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SENATE HANSARD 22 October 2015 25-11

PARLIAMENT OF ZIMBABWE

Thursday, 22nd October, 2015.

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

PRAYERS

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

ANNOUNCEMENT BY THE ACTING PRESIDENT OF THE

SENATE

WORKSHOP ON ECONOMIC LITERACY

THE ACTING PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE: I wish to

remind Senate Thematic Chairpersons, and one member from each

Committee that they have been invited to a workshop on Economic Literacy to be held on Monday, 26th October, 2015, from 0830 to 1730 hours at Pandhari Hotel in Harare. Transport will leave Parliament Building at 0745 hours.

ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITHOUT NOTICE

THE ACTING PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE: These are just

introductions because for some of the Ministers, it is their first time to come to the Senate. Welcome Hon. Ministers to the Senate. This is a House of mature people, very responsible people. We hope when they pose their questions it is because they want to improve their communities and the nation at large. So welcome. I will start by Hon.

Sen. Mutsvangwa, the Deputy Minister of Economic Planning, Hon. P. Zhanda, the Deputy Minister of Agriculture (Livestock), Eng. Tapiwa

Matangaidze, the Deputy Minister of Public Service Labour and Social

Welfare,  Dr. W. Mlambo, the Deputy Minister of Information

Communication Technology, Postal and Courier Services, Hon. Eng. M.

Madanha, the Deputy Minister of Transport and Infrastructural

Development and my dear old friend there the Deputy Minister of Local

Government, Public Works and National Housing,  Hon. Chingosho, Hon. Mabuwa, the Deputy Minister of Industry and Commerce and Hon.

Muchinguri-Kashiri, the Minister of Environment, Water and Climate.

ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITHOUT NOTICE

*HON. SEN. CHIEF MUSARURWA: Thank you Hon.

President Sir.  My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Developmen,t Hon Madanha. So, what is the progress regarding the Beitbridge road? We still have lots of accidents on this road. What steps are you taking in order to preserve life and property on this busy road? Thank you Mr. President Sir.

    * THE ACTING PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE:: Thank you

Hon. Chief Musarurwa. I let you continue talking but we do not encourage making long statements but to simply ask your question.

*THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. ENG.

MADANHA): I will start by thanking you Mr. President Sir. I also thank the Hon. Sen. Chief Musarurwa for the question he has asked because he wants the country to know what progress has been made in the construction and re-mending of the Harare-Beitbridge road. We may not be able to tell when the construction of that road will be complete.  

But we know progress is at an advanced stage and the job is being done under the guidance of Vice President Hon. Mnangagwa. So, what we now await is the sanctioning of it under this voice. May I also tell this Senate that we had more than 10 contractors who had been assigned to work on this road and were competing for this road but now these have been whittled down to three so that we can select who to give the tender.

As soon as the tender is awarded, the job will progress.

*HON. SEN. CHIPANGA: We have some of you who came and

addressed this House and informed us that we had lots of contractors who were delaying this progress. But, you have come in this House and you are telling us that the ball is in the court of the Vice President to award the tender.  Which is the truth on this issue?

 HON. MADANHA:  I thank the Hon. Member for this follow-up question.  When this project was launched, tenders were set out and we had contractors who submitted their bids.  The contractor Zim-Highways won the tender to work on this road but we have since discovered that the country has no money in its coffers to support this programme.  As a result, we had to cancel the tender and we are now interested in getting contractors under Built Operate and Transfer or Public Private

Partnership so that when the road is constructed, the contractor will pay everything and operate on that.  The Government was taken to court by Zim-Highways because the tender was cancelled.  We have had talks with Zim-Highways and Zim-Highways has withdrawn the litigation.  What is now happening is we are starting afresh sourcing out for contractors to work on this road and once the tender is awarded, progress on the road will start.

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

is directed to the Deputy Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development, Hon. Madanha.  What effort is Government putting in place to revive the full operation of the national carrier, Air Zimbabwe, especially to resume the international routes, with reference to the Harare – London route?  Thank you.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND

INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. MADANHA): 

Thank you Mr. President.  I want to start by thanking the Hon. Senator who has just posed such an important question.  We are all aware that Air Zimbabwe is our flagship carrier and definitely as the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural Development, we would like to sit back in the air like yesterday.  It is not a hidden fact that Air Zimbabwe is almost insolvent.  By that, I mean that the assets which Air Zimbabwe owns are now less than the debt that Air Zimbabwe has.  Also, it is not a secret that the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural Development, which always rescues Air Zimbabwe to recapitalize has no money.  So, what the Ministry is doing to revive the airline is, we are trying to partner with any willing partners who want to recapitalize Air

Zimbabwe and we operate Air Zimbabwe on a mutually beneficial basis.  This would ultimately revive most of our routes which have been suspended up to now.  I thank you.

HON. SEN. SHIRI:  My question goes to the Deputy Minister of

Information Communication Technology, Postal and Courier Services,

Hon. Mlambo.  What is the Ministry’s policy with regards to the establishment of information centres nationwide?  Thank you.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF INFORMATION

COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY, POSTAL AND COURIER

SERVICES (HON. MLAMBO):  Mr. President Sir, thank you very much for the question.  The policy is very simple.  We would like every province initially to have a communication information centre.  We have done so to about eight so far and two to go.  Thank you.

*HON. SEN. MASHAVAKURE:  I have got a supplementary question.  We thank the Government for the progress which has been made in accessing buildings so that the disabled have access to these centres but my question is, as Government, are we working out ways and means of letting the disabled to be able to access these electronic gadgets, the ICT, so that they can access and get information from them? 

HON. MLAMBO:  We consider disability very seriously.  Section 111 of the new policy, subsection 4.6 clearly spells out that all operators, in laying down their network must do so in such a way that people with disability are able to use the network.  The national ICT policy would be soon announced by the Minister.  Such issues would be clarified and it would be mandatory to network operators to do as such.  Thank you.

HON. SEN. CHIMHINI:  Thank you Mr. President.  My question is directed to Hon. Minister Muchinguri – Kashiri and I stand guided, I hope that is the correct Ministry.  What steps are being taken to ensure that weather forecast by the Meteorological office is close to what can happen, given that the Ministry of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development last week doubted the validity of the information provided by the Meteorological office for the 2013 / 2014 forecast.

Thank you.

THE MINISTER OF ENVIRONMENT, WATER AND

CLIMATE (HON. MUCHINGURI):  Thank you Mr. President.

Allow me to thank the Hon. Senator for that very important question.  What I would want to assure the Hon. Senator is that the information that we gather is a culmination of information which is gathered within the region and beyond.  That is what forms the basis of our reports on a daily basis.  The situation keeps changing.  That is why we provide cloud seeding to ensure that we reinforce our forecast with what is possible.  I thank you.

HON. SEN. CHIEF GAMPU:  My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development.  Can you clarify on this question about the old vehicles which are supposed to be registered?  Of late, they are refusing to register old vehicles because the seller would accumulate the debt then eventually sell that car to someone else.  The buyer will fail to register the car because he has to pay all the money which was accumulated by the seller.  Can the Minister kindly clarify to the nation how it is done?  Thank you.

        THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND

INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. MADANHA):

Thank you Mr. President Sir.  I would like to thank the Hon. Senator for asking such an important question.  I think we have put some adverts in the local newspapers to the effect that all cars which have gone for more than two years without registration will not be allowed to circulate on the roads by the month-end.

What interests us as a Ministry is to see the registration of cars.  Now, in this case whereby the car was bought from somebody and it had gone for some time without being registered, I think the Ministry will not help in that circumstance.  What we simply need is to have all cars registered and we definitely need that money so that we can apply to repair our roads.  I thank you.

HON. SEN. CHIEF GAMPU:  Does the Government consider

the economic hardships which are prevailing in the country.  People cannot afford to pay that money which they are supposed to pay.  Thank you.

HON. MADANHA: Thank you Mr. President Sir.  Definitely, the Government is sensitive to the situation in the country.  The economic situation is difficult and the Government is sensitive but if somebody can afford to maintain his car, buy tyres and fuel, how come that person cannot afford to register his/her car?

HON. SEN. MARAVA: Thank you Mr. President.  This issue is

very important and we must put serious effort into answering it.  If we consider how many vehicles have crossed these borders, some from Tanzania or South Africa into Zimbabwe; some went on to call us a dumping ground, but it was all in an effort to try and get us into mobility.  Now, that these vehicles are all here, they were actually aimed at the lower income bracket or the poorest vehicle operator in Zimbabwe.

