Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Dissociation from Regime Change Agenda by Zim Civil Society Akin to Betrayal, Hypocrisy and Deceit

So I read my colleagues in the civil society in Zimbabwe are falling over themselves to deny being part of the regime change agenda. Very interesting! The civil society in Zimbabwe, in my opinion has always been part of a regime change agenda.  One way or the other, directly, indirectly, by default,  by design, by association or by ripple effect. If the civil society in Zimbabwe is denying having been part of a regime change Agenda then this is the kind of hypocrisy that gets us nowhere. What is it that the civil society is so ashamed off?

These denials come after the Zimbabwe Democracy Institute led by Dr Pedzisayi Ruhanya published a policy paper “Priorities for civil society-donors engagement in Zimbabwe.” in which it points out that  civil society in Zimbabwe has been pursuing a regime change agenda.
I am struggling to see how this is a bad thing and why civil society in Zimbabwe would fall over themselves to deny the point made in this paper. By being said to be part of does this mean we were all implementing activities to effect regime change? No I don't think so

Wikipedia defines civil society as the "aggregate of non-governmental organizations and institutions that manifest interests and will of citizens."[1] Civil society includes the family and the private sphere, referred to as the "third sector" of society, distinct from government and business
.[2]'s 21st Century Lexicon defines civil society as 1) the aggregate of non-governmental organizations and institutions that manifest interests and will of citizens or 2) individuals and organizations in a society which are independent of the government.[1]
Sometimes the term civil society is used in the more general sense of "the elements such as freedom of speech, an independent judiciary, etc, that make up a democratic society" 

Well need I say more? If the civil society in Zimbabwe has not been part of a regime change agenda then my deduction is they are then saying that the human rights violations, quashing of freedom of speech, political intimidation and public gathering censure which was unleashed upon civilians by political leaders in Zimbabwe was OK and that they saw nothing which called for the regime responsible to be changed? Hello? Well here is my  opinion,  having contributed in some way maybe unknowingly to regime change Agenda does not all of a sudden make you a political pervert of sorts. No I don't think so. Personal opinion.

I will now delve into my own personal reasons why I am saying again that the civil society in Zimbabwe has been part of a regime change Agenda.

 Firstly; by design, because civil society operates or is expected to operate within a human rights and democracy framework it makes the civil society one of the major arms that can advocate for the liberation of the people from oppression. And of course oppression comes from those that are governing us. In Zimbabwe there was a time with which the human rights violations were so gross every other organisation was dealing with the issue one way or the other. If the civil society in Zimbabwe does not subscribe to this notion, of democracy and human rights, then am left feeling confused.

By default. This is when civil society collaborates and associates with each other as peers and stand on one side advocating for human rights especially in the case of Zimbabwe  and for the reason I mentioned above the moment an organisation is non governmental and part of the civil society it is also automatically part of the whole common purpose of civil society as by its definition.

By association.  Of course we have international organisations working on democracy and governance collaborating with local organisations and how exactly do you explain such a marriage unless you are furthering the interests of the financing organisation. Money only marriage or subscription to values and objectives of the financing organisation. How else would they give you money unless you are furthering their objectives?
Worse still if the countries whose development agencies are financing our operations as civil society are on record,  openly calling for regime change in Zimbabwe how can we then say we have not been part of their agenda. So what is it that we are so ashamed of that we have come out in the open and deny being involved in what one would presume is the most critical role of civil society in a retrogressive democracy such as Zimbabwe. I am not too sure about using the words democracy and Zimbabwe in the same sentence though.

So in conclusion, I am totally against championing a lie that as civil society,  as a body that is supposed to hold the government to account, we think the political situation in our country is ok and should go on like that! What deception and hypocrisy and  betrayal of the people who have been putting their faith on NGO's. What the civil society can come out and deny, is the allegations of donor funds embezzlement and allegations of self enrichment by civil society leaders. That you are welcome to come on record and deny, with evidence.

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