Mr. Speaker, Zimbabwe's opposition MPs face the constant threat of physical abuse, beatings or even death at the hands of the police and the gangs used by Robert Mugabe's regime to carry out its dirty work. To protect these MPs, many have been twinned with legislators from other countries.
Sometimes twinning works and sometimes it does not. Several years ago I was twinned with an opposition MP named David Mpala. He was beaten to death by thugs who were never prosecuted.
So I was paired again with a brave young opposition spokesman named Nelson Chamisa. Two weeks ago, he and dozens of others were attacked by police while conducting a peaceful demonstration. And then last Saturday, as Nelson was preparing to fly to Brussels to report on this latest round of abuse, he was beaten by eight thugs in the parking lot of Harare airport.
Today Nelson is hospitalized with a fractured skull, a detached retina and possible kidney damage. As usual, the assailants have vanished without a trace. It is time for the entire civilized world to hold Robert Mugabe personally accountable for his regime's reign of terror.