ZDF embraces research and technology to attain Vision 2030

05 Aug, 2022 - 00:08 0 Views
ZDF embraces research and technology to attain Vision 2030 Zimbabwe Defence Forces commander General Philip Valerio Sibanda

The Herald

August is the month the people of Zimbabwe recognise and celebrate the contributions of men and women of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces as they pursue their mandate of ensuring that peace and tranquillity prevails at all times. Peace and tranquillity are key enablers for building prosperous and better life for the people of Zimbabwe. Ahead of the commemorations, our reporter Columbus Mabika (CM) caught up with Commander of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, General Philip Valerio Sibanda (GPVS) to discuss on the journey the ZDF has travelled since its formation four decades ago. 

Below are the excepts of the interview.

CM: General sir as we kick start the interview share with us the role of the ZDF in nation building. 

GPVS: The main role of the ZDF is to ensure peace and tranquillity which is a necessary condition for economic development and nation building. The ZDF also actively participate in nation building by assisting civil ministries and authorities in their endeavours to improve the standards of living of the population. 

CM: Sir, we meet again as we celebrate 42 years of Defence Forces existence, what is the significance of the ZDF Day to the nation? 

GPVS: The ZDF Day is when the nation honours the ZDF for its important role of maintaining peace and security as well as safeguarding the interest of the nation. In this regard, the day also provides a platform for the nation to interact with the ZDF and get an understanding of the important role that the organisation plays in facilitating socio-economic development. 

CM: How is the relationship between the ZDF and the general populace? 

GPVS: The ZDF is a creation of the people of Zimbabwe and its members are recruited from the general populace. This implies that the ZDF is the peoples’ defence force and a defender and protector of the people of Zimbabwe. In this regard, there is always a symbiotic relationship between the ZDF and general populace. Apart from ensuring peace and security, the ZDF also provide assistance to communities through community assistance projects, disaster management and assistance to civil ministries as was witnessed during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic. 

CM: We know the ZDF is involved in community assistance what projects have you undertaken so far?

GPVS: During the course of the year the ZDF carries out community assistance projects in communities around the country. These projects would then be handed over to the concerned communities during the ZDF Community Assistance Week. 

CM: Let us touch on the welfare of members. What strides have you made to improve conditions of service?

GPVS: As the Commander Defence Forces, I am concerned over the state of welfare of the members of the ZDF and their dependants. Areas adversely affected include salaries and allowances, provision of accommodation, health delivery, transport and other important provisions required to make the lives of our service personnel and their families comfortable.

On accommodation priority is being given to the construction of institutional accommodation and an interim military referral hospital. 

Additionally, the ZDF Benefit Fund is also assisting members in acquiring individual accommodation in various provinces throughout the country. 

On the provision of health, the ZDF partnered with Premier Service Medical Aid Society (PSMAS) to refurbish some of our health facilities and the rehabilitation and equipping of our gymnasium facilities as part of PSMAS wellness programme. 

CM: Lastly Sir, Research and Development has become the cornerstone of the Second Republic towards achieving Vision 2030. What strides have you taken to implement Education 5.0.

GPVS: Research and development has the potential to help propel the ZDF and the nation to achieve vision 2030. The Zimbabwe National Defence University (ZNDU) is expected to take a lead in all the ZDF R&D endeavours. The ZNDU has also adopted the concept of Education 5.0 as introduced by the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education, Innovation Science and Technology Development. In this regard the university is building synergies with industry and other research institutes and take the lead in innovation and the industrialisation of the ZDF and the nation at large.

CM: Thank You

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