Meet Vision Africa: CatalyzingCitizensAgency #lamTheCitizen
Planting bananas in potholes. This symbolic and comic campaign by Vision Africa made a splash not only on Twitter, but in the city of Kadoma as well - the potholes were filled the very same day by city officials. Vision Africa is counting on this type of innovation to encourage young people in Kadoma City to get involved in local governance and be a part of improving their communities. Vision Africa’s latest program #IamTheCitizen is taking a step further to equip “youth….[to] be a part of the solution not the problem” Program Coordinator, Ellaine Manyere said in a local story in the Statesman Zimbabwe newspaper. “It is high time we work as the youth to build the nation we want”. This kind of innovation, in parternship with ZimbabweAlliance, will not only get young people registering to vote, but voting, running for public office and becoming the co-creators of solutions to their communities’ challenges.
Meet Savanna Trust: Transforming Communities Through the Arts
- What is the role of citizens in ensuring good governance?
- How do we respond to the human rights violations, particularly abductions and harassment of human rights defenders and citizens in our communities?
- How do citizens speak to the abuse of state power and resources by politicians?
Savanna Trust’s flagship play “Liberation” is leaving an important footprint on citizen dialogue around issues relating to human rights, governance and democratic participation in Zimbabwe. These are just a few of the discussions happening post performances. The theatrical backdrop invites critical feedback from audience members on these national processes and perspectives on how they can play out in their local communities.
Meet Bulawayo Vendors and Traders Association (BVTA)
In 2016 BVTA trained over 600 vendors and informal traders on economic and social rights. BVTA has a membership of over 2000 informal traders in 29 Bulawayo metropolitan wards. In parternship with ZimbabweAlliance, BVTA has launched the Vendors’ Voices Project (VVP) to innovatively empower informal traders to effectively speak truth to power through existing informal social infrastructure including Stokvels, vendors investment clubs, house meetings, Community-Based Advocacy Teams (CoMBAT) to hold City Council accountable in 4 wards across Bulawayo. BVTA recently held its an Onsite Digital Age Vendors (ODAV) training, equipping over 50 vendors in digital literacy including citizen and advocacy journalism. VISET and BVTA are also coordinating and working together to strengthen the voice of the informal sector across the country.
Meet National Association of Youth Organisations (NAYO)
The 2017-2018 Biometric Voter Registration (BVR) exercise in Zimbabwe has revealed an increase from 2013 registration figures of youth registration to 70% (or 3 612 039 out of the total 5 185 072) registered between 20 and 44 years. Youth participation is going to be a determinant factor in the upcoming elections, and even more critical post-elections in shaping governance as young people seek to reclaim leadership at both the level of structure and policy in Zimbabwe.
Meet Vendors Initiative for Socio-Economic Transformation (VISET)
At Independence in 1980, Zimbabwe inherited a relatively small informal economy which accounted for less than 10% of the labor force. In 2017, Afrobarometer reported that only 26% of youth between 18 and 35 described themselves as in full-time employment. Voices of Zimbabwe (VoZ) recent poll of vendors the respondents indicated a lack of formal jobs as the recourse people have to make a living (see VoZ economic series report: www.voicesofzimbabwe.net, @Voices_ZW).
Africa loses an estimated $60 billion every year through Illicit Financial Flows (IFFs). Defined by the Global Financial Integrity as “money that is illegally earned or transferred”, this enormous hemorrhage of financial resources from the continent severely undermines Africa’s capacity for domestic resource mobilization (DRM) leaving African countries with no resources to finance development. The majority of these IFFs originate from tax evasion and tax avoidance practices perpetrated by multi-national corporations (MNCs), particularly those involved in the extractive sector. In the last 3 decades cumulative losses from the continent amount to over $1 trillion. Thus, effectively IFFs deprive countries of public revenues that could be used to address poverty and inequality.
Amandine Rushenguziminega joins TrustAfrica as the Program Associate with the International Criminal Justice (ICJ) Fund for Africa and the Illicit Financial Flows (IFF) Program. She is a passionate political scientist and human rights activist with a track record of working with African CSOs, international NGOs, justice institutions, and with the East African Community (EAC) and the African Union (AU). Amandine is experienced in policy research, advocacy work and project management and implementation on human rights, good governance and peace and security. She previously led the peace and security department at the Pan African Lawyers’ Union (PALU), based in Arusha, Tanzania, mostly addressing the political and humanitarian crisis in Burundi. In addition, she undertook research and a survey on the AU framework on Unconstitutional Changes of Government (UCG) in Africa. She holds a Master in International Relations – Security, Peace and Conflict – from the Université Libre de Bruxelles (Belgium) and a Bachelor in Political Science - International Relations, from the Université de Lausanne (Switzerland). She is fluent in both French and English.
CALL FOR EXPRESSION OF INTEREST
The ICJ Fund has initiated a process of embedding impact evaluation (IE) of its new and on-going re-grant recipients. The objective of including this IE component in the ICJ Fund’s programming is to demonstrate whether the project goals and beneficiaries works. This is particularly helpful as grant requests might appear potentially promising before the implementation but fail to generate the expected impacts.
Therefore, TrustAfrica seeks a consultant to carry out an impact evaluation of one of its partners. The evaluation will be implemented as part of the series on “African Civil Society’s Roles in The Fight Against Impunity” – aimed at show casing the impact of CSOs on the impunity gap for atrocity crimes in Africa, which will in turn provide a platform for the evaluation of the Fund’s efforts to build the capacity of civil society groups and strengthen networks across regions.
The evaluation is expected to generate relevant findings, lessons and recommendations which will be shared independently with stakeholders and the wider community; and then later synthesized as part of the CSO Advancing accountability series to be published as a book. This will be used as best practice to guide and inform the design of future activities.
By Briggs Bomba
Some have questioned whether Zimbabweans have any reason to celebrate the fall of President Robert Mugabe, and sentiments are divided over the meaning of this change to the struggle for democracy and their aspirations for a better future.
I argue that Zimbabweans have every reason to celebrate Mugabe's fall but that the bigger task is to use this opportunity to organize with more vigor for a more democratic and just Zimbabwe.
Further, I assert that Mugabe's fall creates a new cultural climate of which Zimbabweans must take advantage to launch a new era of invigorated civic organizing and citizen agency in the country.