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Tuesday, 9th May, 2023

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





THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE: On the 17th of April 2023, Parliament of Zimbabwe was notified by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) that Godfrey Gijima was appointed to be Senator by the ZANU PF Party to fill the vacancy that occurred following the death of Hon. Senator Oliver Mandishona Chidawu. The appointment is with effect from the 21st of March, 2023. Section 128 (1) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe provides that before a senator takes his or her seat in Parliament, the Senator must take oath of a senator as set out in the Schedule. Section 120 (a) (2) states that the oath must be taken before the Clerk of Parliament. I therefore, call upon the Clerk of Parliament to administer the oath of a senator to Senator Godfrey Gijima.


THE ASSISTANT CLERK OF PARLIAMENT (MRS. NYAWO) thereupon administered the oath of affirmation of loyalty to  Hon. Sen. Godfrey Gijima as required by law:– [HON. SENATORS: Hear, hear.].


THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE: The Justice Committee is hosting the Namibian Parliament Standing Committee on Constitutional and Legal Affairs. They are present in the gallery. You are welcome.


THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE: Hon. Senators are reminded to put their phones on silent or better switch them off.



First Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on the Report of the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission for the 7th May, 2022 by-election.

Question again proposed.

HON. SEN. SIPANI-HUNGWE: Mr. President, I move that the debate do now adjourn.


Motion put and agreed to.

Debate to resume: Wednesday, 10th May, 2023.



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

  *HON. SEN. KOMICHI: I thank you Mr. President for the opportunity you have given me to add my voice on this motion. I also want to thank the mover of this motion. The President delivered a comprehensive speech which touched on the different departments of Government but I want to dwell on the issue of our economy as a country. Our economy is not rising and the people of Zimbabwe, employed or not employed, are finding it very difficult to sustain their livelihood.

We recall that a short while ago, our civil servants’ salaries were increased by 100% but if you look at the way prices of commodities have increased, we regret having that increase. If you look at how prices of drugs in pharmacies have increased, you would rather prefer to die due to stress from the cost of living and how it is now difficult to access the basic commodities.

For example, teachers’ salaries were increased from RTG$45 000 to $75 000 but the increment is not significant at all if you consider that one needs more than RTG$100 000 to buy BP medication. This means a person who earns a teacher’s salary can access medication for chronic disease and will choose to live by other means such as traditional herbs or prayers from prophets. Our economy has deteriorated and failed to improve. So, as a country we should find other ways to deal with this because for us to increase the salaries, it will still result in price increases and inflation from what it currently is. Today as we speak, the rate was RTG$2 500 per US$1 in some shops which I visited. This points to the appalling state of our economy at the moment.

We do not know what the Minister of Finance will do. He and the Governor of Reserve Bank have done their best but the problem persists. If it is so difficult for the employed what of those who are not employed and the vendors. Zimbabwe is endowed with a lot of resources such as platinum, gold and now large deposits of lithium. Even though the country has a lot of resources, the economy is just stagnant and not reacting at all. Therefore, we should put our heads together so that we can solve these problems. In the industries, people are crying and civil servants are crying as well because of the economy. Thank you.

+HON. SEN. KHUMALO: Firstly, I would like to thank the President for the speech he delivered and trying to make sure that we all have hope in getting the economy up but what is disappointing is that he is not getting the support he requires. In our country, we need to work together and have other people that come through to tell you that certain things are not in position. If you realise that in our country we have quite a number of roads that are in bad shape, it shows that the country is not in a good shape. Quite a number of roads are really bad. A number of our cars are broken down because of the bad shape of the roads in our rural areas and the same applies to roads in urban areas. What kind of a country is this?

Looking at our economy, it continues to devaluate on daily basis. Even when one has paid and they go to the markets to change their RTGs to USD, it is a shame that the equivalent that one is going to get is equivalent to nothing. What is it that one can do with that kind of money when they have families and grandchildren to look after and you are a teacher? There are hospital bills, food to take care of but this kind of money does not take one anywhere. Monthly we pay medical aid fees but in most places where medical aid like Premier is applicable, all those hospitals are closed.  

