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NATIONAL ASSEMBLY HANSARD - 26 NOVEMBER 2013 VOL. 40 NO. 18
PARLIAMENT OF ZIMBABWE
Tuesday, 26th November, 2013
The House of Assembly met at a Quarter-past Two O’clock p.m.
(MR SPEAKER in the Chair)
ANNOUNCEMENT BY MR SPEAKER
CHANGES TO PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE MEMBERSHIP
- SPEAKER: I have to inform the House of changes in the membership of committees as follows: Mrs. L. Sibanda has withdrawn from serving on the Portfolio Committee on Higher Education, Science and Technology Development. The hon. member is already serving two other committees; and Mrs. Majaya moves from the Portfolio Committee on Communication Technology, Postal and Courier Services to the Portfolio Committee on Mines and Energy.
PRESIDENTIAL SPEECH: DEBATE ON ADDRESS
First Order read: Adjourned debate on motion in reply to the Presidential Speech.
Question again proposed.
MRS. THEMBANI: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir, for giving me this opportunity to address this august House. Let me start by congratulating the President and First Secretary of our party ZANU PF, Cde. Robert Gabriel Mugabe, for being elected President of the Republic of Zimbabwe, Head of State and Commander-in-Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces.
May I also congratulate you for being elected Speaker of this august House. My congratulations also go to Mrs. Chinomona for being elected the Deputy Speaker of this august House. To my fellow hon. Members of Parliament, I congratulate you on your election to represent the people out there. Mr. Speaker, people are watching us and are expecting results from us.
Lastly, I would like to commend and thank the people of Zimbabwe for coming in large numbers to vote for us all. They make us proud
Members of Parliament who will work with the President, His Excellency Cde. Robert Gabriel Mugabe, in order to achieve what we promised people through our ZANU PF manifesto.
When His Excellency, President R.G. Mugabe addressed this august House on the 17th September, 2013, he was extending his hand to us all in order to guide us on the right path, which if followed, will lead us to achieve our goals as articulated in the ZANU PF manifesto.
Mr. Speaker Sir, I shall try and speak on some of the issues raised in the President’s Speech. In doing so, I will be supportive of those who have spoken before me. The Government should be commended for taking positive steps by improving our national road network. However, in spite of all these positive steps, today it is not safe to travel on our roads using different types of road transport. There are too many fatal road accidents which are taking place almost every day. Who is to blame for these accidents? We hear people, when they are involved in accidents, blaming the poor road infrastructure instead of the drivers who might be driving at 140 kilometres per hour in a 70 kilometres per hour zone, overtaking on blind corners, et cetera. Mr. Speaker Sir, some blame police road blocks for causing accidents. Although most drivers will not agree with me, in my view, blame must be given to the reckless drivers who are causing accidents. There should be stiffer punishment for reckless drivers so as to stop these accidents.
Also, during his address, His Excellency, President R.G Mugabe said the new Constitution imposes on the State, the duty to take concrete and reasonable measures to prevent the spread of diseases and to treat health care as an absolute right for every Zimbabwean citizen. Hon. members, our task is to debate and urgently amend the laws that govern health care. While debating these issues, we should not forget to support any measures that will be brought before us which are aimed at improving the conditions of service for our health workers, the civil service and our security forces.
I thank you.
- Z. SIBANDA: Thank you Mr. Speaker for giving me this
opportunity. I will start by congratulating you on your election to the position of Speaker of this House, ‘amhlope, makorokoto’. Secondly, I would like to congratulate His Excellency, the President and the First
Secretary of ZANU PF, Cde. R.G. Mugabe for his resounding victory on
31st July, 2013 elections. God is great. Zimbabwe will never be a colony again. Mr. Speaker Sir, I would not be fair if I do not thank the people of Tsholotsho South Constituency, for giving me the opportunity to represent them in this august House.
Mr. Speaker Sir, from the address by His Excellency the President and Commander-in-Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, Cde R. G.
Mugabe, he touched on agriculture as the mainstay of the economy. Yes, Zimbabwe is an agriculture based country and Tsholotsho South falls under natural region 5, with very little rainfall. The community in Tsholotsho South is made up of subsistence farmers. Most young men and women of this constituency work in neighbouring countries, mostly South Africa and Botswana, as domestic workers. Because of the little rainfall the place receives year in and year out, droughts are a common threat in the area. The poor sandy soils and hot weather have adverse effects on the livelihoods of communities and this has a negative impact on agricultural activities in Tsholotsho South. So, as a result communities depend on food from NGOs such as ORAP, Plan International and World Vision. Most, if not all, members of this constituency are extremely poor.
