THE Copac Select Committee yesterday endorsed the new draft constitution and will table it before Parliament next week when it resumes sitting.
Report by Veneranda Langa
Copac co-chairperson Munyaradzi Paul Mangwana (Zanu PF) yesterday told journalists during a press conference that after the endorsment of the draft by Parliament, publicity awareness campaigns would commence before the draft is translated into indigenous languages.
“The Parliamentary Select Committee is pleased to inform the nation that we have formally adopted the new constitution draft, which brings to a successful end the drafting phase of the process,” said Mangwana.
“Once the draft has been presented to Parliament, a publicity exercise will commence and copies of the draft will be distributed in 11 local languages including braille,” he said.
Mangwana said the publicity campaign was expected to take one month, after which the principals would be expected to announce the date of the referendum.
According to the Copac co-chairman, translation and publicity is expected to cost around $500 000.
MDC-T Copac co-chairperson Douglas Mwonzora said MPs were scheduled to debate on the 52-page report as conceptually they spoke on behalf of the people. He said the report would detail the reasons and basis of how they arrived at the outcome of the draft.
Mwonzora also took a swipe on Copac critics, saying they had decided on a “No” vote even before the process began.
“We know there will be forces that would want to derail this process and want this constitution to be rejected by people. Even before the constitution was born those people had held meetings deciding to vote against it and they remain consistent in that regard.
Unfortunately, the people of Zimbabwe are serious with the progress in their lives,” he said.
He said voting during the referendum would not require a voters roll and persons over 18 years will be eligible to vote.
MDC Copac co-chairperson Edward Mkhosi said after endorsement of the draft by Parliament, Copac would have finished its mandate and the constitution would be in the hands of the GPA principals and the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC).