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NATIONAL ASSEMBLY HANSARD 12 NOVEMBER 2019 46-05

                                                      PARLIAMENT OF ZIMBABWE

Tuesday, 12th November, 2019.

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

PRAYERS

(THE HON. SPEAKER in the Chair)

ANNOUNCEMENTS BY THE HON. SPEAKER

PETITIONS RECEIVED FROM MR. R. MAJONGWE AND MR. L.T.

CHASAIRA

THE HON. SPEAKER: I wish to advise the House that on 11th

 November, 2019, Parliament of Zimbabwe received a petition from Mr.

  1. Majongwe of the Progressive Teachers’ Union of Zimbabwe, beseeching Parliament to realign the Public Service Act to the National

Constitution and to ratify the International Labour Organisation (ILO) Conventions 151 and 154, in order to match domestic law with international law and the State to be duty bound to ensure industrial harmony, fair labour standards and social justice in the Public Service and to strictly adhere to the rights guaranteed in the Constitution by the State and its agents.   The petition has since been referred to the

Portfolio Committee on Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare.

I also wish to advise the House that on 11th November, 2019, Parliament of Zimbabwe received a petition from Mr. L. T. Chasaira of the People and Earth Solidarity Law Network, 6 Gloucester Avenue, Eastlea, Harare, beseeching Parliament to protect the constitutionally guaranteed rights to information and environmental conservation and the statutory right to access to the environmental information, especially concerning the capture of export or wildlife from National Parks.  This petition has since been referred to the Portfolio Committee on Environment and Tourism.

          HON. MARKHAM:  Thank you Mr. Speaker. I rise on a point of

privilege.  Two months ago, you ruled on an issue that audit reports must be laid before this House.  As required and as a member of the PAC, we have requested an audit and a report on the Airport Road from the Minister of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing, in a letter to him requesting that audit report on the Airport road has long expired and it has not been presented.  The report called for the special investigations committee report on City of Harare land sales, leases and exchanges from the period of October 2004 to December 2009.  The reason for the urgency of this report is, the Airport Road was supposed to be completed for the World Cup Football in 2010 and it was not. The City of Harare contracted a contractor, Augur Investments and it was not done.  ZINARA continued and paid for that road.  The road is paid for at least twice. It is of serious urgency that the report is availed to this House.  Thank you.

 THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order.  I will proceed to engage the Hon. Minister of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing so that the Hon. Minister complies with the request accordingly.  Thank you.

      +HON. MASUKU:  I rise on a point of privilege Mr. Speaker Sir.  We are very happy because of the resounding victory in the two byelections in Tsholotsho.  There was also a resounding victory in

Hwedza.  This shows that as the ruling party we will continue ruling and people also know that the only party which is there for them and representing them is ZANU PF.  We will continue ruling until the cows come home.

      HON. MAVETERA:  Thank Mr. Speaker Sir.  I rise on a point of privilege whereby we would like to thank His Excellency, the President. We want to give special commendation to His Excellency for appointing more youthful Ministers and Deputy Ministers the Executive into Cabinet – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.] – This is an unrelenting recognition of what the President did and is indeed an endorsement of the inclusive philosophy of generational blending where the young are blended with the elders.  We would like to thank him for we understand this is actually in line with the philosophy of the new dispensation of making sure that there is generational blending.

         I also want to congratulate the Hon. Ministers and Deputy

Ministers who managed to get into the Executive.  We want to thank His

Excellency for we know that these new developments are a confirmation of the new dispensation’s commitment to intergenerational dialogue.

Thank you Hon. Speaker Sir.

      HON. BITI:  Hon. Speaker Sir, I rise on a point of privilege in terms of Standing Order 69(d). I seek your ruling that you direct the Minister of Health and Child Care to address Parliament on the crisis in the health sector.  Hon. Speaker Sir, doctors are on day 69 of their strike and the situation in our public hospitals is a disaster with so many people dying.

      Hon. Speaker, I was in Karanda Hospital recently and the little hospital has been flooded by thousands and thousands of people who are now leaving Harare, other cities, towns and villages to go to Karanda.

Hon. Speaker, I am also disturbed by the fact that the United Kingdom Government has in fact given special exemptions to doctors from foreign countries wanting to work there.  I am afraid that unless we address the situation, we are going to lose over 300 doctors that the country trained, paid for to the United Kingdom.  So I ask with great respect Sir, that the Minister of Health and Child Care gives a Ministerial Statement on the issue.

      I also want to draw your attention Hon. Speaker that on Thursday, 12 November, the Minister of Finance will present a 40 billion dollar budget in this august House.  Surely, I pray that the Minister finds in his wisdom that he gives adequate remuneration and funding to doctors and the public health facilities.  Thank you – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.] –

   THE HON. SPEAKER:  Thank you Hon. Biti, I will proceed to

engage the Hon. Minister of Health and Child Care, except that the last part of your request - I think that one should be reserved for budget debate.  I will not include that one.

      *HON. MATHE:  Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  I rise on a point of privilege.  Mr. Speaker Sir, people are facing difficulties because of the drought.  Livestock is dying in hundreds and in one family they lost about seven cattle and there are about two or three cattle that are dying on a daily basis.  Shortly we will have no cattle in this country or in

some regions.  The main reason why these animals are dying is that there is no grazing land, there is no water.  We have had no rains up to this time.  I am begging this House, and from Members of Parliament, to look at ways and means of alleviating this problem, especially on stock feed.  What we now need is an emergency supply of stock feed so that we can sustain these animals until the rains fall.

      According to our culture, this is a form of draught power we use cattle instead of tractors.  By so doing, we will be trying to fight off hunger.  Mr. Speaker, the cattle we have are now so thin, such that they cannot be used as draught power, even if the rains fall. I am pleading with the Government to put emergency plans of assisting the farmers in ploughing their fields because cattle may not be able to carry that task.

    *THE HON. SPEAKER: Thank you Hon. Member. I advise you

to ask the question during Question Time to the Ministry of Agriculture, so that we can get a response on the means and ways we can save livestock which is being wasted and dying on a daily basis.

       Hon. Matangira having stood up to raise a supplementary point.       THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order, Hon. Matangira, I hope

you were not serious about that.  We do not supplement a point of privilege.

      HON. SIKHALA:  I rise on a point of privilege Mr. Speaker concerning the events of the 15th October, 2019.  On the 15th of October,

2019, Mr. Speaker Sir, there was an altercation that took place in the

City of Belgrade in Serbia between you Mr. Speaker Sir and a

Zimbabwean journalist called Simba Chikanza.  After that altercation, it is now reported and also through an affidavit that has been deposited to the Inter-Parliamentary Union, (IPU)  that you Mr. Speaker Sir, went and reported the said journalist to the Director of National Intelligence, Isaac Moyo that Simba Chikanza is a security threat in this  country.

      Simba Chikanza, Mr. Speaker Sir is a Zimbabwean who in terms of the Constitution is entitled - [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections] – Mr. Speaker Sir, Simba Chikanza is a Zimbabwean who is entitled to the protection by the laws of this country over the issue of his security.  May you please guarantee, as he has raised a red alert that he has been classified as a threat to national security, that he is guaranteed to come to his country without harassment, intimidation or arrest?  It is said that his classification as a threat to State security was motivated by your report to the Director General of CIO.  Can you guarantee Simba Chikadza’s security in our country as a citizen of this country?  I thank you.

  THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, sometimes it is important that you

get the facts straight.   Leaders of delegations to conferences such as IPU are accorded state security and I was privileged to be covered by the state security of Serbia.  It was what the security in Serbia thought, to the extent that my security had to be secured, they did take the necessary measures including beefing up the security around my presence in Serbia.  It is normal practice that the security services in Serbia are obligated to inform my country of origin of what has transpired.  It is the communication between the security services of Serbia and security services here in Zimbabwe.  They were obligated to give a report and liaise with the security services here in Zimbabwe.  What transpires between the two organs is not privy to me.  It is a matter between the two security agencies in Serbia and Zimbabwe.  So, I did not make any report to the Director General of Zimbabwe Intelligence Services.

      *HON. MATSIKENYERE:  I have risen on a point of privilege.  We educated our doctors through our own funds in this country and they have been supported throughout their university education.  To my surprise, they are the people who are now betraying their country.  I am begging this House to put some laws in place which will guide some people who will have trained in some certain professions such as doctors, nurses, pilots and other essential services.

     THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, Hon Member, do not tempt me to

send you outside please.  Hon. Member, you raised a matter that is connected to the point of privilege raised by Hon. Biti.  When the Hon. Minister gives a Ministerial Statement, it will be proper at that stage to make that suggestion to the Hon. Minister.

      HON. NDUNA:  I wish to rise on a point of privilege.  Thank you for recognising me.  It is my suspicion that since the start of the new term – I have information that since the start of the new term, children at Chegutu High School have not been taught.  The teachers go to school and sit in the staff room since the beginning of the term.  It is my hope that the new Minister of Primary and Secondary Education, Cde. Cain Mathema gets to the root of this because it is my suspicion that it is not only happening in Chegutu but it is happening everywhere else.  It has not been brought up publicly as something happening.  It is also my thinking that the headmaster at the school is complacent because he could be aware of what is happening that children are not being taught Mr. Speaker Sir.  I rise to protect the electorate of Chegutu West Constituency in particular and Zimbabwe in general, especially on this issue.

