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NATIONAL ASSEMBLY HANSARD 05 April 2017 43-53
PARLIAMENT OF ZIMBABWE
Wednesday, 5th April, 2017
The National Assembly met at a Quarter-past Two o’clock p.m.
(THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER in the Chair)
ANNOUNCEMENTS BY THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER
INVITATION TO THE ZITF OFFICIAL OPENING
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: I have to inform the House
that the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) is inviting all Hon.
Members of Parliament to attend the ZITF Official Opening on Friday, 28 April, 2017. Hon. Members should collect their cards between 1400 hours and 1600 hours at the Members Dining during the course of this week. Parliament will not provide fuel and accommodation – [HON.
MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.]
Order, order, I do not want to respond to your complaints.
VISITORS IN THE SPEAKER’S GALLERY
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: I recognise in the Speaker’s
Gallery, Ministers attending the Kampala Convention on Internally
Displaced Persons being hosted by Zimbabwe. You are most welcome –
[HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.]
ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITHOUT NOTICE
HON. NDUNA: Thank you Madam Speaker. It is on a point of privilege according to Section 69 of the Standing Rules and Orders. On your Order Paper there is Order of the Day Number 15 that speaks to and about 10% of the population. I seek your indulgence; this motion has embedded in it some sentiments that would have been captured by the 2017 National Budget.
Aware also that the seconder of this motion is differently abled who is Hon. Mpofu, she is not gifted with sight and by debating this motion today, it would have addressed Chapter 4, Part 3 of the Constitution that speaks to Section 80 to 84. I seek your indulgence aware that today is private members day and also aware that Section 59
(1) of the Standing Rules empowers you to rule on a motion of national interest. This motion has been tabled without being moved as a motion of national interest. Now it has become incumbent that it is expeditiously debated in Parliament.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order! If you can help the
House – I can see that it is you who is bringing up this motion. If you have something to say, you can approach the Clerk or my office. Since you are going on, and on we are now proceeding with Questions Without Notice. Why do you not wait until we get to that motion?
HON. NDUNA: Thank you Madam Speaker.
HON. MUNENGAMI: On a point of order. Can this House be accorded an opportunity to know who the Acting Leader of the House is because we have some pertinent issues to ask as far as Government business is concerned? We do not know who the Acting Leader of the House is for now.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order! Since it is Wednesday
today, you are so many and I can hear your whispers from this end.
Would you please lower your whispers so that I can hear what is being debated?
Turning to your point of order, it is not this House which elects the Leader of the House. There is no one who is Acting Leader of the House. So can we proceed with Questions Without Notice.
HON. MUNENGAMI: Even the Speaker of Parliament, Hon Advocate Mudenda, told us that when the Leader of the House is not there, that is, Vice President Hon. Mnangagwa, then someone amongst the Cabinet Ministers has to be the Acting Leader of House. That appointment has to be notified to Parliament so that we know who to direct those questions which we would have wanted to ask Leader of the House. Honestly, for you now to say it is not our duty to elect the Leader of the House – obviously it is not our duty to elect.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Can you please take your seat
so that I can attend to your question. It is not the duty of this House to elect a Leader of the House. This is what I am telling you. The appointing authority is there to appoint an Acting Leader of the House in the absence of the substantive Leader of the House. If the appointing authority has not appointed anyone, we are not here to appoint anyone – [HON. MEMBERS: Who is the appointing authority?]- It is the
HON. P. D. SIBANDA: On a point of order. My point of order is merely a follow up on your answer. It is my view that you have correctly answered that it is not your responsibility or the responsibility of the House to appoint the acting leader. But I think it is the responsibility of the Chair to find out from the appointing authority who has been appointed the Acting Leader of the House because it is necessary that we have one.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: That is fine. I think I hear your point of order that we find out whether there is a Deputy Leader of the House who will be acting on behalf of the Leader of the House. Up to now we do not have anyone.
ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITHOUT NOTICE
HON. MANDIPAKA: My question goes to the Deputy Minister of Youth Development, Indigenisation and Empowerment. Given that the youth are the vanguard of this nation and they need to protect our sovereignty, explain the Government policy you have put in place to inculcate values of patriotism and nationalism in them. I thank you.
THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF YOUTH DEVELOPMENT,
INDIGENISATION AND EMPOWERMENT (HON. TONGOFA):
I want to thank the Hon. Member for asking this very important question. In our National Youth Policy, we have got four objectives. One of the objectives is to make sure that young people are involved in the socio-economic development of this country. The other objective is to ensure that all stakeholders are involved in making sure that the goal is achieved. The third objective is to make sure our young people uphold the principles of patriotism. It is within our National Youth Policy that we have to do that.
We are doing that through National Youth Service at various centres we have. We have the Dadaya and other various institutions which are doing that. We are training young people in that regard but due to financial constraints, we are not able to train all youth in this country. As a policy, we have to do that. I thank you.
HON. MUNENGAMI: My supplementary question is that the Deputy Minister stated that the Ministry has four objectives which he was supposed to articulate. He only articulated two. Can he tell us the other two because Hon Mandipaka’s question was very clear in wanting to know the objectives?
HON. TONGOFA: Let me once again go through the four objectives. The first objective is to make sure our young people are involved in the socio-economic development of this country. I stated that one. The second one is to make sure that we coordinate all the stakeholders who are involved in making sure that young people are involved in the socio-economic development of this country. The third objective is the one that I stated which deals with National Youth Service. The fourth objective is to make sure that the health of our young people…
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: What is happening? – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – No, I think you have to behave like Hon. Members.
HON. TONGOFA: The fourth one is to make sure that we look at the health of our young people. I refer the Hon. Members to the National Youth Policy of this country so that they can read those objectives for themselves. I thank you.
HON. MLISWA: My supplementary question is; Hon. Minister, I
like the aspect that patriotism is inculcated in the youth through Dadaya and through many institutions. Out of all those who are trained through the many courses that they go through who are very patriotic to this country, how many of those youths who undergo such training are employed? – [HON. MEMBERS: Yes!] -
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Is this originating from the first question Hon. Member? – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – that is an issue of employment now– [HON.
MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – Order, order may we have order in the House. Hon. Members, we allow talking of those who are trained to be employed – [HON. MLISWA: So that there is patriotism in the country!] – No, it is a different question Hon. Member. May we proceed with Questions Without Notice.
HON. MAJOME: My question is directed to the Hon. Minister of Health and Child Care. Is the Hon. Minister aware that in terms of
Section 29 (2) of the Constitution, “The State through his Ministry must take appropriate, fair and reasonable measures to ensure that no person is refused emergency medical treatment at any health institution”, and that in fact that same right is equalled in Section 76 (3) of the
Constitution that provides that, “No person may be refused emergency medical treatment in any health-care institution”. Is the Hon. Minister aware of that?
THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HEALTH AND CHILD CARE
(HON. DR. MUSIIWA): Thank you Madam Speaker. Yes, I am very much aware of that section of the Constitution Hon. Member – [HON.
MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, order there is a
HON. MAJOME: Thank you Hon. Madam Speaker I am
delighted that the Hon. Minister is aware of those provisions in the
Constitution. My question therefore is, what reasonable measures has the Hon. Minister taken so far to ensure that no-one and indeed, no-one is denied emergency medical treatment at any health institution because that is actually what is happening? What is it that he has done?
HON. DR. MUSIIWA: Thank you Madam Speaker, I also want
to thank the Hon. Member for wanting to find out what we have done as a Ministry. We actually have enunciated a policy that all our public health institutions, by right, must allow treatment even the private institutions in this country are mandated by the laws of this country to accept emergency treatment – that is the Ministry’s policy. We, as much as possible will enforce that. If she has got specific instances, then we would want those to be brought to our attention so that we could then deal with those specific cases. I thank you.
HON. MAJOME: On a point of order Madam Speaker! THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Where is the point of order,
the Minister is answering.
HON. MAJOME: The point of order is that my question was what practical measures has he taken in order to ensure that happens?
He is saying they will try this and that but the fact is, people are dying.
A person can be knocked down along Mazowe Road outside Avenues Clinic or even outside Parirenyatwa Hospital but you are turned away if you do not have payment yet the Constitution states that he must take reasonable measures to do so.
My question was - what are those measures? He has prevaricated and it is a point of order. I want him to answer my question. What measures has he put in place? He cannot declare it in this House and not implement. I want to know what measures are in place because it is happening. – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, order Hon. Members
at the front bench there, you are making too much noise. The Hon.
Minister wants to hear what the Hon. Member is asking.
HON. DR. MUSIIWA: Thank you Hon. Speaker. I think I have made it clear that we have made a policy - [AN HON. MEMBER: Inaudible interjections.] – This is a policy measure and when you make a policy measure, it is an instruction as to what must happen. We also have regulations that bind institutions, even private institutions to do that and under the Health Professions Authority, we can prosecute
institutions that deny medical emergencies. I thank you. – [HON.
MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –
Hon. Majome having stood up to pose another supplementary question.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Alright Hon. Member, maybe
I will advise you to put your question in writing so that you understand each other better because we cannot continue with one question.
HON. MAJOME: I understand Hon. Madam Speaker, but the
Hon. Minister must remember that in terms of the Privileges Act of Parliament, he must tell the truth to this august House and not try to pull wool over our eyes. This is a serious question and people are dying. – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – He talks about regulations when he is not able to state which ones.
This Constitution was passed in 2013, so he must tell me maybe when the regulations were promulgated and in terms of the Health Professions Act – it does not deal with those issues. If he does not know, he should honestly say, I do not know and I will find out and indicate when because I would like to know what precise measures are in place. People are dying and they are not receiving that medical attention in terms of the Constitution. – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, order in the House Hon. Members.
HON. MAJOME: He must tell the House and answer this statement truthfully. – [HON. MEMBERS: Address the Chair!] - HON. DR. MUSIIWA: Thank you Hon. Speaker. I think the
Hon. Member does not want to listen. We have got a policy and an Act.
Under the Health Services Act, it is mandated for all …
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, order Hon. Minister,
may you please address the Chair.
HON. DR. MUSIIWA: All emergencies …
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, order Hon. Minister, please address the Chair! – [HON. MEMBERS: Address the Chair!] - HON. DR. MUSIIWA: Yes, I have cited these two policies under the Health Services Act. You have to … – [HON. MEMBERS: Address the Chair!] - Okay, okay thank you Hon. Speaker. I said under the Health Services Act, all medical institutions and health service providers are mandated by law to provide emergency treatment as per the
Under the Medical and Dental Act, we can prosecute them if they do not comply. So I think we have made all the required provisions. I thank you.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Majome, I advise you
to put the question in writing so that we get fully researched information.
*HON. KWARAMBA: My question is directed to the Minister,
of Transport and Infrastructural Development. Hon. Minister, there are some volunteer people who are repairing potholes on our roads. They do not have any reflectors or danger warning signals to show that there are men at work ahead. What does the law say as regards an accident occurring if one were to hit into a wheelbarrow or kill a human being? What does the law say as regards these voluntary workers who are repairing these potholes? I thank you.
*THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. ENG.
MADANHA): Thank you Madam Speaker for the opportunity that you have given me and I am also thanking Hon. Kwaramba for her question. The truth of the matter is that yes, our roads are badly damaged because of the incessant rains that we have experienced, especially with the onset of cyclone Dineo which affected us because we now have a lot of potholes on the roads.
I actually have seen these volunteer road repair workers. What I want this august House to know is that firstly, if you look at these people, the type of soil that they put on the roads is not the correct soil. They are not paid by any one of the authorities that are responsible for the maintenance of roads, for example Local Government authorities,
Rural District Council, the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural
Development – Department of Roads or the District Development Fund. They are not on any of those authorities pay sheets. So, as they repair the roads, they raise funds from the motorists, which is unlawful. We do not know any of those people. If there were to be an accident between the volunteer roads repairers who is doing it illegally and the person who will be driving their own vehicle, we are not responsible. I thank you.
