Theme: “Harnessing our synergies for the Zimbabwe we want”.
The training was held at the Village Lodge in Gweru on 12-15 March 2019. There were 29 participants representing civil society organizations operating in Zimbabwe. The African Charter on Democracy Elections and Governance (ACDEG) was adopted on 30 January 2007 as the African Union’s main normative instrument to set standards for better governance across the continent. It came into force in February 2012 after ratification by fifteen (15) States. As of September 2017, the Charter has been ratified by thirty (30) States and signed by forty-five (45) out of fifty-five (55) States. The Charter is a road map that sets out international standards on good governance and democracy on the African continent. The Charter seeks to:
- promote democracy, good governance, rule of law, human and people’s rights on the African continent;
- promote democratic rule and constitutional changes of power through free, fair and transparent elections in Africa and representative system of government on the African continent.
It is therefore important for citizens to know about the Charter and understand its provisions because it enables citizens to be aware of agreed principles by the African Union for the promotion of good governance on the African continent. It further enables citizens to demand for the implementation of the principles in the Charter for the promotion of good governance on the African continent.
Action Aid is implementing interventions under the project Mobilizing Civil Society Support for Implementation of the African Governance Architecture in Ghana, Mozambique, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe. The project aims at promoting the operationalisation of the African Governance Architecture (AGA) and the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance (ACDEG) to ensure effective governance and democracy to promote sustainable development on the African continent.
In March 2018 Zimbabwe signed the Charter. The idea of this training is to capacitate Civil Society Organisations in Zimbabwe to push for the implementation of the Charter in Zimbabwe, with an objective to have it domesticated in our law. The training will conscientise participants on the importance and functionalities of the Charter, its main scope and why it is necessary that it be locally adopted and implemented. It will also highlight how the Charter is particularly important in this political transitional period that Zimbabwe is undergoing. It will emphasise on all three aspects of democracy, elections and governance and how their promotion proscribes the rule of law and national development.
- To ensure that Civil Society Organizations in Zimbabwe have a clear understanding of the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance.
- To consider possible effective ways in which the African Governance Architecture can be implemented and utilised in Zimbabwe.
- To develop strategies for popularising and pushing for the domestication of the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance in Zimbabwe.
- To get Civil Society Organisations to appreciate the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance as well as to develop a roadmap/strategy that CSOs will use in mobilising and popularising the Charter in Zimbabwe. This strategy will then inform the next interventions which will commence in the 3rd year of the project, thus starting April 2019 – March 2020.
- To hold a national planning meeting on the African Charter on Democracy Elections and Governance. This meeting will bring together representatives from the trained groups of young people (being trained by NAYO), Journalists (being trained by MISA) CSOs (being trained by ZHRNGO Forum) and other relevant stakeholders. This meeting is to consolidate the various strategies each group would have come up with and draw a roadmap so that there is uniform messaging in popularising and pushing for the domestication of ACDEG in Zimbabwe.