Communique of the Residents Summit held in Gweru

19 CTOBER 2021

1. Residents Associations from across the country met in Gweru from 4-5 October 2021 to deliberate ways through which they can strengthen citizen agency in terms of participation on electoral and local governance issues

2. The meeting noted with concern the continued shrinking of the democratic space in Zimbabwe

3. The meeting acknowledged the need to create a coalition of Residents Associations whose tasks will include voter mobilization and civic education as well as to push for electoral reforms (around local governance issues). The coalition will include different stakeholders including the private sector

4. The meeting noted the need to engage government with regards the implementation of the devolution and decentralization policy with a view of ensuring that concerns/inputs from Residents Associations are taken on board

5. The meeting noted the importance of voter education as a way of capacitating citizens to demand accountability from duty bearers. The voter education campaign will target youths, women and people living with disabilities as well as first time voters ahead of the 2023 elections

6. The meeting acknowledged the need to strengthen the organizational capacity of Residents Associations in responding to local governance and electoral issues

7. The meeting also acknowledged the need to push for a diaspora vote in the upcoming 2023 elections


Thematic areas identified during the meeting are listed below;


- Electoral reforms linked to issues of local governance

- Voter registration including easy access to national documentation

- Role of citizens in the recall process of elected councilors

- Legitimization of the diaspora vote

- Role of traditional leaders in local governance issues

- Restoration of Executive Mayors

- Citizen participation in resource allocation and management in line with principles of devolution

- Land allocations, management and housing

- Roads and infrastructure development

- Waste Management

- Primary Health Care

- 50/50 representation of women in local governance

- Education




Done on October 5 2021


Present;



- Bulawayo Progressive Residents Association

- Combined Harare Residents Association

- Chiredzi Residents and Ratepayers Association

- Chitungwiza and Manyame Rural Residents Association

- Combined Mvurwi Residents and Ratepayers Association

- Epworth Residents Development Association

- Local Governance Trust

- Marondera Residents Open Forum

- Marondera Residents Association

- Marondera Progressive Residents and Ratepayers Association

- Masvingo Residents Forum

- Masvingo United Residents and Ratepayers Alliance

- Ruwa Residents and Ratepayers Association Trust

- Simukai Residents Association

- United Chiredzi Residents and Ratepayers Association

- United Mutare Residents and Ratepayers Trust

- Victoria Falls Combined Residents Association

- Wedza Rural Development Initiative Trust

- Zvishavane Urban Residents and Ratepayers Association Trust


ENDS//

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