|Zuma team overstepping mandate — legal experts|
|Thursday, 14 June 2012 12:52|
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Sadc facilitator South African President Jacob Zuma’s backroom team was in Harare on Monday and met small parties’ representatives in Harare.
The team had earlier met the GPA negotiators.
Harare lawyer Mr Chris Mhike said engagements outside the GPA should be those helpful in the stabilisation of the political and economic situation in the country.
“It violated not only the GPA itself upon which the Sadc mediation through President Zuma’s facilitation is based, but also in that it violated Zimbabwe’s laws because it contravened the provisions of Constitutional Amendment 19, which relates to the GPA.
“President Zuma’s facilitation is now looking for something else on which to poke its nose, but is unfortunately doing so in a manner that is overzealous, overreaching, lawless, and scandalous and in the process the South African team has become a runaway train that is heading for a catastrophic crash if it is not rescued,” he said.
He added: “While everyone knows that the GPA was signed by Zanu-PF and the two MDC formations after the inconclusive 2008 Parliamentary elections, which resulted in the current hung Parliament specifically and only on the basis that the three parties have representation in Parliament out of which the Inclusive Government had to be formed, there’s no legal basis for Zuma’s facilitation team to operate outside its GPA mandate and shift from being facilitators to become
participants in our national politics.”
Another political scientist, Dr Charity Manyeruke, said the facilitation team was “overstepping” its mandate by engaging the minority parties.
“Going outside the framework of the GPA is overstepping their mandate. It becomes problematic in terms of the confidence that we must have in them. Dealing with other parties reduces our confidence in them,” she said.
“If they violate the agreement then the whole nation is in trouble. This is unheard of and I think the negotiators should come up with a position,” he said.
“Listening is not wrong, but what they do after that should be the question,” she said.
The facilitation team had come to receive an update on the Constitution-making process.
President Zuma’s facilitation team was, however, told to wait for an invitation from Zimbabwe.