Draft Constitution a done deal

THE draft constitution sailed through Parliament yesterday with MDC-T Copac co-chairperson Douglas Mwonzora saying if passed into law, legislators would be empowered to stop the President from unilaterally dissolving Parliament.

VENERANDA LANGA/EVERSON MUSHAVA

Mwonzora told the House of Assembly that a Constitutional Court comprising legislators would be able to challenge excessive use of Presidential Powers.

He said the court can block the dissolution of Parliament by the President until after a consensus has been reached.

“Dissolution of Parliament under the new draft is not going to be automatic and will be reviewable by the Constitutional Court,” Mwonzora said, giving a summary of the draft charter’s contents.
There were three instances, Mwonzora said, that could render the dissolution of Parliament by the President difficult.

“There is natural dissolution that follows expiry of the government term at midnight before elections; and there is dissolution where Parliament itself votes to be dissolved by a two-thirds majority and this has happened in Japan.

“The third circumstance is when Parliament refuses to pass a budget and in that instance, it means the government is rendered dysfunctional.”

Mwonzora said other improvements in the new draft constitution included provisions spelling out that no military or security organ of the State is established outside the law.

“In terms of the law, it now means I cannot establish my own militia in Nyanga and this is meant to protect the people,” he said.
He said the draft constitution had the most comprehensive Bill of Rights which was second to none on the African continent and the world.

Mwonzora said this was because it dealt with first generation rights like the right to life, freedom of association, including socio-economic rights, and others.

Zanu PF Copac co-chairperson Munyaradzi Paul Mangwana defended the $45 million spent on the constitution-making process, saying democracy did not come cheaply.
“Some people will say why the

$45 million, but I will say democracy is very expensive,” he said.
“It has never come cheap. Some have actually died for it.
“But I am happy that we have spent the money for a good cause. We have delivered the constitution.”

Of the $45 million,$24,7 million came from government while $20 million was funded by donors through the United Nations Development Programme.

Mangwana accused the media of fabricating divisions within Copac and misrepresenting delicate information, an issue he said contributed to the delays in the conclusion of the process.

Meanwhile, legislators from across the political divide fell over each other in praising the draft constitution. But they urged their principals to commit themselves to a culture of constitutionalism.
“This constitution belongs to God. If you do not practice it, you will be cursed by Nebuchadnezzar,” Magwegwe legislator Felix Magalela Sibanda (MDC-T) said.

The draft is now at the Senate before it goes to a referendum whose date is yet to be proclaimed. After its adoption, a Constitutional Bill will be brought before the House by the Minister of Constitutional and Parliamentary Affairs, Eric Matinenga.

MPs will be allowed to debate on the contents of the draft during the second reading and committee stages.

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25 Comments

  1. For sure democracy will not come easily, but it will be the victor and shall be there for us all

  2. its e’ best we cld hve, although i m nt hppy wth provisions that take place after certain periods. this was essentially a negotiated agreement as obert gutu rightly predicted. an ideal constitution wl only take place if pple luk beyond protecting/targeting mugabe and e’ mdc’s interests

  3. I am happy to learn that the Presidential powers have been curtailed.

  4. Psalm 102:13. We give all the glory to God for giving our leaders the wisdom of God. Certainly an historic moment for our blessed nation. We shall forever cherish for ages to come. I thank God for granting me the priviledge of having been there throughout the whole process. A year of FAVOUR indeed.

  5. Job well done Mwonzora and Mangwana you earned yrself a legacy in zim political books , there were some elements who wants to derail this democatic charter not to see a day in particular Jonathan Moyo.Its A fact democracy can not be attained cheaply a lot of compromise and bickering is the order of the day.its now the second progresssive constitution in Africa the S.A,one of the best conerstones in the world .Not everyone will agree with all the clauses but there is a significant shift from the Lancanster which was partisian.There are notable clauses i saluted the two lawmakers ‘who ever ants to amend the constitution needs to cal for a referundum and with the blessing of two thirds majority of parliament .’

  6. Phunyuka bemphethe

    “Mwonzora said other improvements in the new draft constitution included provisions spelling out that no military or security organ of the State is established outside the law”

    NO MORE GUKURAHUNDI UNITS AS HAPPENED IN 1980 – VIVA MDC, greening the green!!

  7. Phunyuka bemphethe

    “Mwonzora said this was because it dealt with first generation rights like the right to life, freedom of association, including socio-economic rights, and others”

    NO MORE “DZOKERAYI”;” VOTE FOR ZANU PF, MDC-T OR ELSE”; NO MORE “WE ARE THE MAJORITY NONSENSE!!”

