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NATIONAL ASSEMBLY HANSARD 9 JULY 2024 VOL 50 NO 67

PARLIAMENT OF ZIMBABWE

Tuesday, 9th July, 2024

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

PRAYERS

(THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER in the Chair)

HON. MATEWU:  On a point of privilege Madam Speaker.  It is now mid-July and Hon Members have not received their allowances for this current year, which is having an impact on their welfare.  Secondly, this House’s Hon. Members have not received the Constituency Development Funds for almost two years now.  I ask your indulgence to ensure that Hon. Members get these things.  I thank you.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Thank your Hon. Matewu.  Your point of privilege has been noted, but I am deferring my ruling to Thursday. 

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. Z. ZIYAMBI):  I move that Orders of the Day, Numbers 1 to 6 be stood over until Order of the Day Number 7 has been disposed of.

Motion put and agreed to.

CONSIDERATION STAGE

 ADMINISTRATION OF ESTATES AMENDMENT BILL

[H. B. 3A, 2024]

          Amendments to Clauses 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 and 11 put and agreed to.

Bill, as amended, adopted.

          Third Reading:  With leave, forthwith.

THIRD READING

ADMINISTRATION OF ESTATES AMENDMENT BILL

[H. B. 3A, 2024]

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. Z. ZIYAMBI): Madam. Speaker, I now move that the Bill be read the third time.

          Motion put and agreed to.

Bill read the third time.

 

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. Z. ZIYAMBI): I move that Orders of the Day, Numbers 6 to 8 on today’s Order Paper be stood over until Order of the Day Number 9 has been disposed of.

Motion put and agreed to.

SECOND READING

 PRIVATE VOLUNTARY ORGANISATIONS AMENDMENT BILL [H. B. 2, 2024]

Ninth Order read: Adjourned debate on the Second Reading of the Private Voluntary Organisations Amendment Bill [H. B. 2, 2024].

Question again proposed.

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. Z. ZIYAMBI): I move that the Bill be now read a second time.

Motion put and agreed to.

Bill read a second time.

Committee Stage: Wednesday, 10th July, 2024.

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. Z. ZIYAMBI): I move that Orders of the Day, Numbers 10 to 11 on today’s Order Paper be stood over until Order of the Day Number 12 has been disposed of.

Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE TO ZUPCO AND PRIVATE TRANSPORT OPERATORS

Twelfth Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on inadequate and unreliable public transportation.

Question again proposed.

HON. MADZIVANYIKA:   Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am for allowing me to debate on this very important motion which was introduced by Hon. Mashonganyika. The prayer in this motion is for Government to support ZUPCO and private transport operators. Secondly, the prayer from the motion is that the law enforcement agencies improve surveillance and enforcement activities on the issue of unregistered operators. The prayer also goes on to talk about the Traffic Safety Council of Zimbabwe promoting awareness with regards to the issue of accidents and unregistered operators to the general public of Zimbabwe.

 Lastly, the prayer in the motion also talks about giving financial assistance to the National Railways of Zimbabwe so as to capacitate or recapacitate its operations and improve the transport service delivery in this country. Let me be very clear Madam Speaker, that I am going to support only two parts of the motion. The other parts I am not going to support on the basis of the arguments I am going to put in my debate.

Let me go step by step on the prayers. The first one, the issue of financial assistance to ZUPCO - it is imperative to understand that ZUPCO’s mandate is to provide efficient public transport both in the rural and urban areas. Over the years, we have seen many ZUPCO buses being purchased to support this very important agenda. However, what pains me the most is the corporate governance malpractices and the culture of corruption that we see in our State-owned enterprises including ZUPCO. From 2018 to 2021 Auditor’s General Reports, there is a plethora of scandals or circumstances that shows that there were corporate governance malpractices both in ZUPCO and the National Railways of Zimbabwe.

Let me highlight a few of them so that I put things into perceptive. Let me start with ZUPCO; part of its property and equipment which it has, it has been leasing it elsewhere. So …

HON. J. TSHUMA: I rise on a point of order. May the Hon. Member, while he is debating, not come too close to the mic because we cannot hear some of the words? I think he is speaking sense but he must not come too close or shout, just speak softly. Soft as wool, we want to hear what you are you saying.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Thank you Hon. Tshuma. I am sure Hon. Madzivanyika has taken note of that.

HON. MADZIVANYIKA: Thank you Madam Speaker, point well taken note of. Let me stand straight, I am not sure if the Hon. Member is now hearing me loud and clear. I was referring to the Auditor General’s report and I was saying that there is a plethora of corporate governance malpractice and this malpractice…..

HON. DHLIWAYO: I rise on a point of order. The Hon. Member is debating a report that is under consideration by PAC and it is not yet presented in this House. So, I think if he can concentrate on debating…

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  I think the Hon. Member is debating the motion. Hon. Madzivanyika, may you please go ahead. I have made a ruling Hon. Member, may you take your seat.

HON. MADZIVANYIKA: Thank you Madam Speaker, I used to get offended by points of order until recently when I realised that they will not stop the real substance at hand, so I am continuing. ZUPCO, in its asset register had some equipment which it was leasing out to another third party, under IFRS40. That investment property, that equipment that was leased outside and the proceeds thereof, were supposed to be put under what is called investment property. If you do not put it under investment property, the implication is that the equipment is being used by the company in the day to day running of its business. This equipment was being leased and it was generally income from outside. It creates that opaqueness, which gives opportunity for fraud and embezzlement of national funds. The real risk of fraud was evident. That is number 1 Madam Speaker. …

HON. DHLIWAYO:  Point of clarity Madam Speaker.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Please go ahead.

HON. DHLIWAYO:  I wanted to find out whether that is the correct procedure that he is exhausting that report here, yet we have not fully considered that report in the Public Accounts Committee PAC and it has not been presented in this House.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Hon. Madzivanyika, please may you approach the Chair.

Hon. Madzivanyika approached the Chair.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Hon. Dhliwayo, I will allow Hon. Madzivanyika to proceed because he is not the Member of the Public Accounts Committee. Therefore, I will allow him to proceed.

HON. MADZIVANYIKA: Thank you Madam Speaker for the protection. Secondly, on corporate governance malpractices, during the year 2021, ZUPCO invoiced diesel and the diesel which was delivered had a variance of over 250 thousand liters, the diesel which was delivered versus what was invoiced. This means that money was paid to acquire the diesel but on the delivery side, nothing could be shown for it. Where does it show Madam Speaker? For a normal person like me as a legislator, it shows that there is a real risk of fraud in our State institution.

It is my worry that this trend has been continuing since 2018. If we look at the successive Auditor General’s reports, to me, continuing to put money in such an institution, where there is no clear framework for good corporate governance, is just putting water in the drain. I do not think it is prudent to support that kind of situation. I cannot bury my head in the sand and behave as if everything is normal when this kind of tragedy is taking place in our State institutions and to continue giving money to such an institution is putting our money into the drain.

Madam Speaker, when Auditor General’s reports are being produced, they also take a leaf from what happened in the previous AG’s reports. In 2021, for 2020, out of the 11 adverse reports generated, only three were corrected. It shows that this company has not reformed. To me, if something is said to be wrong by the Auditor General who is constituted by the law of this land and a year later when they make another audit, you will see the previous AG’s reports were not being attended to; this is a sign that there is no change. Why can we not reform ZUPCO itself first? Before we support it financially, we should make sure that we are giving money to people who are genuinely interested in upholding the interest of Zimbabwe first.

