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Ncube MDC Formation Adopts Draft Charter, Pushes Yes Vote

Zimbabwe's Movement for Democratic Change party of Industry Minister, Welshman Ncube has adopted the recently-completed draft constitution, vowing it will not accept any amendments to the document as demanded by Zanu PF.

Ncube told a press conference in Harare Wednesday that his party’s national executive committee resolved to adopt the draft despite its shortfalls, which he said were outweighed by benefits.

He vowed his party will not allow the principals of the unity government to veto any section of the document, saying the Global Political Agreement did not empower them.

Though Ncube should be a principal by virtue of leading a party in the unity government like President Robert Mugabe and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, a fight for control of his MDC has precluded him from assuming his rightful status.

Mr. Mugabe's Zanu PF has said it is not happy with a number of provisions and wants the long-delayed charter re-opened for negotiations.

But the MDC leader said any party with objections or concerns should wait for the second all-stakeholders conference to submit its grievances.

The Tsvangirai MDC has also endorsed the charter, due for a national referendum latter this year.

Tendai Biti, secretary general of Mr. Tsvangirai's party met with civil society representatives, including the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions on Wednesday to articulate his formation’s position.

Human rights lawyer Kucaca Phulu predicted the three political parties will adopt the draft constitution even if they are not entirely happy with some of its provisions.

“All the parties are now literally politicking over this issue as they want public support,” said Phulu.