Now that these vehicles are there, I would like the Minister to let the nation know when the deadline is or have we already passed the deadline.  If we have since passed the deadline, I think I heard some people talk about the poor man having to take his vehicle to VID and all those places.  Please Hon. Minister, can we have a statement from you to the nation because these people who are in the lowest bracket cannot afford what the Government is insisting on.

HON. MADANHA: Thank you Mr. President Sir.  The deadline was last month, the end of September.  However, by the end of September, we discovered that some people had registered their vehicles but still a substantial number had not yet registered.  So, we extended the deadline by one month, up to the end of this month.  Here we are talking of cars which have gone for more than two years without registering.  I know the economic situation is difficult but let us also consider that this is the requirement of the law and we are talking of cars which have gone for more than two years.  Definitely, these cars should be registered.

There are so many issues that are related to cars which are not registered.  For example, you can have such a car being involved in a hit and run situation, how will it be traced.  So, definitely everything has to be legalised.  I thank you.

HON. SEN. W. SIBANDA: My question is directed to the Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Services, what broad measures are you taking to rationalise the wage bill within the Public Service to the 40% anticipated by the Minister of Finance and Economic Development?

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF PUBLIC SERVICE, LABOUR AND SOCIAL SERVICES (HON. ENG. MATANGAIDZE): Thank

you Mr. President.  If I hear the Hon. Senator’s question well, he is talking about Government’s effort to reduce the wage bill to be about 40% so that 60% goes towards infrastructural development.

First and foremost I need to say that retrenchment of workers and laying off of Government employees in the Public Service is not an option.  What has happened right now is we have conducted an audit to ascertain that people who are on the Government wage bill are physically there and contributing to the Public Service.  That exercise has come through; there are recommendations which have come up. There are instances where there was duplication, ghost workers and in some instances where in future, jobs can be rationalised in that one person can carry two of the functions which are currently being done by two people as we speak right now.

This will be an on-going exercise where over a period of time the recommendations which are coming through now will be implemented.  Yes, there will be some immediate savings which can be realised in the medium to short term but bringing down to 40% or 30% of the revenue will be a long term objective.  I thank you.

HON. SEN. JUBA:  My question is directed to the Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development.  We have a problem in Matabeleland North with these haulage trucks.  They are killing people and run away.  Recently, about three weeks back, people were travelling by bus from Bulawayo to Victoria Falls.  They were hit by a haulage truck with trailer, and then the driver ran away.  What is your policy?

How are you going to help us to avoid those accidents?

        THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND

INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. MADANHA):

Thank you Mr. President Sir.  I think here we are faced with an issue which is more of a crime rather than a road condition.  As the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural Development, we are mostly concerned with preventing carnage on the roads by improving the conditions of our roads.  Now, this is a hit and run incident which I feel, it is logically important that it should be reported to the police so that they can trace the vehicle.

HON. SEN. MUMVURI: My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Agriculture (Livestock).  The Government made a decision to take over COTTCO.  How far have you gone with the preparations?  Can people in the rural areas expect to grow cotton this year?  At the moment is it possible to takeover by starting to buy cotton which was grown last year because it is rotting in my Constituency?  Thank you.

         THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE

(LIVESTOCK) (HON. ZHANDA):  Thank you Mr. President.  I would like to thank Hon. Sen. Mumvuri for the question.  I think one would want to understand why the cotton is rotting.  It is not that ginneries which are operating are closed.  There is a background to why the cotton is rotting, which I think the Hon. Senator should have elaborated so that I would deal with the question.  Admittedly, yes,

Government has indicated its desire to take over the Cotton Company of Zimbabwe (COTTCO) but taking over the company does not mean that will be the end of these problems.

The problem associated with cotton is that cotton is a commodity whose price is influenced by world supply and demand; among those issues that influence the price of cotton are basically the issue of production in the United States of America that I will deal with, demand in China which is the main user of cotton and also to a certain extent, the competition between cotton and synthetic fibres.

Under the World Trade Organisation (WTO) rules dealing with agriculture, the issue of subsidies has been of concern.  The over production in the United States of America is the issue of the United States of America government subsidising its local cotton farmers resulting in the huge increase in production that obviously will translate into over-supply into the market place.  Over-supply in the market place requires that the prices will be redundant, so that is one of the reasons.

Coming back home, the issue of cotton or farming is an issue of efficiency of production.  For example, in Zimbabwe we are producing an average of between 500kgs and 800kgs per hectare compared to other countries that are producing three tonnes to four tonnes per hectare and selling in the same market where price is influenced by those factors that

I spoke about.  Therefore, in addressing this issue and Government’s intention to take over COTTCO, Government will not end up just taking over COTTCO.  I think we need to make sure that our farmers are adequately capacitated in terms of know-how so that they can produce and also the issue of sufficient and timeously availing inputs that we require to cover a hectare.  I thank you.

HON. SEN. CHIPANGA:  My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing.  In the recent past, there has been an outcry particularly in Harare about land barons.  Is your Ministry in a position to tell this House that the issue is now behind us?

Also what has happened to the innocent individuals who lost their money only to find their houses being demolished by your Ministry?

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT, PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON.

CHINGOSHO:  I would like to thank the Hon. Senator for the question.

First and foremost, the Ministry is fighting against land barons.  The Ministry is in the process of moving to all those areas alleged to be affected by land barons.  Those who were affected are requested to come to the Ministry and report such cases.

There will be no compensation to those people whose houses were destroyed because they constructed in a wrong place or constructed without following the Government’s rules and regulations, because most people are those in peri-urban areas.  When you go in the peri-urban area, the condition is that you go there on temporary basis and whatever you do there is temporary.  People were advised not to construct permanent structures.  This message is clear to everybody but it is now being complicated by those land barons, some of whom claim to own those lands and ask people to pay them.  The Ministry is seriously dealing with such cases and some of the land barons have been brought to book.

It is a process and a problem that the Ministry is very much concerned with.  I am sure that with the measures that the Ministry is taking, we will be able to resolve that problem.  I thank you.

HON. SEN. CHIPANGA:  Surely Minister, these are your people who were robbed of their monies.  The question is, how long are you going to be pursuing or fighting these land barons?  I would have wanted a situation where the Minister was in a position to say, we are on top of the situation or we have gone this far.

I believe it is not good enough Hon. President to simply say; after all they are in the peri-urban areas as that whole area is under the

Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing.  Why were they allowed to construct these structures in the first place without the Government moving in to stop them?

HON. CHINGOSHO:  I agree with the Hon. Senator but again, yes those areas are under the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing but the situation is that peri-urban areas are directly under municipalities and not the Ministry per se.  You would find that the city councils or the municipalities and even within those municipalities, you will find that there are authorities within that local authority who are even worsening the problem by involving themselves in the land baron scandal.

The Ministry is now working closely with councils and a deadline has been set to say, by the end of this year, any local authority whose area is still seen practicing or affected by that problem, it will be squarely the local authority itself to explain to the Ministry.  It is a complicated problem where you find the responsible authorities spearheading that problem.

I would like to assure the Hon. Senator that the Ministry is seriously taking these measures on board.  We hope that things will be under control by next year.  I thank you.

         *HON. SEN. CHIMBUDZI: Thank you Mr. President. What is your policy as Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing, in imparting knowledge to people so that they know their rights in as far as construction of acquired land is concerned?         *THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT, PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON.

CHINGOSHO): Thank you Mr. President. I would like to thank the

Hon. Senator for asking that question.  The new policy as far as the Ministry is concerned in land distribution is that, as with immediate effect, nobody is going to be allowed to construct any structure without the approval of the Ministry and without servicing the land so that there are roads, water ways and all other infrastructural necessities.

Therefore, if people are to be resettled or given land, it is supposed to have been serviced already with the entire infrastructure that is essential for people to live properly.

*HON. SEN. CHIMANIKIRE: Thank you Mr. President.  I am

directing my question to the Minister of Agriculture, Mechanisation and

Irrigation Development.  We know that agriculture is the backbone of

Zimbabwe’s economy.  Even in our household, whenever there is mealie-meal in the home, no woman would go out and to tell people that she is living a poor life because all she needs to do is go into the garden for vegetables and cook sadza for the family.