*HON. MARIDADI: Thank you Madam Speaker. Hon. Minister,
have you observed that the roads that are being constructed by BITUMEN, about two weeks later, it will be having potholes. This is common knowledge to most of the motorists that are on the roads. The road to Dzivarasekwa is the one that I use every week. Last week, it was repaired but today, the same potholes need attention. The companies that are constructing the roads are not doing their job properly. Are these companies doing their job properly? Are they using the correct material and furthermore, whose company is this?
*THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Kwaramba had asked
about road repair volunteers being involved in an accident whilst repairing the potholes. But now you are asking a new fresh question on why BITUMEN is being given these contracts.
*HON. MARIDADI: I am saying people are volunteering to
repair the roads because they have potholes on their roads but the companies responsible for constructing the roads or repairing the potholes is not doing a good job. If they were to repair today; if you look at Churchill Avenue from Second Street up to Churchill, I go to Church using that road; it is less than six months after it was repaired but already it has 14 patches. Why is the situation like that? Thank you –
[HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.]-
*HON. ENG. MADANHA: It is correct that we have several
companies that are repairing the roads or these potholes. The truth of the matter is that whenever such work is done, there is a contract which is awarded. The terms of reference are also specified in those contracts as to what each part to the contract is expected to deliver and the work to be done. I do not believe or expect that this is the type of shoddy work that is being done, that barely three days after the repair, the same problem recurs.
There is need to inspect to see if the work that they have done is up to the correct workmanship so that payment maybe withheld if they do not live up to the expectations. The contract clearly spells out that there will be a guarantee, a period when they will have to re-patch the road as the case with the Mutare-Plumtree Road. It had its own defects; people were complaining but the maintenance team attended to the defects that were being referred to. At law, they are obliged to correct their wrongs. This is my own understanding. I thank you.
*THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, order! Hon. Member,
no more supplementary questions. Can we please proceed with other questions because Hon. Maridadi, that was not a supplementary question though you have been answered?
*HON. MARIDADI: The Minister is saying that our problem is that the company should maintain it. Our problem is, our roads once constructed should be roadworthy for five years. We are saying that the tender should be given to companies that have the necessary expertise and not your relatives or cousins in the form of BITUMEN that continually have to repair the roads. I thank you.
*HON. MATANGIRA: Thank you Madam Speaker. My
question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Mines and Mining Development. What is Government policy as regards disputes pertaining to the ownership of mines? Will that not affect our foreign investors as they work in partnership with the local companies?
THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF MINES AND MINING
DEVELOPMENT (HON. F. MOYO): Thank you Hon. Speaker. The
Hon. Member has brought two issues; the first one is on the disputes and how long they should be resolved. Secondly, there are disputes as regards the ownership of mines. Dispute in terms of ownership as to whether it belongs to part A or part B - there is no policy that there will be disputes in the mining sector but be that as it may, should disputes arise, there are ways in which redress can be sought at provincial level, which will be the first run. Secondly, at the Ministerial level at a tribune chaired by the Minister, but those who disagree can go to the High Court. It means that the provincial council and the Ministry of Mines officials will no longer deal with that issue until the matter has been resolved. Whilst the matter becomes sub judice, as a Ministry, we cannot do anything about it. There is a backlog of cases in the High Court and you wait for the clearing of that backlog on all such cases. What is important is that we should work together, those that want to be miners and our mining officials so that we minimise the disputes. I thank you.
*HON. MATANGIRA: Madam Speaker, we have failed to
continue with our mining activities. Would it not be possible that some matters should not be taken to the High Court, but because these matters have been pending for three or so years, and that they may have been caused by you, could you please clean out this mess so that this country can develop please?
HON. B. TSHUMA: (In Nambya)
*THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF MINES AND MINING DEVELOPMENT (HON. MOYO): Thank you Hon. Speaker. The
manner in which companies work is that companies have their owners who would have invested in them. There is a Board of Directors before the owners of the company and below the board of directors there is the management. The Ministry of Mines as regards the issue of Hwange represents the Government. The Government is the investor and it is the major shareholder in Hwange.
As a Ministry, we should accept issues that we see are beyond the capability of the board of the parastatal or company. There is need to look at the policy for the investment. At the moment, there are issues for the board, management and investor. The issue of the investment is that we cannot raise adequate capital to finance the company.
HON. B. TSHUMA: On a point of order Madam Speaker.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Is it a point of order or a supplementary?
HON. B. TSHUMA: No, it is a point of order. Let me put it in English for the benefit of the Deputy Minister. I thought that the years that he spent in Hwange he has got a bit of Nambya but I am a bit disappointed. What I am saying is...
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: I hope you are not repeating what you have said before.
HON. B. TSHUMA: I have to because it is necessary. What he has addressed is something else that I was probably going to say in the next three or so months but not for now. What I said right now is a question of conflict of interest. I am saying relating to the issue of solving disputes that has been raised by the Hon. Member, we have a situation - as is the case in Hwange where a managing director who was there and during his tenure, there was massive deterioration of the company. He then moved to the Executive.
When you go to the Ministry today, you are informed that if you are coming with those kinds of problems from Hwange Colliery
Company, Cabinet designated the Deputy Minister who is the former Managing Director to solve those kinds of issues. There is a perceived conflict of interest. I want to know why he has not recused himself or resigned altogether so that Hwange’s issues can have a fair chance of being dealt with. That is my question.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: I think it is unfortunate that I also did not understand the language. I have also benefited from you when you said it in English. I think it is unfair the way you asked your question. You are asking the Minister what he did while he was still a Managing Director. It is very unfortunate. How can you do that?
HON. NDEBELE: On a point of order Madam Speaker.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: What is your point of order?
HON. NDEBELE: Madam Speaker, I have an issue with the way you have treated the Hon. Member.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Member, I am presiding
over the House. I have the responsibility to direct the proceedings in this House, so, it is not for you to direct the Chair. I know how to guide the proceedings in a manner which is fair to everyone.
HON. NDEBELE: Could you assist us on what Standing Rules you are basing your decision on?
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Ah! Hon. Member please
could you please excuse me.
HON. NDEBELE: If it is the purpose of us coming to this House to ask questions...
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: You are now starting to incite
people and it is not good.
HON. P. D. SIBANDA: Thank you Hon. Speaker. I want to direct my question to the Hon. Minister of Energy and Mining Development, Hon. Undenge. Hon. Minister, your Ministry presides over two State owned companies that are involved in the petroleum sector which are
NOIC and Petrotrade. Petrotrade has had no board since 2015 to date. Currently, NOIC has formed a subsidiary called Genesis to also trade in petroleum products competing directly with Petrotrade. Can you educate the House firstly whether it is in line with Government policy for a State owned enterprise to stay for close to two years without a board and secondly, the motivation that led NOIC to come up with another company which is competing directly with another company that falls under your Ministry? Thank you.
HON. MLISWA: On a point of order Madam Speaker.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: What is your point of order?
HON. MLISWA: My point of order is on Standing Rules 106 which reads that ‘The Chair may direct a Member to discontinue his or her speech and resume his or her seat after having called to order such a Member’ - So, it is important under these rules that we respect the Chair, according to Standing Rules 106. Thank you.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Can we please proceed.
Minister please, Minister.
THE MINISTER OF ENERGY AND POWER
DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. UNDENGE): Madam Speaker they
are making a lot of noise. Madam Speaker, let me respond to a good question asked by the Hon. Member. First of all, competition is a healthy thing. We need competition so that at least the customer gets the best service and in any case, within an organisation, we can have a number of companies which are competing. However, there have been discussions which we have been pursuing on whether we should let Petrotrade run independently or there should be a merger so that we achieve economies of scale.
I am aware of what the Hon. Member has just said. It is only that we have deliberations and discussions which are at an advanced stage, to the effect of seeing whether Petrotrade can merge with NOIC so that we achieve the advantages of economies of scale. I thank you Madam Speaker.
HON. P. D. SIBANDA: Hon. Speaker, before I say my supplementary question, the Hon. Minister did not answer the other part of the question. I am sure he will attend to it together with my supplementary question.
You are saying there are still discussions that are taking place, but as we speak, NOIC has already appointed some employees for Genesis. Now, what discussions are taking place when you have already employed some people to run that company and you are actually still continuing to employ others? Is there any Cabinet approval for the formation of that company, Genesis, in addition to the one for the board that has not been there at Petrotrade since 2015? Thank you.
HON. DR. UNDENGE: Madam Speaker, I think the Hon. Member did not get my first response when I said competition is a healthy thing and you can have a lot of actors, but catering for different segments owned by the same company. I will take a simple example. We have for example Meikles Limited. It has so many trading companies. It has TM, Greatermans, Pick n Pay and Barbours. All these are companies in the trading field but owned by one holding group. That is why I said such a thing is not only confined to the private sector, it can take place even in the public sector and competition is a healthy thing.
Coming to his second questions when he said, why is it that there is no board…
HON. MARIDADI: On a point of order, Madam Speaker. I have a problem when the Minister deliberately misleads the nation. You cannot form two companies to compete with the same product. He is giving us an example of a holding company that has Meikles, TM and so forth. Those are meant to cater for different segments of the market.
The price of fuel is one and the supplier is one. How do they compete?
TM and the other shop, are meant for different segments of the market. One goes for the niche market and the other goes for the bottom of the market. Which one is going for niche and which one is going for the bottom of the market? You are an economist and you must know better.
HON. DR. UNDENGE: Madam Speaker, I am wondering whether the Hon. Member went to business school because in every business sector, with every product, it can be differentiated. You can be serving different market segments entirely. This is the same - [HON.
MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.]-
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order Hon. Member. Would you please give chance for the Minister to respond - [HON. MEMBERS:
Inaudible interjections.]- Order!
HON. MARIDADI: Madam Speaker, he is misleading. How do you differentiate petrol…
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, order! Can we have
order, Hon. Member. Hon. Maridadi, I think we have to respect each other. If I call for order, you have to sit down. While you were asking, the Minister was quiet. Now, he starts answering, you also disturb him. Why are you doing that? You will have a chance to bring in another supplementary question - [AN HON. MEMBER: Inaudible interjections.]- No, Hon. Member. So, this is what is there. This is what he is answering. You want him to say what you want. This is what he has. Hon. Minister, do you have something different?
HON. DR. UNDENGE: Thank you Madam Speaker. I think I have exhausted this question- [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.]- and if he needs any other details, let him put it in writing.
I thank you - [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.]-
*HON. ZIYAMBI: Thank you Madam Speaker my
supplementary question is to the Minister. I am not an economist, but I
would want to understand when he says competition is healthy. The companies belong to them, we have the same price. Who is benefitting?
Is it benefitting the company or the public? My understanding of competition as healthy is there should be several players and as a result of several players, the public will benefit. If we have a monopoly and US$1.50 being our price, how healthy is this competition? This is what we are asking you so that we can be enlightened - [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.]-
Secondly, are they not in conflict to have two boards for the same company? Which law did he use to allow you to have two boards for the same holdings which are in the same industry? I thank you - [HON.
MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.]-
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, Hon. Members.
HON. DR. UNDENGE: Madam Speaker, when I stood up I
asked initially for the members to remain quite so that they listen to what I am saying and I am vindicated. It shows that they have not been listening or there was a lot of noise interfering - [HON. MEMBERS:
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Members, allow him to
give his answer please.
