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Tuesday, 7th May, 2024

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


(THE HON.  SPEAKER in the Chair)



THE HON. SPEAKER: I would like to acknowledge the presence in the Speaker’s Gallery, of Members of Parliament and staff from the Parliamentary Budget Select Committee of the Parliament of Namibia – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.] - The delegation is on a benchmarking visit.  Hon. Members from Namibia and staff, you are most welcome to our Chamber - [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.] - I thought you could stand up so that the Hon. Members can see you. 

          Hon. Members from Namibia stood up.

          THE HON. SPEAKER: There are the members there. I want to thank you very much.


          THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Members, I have to  inform the House that on Friday, 3rd May, 2024, Parliament was notified by Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC), that in terms of Section 67 Subsection (III) of the Electoral Act [Chapter 2:13], Mutimbanyoka Kiven and Mashavave George, Members of the Zimbabwe African National Union Patriotic Front (ZANU PF) Party were duly elected as Members of the National Assembly for the Harare East and Mt. Pleasant Constituencies respectively – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.] – This is with effect from 28th April, 2024.

          Section 128 (1) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe 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 now call upon the members to subscribe to the Oath of Loyalty – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.] -


           HON. MUTIMBANYOKA KIVEN and HON. MASHAVAVE GEORGE subscribed to the Oath of Loyalty as required by the law and took their seats – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear,] – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, there is only one Chair. I do not need some assistance at the moment. 


THE HON. SPEAKER: I have to inform the House that Parliament received a petition from the Coalition of Market and Liberal Solutions (COMALISO), beseeching Parliament to exercise its legislative role by enacting legislation that gives life to the tenets of the 2013 Constitution on property rights and the right to shelter. The petition has been referred to the Portfolio Committee on Local Government, Public Works and National Housing. 


          THE HON. SPEAKER: Just to add on a little reminder; when you are in Committee meetings within the precincts of Parliament or outside, you are expected to observe the dress code as outlined in Standing Order No. 80 and I noticed a Member who was in the Committee on Budget and Finance was not properly dressed.  I have forgiven him for this time but in the future, I shall not exercise that indulgence.

          *HON. NYABANI: Good afternoon Mr. Speaker Sir. My point of national interest is that, firstly, I would like to thank the President Dr. E. D. Mnangagwa, the Minister of Finance and his Deputy and the RBZ Governor for introducing ZiG as a currency. There is no country that can develop without using their own currency.

          I have travelled and seen that the President has done well for us to have our own currency. From my own investigations as the representative of people of Rushinga, I have visited the wholesalers to see how they are using the new currency and how people are transacting. I have visited two wholesalers for my investigations. When it comes to a box of jade soap, Munella Wholesalers are charging US$11.00 and in ZiG it is costing Z181.50. When we convert it using the exchange rate of 1:14, it is going for US$12.96. When it comes to Gains Wholesalers, a case of self-raising flour is costing US$16.30 and in ZiG it is Z295.19. If we convert that to dollars, it will be US$21.00.

          I have come into this august House that as people of Zimbabwe, we are the ones who should honour our own currency. Basic commodities in Harare are expensive, yet they do not attract transport costs. You find wholesalers are putting 18% mark up on their products. What will that commodity cost when it gets to Plumtree or Rushinga?

          HON. MATEWU: I rise on a point of order. The Hon. Member from Rushing is debating and he is supposed to give a point of national interest. He is wasting our time. I think it is better that he puts it in a motion or talk to the Minister himself. I thank you.

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Member, your point of order is misdirected.

          *HON. NYABANI: The issue that I am referring to is that people are concerned and it is affecting the general citizenry of the country. I am urging you Mr. Speaker Sir, that the 11 companies that were convicted - I have evidence to that effect even if the police or RBZ asks for it. I can take them to these wholesalers that I am talking about. These wholesalers are not accepting ZiG on all the basic commodities. Even if you go to Mohammed Mussa, you can verify these facts for yourself.

          HON. MURAMBIWA: Thank you Hon. Speaker.  Good afternoon to you.

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Good afternoon, please stick to your time.

          HON. MURAMBIWA:  Hon. Speaker, I rise on a point of national interest which is around the good work being done by the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe, Cde E.D Mnangagwa, through the Ministry of ICT, Postal and Courier Services.  We are witnessing base stations being erected in various parts of the country and network coverage has greatly improved.  Network connectivity is reaching every corner of the country and this is in line with the President’s mantra of leaving no one and no place behind.  In March, during question and answer session, I posed a question to the Minister of ICT about the switching on of the base station which is at Jichidza in Ward 12, Zaka North Constituency.  The Deputy Minister, Hon Phuti, promised that in no time he would work around that.  In less than two weeks, the base station I am talking about was switched on and the residents of Zaka North, especially those coming from Ward 12 of Nyakunhuwa area are now enjoying the sweet fruits of the Second Republic.  So, I want to commend the good work which was done by the Deputy Minister of ICT.  I thank you. 

          *HON. CHIKOMO:  Thank you Mr. Speaker for according me this opportunity to speak.  My point of national interest is in line with road traffic accidents.  I am pained by the accident that happened yesterday involving school children who were going back to school.  What is Government…

          *HON TAFANANA ZHOU:  On a point of order.  The Hon Member is raising the same point of national interest which I once raised and was answered by the Minister in this House.

          *THE HON. SPEAKER:  In Shona, they say dzokororo inesimba.

          *HON. CHIKOMO:  Thank you Mr. Speaker.  I was saying I am pained by the accident that happened yesterday involving school children who were going back to school.  I am saying, what plans is Government putting in place for those errant drivers?  What should be done so that the accidents are controlled because some of the drivers will be under the influence of alcohol and they will have been hired just for the purpose of ferrying children to and from schools?  I was really pained because some of the children were badly injured, some of whom are future leaders.  Also, those groceries which the parents had bought went to waste in the accident.  I think we should come up with a law to curb those accidents.  I thank you.

          HON. SAKUPWANYA:  Good afternoon Mr. Speaker.  My point of national interest refers to the need for language classes to be availed here at Parliament such that Hon. Members of Parliament may learn any of the 16 official languages in Zimbabwe.  Even though Hon MPs hail from different constituencies, when we speak in this august House, we speak to and on behalf of the entirety of Zimbabwe.  In this regard, the availability of these language classes means that MPs can fully participate in debates raised in the House in their respective and various languages and MPs do not miss out on vital information that may affect their respective constituencies.  I appreciate and acknowledge the move to introduce ICT training in this august House so that MPs can keep abreast of technological advancement.  So, through the same, I ask that your esteemed office actions these language classes so that MPs do not miss out on vital information that is shared.  It is not only for MPs, but also for Ministers who come during question and answer session.  I thank you.

          THE HON SPEAKER:  Thank you very much Hon. Sakupwanya.  I thought you could hold back until the motion is debated and you would come in extensively with more time to try to justify what you have just said now.  I suppose you will be there to debate further on your observations when the motion is debated later. 

          HON. MHETU: Good afternoon Mr. Speaker Sir.

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Good afternoon.

          HON. MHETU:  My point of national interest is on regularisation of informal settlements by the Ministry of Local Government and Public Works.  This issue was once raised in this House, but there are no notable changes which we have seen.  This has prompted me to rise on a point of national interest:-

          URGENTLY calling on the Ministry of Local Government and Public Works to expedite the regularisation of informal settlements across our nation;

          RECOGNISING the challenges faced by residents in these settlements and the need for clear guidelines, I propose the following measures:

  • Streamlining in regularisation processes to minimise bureaucratic hurdles and consolidate departments. All departments dealing with regularisation should be available at one place, allocating sufficient resources for surveys and infrastructure development as well as engaging with residents for their input and concern.

FURTHERMORE, we need a clear deadline for regularisation, penalties for non-compliance, including arrest and public awareness campaigns about the deadlines. If we adopt these measures Mr. Speaker Sir, we will provide residents in informal settlements with a pathway to legal recognition and improved living conditions, while also ensuring a controlled and planned approach to urban development. I thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.



HON. TOGAREPI: Mr. Speaker Sir, I move that Orders of the Day, Number 1 to 5 be stood over until Order of the Day, Number 6 has been disposed of.

HON. N. NDLOVU: I second.

Motion put and agreed to.



HON. SHAMU: Mr. Speaker Sir, I move the motion standing in my name that this House takes note of the Report of the Delegation on the Election Observation Mission to Russia on Russian Presidential Elections led by Hon. Shamu from 13th to 20th March, 2024.

HON. MAKWIRANZOU: I second Mr. Speaker Sir.

HON. SHAMU: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. I rise to present the Report of the Portfolio Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Trade on the Election Observation Mission to Russia.


1.1    Mr. Speaker Sir, I led a Parliamentary Portfolio Committee, spearheaded by a Parliamentary Delegation on an election observation mission to the Russian Federation from 13th to 20th March 2024. The visit was initiated following an invitation extended by the Federation Council, and the State Duma of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation to the Parliament of Zimbabwe. This endeavour serves to strengthen the bond between the two sisterly legislative bodies and promotes the progression of Parliamentary Diplomacy. The initiative is in alignment with the nation's foreign policy objectives, which aims to foster relationships with the international community, hence adhering to the engagement and re-engagement agenda, further strengthening our diplomatic ties.

1.2    The Chairperson’s delegation comprised of the following Members,

  • Mercy Mugomo- Member, Foreign Affairs Committee
  • Caleb Makwiranzou- Member, Foreign Affairs Committee
  • Sen. Angeline Kumbirai Tongogara- Chairperson, Thematic Committee on HIV and AIDS
  • Sen. Robson Mavenyengwa- Chairperson, Thematic Committee on Human Rights.

1.3    The delegation observed Russian Presidential Elections held from 15 to 17 March 2024. Its mandate was governed by the guidelines set forth by the Central Election Commission, a counterpart organisation to the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission.


2.1    The Russian Federation's election legal framework includes the Constitution, establishing a basis for credible elections through citizens' rights and obligations, and Federal Laws, providing detailed guidelines on election management. Article 3.3 of the Constitution of the Russian Federation notes that the supreme direct expression of the power of the people shall be expressed through referenda and free elections.

2.2    In accordance with the Constitution of the Russian Confederation, the Federation Council of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation, by Resolution No. 678-SF of 7 December 2023, scheduled the election of the President of the Russian Federation for 17 March 2024. The CEC decided to conduct voting over a period of three consecutive days, namely 15, 16, and 17 March 2024, with polling commencing at 0800 hours and concluding at 2000 hours each day. The decision to have a three-day polling period was made by the CEC after thorough consultations with the electorate. The majority of respondents supported this option as it offers greater flexibility for voting and has the potential to increase voter turnout rates.

2.3    The President of the Russian Federation is elected every six years through universal, equal, and direct secret ballot (Constitution Article 81.1). The President has a six-year term renewable once. To be eligible for the Presidency election, candidates must be at least 35 years old and should ordinarily have been resident in Russia for a minimum of 25 years. Additionally, candidates must not have foreign citizenship or residence permit in a foreign country, neither at the time of the election nor at any time in the past. Previous legislation expected presidential candidates to belong to a political party, however this requirement was removed …

HON. MAMOMBE: On a point of order Mr. Speaker Sir.

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

HON. MAMOMBE: Thank you. Mr. Speaker Sir, I rise on a point of order, Standing Order Number 19 read together with Standing Order Number 24, that when Committees are travelling on Parliament business, be it international trips or local trips, those Committees must be balanced. They must be very inclusive, including gender composition, including political parties. As the Hon. Member goes through his report, I take note that all the Members who travelled to Russia, there was no representation from the Members from this side. Hon. Speaker, we would need an explanation why such a composition without inclusivity was allowed to travel. I thank you Mr. Speaker Sir – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

THE HON. SPEAKER: That is an administrative matter. That will be looked into. Thank you.

HON. SHAMU: By a 2020 Constitutional amendment to allow independent candidates to contest, party candidates must have a minimum of 100,000 nominators while an independent candidate must have a minimum of 300,000 nominators to be considered by the CEC. 

2.4    The current President, His Excellency Vladimir Putin, competed against the Communist Party’s Nikolai Kharitonov, Leonid Slutsky of the Liberal Democratic Party, and Vladislav Davankov of the New People Party, as illustrated in Table 1.

Table 1: 2024 Presidential Candidates for the Russian Federation

Candidate name


Political Party

1.    Vladislav Davankov

40 years

New People Party

2.    Vladimir Putin

71 years

Independent candidate

3.    Leonid Slutsky

56 years

Liberal Democratic Party

4.    Nikolay Kharitonov

75 years

Communist Party


2.5    Russia has fully harnessed the use of technology and digitalised its voting system. The country utilises Electronic Voting Systems (online voting) through the internet portal of the Central Election Commission, a sub system of the State Automated System of the Russian Federation, “VYBORY”. The SAS “Vybory” has fourteen subsystems, providing automation of all stages of the election process. The system is completely autonomous from the global internet and securely protected from any external influence. Data is fed into the SAS “Vybory” internet portal through an air gap that excludes direct connection to the internet. Additionally, more than 3 500 specialists who regularly upgrade their qualifications in specialised areas ensure the uninterrupted operation of the SAS “Vybory” across Russia. It is interesting to note that, the use, operationalisation and modernisation of the SAS, Vybory is provided for by the Federal Information Centre at the Central Election Commission of the Russian Federation.

2.6    The automation of electoral processes increased efficiency, reduced costs, makes the voting process more accessible to all Russian citizens. It contains and processes information on election commissions, election campaigns, participating candidates and parties, election funds, complaints and appeals received and the number of citizens voting in an election.

2.7    The portal provides an opportunity to view the data of protocols of each of the hundreds of thousands of Precinct Election Commissions. The portal has services that allow users to get information on polling stations where they are included, location of polling stations, candidates and parties participating in elections and the results of the election.

2.8    The Voter Register, one of the major subsystems of the SAS, Vybory, contains a constantly updated database of all voters in Russia. This subsystem generates voter lists, including applications for mobile Voting, and voting outside the polling station/remote voting. As of 1 January 2024, the total number of voters within the borders of the Russian Federation was 112,309,947, while the number of voters registered outside the Russian Federation was 1,890,863.

