A former Commissioner on the Mung’omba Constitutional Review Commission says there is need for the Patriotic Front government to exhibit caution over the constitution amendment process following the controversial resolutions of the National Dialogue Forum(NDF).
Mr.William Harrington says the government will be setting itself a trap if it maintains its arrogance on numbers and goes ahead to enact what he terms as “unpopular clauses” citing the re-introduction of deputy ministers and the formation of a coalition.
“Whereas Mung’omba Constitutional Review did an extremely thorough job traversing the length and breadth of the country to the very remotest areas, a relatively small group of people [NDF] have gone ahead to butcher the sacred cow, the constitution to mince meat completely ignoring and rejecting the expressed will of the majority of Zambians on the major issues such as the abolition of the position of deputy minister in the execution arm of Government,” He explained.
“What must be of serious concern to all peace loving citizens is the apparent arrogant whether anyone likes it or not stance adopted by certain officials in government .It was stated recently that government was confident that the NDF constitution amendment recommendations would be easily approved by cabinet and subsequently enacted by parliament.”
He has told 5fm news that while the process of amending the constitution has been costly, there is need for a fresh start in order to enact a new constitution that will stand the test of time.
Mr.Harrington emphasised that there is need to enact a constitution that will reach national consensus noting that a bad constitution can produce a bad president and the government.
Meanwhile Justice Minister, Given Lubinda insists that while the civil society organisations and individuals are at liberty to comment on government programs they should however desist from issuing statements that undermine the intelligence of the 350 delegates who attended the recent national dialogue forum.
Mr.Lubinda also rubbished claims by the Civil Society Constitution Agenda suggesting that he is taking a partisan stance on national issues.