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Copac members get allowances increase

ALLOWANCES for constitution-making process outreach programme members have been increased from US$15 to US$25 per day, a move meant to avert a snub to the process.

The Constitutional Parliamentary Committee (Copac), comprising members of parliament and the management committee –– consisting of cabinet ministers –– finally agreed on the figure after a protracted row over the allowances.

Management committee member and MDC-M secretary-general Welshman Ncube confirmed the increase in allowances. The management committee, which supervises and approves Copac’s budgets and work plans, was forced to review the allowances upwards after being told that outreach team members were likely to snub the process because of unsustainably low daily allowances of US$15.

Ncube said outreach members would now get a parliament rate ($25), which is higher than the government rate (US$15).

The outreach programme is due to start in 10 days and will run for 65 continuous days to gather the public’s views on the planned new governance charter, which is expected to lay the foundation for future credible elections.

Negotiators in the power sharing agreement, Tendai Biti and Elton Mangoma from the MDC-T, Priscilla Misihairabwi-Mushonga and Welshman Ncube representing MDC-M and Zanu PF’s Patrick Chinamasa and Nicholas Goche are part of the management committee, which also includes Minister of Parliamentary and Constitutional Affairs Eric Matinenga. The three joint Copac chairpersons also sit on the management committee.

Ncube said donors were yet to provide equipment although the procurement process was at an advanced stage. Equipment needed for the process includes video recorders, audio recorders, cameras and computers.

Leonard Makombe


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