[featured_image]
Download
Download is available until [expire_date]
  • Version
  • Download 3
  • File Size 690 KB
  • File Count 1
  • Create Date December 18, 2019
  • Last Updated November 18, 2021

SENATE HANSARD 05 DECEMBER 2019 29-10

PARLIAMENT OF ZIMBABWE

Thursday 5th December, 2019

The Senate met at Half-past Two o’clock p.m.

PRAYERS

(THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE in the Chair)

ANNOUNCEMENTS BY THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF

SENATE

SWITCHING OFF OF CELL PHONES

THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE: Hon.

Senators are reminded once again to put your phones on silent or better still switch them off.

BIO-METRIC REGISTRATION

THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: I also want to remind Hon. Senators that you must ensure that you do your bio-metric registration.  A number of Senators still remain outstanding in terms of registering their bio-metrics; this is going to delay a lot of things. So, ensure that your bio-metric is registered so that the rest of the administration of Parliament fall in place.  A lot of things that we are doing now depend on bio-metric.  Please I urge you to ensure that you are registered.

APOLOGIES RECEIVED FROM MINISTERS

THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: Today is Thursday and

we expect Hon. Ministers to attend and answer questions. I have apologies from two Hon. Ministers;

  • Mangaliso Ndhlovu – The Minister of Environment,

Climate Change, Tourism and Hospitality Industry; and

  • E. Moyo –The Deputy Minister of Primary and Secondary

Education.

ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITHOUT NOTICE

HON. ENG. MUDZURI: My question is directed to the Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, the Leader of Government Business.  My question is- has it become the Government policy that

Ministers do not respect the Senate. They never come in time and we have to postpone question time all the respective days, all time waiting for Ministers to come, for us to ask direct questions, especially this time when Christmas is about to come and people are about to close. There is a lot that has been going on in Parliament and we need to ask questions.  Has it become Government policy that they absent themselves and come any time they want?

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND

PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): I want to thank

the Hon. Senator for the question. It is not the Government policy for Ministers not to come to the Senate.  The Government cannot enact a policy that is contrary to our Constitution.  I want to apologise that my colleague Ministers are not here. I have communicated to them and it is my hope that they will arrive. I thank you.

HON. KHUPE: Thank you Hon. President of the Senate.  My question is directed to the Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, Hon. Ziyambi.  My question is as follows, as a matter of policy, it looks like the Government is reversing the gains which were achieved by the inclusion of disabled persons.  I say so because there is  talk about the draft amendment of the Constitution and it includes additional seats for certain sections of our society but ironically, there is no any addition to seats in Senate or National Assembly for persons with disability as per our clarion call.

  THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND

PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): Thank you Hon.

President. I want to thank the Hon. Senator for the question and indicate that Government has no intention not to restate the rights of the disabled.

We have a desire to ensure that it is maintained.  As to the question that Government wants to amend the Constitution and include seats for others, my response Hon. President is, if that proposal sees light of the day it will come to Parliament.  These two august Houses represent the people and that determination will be made here. I thank you.

HON. SEN. TIMVEOS:  Thank you Mr. President.  My question

goes to the Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs.  I need to understand what Government is doing on the issue of these people that are called “mashurugwi.”  I saw a gruesome video of these “mashurugwi” cutting a man’s legs.  I want to understand exactly what we are doing.  I feel that soldiers should be in those areas.  These people are fighting for gold and gold should belong to the State if it is not a pegged area.  I feel strongly that soldiers should actually be at these places to prevent things like this.  I do not think it is Zimbabwean and I do not think it is our “ubuntu.”  I last saw things like this in Libya when their President was killed.  We do not want things like this to come to Zimbabwe but it is happening.  Children and women were there screaming.

  THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE:  Can you ask

your question please?

HON. SEN. TIMVEOS:  My question is, what is the Government

doing?  Why is it that our soldiers are not being deployed in those areas so that we can save lives?  Thank you.

         THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND

PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI):  Thank you Hon.

President.  I want to thank the Hon. Sen. for the question which is very important. The issue of the so-called “mashurugwi” even though I do not want to regionalise it and say rogue people, some of them I do not think are even miners who are going about terrorising people.  The problem now is across provinces.  It is a cause for concern.  We have held meetings with the police and the Minister of Home Affairs is alive to the issues pertaining to these people.  We are going to take some measures if need be like you rightly pointed out.  If the police feel that they are not capacitated then they will request the assistance of the military. In the near future, you should be able to witness some changes regarding the issue of illegal people who go about terrorising others.  It is a cause for concern even for all of us and we believe that people should be allowed to go about their business at peace without fear of any terrorist attacks from the so called “mashurugwi.”

HON. SEN. MWONZORA:  Thank you Mr. President.  My

question is directed to the Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary

Affairs.  In 2013, Zimbabwe adopted a new Constitution after a protracted process and after an outreach process where Zimbabweans told us what they wanted.  In 2013, provincial councils were elected by the people of Zimbabwe.  They were not sworn in until up to the expiry of their term of office in 2018.  In July 2018, provincial councils were again elected by the people of Zimbabwe. Up to now, they have not been sworn in.  The Constitution of Zimbabwe makes it clear that Zimbabwe should be a two tier state with local government, provincial government and central government.  In this House, you made a promise that devolution was coming.  When is devolution coming?  Why have these people not been sworn in despite being elected by the people of Zimbabwe?  Is this Government not in contempt of the people of Zimbabwe?  Is it not in contempt of the Constitution?

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND

PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI):  I want to thank

the Hon. Senator for the question and point out that indeed he is correct that in 2013 we had provincial councilors that were not sworn in.  I will not speak for the tenure between 2013 and 2018 on why they were not sworn.  However, I will say that when we had elections in 2018, we indeed agreed that we need to abide by the Constitution.  We agreed that we need to have our country devolved and we have provincial councils. Pursuant to that, we started the process of coming up with legislation to give effect to the provincial councils.  This process was being led by the Ministry of Local Government.  In the process, we realised that there were some contradictions that we needed to deal with before we could give effect to this legislation that we wanted to do.

We were also mindful that we had an obligation to those people who were elected as provincial councilors.  They had a legitimate expectation that they have to be sworn in and carry out their duty.  We are alive to that but there was slight delay whereby we decided that going forward we need to deal with the constitutional issues irregularities which we are now dealing with.  We will soon be bringing to Parliament an amendment Bill to the Constitution to deal with these issues.  In the meantime, we will also bring a Bill that will give effect to the provincial councils.  This is work in progress and my response is, we are going to ensure that it is realised.  I thank you Hon. President. 

HON. SEN. MWONZORA:  Thank you Hon. Minister for your

attempt to answer this question.  Hon. Minister, do we need to have legislation in order to swear in people?  Why have you not brought the constitutional amendment?  Why have you not brought the bill?  Why is it seemingly not urgent to you yet we have people elected by the people of Zimbabwe?

