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NATIONAL ASSEMBLY HANSARD 3 APRIL 2024 VOL 50 NO 41

PARLIAMENT OF ZIMBABWE

Wednesday, 3rd April, 2024

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

PRAYERS

(THE HON. SPEAKER in the Chair)

ANNOUNCEMENTS BY THE HON. SPEAKER

RE-APPOINTMENT OF HON. SEN. CHIEF CHARUMBIRA AS PAN-AFRICAN PARLIAMENT PRESIDENT

THE HON. SPEAKER: With regards to the Pan-African Presidency, Zimbabwe tendered the name of the Hon. Sen. Chief Charumbira as a candidate for the Southern African Caucus as sponsored by Zimbabwe.  He won in the first round and because of the rules, after your Parliament, where you come from and the Parliament sponsoring you accepts you after the election and you have won, you are eligible to stand and continue in office.  This happened last week and Hon. Sen. Chief Charumbira won with a super majority to continue as the Pan-African Parliament President – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.]-  We wish him well in this very difficult assignment to unite the Parliaments of the continent and address issues of trade as guided by the Africa Free Trade Area Agreement, and also tackle the topical issue of climate change as well as promoting democracy for all on the continent.

We could not announce it yesterday before we presented him to His Excellency the President and this was done this morning – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.]- 

NON-ADVERSE REPORTS RECEIVED FROM THE PARLIAMENTARY LEGAL COMMITTEE.      

          THE HON. SPEAKER: I have to inform the House that I have received non-adverse reports from the Parliamentary Legal Committee on Statutory Instruments published in the Gazette during the month of February 2024, save for Statutory Instruments 17, 18, 23 and 24 of 2024. 

PETITIONS RECEIVED FROM NSSA PENSIONERS ADVOCACY ZIMBABWE, COALITION FOR MARKET AND LIBERAL SOLUTIONS, CENTER FOR NATURAL RESOURCES GOVERNANCE, TAKUDZWA MANYERE AND CLARKSON MUZA

          THE HON. SPEAKER: I have to inform the House that Parliament received the following petitions; NSSA Pensioners Advocacy Zimbabwe of 1/131 Montgomery Drive, Prospect, Waterfalls, Harare, requesting Parliament to investigate and recommend the upward review of the meagre pension pay-outs received by NSSA pensioners.  The petition has since been referred to the Portfolio Committee on Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare.

          Another petition has been received from the Coalition for Market and Liberal Solutions of 6438 NICOZ Diamond Road, Zimre Park, Ruwa, requesting Parliament to enact relevant legislation that protects property rights in line with the Constitution of Zimbabwe.  The petition

has since been referred to the Portfolio Committee on Local Government, Public Works and National Housing.

A further petition has been received from the Center for Natural Resources Governance, beseeching Parliament to play its oversight role on the relevant authorities responsible for monitoring and evaluating the activities of mining companies by ensuring that unsafe mining practices taking place at Premier Estate are stopped in order to preserve the environment.  The petition has since been referred to the Portfolio Committee on Mines and Mining Development as well as Environment, Climate and Wildlife. 

A further petition was received from Takudzwa Manyere of Zimbabwe Ezekiel Guti University, requesting Parliament to consider the Constitutional Court as the highest court in the country for all matters by extending its jurisdiction and amending the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court.  The petition has since been referred to the Portfolio Committee on Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs.

The final petition was received from Clarkson Muza of No. 10 Pakama Road, Harrisvale, Bulawayo, requesting Parliament to investigate the circumstances of victimisation that he suffered after lodging a complaint of corruption against the officers of the Zimbabwe Republic Police.  The petition was deemed inadmissible and the petitioner was advised accordingly.

          HON. KARIMATSENGA-NYAMUPINGA:  Mr. Speaker Sir, I rise on a point of national interest.  This is with regards to delays in the process of enacting the Persons with Disability Bill, which is amending the 1992 Disabled Persons Act and considering that it had taken long to be where we are today; the Disability Caucus, a constituency I represent, is appealing through your good offices, to engage the relevant Minister or the Leader of the House to expedite the process of finalisation of the gazetted Bill into law.  Kindly note that the Bill was gazetted on 9th February 2024, and the relevant Committee is at an advanced stage of preparing for public hearings.  So I thought I should let you know where we are concerning the Disability Bill.  There is too much pressure coming from the disability community to have this Bill read in this House by the relevant Ministry.  I thank you.

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  The Bill was gazetted only last month and today we are on 3rd April and the due process as you indicated Hon. Member of the Committee responsible has started.  So where is the activation of the national interest?

          HON. KARIMATSENGA-NYAMUPINGA:  Mr. Speaker Sir, the activation is that it was gazetted in February and now we are in April.  You know how we have struggled to be where we are today to have the Bill come to the House.  So the Disability Caucus and the nation at large are anxious to have the Bill read in the House.

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Thank you.  I would have appreciated if there was a delay of six months then we would be concerned, but one month and we are still inducting the Committees to know their responsibilities.  Anyway, the Acting Leader of Government Business, if you could take note and liaise with the Committee responsible so that the Bill is expedited as requested by the Hon. Member.

ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITHOUT NOTICE

          HON. CHIKWINYA: My question is directed to the Minister of Local Government and it is in two parts.  As much as we appreciate the massive road rehabilitation programme currently underway in the city of Harare, the programme is commendable.  Along the roadside, the City of Harare had allocated hundreds of men and women some vending stores and those have been displaced because of the road rehabilitation.  This was their survival kit.  I would want to find out from the Minister what he has in place to ensure the continuity of welfare of these hundreds of men and women who have been displaced by this programme.  On the other hand, day in and day out in the Harare CBD, we have seen the City Council and the Zimbabwe Republic Police fighting with vendors on the streets.  How is the Minister going to solve the problem between the police and the vendors who are fighting day in and day out because this problem has been going on for a very long time?  I thank you.

THE MINISTER OF HIGHER AND TERTIARY EDUCATION, INNOVATION, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. MURWIRA): Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. I would like to thank Hon. Chikwinya for her two-part question concerning road rehabilitation and how it is disturbing vending or displacing the vendors, and basically asking what the Ministry of Local Government is doing. Road rehabilitation is a programme that is very important as a national programme, to make sure that our infrastructure is in good condition and is for the benefit of the nation in total. Those ones who were on the road and are…

Some Hon. Members having entered the House while business of the House had commenced.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order. The three Hon. Members who have just come in now, please leave the House. We start at 10 past 2. Leave the House!

HON. DHLIWAYO: Point of clarity Mr. Speaker Sir.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Yes.

HON. DHLIWAYO: Hon. Mahachi was here. He just went out now and the other Honourable, they just went out and came back.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Are you their spokesperson?

HON. DHLIWAYO: No, I am a witness Mr. Speaker Sir.

THE HON. SPEAKER: No interest. They should speak for themselves.

HON. MAHACHI: I was in the House Mr. Speaker Sir.

After other two Hon. Members having entered in the House.

THE HON. SPEAKER: The spokesperson, how about these two?

HON. DHLIWAYO: I can speak Mr. Speaker.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Pardon!

HON. DHLIWAYO: They were here Mr. Speaker. Thank you.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Now, I make this ruling, do not come in for two minutes and go out. You finish your business before the House begins. Otherwise, we will not entertain that. Thank you. Hon. Minister, please proceed.

HON. PROF. MURWIRA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. I wish to thank Hon. Chikwinya for the question – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

Hon. Dr. Mutodi having entered the House.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Member, please you are late. Go and rest somewhere. Hon. Mutodi, next time finish your national programme on time please. We have too many detours here. So, take that into account. Take your seat.

HON. DR. MUTODI: Thank you.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Minister, please proceed.

HON. PROF. MURWIRA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. I wish to thank Hon. Chikwinya for the question concerning the effects of road rehabilitation on vendors basically and the other one asking about the fights between police and the vendors. First of all, Mr. Speaker Sir, I would like to say that the Road Rehabilitation Programme is a national, very important programme because this infrastructure is national infrastructure. The Ministry of Local Government must make sure that they participate and make sure that everything happens to facilitate this process. Mr. Speaker Sir, it is very important to know that we have been able to determine whether these people on the road are legal or illegal. If they are legal, there are methods of compensating them. If they are illegal, I think illegalities are not compensated. 

On the other issue of police and vendors, it is very important again to answer it within this context of legal and illegal. If we are doing illegal activity, it is very important that the police do their job within the law, whether they are municipal police or national police. They have to be doing their job within the law. It is very important that we analyse every situation within the national interest and within the legalities or illegalities of each activity and evaluate that activity accordingly. I thank you Mr. Speaker.

Hon. Matewu having stood up on a supplementary question.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Member, before you proceed, which Member of Parliament raised the issue of point of order earlier on?

HON. MAVHUNGA: It is Hon. Mavhunga, Chitungwiza South.

Hon. Mavhunga having stood up.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Mavhunga, when another Member is standing, you sit down. Hon. Mavhunga, the Clerks-at-the-Table indicated that they apologise. They should have given me the list of apologies, so I am going to read it out now and I apologise too.

HON. MAVHUNGA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.

ANNOUNCEMENT BY THE HON. SPEAKER

APOLOGIES RECEIVED FROM MINISTERS

THE HON. SPEAKER: The Minister of Finance, Economic Development and Investment Promotion, Hon. Prof. M. Ncube; Hon. J. Mhlanga, Deputy Minister of Women’s Affairs, Community, Small and Medium Enterprises Development; Hon. F. Shava, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Trade; Hon. K. Kazembe, Minister of Home Affairs and Cultural Heritage; Hon. C. Sanyatwe, Deputy Minister of Home Affairs and Cultural Herigate; Hon. P. Kambamura, Deputy Minister of Mines and Mining Development; Hon. A. Gata, Deputy Minister of Primary and Secondary Education; Hon. R. Modi, Deputy Minister of Industry and Commerce; Hon. S. Simbanegavi, Deputy Minister of National Housing and Social Amenities; and Hon. W. Chitando, Minister of Local Government and Public Works.

HON. CHIKWINYA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. I was very concerned because this is a daily programme, in and out for years.  I want to know whether there could be a permanent solution to this problem as we move ahead towards creating a smart city. I thank you.