However, we have been moving all over the world, east, west and south and there is no solution to our problem but people were given land so that they can utilize it –[HON. SENATORS: Inaudible interjections]Please, give me the chance to make my contribution Hon. Senators.

      *THE ACTING PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE: Order,

address the Chair, Hon. Senator.

*HON. SEN. CHIMANIKIRE:  My question is, when you see

that those who were allocated land are under-utilizing it, what is the Government policy on that? We have some people who construct structures where it is not allowed to do so and unfortunately, the structures will be pulled down.  Now that people were allocated farming land, are you not able to move around these resettlement areas to check on the farming progress in those areas?

*THE ACTING PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE: Order Hon.

Senator, stop telling stories just ask your question.

*HON. SEN. CHIMANIKIRE:  My question is, now that you see

that the land is derelict, what steps are you taking to make it a point that people fully utilize this land?

         THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE

(LIVESTOCK) (HON. ZHANDA): Thank you Mr. President, if I can be allowed to give my response in English so that I can express and give statistics to this issue.   I would like to thank the Hon. Senator for giving me the opportunity to put the record straight so that it is not distorted and the perception of the land issue being the reason why we have not produced enough maize, is completely wrong and misplaced.

Mr. President, historically, this country has always relied on communal farmers producing maize to an average of 70% to 80% of all the maize before the Land Reform Programme was produced by communal farmers – [HON. SENATORS: Hear, hear] - In 1995/6, well before Land Reform, with one Agritex Officer at a ward, Zimbabwe produced 2, 6 million tonnes and of that tonnage, 1, 6 million tonnes came from communal farmers.  In subsequent years, that ratio remained the same. Therefore, the issue or any insinuation that the Land Reform Programme has been the cause of less production of maize - I am afraid, it is not the case.

Probably, for the Hon. Senator, the issue of the Land Reform Programme was meant to address two things.  Number one, to address the ownership the of land imbalance and secondly, it was also meant to decongest communal areas.  The only thing that the communal farmer used to produce was wheat because small scale farmers did not have the irrigation infrastructure.

The issue of making sure that the farmers have produced must not solely be the responsibility of Government. It must also be the responsibility of all stakeholders including those companies which use maize, wheat and so forth.  I will not mention by name, but if you can imagine, Mr. President, the biggest contributor to the fiscus is VAT.  It is paid by pregnant mothers from Chiendambuya, Dotito, Tsholotsho, Mukumbura and VAT is very ruthless; it does not matter whether you are sick or not, you will pay it.  For us as Government, to go and take that money in order to make sure that wheat is grown on behalf of those companies which are on the Stock Exchange, with owners who are in London and France, that is not the correct thing.  We are not here to subsidise.  As Government, we want to see all stakeholders getting involved in financing what is used by all farmers.  Thank you.

HON. SEN. MARAVA: Thank you Mr. President, whilst the

Minister is still on the land issue, I would like to ask him a question.  The rural peasants out there have sent their bags of maize to GMB.  The last time the Minister was here, he said he was very close to liquidating these debts with the producers of maize.

THE ACTING PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE: Hon. Sen.

Marava, is that a supplementary question?  That is not a supplementary question, please take your seat.

HON. SEN. MOHADI: Thank you Mr. President. My question goes to the Deputy Minister of Agriculture (Livestock).  As someone who comes from the low-veld, I do not know what Government has put in place in connection with livestock feed so that it can reach the people and that they can buy from their nearest depots.

May I also know whether Government has any plans to subsidise livestock feeds. I thank you.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE

(LIVESTOCK) (HON. ZHANDA): Thank you Mr. President.  I want to thank the Hon. Senator for the question. Yes, Government is aware of the devastating drought particularly in parts of Midlands, parts of

Masvingo, parts of Manicaland including Matabeleland South and Matabeleland North.  When we noticed that there was need for supplementary feeding for the livestock sector, we did undertake an assessment study with the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) as early as April, where we made an assessment and concluded that there was need for all stakeholders to come together so that we can assist farmers with supplementary feeding like what had happened in 2012.  In 2012, Government and FAO came out with a scheme which at the end of the day resulted in a heavily subsidised price of nearly US$7 per bag of 50 kgs to Matabeleland farmers.  We were hoping that our partners would come on board to do the same.

However, on undertaking those assessment trips, we also wanted to conscientise our farmers to make sure that when obviously there is a drought, you cannot continue to hold the same animals, seeing or sensing there is a drought.  Education was to encourage our farmers to de-stock, not to completely sell everything but to de-stock.  An example, Mr. President, if one had thirty cattle, it is wise to sell five.  One of them would enable you to buy food for your family and the four will enable you to buy extra feed to make sure that one avoids a total loss.

However, traditionally as we are, the issue of selling cattle is a very painful exercise, to the extent that in actual fact you would want to see the cattle decimating and not selling some.  It is the duty of us as legislators, both from the National Assembly and Senators in this House, that we educate our communities so that they know exactly that the issue of livestock production is a commercial one.

We have had meetings with abattoirs where we encourage them not to take advantage of the drought in short-changing our farmer, making sure that the prices that are being given to the farmers are reasonable.  The farmers should also know when to destock whilst the animals were still in condition.  As Government, we tried by all means to do as much as we can to our farmer.  However, Mr. President, allow me to say that I think as Zimbabwe, we have gone to the situation where everything that needs to be done should be done by the Government.  What is Government doing this for us?  I can assure you Government does not give anybody anything for free.  It does not first take from somebody for free.  If somebody thinks it is not good to work because Government is going to give them something for free and if the other half thinks that it is not good to work because what I work for is going to be taken away for free, then that could be the end of a signal and the end of any nation.  I think we must know that Government does not give anybody that it first takes for free from somebody.  Thank you.

HON. SENATOR MOHADI: My supplementary is that we are

not saying that they should be given.  We are saying, are there any possibilities for the feed to get nearer to the farmers so that they can buy that feed, not to say that they should be given for free.

HON. ZHANDA: I want to thank the Hon. Senator for the supplementary question.  At the moment, I am not aware if there is any feed that has been distributed because we did not get any assistance from FAO.  If there is any feed, it is the remaining feed from last time because what happened with the FAO programme, the money that they got from selling the subsidised feed, they were asked to keep it including building warehouses for the future programme of that exercise.  If there is any feed, it could be from that exercise.  It is Government’s intention that, given the opportunity and resources being available, they would want to make sure it is as easier as possible for farmers to get the feed as nearer to their positions as possible. I thank you.

HON. SEN. MUSAKA: I thank you Mr. President. My question, probably I wish to stand guided, I know the rules but I am kind of trying to use a simultaneous equation to the Ministry of Transport and

Infrastructural Development and the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing in the failure to deal with what is considered inappropriate behaviour.  How does a car get into Zimbabwe and goes on the Zimbabwean roads unregistered?  To the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing, how do you totally fail to deal with land barons? You give wishy-washy answers, Mr. President, when they come back next time, can we get appropriate answers?

THE ACTING PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE: We cannot

accept two questions.  It is one question only per given time and then you can pose another on later.

HON. SEN. MUSAKA: I thank you Mr. President, however,...

THE ACTING PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE: Okay, I will

allow it for this time.

 THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND

INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. ENG.

MADANHA): Thank you Mr. President Sir. I want to thank the Hon.

Senator for such an important question.  Definitely, the law requires that if one imports a car it has to be registered.  Now, if the car lands and moves on our roads without being registered that simply points to the fact that there might be some corruption of some sort which would have taken place.

Let me assure this august House that Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural Development have come up with a lot of innovative ideas to deal with this situation.  One of the innovative ideas that we are coming up with is to put what we call ‘compliance vehicles’ on our roads. These vehicles are equipped with computers and cameras.  Wherever they are stationed, be it in the bush, dust road, wherever you are; it will quickly give feed back to our control room right here in Harare once it picks up your number plate of all the details of that person.  This issue of moving with unregistered vehicles or cars that have not paid their radio licenses or without a certificate of fitness will be a thing of the past in the few days to come.  We have the cars on the road. For thieves, this will no longer be a stroll in the park because wherever you are, you will be picked up and arrested on the spot.

The nation should be assured that we are very innovative and coming up with solutions but when you deal with a thief, the thief will also come up with a counter solution.  This time around, we are ahead of everybody.  I thank you.

THE ACTING PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE: Sorry, if I

might just assist. Eng, what do you mean by registration? He refers to an import a car coming into Zimbabwe without being registered. Are you referring to the quarterly licensing, that someone has not licensed his vehicle for three years or what, if you could explain that to the Senators?

