A compilation of extracts featuring child-rights issues from the reports submitted to the second Universal Periodic Review. There are extracts from the 'National Report', the 'Compilation of UN Information' and the 'Summary of Stakeholder's Information'. Also included is the final report and the list of accepted and rejected recommendations.
Zimbabwe - Twenty-Sixth Session - 2016
2 November 2016, 9:00 - 12:30
1. Developments since the previous review
6. The Constitutional Court is endowed with both exclusive and inherent jurisdiction over all constitutional matters including fundamental human rights. Since its inception, the Constitutional Court has delivered a number of landmark rulings on various human rights issues that include outlawing child marriages, declaring the law on criminal defamation unlawful, and declaring as unlawful the powers of the Prosecutor-General to suspend bail granted to accused persons by the courts.
A. Normative and institutional framework for the protection of human rights
1. The Constitution
7. The expanded Declaration of Rights in the 2013 Constitution includes civil and political rights, economic, social and cultural rights, environmental rights, and an elaboration of women’s rights, the rights of persons with disabilities and children’s rights.
2. Policy and related measures
National Child Rights Policy
13. The draft National Child Rights Policy is under consideration. It proposes to place the child at the centre of development in all spheres of life and attempts to create a better coordinating mechanism and framework within which this must happen.
Basic Education Assistance Module (BEAM)
14. This scheme supports the enrolment and retention of disadvantaged children in schools at primary and secondary level and 10% of the total allocation for each year is set aside for school children with disabilities. The table below depicts the number of students that were assisted under the scheme for the years 2013–2015.
III. Promotion and protection of human rights on the ground A. International human rights treaties
17. Since the previous review, Government has ratified the following human rights treaties: UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) and its Protocol; UN Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially women and children; and the Optional Protocol to the UNCRC on the involvement of children in armed conflict.
1. Domestication of human rights treaties
19. Domestication of human rights treaties is underway as indicated in the Mid-Term Report, with the following notable developments
(e) Government is reviewing the Children’s Act in order to align it with the Constitution and the UNCRC.
21. In 2013, the African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child was in the country where it held an induction workshop for its new members and held consultations with Government and civil society on the implementation of children’s rights. In May 2016, the African Commission Special Rapporteur on freedom of expression and access to information visited the country and met with key stakeholders.
4. Public awareness of human rights
27. Public awareness campaigns have been carried out at annual commemorations such as: the International Day of the Child; the Day of the African Child; the International Day of Disabled Persons;; International Women’s Day;; and International Human Rights Day. Awareness raising is also carried out at grass root level through capacity building of community leaders, religious leaders and community focal persons who further raise awareness in their different communities. Child rights awareness is raised through participation at different exhibitions such as the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair and Harare Agricultural Show.
28. Government promotes public awareness of the Constitution in the formof advocacy meetings with communities, radio programmes and exhibitions at fairs. With the support of development partners, over one million copies of the Constitution in ten officially recognised languages have been distributed through Government structures, CSOs, Educational Institutions, and Faith Based Organisations. Government has also embarked on a nationwide distribution of simplified booklets on children's rights. Six out of the ten provinces have benefitted from this initiative.
29. The new education curriculum which has been developed and comes into force in 2017 has as one of its aims, to prepare learners for participatory citizenship and sustainable development with respect to their rights, duties and responsibilities. Children’s and human rights have thus been mainstreamed in the curriculum from infant level right up to primary and secondary levels.
30. Government has conducted training of child-led groups such as Junior Parliamentarians on the provisions of the Constitution, the UNCRC and the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child (ACRWC). Over 250 children were targeted in 2015. The intention is that those who receive training will cascade information to other members of their communities.
2. Economic, social and cultural rights
C. Right to education
49. Measures have been put in place to ensure that no child of school going age is deprived of the right to education as a result of parents’ or guardians’ failure to pay fees. A policy is in place that no child should be barred from attending school because of non- payment of fees. In addition, Government, through its own resources and with assistance from development partners, provides funding for BEAM to cater for school fees requirements for children from vulnerable families.
