Home » Judicial » AG to Prioritise Alignment of Laws

THE expectation that newly-appointed Attorney-General (AG) Prince Machaya, sworn into office at the end of last month, would hit the ground running so to speak has been misplaced.The country’s top legal aiser says he will need a bit more time before he can dig into laws that need to be aligned to the new Constitution.

In fact, the exercise will only begin next month — nearly two years after the new charter was signed into law.

The delay has been occasioned by the need for the AG to familiarise himself with his new responsibilities.”I am still trying to go through a period of handing down (my previous responsibilities) and I also need to adjust to the new duties and requirements expected of me,” said Machaya.

“The re-alignment of laws is something that should have been done yesterday, but unfortunately I can’t give a timeframe as to when we expect the process to be completed.

“I am trying to ascertain the extent of the work involved and it is a mammoth task that requires due diligence… What we have is a far-reaching Constitution and the process of re-alignment must be done in a manner that takes into account all those things. Probably by next month is when I will know what needs to be done,” he added.

Before his appointment, Machaya was the deputy AG.

His appointment, a year after the vacancy had arisen, was hailed as a natural choice as he has many years of experience behind him in legal matters.

Human rights lawyer, Beatrice Mtetwa, said it may take six months to complete the process, which involves aligning nearly 400 laws.

She said what was required to get started was sincerity on the part of government, previously accused of dragging its feet because it benefits from the limbo created by the vacuum.

The governing party claims it has no money to undertake the exercise.

The European Union earlier this month availed a US$1,28 million funding package towards the exercise in the wake of excuses from government.

Source : Financial Gazette