HON. ENG MADANHA: Thank you Mr. President Sir. When

you import a car, you have to undergo a process whereby you legalise its stay in the country - that is one form of registration I am referring to.  I

think this is how I understood the question.  Any legal process that needs to be done on the car, it has to be done; if it is not done, then we are going to pick it.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT,

PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON.

CHINGOSHO): Thank you Mr. President Sir and I would like to thank the Hon. Member for the question.  I would not be more specific than what I provided in that, the question of land barons, the Ministry has now discovered that the people who are culprits are the people who are supposed to be responsible to guard against this problem.  I have mentioned that most of this land is under local authorities.  You find that the local authorities in those areas are the culprits. Some of the big and respected people are also the culprits.  The Ministry is investigating on this and I am sure you have heard that some councillors have been suspended and responsible people taken to court.  So, action is being taken. Wherever it is discovered and one is identified to be a land baron, he is taken to court.   Thank you.  

HON SEN. CARTER: My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Economic Planning and Investment Promotion. Is the proposal by the Ministry of Youth Development, Indigenisation and Empowerment to impose a tax of 10% on all companies going to hinder promotion of investment in Zimbabwe in your view?

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF ECONOMIC PLANNING AND INVESTMENT PROMOTION (HON. SEN. M.

MUTSVANGWA): I would like to thank Hon. Sen Carter for the question. Yes, as a Ministry, you know we have embarked on looking at all the laws of making business easy for the foreign direct investor. As you are aware, this country is faced with a lot of problems and what we need is to inject capital into the economy and as such, we take foreign direct investors very seriously. I think you have already seen that we are getting a lot of delegations coming into the country who have seen the potential which Zimbabwe has in terms of investing in this country.

We are looking at all those things. Indigenisation is an issue which has been raised by quite a number of investors and we are looking at it and discussions are going on. Certainly, we are still holding discussions on indigenisation and what we need is to look at the Indigenisation Act which the companies or investors are complaining about. We are aware as a Government that when investors come into the country, they put their money and they expect a return on their money. I thank you.

HON. SEN. MARAVA: My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Agriculture (Livestock), Hon. Zhanda. Minister, you are a debtor who is indebted to all the peasant farmers who have submitted their produce to GMB. We are now approaching the rainy season and these peasants want to buy maize seed and they are looking at you as their redeemer. What are you going to do? Are you still a debtor and if you are, to what extent? I thank you.

         THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE

(LIVESTOCK) (HON. ZHANDA): Thank you Mr. President and I

want to thank the Hon. Senator for the question. Let me talk about maize in general. Maize is one of the commodities which was deregulated by Government, allowing anybody to trade in maize and allowing farmers to sell to whoever they think is better. That is the meaning of deregulation. It is no longer controlled. When somebody decides to sell, what Government did was to simply put a floor price of US$390. And Mr. President, I repeat US$390 is a heavily subsidised price meant to encourage maize production in the country. There is nowhere is this world where a farmer can get US$390 and I am afraid including me, if I cannot make money with US$390 per tonne, this opportunity will never come again.

When a person decides to deliver to GMB, obviously it is

Government policy that whoever has delivered maize to GMB must be paid but however, there is no set time to when he is going to get paid. It depends on when the Treasury can avail money to GMB. I am happy to report that the 2013/14 agricultural season outstanding payments were paid and a big thank you goes to the Minister of Finance and Economic Development who made the last US$50million available. We are indebted now to the 2014/15 deliveries and I can state that we are indebted to the tune of almost US$15million equating to about 50 000 tonnes that have been delivered to GMB. Government has put in place some agro bills as a way of wanting to finance the payment of those deliveries.

It is Government’s wish and intention to promptly pay farmers as soon as they deliver but however, in doing so I would want to urge the senators not to turn a blind eye on the economic conditions and also

Government’s depleted resources that we are facing. I am sure that before the year ends, farmers would have been paid by Government.

*HON. SEN. CHIMHINI: My question is directed to the Deputy

Minister of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing. Now that our economy is not performing very well, we have some of our people who are very innovative and they are selling roast meat at Growth Points. The local authority is refusing to licence these innovative people who are roasting beef on braai stands. Manyame Local Authority is saying they do not have a policy of issuing licences to people who roast beef on braai stands. So what is Government’s policy regarding

assisting these people who want to get these licences?

*THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT,

PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON.

CHINGOSHO): Thank you Mr. President for giving me the opportunity to respond to a question from the Hon. Senator. At the moment, the Ministry is trying to empower the local authorities so that they become independent and self sufficient. At the moment, we are looking at the gaps and problems faced by local authorities which are denying them the chance of being able to sustain their produce. We are also looking at allowing local authorities to use car licence fees so that instead of taking the money for car licence fees to the Treasury, it should be retained by the council. We are hoping that if the councils are so empowered, they will be able to be self sufficient and self sustaining.

*HON SEN. CHIMHINI: Supplementary. My question is what is

Government’s policy regarding issuing licences for braai stands because these council officials are refusing to issue licences to braai stand owners and yet they are collecting US$10 every day from these people?

*HON. CHINGOSHO: Thank you Mr. President and Hon

Senator Chimhini for your question. This is what the Ministry says – the Ministry does not issue any licences. I think there is insufficient information or insufficient cooperation and team work from the Ministry of Health and Child Care such as toilets and water where food is sold. As a result, when you look at some of these places whereby braai stands are operated, there are no sufficient toilets and water and hence they cannot be licenced because of those reasons. I thank you.

*HON. SEN. GOTO: My question is directed to the Minister of Environment, Water and Climate. We notice that in resettlement and rural areas, the dams have been silted and have lots of growth in them.

So what is the Ministry’s policy in de-silting these dams so that farmers

can get water for irrigation?

*THE MINISTER OF ENVIRONMENT, WATER AND

CLIMATE (HON. MUCHINGURI): Thank you Mr. President. I thank

Hon. Sen. Goto, for such an important question talking of siltation of dams. This is one of the problems faced by my Ministry because the growth or vegetation in the dams and siltation disturbs the water containment in the dams. Some of these dams are leaking and this becomes a problem to us because if there is such a leakage and we have lots of rains as we did last year, the dam would burst and pose a threat to people and livestock such as what happened in Masvingo.

Consequently, I take these things seriously. As a result, we will send scouts and officers from my Ministry to go and investigate so that they can get some assistance with these dams especially officers from

ZINWA – [HON. SENATORS: Hear, hear.]-

*SENATOR SHIRI: Thank you Mr. President. My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Services Hon. Matangaidze. Hon. Minister, what policy does your Ministry have in observing the International Day of the Disabled which is commemorated on the 3rd of December annually.

*THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF PUBLIC SERVICE

LABOUR AND SOCIAL SERVICES (HON. ENG.

MATANGAIDZE): Thank you Mr. President and thank you Hon. Shiri for such a question. Yes, I am sure you are aware that we have started commemorating some of these days. We started by promoting the day of the Elderly where a celebration was held in Chitungwiza in Bumhudzo.

May I also assure you that on the 3rd of December, we will be observing that day and we will give you the details of where this will be held.

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

question is directed to the Minister of Industry and Commerce. What problem do we have in Zimbabwe in terms of pricing? We have prices which are the highest in the region and even fertilizer, why do we have such prices? If you look around the prices in the region, Zimbabwean prices are two or three times higher than prices in the region. What is wrong with our pricing policy or pricing setting?

*THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE (HON. MABUWA): Thank you Mr. President for such a question which has been asked by Hon. Sen. Mashavakure. The problem he is discussing is also a problem to us because as a Ministry, we have commissioned an inquiry into this issue as to why it is that products in Zimbabwe are more expensive than in the region or neighbouring countries? The report showed that there were about eight reasons why we have high prices. Some of the eight reasons are that when we look around in our region, we have the wages in other countries which are around us such as Mozambique, Zambia and Malawi, they have lower wages.  Zimbabwe has extremely high wages.

The other reason was our electricity is very expensive.

Our water is very low and it is not enough for the industry, and we realised that our priority inputs are either expensive or scarce because the tariff given in industry, especially in comparison with other countries in the region, we notice that electricity tariff in Zimbabwe is very high in comparison. We therefore, took this report and worked on it so that we could start to reduce these prices so that we have ease of doing business and improved competitiveness of Zimbabwean products on the market. As a result, we will be coming back to Parliament so that we have a policy change in the income prices and wages so that we have a National Competitive Commission which should be founded so that it will look into the reasons which caused prices of Zimbabwe to be higher than neighbouring countries or other countries where we export our goods.