HON. DR. UNDENGE: My first response Madam Speaker was that we have delayed creating a board because we are in the process of deliberating on the mechanism for Petrotrade to merge with NOIC and when you want to merge you cannot create a board. There will be one single board. So, there are these merger deliberations which are taking place. Once there is that merger, we have the other company which looks after the procurement side. It goes upstream and then we have this other company which is downstream which looks after rural areas. I think – Madam Speaker, they are busy talking while I am responding, very soon they will ask a follow up question over a matter which I would have said while they are busy talking.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: The last supplementary
question and Hon. Members, I am appealing with you that we have the whole bench of Hon. Ministers, so, please we cannot keep on asking the same Minister – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –
HON. P. D. SIBANDA: On a point of order Madam Speaker.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: What is your point of order?
HON. P. D. SIBANDA: My point is meant to cure some answers
that are so much in disarray that came from the Hon. Minister. Firstly, I asked the Hon. Minister to inform us the motivation, he could not answer it. Secondly, I asked the Hon. Minister to tell us why there is no board, he could not answer it. From his answers Hon. Speaker, I believe that the Minister could be hiding a lot of truth from that issue. As a result, I plead with you Hon. Speaker that may the Hon. Minister give a Ministerial Statement either today or tomorrow regarding this issue because we want to get to the bottom of it. There are issues that are not very clear in the answers that he has given.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: I think I agree to that Hon.
Minister, if we can work on that.
The Hon. Minister having stood up to give a response.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: No, not now, but prepare the
Ministerial Statement and bring it.
*HON. MAHOKA: Thank you Madam Speaker. My question is
directed to the Deputy Minister of Health and Child Care. We would like to know what your Ministry is doing about the nurses who are not being employed in our districts. There will be a single nurse at a hospital who will be tired and off duty such that when women come to give birth they will not be attended to in time and this will result in loss of life. Women will be doing their national duty and these places are
Zebra Down, Netengo, Chivende, Ejositi and Murambi. What is the Government doing about it? I thank you.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Member, it was going to
be easy if you write down the names of the places you have referred to so that the Minister can come up with a proper answer.
HON. CHIRISA: My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Services (Hon. Eng. Matangaidze).
Hon. Minister, NSSA, we appreciate that it is helping Grain Marketing
Board – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections] –
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Members, please the
noise is too much.
HON. CHIRISA: Madam Speaker, NSSA is helping GMB and
soon it will be helping Cold Storage Commission. My question is when are they also going to help the contributors of NSSA, the workers, to construct houses because most of them are tenants? I thank you.
THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF PUBLIC SERVICE, LABOUR AND SOCIAL SERVICES (HON. ENG. MATANGAIDZE): Thank
you Madam Speaker. I would like to thank the Hon. Member for that valid question. Indeed, we have started coming up with initiatives to help the sectors the Hon. Member refers to. You will appreciate that NSSA has come up with the National Building Society. The idea for coming up with the National Building Society is to help Government in its ZIM ASSET agenda to create a 100 000 houses by 2018. Obviously, people will say from the house that is a foul cry but I will say that as things stand right now, National Building Society is the biggest building society in this country in terms of housing delivery. Last year alone, we delivered 1600 houses, which is a bigger number than any other building society has attempted to do. In this regard, yes, priority is going to go to the workers and to the lower end of the market in the housing delivery sectors. I thank you Madam Speaker.
HON. NDUNA: Thank you Madam Speaker, what I want to know
from the Hon. Minister regarding the land that is in the towns that he is talking about, aware that he has spoken about the 1000 households or 1000 units or 1000 places for accommodation...
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Member, please go
straight to your supplementary question.
HON. NDUNA: Please allow me Madam Speaker, allow me to come through – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – yes
Madam Speaker it is coming. What is the plan that he has got regarding the land that NSSA has got in towns? What is the plan that the Ministry has got with the land that is in the towns particularly where I come from?
HON. P. D. SIBANDA: On a point of order Madam Speaker.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: What is your point of order?
HON. P. D. SIBANDA: Hon. Speaker, the Hon. Minister of Energy and Power Development is signaling to me that I am empty up here. I think he needs to explain himself what he means by that gesture because I am honestly offended by that kind of a gesture.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, can we have order in the House. Hon. Sibanda, I hear what you say, Hon. Minister what were you signaling to the Hon. Member.
THE MINISTER OF ENERGY AND POWER DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. UNDENGE): Madam Speaker, he
looked at me when I was scratching my head – [Laughter.] –
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Let us have order and
proceed with our questions.
HON. NDUNA: Madam Speaker, there is still a supplementary question that needs to be attended to. He needs to answer the supplementary question.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Nduna your
supplementary question is going to be answered.
HON. NDUNA: He needs to answer the supplementary that I have already put across to you.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, can we sit down
please. Hon. Minister, please answer the supplementary question.
HON. NDUNA: I have got a whole electorate of 50 000 that I need to...
THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF PUBLIC SERVICE, LABOUR AND SOCIAL WELFARE (HON. ENG. MATANGAIDZE): Thank
you Madam Speaker. Hon. Nduna had asked about the tracts of land that are on NSSA’s books and what is going to be done with regards to constructing houses on those stands. What we have done is we have NSSA transferring the land on to the NBS books. So, that land now belongs to National Building Society and has since strengthened the asset base of National Building Society. I am happy to say some of that land, in areas such as Chinhoyi and Bindura, we have already started constructing houses. That has been taken on board Madam Speaker.
*HON. MLISWA: Thank you Madam Speaker. Firstly, you should leave Hon. Undenge as a Member of G 40, there is a Politburo today…
*THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order Hon. Mliswa. If you
do not have a question, please sit down.
*HON. MLISWA: My question is directed to the Minister of
Local Government, Public Works and National Housing, Hon. Kasukuwere and in his absence, the Deputy Minister, I know that he is attending the Politburo today – [Laughter.] – my question is, the issue of land barons is on the increase. They are defying council, they are not paying rates and in the meantime they are collecting money from people. They ask people to pay rates. What are you doing about this issue so
that the land barons can be brought to book? People like Killer Zivhu is one of them, what are you doing so that you can stop them and make them behave?
*THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT,
PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON.
CHINGOSHO): Thank you Madam Speaker. I would like to thank Hon. Mliswa for his question. It is indeed a topical issue which is also bothering the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing. However, what you should know is that the law says that, land barons are illegal. Their actions are unlawful. At the moment we have land barons who have been identified, they have cases to answer and they are appearing before the courts. I am pleading with you that if you have any land barons you know of, you supply us with the information so that they can be arrested because their activities are illegal. I thank you.
*HON. MLISWA: Hon. Minister, you have always said that you know about these issues and that you will do something about it but nothing has come up. In particular, the vegetable vendors raise their moneys through toil and build houses on these stands acquired by land barons. In the end, they lose out. What measures are you going to take as the responsible authority regarding the issue of these land barons? When are you going to do it when people are suffering and land barons are prospering?
*HON. CHINGOSHO: Thank you Hon. Speaker. I would like to thank Hon. Mliswa for his question. As I have indicated earlier on, that once the land baron is identified, they will be arrested because the activities are illegal. What we are doing as a Ministry is that, once we have observed or received information that the person is a land baron and has committed offences, that land baron will be arrested. That is the practical measure that we are taking. I thank you.
*HON. MLISWA: The issue is that I wrote a letter which I have with me, to the Ministry, concerning Pfugari, Killer Zivhu and Mupambi and the activities in Norton but to date, nothing has been done about the
*THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Yes you wrote a letter Hon.
Mliswa, it is a Ministry and an institution. They will not resolve the issue on the day they have received your letter. They need to investigate and look into the matter and address it.
*HON. S. CHIDHAKWA: My point of order Madam Speaker is
that, the issue is not dealt with on the same day it is reported.
*HON. MLISWA: Unfortunately, he is not the Chair and is not in that Chair. The Chair is there and has already made a ruling.
HON. ZINDI: Thank you Madam Speaker. My question is directed to the Minister of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development. My question is related to the ease of doing business, particularly when the Government has pronounced the policy of ease of doing business. Just this week, we were reading in the press that tobacco farmers are supposed to pay 10% because they do not have clearance certificates. My question is; is there a core-relation in terms of the ease of doing business as a policy enunciated by the Government, is there a core-relation in terms of the 5% as a policy that the Reserve
Bank of Zimbabwe is advancing to the tobacco farmers? Further to that, in terms of the ease of doing business, in accessing the clearance certificates, how are the tobacco farmers from all over going to access those clearance tax certificates, given the fact that it is not easy to access them? In addition – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – the last part Madam Speaker, already, the tobacco farmers are highly taxed, they are paying levies and all sorts of taxes. There is no money in the market for them to be productive on their farms. This 10% introduced by ZIMRA is going to eat into whatever they are going to get, therefore demoralising the farmers for them to go back to the land. What is the policy of the Ministry in order to make sure that they are incentivised? I thank you.
THE MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, MECHANISATION AND IRRIGATION DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. MADE): I want
to thank the Hon. Member for raising the question. Of course, the Hon. Member raised several parts in her question, so I will answer what is pertinent to agriculture and also taking advantage of the fact that the issues relating to the 10%, we have already been in discussion with the Minister of Finance and Economic Development over that issue.
I want to clarify that the law is very clear on that issue of what the farmers must pay. However, some years back, that payment that is supposed to be made by farmers was suspended in order to bring up the farmers and support them in producing tobacco. ZIMRA was going according to the law and we have made the appeal that the issue of the payment of 10% be suspended for now and this has been agreed to and I am happy to announce that there will be no 10% that will be paid by farmers relating to this season -[HON MEMBERS: Hear, hear]. It is not only tobacco farmers but it also affects other farmers. I am very grateful for that question.
*HON. MUTSEYAMI: My supplementary question to Hon. Made is that at the moment, tobacco farmers are on strike and they have stopped selling tobacco. As the tobacco auctions are trading, farmers are receiving cheques and withdrawing $1000. You will have sold your tobacco for $40 000, you would want to go and do something meaningful at your farm. What other means are you putting in place to ensure that tobacco farmers get meaningful amounts so that they can go with something meaningful to their communal homes? Farmers are being paid 50 cents coins amounting to $200. How is someone supposed to carry such a huge amount of coins to their communal lands?
HON. DR. MADE: I want to thank the Hon. Member. However, I want to make a correction. It is not true that tobacco is not being sold. I want to make that clear to the House and to the nation. There is no stopping of marketing of tobacco. We do not want to mislead the farmers out there. What happened this morning was the issue of farmers at Boka Auction Floors otherwise the rest of the auction floors, the trade of tobacco is going on. It is very important that farmers bring tobacco and market it.
The second aspect, it is also not correct to say that the farmers are not being paid. Every farmer has got a bank account. It is the issue of the cash that the farmers are to be given. The agreed position is that the farmers will withdraw $1000 and that if there is any problem relating to that, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe and the Minister of Finance and
Economic Development are ready to handle the matter. I want to make it clear that there is no stoppage of tobacco. The farmers have money in their bank accounts and they are being given the cash that we have agreed on as well as swiping.
*HON. MANGAMI: My supplementary question is, with regards to other crops such as cotton, the 10% levy has been stopped. Does that apply to other crops?
HON. DR. MADE: I want to repeat where the Hon. Member said,
is it going to affect other crops. I made it very clear that - all commodities in relation to the 10% tax. I made it very clear and I repeat that.
*HON. MUTSEYAMI: All I wanted to say to the Hon Minister is that he should check his records. There was a demonstration at Willowvale Auction Floors on the sale of tobacco right away. I am not talking things out of the blue.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Thank you very much for
your comment. I think this will help the Minister to check what is happening. He is going to do that.
*HON. CHAMISA: On a point order. I have observed that when Hon. Dr. Made responded to the question by Hon. Mutseyami, it became clear that there are issues that are bothering a lot of farmers especially tobacco farmers. But it does not end there. We also have barbers and kombi operators who are also complaining about punitive taxes. We have had more than two weeks since the Minister of Finance and Economic Development came to this House. This is a request to Government that the next time we sit, we have a Minister who is responsible for answering our burning questions on the economy. People have spent three weeks in long queues without accessing cash. We have questions from our constituencies as regards the cash issue. There is no one to respond to them. May that be looked into?