Let me go on to the second item, the prayer. The second item on the prayer talks about the issue to do with the law enforcement agencies so that they expedite, improve or increase enforcement activities to weed out unregistered operators. It is true that unregistered operators are a menace to our society, especially in urban areas, even in the rural areas, vehicles which are not designed to carry human beings are used. This is a real cause for concern. Honestly, I support the legislator, the one who brought this motion, Hon. Mashonganyika.

However, I also want to add further to say, can we also, Madam Speaker, try to motivate our police officers?  Most of them are living below the poverty datum line.  Under the current circumstances, they are expected to do their work and do it with the real desire to work, but they need to meet their basic requirements or needs. It is my prayer that as much as we want them to do further enforcement work, we should also try to motivate them. How many police officers own houses out of their own remuneration? They are very few. Madam Speaker, this situation is not sustainable because you cannot tell the guard to guard billions whilst he does not have breakfast. Let us try to move along that trajectory to assist our police officers and at the same time ensure that they improve enforcement activities.

The third prayer talks about the Traffic Safety Council of Zimbabwe. It is not in doubt that the issue of awareness is important. We should, by all means necessary, try to assist and ensure that people are assured to arrive and aware to the constitutional provisions which relate to the issues of transport. Our legal framework is perfect. We have got the ZINARA Act, the Road Traffic Act and many other pieces of legislation which guide us in the area of transport. It is important honestly to promote traffic awareness by Traffic Safety Council of Zimbabwe. I support this issue and the mover of the motion.

The issue of financial support to purchase public service vehicles, the Government has already provided S.I. 38:2022 as a way of trying to support public transport operators.  This S.I. says, for you to be legible, you bring your public motor vehicle, buses or mini-buses into Zimbabwe without payment of customs duty.   That S.I. is in existence but on condition that number one, you are supposed to be a member of the transport operators’ association.  Number two, you are supposed to get a letter from the Ministry of Transport.  Number three, you need to have a route authority and those other small requirements. So, I am very sure to say that the support that these people are getting from Government is so sufficient.

          Lastly, let me talk about National Railways of Zimbabwe (NRZ).  The mover of the motion pointed that we should support NRZ, in an endeavour to resuscitate its dilapidated locomotives as well as the railway systems.  It is another sorry state; when I looked at the Auditor General’s report, I realised that for 2017 and 2018, 2017 alone, the institution made a loss of USD256 000.  In 2018, it made another subsequent loss of USD286 000.  The going concern aspect of this institution is in doubt.  The last two months, I witnessed a video of a Zimbabwean train moving literally in the bush trying to locate the railway line.  To me, it was so embarrasS.I.ng.  What is the problem?  This is very important.   We cannot just come and say we want to resuscitate and support it without understanding the underlying problem.  The problem comes back again; the issue of corporate governance, the issue of corruption. 

          From the 2018 Auditor General’s report on NRZ, NRZ invested cash into a local bank worth USD460 000 and were generating income but that cash, we have nothing recorded as investment property in its balance sheet.  So, it means that there is someone who is benefiting behind the back at the expense of the generality of Zimbabweans.  Then you come back and put money again, putting money into that kind of an institution without correcting the corporate governance system of this company.  It is common cause that when you are in business, you should insure your products.  You should ensure your assets and there was no insurance up to 2018 from NRZ.  No insurance on the NRZ assets, no insurance on the locomotives and no insurance on the railway line itself.  What does that mean? If there is an occurrence of a national disaster which disturbs the operations of NRZ, it means we would be found hamstrung.   So, I was of the opinion that let us correct the corporate governance situation before we deal with the issue of giving out money to this institution.

          The other issue in terms of corporate governance in order to terminate corruption is the fact that NRZ has its own land and its real State land.  Right now, as we speak, it has got illegal tenants but can we call them illegal? I do not think so.  Someone authorised them to stay on NRZ land, build properties on NRZ land.  Why can NRZ not, in its own wisdom, build properties, rent out, get income to support the locomotive system to support the day to day operations of NRZ?  To me, it is important to deal with the scourge of corruption.  It is important to deal with the scourge of corporate governance malpractice before we give money into these institutions.  I thank you.

          HON. J. TSHUMA: Good afternoon Madam Speaker.  Mine is going to be very short because I think the whole discussion here is very simple.  I will take you back to Bulawayo; we had one of the best transport systems in Bulawayo that was managed by an organisation called tshovhamubaiwa.  After that, there was a doctor, the structural impact of their existence could be felt.  We had so much efficiency that even organisations were now coming into our communities to come and help, especially the bereavement in the community.  They could offer their kombis to ferry mourners for free because it was now a very close-knit sort of environment.  So, nothing is important as having a system put in place.  We have seen the introduction of ZUPCO coming in but the mess that I have seen being created as well there, was deplorable.  It is important and for the first time, I actually said I was going to agree with Hon. Mushoriwa when he spoke about corporate governance. 

          I was so appalled one day when I stayed in Pelandaba, Bulawayo.  As I was driving to town, I saw people waking to town and they came from as far as Pumula, Magwegwe and stuff like that.  When I stopped to offer them a lift, I asked them what was wrong, they said there were no buses at all.  As soon as I dropped them in town, I went straight to ZUPCO depot, only to find the manager sitting, who told me that they did not have diesel.  ‘How do you not have diesel, did the Government fail to give you diesel?  No, we were late to order diesel, so it is on its way’.  That now to me, clearly shows that here is a manager who is seated in a ZUPCO office with an air conditioner, driving a ZUPCO company car, may be a 4X4, staying in ZUPCO company house, which is in the low-density suburbs, probably also married a wife uS.I.ng the ZUPCO resources but they forget to come and do their work.  At the end of the day, Government is blamed and most of the times, it is not Government to be blamed.  They blame our party and say look at what ZANU PF is doing, yet it is somebody who is supposed to be competent, somebody who has been hired to come and perform their duty.  So, governance in this institution must be something that is supposed to be of paramount importance, otherwise we will be wasting our time.

          If we go to an institution like NRZ, NRZ used to carry goods, especially coal from Hwange, delivering it to ZISCO Steel and other parts of the country.  This thing was dismantled purposely so that we put into our gonyetsi.  If we look at that road from Victoria Falls coming to Bulawayo, it is a death trap.

One of our best band in Matebeleland had an accident there and their members died. All these things speak of people who are being greedy, people who do things knowing that there are some people who do not want to open their minds and think, and they will challenge back ZANU-PF. That thing must stop. Let us make everybody carry their own cross and make sure that everybody pays for whatever they cause. At the end of the day, they say, ‘your works shall follow you’. This is a very important thing that will need to have registration put in place. We need to have a system put in place so that we do not experience some of these things that we experience in the community.

I just came in to highlight these two issues. Let us do something about the NRZ scenario. I am glad to have interacted with the General Manager of NRZ, a very good lady, very focused and she is doing her best to resuscitate that company. We just need to come in and support her. Hon. Members who are ladies here must be happy to know that one of your own, a lady who is running NRZ is doing so well. If you listen to her plans, follow what she is thinking about and what she wants to do. You can tell that no, may be when they say musha mukadzi/umuzi ngumama, they are saying the truth.  They are doing a very good job there and we just need to support her.

