Now That we Know...A Case for a Community-Driven National Reconciliation Process
To confirm the need for reconciliation in the country and the conflicts that would be included in the reconciliation process was the primary purposes of this study. The researchers needed to establish whether or not the historical situation pointed to the need for reconciliation as the best way forward. This necessitated reading the history of Zimbabwe to find out if the country had experienced conflicts before and if those conflicts had been adequately resolved to the extent that previous conflicts were not coming back to cause or aggravate later ones. The secondary purpose of the study was, having confirmed the need for reconciliation, to get broad insights into how the reconciliation process could be conducted. This necessitated looking at how, according to historical records and other writings, previous conflicts had ended and how current ones were playing themselves out, and enquiring from the people of Zimbabwe as to their views on possible solutions and the best way forward. Zimbabwe became a political unit only a little over a hundred years ago with the arrival of Rhodes’ Pioneer Column in 1890. However, most of the groups of people that made up the population of the country then were already here. The desk study therefore also covered the period immediately before the arrival of the white settlers, all the way up to the time of the study.