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NATIONAL ASSEMBLY HANSARD 10 February 2016 42-33

PARLIAMENT OF ZIMBABWE

Wednesday 10th February, 2016

The National Assembly met at a Quarter-past Two O’clock p.m.

PRAYERS

(THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER in the Chair)

ANNOUNCEMENT BY THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER

VISITORS IN THE SPEAKER’S GALLERY THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  I wish to recognise, the presence, in the Speaker’s Gallery of young men and women from the Youth Empowerment and Transformation Trust.  You are most welcome.

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:  Madam Speaker, I am raising a point of order in terms of Standing Order Number 69 of the amended Standing Orders for the National Assembly.  I want to seek your guidance on how the right of Members to debate on issues and the powers of Parliament to oversee the running of Government is being balanced with the right and power and the need to protect the integrity and the name of the

President.

I am raising that point of order Madam Speaker because I have observed a scenario in this House in which if Members debate anything to do with the Office of the President, they are told that they should not debate.  What I want to understand is whether this House is not allowed oversight over the office of the President as provided by the Constitution on the powers of Parliament.  I believe that when we are debating on anything to do with the Office of the President, we are playing our Constitutional role of oversight over the Executive.  However, I have seen the Chair interfering so much, to an extent that if anyone debates on anything to do with the Office of the President, they are told that they cannot debate.  So, I want a ruling on that Madam Speaker.  I want to know whether, in terms of our Constitution, we are able, as Members of Parliament, to bring the Office of the President to account on certain issues pertaining to the governance of this country.  Thank you Madam Speaker.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Hon. Member, while I do

understand and hear your point of order, at the moment, I can say it is not the Office of the President which is being talked about, it is the name of the President.  However, we will go and study and give you a comprehensive response so that you will understand how we can proceed.

HON. P.  D. SIBANDA:  I will be eagerly awaiting that comprehensive response Madam Speaker.  Thank you.

HON. MUTSEYAMI:  On a point of order Madam Speaker.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  What is your point of order?

HON. MUTSEYAMI:  My point of order Madam Speaker is to do with the business that we have today, whereby we are obliged to ask questions of importance for this country to benefit.  You would see that on the front bench we only have one Cabinet Minister.  I think it is of paramount importance to look into that seriously because last week, we were assured outright left, right and centre by the Speaker that on today’s programme, all the Ministers will be available but alas, today we only have two Hon. Ministers, Hon. Joseph Made and the other.  I think it is best for us to have a response to the nation which is in sincerity to the cause of Parliament.

Madam Speaker, please if you can respond, then we move on for the good of this country, the Republic of Zimbabwe; bearing in mind that we are doing a national business at the expense of a ruling Party which is holding a political party politburo at the expense of

Government business – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] –

HON. MATUKE:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  I wanted to raise the issue that Deputy Ministers are also commissioned Ministers–

[HON. MEMBERS:  Garai pasi Mudhara.] –

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Order!  Order!  Hon.

Members, there is no need to complain if I recognise anyone to stand up and speak.  Can we give him a chance to talk?

HON. MUNENGAMI:  On a point of order Madam Speaker. 

Surely, the Hon. Chief Whip firstly, he is not a Cabinet Minister.

Secondly, the Speaker was very clear, even our rules are very clear that Deputy Ministers do not sit in cabinet.  For Deputy Ministers to come here and tell us that they are the same as Cabinet Ministers - that is not correct

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Order, order behind there.

Hon. Member, are you a Cabinet Minister?  I gave you a chance to stand up and speak out your mind.  That is the same with this hon. member, he also has a chance to stand up and speak out his mind.  From there, you will hear my ruling.  He is not going to speak on my behalf, but he will have a chance to say what he wants to say –[HON. MEMBERS:  Hear,

hear.]-

          HON. MATUKE:  I want to raise an important issue that our Deputy Ministers here present can answer on behalf of the Ministers because they also get Cabinet minutes and all reports from Cabinet.  If there is any question which can be asked to the Deputy Ministers and they fail to answer….

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Thank you. Hon. members,

before we came into this House, I think we discussed this issue and it was also well discussed last week.  I was assured that a number of Members of the Cabinet are coming into this House.  Meanwhile, we can proceed and question those who are here because I am assured they are coming–[HON. MEMBERS:  Hear, hear.]-

HON. MUNENGAMI:  With all due respect Hon. Speaker…–

[HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections]-

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Order, order! Someone is speaking and we want to hear because we would like to answer questions.

HON. MUNENGAMI:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  Surely, with all due respect….

Hon. Musundire having sat on ZANU PF Members of Parliament’s side - [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections]-

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Hon. Members, what is the

problem?  Order, order! Hon. Members, I think you are senior hon.

members.  If I call for order, what does that mean Hon. Munengami?

HON. MUNENGAMI:  Thank you…..

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Hon. Member, when I call

for order, what does that mean?

HON. MUNENGAMI:  Sorry, sorry, sorry.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  So you have to do that.  I am appealing to hon. members, when the Chair is speaking, no one is supposed to stand up.  Do not be surprised if I take action on you.  I am warning you.

The noise is still there.  Everyone should go back to his original seat so that we avoid confusion - [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections]-

Order, order. Chief Whips, Chief Whips please.

Chief Whips approach Hon. Musundire.

Hon. Musundire goes back to his seat.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Order, order!  Can we have order now and proceed?

ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITHOUT NOTICE

HON. CHIVAMBA:  My question is directed to the Minister of Health and Child Care.  There is this Zika virus disease caused by mosquitoes and its being talked of in Brazil.  Are we safe in Zimbabwe?

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HEALTH AND CHILD CARE

(HON. DR. MUSIIWA):  I would like to thank the hon. member for asking this pertinent question at this point in time.  Zika virus disease is a new infection that is spreading in South America.  However, it is not completely new.  It was discovered a long time ago here in Africa in

Uganda in 1947.  That is when it was first isolated.

The current outbreak is mostly centered in South America – Brazil and Colombia to be particular.  It is a viral disease that is spread by mosquitoes.  It is pertinent because we also have mosquitoes in this country but the type of mosquito that spreads this type of infection is different from the mosquito that causes malaria.  The one that causes malaria is the female anopheles mosquito.  The one that causes the Zika virus is known as Aedes.  It is also found locally in Zimbabwe.

The major difference is on their feeding habits.  The one that causes Zika feeds during the day whereas the female anopheles is normally a nocturnal feeder.

The question the member asked is whether we are safe.  It has been declared by the WHO that it is now a pandemic and it can spread all over the world.  At the moment, we have not had Zika in Zimbabwe but we are taking precautions.  Our monitoring and surveillance systems are already in place to detect any such effects.  Thank you Madam Speaker.

HON. MACHINGURA:  Hon. Minister, when they said there is

no treatment of this Zika virus, how did they eradicate it in 1947?

HON. DR. MUSIIWA:  I want to thank the Hon. Member for

asking this question.  Actually what happened is that the disease was not eradicated in 1947.  What happens with viral infections is that they flare up during certain periods then sometimes they just go down and this is what has happened even with other flues.  At the moment the symptoms are quite mild but the danger with this one is that it affects unborn babies.  So, mostly pregnant mothers are affected by this virus and they end up giving birth to children with defects.

HON.  P. D. SIBANDA: My supplementary question is based on the desire to have the nation correctly informed.  The Hon. Deputy Minister indicated that Zika virus is caused by mosquitoes yet information that we get from International News Stations seems to indicate that causal nexus has not really been determined.  Has it been determined scientifically that indeed mosquitoes are the ones that are causing the spread of Zika?

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HEALTH AND CHILD CARE

(HON. DR. MUSIIWA):  I think I need to clarify further.  The Hon. Member has asked a very important question.  He wants to know whether Zika is caused by mosquitoes.  No, it is not caused by  mosquitoes but caused by a virus.  The mosquitoes only transmit and this is irrefutable scientific evidence which we can actually isolate.  – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear] -   I knew this was going to be a very important question because it concerns the welfare of the whole nation.

So, I have taken my time to prepare this document from the Centre for

Disease Control in America and you will read it in the Hansard.

Key Facts

  • Zika virus disease is caused by a virus transmitted by Aedes mosquitoes.
  • People with Zika virus usually have a mild fever, skin rash (exanthema) and conjunctivitis. These symptoms normally last for 2 to 7 days.
  • There is no specific treatment or vaccine currently available.
  • The best form of prevention is protection against mosquito bites.
  • The virus is known to circulate in Africa, the Americas, Asia and the Pacific.

Introduction

Zika virus is an emerging mosquito-borne virus that was first identified in Uganda in 1947, in rhesus monkeys through a monitoring network of sylvatic yellow fever.  It was subsequently identified in humans in 1952 in Uganda and Tanzania.  Outbreaks of Zika virus disease have been recorded in Africa, the Americas, Asia and the

Pacific.

 

  • Genre: Flavivirus
  • Vector: Aedes mosquitoes (which usually bite during the morning and late afternoon/evening hours)  Reservoir:

Signs and Symptoms

The incubation period (the time from exposure to symptoms) of Zika virus disease is not clear, but it is likely to be a few days.  The symptoms are similar to other arbovirus infections such as dengue, and also includes fever, skin rashes, conjunctivitis, muscle and joint pain, malaise and headaches.  These symptoms are usually mild and last for 2 to7 days.

During large outbreaks in French Polynesia and Brazil in 2013 and 2015 respectively, National Health Authorities reported potential neurological and auto-immune complications of Zika virus disease.  Recently, in Brazil, Local Health Authorities have observed an increase in Zika virus infections in the general public as well as an increase in babies born with microcephaly in North East Brazil.  Agencies investigating Zika outbreaks are finding an increasing body of evidence about the link between Zika virus and microcephaly.  However, more investigation is needed before we understand the relationship between microcephaly in babies and the Zika virus.  Other potential causes are also being investigated.

Transmission

Zika virus is transmitted to people through the bite of an infected mosquito from the Aedes genus, mainly Aedes aegypti in Tropical Regions.  This is the same mosquito that transmits dengue, chikungunya and yellow fever.

