Thursday, August 12, 2010

NCC chairman bemoans erratic funding

NCC chairman bemoans erratic funding
By Ernest Chanda
Thu 12 Aug. 2010, 04:00 CAT

NATIONAL Constitutional Conference (NCC) chairperson Chifumu Banda has lamented erratic funding to the constitution-making process.

Officially opening the NCC’s final plenary sitting at Mulungushi International Conference Centre in Lusaka on Tuesday, Banda said inadequate and untimely funding had led to the NCC excluding certain activities.

He said the NCC could not go round the country to collect people’s views on the draft constitution because of poor funding.

“Members may wish to know that the funding situation is still critical. It is for this reason that the final stages in the constitution-making process have had to be revised to exclude certain activities such as the collection of views from members of the public in all the seventy three (73) districts of Zambia,” Banda said.

“In the same vein, this session of the Conference will be held for four (4) days only from today Tuesday, 10th to Friday 13th August 2010…. This time around we do not have the luxury of time or financial resources in the face of the 31st August, 2010 deadline when the National Constitutional Conference will stand dissolved.”

Banda urged delegates to be focused and work diligently in view of the limited time and funds. He further pledged the NCC commitment to help the government deliver a new constitution before neat year's general election.

“The NCC is determined to make its contribution towards ensuring that the government delivers the new constitution to the people of Zambia before the 2011 general elections.

So far, our determination to deliver on our mandate has been demonstrated by the speedy pace at which we as members of the NCC have worked to meet all our deadlines despite the numerous challenges,” said Banda.

“It is important to note that the input of the public at large is crucial for the final conclusion of the constitution-making process and the consequent realisation of a truly people’s constitution.”

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