HON. ZIYAMBI:  Thank you Hon. President and I want to thank the Hon. Senator for the follow up question.  Indeed Hon. President, it might seem like we do not need legislation to swear them but the process of swearing in the provincial councilors must lead them to have something to do in terms of a certain piece of legislation.  We believe that these two are interrelated.  We are going to deal with issues of the laws that govern them and we will now give them the mandate to proceed after we have done that.  Definitely, without that unless if the

Hon. Sen. just wants us to swear them in and they do not do anything, but in our wisdom we believe that we should deal with these issues.  As to the second question why I have not done that, I indicated that indeed, perhaps we should have done it much earlier, but the Bill is going to come soon.  We are going to gazette it very soon.  My desire is to ensure that we gazette the Constitutional Amendment Bill this December so that by March, after the 90 day period, we should be able to start debating it.  Next year going forward, we should be able to give effect ...

Hon. Minister Shiri having passed between the Deputy President of the Senate and the Member on the floor.

THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE:  Order.

Hon. Minister, may you please come back.  You may not pass between me and the Hon. Member who is speaking.  Please use the other door.

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND

PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI):  Hopefully, once

that is done, next year going forward, we should be able to have the councillors sworn in and they should be able to start their duties that they were elected to do.  I thank you Mr. President.

THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE:  I must

announce that we have also been joined by the Minister of Agriculture, Climate Change, Lands and Resettlement, Hon. Shiri; the Deputy

Minister of Energy and Power Development, Hon. Magna Mudyiwa; the Deputy Minister of Youth, Sport, Arts and Recreation, Hon. Machakaire and Hon. Mutodi was already here.  I thank you.

HON. SEN. MAKONE:  My supplementary question relates to the statement that was made by the Minister.  He says that they realised that there was a problem between the Constitution and what was supposed to be done by the members who were elected.  As fellow legislators, is it too much to ask for him to expound on what that difference could have been which has taken so long since the Constitution came into being that up to now, almost six years after the adoption of the Constitution we still do not have provincial councils.  I know he cannot speak about what happened before his time but the people who do the work are still the same people, because it is done by the civil servants.  The Minister simply brings the work here.  What is it that has held this piece of legislation for six years that we do not have provincial councils?  I do not think it is too much to ask for Members of this House as legislators to hear the hurdles that the Minister has come across.  Furthermore, will their terms be extended should we get the legislation and the Constitution aligned?  If he does not next year, will he give them the extra months that they have lost?  Thank you Mr.

President.

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND

PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI):  Thank you Mr.

President.  Like I indicated, I said I am not here to speak about what happened during the last Parliament, but I am here to speak about what transpired after the elections of 2018 which happened last year.  As soon as we finish the elections, we started the process of trying to come up with the legislation to give effect to the provincial and metropolitan councils.  The provincial councils are governed in terms of Section 268 of the Constitution.  The same section 268 has committees and 268, 269 govern metropolitan councils.  Section 270 spells out the functions of provincial and metropolitan councils combined.  We have Section 271 that speaks about committees of provincial councils and Hon. Senators will know worldwide, Parliament in session like this is there for debate but Parliament in committees, that is where you do the majority of the work.

These committees, the Constitution says they are comprised of members in terms of Section 268 (i) and (h) and 269 (i) and (h).  Going to the Constitution- there is no Section 269 (i) and (h).  Already, we could not truly compose metropolitan councils.  Something was amiss.  Again, we then realise that if we look at the composition of provincial councils, Senators and National Assembly Members are supposed to sit in this.  Again it is very problematic in that the National Assembly Members and senators are the very same people who preside over the budget that goes to these provincial and metropolitan councils.  After that they are now required to go and become members of the councils and determine how that money is supposed to be used.  At the same time, they are supposed to play their oversight role given to them by the Constitution and in that regard, there is conflation of roles.  The MP is now doing everything.  We believe we should remove the MPs, they continue with their oversight role and then we have provincial councils with their chairperson, metropolitan councils with their chairpersons having their budget and National Assembly Hon. Members having oversight role on what they are doing.  That is the other issue that we picked.  We decided that let us deal with issues of the Constitution, clean it up and then we bring the law to give effect to the provincial and metropolitan councils once we have cleaned up these issues among others.  I thank you Mr. President.

HON. SEN. B. MPOFU:  Thank you.  My question is to the Deputy Minister of Sports.  I wanted to find out what the Ministry is doing in particular, regarding the African Union Sports Councils

Regional Under 20 Games Forensic Report that was produced by Deloitte in particular, the grey areas of corruption and abuse of money by officials of that Ministry?

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF YOUTH, SPORT, ARTS AND

RECREATIONHON (HON. MACHAKARIKA):  Thank you Mr.

President.  I think I am still settling.  Can I defer the question to the Leader of the House?

THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE:    He is

being very honest.  Do you want to answer that question Hon. Minister of Justice?

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND

PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): Yes, the Deputy

Minister is correct Hon. President. This is not a policy issue and expecting him to answer from his head, by its very nature, a forensic audit is an audit for an action to do something. You do not request a forensic audit just to put it aside but it is not a policy question. Something is going to be done and an answer cannot be provided now

Hon. President. I thank you.

  THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE: You may put

your question in writing if you want a definitive response so that it is given attention.

HON. SEN. B. MPOFU: My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Energy and Power Development, Hon. M. Mudyiwa. What measures is the Ministry making to improve the fuel situation in the country now that we are approaching the festive season? Thank you.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF ENERGY AND POWER

DEVELOPMENT (HON. MUDYIWA): I would like to thank the

Hon. Member for the question which is quite pertinent, particularly now that we are towards the festive season when people would want to travel to their rural homes, holiday resorts and so forth. As a Ministry, we are very much aware that our fuel has been constrained as of late and efforts are under way to ensure that we have enough fuel during the festive season. The challenge that we have is about the rollover of the lines of credit, the credit letters that have been issued for the payment of fuel. Now that process is over, I think we have seen that there is a slight improvement in our service stations. I am not saying there is total sanity there but there is some improvement and we are still working on that. We have been discussing with the RBZ which issues the letters of credit that they expedite the process and ensure that the fuel we need is made available and well in time before the Christmas holiday. Thank you.

HON. SEN. SHOKO: Mr. President, I hope my question is going to be answered well as the man who is supposed to answer that question is not here, the Minister of Finance. Mr. President, on the 18th October,

2018, inflation was at 4,5% and the Minister said give me six months.

What I would want to know from the Minister is what is the

Zimbabwean inflation rate at present and when I have known that, I also would want to hear from the Minister what measures are being taken to deal with that type of inflation that is affecting us presently?

         THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND

PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): Indeed, the Hon.

Member is very correct to say he hopes that his question will be answered correctly which will remain a hope because this is not a policy question. He is speaking about specific figures on inflation and then measures that will arise out of the policy to contain a certain situation.

     *HON. SEN. CHIMBUDZI: Thank you Hon. President. My

question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Information, Hon. Mutodi. What is the Government policy to fight against piracy that is affecting the work of the artists?

         THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF INFORMATION,

PUBLICITY AND BROADCASTNG SERVICES (HON.