HON. SEN. MOHADI: Thank you Mr. President. My question goes to the Minister of Environment, Water and Climate. Minister my question is on poachers. What policy do you have for the poachers because you will find that a poacher is arrested, all exhibitions being there, but you will find that by the time you get home, the poacher is ahead of you. What penalties do you have for these poachers? I thank you.

THE MINISTER OF ENVIRONMENT, WATER AND CLIMATE (HON. MUCHINGURI): Thank you Mr. President. Let me

also extent my appreciation to Hon. Sen. Mohadi for raising this very critical question. We consider poaching as a very serious offence because of the value that we attach to wildlife. But, we have not been noticing, of recent, that the courts have been trivializing the cases by either delaying justice to the perpetrators of such offences. We are currently working very closely with the Ministry of Justice and the Attorney-General to look at how best we can make sure that the Act is deterrent enough. I want also to mention that Cabinet is seized with the matter and they have put in place an Inter-ministerial Committee which is currently carrying out some investigations and once we are ready with the report, we will make it available. I thank you  – [HON. SENATORS: Hear, hear.]-

+HON. SEN. MASUKU: Thank you Mr. President. I am directing my question to the Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development ...

THE DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE: Could you

speak in English because the Hon. Minister does not understand Ndebele.

HON. SEN. MASUKU: Mr. President, I will do that with protest because this is a Zimbabwean Parliament - [HON. SENATORS: Hear, hear] – and for us as legislators to come here and promote foreign language and yet we have been voted in by Zimbabwean people

phandle laphana besesikhangelana lama Ministers ethu” who are

Zimbabwean who say they cannot communicate in a Zimbabwean language.  I will do that but in protest and I will request Mr. President that our Ministers make an effort to be truly Zimbabweans.

My question is the Harare-Beitbridge road that the Minister said preparations are in progress, is it going to be like the Bulawayo – Plumtree – Mutare road or it will be dual-carriage?  I am saying this Hon. Minister because most of the accidents that we experience on our roads are head-on collision.  That is why I am asking to know whether you are going to start with the dual carriage.  Unlike the Plumtree – Mutare road, it is a very good road but look at the head-on accidents that are happening.  I thank you Mr. President.

        THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND

INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. MADANHA): 

Thank you Mr. President.  I would like to thank the Hon. Senator for posing such an important question.  Firstly, her preoccupation I think we are making all efforts to study all the languages of the nation, so I am rightly now studying Ndebele.  The road from Beitbridge to Harare, if we were to compare it with the nervous system of the body, you find that it is the main artery.  By that I mean it is the biggest artery in the country.  Why?  Simply because it feeds all the countries in the SADC region, that is the road leading to Zambia, DRC, Tanzania and all the countries in the SADC region.  So, the volume of traffic on this road is much higher than the volume of traffic on the Plumtree – Bulawayo – Harare road.  Therefore, it is prudent that this road be dualised; two lanes on each side to ease the flow of traffic.

I would like to come to this question of head-on collisions.  Building good roads has also its disadvantages and one of the disadvantages is when we put our road signs indicating that motorists should drive at 120km per hour, you would definitely and usually catch some driving at 160km per hour and that has got the danger of head-on collisions.  The curves on the road are designed for a car to move at 120 km an hour.  The moment you pass that velocity, it means you are going to struggle turning the car in the curve and as a result, that is why you see most cars will go out of the road.  So, I beg all motorists to observe the speed limits on the road.  We are trying to make the roads ridable, transitable, all-weather so that they can service the delivery of goods and services for the nation at a much faster rate.  I thank you.

*HON. SEN. MACHINGAIFA:  My question is directed to the Minister of Environment, Water and Climate Hon. Muchinguri.  The Karoi Town Council has the following request regarding ZINWA.  ZINWA simply comes and collect money and nothing is re-invested in Karoi.  Is that Government policy?

THE MINISTER OF ENVIRONMENT, WATER AND

CLIMATE (HON. MUCHINGURI):  Thank you Mr. President.  I

thank Hon. Sen. Machingaifa for such a revealing question. As far as I

am concerned, when we talk about ZINWA, ZINWA is responsible for selling raw water to councils so that these councils may distribute it.  The monies collected will be used in maintaining the dams and water ways.  The town councils are responsible for purifying the raw water which they then distribute to the end user.  What I am not sure of in the question is, which water is the Hon. Member talking about because as

ZINWA we only receive money for raw water.  We have to pay salaries for the workers because we have now gone for eight months without paying our workers.  Hon. Member which water are you talking about; raw water or purified water?

What I have noticed is that when councils are allocated water by ZINWA, the ratepayers pay that money and these councillors end up abusing the funds instead of passing it to ZINWA.  ZINWA will then turn off water supplies to councils because they cannot continue giving water to councils who do not pay their rates.  I thank you.

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

My question goes to the Minister of Environment, Water and Climate, Hon. Muchinguri.  Our environment is an eye-sore due to the fires burning and destroying environmental wealth.  How are you going to get this under control?  Recently when I was using the Bulawayo – Harare road, I think I saw more than five fires and they are all over the place.

Thank you.

THE MINISTER OF ENVIRONMENT, WATER AND

CLIMATE (HON. MUCHINGURI):  Thank you Mr. President.  Let me also thank the Hon. Senator for posing that very important question.  Veld fire to us is a nuisance because it destroys property, lives and it causes serious environmental challenges and pollution to an extent.  This is not the first time this question has been posed but still I think it is important, considering the losses that we have incurred in terms of the pastures.  It is very sad to report that we have lost more than 1 500 000 ha of land and Mashonaland West is top on that list.  Unfortunately, it is the resettlement areas or farmers who are the culprits, regrettably.  We have lost so far about 20 lives.  These are mainly women and children.  My heart bleeds, despite the efforts that we are putting in place where we have put Committees in place, where we are sending out messages, I am sure you receive these text messages.  We have radio and television programmes but people are not taking heed of our call.  Again we are worried about the sentences which are extended.

Chiefs have been doing a marvelous job, charging all those culprits with fines, very serious ones in some cases.  I want to applaud the role that the chiefs have been playing in their respective areas – HON.

SENATORS: Hear, hear.] – I hope they will continue. We have been incentivizing those areas that have kept their areas away from veldfires by extending bicycles to chiefs, cellphones, putting up gardens and extending beehives to make sure that others who are in the habit of causing these veldfires learn from good practices.

Currently, we have been looking at the possibility of beefing up the Forestry Act because this is where we find types of fines that should be imposed by courts.  We discovered that an offence would call for a US$300 fine when that culprit would have destroyed many hectares of land and caused the loss of lives.  We are recommending to Cabinet a mandatory sentence of not less than five years.  We are comparing this with the sentences on livestock that they call for nine years.  Once that issue is approved by Cabinet and the chiefs, then we will bring it before Parliament.  I thank you.

Questions Without Notice were interrupted by THE ACTING PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE in terms of Standing Order Number

ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITH NOTICE

BLOCK SYSTEM OF LAND UTILISATION AT MAKWE

IRRIGATION SCHEME

 

  1. HON. SEN. B. SIBANDA asked the Minister of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development whether stakeholders were consulted when the “Block System” of land utilisation was introduced at Makwe Irrigation Scheme in Matabeleland South Province?

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE,

MECHANISATION AND IRRIGATION DEVELOPMENT

(LIVESTOCK) (HON. ZHANDA): Thank you Mr. President.  I would

like to thank Hon. Sibanda for the question.  Hon. Senator, consultations were done at provincial level and the Block System was introduced as part of ongoing measures to resuscitate operations at the irrigation scheme.  Operations at the scheme had stopped due to ZINWA and

ZESA bills which had accrued over the years.  As these are ongoing efforts, further dialogue on how best to resuscitate the scheme is still open and farmers are welcome to air their concerns.

However, failure to pay for utility bills is an indication that the template used to develop and operationalise the irrigation schemes is faulty.  Government is re-looking at the template with the objective of ensuring viability and sustainability of irrigation schemes.