50. The Education Development Fund composed of Government and development partners has provided learning resources and improved the quality of education for children in Zimbabwe. The Fund has also ensured the distribution of science kits to 2,424 secondary schools with a view to improve the quality of science education.
51. In addition to reducing the school textbook ratio to 1:1 for the core subjects at both primary and secondary levels, the Fund also invested in the training of school heads to improve management of schools and has provided technical assistance to strengthen Government’s capacity to monitor educational services. The development partners are now implementing a long-term plan, the School Improvement Grant (SIG), focusing on broader investments in schools to further improve the quality of education and to ensure that all Zimbabwean children will have the opportunity to reach their full potential. Zimbabwe has also benefited through the Global Partnership for Education whose focus is on boosting learning outcomes through continuous professional development of teachers, improved teacher supervision and management as well as strengthened evidence based policy strategic planning.
52. In an effort to improve the quality of education, the Government has introduced Early Childhood Development (ECD) in order to strengthen the foundations of education. This is done by ensuring that learners are equipped with various skills from the formative stages of education.
D. Right to health
58. The Public Health Act [Chapter 15:09] provides for the protection of public health, including prevention and suppression of infectious and sexually transmitted diseases, as well as regulation of the provision of safe water and food supplies and improved sanitation, among other things. The Act also provides for the immunisation of children against disabling diseases such as polio. In addition to this, Government is running programmes to educate the public on accident prevention in the home which may result in disability.
59. Government is resuscitating rehabilitation centres in its administered hospitals and is training more rehabilitation technicians. Government has further developed a network of rehabilitation services throughout the country. All Central, Provincial and District Hospitals and some Mission Hospitals have purpose built facilities offering a wide range of rehabilitation services that include physical therapy, occupational therapy, communication therapy, audiology, prosthetic services and referral for necessary corrective surgery. Children who are not able to access institutionalservices are seen through outreach services or through community based rehabilitation.
These services are significant in enabling c h ild re n wit h impairments , activity limit ationsand participat io n restrictions to live independently, remain in or return to their home or community and to participate in education and societal activities in general. They help increase potential for children with disability to enjoy the same opportunities as children without disabilities.
2. In 2016, the Committee on the Rights of the Child recommended that Zimbabwe ratify CAT, ICRMW, ICPPED12 and OP-CRC-IC.13 In 2012, the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women recommended that Zimbabwe ratify OP- CEDAW.14
3. The Committee on the Rights of the Child recommended that Zimbabwe consider ratifying the Hague Convention on the Protection of Children and Cooperation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption.
6. The Committee on the Rights of the Child welcomed the constitutional provision establishing the age of majority at 18 years, as well as the prohibition on pledging children in marriage and on forced marriage. It recommended amending all statutory and customary law to establish the minimum age of marriage at 18 years.
9. The country team stated that the Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission remained underresourced and understaffed, which negatively affected its performance.26 The country team recommended strengthening the independence of the Commission in carrying out its monitoring mandate, including in places of detention. The Committee on the Rights of the Child urged Zimbabwe to ensure that the Commission had the mandate and resources to monitor children’s rights and to ensure the independence of the Commission in relation to its funding, mandate, immunities and the appointment of its members, in compliance with the principles relating to the status of national institutions for the promotion and protection of human rights (the Paris Principles).
12. The Committee on the Rights of the Child urged Zimbabwe to ensure the establishment of an appropriate body at a high interministerial level with a clear mandate and sufficient authority and resources to effectively coordinate all activities related to the implementation of CRC.
20. The Committee on the Rights of the Child expressed concern about forced and early marriage, polygamy, lobola and, in certain regions, virginity testing and witch hunting.
24. The Committee on the Rights of the Child expressed concern about the situation of girls who suffered marginalization and gender stereotyping and who were more vulnerable to sexual violence, abuse and HIV/AIDS.