          So, Madam Speaker, as I conclude, I want us to liberalise the transport system.  Let us let the Harare people sort themselves out in terms of transport so that we remove the mushikashika.  The mushikashika are coming in because there is chaos that they have created and these mushikashika people, every day are robing people and raping our children, mothers, sisters, fathers and brothers, taking away their monies because they are not registered at all.  They can get away with murder.  It would be better if they were a registered company or association like the mutshovhamubaiwa in Bulawayo, the BUPTA in Bulawayo.  Those associations are so organised, you would know which car is what and have done what, that way, there is a system that can easily make somebody to be tracked when there are shenanigans. 

I watched a video of a Honda Fit for mushikashika running away from the Traffic Police and the City Council police as well.  He was literally driving in reverse gear in the middle of town.  That is the kind of chaos you get if you do not organise yourselves and do not want to adhere to simple principles of good governance.   Madam Speaker, this motion is very important and I think every member here in this House should make it a point that we support it so that we bring sanity in that industry.

Lastly, I want to just say probably throw in a small point that worries me a lot.  Do you know that there is something called road rage? Road rage is whereby you have got two lanes then somebody is driving on the inner lane.  That inner lane is supposed to be the fast line or the overtaking lane.  Someone is driving there and the other one on the outer lane is also driving slowly.  Then when you frustrate the other driver behind you, they become angry and this is when accidents start happening. 

While we are registering these companies and doing everything, we need to conscientise people and have Traffic Safety doing the defensive driving and have people learn.  This issue of people that are driving on our roads, most of them do not even have proper licences.  They have bought the licences; they do not know the rules of the road.  While we are doing that, let us nip it there to say while we are regularising that industry, let us also think about training defensive driving and publicising on how you conduct yourself on our roads. If we do that, the Lord himself shall come down and bless us as a nation.

*HON. MUNEMO: I would like to add my voice on this debate about transport and registration and all other documentation. Firstly, if you see a lot of accidents that are taking place on the roads, you will realise that those cars will be driven by unlicenced drivers. Most of those accidents are actually on a hit and run basis because they will be unregistered and they know they can safely run away and never be caught. I think it is good that our transport system must be properly registered and people be licenced.

If you see some of those vehicles, they are bigger vehicles being driven by young people who are not even fit to drive such cars. In the event that they are involved in an accident, they prefer to run away because they know that there is no way they can be traced. As we speak, I have an aunt who boarded a commuter omnibus and she does not know the car she boarded. She was robbed of everything including cell phones and all that she had. As we speak, she is hospitalised. The car was not registered and no one could trace or locate how it went. I think such vehicles must be properly registered under the Ministry so that they are licenced and have route authority to avoid such unscrupulous behaviour.

Also, they must comply with the laws of the country. Sometimes you realise that a young person will be driving a bus with over 50 passengers. That young person cannot withstand the pressure in the event of an accident and they are not in a position to pay, so they prefer to run away. Indeed, I agree and support the motion that in order for us to bring sanity in the transport sector, I think it is good for us to ensure they are licenced accordingly. In addition, if we also want our Government to benefit financially, licencing both the vehicles as well as the drivers will ensure that the Government benefits financially and that will contribute to the development of this country.

Hon. Speaker, you saw a video on social media where buses were chasing each other and competing but you realise that a bus that has everything in terms of being unlicenced and working legally, you discover that there are also some buses that are licenced but only meant to cause commotion and chaos on the roads. So, I support that motion. For us to be able to get proper transportation, they must be registered by the Government. Thank you.

HON. MANGONDO: Thank you Madam Speaker.  I rise to contribute to the motion on public transport.  Also, when there is order in the transport sector, it gives confidence to the people.  The disorder in the public transport causes the working people to wake up much earlier in order to get pirate taxis and those other buses that are not punctual and may not be safe.  That is the same situation after work.  They also wait for very long hours and at times knock off at 5 pm, but get transport at 8 or 9 pm and still are expected to wake up around 3 to 4 am in order for them to get affordable transport.

    The background of public transport must be understood very well in this country.  We had companies that were responsible for Harare and another serving the southern region.  Firstly, there was a group of companies called United Overseas Transport, Salisbury United Omnibus Company and the Rhodesia Omnibus Company (ROC) which were responsible for the southern part, including Bulawayo.  Salisbury United was responsible for Harare.  The Harare Company had an agreement with the local authority in Harare which was to ensure that if the company made losses, Harare City Council was supposed to take over until it recovered.  That enabled the company to purchase new buses because that way, it was sustainable since it had a subsidy and ensured that is ferried people at affordable fares as it was not meant to make huge profit margins.

   So, this proposal that Government should fund ZUPCO and NRZ is to ensure we have a transport system that works and that is very important.  The transport system should be viable and sustainable.  How long should we continue to ask Government to fund these companies?  If you look at ZUPCO, it is just a fraction of what it was, an amalgamation of all those companies that I talked about – if you look at the current structure right now, the President chipped in and procured buses that were given to ZUPCO, but our public transport system is still very difficult.  So, we need to analyse which system can work for both the urban, rural and farming areas.  Right now, we also speak of growth points that are developing into towns and they also need transport systems that work to ferry workers to and from work. 

          In other countries, the transport system is now owned by private operators and no longer under parastatals.  They work in collaboration with the parastatals or local authorities.  Investors that can chip in to invest in that sector can be found, but they consider how they can get their returns from their investment.  Government should contribute, but I believe the pension funds and other private investors should chip in.  If we do not address our transport system and continue asking Government to fund ZUPCO, that is money being wasted and not contributing to the development of this sector.  You will find that in the rural areas where I come from in Murehwa South, people cry foul because buses leave much earlier at 3am with drivers seemingly racing and within 10km of travelling, they block each other so that the other bus does not overtake as a way of competing.   I am saying the whole transport system needs complete overhaul to make the system viable.  The pirate taxis are putting people’s lives at high risk.  Small cars like a Honda Fit or Probox carries 10 or more passengers, in the front seat, three people in the middle and four people in the boot.  That is why you see the touts having their legs hanging outside the car and in case of emergency, they can fall out and get injured.  All those things must be addressed. 

       The Railways issue must be looked into.  Let us consider Private Public Partnerships so that our train system maybe used for transporting people as well as goods.  These things must be addressed categorically and I think that can help us because the fares that people are being charged shows that the business is profitable.  If it was not profitable, the transporters would not be plying those routes.  The system needs to be looked into so as to come up with at modern viable system suitable for our country.

        THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Hon. Mangondo, you are left with five minutes.

*HON. MANGONDO: By carrying 10 passengers or so, it means it is profitable otherwise they would not be doing it. Our public transport system is viable and it only needs to be modified. There is need for private players to be involved. I really would like to encourage private investors to come into play, including ZUPCO which must be opened to private investors so that they introduce new management methods which will ensure that those businesses become viable and ensure that they are sustainable.

          If you look at South Africa, there are a lot of players in the transport sector. There is a train meant for ferrying employees to work between Pretoria and Johannesburg. It is lucrative. There is also what they call mass bus rapid transport system which is also working and it is assisting the public in addition to how trains work. In other European countries, there are trains which drop people to work. I keep on emphasising that private players are the way to go. Indeed, Government has a role but you know that Government funds are limited to invest in efficient transport system. I believe that in this House, there are other Members of Parliament that may try to invest in that sector if it is opened up, especially if ZUPCO were to be privatised.

          HON. GUMBO: The problem that inundates our public transport system is more than just a funding problem. I will pose to this House that what we have in Zimbabwe is a confidence problem. One of the key fundamentals of a successful transport system is that the consumers or users must have confidence in the public transport system. For that to happen, it is very pertinent that our transport infrastructure is reliable. If we are to ask each other here, all of us have vehicles and the reason why we were clamouring that the vehicle scheme be expedited is because we required a reliable transport system for ourselves so that we get to work on time,  attend to our several tasks on time and meet our appointments.