          HON.  PROF. MURWIRA:  Thank you Hon. Speaker. I want to thank the Hon. Member for the supplementary question about the permanent solution.  It is very important that a country is governed by laws, and that these laws should be followed by every resident and citizen of the country.  That is exactly what we call the rule of law.  The continuity of any programme is the respect of the rule of law by those who enforce it, and those who might have a potential of violating that law.  It is very important that lawful activities must prevail in the local authority areas so that we preserve order and lives of the people, which is a very important right. Furthermore, livelihoods should be pursued within the law.  Enforcement of the law should also be done lawfully.  This is the basis of continuity of peace and dignity in the country.  I thank you. 

          HON. MATEWU: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. The Hon. Minister raises a very important question in terms of compensation for those who are affected by the roadworks.  I want to go specifically to the emergency road rehabilitation programme that is currently taking place.  It is displacing many people, not just in urban areas, but also in farms and other areas.  I did not hear the issue when we passed the national budget at the close of last year, 2023.  Where is the money coming from that is compensating all these people who are being affected by these road works?  I thank you.

          HON. PROF. MURWIRA:  Hon. Speaker, compensation is done within the context of the law.  It is very important that when we develop infrastructure, we know that we are developing infrastructure for this nation.  It is every citizen’s responsibility to make sure that this happens in a lawful and fair manner.  What we are saying here is that there is always a budget for compensation, it is very important that if these people are being compensated at all, it is coming from the fiscus; this is where the money is coming from. ….

          HON. MATEWU:  On a point of order Mr. Speaker Sir, if you can indulge me.

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Hon. Matewu, I thought the Minister was still holding the floor.

          HON. MATEWU:  I think he was about to sit down, if you can indulge me Mr. Speaker.  We just want the Minister to be specific……

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Oder, order, Hon. Minister, Leader of Government Business, can you windup your response please. 

          HON. PROF. MURWIRA:  Hon. Speaker Sir, since this question is now out of the local government area which was being talked about, the issue of the police versus vendors, I would kindly ask Hon. Minister Mhona to talk about the source of the money from his budget.

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order…

          HON. MATANGIRA:  On a point of order Hon. Speaker…

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order Hon. Matangira, I have not finished my ruling.  I was saying Hon. Minister Mhona, if you could assist in the response.

          THE MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. MHONA): Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  Let me also thank the Hon. Member for raising that very important question pertaining to the budgetary line items for those who will be compensated.  Mr. Speaker Sir, in the event that we are embarking in a project, we do budget and if it is budgeted for, it must appear in the Blue Book.  This is the procedure.  In the event that we then have an emergency as alluded to by the Hon. Member, then it becomes a declaration by His Excellency, the President that funding must be provided for.  When we do our budgeting process, we know we have an unallocated reserve account within the purview of the Ministry of Finance.  In the event of an emergency, we will tap into that fund to fund our projects and it will be emanating from the fiscus. 

          However, when it comes to the evaluations, we have the Ministry of Local Government, if we are talking of urban land, where they come in and assess so that they come up with precise values.  If we are talking of farms, we have the Ministry of Lands and Agriculture, where they will come up again with their modalities in terms of the evaluation.  It is very clear that if it happens before a budgetary process, we tap into the unallocated reserve through the Ministry of Finance. Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir – [HON. MEMBERS: Hon. Mhona, Mhona!]

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  I thought you were going to shout that the Ministers are in one Government.   Hon. Matangira, does your point of order still arise? 

          HON. MATANGIRA: Negative Sir, why, because he had said precision on those who had been disadvantaged, we wanted to know vakatorerwa nzvimbo dzavo.    It is now done. 

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  In future, do not mix languages.     >>HON. NDOU: Thank you Hon. Speaker.  My question is directed to the Ministry of Mines and Mining Development. What is Government policy when it comes to the destruction of the environment including roads due to mining activities?  Human lives and livestock are being put at risk, people are perishing.    I thank you. 

          HON. SODA:  I did not quite get the question clearly but I suppose the Hon. Member wanted to ask about the destruction of the environment including the roads through mining activities. When a mine is granted in terms of its registration, there are some processes that must be complied with especially regarding the environment. A certificate has to be issued which entails that the miner will observe all requirements in terms of protection of the environment. That is one of the conditions precedent for the issuance of a mining title or a registration for one to start to do mining. We expect that miners will comply from the commitment that they would have given. An environmental social impact assessment would have been carried out before a certificate is issued.

However, we then find at times that there are some violations especially with miners after they would have made all such commitments. They then proceed to mine irresponsibly. Government had come up with an initiative which was launched last year by His Excellency the President, the Responsible Mining Initiative. It brings together a number of ministries to work towards ensuring that there is compliance when mining activities are being carried out. From time to time, there are some audits that are being carried out over and above the normal inspections that the Ministry of Mines conducts. We now have some audits that we carry out together with other ministries to ensure that there is compliance.

There is a lot that is happening. We normally carry out some inspections and we now have some responsible mining audits that are being mandated to be carried. With all that, we should be able to identify the violations and those that are caught on the wrong side of the law are punished immediately as a way of deterring them from committing environmental crimes.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Members, you are under the watch of cameras. There are two Members of Parliament here who have a habit of going to some dream. So, please do not embarrass us because when the pictures come out there, it shows that we are not serious with our business. I shall not name the Hon. Members, but please wake up. I want to see your faces.

Is Hon. Hadebe around? Where is he?

I thought you made a telling confession when we were at State House and you promised me that you would behave accordingly. Can you proceed and behave accordingly? Do not bring your ancestral stick into the House? Can you proceed as per your confession at State House?

HON. HADEBE: Thank you very much Hon. Speaker.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Can you proceed as per your confession at State House.

Hon. Hadebe withdrew from the Chamber with his knobkerry.

+HON. BAJILA: I have a supplementary question to the Minister. In his response, he said there are timely audits. How long does it take to carry on these audits and how long does it take for these audits to be revealed? I thank you.

THE HON. SPEAKER: The question is lost Hon. Member because the question needs numbers. Today, we are speaking of the Government’s policy and not the audits. On the issue of numbers, you should prepare a written question.

HON. S. MAPHOSA: My supplementary question is directed to the Minister of Mines, since he said that there are procedures that they use to evaluate the degradation that has been done by miners on the roads or the environment. I wanted to ask what is done after the degradation has been done by these miners. Is there a way or office that we are supposed to approach to report that there is land degradation and no rehabilitation has been happening in the process?

HON. SODA: Our Ministry is not qualified enough to assess even the damage that would have happened on infrastructure. There is a Ministry that is responsible for that and it is the Ministry of Environment. They have the expertise to ascertain the extent of the damage and punishment which is supposed to be levelled against perpetrators of violations. All that is handled through the Ministry of Environment.

They also administer a budget for rehabilitation as the Ministry of Environment. Like I indicated earlier on in my first response, we work together very closely especially when we are conducting some audits where a violation is ascertained. Immediately, the Ministry of Environment, through EMA, punish for such violations and they are responsible for all the rehabilitations. I thank you.

          THE HON. SPEAKER: The accent of the question was, how do you reclaim the environment? Would you want the Minister of Environment to assist? In other words, what is the process of reclaiming the environment that has been damaged?

          HON. SODA: Mr. Speaker, like I indicated, the Government has a mechanism, but that mechanism is administered or handled by the Ministry of Environment. All the reclamation is done through the Ministry of Environment.

          THE HON. SPEAKER: So there is no Minister or Deputy Minister of Environment here. Leader of Government Business, can you assist? – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – Order! When the Chair has announced the Leader of Government Business, that leader must be respected. – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.] – And I do not accept the howling. It must stop once and for all. If I identify the leader of the howling, then that leader will suffer the consequences immediately.

          THE MINISTER OF HIGHER AND TERTIARY EDUCATION, INNOVATION, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. MURWIRA): Whenever a legal mining activity is taking place, there is an Environmental and Social Impact Assessment. Part of this details the Environmental Management Plan which is required by the Ministry of Environment through EMA. This EMP is the one that is revoked when rehabilitation is taking place. Therefore, Government has a mechanism of making sure that the assessment of the environmental damage is done expertly via the EMP. So yes Mr. Speaker, there is a mechanism that is enshrined in law, and that is in accordance with the Constitution on environment management matters.

          THE HON. SPEAKER: And the Environmental Act Section 98 to 102 does vouch for what the Hon. Minister and Leader of Government Business has said. If you have time, read those sections, 98 to 102.

          HON. CHIDUWA: My supplementary is, what is Government policy regarding devolving the responsible mining policy to artisanal miners?

          THE HON. SPEAKER: That is a brand-new question altogether. It does not relate to environmental damage unless if you want to recraft it.

          HON. DHLIWAYO: Given the contribution by artisanal miners, what is the Government doing in trying to conscientise our miners on the environmental responsibility, apart from the punishments that you are administering?

          THE HON. SPEAKER: What is the problem with the artisanal miners? Can you restate your case?

HON. DHLIWAYO: There are cases where these artisanal miners are just arrested or stopped, maybe because they have violated some laws on environmental issues. So I am saying, what is the Government doing in trying to conscientise those miners on responsible mining because arresting or ministering punishments alone is not sufficient, given the fact that these artisanal miners are making a great contribution to our gross domestic product?

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Thank you, you are trying to be the spokesperson for Hon. Chiduwa in reverse gear and your question does not apply to the damage of the environment.

          *HON. ZVAIPA: My question is directed to the Minister of Finance, but in his absence, I will redirect the question to the Leader of Government Business. My question pertains to the issue which was happening at RBZ in the past. Every Tuesday, people from companies used to go and buy money from the money market, but from January to April this month, we have not heard anything. Why is it that it is no longer happening? Chii chamisa musika? – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – Chamisa chii kutengeswa kwemari kumusika watanga tinawo? – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

*THE MINISTER OF HIGHER AND TERTIARY EDUCATION, INNOVATION, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. MURWIRA): Hapana chamisa.

          HON. MADZIVANYIKA: Supplementary Mr. Speaker Sir…

*THE HON. SPEAKER: I think you heard the response from the Hon. Minister.  There is nothing that has stopped us. 

HON. MADZIVANYIKA: Supplementary Mr. Speaker! 

*THE HON. SPEAKER: Supplementary for what whilst you have enough information.

HON. MADZIVANYIKA: Since January 2024, the auction system has failed to support the local companies.  The supplementary question is…

THE HON. SPEAKER: May you start your question again.

HON. MADZIVANYIKA: It is common cause Mr. Speaker that from January to date, the auction market has not supported or provided the required foreign currency…

THE HON. SPEAKER: The original question is, chii chamisa auction?  It did not ask about support of other entities.  It was directed as, has the auction system stopped or not and the Hon. Minister said it has not.  