Zika virus disease outbreaks were reported for the first time from the pacific in 2007 and 2013, (Yap and French Polynesia, respectively) and in 2015, from the Americas (Brazil and Colombia) and Africa (Cape Verde).  In addition, more than 13 countries in the Americas have reported sporadic Zika virus infections indicating rapid geographic expansion of Zika virus.

Diagnosis

Zika virus is diagnosed though PCR (polymerase chain reaction) and virus isolation from blood samples.  Diagnosis by serology can be difficult as the virus can cross-react with other flaviviruses such as dengue, West Nile and yellow fever.

Prevention

Mosquitoes and their breeding sites pose a significant risk factor for Zika virus infection.  Prevention and control relies on reducing mosquitoes through source reduction (removal and modification of breeding sites) and reducing contact between mosquitoes and people.

This can be done by using insect repellent, wearing clothes (preferably light-coloured) that cover as much of the body as possible, using physical barriers such as screens, closed doors and windows and sleeping under mosquito nets.  It is also important to empty, clean or cover containers that can hold water such as buckets, flower pots and tyres, so that places where mosquitoes can breed are removed.

Special attention and help should be given to those who may not be able to protect themselves adequately, such as young children, the sick and the elderly.

During outbreaks, Health Authorities may advise that spraying of insecticides be carried out.  Insecticides recommended by the WHO Pesticide Evaluation Scheme may also be used as larvicides to treat relatively large water containers.

Travellers should take the basic precautions described above to protect themselves from mosquito bites.

Treatment

Zika virus disease is usually relatively mild and requires no specific treatment.  People sick with Zika virus should get plenty of rest, drink enough fluids and treat pain and fever with common medicines.  If symptoms worsen, they should seek medical care and advice.  There is currently no vaccine available.

WHO Response

WHO is supporting countries to control Zika virus disease through:

  • Defining and prioritizing research into Zika virus disease by convening experts and partners.
  • Enhancing surveillance of Zika virus and potential complications.
  • Strengthening capacity in risk communication to help countries meet their commitments under the International

Health Regulations.

  • Providing training on clinical management, diagnosis and vector control including.
  • Strengthening the capacity of laboratories to detect the virus.
  • Supporting Health Authorities to implement vector control strategies aimed at reducing Aedes mosquito populations such as providing larvicide to treat standing water sites that cannot be treated in other ways, such as cleaning, emptying and covering them.
  • Preparing recommendations for clinical care and follow-up of people with Zika virus, in collaboration with experts and other health agencies.

*HON. MAHIYA:  My question is directed to the Deputy

Minister of Home Affairs.  Can you please enlighten this House on what would have happened when you send the Support Unit or Black Boot to the artisanal miners?  I also want to know who pays the allowances of those police officers when they are on such duty.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS (HON.

MGUNI):   That is a very important question but it is actually dubious because it always pities the police against artisanal miners. But the procedure goes like this; a person will apply for a mining prospective licence which he/she will be given and then apply for a mining licence.  When given the mining licence they then call the surveyors who will peg the claim.  What happens thereafter is -

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Order Hon, Minister. Order

Hon. Members, Order, let us have order in the House.  Why is it that whenever I open my mouth you also start talking?  Hon. Minister, the way I understood the question is that the Hon. Member wants to know about the deployment of police to Makorokoza and the allowances that they are paid, not the allocation of stands.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS (HON.

MGUNI):   Thank you Madam Speaker.  We cannot send police to an area where there is no mining permit.  That is why I was giving you the procedure.  Firstly, if there is a complainant who reports that there are people who will have intruded into his/her mine or claim, we advise that person to go to court and be given the messengers of court to go and evict the intruders.  When it is like that, that is when the police can be released to accompany the owner of the claim to bring order.  If there is no court order, police are not allowed to go there.  That should be reported to us.  Secondly, Government has a duty to give police allowances whenever they are deployed outside their work stations.

Thank you Madam Speaker.

HON. NDUNA:  I heard from the Minister that police are not allowed to go without a court order.  In what instances do police go in without a court order, force and cause the closure of artisanal mining activities, in particular, an incident that happened at Pick-Stone mine in Chegutu West.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Hon. Member, I think you

can write down your question and bring it in as an outstanding question.

HON. MAJAYA:  My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Home Affairs.  I would like to know Government policy on security of tickets, which police issue at road blocks with regards to their  authenticity? Thank you.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS (HON.

MGUNI): Thank you Madam Speaker.  I think the invoice books that are used for issuing tickets are serial numbered and the stock is taken from the headquarters when they issue them.  Secondly, they have got four pages which can be cabornised to show that if you issue a ticket the record remains on the book, the other one is taken to the administration and the third one is sent to the headquarters.  I think that is a very good security measure that the book has.  Thank you.

HON. D. SIBANDA: My supplementary question is that; has the Government policy changed? The system has been that if you are driving without a licence, you are issued seven days grace period to produce that licence.  Then all of a sudden the Deputy Commissioner says you are supposed to pay the fine immediately.

HON. MGUNI: Thank you Madam Speaker.  She is 100% correct

that without a licence you can be given seven days to produce it.

However, the police have had challenges where bogus addresses have been given to them.  People are renting some houses and they transfer immediately after committing an offence. So, we have found that it costs the police to track the $20.00 ticket. It is not cost effective to go around looking for a person who has got an offence of $20 against $100.00 fuel that will be used.  So, the law can be changed but in the interim there is an operation memorandum that has been issued to say people can pay a certain amount. Thank you Madam Chair.

HON. D. SIBANDA: Hon. Deputy Minister, so when are we

going to have the policy changed or are you going to bring it to Parliament to change this.  Are you changing the Act or are you changing the policy in regards to that?

HON. MGUNI: Thank you Madam Speaker. Those are some of

the challenges that the Ministry has come across and we have to bring them to Parliament so that everybody in this House – [HON.

MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections]-

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, order Hon. Members it

is not you who call the Hon. Minister to sit down – it is my duty as the Chair.

HON. MUNENGAMI: Thank you Madam Speaker.  In my view

it is actually scandalous for the Deputy Minister to come here and say that there is an operational memo which they are using to defy the law.  Hence the reason why we have been saying Deputy Ministers do not sit in Cabinet.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order! Order Hon. Members!

Everyone knows that Deputy Ministers do not sit in Cabinet but we already have had satisfactory answers from them and you have been clapping hands to those answers.  So, I think the issue that they do not sit in Cabinet is out. If you are complaining about what the Deputy Minister has said, then let us dwell on that one rather than going back on the issue of Deputy Ministers’ position in Cabinet.

HON. MGUNI: Thank you Madam Speaker, there is nothing that

is against the law which I have mentioned.  The police will have the

right to demand the payment using their own discretional powers – [HON. MEMBERS: In audible interjection]-constitutionally,they have

that right.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER; Order! Order! Can we have

order please? Hon. Members! I am going to give a ruling on this one that the Hon. Member should bring the question in written form so that they go and research in order to give us a detailed answer – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections] - I have given a ruling on this question.  No one is going to answer and no point of order on this question!

HON. P. D. SIBANDA: On a point of order! It is on the issue of the capacity of Deputy Ministers to answer questions not specifically on this one – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections]-

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: You are out of order, please

take your sit.

HON. B.  TSHUMA: Thank you very much for your honour –

[HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections]-

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, order, regai

kundibatsira, I do not need your help, I can control the House.  There is no original Tshuma, they are all equal. I have recognized Hon. D.

Tshuma.

HON. D. TSHUMA: Thank you very much Madam Speaker. My

question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare.  I know there is a policy of feeding the people in the rural areas whenever there is drought. In our urban constituencies, there is the same drought effect, so what is your policy towards feeding us the urbanites as well because we are facing the same drought?

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS (HON.

MGUNI): Thank you Madam Speaker.  The policy we have for feeding people in the urban areas is under the Public Assistance Programme.  Initially, we were giving cash payments to that group of people, but we have since reverted, from this month onwards to giving them maize as well.  So, yes, with effect from the beginning of next month, you will see us giving maize to people in the urban areas.

HON. DR. LABODE: We tend to get a lot of reports of what is happening or is not happening at any given place.  I think it is now important for us to come to a position where the Minister, on regular basis come and brief this House that yesterday you were in Magwegwe, tomorrow you are in another place because no urban area has had food distributed.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS (HON.

MGUNI): Thank you Madam Speaker.  Certainly, as a Ministry we do not have a problem with availing that information.  For the record, week in- week out – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections] –

THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Members behind there, you are

making a lot of noise.

HON. MGUNI: For the record, week in-week out, we actually supply these figures to Cabinet.  So, I do not see any problem with availing those figures here.  That can be done.

HON. MUTSEYAMI: My supplementary question to the Hon.

Deputy Minister is, is it possible to put the information on record from the time they began to allocate assistance to urban vulnerable groups?  I have not heard it anywhere in Zimbabwe.

HON. MGUNI: Thank you Madam Speaker.  I have insisted from the outset that we have a programme on eight rural districts, which is different from the urban product, which we call Public Assistance

Programme.  On that programme, for the two urban centres namely Harare Metropolitan and Bulawayo, we have been giving cash payments to identified individuals and households – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections] – Yes and we will avail the information.  We are now saying, yes we sympathise with the urban settlements right now and with immediate effect, from next month, we will be issuing out grain to the vulnerable households in the urban areas.