Mr. Speaker Sir, Tsholotsho South is the only place in this country where you can find the San community, among other tribes which are Khalanga and Ndebele. The San community is one of the most underprivileged communities and so the Government should embark on an irrigation type of farming. Mr. Speaker Sir, if massive cropping is to be done, it has to be done under expansive measures, that is, through irrigation schemes, as I have mentioned before. Therefore, more dams must be rehabilitated in Tsholotsho South Constituency. The constituency does not have any irrigation schemes. Tsholotsho South experiences floods every year because the land is flat and as a result, we need a big dam to harvest that running water so that we can use it for irrigation purposes.
Mr. Speaker Sir, the livestock payback period is naturally longer than that of cropping. My constituency has the hospitality industry as a ready market for agriculture produce. Poachers from all over the country take advantage of the San community, using them to kill elephants in
Tsholotsho, because most of them are vulnerable families. I would like to suggest that hunger alleviation programmes be introduced as a matter of urgency and that this be a cultural activity to reduce the so-called dangerous poaching in Tsholotsho, where we see the country losing more than 100 elephants a year. I also urge the Judiciary to revise the sentence given to those who kill elephants. Mr. Speaker Sir, someone who kills any elephant is being sentenced to two years, but a stock thief who is being accused of stealing just one beast, is being sentenced for 9 years. Surely it is not fair.
Mr. Speaker Sir, Tsholotsho South has a poor road network. As Government, something has to be done to urge D.D.F to improve its operations because DDF is totally underperforming. We have other state roads in Tsholotsho South, for example Tsholotsho-NyamandlovuBulawayo, Tsholotsho-Plumtree and Tsholotsho-Skente, these roads are in a sorry state Mr. Speaker Sir.
Tsholotsho South residents rely on borehole water from January to December because we do not have rivers to supply our livestock with water. I therefore urge the Government to rehabilitate more boreholes and drill new ones to serve our livestock.
Mr. Speaker Sir, Tsholotsho South Constituency has fourteen secondary schools and thirty-three primary schools, but as I have mentioned before, the San community, found in wards 10, 7, and 8, cannot afford to pay school fees. Therefore, I urge the Government to offer these people free education and build more secondary schools. Teachers at some schools in Tsholotsho face challenges where they have medical aid schemes, but when they go to a clinic they are denied assistance because the clinics fall under rural district councils. Can Government assist the teachers so that the clinics in the rural areas accept medical aid, thereby improving the welfare of rural teachers on their health services.
Also on health, Mr. Speaker Sir, we have a shortage of clinics in my constituency. We have some areas where people travel up to 20km to reach a clinic. For example, people travel from Dingane to Tsholotsho and even from Mbamba area to Bubude Clinic and the distance is too far. Something should be done to reduce unnecessary deaths because people fail to travel these distances. It is a shame, Mr. Speaker Sir. We should increase the number of our health institutions in rural areas and at newly resettled farming areas. Many people in my constituency are people living with AIDS so I urge the Government to make this a matter of urgency.
I would like this House to know that Tsholotsho South Constituency has a big project, which was initiated by the Late Vice President, Dr. John Landa Nkomo, a son of the soil. He built a beautiful school in Tsholotsho, but I would be happy if Government does not abandon this project, to the wishes of the Late Vice President. We need more computers, dormitories and a science laboratory to fulfill the late John Landa Nkomo's wishes and we want this school to be a boarding school.
Finally, the people in Tsholotsho South Constituency need economic empowerment through the provisions of soft loan schemes, community share ownership trusts and restoration of livestock projects, especially the youths, so that they do not travel to South Africa seeking jobs. There is need for the establishment of a vocational training centre and common facility centre to assist the youths and women in Tsholotsho.
Mr. Speaker Sir, people from Tsholotsho South are calling for the removal of sanctions imposed by the West. Zimbabwe will never be a colony again. I thank you, Mr. Speaker.
THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HEALTH AND CHILD CARE
(DR. CHIMEDZA): I move that the debate do now adjourn.
Motion put and agreed to.
Debate to resume: Tuesday, 3rd December, 2013.
BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HEALTH AND CHILD CARE
(DR. CHIMEDZA): I move that Orders of the Day Number 2 to 5 be stood over until Order Number 6 has been disposed of.
INQUIRY INTO THE POWER SECTOR IN ZIMBABWE
Sixth Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on the intermittent power cuts by ZESA.
Question again proposed.
- NDUNA: Thank you very much Mr. Speaker Sir. I rise to debate on the motion by Hon. Maridadi on the electricity or ZESA situation here in Zimbabwe.
Firstly, I want to make it clear that the brain drain here in Zimbabwe, at ZESA is not unique to Zimbabwe only but it is an effect that affects all countries that have got a literacy rate such as ours. So if a country is endowed with technocrats such as ours and the remuneration in their field does not match the amount of work that they put in or the amount of energy they put towards their work, naturally that will shed off such technocrats to other countries.
Secondly, I want to dispel the notion that our grid or our infrastructure here in Zimbabwe cannot hold the amount of electricity that our consumers, as a nation need to use for their day to day consumption. Mr. Speaker Sir, we have a tri-nation agreement which borders on the
SADC countries, that they can take electricity or import electricity via Zimbabwe. This infrastructure was built with that in mind. So the notion that as a nation, our infrastructure capacity cannot hold any electricity that is more than that which is being transmitted through it at the moment is not right.
Thirdly, Mr. Speaker Sir, the electricity shortage here in Zimbabwe is not only unique to Zimbabwe. As I will illustrate, generation of electricity is a mammoth task and is capital intensive, as it also covers the countries that are bordering us. As I speak, Mr. Speaker Sir, except that it gets to be a little bit easier for them to go about this mammoth task because they are not under sanctions, they can easily get their infrastructures in place and they can easily get spare parts from the western countries. The replacement of spare parts and the building of new infrastructure for electricity is very capital intensive.
I would also like the House to know Mr. Speaker Sir, that the unbundling of ZESA, had it gone through or had it not been seen, was going to make sure that our electricity is now in the hands of neocolonialists, our former colonisers and those that we previously fought with during the war of liberation. I am glad Mr. Speaker Sir that we have seen through the thin veil of political machination by the opposition party which intended to give back an issue of national importance to the enemy.
I want to mention that our Chief Whip, Hon. J. Gumbo has already touched on the issue of motions being presented by the other side of the House, that border on trying to debate the Presidential Speech in a skewed manner that is going to be seen as though they are not aligning themselves to the Presidential Speech. The President touched on electricity or ZESA being an enabler in the economy and this has also been touched on in the ZIM ASSET document; that if followed to the latter, Mr. Speaker Sir, is going to see this country go out of the doldrums.
- MUTSEYAMI: On of a point of order, I think the hon. member is not addressing the motion; he is really diverting from the motion. I would appeal to you Mr. Speaker Sir, to address him so that he goes back to the motion. I thank you.
- SPEAKER: There is no point of order because the hon. member is trying to demonstrate that the issue of infrastructural development as far as electricity generation is concerned has been mentioned in the ZIM ASSET document.
- MUTSEYAMI: The hon. member was just trying to find
something to talk about.
- SPEAKER: Order, can you debate the motion -[HON.
MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections]
- NDUNA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. That is music interlude. I have touched on the ZIM ASSET on how the Blue Print is seeking to address the situation of this enabler, which is electricity in our nation to totally make sure that we get optimum power for the development of the issues that have been touched on in the ZIM ASSET document that I think are very noble. This issue is just taking over from the Presidential Speech which I certainly think, if the other counterparts on the other side of the House had debated the Presidential Speech, we would clearly have finished this motion on electricity by now.
I am going to touch on the pre-payment system Mr. Speaker Sir, before I go deep into this debate. It is a noble development because Zimbabwe is the only country in the world that by now or up to now had continued to use electricity to prepare tripe, mazondo, and to cook such other things such as trotters. Other countries have moved away from this approach Mr. Speaker Sir. They are now using other renewable sources of energy and gas to say the least. So, prepayment systems are going to make sure that by choice, our people move away from using electricity unnecessarily that they cannot, at the end of the day be able to pay for Mr.
Speaker Sir. People are going now to use what they are able to pay for. What this does is, it aligns the amount of electricity generated by us as a nation to the amount of electricity that we are using as our domestic requirement.
