Source: Church to translate constitution into vernaculars – NewsDay Zimbabwe December 19, 2017
THE Justice ministry and the Zimbabwe Catholics Bishops’ Conference (ZCBC) yesterday signed a deal to facilitate the translation of the Constitution into local languages by the Church.
BY TINOTENDA MUNYUKWI
Speaking at the signing ceremony, Justice minister Ziyambi Ziyambi hailed the Church’s intervention in assisting the government to fulfil section 7 of the Constitution which obligates it to promote awareness of the Constitution through translating it into local languages.
“The Constitution in section 7, clearly states that we should be having translations in all the officially recognised languages, but that has not been happening, everyone should be aware of the constitutional provisions in particular, chapter four with fundamental rights.
“The coming-in of the bishops to translate the Constitution into four languages is something that we are very grateful of and the government, represented by my ministry, values such initiatives and we are very grateful that this will go a long way in promoting public awareness of the Constitution,” Ziyambi said.
Attorney-General Prince Machaya said the Constitution-translation phase marked a defining moment in which the Church had fully presented itself as an important partner in governance issues.
“This partnership highlights the importance of the Church to the governing of the country, like here the Church has come in to assist the government in a task which is an obligation of the government,” he said.
ZCBC secretary-general Fradereck Chiromba said the ultimate goal of the Church was to ensure every citizen had a fair understanding of the Constitution together with its provisions.
“Basically, we are helping government in the work that government should do, but at the same time it is helping the nation to come to a better understanding of the Constitution,” he said.
The church’s representative, Father Fidelis Mukonori, also recently received widespread recognition for facilitating negotiations culminating in former President Robert Mugabe stepping down to pave way for Emmerson Mnangagwa’s ascendancy.