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Negotiators to Zimbabwe inter-party talks expected to meet in Harare
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16:05, October 07, 2008

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Negotiators to Zimbabwe's inter-party talks are expected to meet in Harare on Tuesday to discuss the allocation of the remaining ministries, local daily newspaper The Herald reported.

Two ministries, Finance and Home Affairs, are still up for discussion between Zanu-PF, MDC-T and the MDC. The party principals who met in Harare recently failed to agree on the allocation and referred the matter to their negotiating teams.

Zanu-PF negotiator Cde Nicholas Goche was quoted by the newspaper as saying that the negotiating teams had failed to meet as scheduled on Monday but were now expected to meet on Tuesday.

Goche's counterpart to the talks, Patrick Chinamasa, expressed optimism that discussions over the remaining posts would be concluded and an inclusive government put in place soon.

The MDC-T team to the talks comprises party secretary-general Tendai Biti and deputy national treasurer Elton Mangoma while the MDC is represented by its secretary-general Professor Welshman Ncube and his deputy Priscilla Misihairabwi-Mushonga.

Speaking at an induction workshop for MPs in Harare on Monday, Chinamasa, who is also the Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, said the Seventh Parliament was unique in that deliberations in the House would be premised on the inclusive Government, hence not much by way of disagreements was expected.

Chinamasa told the MPs that their first task was to debate and pass Constitution of Zimbabwe Amendment (No 19) Bill, which seeks to give effect to the framework of the new Government that saw the creation of the offices of Prime Minister and two deputy prime ministers.

"I remain optimistic that there would be an inclusive Government and some of the posts are not provided for in the new Government to be formed, hence you will have to deliberate and pass the constitutional amendments," Chinamasa said.

He said unlike in the past where a minister would table a Bill reflecting the views of his political party, in the present Parliament, a minister would be tabling Bills that reflected the views of an inclusive Government.

Chinamasa said Government was considering whether to have separate portfolio committees for the House of Assembly and Senate.

Responding to questions on what the Government was doing to have a more spacious Parliament chamber, Chinamasa said a new site has since been identified and construction would begin soon.

"We are fully cognisant that Parliament will be overstretched. The building of a new Parliament is something that has been delayed owing to the last elections. We will be laying a stone at the Kopje and a tender has since been floated and awarded," he said.


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