[featured_image]
Download
Download is available until [expire_date]
  • Version
  • Download 54
  • File Size 907.66 KB
  • File Count 1
  • Create Date September 28, 2022
  • Last Updated September 28, 2022

NATIONAL ASSEMBLY HANSARD 28 SEPTEMBER 2022 VOL 48 NO 80

PARLIAMENT OF ZIMBABWE

Wednesday, 28th September, 2022

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

PRAYERS

(THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER in the Chair)

          ANNOUNCEMENTS BY THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER

SWEARING IN OF A NEW MEMBER

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  I have to inform the House that on 26th September, 2022, Parliament was notified by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission that Tshuma Spencer was duly elected a Member of the National Assembly for the Gokwe-Kabuyuni Constituency following a by election.

          Section 128 (1) of the Constitution provides that before a Member of Parliament takes his or her seat in Parliament, the Member must take the oath of a Member of Parliament in the form set out in the third schedule.  

          Section 128 (2) states that the oath must be taken before the Clerk of Parliament.

          I therefore, call upon the Clerk of Parliament to administer the oath of a Member of Parliament to Tshuma Spencer – [HON. MEMBERS:  Hear, hear.] –

NEW MEMBER SWORN

          HON. SPENCER TSHUMA subscribed to the Oath of Loyalty as required by the Law and took his seat – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.] –

FIRST READING

MEDICAL SERVICES AMENDMENT BILL [H. B. 1, 2022.]

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTAR YAFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of THE  VICE PRESIDENT AND MINISTER OF HEALTH AND CHILD CARE) (HON. GEN.  RTD. C.G.D.N. CHIWENGA) presented the Medical Services Amendment Bill [H. B. 1, 2022].

          Bill read the first time.

          Bill referred to the Parliamentary Legal Committee.

FIRST READING

ELECTRICITY AMENDMENT BILL [H. B. 7, 2022]

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF ENERGY AND POWER DEVELOPMENT (HON. SODA) presented the Electricity Amendment Bill [H.B. 7, 2022]

          Bill read the first time.

          Bill referred to the Parliamentary Legal Committee.

          HON. GONESE: On a point of Order Madam Speaker. My point of order is in terms of the provisions of Standing Order No. 72 which is very clear that a point of order takes precedence over all other motions or Orders of the day. A point of order was raised by Hon. Markham in relation to the lack of connectivity and it is trite that we now have a hybrid system and a zoom link which was sent to our e-mails and provided to all Members of Parliament, which means to say that we are all entitled to elect as to how we are going to participate in the sessions of this august House.

          When we have got a hybrid system, it is important for all Hon. Members to be able to access the proceedings of this House. As Hon. Markham pointed out, there were 12 people lined up and I had to borrow from my learned friend Hon. Ndebele’s tablet because I am failing to connect on my tablet. Yesterday there was a debate on Order No. 33 which had to be adjourned because of this lack of connectivity. It is incumbent upon the Chair to make a ruling as to how we are supposed to be proceeding. I was of the opinion that before proceeding with the business of the day, the Chair was going to advise the Hon. Members of this august House, even those who are not here also need answers. As I have already pointed out, we adopted Standing Orders for virtual sittings, so it is important to us.

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Thank you Hon. Gonese for that. We do not have connectivity challenges.

          HON. GONESE: There are because I failed to access and there are only a few people who are connected. Yesterday I had a problem when I wanted to contribute to a debate on Order No. 33. I had to rush to this august House and the House had to adjourn. Hon. Mavetera was in the Chair and she adjourned the debate and I was informed by other Hon. Members. I was with Hon. Mokone and we were on virtual platform, we could not access. So if those on the floor of this House are failing to get through, it means that even those outside are failing to get through and it is not a new thing. It happened yesterday and the House was prematurely adjourned because there was no connectivity. So you cannot say that there are no connectivity challenges. Right now, I am holding my phone and it is still saying connecting waiting for the host to start this meeting. It is important for us to address the issue because it is critical. I am also speaking on behalf of those who would have taken an election to participate virtually. It is a hybrid system and if we are to dispense with the hybrid system, why are we having the zoom link sent to our e-mails? It is to enable us to connect. Thank you.

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Gonese, those Hon. Members who are facing challenges with connectivity can be attended to by the ICT.

          HON. GONESE: And those who are not in the House who have made an election as we are having a hybrid system, we adopted Standing Orders for a virtual sitting? It is now something which we are entitled to do. It is important that it should be addressed and we know what is happening   and how we are going to deal with it.

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Gonese, we have 37 Hon. Members who are now connected on our zoom link and so we can proceed and others will be connecting as we go.

          HON. GONESE: Thank you Ma’am if it is being addressed, but I was also talking about the future, the way forward, not just for one day.

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Those facing challenges, I am being advised that Hon. Members must log in using the I.D. which was sent on your phones at around 10.30, not the other one which was sent before that. The other one which was sent before that is wrong. So you must use the one which is reflecting on our screen. May we move forward?

ANNOUNCEMENT BY THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER

APOLOGIES RECEIVED FROM MINISTERS

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: I have got a list of Hon. Ministers and Deputy Ministers who have sought leave of absence from the House. Hon. C.D.G. N. Chiwenga, Vice President and Minister of Health and Child Care; Hon. J. Mangwiro, Deputy Minister for Health and Child Care; Hon. E. F. T. Mhona, Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development; Hon. E. Ndlovu, Minister of Primary and Secondary Education; Hon. E. Moyo, Deputy Minister of Primary and Secondary Education; Hon. Prof. M. Ncube, Minister of Finance and Economic Development; Hon. Prof. A. Murwira, Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education, Innovation, Science and Technology Development; Hon. Machingura, Deputy Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education, Innovation, Science and Technology Development; Hon. Dr. K. Coventry, Minister of Youth, Sport, Arts and Culture; Hon. Kazembe, Minister of Home Affairs and Cultural Heritage; Hon. Chitando, Minister of Mines and Mining Development; Hon. Prof. Mavima, Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare; Hon. Dr. S. Nzenza, Minister of Industry and Commerce; Hon. R. Modi, Deputy Minister of Industry and Commerce; Hon. D. Garwe, Minister of National Housing and Social Amenities and Hon. O.C.Z. Muchinguri, Minister of Defence and War Veterans.          

          HON. B. DUBE: Madam Speaker Ma’am, considering that the Session may close any time soon,  I am concerned that the Minister of Energy and Power Development, Hon. Soda, has not showed up and if you check on the Order Paper, questions that were deferred relating to his Ministry date back to 27th July, 2022 and back.  The risk of the Session lapsing is that these questions will fall off and Hon. Members will not have answers and responses to constituents.  The country is black as we speak.  In my constituency in Gweru, there is no electricity and I intend to find out from him and he has been evasive since July.  What is the remedy that we have for Ministers, especially Hon. Soda?  We do not mind other Ministers but for now Hon. Soda.  There is a problem with Hon. Soda, especially where we are now – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: The Hon. Leader of Government Business has taken note of that – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – Order, Hon. Members.

          Hon. Members with vehicles with registration numbers AFX 3461 Toyota Fortuner and ACV 1775 Toyota Prado, please may you go and remove your vehicles.  You have parked your vehicles on Judges’ parking space.  Please may you go and remove them.

          HON. MURAI: I have a point of clarity Madam Speaker.  I seek to get clarification about the Ministers and Deputy Ministers who seek leave of absence from this House.  I want to know, will they be paid at the end of the month?  This is being done continuously.  Will they get their pay?

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Murai, I am not privy to that information.  I am not sure.

          HON. MURAI: Find out from the Leader of the House Madam Speaker – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITHOUT NOTICE

          *HON. R. NYATHI: My question is directed to the Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development. What is Government policy regarding the directive which will be given so that may be that directive is reversed because as a Committee, we are receiving a lot of questions, some regarding the 23 depots?  There is a directive that when VID officers go for outreach programmes, they should bank whatever money they raise on that particular day.  As Zimbabwe for example, we have VID in Kwekwe, and to go to Chitekete from Kwekwe, it is 300 km.  From Bindura to Dotito, it is quite a distance.  From Gweru to Shurugwi where my constituency is at Domboramwari, it is quite a distance. So the directive says that the money should be banked on that particular day, which means that our people cannot receive services yet our President says that we are supposed to go together, no one should be left behind.  My question is - what could be done so that the directive is reversed because we are leaving some people behind?  We are not giving them relevant services which they deserve.  I thank you.

          *THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. MADIRO): Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am. I want to thank Hon. Nyathi for raising a pertinent question.  It is important to know that Government plans to make the different Government service provisions accessible. Let me say this august House should look at issues which affect the people of Zimbabwe like what the Hon. Member has raisedThe directives and laws were put by the people’s Government.  If there are regulations which might not be conducive for the ease of doing business, then they should be reviewed so that it becomes easy for people to expedite their duties with fortitude. Indeed, we are going to look at the regulations.  Also look at the availability of facilities so that it becomes easy for people to access Government services.  I thank you.

          HON. CHINGOSHO: Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am.  My question is directed to the Minister of Health and Child Care.  What is the Ministry’s policy to help people with albinism against skin cancer?

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am.  The Ministry of Health has a policy to assist those who live with albinism in terms of provision of skin creams to ensure that the burden is lessened on them and other necessary provisions.  I will refer the Hon. Member to the Ministry so that he can get detailed explanation on the programmes that they are doing but indeed, there is a policy to ensure that they are helped.  I thank you. 

          HON. NDUNA:  Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am.  Would it also be Government programme, arrangement or policy to also have a programme such as the Aids levy that is apportioned to cancer levy in the absence of the proliferation of the scourge of cancer?  Would it be Government’s thrust to also have a cancer levy in place in the same manner that Aids levy was introduced to curtail, avert, limit and also annihilate the scourge of cancer? 

          HON. ZIYAMBI:  Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am.  At this juncture, there is no thinking of introducing another tax but all monies that are collected go into the Consolidated Revenue Fund and we are approaching budget time.  I would encourage the Hon. Member to ensure that as budget time approaches and consultations are being held, he speaks to the need to ensure that more funding is given so that the Ministry can carry out the mandate that they have in that regard.  I thank you. 

          HON. T. MLISWA:  Maybe it would be important for Members to know that the Zimplats Company does run a very successful programme on the albino community, giving sunscreen and so forth.  If you can get in touch with Zimplats, they will certainly help you.  It is one of their key corporate social responsibilities that they do undertake. 

          HON. NDEBELE:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  Exorbitant prices and fees are indicators of challenges faced by our citizens.  Basic rights are now inaccessible for many.  State university fees have gone up 450% with the Ministry’s approval, which is really insensitive.  I want to check with the Leader of Government Business if there is a deliberate policy thrust by our Government to cushion the majority poor who cannot afford to finance higher education because it must not be a preserve for the rich. 

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI):  Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am. I want to thank the Hon. Member for the question.  State university fees have not been increased for over one and half years.  Hon. Members are quite alive that a lot has happened within that particular period.  If you compare when the fees were pegged at the current structure that has been reviewed and the cost of living that was there including salaries, you will realise that there was a need for a review to be done.  When you compare the fees with what is obtaining in the region, we are the cheapest.  Be that as it may, our State universities have come up with programmes to ensure that our students are cushioned in terms of having payment plans, access to loans and other support services that can be given.  Indeed, there was a huge jump but that was done upon a realisation that we kept the fees frozen for over one and half, if not two years and everything else has been going up but the fees structures are not that exorbitant if you compare with the region.  I thank you. 

          HON. NDEBELE:  Madam Speaker, when Ministers speak to the nation through this House, the understanding is they represent what is on the mind of the entire Cabinet. In January, the Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education in this House rightfully said as a matter of policy that any shift in terms of fees in tertiary institutions would be a function of affordability, reasonability, sustainability, as well as, other factors.  He said other factors relate to improved economic conditions.  We all wonder why our Government is prone to sudden policy shift.  What economic considerations have been taken on board?  What has changed to enable that shift in terms of our fees?  We are talking about children of teachers here who are failing to pay university fees, including MPs. We cannot afford to pay this.  What motivates this selfish consideration?

