SW Radio Africa (London)

Zimbabwe: Draft Constitution Set for 'Yes' Vote After Zanu-PF Endorsement

ZANU PF's decision to endorse the draft constitution at its politburo meeting on Wednesday has prompted speculation that there will be a general 'Yes' for the draft in the upcoming referendum.

The two MDC formations endorsed the new draft in August last year. It is now believed that the combined force of supporters representing all the three parties will ensure a 'Yes' vote.

However, despite the endorsement of the document by the three parties in the GPA, Mavambo, Kusile, Dawn (MKD) leader Simba Makoni said he strongly believes negotiations to come up with a final draft were made to suit political parties or its leaders.

Makoni told SW Radio Africa on Wednesday that he's not comfortable with the deferment of certain clauses in the constitution just because the leaders or negotiators could not find common ground.

"At the end of the day, it was the principals who had the final say on the constitution and not parliament as stipulated in the GPA. What we need to do now is study the draft whenever it is made available so that we can make an informed decision whether or not to vote in the forthcoming referendum," Makoni said.

A source close to the deliberations at which the principals struck the deal to back the draft, said all they did was to work with information they had on the table.

Political analyst Bekithemba Mhlanga said Thursday it was highly likely the principals were guided by what was in front of them when they agreed on all the unresolved issues.

"It would have been political suicide for both (Robert) Mugabe and (Morgan) Tsvangirai to make concessions without consulting their parties," Mhlanga said.

SW Radio Africa is reliably informed the principals had a working document that they used as a guideline to bridge the differences that the committee failed to resolve. This guideline was drafted by the committee a day before the principals met at State House to deliberate on the draft charter.

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