MUTODI): I would like to thank the Hon. Member for asking the question. Piracy is not desirable, both by the artists and on the part of the Government. Whilst we do not have a specific law to deal exactly with what is actually happening on the streets where artists are losing their intellectual work in terms of what they are producing in records and other deliverables to some youths who are selling their CDs on the streets; it remains work in progress on the part of Parliament to craft appropriate laws that can ensure that people engaging in piracy can get jail terms once they are caught by law enforcement agents, but it also starts with the enactment of the appropriate law that we need to really be able to curtail the current illegal activities that are taking place.

HON. SEN. MWONZORA: Hon. Minister, thank you very much

for your answer but why are you not making the law? You are expecting Parliament to make the law. Why are you not initiating them because this has been a complaint of many of our artists who have been short changed by piracy? Why is your Ministry not doing it? Why is it not bringing the Bill? We are waiting for the Bill. Again, what is your Ministry doing to curb hate language in the media?

  THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE: You were

supposed to ask only one question and that is not a supplementary. Hon.

Minister I will ask you to answer the supplementary.

HON. MUTODI: Thank you Hon. Senator for the question. I

think the issue on the Bill will best be answered by the Leader of Government Business, Minister of Justice. I will answer on the issue about the hate speech. Hate speech, you know in our Constitution, we have allowed freedom of expression, freedom to speak out and freedom to express your opinion or research work and so on and this is right according to our Constitution. So, it is very difficult for us to then determine what really is hate speech if there is no specific law to determine what we can say is hate speech because one would actually argue that it is out of research and their conscience to say out something they believe is true.

So, I understand that there is a lot of hate speech and fake news is circulating on the social media but basically it all goes back to the law that we may need but of course it does not need to go against other laws that actually guarantee freedoms - freedom of speech, expression and of research.  I thank you.

HON. SEN. DR. MAVETERA: My question will have to go to

the Leader of Government Business in the House.  My question is related to the current state of the health delivery system in the country.  I would want the Minister to tell us what really is the way forward in solving the impasse which is between the employer and Government

State workers.

Also, I want to find out whether the Government is really aware of the real issues concerning the doctors because, we have a situation where recently out of good will, the Head of State actually gave statements that they should go back to work.  Unfortunately, it has not happened because the information which the President got is not correct.  What is the Government going to do to end this impasse? Then secondly, are we conveying the correct information to the Head of State?  

         THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND

PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): I will answer the

first part and the second part on conveying messages to the President being not a policy question.

On the first part, the doctors went on strike and after they went on strike, negotiations were on going and there was no agreement.  We then went to court so that the court can make a determination and obtain an order as to the way forward.  The Labour Court did that and ordered that the striking personnel should report to work and that the case be referred for arbitration.  When that was done, we duly waited for the time that the court had given us to say that personnel must go to work and they disregarded the order and they did not go back to work, the majority of them.  The order was very clear that if they do not go to work, then they are dismissed.  What then happened is, we followed the law as it was.

Further to that, the Minister of Health and Child Care did not close his doors to negotiations with representatives of those that were at work and even those that had been dismissed, he remained open to discussions.  That again was not taken up.

The church leaders again went to see His Excellency to express their concerns and requested that a moratorium be given and that the doctors be allowed to go to work and then pursuant to the order that was given by the court, we go for arbitration to try and find each other.  Again the doctors disregarded that and currently, that is the position that I have to report.  I thank you Hon. President.

HON. SEN. KOMICHI: It has been in the social media

circulation that Cde. Strive Masiiwa wants to assist.  Is it true that he is trying to fund the doctors?

HON. ZIYAMBI: Thank you Hon. President.  Unfortunately, I am not a follower of social media.  So, I am not competent to answer it.  I thank you.

HON. SEN. MWONZORA: First of all, thank you very much for answering our questions.  We have read in the social media coming from

Government to be specific from the Deputy Minister of Defence and War Veterans, Hon. Matemadanda. But in fact the Government is saying, there is a lawyer by the Name Douglas Coltart who is paying the doctors not to go to work.  Is that as a matter of fact true and if it is not true, what has the Government done to correct that misinformation?

HON. ZIYAMBI:  My response Hon. President is, Government has one spokesperson, the Minister of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services.  Hon. Matemadanda whatever he said, it depends on which platform he was and our Constitution gives the right to say whatever was said was not official communication from Government signed off by the Minister of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services to say that there is a certain lawyer that is paying the doctors.  I thank you Hon. President.

HON. SEN. DR. MAVETERA: Thank you Mr. President.  I am very much concerned about the situation which I have just raised but the issue I think needs to be clear. The doctors want tools of trade and not money.  That is why you find all these things not working.  What has the Government done to address the main reason why doctors left the hospitals which is incapacitation because there are no drugs, there are no medications and doctors cannot go to theatre because there are no gloves.  Then now if we say let them go, they cannot go because there are no tools of trade.  That is what needs to be addressed.  What is the Government doing at the moment?

HON. ZIYAMBI: Thank you Hon. President.  I respectfully submit that he has been misled by the doctors that they went away because of tools of trade.  If you are employed at a road construction site and shovels are not provided, you do not run away from your workplace because there are no shovels.  There is a very clear order of the court

that gave a roadmap of what needs to be done and the doctors decided to clearly ignore that particular order and the Hon. Senator is saying no, the dispute is about tools of trade.  In deed I will agree but there is an order that said go find an arbitrator, discuss those issues and get to a solution and they refused.  I thank you Hon. President.

         HON. SEN. A. DUBE:  My question is directed to the Leader of the House.  Hon. Minister, we really appreciate the schools feeding programme your Ministry embarked on.  My question is- what is the Ministry doing in assisting district and rural hospitals which are struggling to feed admitted patients?  Thank you.

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND

PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI):  I want to thank

the Hon. Senator for the question.  The issue of hospitals is not run by social welfare in other words social welfare is not the one that provides food to hospitals.  Secondly, should the hospitals have shortages of basic food commodities which then becomes a specific question, the Hon.

Senator can put it in writing so that the Minister responsible can then investigate to find out what is transpiring at those specific hospitals.  I thank you.

HON. SEN. NCUBE:  Thank you Mr. President.  My question is

directed to the Leader of the House.  Mr. President, traditional births attendants were abolished were abolished in Zimbabwe to promote skilled personnel.  What is Government policy on backyard midwives in view of the recent actions by Government to recognise traditional birth attendants?  I thank you.

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND

PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI):  The question is

very specific and I request that the Hon. Senator puts it in writing so that the Minister can respond accordingly.  I thank you. 

                *HON. SEN. CHIEF CHIKWAKA:  Thank you Mr. President.

My question is directed to the Minister of Lands, Agriculture, Water, Climate and Rural Resettlement.  We know that our economy is agrobased.  What is Government policy on farmers who use irrigation so that their crops are not affected?  Hon. Minister, fertilizer is not available? What is Government policy in providing fertilizer on time?