It is better for those who drive than pedestrians because you are referred to hospitals that are very far away from cities. You realise that despite the fact that you are contributing to medical aid, each time you go to a doctor or hospital, you are required to pay consultation and you are expected to also buy drugs. The funds that are being collected for medical bills are just too much.

Looking at our issue as Members of Parliament, because we are Honourable Members, we are expected to have everything in place but we have a big challenge. Our Parliament is failing to pay accommodation bills and we are now made to stay at Pandhari. This means that we are a shame as a country. We have a serious problem. When I am at home, I live a comfortable life but when I come to work, I am made to stay at Pandhari Lodge where we are eating unrefined roller meal.  Personally, I do not eat such a kind of sadza.  The shower cubicle is too small, big people like myself do not fit in that shower set-up – very low standards.  Yes, the President said a lot of things but looking at our way of life, we really need to be taken seriously and with respect as Hon. Members of Parliament, we cannot be staying at such substandard lodges, a place that looks like a ruin.  It looks like we are now subsidising Parliament because we are using our own fuel from Parliament building to and from Pandhari Lodge.  May we have this issue solved with urgency?

          Let me now talk about school children.  The Government has for a long time indicated that school children are not supposed to be expelled because of lack of school fees but right now we hear that children are being expelled due to non-payment of school fees.  Despite the efforts by the Government to ban extra lessons, most schools are ignoring that call and those parents without money to pay for the extra lessons suffer because their children will always lag behind.  It also means that their problems as unprivileged families will continue because if they are not educated, their children will also remain uneducated and the poverty cycle will continue. Therefore, the Government should see to it that they resuscitate our economy and the education sector.

          Our country is rich; for example, the number of people who are being arrested in the process of migrating to other countries with gold are doing so for their pockets.  They forget that this gold should be benefiting every citizen of this country.  I saw one person who was putting on a bandage on their leg pretending like someone who is crippled yet they were hiding gold.  All these people who are doing these malpractices are not arrested because there are officials involved in the same corrupt issues.

          Right now, if you move around the country, there are sewerage leaks all over.  I was reading somewhere where it was saying that in Pumula, Bulawayo, people have now dug some holes in their homes so that they use those holes as latrines because their sewer system is not running.  What kind of life is this that people can no longer use their toilets? Children are playing in the sewerage streets; Zimbabwe is no longer a good country.  Something should happen so that the challenges we are facing can change.  Those who are rich continue to amass more wealth, there is no longer middle class; it is either that one is up there and the other one right at the bottom.  People are struggling. I thank you.

          THE MINISTER OF STATE FOR MASHONALAND EAST PROVINCE (HON. SEN. MUNZVERENGWI): I move that the debate do now adjourn.

          Motion put and agreed to.

          Debate to resume: Wednesday, 10th May, 2023.



          HON. SEN. SIPANI-HUNGWE: I move that Order of the Day, Number 3 on today’s Order Paper be stood over until Order of the Day Number 7 has been disposed of.

          HON. SEN. CHIMBUDZI: I second.

Motion put and agreed to.



          HON. SEN. TONGOGARA: I move the motion standing in my name that this House;

MINDFUL that creating a sustainable health care system is essential in Zimbabwe;

NOTING that the Government of Zimbabwe has emphatically declared its desire and aspiration to achieve universal health coverage;

CONCERNED that health services are not accessible by many people, particularly in rural areas, due to inadequate funds that are allocated to the health sector;

COGNISANT that Zimbabwe made a commitment to honour the Abuja Declaration of allocating 15% of the National Budget to public health;

NOW, THEREFORE, this House calls upon the Government:

     a) Through the Ministry of Finance, to honour the Abuja Declaration;

      b) To focus more on preventive public health intervention; and

      c) To disburse funds allocated to ministries, departments, and agencies, in particular the Ministry of Health and Child Care, expeditiously.

          HON. SEN. CHIRONGOMA: I second.