          HON. ZIYAMBI:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  I want to thank the Hon. Member for expressing his feelings.  Madam Speaker Ma’am, there was no question that I could get from his statement, except to say that – [HON. NDEBELE:  I can rephrase it if you say there was no question.] – The only bit that I got Madam Speaker, I have responded to, to say that the fees were last reviewed two years ago.  Even if you look at the statement that was said by the Minister in January, a lot has happened and there is statistical evidence to show the movement that has happened in everything from January up to September where we are. So there is a lot of reasonability that was put in when those fees were reviewed and I still put it to the House Madam Speaker, that our fees structure is one of the cheapest around the region.  I thank you.

HON. HAMAUSWA:  On a point of order Madam Speaker.  My point of order relates to the issues surrounding fees in our country in tertiary and higher education institutions.  There has been a series of petitions from students from our higher and tertiary institutions.  As a result, as a Committee, we made a decision that we now need to have an all stakeholders workshop where we were going to focus not just on fees, but educational funding in the country and that request was shot down.  Now we received the petition again.

So I want to submit Madam Speaker, that this issue of fees has to be taken from a broader perspective to say what is our policy in terms of funding our education in Zimbabwe.  So my issue was that when we made a request, the request was rejected and it is also not true that the fees were last reviewed two years ago.  So this is the issue which is coming from time to time and the Government is proving to actually be failing to resolve this issue and we cannot continue to have one issue coming to the House through petitions, having seven petitions within maybe two or three years.  It is not right for the Government.

Therefore Madam Speaker I request, through you, that you give the Committee on Higher and Tertiary Education to revisit the request for having an all stakeholders workshop where the issue of educational funding in our higher and tertiary institutions is going to be resolved to a point that will satisfy the interest of the students and the interest of the parents who are also failing to fund the fees and also even at primary level, we are having situations which need all stakeholders to come and resolve the issue. 

Madam Speaker, I also want our Government to be sensitive.  They cannot continue to relate the fees with the region.  When we are raising salary issues, they reject us to compare with the region.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Hon. Hamauswa, you are now debating what the Minister has said.

HON. HAMAUSWA:  But you have heard what I have said Madam Speaker.  Thank you.

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

HON. NDEBELE:  But you cannot take to the floor before a ruling is made.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  I ruled.  I said I have heard what he has said.

HON. RAIDZA:  My point of order Madam Speaker is that if it pleases you, I wanted the Minister responsible for higher education to bring a Ministerial Statement to this House that will give us far more details with statistics and everything so that at least we will be having somewhere to interrogate some of these issues from.  Thank you Madam Speaker.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Thank you Hon. Raidza.  I am sure the Hon. Leader of Government has taken note of that.  He will relay the message to the responsible Minister.  Thank you.

HON. T. MLISWA:  On a point of order Madam Speaker.  Ministers have a tendency not to bring Ministerial Statements.  I think you must direct the Portfolio Committee on Higher and Tertiary Education to meet as soon as possible and do an enquiry on it.  They are the only organisation that can exist.  A Ministerial Statement will not come.  So the Portfolio Committee is there to do its work, let it be directed to it and the Minister is called to deal with it.  I think it would bring a lasting resolution to this.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Thank you Hon. Mliswa, whilst the Portfolio Committee is doing its own work, the responsible Minister can also bring the Ministerial Statement to the House.

HON. MUNENGAMI:  In addition to that Hon. Speaker, the reason why we have got the Leader of the House in terms of Government Business, I think it is also important for him to be knowledgeable on all these other issues.  If he is not aware or he does not have that knowledge, I think it would be better to say okay, I am not conversant to the issues which are being asked even before he has gone to answer questions then it would be easier and also to save time.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  You are out of order.  Please may you sit down.

HON. MUNENGAMI:  But it also helps us Madam Speaker.

HON. MURAI:  Thank you Hon. Speaker. My question is directed to the Leader of the House and it is to do with our local utility ZESA.  It seems the issue of power cuts is getting worse with each passing day.  Do you really have a plan as to how to deal with this crisis because the citizens are enduring more and more hours of power cuts?  Do you have any plan to restore the power so that the citizens will enjoy the utility?

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI):  Thank you Madam Speaker.  The issue of power cuts, the power utility through its Public Relations Department, is supposed to inform consumers of what is happening and what they intend to do.  I believe that the power utility is doing that, but should the Hon. Member need further information as to the load shedding programme and what they intend to do, the business plan and whatever, he is free to put that in writing so that the relevant Minister can forward it to ZESA and they bring that particular information.  I thank you.

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

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

HON. GONESE:  My point of order Madam Speaker relates to the response by the Hon. Leader of Government Business which I think is an insult, not just to the Hon. Members of this august House but also to the nation at large.  This is a very serious issue Madam Speaker Ma’am and the question was very clear.  It is a policy issue; this is not something new.  We have been experiencing power cuts over time and it is something which the Hon. Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, in his capacity as not only the Minister of Justice Legal and Parliamentary Affairs and Leader of Government Business, but as a person who sits in Cabinet and I want to assume that any serious Government, if he is part of a serious Government, has been seized with this matter.  He should be well aware of what the Government plans to do. Through this medium where a question has been asked by an Hon. Member of Parliament, he should be able to respond so that all Zimbabwean citizens are able to understand the reasons behind the power cuts, what the Government is planning to do to alleviate the suffering of the people of Zimbabwe.  I submit Madam Speaker Ma’am, that you must direct the Hon. Leader of Government Business to actually be more serious to respond to the question and tell the nation as to what they intend to do, otherwise this is not sustainable, this is not appropriate, we cannot continue as representatives of the people to fold our arms while the people of Zimbabwe are suffering to the extent that they are as a result of these power cuts. 

          HON. ZIYAMBI:  Thank you Madam Speaker, I put it to the Hon. Member that he is also not very serious and he is not representing the people that elected him appropriately.  I say so Madam Speaker because Government has programmes; a lot of coverage has been done as to what the Government is doing to improve the power supply in Zimbabwe.  The Minister has come up with several programmes where he has indicated - [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] – the last time the Government spokesperson - [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] – Madam Speaker, call them to order, when he was speaking, I was silent but they do not want me to speak because they are misrepresenting their people – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections] – They pretend not to know what Government is doing.  The last Cabinet, our spokesperson gave a detailed report of where Hwange 7 and 8 is.  I am ashamed the Hon. Member is saying that he does not have information of the plan of what Government is doing....

          HON. MATEWU: On a point or order Madam Speaker.  When people come to this House, the public expects us to represent our constituents, the public experts this House to behave in decorum that is pursuant to the standard of living of people in this country.  There is a crisis of electricity in this country.  We expect Government to take its part and inform the constituents, through the Members of Parliament, on what is happening in Government and what the Government has and what it is doing to alleviate the crisis...

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  You are not there to debate.

          HON. MATEWU:  We need the Government to tell us, and indeed the public and our constituents, of what it is doing because we are all affected as a country.  We call upon the Government to fully explain to us what is happening in terms of electricity, how are they going to resolve the power crises?  It does not only affect individuals and households, but it also affects business and business makes this economy go.  What is Government going to do to ensure that there is restoration of order and power in this country?  Thank you.

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Hon. Members, please we must behave honourably. When the Minister is responding, give him the chance to respond – [HON. NDEBELE:  You must not take sides.] – I do not take sides.

HON. ZIYAMBI: Thank you Madam Speaker. Earlier on, what I took exception to was that Government was not informing the generality of the public as to what Government is doing in terms of provision of power. Every Tuesday when there is an issue that arises in terms of energy, our Government spokesperson articulates that. The last Cabinet meeting she indeed explained the developments that had happened to Hwange in terms of our 100-days cycle.

          We have expansion of Hwange 7 and 8 that is happening and that is being done to ensure that the power plants that we had which are now antiquated, we need to replace them. We also have a plant in Kariba that was commissioned but you must also appreciate that we have gone for a long time with power plants that have now outlived their lifespan and those are the ones that we are replacing. What is manifesting now is a problem because of the industrialisation in Zimbabwe that was created by the Second Republic because of the new industries that are coming up. The demand for power is increasing. So you realise that the power that we are now spending in Zimbabwe in 2022 is far much more than what we used to spend in 2018 because of the several companies that are now operating in Zimbabwe.

          However, we have a plan to ensure that not only do we increase the number of independent power supplies that will be in there in terms of green energy and the solar energy. A week or so ago, the President witnessed the signing of the Mine to Energy Park where two other power stations will be developed within the Darwendale area. Each power station is contributing 300 megawatts and so all this - the Government publishes time and time again, the events that people are doing. These are in the public domain but what I took exception to is to indicate that Government is not informing the Hon. MPs when they are not reading or following up proceedings. I thank you.

          HON. NDEBELE: Madam Speaker, let me thank Hon. Sen. Mutsvangwa for giving him that answer.

          *HON. PRISCILLA MOYO: Thank you very much Hon. Speaker, there is an issue that has troubled many families in this country, the issue of drug abuse. We are seeing that children are being troubled and those who are caught selling these drugs are being given a lesser sentence. They are seen back on the streets in a very short period of time. What does the Minister say on tightening the sentence on those caught selling drugs?

          *THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): Thank you Madam Speaker. I would like to thank the Hon. Member for such a question. The issue of people who sell illegal drugs is an issue that is troubling the nation and what can be done on these individuals so that they totally stop their act; we have an inter-ministerial committee which was established by the President so that it gives recommendations to the Cabinet on what sustainable measures that can be taken. It is something that we are considering that we stiffen the penalty. Thank you.

          HON. NDEBELE: On a point of order Madam Speaker. My Shona may not be that good but the Minister is speaking of zvinodhaka, I stand to be corrected. He needs to add zvisiri pamutemo. Otherwise it will include Natbrew. Thank you.

          *HON. PRISCILLA MOYO: Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am. My supplementary question is, while they are planning all that, what can be done to assist people?  This issue is really troubling people.  We know it can take long to implement what you are trying to put in place.  What can be done to assist the people, especially those in rural areas?

          *THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am.  This question was asked last week in this august House.  The Deputy Minister of Social Welfare, Hon. Matuke responded that they have people from their Ministry moving around districts educating people on the bad effects of drug abuse.  He also explained that if they find someone who has become a drug addict, they will take them in rehabilitation centres.  The Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare has teams in different districts giving awareness to people.  That is why we have this Committee which was selected by the President so that they can look into this issue in order to get a permanent solution to this problem. I thank you.

          HON. T. MLISWA: On a point of order.  It is important for people to follow proceedings of this Parliament.  The Speaker ruled on this last week.  He said there was going to be a joint Ministerial Statement because the aspect of drug abuse relates to many ministries. Ministry of Health must come in. The Ministry of Youth, the Ministry of Justice must also come in. Women’s Affairs, Home Affairs, Labour, so if there is anything which we expect the Administration to be noting down is this, instead of going for inflated laptops and so forth. 

          They must be reminding the Ministers of these Statements.  It is the role of Administration to remind the Ministers that the Speaker ruled on Ministerial Statement and write to the Ministers.  We have got one Ministerial Statement missing, where the Deputy of Minister of Finance is supposed to give us in terms of all the beneficiaries of the auction, if you remember.  That has not come through again.  You make a ruling, they do not pay attention to the ruling and that is how incompetent the Administration has been.  It is letting us down but when it comes to the issue of laptops they are able to write letters back and forth.  So they must pay attention to your ruling; they follow it up with a letter and then these Ministerial Statements come in here.  So, the Administration is incompetent.  Where are the Ministerial Statements from these Ministers, from the issue of the Minister of Finance on the people who benefitted from the auction?  It is not there.  Is it our duty to remind Ministers?  The Administration is there to do that.  Let them focus on more important issues which will build the nation, which are not for sale.

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Thank you Hon. Mliswa, the Administration will remind the Hon. Ministers to bring the Ministerial Statements.

          *HON. NYAMUDEZA: Thank you Madam Speaker.  My supplementary question to the Minister of Justice is, people that are found with mbanje are nabbed and some are incarcerated.  These drugs we are talking about which are stronger than mbanje, people sell them freely and they are not nabbed at all.  How long does it take for them to be incarcerated or for them to be banned?  How long does it take?

          *HON. ZIYAMBI: Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am.  Both, the Minister of Finance and the Minister of Labour are not around.  They were supposed to bring their Ministerial Statements but they were not around because they are part of the President’s delegation.  They are not yet back.  I think next week they can bring those Ministerial Statements.

