Academic journal article Journal of Emerging Trends in Educational Research and Policy Studies

Zimbabwe: Integration, Reconciliation and Rehabilitation Processes

Academic journal article Journal of Emerging Trends in Educational Research and Policy Studies

Zimbabwe: Integration, Reconciliation and Rehabilitation Processes

Article excerpt

Abstract

Over the years we have failed to stop tyrants and dictators getting into positions of power. Should we just sit back and do nothing about this or should we just be philosophical about it? Being philosophical simply means accepting what we cannot change. This paper sought to change what we thought could not be changed. Integration means 'working together", Rehabilitation means "rebuilding what had been destroyed" and "Reconciliation means forgiving one another." These are all ways of changing what we thought could not be changed. For all this to happen, people of one nation should evolve unity in diversity. Only when people can live together, work together, have mutual respect for one another and speak freely to one another and the country have Peace. Rehabilitation, Integration and Reconciliation can only take place where there is peace. Reconciliation will only succeed where we as Zimbabweans say: 'I hate what you say, but will defend to death your right to say it." This is a powerful defence of the idea that even views that you despise deserve to be heard. Only after reconciliation will integration and rehabilitation be possible. In the wake violence on a societal scale, finding the right balance between justice and healing retribution and forgiveness, tribunals and truth commissions, remembering and 'moving on' is a messy if not an impossible goal. 'Reconciliation' is the term that has been used to refer to this series of messy compromises. Though it may be offensive or inconceivable to some, this is the only sustainable and genuine form of prevention in societies that have undergone mass violence or conflict. Reconciliation is not being cosy; it is not about pretending that things were other than they were. Reconciliation based on falsewood, on not facing up to reality is not true reconciliation and will not last, the paper has argued. Thus, a conclusion that has been drawn is that while truth might not always lead to reconciliation, there will be no reconciliation without truth-hence this paper. The significance of the study was to bring national healing to a country that is heavily polarised, traditional justice o a country in which the judiciary is highly politicised and to bring peace to a country that is heavily fractured by violence. The study has also outlined Zimbabwe's attempts at striking a balance between justice and healing, vengeance and forgiveness.

Keywords: forgiveness, philosophical, integration, reconciliation, rehabilitation, truth

INTRODUCTION

Zimbabwe, a potential giant is in a crisis, (Ayittey, 1998). The causes of socio-political turbulence, economic difficulties, environmental degradation and its cultural dislocation have been well documented, (Bhebhe, 2002, Bloc, 2004, Ndlovu, 2003), but action to redress these problems and reverse the trend has so far failed to produce the expected results. Never in the history of the country has its people been under attack on so many fronts as it is today. This is a sign that we have gone too far and too fast in the wrong direction. Although the country has research action programmes and lobbying at both national and international levels to awaken the public to political turbulence, economic difficulties and its cultural dislocation, little has been done to educate the masses on the basic, underlying and immediate causes of the present political turbulence, environmental, economic and development problems. As a consequence, despite a number of interventions to correct the complex situation, they have had mixed, but on the whole poor results. This is not surprising because in a way the cart has been put before the horse, hence the progress has been difficult and frustrating. That Zimbabwe is in serious political, economic and development crisis is no longer a gossip but a reality that manifests itself in multifarious forms. However, it is only the effects or symptoms of the crisis and not the causes that are common knowledge and quite often emphasised (Otim, 1992). …

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