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Lawyers 4ED launched, challenged to advance development

by Staff reporter
08 Aug 2023 at 06:46hrs | Views
President Mnangagwa yesterday called on lawyers to be steadfast in defending the country's sovereignty and independence and challenged them to entrench and deepen legal frameworks and institutions that advance the country's development agenda.

The President said this at State House when he launched the Lawyers for Economic Development, an affiliate organisation of the ruling party, Zanu-PF.

He said the formation of the organisation attests to the growing convergence of Zimbabweans across, all professions and sectors around the ideals of Zanu-PF as captured in the national development philosophy, Nyika inovakwa, inotongwa inonamatigwa nevene vayo. Ilizwe lakhiwa, libuswe, likhulekelwe ngabanikazi balo.

"I challenge the current and future generations in the legal fraternity to be steadfast in the defence of our sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity," he said.      

"Do not be hoodwinked and contaminated by monetary trinkets from our detractors bent on defiling the national identity, African identity, culture, values and strong Christian family systems.  

"Further, our present socio-economic and indeed global realities require the entrenchment, deepening and sharpening of legal frameworks and institutions to advance national development imperatives as well as the broader Sadc and Continental development aspirations."

President Mnangagwa said the lawyers' willingness and commitment to play a part in the ongoing work of building the country was commendable adding they were walking in the footsteps of luminaries such as national heroes like the late Herbert Chitepo, Edson Zvobgo and Justice Enoch Dumbutshena.

"These cadres, among others, leveraged on their legal training to firmly oppose and fight against an institutionalised racist legal order that oppressed the masses of Zimbabwe in their own country, under the Rhodesia regime. In the Second Republic, under Zanu-PF the law remains an instrument of development, serving the overarching interests of our people and the nation as whole," he said.

The President said it was hypocritical that those who used the law to facilitate abhorrent looting of the country's land and livestock, through the passage of colonial laws such as the Land Apportionment Act and the Land Husbandry Act now want to preach human rights and democracy.

"We are the ones that fought a protracted 16 year-war to bring about the democracy, constitutionalism and justice we are enjoying in our country.

"The deliberate nurturing of legal professionals with the highest levels of patriotism, who take pride in being Zimbabwean and African is urgent. In this regard, the formation of Lawyers for ED is, therefore, timely and most welcome," President Mnangagwa said.

He said the formation of the organisation had also led him to change his perception of lawyers in the country that were largely influenced by the activities of so-called human rights lawyers that were unpatriotic.

The President said the legal profession must go beyond the discourse around the skewed Western narrative and understanding of democracy and human rights but must transcend the multi-faceted aspects, for the development of societies.

"In this respect, I call upon the legal fraternity to champion legal frameworks that facilitate the harnessing of science, innovation and technology to propel the modernisation, industrialisation and holistic development of our country.

"Our people should have a sustainable intellectual and business operating environment that ensures we forever remain masters of our own destiny. The legal profession must be an enabler," he said.   

The President said the Lawyers for ED should nurture and inculcate a new breed of young talented and patriotic lawyers adding that the realisation of Vision 2030 with the attendant modernisation and industrialisation will entail a new scope for our legal practitioners.

"Emerging trends related to climate change, mining, environmental management, the 4th Industrial Revolution, cyber security and space science, among other issues, require both our legal training institutions as well as practitioners alike, to adapt appropriately. The legal fraternity should come on board and play their role during all the stages of law development in a proactive and pre-emptive manner in the context of the national space," President Mnangagwa said.  

He urged them to shun and reject corruption within the noble profession and the society and said it was disappointing that, some lawyers and other professionals across the board have become instruments of the counter-revolutionary and retrogressive imperialist agenda of the country's detractors.

"Some are selling their souls as well as brains, competencies and skills for a few pieces of silver to the extent of calling for continued suffering of our people through the illegal sanctions against our beloved mother country, Zimbabwe. This is unfortunate and shameful.

"Let them be reminded that, the freedom and privileges they are enjoying came as a result of the priceless sacrifices of those who fought against the oppressive colonial regime. In any constitutional democracy, freedoms and rights have a responsibility, limitation, and acts arising thereof require accountability. The Second Republic under Zanu-PF will never apologise for protecting the national interests of the people of Zimbabwe," he said.

With 16 days to go before the harmonised elections, the President called on Zimbabweans to continue upholding peace, unity, love, harmony, tolerance and respect for one another.

"It is my expectation that you will join hands with other affiliate organisations and structures of our Party, Zanu-PF, in the provinces to spread the message of peace, unity, love, production and hard honest work in our free, independent and democratic motherland, Zimbabwe," President Mnangagwa said.

The president of the Lawyers for ED, Advocate Melisa Dinha the creation of the Lawyers for ED came at an opportune time as it was an addition to various affiliate organisations that have been launched before.

"Indeed, it is the responsibility of every Zimbabwean to contribute to the upliftment of their nation. Zimbabwe as a nation needs her people to arise and to propel her to emancipation," she said.

Advocate Dinha said they had 300 members with more people joining every day.

"As Lawyers for ED we are unapologetic about who we are. Our main thrust and vision is to propel the growth of our nation as a whole, to shape our economy and to impact positively the political and socio-economic landscape of Zimbabwe," she said.

Advocate Dinha said they commended Government under the leadership of President Mnangagwa for the various development initiatives that have been implemented to grow the economy.

"All of us here have seen the implementation of this vision and bear witness to the rapid growth of our economy," she said.

Meanwhile, Lyn Karenyi, the daughter of Citizens Coalition for Change vice president, Lynette Karenyi-Kore was part of the members of the Lawyers for ED that attended yesterday's launch at State House.

Speaking in an interview, she said her mother was pursuing her own choices.

"It (membership to Lawyers for ED) won't affect her political career, she has her own dreams and I am part of this programme that is mastering development of the country so I don't think it will affect anything," she said.

Source - The Herald