          On the question on people who are found with mbanje being jailed, why not those who sell drugs, why are they not jailed?  The problem is, some of the substances they use as drugs are prescription drugs.  Some of them are over the counter medicines, for example cough mixtures.  These are different from mbanje because in our Criminal Code, mbanje is criminalised but these substances are not in our laws.  They also use something they remove from pampers, so it is something which is not regulated and we cannot criminalise them.

          I agree with Hon. Mliswa that the issue of drugs, we talked about it last week.  The Hon. Speaker ruled that there will be a joint Ministerial Statement.  It will come.  So Hon. Members, we have two issues; Ministerial Statement will come but there is a Committee which will present.  After their presentation, we will ask them to come and explain in this House what will be the way forward in order to assist our children from the problem of drug abuse. I thank you.

          *HON. CHIDZIVA:  Thank you Hon. Speaker.  My supplementary question is, does it mean that the Government does not have a policy to deal with people who are using drugs in this country?  It has been a long period with people mentioning a Ministerial Statement that has never made its way to this House.  A lot of people are being affected by these drugs.  There are actually known bases of drug lords who are known in this country.  If these people are caught, they are released and nothing much is done to them.  Their places of residence and where they operate from is known.  These drug lords are paying police officers.  Can we take it head on before things go out of hand?  

          *HON. ZIYAMBI: Thank you very much Hon. Speaker.  The Hon. Minister explained last week.  That is where I want to revert to Hon. Mliswa’s position.  The problem is that Hon. Members do not follow proceedings in the House.  The Labour Minister explained in detail what the Government is doing currently.  In addition, he also explained that because of the magnitude of the drug problems in the country, there was need for further research and action to get rid of the problem. The Hon. Speaker also requested for a joint Ministerial Statement. 

          It is very wrong and misleading for Members to come to this House and debate when they would not have read what was ruled by the Hon. Speaker.  Hon. Members of Parliament ought to follow and understand fully the proceedings. The issue of those who are involved in paying police officers, it means it is corruption.  We should report those who are involved in corruption so that we have stability and a just society.  The Government is not establishing these bases for selling drugs.  Instead, the Government is asking for people to communicate and inform them where these people are operating from so that action is taken.  Thank you very much. 

          HON. T. MLISWA:  Madam Speaker, the issue brought up by Hon. Priscilla Moyo is very important.  Just for people to understand, this is the product. [Hon. T. Mliswa showed a bottle of the illicit beer to the House] This is the product.  Aka kanonzi kambwa uri mutoriro.  It is important for Members to understand that this is what is killing the nation.  It is serious.  Kanonzi kambwa ikaka, mutoriro.  Ndinoda kut isu muma constituency matiri tibetsere by raising awareness.  Isusu kuNorton neku Parliamentary Sports Club tinoti siya guka, siya mutoriro.  Siya mutoriro, siya guka.

          Let us help the Government in dealing with this.  Hon. Moyo is correct.  Society has been destroyed.  Children no longer respect their parents.  We need to have a joint Ministerial Statement that will focus on all the ills in our country, including unemployment.  Leave mutoriro, leave guka.        

          *HON. RAIDZA: Thank you Hon. Speaker for giving me the opportunity to ask my question. My question goes to the Minister of Environment, Climate Change, Tourism and Hospitality Industry. Madam Speaker Ma’am, the issue of veld fires has become a serious problem and it is happening every day.  Veld fires are being experienced in different parts of the country.  Some people get burnt whilst trying to put off the fires. My question to the Leader of Government business is; what policy do they have to avert veld fires in this country?  We are facing a continued destruction of property in this country, what is being done to assist in that regard?

          *THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): This is a very good question Madam Speaker, to say if you go to the communal areas, forests are being destroyed by veld fires.  One would wonder what is happening.  There are laws that are meant to apprehend those who are involved in starting these fires.  The laws are there and what is left therefore is for the perpetrators to be apprehended and brought before the courts of law.  There is no one who is allowed to start a fire.  If you are caught in such an act, there are stiffer penalties for such behaviour.  The Ministry of Environment should come up with a programme to stop perpetrators.  There are very good laws in place.  Traditional leaders can work very well using these laws.  Thank you.

          *HON. MADZIMURE: Thank you very much Madam Speaker.  My question goes to the Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs.  We are seeing that our remand prisons are overcrowded.  There is now a trend in this country where people are denied bail at the courts of law.  It seems there is selective application of the law.  Others are being arrested and let go but others are failing to secure bail.  Those who are released even tell the police officers to say, we will meet at the courts.  Others are denied such an opportunity.  There are people who have more than 100 days in remand prison.  However, if you look at their cases, they are just the same as those who have been released in 24 hours.  Why are we experiencing a selective application of the law?  Why are people looking and considering political affiliation for those who are brought before the courts of law?  The issues of Hon. Godfrey Sithole, Hon. Job Sikhala have more than 100 days in prison, in incarceration.  Why are they being denied an opportunity just like those who have been granted bail in 48 hours?

*THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI):  Thank you Madam Speaker.  All cases before the courts of law are not allowed to be discussed in this Parliament but allow me to respond on the issues that he has asked.  I would like to make it clear that we do not segregate before the courts of law.  There is no discrimination and there is no selective application of the law.

Secondly, we are expected to consider a court case as it is.  Those people who have been mentioned had their own stories before.  They were even given a bail before and they were told and instructed not to commit a crime as part of their bail conditions.  One of the things was they were asked to move away from social media and to avoid certain language.  When they went out, they repeated the very same things they were told not to do.  If you do anything against the law of justice, surely you will be brought back.  That bail is therefore evoked.  One of the things is that you will not experience what you expect when you go against your bail conditions. 

Issues before the courts of law are not something that we come here and discuss.  It is not something that I stand in front of you and discuss.  Our Constitution denies us that opportunity to discuss cases that are before the courts of justice.  There is protocol, there is something that you need to follow, procedure when you come to this House.  Thank you very much.

HON. MADZIMURE:  Supplementary question Madam Speaker.

*THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER (HON. MAVETERA):  Hon. Madzimure, it has been said that the House cannot discuss matters that are before the courts of law so why do you have a supplementary question.

*HON. MADZIMURE:  Can you give me an opportunity to contribute.  Madam Speaker, I want to thank the Minister.  I am talking of a matter of principle.  The Minister has talked very well on cases where he thinks that bail conditions were broken.  There are about 16 people who have been there for 100 days and they are first timers.  They did not break any bail conditions.  They are just like any Zimbabweans.  So my question is, if Zimbabweans commit crimes, are they prosecuted for other people’s crimes or for their crimes.  I do not want him to speak for the judges but he is a Minister who is there for people to follow the laws.  So he is the Minister and there is no one who can answer our questions besides him.

*THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER:  Thank you Honourable.  There is no question because we have said these issues are before the courts.

HON. MARKHAM:  I would like to get clarity from the Minister and not from the courts that it is alright for people to be jailed for 100 days in this country, some of them without charge.  Is it clear for the Minister?  He is quite happy with the courts and the magistrates with what they are doing.  Yes or no.  I do not want any other answer.  Thank you.

*THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER:  He said he cannot influence the judges.  I think he articulated very well, there is no question there.

HON. MARKHAM:  I deserve an answer and I want an answer.  You are supposed to be neutral – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.]

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER:  The Hon. Minister was quite clear he said he was not going to respond to those questions.

HON. MARKHAM:  He is not, it is not clear.  I would not have asked for a point of clarity if it was clear.  It is not clear?  Yes or no?

*HON. HWENDE:  On a point of order Hon. Speaker.  When you are sitting in that Chair, you are not supposed to be political.  When you are seated in that Chair, it means you should preside over the House.  You are there just to make sure that the Ministers are answering to questions.  I cannot continue– [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.]

*THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER:  Okay, let the Minister respond.

HON. MARKHAM:  Madam Speaker, it is clear I have asked for a yes or no.

*HON. ZIYAMBI:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  Issues that are before the courts, even if I become passionate about them, it does not help.  I want to say issues that are before the courts, even if I become emotional about them, there is nothing that I can do about it because the law does not allow me to go there and influence.  So the answer yes or no does not apply.  What I think in my heart and what I do not think does not apply to what is before the courts – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.]

HON. MARKHAM:  The Hon. Minister has just told us that he has no issue with human rights.  He is quite happy for people to be incarcerated for 100 days.  I thank you.

HON. ZIYAMBI:  On a point of order Madam Speaker.  The Hon. Member must withdraw his statement.  I never indicated that I do not have any regard for human rights.  I indicated that I defer my feelings because if a matter is before the courts, by the laws of this country, I am not supposed to interfere.  So he must not misinterpret my feelings to say that I do not have regard for human rights.

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER:  Hon. Markham, may you kindly withdraw – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.]

HON. MARKHAM:  Madam Speaker, I made my position clear.  Is the Minister comfortable with the courts holding people who have not been charged for 100 days?  My second question is, even if they have been charged, one of them has had over 40 detentions, all political, and he has never run away and yet 100 days later, he is still there and you are asking me to withdraw.  I refuse.

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER:  Hon. Markham, may you please withdraw.

HON. MARKHAM:  Madam Speaker, I state categorically, I refuse to withdraw my question or my sentiments.

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER:  May you please leave the House Hon. Markham    - [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] -

          Hon. Markham left the House.

          *HON. PRISCILLA MOYO:  On a point of order Madam Speaker, they are looking down upon you because you are a woman.

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER:  Order, order, may we please have order?  I think we just need to follow procedures, whatever we are doing is above board.  Thank you. 

          *HON. TEKESHE: Thank you Madam Speaker.  Two months ago, I raised a point of privilege on why people are being chased away yet the law says that school-children are not supposed to be chased away from school.  There is a judgement which was given by Judge Cheda, it was given 12 years ago.  When we move around we see children in the streets, why are we not following the judgement that was passed? Thank you.  

          *THE MINISTER OF INFORMATION, PUBLICITY AND BROADCASTING SERVICES (HON. SEN.  MUTSVANGWA): Thank you Madam Speaker.  I would like to thank Hon. Tekeshe for the question.  Firstly, Government policy is that all children should go to school.  He said that the Minister issued a Ministerial Statement, so the question is on implementation which we want to ask the Ministry if there are any challenges that they are facing on implementing that policy. 

          I would like to take this opportunity to encourage each other that we should show that we are representing people and when asking questions, we should ask pertinent questions which are relevant to how people are living out there.  It does not mean that being here, we are now clever or intelligent than people whom we represent but we should show that we really represent people out there.  I want to thank Hon. Tekeshe for the question and I will forward it to the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education on why children are being chased away from schools. 

           

          *HON. T. MLISWA:  On a point of order.  I think the issue raised by Hon. Tekeshe is about the enforcement of the order and Government compliance with court order.  Government seems to be disregarding the court order.  You as the Leader of Government business, the question is on Government way of operation by not enforcing court orders from the High Court.  You are representing Government, High Court order comes, how do you go about it?  This is an order that everybody knows and no one is above the law. 

          HON. SEN. MUTSVANGWA:  I would like to thank Hon. T. Mliswa for his point of order but I think I got the question very correct and I think I answered Hon. Tekeshe’s question correctly.  Government policy is to make sure that there is enforcement and implementation.  What he is specifically saying is that we have to engage the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education and see what exactly is being done to make sure that there is enforcement.

          HON. BRIG. GEN. (RTD.) MAYIHLOME:  My point of order rises from this same issue we raised in this House with the Hon. Minister of Primary and Secondary Education regarding the chasing of school children who have not paid fees.   We then said to the Hon. Minister, the headmasters or the school administrators are in a dilemma, they do not know what to do when they cannot meet the operating costs for schools because children have not paid schools on the one hand and on the other hand, the law does not give a free hand to deal with the parents but at the same time we expect these school to be efficient in running these schools.  So we are requesting that when the question goes to the Minister, in addition to that, let there be an adjunct to say how are the school headmasters and administrators expected to run schools if on the one hand the law says do not chase children but on the other hand, it does not give the headmasters a freehand to deal with delinquent parents who do not pay school fees.

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER:  Thank you Hon. Mayihlome, I think that was a comment. 

          *HON. MUDARIKWA:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  I am requesting for Ministerial Statement from the Minister because if others are chased away then those who remain do not learn.  The Ministerial Statement that we want will be attending to chasing away of children from school.  Even if they are chased away, half of those who remain do not learn.  The Ministerial Statement should address the implementation and the issue of the court order which was issued.  Also, the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education, what is it doing so that they follow the Constitution when it comes to the issue of children going to school.? I think if we phrase it that way, it will be clear for the Minister to be able to respond.

