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NATIONAL ASSEMBLY HANSARD 5 MARCH 2024 VOL 50 NO 31

          PARLIAMENT OF ZIMBABWE

Tuesday, 5th March, 2024.

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

PRAYERS

(THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER in the Chair)

ANNOUNCEMENT BY THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER

SWEARING IN OF NEW MEMBERS

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: I have to inform the House that on Friday, 1st March, 2024, Parliament was notified by Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) in terms of Section 39: 7 of the Electoral Act, Chapter 2:13, that with effect from 1st March, 2024, Members of the Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) were duly appointed as Members of the National Assembly for the specified constituencies.

Section 128 (1) of the Constitution provides that before a Member of Parliament takes his or her seat in Parliament, the Member must take the oath of a Member of Parliament as set out in the Third Schedule of the Constitution.  Section 128 (2) states that the oath must be taken before the Clerk of Parliament.  I therefore, call upon the Clerk of Parliament to administer the oath of a Member of Parliament.

I call the following Members to subscribe to the oath of loyalty:

Hon. Sikhuphukile Dube representing Bulawayo; Hon. Sibongile Maphosa representing Matabeleland South; Hon. Nomvula Mguni representing Bulawayo; Hon. Lungile Ncube representing Bulawayo and Hon. Otilia Sibanda representing Bulawayo.

NEW MEMBERS SWORN

HON. DUBE SIKHUPHUKILE, HON. MAPHOSA SIBONGILE, HON. MGUNI NOMVULA, HON. NCUBE LUNGILE and HON. SIBANDA OTILIA subscribed to the Oath of Loyalty as required by the law and took their seats – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.] –

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: May we have order! Order in the House please.

ANNOUNCEMENT BY THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER

APPOINTMENT TO COMMITTEES

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Edgar Ncube to serve on the Portfolio Committees on Industry and Commerce and Higher Education, Science and Technology Development, Hon. Kudakwashe Mananzwa to serve on the Portfolio Committees on Local Government, Public Works and National Housing and Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare, Hon. Tobias Kashamba to serve on the Portfolio Committees on Transport and Infrastructural Development and Local Government, Public Works and National Housing.  Hon. Washington Zhanda; Portfolio Committee on Higher Education, Science and Technology Development and Health and Child Care.  Hon. Joseph Chuma; Portfolio Committees on Sports, Recreation, Art and Culture and Local Government, Public Works and National Housing. Hon. Shakemore Chimburwa; Portfolio Committees on Youth Empowerment, Development and Vocational Training and Information Communication Technology. 

ESTABLISHMENT OF PARLIAMENTARY FRIENDSHIP ASSOCIATIONS

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: I further have to inform the House that following the establishment of Parliamentary Friendship Associations with sister Parliaments in Turkey, Russia, Algeria, Cuba, Iran, India and Egypt, the Portfolio Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Trade is calling for members who wish to join the associations.  The associations will be named as ZIM-Turkey, ZIM-Russia et cetera.

          Membership is open to all Members of Parliament and is on a first come first served basis.  Each association has a maximum of 15 Members.  For registration send a message to Mr. A. Mapetere on 0713313170.

          HON. KANGAUSARU: On a point of national interest Madam Speaker.

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: What is your point of national interest?

          HON. KANGAUSARU: Thank you Madam Speaker.  I rise on a point of national interest in relation to the recent development on the removal of CALA and replacing it with a school-based projects as has been reported in the press.  I would like to ask the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education or the Leader of Government Business what this change entails.  Our children and also our parents have not yet understood what CALA was all about neither have they assessed its pros versus its cons.  Now, a new thing is now being introduced to replace something we barely understood. 

          Is this change not going to affect our current sitting children for 2024 Grade 7, O’ Level and A’ Level’s examination since they have spent two years doing CALA and have been assessed under the impression that it is going….

          HON. MATEWU: On a point of Order.

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Please let him finish.  You will come after him, I will recognise you, please take your seat.

          HON. KANGAUSARU: Is this change not going to affect our students sitting for 2024, Grade 7, O’ level and A’ level examination since they spent two years doing CALA and having been assessed under the impression that it is going to contribute to their final ZIMSEC mark?  I submit.

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Thank you Hon. Kangausaru. Hon. Member, I advise you to ask that to the responsible Minister tomorrow, on a Wednesday.

          HON. KANGAUSARU: Thank you.

          HON. BAJILA: On a point of privilege.

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: What is your point of privilege?

          HON. BAJILA:  I have been reading the Hansard a lot Madam Speaker.  On the 15th of November, I addressed this House in Xhosa, the translation to English was wrong.  Madam Speaker, on the 14th of February, Hon. Gwangwaba spoke in this House in Tonga, the translation was so wrong and actually offensive.  His named appeared in the Hansard as Hon. Mwapona because he greeted the Speaker and said mwapona biyeni and the Hansard actually wrote his name as Hon. Mwapona, his name is Hon. Gwangwaba. 

          Madam Speaker, this is a point of privilege that I would like to raise in the sense that while I am here and capable of speaking in English, there are certain things that I cannot express properly unless I revert to the mother tongue.  It the systems for automatic translation are not in place, it affects my ability to represent my community, and it affects my ability to present myself freely and to the best of my abilities.  I therefore request that through you Madam and in line with the dictates of Section 6 of the Constitution, we move quickly to automatic translation. If it is possible, we can find the people who can assist with the proper translation each and every time.  It might go even worse as we go to the Upper House because we also read the Hansard that side, the problem is the same. I thank you.

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Thank you Hon. Member for that. I am sorry for that and I am sure the administration has taken note of that.

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

  HON. KAMBUZUMA: Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am. I move that we stand over Order of the Day, Number 1 until Orders of the Day Numbers 2 and 8 have been disposed of.

  HON. N. NDLOVU:  I second.

  Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

REPORT OF THE ZIMBABWE ELECTORAL COMMISSION ON THE 2023 HARMONISED ELECTIONS

Second Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on the Report of the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission on the 2023 Harmonised Elections.

Question again proposed.