HON. SEN. TONGOGARA:  Thank you Mr. President.  Sustainable Health Financing in Zimbabwe

Mr. President, our health is our wealth and for this reason, the Government of Zimbabwe has emphatically declared its desire and aspiration for universal health coverage for all Zimbabweans by 2030.  This ambition is primarily anchored on a sustainable national health financing framework.

Sources of Funding for the Health Sector

Mr. President, our health sector is largely financed by public funds in the form of taxes and revenues collected on behalf of Government under the Consolidated Revenue Fund.  Further, our health sector is funded by external sources which primarily extend support to specific sectors and diseases such as the Global Fund for Tuberculosis (TB), Malaria, HIV and the private sector.  The Global Fund, currently, has three active investments in Zimbabwe namely: - a) HIV grant of up to USD449 million; b) Tuberculosis (TB) grant of up to USD26 million and c) Malaria grant of up to USD63million.

Mr. President, this funding is allocated for 2021 to 2023 and supports Zimbabwe’s continued progress towards ending these three diseases as public health threats.  Moreover, private funding is through voluntary private insurance, which covers less than 10% of the population mainly through employment contributions, corporate companies and out of pocket expenditure.  The financing model in Zimbabwe is founded upon the National Health Financing Policy which outlines the various strategies for mobilising adequate resources, financial protection as well as effective, equitable and evidence-based allocation and utilisation of health resources.  Zimbabwe, through the Abuja Declaration, committed to allocating 15% of the total budget to the health sector which, while remarkable progress has been made towards its attainment, has proved to be a challenge due to financial constraints.  Yes, it is also true and worrying that our health system has not been adequately funded.

Mr. President, a trend analysis of how we domestically financed our health system reveals that over the past 10 years, allocations have been revolving around 8% which is below the Abuja target of 15%.  This situation has been worsened by the erratic disbursement to all the public health providers.  More so, over the past two decades, while out-of-pocket spending on health per capita has fallen from USD66.00 per person in 2010 to USD51.00 in 2019, it remains out of reach for most of the population and in particular, the aged, the disadvantaged, persons living with disabilities and also people in rural areas.  Additionally, with the evident growing donor fatigue, external funding for other health programmes have been on a steady decline.  We are, therefore, facing the imminent risk of having a paralysed health system if we do not act swiftly.

Mr. President, to that end, it is imperative that Government prioritises and or adopts the following measures: -

  1. Disbursement of non-wage funds to the relevant ministries,

departments and agencies earlier in the year to facilitate the efficient implementation of medium to long term health interventions.

  1. Strengthen the health financing coordinating mechanism to

allow for more efficient and effective prioritisation and utilisation of donor funds in a manner that is aligned with the overall goals and objectives of the Government.

  1. The urgent need for a robust and sustainable National Health

Insurance system that will substantially reduce our-of-pocket spending on health as well as prevent catastrophic health spending.

  1. Pursue more prudent utilisation of funds by focusing more on

preventive and public health interventions rather than curative cares as prevention is better than cure.

  1. Introduce sin taxes on alcohol and cigarettes as a measure for

domestic resource mobilisation and the funds raised would be channelled towards the health sector.  On this end, measures should be put in place to monitor that these funds are directed for the intended purpose.

          Mr. President, lessons can also be drawn from Rwanda which implemented a robust health financing and insurance policy.  The net effect of these polices has been the widespread reduction in the overall cost of accessing healthcare.  In addition, the legislative framework has provided for the establishment of community-based health insurance systems that are localised and managed by the local community members.  To that end, it is critical that we build upon these lessons and ensure that we continuously call for adequate and sustainable financing of our health sector.

          It is pleasing to note that a lot of good work is also being done by the Ministry of Health and Child Care.  Of note, is that, in partnership with the Zimbabwe National Army (ZNA) and working with communities such as the Vungu District in Midlands Province, the ministry constructed the Impala Clinic at Tovho Resettlement Area.  Containing and vaccination against COVID-19 was a huge success as well.  I thank you Mr. President.