          *THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: I think if we use the first concerns, it would come out. We will say that the Ministerial Statement should be addressed and the implementation of the court order which was issued and also that the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education, what is it doing so that they follow the Constitution when it comes to the issue of children going to school? I think if we phrase it that way, it will be clear for the Minister to be able to respond.

          HON. TUNGAMIRAI: My question is directed to the Minister of National Housing and Social Amenities. What is Government policy on houses built by Local Government over decades of years? How can they guarantee ownership of those houses?

          THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF NATIONAL HOUSING AND SOCIAL AMENITIES (HON. SIMBANEGAVI): Thank you Madam Speaker. My regards to Hon. Tungamirai and thanking him for that important question. We have three situations in which a person can guarantee ownership of a house currently in terms of policy. The first one is when a person is able to have title deeds to their property; in terms of houses that have been built by Government before, we are currently going to have the Inter-ministerial Committee that is discussing the issuance of title deeds. As I indicated last week, for one to be given the title deeds, eventually one has to make sure that their property is up to date in terms of compliance with local authorities. They also need to have a certificate of occupation. If they bought the house from someone else, then they need to have an agreement of sale. For the houses that were built by Government, that person has to indicate that they have a document where Government agreed at some point to sell the house to them, then they qualify for title deeds and eventually ownership.

          The second aspect is, we also have various schemes that were done by Government over the years and one of them includes the Garikai/Hlalanikuhle houses and also some houses in informal sectors. What we are doing as a Ministry in terms of the new Human Settlement Policy now is, we are embarking on a sanitisation programme where we are making sure that some of the old suburbs now have updated sewer reticulation systems, water reticulation systems so that they are able to qualify for title deeds and ownership.

          The third one is that most of these houses that were built by Government, especially under the Ministry of Local Government and National Housing before the new Ministry, are still on lease. What this means is that those people that are living in these houses need to pay up. Some of these houses were given under rent to buy. So they need to update their payments so that their ownership status can be cleared and they can be able to be issued with documents that indicate that they own the houses.

          Lastly, we have people that are living in Government houses which are called GP houses. These are Government property houses. As it stands, the current policy is that those ones cannot be sold and those people living in those ones cannot buy them. They can simply stay in those houses for as long as they are within Government service. Once they retire or they are deceased, it means their families have to relocate to other premises to allow other serving civil servants to come and live in those houses. Thank you.

          (v) HON. TUNGAMIRAI: I thank the Hon. Minister for the good response but I just wanted to ask her that these houses were given 25 years ago. What are you going to do because some of the parents have passed away, the owners of the original leases and now it is the children who are left? So, how are you going to treat these children who are living in these houses?

          HON. SIMBANEGAVI: Thank you Hon. Tungamirai. What happens with the houses on lease is, some of the people that were living in these houses were having payments deducted on their pay slips. So as long as the members of the deceased person can prove that the person was paying or if they can come forward with receipts regardless of when these receipts were paid, even if they were paying for an accumulative period of the 25 years, all they need is to prove that the original person living in that house was making the payments. Once they prove that the payments were being done and are up to date, then the Ministry can process for the remaining family members to have title deeds for the house. Thank you.

          HON. NDEBELE: Madam Speaker, please allow me to check yet again with the Minister on what happens to those who bought houses outside the permission of Government. Is there a way of regularising such agreements of sale in retrospect so that our people do not lose out?

          HON. SIMBANEGAVI: I am not sure I understood the question Hon. Member. Houses bought outside of Government like private or what?

          HON. NDEBELE: If I may clarify Madam Speaker. If I heard the Minister very well in her statement, she said those people that at some point transferred title to others with the permission of Government at the material time, such agreements of sale will be honoured. I am checking with her if I bought a house from A without permission from the responsible Ministry, is there an avenue of regularising in retrospect such a sale? Thank you.

          HON. SIMBANEGAVI: Thank you Hon. Ndebele. I can say that can be regularised because at some point, Government allowed people that were working in Government for quite some time and lived in a house for some time.  They allowed them to buy those houses.  If at some point that person sold that house to someone else and there is an agreement of sale that is valid; they can bring that agreement of sale for issuance of title deeds.  Only that the issuance of title deeds now is as per what we indicated last week that it is a process that is being discussed by the inter-ministerial committee but they can qualify.  I thank you.

          HON. T. MLISWA: On a point of order.  My point of order emanates from the two Ministries.  Who is in charge, National Housing or Local Government because there is a confusing thing.  Local Government claims to be one and National Housing, yes.  This is a confusing issue, who is really the custodian of these properties because we do not want to tell people wrong things out there.  There is a major fight between these two Ministries.  I pray that the President deals with it as soon as possible because are you in control of these houses or it is a policy you have but not in control.

          Who is in control, you or Local Government?  Should this question be directed to Local Government or to National Housing, for us to notify the people that this Ministry is the one responsible?  Should I be sending my people with those properties to National Housing or to Local Government?  I am a legislator.  

          HON. SIMBANEGAVI: Thank you Hon. Mliswa.  Currently everything to do with housing is referred to the Ministry of National Housing – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.] – The Ministry of Local Government is called the Ministry of Local Government and Public Works.  The aspect of housing that can appear in the Ministry of National Housing is the public works aspect.  As you know Hon. Mliswa, the Public Works is a Government contractor and sometimes can be contracted to build houses on behalf of the Government.  That is where the synergy comes in that sometimes the Ministry of National Housing, on specific projects, can work with the Government contractor, which is the Public Works department.

          On the issue of title deeds, as I said, there is an inter-ministerial committee that includes the Ministry of National Housing as the core Ministry that deals with issues of housing and then there is the Ministry of Local Government as the relevant Ministry that deals with local authorities and issues of compliance.  Then there is the Ministry of Justice, which is the Ministry that deals with issues of the end user.  The Ministry of Justice is the one that eventually issues the title deeds after the Ministry of Local Government has done surveys. The Ministry of National Housing deals with issues of policy where we look at – as people build houses, are they adhering to issues of the National Housing policy in terms of offsite infrastructure and other things.  When it comes to title deeds, there will be other Ministries, including the Ministry of Finance but above all, everything else that says housing goes to the Ministry of National Housing.  I hope it is clear Honourable.

         

          Hon. T. Mliswa having wanted to contribute.

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER (HON. MAVETERA): Question time has expired, so I am going to indulge you, so that you are quick.

HON. T. MLISWA: I move that time for Questions without notice be extended by 15 minutes

HON. CHINYANGANYA: I second.

Motion put and agreed to.

HON. T. MLISWA: Thank you very much Madam Speaker.  I think you really behaved as mother because these housing issues are critical.  A point of clarity - the National Sport Stadium does not belong to the Ministry of Sports.  I am just giving an example.  They belong to Ministry of Local Government.  So, that is why I am saying what is it under you because we can talk about it and it becomes a talk show. 

Secondly, if you speak about local authorities, these houses belong to local authorities.  The houses in Ngoni; in Katanga, Norton, they belong to the local authorities.  People who are staying there pay to the local authority not National Housing.  The title deeds – if National Housing comes in but after Local Government, which Ministry is the custodian of these?  So, to me I see the vision of Government but on the ground, it has created a lot of problems because people are paying money to the local authorities, not to National Housing.  When we want a physical sub-division permit, as National Housing, you go to the Ministry of Local Government, yet it is a housing development.  It means you do not have power over that.

So these examples I am giving you of saying that we want to appreciate the role of National Housing but you do not have that muscle.  You do not have the authority.  If I have to go to court today and sue somebody with a house in Ngoni and has been destroyed, I will sue the Ministry of Local Government and not National Housing.  It is called locus standi.  Who are you in this matter as National Housing on properties which fall under the local authorities?  That clarity is critical;  how to appreciate the vision and everything but you really have nothing.  It is my prayer that the President clarifies these issues because there is a lot of fighting.

HON. SIMBANEGAVI: Thank you Hon. Mliswa.  I can just say I have noted what you have said.  I do not think that was a question.  Hon. Mliswa, I can honestly say, I do not know any fights that are between any Ministries.  All I can say is I am sure you are aware of the whole Government approach.  If there are any issues that overlap from one Ministry to the other, the whole Government approach will take care of that.  Then the Ministries can be able to work together.

HON. SHIRICHENA: Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am.  My question is directed to the Minister of Women’s Affairs.  How do you ensure that the implementation of Ministry programmes is in line with Vision 2030 and NDS and the theme of leaving no one or any place behind?

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF WOMEN’S AFFAIRS, COMMUNITY, SMALL AND MEDIUM ENTERPRISES DEVELOPMENT (HON. MHLANGA): Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am.  I would like to thank the Hon. Member for asking that very important question.  Yes, indeed as a Ministry, we are also running with the vision of having empowered and also prospering communities by year 2030.  In the National Development Strategy (NDS) as a Ministry, our departments, the Department of Women’s Affairs, the Department of Community Development, Small to Medium Enterprises is driven by resource funds of Women’s Development Fund that is spread throughout the provinces.  We want to appreciate the fiscal support that we get from Government.

We also run a community development fund supported by the Zimbabwe Community Development Fund, which we also give to provinces in line with creating resilience and empowered communities.  We also have SMEDCO that gives support to our departments as well as our Small to Medium Enterprises businesses. 

          We run the Zimbabwe Women’s Micro-Finance Bank as well, which ensures that in the ethos of the NDS, we are able to resource the various initiatives that women come up with.  I thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am. 

          HON. CHINYANGANYA:  Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am. My question is directed to the Minister of Health and Child Care.  The current Government policy on hospital visits states that there should be only one visitor per patient per day.  Madam Speaker Ma’am, this was due to COVID but now that most of the COVID regulations have been uplifted, what is the Ministry doing to make sure that the status quo is reverted.  As we speak, only one visitor is allowed per patient per day.  Many relatives are finding it difficult to access their ailing relatives and friends in hospitals.  In many cases, those who will be waiting to see their relatives who would have been admitted at hospitals are made to wait outside and there would be no ablution facilities, which is posing a health risk and an environment risk as well.  What is the Ministry doing to revise that policy now that COVID has lessened?  I thank you.

          THE MINISTER OF INFORMATION, PUBLICITY AND BROADCASTING SERVICES (HON. SEN. MUTSVANGWA):  Thank you Madam Speaker.  I would want to thank Hon. Chinyanganya for that very important question, which shows concern as the representative of the people.  He has been moving around, watching people suffering outside hospitals.  I think the regulations or rules which have been put there because of the COVID-19 pandemic, most of them are still standing because we are not yet out of the woods.  Yes, we have relaxed some of the conditions but it does not necessarily mean that we are out of the woods.  I really understand why the Ministry of Health and Child Care is still maintaining the regulations which were put at the height of the pandemic.  We will obviously talk to the Ministry and find out on the issues which were raised here and are of great importance, where the Ministry will have to look at the issue of lack of ablution facilities for the family members who will be outside.  I thank you. 

          Questions Without Notice were interrupted by THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER in terms of Standing Order Number 68. 

ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITH NOTICE

IMPOUNDING OF ZUPCO BUSES WITHOUT NUMBER PLATES

  1. HON. CHINYANGANYA asked the Minister of Home Affairs and Cultural Heritage to inform the House why Zupco buses are not being impounded despite not having number plates.

          THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF INFORMATION, PUBLICITY AND BROADCASTING SERVICES (HON. PARADZA) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS AND CULTURAL HERITAGE:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  It is an offence for any vehicle, including public service vehicles to traverse our roads without number plates.  The Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) carries out its mandate without fear or favour and will ensure that motorists comply with the law.  May I reiterate that all vehicles, including buses owned by ZUPCO should have number plates as the ZRP will not hesitate to impound vehicles found without number plates. 

          The Commissioner General of Police has engaged ZUPCO management to ensure that their buses and crew comply with all the country’s laws in order to set a good example to other motorists.  I thank you. 

          HON. CHINYANGANYA:  Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am.  I want to thank the Hon. Deputy Minister for his response.  These ZUPCO buses that I am referring to were acquired after 2019.  The whole fleet does not have number plates.  Something should be done, just like what the Minister has indicated that the entities should live by example.  What steps are being taken by the Ministry of Home Affairs to make sure that they comply with regulations?  Thank you.