HON. MUROMBEDZI: Thank you very much Madam Speaker. I am going to add my voice onto the ZEC Report. ZEC glorified itself and came up with a report that pretends to give an impression of a free and fair election that it was not. I note five things that point to dishonesty and half-truth in this report…

An Hon. Member having crossed between the Chair and the Hon. Member debating.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order Hon. Mahlangu, you are crossing between me and the person debating. May you please proceed?

HON. MUROMBEDZI: I note five things that point to dishonesty and half-truth in the ZEC Report. The first one is the printing of ballots. According to ZEC, the printing of ballots was delayed by litigation…

HON. TAFANANA NDLOVU: On a point of order Madam Speaker Ma’am.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order Hon. Murombedzi. What is your point of order Hon. Zhou?

HON. TAFANANA ZHOU: Thank you very much Madam Speaker. The Hon. Member is reading and I do not know who wrote the speech. – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] -

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Zhou, can we have order in the House please. It is allowed to read.

HON. DR. MUTODI: On a point of order Madam Speaker. My point of order emanates from the Standing Rules and Orders that when Hon. Members are debating, they are not allowed to lie between her teeth. The Hon Member who is debating is a Member of this Parliament by process of ZEC and she cannot stand before this Parliament and purport to say that the process that ZEC did is invalid. The Hon. Member is out of order and must be reprimanded. Thank you.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Murombedzi, may you proceed but please, I ask you to debate the report.

HON. MUROMBEDZI: According to ZEC, the printing of ballots was delayed by litigation and they had to consider constituencies from Harare first, but we did not see the list of litigation…

HON. S. SITHOLE: On a point of order Madam Speaker.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: We want order in the House please. What is your point of order Hon. Sithole?

HON. S. SITHOLE: She must first withdraw and then she goes ahead to lie in Parliament that ZEC does not conduct elections properly. She must conclude.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Murombedzi, may you please continue.

          HON. MUROMBEDZI: Thank you very much Madam Speaker Ma’am. According to the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC), the printing of ballots was delayed by litigation and they had to consider constituencies that were far from Harare. We did not see the litigation list and neither were the litigations communicated to stakeholders, but Madam Speaker, l am curious if there were delays and they were supposed to affect areas; were the litigations not a wholesale case that we saw on the 23rd August, 2023?

  1. ZEC claimed that the electoral officers used postal ballots and then said slightly above five thousand one hundred applied and were granted in the report more than 130 000 electoral officers were engaged, and most of them were not deployed where they vote.

Madam Speaker, this way dishonestly and deliberately desensitised civil servants who were probably suspected to vote in a certain way.  This facility on postal votes should apply to all civil servants and deployment should be done in advance to allow such. 

  1. Observer mission reports were noted in the reports, but in the recommendations section, before conclusion, it appears ZEC did not take any recommendations from the observer missions. Recommendations should reflect willingness and acknowledgement to correct mistakes unless if the mistakes were deliberate.
  2. ZEC in its report, clearly did not mention threats that were issued to the SADC Electoral Observer Mission. This is dangerous and unprecedented. ZEC must callout on all forms of malpractice, especially to the election observers they would have invited to come and observe our processes. 

The report Madam Speaker, generally lacks self-introspection and presents itself as defence rather than a fair and true assessment of how the election was run.

  1. The transmission of election results was a black-market channel. It must be in the clear Madam Speaker, to date the presidential election results per polling station are still unpublished. Our voter registration, if we remember well, it is polling station based.  Voting itself is polling station based.  Therefore, credibility and transparency to check ZEC results, especially for the presidential candidate must be published as per each polling station for the interest of the nation and all interested parties. 

HON. MUGWADI:  On a point of order Madam Speaker Ma’am, by electoral rules, all results from local authorities, Parliamentarians, Presidential results are plastered or laminated at all polling stations, especially at the entrance under V11 forms.  So if someone then says the results were not published when they were displayed at the polling station, are we not allowing a dangerous culture of being disassociated with the truth in the august House?

Remember Madam Speaker, the public is watching and certain untruths and desperate lies cannot be allowed to go unchallenged.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Thank you Hon. Mugwadi.  I think the best thing for you to do is to debate the report and put the facts right. 

HON. MUGWADI: Thank you Madam Speaker.  I do not want to overburden Parliament.  I have already debated on this motion and am allowed to debate on a motion once.  Thank you. – [HON MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] -  

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, order! May we please behave like Honourable Members! May we behave like adults!

HON. NYABANI: On a point of order Madam Speaker Ma’am.  May the Hon Member kindly withdraw ati, get away! 

*THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Can you recognise the Hon. Member? – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – order, may we have order in the House please!

HON. MUROMBEDZI: Thank you very much Madam Speaker.  Lastly, in its report, ZEC speaks about impartiality as one of its values.  On 23rd August, we saw exhibition tables belonging to a shadowy organisation placed outside several polling stations within the vicinity of several polling stations bearing political party insignia.  This potentially casts doubt in the ability of the electoral management body to be impartial, therefore rendered the election fraudulent.  I so submit Madam Speaker, thank you very much. 

HON. MATEWU: On a point of order Madam Speaker.  My point of order is in relation to what the Hon. Speaker said last week.  He said, and I quote, ‘The decorum of a Member of a Parliament, in terms of their dressing.  When you are dressed and do not have a tie, you must have a full attire” It is my submission Madam Speaker Ma’am that Hon. Mugwadi is inappropriately dressed in this Parliament.  I thank you. – [HON MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] -

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Order, order Hon. Members! May we have order in the House.  Hon. Mugwadi, may you please approach the Chair?  – [HON MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] -  There is nothing wrong with Hon. Mugwadi’s attire. 

          HON. MATEMA: Thank you very much Madam Speaker.  I rise to add my voice to the ZEC Report concerning the 2023 Harmonised Elections.  Let me start by celebrating the wonderful work which was done under very difficult circumstances.  As a creation of Chapter 12, which speaks to Commissions that run affairs in the Republic of Zimbabwe, the ZEC has three roles that they are supposed to play broadly which are - to prepare, conduct, and supervise elections.   So, concerning the processes relating to voter registration, voter inspection, delimitation of wards, and proclamation of election dates, ZEC did very well under the circumstances.

