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This article participates on the following special index pages:

  • Constitutional Amendment 18 of 2007 - Index of articles, opinion and anaylsis

  • NCA's brief demonstration takes police by surprise
    Henry Makiwa, SW Radio Africa
    September 25, 2007

    Visit the special index of articles, analysis and opinion on Constitutional Amendment 18

    Members of the National Constitution Assembly (NCA) caught the police by surprise in Harare late Tuesday evening when they demonstrated in Zimbabwe's capital, Harare.

    At least 200 activists of the civil society organisation that is calling for a new "people-driven" constitution made a brief but marked appearance in central Harare before the police dispersed them. The sloganeering group denounced both the ruling Zanu PF party and the opposition MDC for "conniving to patch up" the constitution following last week's endorsement by parliament to amend, Amendment 18.

    One activist who refused to be named described how the police were caught napping when they converged on the capital.

    She said: "We marched for not more than 100 metres, chanting slogans and singing while distributing leaflets with our messages, before the police started showing up.

    "Knowing what they are capable of inflicting on us if arrested, we had a strategy of quickly dispersing and that is exactly what we did. The most important thing is that we had aired our views and sent the message across. We do not want this patched up constitution, we need a whole new one," the activist said.

    The NCA last week officially cut ties with the MDC, accusing it of "selling out" and "abandoning the principle of a people-driven constitution" after the opposition endorsed an amendment of the contentious Amendment 18.

    The amendment, once turned into law by Robert Mugabe's signature, will give Mugabe powers to appoint a successor and boost parliamentary seats.

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