2.9    It is noteworthy that, in order to cater for citizens who advocate for casting votes through ballots as a secure and transparent method, the Russian Federation has continued to uphold the implementation of traditional paper-based voting systems. Subsequently, polling stations have the necessary equipment for both E-Voting and conventional voting methods. This arrangement allows candidates to exercise their right to vote through a method of their preference. This approach improves the overall efficiency, fairness, and representation in elections.

2.10  Voting at the election of the President of the Russian Federation was held at 94 000 polling stations. Additional opportunities were provided for the realisation of the active suffrage of citizens of the Russian Federation, which included remote electronic voting and voting outside the voting premises.

2.11  In Russia, voters are afforded the opportunity to exercise their voting rights remotely through the "Mobile Voter" technology. This allows voters to request inclusion in the voter list at any polling station, irrespective of their current location, and to cast their ballot at a convenient polling station, regardless of their registered place of residence.

2.12 The option of voting outside of the designated polling premises, commonly referred to as voting at home, is granted to individuals who are unable to physically attend their designated polling station on election days due to valid reasons such as illness, disability, caregiving responsibilities, or other legitimate circumstances. To qualify as an eligible home voter, individuals must formally apply to the Precinct Election Commission by means of a written request, verbal communication (via telephone), or the submission of a request through trusted relatives or acquaintances.

2.13  Individuals with special needs and conditions are able to exercise their electoral rights in the Russian Federation due to the implementation of social policies aimed at ensuring that all public infrastructure facilities are accessible. Polling stations are equipped with specialised equipment and information materials to facilitate voting for individuals with special needs. Sign language interpreters are provided on voting days, and volunteers offer comprehensive assistance to voters with special needs. Additionally, the utilisation of Mobile Voter technology allows individuals with special needs to pre-register for inclusion in the voter list at the most convenient polling station. Importantly, a significant majority of voting precincts, specifically 90%, are situated on the ground floors of buildings for easier access.

2.14  The voting, counting, and result-establishing process is documented through the use of video surveillance and recording. These recordings serve as a means for candidates and political parties to defend their interests in the event of complaints submitted to election commissions and courts. The retention period for video recordings is a minimum of one year from the official publication date of election results.

2.15 Vote counting is conducted through the utilisation of sophisticated Ballot Processing Complexes (BPCs). These are automated tools for counting of votes, collection of paper ballots and printing of the final report of the Precinct Election Commission, as well as its duplicates. Stakeholders involved in the electoral process hold these BPCs in high regard. Most importantly, the results are known in just a few minutes, as the processing of ballots, checking of control and other ratios of the protocol data is automated.


3.1    The delegation observed the election process at seven polling stations, five in the Central administrative district of Moscow and two in Kankova region. All polling stations operated from 8am to 8pm for the duration of the election period. They were situated on the ground floor of existing facilities like schools, libraries, and public buildings for easy access.

3.2    Each polling station displayed posters introducing candidates in the order specified in Table 1. Furthermore, posters detailing regulations for voters and observers were also present. These posters provided a summary of electoral laws and regulations, as well as penalties for any violations.

3.3    The polling stations were uniformly equipped with voting materials and equipment for E-Voting, conventional voting, and voting at home. Additionally, they were furnished with portable, mobile digitalised electronic devices and ballot boxes to accommodate voters wishing to cast their votes from home or at locations outside of designated polling stations.

3.4    Electronic voting was accessible to all registered voters via a website, accessible through the CEC online portal on laptops and smartphones. Voters simply log in on the portal and cast their vote by clicking on their preferred candidate. At polling stations, online voting was done through a digital online booth. The voting process begins with the electronic scanning of the voter's identification document, followed by selecting their preferred candidate.

3.5    All visited polling stations had high-resolution video surveillance cameras and security personnel stationed nearby for added security.

3.6    Media outlets provided objective and balanced reporting on elections, helping to ensure voters have access to fair and accurate information.

3.7    The electoral process in Russia was comprehensive and facilitated participation of all citizens wishing to vote. The CEC implemented measures to enable citizens living abroad, those away from their registered location, individuals wishing to vote outside polling stations, and residents of remote areas to cast their votes.

3.9    Electronic voting was favored by the youth demographic, while the elderly population preferred manual voting. There was a notable presence of elderly women voting manually at polling stations compared to other demographic groups.

3.10  The election environment was peaceful, with fair and impartial procedures being upheld throughout the process.


4.1    The conduct of elections in the Russian Federation reflected a harmonious relationship between different political parties, communities, and interest groups, fostering a sense of unity and cooperation among citizens.

4.2    Russian citizens are patriotic and trust their democratic institutions, namely, the Central Elections Commission and law enforcement agencies. They facilitate fair and transparent electoral process.

4.3    The Russian Federation strategically leverages electoral events to showcase itself as a leading tourist destination. International observers were afforded the chance to explore the distinctiveness of Russia and its prominent tourist sites through a virtual reality presentation at the Zaryadye Park media centre. Additionally, international observers were escorted on guided bus excursions around the city of Moscow and had the opportunity to visit the museums inside the Kremlin.


5.1    The delegation capitalised on the EOM to conduct a comprehensive assessment of operations at our embassy in Moscow. A number of operational shortcomings were identified, encompassing understaffing; a fleet of vehicles not meeting recognised diplomatic standards, and a reliance on leased premises.  

5.2    Staffing levels at the embassy are currently below optimal capacity, especially in key positions such as those of second Consular, Trade Attaché, and Tourism Attaché. The vehicular assets at the embassy are also lacking, with three vehicles present, but only one in reliably functioning condition, a five-year-old BMW. Additionally, the Ambassador's vehicle, procured eight years ago, is presently out of commission.  In light of these findings, it is imperative that immediate steps be taken by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Trade to address the identified deficiencies and reinforce the operational capacity of the embassy in Moscow.


6.1    The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission should conduct a thorough research on the electoral system utilised by the Central Elections Commission of the Russian Federation with a view to adopt the same for Zimbabwe’s next elections by 31 December 2024.

6.2    The Ministries of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, and Local Government and Public Works should liaise with their Russian counterparts on a potential land swap deal for the construction of Zimbabwe’s embassy in Moscow by June 2025.

6.3    The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Trade should appoint a second Counsellor, Trade Attaché, and Tourism Attaché at the mission in Moscow by 31 December 2024.

6.4    The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Trade should acquire a new vehicle for the Zimbabwean Ambassador in Moscow, and possibly upgrade the current vehicle fleet at the mission by June 2025.


The 2024 Presidential elections in the Russian Federation were conducted in a peaceful and transparent manner, embodying the core principles of democracy. The successful utilisation of advanced technological tools for voting underscored a significant advancement in democratic processes amidst the era of artificial intelligence. This seamless amalgamation of technology with electoral procedures serves as a benchmark for other nations aspiring to champion democratic norms and foster transparent electoral outcomes. The elections not only underscored Russia's dedication to democratic ideals and good governance, but also established a new and exemplary standard for future electoral endeavours, especially the Presidential vote. I thank you.

          HON. MAKWIRANZOU:  Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  I rise to second the motion moved by Hon. Shamu on the Report of the Election Observer Mission for the election of the President of the Federal Republic of Russia.

          Mr. Speaker Sir, as indicated by Hon. Shamu, the election was mainly digital.  Though polling station based, one could vote anywhere but the voter’s name would be blocked in the other voters’ roll at once so that one could not vote twice.  This was possible because the Russians have got their own internet systems.