HON. MADZIVANYIKA: My supplementary question then follows that…

THE HON. SPEAKER: No, there is no supplementary question.  It does not arise from the original question. 

HON. MADZIVANYIKA:  It has arisen from the original question.

THE HON. SPEAKER: No, I have ruled – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections. -

*HON. SAGANDIRA: The response given by the Leader of Government says there is nothing that has stopped.  If there is nothing that has stopped them, why is it that things are not flowing?

THE HON. SPEAKER: Let me not preempt the Hon. Minister’s response.

HON. PROF. MURWIRA:  As you rightly said Hon. Speaker, the answer that you have given was based on the question pane chamisa here? The answer was there is nothing that has stopped things from happening meaning to say that if a bus is delayed by two or three minutes or an hour, it does not necessarily mean that it has stopped.

HON. MATEWU: The issue raised by the Hon. Member has to do with what has led to the collapse of the Zimbabwean dollar.  We expect the Government to give us an answer when we ask. The auction system has not been functional.  We want to know where these rates are coming from because it is not working and has not been happening.  The Hon. Minister has to be honest and answer questions as they come and not joke around when people are suffering in this country.

THE HON. SPEAKER: If your point of order was being asked three or six months down the line, it would hold water.  Why do you not allow the fulness of time to be the judge?  Understand my English - why do you not allow the fulness of time, then you make that judgement.

HON. MADZIVANYIKA: On a point of order, the question that was asked three weeks before was to do with the monetary policy and not the foreign auction market. So, with your indulgence Mr. Speaker, I ask you to allow the Hon. Minister to respond accordingly. 

THE HON. SPEAKER: What I understood from the original question was, chii chamisa auction rate, auction system - as simple as that.   Let the fulness of time be the judge and the question will arise definitely and the Hon. Minister responsible will answer accordingly.

HON. MAKOMBE: Thank you so much Hon. Speaker.  My question is directed to the Minister of Local Government and Public Works if he is here and if he is not, I will direct it to the…

THE HON. SPEAKER: Please, it is not your responsibility to direct questions, just ask the questions. It is the Chair that will direct.  Ask the question.

HON. MAKOMBE: Thank you so much Hon. Speaker.  My question is that I want to know the Government policy on issues of billing in USD which is being done by local authorities and also converting arrears into United States dollars because we know previously, they used to bill using our local currency. 

THE MINISTER OF HIGHER AND TERTIARY EDUCATION, INNOVATION, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. MURWIRA): Thank you Hon. Speaker Sir …

THE HON. SPEAKER: Sorry, sorry. Is the Minister there?

THE MINISTER OF NATIONAL HOUSING AND SOCIAL AMENITIES (HON. GARWE): Mr. Speaker Sir, I am acting in that regard.

THE HON. SPEAKER: You did not declare your acting capacity.  Please proceed.

HON. GARWE: Government allows local authorities or any other businesses to trade either in Zimbabwean dollars or other currencies in the basket of currencies.  There is nothing wrong if you are being billed in local currency or USD.

*HON. MATSUNGA:  My supplementary question is directed to the Minister of Local Government and Public Works.  What the Hon. Minister has referred to is not true.  I think he should issue a statement so that our people in the constituencies will understand how their money is working because they do …

THE HON. SPEAKER:  What is your question?

*HON. MATSUNGA: The Hon. Minister should bring a ministerial report which will enforce that our currency is strong because our local authorities are not accepting our local currency because it is weak. 

*HON. GARWE:  I think we are all aware that we are allowed to accept or use foreign or local currency when buying.  The challenge is that maybe the person does not have the local or foreign currency but it is within the law.  This is why we are using forex as well as local currency. 

THE HON SPEAKER:  If there are any people who are demanding USD, bring the list to the Hon. Minister so he can deal with the matter accordingly.

          HON. JAMES:  Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  Can the Minister of Local Government not pass a directive to assist pensioners in all the urban and rural areas to have some sort of discount so that they do not have to go through hurdles and hurdles to get the discount?  Can the Minister not get a discount for pensioners? 

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Is it when they have to pay their bills to local authorities or what?

          HON. JAMES:  Yes, when paying their bills and supplementary bills.  I thank you.

          HON. PROF. MURWIRA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir, earlier on, I directed that the Member who asked the question should put it in writing so we will respond to all the questions at once.

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Hon Brian James, the Minister is saying that if there are instances of that nature in Mutare Central, just compile a list and he will deal with the matter accordingly. 

          HON. JAMES:  Thank you Mr. Speaker, I was asking for a blanket response.

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Yes, that exercise will lead to a blanket decision.

            HON. HAMAUSWA:  On a point of clarity Mr. Speaker Sir.  I wanted to assist on that matter if you can indulge me Mr. Speaker Sir.

          THE HON SPEAKER:  Order, order, order!  Please read your Standing Rules and Orders correctly.  When the Chair has made a ruling, you cannot debate again.  So what you need to do is to approach the Hon. Minister and whisper to him whatever you want to whisper to the Hon. Minister.

          HON. S. ZIYAMBI:  Hon. Speaker, this year the country has experienced climate change induced drought and in line with that, what is Government’s policy with regards to the importation of GMOs.

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Can you elaborate on your GMOs.  Is it GMO maize or wheat?  What is it that you are talking about?

          HON. S. ZIYAMBI:  I am talking about maize imports, especially genetically modified maize from other countries.

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Yes, that is clearer now.  Thank you.

          THE MINISTER OF HIGHER AND TERTIARY EDUCATION, INNOVATION, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. MURWIRA):  Hon. Speaker Sir, Government is very clear on genetically modified organisms, particularly maize in this case.  When maize comes into the country, before consumption by either animals or people, it is grinded or milled.  So the policy is that yes, we can import, but under very special circumstances and handled under very special circumstances to avoid the contamination of the environment.  So the policy is to grind or mill before use and store appropriately.

          HON. S. ZIYAMBI:  In line with that Hon. Speaker, we all know that in a drought year, UN Agencies such as NGOs and faith-based organisations will be granted permission to bring in food or maize into the country to alleviate hunger in the population.  What policy is in place to ensure that these UN Agencies do not bring in genetically modified maize?  I thank you.

HON. PROF. MURWIRA: Thank you for the supplementary question.  It does not matter who is bringing the maize.  When maize comes, even if it had legs and walked into the country, we would still grind it or mill it.  I hope I am being figuratively clear.  I am just saying this to be more dramatic in terms of trying to explain.  It does not matter whether it is the UN, an individual, Government itself, or private companies that bring in maize.  As long as it comes within the jurisdiction of Zimbabwe, the law says it is stored in special places and milled before use by either animals or people.  So this policy applies across the board and it is the duty of the National Biotechnology Authority working together with the Ministry of Agriculture, to ensure that there are no violations to this.  If there are violations, then it means it is against the law.  I thank you.

          HON. MATANGIRA:  Hon Speaker Sir, we understand the strategic maize that is being delivered in the rural areas is real maize.  Is this maize also imported or our own homegrown maize?  If the maize that is going to be imported later on and milled, will the shelf life of that mealie-meal still be okay by the time it reaches Mukosa at the Mozambique border?  Will the mealie-meal not be contaminated or maybe rotting by the time it gets to the people?

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  The question does not arise because the Hon. Leader of Government Business said all categories of maize are tested accordingly.

          HON. DHLIWAYO:  Apart from allowing the GMOs, what else is Government doing to try and improve the volume of imports, especially by the private sector and also to try and lower the cost of importing that maize.  I thank you.

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  That is a fresh question and has nothing to do with GMOs.

          HON. SAGANDIRA:  My question is on the GMOs.  What policy is there to do GMO maize farming, the same way it is being done in cotton farming?  What is the policy regarding the farming of GMOs in Zimbabwe?

THE MINISTER OF HIGHER AND TERTIARY EDUCATION, INNOVATION, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. MURWIRA): Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. Currently, there are controlled experiments on cotton. The policy does not allow at this moment to do anything outside of cotton. We are in the process of understanding the science before policy can allow such a movement. The movement that is there is on cotton and there are controlled places where this is happening under the supervision of the National Bio-Technology Authority. Hon. Speaker Sir, the policy at this moment does not currently allow the growing of genetically modified maize in Zimbabwe. I thank you.

HON. MUNEMO: Thank you very much Mr. Speaker Sir. My name is Labbany Munemo from Mt. Darwin North. Good afternoon.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Good afternoon.

HON. MUNEMO: My question is directed to the Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare. I would like to thank the Ministry of Social Welfare for the effort made on the first quarter to feed the community. However, I may want to seek Government clarification on whether they are to continue with the feeding since the first quarter was not so viable and equitable to the community. I thank you.

THE MINISTER OF PUBLIC SERVICE, LABOUR AND SOCIAL WELFARE (HON. J. MOYO): Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. I want to thank the Hon. Member from Mt. Darwin for elaborating that we were feeding in the first quarter based on last year’s harvest. We had a limited target of 2.7 million people who were feeding. As Hon. Members are now aware, the President has just declared a state of disaster. This state of disaster means there is deepened need for us looking at an expanded delivery of food to food insecure people in the country. We are going to take a rapid assessment between now and the 15th April which the President has also sanctioned that it ought to be done. With this rapid assessment, we are going to expand the food distribution from that date of the 15th April to September this year.

The expanded food distribution requires that every village in this country led by village heads, supervised by headmen and chiefs with every stakeholder involved in each village, we will start writing the names of those who are food insecure from each village. We will start distributing to those who will have been listed. At the same time, I am saying up to September because in September, normally we step up the distribution. In September, we start linking our food distribution to preparations for the new coming season. That is why in the joint letter that we sent out between the Minister of Agriculture and myself, we said from September, all able-bodied people who are desirous to continue to receive food assistance should now do the Presidential Intwasa/Pfumvudza so that we come out of this El Nino induced drought having resilience and having prepared for it.

We are sure that from this month, we will step up distribution. For those who were receiving among the 2.7 million people, we are continuing with their distribution up to end of May. We think that from the 15th April, we will start adding more. We are doing this before even the Zimbabwe Vulnerability Assessment Committee (ZimLAC) is finished because we think that it is urgent that we start by writing people who are in the villages. We think that the villages are our best community-based assessment for those who are food insecure. I thank you Madam Speaker.