25. The Committee also expressed concern about discriminatory legislation on guardianship that distinguished between children born within and outside marriage. It recommended aligning the laws with the non-discriminatory provisions of the Constitution, thereby giving parents equal rights and responsibilities with regard to guardianship and custody of their child, and removing any preference given to a parent prior to specific consideration of the best interests of the child. It also recommended ensuring that the children of unmarried parents have contact with their fathers when it is in the best interests of those children.
26. The Committee remained concerned about the low number of births registered and the low rate of issuance of birth certificates, especially in rural areas and in low-income households. The failure to present a birth certificate could prevent school enrolment and children from receiving their national school examination certificates. It could also lead to a child being denied inheritance from his or her legitimate father if paternity was not proved, as required by the inheritance laws.
27. The Committee expressed concern about reports that children born on the territory of Zimbabwe to parents of indeterminate nationality had been denied the right to have their birth registered and to acquire Zimbabwean nationality, which had impeded their access to health care, education and other social services.
28. The Committee reiterated its concern about high levels of discrimination against certain groups of children, including children with disabilities, children in street situations, children living in rural areas, children born out of wedlock, orphans, children living in foster care, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex children and children infected with HIV or affected by HIV/AIDS.
30. The Committee on the Rights of the Child urged Zimbabwe to establish child- sensitive complaints mechanisms regarding ill-treatment and torture of children in police custody and detention and ensure the independent monitoring of places where children are deprived of their liberty.
31. The country team stated that conditions of detention remained below international standards. It encouraged Zimbabwe to take urgent steps to improve prison conditions and address prison decongestion. The Committee on the Rights of the Child expressed concern about reports of a serious lack of nutritious food and poor sanitary conditions for infants and children sharing prison cells with their mothers.56
36. The Committee on the Rights of the Child expressed concern about allegations that members of religious sects, such as apostolic churches, were involved in harmful cultural practices, in particular early marriage between girls as young as 10 years of age and older men for “spiritual guidance”.
37. The Committee also expressed concern about the prevalence of sexual exploitation and abuse of girls, orphans, children with disabilities, child migrants and children living in poverty, and about the underreporting of such violations. It recommended that Zimbabwe ensure that victims have access to child-protection centres throughout the country.
39. The Committee expressed concern about the persistence of child labour, including hazardous labour, owing to the weak enforcement of existing legislation and policies and about reports of exploitation of children, in particular from low-income households, in the agriculture, forestry, hunting and fishing sectors. It urged Zimbabwe to establish a list of hazardous kinds of work in which children should not be involved, to address the socioeconomic factors contributing to child labour and scale up the implementation of social welfare programmes to prevent children engaging in economic activities.
40. The Committee on the Rights of the Child welcomed the enactment of the Trafficking in Persons Act (2014)71 and the creation of the Interministerial Task Force on Human Trafficking.72 It noted persistent reports of trafficking in children in the context of the high rate of migration of unaccompanied children.73 The Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women remained concerned at the continuing prevalence of trafficking in women and girls, as well as at the low reporting rate. That same Committee called for members of the judiciary, law enforcement officials, border guards and social workers to be trained in identifying and dealing with victims of trafficking and in the anti- trafficking legislation.
41. The Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women was concerned at the lack of shelters and counselling services for victims of trafficking and prostitution. The Committee on the Rights of the Child recommended that Zimbabwe ensure the protection of, and support services for, children who had been victims of trafficking and commercial sexual exploitation.
C. Administration of justice, including impunity, and the rule of law
42. The Committee on the Rights of the Child expressed concern about the inefficiencies and lack of resources in the justice system resulting in the extremely low conviction rate of perpetrators of sexual exploitation and abuse of children.
45. The Committee on the Rights of the Child remained concerned about the minimum age of criminal responsibility being set at 7 years and urged Zimbabwe to increase it in accordance with international standards.
46. That same Committee commended Zimbabwe for including in its Constitution a provision stating that children are not to be detained except as a measure of last resort and welcomed the constitutional and legislative provisions guaranteeing the right to legal aid.
