The Oasis Forum says it is alarmed and shocked to hear that the PF regime is not sure whether or not the draft Constitution will be subjected to a referendum.
Government spokesperson Kennedy Sakeni was quoted saying the government is not sure if draft Constitution will be subjected to a referendum.
But the Oasis Forum has revealed that it has agreed with other stakeholders on a serious of actions to counter PF arrogance to ensure that the country gets a people driven constitution and we will get it.
‘We have stated before in no uncertain terms, that this time around we are certain, as we were certain on the third term debate, that if this trend of arrogance on the part of government continues, the ruling party will not succeed. We are determined to have a people driven constitution and we will get it,’ vowed Fr. Cleophas Lungu, the Forum spokesperson.
Father Lumgu recalled that president Michael. Sata, both in his inaugural speech at the Supreme Court and in his maiden speech in Parliament as President was very clear that the Constitution would be subjected to a referendum.
Secondly, the Technical Committee is operating on the basis that the Constitution would be subjected to a referendum.
‘It is thus shocking and alarming that the government has decided to bring unnecessary mist over this issue. As such, the statement attributed to Hon. Sakeni is confirmation of the fears we have raised in the past that the PF government has no political will to facilitate a process that will lead to Zambians giving themselves a popular Constitution they have desired for a long time,’ said Fr Lungu in a statement.
The Oasis Forum said the situation is compounded by government’s failure to bring about consensus on the Constitution making process by attending to some key issues which stakeholders have raised.
Fr. Lungu pointed some of the key-issues as
(a) Failure by government to publish a detailed budget for the current Constitution making process and especially the projected expenses for the Technical Committee;
(b) lack of a legal framework to guide and anchor the Constitution making process;
(c) failure to appoint a Referendum Commission to put in place machinery for conducting a referendum and the Constitution, and
(d) Setting a time frame for this entire process.
‘We have been engaged in several discussions with other stake holders and have agreed on certain positions and a plan of action which we will start implementing shortly and the nation shall be informed accordingly,’ said Fr. Lungu.