    VIVA MDC, greening the green!!

  8. Phunyuka bemphethe

    This in no doubt a victory for Mthwakazi people, for certain. Its been a hard road to travel bafowethu.

    Remember this nonsense:”

    “Its my country, and Matebeleland is Ngomo’s country”

    “Vote ZANU PF, or else”

    “Amutongi nyika yedu”

    “We are the majority”

    “Dzokerayi, go back to kwaZulu Natal”;

    “ZimuNdevere, rovai”

    “Ngomo Zidumbu”

    “Amuna kudzidza”

    “Border jumping to egoli after O level, while we study hard”

    “You are Mpondo, that is why your women love us – we know how to take care of women”

    “Mazidizidendi”

    The list goes on bafowethu – but we are almost there, we are almost there Praise the lord, praise God the almighty; hail King Mzilikazi and Mambo the nation builders of note. No more mazindevere; no more; no more.

    No more you are a minority; amutongi nyika yedu; your languages are a minority, no more, no more.

    In the BIBLE there is a verse that talks about – YOU HAVE RUN THE RACE; YOU HAVE FOUGHT A GOOD FIGHT ……!!.

    Indeed Mthwakazi wendlela zimhlophe – you have run the race, you have fought a peaceful good fight let peace prevail in our land!!

    1. Your support for the Ncube led MDC is indeed admirable. I tend to sympathise with the other MDC myself. This why I love Zimbabwe and if elections are free and fair the whole campaigning and politicking is going to be fun. There was no Gukurahundi in Masvingo and some parts of the midlands where we of the Makaranga clan hail from but I will tell you what Phunyuka, my tribe has been feeling just as disenfranchised as the Ndebeles.
      Imagine this; its a known fact that in terms of numbers we are the largest group in Zimbabwe but somehow the rulers in Zanu PF contrived to have no less than four provinces where the Zezeru clans have the most influence; namely the Mash East, Central, Est and Harare. They took Chivhu and Kadoma from the midlands where they belonged and as a result have had the most influence on state affairs through “provincial” representation. They stuffed the public service, army leadership, police leadership and key government minisitries and departments with their own clansmen from the mid eighties to now. Through Zimra and Zinara collected revenues they develop their own areas only. We felt the Tsholotsho attempts at fairness were good but they ruthlessly quashed that initiative and punitively dealt with thise involved especially the Karanga ones. We are with you on devolution and fair distribution of national assets and positions. We will only believe that elections have been free and fair after they happen like that. Otherwise do not be surprised that the “ruling class” will be fighting for a status quo. The constitution? Its a good start I guess but please observe the next stages.

      1. Phunyuka bemphethe

        Zhira, but you guys were never Gukurahundied. You were never labelled and insulted.

        You were just used and abused and dumbed like a condom.

        Mthwakazi’s suffering at the hands of the Harare clique has been unparalled.

  9. Lovemore Chikanya

    Will You please come God and sweep this room Zimbabwe. We want to acknowledge your preciousness in the goings in and out as Zimbabweans. This charter like your Bible must serve and be observed as the only lighthouse for us. Amen!

  10. You fought a good fight especially the new parties in govt for this charter.mwonzora and mangwana we thank u for job well done.you suffered and criticised a lot but never gave up.MAY GOD BLESS YOU.

  11. Zhira February 7, 2013 at 3:49 pm #

    Your support for the Ncube led MDC is indeed admirable. I tend to sympathise with the other MDC myself. This why I love Zimbabwe and if elections are free and fair the whole campaigning and politicking is going to be fun. There was no Gukurahundi in Masvingo and some parts of the midlands where we of the Makaranga clan hail from but I will tell you what Phunyuka, my tribe has been feeling just as disenfranchised as the Ndebeles.
    Imagine this; its a known fact that in terms of numbers we are the largest group in Zimbabwe but somehow the rulers in Zanu PF contrived to have no less than four provinces where the Zezeru clans have the most influence; namely the Mash East, Central, Est and Harare. They took Chivhu and Kadoma from the midlands where they belonged and as a result have had the most influence on state affairs through “provincial” representation. They stuffed the public service, army leadership, police leadership and key government minisitries and departments with their own clansmen from the mid eighties to now. Through Zimra and Zinara collected revenues they develop their own areas only. We felt the Tsholotsho attempts at fairness were good but they ruthlessly quashed that initiative and punitively dealt with thise involved especially the Karanga ones. We are with you on devolution and fair distribution of national assets and positions. We will only believe that elections have been free and fair after they happen like that. Otherwise do not be surprised that the “ruling class” will be fighting for a status quo. The constitution? Its a good start I guess but please observe the next stages.

