Download is available until [expire_date]
  • Version
  • Download 130
  • File Size 247.74 KB
  • File Count 1
  • Create Date March 7, 2023
  • Last Updated March 7, 2023



Tuesday, 7th March, 2023

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





          THE ACTING SPEAKER (HON. MUTOMBA):  I have to inform the House that on Tuesday 28th February 2023, Parliament received a petition from the National Association Society of the Handicapped and Deaf People Trust and Organisations of Persons with Disability in Zimbabwe beseeching Parliament to exercise its legislative, representative and oversight functions and protect the rights of persons with disabilities in accordance with the spirit of the Constitution and the International Instrument to which Zimbabwe is part of.  The petition has since been referred to the Portfolio Committee on Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare.

 I also have to inform the House that on Tuesday, 28th February, 2023, Parliament received a petition from the Greater Hwange Residents Trust, beseeching Parliament to exercise its legislative authority through amending the Pneumoconiosis Act [Chapter 15:8] to ensure people in the vicinity of the coal mine industry receive medication and health checks up for the disease caused by coal dust.  The petition has since been referred to the Portfolio Committee on Mines and Mining Development. 


          THE ACTING SPEAKER: I have to inform the House that I have received a Non - Adverse report from the Parliamentary Legal Committee on Statutory Instruments Nos. 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19 and 20, published in the Gazette during the month of February 2023. 

          HON. MUSHORIWA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  My point of National Interest is in response to the fact that 2 days ago, one of our popular musicians in this country Winky D’s show in Chitungwiza was disrupted by the police.  A few hours after that, the show of another musician Baba Harare was also declined to be performed.

          Mr. Speaker Sir, musicians are the cog of our arts industry and they do give entertainment to all of us, hence I am requesting that the Hon. Minister of Home Affairs should come before this august House with a Ministerial Statement to explain what the situation is pertaining to our musicians, whether there is now limitation or ban that musicians can no longer perform and do their work without fear from being harassed.  Primarily, I say this because if you read the provision of MOPA, it does not require the sort of interference that we are actually seeing.  So this is my request that can the Hon. Minister of Home Affairs come before this august House and explain the position because it is actually a stab on our arts industry which if you check from the Hon. Minister of Finance, has actually been generating some resources towards our gross domestic product. I thank you.

          THE ACTING SPEAKER: Inasmuch as I have taken point of your national interest, may I remind you that tomorrow; Wednesday is the most appropriate day for you to pose that question.  Maybe before you pose that request, ask a question to the Hon. Minister himself.  I thank you.

          HON. NDUNA: Thank you Hon. Speaker, my point of national interest borders around the dilapidated, deplorable, disused state of our roads due to the vagrants of the weather and the incessant rainfall that has pelted our community.  Would it please the Hon. Speaker to request the Hon. Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development to come and give this House comfort in-tandem with ERRP 1 to 4 in so far as it relates to the rehabilitation, reconstruction, the maintenance, re-gravelling, rejuvenation and re-sealing of these roads.  In particular, seeing that we have a lot of private individuals out there who are able to rehabilitate and reconstruct these roads at the expense shouldered by the miners, farmers, local authorities and to a limited extent, the Ministry of Transport.  Therefore, also recoup their monies or get their payment in the future from these entities that I have spoken about.  Would it please the Hon. Speaker to request that the Hon. Minister comes and gives us guideline on policy as it relates to private individuals rehabilitating these roads and putting carriageway markings and maintaining them for the good order of the citizens of Zimbabwe and also recoup their payment after they have rehabilitated.  I thank you.

          *HON. DUTIRO: Thank you Hon. Speaker. I stand up here to raise an issue of national importance with regards to deregistered vehicles by ZINARA. Those vehicles are no longer allowed to use the roads because they are unable to be registered.  If we look at this, ZINARA does not even know how many vehicles are in this country or even know any vehicles that have not renewed their licences.  So those vehicles can no longer pay licence fees.  If I were to sell a vehicle, I also pay tax on top of that vehicle.  So there are several reasons why people are failing to register their vehicles.  The Hon. Minister of Transport and Minister of Finance should come to this House to explain to us why they are de-registering vehicles.  What are they doing to assist people to be able to register vehicles?  I thank you.

          THE ACTING SPEAKER: I got a lot on your point of national interest.  May I also advise you that tomorrow being a Wednesday, may you take advantage to pose a question to the Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development so that he can give you a clear answer.  Maybe on that one, this is where you could raise a request for him to make a Ministerial Statement.

          (v)HON. MASENDA: Thank you very much Hon. Speaker. My point of national interest is on the fact that the 2023 tobacco selling season is commencing on 8th March at the auction floor and there is nothing much for the contract sellers.  My concern is that I am reliably informed that the price of tobacco has not changed from what it was in 2022 and what it was for the last two decades…

          THE ACTING SPEAKER: My you lower your voices Hon. Members.  Hon. Member on my left, I cannot hear what the Hon. Member is saying.  Go ahead Hon. Masenda.

(v)HON. MASENDA:  My concern is that when farmers are come  to the market,  they incur huge losses arising from the fact that all inputs that they used have gone up.  Fertiliser has gone up; labour has gone up, water for those who use irrigation has gone up, electricity has gone up, I can name everything that has gone up except for the price at which farmers are going to sell the tobacco which has remained static over two decades. I therefore urge that TIMB as the regulating authority   intervenes to  ensure that tobacco farmers are rewarded adequately for the effort and loss which they incur in the production of tobacco in order for Zimbabwe to get the much needed foreign currency. I also want the Minister of Agriculture to at least re-visit prices in terms of the production of tobacco for it to be sustainable for farmers.

          THE ACTING SPEAKER: I also appeal to you Hon. Member that tomorrow is a very good day for you, ask face to face with the Minister.  My concern with your point of national interest is what you have actually alleged as ‘reliable source’.  You actually confirmed that the auction floors are opening tomorrow, how reliable is this source that you are talking about?  There is nothing that has gone on sale yet; how is it that you get to know on the price?  Maybe you need to rephrase your question for tomorrow so much that you can ask a relevant and pertinent question for the Minister to answer you.  Thank you very much Hon. Masenda.