Secondly Mr. Speaker Sir, those voters who were unbale to go to the polling stations would apply to vote from their residents.  Small ballot boxes would then be taken to these people’s residents but would be opened at the polling station.  Mr. Speaker Sir, there was no voter’s ink as we know it here on our fingers.  In our own opinion, there is room for research and adoption as this is a waste of money to import this ink in the Zimbabwean voting procedure.

Mr. Speaker Sir, the elections were free and fair.  At every one of the seven polling stations we visited, the voters were jovial showing that there was no discrimination and that the election was free and fair.  At the end of the election, the four candidates publicly signed the results and there was no rancor from the losers showing that they accepted the results.

Mr. Speaker Sir, there is room for Zimbabwean research.  It is our opinion that the system could be researched on with the hope that it can be adopted in Zimbabwe with a few digital amendments.  I thank you Mr. Speaker Sir for allowing me to second the Chair, Hon. Shamu.

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Sorry Hon. Members.  We are just clearing some small administrative issue.  In terms of Standing Order, Number 69 (6), “a Notice of Motion may be given by a Vice President or Minister or the Attorney-General between any two items of business”.  So, there must be a motion to adjourn the debate for that to happen.

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

          HON. DR. MAKWIRANZOU:  I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.

          Debate to resume: Wednesday, 8th May, 2024.

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Minister of Justice!

The Hon. Minister of Justice having risen to leave the House.


THE HON. SPEAKER: What is happening now? Hon. Minister!

          HON. TOGAREPI: The Minister is going to the Senate.

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): Hon. Speaker, the Deputy Minister is there, it is allowed…

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  That is not the issue Hon. Minister.  I had been advised that you were going to move...

          HON. Z. ZIYAMBI: Apologies on behalf of the Chief Whip.  He mixed up.

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Initially, I was informed it was the Deputy Minister.  Then, I was informed that the substantive Hon. Minister Ziyambi is here, he shall give the Notice of Motion.

          HON. Z. ZIYAMBI:  Thank you very much.  The Deputy Minister is going to move the motion.  Thank you, Mr. Speaker Sir.

          THE HON. SPEAKER: You are taking leave, I suppose?

          HON. Z. ZIYAMBI: No, I am conversing with those, and I will listen attentively while he is…

          THE HON. SPEAKER: No, no, I thought you were going to the Senate.  – [HON. Z. ZIYAMBI: Yes.] - So, if you are going to make some conversation there, I am saying no.  You should submit the motion.

          HON. Z. ZIYAMBI:  There is no rule that says a Deputy Minister cannot move the motion.

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Minister, if you are there - I thought you were going to the Senate.

          HON. Z. ZIYAMBI: Hon. Speaker, there is no rule that forbids the Deputy Minister from moving the motion.

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Your conversation – Hon. Minister, your private conversation does not take precedence.

          HON. Z. ZIYAMBI: Where is the private conversation?

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Minister, can you leave the House!

          HON. Z. ZIYAMBI: No, Mr. Speaker.  That is not correct.  Why are you saying I should leave the House?  Why are you saying I should leave the House? Ah no. – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] -

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Deputy Minister proceed.

          THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. MAZUNGUNYE): Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir, a very good afternoon to you.

The Hon. Deputy Minister (Hon. Mazungunye) proceeded to give a Notice of Motion. The Hon. Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs and Hon. Togarepi approached the Chair.



HON. KAMBUZUMA: Good afternoon Mr. Speaker Sir. I move that we go back to Order of the Day Number 1 on today’s Order Paper.

HON. HAMAUSWA:  I second.

Motion put and agreed to.



First Order read:  Adjourned debate on motion on the need to enact a law providing security of tenure to all the land including communal land.

Question again proposed:

*HON. NYABANI: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir – [HON. MEMBERS: Akambo debater, akambo debater!] -

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Can you confirm, some Members are saying you debated on this motion.

*HON. NYABANI:  I would like to debate now.

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Did you debate before?

HON. NYABANI: Not yet.

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Alright. Please proceed.

*HON. NYABANI: Thank you Mr. Speaker. I would like to add my voice to the issue of agriculture land tenure.  When we talk about farming or agriculture, we are talking about the issue of farming crops and rearing livestock.

Yes, we do have the farms and we got them under the 99-year lease.  We should not only continue to put the issue of 99-year lease forward, but also the issue of title deeds.  On the issue of 99-year lease, there are some of the things which need improvement in terms of farming.  Right now, people were given the 99-year leases, but when I am doing my investigation on the farms, I see that people are just holding the 99-year lease, yet they do not have enough equipment and resources to practice farming. 

If you go to the farms, some people have land which ranges from 60-1000 hectares. In my view, Government was supposed to intervene like what it did by giving people the 99-year leases, by giving the people equipment like tractors so that they will be able to utilise the land properly and also provide inputs like fertilisers and seed and put in place irrigation facilities. If adequate resources to utilise these farms are not provided, we end up saying that people are failing to utilise the farms.  The issue is that people do not have enough resources to carry out their farming projects…

          HON. HAMAUSWA: On a point of order Mr. Speaker.

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

*HON. HAMAUSWA: My point of order is that this motion which has been raised is on the issue of communal lands.  It is not about the farms that were allocated through the Land Reform Programme under the 99-year lease. I thought that Hon. Members who are going to debate must be guided so that we can have a comprehensive conclusion and we see it from one direction without touching the issue of the Land Reform Programme.

*THE HON. SPEAKER: The Hon. Member was just adding.  He was just paving way for his debate.

*HON. NYABANI: Thank you Hon. Speaker Sir, for protecting me from the Hon. Member who is humiliating me because I am better in terms of debates compared to him. 

Hon. Speaker Sir, when we look at the farms in the rural areas, if we mention places like Rushinga, we see that there are many farms that are being sold, so there is need to come up with a policy and see who is going to be responsible for the land that is being overseen by village heads, at growth points and all other areas.

Right now, you see that people in the reserves are selling their land and also invading land which is meant for towns.  As Government, we must put a policy that protects the people. During the liberation struggle, people went to war because of land. We must protect our land and our people.   There is a relation between land and people.  Right now, chiefs and village heads must have a say on the issue of land in the reserves.  Before colonisers came into this country, the village heads and chiefs were the custodians of the land and they were responsible for the distribution. 

We know that the land is under His Excellency, the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe, President Dr. E. D. Mnangagwa.  As the chiefs and village heads, they are the ones who know where the sacred places are, the rivers, mountains and everything.  When we enact a law, those who know how people are living in these different areas must be considered first. 

Mr. Speaker Sir, let us also put into consideration that many people went to war in order for them to get land.  There is no one who can say I am the only one who is responsible for owning land.  Sometimes, some people would have resided in a certain area for a period of five to 15 years but they end up being told that they settled at the place illegally.  Why did they leave the people to stay there for more than five to six years?  When they see that a person is benefiting from such areas, they begin to say the land belongs to their grandparents, hence they see the need to relocate the people. 

It is very important that we come up with a law that stipulates that when a person has settled on land for a period of time, that land should belong to that person; he or she must not be relocated.  In the rural areas, women are not given the opportunity to own land.  Everyone who is above 18 years, irrespective of gender, must be able or has a right to be allocated land.

