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SENATE HANSARD 20 FEBRUARY 2020 29 22
PARLIAMENT OF ZIMBABWE
Thursday, 20th February, 2020.
The Senate met at Half-past Two O’clock p.m.
(THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE in the Chair)
ANNOUNCEMENT BY THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE
FEES FOR THE PATRIOTS SPORTS CLUB
THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: I wish to inform the
Hon. Senators that the Secretary General of the Parliament Sports Club, the Patriots, wishes to inform all Senators who are interested in joining the club to pay their joining fees to Mr. Nyamuramba, in office Number 4, Pax House, Third floor, South Wing, on or before 28th February,
- This will enable the procurement of Members’ official tracksuits through Tobacco Industries Marketing Board (TIMB).
HON. SEN. SHOKO: Madam President …
ATE: I think several times I
have tried to warn you that you do not just start talking. You stand up then I recognise you. Recognising you means I am allowing you to talk.
HON. SEN. SHOKO: Madam President, I am sorry.
THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: You can proceed.
HON. SEN. SHOKO: Thank you Madam President for allowing
me to talk. I have a point of order. I believe I need some education and education normally helps other people that might not understand some of the things that we are doing. The education that I need is, we have a lot of motions that we debate in this House but at the end of the day nothing comes out of that. The motions would be directed to a particular ministry. Twenty one days come and the motion lapse and is winded up and the minister has not replied. That is what I have been seeing. I believe that the Ministers must reply. Presently we do not know the outcome of those motions. A lot of motions have gone through this House and no minister has responded. I think that is the education that I need and from your nodding of your head, it means I am right.
ATE: Thank you Hon.
Senator. I think I was agreeing with you. If we may use this time to ask the Leader of the House to enlighten us what is taking place so that we can proceed.
THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND
PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): Thank you
Madam President. It is very correct to say that if there is a motion, before it is wound up, the responsible minister has to come and address the issues that would have been debated. I have communicated this to my colleague ministers to say that we need to respond to motions. The President has also told us that it is a must, we must do that.
Perhaps from Parliament Administration, what I can request, so that you support my argument is to remind ministers when motions are due for responding so that they can come and respond. I apologise and it is a consideration that we will pursue and ensure that it is done. I thank you.
ATE: Thank you Hon. Minister but for us as Senators or Members of Parliament to remind ministers, do you think they forget and they are supposed to be reminded? The administration is doing it on our behalf. When we are in this House, the administration cannot answer you, it is us who talk on their behalf. – [HON. SENATORS: Hear, hear.] – The President has reminded them himself that they are supposed to respond to motions. It is this House which will have debated those motions, what else do you think the Members of Parliament should do? Anyway as you have admitted I think together we are going to put an effort so that they come and respond.
I would like to welcome the Ministers who are already in this House starting with the Minister of Justice. Legal and Parliamentary
Affairs, Hon. Ziyambi; the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hon.
Musabayana; the Deputy Minister of Local Government and Public
Works, Hon. Chombo; the Minister of Information, Publicity and
Broadcasting Services, Hon. Mutsvangwa; the Deputy Minister of
Home Affairs and Cultural Heritage, Hon. Madiro and the Deputy Minister of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services, Hon.
ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITHOUT NOTICE
HON. SEN. TIMVEOS: Thank you Madam President for giving
me this opportunity. Firstly, I want to thank Parliament for the gadgets that you see everyone has. This is something good. Having Ipads you see a lot, you google and do everything, so we are going to be troubling
Ministers a lot. Madam President, my question goes to the Leader of the House, Hon. Ziyambi who is here. Hon. Minister, I do not know if you are aware that last year NUST was charging $565 and now it is $4288.
THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: May you please
address the Chair.
HON. SEN. TIMVEOS: I am talking about universities Madam President. A programme which was $600 is now $5000. Lupane was charging $700 and it is now $6068, WUA was charging $800 and now it is $6500, UZ was $643 and now it is $5700. This is just the fees, I am not including the boarding fees, food, transport and everything. Hon. Minister, I have over ten university students who I know right now are not able to go to school because the parents cannot afford. I brought two girls from the University of Zimbabwe because the girl child is important and I thought I would commit myself to help them pay that. They are at my house right now. Hon. Minister, is that reasonable looking at the salaries that every civil servant is ….
THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: The best thing Hon.
Senator is to address the Chair because you cannot address straight in the face of the Minister. I stand on their behalf.