HON. MUNEMO: Madam Speaker, my supplementary question is, there is some discrepancies we have witnessed from this feeding scheme that has lapsed this previous quarter. The problem was emanating from the wards delimitation. They were using the old delimitation numbers yet the feeding scheme was using the new delimitation figures. There are a lot of discrepancies which gave the wards some quarters that were not supposed to be given to them. Let me come again on this one – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: May we have order!

HON. MUNEMO: We had issues Madam Speaker on the wards. The Ministry of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare had given some portions to receive from GMB. The portions were also cut by the GMB officials, meaning the wards were not going to suffice with the portions they were given from the Social Welfare. It means there is no good rapport between the GMB and the Social Welfare…

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Okay Honourable. So, what is the question?

HON. MUNEMO: My question is, what is the Government’s position on the issue of delimitation? What are they going to do so that they have correct figures to feed the community?

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Hon. Munemo, I think that is an administration issue, but the Hon. Minister can respond to the question. 

THE MINISTER OF LABOUR AND SOCIAL WELFARE (HON. J. MOYO):  This is a very important question. I will answer it although it does not arise.  Let me explain what we are trying to do in order to overcome what the Hon. Member is alluding to.  The Zimbabwe vulnerability assessment was done before delimitation last year.  The figures that I am talking about of 2.7 obviously were not aligned to the new wards that were created by ZEC.  However, as we move forward, as I have explained, we are now based at the village level.  All the 35 000 villages fall within wards and most of them are well known.  That will take care of the problems that the Hon. Member is alluding to.  From the 15, when we move forward, we will correct that misnomer of boundaries that were criss-crossed because of delimitation.

Madam Speaker Ma’am, let me assure the Hon. Member again that in order to take care of our delays that can occur, we have agreed and we have been directed by the President that we position in each ward, five tonnes of maize.  This has nothing to do with what we will have assessed.  We will position five tonnes in each of the 1 620 wards which are rural.  We will position those at chieftainship levels so that for those we might miss or those who are under pressure because we might have delayed, they can approach their Chief.  This is our concept of Zunde Ramambo, which we want to make sure that chieftainships in this country can look after those who are under intense pressure because of any delays that we might have.  We have done that in the past and it has worked.  The President has said let us go and position tonnes and we are putting aside 8 100 tonnes so that they can be in every ward in the rural areas.  I thank you.

HON. BAJILA: Thank you Madam Speaker.  When the Speaker was here, he earlier on encouraged that we try to keep the decorum of the House.  My point of order is to request Hon. Moyo and Hon. Coventry to assist in making sure that none of us comes out in photos in a sleeping posture.  I thank you.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  You are out of order Hon. Bajila! 

HON. TSHUMA:  Good afternoon Hon. Madam Speaker Ma’am.  I would like to thank the Minister for such efforts that they are putting in terms of intervening in this drought situation.  If you realise, his answer was centred on rural wards.  Our urban wards are suffering as well.  We need that intervention like yesterday.  What is Government policy in trying to expedite that whole process, and also come into town because we cannot wait another day longer?  People are dying and we really need assistance like yesterday.  I thank you. 

HON. J. MOYO:  I want to thank Hon. Tshuma for the question.  Madam Speaker Ma’am, yes, we have two separate assessments.  We have rural assessment, which is being done by the Food and Nutrition Council, and we then turn to urban vulnerability, which is also being done by the Food and Nutrition Council.  Right now, they are in the process of finalising the urban vulnerability assessment.  The ZimLAC which we now call livelihoods rather than vulnerability, will fInalise that.  We are aware that even if the market systems work in the urban areas where food will be available in the shops, but there are some food insecure households and families in the urban areas.  That is why we are quickly finalising that assessment and we will have a programme which is based on that assessment. 

HON. HLATYWAYO: The Hon. Minister made reference to a declaration that has since been made on the state of national disaster and it is a good thing that we now have that.  What took us so long, especially given that other countries had already done so in the region for example Malawi and Zambia?  Also, taking into consideration that we are looking at the same pot in terms of the resources that are supposed to come from the development partners, what took us so long?

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  I am sorry Hon. Member, that question does not arise. 

          HON. MUTSEYAMI:  On a point of order Hon. Madam Speaker.  The point of order is to do with the question concerning the El Nino induced drought.  Is it possible with your indulgence Madam Speaker, that the esteemed Hon. J. Moyo would bring a Ministerial Statement so that the Hon. Members would have ample time to interrogate issues?  I thank you. I brought this suggestion bearing in mind the enthusiasm of the constituencies to know what is happening considering the level of drought that we have. 

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Thank you Hon. Mutseyami for the point of order.  Hon. Minister, I am sure you have taken note of that.  May you inform the House on when you are going to bring the Ministerial Statement?

          THE MINISTER OF PUBLIC SERVICE, LABOUR AND SOCIAL WELFARE (HON. J. MOYO):  Thank you Madam Speaker, it will be a joint Ministerial Statement.  I cannot make the Statement without the Minister of Agriculture, it will be meaningless.  I will consult my colleague whether we can issue a joint Ministerial Statement so that this House has a full picture of what Government is doing.  Given what the President has done to us today, I am sure that the two of us can come and give full Ministerial Statements, but on one issue.  I thank you.

HON. GUMBO: My question is directed to the Acting Minister of Local Government. What is Government policy with regards to the criteria used to select and appoint development companies or individuals who are developers who enter into partnership agreements with the State for the development of urban State land for residential purposes?

THE MINISTER OF NATIONAL HOUSING AND SOCIAL AMENITIES (HON. GARWE) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT AND PUBLIC WORKS: Allow me to thank the Hon Member for the question. Put simply, anyone can partner Government for purposes of development of housing or any other utilities in urban areas and is expected to apply. The Ministry will then consider the application accordingly.

HON. GUMBO: The most unsightly, undeveloped and uninhabitable residential areas in urban areas are on State land. The reason why this is so is because of lack of clarity on the criteria to select land developers. What mechanisms are in place for Government to interrogate and cause to come to account companies which fail to deliver on the mandate that they would have carried through this development contract?

We have companies owned by Hon. Members like Hon. Chikwinya who have failed to deliver on the contracts for development leading to residential areas which are like slumps in cities like Harare. What is Government’s policy in terms of ensuring that there is delivery on these contracts so that people can reside in habitable areas in town?

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Gumbo, you were just supposed to ask your question and not to mention names even if Hon Chikwinya is in here. Will you expect her to stand and defend herself?

HON. GUMBO: I am not expecting pleasantries from her. We want answers from Government. These are the land barons who are causing problems in this country and there must be an answer and clarity from Government. That is what we are seeking.

HON. GARWE: Madam Speaker Ma’am, let me clarify something for the Hon. Member. Every land is in the hands of local authorities and the private sector. Very few pieces of land are under State land. I just wanted to clarify that. Secondly, when people enter into contracts with Government for purposes of development, there are development permits that are issued with conditions. Whosoever fails to meet those conditions, the contract is either cancelled or they sit down and revise the contract. If there are any issues where the developer has failed to perform, the Hon. Member is free to put it in writing so that we can interrogate specifically the areas that he is concerned about. I thank you.

HON. MATEWU: This is a very important issue. We want the Minister to tell us, there is an emergence of land barons in this country and the President of this country has said that we are going to deal with land barons. What is Government doing to deal with this issue of land barons who are causing untold suffering? He says most of the land is owned by local authorities but actually, there are swathes of land that are State owned in urban areas. What are you doing to ensure that people are not deprived by these land barons? I thank you.

*HON. NYABANI: It is now a new question because it is referring to land barons.

HON. GARWE: Land in the majority of local authorities in Zimbabwe is in the hands of local authorities. The local authorities, city fathers and councillors are the ones who are parceling out land illegally to themselves. We have records to that effect. These councillors must be directed to stop giving land to themselves using proxies and then selling it to themselves and to their cronies. It is happening in the local authorities.

Secondly, the land baron issues are borne out of what I have just explained. The people that are being given land irregularly by local authority councillors are the ones that have turned themselves into land barons. However, we have got laws in this country – whoever knows a person who is a land baron and people who have been duped by the land barons should make a police report so that the law takes its course. We do not have arresting or prosecuting powers as Ministry of Local Government. People must generate a case by reporting to the police and the police will do the rest together with the courts. I thank you.

HON. CHIKOMBO: I would want to believe that the Minister is less than candid in his articulation when he said in urban local authorities there is no State land. That is what he said. He said there is no State land in the country. What are you doing to protect the citizens who are being fleeced by these land barons? For example, the indication provided by the originator of the question, that is the fundamental issue that the Minister must address and not give us half answers full of innuendos.

HON. GARWE:  Firstly, I did not say there is no State land in urban areas. I think I was quoted out of context. The majority of the land that is in urban areas is owned by the local authorities. It is a statement of fact. Government is discouraging its citizens from buying land from irregular sellers of land who are land barons who include councillors from urban local authorities.

Secondly, whoever knows anyone who has bought land from a land baron must encourage that person to go and make a police report. That is how we can start processing the prosecution of land barons. I thank you.

*HON. T. MURWIRA: My question is directed to the Minister of Finance, Economic Development and Investment Promotion. People are being troubled because of the exchange rates which are going up on a daily basis. As I speak, the exchange rate is 1:45000. What is Government’s policy on that?

*THE MINISTER OF HIGHER AND TERTIARY EDUCATION, INNOVATION, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. MURWIRA): I want to thank the Hon. Member who asked about what Government is doing in line with the money that is losing its value. Government is working very hard to see to it that our currency is stabilised. Our policy is to see and try by all means that our currency is strong. There are a lot of steps which are being taken but these steps will be articulated by the Minister of Finance in the shortest period of time. I thank you.

          *THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Thank you for your response Hon. Minister. I think the Hon. Minister has answered in full, and that the Minister of Finance will bring a Ministerial Statement, so we should leave it at that.

          *HON. KARENYI: You have heard that the Minister has been promising for a long time now, but as a woman, I think it is long overdue. We have been waiting for long with the Minister saying he will give it to us. Things are not well out there. The Minister should come between today and tomorrow so that we know what he has under his sleeves.

          *THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Thank you Hon. Karenyi. We believe the Minister will come very soon.

          +HON. R. MPOFU: My question is directed to the Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Services. What is Government’s position considering the people who are living with disabilities and those on the streets? Some are being abused by people who are physically fit. What is Government doing to bring together those children on the streets so that they do not continue to suffer?