          If you go to town today and observe what we call the traffic rush, it is caused mostly by people who want to get where they want to get to on time. The reason why there is a successful and booming mushikashika business in Harare, Bulawayo or any town in this country, is because everyone wants to get where they want to get to on time. How do we improve or how do we go and work on the confidence issue? I will propose to this House and debate that in order to improve reliability in our transport system, it is pertinent that we consider, as a House, putting in place regulations that promote what we call bus lanes in our cities. What are bus lanes for purposes of some Hon. Members who might not know? Public transport will prioritise those lanes. This is where special purpose lanes are created.

          I notice the improvements on the road network that is happening – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.]- but what lacks is proper and coordinated planning amongst several ministries which are responsible for public road networks and public transport systems. Instead of just building one complex road, it is important that Government considers also building public bus lanes which are meant specifically for buses. This is not a new phenomenon; we have such system in countries like Australia and United Kingdom where there are specialised lanes for public transport.

          What does this do Madam Speaker? This ensures that all public transport vehicles stick to their schedule. It ensures that all public transport vehicles adhere to their timetable and time lines. That then gives confidence to the public because everyone will know that if I get on to a bus at 6am, if the bus is scheduled to arrive in Chitungwiza at 7am, it will not have problems of congestion because there are priority lanes for such buses. The moment that is implemented, of course that will require legislative intervention in terms of putting in place regulations which then allow for free movement of public buses. It improves confidence amongst the citizens. Once confidence in the citizens improves, you will realise more of us will want to go and pay money so that I can beat the congestion because my own car will not get me to Parliament on time. That is one thing that this House must consider in terms of its legislative interventions.

          The previous speakers have touched on the question of corruption and corporate governance. We must reduce the fraud that is happening in the public transport system, particularly at ZUPCO and NRZ. The existence of so much human interaction in the ticketing system leads to illicit bus fare management. It also leads to corrupt dealings between consumers and the management of these service providers. It is very important that as a country, we then consider automating. I know there was at one point, an attempt within ZUPCO to introduce what they call tap cards. It is better if we introduce a platform where people will buy tickets online. What does that do, it limits human interaction and improves efficiency in the procurement of the ticket because while you are seated at your House, you can buy your ZUPCO ticket online and when you get to the bus, all you have to do is to produce the bar codes attached to your ticket and you access the transport system.

          If you see the confusion that is happening when boarding ZUPCO buses today, you witness a queue and everyone is trying to jump in and at one time, we had a video footage of individuals jumping on the bus through the window.

Why? Because it is very difficult and cumbersome to buy a ticket at a stampede in trying to get a cheap public transport ticket. It is absurd Madam Speaker. If we consider automating our systems, our public procurement system, it will ensure a flawless activity within the sector and improve confidence again, because now you know with your nice suit, as an Hon. Member, you do not have to suffer being pulled backwards so that someone can buy a ticket you can quickly access.

Thirdly, we must improve what we call customer satisfaction. Any person who has run a business or any person who sells a product or a service like myself, a lawyer, I know very well that customer satisfaction is at the center, at the heart of customer retention. If I have to keep the customer in my office, I must make sure there is air conditioning when they get into my office and Mazoe for them to drink. That is customer satisfaction. If you witness what is happening in the public transport sector, there was a funny video at one point, it was during the rainy season and someone was in a ZUPCO bus holding an umbrella because it was raining in the bus.

If I am seated in my house and witness that, there is no way I will be implored or be pushed to go and board a ZUPCO bus. There is evidence that rampant in the public glare of the harassment which passengers have to suffer and endure under the hands of the conductors and some of the individuals and personnel that will be manning these buses. It is as if it is a privilege or a favour for you to board a ZUPCO bus.

Before you board a ZUPCO bus, you are busy trying to be friendly to the personnel on the bus instead of them being friendly to you because you are the customer. By the way customers are treated – yes, this touches on issues of corporate governance and so forth, management system and all that, we agree. The moment we improve how the personnel in the public transport vehicles and buses behave, how they treat the customer will improve the confidence of the customer. We will have more people and more passengers preferring the public transport system because going to mushikashika and going to ZUPCO bus, same fanana. It is the same thing. You are treated the same way, you are harassed, you are shouted at and sometimes having to interact with conductors with smelling armpits. This is the reality that people are facing. That is what then destroys confidence. As confidence dwindles, what else dwindles Madam Speaker?

The fourth issue in terms of our proposition is to enhance connectivity. These might seem like ideas from Mars because we know at one point, we proposed bullet trains and some these guys thought these were impossible ideas. They are not impossible ideas. The previous speaker was touching on the issues of goods train and so forth…

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

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

HON. S. SITHOLE: My point of order includes also clarification that we require from the Hon. Member. Can he clarify which guys is he referring to that refused the bullet.

HON. GUMBO:  I mean you guys. I think it is clear. The House is in two…

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order Hon. Gumbo. There are no guys in here. There are Hon. Members. Why are you referring to Hon. Members as guys?

HON. GUMBO:  The Honourable guys. Madam Speaker, it is not derogatory. I am a guy myself and among the Hon. Members, we maintain respect.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Gumbo, it is not proper to use that language in this House. You must say, Hon. Members instead of saying, guys. Please may you withdraw that?

HON. GUMBO:  Madam Speaker, I do take note of your wisdom.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: I said, please may you withdraw.

HON. GUMBO:  I withdraw the statement. I will say, these Hon. Members and their other guys outside – [AN HON. MEMBER: No. Madam Speaker, akuda kukura musoro like juru.] – Madam Speaker, I withdraw guys.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Proceed.

HON. GUMBO:  Madam Speaker, another critical cog of restoring confidence is that we are in a world where every person holds a smartphone. Everyone has a smartphone here. Some even call their other smartphones kambudzi but is a smartphone. We are in that age. We are in the age on GPS. We are in the age of internet. It is important that in improving the confidence in the public transport sector, we utilise GPS technology.

We have a problem now that ZUPCO has now also become like mushikashikas because we find these buses with ZUPCO stickers. They are the ones that are competing for customers, but once passengers alight, you will have no confidence that the bus is going to go the route that it promised. You have no confidence that the bus is going to go straight in Murehwa. Sometimes you find yourself in another area which you are not sure where you are, but the destination has been promised Murehwa. It is important that every passenger, once you have gotten into the bus, you have a GPS tracker that allows you to see and track your own journey.

These are things that happen.  Most of us have been on an aeroplane and the technology in bullet trains that we witnessed in other countries. Just Behind the seat of the bus, you can be tracking that apa we are now at Chibi turn off, now we are now at this location and as you head towards your journey, you are also able to plan. It is important that we encourage as legislators, such smart ideas in improving confidence in our public transport sector.

The moment there is confidence, we have resolved the question of funding. The Hon. Speaker who spoke earlier mentioned that there are not enough funding in Government. We know Mthuli does not have money, but that is a conversation for another day. What innovative ways can we put in place to ensure that we improve revenue collection and revenue streams which will self-fund ZUPCO and self-fund NRZ?

It is important that we consider, not to just saying Government must fund, but we consider creative ways and mechanisms of ensuring a boom in the revenue collection of these entities. Lastly, the other Hon. Speaker was busy saying, no, it is not a ZANU PF thing.  Stop blaming ZANU PF and so forth. It is difficult Madam Speaker, to not blame ZANU PF – [HON. J. TSHUMA: Point of order Madam Chair.] –

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: What is your point of order Hon. J. Tshuma?