HON. SEN. TIMVEOS: I am sorry Madam President. I am so overwhelmed and I am touched. I even feel like crying. We are meant to represent people. The salaries that civil servants are paid…
THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: Order. Can we have
order Hon. Member? Can we please put the question across because if we need to address some other issues. I think it would be better to bring up a motion so that we are able to debate. Can you put up the question so that the Minister is able to answer? Thank you.
HON. SEN. TIMVEOS: I hear you Madam President. Thank you very much. My question is Hon. Minister, you sit in the Cabinet. When you were approving these fees hikes, were you cognisant of the fact that people cannot afford especially considering how low the salaries are?
THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND
PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): Thank you
Madam President. Last week in this House, the Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development addressed this question and he gave a very good answer which perhaps if the Hon. Senator was not here, with your indulgence she can go to the Hansard and get the answer. I thank you.
*HON. SEN. CHABUKA: Thank you Madam President. My
question is directed to the Minister of Information, Publicity and
Broadcasting Services, Hon. Sen. Mutsvangwa. I would want to understand how information about corona virus is distributed. Yesterday we heard that there is a young lady who came from China who is not feeling well and was taken to Wilkins Hospital. How much information have you given out to people in rural areas about this disease so that they are prepared? We want to know if it is true that this girl is infected.
*THE MINISTER OF INFORMATION, PUBLICITY AND
BROADCASTING SERVICES (HON. SEN. MUTSVANGWA):
Thank you Madam President. I thank Hon. Sen. Chabuka for being concerned about coronavirus which is so frightening. The Minister of
Health and Child Care is not here but I will speak as the Minister of
Information. There is a lady who came from China who is 27 years old. When this menace started, the Government was prepared to see how protected we are as a country so that this disease does not spread. There was an agreement with the Government of China to see that there is limited movement from China to Zimbabwe and from Zimbabwe to
China unnecessarily. That is the Government’s position. Those who are coming from China are checked at all ports of entry to see if they have any symptoms of this disease. People are checked not only at the Harare International Airport but even at Beitbridge Border Post. We saw the Minister of Health and Child Care was in Victoria Falls and other ports of entry to make sure that those who are entering the country and have high temperatures are quarantined.
This disease started in a province called Hubei in the middle of China and those coming from that area when they enter this country go under quarantine where they are checked daily. Those who are coming from China are first screened in China. That girl was screened in China but she is a citizen of this country. When she arrived here, her temperature was very high and because we want to protect people, she was quickly taken to Wilkins Hospital to be checked thoroughly to see if her temperature has nothing to do with coronavirus. We spread this news everywhere. This girl was tested and she was negative. As we stand, in this country we do not have coronavirus. All this is done to protect people.
The World Health Organisation is saying we have to protect ourselves from this disease. Those parents with children in China are rest assured that they are being protected. Our embassy in Beijing, China is making sure that our students are being protected. In Zimbabwe we do not have corona virus. We are using the radio, newspapers and officers to spread the information as a Ministry. As a Ministry, we have officers in every area, including wards - so those people are disseminating information. Now we are going to give out community radio licenses, which means that we will be going to areas which are considered to be marginalised where they usually wait for someone to come from the towns to obtain information but now, people will get information through community radios. I thank you.
HON. SEN. MAKONE: Madam President, I want to know, since
this disease was discovered, does this country have testing kits? If we do not have, did we buy these kits and do we have people who are able to use these machines?
*THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: For the Minister of
Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services to answer us with the knowledge she has on information, this might require the Minister of Health and Child Care or the Leader of the House to help us if there is something that he knows. I am being informed that the Minister of Health and Child Care is coming and will help us. Let us hold on to the question and ask it when the Minister comes in.
THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND
PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): That is what I
wanted to say, that the Minister of Health and Child Care is giving a Ministerial Statement in the National Assembly, once he is done there, he is going to come over and give the same statement here.
THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: I thought if it is about
the health situation, why do we not wait for the Minister himself.
HON. SEN. NCUBE: Thank you Madam President, compliments
of the season.
THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: Thank you, same to
HON. SEN. NCUBE: Thank you so much. Madam President, I had the privilege to cross outside the country’s border and came back yesterday. What the Minister is saying, I did not see any test commensurate with what the Minister is saying at Beitbridge Border Post. I thank you.
HON. B. MPOFU: It is almost similar. I used the airport and I remember what they were asking is; ‘where have you been in the last two weeks,’ and people were asking, is that the screening?’ I suspect that the person they were talking about told them that they were in China, that is how this person was quarantined. However, there are no tests done, there is nothing at the borders. I thank you.
