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Mwenezi East success story
Community Tolerance Reconciliation and Development (COTRAD)

November 29, 2013

The situation

A community dialogue held at Mwenezi East Ward 5 on the 27th of November 2013 aimed at reaching out to 60 young people in the constituency, and at creating a platform where young people as direct beneficiaries of the execution could meet with local elected leaders to come up with mechanisms and strategies which ensure accountability from elected leaders. Mwenezi district as a whole is volatile and remains a one party district.

The response

COTRAD implemented such an activity for the first time in Mwenezi East Constituency and the turn out to such a gathering was overwhelming. More elderly people participated in the community engagement meeting. The community got the opportunity to have a first ever CSO meeting that specifically targeted young people and introducing concepts of accountability of elected leaders to the electorate. Traditional leaders participated in the dialogue as well as the councilor for ward 5, Master Makope. During the first hour of engagement participants were skeptical of NGO work in Mwenezi district but later understood the reason for the creation of such platform.

The results

173 people attended the activity. The meeting focused on ward 5. 91 women and 83 men took part on the process. The activity revealed high levels of socio-economic, political and cultural intolerance in Mwenezi East as people in the community cannot tolerate diverse political ideologies. Such an activity managed to highlight the importance of the local leadership to practice egalitarianism. Some participants noted that perceived opposition party supporters are disenfranchised in the community development and as part of the key result areas where the leadership should exercise competence. The traditional leadership encouraged CSOs to create more of these platforms as they help inform people of their duties in community development and accountability. Citizens demanded more livelihoods projects and more civic education on matters of life skills, and governance issues as most of them are not aware of their roles and community contribution to governance issues.

The evidence

The meeting made use of participant list, which will serve as an ongoing evaluation strategy.

Visit the COTRAD fact sheet

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