     THE HON. SPEAKER:  Hon. Members, issues of privilege must

please have a national character.  May I urge Hon. Members that if you have a specific question like the one from Hon. Nduna, to put it in writing.  It will demand the Minister concerned to enquire or make some research and report to the Hon. Member because it is definitely a specific area happening in a constituency.  So, I hope you will put it as a written question and the Hon. Minister should be able to answer.

MOTION

RESTORATION OF THE ZIMBABWE INVESTMENT

DEVELOPMENT AGENCY BILL [H. B. 2, 2019], MONEY

LAUNDERING AND PROCEEDS OF CRIME AMENDMENT BILL

[H. B. 4, 2019], CORONER’S OFFICE BILL [H. B. 5, 2019],

MARRIAGES BILL [H. B. 7, 2019] AND EDUCATION

AMENDMENT BILL [H. B. 1C, 2019] ON THE ORDER PAPER

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND

PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI):  I rise on a

motion standing in my name that the motions on the following Bills which were superseded by the end of the First Session of the Ninth Parliament be restored on the Order Paper at the stage at which the Bills had reached in terms of Standing Order No 161(1);

  • Zimbabwe Investment Development Agency Bill [H. B. 2, 2019];
  • Money Laundering and proceeds of Crime Amendment Bill [H. B. 4,

2019];

  • Coroner’s Bill [H. B. 5, 2019];
  • Marriages Bill [H. B. 7, 2019];
  • Freedom of Information Bill [H. B. 6, 2019] and
  • Education Amendment Bill [H. B. 1C, 2019]. I thank you Mr.

Speaker Sir.

Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

RATIFICATION OF THE AGREEMENT ESTABLISHNG AN

ECONOMIC PARTNERSHIP BETWEEN THE EASTERN AND

SOUTHERN AFRICAN STATES AND THE UNITED KINGDOM OF

GREAT BRITAIN AND NORTHERN IRELAND

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND

PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI):  Thank you Mr.

Speaker Sir.  I rise on a motion standing in my name that:

WHEREAS in term of Section 327 (2) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe provides that an international treaty which has been concluded or executed by, or under the authority of the President does not bind Zimbabwe until it has been approved by Parliament;

AND WHEREAS the Agreement establishing an Economic

Partnership Agreement between the Eastern and Southern African

States, on the one part and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and

Northern Ireland was opened for signature, at London on 31st January, 2019; and it will enter into force either on the first day of the first month, or on such other date as the United Kingdom and that signatory Eastern and Southern Africa States agree, following the deposit of the latter of their respective instruments of ratification, acceptance or approval;

AND WHEREAS the said agreement establishing the Economic

Partnership Agreement between the Eastern and Southern Africa States, on the one part and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, on the other part was signed on the 31st of January, 2019, on behalf of the Republic of Zimbabwe;

AND WHEREAS Article 59 (1) of the Agreement provides for signature, ratification, acceptance, approval and accession;

NOW THEREFORE, in terms of Section 327 (2) (a) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe, this House resolves that the aforesaid

Agreement be and is hereby approved.  I thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.

Motion put and agreed to.

HON. MUSHORIWA:  On a point of order Mr. Speaker Sir.

THE HON. SPEAKER:  There has been some procedural hiccup on Notice of Motion No. 1, Hon.  Minister, if you could redo that one.

My apologies.

MOTION

RESTORATION OF THE ZIMBABWE INVESTMENT

DEVELOPMENT AGENCY BILL [H. B. 2, 2019], MONEY LAUNDERING AND PROCEEDS OF CRIME AMENDMENT BILL

[H. B. 4, 2019], CORONER’S OFFICE BILL [H. B. 5, 2019],

MARRIAGES BILL [H. B. 7, 2019] AND EDUCATION

AMENDMENT BILL [H. B. 1C, 2019] ON THE ORDER PAPER

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND

PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI):  Thank you Mr.

Speaker Sir.  Mr. Speaker Sir, I rise on a motion standing in my name that the motions on the following Bills which were superseded by the end of the First Session of the Ninth Parliament be restored on the Order

Paper at the stage at which the Bills had reached in terms of Standing Order No 161 (1).

  • Zimbabwe Investment Development Agency Bill [H. B. 2, 2019];
  • Money Laundering and proceeds of Crime Amendment Bill [H. B. 4,

2019];

  • Coroner’s Bill [H. B. 5, 2019];
  • Marriages Bill [H. B. 7, 2019];
  • Freedom of Information Bill [H. B. 6, 2019] and
  • Education Amendment Bill [H. B. 1C, 2019]. I so submit.

Motion put and agreed to.

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Again, we need to be procedural in terms of Notice of Motion No. 2 because I needed to call for debate.

MOTION

RATIFICATION OF THE AGREEMENT ESTABLISHNG AN

ECONOMIC PARTNERSHIP BETWEEN THE EASTERN AND

SOUTHERN AFRICAN STATES AND THE UNITED KINGDOM OF

GREAT BRITAIN AND NORTHERN IRELAND

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND

PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI):  Thank you Mr.

Speaker Sir.  I rise on a motion standing in my name that:

WHEREAS in term of Section 327 (2) of the Constitution of

Zimbabwe provides that an international treaty which has been concluded or executed by, or under the authority of the President does not bind Zimbabwe until it has been approved by Parliament;

AND WHEREAS the Agreement establishing an Economic

Partnership Agreement between the Eastern and Southern African

States, on the one part and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and

Northern Ireland was opened for signature, at London on 31st January, 2019; and it will enter into force either on the first day of the first month, or on such other date as the United Kingdom and that signatory Eastern and Southern Africa States agree, following the deposit of the latter of their respective instruments of ratification, acceptance or approval;

AND WHEREAS the said agreement establishing the Economic Partnership Agreement between the Eastern and Southern Africa States, on the one part and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, on the other part was signed on the 31st of January, 2019, on behalf of the Republic of Zimbabwe;

AND WHEREAS Article 59 (1) of the Agreement provides for signature, ratification, acceptance, approval and accession;

NOW THEREFORE, in terms of Section 327 (2) (a) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe, this House resolves that the aforesaid

Agreement be and is hereby approved.  I thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.

      HON. GONESE: On a point of order! We have got a situation where we have a Portfolio Committee which deals with matters relating to economic affairs, which is the Budget and Finance Committee.  My question is, whether this particular agreement had been referred to the appropriate Committee.

  I believe that in the last Parliament, we had adopted as a matter of practice that when we have such agreements, they are referred to their appropriate Portfolio Committees which will then give us an in depth analysis so that when Members debate, they do so from an informed position.  Whilst Members may be able to debate from their individual knowledge but as a matter of practice, I believe that it is more desirable for the appropriate Committee which is seized with the matter to have deliberations on the agreement, present a report and thereafter debate can then resume.

  THE HON. SPEAKER: As far as I am aware, the requirement is

for presentation to Parliament and that is why in the Eighth Parliament you were insisting that you wanted to see the agreement put in your pigeon holes.  If we are going to go that route of committees, then it will take years for us to go through the protocols.

      This agreement is straight forward. In fact, it is part of the EU and it has been extracted from there; there is nothing new as far as I am concerned.  The Hon. Minister can elaborate on that.

      HON. ZIYAMBI: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  You are very correct.  The United Kingdom is preparing to exit European Union, so they just extracted that agreement and then we have it with Great Britain instead of European Union.  So, it is an existing agreement that was extracted from EU that we are now signing with Great Britain and Northern Island.

      HON. MUSHORIWA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  I think the Minister of Justice should inform this House what motivates, what is the basis behind us as a country going to sign for this agreement?

      Mr. Speaker Sir, you will appreciate that Zimbabwe is a Member of SADC.  You will also understand that we are also a member of

COMESA and recently, you will also understand that we are part of the

African Continental Trade Agreement.  Now, the essence of it is that; for instance if you talk of the African Free Trade Area that we signed as part of Africa, where we want us as Zimbabwe and Africa as a continent to make sure that we liberalise the trade agreement, we also make sure that we have got access to each and every market.

      It then boggles my mind if we then have an agreement coming in where we have European States Agencies and these States are defined as the Union of Comoros, the Republic of Madagascar, the Republic of Mauritius, the Republic of Seychelles, the Republic of Zambia and the Republic of Zimbabwe.

      Now, if you consider the other countries that we deal with as a country in terms of trade, most of these countries even within SADC are not part of this agreement. Even within Africa, they are not part of this agreement.  However not only that, you will reckon that in terms of the signatory, I think the first country to sign is Seychelles and then Zimbabwe.  Out of these countries that I have mentioned who are part of this ESA agreement, my view is that it is prudent for the Minister responsible for trade to make sure that we do not need to have these piecemeal agreements.  In as much as I agree that the United Kingdom is leaving the European Union, but truly we know that sooner rather than later, they are going to have an agreement - SADC and COMESA.  Why are we pulling ourselves out of the regional blocs? Why are we pulling ourselves out of the economic blocs that we are part of?  There should be a reason.

      Just to show you Mr. Speaker, Zambia which is listed here has not even signed.  We are so quick to commit our signature on any document that we want.  I just wonder whether we are motivated as a country by just sending our officials there to get per diems and sign these documents without a clear thinking.  If you then look into this; it does not read well even with the economic blue print that the Government is using.  We do not think deep before we commit ourselves to this.  It is to this end that I will require the Hon. Minister to explain to this House what Zimbabwe’s investment thinking is; what is it that we intend to achieve outside the other economic blocs that we are?  Are we not disadvantaging ourselves and why should we be the first ones to run? I thank you.

