NCA snubs MDC-T advocacy campaign
THE National Constitutional Assembly and labour movements have snubbed the
MDC-T’s Global Advocacy Campaign (GAC) which the party intends to launch
with the help of civil society ahead of the next elections.
The campaign is meant to ensure Zimbabwe has free and fair polls.
Sources in the civil society said there were also serious divisions among
members of the Crisis Coalition in Zimbabwe over the issue, with some NGOs
such as the NCA and Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (PTUZ) saying the
party wants to use them to further its objectives although it refused to
cooperate with them in the constitution- making exercise.
MDC-T is hoping to form an alliance with NGOs so as to develop a national,
regional and international campaign through lobbying and advocacy for free
and fair elections as well as respect the democratic outcome of the polls.
The campaign intend to lobby NGOs in the Sadc region, African Union (AU),
United Nations (UN) and other international organisations to help them push
for electoral reforms and transitional mechanisms after elections.
However, the sources said the NCA refused to work with the MDC-T on the
campaign on the basis that it did not want to be used by the party to do its
“dirty work” ahead of the referendum and elections.
The NCA believes the MDC-T undermined civil society groups during the
constitution-making exercise although they worked together in the 1999 drive
to stop a government-appointed constitutional commission.
An official in the NCA said: “As a civic society organisation we remain
guided by our work which is civic duty and not to act as conduits of
political parties like what the GAC is modelled. The MDC now wants to use
civic society groups to do their dirty work ahead of the referendum and
elections but as an organisation we are guided by the values and ideals of
the people’s constitution and any processes which are not in line with that
we are not part of”.
NCA chairperson Lovemore Madhuku (pictured) confirmed his party would not
work with MDC-T although it had been approached through third parties.
“Obviously there is no way we can do that thing. We are still working on a
referendum. The MDC-T did not approach us directly but through other members
of the civil society. The NCA has always been distinct, we are an
independent organisation and we can’t be seen doing the business of
politicians. We can’t be a cover of the MDC-T.”
While PTUZ secretary-general Raymond Majongwe said there were attempts by
MDC-T to woo them into working together again, but they were no longer
interested in partisan politics.
“As far as we are concerned as PTUZ, we will resist anyone who will want to
abuse our goodwill or to manipulate and control us. We will not be an
appendage of anyone,” he said.
However, MDC-T spokesperson Douglas Mwonzora said his party would not lose
sleep over the issue.
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