47. The country team stated that Zimbabwe piloted the pretrial diversion programme, which targeted children in conflict with the law, and encouraged the Government to provide funding for the roll-out of the programme nationally.
48. The Committee on the Rights of the Child urged Zimbabwe to continue the pretrial diversion programme and ensure that children have access to alternative measures to deprivation of liberty and ensure the provision of qualified and independent legal aid to children in conflict with the law by increasing the allocation of human and financial resources to the Legal Aid Directorate.
49. That same Committee urged Zimbabwe to designate and train specialized judges for children and strengthen specialized juvenile court facilities and procedures by providing adequate human, technical and financial resources.
50. The Committee recommended that Zimbabwe ensure the effective implementation of legislation recognizing the right of children to express their views in relevant legal proceedings, including by considering establishing systems and procedures for social workers and courts to monitor compliance with the principle.86
D. Right to privacy, marriage and family life
51. The Committee on the Rights of the Child was concerned about the inadequate enforcement of laws protecting children’s right to privacy, in particular in relation to the publication of information by the media relating to children who were either victims of abuse or accused of committing crimes, as well as being subjected to invasive practices such as virginity testing.
52. The country team stated that three marriage regimes existed in Zimbabwe, with different consequences for women after divorce or the death of the spouse. It recommended harmonizing the laws to create one marriage regime.
53. The Committee on the Rights of the Child noted the rising number of children in residential care and recommended that Zimbabwe support and facilitate family-based care for children wherever possible and further develop the foster care system for children who cannot stay with their families.
F. Freedom of or belief, expression, association and peaceful assembly, and the right to participate in public and political life
56. The Committee on the Rights of the Child expressed concern about reports that children had been forced to participate in political activities.
57. The Committee also expressed concern about reports that the Public Order and Security Act had been invoked by the authorities to deny children permission to hold marches in commemoration of International Children’s Day.
G. Right to work and to just and favourable conditions of work
63. The country team stated that the Labour Amendment Act of 2015 prohibited children under the age of 16 years from working. It recommended that Zimbabwe implement that provision through the use of appropriately trained labour inspectors and the application of severe penalties for those who exploit children.104
H. Right to social security and to an adequate standard of living
67. The Committee on the Rights of the Child expressed concern at the persistent widespread poverty and inadequate basic services, including lack of a comprehensive social security system.108 It urged Zimbabwe to develop a national strategy to address poverty, social security, nutrition and health, to improve access to safe drinking water and adequate sanitation facilities and to allocate sufficient resources to ensure the implementation of the 2013 Food and Nutrition Security Policy.109
68. That same Committee expressed concern about the high number of child- and grandparent-headed households. It recommended that Zimbabwe strengthen the financial support and community structures to those households, with particular attention to families in rural areas and farming communities.110
I. Right to health
69. The Committee on the Rights of the Child recommended that Zimbabwe develop long-term strategies for retaining qualified health personnel and accelerate the training of health workers.
71. The Committee on the Rights of the Child noted with concern the high rates of maternal, neonatal and child mortality, as well as of stunting and malnutrition among children under the age of 5 years, with much higher rates in rural areas. It expressed concern about the limited access to health-care services for children living in poverty and in remote and rural areas. It also expressed concern about the significant number of deaths of children under 5 years of age owing to poor hygiene, inadequate sanitation and lack of clean drinking water.
72. That same Committee expressed concern about reports that apostolic churches were barring children from seeking medical attention and regular health services, including immunization, resulting in deaths and high maternal mortality among adolescents.
73. The Committee also expressed concern that in most cases disability in children was due to preventable causes, such as diseases, inaccessibility to full immunization, lack of comprehensive care (antenatal and postnatal), malnutrition and cultural practices such as early and frequent pregnancies.118 The Committee recommended that Zimbabwe adopt a policy of prevention and allocate sufficient resources to ensure that children with disabilities have access to health care, including early detection and intervention programmes.