I am going to touch on energy deficit Mr. Speaker Sir, as examples in other nations that are bordering us, to show that this issue of energy deficit or electricity deficit does not only reside in Zimbabwe. It is a regional phenomenon that touches on all other countries that are bordering us. According to Himende the energy minister in Mozambique. He is looking at closing the energy deficit through building of new hydro-electricity power stations at Mpanda Nkuwa phase one which will generate a thousand five hundred megawatts. Phase two will generate 900 megawatts, Bora 200 megawatts, Lupata 600 megawatts, Lurio 120 megawatts and on the north bank of the Cabora Bassa 1 245 megawatts. This is happening as we speak Mr. Speaker Sir. This is a statement that was produced in May of 2013. Mozambique has not completely covered its population or its needs in electricity issues. The only difference that Mozambique has with us is that they can develop their electricity infrastructure un-impeded in a sanction free environment. What I want the other hon. members to know is that we can develop our infrastructure because we will need that electricity to cover the deficit that is there in the nation. However, it is going to be a bit slower, more tedious and more painful because of the dilapidating sanctions that have been imposed on us by the West. Thus, the hon. members from the other side of the House are totally cognisant of and should call for the lifting of the sanctions uchirayika imi - [HON.
MEMBERS: Hear, hear, ]-
Mr. Speaker Sir, we are endowed with natural resources and I want to touch on what the Energy Minister in Mozambique also are used to, as endowment in their nation. He says, the development of the energy sector in Mozambique – you need to listen to this Hon. Mudzuri- will not be based...
MR SPEAKER: Hon. member will you address the Chair please.
MR NDUNA: Will not be based on one source as a country but, also has access to natural gas. I should hasten to say, we have got these fields as well Mr. Speaker Sir, resident in our country. He goes on to say, there is coal in that nation; he goes on to say there is ethanol in that nation. You already, know that the energy crisis on issues to do with petroleum are going down in Zimbabwe because of the ethanol plant at Chisumbanje. This is a process that we are currently grappled with, that shows that if we use and optimally utilise the resources that our nation is endowed with, we can come out of this energy deficit that is currently in the nation. We have dispelled the notion that the infrastructure or the cabling, to be precise, in this nation is obsolete to the point that it cannot carry the load that is meant for our nation as usage Mr. Speaker Sir. So, however much we generate as a nation to cover our deficit, our cabling, our infrastructure as it is, is able to carry that load.
I am going to touch on DRC Mr. Speaker Sir. We import some of our electricity from DRC to cover our deficit. DRC also exports to other nations. So this phenomenon is not only unique to Zimbabwe. It says the country Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is looking for a developer to build Inga three dam. This is as of November 2011, on the Congo
River, which the authorities hope will generate 4 300 mega watts. As a nation, our consumption is ± 2 600 mega watts and we have a deficit of 500 mega watts. So these nations that are bordering us, that still have a deficit and they are looking to build or develop infrastructure that is going to generate 4 300 mega watts, which is going to be ready by 2018. This is a long term project and I want to prove that it is not unique to us only. It is also capital intensive.
I will also show how much power generation costs. Still in DRC, a far larger project that would build a 39 000 mega watt hydro plant in Inga
3 has attracted the interest of the world’s largest mining company BHP. –
[HON MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections]- MR. SPEAKER: Order, order.
- NDUNA: Mr. Speaker Sir, remember BHP is an Australian based company which also tried its hand in Chegutu West Constituency at some point. They ended up handing over the mining concessions and infrastructure to ZIMPLATS which is headed by a South African oriented company. When I say BHP is a large conglomerate of companies that are resident in the mining sector, it is with a lot of knowledge in that regard.
The plans for quoting BHP have stalled. Naturally, what I see Mr. Speaker Sir, is that because electricity generation is so capital intensive, it will scare away a lot of investors, including the neo-colonialists and big corporates like BHP. If big corporates like BHP can be scared off in a natural environment such as the DRC which is sanctions free, which has a lot of potential, how then will it be for Zimbabwe which is under these debilitating sanctions? I want you to see Mr. Speaker Sir, that in an environment that has got no sanctions, which has free movement of capital and otherwise, big corporates are still scared to embark on big capital projects such as power generation because they are too capital intensive.
It says here, the Government of DRC is hoping to double the percentage of population accessing electricity by 2015. This is 2013, but this would cost $6.5 billion. When we say 39 000 mega watts is going to cost $6.5 billion, it means generation of 500 mega watts is going to cost us a billion to ± $2 billion. So if a country such as DRC is unable to attract people to invest this amount, how can we attract investment ourselves in such infrastructure, in such a sector, if those countries that release the monies report to the Western countries have imposed sanctions on us?
