Rainbow Party secretary general Wynter Kabimba should first apologize to the nation for being part of the confusion in the constitution-making process before he can join groups that want the Constitution to be subjected to a referendum, Grand Coalition spokesperson MacDonald Chipenzi has said.
Mr Chipenzi said Mr Kabimba could not escape from the problems Zambians have been subjected to through a Constitution that could have been presented to Zambians in a better form.
“What our former Justice minister could have done is to apologize to Zambians for the role he played in manipulating the constitution-making process,” Mr Chipenzi said.
He said the Rainbow Party leader as Justice minister had a chance to take the Constitution for a referendum shortly after it was surrendered to him in 2013 but did nothing about it. He said it was Mr Kabimba who wrote a letter to YALI threatening them with arrest if they went round the country educating people on the draft Constitution.
‘’Imagine if in June 2013 when the Technical Committee produced the document and in the same year in December the document was given to him and a roadmap was given to the Zambian people and imagine by April 2014 we were going for a referendum to adopt the Constitution, do you think we would have these amendments?
‘‘The answer is no; but it was Mr Kabimba who wrote to YALI threatening them with arrest if they went round the country on the issue of the Constitution,” Mr Chipenzi said. And YALI president Andrew Ntewewe said all clauses in the Constitution were evident of the people’s will after being subjected to debate by different representatives in the country including the opposition.
“I do not understand what people mean when they say President Lungu has not delivered a people-driven Constitution; this is a document that went through all 83 districts of the country, all 10 provinces and was debated upon by different stakeholders, including political parties. So how does one blame it on an individual? The President just helped us deliver it,’’ he said.
He said it was not President Lungu who introduced clauses such as the 50 per cent plus one vote, running mate and many others that had continued to bring debate.
“It is not President Lungu that proposed the 50 per cent+1 vote, or the running mate clauses; it is the people that cried for it and he just gave them what they wanted,’’ he added.