          THE MINISTER OF PUBLIC SERVICE, LABOUR AND SOCIAL SERVICES (HON. J. MOYO): I want to thank Hon. Mpofu for the question. Government is aware that there are people who are living on the streets, young people and some of them have disabilities. The Government has endeavoured to work to remove these young people from the streets and in our formulation, working with the First Lady. For instance, we have taken some of them to be housed in facilities that we used to house refugees who were in this country. We are now turning those areas into areas where we can have children removed from the streets. We also are very aware as we enter this food insecure situation caused by El Nino that we have a ranking of those who are vulnerable and that ranking is clearly children who are orphaned and from child headed households.

          Secondly, people with disabilities are on our high list of what we want to do. Thirdly, on that issue of children living on the streets, we can remove the begging aspect and hand them over to be looked after, either by their extended family if we can find them so that we make sure to we keep family units. Our number one thing when we remove children from the streets is to find out if they have relatives. When we find out that they do not have relatives, we will try to put them in foster homes where we can find people who are running these foster homes that are supported by Government, and the children are paid per capita in those foster homes.

          We are also saying for those who are very young, when we remove them from the streets, if there are people who want to adopt them, we will encourage adoption. What we are trying to create is children removed from the streets, they must be looked after by society and the first society is their family, foster homes or we put them for adoption. When this has failed, the last thing that we do is to take them into institutions, and we have institutions where we take these children so that we can look after them.

As to the leadership of those who do this work, we do not discriminate against anybody who has disability. The Public Service Commission makes sure that when we employ people, we do not discriminate against disability, and that is the situation that obtains within the country. We want to make sure that our children are looked after and in terms of our Child Protection Act, we are required to look after these children. I thank you.

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

ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITH NOTICE

ACCESS TO HEALTHCARE SERVICES IN HURUNGWE CONSTITUENCIES

  1. H KANGAUSARU asked the Minister of Health and Child

Care to apprise the House on the Ministry’s plans regarding access to healthcare services in Hurungwe Constituencies.

THE MINISTER OF HEALTH AND CHILD

CARE (HON. DR. MOMBESHORA):  I want to thank Hon. Kangausaru for the question. Hurungwe has a total of 39 health facilities, including one district hospital, which is Karoi Hospital, one mission hospital, which is Chidamoyo Hospital, two rural hospitals – Hurungwe Rural Hospital and Mwami Rural Hospital, seven clinics are currently under construction through the Hurungwe Rural District Council and through devolution funds. Hurungwe District Clinics under construction are;-

Vuti Clinic – Ward 4, Mahwau Clinic Ward 8; Chiedza Clinic Ward 15,  Chiedza Clinic almost complete; Nyangwizhu Clinic, Kahonde Clinic and Karambazungu Clinic Ward 16 and Mashuma Clinic Ward 17.

Hurungwe RDC Wards without Clinics

Ward 11 – Previous hosted Hurungwe Rural Hospital but now in a different ward due to delimitation exercise;

Ward 20 – peri-urban plans for construction at Nyarenda available;

Ward 23 – plans available to construct at Maumbe;

In Ward 4, there is a site that was identified at Chivata where a double blair toilet is in place and nothing else;

In Ward 5, there is no clinic only. A site was identified at Muroyi and Ward 6, there is totally nothing.

Hurungwe RDC is targeting completion of three clinics namely Murerekwa, Tovani and Chinyazvivi.

HON. MURAMBIWA:  On a point of order.  I can see that the Minister responded giving names from Zaka but he is referring to Hurungwe.  The places that he is referring to are found in Zaka Central.  I think there is a mix up on his notes.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Thank you Hon. Member. Let us hear from Hon. Kangausaru.

HON. KANGAUSARU:  These areas are in Hurungwe.  I thank you Hon. Minister for those names.  They might be similar names but they are there.  My supplementary question is, is it not prudent also that we my increase the medication that is needed?  I urge the Minister if possible that we may have more medicines to add to what is already there.

*THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Hon. Murambiwa, I think you have heard that the names are similar. 

*HON. MURAMBIWA:  Yes, I have but the coincidence is surprising. 

HON. DR. MOMBESHORA: I think that was a suggestion and we will make all effort to make sure that medicines are availed in health facilities there.

CONSTRUCTION OF CLINICS IN WARDS 4, 5 AND 6

  1. HON MURAMBIWA asked the Minister of Health and Child Care to inform the House the Ministry’s plans regarding the construction of clinics in wards without such facilities, for instance wards 4, 5 and 6.

THE MINISTER OF HEALTH AND CHILD CARE (HON. DR. MOMBESHORA): Zaka District has a total of 26 health facilities.  Out of these, 24 are rural health centres, one mission hospital and a district hospital.  Government, through PSIP, is constructing two clinics, that is Mbuyamasva and Chiromo health centres.  There are three other health facilities under construction through RDC and devolution funds.  These are Chinyazvivi, Murerekwa and Tovani Clinics. 

However, for Ward 5, the site for the construction of a health facility has been pegged and RDC will construct the health facility once funds are availed.  For Wards 4 and 6, the RDC has not yet conducted a feasibility study to substantiate the construction of the health facilities.

DEPLOYMENT OF STAFF TO MEDICAL INSTITUTIONS WITH A SHORTAGE OF NURSES

  1. HON MURAMBIWA asked the Minister of Health and Child Care to inform the House the Ministry’s plans regarding the deployment of adequate staff to medical institutions affected by shortage of nurses in Zaka North with specific reference to Jichidza Council Clinic,Veza Clinic, Harava Rural Hospital, Mandhloro Clinic and Nhema Clinic.

THE MINISTER OF HEALTH AND CHILD CARE (HON. DR. MOMBESHORA): The Ministry of Health and Child Care is currently facing challenges with inadequate numbers of staff.  This has been exacerbated by the Cholera outbreak and building of new facilities which have increased the burden on the staffing levels at institutions, not only in Zaka North Constituency but across the country.

The Health Service Commission (HSC) continues to engage with Treasury, seeking creation of new posts to enable the Ministry to adequately staff both the existing and new health institutions. With reference to the mentioned institutions, Harava Rural Hospital, Veza, Madhloro and Nhema Clinics are adequately staffed in relation to existing staffing norms with the exception of Jichidza Clinic which has one vacant post which will be filled as soon as a cadre is identified

            *HON. MURAMBIWA:  My supplementary question is, is there anything else that you can do Hon. Minister, with reference to Jichidza Council Clinic because there is only one nurse there?  If she is not around, it means people will not get help.  If her child is not feeling well and she rushes to see her child at school, it means there will be no nurse at that station to help people.

*HON. DR. MOMBESHORA:  As I have indicated, we have a challenge that we do not have people who are looking for the nursing jobs in this area.  If we have places with challenges, we would take personnel from other stations with more staff and they will assist.  We are waiting for people to come forward.  If there are any challenges, we engage those in surrounding clinics.  We engage the PMD so that he engages the DMO.

*HON. MURAMBIWA: On a point of clarity, if I got what the Minister said clearly; he said that there are no people looking for jobs.  Where I come from in Zaka North, there are a lot of people who want to be nurses.  If the Minister wants, I can bring the names of the people who are waiting to be employed.

*THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: You can see him and give him the names.

HON. JAMES: Can the Minister explain the policy surrounding the primary counsellors employed by the Ministry paid by the Global Fund. I believe their salary payments are erratic and are a month behind. Could the Minister look at the welfare of this critical important group of health workers working in the HIV testing counselling areas amongst others?

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Hon James, your question is disregarded.  It is a new question and not a supplementary question.  It is not related to the original question.

MEASURES PUT IN PLACE TO ELECTRIFY SCHOOLS AND CLINICS IN HURUNGWE CONSTITUENCIE

  1. HON. KANGAUSARU asked the Minister of Energy and Power Development to explain to the House measures which have been put in place by the Ministry to electrify schools and clinics in Hurungwe constituencies, and to further ensure uninterrupted power supply to those consumers already connected.

          THE MINISTER OF ENERGY AND POWER DEVELOPMENT (HON. E MOYO):  Madam Speaker Ma’am, let me thank the Hon Member for raising such a pertinent question.  Allow me to respond as follows:

Electrification of Schools for 2024

For Mashuma Primary School and Mashuma Secondary school, work is in progress.  We are still to start on Huyo, Daware, and Madudzo Secondary School and two additional business centres.

Batanai Primary and Secondary Schools will be installed with solar.  Mauya High and Vuti High Schools will get installations for biogas.

          I will then give a summary of institutions that have since been electrified using the Rural Electrification Fund in Hurungwe District.  We have a total of 101 primary schools that are on the grid, and 66 secondary schools that are on the grid and 16 on solar.  For rural health centres, we have 13 on the grid and six on solar.  For Chiefs, we have seven homesteads that are electrified and one on solar.  On Government extension offices, we have 12 electrified and one on solar. On business centres, we have 28 on the grid. On small scale farms, we have 27 on the grid.  For Village group schemes, we have 40 on the grid and on others we have 24 on the grid and one on solar.  The total number on the grid is 318 and 24 on solar.

          We also have the following institutions which are scheduled for implementation for 2025, 2026, 2027 and 2028.  For 2025 we have Dororowe, Chitenje, Badze Primary Schools and Chikora Secondary School.  For 2026 we have Momba, Menoembwa Primary Schools and Bakwa, Hesketh Park, Kachiva and Chingurunguru Secondary Schools.  For 2027 we have Dambanzara, Goodhope, Kangurunguru, Chitiki, Jenya Primary Schools and Susiness centres.  Then for 2028 we have Kemapondo, Masikati, Manyenyedzi SDA and Mukuyu Primary Schools as well as Doro and Nyama clinics. 

It must be noted that supply disruptions will always be there.  Some planned and some unplanned.  This can however be mitigated by installation of back-up off the Grid systems.  The Government is rolling out a massive project for schools’ electrification through solar, alongside UNDP who are doing the same for clinics.  I thank you.

HON. KANGAUSARU:  My supplementary question after such a detailed explanation is, are you aware that there are other schools that have been electrified, but the poles have fallen down such as Chirariro in Hurungwe East?  What are the measures in place for continuity of supplying electricity as we want to have our rural schools to be at par with urban areas?  There are no transformers.  How many transformers have you given to Hurungwe constituency?  Day in and day out as MPs, we are being asked to assist and sometimes we have to use our own resources.