HON. B. TSHUMA: Thank you very much Hon. Speaker.  In the absence of Minister Chidhakwa, I will direct my question to the Deputy Minister, Hon. Moyo.  For the record, is the shareholding ministry responsible for managing the Government stake at Hwange?  I read in the papers that you will be paying your institutional creditors through Treasury Bills from the Ministry of Finance.  I also want to know, seeing that you are now prioritising institutional creditors, what policy measures do you have in place to extinguish the long overdue Compensation Bill?  Employees have not been paid for over 15 to 20 months.  I would like you to come clean on policy measures that are in place to extinguish that bill.  Thank you very much.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF MINES AND MINING DEVELOPMENT (HON. F. MOYO): Thank you Madam Speaker.  I

think the key point is ‘institutional creditors.’  I think that is a word that was put up by the press.  What we are trying to do is to avoid the company from going into judicial management or liquidation.  We want to bring all creditors together, discuss with them, agree on how shareholders can protect them, allow them to have payment plans put in place and then give the company the chance to raise capital, which will not be intercepted by creditors and therefore try and resuscitate the company.  So, all creditors will be looked at.  In any case, the law expects workers to be at the top of the creditor priority list.  Thank you.

HON. MUNENGAMI: Thank you Madam Speaker.  My question

is directed to the Deputy Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education, whom I understand is around.  Hon. Deputy Minister, can you explain the inconsistency in policy pronouncements between your Ministry and that of the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education regarding the STEM Programme, which was recently launched by the President.  This is in reference to current issues as Ordinary Level results have been released since yesterday –

THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order Hon. Member.  Is this

question originating from the first one?

HON. MUNENGAMI: No.

THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: Someone had called for a supplementary question.  Can you please sit down Hon. Munengami.

HON. B. TSHUMA: Thank you so much.  I would want the Deputy Speaker to come out very clear on this issue.  Realising right now that we have in place, something very concrete with institutional creditors, what is there with regards to employees as far as extinguishing that long overdue payment bill.  Can you be very clear and concise in a few words.  Thank you very much.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF MINES AND MINING DEVELOPMENT (HON. F. MOYO): Thank you Madam Speaker.  I

commended on the actions that are being taken to protect all creditors, specifically regarding employees as asked by the Hon. Member.  Management has been instructed to put a specific arrangement that will give some level of comfort to employees on an ongoing basis whilst we are managing the larger part of the employee risk.  That is the position that is in place.

HON. P. D. SIBANDA: Thank you Hon. Speaker for giving me the opportunity to ask the last supplementary question.  Hon. Minister you said that you have made plans to extinguish the debt that the Hwange Colliery Company has.  However, Hon. Minister, we understand that recently, you approved the increase of the debt by Hwange Colliery Company through allowing the importation of equipment from India through a loan from the Export and Import Bank of India of which the equipment was found to be unsuitable for use at the colliery company.  How do you align?  Is that not an inconsistency that you are trying to extinguish a debt and at the same time creating another which might have been done in some kind of another debt which might have been done in some kind of a corrupt manner.

HON. MOYO: Thank you Madam Speaker. I guess I will avoid going into the history of which equipment was imported and how. The importation of the equipment which was capital investment was done by the company, board of directors and management without the shareholders necessarily being directly involved. We are now discussing the intervention of shareholders now because the company is being threatened with judicial management and liquidation. So, I am discussing issues past the point where the company’s going concern is now threatened. Yes, the issues that happened upstream of that have been raised, concerns from this House have been taken and we are going to be looking into that issue as well. But, I am talking of preempting potential company exposure in its going concern aspect. Thank you.

HON. CHIWETU: Thank you Madam Speaker. My question is

directed to the Minister of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development. What is Government policy on mechanising institutions such as Prisons and Police? These institutions have farms which are not productive because they are not mechanised. Thank you.

          THE MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, MECHANISATION AND IRRIGATION DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. MADE): Thank

you Madam Speaker. I want to thank the Hon. Member for raising the question. Government policy on institutional capacity building, in terms of all the institutions that have got agricultural land, be they Prisons, Police, the Army as well as other institutions will be supported under the mechanisation programme to include both tractors and irrigation equipment because they play a vital role in the production system.

HON. KWARAMBA: Thank you Madam Speaker. My question

is directed to the Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development. Hon. Minister, there has been confusion on the introduction of STEM that is Science Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. Would you please shed more light on STEM and also advise on how this can be accessed since O level results are out. Thank you.

THE MINISTER OF HIGHER AND TERTIARY

EDUCATION, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT

(HON. DR. GANDAWA) Thank you very much Madam Speaker. I

want to thank the Hon. Member for asking the question. I think we all agree that STEM, Science Technology, Engineering and Mathematics are important to the country and this initiative is the best thing that has happened to this country. To answer on the inconsistencies that have happened, it is irresponsible for anyone to think that STEM is a bad thing in the country. Every development that happens in the country must be hinged on STEM. If you want to industrialise any economy, you need to have your education system hinging on STEM.

This programme came after the realisation that we have few students that get into our universities because we do not have enough students that have done …

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order Hon. Members. We

asked the Minister a question. Now he is giving a response and we are busy talking, how do we hear what he is saying?

HON. DR. GANDAWA: So we have a few students that are

taking sciences at universities. The Ministry found it fit to make sure that we increase the number of students from our primary and secondary education sister Ministry that will then take sciences to the universities. We had to come up with a fund to make sure that we incentivise them because after a study that we carried out, we realised that most of the students could have passed Science at O level, but because of other reasons, they just chose not to take sciences at A level. So, this incentive was to encourage them to say even after you have got a C in these sciences, then you proceed and take on A level and you will later proceed to universities.

I personally engaged the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education Dr. Dokora to get access for us to get the drawback in their schools as our sister Ministry. We got the approval from him through the Acting Permanent Secretary then. The current Acting Secretary was on leave. After having been armed by that, we then went ahead and launched STEM as per directive. My Ministry and the Ministry of

Primary and Secondary Education are agents of the principal who is His Excellency, the President Cde. R. G. Mugabe. So, there should not be any inconsistencies between us. But, the member is quoting what came in one paper and not quoting what came out into the other paper.

The Minister himself, Hon. Dr. Dokora, did not deny that we got access. At policy level, we are in agreement that STEM is the way to go and the country is geared for it. I will take advantage of this opportunity that I have been given to then explain further. Many people have asked where the fund is coming from because they are very sure that the country is in difficult times. We have always had a fund called ZIMDEF and I am on record on many occasions trying to correct the misgivings that were happening in this fund.

So, we have been channeling funds to the polytechnics, universities and teachers’ colleges and we have just decided to take $4 million from that fund that we have been channeling in these institutions to close the gap that we have realised we need scientists to industrialise our economy. That is where the funds are coming from. The funds are there and we are seriously implementing the policy of His Excellency, President. We are saying if you get into the secondary schools or high school, the students will apply in those schools that they intend to go to and register for Mathematics, Science, Physics, Chemistry and Biology, a combination of these subjects.   Once they register in the schools, when we get the statistics, we will cause the release of the funds from the ZIMDEF fund to the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education to administer the funds in our secondary schools to pay for the tuition fees of these STEM students.  Thank you Madam Speaker.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Can we have order in the

House. You cannot keep on shouting point of order, point of order. I hear you. You cannot give me that phone.

*HON. M. NDLOVU: Thank you Madam Speaker. My question

is what does the Standing Order say when a Minister gets into this House and he sits at back as a back bencher, when people who are occupying the bench are not Ministers. A male Minister entered last, and he was given a seat?

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Member, at times he

does not need to waste time, just consult the Chief Whips. That is their duty. It is not the Speaker. I think you will have to consult our Chief Whips.  Order Hon. Members! Let us have order please.  Hon. Chief

Whips, can we go and organise this.

HON. MUNENGAMI:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  My

question to the Deputy Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education,

Science and Technology Development is that now that ‘O’ Level results are out – already this is a concern for my Constituency, whereby secondary schools that are accepting those students are not accepting them on the basis of STEM.  If you apply to study those three subjects, you have to pay.  If you do not pay, they will not accept you.  As a

Ministry, are you allowing students to pay first… –[HON. MEMBERS:

Hear, hear] –  Are you allowing students to pay first, then you refund them later or the STEM has to pay for those students as soon as they are enrolled?

THE DEPUTY MINISTER FOR HIGHER AND TERTIARY

EDUCATION, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT

(HON. DR. GANDAWA): Thank you Madam Speaker.  I would like to thank the Hon. Member… – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible

interjections] –

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, order! Hon. Members.

HON. DR. GANDAWA: I want to thank the Hon. Member for

asking that pertinent question.  It has never arisen to us as a Ministry that they are required to pay before we can pay for them.  Now that we know that there is a situation like that arising – because we were going to pay for them all the costs including their science kits and everything after they have registered; I would put it on record that for as long as they register for a combination of the STEM subjects, we should be able to refund them the money they would have paid and still pay for their fees and the boarding fees.  I thank you.

HON. ENG. MUDZURI: Thank you Madam Speaker.  The

Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development has managed to bring in a policy where they want to encourage students to do Science and Engineering.  Does the Ministry have a record of students who have graduated with Engineering, Mathematics and Physics who are unemployed and where are the incubators where you are helping to ensure that they use those science subjects and engineering to enhance the economy and themselves? –

[HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections] –

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order Hon. Members, you are

making a lot of noise. The Minister is trying to listen to what the Hon.

Member is saying.  What is wrong with us?

HON. DR. GANDAWA: Thank you Madam Speaker.  We have a

database of the graduates that did STEM because we know they are  important, we are trying to increase the number.  We have a fund in the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology

Development called the Innovation and Commercialisation Fund in which we fund students who want start-ups.  Those who have a product that they need to put on the market, we assist them to develop that idea, using the fund which is administered by our department called Research, Development and Innovation in the Ministry, so if you have any graduate…– [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections] –

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, Hon. Minister.  Hon.

Members on that corner, I am so much surprised, it is a Minister from your side, I think you have to support by listening, not making noise.

HON. DR. GANDAWA: I was saying we are available to assist

all the graduates that need to have start-ups in the Ministry.  They approach our Department of Research Innovation and Development.  They should be assisted with a fund that is available to them.  This question is very pertinent because may be we have not publicized.  We have advertised in the press but we might have not publicized this fund.  So, this question comes handy so that the Hon. Members will know and assist the graduates in their constituencies.  My office is always available, should you not get assistance from our department, but there should be assistance.

