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NATIONAL ASSEMBLY HANSARD 02 MAY 2017 VOL 43 NO 57

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PARLIAMENT OF ZIMBABWE

Tuesday, 2nd May, 2017

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

PRAYERS

(THE HON. SPEAKER in the Chair)

ANNOUNCEMENTS BY THE HON. SPEAKER

DEATHS OF HON. RONIA BUNJIRA AND HON. KIZITO CHIVAMBA

THE HON. SPEAKER: It is with profound sorrow that I have to inform the House of the deaths on Saturday, 5th April, 2017 of the proportional representation Member of Parliament, Hon. Ronia Bunjira and on Wednesday, 19th April, 2017 of the Member of Parliament for Chiwundura Constituency, Hon. Kizito Chivamba.  I invite Hon. Members to rise and observe a minute of silence in respect of the late Hon. Members.

All Hon. Members observed a minute of silence.

SWEARING IN OF A NEW MEMBER

THE HON. SPEAKER:  On the 11th of April 2017, Parliament of Zimbabwe received communication from the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) on the election of the following member of ZANU PF party as member of the National Assembly with effect from 9th April, 2017, Hon. Omar Joosbi representing Mwenezi East Constituency.

Section 128 (1) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe provides that before a Member of Parliament takes his or her seat in Parliament, the member must take the Oath of a Member of Parliament in the form set out in the Third Schedule.  Section 128 (2) states that – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible injections.] – Hon. Members on my left, Hon. Mpariwa!  I shall repeat that - take an oath in the form set out in the Third Schedule.  Section 128 (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 Member of Parliament to Hon. Omar Joosbi.

NEW MEMBER SWORN

HON. OMAR JOOSBI subscribed to the Oath of Loyalty as required by the Law and took his seat – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.] –    

APPOINTMENTS TO THE EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE OF THE AFRICAN PARLIAMENTARIANS NETWORK AGAINST CORRUPTION

THE HON. SPEAKER:  I wish to inform the House that following the holding of elections for the Executive Committee Members of the African Parliamentarians’ Network Against Corruption (Zimbabwe Chapter), the following Hon. Members were elected to the corresponding positions:  Hon. J. Maridadi, Chairperson; Hon. F. Mhona, Vice Chairperson; Hon. K. Paradza, Secretary; Hon. P. Misihairabwi-Mushonga, Deputy Secretary; Hon. T. Saruwaka, Treasurer; Hon. P. Mpariwa, Deputy Treasurer; Hon. D.  Mackenzie Ncube, Committee Member; Hon. J. Toffa, Committee Member;  Hon. Sen. K. Chabuka, Committee Member and Hon. N. Ndlovu, Committee Member. 

HON. NYAMUPINGA:  Mr. Speaker Sir, I would like to respond to the announcements that you have just made. How do we have Committees that all women are deputies? - [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] -

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order.  Hon. Nyamupinga, when elections are conducted, they are conducted in terms of certain rules.  It was up to those conducting elections and those present to ensure the balance that you are indicating now.  But as things stand, we go by what we were given and wait for the next elections to take place.

HON. NDUNA:  On a point of order, Mr. Speaker.  According to Section 69 of the Standing Rules and Orders and it also dovetails with Section 141 of the Constitution which seeks public involvement in parliamentary processes, I am aware that every Wednesday we have live broadcasting with ZBC.  Mr. Speaker Sir, you would want to know that your Parliament is covered every other sitting day by S-FM and this has been going on for a very long time.  I am aware that in some parts of my constituency, there are no newspapers but there is radio transmission.  But now, S-FM has ceased to broadcast Parliament live on our sitting days.  It is with your indulgence that I request that they continue to cover Parliament on the days that we are sitting so that the people of Chegutu West and other constituencies can continue to be involved in parliamentary processes so that they are not left on the fringes of involvement in Parliament. I thank you.

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Thank you Hon. Nduna.  Your concern is extremely noted and it does enhance the visibility of Parliament.  I am advised by the Clerk of Parliament that certain measures are being put in place to respond to the concern that you have just raised.  I think things should be in order in the next few days or so.    Thank you for that observation.

HON. PARADZA:  On point of privilege, I would like to notify this House that as we sit in here, we have 1500 Palestinians who are on hunger strike.  Among these, there are 14 Members of Parliament.  The Palestinian Embassy in Harare is inviting us all to their Embassy tomorrow at 1200 noon to be with them in solidarity with these Members of Parliament who are on hunger strike in Palestine.

HON. ZINDI:  I would like to make a follow up on what Hon. Paradza has just said.  Would he please inform the House what the hunger strike is anchored on?

HON. PARADZA:  Thank you Mr. Speaker.  The hunger strike is anchored on the fact that Israeli authorities are abusing Palestinian prisoners.  They are not allowing them to see their relatives.  They are denying them medical attention. They are torturing them. They are arresting them willy-nilly and they are not even allowing them to have the basics.  This is what we are going to do tomorrow.   We are going to the Palestinian Embassy, in solidarity with our comrades in Palestine.  Thank you.

          HON. MLISWA:  I rise to try to bring to your attention some issues which I think require you to intervene.

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  What is your point of privilege?

          HON. MLISWA:  It is to do with the death of Hon. Bunjira and Hon. Chivamba.  I attended and there was absolutely no support from the Parliament of Zimbabwe in terms of the bus.  I do not know what you can do to try and ensure that Parliament does play a part. It was quite disappointing that there was no one to even speak on behalf of the Parliament of Zimbabwe.  These are both funerals I am talking about and equally, I think it is important that we must be seen to be a National House of Assembly that has compassion.  In having compassion, it was also disappointing not to see MPs, especially those representing those on proportional representation.  Here was a Member of Parliament who did her work honestly but we were not there to support.  It did worry me as an MP as to what would happen to me.  I hope it is not us, coming into the various political parties we belong to.  I think the aspect of death and human dignity is very important, in terms of us observing that. I have no doubt that you shall be able to handle this issue, especially after His Excellency even mandated you to go to Mashonaland Central to deal with the issues there.  I think you are capable of handling this.  I thank you. – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible Interjections.] –

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order Hon. Members.  Why Hon. Mliswa do you want to spoil the good statements by bringing in things that have nothing to do with the substance of your statement?  I hope in future you do not do that to destroy your good intentions.  I think the point is taken.  As regards the bus, our bus is at the garage, unfortunately, and it could not be availed.  But that could not have stopped Hon. Members using their own vehicles as you did to be there.  I think your statement is definitely well received.  Thank you.

          *HON. CHINOTIMBA:  On a point of order Mr. Speaker Sir. This is on a point of privilege on Section 69.  I stood because we are troubled by the type of vehicle, the Ford Ranger that we were given and all other vehicles.  We realise that these cars are roadworthy but the Government says we should pay for those vehicles.  We do not have secretaries in our constituencies and we end up doing the secretary’s work.  We are always travelling in our constituencies and if you see people sleeping in this august House, it is because they are tired of travelling.  Those vehicles are no longer serving their purposes because I am now doing the work that the secretary is supposed to be doing, because Government said there is no money.  However we are expected to pay for those vehicles, yet we are performing Government duty with that same vehicle. 

          In the Seventh Parliament, the vehicle loans were written off and MPs did not pay for the vehicles.  My request is for all the vehicles that we were given not to be paid for and the Government should foot the bill, because the work that we are doing is difficult.  We are doing Government’s work.  We were given nothing and we are struggling.  We were told that CDF would be availed but we did not get anything.  We are now heading for elections and CDF has not yet been released.  So, if all of us in this House – the stands that we talked about the other time are not even available.  So, my request is that we should not pay for the vehicles but the Government should pay.  If we unite as Parliament, I know that we will be able to achieve what we want.  That is what I wanted to say.  I thank you.

          *THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, I allowed you Hon. Member to speak but this is not the forum to bring up such issues.  Secondly, I was disturbed when you were interrogating the budget.  The Parliament budget was No 2 and when we came back from Bulawayo, I tasked you to interrogate the budget and urged you to check if your concerns were addressed in the budget.  We met at Cresta Lodge and I reiterated the same statement that you need to look into the Parliament budget but when you got to budget item No 2 for Parliament during the Committee of the Whole House, Parliament budget allocation - any debate?  The Minister of Finance and Economic Development Hon. Chinamasa said that he would add $10 million to the Parliament budget which was earmarked for CDF and members applauded and clapped your hands.  When any further comments were called for, members did not say anything but today you are standing up to make certain requests.  Why did you not put in your requests during the budget interrogations? 

          Thirdly, we have a Committee on Welfare that is composed of our Chief Whips. You meet at your caucuses and these issues must be addressed there.  They should also be brought to the Committee on Standing Rules and Orders, not in this august House; not here.

          HON. CHINOTIMBA:  I have a point of order.

          *THE HON. SPEAKER:  Please talk to your Chief Whips. I have responded to you.

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

          HON. MATUKE:  Thank you Mr. Speaker.  I move that Orders of the Day Numbers 1 to 3 be stood over until Order of the Day Number 4 has been disposed of.

          HON. RUNGANI:  I second.

          Motion put and agreed to. 

MOTION

STATE OF THE NATION ADDRESS BY HIS EXCELLENCY THE PRESIDENT

          Fourth Order read:  Adjourned debate on motion in reply to the State of the Nation address.

          Question again proposed.

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

          HON. MUKWANGWARIVA:  I second.

          Motion put and agreed.

          Debate to resume:  Wednesday, 3rd May, 2017

          MDC Members having cheered Hon. Kasukuwere and Hon. Zhuwao as they entered the Chamber.

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order.  Hon. Members, I have said in the past it is not comfortable to send a Member of Parliament out of this House.  So, please do not invite me to do that.

