Monday, January 10, 2011

Mnyika holds stance on constitution

Dar es Salaam. The Ubungo MP, Mr John Mnyika (Chadema), has resolved to continue with his intention of tabling a private motion during the next parliamentary session, to demand that the law-making organ set a system that would be used during the review of the Constitution.

There were conflicting views on the validity of Mr Mnyika’s private motion after President Jakaya Kikwete announced in his end-of-the-year speech that the government had agreed to a major review of the Constitution.

In a press statement he circulated yesterday, Mr Mnyika said he has decided to go ahead with the private motion after consulting stakeholders on President Kikwete’s stand on the Constitution .

In accordance with parliamentary regulations, Mr Mnyika has already notified the clerk of the National Assembly on his intention to table a private motion during the February session.

He said that in reaching the decision to go ahead with his private motion he had consulted constitutional experts, leaders of civil society organisations, religious leaders, his party’s senior officials and Ubungo residents.

“Moreover, one week after President Kikwete was asked, but failed, to give an explanation on how the government was going to deal with the issue, it is clear that there is no plan to involve the public in the Constitutional review process,” said Mr Mnyika.

“My private motion seeks to ensure that people are involved in the process and therefore I will go ahead with the motion,” he said.

Mr Mnyika said President Kikwete’s speech, during the sherry party he organised at the State House last week, was another indication that he has no plans to involve wananchi in the process.

According to Mr Mnyika, in President Kikwete’s speech he insisted that his intention was to form a committee to review the Constitution.

The opposition party official also revealed that in his private motion he would push for Parliament to approve the 15th amendment of the Constitution with the aim of changing Article 98, by introducing a third Sub-Article which would comprise a process that requires the public to be involved in the constitutional review process.

Source: The Citizen (10/01/2011)

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