Monday, 10 March 2008

Welcome to Zimbabwe Now!

Welcome to the international support blog for the electoral campaign of Fay Chung.

Fay is standing as an independent candidate for the Zimbabwean Senate in the upcoming elections on the 29th March. She is campaigning to win the Hatfield and Waterfalls Constituency of Harare North.

Fay Chung will be supporting the Presidential candidate Simba Makoni, who she believes is a viable candidate to lead Zimbabwe out of its current political and economic turmoil. Fay has an impeccable record of work and is an experienced and astute political analyst. Please show your support for political change in Zimbabwe and get involved in the campaign.

1 comment:

chipo said...

It was with some alarm that I learnt that my mother Fay Chung had decided to nominate herself as an independent candidate for the Zimbabwean Senate (an elected version of the House of Lords) in the upcoming Zimbabwean elections on 29 March 2008. She has worked outside of politics for the past fifteen years in the field of international development with the UN and had ostensibly retired while keeping her hand in work on women's leadership and empowerment in Africa. However, she has committed her life from a young age to social change in Zimbabwe and, like many around the world, has watched the disintegration of the great dream of Independence with frustration and sadness. She has been asked many times to stand as an independent but has finally chosen to join the battle in support of Simba Makoni, who she believes is the most viable candidate to lead Zimbabwe out of its current political and economic turmoil. Fay Chung has an impeccable record of work and is an experienced and astute political analyst. For those who do not know of her I include a short biography below. For those who do, I am sure you remember that her tenure as the Minister of Education was during the highpoint of Zimbabwe's standing as a model African nation. Many of us feel helpless regarding the Zimbabwean situation: this is an opportunity to support a woman who will fight fearlessly to give the Zimbabwean people the government it deserves.

Fay Chung's background
Fay Chung was born to Chinese immigrant parents in Apartheid Rhodesia. She trained as a teacher and spent the sixties working in Zimbabwe's high-density suburbs teaching black youths who were starved of education in an increasingly turbulent political climate. She attained her M Phil in Literature at Leeds University (the same year as Clare Short and Jack Straw) before joining the Liberation Struggle in 1973 and risking her life for black majority rule. She spent four years in refugee camps in Mozambique developing Teachers' Curriculum for the thousands of children and youths forced to flee the civil war. In 1980 she returned to Zimbabwe and founded ZIMFEP, an NGO that gives education with agricultural production to war veterans and their families. She was the Deputy Secretary for Administration in the Ministry of Education before becoming Minister in 1988. In 1980, 5% of the black population had access to education; by the time she left to work for the United Nations in 1993, Zimbabwe had achieved 95% primary education - a model that she replicated in developing countries around the world as Head of Education at UNICEF. Fay left government after her attempt to develop a Ministry of Employment Creation, which she envisioned would provide opportunities for work for the now impressively educated youth population - her vision was not supported by the government and so she resigned from Cabinet and left Zimbabwean politics. Zimbabwe's soaring unemployment and the emigration of its educated masses was an event that she foresaw and felt partly responsible for. In 1998 she moved from UN Headquarters in New York to Addis Ababa where she founded the Institute for Capacity Building in Africa for UNESCO. She is also a founder of FAWE (Forum for African Women Educationalists), ASHEWA (Association for Strengthening Higher Education for Women in Africa) and the patron of the Women's University in Africa. She concurrently attained a doctorate in Education, and while witnessing Zimbabwe's economic plunge, most recently attained a BA in Economics from SOAS. She returned to Zimbabwe in 2004 to analyze the political situation and work on women's empowerment programmes. Her life has been committed to the principles of democracy, and education and opportunity for all, and she has written numerous articles and papers analyzing Zimbabwe's political and economic demise, including her book Re-Living the Second Chimurenga: Memories of the Liberation Struggle for Zimbabwe.

For more information on changes happening in Zimbabwe, here are some relevant articles: