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NATIONAL ASSEMBLY HANSARD 14 July 2015 41-53 2
PARLIAMENT OF ZIMBABWE
Tuesday, 14th July, 2015
The National Assembly met at a Quarter-past Two O’clock p.m.
(THE DEPUTY SPEAKER in the Chair)
ANNOUNCEMENT BY THE DEPUTY SPEAKER
CHANGES TO PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE MEMBERSHIP
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: I have to inform the House of the following nominations and changes to membership of Committees: Hon.
- Mazivisa will serve on the Portfolio Committees of Transport and
Infrastructural Development and Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs.
Hon. O. Hungwe has moved from the Portfolio Committee on Youth,
Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment to the Portfolio Committee on
Mines and Energy. Hon. C. Mutematsaka has moved from the Portfolio
Committee on Foreign Affairs to the Portfolio Committee on Lands, Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development. Also, I would like to inform the House of the appointment of Hon. C. Chitindi as the Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on Lands, Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development.
BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
- CHIKWAMA: I move that Order of the Day Number 1 be
stood over until the rest of the Orders of the Day have been disposed of.
- NDUNA: I second.
Motion put and agreed to.
PRESIDENTIAL SPEECH: DEBATE ON ADDRESS
Second Order read: Adjourned debate on motion in reply to the Presidential Speech.
Question again proposed.
- T. DUBE: Thank you Madam Speaker. I would like to start by congratulating the Ministers who have just been promoted – HON.
MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, order! hon. members. Hon. members, the member is making a maiden speech and must be heard in silence. Would you please be silent?
MR.T. DUBE: Madam Speaker, may I start by congratulating the
Ministers who have just been promoted. My name is – [HON.
MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, order! hon. members. Hon. members, I do not think there is anything exciting. Hon. Maridadi, we do not allow hon. members to use their cellphones when you are in this House. You are not a journalist. Would you please take your seat. – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – Order, order! hon. members. Hon. members, can we please behave ourselves as hon. members.
- MATANGIRA: On a point of order Maám.
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: There is no need for a point of order.
What is the point of order?
- MATANGIRA: My point of order Madam Speaker is, if we are not allowed to use cellphones in this House. Then whatever picture Hon. Maridadi has taken must be deleted.– [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, order! Hon. Dube, can you please proceed?
- DUBE: Madam Speaker, I would like to start by congratulating all the Ministers who were recently appointed. My name is Tshinga Dube, representing one of the poorest – [AN HON. MEMBER: And marginalised.] [Laughter.] –
I represent one of the poorest and the oldest townships in Bulawayo.
Makokoba Township was Bulawayo’s first township for blacks, natives as they called us at that time. It was the only township that housed all the natives, Indians as well as Asians.
The location was sold by the Sanitary Board of Bulawayo while huts were rented out to non-council members and the unemployed. There was massive overcrowding in the houses that were mostly one roomed. A major infrastructure development at the time was the installation of flood lights in 1929.
Makokoba Constituency is located in the Bulawayo Province and consists of high density suburbs, namely Makokoba, Mzilikazi (named after the founder of the Ndebele nation, King Mzilikazi), Barbourfields (named after a former mayor, H.R. Barbour, who during the colonial era, was greatly interested in the welfare of the indigenous people),
(Nguboyenja named after Lobengula’s son and heir) and Thorngroove (a coloured township whose name came from the large number of Mimosa Thorn trees in the area) as well as the National Railways of Zimbabwe residential compound of Westgate. –HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, order! Hon members can we
have order. Hon. members, I appealed to the House that I think we should keep our whispers as low as possible so that we hear what the hon. member is saying.
- DUBE: Madam Speaker, established in the early 1900, the township was the first black African township in the city. The suburb was named after the conduct of Mr. Fallon, the Native Commissioner, who reportedly used to walk around the city with the aid of a walking stick…… Hon. Sibanda having changed sitting places thereby making noise.
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Sibanda, what is wrong, what is happening?
- DUBE: The name comes from the word ‘ukukhokhoba’ which in the local Ndebele language means “bending and walking with a stick”. It is home of Stanley Square, an iconic and much revered venue for
Zimbabwean nationalists such as the late Vice Presidents Joshua Nkomo, Joseph Msika, John Nkomo and many other politicians of note. Even our
President lived in Makokoba with his uncle when he was still a schoolboy. Many of these second class citizens, as the white settlers chose to see them, were forced to turn to menial jobs for survival. The township was the dwelling place of nationalists such as MAsotsha Ndlovu, Martha Ngano, Jason Ziyaphapha Moyo, Edwin Ndlovu and Ethan Dube.
The township was initially built for migrant workers both local and foreign. It was built at a time when the City of Bulawayo was steadily growing as the industrial hub of the country. The white rulers at the time realised that there was a need for cheap labour that could be demanded from blacks. Many of these second class citizens, as the white settlers chose to see them, were forced to turn to menial jobs for survival.
After construction of Makokoba Township in the early 1900, white authorities then built Mzilikazi in 1945. This township has a history of its own in the road towards the independence of Zimbabwe. In what was later to be termed the Bulawayo African Townships (BAT), Babourfields and Nguboyenja were added.
The constituency has a rich heritage that has spawned countless celebrities from politicians to athletes to entertainers. It is home to the famous bus terminus popularly referred to as ‘eRenkin’, Stanley Hall, Stanley Square, McDonald Hall, Mpilo Hospital and Babourfields Stadium are part of the constituency. Ward seven and eight of Bulawayo Municipality also make up the constituency.
Makokoba Constituency is highly populated and in recent years, it has realised an increase in the population., which has not matched an increase in accommodation and other basic and social amenities. The constituency has produced countless individuals who have distinguished themselves in their various fields, from business people, academics, artists and athletes. Names that quickly come to mind include the likes of Tafi
Moyo (Mzilikazi) and Chikerema as well as influential families like the Ntuta, Ncgebetsha and Hlalo families.
There are also arts and culture legends like Dorothy Masuka, the
Cool Crooners, and later years, individuals like Cont Mhlanga, Lovemore
Majaivana and Augustine Musarurwa who composed ‘sikokiyana, which became a world hit. There were also sporting legends like the Ndlovu brothers, Madinda, Peter and the late Adam and many more that helped to shape the history of Makokoba.
After independence, the first councillor of Makokoba Township was Cde Nicolas Joel Mabodoko and the first Member of Parliament for the Constituency was the late Cde. Sidney Malunga.
Madam Speaker, the development of trade unionism began in
Makokoba in 1928, with its pioneers, Masotsha Ndlobu and Clemence Katali. They advocated for improved working and living conditions for the black labourers. There was later, a transfer of political activism from trade unionism to nationalism when the first political parties began to emerge in 1934.
“The Railway Administration was not at all happy about that. However, although they were unrecognized, the union was not actually legal, and there was nothing they could do about it.” These were the words of the late Vice President, Dr. Joshua Nkomo in his autobiography, Nkomo: The Story of My Life, describing his first footsteps into politics, that is, being the President of the African Railway Employees’ Association in 1948.
Madam Speaker, trade unionism was the bedrock on which Zimbabwean nationalist politics was built and Makokoba was central in the evolution from labour activism to home-grown political ideologies that paved the way for the country’s independence from colonial and racist rule perpetuated by white supremacists that migrated from the United Kingdom and arrived in the country in the 1800s.
These white settlers stayed on in the country until 1980 when nationalists like Joshua Nkomo, Josephy Msika, Benjamin Burombo, John
Nkome and so on, cut their teeth at iconic meeting places like Stanley Square in Makokoba and McDonald Hall in Mzilikazi. They often met at these venues to map the way forward and come up with political ideas to free their people from the bondage of white rule.
It is the Rhodesia Railway Employees Association that launched the career of one of Zimbabwe’s iconic leaders, the late Vice President Dr. Joshua Nkomo. Dr. Nkomo started his career as the president of the Rhodesia Railways African Employees Association in 1948 after a series of meetings held at Stanley Square. After that, he became President of the Federation of African Workers Union, a national office that launched him into his political career, as that very same year, he was also elected
President of the Southern Rhodesia African National Congress. (SRANO).
The majority of residents in Makokoba Constituency live below the poverty datum line due to the growing unemployment rates in the country in general and Bulawayo in particular. The constituency saw an unparalleled growth in population levels as people flocked in search of greener pastures at big companies such as Kango, Radar, Dunlop, NRZ,
CSC, Monarch, and National Blankets among others. During the heydays of the city, this influx of people into the city and Makokoba was hardly felt as many were unable to secure jobs at these firms.
However, today Makokoba is a shadow of its former glory. The constituency is beset with unending economic problems brought on by the closure of numerous firms due to several crises, chief among them, sanctions imposed on the country by the West at the advent of the country’s Land Reform Programme, that was implemented by President Robert Mugabe to address the imbalances created by colonialism. Many lost their jobs and this created a constituency of self-reliant residents. Many became vendors while still more migrated to South Africa where they have, unfortunately, been subjected to often barbaric treatment by our neighbours.
Today, Makokoba is full of business people, so to speak, many of whom barely earn enough to survive from one day to the next. Others have stalls from which they vend various goods, but sadly, the younger generation has been driven towards drugs, alcohol, truancy, prostitution and a myriad of other social ills by the high unemployment rate.
Madam Speaker, places in the constituency such as Makokoba Market, popularly known as eMkambo have become for many, the only hope at making some sort of income with which to support their families. Many now struggle to send the children to school, increasing the number of delinquents on the streets with nothing to do from dawn to dusk. Consequently, the only form of economic emancipation in the constituency for the old generation, is vending while our children have turned to crime.
Madam Speaker, Makokoba Constituency has been fortunate to have a fairly high literacy rate with many holding some form of academic qualifications. The constituency has several schools namely, Mzilikazi,
Litshe, Lozikeyi, Lobengula, Robert Tredgold, St. Patricks, and
McKueturn Primary Schools as well as Mzilikazi, Sobukhazi and St. Columbus High Schools. Various churches were allocated stands on the south of Lobengula Street; between the town and the Bulawayo Municipal Compound (BMC) and the suburb of Makokoba. The church buildings were part of the cordon sanitaire to separate black settlement from white settlement.
The churches which had separate church buildings to service the white population in the town were expected to civilize the Africans by not only converting them to Christianity but also providing some education to them. The Anglican Church ran a school, St. Columbus for Africans. The
Catholics established St. Patrick’s which also catered for the Africans. White girls were attending the Convent School in the city. The Churches did not challenge the BSACo policy of racial segregation in the education system.
