RESCUE EMMANUEL’S FAMILY!
Friends, meet Emmanuel*. Emmanuel is 53 years old and has been living at Presbyterian Night Shelter for nearly six months. He left his family in their native home in Zimbabwe to seek political asylum in the United States because of the torture and abuse he endured at the hands of the Mugabe regime. Daily, Emmanuel’s wife and two children face the risks of kidnap, rape, torture, firebombing, unwarranted arrest, and death. While we cannot change the political situation in Zimbabwe, we can give this family a leg up.
At this very moment, Emmanuel’s wife and two kids are in great danger, and today we are imploring all of you good people of the community to please give to the campaign so that we may ensure that his family is safe.
It is going to cost $12,000 to get Emmanuel’s family to a safe place. This money will cover the cost of plane tickets, shelter, food, and visa applications for his wife and two children. This money will ensure that his family will not become another casualty of the political nightmare in Zimbabwe.
This family deserves to be together, and to be safe. Please take this moment to change lives!
About Emmanuel: He is a humble, hardworking, kind man. His greatest desire is to secure his family’s safety and well being. The decision to leave them behind to pave a way to a safe future was a difficult one to make, but very necessary. Deciding to assist this man is easy—knowing the situation, we must come together and help him. We cannot allow his family to suffer any longer.
So please, friends, take the time to give in a meaningful way this holiday season. We want Emmanuel’s family to be safe, at peace, and together again. We want them to get out of Mugabe’s Zimbabwe.
As we have come to know Emmanuel, we have come to love him too. His smiles bring levity to any room he graces. Those same smiles mean so much more to us, too, because we know about the pain that Emmanuel so gracefully conceals. Together, we can give Emmanuel all the reasons to smile. Imagine the relief he will feel to see his wife and children again!
We believe in our hearts that Emmanuel and his family will be reunited very soon. With so much injustice in the world, having hope for something as simple and beautiful as a family reunion seems like a humble wish, and a huge one, too. Every penny raised in this campaign will go to securing the health and safety of Emmanuel family. Thank you for your consideration, do not delay, and God Bless!
*We are using the pseudonym “Emmanuel” to protect our client and his family.
Please read the prepared abstract below for more information about the political and economic situation in Zimbabwe.
Human Rights in Zimbabwe According to a Report Prepared by the
United States Department of State
The political, economic, and human rights situation in Zimbabwe restricts and inhibits personal freedoms and economic growth. The Mugabe regime negatively affects all aspects of life in Zimbabwe, and citizens are frequently the targets of human rights violations that include “torture, abuse, arrest,” harassment, and political and civil oppression (p. 1). Options for abused citizens are nearly nonexistent, and self-imposed exodus remains as one of the few viable options for individuals and families that do not align with Mugabe’s government.
Freedoms in Zimbabwe vanish behind the smoke-screen of a reasonable state constitution; in reality, constitutional civil protections are not honored, and police and government operate without accountability or checks-and-balances. Despite the constitutional laws to the contrary, citizens endure the use of “arbitrary arrest and detention as tools of intimidation and harassment,” particularly when their views do not align with Mugabe’s “Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front” (p.11, 1). Restrictions on all communications effectively kill freedom of speech, and “the law permits the interception and monitoring of any communication” (p. 17). Unrestrained “land seizures” displace thousands of citizens, and a “2005 constitutional amendment transferred title of all land previously acquired for resettlement purposes to the government,” with no recourse for “court challenges to the acquisitions” (p. 17). Effectively, this “allowed the government to acquire any agricultural land for any purpose” (p. 17). Land seizures by government officials have led to “instability and lack of confidence in the agricultural sector,” resulting in shortages in food supplies (p. 17). Regime restrictions on the freedom of assembly, the freedom of association, the freedom of movement, the freedom to challenge the government, academic freedom, and freedom from discrimination effectively place a choke-hold on the development of intellectual and societal resources despite constitutional amendments to the contrary. The Mugabe regime at every turn attempts (and mostly succeeds) in quelling the freedom of speech, and the “heavily biased state media” seeks to quell and “restrict freedom of the press” at every turn (p. 1, 20).
The human rights situation in Zimbabwe is atrocious, with the rights and lives of women, children, homosexuals, and political dissenters suffering epidemic levels of abuse. For women, laws against rape are “not effectively enforced,” and “societal perceptions that rape was simply a ‘fact of life’” prevent women from vocalizing and challenging abuse (p. 39). Discrimination in the workplace and in society at large creates an insurmountable challenge for women seeking recognition and adequate political representation. “Child abuse, including incest, infanticide, child abandonment, and rape” are major problems in Zimbabwe, with “one-third of girls” reporting “sexual violence during childhood” (p. 44). Even with laws to the contrary, forced marriage is common, and female genital mutilation is not explicitly prohibited by Zimbabwe law (p. 45). President Mugabe has also publicly stated that “gays have no human rights,” and the social and governmental punishments for homosexuality defy every basic human right (p. 51). “Corrective” rape and forced marriages remain as a common societal prescription for homosexuality (p. 51).
“According to the Internal Displacement Monitoring Center’s 2009 estimate, approximately 600,000 persons remained displaced as a result of government policies” (p. 29). The political situation has engendered a biased police force, extreme infringements on personal liberties, and endemic corruption. “Corruption [occurs] at every level of the police force,” and laws prohibiting “penalties for bribery and corruption” have historically been enforced partially or not at all (p.35). “Corruption [is a] serious problem,” and the government seems unmotivated to correct the situation (p. 35). In fact, over “20,000 persons were killed during the 1980’s because of a government-sanctioned crackdown on persons believed to be insurgents” (p. 3). Doubtless, that number is artificially low, as the government continues to enforce laws arbitrarily and with impunity.
No doubt can be raised on the severity of the human rights situation in Zimbabwe. Crimes against humanity and near-genocidal atrocities characterize the region and the lives of its occupants. Mugabe’s regime is a damnable failure of internal and external politics. Every effort should be made to raise awareness of the human rights fiasco in Zimbabwe; blind eyes that shy away from the problem become part of the problem. Pray for Zimbabwe and its people, then go out and do something, say something, become a voice for the people. They need all the help they can get.
Zimbabwe 2014 Human Rights Report, United States Department of State