Security sector reform: State security and human security relations in Zimbabwe - the case of Zimbabwe Defence Forces (ZDF) 1980-2008
Bangidza, Lucky Bassie
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This thesis examined the origins, concepts and practices of the security sector reform (SSR), as the independent variable, using state security (SS) and human security (SS) as the dependent variables for analysis. The Zimbabwe Defence Forces (ZDF) period 1980-2008 was the main focus of the case study. Findings of the study showed that the ZDF senior officers perceive SSR differently from the external and internal Western drivers of the SSR, who popularise it. In its current form SSR is an externally and internally driven prescriptive exercise which differentiates civilians from the military. The ZDF senior officer’s perception is that SSR is a process with its origins from the liberation struggle (historical) as an indigenous and non-prescriptive process. In 1980 the Demobilisation, Disarmament and Reintegration (DDR), the amalgamation of the Zimbabwe African National Liberation Forces (ZANLA), Zimbabwe People’s Revolutionary Army (ZIPRA) and the Rhodesian Security Forces (RSF) into a single force was one of a successful SSR process as the second level of consciousness. Operation dissident flash in the 1980s, regional operations and peace support operations in the 1990s, ‘Operation Murambatsvina or Restore Order’ of the 2000s and the professionalization process of the ZDF thereafter, remains an SSR process which is indigenous. The Ubuntu philosophy shapes the major theoretical conceptual framework of this case study. This case study used quester-views, participant observation and focus group discussions as major data collection instruments. The data was managed with the use of the Computer Assisted Qualitative Data Analysis Software (CAQDAS) package, which is a qualitative data-management and analysis tool. This thesis found that the way in which security sector reform (SSR) was introduced to Zimbabwe betrays the motives of internal and external Western drivers of the concept and its ideology as a donor-driven security model. Findings showed that separating the ZDF from direct national, regional, international, security and political involvement is seen as tantamount to militating against the ideas of the liberation struggle. Effective functioning state structures are prerequisites and preconditions for successful defence management system. These should be based on the essentials of defence institution building process. As a result, the concept of the ‘apolitical’ soldier is a euphemism for something else because the gun cannot be divorced from the cause for which it stands. For that reason, the ZDF is part of the state security machinery and therefore is codependent on the politics from which it derives its authority. On the contrary the current character of SSR is such that it is based on Western formulae and hence has caused the development of massive mutual mistrust and suspicion. And yet properly understood, SSR was mooted during the liberation struggle in Zimbabwe as a concept and continues to be so as a process uniting civilians and the military. Thus, SSR is not an issue because it is being practised as a process in the ZDF. As a word SSR is new in its content, philosophy and ideology but as a concept in the ZDF it is not new. The thesis showed that realism in some cases is the means, as in the 1980s on national reconciliation, operation dissident Flash, the Unity Agreement of 1987 and the Global Political Agreement of 15 September 2008, and Ubuntu as the process and goal in SR, SS and HS relations in terms of uniting the population as a family in SSR, SS and HS relations.
Additional Citation InformationBangiadza,L. B. (2016). Security sector reform: State security and human security relations in Zimbabwe - the case of Zimbabwe Defence Forces (ZDF) 1980-2008 (Unpublished master's thesis). University of Zimbabwe.
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