Mr. Speaker Sir, with these words, I say let us go back to our traditional values.  I travelled to Germany and I learnt why European people are prosperous. As Zimbabweans, we are adopting other people’s laws that we do not understand.  People in Europe, especially those in Germany, follow their traditional values and that is why they are prosperous. 

According to the Bible, it is written “honour your father and mother so that your days will be increased on this earth”.  We must respect our parents who gave birth to us.  Right now, we are respecting the laws of other countries, especially the European countries.  That is the reason why we are not prospering.  We are now adopting the laws of other people’s forefathers.  Let us visit our traditional homes. May we craft laws that will benefit the country so that we can prosper and when we are no longer in this House, we will be remembered?  I thank you.

*HON. JONGA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir, for awarding me this opportunity to add my voice on the issue of settlement being debated in this House.  Land is very important in our lives. I want to take this opportunity to say land must remain in the hands of His Excellency, the President of Zimbabwe because he is the people’s choice.  He cannot put the future of Zimbabweans in jeopardy because he is the people’s favourite.  There is the issue of 99-year lease which is being given to A2 farmers.  This programme was supposed to be done and finished because the future of the country and its prosperity depends on farming.  If farming is not considered important and we delay on the issue of 99-year leases, it does not help us because farmers will not be able to farm.  We must be able to access agricultural programmes and inputs under 99-year lease.  This will help us because we can use the 99-year leases as collateral in banks so that we can improve our farming. The issuance of 99-year leases is delaying and this is affecting our farming. 

On the issue of rural areas, if someone owns a farm and when I face hunger, I must be able to sell the farm.  The papers must also be issued after His Excellency the President has allowed the land to be allocated to a certain individual. These are the few words that I wanted to share with this House because land is our heritage. I thank you.

          HON. JAMES: Thank you for allowing me this opportunity. I want to recognise our distinguished guests from Namibia.

 Land and land ownership has always been an emotive issue. However, it is an issue which must be addressed comprehensively in an all-embracing manner. The right to shelter and property is enshrined in our Bill of Rights and Section 71 of our national Constitution. However, without security of tenure, our vulnerable citizens find themselves not only insecure but also facing economic deprivation in the absence of collateral to empower them. Moreover, one can only enforce a right based on legal ownership not just by virtue of a constitutional benevolence.

We have heard from the right to historical background to the land use and I have the greatest respect for that. We have a very much greater population to consider and solutions must be found to cater for these situations. It is understood that most successful economies are based on security of tenure, that is security underpinned at law and in constitutions and tenures that offers freely tradeable market value civilisation grow from and prosperity comes with security of tenure.

          Much has been said about the Land Apportionment Act of 1930 and the subsequent Land Tenure Act of 1969. As we judge administrators and legislators of yesteryear, we too will be judged from history of our handling of this issue. Immediately to mind are legislative opportunities, this House has at its disposal as well as access to best practices availed to us around the world. Many papers have been submitted and written to Government to resolve the land issue and its tenure and no doubt many more will follow.

At Independence about 5 million hectares approximately half of the land held under commercial white ownership was acquired and transferred to 160 000 families. It was an orderly and structured process done on a willing buyer willing seller basis. However, no titles were granted to the recipients, only insecure permits. Further investigations will tell us why this programme failed to continue.

          Following the fast track Land Reform Programme initiated in 2000 which turned out to be chaotic, disorderly and violent most of the remaining farming properties were acquired….

          HON. TOGAREPI: I rise on a point of order! I do not know what to say to the Hon Member who is debating. The Hon. Member is attacking a Government process which I do not think is the basis of this debate. The Land Reform Programme is a Government process which was approved by this Parliament and people are in those farms through the laws of this country. For him to say the Land Reform Programme was chaotic, I think he is bringing in images in some of our minds. We start thinking he is influenced by some racial connotations which I do not think is right.

          He is saying the Land Apportionment Act was good because it was done by white people. Now we did the Land Reform Programme because we are blacks, it becomes chaotic. I think the Hon. Member must stick to the debate on whether it is good to have title deeds or the present structures and not to tell us about his views on what us as blacks do and what they did as whites. It is very bad.

          THE HON. SPEAKER: I think you should stick to the issue of the need for land tenure as requested by the motion. If you go into the dynamics of the land, just to remind you a little bit; when the colonial settlers came in here, they formed a looting committee led by Thomas Meikles which grabbed the land forcefully from the indigenous people and they gave themselves after occupying that land title. This is the emotive side of the Land Apportionment Act 1930/31 and 1969.

          So, you rather stick to the need to have tenure for the communal land and avoid the emotive aspect of that area. You may continue as guided.

          HON. JAMES: I understand all that has been said there. I do not in any way, want to disagree with the Hon Member. I am well aware of the history of this land and I find myself in this position as a relic of that colonial period. However, we have to find solutions to this and there is a clarion call for security of title. I call all for these solutions to be put on the table by the relevant authorities.

          My understanding is that we are asking for security tenure and I would like to point out that some people do have title on their old commercial farms and why not everyone. That is my point.

          It is my understanding that farming properties are indeed being sold and bought with title as we speak but only with the approval of the Minister of Lands, Agriculture, Water, Fisheries and Rural Resettlement. Confirmation of this can be sought from the relevant Ministry if required. Again Mr. Speaker, title is recognised from some citizens and why not everyone? What then has become of the NDS1 maxim “leaving no one behind”?

I may stand corrected here that the current Global Compensation Agreement attempts to address farm owners affected by the fast track Land Reform Programme. It is sensible that in order to grant title to beneficiaries of the programme and everyone else in the country, concerns of the original title deed holders have to be addressed. This will only entail the agreeable sale of the land and improvement but also trigger a massive surveying exercise. This is in order for true security of tenure to be achieved.

My submission is that the massive titling exercise addresses urban, peri-urban and long-standing council rental properties. This is no doubt that it will require an overhaul of not just the Deeds Registry but also digital integration of the whole title deed value chain from Surveyor General, conveyancing, municipalities, Central Identity Registry and ZRP. Detailed investigation and recent media articles have alluded to this value chain experiencing security breaches resulting in fraudulent loss of property.

          Many legal challenges are mounting against our Government, locally, regionally and internationally regarding title deeds pertaining to acquired agricultural land. A more holistic approach regarding communal land occupations, old resettlement schemes beneficiaries and the fast track Land Reform Programme beneficiaries is urgent. It would be prudent for Government to consult with a wider group of disposed title deeds holders to resolve these current and inevitable legal challenges.

          As I understand Government has for some time been consulting with individuals and entities claiming to represent all commercial agricultural land title deeds holders but in reality, they represent no more than approximately 25% of the displaced farmers. This House needs to be informed on details of these negotiations, payment offers currently on the table and not yet presented to Parliament and who exactly is negotiating these deals with Government.  I am well informed that there may be some conflict of interest prejudicing the majority of former commercial farmers, and thus complicating the bigger picture of security of tenure for all other groups occupying land.