      HON. NDUNA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. First and foremost, I would like to applaud the Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs for presenting this agreement for the expeditious signage or signature that they appended on this treaty.  I say this with the background that we are a former colony of Britain and the de-investment of Britain or business which we then stopped doing with Britain because of the sanctions and other additives because they are our erstwhile colonisers, it set us back a bit Mr. Speaker Sir because the machinery that we used to use was of British origin.

I remember long back when I was in the military, we used to have an institution that was British Military Assistance Technical Team

(BMATT) and it was there for a good reason to be the transition to continue to have a British military style in the Air force and in the military Mr. Speaker Sir, not only because of convention and tradition but because of the equipment that we were utilising but aware that Britain was the chief supplier of military hardware to the Rhodesian forces pre-independence, we had to have that transition both technically and equipment wise.  After that period of transition was over, we then became masters of the equipment that we had but when the sanctions came in, when there was disengagement completely; we even grounded some of the military hardware because the origin was Britain.

      Now, the coming in of this business association and this treaty and agreement is quite welcome because the hardware I speak to and about is both aviation and high velocity weapons.  They have a shelf life which can still be recouped and for argument’s sake, if it is a fighter jet, it is supposed to have a shelf life of about 3 000 flying hours.  So, we could at the time of disengagement have just flown 1 500 hours on these pieces.  So I am hoping Mr. Speaker Sir, that we can salvage these pieces of military hardware through the engagement with the British once again so that we can get what we want from what we have.  We do not only have aviation pieces of equipment, but we also have hangers and equipment to mend and to repair the same hardware, which hangers and equipment were designed according to that hardware.  So, it is my fervent view and hope that this re-engagement is especially championed by the new dispensation of the Zimbabwean Second Republic is going to see us salvage something out of the lost hardware that we would have lost completely if there was no such treaties and agreement.

      Mr. Speaker Sir, we also lost because of that disengagement, a lot of our radar machinery since a lot of it was from Australia and her allies, who is Britain.  It is my hope that this can now get to inform the Australians and the other allies of Britain to be embedded with us in terms of recouping the lost relations that we had that can transform this nation into an economic hub both continentally and regionally.

Mr. Speaker Sir, I want to also then say Britain by disengaging from the European Union, it does not give it less power than it had when it was in the European Union.  They are still Britain whose power you know very well and it is all just incumbent upon us to stand on the shoulders of giants in order for us to see far.  So, I commend the reengagement efforts and I also applaud the Minister for expeditiously appending his signature. We should quickly append signatures to such treaties now and in the future in order to get our country from the economic doldrums that we currently are embedded in.  Mr. Speaker Sir, I want to thank you for giving me this opportunity to vociferously and effectively put across my points.

HON. K. PARADZA: Thank you very much Hon. Speaker.  This agreement is a precursor to so many things and we are happy that we have signed this agreement and we are going to ratify this because it is going to open so many avenues for our business people and industries.  It is also going to open a lot of things and it shows that Zimbabwe is now engaging. This is part of our engagement efforts and it is good that we have done this.  You will remember Hon. Speaker, that prior to 2000, we had our EU quota of beef, 9 100 kgs/tonnes of beef which was going to Europe bringing us more than $50 million each year and this is part of it.  We are starting now to engage with our erstwhile colonisers.  So we are going to resuscitate that and you are aware Hon. Speaker that as we speak, the CSC is being modernised in preparation for the business to come.  It is good that together with SADC, we are going to do business with the UK and it is a very good market for our products.  Those who are in the horticulture sector Mr. Speaker Sir, you know that we had been sending flowers and peas to Europe and that was banned and now because of this agreement, we are going to resuscitate doing that to send our horticulture to especially Tesco which is a big supermarket in the UK.  It is going to give us a lot of mileage and I think because of this agreement, it is also going to open avenues with other countries as well, especially the US which I think is going to see some sense so that we can also even sign a similar agreement with the US and other European countries in order to start trading with them.

Hon. Speaker, I just thought that I should commend our Government for doing that and the Executive has done very well in terms of making sure that we open these lines of communication with the UK.  I think we should not waste our time debating this but we should just ratify it here and we go.  Thank you very much Hon.

Speaker.

HON. CHIKWINYA: Thank you Hon. Speaker.  I shall try and

attempt to address this motion on three parts.  The first part is that it is very necessary and it is also a strong measure of the Government’s character in terms of consistency with regards to its policies. Hon.

Speaker, this agreement was signed on the 31st January, 2019 in London. Pursuant to that Hon. Speaker, we came back as a nation, went to SADC and managed to convince SADC that we are under performing because of sanctions. SADC took a resolution to mark the 25th October in solidarity for the sanctions to be removed against Zimbabwe, but in the backyard we were not telling the whole world that we are entering into such agreements and this proves inconsistency on our part.

These are the allies whom we want to be trading with and we are at the same time putting resources and chanting propaganda that they are putting sanctions on us. So we must be consistent Hon. Speaker. We failed to be so consistent to the extent that our own parliamentarians being motivated by the propaganda which we had churned to them, one of our own managed to actually come up with a motion which has been debated in Parliament and it is on the Order Paper, being motion number five (5). This is what the Hon. Member seeks to achieve and I

quote, “NOW THEREFORE –

  1. a) Calls upon the United States of America, the European Union and its allies…” and certainly Britain is part of the European

Union and is regarded as an ally, “…to urgently and unconditionally remove the illegal sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe at their instigation as these have resulted in horrendous suffering of the ordinary Zimbabwean citizens”.

My point Hon. Speaker is that we have put so much emotion into

the people’s representatives, including parliamentarians - yet in the background we are not telling the truth that we are not only engaging the British in terms of trade. Point number two is that I have taken note of the countries so listed here; Comoros, Madagascar, Mauritius, Seychelles, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Apart and with due respect from

Zambia, we are being grouped against countries like the Comoros, Madagascar and Seychelles which have got nothing.

The British know that we are resident with 63 minerals and it is us whom they are targeting. We must be able to rise to a level whereby we trade equally and therefore, it brings me to the issue that if we do not properly analyse this agreement, we are exposing ourselves to people who are seeing that they are getting out of the European Union and now want to seek allies whom they are going to do trade in their favour. I therefore seek that Britain should equally group us with countries like South Africa and Mozambique whom they are negotiating with on their terms and not group us with weaklings like the Comoros in terms of economic development.

Thirdly Mr. Speaker, I was looking at it if the British are genuine in that they want to trade with Zimbabwe, there are no terms of reference with regards to movement of people from Britain to Zimbabwe and Zimbabwe to Britain. We cannot be able to do business when we have got stringent conditions of movement. We cannot be able to do business when there are restrictive conditions of movement. If we look at the Malawians Hon. Speaker, they do not require a visa to go to Britain. So, unless we discuss the issue of movement of Zimbabweans going to the United Kingdom and the British coming to Zimbabwe that is when we can be able to discuss trade agreements. I thank you.

HON. MADZIMURE: I want to draw members to the fact that on the 19th September, this year the United Kingdom entered into an agreement with the customs union of Southern Africa and the countries involved there are Namibia, Botswana, Lesotho, Eswathini and Mozambique. They went into a preferential trade agreement that excludes Zimbabwe and this was after Zimbabwe and the United Kingdom had entered into an agreement earlier in the year. Now, you try to extract the reason why such an agreement was arrived at between

South Africa, Botswana, Namibia - excluding Zimbabwe and the United Kingdom, and we are celebrating an agreement where we are lumped with countries like Comoros.

It is clear that the U.K is protecting itself as far as resources are concerned. They are pulling Zimbabwe away from the E.U. Zimbabwe will now have to negotiate with the E.U and it will be Zimbabwe alone negotiating. When we ask for these agreements to be debated or referred to the Committees, we want to scrutinise these agreements on what is there for Zimbabwe in the agreements. As far as I am concerned, we cannot celebrate this and the issue of hypocrisy Mr. Speaker, how did the British even debate such an agreement in their own Parliament when here in Zimbabwe we are debating sanctions and castigating the British? How do you reconcile our own actions Mr. Speaker?

If there  is one issue that I respected the old man, (may his soul rest in peace), he did not want to do double standards – [AN HON. MEMBER: Tsvangirayi] – Aaah, Robert Mugabe. He would stick to his guns and what we are now seeing here is meddling around trying to jump from here to there as far as I am concerned because how can we debate a motion on sanctions at the sometime debating an agreement between ourselves and the U.K. Where is the reasoning? What are we trying to achieve? What kind of re-engagement is this? We are actually sending a delegation out there to lobby including the Chair of the International Relations leading delegations. This is the contradiction that any leader would not want to see.

So, Mr. Speaker I cannot understand where we are going and where we are coming from. I have not heard even our own Portfolio Committee on Foreign Affairs complaining about what the British did; they signed an agreement with Zimbabwe earlier in the year and went on to sign another preferential agreement with other six countries that are actually of well-meaning in terms of their economies and lump us with these. Mr. Speaker, my concern is that as Zimbabwe we are quick to celebrate things that we sometimes do not even understand.