HON. MATANGIRA:  Thank you Madam Speaker Maám.  My

question is directed to the Minister of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development.  What is Government policy on the maize that is going to be imported for the starving people of Zimbabwe especially when the same maize would be coming from either Brazil, Agentina or the United States of America when our country does not accept Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO) to be consumed by the people of this country?  What is the timeframe to have maize from Agentina, Brazil or America to reach Zimbabwe and at what cost are we importing that maize.  What is it going to cost our people in the constituencies who do not have money to buy the same maize?

THE MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, MECHANISATION AND IRRIGATION DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. MADE): I want

to thank the Hon. Member for raising that question.  Madam Speaker, certainly the Hon. Member has asked some technical questions that need considered response.  Part of that question, you may put it in writing.  However, on the general question that relates to any maize that would possibly be GMO, the country is very clear on that.  We do not accept GMO maize.  Wherever, and as and when it is accepted, it has got to be brought in under escort, direct for milling if we give the permits for such maize to ever come into the country.  Thank you.

HON. MATANGIRA: My supplementary is do we have our own

people at the port of country of origin to test non-GMO maize because we do not accept GMO?

HON. DR. MADE: I want to thank the Hon. Member for asking

that question in terms of clarity.  As I have said, I said as and when we approve GMO to come into the country, it will come under escort for direct milling.  That is in the case that we give that authority.  Secondly, yes, all maize that comes into the country, the consignments are tested before they come into the country.  I thank you.

HON. MUTSEYAMI: My supplementary question to the Hon.

Minister is, I would like to know from him how do you stamp management of authority to authenticate this GMO product bearing in mind that in this country, we get things like tinned foods from South Africa, China, et cetera.  Are we really clear that all these tinned products have nothing to do with GMO?  How do you make sure that they are clear of GMO?

THE MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, MECHANISATION AND IRRIGATION DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. MADE):  I think

the question is relating to grain and any material that is live in terms of the possibility of that material contaminating our environment.  The Hon. Member certainly is asking a different question.  I referred specifically to grain, that has a possibility of germinating on our land.  That is why I made it clear that as and when we approve that material to come in, it has to go direct under security escort for milling.  I think I made that point very clear.  Thank you.

HON. ZINDI:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  My supplementary

question is directed to the Minister of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development in relation to GMO and giving people the freedom to choose to eat or buy GMO and non-GMO foods.  What would it take for the Government, through his Ministry, to enforce a law through all retailers to clearly indicate shelves which contain GMO food and shelves which do not contain GMO food and the choice remains with the consumer to be able to choose to buy the GMO or non-GMO?         HON. DR. MADE:  Like I said Madam Speaker, the questions are very clear and I have answered very clearly.  I am concerned about …

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  When you start making

noise, how do you hear the answer?

HON. DR. MADE:  I am concerned about materials that have the possibility of germinating.  I talked about grain and processed food is a different subject.  That is why I said if we give the authority for GMO grain to come in, it has to go directly for milling.  The question of whether food on the shelf is labeled and placed according to its material base does not arise from the original question that I was asked.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Hon. Minister, if the question

arises on its own, does it come into your Ministry or into a different

Ministry?

HON. DR. MADE:  It comes into a different Ministry because we are not …

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  If it is a different Ministry, yes we can take that.  However, when I allow a Member to ask you when it is in your Ministry, I think you have got to answer.

HON. DR. MADE:  I have answered and I have said I am

concerned about grain. If it is GMO grain that comes in, it has to go for milling under escort so that it is processed into food.

HON. ZINDI:  On a point of order Madam Speaker.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Yes, what is your point of

order?

HON. ZINDI:  My point of order is to clarify my question if the

Minister did not hear me properly or maybe did not understand my question.  My question is, it is the Ministry of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development which has got the responsibility of ensuring that Zimbabweans are eating non-GMO food, which is being imported.  I have said, through his Ministry, what would it take to enforce a law to clearly mark GMO food and non-GMO food in the retail sector so that consumers have got a choice.  That is my question Madam Speaker.

HON. DR. MADE:  I have answered that question clearly.  If it is food and labelling, that does not fall under agriculture.  It is an industrial product and the questions of labeling are totally different matters in relationship to the Ministry of Agriculture – [HON. MEMBERS:

Inaudible interjections.] –

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Order Hon. Members!  I

think you have to hear what the Minister is saying.  He said he is concerned about the grain.  If it is the question of those tinned foods and so forth, it is the Ministry of Industry and Commerce.

HON. SARUWAKA:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  In the

absence of the Leader of the House, I might have to direct my question to the self-appointed Chief Whip, Hon. Matuke who was acting as the Leader of the House.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Hon. Member, you are out of

order.

HON. SARUWAKA:  In that case, can you please appoint someone who can act as the Leader of the House.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  I do not appoint Ministers.

Can you please sit down and re-craft your question so that you know where to direct it.

*HON. MAKONYA:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  My question

is directed to the Deputy Minister of War Veterans, Hon. Dube.  My question is as follows; we heard there is a fund for war collaborators so that their children can attend school.  The majority of us no longer have children who are still at school, what benefit is going to be derived by those war collaborators whose children are no longer in school?  I thank you.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF WELFARE SERVICES FOR

WAR VETERANS, WAR COLLABORATORS, FORMER

POLITICAL DETAINEES AND RESTRICTEES (HON. T.

DUBE):  Madam Speaker, if I understood the Hon. Member well, she is asking whether those who no longer have children in school can be compensated in retrospect.  I do not think this is correct.  Once you have no children, it means you do not have children.  It only applies to those who have children.  All I can say is that I might as well explain to you that at present, we have only 34 thousand war veterans but collaborators, chimbwidos and their children and the restrictees all add up to about 700 000.  Over and above, we have not yet vetted many others so it may mean we will end up having over a million of them, just for interest sake for you to understand.   I thank you.

*HON. MUCHENJE:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  I want to

seek clarity from the Minister.   At times we do not understand the figures that you gave for children of our war collaborators.  What age limit does the Minister define as children because some of these children are as old as myself?

HON. ZINDI: On a point of order Madam President.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  What is your point of order?

HON. ZINDI:  I am interjecting to that supplementary question,  which is questioning the ages of the children born by the war collaborators.  My interjection is on the basis that medically, do people know that even if you are 90 years old you can have a baby through in vitro fertilization – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections] –

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Order! Order Hon. Members!

*HON. MUCHENJE:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  I believe the

hon. member did not appreciate the gist of my question.  I said I would want to seek clarity on the age limit of these war collaborators that should receive assistance.  In terms of the children how old should they be?  If my child is 40 years and decides to go to school, will I get any assistance?  I thank you.

HON. T. DUBE:  It is very difficult to determine the age of children or when you cease having children.  Maybe you may have them in vitro or something.  The fact is that the acceptable age is up to 24. It is assumed that at 24 everyone would have completed his university studies but as I said someone might have kids at 90 years.  So, we do not entertain that.

*HON. MAONDERA: On a point of order Madam Speaker.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  What is your point of order?

*HON. MAONDERA:  I am hate that every time we mention war

veteran issues members on the right side become more patriotic than others.  Some of them were sell outs and very unpatriotic.

*HON. MURUNGA:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  My question

is directed to the Minister of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation

Development; we hear that in Masvingo a lot of livestock has been lost.  What measures have you put in place to alleviate the plight of cattle that are dying in Masvingo.  We hear that maize is now going to be put in place for the people that are starving.  What are you going to do for the livestock?

*THE MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, MECHANISATION AND IRRIGATION DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. MADE): I would

want to thank the Hon. Member for his question.  First and foremost this is directed towards all livestock farmers.  We envisage that farmers that are in the arid lands that do not have sufficient rainfall and enough pastures, should de-stock before the livestock die of famine or lack of grazing.  I am saying so because in some areas there has not been any rainfall as a result we do not have grazing pastures.  We will not be able to give them supplementary feeding for their cattle as Government.  Government on its programme to alleviate the suffering of the people due to famine or drought is that we have in place measures to reduce the effects of the loss of farmers that are into livestock farming.  There are areas where we are moving cattle from one area to the other to ensure that there is enough grazing.  The key point is livestock farmers should de-stock and sell most of their cattle before they die.

+HON. MISIHAIRABWI-MUSHONGA:  My question is

directed to the Minister of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development. If you are saying that you have set aside funds for assisting people who are starving; is there money that has been put aside for cattle because we need to go back to the people and inform them that Government has put aside so much for those people who are into cattle rearing?

+HON. DR. MADE:  I want to thank the hon. member for the

question.  Yes, there are funds that are going to be availed for assisting those who are into cattle rearing…

          *THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Hon. Members, if you do

not feel like being in this House please go out and talk then you can come back.

*THE MINISTER AGRICULTURE, MECHANISATION AND IRRIGATION DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. MADE): We

have made an appeal both domestic and international. Yesterday we made an appeal for food assistance as well as other programmes. On  cattle as well, we will assist using a support programme we are going to spend about 138/9 million on the live stock programme. On the livestock destocking programme we will assist with 54 million and on wild life support we will assist with 16 million. So it means it is 139 plus 54 plus 15 all related to livestock. This programme will also go into borehole drilling and water support as well. Thank you.

HON. MUTSEYAMI: I thought you said Hon. Mutseyami. It is

alright Hon. Speaker.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Misihairabwi!

+HON. MISIHAIRABWI-MUSHONGA: Minister I wanted to

ask about food. We know how people get food but when we talk about cattle and here we are talking about people who are in the rural areas.

How are they going to get the funds?

+HON. DR. MADE: Thank you Madam Speaker and thank you

Hon. for the question. With the cattle programme, we are going to have Committees at the national level then provincial and district levels. This programme will be under a special task force Committee. There will be NGOs involved, private investors as well and our development partners and the national committee. There will also be institutions and we will appoint institutions and local communities as well in the local programme. It will be comprehensive and we want everyone to participate.

Questions Without Notice were interrupted by THE HON.

DEPUTY SPEAKER in terms of Standing Order Number 64.

ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITH NOTICE

HON. MARIDADI:  Madam Speaker question number one was responded to last week by the acting Minister of Finance. But there were aspects to that question which were not responded to that is why the question had to go back to Order Paper.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: So, what do you think?

