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Advocacy missions to Tanzania and Mozambique

In a bid to maintain the momentum and persuade the Southern Africa Development Committee (SADC) countries to convince the Inclusive Government of Zimbabwe (IGoZ) to conclude reforms in line with the Global Political Agreement (GPA), Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition has sent a high powered delegation to Tanzania and Mozambique. The delegation is set to meet civil society leaders and government officials in the respective countries from Monday, 26 November to Friday 30 November 2012.

This follows another successful mission to Zambia from the 12th November to the 16th November 2012. The Mozambican delegation led by Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition (CiZC) Director, Mr. McDonald Lewanika, goes with a solidarity message and continued call for peace and stability to the people of Mozambique in light of the civil war threat by armed RENAMO rebels. The mission to Mozambique intends to meet both FRELIMO and RENAMO leaders. Meanwhile, the mission to Tanzania is led by Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition (CiZC) Regional coordinator, Dr. Phillan Zamchiya.

The two advocacy missions are aimed at impressing upon the people of Mozambique and Tanzania, their governments and civil society to persuade political players in Zimbabwe's Inclusive Government, fellow SADC and AU member states to play a more pro-active role in ensuring the full implementation of agreed reforms in the GPA and emphasised in various SADC communiques. The CSO leaders will make specific reference to particular reform issues which need to be concluded before the forthcoming elections in Zimbabwe in 2013.

The two advocacy missions will also capture the issue of resurgent violence and intimidation as evidenced by the sprouting of militia groups related to Zanu-pf in different urban centres across the country, crackdown on non-government organisations, and the unlawful detention of human rights activists. In light of this and learning from the 2008 election experience the delegation will recommend that there be should an immediate regional lobby for SADC to despatch its 'Early Warning Unit' team to Zimbabwe as soon as possible.

On electoral reforms, the missions are expected to highlight the lack of progress in implementation of the GPA parties' agreed and SADC facilitated Election Roadmap presented by South African President, Jacob Zuma, to the Extraordinary Summit of SADC Heads of State and Government in Sandton, South Africa on the 11th to the 12th of July 2012. The missions will also outline the challenges around the work towards a new Voter's roll, intricate hurdles met by different groups of prospective voters such as women and youth in terms of voter registration, and the unaltered controversial staffing of the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) which is allegedly still infested by state agents. The missions will also bring to attention the continued disenfranchisement of the Zimbabwean members of the Diaspora.

 

The contentious issue of the security sector reform will also be raised by both the Tanzania and Mozambique missions with particular reference to the coup threat by senior members of security forces in the event that Zanu-pf loses the next elections. There will be calls for JOMIC to be empowered to engage and monitor the security forces.

Furthermore, the CSOs leaders will brief the two countries about the lack of transparency in respect of the Marange diamonds mining, involvement of the military in diamond mining and explain how this together with the lack of security sector reform could lead to instability in the region.

Lastly, advocacy missions are also going to inform the Tanzanian and the Mozambican people, respective CSOs and their governments that the constitution making process in Zimbabwe faces the danger of being hijacked by the GPA principals as a result of President Robert Mugabe's speech at the Second All Stakeholders Conference in Harare on 22nd October 2012. President Robert Mugabe called for the principals to have a final say on the resolution of contentious issues.

The CSOs are expected to conclude their business by impressing upon the people of Mozambique, Tanzania, and their respective governments that the democratization struggle in Zimbabwe will not be successful without their progressive intervention and continued support. In light of this the two missions are going to call for Mozambique and Tanzania to join hands with SADC, AU, African governments, CSOs and the entire African people to persuade the Inclusive Government (IG) to do the following before harmonized elections in 2013:

1. Finalisation of the constitution making process according to the provisions of the Global Political Agreement (GPA) and have a referendum where Zimbabweans can decide;

2. Elimination of state sponsored violence and the creation of a peaceful environment;

3. Full implementation of electoral reforms so that Zimbabwe can have a free and fair election that will allow for peaceful transfer of state power;

4. A non-partisan security sector that prioritise the security of persons;

5 .Transparency in the management of natural resources so that they benefit the majority of Zimbabweans. The control of diamonds by the military elite breeds ground for funding conflict not only in Zimbabwe but to our neighbours.

 

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