Civil Society Role in COVID – 19 Pandemic
I have seen most of us lost in translation during the past one and a half months. Waiting for things to
normalize! We have withdrawn or reviewed how we engage with our governments. They are now in the
lead without any measures of accountability. In many countries around the World Civil Society
Organisations (CSOs) are forced to accept the (potentially unlimited nature of their measures)
pronouncements without any questions lest they become unpatriotic, targeted, and labeled critics of
the government. This is mostly predominant among the governments in the South.
For many governments however life continues…they are still performing their functions… their duties.
They are still formulating policies, regulating social and economic activities, and formulating structures
to respond to this pandemic - Covid 19. For addressing this pandemic and many more is why they exist
as governments. That is why the civil Society pay taxes so that they can provide leadership, direction and
motivation. It is why they must provide for our health and safety. It is why we CSOs must still hold them
accountable. In other words, as Civil Society Organisations we must still do our job in these difficult
circumstances. We must be the voices of those in lockdown, and those in quarantine. We must speak
and protect those in the informal economy where there is no government policy and structures to
provide a soft landing. Governments belong to all of us, it must therefore carter for all of us….in policy,
in structure and in resourcing.