THE NGO NETWORK ALLIANCE PROJECT - an online community for Zimbabwean activists  
 View archive by sector


Back to Index

This article participates on the following special index pages:

  • Zimbabwe's Elections 2013 - Index of Articles

  • Political opponents work together for community development
    Habakkuk Trust
    September 23, 2013

    In a rare but sure sign of transformation, political maturity and political tolerance at community levels, Habakkuk Trust has observed political opponents embracing each other and pledging to work together for community development.

    In Gwanda Ward 14 winning Zanu-PF Councillor Mr Phineas Maphosa has already announced that he is picking losing MDC-T Council candidate Mr Gifford Moyo into his ward development committee ‘because the brilliance and tolerance exhibited by Moyo is worth noting’. ‘On August 1 soon after the announcements of my results Moyo, though he was my opponent on July 31, sent me a congratulatory sms at 5am. Later when I was visiting the nearest shopping centre I met him with some members of his campaign team. He ran to me, hugged me and openly congratulated me. This is a man to work with and his behaviour has taught me a thing or two about political tolerance.’ Maphosa further explained to Habakkuk that he knows that the Action Team Organizing Secretary was a campaign agent for MDC (led by Welshman Ncube) Council candidate but he has already asked him to work as his Ward Secretary because of his experience and dedication to community development. ‘Habakkuk Trust taught us to put politics aside and work together identifying each other’s strengths and weaknesses, and this is what am doing now’ said Maphosa. Moyo and Maphosa were both members of the Ward 14 community advocacy action team.

    In another ward in Mangwe at Zimnyama Ward 2, all the three Council candidates and the former ward councillor attended the community consensus building meeting and were agreeing on the ward development priorities, a sign of political transformation. Losing MDC and MDC-T candidates Konzolata Mpofu and Peter Ncube attended the ward consensus building meeting with former Councillor Edward Ndlovu and winning Councillor Sakhile Ndebele.

    Habakkuk Trust has been working in these communities for about 5 years now building the capacity of community members in development, human rights, advocacy and peace-building skills.

    Zanu-PF councilors vow to work with Habakkuk Trust

    Despite belonging to a party that has a history of hostility to NGOs in general, some Zanu-PF Councillors in Matabeleland South Districts of Gwanda, Matobo and Mangwe have pledged to work closely with the Habakkuk Trust Community Advocacy Action Teams in the coming years in a bid to develop their communities. Speaking to Habakkuk Trust during separate community consensus building meetings, the councillors declared their allegiance to partnering with the action teams to develop their communities. ‘The action team is one of the best organized groups in this ward and I will definitely be working with them through my ward development initiatives. Am already consulting others to ensure that we incorporate the action team into the ward structure because the experience they have will be of great assistance to us. I know the action team came in during the tenure of an MDC Councillor but the way they operate have shown me that they are non-partisan and pro-development oriented’ explained Councillor Phineas Maphosa from Gwanda Ward 14. His sentiments were echoed by Mangwe Ward 2 Councillor, Mrs Sakhile Ndebele who said ‘I will be working with Habakkuk given that I have background of having been an action team member before and there are plans that were in the pipeline before. I am committed and willing to work closely with the action team to realize the achievement of those plans’

    Matobo Ward 2 Councillor, Mr Tom Moyo who attended his ward Consensus Building Meeting urged the action team members to bury their political differences considering that elections are over now and work for the betterment of the ward.

    Other councillors where Habakkuk Trust has been programming have urged the action teams to be more vigilant and more active in their programming as the new government term of office commences.

    For more information follow Habakkuk Trust on Twitter on: @habakkuktrust

    Visit the Habakkuk Trust fact sheet

    Please credit if you make use of material from this website. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License unless stated otherwise.