Government still committed to constitution making process – Kambwili


Government has reiterated its commitment to delivering a constitution that will meet the needs and aspiration of the majority of the Zambian people in the shortest possible time.

Information and Broadcasting Services Minister Chishimba Kambwili said this is contrary to assertions by the Grand Coalition on the people driven constitution that government was pursuing a path of partial amendments to the constitution.

Mr. Kambwili, who is also Chief Government Spokesperson, said government has not changed its original position of giving Zambia a constitution.

He also said at no time has President Edgar Lungu changed the goal post on delivering a people driven constitution as suggested by the Grand Coalition.

He was speaking at a press briefing in Lusaka today.

Mr. Kambwili further explained that President Lungu was merely looking ahead of other available options besides a national referendum.

The minister stated that government was evaluating the possibility of holding a successful referendum before 2016 and was also looking beyond the availability of resources in the adoption process of the new constitution.

Meanwhile, Mr. Kambwili has challenged the Grand Coalition to demonstrate that there was enough capacity and time to woo 59 percent of the current registered voters to the polling stations before the 2016 general elections.

He explained that in a referendum, there are no candidates hence making it difficult to reach voters and persuade them to participate in the exercise.

Mr. Kambwili further observed that the referendum lacks a personal appeal that comes with an election where candidates appeal to voters to turn out in numbers.

And Mr. Kambwili has said the confrontational and rigid stance taken by some organization on the constitution-making process has never worked before.

The Chief Government Spokesperson has since called for dialogue and consensus on the constitution making process.

Mr. Kambwili stressed that government has remained committed to dialogue and welcomes both consenting and dissenting comments on the road map that was released by government last month.