THE MINISTER OF INFORMATION, PUBLICITY AND BROADCASTING SERVICES (HON. SEN. MUTSVANGWA):
Thank you very much Madam President. These are technical questions which they are asking, which can only be answered by the Minister of Health and Child Care. I am glad that the Minister will be here but as far as I am concerned, I know that at all the ports of entry, we have our health people there actually testing.
*THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: That is why I
requested Hon. Senators to be patient as the Minister is coming.
HON. SEN. ENG. MUDZURI: On a point of order Hon.
THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: What is your point of order Hon. Member?
HON. SEN. ENG. MUDZURI: My point of order is around the way we are answering questions. The Ministers must be honest because they all attend one Cabinet meeting and discuss and come up with an understanding that this is what is happening. The Minister of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services said she knows it is happening, that the screening is happening. I have also crossed the border and I have never seen it happening. So when they are saying it is happening, if one Minister says it, it does not need the Minister of Health to know that the real screening is happening. So my point of order is that let us be honest, because we are talking about people’s lives.
THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: Thank you Hon.
Senator for noticing that but I feel that when we give questions to our ministers, we should not answer for them again. We have asked them, they have to answer. If it is now technical as she is saying, await for that particular Minister to come and explain to us. This is what we are saying. If it is the issue of information like what the Hon. Sen. asked, this is how the Minister of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting
Services answered that, ‘we are trying to give the information throughout the country.’ That is how she answered. Thank you very much.
*HON. SEN. CHIEF CHIKWAKA: Thank you Madam
President. Allow me to ask the Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development. With the situation that we have in the country, as a Professor who deals with our scientists, what are they doing in terms of manufacture of medication in order to be prepared to address such diseases? I thank you.
THE MINISTER OF HIGHER AND TERTIARY
EDUCATION, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT
(HON. PROF. MURWIRA): Thank you Madam President. I want to thank the Hon. Senator for the question. What we are doing under my Ministry is that there is research taking place and also machines being manufactured. So, with our current education, we now want to manufacture medication from an informed position. We have a programme under the Government called biopharmaceutical and Veterinary Medicine Programme. This programme will ensure that in the next ten years our researchers will focus on the manufacturing of medicinal drugs in this country.
We also have an institution which we came up with called National
Biotechnology Authority and also another programme called Genomic
Technology’s Programme which oversees issues to do with the DNA of certain viruses and examine how diseases caused by such viruses can be cured. I cannot preempt on Coronavirus as of now but I am being inclusive on the issue of research on viruses. We are doing research on such issues. The innovation hubs that we came up with will examine such issues. Madam President, on Tuesday, the Cabinet passed the Bill which is to be introduced here in Parliament, called Education, Innovation, Research and Development Programme Bill. It will be expeditiously passed so that we are able to address these issues not for people to be known as professors and scientists whilst at home but that their knowledge should be used for development. I thank you.
HON. SEN. MAVETERA: My question is directed to the
Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs who is also the Leader of the House. Recently, in the press, the Prosecutor General said that cartels have captured various institutions in the country including the judiciary, the media et cetera. If you can allow me to just quote the
Prosecutor General when he was addressing this fora, he said “I want you to understand the issues are at two levels; the emotional level, members of the public have a legitimate right to be concerned because they live everyday results of corruption”. The shortages that we are experiencing, the economic collapse which, however way you look at it, is a result of corruption.
I think this issue is a serious one in this country. I would like to hear what the Government has so far achieved because I think the fight against corruption started a long time ago during this second republic but we cannot continue like that. I think we owe it to the public to make sure that it is explained and publicly see tangible results of what is happening.
THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND
PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): I would like to
thank the Hon. Senator for the question and indicate that indeed any nation, when there is corruption, it will retard economic growth and as a Government, we are committed to fighting corruption. However, fighting corruption means you will be fighting people with needs and when you do so, they use every legal route available to try to escape. So, you would find that it is actually accepted internationally that prosecuting one case of corruption needs a lot of money and you will meet a lot of impediments.
So, what is happening to Zimbabwe at the moment in our fight against corruption is not something that is isolated to us alone, it is something that is common when you are fighting corruption. Having realised that, we then decided that taking the criminal route is one of the most difficult one because the burden of proof is on the State to prove the case. So we brought to this Parliament amendment to the Money Laundering Act wherein we then inserted what we call unexplained wealth orders where the Prosecutor General will now be allowed an exparte application that will be on its on to court to say that so and so amassed this property…
THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: Order! Hon. Senators
who are seated at the back, may you move so that it does not disturb anything when someone comes in to fill in the chairs. However, it seems I am doing the job for the chief whips.