  • Concerns have been raised by previous speakers about repercussions of issuance of secure title to the recipients mentioned above. In particular, there appears to be unfounded fears that the white community will again repossess the land, giving a false perception that the FTLR programme is being reversed.  These negative perceptions need to be dispelled given that FTLR programme is more than 25 years in place and is irreversible.
  • The AI, old resettlement scheme and communal land occupiers, need a secure form of tenure through certificates of occupation with all features of title deeds except that transfers must guard against holder destitution after possible disposal of their land. However, wider consultations are needed in these areas to ensure no limitations on access to capital for certificate of occupation holders since this would defeat the purpose of secure tenure.
  • 99-year leases, offer letters and permits are, in my mind, mere short term smoke-screens, denying recognition of rights of existing title deed holders as proclaimed by the SADC Tribunal in its November 2008 judgement. These issues are impediments to resolving secure land tenure together with all its benefits for the general Zimbabwe population.
  • Anyone who is genuinely concerned about land tenure and its resolution within Zimbabwe would do themselves justice by looking up the history of SADC from 1992, including the establishment of the SADC Tribunal under Article 9 of the SADC Treaty. The SADC Protocol was signed on 7th August 2000.
  • Speaker, whilst I clearly do not advocate reversal of the FTLR programme in any way, the right to land ownership to those who want it, let alone shelter, is a basic human right. The onus is on us now, the generation of this august House, to do the right thing and adopt this noble motion to start the ball rolling for a sustainable solution.

HON. BUTAU:  On a point of order Mr. Speaker Sir.  I want to establish whether the Hon. Member has locus standi to speak on communal lands.

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Hon. Butau, when a motion is before the House, all Members of Parliament are free to debate that motion.

HON. BUTAU:  Hon. Speaker, I thought there was need for locus standi.  - [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] -

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, I am responding, do not take over.  The locus standi is based on the principle that all members here present are sworn Members of Parliament.  When there is a motion before the House, it does not distinguish as to who has locus standi in the process of debate. Alright.

HON. BUTAU:  Mr. Speaker, thank you for that clarification.  I come from the rural areas, so the knowledge is a bit limited.

HON. JAMES:  Thank you Mr. Speaker.  The Hon. Member across there, please bear with me.

  • I would like to suggest a small committee from this Parliament that travels to Rwanda to learn about the 10.3 million titles that were issued and how this has not only assisted in empowering, but created wealth for the citizens of that country.
  • It is untenable that few properties have security of tenure through title deeds while the majority sit precariously on insecure permits, offer letters or 99-year leases at the mercy of evictions and economic deprivation.

Mr. Speaker, my submission today was prepared a while ago.  My thought was that accepting this motion would open the door for further in-depth negotiations to put together a sustainable solution to our land tenure issues.

It has come to light that these overtures of round table discussions are in fact happening and we, as legislators, will eventually be expected to ratify the final drafts of their deliberations.  Surely then, by not adopting this motion, we nullify the work being done to find common ground and cementing a sustainable solution on the overall land issue.

Again, Mr. Speaker Sir, we have to encourage those at this round table to negotiate in the best interest of the nation and for the future generations who will have to live with our decisions.  We, therefore cannot allow negotiators to deliberate for their own short-term gratification, but to seriously think of the long-term future.

In conclusion, Mr. Speaker Sir, we have heard the recent monetary policy regarding our national currency.  The social media is active regarding this issue and the confidence surrounding it.  It is my submission that true security of land tenure will go a long way in encouraging confidence in our national currency and its exchange rates.  I thank you.

*HON. MANANZVA:  Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  Good afternoon.  I have risen to also add my voice to the motion on land which was moved by Hon. Hlatywayo.  The issue of land includes our ubuntu, the way we live and speak.  What I mean is that in our rural areas that is where we have the chiefs.  There are also laws and values which must be followed such as chisi, the day when everyone rests from going to the fields as it is regarded as a day of resting.  If we say the people in the rural areas must be given title deeds, it means that the values and norms which have been preserved all along are no longer being followed.  The issue of land is the one that caused the first, second and third liberation struggles.  If you go to Genesis 12 vs. 1 in the Bible when God was speaking to Abraham that there is a land I have given to you which is flowing with milk and honey, that is the same time when God also spoke to our ancestors that he had given them a country.  However, God did not give anyone a title deed.  Our ancestors lived for very long periods of time until the white colonisers came into this country under the disguise of hunting animals and ended up taking land from our ancestors.  To date, these people are still hunting but this time not for animals.  So, if issues like this are being raised, we are saying they are now targeting us through the title deeds.  So, if we are talking about this issue, we must look at where we are coming from, who started with the issue of title deeds and when were the title deeds introduced, then check on when the title deeds were introduced going back and how people are supposed to be protected. Hence, the protection of the people must be in the hands of the Government which they have voted into power that time because that Government is responsible for the protection of land, values, norms and ubuntu of the people of that country. The issue of saying people in the rural areas must be given title deeds, I see it as an issue of being lured again by the colonisers whilst they are using another way of title deeds.

In conclusion, the Bible verse from 1st Kings, there was a King called Ahab. He told another person that, I have seen your land and your vines, but I want your farm as the King. I will also give you another land. What I want to emphasise on is the response which was given by Naboth saying, the Lord God does not give me the opportunity to think about it. As parliamentarians and Zimbabweans, we must not talk about the issue which was raised in this august House of title deeds. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

*HON. NYAKUEDZWA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. I want to add my voice on the motion which was raised by Hon. Hlatywayo. The issue of land is a pertinent issue because our ancestors, Mbuya Nehanda and Sekuru Kaguvi fought and died during the liberation struggle for us to be able to repossess our land which has been taken by the colonisers. Mr. Speaker, on the motion which was raised by Hon. Hlatywayo that we must give title deeds to the people who are staying in the rural areas.  I am against the idea because when our land was taken by the colonisers, all of them were driven to the reserves whilst the colonisers were taking bigger farms with good soils. Right now, they want to take that land under the disguise of title deeds. If someone drinks the illegal beers which are being brewed and wants money to drink for the other day, that person will sell for a few dollars. We end up in a country where we do not have land which belongs to us as Zimbabweans.

Mr. Speaker Sir, if we look at a country like Guatemala, they do not have a place to call theirs. Each person has got his/her own right to do whatever he/she pleases, but Zimbabwe is a blessed country. Our country Zimbabwe which was given to us by God, has got a lot of natural resources and minerals, which has caused headaches to most of the colonisers who want to come into this country and mine our minerals like gold, diamond and other minerals.

If you want to say that in the communal lands, the people who are staying in those areas must be given title deeds, it means we would have taken power from the chiefs and village heads. These are the custodians of the land and they are the ones who sent the liberators who are saying they are the heroes who fought for the liberation of this country. In 1980, when the country got independence, chiefs were given back their areas which they used to rule. It will be surprising that in the 10th Parliament, we have enacted a law that certain chiefs no longer have power over their land.

Mr. Speaker Sir, there is an issue which was raised and also supported by Hon. James, that land was not issued properly, but was distribute in a chaotic manner during the Land Reform Programme. He spoke well, but he mixed the years. The issue of chaotic land distribution was done during the colonisation, but when we reposed our land as blacks, we took our land in a rightful manner because we are the rightful owners of the land.