HON. MARIDADI: What I am saying is that the Minister may respond to that question. There is a supplementary that we raised that necessitated us putting it back on Order Paper. 

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: You still need the Minister to

respond to the question.

HON. MARIDADI: Yes.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: We defer the question again.

PAYMENT OF PENSIONS TO RETIRED COUNCIL WORKERS

  1.           HON. MANGAMI asked the Minister of Local Government,

Public Works and National Housing to explain:

 

  • The process for the payment of pensions of people who retire from councils under the Local Authorities Pension Fund (LAPF);
  • Why Sibanda Killion, pensioner 56110000’s pension was

terminated in January 2015, despite completing forms indicating he is still alive and entitled to it.

 

*THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT, PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON.

CHINGOSHO): Hon. Speaker, the first question from the Hon.

Member asking the Minister on the process for the payment of pensions of people who retire from councils under the local authorities pension fund. Hon. Speaker, I am glad that the Hon.

Member has asked the question. However, I would like to inform the Hon. Member that upon receipt of the relevant termination papers and supporting documentation of a retired member from a local authority. The local authority pension fund calculates the retirement pension payable based on the fund’s rules.

In general, the initial retirement benefits is made up of one third lump sum plus monthly pensions arrears from retirement date to calculation date. Currently, the fund’s cash flows are extremely constrained resulting in incapacity to meet benefit obligations on time. -[AN HON. MEMBER: Hanzi gara pasi]- thus, a result of subscribing member to local authorities failing to terminate contributions to the fund. In view of the foregoing depending on the quantum of the member’s retirement benefit payments may be staggered.

Part two of the question, Hon Speaker Sir,

HON. ZWIZWAI: On a point of order.

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER (HON. MUTOMBA): What is

your point of order?

*HON. ZWIZWAI: My point of order is that I was looking at Hon. Chinotimba when he entered he did not bow to the Speaker and yet the rules say that he is supposed to bow to the Speaker. He might see the factions in his party but here in Parliament in this august House there are no factions and my request is that he bows to the

Speaker. Thank you.

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Thank you Hon. Member. Mr.

Speaker did not see that, so your point of order is over ruled. No, I did not call you and I have not recognised you. No, no do not worry about that and resume your sit. Order!

HON. CHINGOSHO: Hon. Speaker, it may please this House that Mr. Killion Sibanda’s pension payments have not been terminated as his record is alive. The reason why he has not been receiving regular pension payments is due to the Fund’s liquidity as already outlined above. In an effort to address the pensioner’s plight, the Fund engaged all member local authorities in October 2014 including Mr. Sibanda’s former employer, requesting them to provide funding for monthly pensions in respect of Mr. Sibanda’s pension, that is, Redcliff Municipality has not provided feedback on the matter.

HON. PHIRI: Supplementary. My supplementary question is on the council’s pension. Most local councils in Zimbabwe are failing to submit monies that are being paid by workers to the Pension Fund. What is the Ministry doing to assist the workers so that councils submit the money to the Pension Fund?

HON. CHINGOSHO: The Ministry has ordered all local

authorities to honour pensioners and to make sure that this is done. All local authorities have been requested and they have done so to make a provision in their current budgets.

HON. NDUNA: Supplementary. Minister, we have it on good authority that Chegutu Town Council has made an application to get $900 000 in order to pay off the executives to go on retrenchment. What is Government’s policy regarding monies that are requested through your office for payment of retrenchment packages for top executives in the council?

HON. CHINGOSHO: I am not sure whether that question applies because here we are not talking about supplementary budgets but we are talking about the pensions.

VIABILITY OF ZIMBABWE UNITED COMPANY (ZUPCO)

  1. HON. MASUKU asked the Minister of Local Government,

Public Works and National Housing to explain the viability of

Zimbabwe United Passenger Company (ZUPCO) and also state whether the Ministry is considering the privatisation of the entity. To ask the

Minister to further explain the benefits accruing to the nation from

ZUPCO?

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT, PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON.

CHINGOSHO): I want to thank the Hon. Member for asking such an important question. The Ministry is currently evaluating the viability of ZUPCO through the analysis of the recently submitted 2013 audited accounts to establish the actual trends. However, the fact that Government has not injected capital into the company for the past 15 years and that ZUPCO has survived the current challenging economic environment to date tells a story about the company’s viability status. In terms of the original mandate ZUPCO has decided to operate rural, inter-city and regional routes due to stiff competition in urban areas.

However, the ZIM ASSET strategy to introduce a mass bus transit system has seen the company repositioning itself for urban operations. The company is now being encouraged to rebuild its fleet to ensure the leading role in the urban sector where it will continue to operate on commercial lines but as a state enterprise 100% owned by Government. On the benefits accruing to the nation, the company is servicing rural and inter-city routes where on most rural routes, the company is the sole supplier, which means ZUPCO is filling a gap where the communities would otherwise be deprived of public transport. I thank you.

*HON. MUNENGAMI:  Supplementary. ZUPCO recently

acquired 50 buses and these were impounded by ZIMRA because they had not paid tax. What are you doing as a Ministry to ensure that

ZUPCO is able to get back the buses that were impounded by ZIMRA?

*HON CHINGOSHO: I want to thank the Hon. Member for the

question. First and foremost, ZUPCO is a parastatal which should be able to stand on its own. At the moment of the 50 buses ZIMRA requires $50 000 for each bus to be released. So far they have paid for 17 buses that are already on the road and the rest have not been paid for.  So, now ZUPCO has submitted a request to the Ministry for assistance but at the moment the Ministry is also facing financial constraints and cannot assist ZUPCO. ZUPCO is still trying to source for required amounts so that the buses can be released. I thank you.

*HON MUFUNGA: Mr. Speaker, still on the issue of  councils, my issue is that my council in Muzarabani was given $82 000 and that money was garnished by the Pensions Departrment.  What is the Ministry doing about it because an acquittal for that money will be required that was taken for pensions?

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER:  Hon. Member, the question

you are posing is not related to the original question of ZUPCO

*HON. MARIDADI:  Hon. Minister, as we are facing this issue of ZUPCO, why is it that the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing still firmly holds onto ZUPCO?  What necessitated ZUPCO to fall under the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing, can you explain to us why your ministry still holds onto ZUPCO yet it is a transport company that should fall under the purview of the Ministry of Transport and

Infrastructural Development because what made ZUPCO fall under your ministry is no longer there?

Do you know why ZUPCO was placed under the Ministry of Local

Government, Public Works and National Housing?

*HON. CHINGOSHO:  I want to thank the Hon. Member for

asking this question.  I am aware of the fact that there is no Act that states the company should be under the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing, that was just an arrangement that was agreed upon that it should fall under the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing since it is a ministry that looks into local authorities. – [SOME HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections] – I am not aware of the reason as to why it remains under the purview of the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing as I have already stated.

UPDATE ON THE OUTCOME OF THE PENSION

VERIFICATION EXERCISE

  1. HON. KANHANGA asked the Minister of Public Service,

Labour and Social Services to provide an update on the outcome of the pension verification exercise that the Ministry recently carried out and to state whether or not it covered the whole country and state the anomalies that were noted as regards the ghost pensioners.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF PUBLIC SERVICE, LABOUR 

AND SOCIAL SERVICES (HON. ENG. MATANGAIDZE):  The

Public Service Commission has a mandate under its Performance Audit and Inspectorate Agency to monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of existing service delivery and human resources management practices and systems in the Public Service.

In line with this mandate, the Public Service Commission, embarked on a pension verification exercise which ran from the 7th September to 30th October, 2015.  Government pensioners were requested to appear before the Public Service Commission for positive identification in person.  They were required to fill in Life Certificates as proof that they are alive and indeed entitled to pension.  In the case of bed-ridden pensioners, close relatives were requested to liaise with the

Public Service Commission officers for authentication.  The findings of this verification exercise are yet to be tabled in Cabinet before official release.

MEASURES TO SUPPLY POLICE STATIONS WITH RAPE

INVESTIGATION KITS

  1. HON. MAJOME asked the Minister of Home Affairs to explain the following to the House: (a) what measures are in place to ensure that police stations are adequately and continually supplied with rape investigation kits; (b) measures the ministry is taking to ensure that the Victim Friendly Unit remains open during weekends and after hours to cater for cases reported by victims of Gender Based Violence at all hours in order to meet the 72 hours recommendation.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS (HON.

MGUNI):  Thank you Mr. Speaker, responding to the questions by Hon. Majome, I know that there are three questions following each other.

  • At any given time, a Police Station should have at least four

rape case investigation kits and these are only used when both the victim and the accused are available.  It is important to note that not all cases require the use of these kits.

However, Police Stations submit monthly returns to the Police

General Headquarters stating their current stock levels of rape kits.  This monitoring mechanism ensures that stations remain with adequate stock at all times.  Furthermore, when a rape kit is used and submitted for forensic examination, a replacement is ordered.

  • The Zimbabwe Republic Police has put measures to ensure that during weekends and public holidays, members from the Victim Friendly Unit will be on standby in the Charge Offices ready to attend to cases that are reported during such periods.  If that is not happening, there is a Hotline where members of the public can report that there are no officers within the Charge Office during weekends and public holidays.

HON. MAJOME: Firstly, I thank the Hon. Minister for his response, particularly about the rape kits. He explained what should be ideal but I have looked at police stations in my constituency, that is Marlborough, Mabelreign and Avondale Police Stations and it does not give much information. There are no rape kits at all. He says that the procedure is that there must be four at any given time. My supplementary question is yes, that is the theory but in terms of the practice, I am hoping that the Hon. Minister can be forthright and explain why there are shortages.

Secondly, can he please give the hotline for the Victim Friendly Units so that Hon. Members can know and benefit their constituencies and when did the 24 hour manning of Victim Friendly Police Units start because I am not aware of it in my constituency.

