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NATIONAL ASSEMBLY HANSARD 15 FEBRUARY 2017 VOL 43 NO 36

PARLIAMENT OF ZIMBABWE

Wednesday, 15th February, 2017

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

PRAYERS

(THE HON. SPEAKER in the Chair)

ANNOUNCEMENT BY THE HON. SPEAKER

INVITATION TO A ZIPAH MEETING

THE HON. SPEAKER: I wish to inform the House that, the Zimbabwe Parliamentarians on HIV Steering Committee is inviting all ZIPAH Members and those interested in joining the organisation to a meeting on Thursday, 16th February, 2017 at 1200 hours in the Government Caucus Room. 

HON. CROSS: Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of privilege.  Tonight at about midnight the cyclone in the Mozambique channel is going to cross the coast.  It is just south of Beira and I am told that by Friday it will be over Matebeleland South.  I am told that up to 400mm of rain can be expected.  In South Africa, they have issued a warning to people living in the north-east of South Africa as to what precautions they are to take.  Mr. Speaker Sir, I do not know if the Minister responsible is in the House but I would hope that the Government of Zimbabwe would take the necessary technical measures to prepare the people of Matebeleland South for this coming event. I understand that the cyclone will be influential over Zimbabwe for approximately five days. I hope this might not be a repeat of Cyclone Eline but it does merit close observation and careful preparations.  Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.] - 

Hon. Cross was asked to approach the Chair.

ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITHOUT NOTICE

*HON. MUPFUMI:  My question is directed to the Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare.  We have a lot of people in state enterprises such as Hwange Colliery and the National Railways of Zimbabwe who live in compounds in these areas and have not been paid their salaries for some time.

What is Government policy, across the board, with regards to payment of these outstanding salaries?

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order, Hon. Members, if you start with one language, you must stick to that language until you finish.

*THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF PUBLIC SERVICE, LABOUR AND SOCIAL SERVICES (HON. ENG. MATANGAIDZE):  Thank you very much Mr. Speaker Sir and I am also grateful to Hon. Mupfumi for this question.

These are parastatals that fall under line ministries and they report to those ministries.  As the Ministry of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare, we only come in when there are labour issues that have to be resolved unless there is anything else that has to do with the Ministry.  If you remember yesterday, I spoke about the problems bedeviling the Hwange Colliery Company and the National Railways of Zimbabwe workers and others including those of  ZISCO.

There are other companies that have now gone bankrupt or have shutdown.  The workers are in problems because they are not being paid.  We believe there are plans in place whereby the line ministries should render assistance to these parastatals.  As  the Ministry of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare, we come in where there are social problems regarding these workers because we are supposed to assist people when they are starving or have other social problems – [AN HON. MEMBER: Inaudible interjections.]

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order, the Hon. Member sitting at the back.  Please you did not come here in order to make noise, I will recognise you.

*HON. ENG. MATANGAIDZE:  Once again, thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  I emphasise the fact that as a ministry, we only intervene when we feel there are welfare challenges being faced by these workers such as lack of food or provision of social services.

For example, we assisted the Hwange Colliery Company workers  a month or two ago giving them food for sustenance.

HON. P D. SIBANDA:  Thank you Mr. Speaker, the Hon. Minister states that they intervene where they see that there is a problem pertaining to the welfare of employees.  I am sure it also applies to former employees as well.

We have got an outstanding situation of pensioners who have not received their once-off lump sum payments of their pensions from various ministries, departments and Government parastatals ranging from 2009 going backwards.  What is the Ministry doing to ensure that those pensioners who are now wallowing in poverty get their emoluments from Government?

HON. ENG. MATANGAIDZE:  Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  In relation to pensions, allow me to focus specifically on NSSA which falls under our purview.  You will also appreciate that there are other pensions in Government which do not necessarily fall under our Ministry.

I hope that you realise that due to financial constraints, it is difficult to give lump sum payments as and when people go on pension or are retired but I believe that commitment has been made to pay monthly disbursements which in the short to medium term, should cushion the retrenched and employees who have gone on retirement in the interim.  I do understand and appreciate the predicament that when people go on retirement, they expect a lump sum payment and the challenge is really with the financial position that we currently find ourselves in.  We hope that it will be attended to as and when the financial situation improves.  I thank you.

HON. MUNENGAMI:  Thank you Hon. Speaker, the Minister stated that there is an arrangement …

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order, the Hon. Minister.

HON. MUNENGAMI:  Sorry, sorry, the Hon. Minister Matangaidze – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order, please address the Chair do not worry.

HON. MUNENGAMI:  Thank you Mr. Speaker, I do not mind them.  The Hon. Minister has actually stated that monthly disbursements have been agreed.  Can he clarify to this House in terms of the percentages like what the Hon. Member of Parliament asked that what is the lump sum that they are supposed to be paid?  He agreed that they are paying monthly disbursements.  Can he clarify on the aspect of the percentages of the monthly disbursements? 

THE HON. SPEAKER:  I did not quite follow the question, percentage of what?

HON. MUNENGAMI:  Let us say they have a lump sum of $2 000.00 just as an example.  Then the Minister, instead of paying the lump sum of $2 000.00 pays monthly disbursements; he did not clarify the specific percentages of those monthly disbursements.

HON. ENG. MATANGAIDZE:  Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  May I seek the indulgence of the House to come back with the specific percentages related to the amounts being paid. Suffice to say, the minimum that we are disbursing right now is $60 per month but obviously, that will vary with amounts of money owing to individual retirees.  My Minister is on record that we appreciate that the $60 per month is not adequate. I would like to think going into the second quarter of this year, we should be able to push those disbursements to a minimum of $100 per month. I thank you.

HON. A. MNANGAGWA: Thank you Mr. Speaker. My question is going to the Minister of Agriculture. All value chain actors should be empowered to build their capacity leading to the creation of reliable local selling markets of their produce. I do not know what the Government policy is in terms of rolling out this programme to benefit the farmers.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE (CROPPING) (HON. MARAPIRA): I thank the Hon. Member for the question. As Government, we have a lot of programmes meant for value addition. There are a lot of companies which have been opened up, for instance in cotton production we have companies in Chitungwiza which are there for value addition. We also have companies in Norton for value addition.  So, we are actually looking forward for more companies in terms of value addition. I thank you.

HON. A.  MNANGAGWA: My question has not been adequately answered. I am saying I feel all value chain actors in agriculture should be empowered to build their capacity leading to the creation of reliable selling markets of their produce. Now, I do not know what the Government policy is in terms of rolling out this programme to benefit these farmers – [HON. DR. LABODE: There is no money.] – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order! We do not have self appointed Ministers here. So, allow the responsible Minister to answer accordingly. Thank you.

HON. MARAPIRA: Thank you Hon. Speaker Sir. I would want to advise the Hon. Member that usually when it comes to value addition, it is under the Ministry of Industry and Commerce – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – Hon. Speaker Sir, I would want this to be put in writing – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

HON. MUNENGAMI: Thank you Hon. Speaker. This is why we always say Ministers and Deputy Ministers should always attend Parliament during Question and Answer sessions. The problem which we have just encountered, we do not want to expose our Ministers or Deputy Ministers. I think Hon. Mnangangwa was very clear in her question and the Deputy Minister at first, was also very clear in answering, only to turn later to say no, this does not fall under our Ministry. That was the first. Then secondly, she has to put it in writing. So, has he remembered now that the questions fall under a certain Ministry that he now wants it to be put in writing – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order! I have listened very carefully to the question from the Hon. Member. It is quite involved as it touches on agriculture and also on the Ministry of Industry and Commerce. So, sometimes it is necessary that the two Ministries coordinate so that a comprehensive answer is given – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

HON. J. TSHUMA: My question is directed to the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order! Hon. Munengami, please. Can we hear the question please? – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – Hon. Tshuma, the Hon. Member has apologised. Why do you want to hit him further?

HON. J. TSHUMA: My question is directed to the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education, Hon. Dr. Dokora. I want to find out what the Government policy is on the issue of teachers that were engaged by your Ministry beginning of Third Term last year, 2016 who have not received a cent of their salaries up to today and yet they are reporting for duty every day. What is the policy of your Ministry towards paying these teachers since they have now worked for more than four months?

