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Criminalisation of the right to free expression
July 06, 2007

The right to freedom of expression has been criminalised in Zimbabwe. This was said by National Chairman of the National Constitutional Assembly (NCA), Dr Lovemore Madhuku on 5 July 2007.

Addressing journalists gathered at the Quill Club, which is the National Press Club, on the Constitutional Amendment 18 gazetted last month, Madhuku said that the ruling regime was using the amendment to hold on to power, regardless of the consequences for the country. He stated that the political parties in the country agree on the elemental problems currently bedevilling the country but have failed to agree on the solutions.

Madhuku said that the ruling party has resisted the realisation of free expression as fundamental in the solution of the problems currently bedevilling the country.

"If you want to express yourself, you are said to be working on the regime change agenda."

At the same meeting, Madhuku pointed to the need for civic society's inclusion in the mediation initiative currently underway. He said that the political weight of the two groups had been considered instead of their representation of the population of the country and ability to come up with lasting solutions. In his view, the initiative is another way of buying time and will not yield any lasting solutions for the country.

Madhuku reiterated the need for a new, people drive constitution to solve the problems of Zimbabwe.

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