Mugabe may get another 10 years

President Robert Mugabe — who has ruled Zimbabwe since independence nearly 33 years ago — may stay in power for another decade if he is re-elected, according to the new draft constitution.

Report by AFP/Wisdom Mdzungairi in Ethiopia

The new basic law would limit presidential terms to 10 years and strip away presidential immunity.

But it is not retroactive and so would grant Mugabe — who turns 89 in February — the right to run again in presidential polls.

The draft constitution, which now needs to be voted on by Parliament and Zimbabweans, forms the main pillar of reforms needed to hold a new vote after deadly 2008 elections.

“The draft constitution will go to Parliament early February and it will go to a referendum,” Constitutional Affairs minister Eric Matinenga said.

Zimbabwe’s unity government of long-ruling Mugabe and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai agreed to the text two weeks ago after disagreements and violence had delayed the constitutional process in the last two years.

There was no information on the much-awaited date when Zimbabweans will vote on the draft charter.

“The referendum date is something that is going to be agreed in consultation with the principals (Mugabe and Tsvangirai),” said Matinenga.

Tsvangirai pulled out of the presidential runoff election in 2008, citing the killing of around 300 supporters.

Mugabe and Tsvangirai were then forced into a power-sharing government a year later.

Their relations have been characterised by bickering and counter-accusations of violence.

The draft constitution retains the death penalty although it says “a law may permit the death penalty to be imposed only on a person convicted of murder committed in aggravating circumstances”.

It prohibits the death penalty for women and people under 21 years and over 70.

In a clear banning of gay or lesbian rights, the draft charter says ”persons of the same sex are prohibited from marrying each other”.

The MDC-T party has said it will support the draft charter.

Mugabe has insisted on new presidential elections in March, while Tsvangirai wants reforms first to allow for fair and violence-free polls.

Meanwhile, African Union (AU) leaders yesterday urged Mugabe to implement outstanding provisions of the Global Political Agreement (GPA) before elections could be held.

Although Zimbabwe was not on the agenda, the call by the AU leaders followed a debate by Sadc Heads of State and Government on Sunday on the sidelines of the 20th Ordinary Session of the AU Assembly underway in Ethiopia.

Zimbabwe, Madagascar and the deteriorating situation in the Democratic Republic of Congo were debated during an AU Assembly closed-door session.

The leaders also debated the general state of peace and security in Africa.

Mozambican Foreign Affairs minister Oldemiro Baloi, who represented President Armando Guebuza, chaired the Sadc Heads of States and Government meeting while Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Dessalegn chaired the AU Assembly.

In an interview, Sadc executive secretary Tomaz Salomao confirmed both meetings, saying Mugabe had been told that the GPA partners should fulfil important aspects of the roadmap.

Salomao said the Sadc facilitator to the Zimbabwe crisis South African President Jacob Zuma had briefed leaders on the Sadc Troika meeting held on January 10-11 in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

“Sadc Heads of State and Government had a full meeting where President Zuma briefed them on the goings-on in Zimbabwe, Madagascar and DRC,” he said.

“President Zuma was tasked to meet the Zimbabwean political leaders with regards to fulfilling the GPA provisions.

“We are encouraged by events of the last weeks . . . We are in the right direction.

“However, it should be pointed out that the provisions of the roadmap relating to the referendum, inclusive and consensual nature of the transitional process, confidence-building and national reconciliation, media freedoms . . . are still to be implemented,” Salamao added.

“Hence, we will do things step by step. These have to be fulfilled before a general election.

“In that same breath, the parties were told to adhere to the GPA provisions.

“Obviously, the constitution is a big success, a huge encouragement, for us.

“But again, general elections will be announced after parties agree to the outstanding issues.

“President Mugabe indicated that the electoral body (Zimbabwe Electoral Commission) should announce rules of engagement on the referendum in the not-too-distant future, including the date, once the parties meet.”

He added Zuma was tasked to meet the GPA partners again to iron out any differences and/or bottlenecks to bring closure to the crisis.

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44 Comments

  1. The Constituition is very clear. Mr President we will support you nemumvura mese…

    1. Ko kutyei, bob ndizvo, 10years ishoma, tinowedzera

      1. Tinomuda mudhara….forward into the next decade!!!

  2. Yes Mugabe will have anther 10yrs as an asslam in foreign Asian county

  3. What is the difference between AU and EU? AU discusses how to stay in power and go for tea and whiskey, EU discusses how their countries economies remain vibrant and how to please their people and then go to work.