While the Anglican and the Roman Catholic churches set up their own separate schools, the other church denominations made collaborative efforts and established the United School. The United School offered classes up to Standard 1. After that, the pupils, who included both boys and girls, proceeded to Mzilikazi Primary School which was the first primary school to be built in Mzilikazi Township, a settlement established in 1945. The school offered education up to Standard 6. Mzilikazi Primary School thus became the first primary school to be built by Government for blacks in Bulawayo. Later, Mzilikazi Primary School offered classes lower than Standard 2. At the time the black primary schools were run by white school heads.
Ultimately, Lotshe Primary School became a stand-alone educational facility in 1955. Some pupils then left Lobengula Primary School to attend Lotshe Primary School, a move which shortened travelling distances for pupils living in Makokoba. The three high schools in the constituency were at the height of the country’s economic growth among the best in the country.
However, today many are lacking the provision of a basic learning environment which many still force to have hot sitting classes due to shortage of adequate classrooms as well as a shortage of learning aids such as text books and computers.
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order hon. member, can you please
raise your voice so that those who are recording can hear you.
MR. T. DUBE: Social Amenities
When Makokoba Township was built, it was the beginning of segregation according to colour lines. Blacks were only allowed into the city so that they could be in the factories. The whites however, realised that there was a need for some sort of the social activity to keep their black workers fairly happy despite the repressive laws governing them. To this effect, they built several social venues in the township to provide entertainment to the blacks in the township. Thus, built Stanley Hall where movies and cabaret shows were held and Stanley Square where boxing matches were held, as well as youth centres such as Tshaka and Thabiso.
*MR. MUTSEYAMI: On a point of order Madam Speaker, can something be done to help the hon. member raise his voice because we cannot hear him or if he can submit his presentation?
*THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: The hon. member naturally has a low
voice. So, let us not make noise so that we can hear him. That is what we can do. Hon. member, can you please proceed.
- T. DUBE: Then the clubs were offering basketball, boxing and weightlifting, while over the weekends; boxing took place at the Stanley Square. With the establishment of Mzilikazi, Nguboyenja and
Barbourfields townships, each came with its own youth club. Mzilikazi had the added bonus of the McDonald Community Hall, Memorial Library and an Art and Craft Centre. Barbourfields was fortunate to get perhaps the most modern of social amenities when the city council built the massive Barbourfields Stadium and a swimming pool in the township.
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, the hon. member’s time has
- MUKWANGWARIWA: Thank you Madam Speaker. May
the hon. member’s time be extended?
- MANGAMI: I second.
Motion put and agreed to.
- T. DUBE: Today, these places remain operational but just barely. Many are run down and are unable to offer the youth the much needed extracurricular activities. This has led to an increase in crime as the youth become degenerated due to lack of creative social outlets.
The constituency has been blessed with one of the country’s major referral hospitals, the Mpilo Central Hospital which was built to provide health services to blacks who were not allowed to utilise the United
Bulawayo Hospitals that were reserved for whites. Also, there was a well and a fully functional clinic that is run by the city council and an infectious diseases clinic in Thorngroove. But today, the hospital is barely operational and the only department that is fully operational is the mortuary.
Arts, Sports and Culture
In 1933, the authorities built Makhumalo Bar, popularly known as Big Bhawa and Khefa Beer factory in the township. This spurred the development of arts and culture as artists now had a venue to perform at, while revelers enjoyed their mugs of opaque beer, the only form of alcohol that blacks were allowed to drink at that time. This lack of alternative alcoholic beverages led to the rise of skokiaan, made famous by August Musarurwa and other ‘independent’ brewers.
The music legends defined Makokoba as the Mecca of arts and culture in Makokoba learning and refining their trade at places such as Stanley Hall, MaDonald Hall and ‘Big Bhawa’. In sport, the availability of sporting centres such as Tshaka Youth Centre, Stanley Square and Mzilikazi Youth Centre have also through the years, produced many top class athletes in different disciplines of sport. Iconic football players like the Ndlovu brothers, Felix Ntuta, Peter Nkomo, Mercedes Sibanda, Max Tshuma and more recently the Ngodzo brothers are all products of the rich heritage of sport in Makokoba. Boxers of prominence such as Philip Striker have also come out of the constituency.
Makokoba Constituency has a rich heritage and with it, the potential to become a truly modern metropolitan constituency. The infrastructure is in place to provide residents with most of their basic needs, but it requires a major overhaul. There is need for Central Government to ensure that the
Makokoba’s place in the history of the country’s fight for economic and political emancipation during the liberation struggle is not negated or forgotten. There is also a need to recognise historic places like Makokoba
Constituency as having played a major role in shaping the destiny of Zimbabwe.
In yesteryears, Makokoba was the heart and soul of nationalist politics in Zimbabwe. It is where dedicated young Zimbabweans met often for the first time, to try and find ways to win back their country and ways to emancipate their people from the clutches of colonialism. It is indeed the bedrock of what today is a free Zimbabwe. I thank you Madam Speaker.
- J. M. GUMBO: I move that the debate do now adjourn.
- MUKWANGWARIWA: I second.
Motion put and agreed to.
Debate to resume: Wednesday, 15th July, 2015.
