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First reading of the Constitutional Amendment (No 18) Bill
September 14, 2007

The Constitutional Amendment (No 18) Bill was on 12 September 2007, read for the first time in the House of Assembly by the Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, Patrick Chinamasa.

The Bill seeks to harmonize Presidential and Parliamentary elections, reduce the Presidential term from six to five years and change the composition of the Senate and House of Assembly from the current 66 and 150 members to 84 and 210 members respectively.

In addition, the Bill provides for the appointment of a Deputy Chief Justice, the establishment and functions of an Independent Human Rights Commission and the division of Zimbabwe into 200 Constituencies for the House of Assembly and 50 Senatorial Constituencies, among many other things.

The second reading is scheduled for the 18th of September 2007 when Patrick Chinamasa is expected to table committee-stage amendments recently agreed to by the ruling party Politburo.

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