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agree on draft Constitution: New dawn for the Zimbabwe women
Institute for Leadership Development
January 18, 2013
Government yesterday resolved all outstanding issues that had
stalled the Constitution-making
process, paving way for the completion of the Draft
Constitution. President Robert Mugabe, Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai
and Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara met at State House and
received a report from the Cabinet committee tasked with resolving
Speaking during a telephone
interview with WILD, Hon. Douglas Mwonzora said there were no outstanding
issues anymore. "All parties have agreed. We have finally
agreed on the finalisation of the draft constitution. There are
no outstanding issues anymore." He added that the committee
was meeting today at 10 am to incorporate the finalised changes
adding that by Monday they should have a final Draft Constitution.
He however said it was
not possible to hold the referendum before March because the Draft
Constitution has to be taken to parliament for deliberation. This
will also give the nation a chance to appreciate the Draft before
they vote for it. He also said that the decision of the actual date
of the referendum lies with the Principals.
According to the Herald,
President Robert Mugabe confirmed that yesterday's meeting
ended in consensus. "After the final completion, we will make
proclamations on the way forward. "We will stipulate on the
roadmap when a referendum will be held. We will also stipulate when
our elections will be forthcoming." He said.
Prime Minister Morgan
Tsvangirai reiterated the same sentiments. "I am glad to say
indeed this completes a long journey we have traveled in this national
process to create this landmark moment in the country's history,"
Ncube, whose party early this week complained that he was being
excluded from GPA
principals' meetings to discuss the constitution, said he
was happy with the outcome.
"I can confirm that the meeting ended with consensus on all
outstanding issues in respect to the constitution of Zimbabwe,"
he said. "All the parties are in agreement. We will now have
to incorporate the agreed changes on the July 18 COPAC draft and
go for a referendum. According to the Global Political Agreement,
a new constitution is a must before fresh elections.
This new development
is a positive step forward for the women in Zimbabwe. The new constitution
contains the equality and non-discrimination clause, making it different
from the current Lancaster House Constitution where equality rights
are not clearly stated. Holding elections under the Lancaster House
may be conceived by women as a deliberate ploy by the three political
parties involved to exclude women from public processes such as
the upcoming elections.
Section 4.13(2) of the
draft constitution categorically states that, "Women and men
have the right to equal treatment, including the right to equal
opportunities in political, economic, cultural and social spheres."
The draft constitution takes critical steps towards enhancing gender
equality in politics.
WILD is happy about
the latest development. Women will now be able to take part in politics
and public participation. We also urge young women to take advantage
of the opportunities that will open up because of the Draft Constitution.
It is indeed a new dawn for the Zimbabwean woman.
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