via ‘Tired spirit of activism, donor fatigue to perpetuate Zanu PF misrule’ – NewsDay Zimbabwe June 29, 2015 by Paidamoyo Muzulu
OUTGOING Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition (CiZC) director McDonald Lewanika has bemoaned the sudden decline in the spirit of activism among civic society groups, saying the development was likely to perpetuate Zanu PF misrule as most human rights watchdogs have given up hope.
Lewanika, who denied reports that he was pushed out of the civic society group, but maintained that he resigned on his own volition to pursue other professional interests, also admitted that most civic society groups had been hit hard by donor fatigue.
In an exclusive interview with NewsDay last week, Lewanika said: “The issue of donor fatigue is understandable given the clear absence of transformation in Zimbabwe, but what is more worrying for me is fatigue on the part of Zimbabweans and Zimbabwean activists.”
He added: “Donor fatigue simply reasserts the reality that the burden of a better Zimbabwe is one that needs to be carried on the shoulders of Zimbabweans first and foremost, others can help, but we should not expect them to weep more than the bereaved.
“For me, the reality is that after six years of loyal and dedicated service, I feel I have contributed enough to the organisation. In fact, I have served at least twice longer than any other director, on a seat that clearly is hot,” Lewanika said.
“This service has come at the expense of my own personal, professional and intellectual growth, and I believe that the institution and its publics will not begrudge me leaving to try and deal with these other growth elements in my life.”
Lewanika said his successor would have the unenviable task of refocusing the organisation in the face of the country’s changing political terrain.
“I accept that our approach has largely been elitist, but to be relevant in the current political conjuncture, the coalition needs to find its grassroots footing, and rebuild itself around the new and emerging movements in the informal economy, community-based organisations, residents and other grassroots-based movements,” he proffered.