HON. ZIYAMBI: So, what we have done is and I am glad this House passed that legislation. We now have that provision whereby if you amass wealth and we know that the amount of money that you earn does not correspond to what you have, the Prosecutor General can go to court so that an order can be issued to show why that wealth cannot be frozen and you explain the source of your wealth. However, failure to explain, then that is forfeited to the State. We believe this is an easier route, it is a civil route, the burden of proof shifts to the other person, and it is not on the State.
So we are now using several methods to fight corruption and going forward, you will see a lot of asset forfeiture happening. I thank you.
*HON. SEN. SHOKO: My question is directed to the Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education. There are students training as teachers, they go for attachments, whilst on attachment, they are supposed to buy stationary that is needed. For those who have been through the teaching profession, you know what is needed for you to be a teacher. Those students are getting 150 dollars. If we are to consider the value of 150 dollars today, I am sure you know that there is legislation that says USD is no longer a legal tender so when I talk of 150 dollars, I am referring to the RTGS$ which is the bond. So, these students are being given 150 bond; they are supposed to buy their food, bath, wash their clothes and buy tools of trade. As a Ministry, what are you doing to address this issue because the situation is bad out there? I thank you.
THE MINISTER OF HIGHER AND TERTIARY
EDUCATION, INNOVATION, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. MURWIRA): I would like to thank
Hon. Sen. Shoko for the question he raised. As we may all be aware because of the adoption of the mono-currency system in 2019, we know that the bond is not of much value and it is inadequate, so we are considering and working with the Ministry of Finance to ensure that when reviews for other funds are done, our students’ allowances will also be reviewed.
I also want to say that this amount that the students are being given is just a stipend. There is never a time when one will say I have enough money under the sun. This is just to assist them. Let me say that we are seized with the matter and we are working towards improving the conditions and ensure that they complete their diplomas on time. I thank you.
HON. SEN. CHIEF CHARUMBIRA: Hon. Minister, this
amount, 150 dollars; when was it last reviewed and we noted that it is inadequate. Furthermore Minister, college fees is paid whilst they are on attachment and it is as much as fees paid by people who are in college.
What is the justification for this?
HON. PROF. MURWIRA: When students are on attachment we
said that they should only pay 60% of the fees, we addressed that and it is in order. On the question raised by the Chief of $150, it was done during the US dollar era. That $150 in foreign currency was very helpful but when we adopted the mono currency system, it means we need to revisit this matter and see how much money these students should be given. As I speak, I hope that this august House should assist us when we are doing Budgets to ensure that we get enough funding.
Madam President, I also want to extent my gratitude in that this year’s Budget for the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education, Innovation, Science and Technology Development, the Hon. Members were able to fight for us and it is commendable compared to other years. So, what we look forward to is that if Parliament supports us through the Budget process to get more money it will enable us to give our students more money to ensure that they complete their education.
Yes, inflation is coming to effect but let me also say that the money that is availed to students whilst on attachment or internship is called stipend. It is for them to be assisted, it is not a salary per se but we want to reconsider this amount so that it can be able to assist them.
Madam President, I hope I have responded to the question.
*HON. SEN. WUNGANAYI: We are in consultation with the Ministry of Finance. We passed the Budget and you were saying
Parliament fought hard for the increase in the Budget. Are you going to go back to the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development because Parliament has already completed the Budget process?
*HON. PROF. MURWIRA: I am saying although the amount
was increased, it is still inadequate but I want to thank the House for the increase that was made. I did not say it is too much but I said compared to other years, it is commendable. When we undergo review for anything, we consult the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development and that is the procedure. I thank you.
*HON. SEN. TONGOGARA: In the absence of the Minister of Agriculture, I will direct my question to the Leader of the House. I want this House to be enlightened on whether there are any programmes in place in terms of water harvesting or not? Currently there are a lot of rains and people talk of water harvesting, people do not know what it is. Is there a programme that is underway to make people aware and train them as to how they can harness water for use after the rains are gone?
*THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE AND PARLIAMENTARY
AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): I want to thank the Hon. Member for
the question. Yes, the Government has measures on water harvesting. When we are building dams, it is because we are harvesting so that we harness and avoid it flowing into rivers. We are also conducting a project known as distillation of dams in order to harvest water. So, we do have those measures in place. The challenge that we are facing is that once we have that water, we have quite a lot of dams but we now want to invest in irrigation so that the water harvested can contribute to securing food.
*THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: Thank you Hon.
Minister but let me ask the Hon. Senator who raised the question if she is referring to harvesting of water to dams?