          I shall be very brief because most of the issues relating to this report have been discussed by other Hon. Members.  Let me add my voice by saying that the mere fact that post the announcement of the 2023 Harmonised Election, there was no contestation, it is on record we do not have any contestation. It speaks volumes to the fact that the process was free and fair.  The process before, during, and after the election…

          HON. BAJILA: On a point of order! The Hon. Member is delving into untruths.  The election in Bulilima Constituency was challenged in court.

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Member, you will have your time to debate.

          HON. MATEMA: That was the long and short of my submission to this report.  I thank you – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.] –

          HON. HAMAUSWA: On a point of order! It is an appreciation of how the Hon. Members from your left side have respected the decorum of this House when Hon. Matema was debating.  I want to implore the other Hon. Members to follow the same when others are debating. When Hon. Matema was debating, we did not see unnecessary interruption and noise in this House.  So, if we debate like that, even though he had issues…

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: But he was interrupted by that Hon. Member.

          HON. HAMAUSWA: Madam Speaker Ma’am, it is not like I am debating with you but my point is, if you noticed there was calmness on this side even though we did not agree with some of the points he raised but the Members from this side did not interrupt.  This is also what we expect to be happening as we move forward.  I thank you.

          HON. KANGAUSARU: Thank you Madam Speaker.  Allow me also to give my voice on this debate on the 2023 Harmonised Election Report presented to this august House by the Leader of Government Business. 

          Let me start by congratulating ZEC for a well-done job for conducting free, fair, transparent, and credible elections.  There was peace before, during, and after the elections.  We thank God for that.  Elections in Zimbabwe are guided by our Constitution and the Electoral Act.  The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission which was established in terms of Section 238 of our Constitution has the mandate to prepare, conduct, and supervise elections.  It also has the mandate to register voters, compile the Voters Roll, delimit constituencies, and accredit observers among other functions.

          Madam Speaker, I would want to acknowledge the work once again, of the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission throughout the whole process of the 2023 Harmonised Elections.  Before the 2023 harmonised elections, the Commission conducted a delimitation exercise in line with Section 239 (f) of our Constitution.  The delimitation was presented to Parliament and Parliament made recommendations which was a transparent exercise.  Madam Speaker, the Commission conducted voter registration during the electoral cycle, and every citizen above the age of 18 years was allowed to register to vote as stipulated in Section 673(a) of our Constitution.  The practice was done in a fair, transparent way. 

          I want to further applaud the Commission for establishing the short code (*265#) which was used by citizens to check their names on the Voters' Roll and their polling stations on their mobile phones which was a very good thing.  Such efforts show the commitment of the Commission to do its process fairly and transparently.  Following the proclamation done by His Excellency, the President of Zimbabwe, Dr. E. D. Mnangagwa, the Commission prepared for the 2023 elections, voter education was conducted, nomination courts set as well, and accreditation of election observers was done.

 I want to further applaud ZEC for accrediting as many election observers as possible according to the laid down regulations both for local and foreign journalists.  This shows that as a country, we remain transparent, democratic, and committed to achieving our national vision, Vision 2030.

Madam Speaker, I want also to applaud His Excellency, the President of Zimbabwe for extending the voting process to areas that were being affected by logistical challenges.  Such a democratic effort cannot be unrecognised.  I want further to applaud the Commission for creating a conducive and peaceful environment during the election period.  All political parties were allowed to put their agents which is a sign of democracy that our country enjoys.  The Commission created a fair playing ground, promoting democracy and transparency in all its processes.  Well done ZEC for a job well done.  I thank you.

          HON. M. C. SIBANDA:  On a point of order Madam Speaker.  The Hon. Member is mentioning the point of fairness.  I think maybe the election was managed by an impartial and…

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Order Hon. Member!  You will have your time to debate.  Please take your seat.

          *HON. KARENYI: Thank you Madam Speaker for giving me the opportunity to debate on the issue of the ZEC report.  Firstly Madam Speaker, what I want to say is that there are a lot of complaints about the election from many Zimbabweans.  This caused observer missions that were there during the elections to complain about what took place during the elections.

          Madam Speaker, let me move over to Chapter 8 which talks on the procurement of election material.  Firstly, it shows that ZEC did not have enough time to prepare for the elections.  ZEC had five years to prepare for the 23rd August general elections and therefore, it should have gone to the elections well prepared and there should not have been a shortage of election material.  On the procurement of election material, there was supposed to be a voters’ roll that was up to date and comprehensive.  We ended up going to the elections without a voters’ roll.  This showed that ZEC did not have enough time to prepare for the elections.

          Madam Speaker, as Members of Parliament and councillors, we were supposed to have had access to the voters’ roll before the elections.  It took ZEC a long time to give us the voters’ roll.  We were presented with a voters’ roll that was in the form of a disc which we could not print.  We could not access information from this voters’ roll.  This shows that the ZEC was not ready for the elections.

          On the ZEC report, section 4.1 speaks on voter education.  They held road shows and advertisements on television among the various voter education initiatives.  If ZEC wanted the elections to take place smoothly, political parties were supposed to be allowed to carryout voter education with the assistance of NGOs and civic society.  Madam Speaker, this shows that voter education was not effective enough for people to be educated on how to vote. 

          Let me move on to 5.3 on the inspection of the voters’ roll.  Madam Speaker, the report shows that people had a right to go and inspect the voters’ roll to check if their names appeared on the voters’ roll.  There was a facility through cellphones where a person could dial *265#.  If a person who was a registered voter was given their polling station through this facility and they went to that stated polling station, they would not find their name there.  From this, we can see that ZEC did not do justice to the people of Zimbabwe on inspection of the voters’ roll for their names.

          Also on voters’ roll inspection, you could find that a husband and wife who voted in previous elections and their names were present on the voters’ roll, when they went to vote, sometimes the husband’s name would be found and the wife’s name would not be there.  This shows that some people were removed from the voters’ roll and some were added.  How can we have a situation where one’s name is on the voters’ roll, but on the day of elections, the name would not be found? ZEC should sit down and look into the issue of voters’ roll inspection.  To add on to that, on the day of voting most people…

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Order Hon. Member.  We are not allowed to record debates with our cellphones in this House – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] -  May we have order please.

