Put national interest first, Silungwe urges Sector Convention delegates
Lusaka, April 3, ZANIS………The Sector groups Convention has opened in Lusaka today where professionals and experts have convened to discuss and analyse different articles contained in the First Draft Constitution of Zambia which is at the consultative stage.
Chairperson of Technical Committee Drafting the Zambian Constitution Annel Silungwe officially opened the convention with a call on delegates who are technocrats and experts from government Ministries, Non Governmental Organizations (NGOs), Associations and individual experts to selflessly and generously use their talents, skills and experience to shape an admirable new constitutional order for the country.
Mr. Silungwe stated that the convention is convened to assist the Technical Committee to technically improve on the content of the first draft constitution and further urged the participants to be broadminded, objective and put national interest first as they have a rare opportunity to represent masses of Zambia.
The Technical Chairperson explained that his committee has held the sector groups convention as a platform for stakeholders to provide their professional view on the proposal made in the first draft constitution.
He noted that the Sector Group Convention has been held after the successful holding of 82 districts consultative Fora and ten Provincial Conventions that were attended by different stakeholders representing various groups of people.
During the three days of its sittings, the sector groups will examine and deliberate on comments submitted by the national organizations and interest groups, analyse articles and clauses of the first draft constitution and make recommendations for improvement to be considered by the Technical committee.
The Sector Groups will also prepare a sector group report with comments and recommendations for consideration by the Technical Committee and elect three persons, besides the chairperson to represent the sector group at the National Convention which will be held after the Sector Groups.
And Convention Coordinator Reuben Lifuka said the convention has been designed to conduct its business in a workshop setting, where 10 groups have been formulated and assigned tasks to work on based on the expertise of the delegates.
Mr. Lifuka disclosed that delegates attending the convention have been drawn from government, private sector, academia, Non Governmental Organisations, professional associations, religious mother bodies, trade unions, employers’ associations, political parties, disability groups and some individual experts.
He noted that delegates have been selected based on their knowledge, expertise and experience in addressing thematic issues that will being discussed in the ten sector groups.
The recommendations of the Sector Groups Convention together with the submissions of the Local and International experts in constitutional law and practice as well as resolutions of the National Convention will be used as a basis for producing the Final draft Constitution.
The convention has since split into sector groups to begin business after a presentation of the background, current constitution making process and the guidelines to ensure that the groups are properly guided and stick to their respective tasks.