HomePoliticsConstitutional views worse than Kariba draft — Ncube

Constitutional views worse than Kariba draft — Ncube

MDC-M secretary-general Welshman Ncube said this week constitutional views gathered during outreach programmes are far worse than what was being proposed in the controversial Kariba draft supreme law and do not meet expectations of political parties.

Addressing a civic organisations meeting in Bulawayo last week, Ncube said people wanted a very powerful executive president who makes unilateral decisions and appoints commissions which were state-controlled. 
He said political parties have come to the realisation that views gathered during the constitution-making outreach programme were constitutional views.
Said Ncube: “We are once again caught up in our visions of what our society is. We thought the people out there, their views would coincide with our views, the elite here and that if we went to ask them they will tell you they want democracy, want a president with limited power, and want commissions which are independent.
“In many of the places we went to, freely or un-freely, people then said when we elect a president we are done, it’s up to him (president) to appoint everyone else. We know that if you were to be faithful to the data which has come out of that outreach you won’t even get the Kariba draft because that data is far worse than the Kariba draft.”
The three political parties in the inclusive government agreed to craft a people-driven constitution after which elections would be held.
Before the outreach programme, the parties clashed over the process with Zanu PF campaigning for the Kariba draft to be used as the basis for a new constitution. The Kariba draft, which critics argue favours most of Zanu-PF’s standpoints, was crafted by the three parties before the March 2008 harmonised elections. Ncube said the rejected 2000 draft document was a better document.
“That 2000 draft constitution had provisions which said the presidential term would be limited to two (terms) …meaning that President Mugabe would not be eligible to stand after this year to contest to be president,” he said.
In February 2000, Zimbabweans rejected the country’s first post-Independence draft constitution because the process by which it was arrived at was deemed to be flawed.
With the collected views far worse than the Kariba draft, Ncube said the major challenge to people who opposed constitutional amendment No 19 saying it did not go far enough in making democratic reforms and those who had disdain towards the Kariba draft, “are grasping the reality that all those gains we have made are now being trampled by the supposed opinion of the people”.
On elections which are likely to be in June next year, Ncube who is a front runner for the presidency in his party, said it was more of individuals in political parties that wanted elections than the political parties as institutions.
“Individuals in political parties want elections but institutionally none of the parties actually want elections because there is a lot of work to be done to reposition them to win elections whenever they are called,” Ncube said. “There are some who want an election next year for selfish reasons…If you wait till 2013 they might not be the president of a party or its automatic candidate.”
Ncube said when evaluating the personal interests they are not consistent with national interest. “Right now what dismays some of us who were involved in the negotiation of the Global Political Agreement; we were all in agreement that what was needed was a programme through which we gradually reduce the political temperatures, polarisation and atmosphere of June 2008,” he added. “What we have seen in the last eight weeks as we demand an election is the escalation of the tension and going back to where we were in June 2008. So you ask yourself what was the point of this government if by the time we have an election we are back to the trenches.”


Nqobile Bhebhe

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