Zim constitution awaits Mugabe's stamp

Harare - Zimbabwe's upper house of parliament on Tuesday approved the country's new constitution, sending the document to President Robert Mugabe to sign into law.

Seventy-five senators in the 94-seat senate approved the draft constitution in the capital Harare, a week after the house of assembly overwhelmingly approved it.

The new basic law opens the path for fresh elections later this year.

Senators from Mugabe's Zanu-PF and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai's Movement for Democratic Change sang and danced celebrating the approval of the draft charter.

Constitutional Affairs Minister Eric Matinenga read the contents of the document before he urged the senators to vote for its approval.

"It's a passage to a new Zimbabwe," Matinenga said.

The new constitution is expected to be signed into law by Mugabe, though no date has been given.

Zimbabweans overwhelmingly approved the draft constitution in March.

The text takes away the president's immunity after leaving office, bolsters the power of the courts, and sets up a peace and reconciliation commission tasked with post-conflict justice and healing.

It also limits a president's tenure to two five-year terms, curtails presidential powers and abolishes the post of prime minister.

A new constitution is one of the key reforms agreed to under the unity government formed by Mugabe and Tsvangirai in 2009 following a bloody presidential run-off election the year before.

Both leaders backed the draft charter during the referendum but they are still haggling over the date of general elections.

Tsvangirai is also insisting on reforms in the media, electoral and security sectors to ensure free and credible polls.

jungleboy 2013/05/14 11:09:45 PM
Wonder if the constitution comes in double ply?
Payricia Bull 2013/05/15 12:03:07 AM
Will Mugabe seek asylum in Nkandla if he loses ???? ..... But of course he wont lose because of our Memorandum Of Understanding !!!! VIVA ZUMA VIVA !!!!
Tommo Too 2013/05/15 12:07:49 AM
Hope he knows what he's supposed to do. Mr president its an ink stamp not a post stamp...
Cuthbert Murwisi 2013/05/15 06:41:30 AM
He is still looking for the stamp. There are so many drawers in his office and he is old and tired please give him time he will eventually find the stamp.
TinavoMagaisa 2013/05/15 07:48:06 AM
This is interesting times for Zimbabwe. Zanu PF and MDC parliamentarians dancing in celebrating the positive direction that the country is taking. Amazing how people here ignore that but understandable because Zimbabweans are doing the unthinkable, being Zimbabweans first and party cadres second. I support ZANU PF but if Morgan wins, then I will support him as my president. Will lick my wounds and wait for the next five years.
Willie Olivier 2013/05/15 07:54:46 AM
planet of the apes!
Khumbulani Sibanda 2013/05/17 04:49:57 AM
please people do not talk about things you do not have a clue about. if you like one side of a political party thats fine. but dwelling on some peoples emotional stress is very dangerous. we have lived all our lives will shame and grief because of what we went through as kids up to today no traumatic counseling has been offered by anyone but the topic is the favorite of anyone. let us live in peace please poeple.