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  • New Constitution-making process - Index of articles

  • GPA principals should publicly condemn intimidation of people in the constitution making outreach
    Youth Alliance for Democracy
    July 08, 2010

    Youth Alliance for Democracy calls upon the principals of the Global Political Agreement to publicly condemn intimidation by their party members in the constitution making outreach. The constitution making outreach has entered its third week and so far there are reports of disruptions, silencing of dissenting voices, threats and biased, stage-managed rhetoric deliberately crafted to either undermine certain sections of the community or to provoke them into uttering statements likely to cause violence.

    A good example is the demand of a president who has a well known history of liberation struggle by speaker after speaker. This has emerged from almost all Constitutional Parliamentary Committee (COPAC) meetings held in ZANU PF strongholds. Such actions compromise the outcome of the constitution since the vulnerable sections of the community will be scared to air their views openly.

    The situation has been worsened by the fact that most communities were not educated on the constitutional and non-constitutional issues. This was as a result of too much focus on either to participate in the parliamentary led constitutional making process or not. This resulted in most civic society groups debating more on process rather than content, the ultimate product of the whole process. Given the limited time of the COPAC meetings, much time is being lost attempting to channel citizens in the right direction pertaining the real constitutional issues particularly the adoption of a Quota System for youths in Political positions.

    Of great concern our Community Electoral Clubs have reported serious youth apathy in all the meetings held so far with serious cases in Matabeleland South, that is, Nkazhe, Mawaza, Mtshazo, Glass Block and Samlodi where youth participation is dwindling between 16.8% and 21.3% translating to an average of 19.1%. This is a bitter pill to swallow for the young people because if that trend continues unabated, youths will remain passengers in issues of national development and rubberstampers of decisions made in their absence.

    As Youth Alliance for Democracy we maintain that participation should be meaningful and youths should participate freely, at every stage of any given process in question. To us the electoral process is continuous and as an electoral youth body already we are concerned about the stated anomalies. We are, however, optimistic that sense will knock in the heads of those who call the shots in Zimbabwean politics to bring to an end this furore. We call upon fellow youth organisations to mobilize their membership to meaningfully participate to air their views.

    At the end of the whole process YAD will host an all-stakeholders conference to take a position on our stance with regards to the referendum. Thereafter strategic partners will be engaged to add their voices to the concerns which would have arisen.

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