*THE MINISTER OF LANDS, AGRICULTURE, WATER,

CLIMATE AND RURAL RESETTLEMENT (HON. RTD. AIR

CHIEF MARSHAL SHIRI):  I want to thank the Hon. Chief for the question.  We are trying by all means to see that farming inputs are available. At the moment if you go to companies which sell farming inputs like fertilizer, people are hoarding fertilizer going to farms.  Mr. President, because of logistics there may be gaps of two or three days without inputs but we quickly close that gap.  The other issue is that our industry does not have capacity to produce enough quantities.  As we speak right now, fertilizer is available and people are buying from these companies.  We continue making efforts so that people get enough inputs.

*HON. SEN. MWONZORA:  Thank you Mr. President.  My

question is that inputs like fertilizers are too expensive and people in rural areas are not able to afford, even those in urban areas cannot afford to buy those inputs.  What is Government doing to make sure that prices are affordable and that those inputs are easily accessible?

                 *THE MINISTER OF LANDS, AGRICULTURE, WATER,

CLIMATE AND RURAL RESETTLEMENT (HON. RTD. AIR

CHIEF MARSHAL SHIRI): I want to thank the Hon. Senator for the question.  The question on prices can be answered properly by the Ministry of Industry and Commerce.  The Ministry of Agriculture is also affected by high prices of inputs.  We do not regulate prices that belong to the Ministry of Industry and Commerce.

An Hon. Senator having stood up to pose a supplementary question.

         THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE:  The original

question was asked by Hon. Sen. Chief Chikwaka; Hon. Sen. Mwonzora then smuggled a new question about prices.  So that is a new question which is not authorised by the Chair. No, you cannot ask a supplementary question!

*HON. SEN. CHIRONGOMA:  Thank you Mr. President.  My

question is directed to the Minister of Lands, Agriculture, Water,

Climate and Rural Resettlement.  We know that we have Command Agriculture and you made it very smart this year.  People are now able to go to banks and get everything they want.  I want to find out from the Minister if people are accessing inputs which are supposed to be provided.

THE MINISTER OF LANDS, AGRICULTURE, WATER,

CLIMATE AND RURAL RESETTLEMENT (HON. RTD. AIR

CHIEF MARSHAL SHIRI): Thank you Mr. President, I want to thank the Hon. Member for that question.  I want to make it clear that the word command agriculture and smart agriculture include doing things on time and using the new technology.  Smart agriculture is a programme which includes the private sector which is banks.  Farmers go to the banks for loans and the bank selects those who are not bad debtors to access loans.  These loans can be in  form of inputs which are accessible in their respective provinces and also from manufacturers of agricultural products.  Command Agriculture focuses on maize, poultry and cattle ranching whilst smart agriculture can for example focus on fruits.

         Questions Without Notice were interrupted by THE HON.

DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE in terms of Standing Order No.

MOTION 

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND

PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): I move that

Orders of the Day Numbers 1 to 6 on today’s Order Paper be stood over until Order of the Day, Number 7 on today’s Order Paper has been disposed of.

Motion put and agreed to.

SECOND READING

MONEY LAUNDERING AND PROCEEDS OF CRIME BILL [H. B.

4, 2019

Seventh Order read: Second Reading: Money Laundering and Proceeds of Crime Bill [H. B. 4, 2019].

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND

PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): Thank you Mr.

President and Hon. Senators.  Unexplained Wealth Orders were pioneered in the United Kingdom to help stem the huge sums of illgotten wealth washing through the UK.  They allow investigators, after obtaining an order from the court, to ask anyone with assets of more than £50,000 to explain how they can afford them if it appears their income is insufficient.  Now some of our people might ask, “why should a developing country like ours bother about the exact source of wealth coming abroad so long as it is invested here? Others might ask, “is the existing law not enough to discover the sources of wealth obtained from fraud, crime and other corruption?’

Let me answer the first question with another question: - “have you thought about the impact on our domestic economy of having floods of dirty money buy up all the available best houses, businesses, assets and services”? In parts of Britain especially London and other city centres, homes for the middle class have become unaffordable because of the tide of dirty money buying up all the prime locations.  Likewise in our country, if we are not careful, we will find our taxpaying, law-abiding citizens locked out of the property and other markets by international criminal gangs seeking to “wash” their dirty money from robbery, fraud, drug-dealing and even terrorist extortion.  Moreover, the international community in the shape of the Financial Action Task Force is keeping an eye on vulnerable countries like our own.  If the FATF considers that we are not doing our part in the fight against international moneylaundering, it may put us under more severe financial sanctions than the ones we already suffer from.  Let me say that we were not required to propose this Bill by the FATF, but they are aware of it and will be pleased that our country is leading the way in the continent to implement this very useful measure against international money laundering.

As to the second question, the law on forfeiture of criminally obtained property is very fragmented.  Some of it is contained in the Criminal Procedure and Evidence Act, the rest of it is scattered over many statutes that deal with the forfeiture of unlawful property in specific cases.  There is no standard procedure for preventing the washing of criminally obtaining property except after a successful prosecution for an offence and this is often very difficult to achieve given the stretched resources of the police and the NPA.  We owe it to our hardworking law-abiding and taxpaying citizens to ferret out (by means of a non-criminal and civil process) those among our people who treat our laws and taxes as if they did not apply to them.  By the dishonesty of these few individuals, the majority of us are made to suffer.  They obtain money from corruption, extortion, fraud, theft, tax evasion and robbery to hoard huge amounts of cash and property that they cannot usefully utilise for themselves.  Homes become unaffordable because of them, capital that should be channeled through banks and other lending institutions is wasted and made unavailable for loans to buy houses or to start business or to employ persons gainfully.  Money that should have been paid as taxes cannot benefit the people to fund housing, schooling, public infrastructure and other basic services.

Let me assure Senators however, that this Bill is not a charter for the persecution of law-abiding citizens of their wealth.  In the first place, an order must be obtained from the High Court by an “enforcement authority” (the Police or ZIMRA).  Secondly, the enforcement authority must satisfy the court that the alleged ill-gotten wealth in question is equal to or exceeds the equivalent of United States $100 000.  Thirdly, the effect of an unexplained wealth order is simply to compel the respondent to provide the enforcement authority with an explanation or a paper trail of how he or she obtained his or her wealth.  If the explanation is satisfactory, no further consequences will follow.  However, if the explanation is untruthful in any material particular, criminal prosecution will follow that will involve forfeiture of at least some part of the ill-gotten wealth or proceeds thereof.

Finally, if the explanation is truthful in every material particular and if it discloses any criminal conduct on the part of the respondent, such information cannot form the basis of a criminal prosecution.  This is because of the privilege against self-incrimination referred to in Subsection (1) of section 70 paragraph (i) of our Constitution.   At the most, the disclosures can only form the basis for a civil asset forfeiture order, which the enforcement authority must prove on a balance of probabilities in the High Court before it is obtained.

Hon. Senators, this Bill is a pledge to our people of our strong commitment to fight corruption and related illicit activities.  Let us not fail them. I urge you to support and pass this law wholeheartedly.  Thank you Hon. President.