I would want to see that agreement even myself so that we can contribute meaningfully but there is no sincerity as far as this debate is concerned, because we are going to be left exposed. The EU are serious and those people are really serious. They will start looking at Zimbabwe and say, you have got an agreement with the UK so whatever agreement we had with the EU we have now to renegotiate. I rest my case.

HON. HAMAUSWA: I also want to add my voice to this agreement. I want to refer the House to the previously known as EPA agreements which were done between EU and African countries. These EPAs had many challenges that are well documented and I was of the view that we were supposed to exhaust those challenges and see whether this agreement is going to address those challenges. We had an opportunity to have a re-look into the agreement because they said it was extracted from an already existing agreement from the EU but African countries have complained.

Firstly, EU has been negotiating as a united front but entering into agreements with different countries, like dividing the African countries. This has been a big challenge. The issue is like in Southern African and I concur with my colleagues who are saying South Africa has been outside the agreement which Zimbabwe is entering into. South Africa is

a major trading partner of Zimbabwe. So by being bunched together with countries with small economies, it is going to be a big challenge.

      The other issue is that the EPA agreements were criticised for restrictive measures that were imposed by the EU countries, including Britain. One example is phyto-sanitary measures whereby goods from developing countries are supposed to meet certain standards. My question is: - are our industries going to meet those standards now? How many industries from Zimbabwe are going to manage to send their products to Britain without facing restrictions? As long as Britain is going to come up with restrictive measures which will consider how our products are going to be manufactured, it is actually a big challenge to Zimbabwe.

      It is going to be a David and Goliath kind of relationship where Britain will have well established industries, but Zimbabwe - because we do not have well established industries, we need to know the restrictive measures that Britain will put in relation to the goods that will be originating from Zimbabwe. This is one big challenge. There is another challenge that might arise because Britain will not be able to enjoy the market share within the EU, they would want to dump their products to African countries, including Zimbabwe.

      So, we also need to be very careful in terms of the goods that are going to be dumped from Britain to Zimbabwe. Are they not going to displace our own products – are we not going to affect the industries that we are supposed to nurture?  This is another big challenge which we should be wary off. We cannot open floodgates for well established industries to come to Zimbabwe. We need to know the specific products that are going to benefit from this agreement. Possibly, Zimbabwe will not benefit much.

      I conclude by saying it was important for this agreement to be deliberated by the specific Portfolio Committee so that a full agreement is tabled before the Committee and some of the provisions are really examined to see the disadvantages and advantages of entering into such an agreement. Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.

      HON. TOGAREPI: Mr. Speaker, I am shocked for the first time that I hear from the other side that they would want Zimbabwe to refuse any relationship with the international community. It is so shocking and for the first time, I hear them repeating the language of ZANU PF but now, the situation that we are in is for Zimbabwe to have partners. If we are going to have partners like UK, it is going to open relations with countries whom we find in the Commonwealth and increase international engagement for the good of Zimbabwe? I do not find any argument that says we should not engage the UK and we believe any engagement with UK will disadvantage Zimbabwe.

      *HON. HAMAUSWA: On a point of order Mr. Speaker Sir. It is important to clarify issues and to be honest. What the Hon. Member just said is not what I said. Maybe the Hon. Member did not understand what I said in English and so I would want to repeat what I said in Shona...

  THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER (HON. MUTOMBA): May

you withdraw that language which is unparliamentary?

        *HON. HAMAUSWA: Mr. Speaker Sir, I withdraw. I was saying

that the issue emanated from our side and the issue is that this agreement was not analysed because this agreement which is being said that it originated from the EU and other parts of the world - I am saying that we are not refusing that Zimbabwe should have partnerships with other countries the world over. That is not what we said and because of that, I wanted to clarify that point.

           HON. TOGAREPI: Now I am very happy that the Hon. Member

has said he is not against the agreement. If he is not against the agreement, there is nothing to debate and we should proceed with the agreement. 

          Hon. Biti having stood up.

  THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: I thought Hon. Biti debated

earlier on. – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections]-

      HON. BITI: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. I want to clarify our submission on this motion. Firstly, we are not going to stand in the way of this motion by the Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, but we are saying to the Government that the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union offers a fantastic opportunity for countries like Zimbabwe - but this opportunity should be harvested at regional level. Therefore, in our respectful submission, we should be part of SADC to negotiate with Britain and in the process of the negotiation, we should go beyond the issues that are covered by this small sub-agreement which in fact, as Hon. Hamauswa has said is just an EPA. We need exhaustive issues.

      I heard Hon. Nduna speaking about something that is not in this agreement, which is military cooperation. It is not there in this agreement and that point illustrates that if we are going to have relationships with the United Kingdom, we need a comprehensive package, including the issue raised by Hon. S. Chikwinya, the issue of Zimbabweans access to the United Kingdom by having a visa free arrangement. It is not an accident Hon. Speaker Sir. It is not an accident that the countries you see on this agreement that are in the company of Zimbabwe are Mickey - Mouse countries without any financial power including ZAP, that is not accident.

      So, in order for us to have power, let us have a comprehensive agreement negotiated in the context of SADC. As I am talking to you right now, the Hon. Minister will know that the European Union has started negotiating the successor of the Cotonou Agreement.  These two platforms offer an opportunity for Zimbabwe to cover out terms that are specific and special to it.  This little agreement does not say that, so that is the point which we are making that we can get more and we can do more but we have not opposed this particular agreement. I thank you

Hon. Speaker – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.] –

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND

PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): Thank you Mr.

Speaker Sir I want to thank the Hon. Members that debated and contributed – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

     THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Can the Hon. Member be

heard in silence Hon. Members.

      HON. ZIYAMBI: Hon. Mushoriwa was asking the basis of

signing the agreement; it is an economic partnership agreement that is the basis.  I want to go to the second point whereby Hon. Members were saying we are members of SADC and COMESA; it is true Hon. Speaker.  If we are a member of SADC, it does not bar us from having bilateral or bi-national agreements.  When we are in SADC, we can have bi-national agreements with Botswana and South Africa, it is allowed and I want to agree with Hon. Biti that when the time comes for a bloc of SADC to negotiate with Great Britain; Zimbabwe as part of SADC will negotiate as part of SADC and that is well received and it will be done accordingly.  What I also want to say is that Hon. Members were speaking to issues that are not part of the agreement.

      This agreement that we are signing has its own aims and what the Hon. Members were speaking to are broad issues that are not in the agreement, so I believe that we must approve this agreement.  It is well received that if Great Britain is going to negotiate with SADC, we will do that.  As a bloc, we will have an agreement that is favourable to us but for now Mr. Speaker Sir, I move that this House adopts this agreement, I thank you – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.] –         HON. HAMAUSWA: On a point of order Mr. Speaker Sir.

           THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: What is your point of order?

      HON. HAMAUSWA: My point of order is that I realise that the full agreement was just put in our pigeon holes and we did not get time to go through it.  What the Hon. Minister is saying is not true; those broad issues are there in the agreement.  We have issues like the rule of origin and how the customs duty is going to be addressed.  Those are the issues that the Hon. Members are supposed to debate. I will give you an example; here when we are milking our cows we use hands, Britain can actually say they want to import milk that was extracted through mechanized means. Those are the issues that we need to address so that the agreement is in line with the conditions of our economies.  We were debating saying that in Zimbabwe, the informal sector is actually holding more than 8 billion dollars. So it means our economy is largely informalised but then we are taking the formal sector, this is a Goliath and David kind of an agreement where Zimbabwe is a David and Goliath is Britain so – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] – so we need to unpack these rules of origin, we are not doing favour to our country, we need to unpack the agreement.  We cannot just rush to sign this agreement without unpacking it. Why are we rushing?

           THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Hon. Members, these papers

were put in the pigeon holes on the 24th of October.

      HON. HAMAUSWA: Mr. Speaker, I check in these pigeon holes

on a daily basis, I checked yesterday and there was nothing and the House was not sitting.

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: But we have got other

members who saw the papers.

         HON. HAMAUSWA: As you are saying that we must go ahead

and sign this agreement, you can proceed but you will not be doing this country a favour because the industries and the majority that we represent that are affected by this agreement, we cannot be able to debate on their behalf.

         THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Hon. Hamauswa, I had

actually given you the opportunity to seek your point of order but now it is appearing you are now debating. I did not give you the platform to debate and I have ruled on your point or order.

      HON. ZIYAMBI: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir, I had already concluded and maybe I may just explain that we do not debate or alter the format of international agreements.  We debate on either to agree, ratify it or to refuse, not to alter the contents of the agreement.  I also indicated that this agreement has always been there. It has been extracted from an existing agreement with the European Union. I also agree with Hon. Biti that should an opportunity arise that SADC is negotiating as a bloc or COMESA, Zimbabwe is part of that and there is nothing that stops Zimbabwe from having bi-national agreements with any other country because they are member States of SADC.  So, I move Hon. Speaker that this House ratifies the agreement.

          Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND

PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI):  I move that

Orders of the Day, Numbers 3, 4 and 5 be stood over until Order of the Day, Number 6 on today’s Order Paper has been disposed of.

Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

FIRST REPORT OF THE PUBLIC ACCOUNTS COMMITTEE ON

COMPLIANCE ISSUES FOR THE RESERVE BANK OF

ZIMBABWE

HON. BITI:  I move the motion standing in my name and on behalf of the Public Accounts Committee, that this House adopts the First Report of the Public Accounts Committee on Compliance Issues for the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe.

