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Zimbabwe's Constitutional Revision Process Beset by Multiple Controversies


The parliamentary committee in charge of revision has come under pressure from the main parties to have their own rapporteurs in the outreach process, which some say defeats the purpose of having neutral record-keepers

Zimbabwe's constitutional revision exercise hit another bump in the road this week, though its organizers insisted that it was back on track again.

This week the negotiators for the three parties in government met with donors to address questions about the soaring costs of the exercise.

The parliamentary committee in charge of revision, meanwhile, has come under pressure from the parties to have their own rapporteurs in the outreach process, which some say defeats the purpose of having neutral record-keepers.

Critics such as the National Constitutional Assembly, a civic group, say that the exercise has become a gravy train for participants and politicians.

For perspective on the controversies and the process, VOA Studio 7 reporter Patience Rusere turned to Edward Mkhosi, a co-chairman of the parliamentary select committee on revision, and Irene Petras, director of Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights, which has undertaken to monitor the process with the Zimbabwe Electoral Support Network and the Zimbabwe Peace Project.

Mkhosi said the controversy has mainly had to do with funding. Petras was critical of pressure for parties to have their own rapporteurs.

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