HON. E. MOYO:  On the refurbishment of broken-down infrastructure, there is a programme that is currently running throughout the country.  Some poles are on the ground, some transformers broke down while others were stolen.  So that programme is ongoing right now.  These refurbishments have been as a result of non-cost-effective targets where incoming revenue is not sufficient to work on these refurbishments.  Currently, this is happening and I am sure the programme will get to your place.  On the issue of transformers, it is a new question, but I think it is in the ambit of the refurbishment exercise which we are carrying out.  Revenue inflows are a factor on the pace at which these refurbishments will be done.

*HON. NYABANI:  What plans do you have for those schools that never had supply connections.  Schools now need to do online lessons so I am wondering what plans you have in place for such places.  Could you consider solar installations for such schools just like installations have been done in clinics?

HON. E. MOYO: Thank you Madam Speaker. The issue of connections is an ongoing exercise and it is a shifting target. Whilst connections are being done, new institutions or houses are being built. So, it is a moving target and it continues to follow that. On the solar in schools, there is a programme which was done initially by REA and some of those solar installations broke down as a result of time. We currently have a programme that is being done in conjunction with the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education and Development Partners, particularly UNDP.

The same goes for clinics. That programme is also ongoing and a number of schools have already been connected to address the issue of e-learning in schools. If I got the whole context of the question correctly, that is what I would say. Thank you.

ZETDC POLICY ON COMPENSATING INDIVIDUALS WHO BUY THEIR OWN MATERIAL FOR ELECTRICITY CONNECTION

  1. HON. GUMEDE asked the Minister of Energy and Power Development to inform the House what ZETDC policy is on compensating individuals who buy their own material for electricity connection and to state whether it is the policy of government for individuals to buy materials on their own.

THE MINISTER OF ENERGY AND POWER DEVELOPMENT (HON. E. MOYO): Thank you Madam Speaker. I thank the Hon. Member for the question. The utility has not been able to implement the provision of power infrastructure through the distribution network extension due to incapacitation after many years of a non-cost reflective tariff. The clients then came up with an initiative to replace the equipment and donate to ZETDC at no cost. In response to this initiative, ZETDC puts in place the Customer Supplied Material Scheme (Chapter 12 of 2022 Commercial Guidelines). This would ensure that clients benefit for their contribution of replacing vandalised and faulted equipment through supply of energy units (electricity tokens).

It means that if they have replaced using their own resources, they are not given cash as a refund for that expense. Rather, they are given energy units, which are tokens. It must be noted that the scheme is voluntary and is there to ensure that clients do not wait for long for cable or transformer replacements, at the same time are compensated for their contribution to equipment replacements. This scheme however, does not apply to new connections where the client supplies materials in place of connection fees for this arrangement where there is no compensation.

Compensation is only availed where replacement of existing equipment either faulted or vandalised has been replaced but for new connections, there is no compensation for own materials. I thank you.

+HON. GUMEDE: You said there is a scheme for customer supplied materials. Most people do not have ways of getting back or waiting for what ZESA should do. Therefore, you cannot wait for too long for ZESA to respond, especially when these cables have been stolen. This is not…

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Hon. Gumede, ask your question.

+HON. GUMEDE: My question is, what can be done so that people can get service on time since they would have paid and the equipment stolen, which is not their fault? What can be done for people to get the service on time?

+HON. E. MOYO: Thank you Madam Speaker. I want to thank Hon. Gumede for the supplementary. Of course, people may stay for too long to get some repairs. If they are only repairs without replacement of the equipment that would have been stolen, it does not take a lot of time. If we are taking a lot of time, you can engage with our offices. If they are not sure of when they are coming, you can take that matter to a higher office or up to my level and we help each other. Where we have equipment that has been stolen, there are some factors that contribute such as our cashflow. Now that we have a bit of tariff, you will find that we are no longer taking time as what we used to do before. If you realise that they are still taking time, please inform us on time. Thank you.

+HON. S. SITHOLE: Thank you Madam Speaker. My supplementary question to the Hon. Minister is, is the Minister aware that there is no electricity at Government institutions, including youths centres, hospitals and Registry Offices? Now that there is use of electrical machines and the Minister is aware that the budget has not been disbursed to ministries, that is why we are not able to solve the problem…

*THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Are you still asking a question?

+HON. S. SITHOLE: My question is, what you are saying is, you remove the prepaid meters from the Government offices?

          +THE MINISTER OF ENERGY AND POWER DEVELOPMENT (HON. E. MOYO):  Thank you Hon. Speaker Ma’am, and I also want to thank Hon. Sithole for his question.  These issues differ from place to place because some of these offices have gone for more than three years without paying what they owe the Government, yet they have received the budget.  Some of those offices are in arrears for this year, and they can engage our Ministry so that they can pay later as they receive their budget.  The issue of prepaid meters is what the Government is recommending.  This is what we have on the ground that if people do not pay ZESA, then ZESA will not be able to pay its service providers.  At the end, you find that the whole system will collapse.  Let those in the offices go and check what could be the problem.  If there is need to engage the Ministry of Finance, we can engage the Ministry of Finance and see how best we can solve that problem. 

          +HON. MAHLANGU:  Thank you Hon. Speaker Ma’am, how is the Minister going to help those that would have lost their gadgets and end up buying the cables and replace the cables?

          +THE MINISTER OF ENERGY AND POWER DEVELOPMENT (HON. E. MOYO): Thank you Hon. Speaker.  I want to thank the Hon. Member for the question, but I think the question has been responded to in the initial response.   The names of those who would have contributed should be taken to ZEDC so that they can be given electricity tokens because they are not given money.  For those who would have contributed to new connections, they do not qualify to be compensated; it becomes a donation to ZESA Company.   If the gadgets were damaged or stolen, then they paid through ZESA tokens.

          +HON. GUMEDE: Thank you Madam Speaker. People cannot afford to make those contributions, as they are buying electricity by cash, kindly please, replace those stollen cables than for people to contribute. The biggest challenge is that people do not have hard cash to replace the stolen cables.  My appeal is that kindly make proper supply of this equipment.  At times, people stay for six months or a year without electricity. This is what forces them to contribute so that they can make that donation.  That is what people are lamenting on.

          +HON. E. MOYO:  Thank you Hon. Speaker, it is all about the cashflows, do we have the cash at that moment?  There is a desire state of affairs and the existing state of affairs.  The ideal situation is that once there is some damages on our lines, then tomorrow we can rectify, but that is not what happens because of the real situation.  People should be patient with us as we try to rectify this problem because our infrastructure in outdated and we are trying to upgrade it.  Right now, you realise that in Manhize, we are coming up with the steel and that will be easier for us to get material so that we can make it locally available.  It was all coming from abroad, right now, we are planning to have this made in Zimbabwe. 

STATE OF BINGA-KAROI ROAD

 

  1. HON. CUMANZALA asked the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural Development to explain to the House why the Binga-Karoi Road has stalled given the salience of the road in boosting access to Tourism facilities and outside markets by the people of the Zambezi Valley.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. SACCO):  Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am.  I would like to thank the Hon. Member for the question. The Karoi-Binga Road is very important for both local communities as well as the economic activities including tourism.  Government is committed to the continued upgrading and construction of the Karoi-Binga Road from gravel to an all-weather standard surface.

Under the Second Republic, works on the Karoi-Binga Road resumed in 2019 with construction of 10 kilometres completed from the 50-kilometre peg to 60 kilometre peg in Zvipane Business Centre.  The newly constructed road section was completed in 2020 and is open to traffic. 

Furthermore, my Ministry flighted a tender for the rehabilitation of an additional 30 kilometres in Mashonaland West, with already one contractor awarded 10 kilometres.  The tenders for the other two remaining lots of 10 kilometres each are now at an advanced stage of finalisation.  Similarly, ten kilometres were recently completed in 2023 from zero kilometre peg to ten-kilometre peg on the Binga-Bumi Road section in Matabeleland North Province. 

Whilst Government is progressing with upgrading the road under direct funding from Treasury, options for private sector participation are also being pursued.  Currently, a proposal for loan financing is being considered.  I so submit. 

HON. CUMANZALA:  I want to thank the Hon. Minister for the response.  Are you aware that besides being an economic game changer, this road is also a political game changer in the sense that this has been a promise that has been made by several governments including the colonial government? When we got independence, the promise was also made by the Government which was led by President Mugabe. Now, we have the Second Republic, the road is still under construction. This is a big issue for the Zambezi Valley community. Do you have anything to say about this?

          HON. SACCO: I would like to thank Hon. Cumanzala for his question. I would not like to respond on behalf of the colonial regime because I believe that is long gone. They were known very well for oppressing the people of this country and giving false promises. Allow me to leave it at that. On the other hand, the Second Republic is known for giving promises and keeping those promises. As you yourself have said, it is a political game changer and this is very correct because under the leadership of His Excellency, Dr. E. D. Mnangagwa, our visionary President, we are leaving no one and no place behind. Therefore, that road is important for us as Government of the day led ably by His Excellency the President.

          You can concur with me that work on this road commenced after the Second Republic, which means that our President, our Minister of Transport, and Government is very aware of the need to resuscitate these roads to allow those communities to benefit and promote tourism and also allow the political opportunities for the Government of the day and the ruling ZANU PF to gain mileage in that area, as you might be aware that ZANU PF won recently in Binga through the work of His Excellency the President.

USE OF FLOOD LIGHTS BY MOTORISTS ON HIGHWAYS

  1. HON. GUMEDE asked the Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development what the Ministry is doing to bring to book motorists who use flood lights on high ways thereby causing accidents.

          THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. SACCO):  The Hon. Member’s point of interest is particularly on the prevalence of road accidents caused by extended headlights mounted on vehicles. My Ministry, through Statutory Instrument 129 of 2015, banned the mounting of additional headlights by motorists. This legal instrument stipulates that motorists who wish to make any modifications on their cars should first get approval from authorities.

          We have noted with serious concern that additional headlights which some motorists have fitted on their cars cannot be dipped thereby compromising the vision of other drivers, which causes fatal collisions that could be easily avoided if motorists comply with the prescribed road traffic regulation. These lights are so intense that the headlight glare blinds other motorists, thereby contributing to road traffic accidents. Motorists who are using these lights are therefore committing a serious offence and will face the consequences of violating traffic laws as both ZRP and VID are instructed to impound these vehicles with additional lights from the roads. I so submit.

