Zimbabwe
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Features of Constitution1

Is there a constitution? Yes
Does the constitution provide for freedom of religion? Yes

Constitution2

Constitution Year 1979
Last Amended As of 5/11/2011, last amendment was in 2008
Source Parliament of Zimbabwe
Translation Original was written in English
Current as of 2005 (Does not include 2008 amendments)

Constitution Excerpts (clauses that reference religion)2

Article 19: Protection of freedom of conscience

(1) Except with his own consent or by way of parental discipline, no person shall be hindered in the enjoyment of his freedom of conscience, that is to say, freedom of thought and of religion, freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, whether alone or in community with others, and whether in public or in private, to manifest and propagate his religion or belief through worship, teaching, practice and observance.
(2) Except with his own consent or, if he is a minor, the consent of his parent or guardian, no person attending any place of education shall be required to receive religious instruction or to take part in or attend any religious ceremony or observance if that instruction, ceremony or observances relates to a religion other than his own.
(3) No religious community shall be prevented from making provision for the giving by persons lawfully in Zimbabwe of religious instruction to persons of that community in the course of any education provided by that community, whether or not that community is in receipt of any subsidy, grant or other form of financial assistance from the State.
(4) No person shall be compelled to take any oath that is contrary to his religion or belief or to take any oath in a manner that is contrary to his religion or belief.
(5) Nothing contained in or done under the authority of any law shall be held to be in contravention of subsection (1) or (3) to the extent that the law in question makes provision�
(a) in the interests of defense, public safety, public order, public morality or public health;
(b) for the purpose of protecting the rights and freedoms of other persons, including the right to observe and practice any religion or belief without the unsolicited intervention of persons professing any other religion or belief; or
(c) with respect to standards or qualifications to be required in relation to places of education, including any instruction not being religious instruction, given at such places;
except so far as that provision or, as the case may be, the thing done under the authority thereof is shown not to be reasonably justifiable in a democratic society.
(6) References in this section to a religion shall be construed as including references to a religious denomination and cognate expressions shall be construed accordingly.


Article 20: Protection of freedom of expression

�(3) No religious denomination and no person or group of persons shall be prevented from establishing and maintaining schools, whether or not that denomination, person or group is in receipt of any subsidy, grant or other form of financial assistance from the State.
(4) Nothing contained in or done under the authority of any law shall be held to be in contravention of subsection (3) to the extent that the law in question makes provision�
(a) in the interests of defense, public safety, public order, public morality, public health or town and country planning; or
(b) for regulating such schools in the interests of persons receiving instruction therein;
except so far as that provision or, as the case may be, the thing done under the authority thereof is shown not to be reasonably justifiable in a democratic society.


Article 23: Protection from discrimination on the grounds of race, etc.