HON. MGUNI: We have a lot of Hotline numbers in ZRP. I

would want to be very accurate by bringing the correct one for that specific case. Secondly, I am 100% sure that the kits are always available and when they are used, they are being ordered. We can even come back to this House and bring the number from the headquarters for that issue and know what is there. Otherwise, we have enough for the moment. – [HON. MEMBERS: Hakuna makits mudhara.] – There are

kits!

UPDATE ON CASE CR28/11/14 BY THE SERIOUS FRAUD SQUAD

  1. HON. MAJOME asked the Minister of Home Affairs to give

an update relating to the status of investigation of case number CR28/11/14 by the Serious Fraud Squad on the allegations of misappropriation of funds at Ellis Robins School.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS (HON.

MGUNI): The Zimbabwe Republic Police investigated the case under ZRP Mabelreign CR28/11/14, CID Serious Frauds DR30/11/14. The matter has been handed over to the Prosecutor General to take it further.

OPENING OF THE AVONLEA POLICE POST           22. HON. MAJOME asked the Minister of Home Affairs to state when Avonlea police post which was built by the community four (4) years ago and is currently collapsing due to non-use will be opened by the Zimbabwe Republic Police who are currently insensitive of the community’s need, as well as defying instructions from Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS (HON.

MGUNI): The Zimbabwe Republic Police does not have adequate human resources to permanently deploy police officers to the post at the moment. The area falls under ZRP Avondale’s area of policing which already has four bases, namely Emerald Hill, Monavale, Avondale Shops and Belgravia. These bases are manned 24 hours. A police cycle patrol unit is dispatched on a daily basis to patrol Avonlea area owing to the shortage of the manpower as stated above.

HON. MAJOME: I want to ask the Hon. Minister to explain why there is a shortage of police officers to mann Avonlea Police Station only when it appears that the Zimbabwe Republic Police appears to be the only public office in terms of the Government that is recruiting? Can he explain that? Also, why is there a shortage to mann that station when there is a lot of crime which is rife at Greencroft Shopping Centre around the Plaza D’Castilla area where there is rampant crime, for example, now there is drug dealing and a lot of abuse of children who are engaging in sex work. Does the Ministry of Home Affairs not care at all? Surely, are these sporadic patrols sufficient because they are never seen and the community is reeling from crime and recently, there were gunshots at that particular place? Does his Ministry not care to do something better about this and find police officers, not to stay there permanently but even periodically when the community made these efforts in collaboration with the police and went to the extent of building this police post that has not been opened.

HON. MGUNI: The police is mobilising a community policing as they have not been recruiting for too long. The 2012 census showed that the ratio of a police officer to the population is 1:550, of which the international standard requirement is 1:300 people. Already by 2012, the police were overwhelmed by the population that they must mann.  By now it is exuberant. Now, what the police have taken action on is to mobilise community and do what we call community policing. However, in her area, there are police that are sent to patrol using bicycles. That is what we are trying to do although we do not have enough support from Treasury, we have managed to have a factory where we fix the bicycles so that the police can give service to the community in a proper way.

HON. MANDIPAKA: My supplementary with regard to the response that has been given by Hon. Mguni is, we are alive to the fact that the police and members of the public work hand-in-hand. That is also in line with the Police Service Charter. You have not furnished this august House with a convincing answer why the police fail to take up and occupy an establishment that has been worked out by members of the public. Is it not negating their responsibility in line with the Police Service Charter?

HON. MGUNI: Thank you for that pertinent question. May the House allow me to physically go to the place, gather correct information and bring an accurate answer to this House?

POLICY REGARDING ORPHANS AGED 18 IN CHILDREN’S

HOMES

  1. HON. MAJOME asked the Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Services to state the policy regarding orphans who attain the age of 18 while still in children's homes, and to further explain how the Ministry supports such orphans given that they would still not be in a position to support themselves?  

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF PUBLIC SERVICE, LABOUR AND SOCIAL SERVICES (HON. ENG. MATANGAIDZE):  Thank

you Mr. Speaker.  The placement of children in residential child care institutions by the Ministry of Public Service, Labour and Social

Services is provided for under the Children’s Act (Chapter 5.05).  Section 3 of the Act defines a child who is in need of care who may end up being placed in a registered children’s home for their safety and rehabilitation support.  Orphans without guardian support fall in this category.

The Constitution of Zimbabwe defines a child as a person below the age of 18.  As such, children’s homes are administratively limited to taking care of children below the age of 18.  However, this does not translate in throwing children out into the streets upon their attaining the age of majority.  The National Residential Child Care Standards (2010) provide policy guidelines for the care and protection of children in children’s homes.  Standard 6.1 of these National Residential Child Care Standards requires the development of individualised discharge plans that outline arrangements for:

  1. i) Continuing education and training; ii) Support and follow up for children living with disabilities, including medical, educational, occupational and psychosocial; iii) Support to enable the child to set up and maintain an independent home, in instances where living with family, extended family or friends is not an option; iv)      Providing information on available social services benefits for future use which may include public assistance, health care and other specialist services as may be required by the child;
  2. v) Creating and maintaining networks of advice and information in order to support the child in decision making during the discharge process; and vi) Ensuring an effective and realistic plan is in place for family and community care and that follow up arrangements are in place.

Standard 6.2 is clear that children should be prepared to:

  • Develop and maintain relationships with others.
  • Understand their sexuality and establish positive and caring relationships.
  • Overcome trauma and establish self esteem and resilience.
  • Prepare for the world of work and/or for further education.
  • Develop practical and independent life skills.

The above are skills that will help the young adult to make responsible decisions and build their self confidence.

After leaving the institution, the young adult is provided with continuous support, follow up and an open door in case they need help.  All this is to make sure they have adjusted and are integrating well in their new lives.  Each case is handled individually but the best practice is that before the child turns 18, their case is continuously reviewed for considering available options.  Most of the institutions have built other shelters for the older children, a reasonable distance away from the children.  These shelters are called youth centres or half way homes depending on the management of the home.

Support systems for children after they leave the children’s homes

If children reach 18 years of age before completing schooling, it is mandatory that they be supported to complete their education from the half-way homes that some institutions run.  They are also supported with life skills and sometimes are helped to start careers depending on their strengths and abilities.  Social protection programmes from Government such as Basic Education Assistance Module (BEAM) and public assistance are available to meet education and accommodation needs.

I hope the above response is to Hon. Majome’s satisfaction.

HON. MAJOME:  I thank the Hon. Minister for demonstrating some care towards children who come out of children’s homes when they are 18 but are not yet looking after themselves.  Is the Government supporting financially, by granting cash transfers to these youth shelters that children who are orphans and have no one to live with but cannot live in children’s homes that he indeed mentioned?

HON. ENG. MATANGAIDZE:  Thank you Mr. Speaker.  I

thank the Hon. Member for that pertinent question.  If you realise in my last remarks, in the last paragraph, I made reference to the BEAM programme and also to the public assistance programme which in fact I have alluded to earlier on in my presentation when I started talking today.  We identify those vulnerable children and we will continue with follow up programmes.

MONEY COLLECTED FOR RURAL ELECTRIFICATION FUND

PURPOSES

  1. HON. MAJOME asked the Minister of Energy and Power

Development:

  1. To state how much money was collected for rural electrification fund purposes during the period 2002 to 2015;
  2. To state which communities that have benefited from the programme, the criteria that was used in selecting beneficiary communities;
  3. To state how Government came up with the 6% rural

electrification levy on electricity bills.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS (HON. MBWEMBWE) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF ENERGY AND

POWER DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. UNDENGE):  Thank you

Mr. Speaker Sir.  With your permission, I am representing the Minister of Energy and Power Development.  During the period 2002 to 2015, the REF got funding from the following sources, in line with the provisions of the Rural Electrification Fund Act (2002):

  1. Six percent levy on electricity sales.
  2. Fiscus allocations.
  3. Loans/Supplementary credit facilities.
  4. Customer contributions.
  5. Income generating activities and other incomes.

Between 2002 and 2008, a total of ZW$11 981 492 178 900

000.00 was collected from the sources mentioned above.  In addition

ZW$318 614 556 102.00 was received from the Parastatal And Local Authorities Reorientation Programme (PLARP) Funding availed through the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe.  A supply credit facility worth US$27 015 002.00 was received from China National Aero-Technology Import and Export Corporation (CATIC) of China.  The supply credit facility provided electricity distribution materials and project vehicles.  The loan will be liquidated by end of February 2016.

Between 2009 and 2015, a total us US$243 337 679.00 was

received from 6% levy, fiscus funding and other income.  The detailed breakdown of funds received by category and by year is given in the

Table below.

Table 1REF INCOME 2002 – 2015

RURAL ELECTRIFICATION AGENCY

INCOME TREND ANALYSIS – ZIM DOLAR PERIOD

 

YEAR

 

2002

 

2003

 

2004

 

2005

 

2006

 

2007

 

2008

 

6% Levy

 

Z$1,206,765,000

 

Z$8,249,015,000

 

Z$56,175,404,000

 

Z$113,308,926

 

Z$1,250,645,253

 

Z$316,006,841,727

 

Z$388,773,735,000,000

 

Grant

Income

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

Z$563,636,000,000

 

-

 

Customer

Contributions

 

-

Z$   665,372,000  

-

 

Z$   9,266,682

 

Z$     45,441,551

 

 

Z$ 72,683,536,917

 

Z$5,780,836,261,694,0

00,000

 

Donations

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

Income

Generating

Activities

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

-

 

Other income

 

-

 

Z$   983,812,000

 

Z$  1,551,230,000

 

Z$  23,979,217

 

Z$    279,588,924

 

Z$433,869,697,624

Z$6,200,000,000,000,0 00,000
 

Total Z$ Income

 

Z$1,206,765,000

 

Z$9,898,199,000

 

Z$57,726,634,000

 

Z$146,554,825

 

Z$1,575,675,728

 

Z$1,386,196,058,2

68

 

Z$11,981,225,035,429,

000,000

 

CATIC (US$)                                                                                      US$27,015,002

PLARP FUNDS (Z$)                                                                           Z$318,614,4556,102

 

The Rural Electrification Programme is meant to benefit the following:

  1. Rural primary and secondary schools.
  2. Rural health centres.
  3. Rural Government extension centres.
  4. Rural business centres.
  5. Chiefs homesteads.
  6. A1 and A2 farms.
  7. Other communal institutions such as churches, co-operatives and clubs.

