Zimbabwe: Madhuku Simply Confused

press release

The MDC is astounded by the allegations by Dr. Lovemore Madhuku that President Tsvangirai's stance on the constitution making process shows he is childish. It is one thing for Professor Madhuku to constructively criticize our President and it is another thing to hurl empty insults at President Tsvangirai as if someone is on a Zanu PF payroll.

The stance taken by President Tsvangirai is that the constitution making process being undertaken under article 6 of the Global Political Agreement is a parliamentary process in which principals must play a minimalist and largely facilitative role.

This is in line with the crucial doctrine of separation of powers. It is clear from the wording of Article 6 that the drafters of that article and the signatories thereto intended this process to be a parliamentary process.

Further in line with article 6, Copac was appointed and did carry out an outreach program designed to enlist the views of Zimbabweans on what they want included into the constitution. Thereafter, Copac produced a draft constitution that was presented by Copac to the Second All Stakeholders Conference.

In terms of the Global Political Agreement, Copac must submit its draft and report to parliament. Only then can the executive through the Minister for Constitutional and Parliamentary Affairs get seized of the document in preparation for the referendum. Any changes to this process are tantamount to rewriting the Global Political Agreement.

The current draft constitution is a product of the outreach programme and the political negotiations that took place during the drafting period. Most of the issues that delegates disagreed on during the Second All Stakeholders Conference were the very issues in respect of which the Management Committee engaged in extensive negotiations. Therefore no useful purpose is served by renegotiating the same issues at whatever level.

It is regrettable that Professor Madhuku does not seem to appreciate this impeccable reasoning on the part of President Tsvangirai. It is even more astounding that Madhuku does not appreciate the very positive achievements in this constitution. Maybe this is because he rejected this document before it was even written. This, in our view is a serious misinterpretation of the processes guiding the constitution making. The professor's judgment is seriously impaired by his fanaticism on Mugabe and is indeed misguided.

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