          HON. MADZIMURE: Mr. Speaker, on 18th February, 2023, the Government announced that it was going to enact a Statutory Instrument to enable EMA to sub-contract private players to collect refuse.  The reason advanced by Government was that refuse collection situation was bad.  The proposed arrangement is that EMA will contract private companies to collect refuse and EMA would then bill the City of Harare for those services.

          EMA is a statutory body which is responsible for ensuring the sustainable management of the environment and making laws to that effect.  The role of the Ministry of Local Government is to make sure that local authorities have their share of the devolution funds and also facilitating the local authorities to be able to fund themselves, to be able to equip themselves.  So the situation we now have is that EMA which has no mandate to collect refuse in Harare is going to do so.  It is going to contract private players without the involvement of the City of Harare but at the end of the day, EMA would then want the City of Harare to assume the responsibility of paying private players whom they have got no contract with. 

          This is also against the Public Finance Management Act.  So we would want the Minister of Local Government to come and explain why they have not capacitated the City of Harare to a level where it can have its compactors, graders, front-end loaders to remove the garbage because the arrangement is going to cost the City of Harare and the residents will not be part of that contract.  So there will be a dispute between the residents and the Local Government authorities and even EMA itself.  EMA cannot have its cake and eat it.  It has the responsibility of making sure that the refuse is collected and all the laws are observed.  Where it thinks a new law has to be introduced, EMA has that responsibility.  So I would beg you Mr. Speaker that the Minister of Local Government comes to this House with a Ministerial Statement explaining to this House why he would want a Statutory Instrument to collect refuse in Harare.




THAT WHEREAS, Subsection (3) of Section 327 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe provides that an Agreement which is not an international treaty but which has been concluded or executed by the President or under the President’s authority with one or more foreign organisations or entities and imposes fiscal obligations on Zimbabwe does not bind Zimbabwe until it has been approved by Parliament;

 AND WHERAES, a loan Agreement between Government of the Republic of Zimbabwe      and OPEC Fund of US$15

million for part   financing of the Smallholder Agriculture Cluster Project to be implemented in Mashonaland Central, Mashonaland East, Mashonaland West, Midlands and Matabeleland North; and

 NOW THEREFORE, in terms of section 327(3) of the Constitution, this House resolves that the aforesaid Agreement be and is hereby approved.

 Mr. Speaker Sir, the NDS1 running 2021 to 2030 prioritises the recovery of the agricultural sector which is key to the country’s economic growth.  The Government of Zimbabwe and OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID) signed a loan agreement of US$15 000 on 12 July 2022 for part financing of the small holder agriculture cluster project.  The loan has a tenure of 20 years inclusive of a five year grace period and will attract a service charge of 1% per annum.

The Smallholder Agriculture Cluster Project is targeted at increasing agricultural production, productivity, especially by smallholder farmers, which enhances food and nutrition security, income, increase opportunities for value addition and the development of agro-business value chains.

The smallholder agriculture cluster project

Mr. Speaker Sir, the project shall benefit poor smallholder farmers participating in value chains selected through a stakeholder consultative process and calls for expression of interest to value chain led enterprises.  The project will be implemented in the following five out of the 10 provinces – Mashonaland Central, Mashonaland East, Mashonaland West, Midlands and Matabeleland North.

The project’s goal is to realise increased household incomes and improved nutrition through sustainable transformation of the smallholder farming sector while the development objective is to increase equitable smallholder participation in market-oriented and climate smart value chains.

The smallholder programme will transform smallholder agriculture and increase productivity and rural incomes by adopting effective production and marketing strategies including organising targeted wards into clusters to allow for effective aggregation and economies of scale in smallholder based value chain development.  It also allows for the establishment of coercive agriculture producer groups and associations.  It also allows for connecting small holder farmers to profitable value chains, markets and financial services.  It also allows for the developing of small holder capacity in climate production systems, marketing and business skills and also the revitalisation of production and market access infrastructure.

Additionally, the SACP is designed to support efforts to create a conducive policy and institutional environment for private sector led small holder agriculture transformation.  The project will achieve through the implementation of the following components;

  • Inclusive value chain development.
  • Climate proofed value chain infrastructure.
  • Policy and institutional support and project coordination.

Project financing and loan repayment

To support the programme, Government negotiated and signed a US$15 million loan with OPEC Fund on 12th January, 2022 for part financing of the small holder agriculture cluster project.

The loan will be utilised for transformation of the smallholder farming sector through value chain investments by smallholders and agri-businesses.  Commercialisaton of smallholder agriculture in key urban and rural agricultural production and food trading corridors as well as infrastructure development which includes climate proofed irrigation systems, rehabilitation of feeder roads and multipurpose community water supply and the creation of a conducive policy and institutional environment for smallholder agriculture transformation.

Loan terms

As I have already alluded to, the loan amount is US$15 million and the purpose is to finance smallholder farmers’ participation in value chains in order to increase household incomes and improve nutrition through a sustainable transformation of the small holder farmer sector.

The project will be implemented, as I have already alluded to, in Mashonaland East, Mashonaland Central, Mashonaland West, Midlands and Matabeleland North and the conditions precedent.   The loan should be ratified by Parliament, the interest is 1%, the commitment is 0.5% per annum and the tenure as already mentioned is 20 years, the grace period is 5 years and on repayment modalities, repayment of principal and interest shall be made from the budget.  The repayment frequency – principal and interest payments shall be made twice a year on 15 May and 15 November of each year, which means it is going to be 30 semi-annual installments.

The expected benefits of the projects

Agriculture is one of the key pillars for Zimbabwe and the support for smallholder farming will go a long way in achieving the thrust of the NDS1 of food security.  The implementation of the project will result in the following benefits;

  • Improved access to water and road networks in the targeted areas through infrastructure development.
  • Employment opportunities to 15 240 non-members of agriculture producer groups and 13 000 agriculture producer group members.
  • Provision of technical services to the agriculture producer groups and agribusinesses for upgraded production capacity and integration into the value chains;
  • Promotion of the participation of women-led micro enterprises and value chain agribusinesses; and
  • Facilitation of access to financial services for APGs and agri-businesses.

