EU donors dump political projects

via Donors dump political projects | The Zimbabwean 19.03.14 by Tawanda Majoni

International donors from the European Union are ditching political and human rights projects in favour of local economic, social, cultural and environmental development, The Zimbabwean has established.

The move is likely to see an acute weakening of the political opposition, which has received support from international pro-democracy well-wishers in the past.

While the Political Parties (Finance) Act prohibits foreign funding of political parties, Zanu (PF) has also received millions of dollars from outside funders in the past.

Sources say Lionel Veer, the Dutch ambassador for human rights, recently visited Harare and convened a meeting with several civil society organisations where he announced the shift from political to human rights support.

“Veer made it clear that it had become unsustainable to support political parties. He said the opposition had been full of brave fighters but they had proved incapable of bringing about democratic change,” said a source who attended the meeting.

“He said: ‘People can fight, but the most important thing is winning. MDC, for instance has fought a good fight but it hasn’t won’”.

Since its formation in late 1999, the MDC has put up a brave show, resisting persecution to mount strong election challenges that almost removed Mugabe and Zanu (PF) from power, particularly in 2008 when MDC-T leader Tsvangirai beat Mugabe in the first round of the presidential poll. He later withdrew because of the widespread violence.

The EU pro-democracy community is said to be disillusioned with the infighting within the MDC. The US and Australian embassies have condemned the squabbles.

Another civil society representative who attended the meeting said western states were unhappy with the fact that the MDC-T seemed to have inherited the violence that had been associated with Zanu (PF).

“There is refocusing. The west is increasingly seeing the crisis moving away from civil and political rights to economic and social rights,” he said.

“We were told (during the meeting) that Zimbabweans are better placed to fight for democracy when they are economically and socially empowered, as poor citizens tend to be vulnerable to politicians.”


  • comment-avatar
    Qiniso 10 years ago

    “We were told (during the meeting) that Zimbabweans are better placed to fight for democracy when they are economically and socially empowered, as poor citizens tend to be vulnerable to politicians”
    Thats the best thing EU can do. Dump politics and support people economically

  • comment-avatar
    Roving Ambassador 10 years ago

    Misplaced aid.they should just stop fueling the corruption. The money always ends up in rich people’s pockets.

  • comment-avatar
    Nyoni 10 years ago

    Thankyou EU for hearing us . Politicians have no will to empower us as this will mean greater dèfiance from us on any issue.

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    Tongoona 10 years ago

    EU yes you were let down by the two so called main political parties but remember that it is fact that there is need for regime change in Zimbabwe. Without regime change, the majority poor will be mercilessly oppressed by the ruling elite. It is my advise that you don’t abandon midsea the ship fully loaded with the majority poor crying out for political revolution.

    I advise that you carefully look around for other opposition political parties, I am sure you will find one or two out of the many parties in Zimbabwe with the ability to effect regime change. Don’t throw away the broom when the house is still full of litter.

  • comment-avatar

    Zim pple must learn to donate funds for their own parties.we have many businesses who can fund these parties.Why do we have to beg the West?? Its time we get serious maZimba