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  • New Constitution-making process - Index of articles

  • Constitution awareness campaign begins
    Women's Institute for Leadership Development
    February 25, 2013

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    COPAC will today roll out a national public awareness campaign on the proposed new Constitution, amid overwhelming enthusiasm by some civic society groups to extend the time to create awareness.

    The new Draft Constitution goes for a referendum on 16 March and prospective voters will be required to produce their identity particulars to cast their ballots, as the voters' roll will not be used.

    In an interview with Women's Institute for Leadership Development (WILD), Copac co-chairperson, Hon. Douglas Mwonzora said the enthusiasm exhibited by members of the public was encouraging. "We are very happy with the progress we have made so far regarding the spreading of awareness on the proposed Constitution. We are glad to announce that we will roll out the awareness on the new Constitution Draft today," said Hon. Mwonzora.

    He said they had completed printing 90 000 copies of the Draft Constitution that would be distributed to members of the public for revision and clarification. "We would like to urge all members of the public to come to these meetings in their numbers, as they are very crucial to each and every one of them in making a wise decision before voting," he said.

    He said during the public awareness meetings, the members of the public should seek clarifications regarding any issues that they do not understand. "These public meetings are about providing information as much as possible and people should take advantage of such," said Hon. Mwonzora.

    He said Copac had reached an agreement to work with civic society organisations to distribute and campaign for the Draft Constitution. "There is a need for members of the public to learn more about the final Draft Constitution and as such to vote for this constitution comes the 16th of March," he said.

    He said there has been a welcoming response from members of the public regarding the awareness campaigns. "People across the political divide are eager to be aware of the contents of the constitution and we hope we are going to have people voting for it," Hon. Mwonzora said.

    Copac co-chair, Hon. Munyaradzi Paul Mangwana said a summary of the Draft Constitution would be advertised in the press with the first placements published in the weekend newspapers. Information on the venues and dates for the awareness campaigns was also published. Each district has between two and three venues and meetings, according to the schedule released.

    In Bulawayo, for example, the meetings start today, ending on Saturday with Matopo in Matabeleland South to host the last ones on Friday next week. Imbizo district in Bulawayo would have two meetings at Killarney Hall at 10am and Lochview Primary School at 2pm today, with Mzilikazi having two at Stanley Square at 10am and White City Arena at 2pm on Saturday. Binga will have two at Manjolo and Lusulu at the same times today while Bikita will also have two at Chiremwaremwa School and Nyika Growth Point tomorrow.

    The 16 March Referendum will be the country's second after 12-13 February 2000 Constitutional Referendum. The 2000 draft, which had been written by the Constitutional Commission, was however, rejected.

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