REPORT OF THE DELEGATION ON THE HIV/AIDS LEARNING
AND EXPOSURE STUDY VISIT TO KARNATAKA STATE, INDIA
Third Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on the report of the delegation of the HIV/AIDS Learning and Exposure Study Visit to
Karnataka State, India, 10-14 November, 2014.
Question again proposed.
- J. M. GUMBO: I move that the debate do now adjourn.
- NDUNA: I second.
Motion put and agreed to.
Debate to resume: Wednesday, 15th July, 2015.
HARMONISATION OF THE MINES AND MINERALS ACT AND
THE LANDS ACQUISITION ACT
Fourth Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on the need to harmonise the Mines and Minerals Act and the Lands Acquisition Act Question again proposed.
- KEREKE: Thank you Madam Speaker for this opportunity to add my few inputs into the motion that was put forth by Hon. Nduna. The motion is a very important one which seeks to reconcile our policy framework in respect of agricultural land and our policy framework in respect of mining. Under the current statutory provisions, there is latent conflict between the miners and farmers in terms of the rights to natural resources. Whereas the mining laws permit a prospecting miner to independently go to their respective provinces’ Mining Commission you pay a minimum fee depending on what type of mineral you want to peg. If it is chrome or gold, you pay the required fee. You are then issued with a prospecting licence which expires after a considerable period. That prospecting licence authorises you to go on any piece of land to scout for minerals regardless of whether that piece of land is a farm land already in use by another interested party.
The ultimate result is that when a prospector has discovered or has confidence that there are prospects for certain minerals at a given piece of land, they are free to then peg and can commence operations. It could be in someone’s farm, in a village on top of graves or any such revered places by the respective communities. In our statutes, we do have a conflict between the entitlements for farmers to land as a natural resource and the entitlement of potential miners to minerals also as a natural resource. The motion as put is a very pertinent one which requires that there be no further delays in reconciling the two pieces of legislation for good order.
I want to move further by commenting more on the Land Acquisition Act to say that our Constitution has voluminously spoken as to how agricultural land is deemed and it is in fact State land. Accordingly therefore, it is the expectation of the people that policies around land be implemented in a way that resonates with the Constitution. I did indicate Mr. Speaker Sir, in earlier contributions in another debate before this august House, that to the extent State land is anchored in the Constitution, we need equality across the board in terms of how individuals, households, companies and other multi-nationals are treated in respect of ownership of land. I have a case in point in Masvingo province, we have a company which processes sugar. It owns vast tracts of land, about 96 000 hectares. The recently promulgated regulations Mr. Speaker Sir, say for A2 farmers you need to pay about US$5 per hectare as an annual farm rental. We are reliably informed that this company has suggested that it will pay US$10 per hectare, then negotiate special leases which will give them title.
Madam Speaker, the Hon. Minister of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development is on record concerning this indicating that the reason they are giving this company a special permit is that they can invest long term. I want to speak for my constituency to say that there is a potential danger inherent in that approach, because the insinuation is that all the other A2 farmers cannot invest long term. We cannot have a company coming and offering a better rental of US$10 per hectare per annum, maybe they will pay a million yet they are holding on to vast tracts of land that are barren.
Mr. Speaker, if you come to Masvingo we had suggestions which had been approved by the province where a number of farmers were going to be parceled out small pieces of land, be it ten or twenty hectares to then do sugarcane, which is then going to be supplied upstream in the beneficiation chain. The approach that is being put forward where a company offers a small increment, disadvantaging thousands of poor household peasants is an approach, which for the record we want to say may lead to problems in future. Mr. Speaker Sir, those we represent - A2 and A1 farmers dream to also invest long term. Does it mean therefore that our farmers have no plans, ambitions or dreams to invest long term? We cannot have therefore, private multinational corporations being preferred by some leases which enable them to make their projects bankable at the expense of the A2 farmers. Such an approach is not consistent with the Constitution and Madam Speaker, it is our prayer that through this motion, that oversight could perhaps be corrected.
Madam Speaker, still on how the lands policy is being administered, there are areas where certificates of no Government interests are being issued. If a certificate is issued, it enables the holder to even sell the piece of land like a private asset. It is our suggestion that due prudence and perhaps caution be taken when such certificates are issued because it then dilutes the thinking, philosophy and the backbone of our Constitution as it recognises agricultural land as State land.
It is an appeal that we are making in contributing to this debate. We are saying until we treat stakeholders, we look at firms and individuals in an impartial manner; we may risk reversing the gains of the liberation struggle itself. We may risk igniting conflict; in fact conflict can arise when misunderstandings are allowed to degenerate around the emotive issues of land.
Mr. Speaker Sir, with respect to mining laws, we are pleased that Government announced this past week that realigned legislation on mines is almost out. Our appeal is that the mining sector lives up to the expected levels where under ZIM ASSET, it is one of the pillars that should carry the economy. Thank you Mr. Speaker.
- C. C. SIBANDA: I would like to thank Hon. Nduna for moving this motion which is very pertinent. Madam Speaker, the issue of the mining laws vis a vis the agricultural or the land law in the country is problematic. It appears that where the two pieces of legislation are in conflict, the Mines and Minerals Act takes precedence. This is now creating a lot of problems. We should actually view the Mines and
Minerals Act as one of the first legislations that was brought about by colonialists in this country in the 18th century, under the banner of the Rudd Concession.
