Arnold Tsunga is a former lawyer from Zimbabwe and presently the executive director of the Africa Regional Programme of the International Commission of Jurists in South-Africa.
Arnold Tsunga started as a commercial lawyer, a field he left in 1998 after he had been beaten by the police in Zimbabwe. He then dedicated himself to defending human rights in Zimbabwe, which is why he founded Zimbabwean Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR). Apart from being managing director of ZLHR, Tsunga was also the National Chairperson of the Zimbabwe Human Rights Association (ZimRights) and one of the democratically elected board members of the Law Society of Zimbabwe (LSZ), the Zimbabwean Bar Association.
Because of its criticism of the human rights abuses in Zimbabwe, the LSZ and its board members have become targets of smear campaigns by Mugabe’s regime. The LSZ, for instance, is accused of favouring the return of a colonial regime, and of acting as a straw man for foreign powers.
Tsunga is also one of the managers of Voices of the People (VOP), which airs an alternative critical radio show. He was prosecuted for making a radio broadcast without a permit and had to appear in court on 25 September 2006. Finally, the case was adjourned.
Arnold Tsunga received a number of awards, including the Martin Ennals Award for human rights defenders, in 2006.
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