          HON. NDUNA:  I second.

                HON. BITI:  This is the Second Report of the Public Accounts

Committee on Compliance Issues involving the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe. Section 119 of the Constitution, gives Parliament power to ensure that provisions of the Constitution are “upheld and that the State and all institutions and agencies of Government at every level act constitutionally and in the national interest.”

Section 299 of the Constitution confers the Public Accounts Committee with unlimited oversight powers over all State revenues and expenditure. It states that

  1. “Parliament must monitor and oversee expenditure by the State and all Commissions and institutions and agencies of Government at every level, including statutory bodies, government controlled entities, provincial and metropolitan councils and local authorities...”

Accordingly, Parliament in general and the Public Accounts

Committee in particular has the responsibility to ensure accountability and openness of the State through oversight of activities of the Executive and its auxiliary bodies.

The Public Accounts Committee is constituted in terms of Standing Order No. 16 of the Standing Rules and Orders of the National Assembly which reads:

“There must be a Committee on Public Accounts, for the examination of the sums granted by Parliament to meet the public expenditure and of such other accounts laid before Parliament as the committee may see fit.”

In doing its work, not only does the Committee measure compliance arising from reports of the Auditor General or other reports but the Committee also looks at constitutional and statutory compliance in so far as it relates to financial and audit matters.

In short, the Committee exercises its oversight function by examining both the technical accounting issues as identified in audit report as well as technical legal compliance issues.

Background to the Inquiry

In performing its duties, the PAC relies mainly on the annual statutory reports compiled by the Auditor General and its findings on the level of implementation of recommendations by various entities audited.

The Committee in its work also relies on various specialised audits including Forensic and Value for Money audits done by the Auditor

General at the special instance and request of Cabinet, particular Minister or any other entity.

In carrying out its work, the Committee is guided by Section 119 of the Constitution.

Ultimately, the purpose of the Public Accounts Committee is to promote democratic and good governance in Zimbabwe as propagated by the Constitution.   

Significance of the Reserve Bank Of Zimbabwe

Mr. Speaker Sir, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) is the country’s apex bank which plays a critical role in the economy of the country. The RBZ’s key functions include; implementing and executing the country’s monetary policy, management of the country’s payment system and currency and the regulation of the banking sector.  The RBZ also plays the central role of being the banker to the State, a function which involves making payments on behalf of Government and in a limited way, lending to Government. The Bank also plays a critical role as a lender of last resort in addition to managing and regulating the use of foreign currency in the country.

Our first report to Parliament which was adopted by Parliament on 30th July 2019 focussed on compliance issues relating to the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development. It was in the process of gathering evidence central to our report that certain issues emerged, Hon. Speaker Sir, which made it necessary and essential to interrogate the RBZ on its own. These issues included among other issues the Government

Overdraft with the Central Bank and Debt Contraction by the Central Bank itself, quasi - fiscal activities by the Central Bank among other things.

Methodology

The Committee studied the reports of the Auditor General for the years 2014 to 2017 in so far as they related to the Appropriation Account of the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development. From the observations, a few of the issues raised in this report required clarification by the Central Bank. The Committee therefore invited the Central Bank to give evidence before it.

The Committee was honoured to receive the RBZ Governor, Dr J.

  1. Mangundya and his team which included the bank’s Counsel, Mr. Webster Madeira, the Director of ZAMCO, Dr Kanhai, and the Director of Finance, Ms Mushowe on 4th and 11th March 2019.

Various issues were comprehensively discussed during the said meetings. These included the following issues

  • The RBZ Debt;
  • ZAMCO;
  • The RBZ’s engagement in quasi fiscal activities;
  • Bond notes and RTGS balances;
  • Foreign Currency and Export Surrender requirements; and
  • Securitisation of minerals

Bank’s Refusal to Supply Certain Information

As is normal in the work of every Parliamentary Committee, the Committee requested various information and documentation.  The Bank through its Counsel, Mr. Madeira, undertook to provide a legal opinion on quasi-fiscal activities as well as the legality of the Bank’s export surrender requirements and the legality of the Bank’s use of the country’s minerals as securities for loans obtained by it.  This process is called securitisation. This opinion was never supplied to the Committee.

The Bank also undertook to provide full details of all its activities and transactions relating to ZAMCO. This included full details and disaggregation by Bank of each loan portfolio taken over by ZAMCO, the names of the individual defaulters, the amounts thereof, and the security provided.

This information, in oral evidence, the RBZ Governor undertook to provide without delay. In fact, in the second meeting held on 11th of

March 2019, the Governor explained Dr, Kanhai’s absence as that he was compiling the information that we had requested. The Committee was shocked when it received a letter dated 18th March 2019, in which the Bank claimed that it could not disclose the disaggregated information, Hon. Speaker, pertaining to the RBZ, the portfolio taken over, the amount lent and the security on the basis that:

  • Protected by banker-client privilege existing between ZAMCO and the individual defaulter whose debt was being taken over.
  • That the RBZ was covered and protected by section 60 of the RBZ Act as well as Section 12 (2) of the Privileges,

Immunities, Powers of Parliament Act. 

We strongly disagreed with the Bank’s position. We maintained in our response dated 12th April 2019, that we had the right to scrutinise any public institution before us as a result of Sections 117 and 119 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe. We also reinstated our right of scrutiny of all revenues in terms of section 299 of the Constitution.  We are pleased that Counsel to Parliament agreed with our position because we sought the opinion of the lawyer to Parliament.

We insisted and communicated this to the bank through our letter dated 21st May 2019.  We therefore want to restate as the Public Accounts Committee and as Parliament, that Parliament has unlimited sovereignty and oversight powers and the RBZ, like any other body that receives public funds cannot refuse scrutiny on the basis of some technical or fictitious legal arguments.

Mr. Speaker Sir, I want to state that after this report has been written, we subsequently received the information which we were requesting namely, information on ZAMCO.  However, this report does not cover ZAMCO fully; we will come back to it once we have scrutinised that information as a Committee.

Mr. Speaker Sir, I now want to summarise the key findings of the

Committee.  After going through the evidence, the Committee’s major findings was that the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe was non-compliant to a number of legal requirements. The following are the Committee’s findings:

1.  Government Debt

Having received oral evidence from the Governor of the Reserve Bank, the Committee learnt that the bank owed a total of US$8.1 billion as of March 2019, comprising the following;

Treasury Bills used to acquire Non Performing Loans NPLs

US$ 1.2 billion

Savings Bonds (Money mopped from the system)

US$ 2.8 billion

PTA and Afrexim Bank

US$ 0.9 billion

Money Borrowed to support Government Overdraft

US$ 3.2 billion

Total

US$ 8.1 billion

I want to say that this is correct as at the end of March, 2019.

We know that they now owe the Afrexim Bank more than US$1 billion.

This is a huge figure Hon. Speaker, when you consider that the country’s external sovereign debt is around US$9 billion.  The country’s domestic debt, Treasury Bills (TBs) is $9 billion.  So, if the Central Bank is going to acquire $8.1 billion outside this Parliament, there is something wrong Hon. Speaker.  So, we give a full breakdown of this debt Hon. Speaker in Paragraph 5.11 of our report.

The Committee also noted that the RBZ as of 11th March 2019 was owed US$ 2.99 billion as an overdraft by the Central Government.  So, the Government itself also owes the Central Bank.  These are the Committee’s findings Hon. Speaker on the RBZ debt.

Committee Observations and Recommendations

The Committee is gravely concerned with the huge footprint of the RBZ in the economy. The Central Bank is not Treasury; it is not the fiscus or the Ministry of Finance.  Therefore, it cannot compete with the Central Government in accruing debt and in funding operations as we will show below.

The Committee is concerned by multiple sources of debt contraction in the country which do so oblivious to the requirements of the Constitution, the Public Debt Management Act and the Public

Finance Management Act.  So our finding Hon. Speaker is that; only the Minister of Finance should be the sole debt contraction agency in the country because it is bound by the Public Debt Management Act, the Public Finance Management Act and the Constitution.

The Committee was also deeply concerned with the RBZ’s lack of acknowledgement of Zimbabwe’s laws and that it was bound by the same. We found it deeply amazing that the Central Bank did not recognise that it could not contract any public debt without the approval of Parliament.  Mr. Speaker, we have just spent the better half of this afternoon approving an agreement in terms of Section 327 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe.  All this debt that the RBZ has been contracting has been done outside the provisions of Section 327 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe.  However, what amazes us Hon. Speaker, was the feeling by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe that it was not bound by the Constitution and it had no obligation to come to Parliament to seek approval for contracting these foreign loans, particularly loans contracted with the African Import and Export Bank.

The Committee was also concerned about the clear lack of coordination between the Central Bank in its debt contraction activities and the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development. This was particularly self-evident on the question of Treasury Bills where it was evident that Treasury Bills were being issued by both the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development and the Central Bank without coordination.  On this issue Hon. Speaker Sir, we found that the two departments were not talking to each other.  So, the figure for the debt by the Reserve Bank in its books is not mentioned or acknowledged in the Central Government’s books.  Equally, the figure for Treasury Bills; the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development has one figure and the Central Bank has another figure.  Our submission Hon. Speaker, is that everything should be done centrally through the Ministry of

Finance.