          Project Implementation

          The Ministry of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Development will be the executing agent for the implementation of the project.  In order to ensure smooth implementation of the project, a Project Management Unit (PMU)( has been established under the Ministry to oversee day to day operations of the project.

          The project was earmarked to commence in 2022 and will be implemented over a period of five years.  Mr. Speaker, I therefore, commend the OPEC Fund Loan Agreement for the Smallholder Agriculture Cluster Project in the sum of US$15 million for the approval of this august House. 

          HON. NDUNA:  Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  I just want to add my voice to the motion moved by the Hon. Minister of Finance through his Deputy Minister Hon. Chiduwa.  I applaud the tenure of the loan which is 20 years and the grace period which is five years.  I have got ten reasons that a loan of such magnitude and of such pittance interest percentage can motivate farming and can be used as an antidote, as a panacea to lack of use of our land. The buying of equipment is one of them, so recapitalisation of equipment on the farming areas that the Hon. Minister has alluded to is applaudable. 

          The second issue is the purchase of supplies, this is one other way that we can utilise this loan for; for the very reason Mr. Speaker Sir, because of that minute interest.  According to Section72 (7)(c), we do not have land cost, we have taken our land and there is no need to capitalise the land cost.  We can also refinance all the loans that we had before using this one which has minute interest so that falls on the false issue that we could use this loan for. 

          Mr. Speaker Sir, on the issues of the product marketing campaigns and also advertising, we can use this loan for that because we have a five-year grace period and also making improvements on the land and rehabilitation of that land.  These are smallholder farming entities in order to rejuvenate them and make sure that we do not only get subsistence out of them but also humongous economic benefit.  Mr. Speaker, Sir, investing in growth is one other issue and it falls on the seven ways of utilising this money because it comes at a very low cost. 

          Mr. Speaker Sir, we can also weather the storm using the same money that the Hon. Minister has spoken about.  Also the issue of covering operating cost falls on number 9. Lastly, let me talk of rebuilding effect to the land after the natural disasters.  These are called acts of God, the issues of El Ninos, the issues of the vagaries of the weather but here is an opportunity to rehabilitate that land using this money so  that we have an opportunity to actually turn subsistence into those economic global and local benefit.  Not only just for those smallholder farmers, but also for the nation so that we use that as a pedestal and platform for the good of Agenda 2030.  I thank you for giving me this opportunity.

          HON. BITI: Mr. Speaker Sir, Zimbabwe is a sovereign country that has been independent for 43 years and our GDP is around US$18 billion.   For us Mr. Speaker, to sit in this House seeking to ratify a loan of US$15 million, there is something wrong.  We are failing somewhere.  US$15 million is not even a loan that can be borrowed by Econet, Delta Corporation, LaFarge Cement, Old Mutual, the top listed companies, the blue chip companies of this country; they do not borrow US$15 million.  It is petty cash.  Small SMEs that want to develop will borrow US$15 million but we are a country. How can we borrow US$15 million?  It is an embarrassment; it is absolutely ridiculous that we can borrow US$15 million as a sovereign republic. 

          Mr. Speaker, let us deal with the fundamental issues that make us borrow US$15 million from this Arab Bank.  Let us deal with the fundamental challenges in our economy that reduces us to the embarrassment of our esteemed Minister of Finance, a whole Professor signing a loan agreement of that amount.  If it was for him, his business and his bank we would say fine but not for the Republic of Zimbabwe.  Mr. Speaker Sir, let us deal with those challenges.

          Mr. Speaker, in 1980, the GDP of Zimbabwe was US$7 billion, in 1980 the GDP of Kenya was US$7 billion, in 1980 the GDP of Zambia was around US$3.86 billion.  Fast forward, 2023, the GDP of Kenya Mr. Speaker Sir is now US$264 billion, the GDP of Zambia US$64 billion and we are stuck around US$18 billion.  Why do we have this developmental deficit; why do we have this growth deficit?  Those are the issues that we need to address.  I addressed some of them last week when you were sitting on the Chair. We are not united, we do not have a common vision.  We pursue politics of exclusion, politics of intolerance and that is the challenge.  We beat each other up, we prevent each other from having rallies and meetings, our politics is ugly, that is what we need to address. 

          Therefore, we have no problem with this loan, the problem we have is we cannot be reduced to such levels of ridiculousness that a sovereign republic, a whole county with a flag and a national anthem can borrow $15 million – that is the challenge we have.

          Mr. Speaker Sir, there is also a compliance issue, when the Minister borrows, he must make sure that he synchronises that debt with the rest of the Constitution and the rest of the law. We have a debt cap spelt in Section 11 of the Public Debt Management Act Number 4 of 2015.  Section 11 says that the aggregate debt to be borrowed, any loan to be borrowed must be such that it does not increase the national debt to be over 70% of Gross Domestic Product.  So the Minister must then come when such a loan agreement is before this august House for ratification - he must show the impact on the borrowing limit in Section 11 of the Public Debt Management Act.  So he must show it does not impact on the ratios. 

          At the present moment, our debt ratio is already 112% of GDP.  We are already over by 50%.  For Parliament to have a proper debate, the Minister must show that this loan does not infringe Section 11 of the Public Debt Management Act.  He must show that the USD15 million does not push the aggregate limit imposed by this Parliament of 70%.  In my submission, we are already on 112%.  So, the honor is on him to show that this debt fits in with the debt limits prescribed by the Public Debt Management Act.  This is so because we are already saddled with unsustainable sovereign debt. 

Only last week, we had high powered structured debt meeting in Zimbabwe led by President Chisano of Mozambique, Cde Adesina of the African Development Bank (AFDB), so, the Minister must show the impact of this debt on that process. The only way he can show is how it impacts on the aggregate debt limit spelt out in Section 11 of the Public Debt Management Act. 

Therefore, in the absence of those aggregate figures, I submit that this debate is premature but in principle, we have no problem with this loan.  We support our farmers, I am a farmer myself, we support this but let us comply with the law and most importantly, let us not be reduced to a begging nation.  We used to be a breadbasket, reduced to a begging basket, it is not good enough. I thank you.

          HON. MUSHORIWA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  Firstly, I need to re-state what Hon. Biti has said, USD15m loan is not a figure that as a country we should be borrowing.