THE MINISTER OF PRIMARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION (HON. DR. DOKORA): I thank the Hon. Member for raising the question. It is a matter that has been exercising the mind of the Ministry, fortunately not alone but together with the employer. So, as I speak, I am aware that the employer and the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development are aware that they need to take care of those teachers that have not been paid as indicated in the Hon. Members statement.  So, it is an important matter and I am grateful that he shares our concern as well.

          HON. MPARIWA:  Thank you Hon. Speaker. In the absence of the Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Services, I will direct my question to the deputy.  Hon. Speaker, I think you may recall that even during the SONA presentation by the Head of State of Zimbabwe, he bemoaned the absence of a legal framework on the Tripartite Negotiating Forum which is a chamber that brings together all social partners, that is business, Government and labour; so that there is social cohesion which will result in a social contract.  When are we likely to see the Minister bringing such kind of a Bill to Parliament?

          THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF PUBLIC SERVICE, LABOUR AND SOCIAL SERVICES (HON. ENG. MATANGAIDZE): Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  If you recall, there is a motion in this House on initiatives that our Ministry is taking and we need to respond to that motion.  Only yesterday, I was speaking to Hon. Hlongwane requesting that it be brought back on the Order Paper.  I have a detailed response to that and with her indulgence, if I can adequately cover that in a formal presentation next week, I thank you.

          HON. MAJAYA:  Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  My question is directed to the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education, Hon. Dr. Dokora. Is it Government policy that teachers sign pay sheets every month? Does it mean that the Ministry has no data base?

          THE MINISTER OF PRIMARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION (HON. DR. DOKORA): I thank you Hon. Speaker and I thank the Hon. Member for asking the question.  I want to just recall sometime in 2015 when there was a very difficult moment in our sector when the Public Service Commission did say there were persons that could be described as ghost teachers.  Now, the Hon. Member is asking whether it is policy for a person to sign for the pay sheet as they collect their dues.  I think we should understand that when we are trying to be accountable and transparent, these kinds of instruments assist us to be clear and dealing with persons who are at a station and who are actually able to sign for their dues.  I thank you.

          *HON. MAJAYA:  Why is it that only teachers are the ones that sign when receiving their pay slips and yet the police force does not have such modus operandi?

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  The Hon. Minister of Secondary and Primary Education is not the Minister of Home Affairs, so that question may not arise.

          HON. MLISWA:  On a point of order Hon. Speaker Sir.

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

          HON. MLISWA:  Hon. Speaker, you are holding a list from the ZANU PF Chief Whip and equally, the MDC T Chief Whip does give you a list.  I do not belong to either party, so how am I accommodated? – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] -

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, a list is composed of more than one person. So, the Hon. Member will recall that I have always recognised him and in my absence, my fellow panelists on my right here have recognised the Hon. Member.  So, you will be recognised in due course.

                HON. CHAMISA:  On a point of order Hon. Speaker Sir.

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

          HON. CHAMISA: Thank you Hon. Speaker.  I have realised that you have taken it as conversion that in this Parliament we come to be divided on the basis of parties. You realise that...

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Be divided?

          HON. CHAMISA:  Yes, you are dividing because once you say there is a list from ZANU PF, a list of MDC-T, you are already delving into parties but when you are Speaker, you are Speaker – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – In the Constitution, there is nowhere where it is contemplating, even in the rules that you would then divide people on the basis of parties.  We may need if you want equity, to perhaps look at rural and urban areas but not on parties.   Once you do that, you are actually prejudicing constituencies on the basis of a criterion that is unknown at law.

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  I hear you; you have made your point.

          HON. CHAMISA:  Thank you and I am glad you know that it is a correct point.  Thank you very much.

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  I hear Hon. Chamisa. There is the question of equity as well and from the right, there have been complaints that some people are not recognised, so I have said those who want to speak, go to your whip and at the same time, on my left they have said we are not recognised.  To be equitable, we are not guided by ZANU PF. We are guided by the people who want to speak from either side.  So, it is a question really of equity rather than anything else. I thank you.

          *HON. PARADZA: Thank you Mr. Speaker.  I am directing my question to the Deputy Minister of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development, we have farmers who are under the Command Agriculture programme who are being tossed around as they are told to go and collect their fertilizers in Harare.  When they get to Harare they are again told to go back to their rural areas and get the inputs for their farming season there.  What is the solution to this problem because if you continue to toss around people who are supposed to be working in the field that is really painful? 

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  I thought that expression is common parlance and if you want an explanation it really means people being allowed to come in and go back, come in and go back without getting the service.

          *THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE (HON. MARAPIRA):  The inputs availed did not tally with the number of farmers who were in the programme, hence these farmers have been told they are on a waiting list.  When more inputs have been imported because we do not have enough in the country, they will be told.  I am hoping that within a week or two, the farmers will be advised of the availability of the inputs.

          HON. ZIYAMBI:  The Minister has told this august House that the inputs are not adequate for the farmers in the programme but what we know is that when the farmers registered in this programme, they were also told the amount of inputs that they would get. Now that these farmers are going to be getting these inputs late when the yield is supposed to be ready for harvest, how are the farmers going to be compensated for this loss in produce?

          HON. MARAPIRA:  We are all aware of the problem we are facing in the country and this is a foreign currency problem.  If we had enough foreign currency, we would have bought all the inputs required by the farmers.

          HON. MAONDERA:  Minister, do you agree that this Command Agriculture programme is now in a sorry state and has not been able to progress as planned.  It is now operating in a haphazard manner and this may distort the expected bumper harvest as envisaged by this programme.

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  The question does not arise.

          *HON. NYAMUPINGA:  My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Health.  When women give birth, they are doing a national duty.  So, what is Government policy regarding the fact that at each hospital or clinic, there should be a mothers’ waiting shelter to enable the mothers to stay within the hospital premises instead of travelling long distances?

          *THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HEALTH AND CHILD CARE (HON. DR. MUSIIWA): It is Government policy especially in rural areas where our road networks are very poor and we have few or no ambulances to access these areas, hence expecting mothers have a problem in accessing these facilities.  Therefore Government policy is that any hospital with maternity facilities should be having waiting rooms for mothers where these mothers are given accommodation and food.  That way, they are able to easily get assistance whenever they are about to give birth.  Government policy is that mothers should give birth at health institutions.

          *HON. NYAMUPINGA:  I want to thank the Hon Minister for his response.  However, what is happening is that most of the Members in both Houses of Parliament have been supporting the construction of these waiting mothers’ shelters through donations of building materials.  Is the Minister aware of what is happening on the ground regarding this programme?

          HON. DR. MUSIIWA:  This is Government policy which started in the year 2012 that waiting mothers’ shelters should be constructed at most health institutions.  This programme started in health development fund districts which were allocated funds to be used in every hospital which deserved it.  So, the funds were to be used to build the waiting mothers’ shelter but because of money problems, we are not able to keep up the pace, but as soon as funds are available we will continue with the programme.  There are also times where as a Ministry; we ask Members of Parliament and the community to give assistance wherever possible in the construction of these shelters.  As a Ministry, we believe that if we construct these shelters, expecting mothers will find it easy to access health facilities.

          HON. MUCHENJE:  My supplementary question is, in places where these mothers’ shelters have been constructed, the expecting mothers are expected to pay rentals equivalent to about twenty dollars for the shelter.  When they are going to give birth, they have to pay some maternity fee which may go up to seventy dollars.  Why should women who are performing a national duty be made to pay and yet we have shelters constructed for them?

          *THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HEALTH AND CHILD CARE  (HON. DR. MUSIIWA):  Thank you very much Mr. Speaker.  Remember I said it is Government policy that we construct these shelters and nobody should pay for these services.  There is a fund which is called HTF and when a mother has given birth at a hospital or clinic, the responsible clinic or hospital should then apply for a refund from the HTF.

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  If there are specific cases, can the Ministry be given the list?  - [AN HON. MEMBER:  I have supplementary question.] -  No. We have had enough of supplementary questions.

          *HON. CHIKOMBA:  My question is directed to the Minister of Agriculture.  We are all aware that this year, Zimbabwe is going to have a bumper harvest.  We have some chemicals which fight off pests.  If we do not have the required pesticides, we are going to lose a very big percentage of our harvest.  What is Government’s policy regarding the availability of these chemicals?

*THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE (CROPPING) (HON. MARAPIRA):  Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir and thank you Hon. Member for asking a pertinent question on the availability of pesticides.  Government has put in place some chemicals which are used in the growing of maize.  Whenever there is any excess harvest within the family, it should be sold to Government.

HON. DR. LABODE:  My question is directed to the Minister of Health and Child Welfare.  I note with regret that drugs for chronic non-communicable diseases like diabetes, insulin and cancer drugs are now going out of stock because of lack of foreign currency.  What action are you taking to ensure that we will not have a lot of patients dying because they cannot access insulin?  A patient on insulin just needs to miss one day to die.  Thank you.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HEALTH AND CHILD CARE (HON. DR. MUSIIWA):  The issue that the Hon. Member has alluded to is an issue of concern.  Yes, we have got shortages of foreign currency.  However, we have been assured by Treasury that they are going to prioritise the issue of essential drugs.  We have forwarded our list of the essential drugs and we have been promised that foreign currency is going to be availed to procure such medication.

HON. D. SIBANDA:  My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Labour and Social Services.  What is the Government’s policy with regards to …

THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Sibanda, you are a seasoned Hon. Member, you address the Chair.

HON. D. SIBANDA:  Thank you very much Mr. Speaker Sir and I am sorry about that. My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Labour and Social Services.  May the Minister tell the House the Government Policy in regard to the distribution of the food relief and also to tell this House the role of the police.

I have noticed that in my constituency, the police will be holding paper work and lining up the people.  What is their role with regards to food relief distribution?

 THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF LABOUR AND SOCIAL SERVICES (HON. ENG. MATANGAIDZE):  I recall that I gave a detailed outline of how the food deficit mitigation programme is implemented.  However, I will give you the main features of that to address your question.

The agreed and authenticated list of vulnerable members of our society is kept in offices of the Social Welfare Section.  However, the people who come up with that list are community leaders, councilors, DAs and everybody of note in that community.  The police are there to maintain discipline and transparency.  It is not up to the police to distribute the food.  Peculiar circumstances might warrant that at some that the list is handled by the police detail although that is not as per the structure that is outlined.

The list of the people who are on the authenticated register cannot be changed by anybody.  The influence of the police is to maintain law and order while food is being distribution. If there are specific examples where the police interfered or even changed the list of beneficiaries, then by all means, we need to intervene and come up with remedial action.  In that regard, I will ask the Hon. Member to give me that specific incident and we will respond to that.

HON. D. SIBANDA:  I hear the Minister very well but the Minister should take note that I said I visited my constituency; it was the ZRP who were holding the list and lining up the beneficiaries.  Is it their role?  Can the Minister specify; the people want to know. - [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] –

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, I do not think we can belabor that question.  The police are there for law and order.  If there is a specific situation and an Hon Member becomes aware, you will have to call the Ministry or Provincial Officers and lodge an official complaint for investigations.

+HON. J. MHLANGA:  Thank your Mr. Speaker Sir.  My question is directed to the Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education. Whatever was done with the operations of universities and the polytechnics showed that 74% of women students are harassed.  There is harassment such as sexual harassment and some of them are even raped by their lecturers and fellow students.  We also have non-teaching staff and security guards.  They also torture these female students.  The main reason why some of these are subjected to such heinous acts is because they need to be supplied with food, higher marks and accommodation.  What is Government policy regarding the protection of the girl child so that the perpetrators of such heinous crimes are convicted and put behind bars and the girl child is protected?

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HIGHER AND TERTIARY EDUCATIONS, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. GANDAWA):  I thank the Hon. Member for her question, but I wish to respond to her in English so that I can get to respond to each and every detail that she spoke about.

I hear what the Hon. Member has said with regards to abuse of female students who are in our tertiary institutions, be it polytechnics, universities or teachers’ colleges, especially with regards to male lecturers, who she alleges want sexual favours from students so that they award them higher marks. 

As a Ministry, we do not condone such kind of behaviour and should we get to know the lecturers who are involved in that, they will be disciplined, but suffice to say that we actually have started to implement a sexual abuse  and harassment policy in all our tertiary institutions, so that we curb against the practice.  You will also note, Hon. Member, that in tertiary institutions, most of the students that we have there are above 18 years and sometimes they consent. 

We are somehow restricted as per the policy that we are going to put up so that we tend to curb against the abuse if these people are not in a relationship.  However, in most cases, we will have problems in some instances where the student says they are mature and can get into a relationship, but we have taken note of the problem that is happening in our institutions of higher learning and we are very sure, we are actually now in the process of realigning all our university Acts to the Constitution and this matter has been brought up in all the consultations that we have done. 

We have gone across all our 46 institutions and this issue was very pertinent.  It came out everywhere where we addressed students and we are seized with the matter.  Very soon, we are going to bring that sexual harassment policy to this august House.  Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker Sir.

HON. MAZIWISA:  Thank you Mr. Speaker.  In the absence of the Minister of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing, I will direct my question to the Deputy Minister. 

Hon. Minister, we have seen in the recent past, the last few weeks to be precise, very good progressive and collaborative work between the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural Development and the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing, to try and fill up our potholes which were there before the initiative, but which had been made worse by the rains that have fallen; which is very good work.  But Hon. Minister, considering the fact that the responsibility to construct, maintain and rehabilitate our local roads lies naturally, if not exclusively, within the purview of our local authorities, which local authorities quite clearly have abdicated their responsibilities - [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] -

THE HON. SPEAKER:  What is your question?

HON. MAZIWISA:  What is the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing doing to make sure that those local authorities are brought to book, they are held to account and in deserving circumstances, dismissed from their jobs?

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT, PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON. CHINGOSHO):  Thank you very much, Hon. Member, for that question.  Hon. Speaker, the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing, in the first place and I am sure recently, in trying to do something about it, it has declared that problem as a national disaster, thereby making it possible - [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] –

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Can the Hon. Deputy Minister be heard in silence please, otherwise I cannot rule whether he is answering the question or not. 

HON. CHAMISA:  On a point of order.

THE HON. SPEAKER:  The Hon. Minister has not finished.  Can the Hon. Minister first finish and then you can ask.

HON. CHAMISA:  It is on a point of procedure.

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Can we hear the procedural matter?

HON. CHAMISA:  Hon. Speaker, we are not yet dealing with written questions and written answers.  The Minister has got a written answer which is definitely out of procedure.  These are oral questions - [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] -

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order!  Hon. Sibanda, when I have called you to order, you must listen.  The Hon. Minister can refer to some notes, but not a written speech.

HON. CHINGOSHO:  Thank you Hon. Speaker- [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] –

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order.

HON. CHINGOSHO:  Indeed we have a problem in our local authorities as far as roads are concerned, with special reference to potholes  but I want to quickly say our local authorities are trying their best in trying to remedy the situation. The problem which is being faced by our local authorities – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] -

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order!

          HON. CHINGOSHO: The problem which is being faced by our local authorities is because of the excessive rains. The other problem is that our road infrastructure is old. – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.]-

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order. On my right and on my left, can we listen to the Hon. Minister?

          HON. CHINGOSHO: Of course, the problem as you are all aware is lack of funds. – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.]-

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, Order Hon. Munengami.

          HON. CHINGOSHO: Hon. Speaker, – [AN HON. MEMBER: Inaudible interjection.]- the other problem that is being faced by our local authorities with respect to potholes is that when you try to fill in the potholes with these excessive rains, they make the potholes worse. This means mending a pothole is like keeping on patching a cloth which is already torn. What we need in our local authorities is new roads altogether. However, we have had some instances where some local authorities …

Hon. Mliswa having stood up.

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order. Take your seat Hon. Mliswa. Hon. Matangira and Hon. Munegami, if you persist, you will be out of the House. Thank you. Can you wind up Hon. Minister?

          HON. CHINGOSHO: However, we have had some few instances where those few resources have been misappropriated. Thank you Hon. Speaker.

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Maziwisa, why point of order and what is the problem now?

          HON. MAZIWISA: Thank you Mr. Speaker. I have got a supplementary question. I want to know, when the Hon. Deputy Minister makes reference to the fact that the local authorities are doing their best; which local authorities he is referring to given that the ineptitude, ineffectiveness and corrupt tendencies of these local authorities are a matter of public record. 