HON. SEN. MPOFU:  Thank you Hon. Minister for presenting

this Bill and I should put it on record that we received this Bill at 1:30 pm in the pigeon holes.  As such, I did not go through it to the extent that my debate will be useful to the Minister and to this House.  Thank you.

      THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE:  Is that the

situation prevailing to all other Senators?  Order, order.  I am advised that this bill was distributed in the last session.  The copy which was distributed this afternoon is actually containing some amendments which were made in the National Assembly and the Minister is going to talk about those amendments. So, your excuse does not exactly hold water.

HON. SEN. MWONZORA:  Mr. President, we are entitled to

reasonable notice as Hon. Senators.  We appreciate that there are amendments from the National Assembly.  That is the more reason why we must be given time.  Surely, making those amendments available at 1:30 pm today you cannot expect us to make meaningful input on the amendments.  I suppose that these amendments are important and the National Assembly exercised its mind in coming up with those amendments.  Why are we being given a shorter time?

         THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE:  The

reasoning behind this is that you read this Bill in the last session. It was distributed in the First Session.  Like I have said, I am advised that this Bill was distributed in the last session and the amendments which have just been distributed are going to be discussed during the committee stage anyway. So, you may proceed.

HON. SEN. ENG. MUDZURI:  Mr. President, I know the

Minister has come in with a Bill which we all picked in our pigeon holes today.  I do not think there is any rush to make this law.  This law is very good for the country.  I do not see what we are going to change by rushing it; let people read.  Maybe they will find something then they will come and do it some other day.  We are persuading you Hon. Minister that we are making laws for the country.  Do not forget that we have no assistance, we have nobody, we need to go and read them ourselves.  So, whatever changes even if it is a full stop, we would want to go through it.  I kindly ask you Mr. President to say there is no rush in finalising this Bill unless there is something you want to achieve in the next few days.  I appeal to you Hon. Leader of the House to allow it to happen.  Thank you.

     THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE:  What I do

find disturbing is that these Bills are distributed in the Hon. Senators pigeon holes and what is apparent is that we do not read them.  What is disturbing is that they are distributed, people do not read, but the moment a Minister comes here to move the Bill, people then say I did not read it when it was distributed in your pigeon holes.  I would like to seek the views of the Minister in light of what is being raised.

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND

PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI):  Hon. Chair, the

Bill has not been changed substantially.  If the Hon. Senators are being truthful that they want to contribute, this Bill was circulated a long time ago.  Those that have got points, even if the point has been overtaken by debate in the National Assembly will point that out.  It is now becoming a chorus.  There was a time when I was told that we have not read this agreement, we cannot proceed.  I duly agreed.  The following day, not a single person contributed.  So, I believe they will get satisfied as we proceed.  I thank you.

HON. SEN. DR. MAVETERA:  Thank you Mr. President.  I

think we have to be honest.  This Bill was thrown into our pigeon holes during the last session.  We are not saying we have not read the Bill, but we are saying an amendment is a new law which actually needs time.  It cannot come 20 minutes for us to consider.  We know the way we go through our motions.  We will not have enough time to go through all this unless you want us to do a shoddy job for the country.  We read that Bill and I think it is not correct.  Last time we read it and we actually thought it was not coming.  These amendments are new.  An amendment is a new law.  That is our plea Mr. President.

HON. SEN. MOHADI:  Thank you Mr. President for giving me

this opportunity to contribute on this Bill.  This Bill was brought to this House a long time ago.  People most of the time are complaining that we are not achieving our targets, how do we then achieve our targets if we just come and postpone?  We will postpone till when?  It seems as though our Ministers are doing nothing, yet they are doing something.  When they come here we turn them around.  I think we have to go ahead.  Thank you Mr. President.

HON. SEN. ENG. MUDZURI:  Thank you Mr. President.  My debate is around money laundering.  The Preamble by the Minister shows that there is serious concern around any likely finances that are coming from elsewhere, and also the process that must be taken to follow through money laundering- what we call dirty money must be very clean.  We are not lawyers, we are not experts.  We sometimes have people behind us who will assist us trying to tell us best practice.  I would want to say we need the best law in this country to make sure that we do as the British did, you caught up with the British.  We also do as any other country that has brought in money laundering to a certain level of control.  We want to get to speak in this Parliament with reasonable authority, especially when you have done reasonable research on whatever amendments we are talking about.

I appreciate that sometimes we might delay something but it is purposely.  It is not them against us, it is just us.  It is more about let us make sure that our laws conform to best practice and when we come here and we rush and say we have already seen it, we are doing our nation a disservice.  I will ask you again Hon. Minister and Hon. President that my debate is around us having a clean law.  We are too poor sometimes to do money laundering.  Some of the clauses we might put here might be coming from outside and we get influenced.  We need to just make sure that when something is written, we perfect the laws that come from the House of Assembly the Lower House as Senators.  When you want to perfect something, you need also to have researched and to be ready.

The appeal to say we have not done it is that the changes that have been put in place need revisiting.  I still think that you can go ahead with what you are thinking that we are finishing the laws as soon as possible, but the laws must be clean.  That is my debate.  The law must be clean.  We have different professions here but when you come to speak, you have to look for the right person who will assist you.  Mr. President, we also have the term corruption associated with money laundering.  We have also laws that touch our banks that will even punish you for money laundering.

We might need to find something that might have been omitted by just doing a little extra on the final document.  Then we are able to say the law is good.  If we pass it, yes, if we rush it, yes and we will still be questioned what were you doing, you Senators?  You just sleep in Parliament, agreed to, agreed to and you go back to sleep.  We must not just do agreed to.  We must be able to speak to the document.  If we do not debate, it means we have been told it is okay, but we have not done enough research.  Thank you Mr. President.

HON. SEN. SHOKO:  Mr. President, thank you.  The money

laundering set up – there is an issue that I want to raise Mr. President.  This issue might help the House when we deal with the laws that are coming from the Lower House.  Certainly, Mr. President, we received the original which was debated in the Lower House.   The problem that we now have is we do not know what has been changed in the Lower House.  I think what we then need to do in future is to have those things changed in the Lower House to be shown so that we can compare when we read.

Presently, you would say the Minister did not help us in telling us that the original Bill was like this.  Then when we debated in the Lower

House, this is what we changed.  He just said, look we are talking about laundering and the likes when he says they were changed.  That is very important if you want to deal with these issues.  Mr. President, I will again say allow us to go back to our shelves, pick up the original and then we can debate, comparing with the new amendment.  That will help us.  That is what I wanted to contribute Mr. Chairman.  I know you are going to say I did not debate the Money Laundering Bill, I did debate because I am saying there must be some improvements captured on this one.  I thank you Mr. President for allowing me to speak.

HON. SEN. TIMVEOS:  Thank you Mr. President.  Mr. President Sir, this is a law that may be used for hundred years to come.  I understand what the Minister is saying but in most cases all the time when we have done these Bills...

THE HON. PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE:  You are not

debating the Bill.  You are still raising issues about what we have already discussed.