          HON. PARADZA:  Thank you Madam Speaker, as I indicated, they must comply with the law.  If they do not comply with the law, then the law will take its course.  Thank you.

          HON. BITI:  Madam Speaker Ma’am, my supplementary question to the esteemed Acting Minister of Home Affairs is that these ZUPCO buses are moving.  They still are enjoying the monopoly over all public transport in Zimbabwe, notwithstanding the fact that they have no capacity to carry our people.  Independent operators - the Mucheches of this world, the Tombs Motors are not operating.  Why is it that Section 4 (2) of the COVID regulations, S.I. 83 of 2020 is still in law when it is clear that ZUPCO is overwhelmed and cannot carry our people?  Let us bring back private operators who are black operators that we grew up with, the Mucheches of this world, the Matambanadzos, the Ruredzos so that they can carry our people.  Thank you very much Madam Speaker Ma’am. 

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER:  Thank you.  That is a new question Hon. Member.  You can put it in writing so that the Hon. Minister will then be able to respond. 

HON. T. MLISWA:  On a point of order Madam Speaker.  Madam Speaker, we had a situation today earlier where Ministers did not attend and it is pretty clear the Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, the Leader of Government Business, was overwhelmed and then we come to this session where there are written down questions and the Ministers know that they must come and respond. Not only that, but Members of Parliament too.

I do not know whether it is really necessary to continue this session because on one of the Order Papers, this one there, is a question as late as March and up to now it has not been answered.  There are motions as far as March which have not seen the light of day.  So to me, it is really upsetting and quite disappointing. 

The Chief Whips, you are here.  The people who are supposed to be asking these questions are Members of Parliament.  At what point do you honestly whip them?  They must be here and we look stupid.  That is why the Ministers do not come too because they know you are asking a question and you have put it on paper, yet you are absent. 

So now there is a culture of why should I go to Parliament when the Member of Parliament asking the question is not there.  In any other country, it is really a waste of tax payers’ money.  The Ministers do not come, the Members of Parliament are tired, the welfare is not there and it is just best to just close this Parliament.  There is no point.  What is the purpose of it; seeing each other queuing for coupons and staying in hotels?  Is that the life we want?  We came here to represent people.  Why do we not just close this Parliament because it is useless?  The Ministers are not here; at question time you have three or four ministers.  They are in Cabinet.

We have a role of oversight.   So the aspect of Cabinet is critical in the implementation and the policy making.  So, what is the purpose of Parliament today?  Are we not fraudsters because we are just earning money for doing nothing?  I think we need to take this thing seriously.  After this talking to you I go because I am tired.  I come here the whole day.   We have got businesses, we have got farms, we have got children, 19 of them but we leave them to come here – [Laughter] – So is it really worth it for me to come and leave my children when people are not really dedicated to national duty?  It is not worth it.

So Chief Whips, we must know.  I think they must engage with you so we know who is here and who is not here so that we do not waste time because we keep on calling them.  We are moving from this one to that one.  Why do you not go to the Chair and tell them so that they scratch out who is not there for us not to waste time? 

The Hon. Minister of Defence who is the National Chairman of the ruling party, a member of the ZANU PF presidium is here.  So let us prioritise and it is good that she is here yet she is so senior.  What about those who are junior, where are they?  I hope the National Chairman is listening to this.  She is a member of the Standing Orders Committee.  Where are the junior Ministers who are supposed to be answering these questions?  Go and tell the President that they are failing him.

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER:  Hon. Mliswa, these are submissions that you are bringing through and I am sure that has always been talked about that it is important that we take this House seriously, all of us.  If you look at the questions as well, it is not only to do with Ministers but even the questions.  Some of the questions here have been long overdue as you are saying but then we are not having any new questions on the Order Paper.

Look the last question which was there was from 13th July and now we are in September.  So it already shows that even us as Parliamentarians, we are not doing our work very well because we are supposed to be submitting questions so that at least Ministers can also be able to respond.  So when you look at it now, it is also not a part just for the Executive but it is also for us as legislators.  We are also slacking and it seems as if we are not even bringing these questions.  We need to take this work upon ourselves so that we can be able to have some questions with notice so that at least we can make sure that we have got more questions and Ministers can also be able to come.

Now also going on to the side of Ministers, I think that it is quite in order that Ministers also have to be coming through.  I think we had 16 apologies today and it is quite important that we have Ministers also coming to the House.  Thank you very much.

HON. BITI:  On a point of clarification Madam Speaker.  Madam Speaker, I would like to acknowledge Hon. Mliswa’s virility and masculinity.  Nineteen children is a lot Madam Speaker, so I want to acknowledge him, but I also want to appeal to him to stop.  Zvakwana shumba.  The population of Zimbabwe will double by 2045 and we do not have the resources to look after that burst in population.  So Shumba zvakwana vharai matepi.  Thank you very much Madam Speaker.

HON. MOKONE:  Thank you very much Madam Speaker.  I think I raised this last week that we are submitting questions to the Journals but they are not capturing them.  I myself have been submitting questions from July, from that time that you are referring to and they have not been captured up to this day.

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER:  Thank you very much for noting that.  I think it is quite important for the Papers Office to act as fast as they can and also they are quite efficient in making sure that questions that are submitted are then published on our Order Paper.  I think Mr. Daniel, you heard the concern.  I think we need to activate that so that at least questions can get on the Order Paper.  Thank you very much.

WRITTEN SUBMISSIONS TO QUESTIONS WITH NOTICE

CONSTRUCTION OF CLINICS IN MBERENGWA EAST CONSTITUENCY

  1. HON. RAIDZA asked the Minister of Local Government and Public Works to inform the House when the construction at Bayayi in Ward 20, Zvomukonde, Ingezi in Ward 4 and Madekwana in Ward 8 clinics in Mberengwa East Constituency will be completed considering that construction progress slowed down in the last four years, resulting in patients having to travel long distances to access health services.

THE MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT AND PUBLIC WORKS (HON. J. G. MOYO):  Madam Speaker, I would like to inform this august House that Bayayi and Madekwana clinics are expected to be complete by April 2023 since they were not budgeted for this year but are next on programme of works for Mberengwa Rural District Council and will be considered in the next financial year.

Zvomukonde, Ingezi in Ward 4 clinic is nearly complete with works at 98% to completion and is scheduled to be completed by November 2022.

ISSUANCE OF DEVELOPMENT PERMITS TO RESIDENTS OF UPPER AND LOWER RANGEMORE AREAS IN UMGUZA CONSTITUENCY

  1. HON. C. MOYO asked the Minister of Local Government and Public Works to inform the House what measures have been put in place towards the issuance of development permits to residents of Upper and Lower Rangemore areas in Umguza Constituency.

THE MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT AND PUBLIC WORKS (HON. J. G. MOYO):  Upper and Lower Rangemore area is made up of 206 privately owned plots with title and two Government owned plots, stand 6 of Lot G Upper Rangemore and the remainder of Lot 27A Lower Rangemore.  The area measures approximately 3 283 hectares in extent.  There are developers who have been granted permits, proposing 8 532 stands covering 685.0604 hectares of land whereas 23 applications for permits, proposing 7 292 stands covering 515.664 hectares are pending in the Upper and Lower Rangemore area.

The issuance of subdivision permits had been halted pending infrastructure provision strategies and solid financial commitments.  My Ministry has however resuscitated the issuance of permits to those properties that can be connected to Bulawayo City Council’s existing infrastructure.  The approval shall be done in liaison with Bulawayo City Council.  Meanwhile, the Ministry is in the process of setting up a Joint Management Committee to spearhead development in the area.

Background

Jurisdiction over Rangemore

The area in question falls under Ward 16 of Umguza District and shares a boundary with City of Bulawayo.  In terms of SI 15E of 2003, the Upper and Lower Rangemore area falls within Mzilikazi District and Bulawayo Metropolitan Province.

Local Planning Authority

Application for land subdivision in terms of section 40 of the Regional, Town and Country Planning Act [Chapter 29:12] are lodged with and processed by the Provincial Planning Officer for Matabeleland North who is the local planning authority for the area in terms of the said Act whilst development control is the prerogative of the local authority, Umguza Rural District Council.

Physical Description of Upper and Lower Rangemore

Upper and Lower Rangemore areas are situated to the south and south west of the City of Bulawayo.  They share boundaries with Emgamwini high density township to the east, Nkulumane high density township to the north-east and Pumula high density township to the north.  The area is generally flat and slopes gently towards Phekiwe River, a tributary of Khami River that flows westwards.  The area of extent is 3 283 hectares.

Land Ownership

The area is made up of 206 privately owned plots with title and two Government owned plots, Stand 6 of Lot G Upper Rangemore and the remainder of Lot 27A Lower Rangemore.

Zoning

The land is mainly occupied by agricultural small holdings in line with Bulawayo West Town Planning Schemes [Section2 and 4] and conditions of establishment for Rangemore Township.  The extent of individual plots range from 2 to 300 hectares.  Twenty five point five percent (25.5%) of these properties have already been subdivided into high density residential stands, creating an urban form in line with the Bulawayo Master Plan of 2004 which zoned the area high density residential.

The Bulawayo City Master Plan of 2004 proposals were strongly underpinned by the assumption that all areas identified for urban expansion, Upper and Lower Rangemore included, would be incorporated into the City of Bulawayo boundaries during the lifespan of the Master Plan.  Incorporation was done and the areas remained rural. Failure of the incorporation process did not deter urban related development in the area in the spirit of implementing the provisions of the Bulawayo Master Plan.

Planning Status

There are 21 developers who have been granted permits, proposing 8 532 stands covering 685.0604 hectares and land whereas 23 applications for permits, proposing 7 292 stands covering 515.664 hectares are pending in the Upper and Lower Rangemore area.

Development status

The issued permits are at different stages of implementation albeit without the prerequisite infrastructure, road, water and sewer.  The nature of development is predominantly residential.

Economic and Social Background of Lower and Upper Rangemore

As previously highlighted above, Upper and Lowe Rangemore were zoned residential agricultural, with the main economic activities being horticulture and cattle rearing; the major market for the produce has been the Bulawayo city markets.

Questions with Notice were interrupted by THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER in terms of Standing Order No. 68.

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

          HON. MUTAMBISI:  I move that Orders of the Day,  Numbers I1 to 20 be stood over until Order of the Day, Number 26 on today’s Order Paper has been disposed of.  I thank you.

          HON. TEKESHE:  I second.

Motion put and agreed to.

SECOND READING

NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL BILL [H.B. 2, 2022]

Twenty-Sixth Order read: Second Reading: National Security Council Bill [H.B. 2, 2022].

THE MINISTER OF DEFENCE AND WAR VETERAN AFFAIRS (HON. MUCHINGURI-KASHIRI): Madam Speaker, it is a great honour to present to you the National Security Council Bill, [H. B. 2, 2022]. This Bill seeks to give effect to the provisions of Section 209 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe, relevant international law obligation and regional best practices. Chapter 11 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe provides for a legal framework to regulate the Security Services sector in Zimbabwe. This Chapter recognises Security Services of Zimbabwe as consisting of the Defence Forces, the Police Service, the Intelligence Services, the Prisons and Correctional Services and any other service established by an Act of Parliament.

Madam Speaker, by giving effect to Chapter 11 of the Constitution, Parliament would have played a significant role in its compliance with the doctrine of Constitutional Supremacy as entrenched in Section 2 of the Constitution, through the fulfilment of obligations imposed by the same. This doctrine requires every person, natural or juristic, including State organs and agencies of Government at every level to be subject to the Constitution. The doctrine further provides that any law, practice, custom or conduct inconsistent with it shall be declared to be invalid to the extent of the inconsistency. In that regard, Section 209 of the Constitution requires an Act of Parliament to be enacted to give effect to its provisions.

The National Security Council Bill seeks to make further provision in respect of the National Security Council as established by Section 209 of the Constitution. The Bill provides for additional members and functions of the Council to those provided for in the Constitution. It also sets out a general framework for the operations of the Council. In this context the National Security Council seeks to enhance the country’s national security and intelligence capability through the systematic and effective coordination of security related issues. The main objectives of the National Security Council among others, include the development of the National Security Policy, promotion of imperatives for national security, promotion of peace and stability in Zimbabwe and the development of security service sector in the interest of constitutionalism.

