DONORS have urged Government to adopt the constitution through a constituent assembly because the majority of Zambians have demanded it.Speaking during the country review portfolio meeting between Government and the World Bank at Mulungushi International Conference Centre in Lusaka yesterday, Minister of Finance and National Panning, Ngâ€™andu Magande, said donors also pledged to fund the CA.
â€œJust two days ago, donors questioned our constitution roadmap whether it was the right one or not and they also appealed to Government to adopt the constitution through a CA because so many non-governmental organisations are calling for adoption through the CA,â€ Mr Magande said.
He said Government was not against the peopleâ€™s will but that some of the demands from the civil society were out of context.
But he complained that money given to NGOs was not accounted for properly.
â€œMy concern is that when donors give money to NGOs such as Emily Sikazweâ€™s Women for Change, they donâ€™t ask how that money is being spent and where it has been taken but when the same money is given to me, I have to be accountable to the Zambian people,â€ he said.
The minister said some NGOsâ€™ unpopular demands were the reason Government was introducing the NGO Bill when Parliament resumes sitting next month.
He said the aim of the NGO Bill was to regulate their operations to ensure they were operating within the law.
â€œWe want to be in control. This is the reason we are taking the NGO Bill to Parliament when it resumes. They canâ€™t just be demanding things from Government at the expense of funding from foreign taxpayers,â€ he said.
But in response, World Bank out-going country manager, Ohene Nyanin, said the issue of the constitution-making process was entirely a sovereignty matter that could be handled through dialogue.
â€œJust yesterday (Tuesday), all donors were called to State House and the issue of the constitution came up but the feeling of many donors is that the matter could be best handled through dialogue and extensive consultation, but above all it was a sovereignty matter,â€ he said.