HON. SEN. TIMVEOS:  I want to appeal to the Minister, he needs to make a law that is agreeable to the whole nation and we have to look at it from a well informed position.  We cannot just endorse something that we do not understand.  It concerns the people of Zimbabwe.  We cannot just hurry and make a law.  We are appealing to the Minister to give us an opportunity to go through this particular Bill with amendments and we look at the other Bill that he said was in the pigeon holes and we compare.  Even him, when the law comes out, he is going to be proud of himself because he would have made a law that everybody contributed to, rather than to say we are endorsing something that we do not know.  At this moment in time, Mr. President Sir, we will not give it our all.  I thank you.

HON. SEN. MWONZORA: Thank you very much Mr. President.

Let me just say that it is important that the authorities and the people of Zimbabwe have knowledge about where wealth is coming from. We have seen a few incidences where people suddenly become wealth upon attaining office. What this Bill is seeking to do apparently is to deal with unexplained wealth. So there is a section which says where the wealth is unexplained, certain bodies like ZIMRA and the Zimbabwe Anti-

Corruption Commission can apply for unexplained wealth orders.

What it then says is that the unexplained wealth orders must be issued ex parte. For those who are non-lawyers an ex parte order is an order that is issued without the involvement of the affected party. In other words, ZIMRA simply goes to the High Court and obtains an order without the knowledge of the person who is going to be affected by the order. The moment you are going to have an order, the person who is going to be affected by the order must have a say in its obtainment. So it is wrong in this Bill.  Unfortunately I do not know whether the Minister has amended that bit or not, where people who are going to be affected by the order have no right to be heard before the order is issued.

In our law, we have what we call the audi alteram partem rule which is the right to be heard before you are affected by a law or an order. That right has been removed. Then assuming that the order is righteous, in other words the order is correct, the law does not say what happens to the property from the time the order is issued to the time that the order is discharged what happens to the property. There are no safeguards against disposal of that property, regarding the use of that property and so on.

Mr. President, I do agree that there must be a curbing to the funding of terrorism but terrorism must be defined. What happens to the funding of the militia by politicians is not covered in this law. In other words and like what happened in 2008 where organised gangs were sent on payment to terrorise people; that king of terrorism is not covered by this law. It seems to cover something completely abstract.

Mr. President, there is always something wrong in making a law with a group of people in mind, a group of internal party opponents or former party opponents. There is always something wrong in making a law with somebody in mind. At one point in time, we made a law when we were debating the Constitution. We were very clear that when we talked about the President, it was a man called Robert Mugabe. The wrongness of that is apparent when that person is not there. I want to appeal to my learned colleagues who are in ZANU PF, we do know for certain that there are internal dynamics.

We do know that there is an outfit called G40. We do not have to like it, I do not like it but we do know that it exists but making a law apparently targeting that group is wrong. We must make a law that targets everybody. There is no indication Mr. President of what guides the judge’s discretion. First of all, what will guide the judge in making the order? Secondly, what will guide the judge in making the order against disposal of that property? It is not given. The judges and ZIMRA are given wide discretion. This law Mr. President targets the disadvantaged and so on.

Then Mr. President, unexplained wealth is only defined as property which is greater than US$100 000.00. So Mr. President, I can have unexplained wealth in property US$55 000 in Kwekwe, Harare, Mutare and dotted everywhere. It is not unexplained wealth in terms of this law. Unexplained wealth is property the value of which is not more than

US$100 000.00. By property we mean an entity. A house, farm and money in the bank is a property as long as that property does not exceed US$100 000.00, it does not qualify as unexplained wealthy. There is a clear unreasonableness within the law because criminals will sub-divide their properties into small units which fall below the threshold.

Again I am debating out of ignorance Mr. President because I do not know whether it is part of the amendments that the Minister has put in. I have not seen the amendments but I want to deal with a question of procedure in making laws. The fact that debate has been done in the National Assembly does not mean that the Senate is divested of the opportunity of debating the same law. Maybe the Minister thinks that for the MDC for example, if I may be specific, it has its Vice Presidents, the National Chairman and so on in the Lower House, that is not how things work in a Parliament. In a Parliament, the two Houses are autonomous.

We want to have equal opportunity to debate laws.

I want to repeat, the Constitution of Zimbabwe created a Senate for a purpose. It is a body that reaffirms and refines laws. It is a body that checks and balances. Now, if we are given 20 minutes and I bet you

Hon. Minister, you did not give the National Assembly 20 minutes. I have researched. You gave the National Assembly two weeks and you give the Senate 20 minutes. That is demeaning this House with all due respect.

Mr. President, if I had my way which I agree I do not have, I would plead with my brother the Minister. We are here as a Parliament to make laws for the just and good governance of Zimbabwe and we must exercise our minds in making this law. We can rush things, yes. There was a time when I corrected the Minister and he was very grateful. It is because I had applied my mind to the law. This is not what we have done and I want to say Mr. President, this is a law. A comma, phrase or the use of a word before the other word makes a difference to the texture of the law.

The moment the Minister, found that an amendment was called for, it means that it was of substance. Now, why are we not been given to see the law of substance on time? We are very experienced people Mr.

President. Speaking for myself, I am an experienced lawyer with 27

years experience. I had the rare opportunity of being given the chance to do a Constitution for my country. I have then gained experience and one of the things that I gained is that you do not rush laws. You apply your mind to laws and why experience is so important in the mind of the Minister is that he has retained as one of his draft persons one of the most experienced drafters, Mr. Dias, and I thank you Minister for doing that. It is because experience is important. Why do you not want to tap in on our experience as a Senate?

Mr. President, again the Minister will correct me, but it appears that somewhere in the law, there are restrictions to proceedings and remedies. Restriction means that certain remedies maybe restricted. Now, for example, there is the right to be heard before anything that affects you is done and I want at this point to quote Justice Chidyausiku in one of the cases.  He said, “Even justice administered under a palm tree demands that a man be heard before you blast his means of livelihood”.  Now, we represent the people of Zimbabwe and we are here on behalf of the people of Zimbabwe as the Senate.  And, this Bill affects the people of Zimbabwe and some of them adversely.  Before you affect the people of Zimbabwe, you must give them the right to be heard and the right to be heard by their representatives.  I thank you Mr.

President.

         THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND

PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): Thank you Hon.

President.  My opening statement is that, this Bill is not new to anyone in Parliament.  Sometime last year, we used Presidential Powers to promulgate this and our Parliamentary Legal Committee that represents all of us had the occasion of looking at it on our behalf and it has been around for all of us to have a look for a very long time.  The Presidential Powers are very clear to say that once you use that law, you will have to bring those regulations to Parliament within six months.

So, once something is published using the Presidential Powers

Temporary Measures, Hon. Members must be aware that is coming here.  So, Mr. President, I can see that people are hiding behind their fingers that they do not know when they know and you had already ruled.  But, I just thought I should say that.  Secondly, Hon. Mwonzora has not read fully because I know that if he reads, he will be able to articulate the Bill correctly.  It does not say that if you have fragmented property, it will not be attached.  In fact, if you go to 37 (b) (7), it says where the property in respect of which the order is sought, comprises more than one item of property.  So, it does not arise in this Bill. What he was referring to is already covered.  So, aside to say that if you go to the definition section on hold in relation to - on 37 (a) (c), it explains very clearly in that regard.

