Archive for human rights

Nelson Mandela Celebrates 92nd Birthday

Posted in Humanity, Mother Africa, NEWS with tags , , on July 21, 2010 by Mijiza Zeyzey

South Africa’s first black president, Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, celebrated his 92nd birthday on July 18th. In honor of his of gift of 67 years of fighting for human rights, in 2009, the United Nations recognized his birthday as ‘Nelson Mandela International Day.

Living in Nairobi

Posted in Awareness, CULTURE, Humanity, Mother Africa with tags , , , on July 9, 2010 by Mijiza Zeyzey

Nairobi is Kenya’s capital and largest cosmopolitan city. It is a city where tourists enjoy luxury hotels with pampered treatment. It is also a city where local residents live in settlements without privacy in sanitation facilities.

Most of Nairobi’s population lives in settlements or slums without clean water, private sanitation facilities, adequate health care, or schools. Conditions such as these create an environment subject to violent crimes. In this environment, women and girls are the most vulnerable.

Women and girls’ need for privacy in sanitation facilities are different from men’s. Without such privacy they are at risk of rape and physical or psychological violence. One woman said after she had been assaulted,

“I didn’t report it to the police. Even if I did, what good would it do? It wouldn’t change anything.”

Security officials have reportedly added to the violence faced by the residence of these settlements.

A UN Independent Expert on human rights obligations said,

“. . . Sanitation is not just about health, housing, education, work, gender equality, and the ability to survive. Sanitation . . . evokes the concept of human dignity . . .”

Call For Independent Investigation of Congo Activist’s Murder

Posted in Mother Africa, NEWS with tags , , on June 8, 2010 by Mijiza Zeyzey

Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and other groups made an appeal for an independent investigation into the death of Floribert  Chebeya. a well-known human rights activist in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Chebeya was found dead Wednesday in a car in the outskirts of Congo’s capital, Kinshasa.  His driver is missing.

Philip Alston, a United Nations special investigator on extra-judicial executions told reporters,

“There is no reason at all to think there will be a meaningful investigation of that killing. [the circumstances of his death] make it look very likely that there was government involvement.”

Chebeya was head of Voice of the Voiceless human rights organization. Amnesty International says Chebeya reported several occasions where he believed he had been under surveillance  by security forces.


UN Investigates Haitian Prison Killings

Posted in Humanity, Latin America, NEWS with tags , , on May 24, 2010 by Mijiza Zeyzey

“Help we’re going to die”, screamed Haitian prisoners after the earthquake in January, 2010. Their screams were met with demands to lie down and then gunfire.

The prison in Les Cayes, Haiti is being investigated by the United Nations for the deaths that occurred at the hands of prison guards a week following the earthquake. UN spokesman, David Wimhurst said,

“As far as we’re concerned there was a major human rights violation in that prison.”

Prison officials blamed deaths on riot ringleaders who escaped. Interviews with released prisoners all say that unarmed prisoners were lying down as ordered when shot.

Most of the prisoners had been locked up for months, and for some years, without having been convicted of a crime. Out of the 467 prisoners, 336 were said to be detainees. Charges ranged from loitering to armed robbery.