SETTING UP OF MTSHAZO IRRIGATION SCHEME

  1.   HON. SEN. B. SIBANDA asked the Minister of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development to explain the position regarding the setting up of the Mtshazo Irrigation Scheme in Ward 6 in Gwanda.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE,

MECHANISATION AND IRRIGATION DEVELOPMENT

(LIVESTOCK) (HON. ZHANDA): Thank you Mr. President.  Hon. Senator, the designing of the infield system is complete and work on the feasibility report of financing purposes is being done.  The idea is to ensure that all irrigation schemes operate viably in order to ensure sustainability.

PASSENGERS IN PRIVATELY OWNED MINIBUSES AND

TRUCKS

  1. HON. SEN. MASHAVAKURE asked the Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development whether there is a prescribed limit to the number of person who may travel in, or be carried by a privately owned minibus or pick-up truck beyond which such a vehicle would have deemed to be a public commuter transport vehicles by police officer manning the road blocks.

        THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND

INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. MADANHA): Mr.

President Sir, according to the Road Motor Transportation Act, Chapter 13:11(1997), there is prescribed limit to the number of person who may travel in or be carried by a privately owned minibus.  A public service vehicle in the category of omnibus is a vehicle which has a seating capacity of seven or more passengers.  Therefore, if a privately owned minibus carries seven or more passengers, it will be classified as a public service vehicle and will be required to have the following:

  • Red number plate; Certificate of fitness
  • Passenger liability insurance cover
  • Motor vehicle insurance
  • Route permit

The driver of the public service vehicle should be 25 years and

above, a holder of a valid driver’s licence.  In addition, the driver should have undergone a defensive driving course, retest and medical examination.

A pick-up truck is for the carriage of goods and cannot be used for the conveyance of passengers for hire or reward.  I thank you.

HON. SEN. MASHAVAKURE: Thank you Mr. President.  In

other words, if a vehicle is not registered as a passenger carrier you cannot carry more than six members of your own family?  Is that the law?

HON. MADANHA: Thank you Mr. President Sir.  I think the

Hon. Senator has answered himself.  That is the answer, you cannot.

ZINARA DISBURSEMENTS TO MUTASA RURAL DISTRICT COUNCIL

  1. HON. SEN. CHIMHINI asked the Minister of Transport and

Infrastructural Development to (a) disclose to the House the total annual

ZINARA disbursement that have been made to Mutasa Rural District Council ever since the department started disbursing funds to local authorities for purposes of road maintenance; (b) to give a detailed breakdown of roads serviced using funds received and to state the amounts used for each road serviced.

         THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. MADANHA):

Thank you Mr. President Sir.

Hon. President of the Senate, the annual disbursements to Mutasa

Rural District Council are as follows:

YEAR AMOUNT
2010 $21 000.00
2011 $21 000.00
2012 $39 000.00
2013 -
2014 $36 291.00
2015 $90 704.00

 

In 2013, nothing was disbursed and this is specifically for the reason that, for ZINARA to disburse money to rural district councils, they should acquit the previous disbursement first.  In other words, you have to justify how you used the first disbursement before you get the next tranche.  The breakdown into various small activities is attached to my response; the breakdown of roads maintenance is as per attached document that the Hon. Senator can view because it is massive.  We tried to put it in detail.  I thank you.

  1. a) SCHEDULE OF DISBURSEMENTS FROM ZINARA

YEAR                                AMOUNT

2009       - 2010     21 000

  • 21 000
  • 39 000
  • - 2014 36 291

2015                                   90 704 (Disbursement received)

TOTAL                              207 995

  1. B) BREAKDOWN OF ROADS SERVICED USING THE FUNDS

RECEIVED

YEAR Road name and length (km) Length graded so far (km) WARD
2011 Zindi Rural Service Centre 3 3

 

  Chisuko Business Centre 1 -
  Hauna Gowth Point 8 31
  Grange Road 20 25
2012 Njerama-Mapfekera Road 7 15
  Nyadera Causeway - 15
  En-avant Road 4.2 23
  Fairview Road 9.3 23
  Koodoosberg Road 13.6 23
  Mutasa Rural Service Centre 1 11
  Kellyspark Road 2.1 23
  Jaeggerberg Road 3.75 23
  Acquittal of Funds of $81 000.00    
       
2013 No disbursement received    
       
2014 Mapanga 3.5 7
  Samanga Loop Road 6.8 7
  Lorreto School Road 0.4 5
  Hauna Rank 0.1 31
  Muzvare-Kwesha Loop Road 2 -
  Nyandoro Road 3.5 5
  Magadu Road 1.5 -
  Muboora Road 0.5 -
  Sanhewe Road 2 -
  Mutase DSC Roads 0.5 11

 

  Rujeko Project Road 4.5 6
  Hauna-Mandeya to St. Columbus 2 31
  Gatsi-Kwesha 0.5 6
  Hauna Growth Point 12 31
  Muparutsa Secondary access 0.6 5
  Ruda School access 0.7 5
  Mahwemasimike Loop 6 5
  Maunze Road 3.5 6
  Zindi-Samutete Road 27 3
  Hauna Growth Point 8 -
  Zindi Rural Service Centre 1.5 -
  Muparutsa Secondary School 1.5 -
  Sahumani Secondary School Access 1 7
  Boundary wards 30, 5, 6 3 -
  Buwu Primary School Road 10 5
  Ishe Chikomba Access Road 2 -
  Chisuko Business Centre 2 1
  Mapokana Road 15 4
  Nyatsanza Access Road - 1
  Bhinya Road 15 28
  Pachije Road 6 -
  Chipote Road 6.8 -
       
2015 Nyamaende Road 7 9
  Korstein Road 25 -

 

  Rupinda Clinic Access Road 0.5 -
  Zongoro-Mandede Road 4.7 24
  Nyamukwara Resettlement Road 25 27
  Fairview Road 9.3 23
  En-avant Road 4 23
  Koodoosberg Road 13.6 23
  Acquittals of the figure - $36 291    
       
  Kellyspark Road 2.1 23
  Jaggersberg Road 3.75 23
  Wye Crescent 7 23
  Quo vadis Road 1.1 23
  St. Augustines-Muchena Road 8.4 26
  Mabonda Road 11 26
  Tsvingwe Township Service Roads 2 21
  Approaches to Tsambe Causeway 0.2 21
  Headman Muchena’s Access Road 0.5 26
  Access to Chinyanjera Water Works 4 21
  Chimuti Access Road 0.75 22
  Toronto Road 2.1 22
  Chikanga Road 5.1 25
  Champion Mine Road 5.65 25
       
  Total 364.10  
       

 

MOBILE MONEY TRANSFER SERVICES

  1. HON SEN. MASHAVAKURE asked the Minister of Information Communication Technology, Postal and Courier Services on the measures the Ministry is taking to ensure that members of the public can conveniently transact in and access mobile money transfer services across all the country’s mobile money transfer service across all the country’s mobile networks irrespective of the cellphone line that one may be using.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF INFORMATION

COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY, POSTAL AND COURIER

SERVICES (HON. MLAMBO):  Thank you Hon. Senator for the

question. Yes, this is true currently; the reason why this is so is because of lack of co-operation amongst network operators. This normally happens when there is a dominant operator who is enjoying the dominance and the status quo and is making money because of that selfish position. The Ministry is of the view that there has to be network sharing, passive infrastructure sharing.  By that, we mean things like masts and towers have to be shared by network operators.  With that therefore, network operators can transmit information amongst the networks so that the benefits go to the consumers.

Now, what are we doing about it?  We are trying to address the issue so that as I said, the benefits must go to the consumer who is the subscriber.  Firstly, in the short term, we have instructed the Regulator to give an ultimatum amongst network operators by what date this seamless transfer of information amongst network operators must be possible.

In the long term, I want to believe that my Minister has made enough noise about the need for passive infrastructure sharing which we are going to hear very soon being announced.  That is the long term solution that network infrastructure be shared amongst operators.  We want, as much as possible, to have the cooperation of network operators by making them understand that we are members of the same ICT sector, and it is to the benefit of all of us to share infrastructure to save costs to make roll-out faster when we are sharing because where one network operator builds a mast, then all of them hang active infrastructure there rather than build another one.  Environmentally, the Minister of Environment, Water and Climate is here, she does not want to see the mountains with multiple masts because it makes the environment ugly.  So, we also want to make sure that we conform to her dictates.  I thank you.