If I were to ask Hon. Dr. Made to respond to the issue of finance, he may not be knowledgeable but he is knowledgeable in terms of crops. Hon. Mandiwanzira is more inclined to broadcasting, information and communication. He is not an expert in monetary issues. We need someone who can answer with authority on the issue of finances. I thank you.
HON. MATIENGA: My question is directed to the Minister of Home Affairs. Hon. Minister, what is the Government policy in terms of foreigners who have overstayed in this country, are they arrested or deported? I thank you. – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] -
THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS (HON.
MGUNI): Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. The law that we have states that the overstayed person is arrested and deported to his country of origin. –
[HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –
THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER (HON. MARUMAHOKO):
Order, order Hon. Members, the noise is so much that I cannot even hear the Minister’s response. Hon. Minister, may you please repeat what you just said?
HON. MGUNI: Thank you Hon. Speaker Sir. The overstayed
person is arrested and deported to his country of origin. I thank you.
– [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –
THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Order, order Hon. Minister,
please take your seat.
HON. MUNENGAMI: On a point of order Mr. Speaker, I propose that we extend by 15 minutes.
THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: There is no point of order, you
just ask for an extension.
HON. MLISWA: Mr. Speaker Sir, I object. – [HON.
MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –
Questions Without Notice were interrupted by THE
TEMPORARY SPEAKER in terms f Standing Order Number 64.
ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITH NOTICE
NUMBER OF VIRAL LOAD TESTING MACHINES AVAILABLE
IN PUBLIC HEALTH INSTITUTIONS
- HON. MANGAMI asked the Minister of Health and Child Care to inform the House on the following:-
- the number of viral load testing machines that are available in public health institutions; and
- the number of viral load testing machines that are functioning and the reasons for some of the machines that are not functioning. – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –
THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Order, order Hon. members, if you are walking out, please do so quietly please. – [HON. MEMBERS:
Inaudible interjections.] –
THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HEALTH AND CHILD CARE (HON. DR. MUSIIWA): Thank you Hon. Speaker and I also want to thank Hon. Mangami who wanted to know the number of viral load testing machines we have in the country.
- We have got 15 viral load testing machines in the country.
- These are distributed as follows: we have got three viral load testing machines that are installed at the National Micro Reference
Laboratory in Harare; one installed at Harare Central hospital; one at
Mpilo Central hospital and another one that is due to be installed at
Mpilo Central Hospital as well; one installed at Mutare Provincial
Hospital; one at Chinhoyi, one at Gweru and another one at Masvingo. –
[HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –
THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Order, order Hon. Members.
Hon. Mangami, did you hear anything from the Hon. Minister’s response?
HON. MANGAMI: I am afraid, I did not hear anything Mr.
THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Yes, there is a lot of noise in this Chamber. – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – Order, order Hon. Members… – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – Order I am talking to you. May you repeat your response Hon. Minister, so that we all hear.
Hon. Chamisa having spotted Hon. Ziyambi, Hon. Dandawa, Hon.
Dziva and Hon. Paradza in deep conversations.
*HON. ADV. CHAMISA: On a point of order Mr. Speaker Sir. My request is for you to talk to Hon. Paradza and his colleagues to stop discussions in the Chamber because this is what belittles this House. We are doing serious business with the Hon. Minister here. Please assist us Hon. Speaker, so that people respect this House.
THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Order, order, I do not need to
remind some of you here to lower your voices. If you want to discuss, maybe you can go to the lobby. Hon. Minister, you may continue with your response.
HON. DR. MUSIIWA: Thank you Hon. Speaker and I also want to thank Hon. Mangami who wanted to know the number of viral load testing machines that we have in the country. I responded that :-
(a) We have got about 15 viral load testing machines in the country. – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –
THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Order, order, Hon. Mutseyami
and your partner there. – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – Order, order Hon. Members, this is the last time I will mention names. The next time, I am going to ask any one of you to go out and make your noise outside. Hon. Minister, you may continue with your response.
HON. DR. MUSIIWA: Thank you Hon. Speaker. I want to thank Hon. Mangami who wanted to know the number of viral load testing machines that we have in the country.
Our response is, we have about 15 viral load testing machines that are in the country. She also wanted to know how many are functional. At the moment, 11 are functional and about four are out of order. She also wanted to find out about their distribution in the country. These viral load testing machines are distributed as follows, we have got three viral load testing machines that are installed at the National Micro Reference Laboratory in Harare; one installed at Harare Central hospital; one at Mpilo Central hospital and another one that is due to be installed at Mpilo Central Hospital as well; two viral load testing machines at Beatrice Road Infectious Disease Hospital; one viral load testing machine at each of the provincial hospitals of Mutare; Chinhoyi; Gweru and Masvingo. I thank you.
HON. MANGAMI: My supplementary question is, according to
the distribution list, may I find out from the Minister if they are sufficient to cater for those who would want to be served taking into consideration that there is one viral load testing machine in Midlands for example?
HON. DR. MUSIIWA: Thank you Hon. Speaker, I want to thank
Hon. Mangami for that question. It is actually a very pertinent question. The viral load testing machines that we have - have got very high throughput. If we have enough samples, they will be able to take all the samples. Unfortunately, for us they are centrally placed, which places a challenge on the transportations of specimens to the laboratories and from the district hospitals and the rural health centres.
In the meantime we have placed smaller point of care machines that can be found in the district hospital. However, even when we have enough throughput, they cannot be properly utilized because they are not strategically placed.
HON. ZIYAMBI: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. My supplementary
question to the Minister is we now have new technologies that can do viral load testing. Given that the majority of our people are now on ART and we are spending a lot of money putting those people on ART and we have technologies that allow for the processing of one, two or three samples at a time. What is stopping Government from utilising those technologies? Some of those technologies are already placed around the country and they are not being utilised. What is stopping the Ministry from doing that? I thank you.
HON. DR. MUSIIWA: Thank you Hon. Speaker. I want to thank
Hon. Ziyamabi for this question. It is true new technologies are coming on stream. We have the gene expert machine which we have been using in the tuberculosis detection with a new cartridge and different software; we can do a viral load on the same machines. In actual fact, at the moment we are migrating to that system. We already have the gene experts in place; we now provide the type of cartridge and the software to then match this process. Thank you.
POSITION REGARDING FAITH HEALERS WHO CLAIM TO
- HON. MANGAMI asked the Minister of Health and Child
Care to inform the House on the Ministry’s position with regards to faith healers who claim that they can treat HIV and advise people living with HIV to stop taking ARVs.
THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HEALTH AND CHILD CARE
(HON. DR. MUSIIWA): The position of the Ministry is that at the present moment there is no cure for HIV/AIDS. It is a form of malpractice for traditional health practitioners to make false claims about the cure of HIV and advising clients to stop taking prescribed medicines and they should be prosecuted. Usually such practices are done by bogus traditional healers who are not registered by the Traditional Medical Practitioners Council.
We actually have Statutory Instruments that will prosecute
Traditional Healers that advise patients who are on ARV’s to discontinue them. At the moment the Ministry has been sensitising the Traditional Healers as to the correct way to go about it and to make sure they do not advise patients to leave ART and over 400 of them have been educated to date. All that they are doing at the moment would be maybe to give medical supplements.
POSITION ON THE PROVISIONS OF UNIVERSAL ACCESS TO
VIRAL LOAD BASED TREATMENT
- 4. MANGAMI asked the Minister of Health and Child Care to explain the Ministry’s position on the provisions of universal access to viral load based treatment.
THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HEALTH AND CHILD CARE
(HON. DR. MUSIIWA): Naturally, everyone who is on ARV must
have a bi-annual load test. It is imperative because when we know the viral load, it will then be important for us to assess whether the ARV’s are working and if they are not, whether there are going to be adjustments to the dose or to the diet. Although at the moment not all patients who are on ART are accessing viral load treatment, we urge as many as possible to do this. I thank you.
POLICY REGARDING SALARIES OF WORKERS AT JENA MINES
- HON. M. M MPOFU asked the Minister of Mines and Mining
Development, to explain to the House the Ministry’s policy regarding miners who have failed to pay their workers’ salaries on time, that is, a case in point being Jena Mines which is in Silobela Constituency under the directorship of the ZMDC which has failed to pay workers their full salaries.
THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF MINES AND MINERALS
DEVELOPMENT (HON. F. MOYO): Thank you Mr. Speaker. The
Ministry’s policy on salary issues is in fact the Labour Act which employers must observe. While ZMDC is owned by Government, they must abide by the Labour Laws.
CLEARANCE OF SALARY ARREARS BY ZMDC
- MPOFU asked the Minister of Mines and Mining
Development, to explain to the House when ZMDC would clear such salary arrears so that mines can get back into full operations again.
THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF MINES AND MINERALS
DEVELOPMENT (HON. MOYO): Thank you Hon. Speaker.
ZMDC’s failure to engage into full operations is not a workers’ problem per se, but a capitalisation one. ZMDC required fresh capital injection in order to ramp up production in all its mines. Efforts are currently underway to secure funding and equipment for ZMDC to restart production.
GOVERNMENT POLICY ON MINES
- M. M. MPOFU asked the Minister Mines and Mining Development, to inform the House whether Gold panning/ alluvial gold mining is permissible and to explain what the Government policy is in mines such as Jena Mines and to further state whether proceeds from such operations are not utilised to pay workers or at least to utilize a percentage of the for community development, instead of them being channelled to the Head Office in Harare.
THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF MINES AND MINERALS
DEVELOPMENT (HON. F. MOYO): Thank you Hon. Speaekr.
Alluvial gold, which is gold deposited by water movement is permissible to mine when it is discovered on an old river channel. However, there is a government policy on riverbed mining where alluvial gold can also be discovered. The policy does not allow anyone to carry out river bed mining because of its adverse effect on the water bodies. Cabinet has tasked ZMDC to carry out riverbed mining on behalf of Government and resources are being mobilised in this regard. Distribution of company revenue is however a Board and Management prerogative.
HON. MUTSEYAMI: Thank you Hon. Speaker. My
supplementary question is that you have pointed out clearly that riverbed mining of the alluvial gold is illegal but the discretion has been given for Government to do the riverbed mining. With all effects of riverbed mining, what exonerates Government from affecting the river system as a result of the mining as compared to the ordinary people doing the mining?
HON. F. MOYO: The difference Hon. Member or the assumption which we believe is correct is that a Government entity will be supervised and regulated by Government better than it would if it was a private entity.
HON. GABBUZA: I just want to bring to the attention of the Minister that the second part of the question is assuming that already riverbed mining is taking place at Jena Mines and the questioner is asking why the proceeds cannot be used to offset the salary arrears. I think that is the question is and the Minister has not attended to that part.
HON. F. MOYO: Thank you Hon. Speaker. My comment is that I
concede to that part of the question but I said that the distribution of companies’ revenue is an issue for the board of that company and its management. So, it would be difficult for us as shareholders to instruct the board and its management on how to distribute its revenues.
HON. HOLDER: Thank you Mr. Speaker. My supplementary is
to do with...
THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER (HON. MARUMAHOKO):
Order Hon. Members, there is a caucus in the corner there. Hon. Member in the corner to my right – Hon. Nhema, I did not want to mention your name, please.
HON. HOLDER: Thank you Mr. Speaker. My supplementary is will that not compromise the Ministry when it gets involved in mining on the riverbeds. Currently, there is mining taking place as what we call artisanal miners on most of the rivers. So, I wanted to find if
Government now goes and does riverbed mining, will it not compromise their oversight role?