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

          HON. MATUKE:  Mr. Speaker, I move that Order of the Day Number 5 be stood over until Orders of the Day Numbers 6, 7 and 11 have been disposed of.  Thank you.

          HON. RUNGANI:  I second.

MOTION

RESTORATION OF THE MOTION ON THE FIRST REPORT OF THE PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON AGRICULTURE, MECHANISATION AND IRRIGATION DEVELOPMENT ON COTTON SECTOR PRODUCTION ON THE ORDER PAPER

          HON. CHITINDI:  Thank you Mr. Speaker.  I rise to move a motion in my name that the motion on the First Report of the Portfolio Committee on Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development on cotton sector production which was superseded by the end of the Third Session of the Eighth Parliament be restored on the Order Paper in terms of Standing Order No. 73.

          HON. MARIDADI:  On a point of order Mr. Speaker. I just wanted to find out if it is procedural that a Minister would shake the hands of all back benchers as if they are coming from a prophet. 

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order.

          HON. CHIDHAKWA:  I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

RESTORATION OF THE MOTION ON THE FIRST REPORT OF THE PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON LANDS, AGRICULTURE, MECHANISATION AND IRRIGATION DEVELOPMENT ON THE OPERATIONS OF THE AGRICULTURE AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY (ARDA) AND COLD STORAGE COMPANY ON THE ORDER PAPER

HON. CHITINDI:  I move the motion standing in my name that

the First Report of the Portfolio Committee on Lands, Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development on the operations of the Agriculture and Rural Development Authority (ARDA) and Cold Storage Company, which was superseded by the end of the Third Session of the Eighth Parliament be restored on the Order Paper in terms of Standing Order No. 73 – [HON. MEMBERS:   Inaudible interjections.] –

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order.  Hon. Kasukuwere!

Hon. Kasukuwere went out of the House and came back.

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Minister, please take your seat.  As you were leaving, there was a point of order regarding yourself.  Can you proceed?

*HON. MARIDADI:  My point of order Mr. Speaker Sir, is that I saw Hon. Minister Kasukuwere moving around shaking hands with the backbenchers.  I observed that he only greeted backbenchers on the ZANU PF side and we were wondering as to why we are not also being greeted by the anointed water.  He should go back to Prophet Wimbo and say the Hon. Member should also greet Hon. Members from the opposition so that he can retain his position.  I thank you Hon. Speaker.

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order.  Hon. Minister, your going around greeting people and so on is unusual – [Laughter.] – I have been here for a while now and I have never seen that happen.  May I request that in future, please take your seat as you normally do and we carry on with business.  Thank you.

Hon. Kasukuwere having stood up.

*THE HON. SPEAKER:  No, hazvibvumirwi.

THE MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT, PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON. KASUKUWERE):  Mr. Speaker Sir, I want to thank you very much for the advice you have given me and also in future, as you are the Chairman of the Committee that was probing, I will also come and greet you on my way out.  Thank you very much.

*THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order.  Hon. Kasukuwere, can you withdraw the last part of your statement.

HON. KASUKUWERE:  Mr. Speaker Sir, I withdraw. 

HON. CHIDHAKWA:  I second.

Motion put and agreed to. 

MOTION

FIRST REPORT OF THE PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON MINES AND ENERGY ON THE CONSOLIDATION OF DIAMOND MINING COMPANIES

HON. DR. SHUMBA:  I move the motion standing in my name that this House takes note of the First Report of the Portfolio Committee on Mines and Energy on the Consolidation of Diamond Mining Companies (S.C. 9, 2017).

HON. MUZENDA:  I second.

*HON. ADV. CHAMISA:  Thank you Mr. Speaker.  I rise on a point of order billed from what Hon. Mliswa has said, that there are certain things that as Parliament we ought to do in respect of each Member by giving honour to each individual Member of Parliament, Hon. Simon Khaya Moyo who is a very good man was not feeling well.  It is well documented and we should have a way that once a Member comes back, the good Lord has been merciful to Hon. Simon Khaya Moyo and we acknowledge through the Hon. Speaker that we want to welcome him so that the heavens will hear and more years will be added on to his life because he is a good man.  I say so because I am genuinely happy in that those Members that are humane are very happy.  We take life for granted but it is not partisan.  There is no party that owns lite, either – that ZANU PF or MDC owns life.  None of the two parties owns life and we should cherish life. We must praise the Lord for this man because he is a good man, across the political divide.  Thank you very much.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order.  Thank you Hon. Adv. Chamisa for the kind message.  I am sure that it is appreciated by all of us and more importantly, by Hon. S. K. Moyo himself.  We are so happy to see you back on your two feet again.  May you be blessed accordingly?  Thank you. - [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear]-

HON. DR. SHUMBA: Thank you Mr. Speaker. I now present the report on the consolidation of diamond mining companies in Zimbabwe. The diamond industry plays an important role in the socio-economic development of several African countries, given that 65% of the world’s diamonds, with an annual value exceeding 8, 5 billion United States dollars are extracted on the continent.  Globally, it is estimated that 10 million people benefit either directly or indirectly from the diamond industry. In Southern Africa, countries such as Botswana, Namibia and South Africa are realising substantial socio-economic gains from the industry.  For instance, diamond revenues in Botswana enable all children up to the age of 13 to receive free education and in Namibia the sector contributes 40% towards the country’s annual export earnings and has had a positive socio-economic impact on the lives of the African people.

Zimbabwe’s diamond scenario has sadly been the opposite of what is happening in other Southern African countries. After the discovery of huge diamond deposits in Marange in the mid-2000, the expectation was that diamond revenues would contribute significantly to Zimbabwe’s national development, but alas, it has been an equally huge disappointment. This sentiment was expressed in the 2016 National Budget Statement by the Minister of Finance and Economic Development when he stated that, “this is a resource that seems to have not benefitted the generality of our people…“

In this context, the Committee on Mines and Energy sought to follow the objectives below:

·       To unpack the underlying causes of the poor performance of the

 diamond industry;

·       To analyse the contribution of diamonds to Treasury; and

·        To analyse the socio-economic impact of consolidation of the

 diamond mines.

1.          Background on the Diamond Industry in Zimbabwe

Diamonds were first discovered in Zimbabwe in 1903 in the Somabula area.  For over a century, the industry remained small with two mining operations by River Ranch located in Beitbridge and Murowa Diamonds in Zvishavane. The sector became a force to reckon with following huge discoveries in Marange in the mid-2000s with projections estimated at 25% of the world’s annual diamond market.  Several companies were awarded special grants to operate in Marange through joint venture partnerships with the Government, represented by the Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation (ZMDC).

Government had an average of 50% shareholding in all these companies which included Mbada Diamonds, Marange Resources, Jinan, Diamond Mining Corporation (DMC) and Anjin Investments.  Other mining companies included Kusena Diamonds, Rera, GyeNyame, Nan Jiang Africa Resources in Bikita and DTZ OZGEO in Chimanimani.  The alluvial diamonds were identified over an area covering hundreds of thousands of hectares, hence Government in its wisdom decided to issue multiple licenses to different investors. The policy position of government shifted towards the end of 2015, with the thrust of centralising all diamond mining activities through Zimbabwe Consolidated Diamond Company (ZCDC).

2.    Methodology

The Committee held oral evidence sessions with the following stakeholders:   the Ministry of Mines and Mining development was represented by its Minister Hon Walter Chidhakwa, the Deputy Minister, Hon Fred Moyo and the Permanent Secretary Professor Francis Gudyanga; Officials and former employees of ZCDC; a representative from Pedstock and the former acting General Manager of Minerals Marketing Corporation of Zimbabwe (MMCZ), Mr. Richard Chingodza.

 The Committee had an opportunity to conduct a field visit to Chiadzwa to get an insight into the socio-economic impact of the consolidation process. Unfortunately the Committee did not get an opportunity to interact with ZMDC’s former joint venture partners because of legal disputes between them and the Government of Zimbabwe. The Committee was unable to visit and interact with regional countries such as Botswana and Namibia, due to financial challenges. The proposed visit would have enabled the Committee to get an understanding of the factors behind the successes recorded by the diamond industries in the specific countries.

3.    Findings

4.1 Purpose of Consolidation of Diamond Mining Companies

The Committee was informed by the Minister of Mines and Mining Development that, the consolidation process sought to stimulate growth and productivity of the diamond industry, as well as promote transparency and accountability in the entire diamond value chain, with the ultimate result of improved revenue inflows to Treasury. 

The consolidation process would also address the following challenges that were inhibiting the growth of the sector;

                   i.            Erratic diamond sales.

Mining companies were negotiating contracts for the sales and

 marketing of diamonds to companies of their choice and these contracts were individualistic in nature and disregarded national interests. Through consolidation, marketing and sales would be conducted through one institution.

             ii.   To plug out smuggling and leakages of diamonds.

Allegations were abound of leakages and smuggling of

diamonds, with estimates that diamond revenues worth an estimated US$15 billion could not be accounted for. No explanation has been forth coming as to the Zimbabwean diamonds discovered at the Shanghai Stock Exchange in China. Monitoring and supervision would be easier through one company.

          iii.   Lack of mutual commitment.

There was no mutual commitment between government and its

 joint venture partners.  This was emanating from the fact that the joint venture partners were unwilling to expand their operations into the mining of conglomerates and to explore for the kimberlitic pipes, given that alluvial diamonds are almost depleted. Underground operations require huge investment and the joint venture partners were unwilling to invest into those expansion projects.  To address this, ZCDC was to embark on underground mining for the conglomerates and kimberlitic pipes.