Madam Speaker, allow me to delve into some of the key provisions of the Bill. Clause 3 set out the composition of the Council. The Council will be headed by the President as the Chairperson. It will also comprise his Deputies/Vice Presidents, the Ministers responsible for National Security, Defence, the Police Service, Prisons and Correctional Services and Finance. The Council will also include the chief Secretary to the President and Cabinet, the Commander Defence Forces and each Service of the Defence Forces, the Commissioner General of the Police Service, the Commissioner General of the Prisons and Correctional Service, the Director General of Intelligence Services and any other Minister who the President may, from time to time, appoint in consultation with any of the Ministers referred hereto. In the same vein, I propose that Clause 3 be amended by the inclusion of the Minister responsible for Foreign Affairs to be part of the Council given that in the exercise of its functions, the Council is mandated to have regard to the country’s security obligations under international agreements, hence the Minister would come with the much needed expertise which will assist the Council in making its decisions.

Clause 4 provides for the exercise of functions by the Council. In the exercise of its functions, the Council among other issues is mandated to regularly review national security policies in view of any prevailing national, regional and international security developments and direct the taking of appropriate action. The Council is also required to have regard to the function of any agency of the State or person relating to or involved in the implementation of any legislation which has national security implications.

Clause 5 provides for meetings of the Council. The Council is required to meet at such times and places as the President may determine, provided that the Council must meet at least once every three months. Further, the meeting of the Council and its committees shall not be public. However, the Council may inform the public of any resolutions where it is necessary and in the public interest to do so. I am of the view that Clause 5 of the Bill be amended by the insertion of an additional Clause 5 (3), stating that the Director General of the Intelligence Services shall be the Secretary of the Council.

          Clauses 6 to 7 provide for the operations of the Council whereby the heads of each Security Service are required to submit security reports to the Council. The Council may issue to any security service or to any person, such specific or general directives in writing in connection with any matter of national security. The person concerned must comply with any such directive. Further, directives issued to any person must at all times be subject to sections 206 (2) and (3) which provide for appropriate safeguards for the protection of fundamental rights of individuals.

          Lastly, Clauses 8 and 9 are the general provisions of the Bill. They provide for confidentiality and annual reports. On confidentiality, members or former members of the Council are not allowed to communicate to any person any information obtained by him or her in his or her capacity as a member of the Council. Further, no person may, without the written authority of the Council, disclose any security related information acquired by such person by whatever means where the person concerned is under an obligation in terms of this or any other Act not to disclose the information.

          On annual reports, the President may report on the State of National Security in his State of the Nation Address delivered in terms of Section 140 of the Constitution.

          Madam Speaker, I therefore plead with Hon. Members of this House to support and pass the Bill. I therefore move that the Bill be read   a second time, I thank you.

          I move that the debate do now adjourn.

          Motion put and agreed to.

          Debate to resume: Tuesday, 4th October, 2022.

          HON. NDEBELE: On a point of order.  I really want to thank the Minister for that flawless delivery. Sometimes you may think we just oppose everything for the sake of it but I really want to thank her for her demeanour and we are going to of course debate and support your Bill. Sometimes Madam Speaker, with all due respect, unotoshaya kuti do these people sit in the same Cabinet or we have others - but I would really like to thank you for that from the bottom of my heart – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.]- .

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Thank you Hon. Ndebele. It is good to appreciate each other. We are Hon. Members and I think it is good just to be able to note when it comes to excellence. Thank you.

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

          HON. MUTAMBISI: I move that we revert to Orders of the Day, Numbers 18 and 4 in that order.

          HON. CHIKUKWA: I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

REPORT OF THE 66TH SESSION OF THE COMMISSION ON THE STATUS OF WOMEN

Eighteenth Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on the Report of the 66th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women.

          Question again proposed.

          *HON. RAIDZA: I want to add my voice on the motion brought by Hon. B. Masara on their report regarding the 66th Session of the Commission in the United Nations. Her report had a lot of issues which touch on the issues of women. When looking at the rights of women, we will be looking at the rights of people who are the majority in this country. We are so grateful for the trip that they attended. It was good for them because they also met women from other countries and learnt on how to promote the rights of women. They also learnt on what we can do as a nation to support the rights of women. Whilst they were there, they articulated in their report that as people who were representing Zimbabwe, they learnt a lot of things so that as a country and Parliament we should have an input in the development of the nation.

          They went there in terms of climate change. Looking at climate change Hon. Speaker, we find that climate change affects the rights of women in many ways.  I will touch on some of the things that were pointed out there.

          Looking at the rights of women in terms of health, you will find that climate change hinders the progress of women in terms of their health.  So as a nation, we are encouraged that when making laws, especially this time when we are presenting the budget.  I think we should make sure that funds are channeled so that we alleviate the plight of women, especially in terms of health.  We know that our women are really concerned about their health.  They are concerned about their access to healthcare, especially when it comes to their reproduction.  So, whenever we are looking at the budget, we should look at what women should be given, and their health should be prioritised during the budget to show that we are concerned as a nation and we really value our women.

          The other issue is on challenges that we come across when it comes to disasters like the recent cyclone in Nyanga.  We will find that women are the ones who suffer a lot.  We find that there was commotion, and the people who were really involved to find out whether the families were women.  So, we are being encouraged as a nation that when we are faced with disasters, we should make sure that women have ICT gadgets so that they are the first ones to be informed before disaster strikes.  What was learnt there shows that when challenges come, they face women; men will be busy with other things and women are the first port of call. 

          As a nation, this teaches us that in whatever we are doing, we should prioritise women issues, especially when faced with disasters.  This is also in line with our tradition.  We know that women are the epitomes of homes.  The first port of call is the mother; even when you look at me, it is because of my wife.  So, the first person to be seen is my wife before I am noticed.  So, what I am saying is that we should value women because they are the first point of call. 

          Climatic change Hon. Speaker, affects the relationship between mothers and their families, children and their husbands because it affects the livelihoods of families.  In order for love and joy to remain in our homes, we should vest our powers and resources on women so that they get food and are able to look after their families well.

          Lastly, we know that the livelihood of women especially those in the rural areas, for them to get water, firewood like tsotso stoves, and biogas digesters, those should be encouraged so that our women use that to ease their livehoods.  So, the concerned ministries should look into that so that our mothers live easy lives.

          In their report, there are ministries that they sought help from like the Ministry of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water, Climate and Rural Resettlement; Ministry of Home Affairs and Cultural Heritage; Ministry of Women’s Affairs, Community, Small and Medium Enterprises and Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Trade so that they look at the rights of women in all sectors and that we are in line with Vision 2030 that will leave no one behind.  So, the above ministries should also take into account the rights of women when they are budgeting.  I thank you.

          +HON. B. DUBE: Thank you Madam Speaker. I want to thank Hon. Masara and her team for their successful trip.  I also want to encourage all those who travel to at least give reports.  Without wasting time, I just want to focus on the energy sources so that our women lead better livelihoods. 

          The issue that played center stage was that on energy because a lot of time is spent looking for firewood.  My suggestion is that things like solar, batteries and everything that concerns energy supply, when we are looking at sustainable energy supply, especially looking at afforestation, such equipment should be imported duty free so that every household has alternative sustainable source of energy.

          On water supply, it shows that water shortages really affects women because they are the ones who make sure that food has been cooked, and children have bathed.  So, the Ministry responsible for provisions of water, I think should prioritise the drilling of boreholes in rural areas.  Even where I come from in towns, you will find that in Gweru, we are also having water challenges because the infrastructure is old now.  This means that even urban women are now living as their rural counterparts.  Looking at that report, I think the Ministry of Local Government should invest so that those old pipelines are replaced.  Even the Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education should also be involved because we do not know where the problem really lies. You find that our local authorities who are supposed to help our women with supply of portable water are spending a lot of money trying to source for chemicals. 

So, those colleges should focus on innovation so that the manufacturing of chlorine should be done in schools but now it is a bit complicated to get chlorine.   I will conclude my submission saying that this issue is very pertinent and on top of that, all ministries which are involved in the development - especially when it comes to women, should come together and make sure that our priorities when it comes to climate change, should come up with better solutions so that we are be able to change on how we are doing business and also make it easy for the lives of women. 

          When we were elected into Parliament, we all came because we wanted change so that we come up with a world class country, thereby changing our standards of living.

          (v)HON. GONESE: Thank you very much Madam Speaker Ma’am.  I would like to thank you for giving me this opportunity to contribute to this very important debate.  I have looked at the report which was presented in this august House.  When you look at the theme, it states achieving gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls into the context of climate change. 

          Before I deal with the specific issues relating to climate change, I would like to preface my remarks by stating that it is unfortunate that as a nation, we have not been serious about implementing the provisions of our own Constitution which was adopted in 2013.  We have got specific sections which deal with issues of gender equality, in particular we have got Section 17 which talks about the issue of gender balance whereby we should be having a situation where women and men are treated equally and there is a saying that men of quality are not afraid of equality.  I want to put myself in that category where I am not afraid of having equality with our female counterparts. 

          We also have provisions of Section 56 which are very clear; again they prohibit discrimination in various grounds. It appears that as a nation, we have been paying lip service to some of those principles. 

          Lastly, I would just want to refer to Section 8 of our Constitution which talks about the rights of women and which speaks to the issues of equality and dignity of women.  I believe that what is imperative is for us not take these as….

          HON. KWARAMBA: On a point of order! May the Hon. Member raise his voice, we can hardly hear him. 

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Hon. Gonese, may you raise your voice.

          (v)HON. GONESE: When it comes to issues relating to gender, those are issues affecting all of us.  When you look at all the men in this august House, they were born by women and when we look at the role played by our women in terms of our birth, you find that although one has two parents, women play a far more significant role in terms of carrying the pregnancy and nursing the baby.

          It is imperative that as men, we also participate in issues of championing women because of gender equality.  When you look at the report, it is clear that it first of all happens to the platform for entry of 1995, that is the Beijing Declaration.  It is very sad that 27 years down the line, we have not achieved as much as we should have if we have taken this issue seriously.  So, before we deal with the specific issue raised in the report, a general principle, I believe that it is important for all Zimbabweans particularly us of the male gender, to also assist to participate and also ensure that these issues are realised.

          I want to reiterate what I said at the beginning that issues of gender are not issues of women but for all of us. Having looked at the report, I just want to refer to some of the specific recommendations which have been made by the delegation and I think that it is something where we can all play our part.

          When we look at the recommendations, first of all, the report calls for adequate resources to be availed towards ministries which deal with climate change issues and I will submit that when it comes to the portfolio committees performing the roles of lobbying and advocacy, we as men should be seen at the forefront of that lobbying so that we can ensure that the budget allocation to climate change programmes are actually increased so that the relevant ministries are able to implement those policies so that the money which will be provided for in the budget is going to be adequate.  This will not happen on its own without our active involvement and this is where I am imploring upon all my male counterparts that we must be pro-active because several portfolio committees are going to be holding these activities, the Portfolio Committee on Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Development and I request that all the Members of that particular portfolio Committee but in particular that the men also be in the forefront of this advocacy and lobbying so that enough resources are going to be provided.

          We also look at the Portfolio Committee on Environment, Climate, Tourism and Hospitality Industry and again is the same plea that all the members of that particular Committee, in particular the males, be at the forefront of ensuring that enough resources are going to be allocated. 

I also make reference to the Portfolio Committee on Energy and Power Development and my colleague Hon. Brian Dube has already started to work with the issues that adversely affect women.  When we look at the electricity power cut that we have been experiencing, the alternative source of energy would usually be firewood.  When you look at what has been happening in terms of climate change, we do not have enough firewood and in any event, it is actually a tiresome exercise, especially as women to continue carrying on with the activities that were carried out in the past where they had to go into the bush and cut down trees to for firewood.  In any event, the trees are getting depleted; we now have got programmes like National Tree Planting because we do not want to continue cutting down trees.  The only alternative is to ensure that adequate provision is made for the alternative sources of energy.

In this regard, I would submit that it is imperative upon the Government to ensure that we have solar geysers, solar lights, solar systems, not just for lighting but also to ensure that they can be able to sustain even cooking.  We need gas stoves and so on so that our women will not suffer. 