*HON. SEN. TONGOGARA: It was not concerning dams Madam President. I once saw on television that there are ridges and then there are squares that were put so that when it rains water goes into those ridges. They were so many of them, because most of us do not have dams, that is when I realised that there are other methods of conserving water. That is the method that I am asking about. I want to find out if people are aware of it, have they been educated on this? We want farmers to be taught and awareness programmes put in place so that farmers could harvest water. I think it will help us in terms of agriculture.
*HON. ZIYAMBI: I want to thank the Hon. Member for the question. I thought she was asking concerning the measures that
Government has put in place in order to harness water at national level. What she has talked about is conservation farming that is used for agriculture.
Madam President, I will refer the question to the Minister and ask him if we have any measures in place for such a programme. I thank you.
*HON. SEN. FEMAI: Thank you Madam President, I realised the Minister of Agriculture is not in, let me direct my question to the Leader of the House. We are losing a lot of livestock to a disease where they just feel weak. How many provinces have been affected by this disease?
*THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: That question should
be put in writing because there are areas that will be referred to. So, I do not think the Minister has such information concerning that particular
Ministry. I think you should put your question in writing so that the Ministry can engage in research. I thank you.
*HON. SEN. CHIMBUDZI: Thank you Madam President. In the absence of the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education, my question is directed to the Leader of the House. Which measures have they put in place in order to address the challenge faced by high schools in the country that now have too many children who used to go to boarding schools? They are now having large classes because boarding schools have become expensive. In Mount Darwin, a class has about 80 pupils. What has the Government put in place to ensure that the high schools and the pupils get adequate education? I thank you.
*THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND
PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): I want to thank
the Hon. Senator for the question. I think that question should be put in writing because I do not know how many people have been returned after schools opened. We would need to conduct a survey to see how many students returned from boarding schools and then a conclusive answer can be given.
*HON. SEN. CHIEF NHEMA: Thank you Madam President.
Mine is a question and at the same time I would want to learn. In the absence of the Minister of Finance and Economic Development, I am directing my question to the Leader of the House. When the policy and statutes are crafted, are they not created for people? If the policy has failed, how long does it take for it to be reviewed? We are sitting in this House saying that forex is no longer used as tender in this country and the statutory instrument has been crafted but in this country we are still using foreign currency. There are some things we are failing to understand – goods being sold in foreign currency are always available, for example fuel. We have a lot of fuel which is being sold in forex.
We do not understand where it is coming from. I want the Minister to have a relook into the policy so that he helps us. We are pained because forex is still being used in this country.
*THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND
PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): Thank you
Madam President. I want to thank the Hon. Senator for asking the question that if a statutory instrument is not working, what is supposed to be done. When we craft laws in this country, what will be left is for people to comply and those who break the law are arrested or are made to comply. If the law has been put and there is something happening against the law, it means those responsible for maintaining the law take action that people follow that law. Thank you very much Madam President.
*HON. SEN. CHABUKA: Thank you Madam President. We are
talking about representing people. As the Leader of the House, you are a lawyer and we respect you very much because you are always available in the Senate. Sometimes your responses do not show commitment. Everyone knows that fuel is being sold in foreign currency. This
country is ours and one day you said Zimbabwe is ours and we are supposed to love it. We love this country, that is why we were chosen to lead. My Chairperson from Manicaland is here and he is seeing all these things happening. People are feeling the pinch. Madam President, we are the Government...
*THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: I have been listening to the supplementary question. Can you please ask the supplementary question?
*HON. SEN. CHABUKA: Thank you Madam President. I am saddened. As the Leader of the House, you know what is supposed to be done to the people who are selling fuel in foreign currency. They are supposed to be dealt with.
*THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: This is a comment but
you have said what is in your heart.
*HON. SEN. CHIEF CHARUMBIRA: Thank you Madam
President. There are some issues which are bi-partisan, these issues are affecting everyone and there is no politics especially on this one. As I am standing here, I sent someone to fill the car and he said he needed forex for him to buy fuel. He showed me service stations which are selling fuel in forex. Even tomorrow we can give you a list of people who are selling fuel in forex. Zuva, some few days ago published and we read a list that if you want fuel in forex, you can go to various service stations to get it. All along the forex fuel was sold in private and now people are selling it openly. No one is being arrested. No one is earning US dollars but you are allowing people to sell US dollars in the streets. What are we supposed to do because this is a very serious issue? You need to come back here and we will give you a list so that you arrest all those people. Thank you.
*THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: You have not yet
asked your supplementary question, we are still on question time.
*HON. SEN. CHIEF CHARUMBIRA: Thank you. My
supplementary question is directed to Hon. Madiro. You are saying you do not know it. As Ministers, it is very bad for you to say that you do not know that there are service stations which are selling fuel in foreign currency. If you know, why are you not arresting them?