3.2           Structure of the Zimbabwe Diamond Consolidation

 Company (ZCDC)

   4.2.1   Legal Status

The Committee was informed by the Minister of Mines and Mining Development that ZCDC is a subsidiary company under ZMDC and is similar in nature to other subsidiaries such Jena Mines, Sandawana Mines and Marange Resources. ZCDC was formed following the expiry and cancellation of mining rights. This had been preceded by the invocation of section 291 of the Mines and Minerals Act where the Secretary of Mines exercised his right of refusal to renew the licenses. This paved the way for Government to establish ZCDC, through the Companies Act and the Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation Act.  It must be noted that this assertion was not the initial presentation of the Ministry of Mines and Mining Development.

Some of the companies such as DMC, DTZ-OZGEO and Kusena accepted the consolidation process but the Government still faces challenges from Mbada Diamonds, Jinan and Anjin.

4.2.2   Shareholding of ZCDC

The initial plan by Government was that ZCDC’s shareholding would comprise of all the mining companies that were operating in Marange, with government retaining a 50% shareholding. ZCDC was to appoint five of the ten board members and the rest would be selected from among the former joint venture partners. Each joint venture partner would get shares based on the net value of assets and liabilities. Government then resolved to expand its shareholding in ZCDC to 100 per cent. Behind closed doors, bilateral negotiations were held between China and the government, resulting in Anjin and Jinan agreeing to a settlement whose matter is still before the Constitutional Court and the rest of the board members will be appointed once a determination has been made.  Only then, can ZCDC be able to carry out operations on all the mining concessions in all the mining area.

4.2.3   Corporate Governance

Currently, ZCDC has five board Members and the Permanent Secretary of Mines and Mining Development Professor F.P Gudyanga is the acting Chairman. The Committee learnt that all except one of the board Members hail from Manicaland. This is in violation of Section 194 (j) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe. The Minister of Mines and Mining Development has continued to prevaricate on the issue of properly constituting the Board of Directors of ZCDC. Secondly, during the Committee’s visit to Chiadzwa, it was noted that almost 90% of the Management Executives of ZCDC were holding their positions in an acting capacity, with almost all of them not having diamond mining experience. To the contrary, the management Executives that were relieved of their duties, two months into the consolidation process, had a combined total of 127 years of experience in the diamond industry acquired from well renowned companies such as De Beers.

4.3        Diamond Production at Chiadzwa.

Production statistics from Marange diamond operations have been on the downward trend for the past five years, largely attributed to a number of factors which include:

                  I.  Depletion of alluvial diamonds at most of the concessions;

               II.  Inadequate exploration to determine the quantities and values of

the diamonds before formal mining operations began in 2009.  The lifespan of the mining operations in Chiadzwa are unknown and current ZCDC operations are not supported by any geological or exploration information.

           III.  The diamond recoveries at the diamond concessions have gone

 down.  At the height of production in 2011, recoveries stood between 25 to 40 carats per tonne but at the time of consolidation this had gone down to between 5 to 6 carats per tonne. 

           IV.  Inadequate investment to meet mining obligations.  Most of the

 joint venture companies did not fully fulfil their investment agreements.

                 V.                     The Portfolio Committee was informed that at the time of

 Consolidation, all the companies were insolvent, hence impacting negatively on mining operations.

ZCDC officials informed the Committee that their future plans were on ramping up production, through exploration and investment.  The previous annual production projections were for 6 million carats. In 2016, ZCDC managed to produce only just below 1 million carats.  In 2015, before the consolidation process, approximately 2,3 million carats were produced.

4.4    Operational Capacity of ZCDC

After the consolidation process was effected, ZCDC management was ordered by the Permanent Secretary of Mines and Mining Development Professor F.P Gudyanga to increase production volumes and according to the former company executives, these targets were unrealistic, given the high operational costs and the low grade recoveries.  The alluvial diamonds had depleted in most concessions and were near depletion in others. This did not make economic sense to the management that was in office at the time, but they were forced to comply.

After only about 100 days into office, the former management team was dismissed, save for one person, Dr R Nyashanu and yet, some of them had signed 6 year contracts.  Most of them were dismissed after undergoing a polygraph test, commonly known as a lie detector. The former employees were asked questions such as ‘are you drunk’, ‘do you operate a syndicate’. The Management executives were not given any reasons for their retrenchment or dismissal. This may constitute an unfair labour practice as defined in Section 65 of the Constitution. Professor F. P. Gudyanga has continued to refuse to produce the polygraph test results to Parliament. We shall soon be giving official notice of contempt of Parliament in respect to this refusal.

During the site visit, the Committee was informed by ZCDC officials that the company did not have adequate machinery and equipment.  As a result ZCDC was hiring and sub- contracting most of its mining equipment and machinery, and operations. To boost its operational capacity, ZCDC secured a loan from the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe worth US$ 30 million for recapitalisation.  The Company somehow managed to purchase equipment at an auction in January, 2017 worth US$7, 5 million that previously belonged to Mbada Diamonds.  The Committee noted that the two mining operations of ZCDC relied heavily on diesel generators because they are not connected to the national power grid.

The Portfolio Committee was informed by the Minister of Mines and Development that ZCDC has embarked into gold mining in Gache-Gache and has since purchased machinery and equipment for that venture.  Although mining has not yet started, ZCDC will be at the centre of those operations. This is contrary to the purpose and the mandate of ZCDC. We found this to be very opportunistic and misdirected by diverting resources from its diamond mandate to gold.

4.5    Diamond Prices

The Committee was informed by the former Chief Executive Officer of ZCDC Dr R. Nyashanu, that the joint venture companies realised different prices for their diamonds. The average price stood at 47, 29 American dollars. The prices realised by the diamond companies is revealed in the graph below:

Figure 1: Diamond Prices (Source: Presentation by Dr Nyashanu to the Portfolio Committee during the Fact-finding Visit to Marange)

The former CEO of ZCDC further highlighted that Mbada Diamonds had the lowest diamond prices yet owned concessions with the richest ore grades.  Dr Nyashanu attributed the low prices to either illicit practices or to low grade recoveries. 

4.6    Diamond Revenues Submitted to the Treasury

In the 2016 Budget Statement, the Minister of Finance laments the poor revenue inflows to the fiscus from the diamond sector when he states that “there was greater economic impact from diamonds during times of uncontrolled alluvial panning than what is being realised following the introduction of formal diamond mining arrangements.” In the same vein, the former acting General Manager of the Minerals Marketing Corporation of Zimbabwe (MMCZ), Mr. Richard Chingodza attributed the poor revenues to Treasury due to incapacity of government representatives that sat on the boards of the joint venture companies to access critical information such as production statistics, board minutes or audited financial reports.

The Permanent Secretary of Mines and Mining Development Professor F.P. Gudyanga, told the Committee that the country lost diamond revenues through leakages and smuggling and the loss will be quantified through a forensic audit being conducted by the Auditor General.  According to the Permanent Secretary of Mines and Mining Development Professor F.P Gudyanga, from 2010, Treasury has realised approximately 600 million American dollars as shown in the table below:

Figure 2: Payments to Government from Diamond Sector (Source: Presentation by Secretary of Mines at the 2016 AGM of Chamber of Mines)

4.7    Illicit Financial Out-Flows

The Committee received evidence from the former acting General Manager of MMCZ Mr. Richard Chingodza of illicit financial outflows from the extractive sector.  Some of these illicit financial flows were aided or facilitated by government officials, in clear violation of government accounting procedures and regulations. The MMCZ lost approximately four (4) million America dollars. The money was transferred to Pedstock, an agricultural company, which further transmitted it to an unknown recipient who resides outside the country.   The Director of Pedstock, Mr. Jackson Dror admitted before the Committee that he was being used as a conduit to transfer the money from MMCZ to the unnamed recipient.

The Former Acting General Manager of MMCZ was ordered to release this money by the Permanent Secretary of Mines and Mining Development, who is currently the acting board Chairperson of the parastatal. The invoice raised for the money was that it would be used for the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) Border Control and Minerals Unit operations in curbing leakages and smuggling of minerals.

 The Permanent Secretary of Mines and Mining Development Professor F.P Gudyanga admitted to the Committee that the money was sent to the unknown recipient who is a foreigner and his identity could not be disclosed because it will jeopardise the State security operations aimed at curbing leakages and smuggling of minerals. Pedstock made cash payments to the unknown recipient because he refused to open a bank account.  Pedstock received a commission for its services.

Furthermore, the Committee learnt that the Permanent Secretary of Mines and Mining Development Professor F.P Gudyanga had both personal and official links with Pedstock, where on several occasions he purchased or benefitted from agricultural equipment from or by the company.

4.8    Role of MMCZ in the Diamond Industry

The Minerals Marketing and Corporation of Zimbabwe, has the main responsibility of advising government on the marketing of its diamonds.  However, the corporation has been facing a number of challenges in  executing its mandate.

Since 2009, the parastatal is without a substantive General Manager and since 2013 has been without a Board of Directors.  The parastatal is being run by a one-man illegal board, comprising of the Permanent Secretary of Mines and Mining Development Professor F.P Gudyanga  and in 2015, he paid himself 35 000 United States dollars as Board fees in violation of the MMCZ Act and basic principles of corporate governance. The Board should have between 6 to 10 members.  So legally and technically, MMCZ has no board and board fees should not have been paid to anyone.  In the absence of a Board, the annual budgets of MMCZ have failed to get approval, in violation of the Public Finance and Management Act, the MMCZ Act and the Audited Office Act.

Furthermore, the Parastatal has been unable to conduct strategic planning sessions to discuss critical issues, including the Ministry’s intention to transform it into an exploration company. The respective Bill is awaited by Parliament.

The Committee was also informed that MMCZ has paid for some of the Ministry of Mine’s expenses, activities and programs, yet these should be supported by Treasury. Some of these payments have found their way into personal accounts.  An example was cited of payments made into the account of Mr. Nzarayapenga whose credentials the Portfolio Committee did not ascertain but was alluded to during an oral evidence hearing with the Acting General Manager Mr Richard Chingodza. 

