As Zimbabwe prepares for political transformation‚ it should be wary not to isolate itself‚ Zimbabwean activist and leader of the #SheVotes campaign Maureen Kademaunga said on Wednesday.
Speaking at a media briefing in Braamfontein‚ Kademaunga cautioned Zimbabweans against calling for the African Union and the Southern African Development Community to distance itself from their transitional processes. “Solidarity is important in this struggle‚” Kademaunga said.
Zimbabwe’s former head of intelligence Dr Dumiso Dabengwa was among those blatant about how Zimbabweans had a sense of distrust for SADC.
Speaking to journalists in Sandton‚ Johannesburg‚ last Friday‚ Dabengwa had said he was not impressed with SADC’s track record in most areas where they were required to resolve conflicts.
“SADC has not been able to successfully resolve [issues] without being prejudiced in one way or the other‚” said Dabengwa.
Kademaunga stressed however‚ that the removal of President Robert Mugabe was only the beginning of a tough journey for the country.
“The system is more complex than the man they took out yesterday‚” Kademaunga said‚ adding that the people of Zimbabwe had spent years living under ‘Mugabeism’.
“Mugabe is the infrastructure‚ the culture‚ the ideology‚ the system‚” she said‚ suggesting that the country needed to root these out. Mugabe’s rule came with a lot of losses for Zimbabwean nationals and left the youth in shackles‚ Kademaunga said.
“Zimbabwe was the perfect graveyard for hopes and dreams‚” she said. With Mugabe gone‚ hope had been revived‚ Kademaunga said.
A lot of changes needed to happen in Zimbabwe‚ including female participation in the democracy. She said she found it worrying that during the mass march against Mugabe at the weekend‚ she did not see a single female soldier among the troops.
Instead‚ many had come out to say that Mugabe’s ‘unruly wife’ Grace is to blame for the troubles of Zimbabwe.
“This has caused people to say that women should not be in public spaces‚” she said. Kademaunga said all of this defined how the role of women was portrayed in Zimbabwe.