Mr. Speaker, I now want to come to ZAMCO and the ZAMCO Debt.  The Committee noted that Treasury Bills were issued to purchase non-performing loans from banks in the total sum at the time of US$ 1.2 billion.  The TBs are a levy on the Consolidated Revenue Fund and will have to be paid and honoured by the taxpayers of Zimbabwe. There was therefore a need to provide for these borrowings in an appropriation account to be approved by Parliament in terms of section 305 of the

Constitution of Zimbabwe; this did not happen in an Appropriation Act.

Treasury Bills became the major source of the budget deficit accrued between 2014 and 2018.  They represent a major bypassing of Parliament.  TBs also became the major source of the country’s domestic debt now standing at US$ 9 billion, creating a situation where for the first time in the country’s history, domestic debt now exceeds

external sovereign debt.

Recommendations

TBs should not be issued outside Parliament and without approval in an Appropriation Act.  Hon. Speaker, this is very important.  More than US$9 billion worth of Treasury Bills have been issued more than any budget passed by this Parliament since 2014.  It makes the business of Parliament particularly what we are going to do on Thursday, of approving a budget when a parallel budget unapproved by Parliament is going to be run through the issuance of Treasury Bills Hon. Speaker Sir.

We demand with the approval of this House that Bills of Condonation should be presented to Parliament together with the appropriate supplementary budget by 31st December 2019.  We recommend that the Public Finance Management Act (PFMA) must be strengthened so that the role of the Ministry of Finance as the sole authority to issue TBs is cemented and protected.  So, Hon. Speaker, we are recommending that the PFMA should be made clearer that only the Ministry of Finance and not the Reserve Bank can issue TBs.

We also recommend that only the Ministry of Finance should be the sole debt contracting agent in the country as we have recommended in our previous report.

           External Debt

The Committee gathered that the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe contracted external debt amounting to US$ 985 million as of that time

Hon. Speaker, March 2019. This was constituted by the following; US$

641 million borrowed from Afrexim Bank, US$152 million from the

PTA Bank, US$ 25 million from Banco de Mozambique, the Bank of

Mozambique, US$ 9 million from the PTA Insurance Corporation, US$ 15 million from the African Development Bank and US$1.9 million from a mining company in South Africa among others, as shown in the table below:

Afrexim Bank

US$ 641 million

PTA Bank

US$ 152 million

Banco de Mozambique

US$ 25 million

PTA Insurance Corporation

US$ 9 million

African Development Bank

US$ 15 million

Premier African Mint

US$ 1.9 million

Others

US $141.1 million

Total

US $ 985 million

            

            These loans were contracted at rates of between 5-6 % and for periods ranging from three to five years.  

        5.3.2 Contrary to the advice of the Central Bank, the Committee was not furnished with any evidence to show that the RBZ got  consent from the Minister of Finance and Economic Development and this is important because the Reserve Bank kept on saying, we were  authorised by the Ministry of Finance and indeed the Reserve Bank Act  allows the Reserve Bank to act as an agent of Government but that has  to be done in writing specifically.  We requested for letters from the  Reserve Bank offered by the Ministry of Finance authorising the bank to  borrow and we never got those letters.

        5.3.3 Loan contraction by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe was in  breach of Section 300 (3) and (4) of the Constitution which obliges the  Minister of Finance and Economic Development to publish in the  Gazette loans contracted and guarantees issued by Government within  sixty days of their conclusion and to present to Parliament a report on  loans raised.

        5.3.4 In addition to that, the loans were contracted without the  Minister of Finance and Economic Development seeking on behalf of  the bank, Parliament’s approval as required by Section 327 of the  Constitution. 

        5.3.5 The Governor’s contention that approval is sought by the  Minister of Finance and Economic Development and not him was  unacceptable to the Committee as the bank has an obligation to ensure  that the law is complied with. The least expected of the Central Bank  officials is to remind the Minister and ensure that the requirements of  the law of the land are complied with. 

5.3.6 RECOMMENDATIONS

        5.3.6.1 All loans contracted without Parliament’s approval  should be presented to the august House by 31st December 2019 and  all future borrowing should be presented as dictated by the  constitutional provisions.

        5.3.6.2 All loans that were not gazetted as is required by the law,  should be published in the Gazette by 31st December 2019

         5.3.6.3 As a matter of urgency, all laws to do with public debt contraction should be aligned with the Constitution to create one centre of publication, in particular Section 7 (1) (n) and Section 23 of the Public Debt Management Act needs to be aligned to the

Constitution and be amended to reflect the following:

  • That no debt can be contracted without the approval of

Parliament.

  • That the Ministry of Finance is the sole debt contracting office

 

        5.4  Money mopped and converted into Savings Bonds and the money borrowed to lend the Central Bank

5.4.1 The RBZ borrowed a substantial amount of money, US$ 3.2  billion that was essentially to finance Government operations. The  Committee notes that an expansionary fiscal policy forced the RBZ to actively enter that market to mobilise resources for and on behalf of  Central Government.

5.4.2 The challenge with this process is that it was done outside 

Parliament and the amounts were well above those approved by Parliament in terms of Section 13 of the RBZ Act. The Committee put it to the Governor that he had the duty to ensure that the Government complied with its own budget and the limits provided by Parliament.

5.4.3 The RBZ was adamant that, of the US$3.2 billion that it 

converted into savings bonds, none of it came from people’s deposits in their bank accounts. The discussion that took place in the Committee was that the RBZ went and raided people’s accounts and took US$3.2 billion which was then used to support Government’s operations.  The RBZ denied this and we make the following findings:

5.4.4.1 The Central Bank failed to act diligently in ensuring that  the Central Bank complied with the budget approved by Parliament.

5.4.4.2 On the contrary, it appears that the RBZ aided and abated an  expansionary fiscal policy which resulted in the huge budget deficits  experienced from 2014.

5.4.4.3 The Committee also makes the finding contrary to the  protestation by the RBZ that in fact it mopped up deposits in bank accounts for onward lending to Central Government.

5.4.4.4   Our finding is based on the clear and uncontroverted 

evidence that the relevant companies and organisations whose deposits were later on converted into savings bonds, in fact kept the same in banks and not in their safes, pillows or offices.  What we are saying is that the money that these companies had which was later converted into savings bonds were in fact kept into savings accounts in banking institutions and not in people’s pillows or houses – that is the money that was mopped and then later converted into savings bonds resulting in the shortage of US$, resulting in the clear inevitable creation of the mirage currency called the RTGs dollar and subsequently the bond note.

Our recommendations are as follows;

5.4.5.1  By the 31st December 2019, the RBZ Act should be  amended to ensure that the Central Bank sticks to its original core mandate of any Central Bank.  

5.4.5.2  For the avoidance of doubt, the Committee recommends

that  the mandate of the bank should solely be: (i) Acting as a banker to the state.

  • Managing the monetary policy.
  • Managing the local currency.
  • Managing the exchange rate.
  • Managing the national payment system.
  • Acting as lender of last resort.

Any other function that the bank has been doing outside these six key functions should be done by the Ministry of Finance and we cannot afford two competing Ministries of Finance – one in Central Avenue and the other one at 80 Samora Machel Avenue.

5.4.5.3 Through the Minister of Finance, the RBZ must report  twice a year on all monies it would have borrowed within that particular year and monies lent.

5.4.5.4  The RBZ must comply strictly with Section 49 of the RBZ 

Act that its lending must be backed by 100% reserves.

                   5.5        Government’s overdraft facility with the Central Bank

5.5.1 The Committee gathered that Government had borrowed

$2.99 billion from the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe as at 31st December 2018. The Committee learnt that this money came from Reserve Bank savings bonds and not from depositors’ money in commercial banks. The bank’s asset savings were reported to be $3.2 billion and the tenure ranged between 2 and 5 years. The diagram below tabulates the State’s annual borrowings from the Central Bank from 2014 to 2018. 

YEAR

2014

2015

2016

2017

2018

Amount

$126 373 713

$278 761 815

$941 815 033

$1 369 355 198

$3 004 842 937

 

5.5.2 An analysis by the Committee of all the amounts overdrawn by the State from the Central Bank and the revenues from the State clearly showS that the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe was in breach of Section 11 (1) of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Act which provides as follows:

             (1) The Bank shall not-

(a)  Lend or advance moneys to, or directly buy, discount or rediscount bills, notes or other obligations from the State or any fund established by the State so that the amount outstanding at any time exceeds the equivalent of twenty percent of the previous year’s ordinary revenues of the State; 

A 20% cap is put on the amounts that the state can borrow 20% of the previous year’s Government revenues. Mr. Speaker Sir, we found that throughout the period under review, the State borrowed above the 20% threshold. The table below illustrates the Committee’s finding:

 

Dec-2013

Dec-2014

Dec-2015

Dec-2016

Dec-2017

Dec-2018

Total

Revenue

3741041420

$3727189670

$3737068001

$3502166241

$3869956331

$5402099667

20% limit

 

$748208284

$745437934

$747413600

$700433248

$773991266

Actual outturn

 

35.0%

36.5%

60.4%

95.5%

109.6%

 

      So the levels of non compliance are huge and unexplainable.

5.5.4   The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Act also provides that

Government should repay the overdraft within twelve months after the

end of the financial year in which it was made. The Committee established that Government was in default as it was not doing so.

The Committee was disturbed by the continuous breach of the section 11 of the Act, and that the percentage of the overdraft grew significantly with each year.