74. The Committee on the Rights of the Child and the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women expressed concern about the restrictive abortion law and the lengthy procedures for authorizing abortions, which results in illegal and unsafe abortions. The Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women urged Zimbabwe to provide women with access to quality services for the management of complications arising from unsafe abortions and that it consider reviewing the law with a view to removing punitive provisions imposed on women who undergo abortions for unwanted pregnancies and review the procedures for the exceptions that are allowed by law.
76. The Committee on the Rights of the Child expressed concern about the requirement, in law, for parents or guardians to give consent for unmarried adolescents to access reproductive health services, including information on contraception and the prevention of sexually transmitted infections.
77. The Committee urged Zimbabwe to ensure that sexual and reproductive health education is part of the mandatory school curriculum and that it targets adolescent girls and boys, with a view to reducing teenage pregnancies and preventing HIV and other sexually transmitted infections.
78. The Committee expressed concern about the high rate of mother-to-child transmission of HIV and new HIV infections among girls and boys; the high number of children being orphaned by HIV and AIDS; the significant number of cases of under-5 mortality for HIV-related causes; the large percentage of infants exposed to HIV not being tested early on for HIV or not receiving the necessary medication; and the large majority of children under 15 years of age with HIV lacking access to antiretroviral treatment.
J. Right to education
80. The Committee on the Rights of the Child remained concerned about primary education not being free owing to imposed tuition fees and hidden costs, leading to low completion rates.
81. It also remained concerned about the high number of girls suffering sexual abuse and harassment on the way to or from school, as well as in school, by both teachers and classmates. The Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women urged Zimbabwe to strengthen awareness-raising and training for school officials and students and to establish mechanisms to ensure that alleged perpetrators are prosecuted.
82. The Committee on the Rights of the Child remained concerned about the difficulties faced by some children in accessing education, particularly those living in poverty and those in remote and rural areas owing to the long walking distances between home and school.
83. The Committee urged Zimbabwe to ensure the allocation of sufficient resources to improve the quality of education by increasing the number of qualified teachers, improving school infrastructure, including sports, recreational and arts facilities, and increasing children’s access to school materials and textbooks with a view to eradicating rural-urban disparities in school enrolment and attendance.
84. The Committee remained concerned about the high rate of girls dropping out of school, especially at the secondary and tertiary levels, owing to early marriage, teenage pregnancy, discriminatory traditional and cultural practices and poverty, and about the lack of implementation of the policy on re-entry of adolescent mothers into school after delivery.
85. The Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women expressed concern that traditional views of both students and teachers oriented female students into areas of study perceived as appropriate to their social roles and participation in public life.134 It urged Zimbabwe to increase its efforts to provide career counselling for girls that exposes them to options related to non-traditional career paths.
88. The Committee on the Rights of the Child urged Zimbabwe to adopt a human rights- based approach to disability and recommended that it develop an inclusive approach to education and that it train teachers specialized in providing individual support and attention to children with learning difficulties.138 It also recommended expediting the establishment of the public infrastructure necessary to accommodate children with disabilities.
M. Migrants, refugees and asylum seekers
89. The Committee on the Rights of the Child was concerned that the prolonged socioeconomic crisis had led to the migration of children to neighbouring countries either with parents or unaccompanied. It was particularly concerned about the exposure of children to risks along the migration routes, including sexual abuse, physical abuse, exploitation and malnutrition.
90. UNHCR stated that refugees did not have formal access to the labour market and were therefore compelled to work in the informal sector, often working under duress or in jobs presenting special hazards and risks.
N. Internally displaced persons
91. The Committee on the Rights of the Child expressed concern about the destitution faced by displaced children and their families as a result of the flooding at the Tokwe Murkosi dam and the forced resettlement operations, in particular the reported severe malnutrition and disease, incidences of abuse and sexual violence committed against children and disruption of their education. The Committee urged Zimbabwe to expedite the provision of redress to the displaced families, including prompt and adequate compensation and the ability to return to their land, while ensuring access to appropriate and quality educational, health-care and recreation facilities and the restoration of lost birth certificates.
