BY NQOBANI NDLOVU
THE Bulawayo Progressive Residents Association (BPRA) has elected a new 19-member executive for a four-year term, with labour expert and human rights defender Ambrose Sibindi landing the chairmanship.
The new executive was elected at the 2019 BPRA convention, that drew delegates from BPRA’s 29 ward structures in the city. The convention was held at the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair on Sunday.
BPRA co-ordinator Emmanuel Ndlovu yesterday confirmed that HIV and Aids activist Sibindi was elected chairperson, taking over from Reason Ngwenya, a labour activist.
“The new chairperson for the association is Sibindi (former BPRA organising secretary), who is now deputised by Patricia Tshabalala. They are set to champion the vision of the association. BPRA has an inward and outward looking vision,” Ndlovu said.
“It envisions being a transformative, relevant, and accessible residents association for the inhabitants of Bulawayo and local government stakeholders.”
Others who were elected are Thembelani Dube, who became secretary for administration, Melusi Moyo (organising secretary), Alick Gumede, (finance), Benny Lutshani Moyo (education), Marble Ngwenya (health) and Desire Moyo (arts and culture).
The members also elected Joseph Nkomazana as secretary for water management and development, Austin Nkomazana (business), Beauty Lifa (welfare), Ottilia Sibanda (gender), Samuel Munsaka (environment), Sukoluhle Mhlanga landed the secretary for people living with disabilities post, Teresia Nyathi (transport), Perseverance Nyathi (youth: female), Stanley Moyo (youth, male) and committee members Violette Nxumalo and John Gasela.
The BPRA is a community-based and membership-driven organisation established in 2007 as a non-partisan platform to promote effective residents and stakeholder interaction and participation in local governance.
It is registered as a Trust with the High Court of Zimbabwe.
The BPRA has, in its past advocacy campaigns successfully mobilised residents to resist the installation of pre-paid water meters, lobbying Parliament to stop the centralisation of Local Government Procurement Processes and stopped the appointment of special interest councillors, among others
“BPRA also envisions contributing to the city of Bulawayo’s assent as a centre of local governance excellence, prime service delivery and the city of first choice in Zimbabwe,” Ndlovu said.
“BPRA pursues this dual vision through its mission to empower residents of Bulawayo on issues of local governance and collective decision making through effective participation and evidence-based advocacy, with the understanding that these are the building blocks to improved service delivery in the city.”