Constitution Amendment Bill (2) sails through

by | Apr 20, 2021 | Crime & Courts, Local News, Politics | 0 comments

Hosia Mviringi

The Zimbabwe Constitution Amendment Bill number 2 of 2019 has successfully sailed through the National Assembly, with an overwhelming majority of 191 to 22 votes.

The bill will now go through a final hurdle in the Senate, from which it is elevated for President Assent.

This bill is very significant to the governance of the country, as it seeks to improve efficiency while deepening democracy.

Among the most notable changes to be brought by the landmark bill, is the scraping of the running mate concept for the Vice Presidency thereby effectively giving the President full discretion to appoint his or her Deputies.

The bill, when passed into law will empower the President to increase the number of Ministers appointed outside of Parliament from the current five to seven.

This has the effect of widening the pool of citizens from which the President can choose his cabinet.
It increases the President’s chances to appoint technocrats and professionals who may otherwise not be eligible for appointment.

The bill will also extend affirmative action as it will extend the women’s 60 seat Parliamentary quota and 10 seats allocated to the Youths by another two Parliamentary terms.

The President will be empowered to appoint and promote judges to higher courts and extend the tenure of employment beyond the 70-year limit subject to a favourable medical report without the need for public interviews.

This he will be empowered to do in consultation with the Judicial Service Commission.
The bill once signed into law will establish the office and functions of the Public Protector, formerly Office of the Ombudsman.

The development comes as the atmosphere in the Senate has changed for the better, with the house experiencing unprecedented unity of purpose and convergence between ruling party and opposition members.

A shared sense of belonging and purpose seems to be refreshingly sweeping through Senate.