*HON. SEN. CHIMBUDZI: Thank you Mr. President. I have just stood up to make a few contributions to what has been moved by Hon. Sen. Tongogara. It is a very painful motion because it is related to health matters. She has actually raised matters that should be attended to by Government. It touched on three diseases: T.B, malaria and HIV/AIDS. These have wreaked havoc in this country. As for HIV, we are grateful to the Government as it quickly conscientised people, which led to the saving of many people’s lives and it was not difficult for people to be helped. People were in denial because it was a new disease but the Government, through the Ministry of Health, continually conscientised people and it is no longer a problem now. We commend the Government for working on that to reduce infections.

We want to commend Hon. sEN. Tongogara for raising this matter. On the issue of T.B; it works hand-in-hand with HIV. You can be diagnosed with TB if you have HIV. However, the Government has managed to solve that problem because people are being helped medically, counselled on how to eat health and how to live. TB is still around but the Government is trying its level best to solve the problem. In Mt Darwin, there is a place called Ruya which has a prevalence of malaria going towards Mukumbura. The Ministry of Health sprays that area to disinfectant the household and also give mosquito nets because it is a malaria prone area. Partners helped us with these problems of malaria and HIV but as a country we need to put in place measure so that we can stand on our own so that we are able to fight those problems. We should not fall down because we no longer have partners.

Our problem as a country is in terms of the economy but I want to say if sanctions are not removed, our economy will continue on the downward trend. Everything is affected by sanctions in this country. Some countries are more developed than Zimbabwe because they do not have a problem with the West but we have a problem because of our land reform programme. As a country, we should raise our voice in unison against the removal of sanctions but if we do not raise our voices, whoever will come sanctions will be there.

We thank the Second Republic and Hon. Sen. Tongogara made some recommendations which we heard here. We see hospitals being given relevant infrastructure. We see on television even staffers confirming that they now have requisite resources even though we re under sanctions but the Second Republic has worked very hard. We commend it for that. Clinics are being built but right now they are concentrating on big hospitals that they should be properly equipped because the Government wants our health system to be of quality. For a country to develop, it should have a healthy workforce.  The key to development is a healthy workforce.

Let us raise our voices on the removal of sanctions which are adversely affecting our economy so that we can also develop. Let us remove these sanctions. I would like to thank you Hon. Sen. Tongogara for your motion, it was quite pertinent. Our health sector is working very well under the Second Republic. We commend the Government so let us be in support of the Government and not oppose it. We have only one Zimbabwe. How can you run a country with sanctions? Let us raise our voices so that sanctions are removed. Our Vice President, Cde. (Rtd) Gen. Chiwengwa is trying his level best in the area of health, in particular, in areas of HIV/AIDS, T.B and malaria so that we deal with them once and for all. Thank you.

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

          HON. SEN. CHIRONGOMA: I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.

          Debate to resume: Wednesday, 10th May, 2023.



Fifth Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on the sustainable management of waste.

Question again proposed.

HON. SEN. SIPANI-HUNGWE: I move that the debate do now adjourn.

HON. SEN. TONGOGARA: I second.        

Motion put and agreed to.

Debate to resume: Wednesday, 10TH May, 2023.



Sixth Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on measures to combat human trafficking.

Question again proposed.

HON. SEN. SIPANI- HUNGWE: I move that the debate do now adjourn.


Motion put and agreed to.

Debate to resume: Wednesday, 10th May, 2023



Seventh Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on the Report of the 145th Assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union and Related Meetings held in Kigali, Rwanda.

Question again proposed.

HON. SEN. SIPANI-HUNGWE: I move that the debate do now adjourn.

HON. SEN. D. M. NDLOVU: I second.

Motion put and agreed to.

Debate to resume: Wednesday, 10th May, 2023.

On the motion of THE MINISTER OF STATE FOR MASHONALAND EAST PROVINCE, HON. SEN. MUNZVERENGWI, the Senate adjourned at Twenty-Five minutes past Three o’clock p.m.









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