    1. John weku Mabvuku

      Wamaromo, you havent been following the economic debacle that the EU has become over the last year or so. Globalisation is unsheathing the worst of the bubble union, Frau Merkel has refused to prop up the Greeks and, going by Cameroon’s body language at the recent World Economic Forum, everybody wants out! Check with Richard Quest at cnn.com

  4. John weku Mabvuku

    Either Salamao was misquoted or read from a script authored by the enemies of Zimbabwe, this very publication is proof of press freedom. What is abhorent is allowing the media in the name of Press Freedoms, to publish lies, misrepresentation of facts, falsehoods and endless cyber attacks on the country’s image. This article cites, “300 people killed during last elections” as a fact when we all know that is false.The same complain of lack of Press Freedoms. One such article by Civil Society reported on the eve of the KPCS conference in Vic Falls that “thousands of people are killed daily in Marange.” From a population of 13m, how many would be left after six months? You do the Maths.

  5. Thank you John.

  6. Good move on the gay issue !, my worry is on discrimination btwn men and women, women sometimes commit the most gruesome murders and they are not subjected to the same law as their male counterparts, i think the constn should have made provision for the high court to decide.

  7. John weku Mabvuku

    Cde Zero, you are right, Laws should not be so blatantly discriminatory. Tichiri parwendo vakomana. Can you hear the deafening silence from women’s rights groups?!

    1. local government harare

      This document is a product of negotiations and hence it is full of compromises. One group of Zimbabweans wanted the death sentence scrapped for our statutes completely while the other group from the other mother wanted it to remain. By removing some people from the death sentence threat, I think we are moving in the right direction. Very soon all Zimbabweans will see the barbarism in killing a fellow human being and scrap the death sentence completely. Putting a convicted killer behind bars for life seems to be the most civilized way of treating murderers.

      1. John weku Mabvuku

        LGH, to the best of my knowledge, all who were sentenced to death are still alive,(except Chidhumo na Masendeke), spending taxpayer’s hard earned money daily. People say H.E.Va Mugabe havadi kusaina, based on his religion.The atomic bomb was made for humans, noting insufferable deeds, such as killing other humans, its called murder. You want a law that will deter would be offenders, now women are going to kill babies, because of the so called GPA compromise, knowing they are exempted from capital punishment..yo “civalisation” needs a universal caption..Its the Animal Farm all over again!

  8. Discrimination will always be there. Now Woman are classified as not to get the same treatment as men when they commit murder. Isnt this discrimination based on gender? I hope WOZA will contest this, as they say Man and Woman are equal and should be treated the same.
    Is this treatment only limited to the goodies not bad? The quantum doesnt balance here.

  9. Inonzi tamba wakachenjera! Anonzi “BOB WEKWAZVIMBA”

  10. Ko nahi Newsday mashayawo here picture yapresident irinani pane iyo yamaisa, kubva Vamugabe vaita senge munhu akaomeswa

    1. Ndozvaari. You want to photoshop the president to look young? You cannot change what God has made and as fate will have it will die when he will die with or without bodyguards. Shame

  11. Siyabonga Ndebele Harrison Shumba

    ZANU-PF members should start facing reality. Mugabe is old. Sanctions, the British, Americans, have nothing to do with Mugabe’s old age. His non-viability as a candidate is a natural result of nature. If the party is to win the coming election, if the party is to stay relevant, there is need for urgent leadership renewal. The Mugabes, Mutasas, Shamu, etc, the sun has already set for them. Funny, who knew that, come 2013, even if ZANU-PF stole the election, they wouldn’t be able to govern for five years?

  12. @manomano this pic is better coz it was shot recently like 5 yrs ago unless yu want the 1976 one which appears on ballot papers ,Mugabe is now frail and old ,which ten yrs are they dreaming now.

    1. Frail and old ,yes….intellect,…100% intact…..way better than young swash buckling i-will-sow-my-oaths-willy-nilly Tsvangirai

  13. This document has a mixture of good and bad issues. Yet the refrendum will be a yes or no. This is not fair. While I agree with the homosexual issue, I am against the gender discrimination on the death penalty. How do I vote? Zve 10 years hazvina mhaka. Kana pane malunatics anoda kutongwa nemunhu odzudzurwa nendove kutsemuka musana and malunatics ari majority, so be it. I hope that ia not the case in ZIM!!!!!