Looking at that Rudd Concession which Lobengula was made to sign though he put an X which indicated that he was not really agreeing - [Laughter] – taking into account that Lobengula had indeed gone to school at Mhlangeni Primary School in my constituency, Lobengula was an educated person. He was not illiterate, so by indicating with an X he showed that he was not really agreeing to that – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear] – From that day, what happened is that the mining law became the superior law of the land. When you look at how it is structured, it is never structured in a way that will benefit the locals because if anyone has got his homestead and a mine is found there, they are forced to move without meaningful compensation because minerals take precedence.
We have seen the displacements of people in many areas due to mining activities. The Executive should come up with a law that will benefit those people who would have been affected by the big business of mining. There has to be fair compensation to the affected people.
Again, I would like to indicate that my constituency Bubi is one area that will have a very big problem in future. The land that was available in Bubi, almost 90% of that land was pegged for mining. What happened is that there was an arrangement which existed then between the mining community and the so called commercial farmers. What has happened now, people have been settled there under the Land Reform and people have been put on top of the pegs of the mine, which are mines that were pegged in 1920 and some in 1947. Now, whenever there is mining to take place, what will happen is that there is always a massive displacement again for those people who will have just been resettled in that area. There is a looming disaster because recently, the owners of the concession came in the area and started resuscitating the pegs and people were really confused with what was taking place. So, we need to see to it that the laws are designed to benefit the people.
Mr. Speaker, that prayer that you always start with is very indicative of making the laws for the benefit of the society. So, we need to make laws that will make the people benefit instead of displacing them. This issue of the mining war, as I indicated in the beginning it is problematic and needs to be looked into. I heard the other member saying the law is close to being brought to Parliament, we need to seriously look into that law so that the people, at the end of the day should benefit. I thank you.
*MR. MUDARIKWA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. The motion
that we are debating here is very pertinent because it enables us to know where our country Zimbabwe stands pertaining to agriculture. There should not be much altercations where agriculture is concerned because all people with offer letters are mandated to till the land. Our motion seems to be focused on A2 farmers. Even when these A2 farms were owned by the whites, people in the rural areas are the ones who harvested more crops. They used to yield 80% of maize and cotton as well as keep the herd that was sold to CSC. The only problem that we are facing in some instances is of greed because if you are said to be a farmer and then you get a mine, you are suddenly a miner. If you get a school, you become the headmaster of the school and if you get herbs you become a witch doctor.
All these are piled on the same person.
On the issue of minerals – they are under the President and he is the one who allocates the minerals to people to start working on them. All these minerals pay royalties to Government so that government’s programmes can be implemented.
The issue of EMA was raised because they are seen milling around the mines and an example of kitsi yatota was given on account of the land degradation happening in Shurugwi. Those are makorokoza and not miners. Let us not mix makorokoza and miners but distinguish between the two. The other problem that we face is that knowledge of gold mining was inherited from Munhumutapa. Our gold is found all over the world because all the gold from Mount Darwin was sold all over the world and this relationship should continue as it used to be. In Mutoko, there is black granite. There is no one who is allowed to peg without getting permission from council. Someone came on a one day visit and declared that nothing was happening there. That person was able to see all the bad things in that single day. I challenge him to go and see the Mutoko Council offices which were built with the proceeds from black granite.
The biggest issue that we should look at when looking at our wealth is; if it is granite, there are no cattle that graze on stones. In Mutoko, there is what is called hukurutombo and that is the only thing you find among those black stones. There is nothing else that lives among those stones. What we need to look into is how we can assist our people so that agriculture is beneficial to them. First and foremost, let us see to it that the loans being given to our farmers attract little interest rates because currently, the interest rate is very high. There is need to organise different loan categories for different activities such as 5% interest rate for those wanting to build dams, 10% interest if one wants to buy a tractor and 15% if one wants to buy fertilizer. We also need to train our farmers how to farm because having an offer letter does not automatically make you a farmer. People should go to school and get Master Farmer certificates. If yields go up, no one will be jealous of the other person because you will all have high yields. The white farmer who used to farm on that particular farm used to get high yields without any mining rights.
Then another issue that is working against our farmers is the market where they sell their produce. If they take their grain to GMB, it takes them 2 years to get paid but the same GMB is selling grain and no one knows where the money disappears to. In Mutoko, we grow tomatoes but we see that the market is flooded with tomatoes from South Africa. That is what has destroyed our agriculture. If a person is sick and does not take tablets but blames the disease on mombe yeumai, they will die. So, one has to take medication in order to get well.
Another issue that we need to look at is to do with climate change. We should assist each other in terms of irrigation schemes or conservation agriculture or zero tillage where you use manure or even human manure for things to work out. Still on that issue, we have a huge problem. In Zimbabwe there are about 5.3 million cattle and 3 million goats. Farmers can use their herds as security. If these cattle are insured at US$300, it gives us US$1.5 billion and if the goats are insured at US$20, it gives us US$60 million. We can use that insurance as security.
I think the issue of using our houses as security should come to an end. It is not good because we are enslaving our people ending up without a roof for the family. The houses are also sold way below their value. The other thing that can assist people to get wealthy is contract farming. As Government, let us say it is a crime for one to do side marketing. Zimbabwe was the bread basket of Africa and most of the produce was grown by people in the rural areas. There was no person with mining rights. Let us concentrate at what is at hand, we should move with the times. I think our country Zimbabwe, should move forward. We should also look at how we should lift the people who are living in the rural areas. These are areas that we should bring up. Production is said to be 10 tonnes per hectare, yet someone is getting 5 tonnes per hectare. Some of these people being interested in doing so many things like mining etc, because they do not have the experience in the work that they are doing. Many hon. members are laughing at what I am saying and I think some of them will be struck. –[Laughter]- Thank you Mr. Speaker.