HON. F. MOYO: The issue of artisanal miners mining on riverbeds is an issue that is attended to by Government to try and regulate their activities. With regard to the second part of the question, I think our laws at the moment allow Government to form company entities that can be engaged in various sectors of the economy. Government is in fact using one of such companies to be engaged in river mining and I said we believe that we could supervise and regulate the activities of river mining in a more constructive way.
HON. NDUNA: Thank you Mr. Speaker. It would not be sufficient if I did not pose a supplementary question on mining. Mr. Speaker, My question borders on the riverbed mining and all other artisanal mining activities around riverbed mining and all that. They are enshrined and embedded in the Mines and Minerals Act, both current and the one that is coming. My question therefore is when are we expecting that Mines and Minerals Act to come so that we can repeal these sections that are allow for artisanal miners and small scale miners to be embedded in terms of their activities in the most lucrative riverbed mining so that we empower the formerly marginalised black majority?
HON. F. MOYO: Hon. Speaker, the Bill is now before Parliament Administration and the Ministry. So, it is my assumption that it will soon be before Parliament.
WRITEN SUBMISSIONS TO QUESTIONS WITH NOTICE
BUSINESS OF PRIVATE VOLUNTARY ORGANISATIONS
(P.V.0S) AND OTHER NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANISATIONS
- HON CHIRISA asked the Minister of Public Service Labour and Social Welfare to explain the role played by the Ministry in the following:
- Business of Private Voluntary Organisations (P.V.0s) and other Non-Governmental Organisations when they have practical and strategic needs in the Organisations.
- Assisting Jairos Jiri Rehabilitation Centre in Bulawayo which has inadequate resources to feed their students.
THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF PUBLIC SERVICE LABOUR AND SOCIAL WELFARE (HON. MATANGAIDZE): Our Ministry
oversees the implementation of the Private Voluntary Organisation Act (Chapter 17:05). Accordingly, we recognize all organizations registered in terms of the aforementioned Act and other institutions which are governed by such legislation as the Children’s Act (Chapter 5:06), the Disabled Persons Act (Chapter 17:01) and the Older Persons Act (Chapter 17:11).
Our Ministry registers and monitors programme activities of Private Voluntary Organizations and institutions and institution which are part of these PVOs. Private Voluntary Organisation primarily is registered to compliment Government efforts in social protection services for the distressed families and vulnerable communities.
The operations of Private Voluntary Organisations are governed by all relevant legislation depending on their area of focus. There are Government grants accorded to these special needs groups, in the form of once off administration grants for children’s homes and Institution for person with disabilities. The grants are paid off to cushion the day to day running costs of the institutions. The institutions also receive per capita grants which are paid upon claim at a rate of US$15.00 per inmate per month. These are meant to assist in the maintenance of the institutionalised persons.
On the (b) part of the question, the running of welfare and rehabilitation programmes for persons with disabilities are guided by the Disabled Persons Act (Chapter 17:01) as supported by the United
Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with disabilities, of which
Zimbabwe is signatory to. The Ministry of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare has the mandate to promote, protect and ensure the full and equal enjoyment of the rights of persons with disabilities. The
Jairos Jiri Centre Bulawayo is registered under the Private Voluntary
Organsiation Act (Chapter 17:05) and its PVO number is 17/67
Hon. Chirisa’s observations that the Jairos Jiri Rehabilitation Centres in Bulawayo namely, Pumula, Nguboyenga and Burnside had particularly been challenged by lack of food rations’ as at the middle of last year are correct.
Accordingly, our Ministry has since July 2016 been making the following monthly maize allocations:
Jairos Jiri Pumula 100kgs
We have also complemented the above with cumulative rice allocations as follows:
23 November 2016 850 kgs
18 January 2017 4 250 kgs
17 March 2017 7 500 kgs
Hon. Members will be pleased to learn that our Ministry, through the Department of Social Welfare has been playing an effective role in complimenting the efforts of institutions such as Jairos Jiri in meeting the needs of persons with disabilities.
It is our Ministry’s mandate to continue monitoring PVO’s and ensuring a smooth working partnership with them as they complement Government efforts in the social protection of vulnerable groups.
BENEFITS FROM THE COMMAND AGRICULTURE
- HON. CHIRISA asked the Vice President and Minister of
Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, to explain that in view of the fact that the initial hectrage of the Command Agriculture was 400 000 hectares valued at a cost of US$500 000 000 when in fact the actual hectrage is 168 666 -
- How much the actual total of the 168 666 ha and its breakdown was.
- What happened to the remainder of the money since the actual hectrage was below 400 000.
- How would the loan be repaid if the Command
Agriculture fails to yield the expected results, since some of the farmers were unable to get all the necessary inputs in time for the anticipated bumper harvest and also bearing in mind that this loan was not approved by Parliament and
- Disaggregate how many women and men benefitted from the Command Agriculture.
THE MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, MECHANISATION
AND IRRIGATION DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. MADE) on behalf of THE VICE PRESIDENT AND MINISTER OF JUSTICE,
LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON.
MNANGAGWA): Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. Hon. Member,
- The total value was $160 000 000 to cover 168 666 hectares under the Special Maize Programme for Import Substitution (Command). However, the only pledge that was accepted was for $85 000 000 for the irrigated maize and $75 000 000 for the dryland maize. The balance of $340 000 000 offered from the $500 000 000 was rejected as the interest rates were too high and would have crippled the farmers.
The Special Maize Programme for Import Substitution (Command) costs covered tillage services, seed, fertilizer, chemicals, fuel, motor bikes, vehicles and administrative costs. The reconciliations are in progress.
The total land contracted under the Special Maize Programme for Import Substitution (Command) was 168 666.1 hectares, broken down as follows:
Table 1: Planted hectarage per Province (Farmers)
DRY LAND (HA)
Table 2: Planted hectarage per Province (Institutions)
DRY LAND (HA)
- The $340 000 000 was never accepted as the interest rate was too high and would have crippled farmers. The hectarage was
168 666 hectares which cost $160 000 000 as explained above
- The Special Maize Programmes for Import Substitution (Command) will not fail to yield results. Individual farmers who fail to meet the yields will be addressed on a case by case basis.
- There were 2 616 women and 33 794 men. The figures are broken down as follows per province:
FIRST REPORT OF THE PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON LOCAL
GOVERNMENT, PUBLIC WORKS AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT
ON SERVICE DELIVERY BY LOCAL AUTHORITIES
HON. ZINDI: I move the motion standing in my name that this House takes note of the First Report of the Portfolio Committee on Local Government, Public Works and Urban Development on Service
Delivery by Local Authorities.
HON. NDUNA: I second.
The Portfolio Committee on Local Government, Rural and Urban
Development plays an oversight role on the Ministries of Local
Government, Public Works and National Housing and Rural
Development Promotion and Preservation of National Culture and
Heritage. The Committee conducted an inquiry into the operations of Local Authorities with a view to assess overall service delivery. Prior to that, the Committee had received complaints of poor service delivery, allegations of corruption and mismanagement of funds by Local
Authorities from residents associations, civil society organisations and rate payers. The allegations included favouritism in allocation of stands and mismanagement of rate payers’ funds. The Committee then resolved to conduct fact finding visits to selected local authorities to examine the veracity of the allegations.
According to Sections 274 and 275 of the Constitution, Local Authorities have a mandate to represent and manage the affairs of the people in urban and rural areas throughout Zimbabwe. Service delivery is a key to the development of communities and should be top priority for local authorities. Service delivery should not be characterised by heaps of uncollected refuse, lack of water, demolitions, illegal settlements, poor road networks and congested central business centres. Unfortunately this has become the order of the day in most towns and
The Committee visited the following local authorities;
Chitungwiza, Bulawayo City, Lupane Town, Hwange Town, Binga
Rural District, Umguza Rural District, Gwanda Local Board, Beitbridge
Town, Chiredzi Town and Masvingo Town Council. It received oral and written evidence from the management of Councils of the above mentioned local authorities. Tours to water and sewer treatment plants were conducted. Main bus terminuses were visited. In Chiredzi and Masvingo, the Committee held public hearings on the state of service delivery by these two Councils.
Chitungwiza Municipal Council
The Committee held a meeting with Mr Makunde, the Town Clerk of Chitungwiza Municipal Council and his team at Parliament on 9 February 2016. The Committee learnt that an audit that was carried out in November 2013 came up with several recommendations meant to bring sanity to Chitungwiza Municipality and its community, following illegal land allocations and occupation of the same. The audit identified a number of land barons and recommendations for their prosecution were made. The audit report condemned allocation of stands on wetlands, school sites, road servitudes, buffers, under electricity lines and on top of sewage pipes. The Committee was disappointed to learn that although a directive by the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing was issued to stop development on the above mentioned areas, more land continued to be illegally allocated, occupied and more houses were constructed on the condemned sites.
The Town Clerk informed the Committee that Chitungwiza Municipal Council sold more residential stands than were available from Braemar and Longlands Farms under the Nyatsime Housing Scheme. After realising that, the Council amended the layout to accommodate more stands. The Committee was informed that 15457 stands were created and were paid for in full during the Zimbabwean dollar period. Top ups in the United States dollar were paid by beneficiaries to enable servicing of the stands. The Committee was disappointed to learn that beneficiaries of this project could not be allocated their fully paid stands on Braemer Farm because of an interdict obtained by A2 farmers barring Council ownership of the land. Chitungwiza Council reported that two pressure groups started illegal subdivisions and parceling out stands on Braemer and Longlands Farms, citing that Council had taken too long to allocate them stands which they bought in 2006. The Council informed the Committee that Longlands and Braemer farms were formally handed over to them in 2014 but the Ministry of Lands and Rural Resettlement did not withdraw offer letters issued to six A2 farmers, resulting in the said farmers obtaining an interdict barring Council from Braemer Farm.
Council told the Committee that two pressure groups emerged, one led by someone called ‘Chief Svosve’ which operated across the Nyatsime River and the other one led by Mr and Mrs Matambo which operated on land within the Municipal boundary but being part of Nyatsime Project. These two groups were said to be illegally subdividing and allocating state land, taking advantage of a court order which barred Chitungwiza Municipality from land that falls under Braemar Farm until A2 offer letters issued to about six beneficiaries had been withdrawn.
The Committee undertook a visit to Nyatsime Housing Scheme and held a meeting with settlers. The Committee heard that some beneficiaries of Nyatsime Housing Scheme led by Mrs. Matambo mobilised themselves and settled on the land, citing that they were disappointed that Chitungwiza Council had taken long to allocate them their stands. Settlers told the Committee that when they settled at Nyatsime, they did not adhere to the stand numbers as allocated by
Council. People just settled where they wished and that created chaos. The settlers acknowledged that they made a mistake by illegally occupying stands and urged Council to correct the error by switching the numbers since the amounts paid were the same and the size of stands were the same. Those who had settled were against the idea of being moved because they had developed the stands.
The Committee was informed that on 5 June 2013, Council obtained a court order to demolish all illegal structures in Nyatsime but this order could not be implemented because a council vehicle and that of the Messenger of Court were damaged. The Committee was informed that in spite of court orders, illegal occupations continued on
Braemer Farm, with about 12000 residential stands illegally allocated by Councillor Choga from Manyame R.D.C. Longlands Farm also experienced illegal occupations, with about 3000 residential stands also illegally allocated by Nyatsime Housing Trust.
The Land Audit Report done by the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing in November 2013 listed Dr. Fredrick Mabamba of United We Stand Multi Purpose
Cooperative, Mr. Bonifance Manyonganise of Yamurai Disabled
Cooperative, Mrs. Manhango of Chitungwiza Ruvimbo Housing
Cooperative, Mr. Makuchete, Major T. Marufu, Hon. Chigumba of Chigumba Holdings as land barons who had illegally sold stands to home seekers. Other land barons who were mentioned are Mr. and Mrs.
