Rebuilding Constitutionalism and Rule of Law in Zimbabwe

On March 16, 2013, following a nationwide referendum which saw a turnout of more than half of those eligible to vote (3.3 million), a new draft constitution for Zimbabwe was approved by an overwhelming majority (95%) of participants. The document provided a progressive new framework for how Zimbabwe should be governed. It cites respect for the “supremacy of the Constitution” and “the rule of law” among its founding principles and cornerstone values of a democracy, and contains strong provisions relating to media freedoms; the separation of, and limits on, power; the independence of the courts and judiciary; the devolution of power down to the provincial level6 ; and how and when elections should be run. This policy briefing presents some of the key insights and takeaways from engagements with a range of stakeholders from Zimbabwe’s government, civil society and academia pertaining to constitutionalism and the rule of law.