 Primarily, as a nation, we are a country that has got the capacity to generate sufficient resources to finance our farmers. If you look at the presentation by the Hon. Minister, he advised this august House that the intention of borrowing USD15 million was to support the poor farmers in the five provinces that he has mentioned.  The only provinces that were excluded is Manicaland, Masvingo, Matabeleland South, the south axis was removed from benefiting from this scheme. 

However, if you do a mathematical analysis of the quantum, the USD15 million, if you look on the five provinces, you want to say possibly we have got a minimum of 3 million of poor farmers in those five provinces.  So, if you divide 3 million into 15 million, it means each farmer is likely to get USD5.  This is the reason why we are simply saying this amount of money is too little.

Worse still, the Hon. Minister here was telling us that they have actually set some committees within the Ministry to run this project. You cannot, with all due respect, create several committees to just oversee this small amount. 

I have real challenges and real problems in the manner in which the Government is financing agriculture. You know Mr. Speaker Sir, that in this august House, the same Hon. Minister brought a Financial Adjustment Bill of more than USD10 billion and that Bill lapsed; they never brought it back to Parliament. Not only that, they also brought another Bill, ZWL160 billion and then it lapsed.  Then Mr. Speaker Sir, how do you run the country when Treasury itself cannot follow the Constitution or follow the prescription of the Public Finance Management principles as enshrined in Chapter 17 of the Constitution or even the Public Finance Management Act.

Mr. Speaker Sir, we know that there is Pfumvudza, the Presidential Scheme but if you check the manner in which all those schemes are being run, it leaves a lot to be desired.  You know that even the provision of inputs to those beneficiaries of Pfumvudza, some of them got Compound D fertilizer very late, some are now receiving the top as we are speaking.  The method that we are using in terms of financing agriculture does not take this country forward and this is the reason that I find it so difficult that the Hon. Minister and I can understand why the Hon. Minister, when he started his presentation, he appeared hesitant, he was not that confident.  I think it speaks to the quantum of the amount but more importantly, I think we are not doing sufficient when it comes to our agricultural sector, the financing model.  I just pray, because this is USD15 million, it may not look huge and one would actually be forgiven to simply say let us just let it pass but the question that Hon. Biti raised, you need to read this figure in conjunction with the debt position of Zimbabwe.  We are over indebted and I think the Hon. Minister understands that and we cannot continue as a country to borrow.  It does not matter whether we borrow a small quantum.

Lastly in this loan amount, there is no provision for the Hon. Minister to then come and I think we need to have an undertaking that we need to have probably a yearly report for the next three years, on the performance of this loan.  We are not just interested in terms of then repayment bi-annually as he was saying on 15 May and 15 August or November, we are also interested to then say, if you had borrowed the 15 million and you have said that you want to utilise this money for this project.  We need an annual performance appraisal so that at least we see whether there is real basis of continuously getting these loans.  I thank you.

          HON. MADZIMURE:  Thank you Mr. Speaker.  I am happy that the Minister responsible for monitoring and evaluation is here, mukoma vangu.  I want to understand the relationship that exists between those who will be administering the loan and those who are responsible for monitoring and evaluating the performance of Government projects.  What lacks Mr. Speaker is an understanding that for any loan to perform, it must be anchored on research and you actually have evidence that this is precisely what you want the loan to do.

          Mr. Speaker, unless you have roughly those targeted people in those five provinces and how they are living today; you will not be able to measure the performance or the impact that the USD15million is going to make. If you know the targeted population, you would then know that the USD15milion is too little for it to impact on the living standards of those people.

          So Mr. Speaker, when we borrow, like in any business, you must borrow for a specific reason and within the shortest period of time you must be able to start observing some changes in the lives of the people whom you intended to help.  So Mr. Speaker, we can celebrate that we now have a loan or money available but because of the quantum of the loan, it makes it so easy for the loan to do almost nothing.  The Ministry of Finance and Economic Development must be in the habit of continuously coming back to this House and report on the performance of these loans.  The loans may appear to be affordable in terms of repayment but they can only be affordable if we have specific targets or key result areas of their performance.

          In most cases, people eventually completely forget about this loan until it is time to repay. The loan comes and we start paying without any reference to the performance of the loan.  So Mr. Speaker,  I would want the Hon. Minister to assure this House that his office will continuously return to the same House that authorised the borrowing to report on progress as far as the performance of the loan is concerned and to have evidence of people who will say, ‘this is the programme that transformed our lives.’  I thank you.

          THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF FINANCE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT (HON. CHIDUWA):  Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  The submission by Hon. Nduna; he applauded the position taken by the Government to secure the loan from the OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID) to support our small holder farmers.  I think this is very critical for us as a country. 

          Why?  Because if you check our NDS1, one of the critical pillars is the pillar on food and nutrition security and on growth and stability again; this is also going to add to our GDP.  So I think the submission by Hon. Nduna is well taken and aids our realisation of NDS1 and Vision 2030.

          Then the submission by Hon. Biti, he is saying our country has got a GDP of around USD18 billion and surely we should not borrow such a small amount.  I think what I would want to bring to the attention of Hon. Members; which as a country we should not take for granted, I know the moment we mention the issue of sanctions, people think this is a small issue.  The country is under sanctions and we have limitations in terms of what we can do as a country.  The Hon. Member mentioned that we are burdened; we have a hamstrung that is over us because of our arrears and level of debt that is around USD17.6 billion and with that, we are also struggling to service that debt as a country.

          So the issue of the USD15million, we need not to take it in isolation. If Hon. Members recall, last year I came to this august House with a similar request for a ratification of the loan agreement between the Government of Zimbabwe and the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD).  The IFAD is around USD35.7million and the USD15million. So, the IFAD and OFID are co-financing.  Then we have a contribution that is coming from the Government of Zimbabwe, the private sector and farmers; if we take everything in totality, it would be around USD67million but we also need to take into account that the loan is not going to individual farmers. 

          I said that this is a Smallholder Agriculture Cluster Programme (SACP) where we are taking farmers, bring them together as a cluster and then develop them around an irrigation scheme.  This, I think we also need to take note that we are not targeting individual farmers but these are clusters.  So if we take the IFAD and the OFID, the USD35.7million that was ratified by Parliament last year, bring in the USD15million then I think this is where we can again comment on whether it is too small or not.  I think for us as a country that is under sanctions, USD15million is not a small figure and we need it as long as it is going to develop our farmers.