During the fact-finding mission to Marange, the Portfolio Committee noted the absence of MMCZ at the mining operations yet its officers are visible in other mining operations which include platinum where government does not necessarily have a controlling shareholding.

4.9    Value Addition and Marketing of Diamonds from Marange

The Committee was told by the former CEO of ZCDC, Mr. Mark Mabhudhu that the country lost a lot of diamond revenues before 2014 due to lack of value addition. The marketers of Marange diamonds, never fully understood its footprint and after feedback from the market, it became apparent that the country had sold some very unique diamonds with fancy colours for a song.    The diamonds were not being properly sorted, hence it was easy for them to be undervalued.

The cleaning and sorting of diamonds from Marange is undertaken by a company known as First Element. The Committee was informed by Mr. Richard Chingodza that First Element is a foreign company that was hand-picked by the Permanent Secretary of Mines and Mining Development.  Due diligence was not conducted to ascertain its capability and credibility.  In the course of time, management at MMCZ noted operational deficiencies which they highlighted to the Executive but no action was taken and the management of MMCZ was threatened not to interfere in the affairs of First Element. 

The first anomaly was on the losses experienced in the cleaning of diamonds.  This was noted following a comparative analysis with a former company Kenako, which is an indigenous company that used to clean the diamonds.

Secondly, an arrangement was made for the construction of a cleaning facility for the diamonds through a build-operate-transfer arrangement where First Element won the bid, yet it had inflated the costs in comparison with other bidders. MMCZ management disapproved of the agreement, the Permanent Secretary of Mines and Mining Development Professor F.P Gudyanga was not happy with it, hence creating tension between the two parties.

Furthermore, management of MMCZ observed that when auctioning diamonds, First Element would claim to have invited 80 or 100 companies when in reality there were just a few buyers, less than five.  Upon scrutiny, it was discovered that one company would just be 20 or more people passing out as individual companies.  This created room for collusion and transfer pricing, prejudicing the country of substantial revenues.

Another anomaly, was on the auditing of MMCZ’s books.  The Committee was informed that the Permanent Secretary of Mines and Mining Development Professor F.P Gudyanga hand-picked an audit firm to scrutinise MMCZ books.  However, the audit firm was not appointed by the Auditor General’s (AG) Office and the AG was not even aware that such an operation was taking place.  As a result the company’s financial records have been compromised.

4.10  Relocated Mining Community at ArdaTransau

When diamonds were discovered in Marange, several thousands of families were relocated to Arda Transau, a farm on the outskirts of Mutare city.  The relocation program began during the era of the joint venture agreements.  When it came into existence in 2015, ZCDC has managed to relocate 23 families.  However, the company inherited several unfulfilled obligations by the former joint venture companies.  The Committee had an opportunity to visit and interact with the relocated families.  These were some of their concerns:

                   i.            Housing defects:  Some of the home owners were experiencing

 housing defects such as cracks on the floors and walls.  This was attributed to poor workmanship and the fact that some of these houses were constructed on wetlands.

                ii.                        Relocation Allowance/Disturbance Allowance:  There were

complaints by some of the families that they did not receive their relocation allowance, which was supposed to be given on an individual basis rather than per household. Most of the households are in polygamous relationships.

             iii.                        Inadequate Space for Expansion:  Complaints were raised that children who had reached the age of majority or had married were failing to get land to build their own homes.  The half-a—hectare plots they were allocated are inadequate to meet their needs.

             iv.            Unemployment: The youth complained they had no sources of

 livelihood in the area.  This was attributed to lack of capital to start income generating projects.

                v.            Right to Water:  Some of the residents complained that portable water to their homesteads had been disconnected.  Each household has to pay $8 per month but due to lack of sustainable livelihoods, very few households have the capacity to pay these bills.  For households without tap connections, the people walk long distances to access water from wells, some of which is not safe for drinking.

             vi.             Lack of Houses:  There are some families who were relocated but have not yet been allocated houses.  There were allegations that some people were are renting out their houses to persons from elsewhere other than Marange.

          vii.            Compensation for Property:  A complaint was raised by a former shop owner who had not been compensated for loss of property which he left behind in Marange. The relocated families also highlighted that they were not aware of valuation results of their properties which they left behind in Marange. 

       viii.            Lack of Feedback:The community expressed disappointment in that government agencies and the mining company did not give feedback regarding their concerns.

In spite of these challenges, the local authority of Mutare, is co-ordinating an irrigation project, which seeks to empower the community in market-gardening.  The project has been constrained by lack of financial resources.

5.      Committee Observations

5.1           Purpose of Consolidation:

The purpose of consolidating diamonds mines, whilst it is a noble idea, needs to be supported by best international practices.  In regional countries such as Botswana and South Africa, their diamond policy framework allows for independent players to participate in the sector.  What was lacking in the former arrangement, with joint venture partners, was strong monitoring by the government representatives who sat on the company boards.

5.2           Structure of the ZCDC

5.2.1   Legal Status

ZCDC is not properly constituted. This is a private company formed under the Companies Act and is supposed to superintend over such an important national resource. Secondly, Section 315(2) of the Constitution clearly highlights that “an Act of Parliament must provide for the negotiation and performance of concessions of mineral and other rights to ensure transparency, honesty, cost-effectiveness and competitiveness’.  The Ministry of Mines missed an opportunity to correct the challenges it is facing in Chiadzwa.

5.2.2   Corporate Governance

It is unacceptable that ZCDC should be a subsidiary of ZMDC, when it is clear that the Board of ZMDC has no control over the company as revealed by its absence during the Committee’s visit to Chiadzwa.  There is also a conflict of interest in that currently ZCDC is chaired by the Secretary of Mines and ZMDC Board oversees that subsidiary, yet the ZMDC board is answerable to the Permanent Secretary of Mines and Mining Development.  Such an arrangement clearly violates good corporate governance principles.

Secondly, nepotism and tribalism was the criteria used in appointing the board of ZCDC.  All of them hail from Manicaland and there is no illustration of gender representation.  This clearly violates sections 17 and 18 of the Constitution which promote gender balance and fair regional representation respectively.   Furthermore, it is improper that ZCDC should be run by a management team that does not have any experience in diamond mining.  Surely, the country should not expect positive growth and meaningful returns to emanate from such an operation.

5.3           Diamond Production at Chiadzwa

The six (6) million carats per annum projections are possible only if the company acquires investment for exploration.  Right now, no one knows the quantum or the value of the diamonds in Chiadzwa.  Without adequate geological information, ZCDC cannot outline strategic goals for the future.  Secondly, in proper governance system, management is supposed to advise the Board on operational issues, but instead, in this case the Secretary of Mines is directing the mining operations.

The Committee would also like to express its disappointment on low productivity at the mines, more particularly due to the fact that it failed to see any diamonds during its site visit.  The Committee had high expectations that after rigorous physical searches, it would see the diamonds. 

The Minister of Finance and Economic Development highlights that government realised better revenue during times of uncontrolled panning, highlighting the significance of artisanal and small-scale miners to the growth of the sector.  Other countries, especially in West Africa have developed sustainable models for integrating artisanal and small-scale miners into the diamond sector.  The Minister of Mines and Mining Development needs to consider such models, as a way of empowering and creating employment for surrounding communities. 

5.4           Operational Capacity of ZCDC

During the fact-finding visit, the Committee observed that ZCDC does not have adequate equipment and machinery and has to hire some of it.    It is inadequate for ZCDC to borrow from the local financial market given the high interest rates.   ZCDC has to scout for investors but there is low investor confidence, after the ouster of the joint venture partners.  It will be difficult for the company to attract the much needed investment. It is also important for Government to be consistent in the implementation of its policies.  This is one area that has been raised by investors, in various mining fora such as the Regional Mining Indaba held in Cape Town annually. Secondly, the Committee is concerned that ZCDC is now venturing into gold mining operations in Gache-Gache yet its operational capital is very thin.

5.5           Diamond Prices and Revenues to Treasury

The Committee awaits for the results of the forensic audit to determine the extent to which the country may have been prejudiced by the former joint venture partners.  Poor revenues to Treasury should also be attributed to delays taken by government to set up cleaning and sorting facilities.  A lot of valuable diamonds were sold for a song. Secondly, the blame on the poor revenues and the disparities in diamond prices should be apportioned to both Government and the former joint venture companies.  Government had representatives that sat on the Boards of the joint venture agreements and were there to advise government on policy issues or anomalies which were hindering the State from realising its objectives.

5.6           Illicit Financial Outflows

It will be very difficult to conduct an audit trail on some of the funds that were siphoned from MMCZ.  Pedstock made cash payments to its unnamed source for services rendered. It is clear that government accounting systems were violated and there are no prospects for MMCZ to recover the US$4 million that it lost.

Secondly, State security matters should be financed by the relevant agency, under the intelligence services.  It was improper for the Permanent Secretary of Mines and Mining Development Professor F.P Gudyanga to siphon MMCZ of its resources and expect it to perform effectively afterwards.  It defeats the whole purpose of Government’s intentions of developing turnaround strategies to revamp or rebuild ailing or dead parastatals.

5.7           Cleaning, Sorting and Marketing of Diamonds

The Committee noted with concern the allegations of diamond losses experienced during the cleaning, sorting and evaluation of diamonds.   One of the functions of MMCZ is to advise the Minister on important issues such as this one, so the Minister should take matters of this nature seriously.  It is not proper to disregard concerns raised by an institution which has been established to safeguard national interests of government and defend a private company which might not have the interests of the nation at heart.