REHABILITATION OF AIRPORT AND CECIL ROADS

  1. HON. GUMEDE asked the Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development to inform the House the Ministry’s plans to rehabilitate Airport and Cecil Roads in Bulawayo.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. SACCO):  I would like to thank the Hon. Member for raising a very pertinent question around the rehabilitation of Airport and Cecil Roads in Bulawayo. It is my pleasure to inform Hon. Members that the rehabilitation of Cecil Road has commenced. A contractor was engaged to carry out the rehabilitation work and the scope under the current tender is 10km. The contractor opened up a section of two km which has been closed off from use by the public. Progress has been hampered by a backlog in the settlement of Interim Payment Certificate (IPC) to contractors.

The contractor is on standby and ready to resume work once significant payment towards the outstanding IPCs is made. Furthermore, routine maintenance is being carried out on the Airport Road in Bulawayo by my Ministry’s department of Roads. As the road extends beyond Bulawayo municipal boundary, it becomes the Bulawayo-Nkayi Road. Works for the upgrading of this road have commenced on the Bulawayo end of the road. A contractor is currently on the ground and recently opened two kms of surface road to traffic. The total scope for the current tender on this one is 14km and of the remaining 12kms, 3kms is ready for surfacing and with the remaining 9kms at various stages of subgrade and base layer preparation.

REHABILITATION OF BULAWAYO-VIC FALLS ROAD AND NKAI-LUPANE ROAD

  1. 12. HON. P. MAHLANGU asked the Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development to inform the House the plans being put in place to rehabilitate the following roads; —

(a) Bulawayo to Victoria Falls Highway in light of the high rate of accidents on this road; and

(b) Nkayi-Lupane gravel road

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. SACCO):  Allow me to respond to Hon Mahlangu’s question. The Bulawayo-Victoria Falls Road has outlived its design life and hence requires rehabilitation. As a result of the aged pavement routine maintenance, that is pothole patching is no longer the appropriate solution to maintain the road to a trafficable state. To restore good riding quality, my department of Roads has embarked on a phased approach of the rehabilitation of the road.

The rehabilitation is targeting the worst sections, taking into account availed resources. The current tender involves the rehabilitation of 32 km and patching of the entire length of 435 km as a short-term solution. Of this total scope, 10,5 km of the rehabilitated road has been opened to traffic while pothole patching has covered 170 km. Rehabilitation will be done on the next stretch whose length will depend on the finances availed for the purpose.

My Ministry also has plans to upgrade the rest of the road through a Public Private Partnership, and we are at the preliminary negotiations stage with investors that have expressed interest. For the House’s information, I will be touring the road from Victoria Falls to Bulawayo on Friday to get an on-sight appreciation of the condition of the roads muchida musingadi, I am going to tour the road and that is what is happening – [AN HON. MEMBER: Unopenga.] – excuse me, can you withdraw unopenga – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Minister, please withdraw that statement which you said muchida musingade.

HON. SACCO: I withdraw Madam Speaker.

As the Ministry of Transport, we are going to tour that road on Friday from Victoria Falls to Bulawayo, to get more information on what is required, and we are working on a Private Public Partnership to work on the road from Beitbridge to Bulawayo and from Bulawayo to Victoria Falls.

On the Nkayi-Lupane road, this is a very important route from Kwekwe to Nkayi to Lupane which greatly shortens the distance travelled by those going to Victoria Falls. The road is currently in gravel state and needs repair. Five kilometres of the road were upgraded to safest standards in 2022. The rest of the road which is 120 km is to be periodically graded and spot re-gravelled until such a time when funding is availed for the upgrading of this road. We are also scouting for potential investors to finance the project. I so submit.

HON. BAJILA: I want to thank the Minister for the response. The Bulawayo-Victoria Falls Road is largely affected by haulage trucks that use that road. Without a plan to reduce the movement of haulage trucks on that road, its rehabilitation may not be sustainable. Are there plans in place to resuscitate the railway line from Bulawayo to Victoria Falls so that they can be reduction in the movement of haulage trucks and therefore sustainable rehabilitation of Bulawayo-Victoria Falls?

HON. SACCO: Thank you Hon. Member for a very pertinent question. It is true that without working on the railways repairing that road will be a short-term solution as all the freight, especially the coal being transported, will result in the new road being damaged once again. Therefore, as a Ministry, we are at an advanced stage in negotiations with potential partners to work on the Hwange-Bulawayo-Chikwalakwala-Maputo Corridor.

That rail requires rehabilitation and we are at an advanced stage on coming up with an agreement so that that rail can be resuscitated which, will then result in the road from Bulawayo to Victoria Falls, once repaired to have a longer life. This road is very important to us as a country because a lot of our tourism in Victoria Falls is from driving tourists who come from South Africa and our numbers have gone down. So, we are working on both the National Railways of Zimbabwe railway line as well as the road from Beitbridge to Bulawayo to Victoria Falls.

[Time limit]

HON. KAMBUZUMA: I move that we add an additional 20 minutes to clear our long outstanding questions.

HON. HAMAUSWA: I second.

Motion put and agreed to.

+HON. MAHLANGU: My supplementary question to the Minister is, I remember the response that we have heard from the Minister is the one that we were given three years ago pertaining to Nkayi Road. He indicated that Nkayi Road is in the process of being rehabilitated and all the material is in place. Today, he is saying if funds permit, they will prioritise it. When is this road going to be prioritised because every year, we get the same response that if funds permit, they will look into that road? We are talking of a road that is so dilapidated. It is in a deplorable state.

          THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. SACCO):  Thank you very much.  I think I had responded to say that when funds are available, the road shall be worked on.  You refer to three years ago, unfortunately I cannot respond to that because I was not yet in the office as Deputy Minister, but let me just comment that all roads in Zimbabwe are important to us.  Nyika inovakwa nevene vayo and therefore, there is no road that is not important to us.

          Hon. Member, you should bear with us.  Our country Zimbabwe is under serious pressure mainly because we cannot access lines of credit like other countries.  If you go to South Africa, Botswana and Namibia, they get lines of credit from international financial institutions but because in this country we have sanctions on our country, we cannot access funding in the same manner as other countries do.  So, this is a fact, therefore we rely on what we raise from Treasury.

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

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

          HON. BONDA:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  The Ministry is an infinitum body.  It continues from where somebody left.  I do not think it is proper for the Minister to say three years ago he was not there because there is always a handover and takeover, and it is actually continuous.  There is no way you can say I was not there three years back and then you are starting from where it is.  It is infinitum, it is continuous.  I thank you.

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  I think the Hon. Minister is correct because he said three years ago he was not in office and it is true – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] -  Let us allow the Hon. Minister to continue.

          HON. SACCO:  Madam Speaker, three years ago, this country was still under sanctions.  So, let me continue with my response because what caused us to fail to do that road three years ago is the same reason why today we are struggling to do all the roads in the country.  Let me say that as a Ministry, we are thinking out of the box even though some Zimbabweans got on an airplane to New York to ask for sanctions against their own country.  We still, as patriotic Zimbabweans, are thinking outside the box on how we can solve these problems.  Those who are making noise in the opposition are the same people who asked for sanctions on this country and it is hypocrisy for them to ask for results.

          *THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Hon. Members, we had requested for an extension of 20 minutes but you are wasting that opportunity.  You want to waste that opportunity without making any progress.

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

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

          *HON. ZVAIPA:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  I heard the Deputy Minister say that we were affected by sanctions three years ago but we have got roads like Leopold Takawira which is being destroyed but that road was in a good state.  Why is it other roads are not being rehabilitated while we are destroying the roads that are in perfect condition?

          HON. SACCO:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  Let me conclude by saying that as a Ministry, we are seized with finding solutions to the problems that we are facing with our infrastructure, whether it is roads, railways or air transport.  We are looking outside the box to partner with potential investors under Build Operate Transfer or PPP arrangements where investors will build a road and recover their money from tolling and weigh bridges on those roads. If we rely on Treasury alone, we will not manage to repair our infrastructure across the country, but with the new dispensation, the thinking is to think outside the box and find investors who are willing to work with us to move our country forward. So, my assurance to the Hon. Member is that no one and no place shall be left behind as our great visionary leader, Dr. E. D. Mnangagwa always says nyika inovakwa nevene vayo.  I so submit.    

          HON. V. MOYO:  Supplementary question Mr. Speaker Sir.  Thank you very much Mr. Speaker Sir.  I want to thank the Hon. Minster for his response.  My supplementary regards the Victoria Falls-Bulawayo Road.  Part of the road just after Hwange towards Victoria Falls, there was some reconstruction of the road and the contractor has however left the site.  I wanted to find out when funds will be made available so that he can as well finish up on that construction project.

          The road in question is in a very bad state.  May I hasten to say that the number of accidents that are being witnessed on that road is partly because of its bad state.  Mr. Speaker Sir, I want to mention the mantra of saying ‘leaving no one and no place behind’.  Sometime in October, a certain man from Masvingo Province twitted about the road in the province and two months after that he was thanking the Minister.  May we also give prominence to the roads in Matabeleland.  It is our plea.  The road is in a very bad state.  I wish I could go with him as he will make his tour next week.  I so submit.

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER (HON. MACHINGURA):  Was that a question?

          HON. V. MOYO:  There is a part of the road in Hwange and the contractor has left the site for the past three months.

          HON. SACCO:  Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  I think the Hon. Member might not have been in the House when I was giving a response.  I did not say I will be going next week.  I said I will be going on Friday but if he wants an invitation, he is more than welcome to join me so that we can look at it together.

          Ultimately Mr. Speaker Sir, there is no segregation where development is concerned and that is why our Ministry is conducting a nationwide tour to look at sensitive roads across the country from Chipinge, Mt. Selinda, Hwange, Mukumbura Growth Point to Plumtree.  We are touring the whole country to make an assessment of all the roads that need work and finding solutions so that these works can be done. So, I submit that there is no segregation where development is concerned and I would like to say to the Hon. Member, you are most welcome to attend.  You just need to ask.  I so submit.

REFURBISHMENT OF THE MULTI-MILLION DOLLAR CHITUNGWIZA AQUATIC COMPLEX

  1. HON. MAZHINDU asked the Minister of Sport, Recreation, Arts and Culture the Ministry’s plans regarding the refurbishment of the multi-million United States Dollar Chitungwiza Aquatic Complex which has been in a state of abandonment since the 1995 All Africa games.

THE MINISTER OF SPORTS, RECREATION, ARTS AND CULTURE (HON. COVENTRY): Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  The Ministry of Sport, Recreating has worked with the Harare Swimming Board and the following are the recommendations.

