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  • New Constitution-making process - Index of articles

  • NCA statement on President Mugabe’s cabinet
    National Constitutional Assembly (NCA)
    September 13, 2013

    The NCA is not surprised by the uninspiring, bloated Cabinet announced and sworn into office by President Mugabe. This lack of surprise comes from the NCA`s long-standing belief that without a democratic and people-driven constitution guiding the President of the day in terms of the quality and size of Cabinet, Zimbabwe will remain under an incompetent and unaccountable leadership.

    President Mugabe’s selection of cabinet is an insult to the intelligence of the people of Zimbabwe.

    We are gravely disappointed by the recycling of the same old, tried, tested and failed Ministers who have presided over the collapse of the economy and key state institutions since the country attained independence. The selection of cabinet Ministers should be based on merit and not on the basis of ‘close links’ to the President.

    It is the NCA`s position that the occasion of Mugabe`s “new” Cabinet under the auspices of the COPAC Constitution must be used to demonstrate to all Zimbabweans the serious shortcomings of the current constitution which were raised by the NCA campaign for a NO vote. These are:

    • There is no limit in the Constitution on the number of Ministers. Mugabe has exploited that loophole to appoint over 63 Ministers and Deputy ministers. This is too big and too expensive for our country.
    • There is no time-limit within which the President must constitute a Cabinet. Mugabe used that loophole to take over three weeks to constitute his Cabinet. During that period, he was running the country alone.
    • There is no meaningful devolution. Mugabe has exploited the vague provisions to retain Provincial Governors. The COPAC drivers and the MDCs had told people during their “YES” campaign that the new Constitution had abolished the post of Provincial Governors.
    • There is no quota on female cabinet Ministers. Mugabe has exploited the vague provisions on gender to appoint only 8 out of 63 Ministers. The MDCs and some women`s groups had claimed during the “YES” campaign that the new Constitution guaranteed women equal representation in all state organs.
    • There is provision for the President to appoint up to 5 Ministers from outside Parliament. Mugabe has used this provision to appoint 5 Ministers from outside Parliament.

    These illustrations show that the country still has no democratic and people-driven constitution. The NCA will continue to work towards a genuinely democratic and people-driven constitution.

    In this regard, Mugabe`s new Cabinet must expect vigorous scrutiny from the NCA, which is already embarking on building a movement of the people focussing on ensuring that by 2018 Zimbabwe will have a competent alternative to the recycled Mugabe appointees.

    Visit the NCA fact sheet

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