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Masvingo province faces severe challenges
Community Tolerance Reconciliation and Development (COTRAD)

September 30 , 2013

Masvingo province is in need of more humanitarian aid organizations and requires more work around the promotion of human rights.

The banning of 29 NGOs from operating in the province last year reduced the number of humanitarian aid organizations providing food aid to the drought stricken province. Approximately more than 200 000 households are in the quagmire of poverty in districts such as Chivi, Mwenezi, Bikita and Zaka.

Increase is dropouts from school due to poverty has also escalated with a ratio of 3 in every 10 being drop outs, this further questions the authenticity of the presentation made by Zimbabwe to the 68th UN General Council.

The closure of the operating space led to the politicization of the grain loan scheme which was further used as a tool to coerce the electorate in buying certain political ideologies. As the elections are gone communities in Masvingo have been left vulnerable, as there is no cushion to the hunger problems facing the province. This will certainly cripple Zimbabwe as a community and the attainment of the MDGs will be a fallacy.

The decentralization of autonomy to provincial levels should be followed by disbursement of adequate resources aimed at masterminding development projects and eradicating poverty which is also part of MDGs. The national budget for the fiscal year 2014 should be all encompassing to give provinces leverages in addressing their peculiar challenges

More so Masvingo has become a one party province, underlining the importance of watchdogs in the form of Civil society to consistently provide checks and balances for the next 5 years. The role is to make sure Zimbabweans are equal regardless of political affiliation. This is essential and of paramount importance as the earlier distribution of grain and development projects was done on partisan basis.

COTRAD among other key community based actors will play a key role in making government accountable to its citizens through ushering provisions for adequate support to communities like Masvingo which are vulnerable.

Visit the COTRAD fact sheet

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