O. Right to development, and environmental issues
92. The Committee on the Rights of the Child noted that the severe economic decline of the country had had an impact on the delivery of all services to children and that the situation was compounded by pervasive corruption. It urged Zimbabwe to take measures immediately to combat corruption and strengthen institutional capacities through the allocation of human, technical and financial resources to effectively detect and investigate corruption and bring those responsible to justice.
II. Information provided by other stakeholders A. Background and framework
3. Institutional and human rights infrastructure and policy measures
16. SOS CVZ stated that Zimbabwe must ensure that the Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission has the mandate and resources to monitor children’s rights and is able to receive, investigate and address complains from children in a child-sensitive manner.
C. Implementation of international human rights obligations, taking into account applicable international humanitarian law
1. Equality and non-discrimination
26. ERI stated that there was discrimination and stigmatization of people living with HIV/AIDS, which needed to be addressed through education and awareness-raising.47 It recommended that Zimbabwe support public education campaigns to eliminate stigma and discrimination against those living with HIV/AIDS, especially children.
28. ERI stated that at the 2011 review, Zimbabwe did not support a recommendation to amend the Births and Death Registration Act to ensure that all children born in Zimbabwe, regardless of the origin of their parents, were issued with a birth certificate.51 It recommended amending the Act to make provision for birth registration of all children born in Zimbabwe, regardless of their parents’ origin.
39. JS8 stated in relation to child abuse that during the 2011 review, Zimbabwe committed to providing a child-sensitive, accessible complaint mechanism, ensuring proper redress, rehabilitation and social reintegration of children who were victims of abuse. No action has been taken to implement the recommendation. JS8 stated that cases of child abuse were very high, and that the child protection systems remain weak and ineffective in providing quality care and protection for children.
40. JS8 stated that child marriage was fuelled by extreme poverty, harmful religious cultural practices and conflicting laws. HRW stated that Zimbabwe lacked comprehensive strategies to curb the rising practice of child marriage. It stated that the relevant marriage laws should be amended and a national action plan should be created and implemented to combat child marriage.
41. GIEACPC stated that at the 2011 review, Zimbabwe accepted recommendations to prohibit all forms of corporal punishment. While the 2013 Constitution, unlike its predecessor, does not expressly provide for “moderate” corporal punishment of children, there has been no change in the legality of corporal punishment, which remains lawful in all settings – in the home, alternative care settings, day care, schools, penal institutions, and as a sentence for crime. The General Laws Amendment Bill 2015, intended to harmonise legislation with the 2013 Constitution, does not include prohibition of corporal punishment of children. A Children’s Bill is being prepared and a Juvenile Justice Bill is planned, both of which provide opportunities to prohibit corporal punishment. ACTSA urged Zimbabwe to ensure that corporal punishment of children is unlawful.
3. Administration of justice, including impunity, and the rule of law
48. CRIN stated imprisonment for life is lawful as a sentence under the Criminal Procedure and Evidence Act, and there is no exemption for child offenders. It called for explicit prohibition of life imprisonment for offences committed by persons when they were under the age of 18 years. It also called for a review of the sentences of those who received life imprisonment for offences committed when they were under the age of 18 years and for resentencing them.
7. Right to social security and right to an adequate standard of living
63. SOS CVZ stated that the social welfare system had a huge case-load, and the lack of adequate numbers of professional personnel impeded effective implementation and monitoring of child protection legislation.
64. SOS CVZ stated that Zimbabwe has introduced programmes, such as social welfare grants for orphans and vulnerable children to ensure social security and to increase the standard of living. However, disbursements to recipients were not done on time by the national treasury resulting in, for instance, children in residential care relying on donations. Also, disbursements were hampered by widespread corruption which led to donors withdrawing their support for those programmes.
