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Deputy Chief Justice, Judicial Service Commission, Justice Luke Malaba
The Mayor of Bulawayo, His Worship Councillor Martin Moyo
The Provincial Affairs Minister for Bulawayo Metropolitan Province, Honourable Eunice Nomuthandazo Moyo
Honourable Government Ministers
Honourable Members of Parliament
Members of the Judiciary
Chairperson, Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission, Commissioner E. H. Mugwadi
Deputy Chairperson, Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission, Dr E. Sithole
Zimbabwe Human Rights Commissioners
Commissioners of Sister Commissions
Ladies and Gentlemen
Vice Chancellors of Universities
Development and Donor Partners
Ward Councillors
Directors and Officers of Government Line Ministries
Directors and Staff of Civil Society and Faith Based Organisations
Directors and staff from the Private Sector
Members of the Media fraternity
Artist Groups here present

Ladies and gentlemen, my task is to give the vote of thanks. Obviously for such a big event to take place both financial resources and human effort have been ploughed in to prepare and plan the event.

These commemorations were largely made possible by the partnership between the Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission (ZHRC) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). Through the partnership project the ZHRC has benefited from financial and technical support from UNDP and the European Union. I would therefore like to express my heartfelt gratitude to these partners who have been so consistent and reliable in working with the Commission.

Additional financial resources were also received from another partnership which is   coordinated by the Danish Institute for Human Rights (DIHR) with funding again from the European Union, Royal Norwegian Embassy and Danish Embassy. Further financial support which went towards information, education and communication materials was received from the Royal Netherland Embassy though Hivos. Allow me therefore on behalf of the Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission (ZHRC) to thank these development partners.

Not to be outdone, Civil Society Organizations, namely National Association of Non Governmental Organisations (NANGO), ZimRights, and others chipped in with contributions towards food and other items. Ingwe Studios have assisted us with all the equipment used today at lower rates than those prevailing on the market. Allow me to extend my most sincere gratitude to these organizations as well.

In fact, while this was a planned for event, what the Commission had not anticipated is the amount of support that the event has received. Twenty one (21) partner organisations attended the meetings in Harare and Bulawayo to initiate the preparations at the beginning of November and more joined the partnership afterwards. These stakeholders who are represented here include representatives from Civil Society, Government, Teachers’ Unions, Faith Based Organisations, International Development Agencies and Organizations and others. From these, two Steering Committees were established in Harare and Bulawayo which met several times and worked tirelessly with the Commission Secretariat to plan and prepare for the event. May this spirit of collaboration and partnership be maintained for future events.

Let me also take this opportunity to thank my fellow Commissioners and staff members of the ZHRC for a job well done. You have made us proud.

But above all, this event would not have been successful without you, the citizens and residents of Zimbabwe, and in particular the Bulawayo community. You are the rights holders. You are the reason why we are here to ensure that you know your rights and where to go in the event of a violation. Your presence here is therefore greatly appreciated.

I Thank You.

Vote Of Thanks by Chairperson for the Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission Dr. Ellen Sithole at The International Human Rights Day Commemorations – Amphi Theatre, Bulawayo, 10 December, 2014