Culture Lens to Constitutional Realignment

Where
Zimbabwe
When
2020
Who
Nhimbe Trust
This measure was reported by civil society.
Describe the main features of the measure/initiative: 
Zimbabwe, since 2015 and through a cabinet resolution, has been undergoing a process of realigning legislation to the new constitution. In asserting creative civil society’s place and active participation in the country’s constitutional and legislative agenda, the initiative is intended at extending culture lens expertise through the CSO constitutional consortium which works collaboratively with the Inter-Ministerial Taskforce. In advancing the promotion of the dictates of the Convention, the initiative is premised on policy advocacy. The development of position papers and policy briefs, specifically focuses on mapping the implications of proposed legislative amendments to a bundle of leverage rights, such as artistic freedom, freedom of assembly and association, freedom of opinion and expression, to the active participation of artists and cultural professionals in the cultural and creative industry value chain of creation, production, distribution and consumption. Overall, the initiative seeks to: • Inform constitutional and legislative agenda, through a culture lens, to build respect and acceptance of the value of the diversity of cultural expressions and its significance to the advancement of the rule of law and the consolidation of a resilient national identity • Raise awareness of the role of arts, culture and media practitioners as shapers of constitutional and legislative agendas • Raising awareness of the significance of legislation in the domestication and localisation of the 2005 UNESCO Convention, and its instrumental function in the implementation of the National Arts, Culture and Heritage Policy Legislation mapped for realignment, that specifically has been identified as having a bearing on efforts aimed at the protection and the promotion of the diversity of cultural expressions is as follows: • The Draft Computer Crime and Cyber Bill • National Peace and Reconciliation Bill • National Arts Council Act • Traditional Leaders Act • Freedom of Information Bill • Broadcasting Services Act • Censorship and Entertainment Controls Acts • Maintenance of Peace and Order Act • Immigration Act • Private Voluntary Organisations Act • International Treaties Bill • Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission Act
What are the results achieved so far through the implementation of the measure/initiative?: 
The implementation of the initiative has amplified the voices of artists, cultural professionals and media practitioners in matters relating to constitutional and legislative provisions. Consultative meetings, in particular, have served as a platform of information gathering and dissemination, on the progress of constitutional alignment and the implications of bills proposed to date, on artistic freedom, freedom of opinion and expression as well as freedom of assembly and association. The development of a policy paper on leverage rights to Artistic Freedom in Zimbabwe, in collaboration with FreeMuse, is a step intended at strengthening operational provisions of the initiative through raising awareness on constitutional provisions protecting and promoting cultural expressions. The creation of a Legislative and Advocacy Tracker, as an accompaniment of the brief, has been aimed at: • Popularising the goals of the Convention among artists and cultural professionals, for ease of identifying how specific legislation affirms or contradicts Convention provisions • Raising awareness on processes of constitutional alignment, to enable artists and cultural professionals to be informed of what their intervention options are, at each stage of alignment • Consolidating artist and cultural professional action in legislative policy advocacy • Identifying strategic areas that require the training of legal and judicial officials who will employ their expertise to advocate for legal frameworks that achieve the best possible outcome in the protection and promotion of the diversity of cultural expressions