          *HON. KARENYI:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  On the issue of the voters’ roll on 5.3, inspection a person was supposed to check for their name while outside the polling station and then get inside and vote.  Madam Speaker, it is my thinking that this was a way of making sure that some people did not get the opportunity to vote.  Why I am saying this is because most people would not find their names on the voters’ roll on Polling Station A, Polling Station B and on the next polling station, and would give up in the end then go home.  An example of what happened is that if someone did not find their name on the voters’ roll displayed outside, he or she would lie that their name was there, and upon getting inside the polling station, find his or her name there… 

*HON. NYABANI:  On a point of order Madam Speaker.  Hon. Molokela-Tsiye resigned, but I can see he is present in this House – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] –

*HON. KARENYI:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  It shows that there are some people who did not manage to vote because they had to check their names outside and also inside the polling station.  ZEC should look into this matter and this practice should be discontinued.

Madam Speaker on 8.4 on the issue of ballot papers, we could debate on this issue all day, but the truth is that ZEC did not do a good job.  ZEC knew fully well that we were going to elections, but it printed an insufficient amount of ballot papers.

HON. CHIGUMBUOn a point of order Madam Speaker.  I would like Hon. Nyabani to withdraw what he said.  If an Hon. Member resigns it is announced by the Hon. Speaker and yourself.  So he is not telling the truth while he is seated in the most respected house in the country.  Can he withdraw what he said? – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] –

          *HON. KARENYI: Thank you Madam Speaker.  Let me say to Hon. Matangira, you are free to do what is right for your own party – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order! Hon. Karenyi, please withdraw that statement.

          *HON. KARENYI: I withdraw Madam Speaker. My point is, ZEC should look into this matter so that in the next elections we do not face the same problem of inadequate ballot papers.

          I now move to 9.2 assisted voter; let me quote the Electoral Act, where it talks about assisted voters.  Please allow me to read it in English.  “In terms of Section 59 of the Electoral Act,  illiterate and physically handicapped voters who were not able to vote without assistance, either brought persons of their choice to assist or were assisted by a presiding officer”  I continue to feel that ZEC has to look into this matter closely because we now see that assisted voters can end up being abused.  There are other people who now take advantage and abuse people whom they know belong to certain parties.  These people might end up being abused by headmen being told to pretend to be illiterate and given someone to assist them in the voting process.  We noticed that even people as young as 20 years were being assisted to vote.  This proved to us that, that was abuse at its best.  It caused people to vote for someone they do not want. 

          It is my appeal that this law should be amended and assisted voters should be people who cannot write or read, not that someone who graduated from university is assisted to vote.

          *HON. GANYIWA: On a point of Order Madam Speaker.  I do not think the Hon. Member is being truthful in her debate because it is a choice of the assisted voter to choose someone to assist them to vote.  You are not forced.  She has to withdraw that statement.

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Member, I think you need to have your chance to debate and say what was good about the electoral process.

          *HON. MUGWADI:  My point of order is very simple; it is about the time allocation.  In our Standing Rules, the Hon. Member should be allocated 20 minutes but the Hon. Member on the floor started at fifteen minutes to three and now we are at…

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Mugwadi, please take your seat. Hon. Karenyi, may you proceed but you are left with five minutes.

          *HON. KARENYI: Thank you Madam Speaker.

          *HON. MAPIKI: My point of order is that the Hon. Member is continuously referring to my President, Adv. Chamisa, yet Chamisa is no longer the President of CCC.

          *HON. KARENYI: In conclusion, let me talk about postal voters.  ZEC should scrutinise the postal voters because we have our people, the civil servants who also go out to help in executing the elections.  It is my thinking that when we call out that people should come to vote, no political parties should be there.  Civil servants who will be on duty should be placed where they are registered to vote.  I remember in Bulawayo where I had a lot of problems, it is my clarity that let there be …

          HON. KUDHLANDE: On a point of order. The Hon. Member first debated in English then she went to Shona.  She was mixing the languages.

          HON. TOBAIWA: I move that Hon. Karenyi’s time be extended.

          HON. MAHLANGU:  I second – [AN HON. MEMBER:  I object.]

          Motion put and negatived.

          HON. KAMBUZUMA: I move that the debate do now adjourn.

          HON. N. NDLOVU: I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.

          Debate to resume: Wednesday, 6th March, 2024.

MOTION

CONDITIONS OF SERVICE TO IMPROVE THE PLIGHT OF COUNCILLORS

          HON. JERE: Good afternoon Madam Speaker Ma’am.  I move the motion standing in my name that this House:-

CONCERNED with the marginalisation which our society exhibits towards our Councillors whereby some sections of our population perceive them as volunteers despite the unwavering patriotism and devotion to their national duties;

FULLY APPRECIATING AND ACKNOWLEDGING that Councillors are the real foot soldiers in the constituencies as they are the engines that drive all our developmental programmes and projects for the benefit of the people to whom we are accountable as Members of Parliament;

APPLAUDING the highest levels of responsibility, custodianship, unflinching loyalty and dedication of our Councillors who are also the caretakers of multi-million dollar assets and yet they still remain as the unsung heroes in our quest to develop the nation;

NOW, THEREFORE, calls upon the Ministry of Local Government and National Housing to come up with competitive conditions of service in order to improve the plight of our Councillors so that their livelihoods can be sustained with dignity which is commensurate with their dedication to duties and responsibilities to the nation.

HON. KARIMATSENGA-NYAMUPINGA: I second.

HON. JERE: Let me start by bringing to the House a quote by one of the renowned motivational writers called Fredrick Herzberg.  Herzberk spoke about motivation in his factor theory.  He was very clear that remuneration is classified as hygiene factor. He went on to say the absence of a good remuneration is a de-motivator.  What he was speaking to is that in an environment where remuneration is not adequate, the issue of remuneration becomes a de-motivator.  People become so demotivated if they are not getting very good remuneration. 

          Madam Speaker, Section 276 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe Amendment No. 20, provides for the designation of local authority such as Rural District Councils and Urban Councils. Section 276 and 279 outlines the objectives, structure, composition and roles of local governance, Clause 2 under section 276 states that local authority must have the capacity to make decisions on local governance issues on behalf of their communities in accordance with the law; our Constitution of Zimbabwe 2013.