Chivhanga and Zanoremba Housing Cooperation.
Chitungwiza Council alleged that these land barons created a parallel land authority which had their own architects, town planners, building inspectors and housing officers. They designed their own layouts, surveyed the stands, drew and approved their own building plans and undertook inspections so as to convince home seekers that everything was above board.
The Council also informed the Committee that wetlands identified and condemned in the 2013 audit report were being reoccupied and local leaders were applying for regularisation and this was said to have caused another wave of illegal land occupations.
Chitungwiza Council and settlers said the situation at Braemar and Longlands farms needed urgent government intervention in order to protect the people who legally paid for their stands through Chitungwiza Council. The Committee was told that between 2000 and 2002, periurban farmers occupied Braemar farm, after Government offered them the land. A group of A2 farmers who had offer letters settled there in 2006. Between 2007 and 2008, Chitungwiza Council advertised stands at Braemer Farm (Nyatsime).
Settlers at Nyatsime told the Committee that they bought the stands for ZW $60 million and had paid cash to Council and receipts were shown to the Committee. In 2010 the settlers were asked by
Chitungwiza Council to pay another US$900.
The Committee toured Unit A Extension which had 400 stands which were illegally sold by Dr. Mabamba of United We Stand
Cooperative. These stands are along a stream and were not serviced.
There were no roads, sewer and water reticulation. Residents were using unprotected wells and blair toilets. The Committee interviewed one settler who said she bought the stand for $4500. The Committee was shown where demolitions were done in that area before Chitungwiza Council was stopped by the High Court.
The Committee also toured Unit P Extension which is a wetland. The Committee was shown houses that were allocated by Council but were on wetlands and those that were sold by Dr. Mabamba, again on wetlands and some on a stream. The Committee was concerned when told that Chitungwiza Town Council had between 4000 and 5000 illegally allocated stands.
The Committee observed burst sewer pipes during its tour and that
Chitungwiza Town had inadequate water to supply its residents. The Committee was informed that the average water supply for the year 2015 was 26 mega litres per day against a demand of 62 mega litres. Chitungwiza Council resolved to commercialize its water and sanitation department so as to raise $82 million for water infrastructure rehabilitation, upgrading, procurement of plant and equipment. The intention of the Council was to form a company called Chitungwiza Water Company whose mandate would be to ensure Chitungwiza has adequate potable water.
At the time of the Committee’s visit, Chitungwiza Council had salary arrears that ranged between four to twenty two months. The Committee was informed that the majority of workers were owed sixteen months’ worth of unpaid salaries.
The Committee held a meeting with Chitungwiza Residents who indicated that they were not satisfied with service delivery by their Council. They cited scarcity of portable water as a huge potential health hazard as residents were turning to unsafe water sources. The association feared that Chitungwiza Council’s plan to privatize water
would make it expensive and therefore unaffordable to most residents.
The association also complained about the continued emergence of unplanned settlements in Chitungwiza, the demolition of the same and forced evictions. The association told the Committee that the absence of roads in some residential areas such as Manyame Park, Zengeza 4 and Unit O resulted in commuter omnibuses not being able to service those routes. Where there were roads, most routes were said to be in a deplorable state.
BULAWAYO CITY COUNCIL
The Committee held meetings with officials from Bulawayo City Council on 16 May, 2016. The Town Clerk informed the Committee that Bulawayo gets its water from Insiza, Inyankuni, Lower and Upper Ncema, Umzingwane and Mtshabezi Dams. Bulawayo City Council has an Epping Forest Project which is meant to augment the city’s water supply with an additional 10 mega litres per day. The Epping Forest
Project was estimated to cost $4 million.
The Committee visited Criterion water treatment plant and also the holding reservoir. The Committee was informed that the reservoir has a holding capacity of 1035 mega litres which can supply the city water for ten days in case of breakdowns. The water flows by gravity from the reservoir to the city’s water treatment plants, thus saving on electricity.
The Committee toured the treatment plant which was found to be very clean and operating efficiently. The Committee was impressed with the way the water treatment plant was maintained, considering that it was constructed in 1972 and a duplicate of the same was built in 1989, and both were functioning very well. The city uses two chemicals to treat its water and the water was said to be safe for drinking.
The Committee was informed that a tender was awarded to
Baritone Enterprises on 4th March 2015 for the rehabilitation of
Cowdray Park waste stabilisation ponds. The Committee was told that Bulawayo City used to be accused of polluting Umguza River but that, this had become a thing of the past because the City borrowed $8 million for the rehabilitation of its waste management system.
Bulawayo City said it would receive $899 000 as ZINARA disbursements for the year 2016 and at the time of the Committee’s visit a total of $430 000 had been disbursed. Of the amount disbursed $135
000 was used for pothole patching and $295 000 for resealing Hillside
Bulawayo City told the Committee that there was shortage of cemetery space and they applied for more land in 2010. The Ministry of
Home Affairs only gazetted the land on 12 August 2016, Marvel and Pumula South areas for cemeteries. The Council was also facing challenges in registering its doctors to be able to conduct cremations. The Committee was told that an application was made in 2005 to have three Bulawayo City’s three doctors registered for cremations. Bulawayo City was asked to pay a sum of $120 on 14 June 2016 for gazetting but they were still waiting.
Plans were in place to upgrade Egodini rank into a mall to accommodate vendors. The Committee was informed that Egodini project was launched on 29 February 2016 and the contractor was working on engineering and architectural designs. The Committee is however worried that the project was taking a long time to be constructed.
The Committee was told that Bulawayo City had adequate firefighting equipment and had helped other neighbouring local authorities such as Zvishavane and Shurugwi. Bulawayo City Council managed to buy equipment to maintain roads and two new refuse compactors as a way to keep the city clean. Commuter omnibuses were encouraged to form companies. Bulawayo City also urged operators to form one company so that drivers would cash in to one company and as the company grew, they could improve the fleet from small vehicles to conventional buses.
Bulawayo City’s budget was approved on 3 August 2016 but had been submitted for approval in November 2015. The Council complained that the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and
National Housing’s demands for budget representation kept changing. The Committee was told that the current budget was not approved because the Ministry instructed the Council to revise the salaries of workers in May 2016, seven months after the budget was submitted and it took the Ministry another three months to approve the budget.
The Committee was informed that Bulawayo City paid $205 000 to
Axis Medical Cooperative Pvt. Ltd. for the purchase of four ambulances in 2010. When the company failed to deliver the ambulances, Bulawayo City sued it and got a judgment. However Bulawayo City failed to enforce the judgment because they could not locate the company. Bulawayo City contracted a Harare tracing company but the tracers also failed to locate the company. The matter had since been reported to police.
LUPANE TOWN COUNCIL
The Committee visited Lupane Town Council on 16 May 2016. The Committee was informed that Lupane Town Council was originally a growth point, became a local board and then a town council in 2009. Lupane Town Council has a road network of 33 kilometres, of which 5 km is gravel and the rest is earth roads. The Committee was informed that the town’s sandy Kalahari terrain presents a serious challenge in terms of service delivery. The Council’s strategy is to ensure that the town centre is accessible by maintaining the road network to an acceptable and satisfactory standard.
Lupane Town Council has an area that covers 23 520 000 square metres which is not title surveyed. Some properties have no title deeds and this does not only disadvantage the Council in the form of revenue loss from the sale of developed properties but also private owners who cannot use their properties as collateral security when seeking loans.
The Committee was informed that the water supply system in Lupane was not only erratic but very unreliable and cannot sustain the growing population. Water is currently supplied by Zimbabwe National Water Authority (ZINWA) from two old systems which are prone to frequent breakdowns. The Town Secretary was concerned that once the construction of Lupane State University and the Government Composite Offices were complete, the Town would experience serious water shortages.
The Committee was informed that a dam was constructed with a capacity of over 400 million cubic litres and what remained were the construction of infrastructure for the pump house and purification works. The project was said to be progressing at a slow pace due to financial constraints. The Committee was informed that due to the current set up where ZINWA is responsible for the town’s water supply, the town has no sewer system. The town had septic tanks and soak-aways even in high density areas. There is no sewer reticulation system and poor water reticulation as the town uses borehole water. The Committee was further informed that this poses a challenge in that the town has no honeysucker to service the system. The current sewer system is inadequate in the face of growth projections of the town.
Lupane Town Council has no proper landfill site for the disposal and management of solid waste. The Committee was informed that a site was identified and approved by Environmental Management Agency (EMA) for the construction of a landfill but the Environmental Guiding
Services that was engaged to do the appropriate Environmental Impact
Assessment (EIA) unfortunately did not meet EMA’s standards.
The Town also faces a challenge of lagging in terms of computerisation. The town has no street lights and this poses a security risk to residents.
Lupane Town Council has no proper offices, no equipment and machinery to offer meaningful service delivery.
Lupane Town Council complained that its revenue flow was very low because residents were not paying rates. Most of them are unemployed, while a few are into informal trading. They pointed out that there is potential investments in timber and methane gas.
HWANGE LOCAL BOARD
The Committee was informed that Hwange Local Board is different from other councils because after the Constitution of
Zimbabwe Amendment No. 19, Hwange Local Board boundaries were extended, resulting in an additional eight concession wards, Hwange Council requested that the eight wards in Hwange Colliery Concession be incorporated into the Council’s jurisdiction because at the time of the
Committee’s visit the eight wards were not contributing any revenue to the Hwange Local Board. Although the eight councilors were elected, their wards are run by Hwange Colliery. The councillors from the eight concessions are remunerated from the small revenue coming from the seven wards under the Hwange Local Board’s jurisdiction.
Hwange Local Board also informed the Committee that many properties which can earn revenue through rentals are in the concession area, resulting in the Council not generating income from them. Council had proposed to the parent Ministry that Hwange Local Board be upgraded into a town or a municipality and was still waiting for the approval.
The Committee was informed that a larger part of the properties which can be rented out belong to Zimbabwe Power Company (ZPC). Council feared that if ZPC faces operational challenges, automatically Hwange Local Board will suffer in terms of revenue collection. Another issue which negatively affected revenue collection was that when Government cancelled debts that residents owed, they stopped paying rent after that and those who used to pay stopped paying.
Since the reversal of control of water and sewer from ZINWA to local authorities, Hwange Local Board up to date does not have control of water and sewer reticulation. ZINWA refused to hand over the treatment of water and sewer. Some local authorities generate revenue from water. The Committee was informed that water and sewer treatment plants were not functioning because ZINWA could not manage the maintenance works.
The major challenge is that ZINWA is still running the water infrastructure which belongs to council. The Committee was informed that Hwange Local Board approached ZINWA in September 2010 in an effort to take over water reticulation system but they refused. The water and sewer plants have been down for the past eight years and it is difficult to treat sewer when there is no water. The Local Board’s raw sewage is disposed into the stream which is a health hazard. Hwange Council has made its own efforts to engage the parent Ministry to get funding from PSIP to resuscitate the plant. The Committee was informed that the Board received $300 000 through PISP to rehabilitate Baobab plant. The Local Board wants ZINWA to hand over the treatment of water and sewer back to enable Council to offer good service delivery to residents and for Council to realise profit from the water account.
The water account which is still being managed by ZINWA resulted in a loss of $2 million per annum. Also the non-functional sewer plants resulted in pollution of water bodies and EMA fines Hwange Council $3000 per quarter since 2015 for pollution and had been fined five times. They argued that ZINWA was supposed to be fined since it controls water and sewer treatment plants.
The Council came up with a low income housing scheme of 2 000 stands. The arrangement was that people pay US$50 per month towards acquisition of a stand. Once they have paid up to 50% of the total price of the stand, they are allowed to move on site and start developing. The Committee was informed that the scheme was working well but sometimes people fail to pay the US$50.