Additional information

  • Network geographical coverage is now at 78%;
  • Mobile penetration rate is 92% (Active lines); and
  • The total value of deposits on mobile money platforms increased by 25.8% to record $512 million from $407 million recorded in the previous quarter.
Operator                                 Active Subscribers  
  1st Quarter 2015 2nd Quarter 2015 % Change
Econet 6 619 058 6 633 260 0.2%
Telecel 2 069 142 1 936 124 -6.4%
NetOne 3 170 955 3 380 407 6.6%
Total 11 859 155 11 949 791 0.8%

 

MEASURES TO CUSHION LOCAL AUTHORITIES FROM

FINANCIAL HARDSHIPS

  1.   HON. SEN. CHIMHINI asked the Minister of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing to explain the measures the Ministry has taken to cushion local authorities from financial hardships in order to enable them to continue providing quality service without increasing rates and other related service charges which emanated from the consequences of writing-off water and rates charges for individuals in local authorities after the 2013 harmonized elections.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT, PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON.

CHINGOSHO):  I would like to thank the Hon. Senator for asking a question that relates to service delivery.  In an effort to provide quality service delivery, the Ministry has come up with a number of strategies that are meant to improve service delivery without overburdening the ratepayers with increased rates and other related charges.

The following are some of the strategies:

Salary rationalisation

Mr. President Sir, in an effort to improve service delivery, the Ministry issued a directive which stipulated that all local authorities should rationalise their salaries in line with the 30%:70% ratio recurrent to capital expenditure respectively.  In this case, all the budgets that were submitted for the Ministry’s approval were assessed on the said standard and those budgets which did not meet the 30%:70% ratio of salaries to service delivery were not approved, thus all local authorities rationalised their salaries to meet the said ratio.  As a result, dedicated 70% of the revenue towards service delivery will both improve service delivery and eliminate the possibility of rate increases.

Pursuing 5% from constitutional allocation as provided for in

Chapter 17 301(3)

The allocated 5% from the constitutional allocation will be pursued and accounted for.  If the 5% is equally and fairly distributed; local authorities are able to boost their service delivery through this fund.

The Ministry is also encouraging Public Private Partnerships and notable examples are:

  • ZimFund – Water and sewer reticulation in Masvingo, Chitungwiza, Harare and Mutare. Rehabilitation of water and sewer treatment plants as well as the entire network.
  • World Bank and UNICEF formed WASH (WASH is a water programme) in Beitbridge to partner in 14 small towns

WASH programme – Mvurwi, Bindura, Mutoko, Chivhu, Plumtree, Rusape, Chiredzi, Chipinge, Chegutu, Shurugwi, Zvishavane, Gokwe, Karoi, Gwanda - $30 million.

Other Government entities such as ZINARA and ZINWA are also  engaging with the local Government fraternity through the allocation of funds for road maintenance, construction and water rehabilitation projects respectively.

Capacity Building Programmes – UNDP support

The Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing is coordinating with UNDP to facilitate for workshops and programmes that will enhance the local authorities performance through  further education of council heads and officials with the much needed expertise accordingly, to each department and section to enable the fluent running and improvement of service delivery meeting international standards.

  • Encourage residents to establish committees that will compliment council efforts in providing quality service delivery.
  • Encouraging establishment of residents associations to liaise with the public more intimately and report to the local authorities and the Ministry on ways that the public sees needy in further development and attention. Thank you.

DEVELOPMENT LEVY COLLECTED BY MUTASA RURAL

DISTRICT COUNCIL

  1. HON. SEN. CHIMHINI asked the Minister of Local

Government, Public Works and National Housing to state:-

  • How much revenue was collected by Mutasa Rural District Council as development levy in the financial years ending 2013, 2014 and the first six months of 2015;
  • The specific development projects that were funded by the development levy collected by Mutasa Rural District Council;
  • The policy on the payment of development levies by non-profit making churches such as St. Columbus Mission Church in Honde Valley under Mutasa Rural District Council which is struggling to collect church donations for the sustenance of local priests and nuns to carry out their pastoral duties.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT, PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON.

CHINGOSHO): Mr. President, I would like to thank the Hon. Senator for asking the question on revenue collection for Mutasa Rural District Council for years 2013, 2014 and part of 2015.

Revenue collected in the years 2013, 2014 and 6 months of 2015 are tabled below:

DETAILS 2013 2014 2015 TOTAL
Development levies US$ 355 667.00 297 214.00 83 204.00 736  005.00

 

Mr. President, the following are specific development projects that were funded by the Development Levy collected by Mutasa Rural District Council.

         YEAR 2013

  • Development levy contributed to payment of the grader 120G

installments;

  • Grading of schools sports ground
    • Pafiwa High School – Ward 11
    • Sadziwa High School –Ward 12
  • Grading of roads
  • Bethania Makaha – Ward 15.
  • Samusudza Sadziwa Loop road Ward 12.
  • Chihaka Govingo road – Ward 17.
  • Watsomba Sherukuru road – Ward 17.
  • Mutasa District Service Centre Roads – Ward 11.

(iv) Construction of

  • Nyodera Causeway – Ward 13.
  • Tsambe Causeway – Ward 21.
  • Mubvumira footbridge – Ward 13.
  • Fairview bridge – Ward 21.

Year 2014

  1. i) Grading
  • Sakupwanya Clinic Loop road – Ward 11.
  • Mudenda – Old Murapa – Ward 24.
  • Access to Headman Chikomba residence – Ward 4.
  • Chisuko Business Centre roads – Ward 1.
  • Chipole Pachidye School road – Ward 2.
  • Penalonga Access road – Ward 21.
  • Segulse Secondary School Access road – Ward 1.

(ii) Construction of

  • Tsambe Causeway – Ward 21.
  • Chinyajera Water Works – Ward 21.

(iii)  School grounds grading

  • Muterere School – Ward 4.

( iv) Verge clearing and drainage opening of Koodsberg and Kelly spark Ward 23

  • Rehabilitation of Tsvingwe Market Public toilets – Ward 21.

YEAR 2015

  • Continued construction of Tsambe Causeway – Ward 21.
  • Rehabilitation of water and public toilet – Ward 20.

 Rehabilitation of Mutasa Business Service Centre Public toilets – Ward 23.

  • School grounds levelling
    • Saungweme Primary School – Ward 23.
    • Zongoro Primary School – Ward 24.
    • Tsvingwe Primary School – Ward 21.
  • Grading
    • Chirarwe road (formation) – Ward 12.
    • Loop road to Beaulie Primary School Ward 23.
  • Patch gravelling of Grange road – Ward 23.
  • Construction of Watsomba Boomgate – Ward 20

Mutasa Rural District Council charges different land levies to missions depending on their sizes (in both land occupied and enrolment).

The council resolved to give a $500.00 rebate to missions with orphanages.  The missions are grouped in three categories thus:

Group A -          $4 500.00

Group B    -       $2 500.00

Group C    -       $1 500.00  Examples are:

  • Group A -       Hartzel and St. Augustine.
  • Group B   -       Mathias and St. Columbus Missions.
  • Group C: -         Zongoro and Triashill Missions.

The missions and churches are given twelve months to pay after making a payment plan.  Those in Group A - pay $416.67 per month; Group B - $208.00 per month and; Group C - $125.00 per month.   I thank you.

GAZETTING OF PUBLIC TRANSPORT FARES IN URBAN AREAS

  1. 14. HON. SEN. MUMVURI asked the Minister of Local

Government, Public Works and National housing to inform the House when Government will gazette the public transport fares in urban areas considering that commuters are shortchanged during the rainy season.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT, PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON

CHINGOSHO): Mr. President, the Ministry feels that it is not the right time to gazette fares which have been deregulated since the introduction of the multi-currency system in 2009.  The Government is actively seeking investment in the urban public transport sector.  Any form of control tends to deter investors.

Gazetting of fares provides for fares according to kilometer bands for example, 0-10km.  From previous experience, operators tend to apply a flat fare relating to the highest fare which would effectively disadvantage the commuter.

In the advent that urban tollgates get implemented (being planned for by the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural Development), fares will increase as operators transfer all costs to the passenger/service consumer.

Gazetting of fares will not necessarily translate to compliance on the ground since the times randomly affected by fare cheating are outside the normal working hours when enforcement agents are not usually on the ground.

Having said that, the Ministry intends to resolve the issue of random fare increase and other problems such as unruly crew behaviour through the implementation of a more efficient and cost effective mass bus transit system to be operated in urban areas by ZUPCO and other private operators using conventional buses.  To that end, efforts to engage the Exim Bank in India to sponsor the recapitilisation of ZUPCO is underway.  In addition, private operators are engaging bus suppliers to enter into partnership to acquire buses for urban operators.

