n African Renaissance - Constituting power and democracy : Zimbabwe's 2013 Constitution making and prospects for democracy

Volume 12 Number 3-4
  • ISSN : 1744-2532
  • E-ISSN: 2516-5305


This paper uses a nested theory of conflict to analyse the politics of Zimbabwe's 2013 constitution making process initiated after the controversial 2008 elections. The final Constitution draft released on 18 July 2013 created a transitory deadlock after the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) rejected what the Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front (ZANUPF) called 'non-negotiable' amendments to the draft. The final negotiated draft was released in January 2013 and was accepted during a referendum in March 2013. The paper argues that the political disputations that characterised the constitution making process reflected problems of a broader structural systemic political strategy by ZANU-PF's unwillingness to underutilise power in the coalition government and a problem embryonic in the deployment of the constitutional discourse by the MDC as a tool for political change in Zimbabwe.

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