          Madam Speaker, my submission today is a research which was also made in consultation with the Association of Rural District Councilors that should be taken note of. The Rural District Council Act Chapter 29:13, also outlines the role of power and procedures governing Rural District Councils.  Section 19, specifically states that councillors must be paid such allowances as may be fixed by the council with the approval of the Hon. Minister, Rural District Council Act 2002.

          Furthermore, Madam Speaker, Section 264 of the Constitution stipulates that legislative powers on local governance issues are shared between Parliament, provincial and metropolitan councils.  The Constitution of Zimbabwe and the Rural District Council Act fully appreciates and acknowledge that councillors are the real foot soldiers in the constituencies as they are the engines that drive all our development programmes and projects for the benefit of the people whom we are accountable for as Members of Parliament. 

          The two, also provide the legal basis of central governance to develop national legislation and policy regulating councillors remuneration.  This will empower councillors by providing guidelines and parameters for determining appropriate compensation…

          HON. TAFANANA ZHOU: On a point of order Madam Speaker.

          THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: What is your point order?

          *HON. TAFANANA ZHOU: My point of order is that I am seeing Members of Parliament from our left who are just roaming around without bowing to the Chair.  They are supposed to bow their heads when they are going outside the House.  I thank you.

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: I thank you for reminding them.

          HON. JERE: Thank you Madam Speaker, this will empower councillors by providing guidelines and parameters for determining appropriate compensation.  National standards promote fairness, transparency and good governance.

          Madam Speaker, Zimbabwe has been pursuing a devolution agenda aimed at empowering provincial and metropolitan councils as well as local authorities through the transfer and decentralisation of Government responsibilities and powers.  In this regard, His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe Cde. Dr. E. D. Mnangagwa launched a devolution and decentralisation policy in 2020.  The policy aims to operationalise the devolving of power to sub-national structures of a re-configured Zimbabwe state to enable a faster, efficient and effective response to challenges of the delivery of public service, development, democracy as well as the imperative of sustaining national unity and peace. 

          Madam Speaker, councillors play a critical role in decentralised Government.  Given their responsibility in overseeing service delivery, planning, budgeting, revenue management and representing constituency needs within their wards, for devolution to be effective, local governance requires competent and motivated leaders.  I spoke about the Herzberg two factor theory, if people are not motivated through a very good salary, they are demotivated and their performance …

          HON. SAGANDIRA: On a point of Madam Speaker.

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

          HON. SAGANDIRA:  I think the motion that is being moved has been overtaken by events as the Hon. Minister has already addressed to issues concerning councillors, in his letter dated 27th February, 2024 where he stated that the allowances have actually been reviewed.  I thank you Hon. Speaker.

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Member, it is not only allowances, I think it is the conditions of service. It is not overtaken by events – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –Hon. Members on my left side, you are required to bow your heads to the Chair whenever you are - [HON. MATEWU: Who is the Chair?.] – Who said that?  So it is you Hon. Matewu.  Hon. Matewu, please leave the House.

          Hon. Matewu walked out of the House.

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Members it is our Standing Rules requirement, it is not anybody’s requirement, it is not my requirement, it is our Standing Rules requirement so we have to abide by our Standing Rules and Orders.  You have to bow your heads to the Chair.

HON. JERE: Thank you so much Hon. Speaker.  Let me remind the leaders of the people in this House that great leaders are great listeners and listening on its own is a virtue.  I thank you so much.  For devolution to be effective, local governance requires competent and motivated leaders’ compensation, I am talking about inadequacy.  I know that this item has been sitting on the Order Paper for a long time and it might seem as if it might have been overtaken by events, but still the current compensation, we feel it is not enough, it is inadequate.  The inadequate compensation hinders councils’ ability to full execute their responsibilities.  The current allowance for councillors is inadequate and this hinders motivation, accountability and capacity to perform their duties effectively.  For devolution to succeed, it is imperative that councillors are properly incentivised and compensated through a remuneration framework that adequately reflects their responsibility and contributions as we march towards achieving Vision 2030 agenda.

          Madam Speaker, in some of the small councils where we come from, especially the rural councils, their remuneration before the current endeavour by the Ministry to increase to 1300 for councillors which we are quite aware of. We want to acknowledge and say thank you to them.  The councillors were getting 150RTGS as an allowance and they were not even getting it.  As I am standing here presenting this motion, they have not been getting it for the past 3 to 4 months.  Adequate remuneration that reflects their contribution will strengthen oversight, representation, planning and accountability.  It will also attract skilled candidates to stand for office.  Ultimately, it empowers the councillors to make devolution successful, productive by unlocking local governance capabilities, resources and actions.  Councillors compensation should align to international best practices on local governance and government remuneration aimed at facilitating good governances.  This outlines that local elected officials should received salaries.

          What has bene approved Madam Speaker, is an allowance.  We are proposing that these councillors should be entitled to a basic salary plus those allowances as part of the presentation.  Allowances should cover expenses incurred during officials’ duties, enable professional development account for constituency sizes.  Remuneration packages should be regularly reviewed by independent bodies to match evolving roles and maintain public confidence.  The current situation on the ground has been overtaken by events, where councillors were earning something like 115 which was equivalent to US$9 per sitting at the current official rate of exchange.  At today’s current rate, my proposal to achieve the Vision 2030 by His Excellency, Dr. E. D. Mnangagwa, is to bring Zimbabwe’s councillors compensation in line with international standards. There is need for a Statutory Instrument to mandate appropriate compensation parameters linked to responsibilities and constituency sizes. This would enhance compliance with international standards.

          It is my proposal that national legislation outlines basic salary, allowances and a performance-based bonus framework for our councillors. It is very sad to let this House know that the welfare of the councillors as we speak now, it is the responsibilities of the Hon. Members. They are funding their operations as they are regarded as the foot soldiers of our constituencies. Even during our campaign, it was broken down into three pieces where they were saying the head was the President and the stomach was representing the Hon. Member of Parliament and the councillors were referred to as the foot soldiers of the constituencies.