  12. overall its a gud draft. cn any1 tell me to what extent the provision on devolution is? wil it really give some powers to provinces/regions? m a shona bred in byo, bt matabeleland togetha wth masvingo, manicaland vry marginalised, its jst 2 obvious!

  13. Nyongolozi Omnyama

    This was long overdue, hope we’ll live to see it coming to effect . . . .hope noone will ‘declare’ himself or herself above this supreme piece of legislature. Hope political leaders will honour and abide by the clauses in this constitution, i hope our right of expression and rights to productively criticise what is wrong will be observed by those we criticise and all. . .and to my fellow kinsman in this struggle of coming up with document i salute, long live the spirit and to a nation Reborn i say congratz take the blessing Zimbabwe! Siyakubongela . . . .

  14. george bachinche

    This is self approval for the MPs. The issue took so long becaue there was money to be made. Parliamentarians could have easily drafted the constituion. What we have is very siilar to the constitution rjecvted in 2000.

    The challege toZimbabwe is underdevelopment, lie most ohr countries in Africa. Look at Egypt, after the so calld popular uprising thety are still on teh streets nd sigruntled, evbe with new constitutionanddemocratic eletion.

    The problem was misdiagnosed. Te problabe was not the previous constitution but underdevelopment manifesting in the forms of povery and disease.

    The government of National Unity has been a failure becuase it has not addresed that core issue.

  15. This leaves Tafataona Mahoso and company with an egg on the face. Ukada kuita sezvinonzi Zunu(pf) mangwana unoshaya kokunyarira. I also feel for Manheru not to mention Jonathan Moyo there acres of space the enjoyed in the Herald came to nought.You no matter how you try change like death is unstoppable. Iam not any MDC nor Zanu(pf) , Zapu.Zanu Ndonga or a menber of any two tribalistic parties from Matebeleland.

    1. Phunyuka bemphethe

      You are the tribalist. Tribalistic parties are only those in Mthwakazi, are there no parties among the Shona that have never even left Harare? What do you say about those. You are a Gukurahundi idiot.

  16. I suppose we have to accept this flawed constitution as a start there are so many inconsistencies in this new draft and lack of clarity for example the citizenhip section is so convoluted….but anyway when has zpf ever followed rules on a piece of paper. For zpf, rules are meant to govern the people not them, the ruling elite live by their own rules. “some animals are more equal than others”.

  17. Bring me Madhuku I want to ask him a question.

  18. Where is the draft?

    1. Phunyukabemphethe

      RudeBoy

      Only dull, uneducated people will ask that question – no wonder you allow politicians to mislead you on devolution. You love being spoonfed.

      All educated people know how and where to find the draft!!

  19. Guyz I would like to first of all thank you our Zimbabwean CDE President, Honourable Prime Minister, your deputise, Your Excellency speaker Sir, and the whole body of CDE & Honourable parliamentariants for taking your time to sit down and anonimously endorsing the so long waited Final Draft Constitution Document. The two Co-Chairpersons Mangwana and Mwonzora you fought a fierce battle no one could have fought so thank you, thank you. Putting aside animosity and fostering towards one goal National interest is what you have demonstrated. Can you please continue to demostrate this even in the forth coming elections for I know there will be no any violence during the referendum as the trinity of the Zimbabwean Government is in agreement on the Draft. Let me say to the like of Jona Moyo you are just like an empty vessel that makes a lot of noise but at the end you produce nothing. I believe ZANU PF seen that you were the troble maker thats why you are seing yourself sinking like a candle that has been thrown into an endless dark pity that no-one can follow. Tafatawona don’t make too much noise. On the MDC-T side you just need to know that you need these elderly like CDE President during your political journey there-by gaining experience. They have to pass on the batton nicely and smartly. Get me right I’m not into any political party and I will never vote for any of you even if you entice me in what-ever way. Guy let foster for peace. I want to ecoe the very statements by the late VP J.L.Nkomo that “peace begins with me, peace begins with you, peace begins with us all” President said “peace begins with me Mugabe, peace begins with you I don’t know who you are ………………………………………” My last words is young people lets not be used by these politicians to fight, to stir violence.

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