8. Rights to health
69. JS8 stated that during the 2011 review, Zimbabwe supported recommendations related to the continuation of efforts to reduce HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis as well as mortality rate caused by HIV, and development of a financing mechanism to help the underprivileged. Despite support for those recommendations, children continue to experience difficulties in accessing health services.129 JS8 recommended that Zimbabwe ensure that all children have access to free quality health services, notably through the establishment of a policy of universal health coverage that prioritizes access to healthcare for the most deprived children by, December 2018; and allocate adequate resources to the
74. JS6 stated that women and girls seldom had access to safe abortion services, even in instances where abortion was legal and should have been performed in accordance with the law.
9. Right to education
76. JS8 stated that at the 2011 review, Zimbabwe supported recommendations on the right to education for children, including girls and vulnerable children,142 all of which reflected the challenges within the education sector.143 It stated that there was a shortage of schools, with some children walking about 5 kilometres to the nearest primary school and 10 kilometres to the nearest secondary school. The economic crisis has left many parents unemployed and unable to provide for the educational needs of their children.
77. JS8 stated that the Basic Education Assistance Module intended for providing assistance to vulnerable children was under resourced. Also, it only catered for school fees and not for uniforms, stationery and examination fees.
80. ERI called for an increase in government spending on education to keep pace with population trends, and to protect the rights of vulnerable children, in line with the Sustainable Development Goals. It also called for measures to combat discrimination and sexual violence in schools.151 ERI made recommendations including the providing of training on the children’s rights for teachers and the development of a child protection policy to be signed by all teachers.
The following recommendations enjoy the support of Zimbabwe:
131.18 Align domestic legislation with the obligations under the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and adopt measures to ensure inclusive education and access to public buildings for people with disabilities (Israel);
131.20 Update national legislation in line with its international commitments, especially with regard to gender equality, protection of the rights of the child and combating violence and forced marriage (Tunisia); africa);
131.22 Amend all statutory and customary laws to establish the minimum age of marriage at 18 years and take concrete steps to implement this legislation, in line with the Convention on the Rights of the Child (Belgium);
131.40 Continue to do what needs to be done to put together a national child rights policy (Ecuador);
131.41 Establish child protection systems in order to reduce the number of cases of maltreatment of children (Madagascar);
131.42 Continue efforts to align training programmes for all government officials with international human rights law and incorporate more training in child rights into professional development courses (Holy See);
131.56 Ensure more effective enforcement of policies and legislation to address discrimination against and marginalization of women, and take measures to promote equal access for boys and girls to basic education (Thailand);
131.58 Continue to address the marginalization and exclusion of women in the economic, social and political spheres, with special attention paid to eliminating the harmful practice of child marriage (Republic of Korea);
131.59 Set up a strategy to promote the rights of women to combat discrimination against women and girls, focusing in particular on matters such as early or forced marriage, sexual violence, equal access to education and equal access to land ownership, inter alia (Mexico);
131.60 Act swiftly to address issues of discrimination against girls in education, especially sexual abuse and harassment of girls in schools, as well as difficulties faced by children in rural areas in accessing education (Japan);
131.65 Strengthen the implementation measures taken to fight child labour (France);
131.66 Fully implement the constitutional provisions for the protection of the rights of the child in line with international standards, also in order to further reduce the practices of child, early and forced marriage (Italy);
131.67 Improve the protection of children, taking measures to prevent forced and early marriage, and eliminate child labour (Israel);
131.68 Amend all statutory and customary laws as soon as possible to establish the minimum age of marriage at 18 years, and create and implement a comprehensive national plan of action to combat the practice of child marriage and its root causes (Ireland);
131.69 Develop a national plan of action to stem the rise in the practice of child marriage (Madagascar);
131.70 Adopt measures to prevent and eradicate violence against women and girls, especially the adoption of legislation, the establishment of more shelters and the training of judges, prosecutors and police officers (Israel);
131.71 Adopt measures to prevent and eliminate all abuses of sexual violence against girls and women, ensuring that perpetrators are effectively held to account, including with full coordination of the Zimbabwe Gender Commission (Turkey);
131.79 Strengthen the interministerial committee to combat trafficking in persons to provide effective protection to victims of trafficking, particularly women and children (Belarus);