I want to touch on ...
- SPEAKER: Hon. member, you have five minutes more to
- NDUNA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. I will quickly touch on
issues of playing politics with electricity, which is a key enabler of any economic development in our country. In a statement that was given by the former Minister of Energy and Power Development, at the time Elton
Mangoma said, “all the 13 independent power producers are licenced to produce electricity but have not started operating because of heightened concerns about the political situation in the country and Government’s forcible approach in implementing its indigenous programme”, that is a shame Mr. Speaker Sir. You can see already, the war is not yet won. These people want to come into our environment on their own terms. The former Minister of Energy was nearly giving away our livelihoods on a silver platter to neo-colonialists. He goes on to say, “the people who are prepared to do IPP and CSCs are there but they are not here because they are finding the economic and political situation unacceptable to them.”
If you are coming into our turf, the terms should be acceptable to us not to you. The percentage, that as a nation we are giving to foreigners as an indigenisation approach is too much in my opinion. -[AN HON
MEMBER: Indigenous ipi yacho yauri kutaura]-
- SPEAKER: Order, order.
- NDUNA: So if corporates from the West are not prepared to invest in our nation or commit themselves in the energy sector, Mr. Speaker Sir, as you have seen in the past few days, the load shedding has subsided a bit because we are now using what we are able to pay for.
Also, the issue of brain drain is because we are endowed with technocrats. The issue Mr. Speaker Sir, of sanctions, the hon. member who moved this motion should be calling on nations that imposed sanctions on us in order that they get removed and we proceed to generate electricity, Mr. Speaker Sir; using our own natural resources: our coal, our gas at Lupane, using our water at Kariba unimpeded, because we have got the capacity and the natural resources. What we lack is the removal of sanctions so that we can access the lines of credit to build the infrastructure.
So Mr. Speaker Sir, I want to encourage the hon. member that moved this motion to keep moving motions of this nature, but should take cognisance of the fact that, the likes of hon. members who have seen through this thin veil of politicking and political machinations, by the neocolonialists, are going to come and debate to the effect that, let us make sure that this environment is sanction free – [HON MEMBERS: Hear, hear] – and then we can now …
- SPEAKER: Order, order, hon. member, your time is up.
- MUTSEYAMI: I want to move that the hon. member’s time be
extended – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections].
- SPEAKER: Order, order, hon. member, you may sit down please – [Being Mr. Nduna who had stood up]. Hon. Member, can you wind up your debate – [HON MEMBERS: Hear, hear].
- NDUNA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. I just want to touch on the statement by the Energy Minister, Minister Mavhaire that, given the current situation…
- SPEAKER: Sorry, hon. member, there were some members who did not agree and in that case, the time cannot be extended – [HON.
MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections].
- MHLANGA: Thank you Mr. Speaker for affording me this opportunity. What I would actually like to thank very much, the hon.
member for bringing this very important motion. Sometimes Mr. Speaker, you wonder where this important motion is debated here; you find it is actually like a rally, when people are campaigning. I wonder, maybe there is an election.
Mr. Speaker, this very important motion affects a number of sections in our community…
ANNOUNCEMENT BY MR. SPEAKER
VISITORS IN THE SPEAKER’S GALLARY
- SPEAKER: Order, order, switch off your microphone. My apologies hon. Mhlanga, I need to announce the presence of a delegation in the Speaker’s Gallery, of hon. members of the Committee on Equal
Opportunities from the Parliament of Uganda, led by Hon. Kawooya Anifa. You are welcome. Hon. Mhlanga, if you may continue – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear].
- MHLANGA: Thank you. I was saying this motion touches everybody’s life; all ministries concerned. For example, I said, a number of sectors, you will find in the commercial industries, ministers are always complaining about poor quality. Honestly, there have been a number of workshops talking about that. What causes poor quality is because electricity is cut when production is on line. Definitely, unless we actually attend to that, we will always have poor quality.
