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02 September 2009 

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Zimbabwe Union Severs Ties With Civic Groups Over Constitutional Reform

02 September 2009

The Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions has pulled out of the Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition and the National  Association of Non-Governmental Organizations saying that those groups have backed the parliamentary-led constitutional revision process, which it opposes along with the National Constitutional Assembly, another leading civic group.

VOA was unable to reach senior officials of NANGO or the Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition, but a spokesman for the former, an NGO umbrella organization, confirmed that it received notification from the union of its decision and was drafting a response.

ZCTU Secretary General Wellington Chibebe told reporter Patience Rusere of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe that his union doesn't want to confuse its membership on the heated issue of constitutional reform by continuing to work closely with the two civic groups.

The union has joined forces with the National Constitutional Assembly in campaigning for a "No" vote in the referendum on the new constitution that must eventually be held. They say the constitution should be redrafted by a special constitutional commission, not by Parliament whose members might be swayed by political considerations or self-interest.

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