5.5.5   Our biggest concern is that the Zimbabwean Central Bank is undercapitalised. It does not have resources of its own. As shown above, all the money it lent to Government was mopped from private sector, from people’s bank balances.

5.5.6. It is a fallacy to pretend that the Central Bank in its current position can lend to Government. This is just a licence of pushing the CB into embarking on creative means of resource mobilisation which includes interfering with bank deposit and export earnings.

5.5.7 Recommendations:

5.5.7.1   The RBZ Act should be amended by 31st December 2019 to repeal section 11 (1) (b) and ensure the RBZ does not lend to the State under any circumstances.

5.5.7.2   Until the repeal of section 11(1) (b), the Reserve Bank of

Zimbabwe should not allow Government’s overdraft with the Central

Bank to exceed twenty percent of the previous year’s revenue as stipulated in the law.

5.5.7.3   Government must, before 31st December 2019 settle its obligations with the RBZ.

                   5.6           The Engagement of the RBZ in Quasi-Fiscal Activities. 

5.6.1   The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Act was amended in 2010 to, among other things, prevent the Central Bank from engaging in quasi-fiscal activities. Furthermore, the Government, through the 2019

Budget Statement states that “all Reserve Bank quasi fiscal activities, … are being discontinued” and that public expenditure would be confined to the budgetary framework approved by Parliament. The Committee sought an explanation from the Governor on the legal basis for payments of grain, fuel and electricity imports by the Central Bank.

5.6.2   The Governor defined quasi-fiscal activities as activities undertaken by the Central Bank or any other institutions on behalf of Government at below the market prices. He argued that as far as he was concerned, the bank had not been involved in any quasi fiscal activities from 2014. His contention was that the Bank was providing foreign currency to fuel importers or millers at the market rates and therefore could not be referred to as quasi-fiscal activities.  Mr. Speaker it went so far as the Governor offering the Committee a retreat in Victoria Falls or anywhere so that we will be taught the meaning of quasi-fiscal activities. We want to go to Victoria Falls Hon. Speaker.   He highlighted that it was the role of the Central Bank to manage foreign currency as this was the case in other countries such as Botswana, Nigeria and Angola.

5.6.3    Committee’s Observations

5.6.3.1   During the oral evidence session, there was a disagreement between the Committee and the RBZ Governor over the definition of quasi fiscal activities (QFA). The Committee is concerned that the RBZ is slowly drifting back to the era of quasi fiscal activities. QFA create contingent implicit liabilities which the government is expected to fulfill there by mortgaging the nation’s future without proper approval and end up being funded by borrowings which leads to increased money supply.

5.6.3.2   The Committee noted that the RBZ through its Monetary Policy Statement of February 2019 continued with quasi fiscal activities through its procurement of commodities that included, fuel, cooking oil, electricity, medicines and water chemicals1. Procurement is the responsibility of central government.

5.6.3.4   On analysing the Monthly Economic Reviews by the RBZ, the Committee noted that a very high proportion of imports

(averaging 60%) per month, was classified as ‘other’ under the ‘Imports Classified by Harmonised Commodity Description and Code System’ tables as shown below for the months from November 2018 to May

2019;

            

5.6.3.5    The Committee is concerned by this unexplained high proportion of the foreign currency being channelled towards imports and would want to know the breakdown composition of what it entails.

5.6.4   Committee’s Recommendations: 

5.6.4.1   The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe must stop engaging in quasi-fiscal activities and focus on private sector growth to help economic recovery. The RBZ should stick to its core mandate of

  • Acting as a banker to the state.
  • Managing the monetary policy.
  • Managing the local currency.
  • Managing the exchange rate.
  • Managing the national payment system.
  • Acting as lender of last resort.

5.6.4.2   The RBZ Act should be strengthened to proscribe all quasi fiscal activities.

5.6.4.3   To prevent the 9th Parliament from being saddled with another Debt Assumption Bill, the Minister of Finance and Economic Development should present to Parliament the full scope of quasi fiscal activities.

5.7   Purchasing of non-performing loans by the Zimbabwe Asset

Management

Corporation (ZAMCO)

5.7.1 The Committee gathered that ZAMCO acquired 1160 nonperforming loans (NPLs) with a value of $1.13 billion, over the period 2014 to 2018. The non-performing loans were bought through issuance of Treasury Bills worth about $ I billion. At the time of the enquiry, about 260 loans were reported to have been repaid leaving a balance of 882 loans outstanding.

5.7.2   The Committee’s finding was that the Reserve Bank had no legal basis to purchase the non-performing loans through issuance of Treasury Bills. The Committee submits that issuance of Treasury Bills is the remit of the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development.

5.7.3   It is also the Committee’s finding that the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe through ZAMCO, had acquired the non-performing loans without Parliament’s approval. This was in breach of Section 327 (3) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe which provides that an agreement which is not an international treaty but which imposes fiscal obligations on Zimbabwe does not bind Zimbabwe until it has been approved by

Parliament.  So, $1 billion has been paid but the money is coming from

Parliament and all we are saying is that anything spent by the State must be approved by Parliament through a budget such as the one which is going to be presented to us on Thursday.

5.7.4   The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe submitted to the Committee that the assumption of non-performing loans was based on the willing buyer – willing seller concept. Secondly, a bank had to be willing to sell a loan as opposed to resolving it internally.  Thirdly, the loan had to be secured by an asset or acceptable security.

5.7.5   Contrary to this evidence, it does not appear as if the debts were secured at all. If the loans had security like houses, factories and so forth, they would have been nonperforming anyway because banks would have been able to fall close on the securitized assets.  So that means $1 billion has been spent on loan that are totally debt because there is nothing to securitize the same. This conclusion was reached for the simple reason that commercial and other banks owed money would have followed up on the security pledged by the borrowers rather that sell the non-performing loans to ZAMCO.

5.7.6  The Committee requested the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe to submit information on ZAMCO relating to the list of beneficiaries of debt assumption, the banks involved, values of each loan, discount rates applicable, security pledged and the tenure of Treasury Bills. Despite several attempts and Counsel to Parliament’s legal opinion supporting the Committee’s position, the Bank has not complied. The Central

Bank’s refusal to submit the information stems from their argument that the information requested is privileged as it is covered by bank/client confidentiality. The Committee strongly differs with this claim. The demand for information on ZAMCO is being pursued separately.

5.7.7   Committee’s Observations

  5.7.7.1   Part of the challenges with ZAMCO is that there is no legal instrument or Act governing the RBZ’s Non-Performing Loans as like with other countries like Nigeria. In Nigeria for instance the Parliament passed the Nigerian Asset Management Act in respect of which Parliament approved the purchase of nonperforming loans from banks and then provided the necessary financial muscle for the central bank to do so under Governor Samido.  This has not happened in our case.  So, the bank is doing this outside any legal framework and hence some of the challenges that they are facing. The absence of a legal instrument makes the process opaque and subjective leaving too much discretion in the hands of RBZ officials.

5.7.8   Recommendations

5.7.8.1   The Ministry of Finance and Economic Development should present Non-Performing

Loans assumed by ZAMCO before Parliament by 31 December

2019, for approval.

5.7.8.2   Parliament should issue summons to the RBZ compelling the Bank to comply with the lawful request for information on ZAMCO. (This has already been done two weeks after this report had been complied with).

5.7.8.3   An Act should be crafted to deal with the acquisition of

Non-Performing Loans which is the best practice.

5.8   Security Provided for the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe’s

External Loans

5.8.1 The Committee gathered that external loans, in particular to the African Import/Export Bank contracted by the Reserve Bank of

Zimbabwe were being secured by the country’s future gold sales. Evidence submitted was that Government was paying US$ 5 million per month as loan repayments. These payments were being made against the country’s monthly gold earnings of between US$ 15 million and US$ 16 million.

5.8.2 The Committee’s finding was that the Central Bank had no legal basis to assign export receivables to repayment of loans without

Parliament’s approval.  Section 327 says these loans must be approved by Parliament at first instance.   Contrary to the Governor and officials from the Bank that sections 7 (1) (n) and 49 of the Reserve Bank Act of

Zimbabwe gives them the legal basis to do so, the Committee’s view is that all receipts from gold sales constitute revenue for the country, which should be legally appropriated by Parliament. It was also apparent that there was no limit set in terms of export receivables that could be used as security for the loans. We also came to the conclusion that there is no legal instrument in our country that authorises the RBZ or anyone else to mortgage the country’s minerals and to use them as security against any loan.  We also noted that even in those countries like Angola which have securitized their minerals, in the case of Angola, this was a complicated process which requires a lot of forensic skills, which skills we do not have at the present moment.

5.8.3   Recommendations

5.8.3.1   The Minister of Finance and Economic Development should regularise the securitisation of export receivables as security for loans contracted by the Central Bank by presenting the arrangement for approval by Parliament not later than 31 December 2019.

5.8.3.2   In the absence of a legal instrument authorising securitization, the Minister of Finance and Economic Development must, by 31st December 2019, bring to Parliament a comprehensive report and strategy detailing Zimbabwe’s exit strategy and defection from all agreements where Zimbabwe’s minerals had been securitized.

5.9 Maintenance of Adequate Foreign Currency Reserves 

5.9.1 Section 49 (2) (a) provides that “the Bank shall maintain sufficient reserves to cover one hundred per centum of its liabilities to the public, held in foreign currency accounts in any banking institution.”

