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S. African Facilitators Said to Pledge Funding for Zimbabwe Constitution Rewrite

  • Sithandekile Mhlanga

Political analyst Brian Raftopolous said the Zuma administration has more clout within SADC now and can move to isolate Harare diplomatically if the ZANU-PF side of the government continues to hinder progress

Facilitators working under South African President Jacob Zuma to mediate a solution to the perennial crisis in the Zimbabwean government met Thursday with the parliamentary committee in charge of revising the constitution, promising to provide funds to help complete the process plagued by funding shortfalls and political bickering.

Mr. Zuma’s facilitation team was to meet with the Joint Monitoring and Implementation Committee, established to measure compliance by Zimbabwe's power-sharing political parties with the 2008 Global Political Agreement for power sharing.

Edward Mkhosi, select committee co-chairman for the Movement for Democratic Change formation of Welshman Ncube, said his panel updated the facilitators, who were led by Zuma foreign policy adviser Lindiwe Zulu and African National Congress official Marc Maharaj. He said his panel vowed to complete the revision by the end of 2011.

Mkhosi told VOA reporter Sithandekile Mhlanga the facilitators promised to present their findings to a Southern African Development Community summit in August in Angola.

The two MDC formations in government - including that led by Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai - have accused ZANU-PF of blocking progress toward implementation of the Global Political Agreement including a broad range of electoral media reforms.

Political analyst Brian Raftopolous said the Zuma administration has increased its clout within SADC and can move to isolate Harare diplomatically if the ZANU-PF side of the government continues to hinder progress toward free and fair elections.

Raftopolous told reporter Violet Gonda that SADC must stand firm on the positions it took at previous summits, in particular its resolution to delegate three members of its staff to the Joint Monitoring and Implementation Committee, which it has not yet done.

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