Zimbabwe: Mwonzora Castigates Mnangagwa's Third Term Calls

Emmerson Mnangagwa.
29 February 2024

Opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) leader Douglas Mwonzora has voiced strong opposition, labeling such sentiments as unacceptable and a direct threat to the country's constitutional integrity.

Mwonzora's remarks comes in the wake of recent statements by some Zanu PF leaders suggesting that President Emmerson Mnangagwa should exceed the two-term limit outlined in the Constitution

Addressing journalists at the party headquarters in Harare, Mwonzora said the Constitution of Zimbabwe, endorsed by an overwhelming majority in the 2013 referendum, stands as a sacred document defining the nation's identity.

"Our constitution makes it clear that a president serves a maximum of two terms of five years. It makes it clear that any proposed amendments to extend term limits should be subjected to Referendum. And even where the amendment succeeds, such an amendment should not benefit the incumbent. These calls are an affront to our democracy. They dent our image as a constitutional democracy. It will further cement the unfortunate international image of Zimbabwe as a pariah state. This will never end our international isolation.

"Zanu PF is acting in the manner that Zanu PF acts, an agenda is spoken by lower ranking people and then it is attenuated as time goes on. It is announced by people who are seemingly insignificant and it gathers momentum so there is no cause for us to believe that this is idle talk on behalf of Zanu PF. This is unacceptable, the Constitution of Zimbabwe was voted by over 93% of people who voted in the referendum of 2013. It is a sacrosanct document, a document that defines us as a nation and therefore we will never allow the desecration of this Constitution," said Mwonzora

He highlighted the obligation of President Mnangagwa, as the custodian of the Constitution, to uphold its principles.

"The first defender of the Constitution is the President himself. He must defend it against the madness of members of his own party," he said

The MDC leader underscored the readiness of his party to engage in dialogue but drew a clear line, saying "This is a red line we cannot accept."

He indicated that as Zanu PF persists in its stance, there would be intensified political discussions surrounding the issue, suggesting a potential escalation in the political discourse.

Mwonzora's remarks come amidst growing concerns within the country's political circles regarding the stability and adherence to democratic principles.

AllAfrica publishes around 400 reports a day from more than 100 news organizations and over 500 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.