INTERNATIONAL RULE OF LAW LECTURE

The Bar Council was delighted to welcome the former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Zimbabwe, Judge Anthony Gubbay to the Inner Temple on 9th December to speak on, “the progressive erosion of the Rule of Law in Independent Zimbabwe”. Judge Gubbay chartered the gradual erosion of the Rule of Law under the Mugabeled government from his unique perspective as the leading judge in Zimbabwe. He referred to the practice of placing of regime-friendly judges in powerful positions, the treatment of land invasions as a political rather than legal issue, the amendment of the Declaration of Rights to the detriment of individual rights, the abuse of the presidential pardon and clemency, the intimidation of a free press and human rights defenders, the non compliance of the government with a SADC tribunal judgement and to the threat to his own personal security he encountered as Chief Justice. Judge Gubbay applauded those individuals who put themselves at risk by highlighting the government’s disregard for the rule of law and by campaigning for the protection of human rights. He offered some cause for hope with the recent political change and signs the judiciary may be finding their voice again, but warned that there is a long and difficult road ahead. This event, which once more attracted a large audience, was the third in a series of annual lectures on current challenges facing the rule of law around the world, organised by the International Committee of the Bar Council.

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