5.8              Relocated Families

The unfulfilled expectations of the relocated families can only be met once ZCDC is fully operational and making a profit.  ZCDC has inherited a number of liabilities from the former joint venture partners, such as wages.  ZCDC’s financial position is very precarious and cannot be expected to meet the concerns of the communities anytime soon.

5.9           Property Rights Issues

Section 72 (2) of the Constitution states that “every person has the right, …to acquire, hold, occupy, use, transfer, hypothecate, lease or disposes of all forms of property, either individually or in association with others”. The grounds for dispossessing the mining companies of their concessions are weak and indefensible. These were joint venture agreements and if the lease had expired, surely ZMDC could have easily reacted to rectify the anomaly.  It appears this was just a weak excuse to get rid of the joint venture partners. It cannot be denied that the consolidation process put a dent on investor confidence into the mining sector. It is important that property rights are respected so that it does not affect investment opportunities for the entire mining industry.  When the Committee visited Marange it saw immovable property such as offices, airstrip, employee houses, watch towers, machinery which was lost inadvertently by the joint partners and will now be inherited by ZCDC without paying any compensation.

5.10                 Workers’ Rights

These need to be respected in line with the labour laws of the country.  It defies logic that the Board of ZCDC retrenches some of its workers and then immediately replace those positions.  Retrenchment entails downsizing operations.  The former management Executives of ZCDC were relieved of their duties after undergoing a polygraph test.  The questions and manner in which the polygraph was applied clearly violates fundamental rights particularly section 51 of the Constitution which talks about the right to human dignity. In other countries, polygraph tests are permitted but adhere to fundamental human rights. In practice, a polygraph test cannot be used as a basis for a finding of guilt, it is used to support other evidence, but in this case, the polygraph tests were used to find the eleven (11) interviewees guilty and a strong reason for dismissal.  Zimbabwe’s jurisprudence need to be developed on the application of polygraph test in order to protect the rights of workers.

5.11       Political Interference

The Committee noted with concern that there is too much political interference in the mining of diamonds in Marange, particularly by the Permanent Secretary of Mines and Mining Development, Professor F.P Gudyanga. Without a proper legal framework which outlines the responsibilities of the various State actors in the diamond sector, the current system is porous and being abused. As a result, the country will not be able to realise meaningful returns from the sector.  Whilst, the Diamond Policy outlines government’s vision in the diamond sector, it is not binding on anyone. Furthermore, it is unacceptable that the Secretary of Mines is directly involved in operational issues at ZCDC, at MMCZ, at ZMDC and at other institutions that a directly linked to the mining industry.  The workload is too heavy for one person and this had negative impacts on operations of some of these entities.

I will now hand over to the Deputy Chairperson to give you the recommendations.  Thank you Madam Speaker.

ANNOUNCEMENT BY THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER

INVITATION TO THE FIRST MEETING OF THE LIAISON AND COORDINATION COMMITTEE

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Before I call your seconder, I would like to make an announcement.  I would like to inform the House that the Chairperson of the Liaison and Coordination Committee (LCC), Hon. Matuke, has convened the first meeting of the LCC for the year 2017.  The meeting will be held tomorrow, 3rd May 2017, in the Senate Chamber at 1000 hours.  All Committee Chairpersons must attend as well as the Chairperson and Deputy Chairperson of the Women’s Caucus.

          HON. MZENDA: Thank you Madam Speaker.  I rise to give recommendations of the Committee.

6       Recommendations

 

Resolution

Action

Timeline

6.1

ZCDC should be properly constituted.

The Ministry of Mines and Mining Development should bring before Parliament a bill to regulate diamond mining operations by ZCDC in line with section 315 (2)(c) of the Constitution.

Before end of December 2017

6.2

The Board of ZCDC should be dissolved.

Any board appointments by ZMDC or by the Minister of Mines should be in line with sections 17 and 18 of the Constitution which promotes fair regional representation and gender balance.

On-going.

6.3

A Board for MMCZ should be appointed and the process of selecting a substantive general manager for the parastatal concluded.

The Minister of Mines should initiate the process for the appointment of the board of MMCZ and its substantive general manager in order to promote good corporate governance at the parastatal and in the mining sector.

Before end of June 2017

6.4

Mining policies for the diamond industry should be clear and consistent in order to attract investment both foreign and local.

The Ministry of Mines needs to come out clearly on the position of government pertaining to foreign direct investment into mining concessions in Marange

Policy should be outlined by June 2017.

6.5

Competition should be promoted in the production of diamonds in Zimbabwe.

The Ministry of Mines should allow independent players to participate in diamond production in various parts of the country, including the Marange concessions.

By December 2017.

6.6

Investment is needed for exploration of diamonds in Marange.

The Ministry of Mines need to create a conducive platform that promotes investment into exploration to determine the quantum and values of diamonds in Marange.  Evidence-based information will strengthen government’s ability to make decisions on diamonds in Marange.

On-going

6.7

ZCDC should solely focus on diamond production.

The Ministry of Mines should ensure that ZCDC focuses only on diamond production and cease all operations of gold mining in Gache Gache.

Within a month of tabling this report.

6.8

Illicit financial outflows from MMCZ should be thoroughly investigated.

The Auditor General, the Anti-Corruption Commission and the Zimbabwe Republic Police, must investigate these illicit financial outflows.

Before end of June 2017.

6.9

Due diligence should be conducted on companies to be selected for cleaning and sorting of diamonds as well as on buyers who attend the domestic diamonds auctions.

MMCZ should ensure public tenders forth the cleaning, sorting and buying of the country’s diamonds are floated and due diligence is followed in the selection process in order to minimise leakages and collusion in pricing of the gems

On-going.

6.10

Allegations of diamond losses through cleaning and sorting by First Element should be investigated.

A Commission of inquiry should be appointed by the Minister of Mines to ascertain if the country has been prejudiced by First Element and give feedback of its findings to Parliament.

Before June 2017

6.11

MMCZ officers should have representation at all diamond operations including those in Marange.

The Minister of Mines should ensure that all MMCZ officers are visible at diamond mining operations in Marange in order to promote transparency and accountability.

On-going.

6.12

ZCDC should be managed by skilled personnel with knowledge of the diamond sector.

Appointments to serve on ZCDC should be based on merit, so that State participation in the industry is justifiable.

Within three (3) months of tabling this Report.

6.13

Results of polygraph tests should not be used as a basis for finding one guilty or dismissal of workers.

The Ministry of Mines should reinstate workers that were dismissed due to polygraph test because the practice is not supported by the labour laws of the country.

By June 2017.

6.14

Property rights in the mining sector should be respected in line with section 72(2) of the Constitution.

The Minister of Mines needs to ensure that property rights of investors in the mining sector are respected in order to build confidence that Zimbabwe is an investment friendly destination.  Furthermore, companies that lost their properties as a result of consolidation should be compensated.

By December 2017.

6.15

Relocated families at ArdaTransau should be compensated for loss of property and be given their relocation allowances on an agreeable formula.

ZCDC should ensure that all relocated families that lost their properties are compensated fairly and relocation allowance should take into account families in polygamous relationships.

By June 2017.

6.16

New land should be identified to cater for population growth at ArdaTransau.

The Ministry of Local Government need to address the shortage of land at ArdaTransau, so that families live in socially and culturally acceptable environments.

Before end of June 2017.

6.17

Corrective action should be taken on homes that have developed defects.

Ministry of Local Government should institute an inspection of houses with defects at ArdaTransau to assess the safety and well-being of the tenants. Furthermore, corrective action should be taken on those buildings

Before end of December 2017.

6.18

A policy should be developed to integrate artisanal and small-scale diamond miners who are operate illegally in Marange.

The Ministry of Mines needs to copy best international practices, especially from countries in West Africa and come up with a policy position in order to integrate artisanal and small-scale miners in the mining of alluvial diamonds.

Before end of December 2017.

6.19

Government and political interference in mining of diamonds in Marange should cease forthwith, particularly by the Secretary of Mines

The Civil Service Commission should recall the Permanent Secretary of Mines Professor Gudyanga in line with section 205 of the Constitution. The grounds for dismissal include his role in aiding illicit financial outflows, poor corporate governance and at times his position has been conflicted.

Within a month of tabling this report.

6.20

Modern equipment and technology should be installed for searches in sorting areas in order to curb leakages.

ZMDC should invest in modern equipment for diamond detection rather than conducting body searches which an archaic method of control.

Before December 2017

6.21

State participation in the diamond sector should be minimal but the marketing of diamonds should be centralised and remain the preserve of the State.

The Ministry of Mines should ensure that marketing of diamonds is centralised and is in the hands of the State.

Before December 2017

 

7       Conclusion

The diamond industry in Zimbabwe needs to be supported by strong and consistent policies and a sound legal framework. This should also be buttressed by the observance of good corporate governance principles by the implementers of these policies and laws.  In that way, Treasury and the country will be able to experience positive socio-economic returns from the diamond industry as being experienced in the neighbouring countries.

          HON.  MLISWA: First of all, we are dealing with an illegal entity.  ZCDC is not supposed to be there.  How it happens to be there, one wonders because it has not passed the test.  So, I would like to begin by saying that we are basically dealing with a mafia that is involved in diamonds.  Unfortunately, the Minister of Mines who is supposed to superintend and the Ministry’s failure to superintend also implicates him in all the under-hand dealings which are happening.  For the first time, it is important that Ministers become honourable.  They do not have to be fired but I think being honourable is to also resign.  Minister Chidhakwa must resign because he has totally failed to superintend his Ministry. 

