUTH AFRICA, MVUZO NOTYESI
Nomfundo Jele nomfundom@LSSA.org.za Tel: (012) 366 8800 or 072 402 6344