The first Rural Electrification Master Plan (REMP) which had been developed by Water and Power Consultancy Services (WAPCOS) of India Limited in 1995-97 and whose main focus was on rural business centres was reviewed by the same consultant in 2001 – 2002, giving birth to the Expanded rural Electrification Programme (EREP).  The EREP entailed extending the grid infrastructure to all the beneficiaries listed above, starting with those centres within 5km radius of the existing grid, in all the eight rural provinces of Zimbabwe.

Since January 2002 to 31 December 2015, 6 158 rural nodes including public institutions, villages, farms, chiefs’ homesteads and other communal centres were electrified using electricity grid.  Four hundred and twenty-four (424)solar mini-grid systems and 437 mobile solar systems were installed at remove rural institutions.  In addition, 36 institutional biogas digesters were installed at rural institutions such as schools, hospitals and prisons.

Table 2 showing the status of rural electrification using electricity grid and solar technologies countrywide between January 2002 and 31 December 2015 is attached below.

Table 2: RURAL ENERGY PROJECTS IMPLEMENTED 2002 –

2015

 

YEAR

 

2002

 

2003

 

2004

 

2005

 

2006

 

2007

 

2008

 

2009

 

2010

 

2011

 

2012

 

2013

 

2014

 

2015

 

Total

 

Grid Extensions

 

 

970

 

512

 

346

 

1096

 

258

 

 

242

 

 

115

 

154

 

357

 

332

 

572

 

490

 

287

 

427

 

6158

 

 

Solar Micro

Grids

 

 

14

 

47

 

70

 

106

 

136

 

10

      5  

22

 

14

 

424

 

Mobile Solar

Units

 

 

392

 

45

 

437

 

Biogas

 

      6  

12

 

18

     36

 

The EREP which runs in all the eight rural provinces concurrently is much broader in terms of coverage than the first master plan programme (1997 – 2007), which targeted only 415 rural service centres countrywide.  In view of the magnitude of the EREP, it became necessary to increase the levy from the original 1%.  In this regard, recommendations to increase the RE levy from 1% to 6% were made to Cabinet through the then Ministry of Mines and Energy.  Pursuant to this, in 2002 Cabinet approved an increase in the RE levy from 1% to 6% with effect from 1st July 2002.

Mr. Speaker Sir, it is not clear why this question is being posed in respect of a decision which was made some 14 years ago by Cabinet.  Much as we would want more financial resources for this worthy rural development programme, we have had to make do with the rural electrification levy at 6%.

HON. MAJOME: This was fourteen years ago when the Rural Electrification Levy was raised to 6%.  Why is Government not reviewing this 6% downwards considering the heavy burden on consumers particularly urban consumers of electricity when there are all sorts of power cuts?  Fourteen years is a long time to realise the objectives of this programme without a review.

HON. MBWEMBWE: I thank the hon. member for that question.  with your permission Mr. Speaker Sir, may I ask the hon. member to put the supplementary question in writing for the relevant Ministry to be able to respond.

TARGETS SET FOR THE RURAL ELECTRIFICATION

PROGRAMME

  1. HON. MAJOME asked the Minister of Energy and Power

Development to state the targets set for the Rural Electrification Programme and to further state how long would consumers continue to charged the rural electrification levy.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS ( HON.

MBWEMBWE) on behalf of  THE MINISTER OF  ENERGY AND POWER DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. UNDENGE): About 3700

rural public institutions remain un-electrified to date. It is estimated that between US$250 – 300 million is required to provide some form of energy source to these outstanding rural public institutions.  Of the 3 700 institutions, about 3 000 are within 20 km of the existing grid network while the remainder are beyond 20 km from the existing grip network.  In an effort to meet our ZIM ASSET targets, the REF plans to extend the grid to all institutions within 20 km of the existing grid network, while providing those beyond 20 km with renewable energy sources by 2018.  Achievement of this target is subject to availability of resources.  In the outlook, in line with Government vision, it is envisaged that all rural communities will have access to modern energy services by 2030.  The

Rural Electrification Fund is expected to play a pivotal role in this Government effort.

If Government, through the REF, is to attain this vision of universal access to modern energy services by all by 2030, it will be necessary to continue charging consumers the Rural Electrification Levy, until such time when other alternative sources of funding have been identified.

Mr. Speaker Sir, one hopes that the hon. member who has asked this question is not suggesting that the Rural Electrification Programme should be stopped.

PROVISION OF ELECTRICITY METERS

  1.   HON. MAJOME asked the Minister of  Energy and Power Development to state what the Ministry has been doing to ensure provision of electricity meters because electrification has been put on halt due to the electricity meters which are out of stock.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS ( HON.

MBWEMBWE) on behalf of  THE MINISTER OF  ENERGY AND

POWER DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. UNDENGE):  Mr. Speaker

Sir, my Ministry is aware that ZETDC has not yet installed prepaid meters in Westlea Suburb.  Prepaid meter installations had stalled due to a shortage of prepayment meters.

ZETDC went out to tender for 130 000 prepaid meters to cover both new connections and replacement of the remaining post-paid meters.  Tenders for the procurement of the meters were finalised with contracts being awarded and signed off in November 2015 for meter deliveries to commence end of March 2016.

Installations in Westlea and other suburbs are expected to be carried from the month of March 2016 when the deliveries are received.

PETROLEUM PRICES VIS-À-VIS CRUDE OIL PRICES

  1. HON. MAJOME asked the Minister of Energy Power and Development:

a)To explain why Zimbabweans continue paying retail petroleum prices of about US$1.40 per litre which is consistent with crude oil prices of US$120.00 per barrel, despite the fact that crude oil prices have reduced to US$30.00 per barrel and SADC one ranging from 59 cents per litre in Namibia to 89 cents per litre in Mozambique.

b)To state when Zimbabwean petroleum consumers can expect to enjoy the slump in world crude oil prices.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS (HON.

MBWEMBWE) on behalf of  THE MINISTER OF  ENERGY AND

POWER DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. UNDENGE): Mr. Speaker Sir, Hon Cross asked a similar question in February 2015 for which a response was given in this august House.  I hope that the explanation that I will give today will put to rest the same question being asked over and over again.

Fuel prices in Zimbabwe are set through a fuel pricing model agreed to between the Ministry of Energy and Power Development, Zimbabwe Energy Regulatory Authority and oil companies.

The model sets the maximum pump price permissible, after taking into account all the costs of doing business in the fuel sub-sector.  The costs include taxes and levies that go to Government.

The first cost element in the fuel pricing model is the price at which oil companies procure their fuel.  As this price changes, the model captures the movements and adjusts the maximum pump price accordingly.  The same applies when the other cost elements in the model change.

It is important to note, hon. members, that the fuel pricing model that we use is unique to Zimbabwe.  The cost elements in the model are not the same as those used by other regional countries.  The model therefore produces prices that cannot be compared with prices obtaining in countries that use different models and have different cost structures.

Comparing fuel prices in Zimbabwe with those obtaining in other countries will produce different results because we do not use the same fuel pricing models.  Comparison would only be really useful if our pricing model was similar to the pricing models of other regional countries.

Some countries like Namibia and Mozambique have ports of their own while Zimbabwe is landlocked and has to transport its fuel for long distances.  Angola, for example, actually subsidies its fuel while Zimbabwe imposes taxes on its fuel.  Some countries impose taxes on their fuel but at lower rates than Zimbabwe does.

Some countries like South Africa and Zambia own refineries and refine their own fuel.  Countries that use own currencies can benefit or lose when their currency gains or loses against the United States Dollar.

The same cannot be said for Zimbabwe because the country uses the

United States Dollar.

If one is to compare fuel prices in the region, one therefore necessarily has to also take into account the different cost structures, otherwise the public may be misled.

Mr. Speaker Sir, I have also noted one other error that some people make.  Such people think that if crude oil prices fall by 50%, it means that local pump prices should necessarily also fall by the same percentage.  The relationship between crude oil prices and pump prices of refined fuel is not necessarily like that.

Crude oil is a raw material that has to be refined.  The refined fuel needs to be shipped to Beira where Zimbabwe can access it.  There are therefore costs associated with refining, shipping and storage which have to be incorporated into the Zimbabwe fuel price.

Zimbabwe does not buy fuel direct from refineries.  We buy our fuel from international traders, ex-Beira.  So for us, the ex-Beira price is what we really consider.  Yes, if crude prices fall, the ex-Beira prices will also fall but not necessarily by the same percentage or magnitude.

Mr. Speaker Sir, on 1 June 2015, the ex-Beira prices for diesel and petrol per litre in Beira were 63.22 and 60.53 cents per litre respectively.

After factoring in the cost of pumping the product into the country, local duties and taxes, internal storage and handling, internal distribution and the margins for oil companies and dealers, the pump prices for diesel and petrol per litre then were US$1.41 and US$1.54 respectively

On 1st February 2016, the ex- Beira prices per litre for diesel and petrol were 34, 53 cents and 40.75 cents respectively.  The ex-Beira prices had therefore fallen by 45.4%.  In tandem with the fall in the exBeira prices, the pump prices of diesel and petrol fell to US$1.05 and $1.27 per litre respectively.  The price of diesel therefore fell by 25.5% and that of petrol fell by 17, 8%.

Mr. Speaker Sir, these facts are a testimony that prices of fuel on the local market respond to the movements of crude oil prices on the international market. I also would like to inform the Hon. Members of Parliament that the majority of the cost elements in our pricing model are fixed.  In other words, they are not affected by changes in the movements of crude oil prices.  In fact, only the ex-Beira prices are affected by movements in the international crude oil prices.  The rest of the costs are affected by our local economic situation prevailing at the time.

