Practice Related to Rule 95. Forced Labour
Zimbabwe’s Constitution (1979), as amended to 2009, states:
THE DECLARATION OF RIGHTS
14 Protection from slavery and forced labour
(1) No person shall be … required to perform forced labour.
26 Interpretation and other savings
(7) No measures taken in relation to a person who is a member of a disciplined force of a country with which Zimbabwe is at war or with which a state of hostilities exists and no law, to the extent that it authorises the taking of such measures, shall be held to be in contravention of the Declaration of Rights.
Zimbabwe’s Constitution (2013) states:
Chapter 4 – Declaration of Rights
55. Freedom from forced or compulsory labour
No person may be made to perform forced or compulsory labour.
86. Limitation of rights and freedoms
(2) The fundamental rights and freedoms set out in this Chapter may be limited only in terms of a law of general application and to the extent that the limitation is fair, reasonable, necessary and justifiable in a democratic society based on openness, justice, human dignity, equality and freedom, taking into account all relevant factors, including –
(b) the purpose of the limitation, in particular whether it is necessary in the interests of defence, public safety, public order, public morality, public health, regional or town planning or the general public interest;
(3) No law may limit the following rights enshrined in this Chapter, and no person may violate them –
87. Limitations during public emergency
(1) In addition to the limitations permitted by section 86, the fundamental rights and freedoms set out in this Chapter may be further limited by a written law providing for measures to deal with situations arising during a period of public emergency, but only to the extent permitted by this section and the Second Schedule.
(2) A written law referred to in subsection (1) and any legislative measures taken under that law, must be published in the Gazette.
(3) Any limitation which a written law referred to in subsection (1) imposes on a fundamental right or freedom set out in this Chapter must not be greater than is strictly required by the emergency.
(4) No law that provides for a declaration of a state of emergency, and no legislative or other measure taken in consequence of such a declaration may –
(a) indemnify, or permit or authorise an indemnity for, the State or any institution or agency of the government at any level, or any other person, in respect of any unlawful act; or
(b) limit any of the rights referred to in section 86(3), or authorise or permit any of those rights to be violated.
Zimbabwe’s Geneva Conventions Act (1981), as amended in 1996, punishes “any person, whatever his nationality, who, whether in or outside Zimbabwe, commits any such grave breach of [any of the 1949 Geneva] Conventions”.