‘Mugabe, Chinamasa should apologise to nation’

Source: ‘Mugabe, Chinamasa should apologise to nation’ – NewsDay Zimbabwe April 21, 2016

PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe and Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa have been urged to apologise to the nation for wasting three years before appointing the National Peace and Reconciliation Commission (NPRC), as well as their failure to provide resources to the new constitutional body.

by VENERANDA LANGA

This was brought up by Harare residents yesterday during public hearings on the NPRC Bill being held by the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Justice, and thematic committees on Peace and Security and on Human rights.

According to the Constitution, the NPRC has a 10-year lifespan which dates back to 2013.

“Government, through Mugabe and Chinamasa, must apologise to the nation for failing to appoint the NPRC and avail money because three years of its 10-year lifespan have been wasted and yet there have been several cases of politically-motivated violence,” Obert Matsika of Chitungwiza said.

Participants also demanded that the clause which stipulates that Mugabe appoints the commission be removed as this could result in political appointees.

Others demanded the National Peace and Reconciliation minister should not be a member of a political party.

They said the NPRC should be run by churches.

Different people demanded the NPRC Bill, which is currently in the Second Reading Stage in the National Assembly, should include clauses banning political slogans that promote hate speech.

Other participants suggested the Bill must have clauses that stipulate action which the commission will take to curb future electoral violence, as well as clauses on how the NPRC will engage in dialogue with different political parties to discourage violence.

They said the Bill must be explicit on how to deal with the securocrats threatening, intimidating and announcing their political allegiance during election periods, including partisan traditional chiefs and headmen who intimidate voters, saying they were fuelling conflict.

Clayton Manjova of Heal Zimbabwe Trust said the Bill seemed to criminalise victims who will give evidence by mentioning issues of falsehoods.

“Rather there should be criminalisation of the perpetrators. There should be publication of the findings after, and not before, investigations so that the perpetrators do not tamper with evidence,” he said.

A development consultant, Cynthia Mawema, said the Bill should consider the role of the media in peace building and in instigating violence, taking into cognisance what happened during the Rwanda genocide.

Trade unionist Rita Nyamupinga said the NPRC Bill must be explicit on protection of employees and ensure the judiciary would act fairly in passing judgments.

A Bindura University student, Tatenda Gwaradza, said the Bill should consider traditional leaders in the national healing process as they can offer traditional methods of healing.

COMMENTS

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    Mukanya 6 years ago

    “Traditional leaders in the national healing process.” Be careful these are also fully-fledged ZANU PF apologists/activists.