*HON. ZIYAMBI: Thank you Madam Speaker. We know that
there are service stations which are selling fuel in foreign currency. The mines and big companies that are generating foreign currency came to us and said that their operations were being affected. They wanted to be allowed to bring fuel on their own and give it to service stations selling in foreign currency. That was allowed by Government that those companies could go ahead so that we do not destroy our industry. If these companies pay their fuel in foreign currency, they can get that fuel from Zuva because they generate foreign currency. If there are people who are not in that arrangement, those people are supposed to comply with the law and people breaking the law must be arrested. Thank you Madam President.
*HON. SEN. MAKONE: Thank you Madam President. We hear
what he is saying. We can really understand that he is not answering our questions adequately. The truth is, in the coming weeks we might fail to come to this House because the coupons we are being given, there is nowhere we can redeem them. The Minister knows that there is nowhere we can redeem these coupons because garages have fuel but they are not selling waiting for price adjustments. They want to adjust their prices against the US dollar. The job that we are doing here does not generate foreign currency. So, how are we going to operate?
*THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND
PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): Thank you
Madam President. If there are service stations that are hording fuel and not selling, we can withdraw their licences. We closed some service stations after we had been tipped that some service stations were hording fuel and not selling. They were investigated and it was found out that the fuel was there. If there are people who are doing that we are going to withdraw their licences. We are very serious on that issue. If there are places that you know that have fuel and it is being held and not sold, please tell us their operating licences will be withdrawn.
*HON. SEN. MAKUMBE: Thank you Madam President. I was
very happy to hear the Minister saying there are industrialists who have come saying that if they continue using bond notes they will be killing the industry. Will they allow industry to continue using bond notes when they have accepted that it is destroying the economy?
THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: Hon. Sen. Chief
Makumbe, with due respect, I did not hear the Minister say that.
*HON. SEN. ZIVIRA: Thank you Madam President. A lot of people who are renting are paying in foreign currency. Where are they going to get foreign currency to pay their rentals? Where are they going to stay when they cannot afford to pay for in foreign currency?
*THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: Hon. Senator, your
question is not a supplementary question.
Questions Without Notice were interrupted by THE HON.
PRESIDENT OF SENATE in terms of Standing Order No. 62.
ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITH NOTICE
MEASURES TO CONTROL ENVIRONMENTAL DEGRADATION
- HON. SEN. CHIMBUDZI asked the Minister of Environment, Tourism, Climate and Hospitality to inform the House the measures being taken by the Government to control environmental degradation and to explain the role of traditional leaders in this regard.
THE MINISTER OF ENVIRONMENT, TOURISM,
CLIMATE AND HOSPITALITY (HON. M. NDLOVU): Madam
President, I will bring the responses for Questions 1 to 6 next week.
*HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: Hon. Members, I do not
think it will give us a good picture, to have the whole two pages of questions from Hon. Sen. Chimbudzi, honestly. These questions are asked so that ministers go out and research and come back with the information which we would have requested. In the National Assembly, they do not allow for more than three questions from one Hon. Member, but because the Hon. Member would be the only one who would have sent the questions, they will have to put them all on the Order Paper. I think that we should help other Hon. Senators to ask because there are a lot of issues which need to be heard. Questions without notice differ from questions with notice.
HON. SEN. B. MPOFU: I have a point of order. Last year we had questions which lasted two to three months and I think we have been discouraged from asking questions by the non-attendance of the ministers because it is a waste of our time. Thank you Madam Speaker.
THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: We do not say it is a
question of wasting time.
HON. SEN. B. MPOFU: I retract the statement.
THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: We continue asking the
questions, complaining and putting more pressure that we need ministers. That is our work and I think the Administration is going to help us to write to the ministers so that they come in and answer the questions.
*HON. SEN. SHOKO: Madam President, let us be wary that we might be fired from work. Unfortunately, even you will also lose your job for the reason that these people are affecting us. The questions which were asked last year were discarded, once they answer questions without notice, they leave the House and we are left here where questions will be moved to the following week. So we ask you as the President of the Senate, without giving you instructions but just saying because I cannot instruct my superiors. You are our leader, we want to do our work, you should be hard on these people, look for a whip to make them work. They should not go out soon after the first session of questions, they should remain here until all the questions are exhausted.
People are saying that these old men are not working, they only work for 30 minutes and adjourn. So what is the purpose of this House? Please deal with these people, do not allow them to continue doing what they are doing right now. I thank you Madam President.
THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: I think the questions
which were on the Order Paper last year, you can still resubmit them. We cannot just say it is over, I agree with you and I will make sure that it is effective. Thank you.
