San Francisco, California
London, United Kingdom
The International Forum for Democratic Studies
at the National Endowment for Democracy
cordially invites you to a presentation entitled
“Zimbabwe’s Military and the Prospects for Democratic Reform”
Reagan-Fascell Democracy Fellow, National Endowment for Democracy
with comments by
Senior Program Officer for Africa, National Endowment for Democracy
Executive Director, International Forum for Democratic Studies
Wednesday, January 15, 2014
4:00 p.m.–5:30 p.m.
1025 F Street, N.W., Suite 800, Washington, D.C. 20004
RSVP (acceptances only) with name and affiliation by Monday, January 13.
Since gaining independence in 1980, Zimbabwe has witnessed a progressively larger role for the military in the country’s political life. President Robert Mugabe’s regime has militarized state institutions in an attempt to consolidate political power. Zimbabwe’s militarization has been integral to the regime’s effort to establish a one-party political system and to resist democratic change in the face of growing opposition. In recent years, the military has become an agent of political violence, actively undermining Zimbabwe’s struggle to achieve democratic progress. In his presentation, Charles Mangongera will explore the influence of the military in shaping political developments in Zimbabwe, especially during the last five years of the power-sharing government and the recent elections. He will offer recommendations for international actors, civil society, and the Zimbabwean government on how to reform civil-military relations along democratic lines. His presentation will be followed by comments by Eric Robinson.
Charles Mangongera is director of policy and research for the Movement for Democratic Change, a national political party at the forefront of fighting for democracy in Zimbabwe. In 2009–2010, he served as a senior program officer for the southern Africa local governance project at Freedom House, where he worked to strengthen civil society organizations. He previously worked at HIVOS as a program officer for human rights and democratization, ICT, and media. An accomplished researcher who has contributed to reports produced by USAID, IRI, and the Electoral Institute of Southern Africa, Mr. Mangongera regularly provides expert political commentary to newspapers and radio stations, including Studio 7, Voice of America, and Voice of the People. He was awarded a Chevening scholarship in 2003 to pursue graduate studies at the University of Birmingham in the United Kingdom. During his fellowship at NED, Mr. Mangongera is exploring the counter-productive role of the military in Zimbabwe’s efforts to achieve democratic reform. Eric Robinsonis senior program officer for Africa at the National Endowment for Democracy.