WOZA says too many compromises in constitution
By Alex Bell
Pressure group Women of Zimbabwe Arise (WOZA) has criticised the new draft
constitution for containing too many compromises by the MDC parties in
Both MDC formations have thrown their support behind a ‘yes’ vote for the
draft charter, despite ongoing criticism of the document. Analysts and
observers have dismissed the document for not reflecting the will of the
people, while still too closely resembling the contested Kariba Draft.
The document meanwhile has also been slammed for not diminishing the
executive powers of the president or allowing dual citizenship. Issues like
property rights are also left very insecure in the new charter, while
discrimination has been written in to the document, in the controversial
WOZA meanwhile has said the constitutional reform process has been “too
dependent on political negotiation,” and the result has been a draft charter
with too many compromises.
WOZA leader Jenni Williams told SW Radio Africa on Tuesday that their
members agree “there are too many compromises by the MDC and they appear to
be looking more at their own interests than the people’s will.”
However, she said a ‘yes’ vote was still the likely campaign WOZA would
undertake, despite the shortfalls of the constitution.
“We know that the culture of dictatorship is not going to die over night,
and the MDC most likely has betrayed our hopes and desires on the
presidential front. So we said we should be a little bit more patient and
hope that if the draft is passed we can seek better amendments in the
future,” Williams said.
She added: “We are definitely not as happy as we would have been. But,
unless ZANU PF decides to be a prima donna and change this draft, then a
‘yes’ campaign is likely what we are going to do.”
WOZA meanwhile warned the MDC to be aware that the Mugabe regime is renowned
for ‘backtracking’, and there is no guarantee yet that Zimbabwe is safe from
future violence. Williams said they are very concerned about safety issues,
because their members continue to face persecution and harassment.