          Then the other issue is on the need for us to be compliant.  This is very critical, which is coming from the Hon. Member.  Again, I bring the same issues where he says, why are we in the situation that we are in?  The Hon. Member mentioned something very critical to say, we need to work together as a nation.  I think the situation that we are in, part of it is because at some point we were not working together as a nation.  I think if we continue working together as a nation, this is going to assist us.  This loan is very important to us.  I would implore Parliament to ratify it also because Parliament ratified the other component of USD35.7 million.  So, there is  co-financing.  The moment the other 15 million is not ratified, then it means the other 35.7 million will then fall off.  I think it will be a dis-service for Parliament not to support our small holder farmers. 

          Hon. Mushoriwa raised more or less same points as presented by Hon. Biti to say we have got the capacity to borrow but why is it that we are borrowing such small amounts.  I think I have mentioned to say our issue is, we are hamstrung with sanctions and we are also developing our capacity as a country that is under sanctions.  He mentioned that why is it that the loan agreement is just covering five provinces – it is not like that.  If you check, Parliament again ratified a loan agreement under OFID and Small Holder Irrigation Revitalisation Programme (SIRP) – that loan agreement covered Matabeleland South, Masvingo, Midlands and Manicaland.  Now, we are also saying given that Parliament is going to ratify this one; it means we are then going to cover all the provinces but the SIRP covered the other provinces where Hon. Mushoriwa said we seem to be excluding them - so all the provinces are covered.

          Why are we having committees – if you check the provisions of the loan agreements, it is a requirement that we should have committees.  We were trying to be compliant to the conditions as set by OFID and IFAD. 

The Hon. Member also mentioned the issue of late disbursements especially on inputs.  This may not relate directly to the ratification but I would want to mention that on late disbursement; it is the disturbance that happened in the fertiliser supply chains.  We had to import some of the components of the fertiliser that we are using here in Zimbabwe; because of the war that is in Russia and Ukraine, this is also what can be attributed to the slow supply chain movement.  The other issue is for us to be able to balance our cash flows.  We have mentioned that as Government we are running a cash budget and we only release funds on condition that those funds are there.  When they are not there, there is nothing that we can do.  It is a combination of all that.  I think the Hon. Member understands that.   The system does not take the country forward. 

At the moment, following our Vision 2030, we have said we want our economy to be private sector led and one issue that we are grappled with, with regards to the financing model for agriculture is to ensure that we cloud in private sector investment.  It is true that we may not have a sustainable system where the Government will continue to pay for grain and all that.  We have said going forward; we would want the private sector to be part of the whole supply chain process.  We continue to improve on the funding models and we continue to look at it.  I am sure as stakeholders; we will continue to also take into account your submissions.

The Hon. Member also said that there is need for the Ministry of Finance together with the Ministry of Lands to come and report on the performance of the loan agreement from time to time.  I think this is fairly in order.  You are playing the oversight role and it is fairly in order for Ministry of Finance to come to the august House to report on the performance, not only of this loan but other loans as well.

Hon. Madzimure linked the presence of the Hon. Minister who is responsible for monitoring and evaluation to say to what extend do you monitor the administration of these loans.  I do not know Hon. Speaker if you are going to give the Hon. Minister a chance to also explain himself as asked by Hon. Madzimure.  The loan is too small.  For now the loan of US$15 million for us is not too small – it is a very significant amount which I think is going to make a difference to our farmers and people who are living in the rural communities.  I think it is important for the Hon. Members to look at the targeting which has been done.  We were informed by the ZIMVAC report.  This report gives us the poverty map to say these are the areas that are vulnerable and there is need for us to come up with targeted programmes and this is what we are doing as Treasury and as Government.  I think this loan is going to make a difference.

As I have said, there is need for us to know that there is co-financing.  The US$15 million is part of the US$35.7 million which was ratified by Parliament last year.  We can only move forward if the missing component which is the US$15 million being offered by OFID has been ratified by Parliament. 

Hon. Speaker Sir, I now move that this agreement be approved.

Motion put and agreed to.



          HON. T. MOYO: I move that Orders of the Day, Numbers 2 to 5 on the Order Paper be stood over until Order of the Day, Number 6 has been disposed of.

          HON. L. SIBANDA: I second.

Motion put and agreed to.



THE ACTING SPEAKER: Hon. Members, it would appear Mr. Speaker is all by himself. We do not have anybody who can take the chairmanship position. I am sorry. We can defer it until such time we will be two of us in the House or maybe it will be deferred until tomorrow.

HON. NDUNA: I move that Committee Stage be deferred to tomorrow.

HON. L. SIBANDA: I second.

Motion put and agreed to.

Committee to resume: Wednesday, 8th March, 2023.



HON. NDUNA: Mr. Speaker Sir, I move that Orders of the Day, Numbers 7 to 23 on today’s Order Paper be stood over until Order of the Day, Number 24 has been disposed of.

HON. L. SIBANDA: I second.

Motion put and agreed to.



Twenty-Fourth Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on the Delegation of the Bilateral Visit to India from 5th to 12th December, 2022.

Question again proposed.

HON. SHAMU: Mr. Speaker Sir, I rise to thank all the Hon. Members who contributed to this very important motion. May I also take this opportunity Mr. Speaker Sir, to thank the Department of ICT of Parliament for having been able to show the interview of the Hon. Speaker when he was in India. On that note, Mr. Speaker Sir, I do move that the motion be now adopted:

Motion that this House takes note of the Delegation Report of the Bilateral Visit to India led by Hon. Advocate Jacob Francis Nzwidamilimo Mudenda, Speaker of Parliament from 5th to 12th December, 2022 put and agreed to.



HON. NDUNA: Mr. Speaker Sir, I move that we revert to Order of the Day, Number 23.

HON. L. SIBANDA: I second.

Motion put and agreed to.



Twenty-Third Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on the Report of the Public Accounts Committee on non-compliance with regards to the submission of financial statements to the Auditor-General by some Local Authorities.

Question again proposed.