131.100 Continue consolidating its social programmes and strengthening its successful education policy (Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela);
131.101 Undertake efforts as set out in the Sustainable Development Goals, especially those related to poverty, education, health, housing and water and sanitation (Bangladesh);
131.108 Continue to ensure, through an ongoing campaign or strategy, access to food and to education for all children, including children with disabilities, children who live on the street, orphans and children living in rural areas (Mexico);
131.109 Develop a strategy or a national plan for the de- institutionalization of children from residential care institutions to foster families (Serbia);
131.110 Develop a comprehensive strategy for children in street situations, using a child-rights approach and addressing both prevention and response (Serbia);
131.115 Strengthen children’s access to health services, particularly as regards HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis (Algeria);
131.117 Develop and operationalize a comprehensive strategy on preventing maternal, neonatal and child mortality (Botswana);
131.119 Continue to take further measures to enhance health-care services, especially for women and children (Myanmar);
131.120 Upgrade primary and secondary health-care infrastructure and increase budgetary allocations to the Ministry of Health and Child Care in line with regional and international obligations (Kenya);
131.122 Promote the right to education, inter alia, through combating the challenges of access to schools (Armenia);
131.123 Eliminate all barriers to students’ access to education in all provinces (Kenya);
131.124 Strengthen national mechanisms to allow children’s access to education and health services, specifically in rural areas (Morocco);
131.126 Continue working with its development partners to invest in the education sector (South Sudan);
131.127 Take further steps to provide access to education for all children (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea);;
131.128 Continue to focus on the issue of education to ensure inclusive, high-quality, accessible education for all (Belarus);
131.129 Further develop its education system, including through the improvement of access to education for persons with disabilities and other vulnerable groups (China);
131.130 Incorporate into the education system a human rights-based strategy which is inclusive of children with disabilities (Panama);
131.131 Ensure a free and compulsory primary education by implementing the Education Act (Slovenia);
131.132 Continue strengthening the program on primary education and ensure full school attendance by children deprived of education at the primary and secondary levels (Iraq);
132.78 Reinforce policies to ensure that all children born in Zimbabwe, regardless of their parents’ origins, are issued with birth certificates (Holy See);
132.79 Consider amending the existing legislation to ensure that all children born in Zimbabwe, regardless of their parents’ origin, are issued with birth certificates and ensure the paternity rights of children born out of wedlock (Namibia);
132.80 Scale up efforts to ensure that all children are issued with a birth certificate (Mexico);
132.81 Provide access to free, quality health-care services for all children; abolish corporal punishment in all settings; and strengthen child protection systems in full compliance with international human rights obligations, including through the implementation of national child protection programmes by December 2018 (Slovenia). (Zimbabwe support this recommendation except the part of the recommendation concerning corporal punishment as this matter is still pending before the Constitutional Court).
The following recommendations did not enjoy the support of Zimbabwe:
132.33 Ratify the core international human rights instruments, including the Convention against Torture, the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, all Optional Protocols to the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children, supplementing the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime, and the First Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and incorporate them into its national legislation (Slovenia);
133.13 Take measures to prevent and combat discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, including by decriminalizing sexual relations between consenting adults of the same sex (Brazil);
133.14 Adopt measures to prevent discrimination and violence based on sexual orientation and gender identity, both by State officials and non-State actors, and allow the change of gender markers on government-issued documentation (Israel);
133.15 Prohibit discrimination against persons because of their real or imputed sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, and ensure adequate protection for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex persons, sex workers, and other marginalized groups (Canada);
133.16 Adopt urgent measures to make progress on the elimination of all forms of discrimination, stigmatization and violence against people on the basis of their sexual orientation and gender identity and to promote the respect of the rights of all persons by society (Chile);
133.17 Eliminate discrimination, stigmatization and violence against persons based on their sexual orientation and gender identity and, through public dialogue, promote tolerance and a culture of non-discrimination (Czechia);
133.18 Enhance efforts to promote gender equality and combat all forms of discrimination, including those on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity (Italy).