So, I do not believe that what he is referring to is very correct in that regard.  Mr. President, this law, while it deals with corruption, financing of terrorism, is an attempt to find a middle ground between trying to prosecute people who have illicitly got wealth and it has been discovered the world over that it is very difficult to prosecute a single crime of corruption.  So, what we are trying to do here is to say, let us find an instrument which we have termed, an unexplained wealth order where we will call upon you to say, you are a civil servant and you are earning $500 but all of a sudden we are seeing you owning three houses in Borrowdale Brooke and you do not have any business that is known.  The reason why we want the exparte application that he alluded to, he described it very well and even the right to be heard.  I agree with but you cannot give a thief the chance to go and hide his loot.

The main purpose is, the one who is applying it has to satisfy to the judge why he is applying for that order.  In any event, the court can say no, we want that person to respond, it is within their jurisdiction but you would have made the exparte application.  You will have to satisfy certain requirements but, you cannot then say, no let us give them the chance because they will empty all the money from their accounts.  What we are trying to do here is, we want to fight corruption by whatever means possible, even money laundering.  This is an instrument that we are putting to say, if your wealth is clean, you will simply explain and nothing will happen.  It is those people who are not able to explain and would have stolen; those are the top target. We cannot go about when we know fully well that such people are not doing anything and are just seated and the kind of wealth that they have, without declaring anything to ZIMRA.

  THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE:  Minister, try

and stick to one language.

HON. ZIYAMBI: I will try Hon. President but, indulge me if I failed to stick to one language because I use both.

So Hon. President, this is the reason why we want the exparte application, to ensure that we do not give notice to thieves.  We know that Hon. Mwonzora is an attorney of repute and if we come to you, it will be easy because you will simply say, I have this practice and this is what I get.  Any reasonable person will say, on a balance of probability, I cannot prosecute this case but there are certain individuals where they cannot even explain anything and the job that they are doing, you cannot imagine that they can have that wealth.  Those are the target and we believe if we do that, we will also relieve pressure on the prosecution because it is very difficult to prosecute corruption cases and that is the reason why we should have it in that regard.  The judge has discretion in terms of what they can do.

The fears of Hon. Mwonzora are not founded and this is a very good and progressive law that will allow us to deal with corruption and ensure that we will be recognised as a Senate that passed a law that helps this country in the fight against corruption.  I thank you Hon. President and move that the Bill be now read a second time.

Motion put and agreed to.

Bill read a second time.

Committee Stage: With leave, forthwith.

COMMITTEE STAGE

MONEY LAUNDERING AND PROCEEDS OF CRIME

AMENDMENT BILL [H. B. 4, 2019]

House in Committee.

Clause 1 put and agreed to.

On Clause 2:

      HON. SEN. CHIEF SIANSALI:  I move the amendment in my

name to the definition of “enforcement authority” in the Bill before the Senate.

I know may be the National Assembly had proposed a different amendment to the definition which is now before us.  The House wanted only the police and ZIMRA to be “enforcement authorities”, that is to say authorities that are authorised to bring an application before the High Court for the issuance of an Unexplained Explained Wealth Order to a specified individual whose source of wealth is suspicious.

Hon. Senators, when the House made that amendment, they felt that we should not authorise too many agencies to have this power which might be abused by any one of them.  So, they cut out the

National Prosecuting Authority and the Zimbabwe Anti Corruption Commission leaving only the Police and ZIMRA. It was thought that if the NPA and ZACC wanted to trace the wealth of a suspect they could ask the police to do the application for them.

However, they failed to see that the police may be prompted to exercise this power not only by ZACC and NPA but also by anyone with a grievance or complaint against a wealthy person.  This exposes wealthy people to danger from frivolous and vexations applications.

Please, do not stigmatise innocent wealthy people in this way!

Mr. President, to avoid this scenario, I am proposing that the police be replaced by the NPA as an enforcement authority.  The NPA has a clear constitutional mandate for the discharge of which it is accountable to Parliament through the responsible Minister.  Being composed of lawyers, it will be careful to use its powers lawfully and transparently and only when strictly necessary.  It can receive requests from ZACC and the ZRP and act when they feel those requests are justified or it can act on its own motion.  The NPA at present has a dedicated Money

Laundering and Asset Forfeiture Division.  It is the appropriate authority (together with ZIMRA which will deal only with revenue violations) to have the power to seek Unexplained Wealth Orders.

Accordingly, I urge the Senate to adopt my amendment.  I thank you.

HON. B. MPOFU: I know that this issue of Clause 2 was debated extensively in the lower House.  Could the Minister furnish us with what was disclosed because at the close of the Second Reading it was agreed that it will change.  To what extend was it changed.

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND

PARLIAMENTAR AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI):  In the original

Bill, in this section we have got four enforcement authorities and these are ZACC, NPA, Commissioner General of Police and ZIMRA.  Like what the Hon. Senator has alluded to, in the National Assembly the thinking was having too many enforcement agencies can be very problematic and that certain individuals may be targeted unnecessarily by the different agencies and also that it might not be desirable.  In our wisdom, trying to reduce the enforcement agencies – the principle behind not having many enforcement agencies, I accepted but in trying to see which ones should not be involved I think I tend to agree with Hon. Senator Chief Siansali that perhaps we need to remove the police and put the NPA in that when the police investigate a case of corruption, the docket ends up with the NPA.  The NPA now at that stage should be able to apply their mind and say, are we able to prosecute these or should we go for Unexplained Wealth Order which is a civil procedure with less burden of proof requirements.  So I then believe that what the Hon. Senator is proposing will make the law better because what it means is, the police can bring their cases to NPA; ZACC will bring their cases to the NPA and the NPA will then be able to apply their minds whether to proceed via the prosecution route or to apply for Unexplained

Wealth Orders.  So, I agree Hon. Chair that we remove the Commissioner General of Police and put the National Prosecuting authority.  I, so submit.

HON. SEN. MPOFU: So, which authorities are remaining now?

HON. ZIYAMBI: The authorities that will remain will be the

National Prosecuting Authority and the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority.

ZIMRA already have that function in terms of our compliance with tax laws.  The National Prosecuting Authority, all the other agencies feed into the National Prosecuting Authority, so there is no need to have them there.  I thank you.

House resumed.

Bill reported with amendments.

Bill referred to the Parliamentary Legal Committee

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND

PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): I move that we

revert to Order Number 6 on today’s Order Paper.

Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

RATIFICATION OF THE FRAMEWORK AGREEMENT OF THE

INTERNATIONAL SOLAR ALLIANCE

 

      THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF ENERGY AND POWER

DEVELOPMENT (HON. MUDYIWA): I move the motion standing in my name;

THAT WHEREAS in terms of section 327 (2) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe provides that an international treaty which has been concluded or executed by or under authority of the President does not bind Zimbabwe until  it has been approved Parliament;

AND WHEREAS the Framework Agreement of the International

Solar Alliance was opened for signature at Marrakech on 15th

November, 2016; and it entered into force on the 6th of December, 2017;

AND WHEREAS the said Framework Agreement of the

International Solar Alliance was signed on the 17th of July, 2018 on behalf of the Republic of Zimbabwe;

AND WHEREAS Article VII (I) of the Agreement provides for

signature, ratification, acceptance, approval and accession:

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

The International Solar Alliance is a multi-partnership organisation which was launched on the 30th of November 2015 at the opening of the

COP 21 in Paris by the Prime Minister of India and the President of

France.  The Alliance was formed on the United Nations General Assembly resolution, A/RES/36, 193 of 1981 which underlined the need for cooperation among developing countries and mobilisation of financial resources for new and renewable sources of energy.  It is supported by the Sustainable Development Goal Number 7 among

others.

The International Solar Alliance is to provide a platform for cooperation amongst solar resource rich countries where global community including bilateral and multi-lateral organisations, corporates, industry and stakeholders can make a positive contribution to the common goals of increasing utilisation of solar energy in meeting energy needs of ISA member countries in a safe, convenient, affordable, equitable and sustainable manner.  The overarching objective is to create a collaborative platform for increased deployment of solar energy technologies to enhance energy security and sustainable development, improve access to energy and opportunities for better livelihoods in rural and remote areas and to increase the standards of living.

To achieve the objectives, ISA will have five key focus areas:-

  • Promote solar technologies and investment in the solar sector to enhance income generation for the poor and global environment;
  • Formulate projects and programmes to promote solar applications;
  • Develop innovative financial mechanisms to reduce cost of capital;
  • Build a common knowledge e-portal; build a knowledge platform including a 24 by 7 e-portal for sharing of policy development experiences and best practices in member countries; and
  • Facilitate capacity building for promotion and absorption of solar technologies, research and development among other countries.

To achieve the above overarching objectives, ISA by way of supplementing the national efforts of the Member countries through appropriate means will undertake the following activities:-

  • Collaborations for joint research, development and demonstration, sharing information, capacity building, supporting technology hubs and creating networks;
  • Acquisition, diffusion and indigenisation and absorption of knowledge, technology and skills by local stakeholders in the member countries;
  • Creation of expert groups for development of common standards, tests, monitoring and verification protocols; creation of partnerships among country specific technology centres for supporting technology absorption for promoting energy resource and energy access;
  • Exchange of officials, technology specialist for participation in the training programmes on different aspects of solar energy in the member countries;
  • Encourage companies in the member countries to set up joint ventures;
  • Sharing of solar energy development experiences, analysis on short and longer term issues in key energy supply, financing practices business models particularly the decentralised applications and off grid applications including creation of local platforms focusing on implementation, solutions and grassroots participation;
  • Establish new financial mechanisms to reduce cost of capital in the renewable energy sector and innovative financing to develop and;
  • Collaborate with other multi-lateral bodies like the International

Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), Renewable Energy Policy Network for the 21st Century (REN), United Nations bodies; bilateral organisation; Corporates, industry and other stakeholders can contribute towards the goal of increasing utilisation of solar energy in ISA.

ISA is proposed to be a multi-country partnership organisation with membership from solar resource rich countries between the two topics.

ISA’s proposed governance structure consists of an Assembly, a Council and a Secretariat.  However, operations will be subject to member countries deliberations and suggestions.  The Assembly provides guidance, direction and advice to the Secretariat for undertaking the activities.  ISA’s detailed statute has been developed in consultation with member countries.

The Government of India (GoI) is supporting ISA by hosting its Secretariat for an initial period of five years and thereafter it is expected to generate its own resources and become self-financing. The ISA secretariat is located at the premises of the National Institute of Solar Energy (NISE), until a separate infrastructure has been constructed.

The total Government of India support, including putting normative cost of the land is around US$62 million.  Government of India support of US$27 million will be utilised for creating building infrastructure and recurring expenditure.  It will be provided over a 5 year period from 2016 – 17 to 2020 -21.  The Government of France will also provide financial material support to the Alliance.

Zimbabwe is endowed with a good solar resource. The resource is being underutilized whereas the country is having challenges in meeting demand for clean and modern energy to 60% of its population. Solar energy is one of the resources that is key in the mitigation of climate change.  The Alliance will assist the energy sector particularly with capacity building, skills training, policy development (developing a solar roadmap), access to resources and equipment, and more importantly, accessing concessional loans (finance) for practical developmental projects.

Zimbabwe officially became a Member State of ISA after signing the Framework Agreement on 17th July 2018.  The next move is submission of ratification papers which were forwarded to Parliament on 22nd March, 2019.

I hereby propose and recommend that the ratification process be expedited before the Second ISA Assembly due to be held in October 2019.  That stage will enable Zimbabwe to be a full Member of ISA community.  A number of benefits associated with being an ISA Member State are still limited until the ratification process is completed.  ISA is currently requesting countries that have ratified to express their requirements in order to benefit from the following programmes:

a) Affordable finance at scale

This was the first programme launched by ISA.  The programme seeks to aggregate demand and seek funding to the tune of $1 trillion for solar projects. 

b) Scaling solar applications for agriculture use

This is the second programme launched by ISA.  This programme targets the use of solar in agriculture, particularly solar water pumping for irrigation purposes.  This initiative has been launched and Member States are compiling databases of their requirements.

c) Scaling solar mini grids

This programme has just commenced.  It involves the promotion of solar mini-grids in off-grid areas.

d) Rooftop solar applications

This programme aims to promote the uptake of solar systems at rooftops, including Government buildings and at carports.  The solar systems will be connected to the grid through a net-metering scheme

e) Electric mobility and battery storage

The programme aims to accelerate the use of electric vehicles and buses in order to move the transport sector from petroleum products to battery powered electric systems that are charged from solar energy.

         As mentioned earlier, the Ministry implores this august House to expeditiously ratify the ISA Framework Agreement in order for the country to benefit from the ISA programmes.  Thank you Mr. President.

*HON. SEN. SHOKO:  Thank you Mr. President.  I was listening to the Minister reading the ISA document.  It has very good provisions but there is an issue that I did not get from the document.  What are the conditions for us to be members?  This House has the right to know whether it will attract any fees or subscriptions so that when we incur questions out there we are able to explain.  So, I want to know if there is anything that we are going to be paying.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF ENERGY AND POWER

DEVELOPMENT (HON. MUDYIWA):  There are subscriptions that

are paid. Unfortunately, I do not have the figures with me here.  There are some subscriptions to be a full member, but the benefits are insurmountable.  Thank you.

Motion put and agreed to.

On the motion of HON. MUZENDA seconded by HON. SEN. CHIRONGOMA, the Senate adjourned at Eleven Minutes to Five

o’clock p.m. until Tuesday 10th December, 2019.                                                                 

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Reply

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

Post comment