The second recommendation that has been made by the delegation is that we must have outreach activities in rural areas and I believe that the raising of this awareness is very important because unfortunately in the rural areas, that is where we have the traditional approach where some of the people in those communities are not conversant with thinking.  It is important to add males who will also be of assistance to ensure that we sensitise and conscientise both the traditional and religious leaders.

We also need to have women to be actively involved to the Climate Change Committee which is going to be set up. I want to hasten to add that it is not just about women involvement; we also need to be participating so that we do have the necessary information. 

Whilst in terms of recommendation, the Women’s Parliamentary Caucus is going to be at the forefront.  I submit that when the work plans are going to be submitted they should also involve champions.  We already have HeForShe champions in this Parliament, myself, Hon. T. Moyo, Hon. Brian Dube is in the Women for Women Affairs, Hon. Chingosho and so on. 

We all need to come together as males to ensure that these issues are properly articulated and that they get realised.  There is also the third recommendation with the women participation... – [HON. MEMBERS: We cannot hear him.]  -

HON. RAIDZA: Hon a point of order Madam Speaker.

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: What is your point of order?

HON. RAIDZA: The Hon. Member is holding us hostage here,

(V)HON. GONESE: Unfortunately, I cannot hear the points being said here.

HON. RAIDZA: My point of order is that Hon. Gonese is not clear; we cannot hear him, we cannot get what he is talking about, and we are all here lost on his submissions. I want to propose that maybe he can submit a written submission on whatever he is going to say, I think to serve our Hon. Members who are here who also want to debate.

(V)HON. GONESE: It can be a problem of connectivity but let me just try to summarize.  As opposed to written submissions, I will try to speak as loud as I can.

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Hon. Member, are you now concluding because people cannot hear you?

(V)HON. GONESE: I am now concluding Madam Speaker; it is unfortunate that connectivity has been a problem.  We need to get involved as men in articulating some of these issues.  You need to be more actively involved in the relevant Portfolio Committee so that the recommendations which have been made can see the light of the day with our active participation.

I am sorry that I have been having connectivity challenges and this has prevented me from being able to be heard by the Members in the House, I rest my case Madam Speaker.

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Hon. Members, I am kindly requesting you that you do not repeat what others have said and may you please try to make sure that at least you get your points in order so that when you speak, you speak fast to allow others to debate.

*HON. TSUURA: Thank you Madam Speaker for giving me this opportunity to add my voice on this report that has been tabled by Hon. Masara. I want to talk on what the Government can do.  It is my plea that it should electrify the rural areas or even install solar systems. If electricity is there, women are child bearers and they look after children. It is very disheartening that a child in the rural areas sits the same exam as that one in the urban areas.  Children in rural areas are being disadvantaged because they do not have the necessary I.T gadgets. 

We are asking that the Ministry of ICT must provide rural schools with the necessary E-learning so that they are at the same level as their urban counterparts.   People in rural areas must have access to latest technology so that if they face problems they can phone to get the relevant help in cases of emergency like death and sickness.  Women walk long distance to go and fetch firewood where they come home late and they face problems of being raped or murdered.

If it is girls, the mothers of the children carry the burden because that child may be infected with diseases or end up having children whom their mothers cannot look after, after being raped. It is a big challenge that needs to be looked after.  I thank you.

*HON. MATSUNGA:  Thank you Hon. Speaker, I want to add my voice to this report which was tabled by Hon. Masara and her team.  Looking at the girl child, it would have been a very good thing that our Government assists women through the Women’s Bank. If you look at women who are in our country, they are not empowered.  For them to borrow from banks, women and girls are facing challenges because men are the ones who own properties.  For women to go and look for things that empower them, they do not have. So it would have been good that our Government especially the Ministry of Women Affairs, should stand with women and spearhead those women who do not have collateral so that they get loans from the bank.

          Secondly, I want to add my voice on the rights of women. For a home to be a home, it is because of women. I think in all the schools, the girl child should be looked after properly and be provided with sanitary wear because the girl child is having challenges. They should get access to sanitary pads and our Government should empower the girl child. The time that we are living in, there are a lot of diseases and for a girl child to use unhealthy things, it causes diseases during their menstrual cycle.

          I once went to Rwanda and I witnessed women being given land and they are farming trees which they can sell or even export those trees and that will empower them. It is difficult for them to go to the forests in search of firewood because there are so many dangers out there, both animals and human beings.

          Lastly, I would like to say most of the time, women face challenges because they fall pregnant and they give birth in places which are not good. When they go to the hospitals to give birth, they should be looked after properly. If it were possible, our Government should congratulate women when they give birth because for a country to be a country, it is because of women. You find that women are being looked down upon. So the hospitals should have proper facilities so that women give birth safely. Women are very important because they are the ones who have made it possible for us to be here. Thank you.

          +HON. LWAZI SIBANDA: Thank you Madam Speaker for the opportunity that you gave me to add my contribution on the report that was brought into the House by Hon. Bhuda-Masara when they went to CSW. First of all, I would like to say for everyone in this House to be here, it is because you were brought up by a woman. If it was not for the woman, we would not have anyone in this House. We have to give respect to our women at all times. After our group went to CSW, we learnt that women are treated in such a manner that there is a bank that represents them. This bank does not require women to present collaterals so that they can be offered loans or money or funding for other projects.

          In the 8th Parliament, we debated that we need a bank for women. After we had this bank representing women and this bank is present in other countries, but the Women’s Bank in Zimbabwe does not assist women. This is because when women go to this bank, they are told that they are supposed to present collateral. Where are the women going to get that collateral from because they are just poor and they have nothing? I wish that the Government should have a bank that represents women, not this bank that only bears a name that is called Women’s Bank but it does not see through the needs of women.

          I need a bank that will represent the needs of women. Even a woman from the rural areas will go to this bank and be assisted. The woman is the owner of the home and she is the one that sees to it that the children have been fed, children are going to school and the children are always kept in a safe and hygienic environment. We need a bank that is different from this bank that we have. This bank only assists people in urban areas but not people in rural areas. Also looking at climatic change, during the rainy season, women face challenges because they are the ones who are responsible for seeing that everything within the home set up is presentable. Even to go and fetch firewood, they will fail because the roads will be destroyed by the rains and they will not have firewood for them to prepare food for the children.

          I was praying that the Ministry of Women’s Affairs should consider the budget for women and that budget could be assist in changing the lives of women. Women can be provided with solar stoves so that it will assist them in the preparation of food. I also wish that the Government could see through into the youth. They have got a bank that represents them but this bank does not ask for collateral. I wish that Government could also look at women as important people.

          Even His Excellency, President Mnangagwa was raised by a woman. We pray that women should have a bank that caters for the needs of women. Other women also want to be MPs but they do not have money because if they go to the bank, they will be told that they should bring collateral. We wish that there be a bank that will assist women that even during the rainy season, women can be given other lighter options so that they are able to assist their families during the rainy season and prepare food for them. I pray that we can have a way that we can change the lives of women during this season. Thank you.

          +HON. MOKONE: Thank you very much Madam Speaker. I want to thank Hon. Bhuda-Masara and his team who went and brought us such a report on climate change. Allow me this time to say that most women are affected by climate change and this climate change also affects the economy and after it has affected the economy, women are the ones that are affected mostly. Most of them end up being vendors. What we are witnessing here in Zimbabwe is that most vendors are chased away because they are trading in illegal points.  We ask that legalised points be created where they can vend from and they are not being chased around by police offers and other local authorities responsible for that.

          Another issue of empowering women, we ask that in mining, women should be considered even in farming. I come from Gwanda and we have a problem of water shortages. First of all, it is burst water pipes and the second one is caused by lack of electricity. If we do not have electricity, it is impossible for them to pump the water. Most of the time women are the ones that suffer mostly because they end up fetching water and carry buckets on their heads so that the family can have water to bath and children to go to school.

          I appeal to the Government so that it can invest in solar systems so that it can be able to pump water in areas like Gwanda and other different areas. 

          Also there is need for the Government to invest in bio-gas because we witness most of the women carrying firewood from the bush.  This also affects them and they are exposed to issues like rape.  If they are going to ferry this firewood from the jungle and other isolated areas, they end up being vulnerable to rape.  I want also to include the elderly women.  These people are very important.  Government should see to it that the elderly women’s rights are also catered for.  Whilst I am on the issue of women, I am a student.  Where I am, I see a lot of girls engaging in mischievous behaviours so that they can have money to pay their fees and photocopy other necessary documents pertaining to their studies.  There is need for Government to assist the girl child in academic education.  With these few words, I rest my case.

          HON. BITI: Thank you very much Madam Speaker for giving me this opportunity to speak on the report by the esteemed Hon. Bhudha on their visit to the United Nations connected to the CSW.  The report concentrated on the issues of women and climate change.  Those of us who come from the rural areas know the devastating effects that climate change is affecting rural livelihoods and rural communities.  The issues of access to water and access to firewood are affecting women disproportionate to men.  The average woman spends eight hours, either looking for firewood or water per day.  She wakes up around 0300 a.m. 0400 a.m. looking for those things whilst the husband is at a beer-hall or has gone missing to the home of a ‘small house.’

          This same woman bears the burden of child birth.  So, I urge that as a country, we push the development agenda.  We accelerate the development agenda so that there is rural development.  The urbanisation and development of rural areas is an imperator.  We must electrify rural areas.  We must put water and access to water in rural areas.  It is a pity that 43 years after independence, 56% of our people do not have access to covered clean water.  It is a pity that 43 years after independence, only 30% of our population has access to electricity.  It is a pity that 43 years after independence, 46% of the Zimbabwean population does not have access to toilets and we use the bush as a toilet. 

          Where I come from, you will see a lot of mangoes in the forest and when you see a lot of mangoes, you must know that Nyamuziwa was there because there are no ablution facilities.  These things affect women disproportionately and it is important that women be given a voice.  We have a Constitution which says that in public spaces, women must occupy 50% of the seats.  Look at the status of women in this august House, women are not 50%. Look at the status of women in Cabinet, women are not 50%.  Look at the status of women in our public bodies, whether it is ZESA, ZINARA, Air Zimbabwe, women are not 50% but we have got a Constitution that says 50% of all public positions must be occupied by women.

          So, my submission is that we must walk the talk. Empower the girl child; empower women but it is not just in the developmental issues that women are suffering.  Also in personal spaces, it pains me to learn of the fact that every 75 minutes, a woman is being raped in Zimbabwe.  On a day to day basis, at least 23 women are being raped.  It pains me that 43 years after independence, the amount of women that are dying in illegal abortions is…

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER (HON. MAVETERA): How authentic are your submissions?

          HON. BITI: I can produce sources, just on abortion about 40% of the pregnancies in Zimbabwe are unwanted and unplanned.  Of those 40%, 25% are aborted and are aborted illegally.  This amounts to 20 000 out of 100 000 and that is a big factor.  The people that are involved in abortions are women.  We are not protecting them.  We need to protect them.

          I have been a lawyer for a long time now.  Women are suffering on inheritance.  We still have customary laws that say that women cannot inherit from their father’s estates.  We have clogged our courts at the present moment, hundreds of women fighting off brothers who would have come or uncles who would have come to grab assets from a deceased father.  The story of Neria is not fiction.  There are hundreds of thousands of Nerias in our society. 

          The area of divorce is another area where women are being disadvantaged.  Yes, those that are married in terms of Chapter 5.11 marriage, which is now a marriage in terms of Section 5.1 of the new Marriages Act that this Parliament has just passed are protected by Section 7 of the Matrimonial Causes Act. Majority of our women are in unregistered Customary Law unions, which even in the current Marriages Act, which we passed very recently, are not covered by Section 7 of the Matrimonial Causes Act.  Kana kuri kumaruzevha, mukadzi anogarwa naye for 40 years.  Agarwa naye orambwa kunge imbwa.  Anongopihwa tumombe twake twaka bhadharwa tumombe twehumai. Obva nezvikapu zvake nezvindiro, apa chikara chinenge charoora vamwe vakadzi.  We are not protecting them.

          Kuma farm, women work hard for farms received in terms of the Land Reform Programme but on divorce, the courts are saying the farm belongs to the Government and the courts cannot distribute a farm in lease.  Here in this august House, Hon. Marian Chombo is a Member of this august House.  There is a judgement in our courts called Chombo versus Chombo, where the Supreme Court of this country said Mrs Chombo cannot get the farm, somewhere in Zvimba because it was a product of the Land Reform Programme.  So, our women are suffering.