HON. NDUNA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. On the face of this report, it looks very innocent but deep inside, deep down, it is mired  in a lot of controversy and a lot of town clerks and heads of departments in the local authorities are taking advantage of non-submission of their financials to the Auditor General’s Office to avert and avoid scrutiny. Having seen that, the 2019 Auditor-General’s Report, your sub-committee on Local Government, Public Accounts sought to understand how they could treat this matter once and for good.

Mr. Speaker Sir, the non-submission of financials to the Auditor-General’s Report speaks to the heart, the pith, the core of delinquent behaviour and the Criminal Law Codification and Reform Act is not silent about such behaviour. If at all, it does chastise such delinquent behaviour and there are a plethora of sections that are dotted around Sections 134 up to Section 176 of the Criminal Law Codification and Reform Act. Some of those sections speak to the heart of such behaviour which is criminal abuse of office.

Mr. Speaker Sir, if you hide these financials and you do not bring them out for audit, on the face of it, it looks very innocent, as though somebody is delayed in their workmanship but deep down inside, there is a lot of delinquent behaviour that speaks to naivety, arrogance and a lot of inconsistencies that is in the local authorities, that is championed by these town clerks and these officials The import or the extent of it is that there is financial haemorrhage that is bound to occur. For instance, 2019, about 59 local authorities did not submit financials for audit. Fast forward, 2020, there is about 69 and 2021, there are 78. It means Mr. Speaker Sir, as long as we do not crack the whip as the Committee and as Parliament, there is bound to be no support for the Auditor-General, who is an ex-officio member according to the Constitution. Her mandate is derived from Section 309 and Section 310. It speaks and talks to the appointing authority. His Excellency has appointed her to make sure that she cleans out the behaviour in the local authorities. So non-submission should be treated as criminal abuse of office. These people should be suspended from work, they should exit those places of placement not through natural attrition but via Chikurubi en route to their homes Mr. Speaker Sir. If they have farms, they should be taken away from them because these people want to plunder the resources of this nation through non-submission of these financials for audit by the Auditor-General.  I have stood to support the issues and recommendations by the Committee in order that we bring this conduct to a screeching halt.  Having said that, this report was for 2019 and we have since received the 2020 Auditor-General’s Report and 2021 Report on Local Authorities.  I call Mr. Speaker Sir, if it pleases you, to wind up this report and request that it be adopted according to how it was presented.  I thank you.

          HON. MPARIWA:  Hon. Speaker Sir, let me begin by thanking the Chairperson of the Committee for tabling this very important report in this august House and all the Members that have spoken to the report.  Hon. Speaker, you will note that it is not the first report but I think many Public Accounts Reports have been tabled in this august House.  My worry is that there is lack of implementation in terms of the recommendations.  I hope and trust that since this report put emphasis on operations and service delivery, that we will be able to see some kind of implementation and some changes in the way the recommendations have been shared within the ministry.  I hope and trust that will also improve in terms of the style and work and approach in the local authorities.       Hon. Speaker Sir, when you talk local authorities you are talking about people and focusing on service delivery and I only hope that the responsible Ministry will be able to monitor the implementation in terms of those local authorities that have been mentioned in this report.  I think he has to move it procedurally so I can second the adoption of the report. I thank you.

          THE ACTING SPEAKER:  Thank you very much Hon. Mpariwa.  Unfortunately, I cannot break the procedure.  It must be the mover of the motion who should move for adoption. However, we still have other Hon. Members on virtual who would want to debate.

(v) HON. NYOKANHETE:  [Part of Speech not recorded due to Technical Fault] - Otherwise they viewed the reasons why these local authorities are just failing to do what is normal, to submit the financial reports.  I have realised that these local authorities which are failing are just doing it and they continue to do it because it seems there are no stiff penalties which are charged to the accounting officers.  This is now causing serious problems because they now act as if it is a normal thing.  Non-submission of financial statements can have serious repercussions. 

The first problem is fraud, which can happen and never be investigated.  The fraudsters can even get to the point of resigning without this fraud being detected. So that is the problem we can encounter, especially when these accounting officers fail to submit the financial statements and also they can retire or die before any audit has been done.  So it can work to their advantage but it can disadvantage the public and residents who are always contributing funds, especially to the councils.  So I call for stiffer penalties to be meted on those accounting officers who are failing to submit the financial statements for auditing.  This is a very serious offense.

Those who have submitted their financials but have some negative reports are doing something as compared to those accounting officers who are failing even to submit the financial statements.  These are the greatest offenders who need to be dealt with and there is need for stiffer penalties, especially for those who fail to submit their financials.  I am also an accountant by profession before I became a politician.  Sometimes if you look closely, the unscrupulous accounting officers can hide financial statements so they need those stiff penalties to enforce submission of their financials.  I thank you Hon. Speaker Sir.

          HON. T. MOYO: I move that the debate do now adjourn.

          HON. L. SIBANDA: I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.

          Debate to resume: Wednesday, 8th March, 2023.



          HON. T. MOYO: I move that we dispose of Order of the Day Number 26.

          HON. L. SIBANDA: I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.



          Twenty Sixth Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on  the Report of the Public Accounts Committee on the analysis of the Auditor General’s 2020 Report of the Harare City Council.

          Question again proposed.

HON. T. MOYO: I move that the debate do now adjourn.

          HON. L. SIBANDA: I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.

          Debate to resume: Wednesday, 8th March, 2023.



          HON. T. MOYO: I move that Orders of the Day, Numbers 2 to 11 be stood over, until Order of the Day Number 12 has been disposed of.

          HON. L. SIBANDA: I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.



          Twelfth Order read: Adjourned debate on motion in reply to the Presidential Speech.

          Question again proposed.

HON. MAKOPE: Thank you very much Mr. Speaker for giving me this opportunity to debate on the SONA. The President presented on the issue of the Pfumvudza inputs and I want to touch on that aspect. I want to applaud the Government’s efforts in the provision of agricultural inputs. Farmers for the Pfumvudza projects; at its inception, many farmers were very reluctant to join this programme as they could not believe that agriculture can be successful without ox-drawn ploughs. However, through the continued and determined lectures from the agricultural extension workers, many farmers are now in full swing, implementing Pfumvudza farming technology.  I kindly request the concerned Ministry to avail seed in time such that our farmers can catch up with the season.

