AFRICANGLOBE – Zambia’s ongoing National Constitution Convention has recommended to the Technical Committee on Drafting the Zambian Constitution to make clear and precise a clause in the draft constitution that bars Anti-Social practices such as homosexuality, lesbianism and other abominable practices from being practiced in Zambia.
The convention which reconvened for plenary discussion today has been scrutinizing articles especially those that provides the rights of people and articles that describes the minority and marginalized groups to ensure that the practices of homosexuality and lesbianism are not given leeway into the national document.
Debate deepened on article 27 of the Draft Constitution which provides that a person has the right not to be discriminated against, directly or indirectly on any grounds including birth, race, sex, origin, colour, age, disability, religion, conscience, belief, culture, language, pregnancy, health, marital, ethnic, tribal, social or economic status which rose concerns that homosexuals and lesbians might use it to their advantage.
Both Kembe Member of Parliament and Bishop David Masupa noted that the people of Zambia have clearly spoken that they do not want homosexuality and lesbianism hence the need to spell out in clear terms that such practices are illegal.
And Request Muntanga contended that the article should not have a place in the Zambia constitution and the monies that people who encourage homosexuality and lesbianism promise should be rejected.
He said the drafts persons of the constitution should not include semantics or difficult language in barring such practices.
Adding to the motion Chief Mumena described homosexuality and lesbianism as abominable acts that delegates should watch closely so that they do not sneak into the constitution in any way.
The house voted against amending the article to delete ‘on any other grounds’ but after an explanation that it might allow anti-social practices, the whole house changed but called on the committee to simplify the article so that it is better understood.
A similar scenario prevailed on clause (c) of article 9 where the convention wanted the technical committee to redefine the minority and marginalized groups who should be protected and not be discriminated against so that the homosexuals and lesbians do not enjoy such constitutional rights.
Meanwhile, clause (3) of article 28 has been referred to a vote on the last day of the convention after delegates failed to reach a consensus just like on Barotse Agreement of 1964.
According to the provincial resolutions, 9 provinces recommended for the upholding of the article but delegates were divided as to whether the death sentence should be abolished or allowed to stand in the constitution.
By: Charles Sakala