5.9.2   The Committee’s finding was that since 2009, when the country adopted the multi-currency system, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe had never maintained foreign currency reserves to match the statutory requirements. At the time of receiving the oral evidence, the Committee established that the country had about US $500 million which constituted 3 to 4 weeks cover in reserves. This position is unacceptable as this leaves the country at great risk of being unable to meet its current account requirements or external obligations.

5.9.3   Recommendations:

5.9.3.1   The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe should by 31st December 2019 have built sufficient foreign currency reserves to a point where the reserves match the level legally provided for by the Act. Our export earnings this year are over US$5 billion and the RBZ through export surrender requirements is obtaining a huge chunk of this money.  So meeting the reserve requirement required by Section 49 of the Reserve Bank Act should not be a problem at all.

5.10 Export Surrender Requirements

5.10.1   The Committee noted that the Central Bank was retaining export surrender requirements which varied from 20% to 80% depending on the commodity.

5.10.2   The Committee noted that at the time of surrender, the RBZ was using the exchange rate of US$1 to I bond, which has since changed with the various changes in multiple currency in particular Statutory Instruments 33 of 2019 and 142 of 2019.

5.10.3   The legal basis of the export surrender requirements according to the RBZ was the Exchange Control Act.

5.10.4   The Committee also noted that the export surrender requirements required that tobacco farmers had a short period of utilising their retained forex failure of which the RBZ would retain the amounts at the rate of 1.1.

5.10.5   It was the Committee’s finding that the legal basis of the RBZ retaining export proceeds was extremely tenuous.

5.10.6   The Exchange Control Act did not provide a clear and unambiguous legal basis for the RBZ to appropriate exporters’ foreign currency.  In the absence of a clear legal exchange, Counsel to the RBZ, Mr Madeira, failed to provide a legal opinion justifying the requirements. The Committee felt that export surrender requirements were an unlawful appropriation of private property in breach of the provisions of Section 71 of the Constitution.  Our strong view was that export surrender requirements are part of the country’s revenues and all the revenues are accounted to Parliament through the Consolidated Revenue Fund which is distributed by the Ministry of finance through the budget.  Therefore all export earnings must come to Parliament through the budget presented by the Minister of Finance and not a parallel exercise of distribution outside Parliament and Public scrutiny as is being done by the RBZ at the moment.

5.10.7   The Committee also established that the monies that were being retained by the RBZ through surrender requirements were huge and ran into billions. The RBZ, at that time in March 2019 had the sole discretion of allocation of the expropriated forex.

5.10.8   It was the Committee’s view that any money received by any public entity must be appropriated through Parliament. Only Parliament through Section 365 of the Constitution should have power to allocate the same.  This means the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development will have the discretion to allocate the funds through the budget, subject to approval by Parliament.

5.10.9   As pointed out above, the RBZ quasi fiscal activities are huge and are driven by this the export surrender requirement.

Recommendations

5.10.10.1 The RBZ must cease the export surrender requirements forthwith.

5.10.10.2 The RBZ must ensure that there is a free market of foreign exchange.

5.10.10.3 The exporters must follow the laws of the country and bank their proceeds locally.

5.10.10.4 The Ministry of Finance and Economic Development must source forex through traditional means which include the Income Tax Act, Capital Gains Tax, Value Added Tax and other revenue measures.

5.10.10.5 The Ministry of Finance and Economic Development must twice a year report to Parliament on foreign currency received and utilised which is implied in any event in Section 300 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe.

                   6.0   Conclusion

As a Committee, we note that the RBZ plays an important role in the economy; because of its importance, it must adhere to the strict provisions of the Constitution, the RBZ Act, the Public Finance Management Act, the Public Debt Management Act and other laws. This is important for the good governance of the country which is codified in Section 2 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe.  We therefore trust that the authorities shall comply with the recommendations above and we, as Parliament shall ensure compliance so as to protect the Constitution and the resources of Zimbabwe.  I so commend the report before this august House Hon. Speaker Sir.

      HON. NDUNA:   Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  I just want to second the report by the Chairperson of the Public Accounts Committee, Hon. Biti on the Compliance by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ).  Mr. Speaker Sir, I stand here to complement and augment the words in this report, which report is pregnant in terms of compliance and the timelines that he has given in order to adhere to the ethos and values of compliance according to the Acts of Parliament that we produce here.

Mr. Speaker Sir, any country is looked at and respected by the way it respects its own Constitution and by the way it respects its own laws that it originates.  We cannot burn midnight candles here, originate laws for the good governance and order of the people of Zimbabwe, only for those laws to be assassinated willy nilly, with impunity by Government entities and quasi- Government entities.   Mr. Speaker Sir, I therefore, want to say, Section 2 of the Constitution speaks to and about the supremacy of the Constitution.  As I have said, we are respected by the way we uphold our own Constitution as a nation and any Act that is ultra vires the Constitution needs to be repudiated to the extent that it is ultra vires the Constitution.  Therefore, Mr. Speaker Sir, in 2013, we did not put dates by which our Acts and laws need to be aligned to the Constitution.  We lost the opportunity.  It is now therefore, a process which was left open-ended and it is now incumbent upon us to pressure the Executive to align certain Acts of Parliament with the Constitution.  This is where the lacuna presents itself, in terms of the alignment of our laws with the Constitution.

You will find that the left hand does not know what the right hand is doing but ultimately the Constitution is the supreme law of the land.

The new Constitution of Kenya Mr. Speaker Sir, speaks about the timelines by which types of Acts need to be aligned with the Constitution, alas, ours does not have that.  That is certainly an impediment on our operation or modus oparandi of our Acts and our Constitution.  Mr. Speaker Sir, the Chairperson of the Committee spoke so eloquently and so vociferously about a lot of issues and the quasi- fiscal issues that the RBZ is engaged and grappled with, which according to the view of the Committee, it is supposed to be acting contrary.  Otherwise, I stand here to say exactly, the RBZ needs to come here and seek condonation for whatever transgressions that it has presented itself knowingly or unknowingly.

As I conclude, he also talks of ZAMCO Mr. Speaker Sir.  ZAMCO in its defence says it was formed in order that it clears the bank’s balance sheet of non-performing loans.  By so doing, it says, it is cleaning the balance sheet Mr. Speaker Sir and that is its primary mandate.  It goes further to say that mandate, according to them, has been concluded.  On further interrogation why they would have done so without seeking an Act of Parliament like Nigeria did as alluded to by the Chairperson of the Committee; they will go further to say Section 57

(a) of the RBZ mandates them to deal in the manner that they dealt.   Mr. Speaker Sir, the Committee have none of that.  The Committee would want to see that any Act is done according to an Act of Parliament Mr. Speaker Sir.  If it has not been done according to that, the supreme law of the land which is the Constitution far overrides any other Act which is ultra vires what is imbedded in the Constitution.

The issue of securitisation of ubiquitous amount of mineral wealth – by the way, we are endowed with – like Hon. Chikwinya said, over 63 minerals and the largest belt diameter of the Great Dyke in Chegutu West Constituency and is 11 km.  Twenty of those minerals are the only ones that have been extracted or that have been exploited but 40 of them, including uranium which if we beneficiated just a little ball will cause us to have copious amounts of ZESA and power here in Zimbabwe.That is topic for another day.

My point exactly is that as long as we do not put our money where our mouth is, our money is the ubiquitous amount of mineral wealth, we need to policy their inclusion in our economic development.  We need to policy and put eyes on the ball as relays to the externalisation of our minerals.  Externalisation means that there is need for authority to be gotten from Parliament if there is anyone that is going to securitise or externalise our minerals, even for the good order and governance of the people of Zimbabwe.  So I agree with the Chairperson and also go further to say, on the 31st December, let all that has been securitised on the 31st December, let all that has been securitized against any amounts gotten by this country, in particular our mineral wealth be presented to Parliament without any further delay.  Any further than 31st December; if that information is not availed here, I ask that you bare teeth Mr. Speaker Sir.  If you do not have them, you will be given so that you expose the teeth and you bite these entities.

  Coming into the revenue inflows and illicit outflows; the Hon.

Chair touched on revenue gotten in foreign currency form which needs

to be banked here – back in Zimbabwe.  The Platinum Group of Metals; I am saying with a heavy heart that currently we are exporting the Platinum Group of Metals and we are leaving it to ZIMPLATS to tell us what is in there because we are not beneficiating and we are not refining our own platinum.  The Platinum Group of Metals is quite broad in terms of content of minerals in those PGM’s.  So, it is incumbent upon the Executive to make sure that in the absence of a refinery, we still make sure that ZIMPLATS banks their resource based economic benefit from those minerals back here in Zimbabwe so that we can use our minerals as a pedestal and as a platform for economic emancipation and enhancement. The Committee is very alive that this new dispensation has to be an upper middle income economy by 2030.

      Mr. Speaker Sir, I want to thank you for giving me this opportunity to vociferously, effectively and eloquently back the Committee’s report on Public Accounts.  Let us adhere to the values, the ethos and the contents of that report as it relates to the timelines given for adherence to seeking condonation and establishment of the Act that speak to

economic development of our country using what we have to get what we want.  Thank you.

  HON. TOGAREPI: I move for the adjournment of the debate.

          HON. NDUNA: I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.

         Debate to resume:  Wednesday, 13th November, 2019.

         On the motion of HON. TOGAREPI seconded by HON.

NDUNA, the House adjourned at a Minute to Five o’clock.

       

 

     

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