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order. The making of a general statement by the Hon. Deputy Minister is appreciated. If you come from any part of the country, you will find that the question of potholes affects virtually all local authorities. So, the Hon. Minister is correct in that sense.

          HON. MARIDADI: On a point of order Mr. Speaker. I would like to thank the Hon. Deputy Minister for being honest. He is an honest man and I think he is a man deserving to be promoted to be the Minister of Local Government. Thank you.

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order. I hope I will not get a statement to the effect that Hon. Deputy Ministers cannot perform as you have affirmed it today.

          *HON. SITHOLE: Thank you very much Mr. Speaker Sir. The Deputy Minister has stated that some of the problems which caused non-repairing of these potholes is because of finance. We have been told that Chitungwiza roads need an amount of US$9 million to repair the potholes but at the same time, we are going to hold a birthday bash for His Excellency, the President using an amount of US$9 million. Is it not possible for Government to divert the funds for the birthday party to the repair of the Chitungwiza roads?

          Hon. Bhebhe having stood up to ask a question.

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Order Hon. Bhebhe. The birthday bash is not being held in Chitungwiza. - [Laughter.] -

HON. BHEBHE:  Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Home Affairs in the absence of the Minister of Home Affairs ...

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Do not worry about the absence.  He is there, direct the question to him.

HON. BHEBHE:  I am worried Mr. Speaker, because I have deferred this question for three weeks.

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Do not pre-judge him. Let him answer.  Ask the question.

HON. BHEBHE:  The question pertains to the issue that worries every motorist in Zimbabwe.  Is it Government policy that when police go to roadblocks, they are given a target to meet on daily basis?  If so, on the affirmative or in disagreement, on both instances I have a supplementary question. 

THE HON. SPEAKER:  What is your question Hon. Member?

HON. BHEBHE:  Is it Government policy that every time when police officers are going on roadblocks, they are given a target to meet in terms of collections?

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS (HON. MGUNI):  Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  The question has been coming through Parliament and we have been giving the answers.  I think I can clarify where the word target comes from.  There is a key performance indicator in any worker where each police officer must have target on how many small vehicles they have searched, how many trucks they have searched and how many buses.  It is not related to the revenue but to see that they are working, otherwise they will stand under the trees – [HON. MEMBERS:  Hear, hear.] – Therefore, on key performance indicators, we have targets and on revenue, we do not know because all cars may comply and there is no revenue collected.  I thank you Mr. Speaker.

HON. BHEBHE:  Mr. Speaker, the issue of performance has got nothing to do with the targets of revenue collected by the police – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] –   

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order.  The Hon. Deputy Minister has disabused the issue of target on money collected.  It is the number of vehicles that are being searched, that is the target.  So, the question does not arise. 

Hon. Members having stood up

Order, order.  When the Chair is giving a ruling, you do not stand up.  The Hon. Deputy Minister explained clearly that there are no targets search for money collected.  What is said is the number of vehicles that have been searched by the police in charge at that particular roadblock.  That is the issue.

HON. BHEBHE:  On a point of order Mr. Speaker, this is a very pertinent question that I am asking.

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Would you clarify the question rather than asking the point of order.

HON. BHEBHE:  I am asking this question because when the police go out on roadblocks, they are supposed to issue tickets because it is not everyone who drives around a vehicle who carries money or has money in his bank account.  You would find that the police do not issue out tickets but they demand to an extent of threatening people to go to police stations and open dockets.  Hence, I am asking the issue of the targets that arise because if you do not meet the target, it means you are going to coerce or force people to pay spot fines.  This is why I am asking the issue of targets.  That is the clarity we want because people out there are going to charge us by the questions we ask and the responses we give.

THE HON. SPEAKER:  I have heard you and there are two issues here. If there is that demand on the spot, the concerned citizen should quickly phone the Police Headquarters so that the officer who is demanding is brought to book.

+HON. MISIHAIRABWI-MUSHONGA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  My question is directed to the Minister of Home Affairs.  If you notice, right now as you move around on the roads, police officers carry spikes which they throw under people’s vehicles.  I would like the Hon. Minister to clarify which law and policy they follow as they use these spikes.  There are many people who have lost lives because of this.  I thank you.

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Sorry Hon. Member, I did not quite get your question.

 +HON. MISIHAIRABWI-MUSHONGA: Mr. Speaker Sir, I asked the Hon. Minister of Home Affairs on the issue of the police officers who move around with items which damage vehicles’ wheels which in English are referred to as ‘spikes’.  They throw them under vehicles any time they feel like.  I want the Hon. Minister to clarify which law and policy they follow in order for them to throw these spikes, perhaps we could understand.

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Where is the supplementary question going to because the original question was about targeted collection and not spikes?

HON. MLISWA:  Mr. Speaker, my question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Health and Child Care on Government policy pertaining to mortuaries.  If he recalls, they came to Norton Hospital just before the elections and promised people that they were going to refurbish the mortuary.  I would like to know whether it is Government policy or just a political statement because the mortuary has still not been fixed.  I thank you. – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] -

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order that is a specific question about a mortuary in Norton.  So that question should arise out of a written question – [HON. MLISWA: Inaudible interjections.] – I have ruled.  It is a specific issue relating to a mortuary in Norton, so it cannot be a policy issue.

+HON. MISIHAIRABWI-MUSHONGA:  Thank you Hon. Speaker, I would like to repeat my question and direct it to the Minister of Home Affairs.  I would like him to …

          +THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order, Hon. Member, I did not say you should repeat the question.  I said if it is a new question then direct it to the Hon. Minister.

          + HON. MISIHAIRABWI-MUSHONGA:  I direct my new question to the Minister of Home Affairs.  I would like him to clarify to us on the issue of police officers who move around carrying piercing metal objects which are called ‘spikes’, in English that they throw under vehicles.  We realise that this has become a problem so many times.  I would like the Minister to clarify to the House which law or policy the police use to throw these objects?  I thank you.

          +THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS (HON. MGUNI):  Thank you Hon. Speaker.  I wish to state that police officers do not throw spikes under any car that is moving around because I heard the Hon. Member saying that they throw spikes under vehicles.  No, they do not throw under any car.

          The police officers have many and varied ways, using their Act, which they use in order to stop criminals.  For example, a gunshot can be fired in the air – just one bullet. It can also happen that in the Act it was specified that a warning shot can be fired in the air in order to stop a criminal.  That is an operation that is done in order to stop criminal activities that happen in this country. – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] -

          +THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order, Hon. Misihairabwi-Mushonga, I would like to apologise and state that the time for Oral Answers to Questions has elapsed.  We will therefore continue next week. – [HON. MISIHAIRABWI-MUSHONGA: Thank you Hon. Speaker.] – Order, order you should first extend the time Hon. Member.

          HON. MISIHAIRABWI-MUSHONGA:  Mr. Speaker Sir, I move that the time for Oral Answers to Questions Without Notice be extended by ten minutes.

          Hon. K. Sibanda having passed between the Hon. Member speaking and the Chair. 

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order Hon. K. Sibanda, you may not cross between the speaker and the Chair.  Please go back.  Hon. Member, you may continue.

          + HON. MISIHAIRABWI-MUSHONGA:  My supplementary question to the Hon. Minister of Home Affairs is, if you look at the Criminal Codification Act, Section 38 (a).  It states that, ‘Anyone who throws… I will put it in English.

          “Anyone who throws, propels any missile, article or thing on any person, motor vehicle, boat, aircraft or building with the intention or realizing that there is a real risk or possibility of causing damage or injury”.

          +So it is actually a criminal offence in the Criminal Codification Act.  Are you saying that the police are allowed to do things that are unlawful because it is specified in the Criminal Codification Act?  I thank you.

          +HON. O. MGUNI:  Thank you Hon. Speaker.  I also want to thank the Hon. Member of Parliament for clarifying on the specified law.  I would like to also go back and consult with those at the Ministry of Home Affairs who know about the law so that it can be clarified to me whether police officers who are on duty are classified as a person or as officers so that we know how this law is used.  I thank you.