The Committee learnt that through its own resources, Hwange Local Board procured a new refuse compactor from India. The Board was also happy to report that a state of the art clinic was under construction and was at 80% completion and this project was funded from its own resources.
The local board complained that the budget for 2016 had not yet been approved and wondered why the Ministry was taking too long to approve it. They argued that by the time the budget is approved, council will not have much use for it.
The Committee learnt that the council had eight months’ salary arrears. It pointed out that council was finding it difficult to adhere to the 30/70% ratio because revenue collection was low. The council was not up to date with statutory obligations.
BINGA RURAL DISTRICT COUNCIL
Binga Rural District Council has a total of 123 primary and 39 secondary schools. Out of these, 63 are satellite primary schools and 25 satellite secondary schools. The satellite schools do not have proper infrastructure in terms of classrooms and teachers’ accommodation. This was said to be a challenge to the district as qualified teachers were not willing to take up posts in Hwange. Another problem that was pointed out was the lack of science laboratories in most of the secondary schools, making it hard to effectively teach science subjects.
The Committee was also informed that there was need for more health clinics in Binga District so that each ward has a clinic in order to reduce the distance travelled to and from health institutions. It was also pointed out that Siabuwa and Kariangwe Mission Hospitals needed resident doctors because the distance travelled to the Government
District Hospital was too long. Binga’s health institutions in rural areas were not manned by state registered nurses which poses a risk to patients, because they do not hold requisite qualifications. Binga Rural District Council needed more ambulances since it had only one ambulance which was sourced through a Danish donor.
Binga Rural District Council faced challenges in the provision of portable water. Some wards were said to have a very low water table which makes it difficult to sink boreholes. The Committee was informed that ZINWA needed to improve its water reticulation system at Binga Centre because when electricity outages are experienced, the system stops. This means that residents go without water for long periods of time.
Binga Rural District has a total of 968 km of road network to superintend. The Committee was informed that council had completed a total of 117 km of motorised grading within and outside Binga Town
Centre since the beginning of the year. Council managed to maintain 5.5 km of road and intended to tar the bus terminus and 2 km access roads at Binga Centre from ZINARA funds.
The council reported that the motorised grader was constantly breaking down and this was retarding progress in the maintenance of targeted roads. Binga RDC suggested that Siabuwa Road be rehabilitated so that the sections that are gravel be tarred. It was proposed that Government should consider rehabilitation of the HarareKaroi-Binga-Victoria Falls Road which would save travellers 300 km compared to the Harare-Bulawayo-Victoria Falls Road. Some benefits will accrue from the rehabilitation of this road, such as tourists travelling to Victoria Falls, Mana Pools and fisheries at Binga, coal mining and tobacco farmers. Easy transportation of goods will reduce costs.
The Committee was also informed that Binga Rural District Council lacked resources for pegging of schools and therefore, most schools remained unpegged and unregistered as examination centres.
Councillors complained about their welfare as they travelled long distances to attend council meetings, without provision for transport, food and accommodation. Their travel and subsistence allowances need approval from the Ministry and it always takes a long time to approve. Councillors also complained that the Procurement Committee was given to management resulting in councillors not knowing what had been purchased. They also complained that they were not signatories to issues of finance and management of finances was left to management only. They said this makes it very difficult for councillors to detect if there is any misuse of funds.
UMGUZA RURAL DISTRICT COUNCIL
Umguza Rural District Council has seven clinics, one of which is a mobile centre. The medical staff is paid by Central Government and council provides a supporting grant.
The district has a total road network of 1071 km, 77.6 km being surfaced roads, 120 km gravel roads and the rest being earth roads. Since the beginning of 2016, Umguza Council graded a total of 150 km using disbursements from ZINARA and own funds. The council was also able to undertake bush clearing, pothole patching and grading.
The Committee was informed that council was in the process of rehabilitating and upgrading Nyamandlovu sewer reticulation and construction of sewer ponds.
Umguza was faced with a problem of illegal occupation of stands at Rangemore suburb. The Committee learnt that Rangemore is a suburb under Umguza Rural District Council and is privately owned. There are 2000 stands which were sold by a private developer. The developer however, did not finish the servicing of these stands but beneficiaries settled there. The Committee was informed that Umguza Council was in the process of trying to regularise the situation and plans are under way to provide water and sewer systems. Umguza advertised in January 2016 that no developments should be done without a certificate of compliance. Umguza RDC complained that residents of Rangemore demanded servicing of stands by council but, money was paid to a private developer who did not provide the services required. Council will only benefit from rates paid by residents after regularising the situation.
Umguza Rural District Council pointed out that the takeover of unit tax collection from resettlements and farmers from local authorities to the Ministry of Lands and Rural Resettlement has affected the ever dwindling financial resource base. They complained that the move had further affected the provision of infrastructure and services to resettlement areas and farms.
Umguza RDC informed the Committee that residents were not paying their dues in anticipation of another write off of debts. To worsen the situation, the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing had prohibited the use of debt collectors, rendering local authorities toothless.
Umguza complained that EMA was not helping with the preservation of the environment as expected, but only became visible when there was need to fine environmental offenders. Council said that there was no ploughing back to the community from the fines collected.
GWANDA LOCAL BOARD
Gwanda Municipal Council informed the Committee that purchasing treated water from ZINWA was very expensive, 81 cents per cubic litre. Gwanda Municipal Council complained that ZINWA was not willing to hand over the water treatment plant. Gwanda Council owed ZINWA $9 million. The Committee was informed that some of the maintenance of water treatment plant was being done by Gwanda Municipal Council but this did not deter ZINWA’s high charges, council then sells water to residents at 84 cents per cubic metre. Gwanda Municipal Council said it was losing a lot of potential revenue from water. The council appealed to the Committee that the control of water be handed over to local authorities because the cost of water by ZINWA makes it difficult for council to provide adequate and affordable water to residents.
It was pointed out that Gwanda Municipality only gets cash from residents because other payments from government departments were through debt swop and this was said to impact negatively on service delivery. It was proposed that the ideal situation would be to get a debt swop and also be given some cash so that the cash goes towards ZINWA for water payment. They argued that as long as council depends on what the residents were paying and not getting anything from the Government departments, it will not be able to supply adequate water and it will continue to owe ZINWA millions of dollars.
The council has a backlog of salary arrears of six months. Gwanda Municipal Council informed the Committee that it was not able to adhere to the 30/70 ratio in the current prevailing economic situation. They complained that revenue collection was not adequate to meet the required services. The Committee was informed that in the past, water account used be a cash cow account for local authorities and for some councils who control their water, it was still a cash cow.
Gwanda Municipal Council informed the Committee that it had a challenge of staff shortage. The council pointed out that the parent Ministry has to be consulted before employing any personnel.
It was pointed out that gold panning was posing a threat as it was causing blockage of sewer pipes. They also complained that by-laws were taking too long to be approved and also that the State Procurement Board was taking too much time to award tenders resulting in delays in service delivery.
BEITBRIDGE TOWN COUNCIL
Beitbridge Town has an excellent supply of water from the
Limpopo River. During dry seasons, Zhovhe Dam supplies water to Beitbridge Town. The Committee was informed that the current treatment plant has a capacity to treat 5000 cubic meters of raw water per day against a demand of 15000 cubic litres a day. Treatment works need to be upgraded so that it can meet the town’s demand. The other treatment plant was completed ten years ago but has not been commissioned because there is a $1.6 million dollars which has to be paid to the contractor. The Committee was informed that the plant is already depleting before it is used.
Beitbridge Town Council is one of the few councils that has its water supplied by ZINWA. The Committee was informed that ZINWA supplies council with treated water then council distributes the treated water to the residence. Beitbridge Council complained that ZINWA’s water charges were very high. As at 24 May 2016, Beitbridge Council owed ZINWA $12 million and an interest of $4.3 million charged on the amount owed. The Committee was informed that when Government cancelled debts in 2013 from residents, ZINWA did not cancel the debt from councils. ZINWA charges 92 cents per cubic litre for its water. The council wants to take over water treatment from ZINWA. They argued that there is no reason to have water problems or to have it at a high cost considering the vicinity of the Limpopo River to the town.
The Committee was disturbed to hear that ZINWA was rationing water when Limpopo River is still with adequate water to supply the town. ZINWA decided to ration water because Beitbridge Town Council was unable to pay a monthly installment of $70 000 towards the $12 million debt owed to ZINWA. Beitbridge Council was not satisfied that it can owe ZINWA such a huge amount considering that the source of water was nearby.
In terms of revenue collection, Beitbridge Town Council felt that ZIMRA should allocate a certain percentage to the council from the revenue collected at Beitbridge Border Post. The council pointed out that they are the ones who offer service to people who use the border and they need resources to collect litter along the highways.
The Committee was informed that the council’s landfill was not compliant with EMA requirements and had identified a new site. It seems all local authorities visited were having challenges in complying with the landfill requirements and wonders why EMA was not coming up with a standard requirement of a landfill and give it to local authorities. The Committee wonders if EMA was deliberately avoiding outlining the requirements of a landfill so that it keeps getting punitive fines. The Committee was informed that EMA fines them every quarter.
What was disturbing was that EMA charges $200 per quarter as inspection fees and a fine of $3000 per quarter if found not complying.
The council complained that it had only one refuse compactor and two tractors to collect refuse. They said the refuse vehicles were not enough considering that they collect refuse within the town and for those in transit who litter along the highway.
Beitbridge Council also complained that some rate payers were not paying their dues.
CHIREDZI TOWN COUNCIL
The Committee held a meeting with management and council of Chiredzi and also a public hearing with members of the public on the overall state of service delivery by Chiredzi Town Council. Chiredzi Council informed the Committee that it managed to upgrade its water treatment plant capacity from 4 mega litres a day to 10 mega litres a day. The Committee was informed that there was need to expand the water treatment plant from its current 10 mega litres a day to 15 mega litres and that works were being done. Currently, the town was not getting water twenty four hours and the expansion of the water treatment will increase the town’s water supply.
The council complained that there was high non revenue water due to poor design system. A lot of water was lost through leakages resulting in revenue loss. The Committee was informed that half of the water distributed cannot be accounted for. The assumption was that lack of infrastructural maintenance and non functional metres can be contributing to non revenue water.
Chiredzi Town Council’s water is supplied by ZINWA. Council was not happy that ZINWA supplies water citing that the water was expensive. ZINWA provides 15 mega litres of water a day and charges for that amount whether the water has been consumed or not. Council is responsible for treating the water. Council said ZINWA charges $4000 per month for raw water then council charges 30 cents for high, 50 cents medium and 70 cents for low density areas. Chiredzi Town Council also complained that when Government cancelled debts in 2013, ZINWA did not cancel the debts. The high amounts owed to ZINWA are also as a result of the write offs that were given to residents but were not cancelled with ZINWA. ZINWA has taken Chiredzi Town Council to court and council said they offered ZINWA stands as a settlement.
The Committee was informed that there was need for a new sewerage treatment and reticulation plant for new suburbs. Sewer ponds and sewer pipes needed upgrading as the systems were old and cannot cope with the growing population.
Chiredzi Council also reported that there was no land for a proper land fill. Like other local authorities, they complained that EMA was there to collect fines and penalties instead of making a contribution to the community from funds collected.
Chiredzi Council informed the Committee that it applied for 600 hactares of land from the Ministry of Lands through its parent Ministry in 2006 for expansion of the town but until now, no land was allocated to them.
Chiredzi Council also complained that the 2016 budget was not approved. The Committee noted that most local authorities had submitted their budgets but complained that the Ministry was taking too long to approve the budgets. Also, that the approving of by-laws was taking ages was also raised.