In the residents, you will find that when the electricity is being cut, another cruel law was made Mr. Speaker Sir, another cruel law to the people to say you must not sell firewood in town. We used to say, when electricity was abundant, you know very well Mr. Speaker, that there were some stores where people could be allowed by the City Council to sell firewood. When electricity is not available, another cruel law is made. Surely hon. members must actually consider and feel it in their hearts and allow people of Zimbabwe to sell firewood, especially in places where it is dry. Let the people be allowed to sell because electricity actually is replaced by firewood. I think I am right Mr. Speaker.
What I have also noted is that power cuts have also affected the residents’ gadgets. People have lost a lot of gadgets through these power outages and everybody is keeping quiet. What I have noted with concern, both Members of Parliament and Ministers, what have you as Members of Parliament to do with the calculations of megawatts? What must an MP know about megawatts? An MP is an enabler. We must ensure that the environment is free. Let our experts do the megawatts calculations, not to concentrate on calculations. Maybe we are also interfering in their work and that is why, they are not carrying out their job properly. Let us move from working as technocrats or electricians. Let us come here to
Parliament and make policies and rules which will make those people able to do their work. We are enablers here, not doers. I hear a lot of calculations of megawatts, it is not our job – [HON. MEMBERS:
Mr. Speaker Sir, I want to thank this hon. member for bringing this, maybe in another platform, where people will get men and women of substance and content to actually debate and maybe come with a good policy rather than this fighting and this campaigning. Thank you Mr.
Speaker – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear].
- CROSS: Thank you Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, after the previous two speakers, I feel that I should in fact make a short statement today on the question of electricity supplies in Zimbabwe because there is a lot of confusion and it is not assisted by this kind of debate.
The power generation facilities in Zimbabwe were built in stages; the small thermal power stations were built prior to 1938. Kariba was completed in 1958 and Hwange was built under United Nations Mandatory Compulsory Universal Sanctions between 1968-1970. I mention the latter because I was a young man during those days. I participated in the construction of Kariba. Kariba at its time was the largest infrastructure development in the world financed by the World Bank. Hwange was financed by the Rhodesian Government and the equipment was imported to Rhodesia under United Nations sanctions. I simply cannot understand why our associates on the other side of the House, should claim today that sanctions should be causing, in any way, the kind of crisis we are experiencing today. It is not true.
There are absolutely no restrictions whatsoever on the importation of spares of any kind to deal with any form of electricity generation infrastructure in Zimbabwe today. The power generation capacity of Zimbabwe is about 1200 MW today. It fluctuates a little bit based on the facilities at Hwange, but by and large, I think one of the greatest achievements of the past four years has been to stabilise the two major power stations in the country. I am pleased to announce today that the contractors have moved on site at Kariba South. This is a major step forward. It is a contract negotiated by the former Minister of Energy and I think it is a good contract. It will be funded by the people constructing the facility and I hope that within three years, Kariba will be able to generate something like 900 MW for us as a nation. It will not be creating any additional sources of supply because we do not have sufficient water in Kariba but will enable us to fluctuate the production from Kariba to meet our peaks in demand. This is a very important function.
Hwange, I am afraid Mr. Speaker, has been inexplicably delayed. It is in fact the only major new generation source of power to Zimbabwe today. It is capable of being financed today, without any problems at all. It is a mystery to me as to why this particular contract, like Kariba South has not been awarded. I do not know what the hold-up is today but I would hope that the minister would be more transparent in the way he is handling this business and inform the House when he has the time, as to why this important contract has been delayed.
For the rest, Rhodesia always could depend on surpluses in other parts of Southern Africa for its shortfall in supplies. Therefore, no expansion in the production of electricity in Zimbabwe has been completed in the last 40 years, 34 of which have been under ZANU PF management. More importantly, during this period, there has been absolutely no maintenance and no reconstruction of these important facilities. Now that the region itself, particularly South Africa, is moving into a deficit position in so far as their own requirements are concerned; these countries are no longer able to supply us on and when required, hence the load shedding.
As far as the future is concerned, Mr. Speaker, the Sengwa project has been on the books for some time, promoted by a major international company based in London, Rio Tinto. There is no question of any kind of restrictions on Rio Tinto regarding this investment. Rio Tinto is not proceeding with this investment simply because of the risk profile of Zimbabwe. Part of that risk profile is indigenisation. There is no investor in the world that is going to put a dollar on the table and have fifty-one cents taken by ZANU PF. For that reason, Sengwa has not proceeded. The same applies to Binga. There is another thermal station being planned in Binga. Plans for the thermal station are being funded by the French.