          HON. MAJOME:  My question is directed to the Hon. Deputy Minister for Home Affairs. I would like to ask through you Madam Speaker, whether the Commissioner General of Police has presented to the Ministry, an annual report in terms of Section 13 of the Police Act that details offences investigated in the previous year as well as instructions from the Attorney-General, to investigate as well as directives by the Minister.  This must be done as soon as possible or after the 31st … – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] -

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Order, order, Hon. Members over there.  The Minister is listening so that he understands the question in order for him to be able to answer but you are making a lot of noise.  Have you heard the question Hon. Minister? – [HON. O. MGUNI: Yes, Madam Speaker.] – Hon. Member, you may proceed.

          HON. MAJOME:  The question is, has the Commissioner-General of Police presented to the Hon. Minister an annual report as envisaged by Section 13 of the Police Act, which requires that as soon as possible after the 31st December each year, the Commissioner General must present a report to the Minister that details the activities of the police in the preceding year, as well as instructions from the Attorney General to investigate issues and any policy directives. Has the Commissioner General received that report?

HON. MGUNI: That is actually a very pertinent question of which I must admit that it was not done exactly after the 31st as she said but I happened to see the report which was given to Dr. Chombo who went to present it to Cabinet. So, I saw it. I am 100% …

Hon. Misihairabwi-Mushonga having passed between the Chair and the Hon. Member speaking.

          THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, Hon. Misihairabwi-Mushonga.

          HON. MGUNI: I am aware that yesterday Cabinet did receive that report because they wanted to hear about it, Hon. Member. Thank you.

          HON. MAJOME: Why is it that in this whole Eighth Parliament, no report has ever been presented to Parliament? No such report has ever been presented to this august House in terms of Section 13. Why has that never been done and when can we expect to see that report because it is already the 15th February and the Act says as soon as possible, after the 31st December?

          HON. MGUNI: Thank you Madam Speaker. That is a very truthful articulation that she has made. I will make sure that it is brought. In fact I saw it being given to Dr. Chombo to present to Cabinet. I will inform him, he is my colleague, to say can we go to Parliament and present it. I thank you.

          HON. MANGAMI: My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Health and Child Care. Minister, what is Government policy regarding the provision sunscreen lotion for people living with albinism through your Ministry?

          THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HEALTH AND CHILD CARE (HON. DR. MUSIIWA): I want to thank Hon. Mangami for asking that question. However, we do not have a definite policy on that since we normally deal with ill patients. Albinism is a condition that people can live with at home.   In that case they buy their own creams.   Those who really can afford will then have to buy the cream but if they are patients, then we provide the cream. Thank you.

          HON. P.D. SIBANDA: The Hon. Minister is indicating that Government has got no policy but my view is that the condition of albinism affects the health of an individual and in terms of our Constitution; health is a right and not a privilege. Is the Hon. Deputy Minister therefore telling us that Government has got no policy that supports a constitutional provision?

          HON. DR. MUSIIWA: Thank you Hon. Speaker. I would want to clarify my earlier answer. I said if the patient is in hospital we will try to provide the sun creams. However, if they are living in their homes, it would be very difficult to know how many they are and where they are. At the moment, truly speaking, we do not have a policy as to the provision of the creams.

          HON. KHUPE: On a related matter Hon. Minister, I saw an albino cancer patient who is really in bad shape. He went to a hospital and was turned away because he could not pay $250. What is Government policy in regard to people who are not employed, are albinos and do not have money to pay when they go to a hospital, are in a bad state and they cannot be attended to?

          HON. DR. MUSIIWA: This indeed is a particular incident. However, Government’s policy does not preclude people from getting emergency treatment. It is their right as expressed by the Hon. Member. If we have such specific incidents, it is very important for us in the Ministry to know because there are centres that are specialised for cancer patients where these patients can actually get assistance.

          Questions Without Notice were interrupted by THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER in terms of Standing Order Number 64.

ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITH NOTICE

STATE OF CHINEMBIRI TO CHITUNGWIZA TOWN CENTRE ROAD

          7. HON. G. SITHOLE asked the Minister of Local Government,

Public Works and National Housing to inform to the House what the

condition of the road from Chinembiri in ward 21 to Chitungwiza town

centre is like.

          THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT,

PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON.

CHINGOSHO): Let me thank Hon. Sithole for asking the question.

Madam Speaker, let me inform this House that the condition of

Chinembiri Road, like many other roads in Chitungwiza is in very bad

shape. It is so bad that routine maintenance may not still be possible.

Repair of the same is planned for 2018 as Chitungwiza Municipality is currently prioritising and working on re-sealing its arterial roads which link to Chitungwiza and Harare.  Let me inform this august House that Chitungwiza Municipality will be carrying out periodic maintenance in the following order.

a)     Arterial roads which facilitate transportation of the public and commercial goods.

b)   Collector roads which link Chitungwiza suburbs with arterial roads right down until we get to street access roads.

CHANGE OF HOUSE OWNERSHIP IN UNIT O CHITUNGWIZA

          8.  HON. SITHOLE asked the Minister of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing to inform the House why house number 33522 in Unit O in Chitungwiza changed ownership from Mary Chakanetsa, the initial owner who bought the stand in 2010 to Beauty Mushamba without the knowledge of the initial owner.

          THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT, PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON. CHINGOSHO):  Madam Speaker Sir, I would like to start by thanking the Hon. Member for asking the question. Fortunately my Ministry is also currently seized with this issue.  However, let me inform this august House that in the billing system of Chitungwiza Municipality, Mary Chanetsa appears to have lost the property, but on the ground she has ownership of the property.  This was a result of a fraudulent transaction done by the then Acting Director of Housing and Community Services of Chitungwiza Municipality who has allocated to Beauty Mashava a stand on a non developable piece of land.  He went further to unlawfully instruct the Information Technology Section (IT) to register that undevelopable stand with the number 33552 owned by Mary Chanetsa.  Having gone through the internal audit report by the Chitungwiza Municipality, the Ministry has since directed that the fraudulent transaction be reversed with the necessary reimbursements. 

          *HON. SITHOLE: Thank you Madam Speaker, today I have spoken to Mary Chanetsa but we have been told that she is not allowed access into that property.  This means that there is some misunderstanding because local authorities are saying one thing and the Minister is saying another. 

          *HON. CHINGOSHO:  I thank Hon. Sithole for the supplementary question. As far as we are concerned, I am hearing this information for the first time.  If the owner is being denied access to the stand we will note it down and make a follow up on what really is happening on the ground because it is different from the instructions issued.

          *HON. MARIDADI:  Thank you Deputy Minister for the response you have given.  Is it not possible for the Ministry when you look at the case we have dealt with?  It is just a tip of the iceberg and it shows there are so many cases whereby the corrupt authorities are double allocating these stands.  May you please direct all local authorities to give that to all the officials responsible for transferring properties in a unlawful manner.  These officials will then be prosecuted because we have many people who have their properties changed ownership without their knowledge.  There are people who have been ejected from their rightful home by the new owner and therefore I think there should be some direction put in place.

          *THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: I understand people were robbed of their properties by these corrupt local authorities. I do not think it is possible for the Ministry to go door by door and ask whether the owners were robbed of their houses.  I advise that all the people who are facing this problem report to the Ministry so that the problem can be solved.

          *HON. MARIDADI:  My request is that circulars or directive from the ministries should be sent to local authorities, directing the local authorities that if ever there is any change of names on property ownership; there should be some steps which have to be followed because we realise that there are some people who suddenly found themselves without a home and these transactions are done corruptly.  In most cases it is widows and orphans who suffer. Can we have this blanket circular which will protect these vulnerable groups of people?

              *HON. ZVIDZAI: My question is generally these corrupt activities are associated with officials as in this particular case.  In many cases the Councils want to act on the staff but the Ministry interferes and stops the councilors from acting appropriately.  We have got examples of Harare, what is the Ministry going to do?  I have just heard that they are dealing with the issue of reimbursement.  What is going to happen in the case of these wrong doing directors?  What sanctions are going to be applied to the director?

          HON. CHINGOSHO:  I would like to thank the Hon. Member for the question.  In the first place the Ministry does not condone corruption.  So, the steps which the Ministry is going to take on those corrupt officers if identified - some of them have been suspended because of that.  The question of saying that the Ministry is trying to interfere with the Councils, I think that is a very unfortunate situation.  I thank you very much.

UTILIZATION OF THE FUNDS COLLECTED FROM PARKING SHOP LICENCING AND RANK FEES

9.      HON. PASSADE asked the Minister of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing to inform the House how the Harare City Council has been utilising the funds collected from parking, shop licencing and rank fees.

                THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT,

PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON. CHINGOSHO):  Let me inform this august House that parking fees are no longer collected by the City’s Mainstream processes, but City’s Parking, a Private company wholly owned by City of Harare through Harare Sunshine Holdings, which runs all the city’s businesses.  The City Council received a dividend amounting to $480,000 in 2016 from Harare Sunshine Holdings and the dividend went towards the repair and maintenance of roads.

1.    Rank Fees

          The City Council collected $1,329,177 rank fees in 2016 and again channeled the funds towards the repair and maintenance of roads. The following were the targeted roads for the total overlay using proceeds from the parking and rank fees;

·       High Glen Road overlay

·       Churchill Road full overlay

·       Chizhanje Road overlay

·       Harare Road (siyaso) overlay

·       Road patching around the city

However, the amounts fall short of the total required to rehabilitate

Harare’s road network of 5,000km.

1.    Shop licence Fees

The City collected $4,700,123 by way of shop licencing fees in

2016 and paid salaries and other operating expenses such as fuel, stationery and hire charges from the proceeds.

CONSTRUCTION OF A COLLEGE IN KADOMA

10.    Hon. Phiri asked the Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development to state the plans that are in place to construct a college in Kadoma.

          THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HIGHER AND TERTIARY EDUCATION, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. GANDAWA):  The establishment of a tertiary institution in Mashonaland West Province is an absolute necessity that is long overdue.  The college does not necessarily have to be built in Kadoma.  Mashonaland West Province leadership must decide where it should be situated.  It should be noted that my Ministry intends to establish three tertiary institutions in the province, which are a polytechnic, teachers’ college and an industrial training centre as per its 2005 Strategic Plan of having a university, teachers’ college and a polytechnic in each province.  Government is to be commended for fulfilling this plan as far as universities are concerned.  Each province now has a State university but Government still has to meet its obligation to establish teachers’ colleges and polytechnics in Mashonaland west, Matabeleland North and Mashonaland Central too which does not have a polytechnic. 

          Let me give the Hon. Member the background to the proposed Kadoma College.  In fact, it was supposed to be a polytechnic and was to be called the Mashonaland West Polytechnic.  Possible sites then in 2012, were Kadoma Town Council and Ngezi Rural District Council but these have since been overtaken by events.  The Ministry had identified Trelawney Training Centre as a temporary site to kick start the project because of the already existing physical infrastructure.  There was need for Treasury support to finance capital projects at this proposed temporary site.  Due to tight fiscal space, this has not been possible in the short term.  To date, the province must identify and avail suitable land for the establishment of the Polytechnic, a Teacher’s College and an Industrial Training College.  The Ministry encourages the Mashonaland West Province leadership to expedite the provision of the land for the establishment of the three tertiary institutions.  Should Kadoma be one of the sites that the Mashonaland leadership chooses for one of these institutions, then the Ministry will establish it there.

          HON. ZVIDZAI:  On a point of order Madam Speaker, the Minister has repeatedly referred to Mashonaland West leadership which must decide where to place the tertiary institutions.  Which leadership is he talking about?

          HON. DR. GANDAWA: The leadership pertains to the Hon. Members and the Minister of State for Provincial Affairs for Mashonaland West who is actually seized with the matter as we speak.

POLICY ON CORRUPT OFFICERS

11. HON. CHIKUNI asked the Minister of Home Affairs to inform the House what the Government policy is on corrupt officers who are transferred to other stations whenever they commit a crime and their whereabouts are not disclosed when follow up action is made.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HIGHER AND TERTIARY EDUCATION, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. GANDAWA) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS (HON. DR. CHOMBO):  Madam Speaker, Hon. Members; I would like to get more details on the matter as it sounds sensitive and very particular indeed in this august House.  The police officers who are found to have engaged in corrupt activities are not transferred, but are dismissed immediately from service.   In addition to the dismissal, criminal charges of corruption are laid against the officers and due processes of court proceedings are commenced immediately.  This is the reason why our courts are also clogged with cases of dismissed ex-officers who are always taking the Commissioner General of Police to court in their fruitless attempt to challenge their lawful dismissal.  The Hon. Member and this august House should not be misled by what we read in the media.

Mr. Speaker Sir, as for the transfer of police officers from Beitbridge to other stations, may I bring to the attention of the House and the Hon. Member that the police officers were not transferred for engaging in corrupt activities.  The transfers were originating from a Government policy that all staff from Government Departments at Beitbridge and other national key points should be rotated to other stations.  These departments include the Police, ZIMRA, Immigration and Zimbabwe National Army.  The Zimbabwe Republic Police was the first department to comply with the Government policy.  Let me reiterate that this has nothing to do with corruption allegations, it is a policy issue.

The latter part of the Hon. Member’s question must have more clarity as we need to attend if there are such cases of our officers who try to evade the rule of law.  As the Minister of Home Affairs, it is important for me to dispel once and for all the misdirected notion that police officers who were previously at ZRP Beitbridge were transferred for corruption, no.  This was a result of a Government policy which is for everyone.  May the Hon. Member be well informed in this regard accordingly?  I thank you.

ANNOUNCEMENT BY THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER

INVITATION TO A MEETING AT POLICE HEADQUARTERS

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: I would like to inform all members of the Portfolio Committee on Transport and Infrastructural Development that they are invited to a meeting to be held tomorrow, 16th February 2017, at the Police General Headquarters at 10 o’clock to discuss the implementation of the electronic traffic management system.

STATUS OF REGISTRY OFFICES IN BULAWAYO AND MATEBELELAND NORTH PROVINCE

12.    HON. M. KHUMALO asked the Minister of Home Affairs

a)    To explain to the House when the Provincial Registry and Passport Official relocated from Mhlahlandlela complex in Bulawayo Province to Lupane Provincial Offices in Matebeleland North Province.

b)   To inform the House when Jotsholo Registry Offices would be electrified since the grid is a few metres away from the offices.

c)    To inform the House when the Ministry would establish additional sub registry offices at Zewal and Dandanda areas.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HIGHER AND TERTIARY EDUCATION, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. GANDAWA) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS (HON. DR. CHOMBO):  Mr. Speaker Sir, Matebeleland North Provincial Registry Office is currently located at Old Income Tax Building and not Mhlahlandlela Complex. The Provincial Registry for Lupane has started relocating to the new Government Complex in Lupane.  The department is currently in the process of computerising the offices. On completion of the computerisation of the Provincial Offices, the department intends to install the passport system online.  Once the passport system is online, then the Passport offices at this Government Complex will be ready to issue out passports to the public.

However, we have been informed by the Ministry of Local Government that we may face challenges regarding accommodation for our Provincial Passport officers at Lupane which will naturally affect the opening of the offices to the public.

Madam Speaker, Jotsholo offices are being leased from the Kusile District Council. The Council will be approached to provide electricity to the building.  We are made to understand that the Japanese Embassy which had renovated the building had made an undertaking to have electricity connected.  However, to date, they have not yet done so.  We have made a request to the local authority for electricity to be connected.

Madam Speaker, the establishment of sub-offices is the responsibility of the Public Service Commission.  The Government has since directed that there will be no creation of new posts due to the current financial challenges facing the country.  I thank you.

ILLEGAL SETTLERS IN CHIMANIMANI

21. HON. CHIKUNI asked the Minister of Lands and Rural Resettlement to inform the House how far the Ministry has gone in addressing the issue of illegal settlers especially in Chimanimani where they are responsible for veld fires which have destroyed vast plantations this season.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF LANDS AND RURAL RESETTLEMENT (HON. CHIKWAMA): Manicaland Provincial Lands Committee (PLC) held a meeting with the plantation companies to map a way forward on the issue of illegal settlers.  The traditional Chiefs proposed that the companies must cede land for formal settlement. They suggested that the resettled people will provide labour and help in fire management.  The proposal is still under consideration by the companies especially Border Timbers.

On the other hand, traditional Chiefs are claiming traditional land rights of the area and do not consider their people as illegal settlers.  The Chiefs also want to benefit from activities by the companies through employment and provision of services in the area such as schools and clinics.

On privately owned land, for example Thornton which is owned by Border Timbers, the company applied for eviction of illegal settlers at the courts and the eviction orders were granted.