REPORT OF THE DELEGATION TO THE 45TH PLENARY
ASSEMBLY OF THE SADC PARLIAMENTARY FORUM HELD IN MAPUTO
First Order read: Adjourned debate on the motion on the Report of the Delegation to the 45th Plenary Assembly of the SADC Parliamentary
Question again proposed.
HON. SEN. MOHADI: Thank you Mr. President. Before I say
what I want to say, I want to encourage the Hon. Members that if a report is brought to this august House, it is their responsibility and duty to check in their pigeon holes and find issues that they can debate on. I say this because we had a heated debate somewhere over the weekend when some people were saying that Committees which are sent outside the country like the SADC PF, IPU and Pan African Parliament do not report back. However, we argued that reports are there if you go to your pigeon holes, you would find them but they were not very happy. So I am encouraging the Hon. Members to read. There are a lot of issues in those reports where they can also make contributions.
Mr. President, with these few words, I also want to thank all the
Hon. Senators who took time to make contributions on this motion.
Without much ado, I move for the adoption of the motion;
That this House takes note of the Report of the Delegation to the
45th Plenary Assembly of the SADC Parliamentary Forum, held at the
Joaquim Chissano International Conference Centre in Maputo,
Mozambique, from 15th to 25th July, 2019. Motion put and agreed to.
REPORT OF THE DELEGATION TO THE PAN-AFRICAN
PARLIAMENT HIGH LEVEL SUMMIT ON HIV AND HEALTH
FINANCING IN AFRICA
Second Order Read: Adjourned debate on motion on the Report of the Delegation to the Pan-African Parliament High Level Summit on
HIV and health financing in Africa, held in Brazzaville, Congo, from 11th to the 12th July, 2019.
*HON. SEN. TONGOGARA: Thank you Mr. President. I have
stood up to support this report of the delegation to the Pan-African Parliament High level Summit on HIV and health financing in Africa held in Brazzaville, Congo. Mr. President, it was noted here, that this disease of HIV and AIDS is not only a problem in our country but the whole of Africa. That is why all countries in Africa did gather to put heads together to see to it that this disease is put to a stop.
The problem which I have seen here Mr. President, is that our budget on health is very small; the money is not enough for us to fight this disease. On that same issue, it was noted that HIV is not the only problem, but like I said earlier on, the Health Ministry is not getting enough money. We have seen that it includes SDG’s especially SDG number three which says people of all ages have to live well. Here, we are being encouraged as Parliamentarians that when the budget is being done to look at the health budget so that it is given enough money for it to be able to fight all diseases and not only looking at HIV/AIDS alone.
There are a lot of diseases affecting people in this country which requires a lot of money to buy medicines, machines and scans to screen various diseases. Some of these diseases need to be screened earlier so that they get treatment, therefore, maintaining good health amongst our people.
If the country has healthy people even the economy will grow. For example in this august House, if Senators are not in good health, they will not be able to make contributions to debates. When we go to our hospitals, our doctors and nurses are supposed to be healthy so that they are able to assist other people. Furthermore, when we talk about food, it comes from our fields, so, if people are not healthy, no one will be able to work in the farms in order to provide food for the family.
As Parliamentarians, when the budget is being presented, we fail to make sure that enough money is being provided to the Ministry of Health so that it is able to take care of everyone in this country health wise. So, my request is that when the budget is being done, we need to pay much attention to see to it that the Ministry of Health is given enough money.
I would like to thank everyone who attended that Summit, our Deputy Speaker was there and she gave a history of our challenges here in terms of HIV/AIDS. I thank you.
HON. SEN. FEMAI: I move that the debate do now adjourn.
HON. SEN. CHIFAMBA: I second.
Motion put and agreed.
Debate to resume Tuesday, 25th February 2020.
REPORT OF THE THEMATIC COMMITTEE ON GENDER AND
DEVELOPMENT ON THE PLIGHT OF PEOPLE WITH
DISABILITIES AND CHALLENGES FACED BY WOMEN AND
GIRLS WITH DISABILITIES IN ZIMBABWE
Third Order read: Adjourned debated on motion on the Report of the Thematic Committee on Gender and Development on the plight of people with disabilities and challenges faced by women and girls with disabilities in Zimbabwe.
Question again proposed.
HON. SEN. NCUBE: I stand to wrap up the motion, the report on the Order Paper. Before, I do that, I just want to thank the Members of the Committee for the tour that we had. Also I want to thank all Senators who debated on this report on the plight of people with disabilities and challenges faced by women and girls in Zimbabwe. This was a very touching report. I want to thank everybody and I also want to ask the Minister to come and respond to the report.
