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Ministerial Constitution Committee Meets in Harare

The committee of three cabinet ministers and parliamentary constitution committee co-chairmen tasked with resolving areas of disagreement in the Second All Stakeholders’ Conference report met Wednesday in Harare and agreed that their parties should first look at the report before they convene again next Monday.

Ministers Patrick Chinamasa of Zanu PF, Tendai Biti of the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) formation of Prime Minister Tsvangirai and Priscilla Misihairambwi-Mushonga of the Ncube MDC are expected to break the deadlock stalling the constitution-making process.

The leaner committee was formed following disagreements that threatened to derail the constitution-making process.

The MDC formation of Ncube also threatened to boycott the committee if it was tasked with demanding a renegotiation of the previously agreed issues.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Eric Matinenga said he is optimistic that the constitution-making process will soon move forward.

Mr. Mugabe has already said the next poll would be in March although his opponents are still pressing for more political reforms to the avoid disputes that have marred previous elections.

Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai has called for calm in the run-up to the next poll, but criticised Mugabe's suggestions that the two would have the final say on the draft - a position also at odds with that taken by the inter-party parliament committee driving the constitutional reforms.
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