Allied Timbers Company is being affected by illegal gold panners and was advised to seek eviction order from the courts.  I thank you.

HON. CROSS:  The situation in the plantation industry is extremely serious.  We have 60 000 hectares of mature pine in Zimbabwe, which is very small and thousands of hectares have been destroyed by illegal occupation, fires set by settlers and illegal gold panning.  When is the Ministry going to get tough on this issue because if they are not, I am afraid we must say goodbye to this entire sector?

HON. CHIKWAMA:  Thank you, Madam Speaker.  I think that I have alluded that we give the company the authority.  Whenever we give someone a paper which is authentic which enables him or her or a company to contest in a court of law, he is the one who is supposed to do that work so that he can evict those people.  That is why the company went to the courts and was granted an eviction order.

According to the Ministry, we have Committees from the district and the province.  Those people are the ones who are dealing with the situation.  That is why we said the PLC held a meeting with the companies and they agreed on a certain issue.  I thank you.

HON. P. D. SIBANDA:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  I heard the Hon. Minister speaking about issues of illegal settlers being dealt with by the PLC.  I just wanted to know who comprises the PLC because we have also got similar challenges in our provinces.  Thank you.

HON. CHIKWAMA:  I did not say the PLC is the one dealing with the illegal settlers.  I said on the situation of Chimanimani, they held a meeting together in order to come up with the way forward in solving the issue of the illegal settlers.

HON. P. D. SIBANDA:  Who comprises the PLC?

HON. CHIKWAMA:  The PLC comprises of the following people; the Provincial Minister of Affairs who is the Chair, all the heads of department of that province are also involved, the JOC and chiefs are also members of the PLC.  I thank you.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Do you mean all chiefs of that particular province or chiefs of that particular area?

HON. CHIKWAMA:  Chiefs of the whole province have two or more representatives who are going to sit on the Provincial Lands Committee, while the other chiefs in the districts also have representatives in the District Lands Committee.

*HON. ZVIDZAI:  As far as we are concerned, these plantations in the Eastern Highlands were given material for the production of paper in the mills in Chimanimani.  We also used to manufacture matches, but we are now importing matches from China.  Now, since you have started allowing the courts and the police to evict people as they are illegal settlers, are these plantations now growing in such a way that industry may be resuscitated to its former height?

*HON. CHIKWAMA:  I was actually talking about the timber plantations as enquired by Hon. Chikuni.  When we are talking about illegal settlers in these plantations, people should be settled after they have received letters which empower them to be in those places.

So, we are saying, in the case of Chimanimani, we have chiefs in those areas, who are protecting these illegal settlers.  They are claiming that the forefathers of these people were evicted from these areas by the settlers, but at the same time, their subjects and children are benefiting by getting employment in those plantations.  Therefore, you cannot have your cake and eat it.  Consequently, the courts and the police have been empowered to follow legal procedures in evicting these illegal settlers. 

We know there are some plantation and factories which have continued to operate despite all these problems and again, we are talking about one district which is faced by these illegal settlers.

CONSTRUCTION OF A NEW DISTRICT HOSPITAL AND COMPLETION OF LUPANE UNIVERSITY HOSPITAL

24. HON. M. KHUMALO asked the Minister of Health and Child Care:

a)                To inform the House when the new District Hospital would be constructed in the Lupane District in view of the fact that Jotsholo Growth Point has been designated the new district headquarters for Lupane District.

b)               To inform the House when Lupane Provincial University Hospital would be completed, considering that its construction has been going on for the past ten years, a situation that has seen some criminal elements vandalising the infrastructure at the new hospital

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HEALTH AND CHILD CARE (HON. DR. MUSIIWA):  Thank you Hon. Speaker.  I want to thank Hon. Khumalo for asking that question.  At the moment, Lupane District has no Government hospital.  As already has been said, Jotsholo has been designated as the new growth point for the district.  We have received plans and a request for the construction of such a hospital.  However, we have not received land for the construction of the hospital.  So at the moment, we are in consultation with the relevant district hospital.

The second part of his question was, he wanted to find out when the Lupane Provincial University Hospital is going to be constructed because it has been in the offing for the past ten years.

HON. M. KHUMALO:  Correction, Mr. Speaker, they made a mistake.  There is no university there.  It is a provincial hospital.  That university is out.

HON. DR. MUSIIWA:  Thank you Hon. Speaker, I also at the point was trying to correct that impression.  Although the university is constructed next to the hospital, the hospital at Lupane is going to be the provincial hospital for Matabeleland North because at the moment, we are using a designated hospital which is a Catholic Mission Hospital.

He wanted to find out when the construction is going to be completed.  We are, at the moment, at the site.  What happened was, we had run out of funds with the initial project which was Government run.  However, we have now secured funds from a Chinese programme known as FOCAC and US$55 million has been afforded for the construction of the provincial hospital for Matabeleland North at Lupane.  We have actually retained the last contractor who is on site updating plans and we will update the House as the work progresses.  I thank you.

HON. M. KHUMALO:  Can I make a follow up Hon. Speaker, on the two questions, the new district hospital because we do not have a district hospital. If you look at the 2017 budget, the Ministry has again allocated St. Luke’s which is a mission hospital with funds to do some construction at the privately owned hospital. Whilst the Minister says they are looking at the plans for a new district hospital, why is the Ministry allocating funds to the Catholic hospital? [AN HON. MEMBER: What is wrong?]- Hon. Speaker, we have been using that Catholic hospital as a district provincial hospital, but the relations between the Government system and that private hospital are not good. They want to be independent and that hospital is becoming poorer and poorer because of the involvement of Government activities. Why do you not stick to the Government hospital at Jotsholo and the provincial hospital in Lupane?

          HON. DR. MUSIIWA: Thank you Hon. Speaker. I would want to thank the Hon. Member for the concern he has raised. It is true that the relations between the Ministry of Health per se and the particular hospital is not very good. It is for that reason why we are moving expeditiously to provide a purely Government hospital for Matabeleland North. However, at the moment, I have said we have secured funds to construct the hospital, but in the mean time, the people of Matabeleland North must have a service. Before this hospital is completed, we are obligated to support the current designated hospital because it is a Government aided institution. We are going to move as expeditiously as possible for them to have a purely Government hospital, but in the mean time, our hands are tied. We support the current structure so that the people of Matabeleland North will have the facility. Thank you.

SOURCING OF DONATIONS FOR MAINTENANCE OF THE DAMAGED LAUNDRY MACHINE AT INGUTSHENI HOSPITAL

25. HON. MASUKU asked the Minister of Health and Child Care whether it is procedural for the Ingutsheni Chief Executive Officer to source donations from the staff for the maintenance of the damaged laundry machine at the Hospital.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HEALTH AND CHILD CARE

(HON. DR. MUSIIWA): Thank you Hon. Speaker and I want to thank Hon. Masuku. Ingutsheni Central Hospital has old but sometimes malfunctioning laundry equipment which frequently breaks down...

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: It seems you are answering a wrong question Hon. Minister. You are answering Question Number 26 instead of Question Number 25.

HON. DR. MUSIIWA: Is it the one about donations at Ingutsheni? I am sorry they have been given in this order. The answer to that one is that it is never Government policy and it is not procedural. However, what has been happening is that Ingutsheni has got an old and sometimes malfunctioning laundry machine and we have prioritised the procurement of a new laundry machine during this year. We have allocated about US$250 000 for its infrastructure development at Ingutsheni and from that, we are going to procure a new laundry machine. However, I want to reiterate that it is not procedural. What I have found out on the ground was an ordinary SOS for cash or kind had been sent out by the CEO and I am not sure whether the staff at the hospital chipped in. Thank you.

LAUNDRY MACHINE FOR INGUTSHENI HOSPITAL

26. HON. MASUKU asked the Minister of Health and Child Care to explain to the House why Ingutsheni Hospital does not have a laundry machine and to state what alternatives the hospital has for its laundry requirements.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HEALTH AND CHILD CARE (HON. DR. MUSIIWA):  I said Ingutsheni has got old equipment and this old equipment is very difficult to service at the moment. Ingutsheni Hospital being a mental institution, does not generate any funds. So, most of the time when we have got funds we prioritise funds for Ingutsheni and Ngomahuru. So, during this year’s budget, we have allocated US$250 000 for its infrastructure development and we have agreed that they are going to procure a new laundry machine for Ingutsheni. Thank you.