I also thank the Second Republic for a job well-done relating to the Harare–Beitbridge Road which cuts through Mwenezi East Constituency, the constituency that I represent. The road construction exercise has seen the employment of a number of local youths who have been unemployed for long. Within the constituency itself, the Ministry of Transport, through the Emergency Road Rehabilitation Programme has been tirelessly working on road rehabilitation that has seen a fairly improved road system. The Ministry of Transport is already working on the Rutenga–Zvishavane Road. This road will accentuate development in my constituency owing to the reduction of the distance for transportation of platinum and other goods from Midlands as this will shorten the road linking the Midlands and the Harare–Beitbridge Road.

However, there is Mapi–Neshuro Road, commonly known as Tempee, which is a core-link road from Mwenezi District Growth Point which is Neshuro. It is just 12 km from Beitbridge Highway and this road is crucial since it links the highway to the district hospital at Neshuro Growth Point. This is a district hub which has a number of essential service offices for the district. If this road is worked on, even with low cost surfacing, this will forever remain on the hearts of the people of Mwenezi. They will be forever grateful for such a stride from which Government of the people can assist. Hon. Speaker, I want to say the Mapi Road can also be among those emotional projects in our country. The people of Mwenezi have been expecting a lot from our Government to look at that road seriously.

We also appeal to our esteemed Government to rehabilitate or resuscitate the passenger train. We used to have our Bulawayo to Chiredzi passenger train. That train used to connect all the centres from Garare, Sarahowe and Rutenga up to Chiredzi, assisting our people in the constituency. I think the Government can look into that and resuscitate those services to our people. I also want to appeal to our Government to introduce the ZUPCO buses into the rural communities.

Mwenezi wants to commend Government for the erection of Tugwi-Murkosi Dam, one of the largest inland water bodies in Zimbabwe.  The 2014 Tugwi-Murkosi national disaster which displaced thousands of people significantly increased the number of people in Ward 13 under Mwenezi East Constituency.  This dam has affected the macro-economic conditions of Mwenezi and has seen an improved pattern of the precipitation received.  This dam saw relocation of 30 040 households from Chivi to Chingwizi, which is Mwenezi although as of now the number of households has risen to 30 060.  This has seen an increase in population numbers for Mwenezi East Constituency and has increased the strain on the available social services and amenities. Hon. Speaker, I want to make it clear that if these issues are addressed then the people of Mwenezi will embrace any future infrastructural development programme knowing Government definitely takes care of its own.

          As a constituency, we visited Bubi-Lupane irrigation scheme in Matabeleland North, where Vision 2030 accelerator model type of agriculture is being implemented and has improved the conditions of the people of Lupane.  We also learnt a lot as it was a look and learn visit of the people of Mwenezi.  We also appeal to our Government to address the relocation of the people of Mwenezi or the irrigation schemes in Mwenezi, looking at that particular model we have seen in Bubi-Lupane.

          At the moment we want to appreciate what is being done by the Ministry of Lands.  They are already on the ground re-organising the people of Chingwizi but my appeal is to expedite the process so that our people can erect permanent structures in Chingwizi.  The people of Mwenezi always thank the Government for the indigenisation policy, which saw the Land Distribution Programme; Mwenezi is one of the beneficiaries of this exercise.  A lot of agricultural activities are taking place in these resettlement areas.  However, there are still a lot of things that Government need to take care of. 

          We want to thank Government because through the devolution funds, a clinic is being erected at Petronella, one of the resettlement areas. Classroom blocks have been built in most of the resettlement areas from the devolutions funds but there is still need for the official registration of the schools as many are still recognised as satellite schools, 22 years after their establishment.  If they are officially registered, it will be a positive spin-off that they can manage their affairs independent of their mother schools and increase the pace for development.  This will go a long way in ensuring that this need is catered for.  The bureaucracy in re-pegging and registration of schools should be reduced such that these satellite schools can be pegged and assist the people in resettlement areas.

          We also have the Ministry of Women’s Affairs which has been very instrumental in its mandate for women empowerment, in conjunction with its sister ministries, the Ministry of Small and Medium Enterprises and Ministry of Youth.  This has seen a number of women venturing into businesses and there has been a marked reduction in domestic violence cases.  Various programmes have been launched through the initiatives of the First Lady, Dr. Auxillia Mnangagwa.  Women have been trained in making detergents, cakes and tailoring.  Government also, through the Women’s bank has provided a platform for the disbursement of financial loans to women.

          However, there is a concern among the beneficiaries that the loans would work better if they are in hard cash and not local currency since most suppliers opt for the hard cash.  The other issue is that the loans seem to be long in their processing and this frustrates the beneficiaries.  Mwenezi Rural District Council joined hands with the Ministry of Women’s Affairs and made arrangement for about 400 women to sell their wares, which is a very positive development in the Government’s women empowerment programme in Rutenga.

          Mr. Speaker Sir, employment prospects have been diminished due to the closure of mines in Zvishavane and Chiredzi.  Residents in this community have instead turned to small scale and artisanal mining in Mwenezi.  Mwenezi has been mainly alluvial but there are reports of mineral reserves and it is our wish as a constituency to have these reserves prospected and made open for artisanal miners.  This is instrumental in nipping in the bud the problem of employment that has seen the greater chunk of our economic activity group migrating to neighbouring South Africa, Namibia and Botswana to look for menial jobs.          Youth capacity building is pre-requisite to ensure that we retain the skilled experts of our constituents.  All interventions by Government and its partners should be in consultation with the youth so that they will partake in projects. 

          Mwenezi East wants to applaud Government for adhering to its funding principle of placing emphasis on innovation to achieve rural industrialisation.  The Marula Processing Plant situated at Rutenga Growth Point, the first of its own kind, spearheaded by the National Bio-tech Authority and Masvingo Poly-Technical College, is a testimony that Government is committed to economic development.  It was commissioned by His Excellency in 2021.  This has seen transformation of people’s lives.  It also made Rutenga a potential industrial hub, which would see an agglomeration of other industries, most conveniently since Government approved the dry port concept.  The plant created employment for youths.  They employed around 230 youths.  The community was collecting the marula fruits and selling it to the plant at USD5 per 50 kg of the premium quality of the fruit.

