THE ruling Zanu PF is reportedly planning to amend the Constitution with the clauses on presidential running mates and presidential term limits to be dropped.
In the new Constitution, the president can only serve a maximum two five-year terms, but according to insiders, the party is plotting to have this changed.
A clause which will come into effect after nine years stipulates that presidential candidates should have running mates during elections, which analysts say was put in place to manage succession, is also set to be amended.
“If you remember well, these clauses caused problems during the Constitution-making process and there are people itching to have them changed,” an insider revealed.
The insider said he was not sure when the amendments would be tabled, but it was one of the issues Zanu PF wanted brought to Parliament immediately.
“There are a number of sections that will be amended, but top among them is the running mates clause,” the insider continued.
“The section on running mates might be totally removed.”
In August 2012, Zanu PF strongly opposed the running mate clause during the drafting of the Constitution, although it ended up relenting.
Section 92 of the new Constitution clause (2) states that every candidate for election as president must nominate two persons to stand for election jointly with him or her as vice-presidents, and must designate one of those persons as his or her candidate for first vice-president and the other as his or her candidate for second vice-president.
If the clause on term limits is removed, then Mugabe may serve beyond 2023, when he is expected to be 99, although that is unlikely.
Already, Gokwe-Nembudziya Zanu PF MP Justice Mayor Wadyajena has declared that Mugabe should be the Zanu PF candidate for the 2023 elections, although at present, the Constitution does not allow.
Contacted for comment yesterday, Zanu PF’s newly-appointed spokesperson, Simon Khaya Moyo, said he had not been around and was unaware of the plans.
“I was not around and I am not aware of that,” he said.
“Why don’t you call the secretary for legal affairs Patrick Chinamsa?”
Chinamasa’s phone went unanswered for much of yesterday, while the party’s political commissar, Saviour Kasukuwere, said he could not talk on the phone as he was driving.