By Wallace Mawire
The Citizens Manifesto in Zimbabwe will on 20 July, 2018 host a national citizens convention which will bring together a multi-sectoral cross-section of civil society organisations, activists and social movements from across the country to discuss a shared vision of a better Zimbabwe.
According to Briggs Bomba, Convener of the Citizens Manifesto, the convention is also anticipated to articulate citizens’ demands in relation to the elections and the post elections period.
It is reported that the convention will create space for sectoral clusters to discuss key issues affecting their respective sectors and develop corresponding citizen priorities and demands.
Bomba said that the position statements from the different sectors will be collated into a communiqué articulating key cardinal pillars of a citizens’ manifesto for a better Zimbabwe.
It is reported that the manifesto is envisaged as a framework for a collective citizen voice to hold political actors accountable before and after the elections.
It is also added that the citizens’ manifesto is a principled call by ordinary citizens of Zimbabwe to define the Zimbabwe they want and guide policy and action towards the dream of a better life and future for citizens of the country.
According to Bomba, the #OurZimbabweDream national citizens’ convention calls for a Zimbabwe underpinned by the cardinal pillars of servant leadership, citizen participation, public services that uphold human dignity, no corruption, gender justice, investment in youth, labour justice, natural resources justice, inclusive and diverse society, devolution of power, democratic rights and freedoms, disabled persons rights including peace, justice and reconciliation.
“The political developments in our nation since November 2017 and the impending elections of 30 July 2018 make it ever more critical for citizens to come together in crafting a collective vision for their beloved country as well as agreeing on a roadmap towards fulfilling that vision,” Briggs Bomba, Convener of the Citizens’ Manifesto process said.
He added that the convention is open to all progressive citizens, civil society and activists.
He also said that the convention will be an opportunity for international advocacy and solidarity. He said that it will be graced by key actors from the regional and international solidarity community who will attend to listen to voices of civil society and help amplify the message at the international level.
Other organisations who will participate in the convention include the Zimbabwe Coalition on Debt and Development (ZIMCODD) ,the Zimbabwe National Students Union (ZINASU) and the Vendors Initiative for Social and Economic Transformation (VISET).The organisations will participate under the social, youths and informal sector clusters respectively.