          The proposed remuneration will aim to cover basic expenses, opportunity costs and productive cost incurred by councillors in fulfilling their demanding official duty across potential vast wards. In summary, the proposed remuneration will empower oversight accountability, representation, monitoring and planning by councillors as envisaged under the Constitution and required for successful devolution. Remuneration should match councillors time, commitments and living costs. I so submit Madam Speaker Ma’am.

          HON. KARIMATSENGA-NYAMUPINGA: Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am and good afternoon. I thank the mover of the motion, Hon. Jere for drawing our attention to one critical structure paramount to an effective delivery to achieve Vision 2030. When it comes to our Ward Councillors throughout...

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER (HON. MACHINGURA): It is now the Hon. Speaker in the Chair.

          HON. KARIMATSENGA-NYAMUPINGA: Mr. Speaker, may you excuse me. I had not noticed that there had been change of hands.

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: You are excused.

          HON. KARIMATSENGA-NYAMUPINGA: Mr. Speaker, when it comes to our ward councillors throughout the country, urban and rural, there is a glaring disconnect between their mandates. The developmental responsibility and their capacitation and empowerment for effective delivery and successful implementation of their responsibilities – what we have and how we are treating our councillors is very sad and unfortunate. This is because it is like asking a starving person to carry food to feed others but not to eat it.

          I stand here to add my voice that Government must immediately address the welfare requirements of councillors to capacitate them to fulfill their devolved development duties. As pointed out by the mover of the motion, our councillors are the development foot soldiers. They are the channels to and from the people, seeing to the mobilisation of people, to support, participate and facilitate Government and community programmes. They travel long distances especially in my constituency, worse now after delimitation which produced bigger wards with some distances of about 20 kilometers in one ward. They cover the length and breadth of these wards on meagre resources with no transport.

          Mr. Speaker Sir, institutions and organisations are driven by structure. Councillors are a key component of Local Government structure. Their proper resourcing reflects on our Government attitude and seriousness to implement strategy and achieve Vision 2030.  Section 277 of our Constitution states that councillors have responsibilities for financial oversight, formulating by-laws, approving budgets, plans and service deliver targets. They also oversee administrators and establish development priorities that puts them at a centre of devolution success and development.

          The motivation to carry out the mammoth responsibility is found in their conditions of service. The welfare issues of our councillors remind me of mussel hierarchy of needs. Let us address the fundamental needs to allow the councillors to focus on the critical development issues. You cannot talk about clothes to a starving person. The Government recently reviewed their remuneration but when you look at it, and when you look at the figures, it is nothing to talk about. It is actually a mockery, giving a councillor an amount that is below USD80 equivalent, given the magnitude of the work that they do.

          The current sitting allowance which I think is actually a transport allowance as it is calculated according to the distances that these councillors travel, it is also a mockery considering the important work they do and also the distances that they cover. Councillors are also given loans to buy motor-bikes. Why give them loans for a motor-bike to carry out council work?  In some cases, the loan deductions would leave some councillors with nothing. The question is, why is it a loan when it is for council work? I understand in some councils, there is a residential stand for which they pay 40%, but that is not happening across all councils.      The councillors are the people who drive development when they cannot sustain their livelihoods. I really applaud the councillors, they are indeed unsung heroes. They work every day 24/7, driving million-dollar projects caring for the well-being of communities where they need some help to sustain themselves. They work every day 24/7, driving million-dollar projects, caring for the well-being of communities when they themselves need so much help to sustain themselves.  They have no ward offices.  So they wake up to people at their houses with issues ranging from food, school fees to health challenges.  Very few people will go to the village heads when they are hungry or when they need school fees for their children or any type of help that they may need within the community – they will all go to the Councillors.  They will end up feeding these people because they will have come to their houses.  They need council offices.

The issue of data is very essential Mr. Speaker Sir as councillors use their phones more than anyone else. 24/7 they will be communicating with their wards.  Government should provide data for councillors so that they discharge their duties diligently.

Mr. Speaker Sir, I recommend that the Ministry of Local Government and Public Works improves the welfare of our councillors.  Let us review their salaries to be competitive regionally, their sitting allowances, assist them to procure vehicles or maybe provide them with certificates to import what they can afford, or allocate council transport and access to descent housing, medical aid and funeral policy.  Sometimes, it is a sorry sight Mr. Speaker, when the councillors die in the ward; if the Member of Parliament does not stand up to the occasion, it will be something else.

They need to lead by example and demonstrate what a decent life is during and after service through a decent pension scheme.  If we are serious about development and empowerment to an upper middle-income society by 2030, we need to pay attention to the fundamental structures; the local authority structure that will enable us to deliver the results.  I thank you. – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.] –

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER (HON. MACHINGURA): Thank you Hon. Member.  I just want to get some clarity from you.  I think I heard you saying let us review their salaries.  Do councillors have a salary? – [HON.MEMBERS: No, they have allowances.] -  

*HON. TAFANANA ZHOU: Thank you very much Mr. Speaker Sir.  I stand in support of the motion that was tabled by Hon. Jere.  I applaud the motion because it has given us all a wake-up call-in terms of the welfare of our hardworking rural councillors.  All their duties are enshrined within our Parliamentary regulations and also includes local and urban authorities. 

So the ball is now back in our court for us to make sure we have adequate tools of trade in the diligent performance of their duties.  We tasked them with the mandate of looking after the welfare of our people in both rural and urban areas in our absence.  Lack of adequate tools of trade puts our councillors between a rock and a hard place, and at times promotes corruption. 

I therefore, stand in support of Hon. Jere’s motion.  Hon. Speaker Sir, our councillors should be awarded salaries as was alluded to by other Hon. Members.  Some councillors end up engaging in corruption due to poor remuneration when they end up illegally selling stands and acquiring secret individual stands in their various wards.  For instance, in Mberengwa, there used to be a councillor who used to unscrupulously sell and allocate stands.  It is my humble plea Hon. Speaker, that over and above the proposed funeral policy, Parliament and Government should set aside budgets for councils that are struggling financially.  An Hon. Member alluded to the fact that some councillors have not been paid for up to four or five months. 