- MATANGIRA: Thank you very much Mr. Speaker Sir. I feel that I must also add my voice to this pertinent motion on mining and agriculture. I think the last speaker Hon. S. Mudarikwa elaborated that as an Act of mining, you are not allowed to peg in any agricultural land. As an Act of mining, you are not supposed to peg not less than 90 metres from a homestead or from any house that is built of bricks. The agrarian revolution in 2000/2002, the President of the State of Zimbabwe elaborated that those that have land, when they are on the land, anyone will come to peg a claim or a mine and it is one on one. If you agree to have a joint venture, you can have it, not on farming land or agricultural land. The last speaker rightly said it. We cannot be jack of all trades and master of one.
I am a miner Mr. Speaker. I have had problems with the farmers. This agricultural land is none productive. From 1965, people have been mining in that farm. They have not delivered 2 bags of maize to GMB and they say we need a share from what you produce. We say no, I am producing for the State. Gold goes to Fidelity and eventually it goes to the fiscus. If you want to farm, farm on top and I go underground. There is no way we can conflict, but we are saying if the farmer wants to become a miner, go and peg your own claim, your own mine, even on your farm and no one will say no to that.
So, we are saying, like what the mover of the motion has said, harmonisation of agricultural and mining Acts should be one. We accept that because we are saying, if you want to do farming, the farmer must go ahead and do farming. If I want to do mining, I will go ahead with my mining operations. Both operations are beneficial to the country and the people of Zimbabwe. We have a problem now where you would find a farmer is there on the land. He has got no inputs. The old lady in the rural set up goes and korokozas. She gets two grams, which is 62 grams. She goes and buys a bag of fertilizer and she can go back on the land.
So, farming and mining can move together with no conflicts. We support the mover because we are saying Parliament has to know what is happening in mining and agriculture. Commercial farmers are commercial farmers and they must produce food for us. We should be crying as to how we should get finances on the same farms that were productive before 2000, before the agrarian revolution. The reason is that there are sanctions by America through an Act called ZIDERA, has hampered those on land to produce. We want to highlight to this House that we may be of different opinions, we may be coming from different walks of life, even political parties, but famine and hunger is non- selective.
You can be where you are, but hunger will still get you like the sun shines for us all. Hunger will affect us all as a nation. So, rather than in Parliament here, those that asked for the sanctions for none funding of agriculture should go back and say please, can you lift these sanctions because we need food. –[HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear]- Mr. Speaker Sir, I am divulging what I was supposed to have debated in the next motion. I liked the way Hon. Misihairabwi debated the other time, when she brought in the sanitary wear here in Parliament.
Today, I have brought a typical sanction pointer in Zimbabwe. The Presidential input scheme gives the rural folk one bag of Compound D, one bag of Ammonium Nitrate and 25 kilograms of seed maize. This is what has happened even in the resettlement areas where in my constituency, I have got a resettlement area, districts and wards where the same format of distribution of the inputs is done. This one here comes from a resettlement where an individual has got four hectares. From the one bag of Compound D and one bag of Ammonium Nitrate, this farmer has 20 lines and this is the yield. It is not even a quarter of a hectare.
The rest of the three point something hectares, the same seed that the seed packer actually got; he planted the same maize and you can see it is the pioneer 30g 19, with 18 lines. Small as it is, this is the yield. No fertilizer, the seed is there and this should be the point. Zimbabwe is producing 2 tonnes today on the productive land. This is not right. As a nation, we are going to Zambia to buy maize and we are going to Malawi to import maize. Of all countries, we are saying no. Our rural folk can farm better than the commercial farmers who were there yesterday. Why can we not have a Government policy that supports agriculture?
It is not even money. We go to ZFC and they are not given money by banks. It is solely to say we guarantee that the farmer is going to pay. What price fertilizer do we pay? For cash, one 50kg bag of fertiliser is going for US$31.00. The bank that lends me money says, if I get fertilizer I must be charged US$37.00. I come from a rural constituency in Bindura, the same bag of fertilizer from Harare to Bindura costs US$4.00. For 30 tonnes I have to pay US$2 400.00 and this is broad daylight robbery.
Generally, we are saying, in order for Zimbabwe to become successful we need a shift from where we are, the blacks being the unfortunate and unable. We are able if we manage to liberate ourselves and this is the same motion I am talking about to say, let us liberate ourselves because the banks are not supportive. Even in the mining sector like the mover of the motion said, we have been talking about US$100 million that was supposed to come from China. Where is it? It is still not here three years later.
So how do the makorokoza graduate to miners, the middle class or the small scale miner, how is he going to become a big miner? We have the best ideas and strategies but our implementation is poor. We also have the stumbling blocks who put spanners in the works in order for Zimbabwe not to be successful. All the same, let us pray that one day we are going to talk with one voice and Zimbabwe will be one country again.
