ActionAid Zambia has called on Zambians to demand for the domestication of the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance (ACDEG) in order to enhance good governance in the country.
Speaking at a media training workshop held in Siavonga last week, ActionAid Country Director Nalucha Ziba said there was need to ensure adherence to the various pieces of legislation as well as transparency in the management of public affairs.
“Zambia has signed and ratified the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance (ACDEG). This implies that government is committed to principles of good governance. However, on the contrary, Zambia is grappling with financial mismanagement, ineffective public service delivery, suppression of freedom of expression, low participation of women in decision-making process and structures to mention but a few. There is need to ensure adherence to the various pieces of legislation, transparency in the management of public affairs, promotion and protection of fundamental human rights and inclusivity in decision making process. Further, there is need to promote progressive practices that enhance good governance. These, we are certain, will ensure that Zambia completely domesticates the ACDEG,” Ziba said.
Ziba appealed to citizens to demand for the domestication of the ACDEG to enhance good governance in the country.
She added that the media was better placed to raise public awareness on ACDEG.
“There is need for the citizens of Zambia to demand for the domestication of the ACDEG. As earlier mentioned, the ACDEG is a mechanism that will enhance good governance in Zambia. However, we have observed that very few citizens know about the ACDEG. In addition, many don’t know that the Zambia Government has signed and ratified the Charter implying that government is committed to principles of good governance. It is for this reason that we are of the concerted view that the media is better placed to raise public awareness about the ACDEG. We cannot underestimate the power of media in governance processes,” she said.
Ziba also noted that as a member of the African Union, the country had an obligation to apply the African Governance Architecture (AGA) which advocated for stakeholders participation in promotion of good governance and democracy in Africa.
“This event is emanating from the European Commission – Pan African Project simply put (EC –PANAF) which is managed by the Governance Department of ActionAid Zambia. The EC-PANAF project aims at Mobilizing Civil Society Support for the Implementation of the Africa Governance Architecture (AGA). The AGA is a mechanism for dialogue between stakeholders that are mandated to promote good governance and democracy in Africa,” said Ziba.
“The AGA is structured around a normative framework that is setup by the African Union (AU) Shared values. To this effect, it is based on objectives and principles that have been defined in various AU shared values that member states have signed and ratified such as the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance (ACDEG). The EC-PANAF project is also implemented in eight other ActionAid Countries particularly Zambia, Zimbabwe, Ghana, Mozambique, Tanzania, Sierra Leone, Nigeria and Uganda.”