HON. J. TSHUMA: My point of order is that the Hon. Member, I am sure is getting lost somewhere, whilst he is trying to bring up his point.  I was very clear that our colossal party; our revolutionary party ZANU PF has nothing to do with what ZUPCO does if they fail to provide service.  We are tired of people pointing fingers at our party instead of making people carry their cross and that is a statement that is so true.  So, he must withdraw trying to put ZANU PF that it is the causer of these problems.  I thank you.

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER:  Hon. Gumbo, can you please withdraw?

HON. GUMBO:  Madam Speaker, what am I withdrawing?

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Withdraw referring to the Party ZANU PF – [HON. GUMBO: No, no.] – Hon. Gumbo withdraw your statement?  - [HON. GUMBO: No, Madam Speaker, that is an unfair ruling.] -  Hon. Gumbo, can you please withdraw your statement? – [HON. GUMBO: Madam Speaker, he made reference to ZANU PF, why must I not take a debate to that.  It is an unfair ruling.] -  You cannot be blaming the Party ZANU PF - [HON. GUMBO: Why?] –

HON. MATEWU: On a point of order Madam Speaker.  There is nowhere in the Standing Orders that says one cannot be inclined to debate mentioning a party.  A lot of time here we mention our parties, CCC, MDC, ZANU PF, it is a normal debate and there is nowhere in the rules that penalises a Member for mention or accusing a party.  Our Members must be allowed to freely debate this motion. Thank you.

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Hon. Matewu, I have made my ruling.  Hon. Gumbo, withdraw, before you proceed.

HON. GUMBO: I withdraw ZANU PF and I will revisit my point by saying the previous Hon. Member referenced the point that people must not blame the ruling party for the failures of ZUPCO, NRZ et cetera.  It is difficult not to blame the ruling party, why?  If you go to NRZ today, who is the chairperson of the board, Mike Madiro, former Deputy Minister of the Ruling Party, former Member of Parliament for the ruling party and political central - I do not know of the ruling party.  Why can I not blame the ruling party?

HON. S. SAKUPWANYA: On a point of order Madam Speaker.  I think when we want to discuss the competences of the people who are in such positions, it is important to look at their capabilities based on their CVs.  The person in question should not be castigated based on his affiliation to a ruling party because everyone has political choices.  That is their own personal business but when dealing with Government business, we must deal with the person’s own capabilities based on their CVs.  I feel it is important that the Hon. Member not attack someone based on his affiliation to a revolutionary and ruling party.  I even want to say that even us, just by our affiliation to the ruling party that rules Zimbabwe, he has castigated us as well.  Actually, he must withdraw that statement.

HON. CHIGUMBU: On a point of privilege.  I think it has become a norm in this House that when someone is debating, the Members of Parliament on your right are always destracting debate.  The reason why we have debate here, if you have a counter-debate, you have to register your name with your chief whip and debate.  The debate is open to every Member of this Parliament.  Why are they always destructing others?  - [HON. NYABANI: Point of order.] –

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER (HON. TSITSI ZHOU): Can you please allow him to finish?

Hon. Nyabani having insisted on his point of order.

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Order Hon. Nyabani.

HON. CHIGUMBU: Secondly, if we discuss issues in this House, we are not in any way disadvantaging this country, rather we are enhancing proper governance in this country.  This is classroom where we should be talking about issues that happen in this country.  Why are they always distracting debates that has got something to do with enhancing governance in this country?  These Hon. Members claim that they are patriots but their behaviour is contrary to that which they claim they are.  We are here to play our oversight role...

*HON. NYABANI: Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am – [HON. MEMBERS: Nyabani gara pasi.] -

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Hon. Gumbo, you are not allowed to mention people who are not here to defend themselves.  Can you please your statement and finish your debate?

HON. GUMBO: The fact is that, but…

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Do not say but, just proceed.  If you do not have any points, you can wind up then we proceed.

HON. GUMBO: I have numerous points.  We cannot debate – honest debate in this House requires that we are also be honest with facts, they are stubborn.  We might not like the stubborn facts but they are facts.  So, even the people who are put to manage these institutions must be people who are beyond reforms.  They must people who are not linked to a political organisation which general citizens of this country have no confidence in that kills the question of confidence which is at the centre of my debate today.

Let us go back and revisit the appointments that have been made.  No political appointment to the NRZ; no political appointment to ZUPCO.  The ports that runs public transport system must be people who are professional, qualified and who do not sing for their supper and ululate for their breakfast.  I thank you. 

          HON. GANYIWA:  Thank you Madam Speaker for giving me this opportunity to add my voice on the important subject motion brought by Hon. Mashonganyika regarding the importance of a relook on issues to do with registration of public transport system in our beloved nation.  As I was listening to all the Honourable Members that have debated earlier on, it seems we were going the same way except probably, and I must appreciate Hon. Gumbo when he even made it so open when he appreciated what the Government led by His Excellency is doing on the issue to do with construction of the roads that is taking place in our land. I think this is evidence of the Government that is able to do what it is supposed to do to its people.

          Let me touch a bit, especially connecting from my previous debate then back when debating on the budget.  I once brought issues to do with systems that can help us in policing and regulating our transport systems in a way that can bring also sanity to some extent.  Some of the proposals seem to be harsh but they will work and are working in other nations.

Madam Speaker, previous debaters spoke about the importance of organised associations that can also help or ease the regulations of their members as far as they see if the operators are properly registered.  If we can also look back, we had taxis that used to operate under the banners of associations like Rixi Taxi and A1 Taxi back then, early 2000. They were properly managed from the framework in which these associations were regulated or policed if I may say that, internally within those associations. I think it proved that it is the only way that we can go in as far as bringing back sanity in our public transport systems.

Madam Speaker, at the moment, I heard so many speakers focusing on, of course buses, mushikashika and NRZ but there is also a mushroom of other online transport operators like UBER system whereby people can be using their own private vehicles to ferry the public on hire.  These operators are not regulated properly, neither do we know if the authorities are aware of the numbers of people who are actually working as private taxis that are not registered under the red number plate that are supposed to be placed on their vehicles.  This is also something that needs to be looked at when we are putting our minds and facts around this important motion raised by Hon. Mashonganyika, such that we protect the lives of our beloved citizens from being robbed of their hard-earned cash or subjected to lose their precious life.

Previously, I once spoke about the need for us to make sure that the policies or regulations within the transport sector, from the studies that I did, we cannot fully liberalise the transport system and leave the private players to fully take charge and control of that sector. Anywhere in the world, it is the mandate of the government to make sure that the transport sector is controlled and the government has got the hand to control that because the transport sector, to some extent, if it is liberalised without putting policies that promote or enhance the public operators including the private operators such that they can see the benefits of investing in the transport sector, we will end up losing control of that sector to the private operators.

All of us can recall that not long ago, twice in history, we once witnessed other advocates conniving with private players to join hands in what they called ‘stayaways’ whereby they ordered them not to ply their usual routes. What it basically means, indirect or direct, is if we liberalise it, it becomes a security threat to some extent. Hence the need for us to support the prayer that was asked by the Hon. Member who raised this motion that we need to see how best we can revive ZUPCO and NRZ. However, it is true that we cannot continue pouring funds whereby the same receiver is using the same system that they once received money previously for and without having to bring meaningful changes within those private or public institutions.