Mr. Speaker Sir, I was deeply touched at the passing of Councillor Mapadza, may his soul rest in peace, a councillor in my constituency.  There was no evidence of his long service after having served the Mberengwa Council for 15 years.  He could neither afford to have a funeral policy or a decent coffin.  I therefore request the Minister of Local Government and Public Works to urgently look into this matter…

*THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Order, order.  Who is shouting behind my back? – [AN HON. MEMBER: NdiHamauswa!] -Hon. Members, may we all listen to the Hon. Member on the floor.  You may proceed Hon. Zhou.

*HON. TAFANANA ZHOU: Mr. Speaker Sir, I am not sure why Hon. Hamauswa is disgruntled.  Does Hon. Hamauswa not have councillors in his constituency?  This is a very important debate that we should all be focusing on…

*THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Order, order.  May you proceed with your debate Hon. Zhou?   

          *HON. TAFANANA ZHOU: I wanted it to be reflected in the Hansard that he has no interest in the welfare of councillors…

          HON. HAMAUSWA: On a point of order! I did not say I do not want councillors but it is known that the people who do not want councillors…

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Order! The Hon. Member who is debating is giving their views on the welfare of councillors in local authorities – [AN HON. MEMBER: Inaudible interjection.] – Hon. Member, I will throw you out of the House. Hon. Tobaiwa, get out of this House now.

          Hon. Tobaiwa left the House

          HON. TAFANANA ZHOU: Thank you, Mr. Speaker Sir.  What we ask for as the Parliament is that we make things fast so that our councillors get salaries in order to have peace whilst working for the nation.  Those councillors in Rural Districts Councils are the ones doing registers, so every day councillors are working.  So, if someone is working every day, they need a salary at the end of the month to sustain on.

          ^^HON. S. MOYO: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  Most of the issues have been addressed regarding the welfare of councillors.  The lifestyle of councillors is a sorry one yet they are the ones who are doing most of the running around for the development of the areas that we lead. 

          Firstly, our councillors should get duty free cars for their day-to-day running.  If ever there is a funeral, they need to assist the bereaved family but with the allowances that they are getting, they cannot do that.  When people from their wards need assistance, they will look forward to the councillors' help but with the meager allowances that they get, it is impossible.

          As a Member of Parliament, my plea is for the Government to see to it that councillors get housing allowances, some of our councils when they resume duty in local authorities, they will not have appropriate accommodation, hence the need to give them housing loans.  Yes, I agree they get residential stands but they will not have enough money to develop those stands.

          Local authorities need to craft policies to curb a lot of bureaucracy found in local governance. This bureaucracy impedes development in most areas.  I thank you.  

          HON. MUTOKONYI:  Thank you, Mr. Speaker Sir.  I rise to support the motion moved by Hon. Jere regarding the marginalisation of the councillors.  It is a fact that the councillors play a very key role in the development of our communities, both rural and urban development. As such, they are the foot soldiers who drive development in our communities.  Driven by our trajectories as a nation, Vision 2030, these councillors have got a huge task to ensure that the National Development policy is made to be accounted for by ensuring the implementation of such. It is very important Mr. Speaker that this implementation is done by these foot soldiers in our communities.

          So, it is very important to ensure that their welfare is well taken care of to ensure the best result.  I understand Hon. Jere highlighted the issues of motivation when he referred to one scholar, there are indeed various motivation strategies both intrinsic and extrinsic.  The extrinsic motivation relates to allowances and salaries for these councillors.

          Mr. Speaker, if you look at our rural communities, particularly in my community, I come from a farming community where the councillors have to manage the entire ward which stretches for up to 30km and the same councillors will not have bicycles, neither will they be having motor bikes nor vehicles. So, for the various Government programmes, it becomes very difficult.

          It is very also important to note that as they implement this, we start to see or hear the issues of corruption and some such are because of non-availability of basic resources which ensures they deliver their mandate.  So in an effort to avoid such, I do concur and buttress the motion that has been raised by Hon. Jere to ensure that their salaries or allowances should be looked into.

          Right now, I understand that local authorities were given a target to ensure they avail the master plans by April, if I am not mistaken.  This is quite a lot of work that involves these councillors to ensure that when they meet with their communities, they discuss the future plans of these wards.  That involves a lot of engagement and requires mobility.  It also requires some kind of financial support.  So it is very important that the councillors are actually the key people turning and implementing the Government programmes.

          Mr. Speaker, I will just quote from some research here which was done by Transparency International, where it says it was looking at the framework in line with the international standards.  It says Zimbabwe’s council allowances fall far short of international guidelines and best practices.  For instance, a survey by Transparency International Zimbabwe in 2017 found that over 80% of councillors felt their remuneration was inadequate to sustainably cover ward activities, travel costs, communications and professional development.  The Zimbabwe Local Government Association from their study also highlighted that huge variances in council budgets had capacities to pay meaningful allowances and this underscored the need for the national standards. 

It is very important Mr. Speaker that we need to look into this and particularly, our Portfolio Committees responsible for the local authority or local Government.  They need to discuss this key issue and probably come up with various proposals that could motivate our councillors for the future and betterment of our country.  I thank you Mr. Speaker.

          *HON. MAPIKI:  Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  Firstly, I would like to say I support the issue of allowances for councillors.  Councillors are doing a very important job in the different parts of the country; so they should be given some allowances to assist them such as what Members of Parliament get.  This will help them as they will have a source of livelihood.

          Some of you may ask where the funds to give councillors will come from.  Previously, most councillors had running projects that they were engaged in so that councils could carry out their mandate.  Some would have campfires, tourism and agricultural activities.  These would help in the funding of councils to assist them to assist councillors, but nowadays councils are surviving through charging rates and selling stands.  In developed countries, we see councils providing their own funding.  Therefore, councils should not wait for devolution funds in order to run, but should have income generating projects.  This should be looked into so that each council engages in activities where they can get funding from. 

If you look at the current situation, councils have failed to run their bottle stores or other projects that give them income.  The welfare of CEOs or engineers in councils must be the concern of the Government and not wait for council resolutions because for the past two years, most councils have failed to bring in funds from projects, but wait for devolution funds. 