Lastly, Mr. Speaker Sir, I want to pray and say in this august House, let us leave our partisanship outside the Parliament building. This is a
National Assembly... – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections] – We need people who understand democracy and people must accept the results that come out and forget... – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections] – You must forgo because when you have lost, you have lost, you know you have become a brush to shine my shoes that is it – [HON. MEMBERS:
Inaudible interjections] – I thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.
- J. M. GUMBO: Mr. Speaker, I move that the debate be now adjourned.
- MUKWANGWARIWA: I second.
Motion put and agreed to.
Debate to resume: Wednesday, 15th July, 2015.
PEOPLE-CENTRED DEVELOPMENTAL POLICIES AND
MEASURES ON IMPROVING DOMESTIC PRODUCTION AND
FOREIGN DIRECT INVESTMENT
Fifth order read: Adjourned debate on motion on the deteriorating social and economic conditions in the country.
Question again proposed.
- CHIMANIKIRE: Thank you Mr. Speaker. First and
foremost, I would like to thank the mover of the motion Hon. Dr.
Mashakada for bringing forward an issue that is of essence to this nation.
Mr. Speaker, I will repeat what I said in my last debate. We debate here vehemently arguing on one point or the other but like the last speaker, I am wondering who implements what we resolve in this House?
Sometime last year, in this particular session, we debated on the issue of the Zimbabwean economy. I remember an hon. member from the other side of the House eloquently and vehemently arguing on the issues affecting this country in as far as our economy is concerned. That was Hon. Mutomba, I remember, he made very constructive suggestions on the direction that our economy is supposed to take. Yes, we have ZIM ASSET but what is happening to ZIM ASSET? We do not seem to be delivering on the deliverables that are expected from ZIM ASSET.
When people talk about sanctions, there are certain issues that affect us in this country because nowadays trade is related to human rights. I recall when I read ‘The Southern Eye’, when His Excellency the President,
Cde. Robert Gabriel Mugabe assumed office as SADC Chairman in
Victoria Falls. ‘The Southern Eye’ reported that while he was acknowledging his ascendancy to the chairmanship, in the mean time his body-guards outside the hall from where he was making his acceptance speech, were brutally assaulting a woman for having used ZANU PF regalia to tie up grass that she was carrying on her head.
That reflects on us when people talk of country risk because trade is related to human rights nowadays. Globally, we do not trade with ISIS simply because they are terrorists and sometimes it is our own behaviour that drives away investors….
THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Order, order hon. member.
There is Benz AAX9487 which is obstructing other vehicles. Can the owner please go and remove the vehicle. You may proceed Hon.
- CHIMANIKIRE: Again, a few weeks earlier, Zimbabwean
soldiers burnt down tents that were donated by the Red Cross to the Chingwizi families in Masvingo and in the process, destroying food that was donated and other clothing reserves that had been issued to families in the Chingwizi area. Again, this reflects on us when we talk about country risk in terms of investment; it is these behaviours that we then try and blame on the Americans or the British.
Young Zimbabweans marching peacefully in the streets of Harare just along Nelson Mandela Avenue were brutally attacked by police for allegedly threatening peace but what peace if one has no job? What peace when someone has not had something to eat and what peace when one does not have shelter?
Mr. Speaker, despite the fact that our new Constitution guarantees freedom of expression, however, we have continued to ensure …
THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Order, order hon. member. On
reading Order Number 5, it is about the economy, if you could stick to that please.
- CHIMANIKIRE: Thank you Mr. Speaker, I was responding
to the allegation that sanctions are the order of the day and have affected our economy. Let me just refer to a conversation …
THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Order, order, may you respond
to what is on the Order Paper hon. member.
- CHIMANIKIRE: That is fine Mr. Speaker, I will continue to discuss the economy but I just wanted to point out that.. – [HON.
MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections] – Aah you are not going to divert me.
Mr. Speaker, I was talking to a very senior ZANU PF official a year ago who said, “we have failed in running the economy of this country” but however, that person is a Member of Parliament, for your information. He said, “when we tell our people that this is because of sanctions, fortunately they believe us”.
In the 2013 Report of the Confederation of Industries of Zimbabwe, the country risk was not allotted to labour but in this House, we have had suggestions that if we amend the Labour Relations Act then our economy will be able to perform better, that is not correct.
Mr. Speaker, in the year 2000, the President made the Kadoma Declaration. The intention of the Kadoma Declaration was to promote social dialogue between Government, labour and business. Mr. Speaker, that is the way to go. However, this social dialogue document has not been implemented in this country and we are still awaiting it to be implemented so that at least there should be dialogue between Government and business. We have Members of Parliament who have recently come into Parliament who are actually successful business persons. Those people should be engaged in other fora so that Government can have the correct direction in terms of re-investment or expanding our businesses in this country.
During the honeymoon of the GNU Mr. Speaker, Christmas was
celebrated in this country for the first time. In 2010, 2011, 2012 but come 2013, we were back to the doldrums again. What went wrong? Mr. Speaker, we need to look at certain aspects that affect our economy that we need to put right. For example, Government has turned itself into a bad debtor. If you talk of the company that supplies electricity to this country, their bills are not being paid by Government departments. If you talk of Tel One, Government bills are not being paid, ZUPCO bus hires are not being paid for. There is non-payment of BEAM and benefits to war veterans such as school fees for their children, as well as widows of national heroes.