Again, there is no question of any restrictions on the financiers of this; it is the risk profile of Zimbabwe that is impeding these investments.
As far as gas is concerned in Lupane, I think most people now know that the gas in Lupane is not a reliable source of energy. It is unlikely to be developed on any significant scale. Therefore we have to ask, what are the immediate prospects for new energy sources for Zimbabwe? I want to highlight the new role of Mozambique. Mozambique first found gas just about 150 km South of Beira about 20 years ago. That gas is being delivered to Gauteng today using a pipeline constructed by SASOL.
Recently, Mozambique has discovered major gas in the North near the Tanzanian border. This new discovery Mr. Speaker Sir, is going to turn Mozambique into one of the largest energy suppliers in the world. These gas reserves are similar to those of Doha in the Middle East. It is going to transform the Mozambican economy. Already, more than US$100 billion has been committed to investment in the Mozambique gas
The other development of concern to us is that just in the last two months, a gas field was discovered just off Beira, about 10 km from Beira port on the other side of the river. This gas field has 4 trillion cubic feet of gas which is bigger than the fields in the south supplying Gauteng. I am reliably informed that using this gas, which is only 183 km from Mutare, we can construct a 2 000 MW power station in Mutare within three years.
Contrary to what my colleagues on the other side of the House are saying, the Indian private sector is prepared to invest in that facility. The issue we have got to look at here is that this is a critical subject for every Zimbabwean; to try and make cheap political points about the so-called sanctions on this kind of issue is simply not doing it justice. We need to debate this issue. We need to have clarity on it, the future of our economy –[MR NDUNA: Inaudible interjections]- you are quite right. Mr. Speaker Sir, my colleague is debating with me here.
- SPEAKER: Order, order, order. Please address the Chair. Hon Nduna, please avoid direct verbal attack – [MR NDUNA: He is saying there are no sanctions.]- Order. May the hon. member continue please?
- CROSS: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. I just want to make a point that, until we resolve the question of a reliable power supply for Zimbabwe at the lowest possible cost, our economy is not going anywhere. We cannot expect any substantial new investment in Zimbabwe until we are able to guarantee those investors power. Therefore, this issue is of critical importance to us as a nation and should be debated properly and clearly. Thank you very much Mr. Speaker.
MISS. ANASTANCIA NDHLOVU: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. I
would like to add my voice to this motion very briefly and thank the mover for moving it. I will not dwell much on why we have power cuts because we have them and they are very visible. I will instead suggest how, I think we can address the challenges.
Mr. Speaker Sir, I think over and above the hydro and thermal power sources that we use mostly, I would like to recommend that Government also invests in renewable energy sources which are also environmentally friendly, such as wind and solar. I want to recommend that Government invest in finding out, how much wind resources we have as a country to carry out what is called a windmill. The Government will also have to put resources to see how we can use both wind and hydro, so that when the wind levels are high, we can save or reduce pressure on the hydro power.
Mr. Speaker Sir, I would also want to suggest that the country invests in solar energy. We have plenty of sunlight in our country and I am sure it would add value to the electorate and put less pressure on them with regards to the cost of electricity if we use and encourage our people to go the solar way.
Mr. Speaker Sir, we all know the effects of power shots; power cuts are mainly felt by the women and the young girls. Therefore, it is important that we look into ways of how to address this. I am trying to imagine what could happen if a woman was in labour and there is a powercut in that labour ward. I think we really need to take issues of energy seriously because it affects women adversely. It also affects our economy in a very negative manner because it affects ZIM Asset’s implementation and its success. It is therefore imperative that we look into energy challenges.
I also want to congratulate the Government, through Ministers
Chinamasa and Mavhaire, who two weeks ago, signed some deal where they secured funding to look into energy challenges in our country. It is my hope Mr. Speaker Sir, that the loan facility that they secured will help us deal with the challenges of energy cuts that we face.
Mr. Speaker Sir, with those few remarks, I would want to thank you for affording me this opportunity and for thanking the mover.
THE MINISTER OF STATE FOR MANICALAND PROVINCE
(MR. MUSHOWE): I move that the debate do now adjourn.
Motion put and agreed to.
Debate to resume: Tuesday, 3rd December, 2013.
On the motion of THE MINISTER OF STATE FOR
MANICALAND PROVINCE (MR. MUSHOWE), the House adjourned
at Twenty-Nine Minutes to Four o’clock p.m. until Tuesday, 3rd December, 2013.