As they said, repeating the same thing over and over again expecting different results might be the highest level of just over fighting certain issues. If my children and my wife in the house are spending beyond my means or my budget as far as their grocery issues, I do not opt to punish them by not providing for them next month, but I will need to sit down and put down regulations on how they should be disciplined within their means of expenditure as well as making sure that I also instill a sense of not so high spending pattern.   So, I propose that yes, obviously ZUPCO needs money because money anchors all things but if we are all going to agree that we should answer their prayer by giving them money, we may then need to look into the issues of how they are going to use those funds.  As a principle of banking says, you do not borrow to buy but you borrow to invest, which means we can only second whereby they can ask for grants to reinvest, especially on acquiring more buses that can service our citizens other than to apportion some of the funds that we may second them to get then end up spending the funds on allowances or salaries. 

   I would want to look at the issues that I once talked about referring to the debate I contributed during budget that our wish as a country is to get to a point whereby going to Bulawayo or Gutu, my rural area should not be a choice but how I get there should be my choice.  We need to get to that point, just like what other Hon. Members alluded to.  We need to get to a point whereby I should also wish to use the bus because it will be reliable and safe to use.  It will be coming on time and safely, leaving me at my destination.  How can we do that?  We start by making sure that we put deliberate policies that protect that industry, be it for public sector or private sector.  We need to ensure that we put policies that can enhance their functions when they are operating their business.  For example, let it be a policy whereby for bus operators that are registered, let us normalise them not paying toll-gates or if they are to pay, let them pay at least 50 cents because mind you, as I once proposed that if we put five toll-gates from Harare to Chiredzi, they will not pay any cent as they should be charged on the registration of the public transport operating licence.  The mushikashika on the other hand who are not complying with the required regulations for them to be registered, will not be registered and as they pass, those five toll-gates especially if we put our toll-gates close to the rivers or just after a river, they will not find a way to escape the toll-gate.  When they get there, they will be penalised by paying heavy toll-gate fees, whether they are carrying passengers or not and they will see that it is not profitable for them to continue doing that.  It makes sense for those who would have invested in buying buses that are properly registered and insured.  There I can see and in Shona we say kungwarira kana kuisa musungo kune avo vanenge vachida kunzvenga kusava namapepa akakwana.   I am saying these are some of the proposals that we can put in place whereby the bus will not pass that pain of paying five toll-gates to and fro every day.  They will pass on the cost to the passengers whilst the mushikashikas will meander and bypass these toll-gates or they pass through the toll-gates and they are being charged lesser.  They do not feel it.  These are some of the proposals that we can put in place to bring sanity as well as to ensure that we reduce the human interaction as far as law enforcement is concerned.  We see a situation whereby there are other traffic offences globally that no longer warrant a police officer or any VID personnel to enforce on their own.

We see many accidents that happen and to some extent they are caused by human error.  I once witnessed a bus that was involved in an accident some time ago after passing a road block with worn out tyres.  These are other issues that can also be put in some policies that we can propose in as far as registration of these transporters is concerned, be it public or private.  I thank you for listening.

          HON. ENG. MHANGWA: I rise to further buttress the fact that public transport is there for a reason. It is there to provide safe, efficient and affordable way to move people from place to place. Currently, as a country, we cannot with confidence, say we have a functional public transport system. There is something that is missing and evidently when all of us were touching on the misgivings, it talks to lack of a masterplan. There is need for long term planning of our public transport system.

          Where we come from, the way the buses go to rural areas is haphazard and the State has left this mainly to be done by private players. The public player that is supposed to be there is missing in action. Whenever public transport is there, there is need for a seamless integration between local government and the transporters. I believe it is critical in all our planning, be it central or local government planning that we have a masterplan. This masterplan talks to having seamless connectivity. It talks to having convenience. Transport should give convenience to people. Transport should be affordable and there should be a way of regulating fares.

          In the not so distant past, people have mentioned conveniently that operators say they cannot find change. They arbitrarily put figures. Trips that used to cost 50c have been moved to a dollar and in some instances $2. So, it is important that we plan and have a mechanism to regulate the fares of public transport.

It is also important, other than for it to be affordable, it should also be environmentally sustainable such that it is important that we embrace newer technologies like electric vehicles et cetera as we look into the future in terms of our public transport system. It is important that there are fixed timetables to enhance reliability. It is important that as we think about our network, we should not only not look at the roads as a way of providing transport, there is need for rail to go beyond merely what it is currently. We can think about trunks and other means of taking our people through and into the towns in a way that does not lead to congestion or in a way that makes our towns navigable.

It is my fervent hope that with a masterplan, we have improved mobility and accessibility, enhanced customer experience, increased efficiency and reduced pollution. With these few summations, it is my desire that as we go forward, we will plan and have parastatals that will help us realise this goal to have public transport that is efficient, especially in towns and that makes going to work less of a burden. It is important for this House that we support sound plans and not throw money down the drain as has been in the past. I so submit.

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

HON. PINDUKA: I second.

Motion put and agreed to.

Debate to resume: Wednesday, 10th July 2024.

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

          HON. KAMBUZUMA: I move that we stand down all Orders of the Day on today’s Order Paper until Order of the Day Number 13 has been disposed of.

          HON. MATEWU: I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

REPORT OF THE PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON DEFENCE, HOME AFFAIRS, SECURITY AND WAR VETERANS AFFAIRS ON THE PETITION FROM THE CHILDREN OF WAR VETERANS AND HEROES DEPENDENTS FORUM

          Thirteenth Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on the Petition from the Children of War Veterans and Heroes’ Dependents Forum on the Economic Empowerment for War Veterans and their Dependents.

                Question again proposed.

          *HON. NYABANI: Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am. Good afternoon to you. I want to say a few words. I noted that the Hon. Members on the left side are really interested in what I am saying. I want to talk about the children of war veterans. Indeed, what was raised by the children of war veterans is true. As I stand here, I am not going to just address children of war veterans, but I want to go back and say that there are some parents who left their children when they were going to participate in the liberation struggle.

          In Rushinga where I come from, there are some people who were maimed by landmines which were planted along the border post to deter people from going to Mozambique where most fighters were going. A war was waged in that particular area. In Rushinga, there are people who lost their limbs and arms and there are a lot of issues that happened there which still affect us now. There are some parents who left their children without anyone to look after them and they perished in the war.  It is known that some people went to war and left their children, but the children did not have anyone to look after them even up to now. So, it is my desire that this House looks at the plight of the children of war veterans.

          So many people sacrificed their lives and their children also wish that if their parents were there, they were going to have a better life. Government should look into that issue so that their plight is addressed. We also want to look at war veterans who are still alive. As an Hon. Member, we are living the lives that we live as a result of the sacrifices that were made by war veterans who went to war without any salary.      When you tell someone to work, they will ask you what am l going to get, but we have people who sacrificed their lives for no payment. This was done because they were patriotic and they did not reason to say what if we die. They sacrificed and went to participate in the liberation struggle. So, everyone anticipates that after working they get pension, even MPs also require two terms. Everyone desires to prepare for their future. War veterans of the liberation struggle should have decent lives because they sacrificed their lives. Some died because of the different predators that were found in the bush and some because of diseases. How many in this august House can go to war, especially on the left side? They will not go because they would want to go to America. War is indeed painful. There is no war which is simple. Some come to this august House and laugh that there are no Ministers in Rushinga because people in Rushinga are not educated. They are not educated because there was war. That is why many war veterans are not educated because they were participating in the liberation war.

