munyaradzi paul mangwana 31-10-10 ed.jpgThe constitution-making process is in limbo after failure by Finance Minister Tendai Biti to allocate funds in the national budget for the process, following the withdrawal of donors, who were co-sponsoring the exercise with government.

 

According to the timelines set to guide the constitution-making process, the uploading of information collected during outreach is now 2 weeks behind schedule.

 

Copac co-Chairperson, Cde Munyaradzi Paul Mangwana, expressed disappointment with the treasury for failing to allocate funds specifically for the constitution making process.

 

He said Copac is still uncertain whether there may be a provision under the un-allocated reserves.

 

“I am very disappointed with the treasury. Now the donors are withholding their funds, saying the government is not committed,” said Cde Mangwana.

 

The other Copac co-Chairperson, Mr Douglas Mwonzora was equally disappointed by failure by the Finance Ministry to allocate funds for constitution making, pointing out that the select committee still owes outreach members and hotels about US$5,9 million.

 

mwonzora 17-11-10 ed.jpgHe said the US$1 million that might have been allocated to the constitution making process under the capital transfer provision falls far too short of their requirements.

 

“We still require about US$6 million for the 3rd and 4th phase and we still owe outreach members and hotels US$5,9 million yet we were only allocated a mere US$1 million,” Mr Mwonzora said.

 

Both Cde Mangwana and Mr Mwonzora said if the situation is not addressed soon, the select committee will not be able to achieve the set timelines.

 

The outreach phase was completed in mid October and by now, Copac was supposed to have started uploading the information that was gathered across the country.

 

After uploading of the information, thematic committees will be convened and then a drafting committee will be appointed to begin the actual work of writing the constitution.

 

A second all stakeholders’ conference will be held where the draft will be discussed further before it is presented to parliament for further debate and then a referendum is expected to be held by March next year, paving way for elections by mid-year.