Immediately after the MDC (Movement for Democratic Change, the opposition party Wikipedia) won elections in Zimbabwe, two Zimbabwean Army soldiers appeared at the MDC offices in Gokwe South. They shot one MDC worker in cold blood outside the office, shot another inside the office and then locked 3 more MDC officials inside. Pouring 20 litres of petrol over the building, they set it alight before leaving. All three men suffered third degree burns before they could break down the door and escape.
It took three days to reach a treatment facility. Once there, doctors had to hide the men because Zanu-PF supporters came looking for them, intending to finish the job the soldiers had started. The young man in the picture, a former MDC secretary for Healing and Intergration in Gokwe South, also lost half his foot in the attack.
In 2009 I wrote about an unusual outdoor campaign for The Zimbabwean, a newspaper produced by a group of exiled Zimbabwean journalists.
Late last year, the situation in Zimbabwe started to deteriorate, and once again The Zimbabwean commissioned a campaign. The bulk of The Zimbabwean’s money is spent on getting newspapers into Zimbabwe, and not media space.
Two weeks ago The Voiceless Campaign launches in South Africa, as billboards across major cities direct viewers to a website where they can read more about the photographs, hear eye-witness accounts and locate the images in context on a satellite map. Visitors to the site can purchase subscriptions to The Zimbabwean, but they can also purchase subscriptions on behalf of reading groups, schools, training colleges and libraries within the country itself.
Eye-witness accounts on the map of Zimbabwe:
TBWA Hunt Lascaris Johannesburg
Chief Creative Officer : John Hunt
Executive Creative Director: Damon Stapleton
Art Director: Shelley Smoler
Copywriter: Raphael Basckin
Featured Photojournalists: Dirk-Jan Visser, Robin Hammond, James Oatway
Web Developer: Simon Gill
Account Director: Bridget Langley
Operations Director: Carol Soames
Client Service: Kershnee Pillay
Production Manager : Craig Walker
Project Photographers: Christof van der Walt, Michael Grobler, Lucas Mathebula, Tebogo Suping
Editor: Tongai Furusa
Art Buyer: Simone Allem
Project Manager: Leanne Ferris-Woods