How can the Minister superintend a board with one person who is the Permanent Secretary?  So, the aspect of the respecting structure is between two people, the Minister and the Permanent Secretary.  The role of the Ministry and the Permanent Secretary is to have oversight of the board.  So, how can you surely have those you are supposed to oversee sitting on boards?  There is absolutely no oversight.  Basically, what you have is a mafia approach of people who are looting State resources every day and in looting State resources, they have gotten away with murder.  They have been able to make money so that they are able to also bribe people in the process.  Professor Gudyanga – evidence has been shown and Parliament has done its part.  The Parliamentary Committee has exposed him but he is still working up to now.  My question then is; what is the role of the Executive in Parliament recommending somebody who is not up to the job? 

The country is being destroyed because we have people who are sitting and doing nothing but stealing.  The economy is in its worst state ever.  Diamonds were supposed to be a blessing but they are a curse.  They are a curse to this nation because we all believed that the turnaround of this economy would really be premised on the diamonds.  The President, His Excellency in his own statement acknowledges that $15 billion went missing but what surprises me is that more billions are still missing and still nothing is being done.  We talk about ZIM ASSET which is supposed to benefit from the State resources.  We talk about domestic mobilisation in terms of resources, how can you really mobilise resources domestically when there is no accountability?  The aspect of accountability is truly out of order and whether the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission is doing its job, I wonder.  I also wonder whether the ZRP is doing its job.  Even the Chinese who we say are our all weather friends are equally disappointed, the so-called all-weather-friends.  If you see the Chinese people not wanting to do business with you, you are the worst economic nation ever because the Chinese can go anywhere but they are refusing to do business with Zimbabwe because of the diamonds. 

Intellectual property rights are not respected.  Anybody just wakes up one day and you get the military and the police there seizing everything when people have invested money into the country.  We talk about having the Zimbabwe Investment Authority trying to sell Zimbabwe to the people in terms of investment.  What are they selling when we have examples of people not respecting intellectual property rights?  We have the best experts such as the former CEO of ZCDC, articulate, knows his staff and has been in the industry working for DeBeers but if you know what you are doing and if you are going to protect the interests of the nation, they do not want you there.  He was fired for no reason.  The report clearly indicates how many labour cases that they are going to face.  Where is the money going to come from?  There is no money.  It is very important that we are seen to be walking the talk. 

Right now they are mining in Gachekache.  They are behaving like Makorokoza.  They go to the diamond mines and they korokoza.  Now in Gachekache, they korokoza without achieving anything.  So, how really can you do anything tangible in Gachekache when you have failed to mine the God given diamonds that we have? 

Money has been seen going into people’s personal accounts.  You know that we have citizens who are very law abiding.  If I was not a Member of Parliament, I would really lead a demonstration to Gudyanga’s office because he does not deserve to be in that office.  What is he doing in that office, a Professor?  It seems like he went to school to come and steal from the resources of this country.  He is a Professor of stealing.  He is not a Professor running the Ministry as he should.  We have got the aspect of the diamond industry.  The smuggling - they have created a system where they benefit from smuggling and basically do not want any security or system in place because they know they will benefit at the end of the day.  The price of diamonds right now, listening to the report by the former CEO, was very clear that we can still turn this around if we have people who are professional who have to do it. 

We have the aspect of those being relocated Madam Speaker.  Surely, do we not have mercy on our people?  They were relocated and told that they were going to get everything according to what they wanted compensated.  Up to now, they have not been compensated and with the way we are looking at things, by the time that the compensation is due to them, there will be no diamonds left with the way these thieves are stealing those diamonds.  So, what security do they have? 

We represent people and in representing people, the people that were relocated, how are they able to earn their living without Government coming in to do what it has to do?  We, as Parliament, can play our role Madam Speaker but it is very clear to me that the Executive is not playing its role.  The Executive includes His Excellency and the two Vice Presidents who should oversee the performance of those Ministers who have not had a reshuffle - I do not know for how long.  The reason why people are not reshuffled is that they are constantly patronising His Excellency because they know that they have got crimes.  These guys are criminals and if there is anything, they must actually spend more money building jails because after some time, they will be languishing in those prisons.  We have people who are supposed to be in prison running the Government. How can we really encourage that to happen?  From an operational capacity, it was pretty clear that if it is brought back to what it is supposed to be, there is a lot of profit.

          With the Community Ownership Trust, money was given; we saw cheques, we saw the President being given cheques by these diamond companies but we have seen nothing in terms of the communities being assisted with that money at the end of the day.  You really wonder in terms of reviewing the policy whether the Community Ownership Trust is working?  I think the danger in the Community Ownership Trust is especially where diamonds are related where you have so much resources is that they should be housed at provincial level and not at district level.  This is because the capacity for the people to manage so much money is not there. 

There are certain areas and provinces which do not have diamonds but they grow food, they produce maize and the maize feeds everyone.  So, it is equally important that from the Community Ownership Trust, if a provincial development trust was put together, it would ensure that things are happening in a proper way.

Madam Speaker, I want to end by saying we must respect this Constitution and report clearly, expose the lack of respect for this Constitution where nothing is implemented according to the Constitution.  That is the reason why I rise to say that we are dealing with a dysfunctional company; a company which is not supposed to be registered, a company which is supposed to be closed right now and people are arrested and investigated.  Maybe, let them be investigated and arrested, which is critical.  I am in fact used to being arrested and then investigated but really it must be investigation to be arrested.  So to me, it is important Madam Speaker that we take this report seriously. 

I want to thank the Committee for producing such a report without fear or favour – [HON. MEMBERS:  Hear, hear.] -  For me, it was going to be difficult for anybody else to do that, more-so the report coming from the Government of the day, which really is in the hands of the ruling party.  I hope the ruling party will take this seriously.  We are also tired of members of the ruling party giving reports and not acting.  When they go to the caucuses, they do not do anything.  It is about time you also act in your party which is ruling because failure to act, you shall not govern.  You shall be punished for the thieving and corruption that is happening.  The good Lord is watching you.  Act, do not talk.  Thank you. 

HON. GABBUZA:  Thank you Madam Speaker. I will be very brief.  Madam Speaker, let me first of all thank the Chairman for the very good and bold report.  What is happening in Marange can be best summarized in two words - negligence and ignorance.  I will try and highlight to you Madam Speaker how negligence is taking place. 

When the several companies were merged together, although unwillingly, they were not given time to wind up.  They were just told to leave everything.  They left equipment, vehicles and houses and certainly there were few guys left to mann and look after the equipment.  When you go now, there are several lorries and a lot of equipment which has been vandalized.  Existing companies are now cannibalising removing tyres from the vehicles that were left and assisting themselves to do their own equipment which they are failing to do. 

There are things like the monitoring and surveillance cameras that were manning the whole area.  Nobody is looking after that and they are now dilapidated.  The nice houses that were built for the workers, now rats, owls, et cetera are living inside; things are just falling apart.  The people that instructed the merger of those companies did not even take time to make sure the remaining equipment is looked after for the benefit of this country.  When equipment is imported, it is not for that particular company.  It serves this country and it must be protected.  Unfortunately, what is happening there is really a sorry state.

Secondly, when you travel to Marange there are no bridges. This new company that is mining which brings out the issue of negligence, is not even constructing bridges.  With all the rains that were falling, each time they want to pass through a stream, they bring rocks, rubbles, et cetera and dump it across the stream and their equipment and trucks cross over.  When heavy rains come, they flash off all those rocks into Save River causing more siltation.  They go again, bring some more rubble, dump into the river and they cross.  They are not interested in building any bridges at all. That is serious level of negligence.  EMA is there, they are watching these things.  Rivers are being silted and people are without water downstream because of the siltation. 

On security checks, diamonds world-over are precious stones.  You do not just pass through a diamond mining company as if you are crossing a park.  There is thorough checking.  There are various equipment or machines that you go through to check whether you have swallowed any diamonds. They have very sophisticated equipment but in Marange, we have two or three security officers with very dirty and torn uniforms.  You can see that this is a poor company manning.  The way they check, they have to touch all over you.  They use very primitive method of security check.  You raise your feet and they check under your feet.  Where on earth do you search for diamonds in that manner?

The old companies that were pushed out had sophisticated equipment.  You go through it and it scans you to check that you have no other stones in your pockets. In the new system, the companies have to use their hands to check if anybody is moving out with diamonds.  That is primitive and not efficient at all. 

On the issues of ignorance, the method of mining which is being used now, we have been told before that those diamonds are not from under the earth’s crust, they are alluvial diamonds brought by water from somewhere.  The ‘somewhere’ up to now, with all the mining that has been going on, nobody knows where they came from.  The alluvial were brought from somewhere.  If we were a clever country, the idea is to look for the source where those diamonds came from but up to now, with all these years of mining, nobody knows. If you ask those geologists, they will tell you we are almost certain.  You cannot be almost certain after nine years or so of mining.  That is serious ignorance on the part of Government.  We have mining going on and we do not know the source of those diamonds. 

The method of mining, currently they are mining an overburden of about 15 metres waste material, almost the height of this Parliament building.  They mine it, put it on tracks and tram it about a kilometer to dump it somewhere just to access one metre of the ore body which they suspect could be having diamonds.  Where on earth do you mine like that?  We are told those people doing the mining are not professional diamond miners, they have no experience.  The previous guys had experience but the current ones could have experience in mining chrome and other minerals.  Where would you mine 10 or 15 metres of useless material?  You carry it away just to access one metre underground.  We were suggesting to them  that, why do you not simply push it on the side to access that then you do not need to pay a lot of expenses moving it to the furthest point.  That is a very expensive method of mining. 

Within the mining area, there is no electricity and yet the grid is just a few kilometers away.  They have to run all the equipment using generators on diesel.  Honestly, you do not need to be an economist to see that it is not cost effective.  Just put a grid across and use it, which will be cheaper.  To run 40 or so processing plants using 7, 20, 30 50 kv generators is very expensive and the amount of diesel, you would really need a filling station to be on standby.  That is exactly what is pertaining there.  Besides, I was asking myself when we went as a Committee, what is the role of ZMDC there and what is the role of Government because everything happening at Chiadzwa is sub-contracted. 

