Zimbabwe Vigil regards the constitution-making process as an expensive time-wasting distraction

The Vigil is to mark Referendum Day with a demonstration at which we will be joined by Action for Southern Africa (ACTSA), the successor to the Anti-apartheid Movement. Trade unions have also been invited to take part. The theme will be the need to ensure peaceful and free elections in Zimbabwe.

As readers of the Vigil diary will know, we have from the beginning regarded the constitution-making process as an expensive time- wasting distraction. The apathy that has greeted the abortion of a constitution supports our view (see: http://www.theindependent.co.zw/2013/03/08/march-16-vote-why-spend-so-much-on-non-event/  March 16 vote: Why spend so much on non-event?).

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So much for $50 million spent on what we have always referred to as the constitutional outrage programme and the $85 million or so spent on this pointless referendum!

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We have never understood why the MDC parties allowed themselves to be taken in by this ludicrous exercise instead of trying to level the electoral playing field as envisaged by the GPA. We fear it is now too late.

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As the well-practised Zanu PF election-stealing machine lumbers into action, MDC T has appealed for Zuma’s intervention with a dossier detailing 120 incidents of politically-motivated violence against its supporters.

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But – surprise! – bad news. A member of Zuma’s facilitation team is reported as saying the dossier lacked ‘details’. It had ‘loopholes which makes it difficult for the facilitation team to pin Zanu PF as the perpetrators . . .’

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Quote of the week came from Zuma’s facilitation team spokesperson, Lindiwe Zulu, who said they were waiting to hear from the Joint Monitoring Implementation Committee. ‘It has to formally give us a report on the said violence’ she said (see:http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/mar9_2013.html#Z6  SADC alarmed by reports of political violence ahead of Zim polls).

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The South African facilitation team will have a long wait. If they looked up their dusty records they would find that JOMIC has never really been operational. A couple of years ago SADC ordered regional representatives to be sent to galvanise it. Last heard of, they got bored hanging around waiting for Zanu PF to shake their hands and went home . . .

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The fiasco smacks of South Africa’s duplicity as evidenced by its desperate resistance to the release of a report on the stolen 2002 elections despite repeated court orders.

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That’s why the Vigil will be demonstrating next week: not about the constitutional nonsense but to warn of what Co-Home Affairs Minister Theresa Makone predicts will be even worse violence than during the 2008 elections. (http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/mar6_2013.html#Z21  HOT SEAT: Interview with Home Affairs Minister Theresa Makone).