24 January 2013

Zimbabwe: Avail Draft to Public: Mavambo

MAVAMBO-Kusile Dawn leader Dr Simba Makoni has called for the formation of a "grand coalition" for parties in and outside the inclusive Government to restore what he referred to as constitutionalism and consolidation of plural politics.

Addressing journalists in Harare yesterday, Dr Makoni said the coalition should also include members from the academia and the church.

He said the inclusive Government had failed to respect the country's constitution.

"We shall work with other non-GPA political parties, those in the original MDCs and Zanu-PF, and citizens from other sectors of the society, to build a grand coalition for change, to restore constitutionalism and to consolidate a vibrant and viable plural politics," he said.

On the constitution-making process, Dr Makoni said the GPA Principals presented high levels of arrogance by arrogating themselves the role of making the country's constitution.

The principals dealt with all the contentious issues that have been dragging the constitution making process.

Among the sticking points the parties negotiated included running mates, powers of the President, appointment of provincial governors, devolution, dual citizenship and office of the Attorney General.

President Mugabe last week announced that the drafters of the constitution would amend the July 2012 draft document to include agreed issues before the final one was released and taken to the referendum.

Dr Makoni demanded that the principals make public the document detailing what they agreed on the draft constitution.

He said it was illogical for the Principals to take over the process at the last minute after the country spent resources on the process.

"We demand that the full text of what was agreed upon by GPA Principals be published forthwith, for the people to interpret for themselves, in whose interest the compromises were made," said Dr Makoni.

"We condemn in strongest terms that national resources were expended in an exercise aimed primarily at allaying the fears and concerns and advancing the aspirations of the GPA political parties."

Dr Makoni said the constitution should not be used to serve interests of certain individuals.

He said it appeared the constitution was being used to benefit a few individuals in higher echelons of power.

Dr Makoni said it was surprising that leaders of the MDC formations agreed to compromise on the draft constitution after vehement denials that they would not open negotiations on the draft constitution.

He said MDC leader Professor Welshman Ncube predicted before that the constitution would be a negotiated document.

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