Towards Group Litigation in Zimbabwe
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Introduction (i) A bus overturns. A number of passengers are injured and others lose their lives. The injured persons and dependants of those killed wish to sue the bus operator. (ii) Many infants are born deformed. It is established that the cause of their deformity is a drug that their mothers have taken, and which was manufactured and marketed by a large company. Their parents wish to sue the company. (iii) A multi-national corporation dismisses all contract workers from its countrywide agricultural estates. It is established that the workers, who are not members of any trade union, have been working for the company for two years on three monthly contracts which have been renewed at the end of each three monthly period. The workers wish to sue the company. (iv) A group of residents wish to sue a local mining company for environmental degradation. They wish to sue on behalf of themselves and future generations who, they claim, will be deprived of the beauty of the locality. (v) A large group of squatters who have been living in an area for two years wish to sue the Ministry of Health for failure to provide them with medical facilities. They seek a mandamus against the Ministry. (vi) A group of peasants wish to obtain a mandamus against the Ministry of Water Development. They allege that the Ministry has failed to provide them with clean water despite the government’s policy to supply clean water to all by the year 1989. (vii) The Child Protection Society wishes to sue a certain religious sect for failure to have children of the members of the sect vaccinated.