  •     The filtration plant is not functional and will require major renovations
  •     Most of the valves at the plant are now working and need to be replaced.
  •     The computerised system of the filtration plant is also not functional
  •     The competition pool needs to be fully renovated, the training pool and baby pool can hold water for swimming activities to take place.

With this being noted Hon. Speaker, the ministry is now working to put together prioritised areas to go to Ministry of Finance to ask for specific funding to be able to upgrade and rejuvenate the Aquatic Centre.  We have had a few corporates coming to us and we are in continuous dialogue to find out which would be the best joint venture, whether it will be more on a PPP (Public Private Partnerships) or BOT (Build Operate and Transfer), I submit Hon. Speaker Sir.

          HON. MAZHINDU: Any time frame from the Minister?

           HON. COVENTRY: I am sorry I did not get the question.

          HON. MAZHINDU: Any time frames?

HON. COVENTRY: At this point, I am sitting down with the Ministry of Finance on Monday and this is one of the agenda points, so I can come back to the House with more specific timeframes once I know if we will be allocated a specific budget for this project.  I thank you.

USE OF OWN RESOURCES BY ZIMBABWE TENNIS PLAYERS

  1. HON. BAJILA asked the Minister of Sports, Arts and Recreation to explain to the House why tennis players who represent Zimbabwe in international tournaments often use their own resources for their travel and participation.

THE MINISTER OF SPORTS, RECREATION, ARTS AND CULTURE (HON. COVENTRY):  Thank you Hon. Speaker Sir and I thank the Hon. Member for the question.  First of all, Hon. Speaker Sir, the National Sport and Recreation Policy underscores that it is mandatory for all National Sports Associations (NSAs) to have a source of funding and resource mobilisation mechanism and strategy.  These mobilisation strategies assist them to fund their participation in events at various levels of competition tiers.  The policy further states that NSAs shall work in close consultation with the Government when bidding, hosting and participation in regional, continental and international competitions.

The National Associations work closely with the SRC, I can always request funds if needed.  When these National Associations request funds, the National Associations must be in good standing with the SRC for SRC to then process that request and send it to the Ministry.  As far as I am aware, we have not received any request from this National Association for additional funds on any international tours.

HON. BAJILA: If the Hon. Minister could clarify what constitutes being in good standing with the Sports and Recreation Commission?

HON. COVENTRY: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir, if the Hon. Member pleases, I can come back with the full list of the good governance standing, it comes from having audited accounts as well as holding a regular AGM, it is a long list.  I do  not remember all of them at the top of my head.  If it pleases the Hon. Member, I am happy to bring that back and share with himself and the House.

STATE OF THE COUNTRY’S STADIA TO HOST LEAGUE AND INTERNATIONAL GAMES

  1. HON. C. MOYO asked the Minister of Sport, Arts and Recreation to inform the House on the state of preparedness of the country’s stadia to host Premier Soccer League, CAF Champions League and Federation Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) World Cup 2026 Qualifier games.

THE MINISTER OF SPORTS, RECREATION, ARTS AND CULTURE (HON. COVENTRY):  Thank you Hon. Speaker and I thank the Hon. Member for his question. Regarding the PSL, it has already satisfied a number of facilities and these are Rufaro Stadium in Harare Province, Luveve Stadium in Bulawayo Province, Mandava Stadium in Midlands Province, Nyamhunga Stadium in Mashonaland West Province, Green Fuel Arena in Manicaland Province, Sakubva Stadium in Manicaland Province, Barbourfields Stadium in Bulawayo Province, Colliery Stadium in Matabeleland North Province, Baoab Stadium in Mashonaland West Province, Wadzanayi Stadium Mashonaland Central Province, Bata Stadium in Midlands Province and that is ongoing. 

With regards to the National Sports Stadium, the Ministry is seized with the resuscitation to enable the facility to host CAF and FIFA sanctioned events. Today, the progress at this point is that the water reticulation is in progress, and with that coming along nicely, we are waiting for additional funding to be released for that process to finish. 

Doing styles and electronic ticketing machines have been procured and have been delivered and are waiting for installation.  There is need to be a smart adjustment to our gates for entry for those to fit in nicely. The turf will be replaced and that is in progress, we have spoken to a number of the teams and players as well as the stakeholder.  They will prefer to have natural grass so that is now what we are working on. 

Bucket seats have been procured by a third party and are in the process of being made, and we want to thank that third party for coming forward to assist Government through PPP. We are having somewhat other corporates approaching the Ministry wanting to help with various projects, and we are in discussions on the way forward as there are a number of them, and we are trying to ensure that all of the stakeholders can work together for the same end result. That being the goal as opposed to be ready for us to be able to play at home, we are working towards that if you are confident as we are today, but we are lagging a little bit behind on some of the funds that need to be paid urgently which will be spoken about with the Finance Ministry next week.

We are also working closely with the City Council and private partners that own the stadia and to be potentially ready as well in the next few months.  I thank you.

WRITTEN SUBMISSIONS TO QUESTIONS WITH NOTICE

STATISTICS ON THE COVERAGE ON RURAL ELECTRIFICATION AGENCY

  1. HON. JERE asked the Minister of Energy and Power Development to provide statistics on the coverage on Rural electrification Agency in the Country Province by Province since inception of REA.

           THE MINISTER OF ENERGY AND POWER DEVELOPMENT (HON. E. MOYO):  Since inception, REA has electrified the following institutions as shown in Tables 1, 2, and 3:

TABLE 1: STATISTICS ON THE ELECTRIFICATION STATUS OF RURAL INSTITUTIONS DONE BY REF AS AT 1 FEBRUARY 2024

Province

Primary Schools

Secondary Schools

RHC/ Clinics

Govt. Ext Offices

Chieftainships

Business centres

Small scale Farms

Villages

Others

Total Electrified  to Date

 

Grid

Solar

Manicaland

534

277

195

76

34

0

241

78

354

173

1962

Mashonaland Central

395

185

115

47

26

2

144

146

53

130

1243

Mashonaland East

337

194

119

39

32

2

127

186

198

194

1428

Mashonaland West

420

178

81

41

29

4

73

224

132

70

1252

Masvingo

374

230

153

75

34

1

190

53

190

117

1417

Matebelelend  North

323

140

93

65

35

7

115

27

24

81

910

Matebeleland South

320

127

92

53

31

0

152

22

136

83

1016

Midlands

268

149

107

37

39

5

132

117

193

88

1135

TOTAL

2971

1480

955

433

260

21

1174

853

1280

936

10363

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TABLE 2:  SOLAR STATUS AS AT 29 FEBRUARY 2024

Province

Solar Mini Grid

Mobile Solar Units

Total

Manicaland

43

82

125

Mashonaland Central

48

38

86

Mashonaland East

60

60

120

Mashonaland West

60

45

105

Masvingo

65

32

97

Matebeleland North

78

55

133

Matebeleland South

50

69

119

Midlands

66

47

113

Bulawayo

0

9

9

Harare

1

-

1

Total

471

437

908

 

TABLE 3:  STATUS OF INSTITUTIONAL BIOGAS DIGESTER PLANTS CONSTRUCTED BY REF AS AT 29 FEBRUARY 2024

 

Province

Number of Biogas plants

Number of Domestic Biogas Plants

Total Number of Biogas Commissioned

Comments

Manicaland

15

90

105

Domestic biogas digesters are mainly being done under the Climate Adaption Water and Energy Programme (CAWEP) with funding from the UK’s Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) and the Government of Zimbabwe. These are part of the 90 biogas digesters to be part of the 90 biogas digesters to be constructed through the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), in the collaboration with the Ministry of Environment, Climate and Wildlife, Rural Electrification Fund, Ministry of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Development, Chipinge District and Hakwata community.

Mashonaland Central

14

2

16

 

Mashonaland East

6*

5

11

Includes the 1 Commercial biogas digester plant at Kotwa in Mudzi District

Mashonaland West

8

-

8

 

Masvingo

13

30

43

 

Matebeleland North

14

1

15

 

Matebeleland South

16

1

17

 

Midlands

14*

-

14

Includes the 2 Commercial biogas digesters plant at Mimosa Mine in Zvishavane District & Unki Mine in Shurugwi District.

Harare

6*

-

6

Includes one Commercial biogas at HIT completed in October 2017

Total

106

129

235

 

 

ADEQUACY OF THE LEVY CHARGED BY REA

  1. HON. JERE: Asked the Minister of Energy and Power Development to explain to the House whether the 6% levy charged by REA is adequate to achieve 100% accessibility to power by 2025 in line with the country’s 2030 vision which talks about power to all by 2030.

THE MINISTER OF ENERGY AND POWER DEVELOPMENT (HON. E. MOYO): The 6%is not adequate to electrify the whole rural Zimbabwe by 2030.  Currently the levy billed monthly is equivalent to US2.5 million.  To achieve Visio 2030, we need about US2 billion according to the Rural Energy Master Plan.  See the table below for the shortfall: 

Current RFE’s Funding Position

 

ZWL

USD

REA MONTHLY REVENUE

55 000, 000,000

2,500,000              

REA ANNUAL REVENUE

660,0000,000,000

30,000,000

TO ELECTRIFY 100% OF ZIMBABWE RURAL (BUDGET)

 

2 000,000,000

ANNUAL REVENUE TO COMPLETE WITHIN TARGET

 

286,000,000

FUNDING DEFICIT/YEAR

 

256,000,000

 

To argument the shortfall REF is frantically seeking concessional loan facilities to fund the R.E Programme.  If accessed, these will enable bulk supply of project materials and speed up the electrification.  It is also seeking partnerships and or grants to implement renewable energy projects.

REF has the plan in place, the skills and manpower, tools and equipment to meet the vision 2030 target, provided they get adequate funding.

ZERA LICENCING MODEL BASED ON SALES AND SIZE

  1. HON. JERE to ask the Minister of Energy and Power Development, to explain to the House why ZERA does not come up with a licensing model based on sales and size as opposed to a flat fee of 25 000 USD per firm so that the authority can in turn channel proceeds towards  the REA.

THE MINISTER OF ENERGY AND POWER DEVELOPMENT (HON. E. MOYO): The Ministry has received proposals for volume-based licensing from ZERA and is reviewing these proposals in addition to other models.

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

On the motion of HON. KAMBUZUMA seconded by HON. HAMAUSWA, the House adjourned at Twenty-Five Minutes to Six o’clock. p.m.

 

 

 

 

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