People should be given resources despite lack of education. War veterans should be remembered, and this is their time. This is a time of recognising them. Some were given 30 or 50 hectares of land. Then you find people saying they have failed. How can they fail without farming implements? They must be given farms and farm implements like tractors, combine harvesters and inputs, particularly seed and fertilizers. Instead of blaming them for failing to farm, they must be given resources. My desire is that Government should empower war veterans so that they can fend for their families. This is what their children should be proud of, that this is what our parents fought for.

I also want to add on the issue with regards to education. It is not an issue that children of war veterans only receive school fees up to Form 4 because Form 4 now is equivalent to the past years’ standards. It has no value, university education is what matters now. How many children of war veterans can afford to go to university and those who have gone to university so that war veterans will say, this is the country we fought for? You find people despising war veterans but there are people who were running away from the war. Such people would just criticise and look down upon war veterans whilst war veterans are suffering.

Some will say that you liberated the country, can you take it back where it was whilst the children of war veterans are suffering? There was a man in 1978, who said that when an eagle comes, a chick will run away otherwise it will be taken away by the eagle. You would find people talking about the war which they read about in papers. Ask those who experienced the war. The war was not easy. War destroys. We have relatives, war collaborators and a lot of people who participated in the struggle and some who died. Now that you are in Parliament, you just say agreed, agreed, without valuing those who sacrificed their lives in order to free and liberate Zimbabwe.

I once went to a certain country in Europe. Europe does not follow African culture but they follow their own culture. There are war veterans in Europe who have a history. In Germany, you are told that there is East and West Germany but we do not care about such. We leave our own heritage, our heroes and heroines, Mbuya Nehanda, Sekuru Kaguvi, Chingaira and others. When you inherit other people’s culture, you will continue suffering. You are told that you should honour your father and mother for your days to be many on this earth. Instead of honouring Americans, you must honour Nehanda and Kaguvi, otherwise you forfeit your blessings. Our ancestors will be happy when we honour our own. There are so many who still manifest where we come from, who would even talk about what happened during the liberation war.

Some people who lost their lives during the war, you would find that their children did not benefit in any way but such children will end up manifesting so that there is closure regarding where their parents died and buried during the liberation war. We need to know that as black people, there are ancestral spirits and if spirits are anguished and hovering, nothing is going to move or thrive for us. When our war veterans are complaining, nothing will move and prosper for us. I want to say that what the children of war veterans said is indeed correct and I stand with them. Even those who did not get the opportunity to speak, who had their fathers who perished during the liberation war, we want to speak on their behalf that such children should also be considered. With these few words Madam Speaker Ma’am, I want to thank you for giving me this opportunity. This should not be an issue of just talking, but we need to take action. I thank you.

*HON. MUNEMO: Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am. I want to add a few words to the motion pertaining to the children of war veterans. What pains me regarding this issue is that the war ended long back in 1980 but up to now, we are still talking about the children of war veterans and the war veterans who deserve also to be treated in a decent manner like everyone else. This issue has been talked about for a long time and I believe that we are behind time because some of these children were very young and they are growing old. Some have passed on, some of the war veterans we are talking about have been dead for some time and never benefited in anyway. Those who participated in the liberation war did so out of sacrifice. That sacrifice was done in a manner that they wanted a free and independent Zimbabwe and they believed that they were going to partake in the heritage and riches of Zimbabwe. Some died and some did not come back and they left orphans. Such families do not have anyone fending for them now.  As a result, the children worked hard. You will find children at households as a result of that, poverty moves from one generation to the next. It is a vicious cycle for them. My desire is that such children should be given the opportunity to learn just like other children because they grew up suffering. We need to strike a balance between these orphans who were suffering during the liberation war and even after the war. After 1980, they were several droughts and you wonder how they were living. We discussed this issue now after over forty years, some have died following their parents. This was a sacrifice which was done by war veterans. I believe that Government should also commit to looking at their plight and making them happy. I believe it was going to be better if they were given resources time and again to better their lives. The tears of the poor, the tears of those who died during the liberation war might bring hunger to the nation because they are not resting in peace. Some might be saying that we did not benefit. That is why the Portuguese said that the poor does not rest and the poor do not rest because those who are rich would be enjoying on their own. When loans are given out by banks, they should also cater for war veterans, whether it is the allocation of funds, war veterans should be considered and they should have loans so that they will recover from their loses which they suffered during the liberation war. The plight of orphans who did not see their parents is quite difficult. It is different from that of orphans who saw their parents. Some would be wondering how their parents were. At the end of day, they do not have food, education and they cannot participate in public debates because they are not educated enough to be able to engage in public discourse.  Government should empower such children so that they attain a certain level of education. They should be given jobs in Government and their own quota as children of war veterans when position come out in different Government departments. There is a song which says that mother and father do not mourn me when I die during the war because I died for Zimbabwe. We need to appreciate that they sacrificed their lives for the freedom of Zimbabwe. Indeed, they sacrificed their lives but they did not benefit in any way. I wanted to request that if possible, such children would be sent to school so that they benefit because their parents also wanted a good life for their children. They would be very happy if they see their children rejoicing even though they did not benefit from the heritage of the nation. There is an English saying which says indeed parents went to war and freed Zimbabwe but the orphans are not independent. We do not know what is going to happen in the future but it is important that because of the challenges that war veterans went through together with their children, there is need to address their plight now because we do not know what the future will be like. I want to request that if possible, when different projects are being implemented, the children of war veterans and the war veterans should be considered. There are some that we live with in our communities in different rural areas who live as destitutes. Sometimes we wonder saying that these people fought for the liberation of the nation which means that what they went for has not been fulfilled. It is long since we have been in an independent country. It really affects the dead and the living. It is quite touching. I thank you

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. Z. ZIYAMBI): I move that the debate do now adjourn.

          Hon. Madzivanyika having stood up to debate after the Minister had moved for the adjournment of the debate.

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Hon. Madzivanyika, you are out of order on the question of adjournment.

          Motion put and agreed to.

          Debate to resume: Wednesday, 10th July, 2024.

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): I move that we revert to Order of the Day Number 1, on the Order Paper.

MOTION

APPROVAL FOR THE RATIFICATION OF THE AGREEMENT ON THE CO-OPERATION OF THE DEVELOPMENT, MANAGEMENT AND SUSTAINABLE UTILISATION OF THE RESOURCES OF THE SAVE WATER COURSE

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI), on behalf of THE MINISTER OF LANDS, AGRICULTURE, FISHERIES, WATER AND RURAL SETTLEMENT (HON. DR. MASUKA): I move the motion standing in my name:

THAT WHEREAS Section 327 (2) (a) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe provides that any convention, treaty or agreement acceded to, concluded or executed by or under the authority of the President with one or more foreign States of Governments of international organisations shall be subject to approval by Parliament;   

AND WHEREAS the Agreement on the Cooperation of the Development, Management and Sustainable Utilisation of the Resources of the Save Watercourse was signed on 23 May 2023 at Harare, Zimbabwe;

AND WHEREAS the Republic of Zimbabwe has not ratified the Agreement on the Cooperation of the Development, Management and Sustainable Utilisation of the Resources of the Save Watercourse;

AND WHEREAS the Republic of Zimbabwe is desirous of ratify the Agreement;

AND WHEREAS in accordance with Article 26 of the Agreement, the Agreement shall enter into force 30 days after the deposit of the instrument of ratification by the parties;

NOW, THEREFORE, in terms of section 327 (2) (a) of the Constitution if Zimbabwe, this House resolves that the aforesaid Agreement is hereby approved for ratification. 

Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

APPROVAL FOR THE RATIFICATION OF THE HOSTING AGREEMENT OF THE BUPUSA COMMISSION SECRETARIAT.

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. Z. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF LANDS, AGRICULTURE, WATER, FISHERIES AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. MASUKA): I rise on the motion that;

WHEREAS Section 327 (2) (a) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe provides that any convention, treaty or agreement acceded to, concluded or executed by or under the authority of the President with one or more foreign states od governments of international organisations shall be subject to approval by Parliament;

AND WHEREAS the Hosting Agreement of the Bupusa Commission Secretariat was signed on the 23 of May 2023 at Harare, Zimbabwe;

AND WHEREAS the Republic of Zimbabwe has not ratified the Hosting Agreement of the Bupusa Commission Secretariat;

AND WHEREAS the Republic of Zimbabwe is desirous of ratify the Agreement;

AND WHEREAS in accordance with Article 15 of the Agreement, the Agreement shall enter into force 30 days after notification by the parties to the Depositary that the procedures and requirements of the domestic laws of both Member States were fulfilled;

NOW, THEREFORE, in terms of section 327(2) (a) of the Constitution if Zimbabwe, this House resolves that the aforesaid Agreement is hereby approved for ratification. I so submit.

Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

APPROVAL FOR THE RATIFICATION OF THE AGREEMENT ON THE ESTABLISHMENTOF THE BUZI, PUNGWE AND SAVE WATERCOURSE COMMISSION.

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. Z. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF LANDS, AGRICULTURE, WATER, FISHERIES AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT: I rise on the motion that;

WHEREAS Section 327(2)(a) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe provides that any convention, treaty or agreement acceded to, concluded or executed by or under the authority of the President with one or more foreign states od governments of international organisations shall be subject to approval by Parliament;

AND WHEREAS the Agreement on the Establishment of the Buzi, Pungwe and Save Watercourse Commission (Bupusa Commission) was signed on the 23 of May 2023 at Harare, Zimbabwe.

 AND WHEREAS the Republic of Zimbabwe has not ratified the Agreement on the Establishment of the Buzi, Pungwe and Save Watercourse Commission.

AND WHEREAS the Republic of Zimbabwe id desirous of ratify the Agreement.

AND WHEREAS in accordance with Article 14 of the Agreement, the Agreement shall enter into force 30 days after the last notification to the Depositary, by the Parties that their respective constitutional procedures have been complied with.

NOW THEREFORE, in terms of section 327(2) (a) of the Constitution if Zimbabwe, this House resolves that the aforesaid Agreement is hereby approved for ratification. I so submit.

Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

APPROVAL FOR THE ACCESSION TO THE CONVENTION ON THE PROTECTION AND USE OF TRANSBOUNDARY WATERCOURSES AND INTERNATIONAL LAKES AND CONVENTION ON THE LAW OF THE NON-NAVIGATIONAL USES OF INTERNATIONAL WATERCOURSES.

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. Z. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF LANDS, AGRICULTURE, WATER, FISHERIES AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT: I rise on the motion that;

 WHEREAS Section 327 (2) (a) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe provides that any convention, treaty or agreement acceded to, concluded or executed by or under the authority of the President with one or more foreign states or governments of international organisations shall be subject to approval by Parliament;

AND WHEREAS the proposed accession to the Convention on the Protection and use of Transboundary Watercourses and International Lakes and Convention on the Law of the Non-navigational Uses of International Watercourses (hereinafter “the global water conventions”) was approved by Cabinet on 09 April 2024;

AND WHEREAS the Republic of Zimbabwe has not acceded to the global water conventions;

AND WHEREAS the Republic of Zimbabwe is desirous of accede to the global water conventions;

NOW, THEREFORE, in terms of section 327 (2) (a) of the Constitution if Zimbabwe, this House resolves that the global water conventions be and are hereby approved. I so submit.

Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

APPROVAL FOR THE RATIFICATION OF THE AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE GOVERNMENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF SOUTH AFRICA AND THE REPUBLIC OF ZIMBABWE ON THE SUPPLY OF TREATED WATER FROM BEITBRIDGE WATER TREATMENT WORKS IN ZIMBABWE TO MUSINA TOWN

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. Z. ZIYAMBI): Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am.  I rise again on a notice of motion by the Minister of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Resettlement;

THAT WHEREAS Section 327 (2) (a) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe provides that any convention, treaty or agreement acceded to, concluded or executed by or under the authority of the President with one or more foreign states of governments or international organisations shall be subject to approval by Parliament;

AND WHEREAS the Agreement between the Government of the Republic of South Africa and the Republic of Zimbabwe on the Supply of Treated Water from Beit Bridge Water Treatment Works in Zimbabwe to Musina Town (hereinafter “the Agreement”) was signed on 14 March 2024 at Musina, South Africa;

AND WHEREAS the Republic of Zimbabwe has not ratified the Agreement;

AND WHEREAS the Republic of Zimbabwe is desirous to ratify the Agreement;

NOW, THEREFORE, in terms of section 327 (2) (a) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe, this House resolves that the Agreement be and is hereby approved.

Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

 

APPROVAL FOR THE RATIFICATION OF THE MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING (MOU) ON THE DEVELOPMENT, MANAGEMENT AND SUSTAINABLE UTILISATION OF THE WATER RESOURCES OF THE BUZI WATERCOURSE

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. Z. ZIYAMBI): Thank you once again Madam Speaker Ma’am.  I rise on a Notice of Motion of the Minister of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Resettlement;

THAT WHEREAS Section 327 (2) (a) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe provides that any convention, treaty or agreement acceded to, concluded or executed by or under the authority of the President with one or more foreign states of governments or international organisations shall be subject to approval by Parliament;

AND WHEREAS the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on the Development, Management and Sustainable Utilisation of the Buzi Watercourse was signed on the 29th  of July 2019 at Mutare, Zimbabwe;

AND WHEREAS the Republic of Zimbabwe has not ratified the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on the Development, Management and Sustainable Utilisation of the Water Resources of the Buzi Watercourse;

AND WHEREAS the Republic of Zimbabwe is desirous of ratifying the regulatory framework;

AND WHEREAS in accordance with Article 25 of the MOU, the MOU shall enter into force 30 days after the deposit of the instrument of ratification by the parties;

NOW, THEREFORE, in terms of section 327 (2) (a) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe, this House resolves that the aforesaid Memorandum of Understanding is hereby approved for ratification.

Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. Z. ZIYAMBI):  Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am.   I move that Orders of the Day, Numbers 8 to 20 be stood over until Order of the Day Number 21 has been disposed of.

Motion put and agreed.

MOTION

CONDOLENCES ON THE DEATH OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE ISLAMIC REPUBLIC OF IRAN, HIS EXCELLENCY EBRAHIM RAISI

HON. TIMBURWA:  Hon. Speaker, I seek leave of the House to withdraw my motion, Order of the Day Number 21 on today’s Order Paper. The motivation to withdraw my motion has been prompted by the similar development that happened on the same motion at a higher level whereby the condolence message was passed onto the nation of Iran. I thank you Madam Speaker. 

HON. SHAMU:  I second.

          Motion, with leave, withdrawn.

          On the motion of THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. Z. ZIYAMBI), the House adjourned at Five Minutes to Five o’clock p.m. 

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