A Harare man has challenged the constitutionality of the government policy requiring all school children to recite the National Pledge. The case is going to be heard by the full bench of the Constitutional Court on the 1st of February 2017. Mr David Hofisi of the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights is representing the parent who is not named.
The applicant is a member of the Apostolic Faith Mission in Zimbabwe (AFM) and is arguing that the national pledge goes against his Christian beliefs. His argument is that the National Pledge is a prayer which exalts various secular phenomena including the national flag, mothers and fathers who lost their lives in the liberation struggle.
In his response Minister of Education Lazarus Dokora said:
Applicant’s objection on the grounds of religion is misplaced. The national school pledge is not a prayer in any form.
There is nothing inappropriate in the wording. It is clearly not a prayer but simply a pledge or commitment which begins by exalting Almighty God. There is nothing wrong in acknowledging God at the beginning of the school pledge