In conclusion Mr. Speaker, the person who was voted to rule or to lead the country of the Republic of Zimbabwe, Dr. Emmerson Mnangagwa is the one who has got power to protect the heritage of our country, not to say that we put a law in this House today. The laws of nda, nde, ndi, ndo, ndu for our country to move forward, I do not agree with that.

I also want to thank the pertinent issues which were raised by Hon. Jonga. He spoke very well that if we were still at school, I was going to make him a prefect. He spoke very well that if we are talking about the land looking into those issues, we must not approach it on the basis of trying to return the land to the colonisers. In my concluding words Mr. Speaker Sir, let the chiefs, village heads and all traditional leadership be custodians of our land as per our norms and values which we used to follow as a country.

Mr. Speaker Sir, the owner of the land is the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe, Dr. Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa because we are the ones who gave him power. Right now, we are standing on land. Everything we are doing; we are stepping on the land. Everything which we are doing, we are stepping on the land.  You might trouble us as here on earth or trouble the women in this House and those who are not in this House because we enjoy all the benefits when we are here on the land, but let us protect our land, hence whatever was raised by Hon. Hlatywayo must be discarded.  Thank you, Hon. Speaker. 

          HON. ENG. MHANGWA:  Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  I rise in support of the motion by the Leader of the Opposition, Hon. Hlatywayo and seconded by Hon. Mushoriwa.  As Hon. Hlatywayo was reading the motion, tears fell down my cheeks.  I had mixed emotions.  I felt elated that the 10th Parliament has a unique opportunity to stand on the shoulders of the great men and women since the Mutapa Empire.  It is a chance to make Zimbabwe the UAE of Africa.  It is an opportunity to redefine what communal lands are all about to the settler regime who were merely wastelands.  The question today before the House is, do we want to continue making them wastelands, do we want to continue making them the reserves with no other purpose except to serve as providing labour force for the town? 

          Mr. Speaker Sir, I stand here inspired by one great man, a warrior, once a mighty chief who braved it all in an effort to defend the land we are sitting on today.  If I am to ask in this House about the man by the name Gwiranerwizi from the Shumba Simboti totem clan, it will be a miracle if more than one Hon. Member can relate to his story.  This warrior in the early 1890s, just after the settlers took residence in the now called Mazowe area, took it upon himself to push back the attack. He attacked and killed the first settler Governor there.  His action had a catastrophic effect to his descendants.  His chieftaincy was disbanded and handed to his vassals and headmen.  He was restricted and executed and his family reduced to headmen. 

          His area that spanned from his headquarters, in the present day Nyachuru Village in Chiweshe, stretching through Mazowe and the present-day Mount Hampden, was seized and his family was restricted to the small Nyachuru Village as a headman.  Had this episode not happened, we could have been his subjects in Parliament here.  His jurisdiction was much bigger than any other in Mashonaland Central but today his name is nearly forgotten.  There is not even one street in Mashonaland Central by the name Gwiranerwizi.  It is one and only, I repeat Mr. Speaker Sir, by the grace of the people of Chinhoyi that a descendant of Gwiranerwizi today addresses you the people in this august House.

          Hon. Speaker Sir, as I speak today, a whole clan that had prominence less than 200 years ago, their fate has been reduced simply because they lacked security of land tenure.  They lacked it then and our people, 44 years after independence, still lack security of land tenure in communal lands today.  Why do I go to pains to explain this story?  The communal lands of this country are a produce of continual disempowerment and vulnerabilities of communities and tribes.  It is incumbent upon us, this august House Mr. Speaker Sir, either to perpetuate the colonial agenda of denying the bulk of our people, security of land tenure or take this opportunity to use these once wastelands and reserves as they were called as the opportunities for growth. 

          Mr. Speaker Sir, the golden words in the motion by Hon.   Hlatywayo that may have been missed conveniently or inconveniently by most speakers, is that it is in communal lands.  Mr. Speaker Sir, with more than a century, deliberate this empowerment and this position ranging from the Land Apportionment Act [1930], the Land Husbandry Act [1957] and the Tribal Trust Land Act [1965.]  To the few that tried to sanitise the situation such as the Land Tenure Act [1961] and its amendments in [1969], which sought to sanitise disempowerment, still have effects among us and have been inadequately addressed to date.

          This motion gives us ample opportunity to move our communal lands to participate in the economy of this country.  It further aides in giving us the much-needed breath of fresh air to these spaces that house the majority of our people.  It is an undeniable fact that the majority of our people reside in communal lands.  My affirmation to this motion is premised on the following; seeking to safeguard the unique heritage of communities and preserve it for future generations.  Mr. Speaker Sir, it is said that we do not own this land but we have borrowed it from our future generations.  Our communities are unique and complement each other.  The diversity it brings to this country we call Zimbabwe can only flourish if we actively ensure they develop undisturbed in their domicile areas.  We owe it to the next generations to preserve and assure the heritage, including the graves and the culture are preserved. 

          Devolving decision making on issues to do with land use and creativity is enhanced by security of land tenure.  Various aspects of land are venerated differently and it is not practical for political offices to be prescriptive to the individual communal lands and centralising this right can prejudice individual communities.  The same way the settler regime sought to take away the rights from our chiefs and headmen, is the same way that we continue to perpetuate it.  Safeguarding wealth accrued over time by communal dwellers and giving them an opportunity to plan beyond a few years ahead is only guaranteed if we give security of land tenure.  Allowing the greater access to finance, leveraging on their assets and the assets they have is what we call land.  So, there should be innovative ways to allow them to do this in the lands they call communal lands; we call it home. Land has long ceased to be just about one or two uses, as was when the Communal Land Act was muted.  Land is a source of both active and passive income generating.  An example is where telecoms towers can give a viable source of income to a family or a community without any active action. 

Mr. Speaker Sir, I could sense some consternation from the previous speakers, as their opinions of security of tenure means title deeds.  Fear amongst a section of legislators could only suggest one or two things.  Failure to imagine alternative ways to empower our people whilst at the same time overcoming the potential pitfalls of this envisaged benefit. 

          Secondly, deliberate disempowerment aimed at continual impoverishment of the people so that they remain vulnerable and making them cannon fodder and perpetual beggars and indigents.  I do not want to assume the second.  I will try to proffer ways to still achieve security of land tenure, without the undesired effects of having full title.  In towns world-over, properties have had what is called sectional titles, trends that we have seen happening in Harare lately, where people had cluster homes. Owners have sectional title to their properties.

          They enjoy certain rights as owners of apartments, but ultimately the full rights to the land belong to the body corporate. There are rules governing how one exercises their rights, as well as obligations. Certain decisions to deal with the overall outlook of the enclosure, types of house plans, the ensuing environment, preservation of property value and so on, are a preserve of the collective. Communities under traditional councils can collectively own the land with individual families within their clan land remaining USUFRUCT.

          Each community can have trustees to ensure the collective good is preserved. We can get much more from our land. Certainly, with will, how can we not as this august House, adopt such innovation to give the majority of our people security of land tenure in communal lands and complete the business of the First and Second Chimurenga?

          The security of tenure is an opportunity to empower and create wealthy traditional authorities and fast-track the devolution agenda. The primary beneficiaries of any resource in this country should be those that are blessed by God with that resource. I can only imagine that security of land tenure was the missing link in the past when empowerment and growth schemes were mooted. Had this been embraced early on, our growth points by now would have been grown points.