          Wards 13, 14 and 18 were the major suppliers of marula fruit since this project’s inception.  This has improved the lives of families and also provided them with foreign currency since payment of the fruit was pegged at USD per 50 kg. Plans are underway to expand the project with 100 hectares of land already identified.  This project has a potential of turning Mwenezi East into one of the producers of finest liquor in Zimbabwe and even beyond borders.  It is endowed with indigenous trees, mupfura from where the marula fruits are derived.  The tree is ubiquitous in the whole of Mwenezi and the potential benefits for every family are huge.  There is need though for the transportation matrix of the mapfura/marula to be sorted out for every benefit.  The indigenous knowledge system of Mwenezi is now being used for financial benefit, a huge concept for the new curriculum.

          Mr. Speaker Sir, owing to low rainfall amounts in Mwenezi East has serious water woes.  Since my inception as a Member of Parliament in 2022, we have managed to facilitate rehabilitation of 24 boreholes.  Three drilled boreholes catered for communities with serious water problems.  We also thank the Government for the provision of CDF since we managed to rehabilitate Machena Dam in Ward 13.  Government could also facilitate the drilling of more boreholes.  This will improve the livelihood of communities because water is important for domestic use in agriculture.

Mr. Speaker Sir, it is also very plausible for me to mention the need for a viable communication network.  Most of the areas have poor network, henceforth, I make the call for the need to erect more network boosters to ensure that every corner is covered.  There are health facilities in schools with no reliable cellphone network which is very dangerous considering the importance of these facilities in this day and age.

Under the health sector Mr. Speaker Sir, my constituency has a fair number of clinics although there is need for more to serve some communities who walk long distances to seek health services.  It is necessary to have clinics in Ward 5 at Sarahuru, Ward 4 at Pambe and Ward 13 at Ponora, Mufula, Pambe and Murowa.  Currently, Mwenezi East Constituency is serviced by nine clinics which are Neshuro, Dine and others.  We have Neshuro Hospital and Matibi Hospital.

Neshuro district is the hub of all these other health facilities and there are major setbacks that they have been derailing health delivery including the need for a tarred road leaving the hospital to the highway.  The Government should put in place measures to enable ambulances at the district offices to attend emergencies within the district.  People have lost lives owing to fuel scarcity for  ambulances and numerous breakdowns.  There is also need for improved drug supplies at the existing health centres.

Mwenezi East Constituency, Hon. Speaker, has benefited from the Rural Electrification Programme.  However, 66% of Mwenezi still needs electricity especially in schools since the Government has embraced information and technology.  Schools in Ward 4 like Hebron High and Ruzobwe Primary need electricity for convenience as well as teaching and learning to bridge the gap between the rural scholar and the urban scholar.

Electrification programme as initiated by Government should continue.  I want to applaud our esteemed Government that recently, Chief Murobe’s homestead in Chimbudzi Township and Piccinini Jawanda Irrigation Schemes have been connected courtesy of Government initiatives.  We have the small and medium enterprises chamber in Mwenezi who arranged a market for selected places like Chimbudzi, Mushava, Turn P, Lundi, Marirangwe and Neshuro to sell their farm produce and other goods. 

This has lessened the burden on the locals since they do not have to travel to the growth point or even towns since some of the merchants will be as far as Harare and Chiredzi.  These market places which are called Barcosis, as the locals call them, have improved the lives of communities and they gather on predetermined dates and people walk to these places to buy and sell.  It is my hope that Government will assist these merchants by providing permanent infrastructure at such places so that their goods will not be affected by bad weather.  At the same time this will enable council also to collect tax to be used for other developments. 

Let me also commend the Government, Mr. Speaker, for the training skills it is giving to our youths such as in irrigation, building and other skills.  The Ministry of Youth, Sport, Arts and Recreation is also commended for committing to the construction of Petronella Clinic with Youth Voluntary.  Mwenezi East also has an abundance of youths talented in arts and craft as demonstrated by the fact that some went to an arts and exhibitions fair in Victoria Falls on 11th October, 2022.

The Ministry of Women’s Affairs, Community, Small and Medium Enterprises has also been promoting a localised bank system where groups of women put their money together, lend to others and earn interest.  Those that borrow the funds have managed to expand and start their businesses.  There are also women’s groups that have been created and they are given loans from the Women’s Bank.  So far three groups have been formed at Rutenga, Guramatunhu and Neshuro.

Mr. Speaker Sir, I would like to applaud the DDF for gully reclamation and other developments which they are undertaking in the constituency.  Currently, they have been managing and rehabilitating the Chingami Bridge.  We want to thank Government for those developments under DDF.  Mr. Speaker Sir as a former teaching practitioner I would be remiss if I do not address…

[Time limit]

HON. T. MOYO:  Hon. Speaker, I move that the Hon. Member be given an additional five more minutes.

HON. L. SIBANDA:  I second.

Motion put and agreed to.

HON. MAKOPE:  On the recruitment of teachers Hon. Speaker, I make a passionate appeal on our Government to recruit local teachers where necessary especially for primary education which in some cases requires those with knowledge of local languages.  This is especially true for those communities where minority languages like Shangani, Chikalanga and Venda are spoken. The major problem we are facing on that front as a district is that teachers, those whose home areas are far, simply assume duty and start asking for permission to transfer back to their homes.  That means we almost always do not have experienced teachers in many schools in our areas.

Mr. Speaker Sir, I want to thank you so much for giving me this opportunity to comment on the State of the Nation Address given by the President giving more reference to my constituency which is Mwenezi East.  One of the largest constituencies in Masvingo Province with many challenges which I think  Government can also look at considering that the largest part of my constituency is a rural resettlement area where water, transport and other social amenities need to be addressed.  I thank you. 

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

          HON. MAHLANGU:  I second. 

          Motion put and agreed to.

          Debate to resume: Wednesday, 8th March, 2023.

          On the motion of HON. NDUNA seconded by HON. L. SIBANDA, the House adjourned at Seventeen Minutes past Four o’clock p.m.

Leave a Reply

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

Post comment