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This article participates on the following special index pages:

  • New Constitution-making process - Index of articles

  • Key emerging issues from COPAC
    Youth Alliance for Democracy
    October 29, 2011

    Zimbabwe's Inter-party Political Agreement sometimes referred to as the Global Political Agreement provides for the authoring of a new people driven constitution as enunciated in Article 6 of the agreement. COPAC is mandated by the political parties' agreement to spearhead the constitution making process. Civic Society produced a report on the COPAC led process and submitted to COPAC which speaks to issues of both content and process highlighting issues like the political bickering, intimidation of communities, attempts to push for the adoption of political party positions using the back door. The report also clearly states the minimum benchmarks expected by Zimbabweans of a democratic constitution. The following are revelations that give insight to the document that is most likely going to be tabled at a referendum:

    • Executive - an executive with limited terms and the concept of separation of powers seems to be agreed across the political divide
    • Devolution - all ten provinces are agreed that decentralisation or devolution of power is key to curb historical developmental imbalances
    • Land - 1 person 1 farm, land audit, land commission, land reform, security of tenure while compensation is debatable on political parties ideological inclinations
    • Bill of Rights - first generation rights, socio-economic rights seem to be guaranteed, Parliament is mandated to appoint and have an oversight role on the Human Rights Commission

    The drafting of the constitution to be led by three principals Justice Chinhengo, currently based in Botswana, Priscilla Madzonga a lawyer in private practice and a lecturer from the University of Zimbabwe is set to commence around the 18 or 19 of November 2011. Indications are that there will be no referendum before March 2012. There two types of referenda, one that simply takes a blanket approach to the constitution through a YES/NO vote while the other will table specific issues or clauses of the constitution. However while the latter is the most ideal it is less likely that it will be used in the Zimbabwean case considering the gross incapacity of the Zimbabwe Election Commission, political bickering as well as lack of resources.

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