          Security of land tenure is the difference between the people of Ngezi under the Mupamombe Clan of Chief Ngezi and the Bafokeng Nation of the North-west in South Africa, yet both communities have platinum group metals under their land. God blessed them with the same mineral. The same company exploits their minerals, albeit with different set of rules. The Royal Bafokeng Nation of about 350 000 people, covering 1 000 km of the platinum rich North-west Province is unique in that it holds mineral rights, courtesy of security of land tenure. From the initial ownership of land, it has investment in mining in Impala Platinum Holdings and Royal Bafokeng Mining making up 40% of their portfolio.

          I further perused to check their asset base and I was pleasantly surprised Mr. Speaker as to the levels they have reached, through what merely seemed as empowering a rural community years ago. It has become a major investment in South Africa and Africa. In addition to mining, they have shares in banks such as First Rand Group and Discovery which has medical aids, banks and so on. Telecommunications – surprisingly they have shareholding in Liquid Telecoms. They also have shareholding with DPA which does solar infrastructure also owned by our own magnate, Strive Masiyiwa. They have shares in pharmaceuticals.

          Another community that we can benchmark on is the Ingonyama Trust of the Zulu Nation, again in South Africa which was established in 2000 after amendment of the Ingonyama Trust Act. It owns vast tracts of land estimated to be approximately 2, 8 million hectares in the province of KwaZulu Natal. These are lands that ordinarily were regarded as communal lands prior to majority rule. Land management that they do is professionally done in conjunction with the traditional council. I took as snap-pic into their website Mr. Speaker and again, I was green with envy. I will highlight a few issues;

          The land there is held in trust for the benefit and welfare of the tribes and communities by the Ingonyama Trust. Since land is a limited resource, their role is to ensure there is controlled access to the land. They have managed to give limited time leases to businesses and generate income from this land. The businesses span from shopping malls, service stations, cellular phone towers, office blocks and you name them. The monies collected from these leases is used to uplift the communities in the traditional councils where the development has taken place.

          Mr. Speaker Sir, having presented the above, allow me to conclude by stressing the following:

  • Our people in the communal lands are important. They lack security of tenure and it is incumbent upon us to make their lives better.
  • Security of land tenure, if well structured, can go a long way in unleashing our potential as a country and have truly indigenous rich investors whose investments will not leave the country.
  • Security of land tenure cannot be deferred to future generations as the opportunity cost can only taint us as a Parliament for not doing all necessary to ameliorate those in communal lands.
  • Centralisation of land administration for communities can only serve to leave communities vulnerable to land barons and opportunistic land-preneurs. Politicians have no space in determining how land is distributed within communities. It is a preserve of the chiefs and the chiefs need to have a place on the table.
  • Growth of our communal growth points to grown points is long overdue and the panacea to this is security of land tenure.
  • Wherever there is benefit, there is inherent risk. The solution is not being risk averse, fearing adverse effects of the bold step, but mitigating them and ensure we have beneficial arrangements for Zimbabwe.

Fear always asks, is it safe? Greed asks, is it beneficial to me only?

Pride asks, is it popular? However, conscience asks, is it right? This motion appeals to our conscience and indeed, as legislators, we should do what is right for Zimbabwe as a whole. The land is not ours. We borrowed it from the future generations. We cannot afford to give land to be absolutely run by politicians. We cannot allow ourselves to drop the ball. I so submit.

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

          HON. N. NDHLOVU: I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.

          Debate to resume: Wednesday, 8th May, 2024.



          HON. KAMBUZUMA:  Mr. Speaker Sir, I move that Orders of the Day, Numbers 2 to 13 be stood over until Order of the Day Number 14 on today’s Order Paper has been disposed of.

          HON. N. NDLOVU:  I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.



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

          Question again proposed.

          THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. MAZUNGUNYE):  Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  I rise to give a response to the debate of the President’s speech on the occasion of the opening of the First Session of the 10th Parliament.

          Mr. Speaker Sir, I wish to thank Hon. Nguluvhe for raising the motion that this august House debate on the Presidential Speech delivered by His Excellency, Cde E. D. Mnangagwa, the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe during his State of the Nation Address and the legislative agenda opening the First Session of the 10th Parliament.  I would also like to thank the Hon. Members for a lively debate which ensued.

          Mr. Speaker Sir, I join Hon. Members in acknowledging the astute leadership of His Excellency, the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe, Dr. Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa, for providing leadership in delivering a successful, transparent, credible, fair and peaceful election.  In the build up to the elections, the President’s message was clear that we want an election that is void of violence and the nation took heed of the message. 

The President understands the importance of participation of women and youth in the affairs of this nation.  It was through His Excellency’s initiative that the Constitution be amended to extend the women’s quota in the House by a further two terms and also Mr. Speaker Sir, a youth quota was introduced through the same amendment.

          Mr. Speaker Sir, a number of Hon. Members debated on the legislative agenda for the current session which was set by His Excellency and in his speech, the President urged all Parliamentarians to whole-heartedly participate in the enactment of laws that will improve the quality of our people’s lives.  The President also encouraged Parliament to be an institution of peace-building, hope, national development, the entrenchment of constitutionalism and deepening democratic practices in our society.

          His Excellency urged Parliament to consider Bills which lapsed in terms of Section 147 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe when the 9th Parliament was dissolved just before polling day in the general elections.  Section 147 of the Constitution provides that on dissolution of Parliament, all proceedings pending at the time are terminated and every Bill, motion, petition and business lapses.  These Bills cannot be restored at the stage where the 9th Parliament left them, therefore they will be introduced afresh to Parliament. The President mentioned the following Bills: – the Mines and Minerals Bill, Public Finance Amendment Bill, Medical Services Amendment Bill, Insurance Bill and Private Voluntary Organisation Amendment Bill.

          Additionally, there are other Bills which were not mentioned by His Excellency which had lapsed or passed by Parliament, which were introduced afresh to this august House.  This is the Police Amendment Bill and the Child Justice Bill. 

          As laid out by His Excellency the President, the Ministry of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs shall introduce new Bills.  A Legal Practitioners Amendment Bill that will streamline the registration process for foreign legal practitioners, also an Inheritance and Succession Laws General Amendment Bill shall be introduced.  The Bill will align inheritance and succession laws to the Constitution and also international best practices.  There has not been expedience in the introduction of these Bills to Parliament, including those which were terminated by the dissolution of the 9th Parliament.  Mainly, this is owed to high staff turnover within the Attorney-General’s Drafting Division.

          Interventions have been made to address drafting challenges and more Bills are going to be introduced to Parliament.  Private Voluntary Organisations Bill is one of the Bills which His Excellency urged the House to deal with and the Bill has been gazetted.  This is as a result of deliberate approach that has been taken to prioritise drafting of legislative agenda Bills for this session.

          Mr. Speaker Sir, in closing, I am humbled by the motion moved by Hon. Nguluvhe that a respectful address be presented by this House to the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe.  Once again, I would like to thank the Hon. Members for the lively positive debates and the contributions thereof.  I thank you Mr. Speaker.

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

          HON. MAMOMBE:  I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.

          Debate to resume:  Wednesday, 8th May, 2024.

On the motion of THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. MAZUNGUNYE), the House adjourned at a Quarter to Five o’clock p.m.

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