(1) Subject to the provisions of this section�
(a) no law shall make any provision that is discriminatory either of itself or in its effect; and
(b) no person shall be treated in a discriminatory manner by any person acting by virtue of any written law or in the performance of the functions of any public office or any public authority.
(2) For the purposes of subsection (1), a law shall be regarded as making a provision that is discriminatory and a person shall be regarded as having been treated in a discriminatory manner if, as a result of that law or treatment, persons of a particular description by race, tribe, place of origin, political opinions, color, creed, sex, gender, marital status or physical disability are prejudiced�
(a) by being subjected to a condition, restriction or disability to which other persons of another such description are not made subject; or
(b) by the according to persons of another such description of a privilege or advantage which is not accorded to persons of the first-mentioned description;
and the imposition of that condition, restriction or disability or the according of that privilege or advantage is wholly or mainly attributable to the description by race, tribe, place of origin, political opinions, color, creed, sex, gender, marital status or physical disability of the persons concerned.
(3) Nothing contained in any law shall be held to be in contravention of subsection (1)(a) to the extent that the law in question relates to any of the following matters�
(a) matters of personal law;
(b) the application of African customary law in any case involving Africans or an African and one or more persons who are not Africans where such persons have consented to the application of African customary law in that case;
(c) restrictions on entry into or employment in Zimbabwe or on the enjoyment of services provided out of public funds in the case of persons who are neither citizens of Zimbabwe nor regarded by virtue of a written law as permanently resident in Zimbabwe;
(d) qualifications, not being qualifications specifically relating to race, tribe, place of origin, political opinions, color, creed, sex, gender, marital status or physical disability, for service as a public officer or as a member of a disciplined force or for service with any public authority or any body corporate established directly by or under an Act of Parliament for a public purpose;
(e) the appropriation of public revenues or other public funds; or
(f) the according to tribespeople to the exclusion of other persons of rights or privileges relating to Communal Land; or
(g) the implementation of affirmative action programs for the protection or advancement of persons or classes of persons who have been previously disadvantaged by unfair discrimination.
(3a) Notwithstanding subsection (3)(b), in implementing any program of land reform the Government shall treat men and women on an equal basis with respect to the allocation or distribution of land or any right or interest therein under that program.
(4) The provisions of subsection (1)(b) shall not apply to�
(a) anything that is expressly or by necessary implication authorized to be done by any provision of a law that is referred to in subsection (3); or
(b) the exercise of any discretion relating to the institution, conduct or discontinuance of civil or criminal proceedings in any court vested in any person by or under this Constitution or any other law.
(5) Nothing contained in or done under the authority of any law that discriminates between persons on the ground of their sex or gender shall be held to be in contravention of subsection (1)(a) or (b) to the extent that the law in question�
(a) gives effect to section 7(2) or any other provision of this Constitution; or
(b) takes due account of physiological differences between persons of different gender; or
(c) makes provision in the interests of defense, public safety or public morality;
except in so far as that law or, as the case may be, the thing done under the authority thereof is shown not to be reasonably justifiable in a democratic society.


SCHEDULE 1

Oaths and Affirmations

Oath or Affirmation of Loyalty

I, _____________________________ do swear [or solemnly affirm] that I will be faithful and bear true allegiance to Zimbabwe and observe the laws of Zimbabwe.
So help me God. [To be omitted in affirmation]


Oath or Affirmation of Office

I, ______________________________ do swear [or solemnly affirm] that I will and truly serve Zimbabwe in the office of ______________________________.
So help me God. [To be omitted in affirmation]


Oath or Affirmation of a Member of the Cabinet

I, ______________________________, being chosen and admitted to the Cabinet of Zimbabwe, do swear [or solemnly affirm] that I will to the best of my judgment, at all times when so required freely give my counsel and advice to the President of Zimbabwe for the good management of the public affairs of Zimbabwe, that I will not, directly or indirectly, reveal such matters as may be debated in the Cabinet and committed to my secrecy, but that I will in all things be a true and faithful member thereof.
So help me God. [To be omitted in affirmation]


Judicial Oath or Affirmation

I, ______________________do swear [or solemnly affirm] that I will well and truly serve Zimbabwe in the office of ___________________ and I will do right to all manner of people after the laws and usages of Zimbabwe, without fear or favor, affection or ill-will.
So help me God. [To be omitted in affirmation]

Sources

1.  Data under the "Features of Constitution" heading are drawn from coding of the U.S. State Department's 2008 International Religious Freedom Reports conducted by researchers at the Association of Religion Data Archives. The article by Brian Grim and Roger Finke describes the coding of the International Religious Freedom reports. A dataset with these and the other international measures highlighted on the country pages can be downloaded from this website. Used with permission.

2.  The constitutional excerpts shown above are reproduced from the websites given in the "Source" field; the links to these websites were active as of May 2011. Where the constitutional text shown on these websites was provided in a language other than English, this text was translated to English by ARDA staff with assistance from web-based translation utilities such as Google Translate and Yahoo! Babel Fish. Constitutional text was converted to American English where applicable. Constitutional clauses were judged to contain religious content based largely on the standards used in the construction of the Religion and State Constitutions Dataset collected by Jonathan Fox. Emphases were added to the text by ARDA staff to highlight religious content in articles that also contain content that does not pertain to matters of religion. The data on this page were correct to the best of the knowledge of the ARDA as of the date listed in the "Current as of" field shown above. Please contact us at arda@pop.psu.edu if you are aware of any incorrect information provided on this page.