HARARE -Some 83 local councillors from local authorities throughout the country who had an opportunity to take courses on democracy under a Swedish programme met the new Swedish Ambassador to Zimbabwe, Sofia Caltorp in Harare last week.
The Swedish Ambassador took the opportunity to take stock of the training programme which was facilitated the Institute of Local Democracy
(ICLD) based in Sweden.The ICLD's main objective is to promote local
democracy in order to reduce poverty by strengthening local institutions said Shanon Lovegren the program coordinator.
Ambassador Caltorp recently presented her credentials to President Mugabe.
The ICLD programme which runs for five weeks was introduced in 2010 and all groups that have benefitted from the programme since then were invited to the meeting with the Ambassador.
"The reunion not only allows us to recall the time you have been to Sweden but to rediscover all that has happened over the years in our professional lives, facilitated by where we were when we came back from Sweden and where we are now.
"It also enables us to take stock of how we have used the expertise we got from the training. ICLD will also use your experience over the years to design future programmes and also use this to measure the impact of their programmes," said Caltorp to the councillors.
"The programme was started in 2008 in Sweden with the main objective being to promote democracy at local level by capacitating councillors
through training on planning skills, how to engage the community, better communication skills, project implementation and leadership training among
"To date 83 councillors from across the country have received training in Sweden, these were selected by their chief executive officers from their respective councils and went through a selection process to gauge their ability to understand English and basic provisions of the Constitution of the country and this is done with the assistance of MSU," added Lovegren.
One of the beneficiaries of the programme is Grace Mukungunugwa who went to Sweden in 2015. Tsungai Makore who is Shurugwi Town
Council chairman who went through the training last year in September said what he learned has immensely benefitted his council.local news