Overally, it may please the House that my Ministry is committed to the provision of a safe, reliable and affordable urban transport service and will continue to monitor the goings on in the sector. I thank you.

HON. SEN. W. SIBANDA: What would be the future of the numerous commuter omnibuses that are available on the market if we introduce conventional buses?

HON. CHINGOSHO: The Ministry’s position is to try and

improve our transport system.  By introducing these buses, it is to try and reduce the existence of our commuters which have proved to be problematic in the transport system.

CONSTRUCTION OF BUNGWE TO MACHITI PRIMARY SCHOOL

ROAD

  1. 15. HON. SEN MUMVURI asked the Minister of Local

Government, Public Works and National Housing to state when the Ministry will construct a road from Bungwe to Machiti Primary School in Ward 9, Rushinga.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT,

PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON.

CHINGOSHO): Mr. President Sir, may I inform the august House that construction of roads is not the responsibility of the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing alone.  Instead, the said mandate is reposed in three road authorities, namely; the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural Development, the District Development Fund (DDF) and local authorities.  In this regard, the Hon, Member may want to note that the said road is under the authority of Rushinga Rural District Council.  However, Rushinga Rural District Council is lacking financial capacity to construct the road which requires an amount to the sum of $506 360.00.  It may be of interest to note that Rushinga Rural

District Council submitted a request of the above mentioned amount to

ZINARA on November 6, 2012 under the Public Sector Investment

Programme (PSIP) but no fund was given.  However, Rushing District Council will be resubmitting the application for funding to ZINARA for the construction of the said road next year, 2016.

REVENUE DERIVED FROM IMPORTED CHINESE GOODS

  1. HON. SEN. CHIMHINI asked the Minister of Industry and Commerce to state the annual revenue derived from imported Chinese goods that have flooded the shops in our cities for the past three years.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND

COMMERCE (HON. MABUWA): I would like to thank Hon. Sen. Chimhini for the question regarding how much the annual revenue derived from imported Chinese goods that have flooded the shops in our cities for the past three years is.

In response, may I state that the Government’s central databank is the Zimbabwe Statistical Agency (ZIMSTAT) which falls under the purview of the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development.

However, ZIMSTAT renders services to stakeholders who include

Government Ministries such as the Ministry of Industry and Commerce.  The Ministry of Industry and Commerce requests and accesses data that has to do with the trade balance sheet among others.  The Hon. Senator is requesting for information on revenue derived from imports from China.  Since the issues of revenue derivation and collection are the responsibilities of the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development through the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (ZIMRA). May I humbly request the Hon. Senator to please direct the question accordingly, that is to the Minister of Finance and Economic Development.  Otherwise we can only give the figures of the imports not the revenue derived.  I thank you.

WATER SITUATION IN GWANDA SOUTH CONSTITUENCY

  1. HON. SEN B. SIBANDA asked the Minister of Environment, Water and Climate what plans the ministry has put in place to alleviate the dire drinking water situation that is currently faced by the people of

Gwanda South particularly in Selonga, Buvuma, Takadyiwa and Nhwali.

THE MINISTER OF ENVIRONMENT, WATER AND

CLIMATE (HON. MUCHINGURI): I want to start by thanking the Hon. Senator for raising fundamental issues on Gwanda District in general and the areas of Selonga, Buvuma, Takaliyawa and Nhwali in particular.

As the Hon. Senator will know, Gwanda District falls in agroecological Region 4 which is generally dry. During the year, there is little rainfall with a mean annual total of around 477mm. Because of its aridity; water is therefore a perennial problem.

It terms of agriculture, Gwanda is a livestock district. This introduces competition for water between human beings and livestock.

To address this challenge, the Hon. Senator needs to know that in 2013, Government prioritised Gwanda District among the 33 districts to benefit from the Ministry’s Rural Water, Sanitation and Hygiene

(WASH) project supported to the tune of US$53million. This Rural WASH Project seeks to reduce by 25%  people without access to safe water supply and sanitation in rural areas. Under the programme, 1 660 new boreholes are going to be drilled, 8 200 existing boreholes are going to be rehabilitated together with 33 piped water schemes across the 33 districts, of which Gwanda is one.

Hon Senator, selection of wards for intervention in Gwanda was done by the District itself using a set of agreed vulnerability criterion.

For Gwanda District, the project has a target to:

  • Drill 40 boreholes and so far 33 have been drilled out of which Nhwali benefited one new drilling at Patane Newline (with 21 households and 89 direct beneficiaries) and Buvuma also benefited one at Spuma Line (with a total of 40 households and 176 direct beneficiaries)
  • Repair and rehabilitate 162 boreholes out of 167 have been repaired surpassing the set district target. In Nhwali area, 21 water points were repaired.

The other areas of Selonga, Buvima and Takaliyawa that the Hon. Senator refers to, were covered under an earlier intervention called the Moriti support where a borehole was drilled at Nkalange village in Selonga areas, Ndibe village in Buvuma and yet another one at Takaliyawa Business Centre. Over and above this, 17 water points were also repaired in each of the four areas to give a total of 3 new boreholes and 69 additional functional boreholes.

My Ministry also commissioned a District Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Information Management System for the district code named, the Rural WASH Information Management System

(RWIMS), to keep track of the distribution and functionality of water supply systems in the district. This is a web based database able to give real time information with regards to:

  • Distribution of water points in the district
  • Functionality of water points at any given time, and  Yielding capacity of the same water points.

In Ward 18 where Buvuma belongs, Government rehabilitated 3 boreholes of Sibaira, Mfuti and Spuma Line in the month of September.  It is however critical to note that siltation of Buvuma Dam has of recent months, worsened the water woes in the ward for both livestock and human beings. To address this challenge, my Ministry has launched a desiltation programme to desilt the affected water bodies.

Hon. Senator, all these initiatives are put in place to make sure that our communities in the rural areas have access to safe and clean water for their daily water requirements. I thank you.

ACTION ON LAND DEGRADATION CAUSED BY ILLEGAL MINERS

  1. HON. SEN. B. SIBANDA asked the Minister of Environment, Water and Climate what action is being taken to deal with land degradation caused by illegal miners?

        THE MINISTER OF ENVIRONMENT, WATER AND

CLIMATE (HON. MUCHINGURI): My Ministry is cognisant of the

fact that illegal mining is a major driver of land degradation because it does not operate within the confines of the law, hence it tends to overexploit common resources without the necessary rehabilitation. This has seen the destruction of approximately 10 000ha in mineral rich Provinces of Mashonaland Central, Matabeleland South, Matabeleland North and Masvingo.

My Ministry, through EMA has carried out a total of 1002 routine monitoring inspections in the Third Quarter of 2015 and 193 illegal miners have been prosecuted, 93 restoration orders issued and 3 dockets opened.

To complement the enforcement efforts Mr. President, environmental education and awareness programmes have been carried out to raise awareness of illegal miners through small scale miners associations. This is a regular and continuous process because of the nomadic nature of these illegal miners. They are highly mobile and normally move to mineral rich areas leaving their previous workings not rehabilitated. Such awareness progeammes have seen an attempt  of regularisation of illegal mining activities in areas such as Ingwizi, Matabeleland South and Mukaradzi in Mashonaland Central.

Mr. President, it has been noted that in some instances, communities engage in illegal mineral extraction due to poverty. My Ministry is therefore, providing alternative livelihoods through the support of 239 community projects such as small grains production, wetland protection and consolidated gardens, apiculture, agroforestry among others.

In conclusion, Mr. President, my Ministry is collaborating with the Ministry of Mines and Mining Development in order to organise small scale miners into mining syndicates. It is expected that this approach

will ensure sustainable mineral extraction and minimize land degradation.

MOTION

PROMOTION OF SPORTS DEVELOPMENT

First Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on the need to promote sports development in Zimbabwe.

Question again proposed.

HON. SEN. MASUKU: I move that the debate do now adjourn.

HON. SEN. MOHADI: I second.

Motion put and agreed to.

Debate to resume: Tuesday, 27th October, 2015.

On the motion of HON. SEN. MASUKU, seconded by HON. SEN. MOHADI, the Senate adjourned at Eleven Minutes to Five o’clock p.m. until Tuesday, 27th October, 2015.

 

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