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Statement on the passing on of Professor John Mw Makumbe
Centre for Community Development in Zimbabwe (CCDZ)
January 29, 2013

The Centre for Community Development in Zimbabwe (CCDZ) joins the Makumbe family and the nation in mourning the untimely death of Professor John Makumbe. Professor Makumbe was an immensely talented and rare academic whose meaningful contribution to the fight for good governance and democracy shaped Zimbabwe's political trajectory. Many scholars and academics of repute in political science were mentored by Prof Makumbe whilst many civil society activists drew inspiration from him. Prof Makumbe will be greatly missed in both the academic world and political platforms.

In 1995, Prof Makumbe was suspended from being a lecturer at the University of Zimbabwe for "taking an active party in politics" and voicing that Zimbabwe was a de-facto One Party State. He was reinstated by the High Court and never looked back. His depth and credibility in democracy and governance issues saw him being invited to work with many civil society organizations such as Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition, Transparency International-Zimbabwe, Mass Public Opinion Institute and CCDZ. Professor Makumbe was instrumental in the formation of Transparency International-Zimbabwe and The Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition.

CCDZ benefited immensely from the knowledge and wisdom of Prof Makumbe, having accepted invitations to facilitate workshops and presentations at public meetings. In this vein, he played an advisory role at CCDZ and also steered national debate on critical issues which include the Constitution Making process, elections, service delivery and local governance matters. He mixed his good sense of humor with critical issues. Prof Makumbe also helped CCDZ deliver a project on "Citizen Advocacy for Effective Local Governance and Improved Service Delivery" that was supported by the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) and USAID in 2009 and 2010.

CCDZ takes comfort in the fact that his written works will live forever and continue to shape public debate on democracy and governance in Zimbabwe. His fight for human rights shall not go down the drain. We urge his wife Virginia and three children, Rumbidzai, Simba and Tawanda to be strong in these trying times. They should adopt the fearlessness, hardwork and consistency that characterized the life of their father. The nation has lost a true patriot!

Visit the Centre for Community Development fact sheet

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