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  • New Constitution-making process - Index of articles

  • COPAC concludes compilation of district and provincial reports
    The Constitutional Select Committee (COPAC)
    August 18, 2011

    The Constitutional Select Committee, COPAC, is forging ahead with the work of spearheading the drafting of a new constitution in Zimbabwe, and the focus now is on the preparation for drafting by ensuring the production of the necessary reports. Several milestones have been recorded on the constitution-making process so far; notably the successful public consultation exercise, collation of all the data collected from the people's submissions as well as the compilation of the ward, district and provincial reports.

    Recently, COPAC Thematic Committee teams completed the compiling district and provincial reports from the 4821 meetings held throughout the country as well as the written and website submissions. The exercise was done over a period of 16 days from the 1st to the 16th of August, and was a follow-up to the exercise carried out from the 2nd of May to the 9th of June which focused on the production of ward reports.

    A total of 368 people, who compromised Members of Parliament, representatives of political parties and civil society organizations took part in the production of the reports. There was team each for the 17 thematic areas and these teams were made up of team leaders and rapporteurs, while data analysts were on hand to assist the teams. Reports were produced on the following thematic areas:

    • The founding principles of the constitution
    • Separation of powers of the State
    • Systems of Government
    • Executive Organs of the State
    • Elections, Independent Commissions and Transitional Mechanisms
    • Citizenship and Bill of Rights
    • Land and Natural Resources
    • Public Finance and Management
    • Media
    • Traditional Institutions and customs
    • Labour
    • Youth
    • The Disabled
    • War Veterans/Freedom Fighters
    • Local languages
    • Women and gender
    • Religion

    The process of compiling the national report will commence soon, and we will advise as soon as the plans are finalized. The process of organizing a team that will produce the national report is already underway. The national report that they will produce will be forwarded to the drafters of the new constitution.

    As COPAC, we are pleased with the achievements so far though we wish the process could move faster. We are grateful to the Government and donors for supporting the process, and I am pleased to both have committed themselves to continue funding the process. The Project Board, which compromises The COPAC Management Committee and representatives of the donors, met on the 4th of August and approved the budget for drafting.

    Drafting will commence soon and the principal drafters will be Justice Moses Chinhengo, Mrs Priscilla Madzonga, and Mr Brian Crozier. They will be supported by a drafting team whose names shall be publicized. The drafting process will take 35 days.

    COPAC would like to assure all Zimbabweans that once the draft is in place, it will be made available in English, in vernacular languages and in Braille. The Second All Stakeholders Conference will be held to discuss the draft after which it will be presented to Parliament for debate. After this a referendum will be held on the draft constitution, and this will give Zimbabwean an opportunity to say whether they like it or not.

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