          Child marriages, in places like Gokwe, an average girl, by the time she becomes 19, she will have two children.  You ask me for a source, I refer to the 2015, National Demographic Health Survey.  I refer to the 2011 National Demographic Health Survey.  I have just come across recent UN report, that compared 24 institutions of higher learning in Zambia and 24 institutions of higher learning in Zimbabwe.  The girl child is suffering at the tertiary institution.  High school fees is forcing the girl child to indulge in prostitution.  Madam Speaker Ma’am, that refers to what is called new phenomenon to what they call semester marriages.  So, at the beginning of a semester, a girl child moves in and co-habits with a male student in order to cope with the vagaries of an expensive life that is affecting these students. 

There are also old people who prey on those young children.  They used to be called sugar daddies and they are now called ‘blessers.’  You find a young girl aged 20 or 21 going out with a 90 year old man.  We need a comprehensive position to protect women.  We need a comprehensive position paper to protect women, including access to finance. 

An Hon. Member spoke of the challenges with the Women’s Empowerment Bank.  It is capitalised like a micro-finance when we want it to be capitalised like a full commercial bank with US$25 million capital.  That bank should not demand collateral in the form of a house.  Only 28% of Zimbabweans own houses.  Of that 28%, less than 5% are women.  When a woman goes to a bank, how do you ask for collateral in the form of a house when that woman actually wants to empower herself so that she can prosper? 

I want to conclude Madam Speaker Ma’am by saying, let us walk the talk.  Let us start by respecting the Constitution which says that 50% of all public positions in parastatals, Parliaments and Cabinets must be women.  I thank you very much Madam Speaker Ma’am. 

*(v) HON. MANGORA:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  I would like to mention the issue of health on women.  Because of climate change, a lot of things affect women.  I would like to encourage the Minister of Finance, now that we are approaching budget consultations, we ought to see clinics whose specialization is on assisting women and girls.  We have diseases such as cervical cancer.  This would assist with early detection. 

During the Covid period, we saw a lot of women could not collect their family planning medication.  We saw a lot of unwanted pregnancies.  There should be provision for women during disasters so that they get assistance. In other developed countries, they have devised methods of bringing medication to the people during disasters.

(v) HON. H. MGUNI:  Thank you Madam Speaker for giving me this opportunity to the motion that was introduced by Hon. Bhuda-Masara.  For our goals to be achieved in the full participation of women, we should make sure that the challenges are addressed.  There is violence against women, there is early child forced marriages, gender disparity in secondary and tertiary education.  We should also ensure that in rural areas, there are outreaches that are done to enable women to get screened and seek treatment for ailments such as medical cancer in order to ensure that they are healthy.  This will enable them to effectively participate which in turn will promote gender equality.  Thank you very much Hon. Speaker.

*HON. HAMAUSWA:  Thank you very much Madam Speaker. I would like to support this motion that was moved by Hon. Masara.  I want to focus on the issue of unpaid care wage, looking at climate change which is affecting many economies around the globe and derailing the progress of such economies.  This has affected women who are not employed, which has resulted in them doing unpaid care work in their homes. 

Also looking at those banks that are issuing loans to empower women, what I expect from this House before the passing of the budget, this House should agree that the money that is given to the Women Empowerment Bank should not have monthly interest rates.  It should not be a micro-finance bank because if it continues like that, women will not be able to pay back the loans. 

Lastly Madam Speaker, I will mention the issue of markets.  Usually when we talk of markets, we are talking about those in the urban areas.  I wanted to propose that in rural areas, we allow highway markets.  If you look at Mutoko Highway, even Mutare, along the highways there are those who sell fruits and vegetables.  We are losing a lot of women as they run towards buses and public transport as a way of trying to sell their wares.  There are no proper ablution facilities where they sell their produce.  There are no proper facilities for them to operate from.  It is prudent that we provide good facilities for them to operate from, proper facilities so that they are not run over by vehicles as they stop to buy fruits.

On these highway markets, you would need toilets or even solar lights.  You see that our places would have been developed at the rural areas.  If these things are done, it will allow even farmers in those areas to bring their produce to these particular spots.  You can see we are looking at women development, with women working from developed places and avoiding accidents like being run over by vehicles as they are selling their wares.  This shows that Government is concerned with the welfare of women. 

Lastly Hon. Speaker, as they focus on highway markets, even those who are into mobile money, banking women may be invited to these places.  Even these mobile phone agencies will enable women not to carry money in bulk, hence doing away with theft on their way back home.

*HON. …MOYO:  Thank you very much Hon. Minister.  I would like to add on the motion that was raised by Hon. Bhudha- Masara looking at the way women survive during the time of climate change.  In many cases, women are seen to be the ones suffering. 

As mentioned by Hon. Hamauswa, there are a lot of highways that are being refurbished.  There are no toilets, there is no running water but you see that there are women on those areas.  Women are the ones facing harsh conditions carrying water, bringing it to these places where they are selling their wares.  It is prudent that our Government makes action towards developing these places, these highway markets, so that as women are working, they find it smooth and nice.  Developing these highway markets is a way of averting the spread of diseases. 

Our local councils should consider women whenever they allocate places for themto operate from.  When they allocate these places, it seems men are the ones who are favoured as compared to women.  Women should be considered whenever places to operate from are being allocated.  Women should be given priority.

Looking at school children, most of the school children especially where children have nowhere to stay, are seen being made to work as maids by teachers.  This only results in them being abused.  They even fail to finish their examinations and education because they will be having a very big load on them.  They are expected to be women whilst they are still at school.

From what we saw in the rural areas, women are suffering.  It will be hot out there, they carrybabies on their backsand are expected to be on the fields.  It is very difficult for them.  This actually makes women to continue suffering.  Something has got to be done.  Looking at women, even looking at the elections between men and women in the National Assembly, you will see that women are discriminated against, they are looked down upon.  It actually despises them hence they fail to represent other women. 

On the issue of inheritance, when their husbands die all the property is taken away from them.  Women are suffering whenever their husbands depart.  Relatives take away all the property despite them knowing every detail of all the domestic animals kept at the homestead.  There should be a law to say no man can come and inherit property that has been left by another man.  It is unfair, some behaviour is very surprising.  Women are being made to suffer and we should look into this law.  Women should be protected.  No one should just come from the urban area, go to the rural place and sell the domestic animals and say I want to marry another woman.  That is more than torture.

You see a man taking another woman, bringing her home to the first wife.  This is one of the first things troubling women.  We should consider these laws and this should be rectified.  Women should be protected.  They should not be allowed to psychologically suffer and mentally breakdown because of the behaviour done to them by men.  Those are the few words I wanted to add to this motion.  Most of the things have been mentioned.  Thank you Madam Speaker.

*HON. TOBAIWA:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  My issue is on free education.  Free education should be offered from primary level to college because if we offer free education only at primary level, it means that a person cannot proceed to higher levels such as college.  This contributes to the girl child not proceeding with their education to college level as only boys will be given preference to further their education and the girl child is left to drop out.  This comes to the issue where women will be staying at home doing all the house duties. 

One of the issues I want to mention is the issue of bringing back night classes, can the Government bring back night classes for those who did not fully finish their education only.  I thank you.

HON. JOSIAH SITHOLE: Thank you Madam Speaker. I want to add a few doses to the Report by Hon. Bhudha-Masara. We need to move away from advocacy about women’s issues and go to practical. If we just talk without being practical, we are not going to get anywhere. Madam Speaker, if we talk about health, then we must see clinics closer to the women, hospitals closer to the women and they have to be there so that we become practical. Even if we talk of education, let us see schools being constructed so that they are close to people and people can access the education. It is the women at times who accompany ECD children going to school. If the school is 10km away, then it is a disadvantage to the woman. The woman has to take the child there and at the end of the day we are giving her more burdens. You will realise that women do not get entertainment because they do not have time for entertainment. Theirs is time for work and work only. Men can go and watch soccer. They can go and watch golf. They can do whatever they want in terms of entertainment but women are always tied-up. That can even traumatise their life to the extent that when they try to respond to a spouse when he comes from a soccer match, they may not understand each other because the other one was being entertained and was very free, enjoying but the woman was there at home. Finally, Madam Speaker, when you are at a funeral, people cry maiweee. When you get pain, it is maiwee, meaning the mother is superior. I thank you.

*HON. TEKESHE: Thank you Madam Speaker. Let me also add my voice to the issue that was raised by Hon. Bhudha-Masara on the Conference they have attended. I think the issue of rural electrification must be taken seriously because everyone is paying a levy towards the rural electrification fund. I think there is need to ensure that there is electricity and health. There is a programme of Pfumvudza (dig and die), the husbands are normally at beer halls and the woman is the one digging in the fields. There is need to ensure that we get technology that reduces the drudgery of the work. Pfumvudza is affecting women’s health a lot. The Women’s Bank is only found in urban areas and I think it should be situated at every post office. Those in rural areas should benefit from the Women’s Bank. I thank you.

+HON. MAHLANGU: Thank you very much Madam Speaker. Other households are closed because there is no one willing to assist the child to get a birth certificate. Government has loosened up the conditions and requirements for one to access documents such as birth certificates. People cannot get a witness to assist in getting documents like birth certificates and national identity cards so that they get passports. My appeal to the Government is to bring back the programme so that people can get the necessary documents like any other Zimbabwean.

*HON. KWARAMBA: Thank you Madam Speaker. I want to thank Hon. Masara. I was part of the delegation that went to the 66th CSW. It was a difficult trip since it was during COVID but we were able to learn something from it. The theme was Achieving Gender Equality and the Empowerment of all Women and Girls in the Context of Climate Change, Environmental and Disaster Risk Reduction Policies and Programmes. We have said a lot in this House and I am not going to repeat what was said. We heard about Cyclone Idai, the challenges that women face in accessing health services and water. We also heard that programmes such as pfumvudza can assist women but we need to reduce the workload. We heard about electricity and we need solar energy and biogas digesters to ensure that we reduce the burden of unpaid care work. Women do most of the work but they do not get anything. We have heard that there is the Women’s Bank but we are saying it should not request for collateral. It should be decentralised to rural areas. We heard about the highway market vendors. There was the issue of SRHR and the issue of boreholes that women are facing challenges. The issues of inheritance were also mentioned. I was impressed by the men who are supporting women and pushing the Government to ensure that the plight of women is taken into consideration. The laws should ensure that women and girls enjoy their works and their lives as well. I want to thank you all for everything and I want to leave the matter to Hon. Masara as she winds the motion. I thank you.

HON. BHUDHA-MASARA: Thank you very much Madam Speaker for this wonderful moment you have allowed to the Zimbabwe Women Parliamentary Caucus to table our Report for the second time and allow Hon. Members to have a second bite. I would like to appreciate especially the gender male champions for the support that you have given to the Zimbabwe Women Parliamentary Caucus as well as the owners of the report; the members of the Zimbabwe Women Parliamentary Caucus. Madam Speaker, the CSW 66 was held in United States at UN Headquarters from the 14th to the 25th of March 2022 under the theme: Achieving Gender Equality for all Women and Girls and Empowerment in the Context of Climate Change, Environmental and Disaster Risk Reduction Policies and Programmes.

Madam Speaker, let me also thank the leader of the Women’s Caucus who happens to be the President of Senate for leading the Zimbabwean Women Parliamentary Caucus’ delegation to the UN. Let me thank the Hon. Members in style and allow me to mention them by name. I would like to thank Hon. Raidza, Hon. B. Dube, Hon. Gonese, Hon. Biti, Hon. Hamauswa, Hon. Tekeshe and Hon. Josiah Sithole. Hon. Members of ZWPC, let me thank Hon. Madiwa who was the seconder of the motion. She was part of the delegation to the UN CSW 66th Session, Hon. Mpariwa, Hon. Tsuura, Hon. Matsunga, Hon. L. Sibanda, Hon. Mangora, Hon. Mguni, Hon. Priscilla Moyo, Hon. Mokone, Hon. J. Tobaiwa, Hon. Cele and finally the Chairperson of the ZWPC, Hon. Kwaramba.

I now move that this House adopts the Report of the 66th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women held from 14th to 25th March, 2022.

Motion put and agreed to

On the motion of HON. MUTAMBISII seconded by HON. TEKESHE, the House adjourned at Half past Six o’clock p.m.  

 

 

                                                                              

 

 

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Post comment