Even cleaning the diamonds, they subcontract.  The surveyors to survey, they subcontract. To do the geological findings, they subcontract and to do the actual mining, they subcontract.  Then you wonder why we have all these officers.  Why do we not simply allow a private company to mine and you charge them because we have subcontracted everything from the actual preparations of mining, the mining up to the selling.  Even the sorting of the diamonds have to be done by a private company – subcontracted.  So what is the purpose of our presence there?

When you are mining diamonds, Madam Speaker, there are four things that they normally call four Cs.  There is the clarity, the carratage.  The clarity being the smartness of the diamonds but for you to get a smart diamond, you do not need to look for it from the alluvial deposits because the alluvial deposits are mixed with a lot of other dirt.  You will spend more money to clean it.  You look for a deep seated diamond underground which is not tainted with other impurities.  There is the issue of the corners, that is the other C.  You cannot mine an alluvial diamond and expect to get money more money because it has rolled over.  It was transported by water over a long period of time.  So the corners which are important in a diamond, the 16 or 32 corners which normally are important when they are buying them for a high value, if you buy a diamond that has been rolled over, all those corners have been smoothened, it is now a pebble stream.  The people mining there are going for the alluvial instead of the deep-seated.  When we got there, they were thinking of mining the metamophors, the ones that have been crushed under the rods which are even less properly shaped than those that would be found under a normal environment.

From the Committee’s analysis, as Government, we have no business in mining those diamonds because we do not have the expertise and we do not have the knowledge, not even the care.  We would rather have the original companies to mine and we agree on a shareholding.  Even if we called back the companies that were mining, they will not be interested because right now, all the equipment is obsolete. Their debtors and creditors have been selling that equipment.  Some of it has been stolen; it is really a sore state.  For us as Government to be sitting and expecting revenue from that defunct mining operation is just a waste of time.  The quicker the Minister of Mines puts his hand on what is happening in Marange, the better.  Otherwise, there is no diamond to talk about now with the current level of expertise that is there in Marange.  I thank you Madam Speaker.

HON. CHIRISA:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  I would like to thank the Chairperson of the Mines and Energy Portfolio Committee for presenting such a wonderful report.  I also want to contribute but my question is diamonds, diamonds and diamonds which have a very high potential of reviving this economy, unfortunately because of illicit flaws and corruption, this has not happened.  Mr. Speaker Sir, there has not been any explanation so that we have knowledge of how much diamonds we have in Marange.  Nothing was done.  I think this was done purposely so that people will harp harphazardly take away our diamonds to fill up their pockets. 

Mr. Speaker Sir, let us take the local authority, the Mutare Rural District Council which should be one of the beneficiaries, there is tax levy that is supposed to go to the local authority, they never received that.  The companies also committed themselves to community social responsibilities, that is looking after the communities.  This has not happened and I doubt whether the new company will be able to do that because they are not concerned about all these things.  The local authority, the Chief Executive Officer of Mutare Rural District Council and his team are not allowed Mr. Speaker Sir, into Marange diamond fields, yet they are the local authority. 

They have projects or programmes that they had planned when the diamonds were discovered but they were not sponsored because this was not priority for the companies that were mining.  The ZMDC is worse because they are not even considering all those things.  Mr. Speaker Sir, the community which was supposed to benefit when they moved out of Marange to go to ARDA Transaal, they did not keep the promises that were made.  They did not fulfil the commitment that was made and these people are suffering.  We went and sympathised with them. The situation is so pathetic that those people when they agreed to be moved, they thought it was going to be heaven on earth.  The promises and assurances that were made were never implemented.  They were supposed to get a monthly allowance and were supposed to have own houses for their children built at a later stage but this was not done.  There were houses that were kept for the other group to occupy when they moved into ARDA Transaal but the children of the parents who were already in ARDA Transaal have moved into those houses because they have also married.  Those small houses cannot accommodate them, their families as well as their parents.  Mr. Speaker Sir, Marange diamonds is a sad story. 

We also have the $15 billion that the President talked about and up to now, we do not know what happened to that $15 billion which could have covered a lot of ground in terms of reviving the economy and making sure that each and every family would survive in this economic situation.  I do not think there would be any need for Minister Dokora to talk about paying school fees with goats because that $15 billion would have covered everything. 

Mr. Speaker Sir, Mutare as a city would have benefited from Marange diamonds, but looking at the roads and the state of the city, it is not showing that Mutare is the capital city of Marange where there are diamond fields.  I think Government should do something.  It should pull up its socks and make sure that Marange diamonds are used for the purpose that everybody is expecting.  The Marange community and the local authorities have high expectations.  As Members of Parliament representing people, we also had high expectations and this is a sad story. 

Mr. Speaker Sir, there is EMA that is collecting millions of dollars, but if you look at the state of Marange fields, there are gullies and livestock are falling into those gullies which are not being reclaimed.  The people there do not have clean water and the women suffer most.  There is a lot of pollution affecting their health.  When this happens, it is mostly the women and children who are affected.  I think we have failed as a State.  We have failed as a Government to make sure that Marange benefits every community member and the country at large.

The Committee members who visited Marange diamonds had also their expectations and thought they would go and visit where the final diamonds are then packed for forwarding.  Mr. Speaker, when people went in, they thought that they were going to see the diamonds but they did not see them.  You should have seen how these MPs were searched yet they did not see or touch any diamond.  The way that they were searched was an embarrassment, especially that the women MPs were searched by male security guards which I think is not fair because there was no reason to search us for as there were no diamonds that we even saw.  So, maybe they were trying to prove to us that their security is tight but to whom because already diamonds are going out of Marange fields.

          Then Mr. Speaker, I have the issue of the Kimberly Process which we are a member of, yet we are supposed to then get statistics and compare what our Ministry has as statistics of diamonds that have already been mined and what Kimberly Process has as a monitoring agent but we do not have that kind of information.  As a Committee, I think that we need to also get statistics to also monitor because that is our oversight role to make sure that the statistics are matching the Kimberly Process and the Government of Zimbabwe.  The dismissal of some of the former employees was very unfair because if you look at the way that they were dismissed and the exit interviews that were done using the system which I do not know, it was very new to me and even the terms that were used there were also new to me.  To me, this was a way of just saying, you go without anything after all those years that they had worked at Marange Diamonds.  I think that it is very unfair because they did not get any packages and their families are suffering.  When this happens, it is the women and children who suffer most.

          Mr. Speaker Sir, when we talk of recruitment at Marange Diamond fields, we did not see any locals even for lower grades and people were being bused from other provinces to come and work in the mining fields.  I do not think that that is fair for the Marange communities and I think that as Parliament, we must make sure that the recommendations that were made by Hon. Muzenda are followed to the point.  I thank you.

          HON. NDUNA:  Thank you very much Mr. Speaker.  I would want to add my voice and I would want to congratulate Dr. Shumba and Hon. Muzenda for presenting a report that is flawless in terms of presentation – that is quite eloquent and they did it vociferously and effectively.  I want to say that the whole world-over, nations which are endowed with a ubiquitous amount of mineral wealth, it translates into modernisation of their infrastructural development. 

I want to say diamonds in particular, that reside in our nation should have translated to the wealth of the nation and I am quite alive and aware to the issue of the late Muammar Gaddafi the Libyan President, in that he would distribute the mineral wealth of his nation to all and sundry in the citizenry of Libya.  And, one would wonder why they killed Muamar Gaddafi – those neocolonialists, colonialists and the capitalists.  Mr. Speaker Sir, we should have taken a cue from such countries and such leadership style in order to enhance and to develop our nation, utilising what we have to get what we want.  Mr. Speaker Sir, I certainly want to touch in particular on the lessons that we have learnt from the ills of the mining in Marange fields so that they are not repeated in various other areas;  also aware that we have a lot of other minerals, over 60 minerals of which only 20 have been exploited and less than 20 are being extracted. 

What we know as a nation is that we have diamonds, gold, platinum and chrome and the rest of other minerals including lithium and uranium. We are not yet or we have not yet embarked on extracting those resources.  What has happened in Marange should not recur in all other areas and how do I hope that it would not recur.  We have seen a lot of illicit outflows at Marange and as I speak, we are certainly enriching Mozambique and the Portuguese speaking countries and other Asian countries through Mozambique, through illicit outflows and through revenue leakages from the diamond rich Marange area.  The sooner we stopped those leakages and illicit outflows by putting in relevant administration structures that are going to curtail the outflows of our mineral wealth, the better.  Howbeit, whatever it is that is occurring at Marange that occurred there that caused the illicit outflows which by the way, President Thabo Mbeki at one point said, Africa was losing about $80 billion worth of US dollars in terms of its minerals per annum.  This is one of the ways that Africa is losing its wealth and in particular Zimbabwe.  This should not recur elsewhere Mr. Speaker Sir – for a nation as small as Zimbabwe and as land - linked as Zimbabwe is, with an amount of wealth in particular the diamond sector as we have, we should be red, taidayi tese takamenyukira, with a good skin and with a lot of wealth individually and severally in this nation.

          Our nation should not be a $4.5 billion economy Mr. Speaker Sir.  I beg to differ when the Hon. Minister of Finance and Economic Development comes here and presents a budget that only speaks to and about tax collection at the border amounting to about $4.5 billion to finance the national budget.  Mr. Speakr Sir, we are a way bigger than that because we are endowed with mineral wealth which we are not utilising optimally, effectively and efficiently to its conclusive positive end.