  14. Gushongo tongai ksvika vakadainza mSanctions vamira moyo. We a praying tht u b given more. Infact it shld b 10+++. Ichoooooo!

  15. I think its 20 years not 10, thus if the new constitution will be effective only after 10 years from now, this means if one secures the following two terms (in 10 years), then after the ten years we start using the new constitution meaning the same guy who would have served 10 years is free to contest because the other 10 years would have been served under the old provision, from the new one he/she is starting from zero.

    1. No. The new consititution becomes effective upon adoption which is likely mid year. However certain cluses of the constituiton are only going to be effective ten years afterwards but the term limits will only be applicable for persons who would have served as presidents under the new consititution.

      1. Thanx for the explanation manos!

  16. There is time for everything.We should not worry much about whether Mugabe wins the next election or not.Let us do our best and let God do the rest.Shame to people who are shouting their lungs out for Mugabe to enter the next presidential race.Those people are heartless.They should at least have mercy on our dear leader and spare him the shock of imminent defeat.Probably they have a hidden agenda of slowly sending our dear leader to the Heroes Acre.

  17. @Fighter, TK, Cde Chihondo.U ar celebrating a 90yr old suffering dementia, urinal + fecal incontinence x cancer & tipping him president for next 10years. Hehehehehe kikikikiki!!!

    1. Be careful what you say boss….life and death is under God’s power…HE MIGHT OUTLIVE YOU!!!!

  18. Spot on with this write-up, I really think this web site wants rather more consideration. I’ll most likely be once more to learn rather more, thanks for that info.

  19. No, Wisdom, this year is Pres Mugabe’s last year in power. No matter what the world systems believe, this issue is now in Heavenly Counsels. Pres Mugabe will peacefully hand over power to Mr Tswangirai.

    1. God has the final says boss……not men.

  20. If ppe had voted yes in 2000 on the then draft constitution but thnx to Tsvingiria and Madhuku RGM is in power and will remain in power for another 10 yrs. Gushungo for life

  21. Wether he is from zvimba,mwenezi,checheche etc he is going to surrender power come election time

  22. Please mr reporter does the new draft says elections will held once after every ten years if not what guarantee do you that Gushungo will win the second time. Besides nothing really indicates outright victory for zanu pf so stopping dreaming and giving false impressions. Who told you Tsvangira i wil not win in 2013? Do not forget that Vamugabe is mortal like any other human being.

  23. vamugabe vachatonga kusvika madhinhiwa mukandozviuraya. Tsvangirai tinomukunda in and out muchamuramba chete mukazotendeuka kuzanu regai nguva isvi muzvionere

  24. John WekuMabvuku, fellow Zimbabwean, I urge you to think this through, no one should die in an election, no one at all!!! If you had lost a son or daughter or other relative you would understand how your careless talk pains the rest of us peace loving Zimbabweans. Your being able to use the internet tells me you went to school, now I appeal to you to use that little education to appreciate simple logic and documented facts about our political situation.

  25. Pres mugabe wil definately win these elections no doubt, my main worry is that no death penalty for women, saka ndivo vanenge vakutambiswa front whenever sm1 wants to kill. Yah zvakaoma.

  26. What if a woman kills another woman?

  27. Shame varume tiri patight

  28. The constitution is rather gender biased,i hope women will protest for the right to be beheaded like their male’counterparts’. As for the other bit of the constitution, half of those who are making replies to the 10 year act wont bother to go and vote so why cry foul? Voter apath has its price as we have always seen. History will repeat itself.

  29. Wamwe wanotoda waMugabe kupfuura baba kana mai wakamubereka chaiye….some even worship him in place of God kikikikiki..funny how politicians manipulate poor people’s brains into hero worshoping them…so have never saluted there own parents who brought hem on this earth. Its funny..ull never here mugabe’s own sob bootlicking like some of you doing here…..ndaseka hangu ini….l only salute my own farther and hero worship my parents not any dick and tom of this world….

  30. Come, Black Smiths time is over!

  31. ten years mberi dzakarema coz age yashata.siirao vamwe vemuparty.

  32. hi!,I like your writing very much! share we communicate more about your post on AOL? I need an expert on this area to solve my problem. May be that’s you! Looking forward to see you.

  33. Vamugabe ngavatonge kana mamwe makore 33 futi. arwadziwa ngaaende diaspora kwakaenda vamwe vatengesi. Mese muri kucomplainer but you are not registered voters.

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