          So this is where the issue raised by Hon. Jere sticks.  As Members of Parliament, if we put laws that CEOs should be rotated just like what happens in the police sector, this is what should happen.  Government should give advice to local authorities so that they also function and be able to pay their workers.  We have seen that now they are involved in land issues and those issues involving land barons. 

We should be clear that local authorities should function without expecting money from the fiscus because they may not get funds.  The local authorities have committees as far as I have seen according to their documents, but those committees are only meant for taking money, yet our councillors are supposed to be running around doing ground work and they should be able to get remuneration. 

Hon. Speaker Sir, I support this motion that the law should ensure that local authorities should carry out money making projects, but nowadays, it seems the local authorities are only focusing on devolution funds.  They are supposed to ensure that they make money and they should ensure that 70% of the revenue they collect or generate should be put into service delivery and 30% to be on expenditure, especially remuneration.  That is why sitting allowances are very meagre.  Right now, they are earning $7 to $9 as sitting allowances.  That money is useless.  Councillors are as good as directors, yet they earn much less than their workers.  That is why they end up being controlled by their workers because the workers earn more.  In the end, they end up being dragged into corruption.

          So I would like to support the motion raised by Hon. Jere, but Government should look into this issue.  I have realised that there are already some acts that only lack implementation.  That is why they are only looking at revenue collection and not generating any funds themselves.  I thank you very much.

          *HON. NYABANI: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  I would like to add my voice and speak briefly on this debate raised by Hon. Jere seconded by Hon. Nyamupinga.  Looking at local authorities, especially how the councillors are lagging behind, if you look at what the councillors do, they do a lot of work.  They work much more than how the council employees do because some of the work they do comes from the portfolios or committees that the councillors go through.  So, they spend a lot of time at work.  They attend meetings at council and they attend development meetings at wards.  If there are constructions, they attend to that.  Councillors rarely stay home.  Most of the times they are going around in wards because they are the ones responsible for the development in the wards, yet at the end of the month when they cannot do any other work, where they can earn a living, they cannot even afford to go to their fields and they earn ZW1 300 which is converted to USD 80.  They have yet a lot of other responsibilities.  They need to buy clothes and take care of their families, including sending children to school.  That USD80 is very little.  That is why you end up reading about the arrest of councillors because they end up parceling out land or stealing inputs like fertilizers or sometimes end up diverting revenue.  This is because they are struggling.

          The other thing is when they travel like where I come from in Rushinga, the wards are very big.  A constituency in Harare is the size of a ward in Rushinga, yet they are not even given bicycles.  This is a request that a councillor, as soon they are elected into office, must be given motorbikes just like Members of Parliament are given vehicles.  Sometimes we end up seeing councillors being given motorbikes because local authorities owe them their allowances.  These must be two separate issues.  A motorbike must be a separate package altogether.

          The other issue is accommodation. Councillors use very dilapidated accommodation.  They risk being injured as they try to go into the huts, yet they are responsible for all the development, distribution of all donations from donor community or inputs yet their homesteads will be very poor because USD80 cannot be used to construct a house.  Government should really consider that.  A councillor’s work is very important in terms of development.  At least they must be able to construct better houses and even if a councillor were to die, they should not leave a legacy of dilapidated huts.  They must be given stands as part of their package.  Sometimes in Rushinga, you see councillors being given stands because council cannot award them their remuneration.  They should be given stands just like what Members of Parliament get in terms of package.  As soon as they are elected, they must be given those packages.

          The most significant thing about this whole debate is that the councillor is responsible for all the development in an area.  Without a councillor, there is no development.  A councillor is responsible for accessing donor funding and coordinates Pfumvudza or inputs as well as revenue.  If they are not taken care of, all those things will be looted.  They end up thinking of looting because they do not have lucrative allowances or better remuneration.  Councillors must be held in high esteem and dignity.  They must be respected.   A councillor is as good as a foot soldier.  They are supposed to be dressed accordingly so that they are protected from temptations.  A councillor must stay at a good place,  use better transport facilities and their families must eat good food.  Kwashiorkor should not affect a councillor’s children.  I hope that by the end of this debate – by the time the Minister comes to address this, councillors’ issues would have been rectified.  With those few words, I thank you.

          HON. V. MOYO: Thank you, Mr. Speaker Sir.  I also rise to add my voice on the motion by Hon. Jere.  I believe a lot has been said. It is true that councillors are at the lowest tiers of Government, specifically Local Government.  I work closely with the communities who have unimaginable expectations.  Councillors are expected to assist on funerals.  They are expected to assist on school fees payment.  They are expected to even assist on medical bills.  They have massive responsibilities of running councils, some with budgets of over hundreds of millions of dollars.  They are even called to preside over tenders running into millions, yet recently they have only been paid an allowance just about $135 000 per month.  This leaves them very vulnerable to corruption, especially from bidders because of poor remuneration and motivation of their conditions of service. 

          The normal practice of determining one’s dues in most organisations is their level of influence in the decision-making body.  I believe councillors are at the apex in most of their local authorities.  Hence their remuneration should also be up to standard.  These councillors manage and supervise managers who are handsomely paid.  This is why you get in most councils; most managers end up capturing these councillors because our councillors are poor, hence their oversight roles within these local authorities are very much compromised.

          Mr. Speaker Sir, in closing I also want bring up this issue, councillors are equivalent to board members in any organisation.  The only difference is that their appointment is through an election. So it is my strong conviction that their welfare and their conditions of service should also be reviewed.  I know back in the days; the ministry would allow local authorities to determine what should be paid to councillors depending on their capacities. 

          So I think it is also prudent for the ministry to also explore ways. We know that not all authorities have the same capacity.  I believe we should also explore this route so that we try and make sure that these foot soldiers are also taken care of.  I submit.

          HON. KAMBUZUMA: Mr. Speaker Sir, I move that the debate do now adjourn.

          HON. N. NDLOVU: I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.

          Debate to resume: Wednesday, 6th March, 2023.

          On the motion of HON. KAMBUZUMA, seconded by HON. N. NDLOVU the House adjourned at Twenty-Eight Minutes past Four o’clock p.m.

 

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