Citizens trained on advocacy and lobbying

On the 27th of July 2022, Women’s Institute for Leadership Development (WILD) in collaboration with the Public Policy and Research Institute Zimbabwe (PPRIZ) conducted a training for 25 Local Participation Champions in Bulawayo. The training was designed with the aim to strengthen citizens ‘capacity to actively participate in public decision making and demand quality service delivery, call for improved public resource management and ensure that public officials are accountable to the people.

The training also sought to provide citizens with information on the importance of citizen participation through sharing of concepts such as advocacy, lobbying, community mobilization, engaging election officials, knowing about the Commissions they can engage. The 25 participants who attended the Training were also taken through various social media tools they can use to engage other citizens so that they actively participate and deliberate on critical issues affecting them from the vantage point of their communities.

During the training the facilitator, Dr Tobias Guzura illustrated that, ‘there is need for Citizens to work together so as to achieve a common cause though Advocacy and lobbying. He further outlined that ‘citizen participation requires an informed citizen, empowered citizen and a citizen who is conscious of their rights and obligations.’

One of the participants stated that when advocating, it is not the magnitude of a campaign that matters but the impact of the campaign. Dr Guzura further concurred with the participant stating that the messaging of your campaign and the target audience matters.

Furthermore, Dr Guzura elaborated that there is need for citizens to know the mandate of commissions that exist, inquire on the work of the Commissions, contribute to the work that they do and support their work by regularly engaging and working with each other so as to complement each other’s efforts.

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