I will however, highlight just two cost items in our pricing model, that is Government charges (duty, taxes/levies) and pipelines charges. You are aware Hon. Members that the pipeline that we use to transport fuel from Beira is Mozambican owned.  We pay not less than US$3 million per month at the current level of pumping for the pipeline services.  So, every litre pumped into the country attracts a pumping fee of 6.55 cents. Government charges (duty, taxes/levies) amount to 46.1 cents per litre for diesel and 63.2 cents per litre for petrol.

Mr. Speaker Sir, the current maximum pump price for diesel is US$105.00 per litre.  If we take out the Government charges and pumping fees per litre, we remain with 58.8 cents.  This 58.8 cents covers the ex-Beira purchase price, storage and handling, internal distribution and the margins for the oil companies and the dealers.  Taking out the Government charges and pumping fees from the current price of petrol leaves 63.7 cents for the remainder of the cost elements on the pricing model.

Mr. Speaker Sir, may the House note that even if we were to be given fuel for free, given the costs of pumping it into the country, the duties and taxes, storage fees, distribution costs, the pump price of petrol would be 86 cents per litre and that of diesel would be 71 cents per litre.  This helps to demonstrate that although local fuel prices respond to movements in the crude oil prices, there is a limit to the extent to such response.

Mr. Speaker Sir, my response to part B of Hon. Majome’s question is that the consumers are already enjoying the benefits. I have just given you the maximum fuel prices as at 1st June, 2015 and compared them to the current prices.  While Hon. Majome says the price of fuel is around

US$1.40 per litre, as we speak the maximum prices are actually

US$1.05 and US$1.27 for diesel and petrol respectively.  Because of competition, some fuel retailers are actually selling the fuel at lower prices.  This goes to show that local prices are falling in line with the movements in the prices of crude oil globally.

Take note too, Hon. Members that the Zimbabwe Energy Regulatory Authority (ZERA) reviews fuel prices weekly hence quickly captures any changes in international crude oil prices.  Other countries do so once a month.  ZERA’s price adjustments may appear small but this is only because they are implemented more frequently than obtains in other countries in the region. ZERA has also engaged a consultant to review the pricing model to see if the cost elements therein are still applicable.

With this submission, Mr. Speaker Sir, I believe the Hon. Members now fully appreciate the nature of fuel prices in Zimbabwe. In conclusion, I request Hon. Members to assist with educating the people in their constituencies on this matter so that the general motoring public is informed of how local fuel prices are arrived at.

WRITTEN SUBMISSIONS TO QUESTIONS WITH NOTICE

CRITERION FOR SELECTING AND INVITING BIDDERS

  1. HON. CHIRISA asked the Minister of Mines and Mining

Development to: (a) explain the criterion used in the invitation and selection of bidders; (b) explain whether the mineral licensing regime is done transparently; and  (c) state whether there is a provision for parliamentary revocation or veto of an exclusive exploration award.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF MINES AND MINING

DEVELOPMENT (HON. F. MOYO):  

  1. a) My assumption here is that the invitation and selection of bidders in this question relates to the diamond sales.

Diamonds produced in the country are marketed through a standard tender system, organised by the Minerals Marketing

Corporation of Zimbabwe (MMCZ) in consultation with an international facilitator, who currently, is First Element Services.

For one to participate in the international diamond tenders and be registered on the database for future invitations, they have to submit the following documents to MMCZ for consideration: (i) Company profile; (ii) Company Incorporation documents; (iii) Police Security Clearance of Directors and Attendees; (iv) Letter of intention; (v) Passport copies (Directors and possible attendees); (vi) Name of responsible payee and proof of funds available; (vii) Diamond organisation memberships and proof thereof; (viii) Whether the applicant is a trader, dealer, beneficiator, manufacturer or a broker.

MMCZ assess applicants on the basis of financial capacity and technical expertise.  MMCZ may then recommend the applicant and include them on their database of customers.

  • The country’s mineral licensing system is transparent. All mining titles are issues in terms of the Mines and Minerals Act [Chapter 21:05] which also provides for requirement to maintain title.  Procedures for acquiring mining titles are clearly outlined in the Act and should be adhered to by applicants and title holders.

However, the current system is manual and this comes with challenges to do with efficiency of the system given the huge number of applications.

In that regard, the Minister is establishing a computerized Mining Cadastre for the management of the entire mining industry throughout the value chain; that is from licensing, actual projects implementation and marketing including accounting of production by all mining and mineral entities.

Such a system will result in the modernisation of the mining title management system in line with regional and international best practices to provide for a faster and more efficient system.

  • The Mines and Minerals Act, does not have a provision for Parliamentary revocation or veto of an Exclusive Prospecting Order (EPO) award. The mandate is left with the issuing authority and in this case His Excellency, the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe.

Parliament, however, oversees compliance with the Act per procedure.

All EPOs are applied for through the Mining Affairs Board (MAB), which recommends to the Minister, who in turn recommends to His Excellency the President for approval.

However, during the processing of an EPO application, the MAB publishes a general notice of application in the Government Gazette inviting members of the public to raise objections, if any, within a period of 21 days.

ADVICE TO SMALL SCALE AND ARTISANAL MINERS

  1. HON. CHIRISA asked the Minister of Mines and Mining

Development to: (a) explain how the Ministry advises the small scale and artisanal miners of their rights and responsibilities; (b) state where there is an integrated network of mutual accountability among various operational agencies in the mining sector.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF MINES AND MINING

DEVELOPMENT (HON. F. MOYO):  (a) Artisanal miners are either registered or none registered.  Where they are registered, upon being issued with a prospecting license, small scale and artisanal miners are informed of their rights and obligations for the maintenance of their title by the Provincial Mining Director.

Furthermore, during the Ministry’s routine technical inspections, the small scale and artisanal miners are given advice on their rights, proper and sustainable mining methods and responsibilities in terms of the law.  The Ministry seeks to intensify its presence at mining locations given that the ministry is now represented at provincial level.  It must be mentioned however, that the Ministry is currently weak on logistics and does not adequately reach out to miners.

Representatives of small scale miners are always invited to the

Ministry’s strategic planning workshops where they are reminded on the expected responsibilities of the miners.  There is need to compile a database of miners working with Rural Councils so that communications and support is done more effectively.

(b)  The Ministry of Mines and Mining Development works together with various stakeholders in the mining sector such as the Environmental Management Agency (EMA), Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ), Fidelity Printers and Refiners (FPR) and the Zimbabwe Republic Police – Mineral and Border Control Unit (ZRP-

MBCU).

Examples include the following: (a) Applications for

Environmental Impact Assessments (EIA) at mining sites are forwarded by EMA to the ministry for consideration; (b) The ministry conducts joint gold monitoring and surveillance exercises together with the RBZ, FPR and ZRP-MBCU.

However, there is need for harmonization of fees that are charged to miners by various agencies in the mining sector.  Also, like in any process, stakeholders are urged to stick to their mandates in order to provide for accountability.  Equally, stakeholders must ensure awareness and competency on the part of miners to help them achieve compliance.

RELOCATION OF MEMBERS IN MINING COMMUNITIES

  1. HON. CHIRISA asked the Minister of Mines and Mining

Development to: (a) state whether the law provides for the relocation of communities including upholding of rights of members in mining communities; (b) state whether the law provides for environmental protection and (c) state key mechanisms that are in place to solve disputes.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF MINES AND MINING

DEVELOPMENT (HON. F. MOYO):  Government policy provides

for anyone who is negatively affected by mining activities to be compensated.  Miners and respective ministries are required to ensure that fairness is realised through compensation, education and support is necessary.

Currently, the Mines and Minerals Act provides for compensation or buyout of the land hosting minerals from their private owners.  The proposed Amendment Bill seeks to expand this protection to general land occupiers as issued by the Ministry of Lands and Rural

Resettlement.

  • The Mines and Minerals Act [Chapter 21:05] provides for various mechanisms for environmental protection at the mining sites.

This includes maintenance of slime dams, land reclamation,

management of effluent disposal et cetera.  It also prohibits mining in certain areas and within certain jurisdictions in a bid to protect the environment.

The Act is further complimented by the EMA Act.  It must be noted that in the Mines and Minerals Amendment Bill, it is proposed that the Ministry continues with environmental protection and monitoring within mining sites since technical expertise is required for this role, whilst EMA becomes responsible for environmental protection issues outside mining sites.

  • In terms of the Mines and Minerals Act, disputes can be resolved at any of the following levels: (i) Provincial Mining Director

(PMD); (ii) Minister; and (iii) courts.

The aggrieved parties may approach the Provincial Mining

Director in their respective province for resolving of their disputes.  If the parties do not agree, they may appeal to the Minister and finally to the Courts for determination.

In that regard, the Minister has set up a dispute committee at Head Office which deals with appeals from the provinces.  The Committee was set up as a check and balance for decisions made by the PMDs and recommendations to the Minister for his/her decision process.

Once a matter is referred to Court, all ministry proceedings are automatically suspended.

DECENTRALISATION OF EXECUTIVE AUTHORITY ON

EXTRACTION OF MINERAL ORE

(9) HON. CHIRISA asked the Minister of Mines and Mining

Development to inform the House whether or not the ministry has decentralized Executive Authority on the extraction of mineral ore.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF MINES AND MINING

DEVELOPMENT (HON. F. MOYO):  Previously, the Ministry had been decentralized to five mining districts namely Harare, Bulawayo, Masvingo, Gweru and Kadoma with two satellite offices in Mutare and

Gwanda.

In 2014, the ministry restructured to align itself to Government

Administration Provinces i.e. Mutare, Gweru, Masvingo, Chinhoyi, Marondera, Bindura, Gwanda and Lupane.  This was done to ensure that the Ministry gets closer to the miners as well as liaise better with other ministries at provincial level.

Oral Answers to Questions with Notice were interrupted by THE

TEMPORARY SPEAKER in terms of Standing Order Number 64.

          On the motion of HON. RUNGANI seconded by HON.

MUTSEYAMI, the House adjourned at Eight Minutes to Five o’clock p.m.

 

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