Mr. President, I now move that the motion on the Report of the Thematic Committee on Gender and Development on the plight of people with disabilities and challenges faced by women and girls with disabilities in Zimbabwe be now adopted – [HON. SENATORS: Hear, hear.]
Motion with leave adopted.
REMOVAL OF ILLEGAL SANCTIONS IMPOSED ON ZIMBABWE
Fourth Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on the unconditional and immediate removal of the illegal economic sanction imposed on Zimbabwe.
Question again proposed.
HON. SEN. MBOHWA: Thank you Mr. President. I would like
to thank you for giving me this opportunity to wind up my motion. I want to thank all Hon. Senators who debated on this motion. They gave very pertinent advice. I think their contributions will benefit the country. I would like to thank fellow SADC countries who called for the immediate removal of these sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe and their unconditional removal as well.
I would also want to thank SADC countries once again for setting
25th October as the date for all SADC countries to voice their
disapproval of the sanctions. It is my hope that one day our cries will be heard and the sanctions will be removed.
I now move for the adoption of the motion on the unconditional and immediate removal of illegal economic sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe.
Motion with leave adopted.
PRESIDENTIAL SPEECH: DEBATE ON ADDRESS
Fifth Order read: Adjourned debate on motion in reply to the
Question again proposed.
HON. SEN. GUMPO: Thank you Mr. President, I seek your permission that I read instead of referring. I want to thank you for affording me an opportunity to debate the Presidential Speech which was delivered at the opening of the Second Parliament…
THE TEMPORARY PRESIDENT OF SENATE (HON. SEN.
CHIEF CHARUMBIRA): Order, order! The rules of both Houses state that the only time you can read is when you make your maiden speech. Thereafter, for the rest of the five years, you have to speak from your head and probably refer to some notes as you go. For you to read the whole text, that will be against the rules.
HON. SEN. GUMPO: Thank you Mr. President. I want to thank the President for his speech that was presented at the opening of
Parliament. It was well presented….
HON. SEN. NCUBE: On a point of order Mr. President. I do not know if I am getting lost but I understand it was agreed in the Standing Rules and Orders that Members can now read their speeches.
THE TEMPORARY PRESIDENT OF SENATE: Take your
seat my consultant is coming.
One of the Clerks at the Table approached the Chair.
THE TEMPORARY PRESIDENT OF SENATE: I knew what I
was doing but I wanted to confirm. It is good to consult in case I missed something. He has just confirmed that there is an intention and some draft recommendations have been made to the Standing Rules and Orders Committee to amend and then proceed as you have just mentioned. For now, we are still using the old ones, so the old rules apply. I thank you.
HON. SEN. GUMPO: Mr. President, His Excellency the President praised the peaceful environment that prevails in our country as compared to other countries where there is political turmoil. This is a credit to the President and also a credit to the people of Zimbabwe that this country is peaceful.
In addition to that Mr. President, the President covered those areas that are a challenge to the country. One of them is the recent Cyclone Idai where people were heavily affected by the floods and some of the people died. He expressed his gratitude that most of the people throughout the world supported Zimbabwe in terms of resources in order to support those people that were affected.
Mr. President, the President also covered areas that the country is actually facing in terms of the economy that currently there are problems of fuel, electricity and also the problem of shortages but the President assured the country that Government is doing its best to be able to overcome all the problems that are taking place currently.
The President also covered areas that cover corruption in this country that has reached alarming levels. He confirmed that he has a zero tolerance to corruption and warned everyone that the law is going to take its course on anybody who is found at the wrong side of the law. The President finally assured the people that they should keep united as they have been in the past as they await the results of the Government’s efforts in terms of trying to rectify the problems in the economy. I thank you Mr. President.
THE TEMPORARY PRESIDENT OF SENATE: In view of
the issue raised by Sen. Ncube, I just want to refresh your memories in case you doubt in future. You can get it on Clause 80, ‘Senators’ speeches; a senator must (a) read his/her maiden speech; (b) not read his/her speech but refresh his/memory by reference to notes when addressing the Senate’. Those have not been amended yet, they are in the red book. We can proceed.
HON. SEN. MUZENDA: I move that the debate do now adjourn.
HON. SEN. MOHADI: I second.
Motion put and agreed to.
Debate to resume: Tuesday, 25th February, 2020.
On the motion of THE MINISTER OF STATE FOR
MANICALAND PROVINCE (HON. SEN. GWARADZIMBA), the
Senate adjourned at a Quarter past Four o’clock p.m. until Tuesday, 25th February, 2020.