Council complained that residents associations were misleading residents by influencing them not to pay rates citing that the money they pay were being misused.
Public hearing in Chiredzi
Members of the public complained that council management and councillors were abusing council properties. It was alleged that rate payers were reluctant to pay their dues because of corruption at Chiredzi Town Council. Members of the public complained that there were no waiting rooms and clock rooms at ranks. They argued that people need benches and shades where they can sit while waiting to board buses.
Residents complained that when the current councillors took offices they came up with a new waiting list. They alleged that the old waiting list was manipulated so that those who were not on the waiting list can benefit. Councillors were accused of allocating each other stands through relatives.
Residents complained bitterly about the poor service delivery offered by their local authority. They were not happy about water supply, state of road network and lack of affordable residential stands. The residents also alleged corruption and mismanagement of rate payer’s funds by the management and council. They felt that resources were used to buy luxury vehicles instead of being channeled to service delivery.
Residents also complained that they are not consulted on issues to do with council, for example during budget formulation and that they do not have access to council minutes and are denied to observe council meetings.
Some members of the public said the council was trying its best but lack of funding from Government was the problem. Lacking of funding has resulted in poor road network and poor service delivery.
Some residents said they benefitted stands through the current council which was never the case before.
Masvingo Town Council
Masvingo Town Council has a capacity to supply 30 mega litres of water a day against a demand of 48 mega litres. The Committee was informed that because of poor 2016 rain season, water shortages will increase. Masvingo Town Council’s sewer treatment works has a capacity to treat 21 mega litres per day and meet the town’s demand. Masvingo Town Council however indicated that there was need to upgrade the current waste treatment works to meet the town’s projected waste water generation. A cost of $US 73 million is needed for the project. The Committee was informed that the water and waste water plants were recently rehabilitated through the Zimbabwe Multi Donor Trust Fund Urgent Water and Sanitation rehabilitation programme at a cost of US$ 4.5 million and $1.5 million from UNICEF.
The Committee was informed that because of limited resources to maintain its road network, the City of Masvingo introduced a Roads Levy in 2015 which was used towards maintaining some of the roads. The city said it would require $25 million to revamp the entire road network. The city was able to reseal a total of 2.8 km out of a planned 5.5 km. ZINARA had allocated Masvingo Town a total of $345 000 for 2015 but $172 000 was disbursed.
Masvingo City told the Committee that it was owed $36 million as at 30 April 2016 of which $19.7 million is from ZRP, Army, Zimbabwe Prison Services, Parastatals, Schools and Ministry of Health and Child Care. The Committee was informed that Government made efforts to swop council debt by offsetting what it owes ZIMRA. It was pointed out that non-payment of institutional debt has negatively affected service delivery and leaving residents to carry the burden of funding service delivery.
The Committee was informed that the City of Masvingo was embroiled in a labour dispute currently pending before the courts of law and had grossly affected service delivery since most of council’s equipment was attached by the Deputy Sheriff.
Masvingo City complained that the decision to appoint ZINARA to collect licensing fees was negatively affecting local authorities’ revenue base and capacity to maintain the road infrastructure which was traditionally financed through vehicle licensing fees. The need for urgent alignment of the Urban Council Act to the Constitution was raised.
Masvingo Public Hearing
Vendors complained that they were made to pay for market stalls which were not properly constructed and were covered by plastics. These makeshift markets were not clean and few vendors use them opting to go back in the streets where people come to buy. The market stalls which vendors were forced to use were said to be dirty and people were not willing to buy things from there.
Commuter omnibus operators also complained that they approached the city so many times asking them to provide ranks. The Committee was told that no rank facilities were provided by City of Masvingo but commuter omnibus operators get arrested for picking and dropping passengers from undesignated places.
Residents complained that service delivery was affected by Government departments who were not paying for their bills. They also complained that the Central Government was intervening a lot in council management instead of leaving councillors and management to do their work.
Residents also complained that the labour dispute between council and its workers was affecting service delivery as council resources were being spent on legal costs instead of service delivery. Management was accused of giving itself pay rise and nothing for junior employees and this was attributed to the labour dispute.
Residents accused councillors and management of abusing council resources for their personal benefits instead of offering service delivery.
They were accused of buying expensive vehicles for themselves. Councillors were accused of not fulfilling the promises they made to people during campaigning and urged Government to come up with a law that allows residents to call back those who do not perform their duty to the satisfaction of those who voted them into office.
Residents demanded that council must be transparent and accountable in terms of managing rate payers’ money. They said they have a right to know how council works and should be involved in budget consultation. Residents’ involvement in budget consultation and feed backs from council will motivate residents to pay if they know what the money they pay is used for.
The Committee observed that most local authorities were struggling to pay their workers as evidenced by salary arrears. The
Committee urges the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National to intervene so that a payment plan can be put in place for those in employment and a once off payment for those who were retrenched.
The Committee also noted the need for regularisation of illegal settlements in Chitungwiza and Umguza’s Rangemore suburb as a way of increasing revenue base.
The Ministries of Lands and Rural Resettlements and Local Government, Public Works and National Housing must solve the problem of A2 farmers, peri-urban farmers and residents of Nyatsime who are fighting for the same land in Chitungwiza.
The Committee is concerned that there is a potential health hazard at Nyatsime in Chitungwiza and Rangemore in Umguza settlements because beneficiaries settled where there is no water and sewer reticulation system.
The Committee noted the need for local authorities to have competent and qualified Town Planners, especially Chitungwiza Town Council where council also allocated stands on wetlands.
Bulawayo City has a reservoir that has a capacity to hold water for ten days in case of a breakdown of pumps unlike in Harare where the city goes for days without water whenever there are maintenance works.
The Committee also noted that Bulawayo City’s water purification process is of high standard and the two water treat plants were clean and reflects good management practice.
The Committee, however, observed that Esigodini Shopping Mall in Bulawayo was taking long to be constructed and urge the council to give priority to the project.
The Committee also observed that Government rushed to make Lupane a town without considering all the necessary capital requirements that are involved. There is need for a substantial capital injection if Lupane is to attain the town status. The few resources that were injected in building Government complexes and Lupane University might come to waste if Government does not urgently come up with a solution to Lupane Town Council. The Committee urges Government to come up with plans on how it wants Lupane to grow, possibly to bring in private partners.
There is need for Government to look for Private Public Partners to develop Lupane Town. The Committee also noted that there are potential investments in methane gas and timber in Lupane. These can be exploited to improve the area.
Water and sewer reticulation system should be of top priority if the Lupane Council is to attain its status as a town and not the use of blair toilets.
The issue of Hwange Local Board not having control over the eight concession wards under Hwange Colliery should be solved since the councillors from the Concession wards are benefitting from the limited resources from the local board.
The Committee noted that the issue of ZINWA managing the water and sewer reticulation but failing to maintain the system should be looked into. The ideal situation is to have all local authorities manage the sewer and water reticulation system. ZINWA should supply raw water to local authorities at a reasonable price so that local authorities are able to supply water to residents at a cheaper price.
The Committee also observed that the issue of EMA charging punitive fines and fees for not compiling to unspecified standard requirements of a land fill was not fair to local authorities. EMA should come up with what is required for a land fill. EMA must also plough back the money they collect from local authorities as fines and fees to the development of the communities.
The Committee urges Government to look into the issue that
ZINWA did not write off the 2013 debts that were written off by Government but instead charged local authorities and this has resulted in local authorities owing ZINWA millions of dollars.
The Committee observed that Binga’s sewer treatment plant was too close to the dam that supplies water and chances of underground water pollution are high.
The issue of local authorities’ budgets and by-laws not approved in time was affecting most local authorities. The Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing should approve the budgets in time and if there are issues that need to be solved before approval, that process should be done expeditiously.
The Committee noted the need for Government to consider rehabilitation of the Harare-Karoi-Binga-Victoria Falls Road which will save 300 km compared to the Harare-Bulawayo-Victoria Falls Road.
Some benefits will accrue with the rehabilitation of this road like tourists travelling to Victoria Falls, Mana Pools and fisheries at Binga, coal mining and tobacco farmers. Easy transportation of goods will reduce costs.
The issue of illegal settlements at Rangemore suburb should be solved or regularised so that Umguza RDC can collect revenue from residents which has about 2000 stands. There is a potential of outbreak of disease because there is no water and sewer reticulation system.
Bulawayo City should supply water to Rangemore Suburb and Government should also consider finalising the Zambezi Water Project so that Bulawayo City is able to supply adequate water to the surrounding areas.
The Committee noted that Gwanda Town Council’s water system was also controlled by ZINWA resulting in water being expensive and inadequate.
There is need for Beitbridge’s new water treatment plant to be commissioned by paying the outstanding $1.6 million in order to improve water supply to residents.
The Committee noted the need for ZIMRA to contribute a percentage of the revenue collected from travellers at the border so that the money can be used for refuse collection and also to pick litter along the highway by Beitbridge Town Council.
There is need for Beitbridge Town Council to provide a public toilet at the rank that is currently being used and the area also needs to be paved-tarred.
The Committee noted that Masvingo Council’s service delivery was affected by the labour dispute between management and staff. The service delivery vehicles that were attached were dilapidated and this was also affecting service delivery.
The Committee therefore recommends the following:-
That the A2 offer letters issued by Ministry of Lands and Rural Resettlement should be revoked and allow the people who legitimately bought stands from Chitungwiza Council to occupy the Nyatsime area by 31 March 2017.
If permits for peri-urban farmers were issued they should also be revoked by the Ministry of Lands and Rural Resettlement and Braemar and Longlands farms be handed over to Chitungwiza Council so that the two farms can be allocated to those people who paid for stands in 2007, those who have bought land from land barons and are illegally settled in wetlands and along streams by 31 March 2017.
In view of the audit report produced, Chitungwiza Municipality and the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing should come up with a way forward to solve the problems of illegal settlement caused by land barons and action should be taken by 31 March 2017.
All local authorities should be responsible for controlling water and sewer reticulation systems and ZINWA’s role should be to supply raw water by 31 March 2017.
EMA’s fines are too punitive and fees are too high and EMA must contribute towards the development of the communities from the funds they collect and consider reviewing the fines and levies downwards by 31 March 2017.
EMA should come up with the requirements of a landfill that should be used by local authorities by 31 March 2017.
Councils are failing to meet the 30/70% ratio; therefore, the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing should consider reviewing the ratio so that it becomes practical by 31 March 2017.
The Government should pay its dues to local authorities to enable them to perform their functions by 31 March 2017.
Government must pay the outstanding of $1.6 to the contractor to enable the commissioning of the Beitbridge Town Council’s water plant that was completed ten years by 31 March 2017.
Land developers should be involved in servicing of land and development off-site infrastructure then hand over the projects to local authorities for selling of the stands by 31 March 2017.
That a certain percentage of revenue collected by ZIMRA from Beitbridge Border Post should be given to Beitbridge Town Council for service delivery. This policy should be applied to all other border posts by 31 March 2017.
That the eight wards in Hwange Colliery Concession be incorporated into the Hwange Local Board and the eight wards must contribute revenue to the board by 31 March 2017.
The policy of Public Private Partnerships should vigorously be pursued by all local authorities in order to improve on service delivery by 31 March 2017.
Local authorities must consult residents in all programmes to do with service delivery, for example vending sites and ranks by 31 March, 2017.
Finally, the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National
Housing should approve local authorities’ budgets before the commencement of the next financial year and also approve the by-laws submitted within a period of two months. I thank you.
HON. RUNGANI: I move that the debate do now adjourn.
HON. NDUNA: I second.
Motion put and agreed to.
Debate to resume: Thursday, 6th April, 2017.
On the motion of HON. RUNGANI seconded by HON. NDUNA,
the House adjourned at Three Minutes past Five o’clock p.m.