Having said that, the issue of there being a Minister of Mines and Mining Development alone making decisions on such very key and important issues, I believe that it is okay for a nation which is not at a crossroad such as ours; a nation which wants to up its budget to about $50 billion and $100 billion per annum.  We need as I have always alluded to, a decision making process which is called a mining indaba when it comes to our mineral wealth, where we can sit – all technocrats and all those fundis in the mining sector to speak about our mineral wealth so that we can optimally utilise them for the good order and benefit of the citizenry of Zimbabwe.  Mr. Speaker Sir, yes the Minister can make the final decision on what it is that is supposed to occur in the mines and mineral sector but, to say that we are so impoverished as a nation and we have more than 13 million heads in terms of population and to say we are also endowed with technocrats that are second to none, in the whole of Africa and we are so literate.  We are the second highest literate nation in the whole of Africa, if not in the whole world.  We need to come together with the Minister of Mines and Mining Development and say what is it that we can do to get out of the impoverishment of this nation by utilising the diamonds, in particular those that resides at Marange.

          So, the mining indaba needs to be put in place immediately so that we can help the Minister of Mines and Mining Development, getting us out of where we are, to get us to where we want to be Mr. Speaker Sir.  This nation is too impoverished but we are a nation – tirikufa nenyota makumbo ari mumvura.  Having said that, infrastructure development, the spaghetti network roads of Hong Kong and America can come into Zimbabwe if we utilise our God-given diamond resources Mr. Speaker Sir.  It is not too late, having said there is now formulation of other quasi and Government departments, ZTDC and such like, if they are formulated in the right manner; if without delay, the formulation of mining indabas to complement and augment what the Minister of Mines and Mining Development is doing, we are certainly going to get out of the doldrums of poverty and get to the city of Canaan as a nation.   Mr. Speaker, we are a nation endowed with milk and honey.  It certainly makes me weep on how it is that we are where we are; endowed, as I have said, with ubiquitous amounts of mineral wealth. 

Now, we are dealing with the gold sector.  As long as the Mines and Minerals Act has not come to Parliament and we are waiting for it like forever, we are going to continue having leakages in the gold sector as well.  I speak so today because there has not been any investigation in the gold sector but we are losing more in the gold sector than we lost in the diamond sector.  We are losing because the same enfranchisation of those that are marginalised, the Black majority, who today have been commended for bringing 10 tonnes of gold in 2016, who are termed artisanal miners and small scale miners are not formally part of this economy.

Tomorrow we will be standing here debating the illicit outflows caused by gold because of the marginalisation of these people that are on the fringes of economic benefit.  Whereas, if we embrace them, embed them in the economy of this nation, bring them together and make sure that we get what we want out of the gold that we have as a nation, we will get out of the doldrums of the economic quagmire that we currently are embedded in.

I make a clarion call today, in the same manner that Members of Parliament have embraced the issue of the gold sector championed by the artisanal miners and also led by yours truly.  I make a clarion call here today so that in the future, we will not cry for our gold that would have eloped to other nations.  It is sad Mr. Speaker Sir, there is five tonnes of gold accruing to Rand Refinery, from Zimbabwe each month through illicit outflows.   I should hasten to say, as a nation we are only crying for about 28 tonnes of gold per annum, when we cannot curtail the illicit outflows going to South Africa, now being refined as South Africa’s own gold and being sold to multi-nationals in other jurisdictions.  It is time we wake up and smelt the coffee as a nation so that each and every one is playing their part to make sure we enrich Zimbabwe to become second to none. 

Those claims that are held for speculative purposes is where the small scale miners and artisanal miners are busy eking out living and making sure that they are making you Mr. Speaker and the rest of the Members of Parliament earn their living at the end of the month.  Mind you Mr. Speaker, you are earning your salary, the 4th or 10th of the next month because those artisanal miners and small scale miners would at that time have been evading arrest to try and deliver their gold to Fidelity Printers.  However much time it takes them to deliver their gold after the impediments, red tape and bureaucracies that are there embedded in the present Mines and Minerals Act, then at that time, the Minister of Finance and Economic Development only gets his money and gives you out of the royalties 5% from the big miners and 3% from the small scale miners.

I make this clarion call that Hon. Members here in Parliament can come together with one voice and make sure that there is no repeat in illicit outflows to the tune of US$15 billion or more because of the marginalisation of those people that are bringing gold to Fidelity Printers.  Mr. Speaker Sir, the small scale miners and artisanal miners who minimally get 15 points per day and maybe a maximum of 100g per month each, will never be engaged and involved in illicit outflows, in particular those that are utilising claims that are held for speculative purposes.  Also aware that the ACR and De Beers who left Marange are now entrenched and embedded at Pickstone Mine in Chegutu West Constituency and they are listed on the Australian and London Stock Exchange, using the mineral wealth deposits, rewards and power of the gold that we have got here  in Zimbabwe, and Chegutu West in particular, the small scale miners will work for the good of this nation.

These are the people that plundered our resources in Marange.  These are the same people that we are living to plunder our resources in Chegutu West in particular and Chegutu Administrative District in general and also Zimbabwe in general.  We should wake up and empower the small scale miners to immediately extract the resources that we are endowed with and deliver them to Fidelity Printers, as they are doing but we should remove the impediments and we should not arrest them.  We should de-criminalise them and we will benefit as a nation without any further illicit outflows and revenue leakages as they have been seen in Marange.

As I conclude, I would like to congratulate the Hon. Members for now taking on board the issue of de-criminalisation of artisanal miners and that they are now going to make a clarion call that there be a moratorium before the Mines and Minerals Act comes to this House.  There should be a moratorium for all those artisanal miners that are delivering their gold to Fidelity Printers, that they are not arrested, according to Section 3 of the Gold Act, that criminalises gold possession.  Also de-criminalise the Mines and Minerals Act, Section 368, that criminalises prospecting without a licence and get these people incarcerated for 10 years without an option of a fine. 

Mr. Speaker Sir, I would like to thank you for giving me this opportunity and I want to congratulate once again Hon. Dr. Shumba and Hon. Muzeda in absentia for a report that is quite pregnant with a lot of very important issues. I thank you.

          *HON. MAHOKA: Let me start by thanking Hon. Shumba for the report that he has brought which was seconded by Hon. Muzenda. We thank the Committee for coming up with such a report which is detailed. Let me then say that when reports are tabled by the Minister of Finance and Economic Development, you find the officials from the Ministry taking notes, meaning that they are serious about the business. When the Committee brought the report, I was anticipating that the officials in the Ministry of Mines and Mining Development would be taking notes to show that they treat the issues being raised here seriously. I believe they have taken it as nothing of consequence, hence their absence.

          When the issue of diamonds came to light, artisanal miners were mining and smuggling was rampant. At that time, a lot of money was going round in Zimbabwe. Even in Hurungwe, money was found because artisanal miners were spreading the wealth. When Government descended into the arena to look into the diamond mining, money was never shown in this august House and neither were reports that were positive shown of the positive developments that were taking place in Marange. Maybe a report was tabled during my absence, but even if I was absent I should have seen the report in my pigeon hole but alas, to date I have not seen anything to that effect.

          I am not sure if the workers at Marange are being paid from the proceeds, because as Government we should pride ourselves with the God-given diamonds. Diamonds should not be a monopoly to an individual but these diamonds are for the nation and should benefit the nation. We should be able to ensure that there is poverty alleviation as a result of the well-endowed diamonds that we have.

I have observed that we are not going to receive anything meaningful from the diamond mining. Karoi is now better than Mutare City. There is no evidence to show that there is diamond mining nearby. Mutare is in a sorry state. It has potholes, the roads are in a bad state and the schools are nothing to be proud of as a country. We want to see a change in the state of affairs in Mutare in that regards. I believe that even the communities; the Community Share Ownership Trusts (CSOTs) have not received anything tangible that was used by the CSOTs. The people in that area are still suffering. If possible, we should be able to uplift the standard of living of the people in Marange so that they could pride our Government of having done a good job.

There is an issue of the board which was raised here. I do not know if it is true that our country which has God-given diamonds, is run by a one man board. Prof. Gudyanga is now the one-man board. He is the owner of the cattle, the headman and also counts the cattle to see if they are all in the kraal. I do not think that is good corporate governance. There is need for separation of roles in that regard so that there are checks and balances.

Recommendations have been made by the Committee. I support the recommendation that there be a board by the end of June. The board should quickly be put in place so that there is good governance. If there are also investigations into the theft that are alleged to be taking place, Prof Gudyanga should be suspended so that investigations can be done. I believe that the recommendations made by the Committee are good for us. There should be the timeous appointment of the board and diamond mining should not be the preserve of Government when nothing is coming to Government. There should be several players involved in diamond mining. There should be several experts that will then compete so that this country can develop.

Hon. Mliswa urged that the Constitution should be respected. In his absence, I do not believe that the Constitution is being followed. If it was being followed we would now have a 50/50 representation. The men would be ashamed and would be giving the 50/50 representation. They should not run with the hare and hunt with the hounds. The men should behave in an honourable manner. Let me thank the Committee and the Deputy Minister who is here taking notes because he does not have the staff to come and listen to what is being debated in this House.

Let me go into the issue of mining, there is Eureka Mine which either folded up or was forfeited, as the member has used the word. We believe mining was stopped and because the mining was stopped, there should be those people that specialise in mining who should put their papers in order so that they are allowed to continue mining. In the end, we are punishing innocent souls because we require money to be raised in order to have taxes. We should not tax people heavily or punish our people. I thank you Mr. Speaker for granting me the opportunity to add my voice to the debate.

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

HON. NDUNA: I second.

Motion put and agreed to.

Debate to resume: Wednesday, 3rd May, 2017.

On the motion of HON. MATUKE seconded by HON. D. SIBANDA, the House adjourned at Quarter to Five o’clock p.m.

 

 

 

 

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