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Serious Flaws Identified in Zimbabwe Constitutional Revision Process


Zimbabwe's constitutional revision process kicked off in earnest this week – though with a false start Monday as the first session of an all-stakeholders conference ended in turmoil as militants of President Robert Mugabe's ZANU-PF chanted songs and threw water bottles.

In a rare show of solidarity, President Robert Mugabe and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai denounced the disruption and warned that more such incidents would not be tolerated.

The second day of the conference went more smoothly - but critics of the process, which is led by a parliamentary select committee, said the incident showed the risk of giving control of the constitutional rewrite to politicians with a limited role for civil society groups.

Non-governmental organizations led by the National Constitutional Assembly have launched an alternative mechanism and will hold a parallel constitutional congress.

For a look at the troubled revision process, reporter Patience Rusere of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe turned to Farai Maguwu, director of the Center for Research and Development in Mutare and University of Zimbabwe constitutional law lecturer Greg Linington,

Linington expressed discouragement at Monday's debacle and the mix of delegates.

More reports from VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe...

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