If we look at various ministries Mr. Speaker, and you look at the audit report of the Auditor General for the year 2013, it is evident that 23 ministries failed to account for almost $150 million. I have a short breakdown Mr. Speaker. When the Ministry of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development was paying for irrigation equipment, it came across a figure that they could not account for to the
Auditor General’s office. This was supposed to have been paid to a supplier and according to the Auditor General, the supplier was Chinese and a figure of $12 million was unaccounted for. Reasons given by the Ministry, although they could not account for the equipment that was supposed to have come, was that they paid that amount in order to maintain diplomatic relations with China. A country suffering from a shortage of finance like Zimbabwe is able to pay $12 million to a farming equipment supply company in China without receiving the equipment only to maintain good diplomatic relations. Treasury has not guaranteed the acquisition of this loan but the country lost $12 million along the way.
The Auditor General’s 2011 report points out that ZINARA failed to account for $6 million. This money was supposed to have been accounted for from maintenance of equipment. This was not done and the money was not accounted for. We are at $18 million Mr. Speaker. The ZMDC, which is a parastatal of Government, again according to the Auditor General’s report of 2012 could not account for $1.6 million. Why? It is because they were making payments using cash. The cashbook disappeared when the Auditor General went to audit their books; so much for a country that is crying about sanctions and the collapse of our economy.
ARDA has 36 estates; farms spread throughout the country but during the 2014/2015 agricultural season, they failed to produce reasonable yields that can actually support the country in terms of food sufficiency. They are renowned for having obsolete equipment and unskilled mechanics but this is a parastatal. So, whatever supplementary monies that they are receiving from Government in order for its upkeep, the running of these 36 estates is going to waste and it affects our economy.
Mr. Speaker, when it comes to GMB, not only has it failed to pay farmers but at the same time, we noticed that yields that are sold to the GMB have gone down since 2009. In 2009 to 2010 farming season, there was a reduction of maize sold to the GMB by 91%. In 2010 to 2011, there was a further reduction of 55%. So, by the end of the day we have a parastatal that is not operating viably and has failed to pay farmers. This reduces the buying power of the farmers and our economy which is agrobased is sinking slowly.
The Central Vehicle Registry, according to the Auditor General’s report, there were over 54 000 unprocessed licences. In other words, you go for a licencing test but the Registry itself is failing to actually process this. This is supposed to be income that is coming to Government.
Overally, Government failed to unlock a $51 million loan coming from China, simply because the Chinese want an advance of at least 10% which was $7 million but we failed to raise that amount. At the same time, this amount was supposed to have been used to facilitate the maintenance of our grain silos. Our grain silos are deteriorating, very soon they will be a write off. I am sure there has been migration of maize from Zimbabwe to Mozambique because there is no maize in the silos and by the end of the day, if we do not maintain our silos, we have nowhere to stock our maize when we finally have bumper harvests.
Mr. Speaker, when one looks at poor Government debt recovery processes and the losses that are being suffered by 23 ministries out of 33, one can only recommend certain drastic action to be taken. Corruption is a catalyst to the current economic ruin. For example, there are issues of contracts that have been issued and the use of Brainworks that we have been reading about in the newspapers. We have the issue of ESSAR Mr.
Speaker. How on earth do we enter into contracts that are not applicable?
I remember the Minister of Industry and Commerce when we started in 2013 in this Session of Parliament; he announced that now that we have a one party Government, ESSAR is going to start working by December 2013. We are in July, 2015 and what has happened? ESSAR has abandoned Zimbabwe and why have we not re-tendered or redone the process so that we can come up with workable arrangements.
Mr. Speaker, this Government is pushing this country where other countries are actually migrating from. In Senegal, 90% of the economy is informal but dust bins are collected by donkeys, pulling scotch carts. In the DRC, when Mobutu had faced a collapsing economy, he tried to introduce the use of bicycles because people could not afford to buy cars.
In conclusion Mr. Speaker, I would like to put forward what I call recommendations. How do we resuscitate this economy? Government should seriously re-invigorate performance management programmes to ensure that service efficiency is harnessed from the Permanent Secretary to the most junior clerk. The Government should fire all heads of departments in 23 ministries who failed to account for Government funds allotted to them.
The Anti-Corruption Commission should be appointed to ensure that we deal with issues of corruption. However, they need to be investigated. They bought offices worth $168 million which were overstated according to the Auditor General’s office by $480 000. This should be repaid.
The Government should amend the Indigenisation ratio. Instead of
51:49 ratio, why do we not go to 26% and then we graduate to 51% over a set period of time so that we are able at least to attract Foreign Direct Investment? Mr. Speaker, Government should bring in private business investors into ARDA, National Railways of Zimbabwe, ZUPCO, Air Zimbabwe, Cold Storage Commission, ZINARA, ZINWA and other
parastatals that are not operating profitably.
However, Mr. Speaker, should this fail to happen, I am sure the challenge is that, this Government has to resign and seek a new mandate from the people. They have promised people 2.1 million jobs, nothing is happening and what do you do when you have failed on your own manifesto? You just resign and seek a new mandate from the people. I thank you Mr. Speaker.
- CHIKWAMA: I move that the debate do now adjourn.
- MUKWANGWARIWA: I second.
Motion put and agreed to.
Debate to resume: Wednesday, 15th July, 2015.
On the motion of MS. CHIKWAMA, seconded by MS.
MPARIWA, the House adjourned at Three Minutes to Four o’clock p.m.