A HARARE resident, Danny Musukuma, yesterday approached the High Court seeking an interdict barring the holding of the Second All-Stakeholders’ Conference and demanding the release of the National Statistical Report (NSR).
Report by Charles Laiton
Musukuma made an urgent chamber application, arguing Copac negotiators could not introduce the report at the conference, scheduled for this weekend, and have it considered without having been made public.
“What the respondents seek to do is to go for this Second All-Stakeholders’ Conference when they have not been equipped with their principal’s (people’s) views and opinions and, as such, this process that is meant to take place from October 21 to 23 is not going to be people-driven,” Musukuma said.
Musukuma argued that it was very clear that the all-stakeholders’ conference was a crucial stage of the constitution-making process and, as such, Zimbabweans were entitled to meaningfully and actively contribute towards the process after having sight of the NSR.
He said it was at this stage where all Zimbabweans would be expected to contribute since out of this conference, a new draft constitution would be produced and tabled before Parliament.
“If this Second All-Stakeholders’ Conference scheduled for the above-stated dates is allowed to go through under these circumstances wherein the general Zimbabwean public has not had sight of the contents of the National Report, what it will mean is that the stakeholders will have proceeded with the constitution-making process without the views of their principal, the general people of Zimbabwe,” he said.
Musukuma further argued that failure to make the NSR available to the public violated the people’s rights to freedom of expression as enshrined in the Constitution of Zimbabwe.
Copac, ministers Patrick Chinamasa, Elton Mangoma, Tendai Biti, Welshman Ncube, Priscilla Misihairabwi-Mushonga, and Munyaradzi Paul Mangwana were cited as respondents.