Zimbabwe passes ‘draconian’ Patriotic Bill ahead of elections

Published: 1/Jun/2023
Source: News24 (South Africa)

Zimbabwe’s president Emmerson Mnangagwa is expected to sign into law the Patriotic Bill, which critics and the opposition say is the most draconian law ever passed in the country’s post-colonial history.

The bill is an amendment to the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Amendment Bill, which criminalises fundamental freedoms of association, assembly, and speech of any citizen who holds meetings with foreign governments through diplomats and other representatives.

The bill was passed on Wednesday by parliament in which the ruling party Zanu PF enjoys a more than two-thirds majority.


The Patriotic Bill

According to Veritas, a legal monitoring organisation in Zimbabwe, some of the bill’s provisions state that a Zimbabwean could face up to 10 years in prison if they engage in talks with hostile nations about sanctions or a trade boycott.

Under the bill, if sanctions are enacted by nations based on advice from Zimbabweans, citizenship can be revoked, if the person is a citizen by registration or a dual citizen.

There is also a provision for cancellation of residence rights if the convicted person is a permanent resident of Zimbabwe. They may even lose their voting rights for five to 15 years. They may also be banned from holding public office for the same period.

read further: https://www.news24.com/news24/africa/news/zimbabwe-passes-draconian-patriotic-bill-ahead-of-elections-20230601

Themes: Loss and Deprivation of Nationality
Regions: Zimbabwe
Year: 2023