HON. MASUKU: On a point of order, the question is not fully answered. The last part of the question was not answered.

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER (HON. DZIVA): Hon. Deputy Minister, can you please clarify.

HON. DR. MUSIIWA: Thank you very much. He wanted to find out the alternatives. At the moment, when the laundry equipment is down, we have been speaking to Mpilo so that some of their laundry can be done at Mpilo. I want to assure this House that it is not a permanent arrangement. We would want a situation where Ingutsheni could stand on its own.

HON. KHUPE: Thank you very much. Hon. Minister, the Hon. Member was asking about alternatives. There are big washing machines and driers at UBH which we acquired during the inclusive Government and they were under my purview. Why can you not utilise those washing machines and driers for Ingutsheni as well because the machines are already there. The room is there and they are massive. They can service the whole of Bulawayo.

HON. DR. MUSIIWA: Thank you Hon. Speaker. I want to thank the Hon. Member for that information. We would want to look at that situation and see whether we can utilise that facility. Thank you very much.

HON. MUSANHI: Thank you Madam Speaker. I just want to find out from the Hon. Minister whether the same hospital in question does not have food for the patients?

HON. DR. MUSIIWA: Thank you Hon. Speaker. I want to thank the Hon. Member for that follow up question. As I said, we have got challenges at Ingutsheni because the nature of mental institutions is such that they do not generate funds for themselves. However, we prioritise funds when they are available. At the moment, they have enough food. When we did not have enough in our coffers, at some point we approached the Ministry of Labour and Social Services and they provided us with food items that included about 15 tonnes of maize, three tonnes of rice and 1 200 litres of cooking oil for Ingutsheni.

They also provided 35 tonnes of maize meal for Ngomahuru, 2 tonnes of rice and 600 litres of cooking oil. They have also provided soap about 350 boxes and cooking oil. Last month, I provided 200 boxes each of canned beans for the two institutions and at the moment they have got adequate food.  I thank you.

HON. WATSON:  Could the Minister also tell us, having said that they have sufficient food, is he aware of the fact that the staff at Ingutsheni put out an appeal in the Bulawayo public fora and a lot of food was provided.  Is he aware of that...

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER:  Order Hon. Members.  Can the Hon. Member be heard in silence.  I think the Minister wants to respond to the question.  Hon. Members from my right side, please.

HON. WATSON:   I think it is of concern to the Bulawayo community that they are providing food to an institution which may or may not need food.  What they also provided, which while you are considering your options about washing machines, is repairs to a vehicle – because they have no working vehicle at Ingutsheni.  What is the Ministry doing about shortage of drugs at that particular mental institution?  Thank you.

HON. DR. MUSIIWA:  I want to thank the Hon. Member for her concern for Ingutsheni.  Like I said in my earlier answer, because of our resource constraints, we priorities Ingutsheni but we have been honest to say, any well-wishers can come in and assist us in provision of either food items and clothing for Ingutsheni.  I want to thank the Bulawayo community, they have responded and assisted us.  We have received food items from shops like Pick n Pay and Choppies for Engutsheni.  Thank you for that assistance.  I thank you.

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER:  Order Hon. Members. 

HON. SITHOLE:  The admission by the Deputy Minister that the Government institution is now surviving on well-wishers, is it an acknowledgement that the Ministry has failed to fulfil its constitutional mandate to provide basic food to the patients?

HON. DR. MUSIIWA:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  I want to dispute what the Hon. Member has just said.  In actual fact, we say we have got resource constraints, which means that we have got shortages.  However, we have also allocated resources and I have with me here an allocation of funds to the two institutions.  Ingutsheni hospital to function properly had asked for over $410 000 for 2016 and Government only provided $378 ooo.  This means there is still a huge shortfall.  We have chipped in for the drugs and for the maintenance.  However, it does not raise money on its own because the inmates do not pay for the services provided.  So, we are admitting that we have a shortfall and it is for this shortfall that we have appealed for assistance.

NUMBER OF VIRAL LOAD TESTING MACHINES AVAILABLE IN PUBLIC HEALTH INSTITUTIONS

27.  HON. MANGAMI asked the Minister of Health and Child Care to inform the House on the following:

a)    The number of viral load testing machines that are available in public health institutions; and

b)   The number of viral load testing machines are functioning and the reasons for some of the machines that are not functioning.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HEALTH AND CHILD CARE (HON. DR. MUSIIWA):  Thank you Madam Speaker.  My apologies for questions numbers 27 to 30 because these questions had been posed before and I had tendered the answers to these questions in December and they have just reappeared on the Order Paper.  I could supply the House with the answers in the next session.  I thank you.

Questions With Notice were interrupted by THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER in terms of Standing Order Number 64.

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF PRIMARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION (HON. DR. GANDAWA): I move that Orders of the Day, Numbers 1 to 29 be stood over until Order of the Day, Number 29 has been disposed of.

Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

FIRST REPORT OF THE PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON HIGHER AND TERTIARY EDUCATION SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT ON HARNESSING BIOTECHNOLOGY FOR SOCIO-ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

Twenty-ninth Order read:  Adjourned debate on motion on the First Report of the Portfolio Committee on Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development on Biotechnology.

Question again proposed.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF PRIMARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION (HON. DR. GANDAWA):  Madam Speaker, I want to present responses to the recommendations by the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development. 

Firstly, I want to thank the Chairman of the Portfolio Committee on Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development, Hon. Dr. Mataruse and his Committee for the report on biotechnology.  The National Biotechnology Authority (NBA) is a strategic arm of the Government of Zimbabwe established through the National Biotechnology Authority Act [Chapter 14:31] of 2006.  As the National Competent Authority for all biotechnology and bio-safety matters, NBA advises Government on all aspects of biotechnology and bio-safety to enable policies and laws to be made from an informed and evidence based point of view. 

Biotechnology has been identified as one of the most promising tools that can bring about rapid sustained socio-economic development in Zimbabwe.  However, being a new field, modern biotechnology is commonly associated with a lot of misconceptions in the public domain including policy makers and legislators.  In its quest to explore and exploit the potential of new and emerging technologies including biotechnology, the NBA endeavours to provide adequate advice to policy makers and the public on the benefits and potential risks associated with the use and adoption of products derived from new and emerging technologies such as biotechnology, synthetic biology and nanotechnology.  Emerging technologies are part of the future of our industry, our children and the economy depends on it.  Thus, the adoption of these technologies is more relevant and sustainable. 

The Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development carried out an enquiry that sought to explore the benefits and opportunities that biotechnology presents to the country.  Following the recommendations from the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee, the National Biotechnology Authority made the following observations:

1.                ESTABLISHMENT OF THE NATIONAL REFERENCE

LABORATORY

Zimbabwe is a signatory to the Cartagena Protocol on bio-safety to the Convention on Biological Diversity, an international agreement which aims to ensure the safe handling, transport and use of products of biotechnology that may have adverse effects on biological diversity, taking also into account risks to human health.  In order to contain health and safety risks of undertaking involving biotechnology processes and products, the National Biotechnology Authority (NBA), (the designated, National Competent Authority for the Cartagena Protocols on biosafety and national focal point on bio-safety clearance House for Zimbabwe) regulates the development, use and application processes and products.

          Thus, the National Biotechnology Authority, needs to set up a National Biosafety Reference Laboratory manning all biosafety levels from 1 to 4.  A facility of this kind is currently lacking in the country and its construction will give Zimbabwe the capacity to handle high risk category living microorganisms (LMOs).  It is important that Zimbabwe through NBA has such a facility in order to be able to benchmark our test results with other biotechnology laboratories in the region and beyond.

          Madam Speaker, currently, many analytical centres, research and academic institutions are relying on foreign laboratories for advanced analysis.  NBA will generate income by carrying out various analytical tests (gene analysis, particle analysis, drug analysis and forensics) for our regional and local clients on a cost recovery basis.  The laboratory will also be used for routine clinical and diagnostic research procedures.  Evaluations of safety and efficacy of vaccine clinical trials and data for health interventions (for example drugs, devices, and therapy protocols) will also be carried out.  Furthermore, the laboratory facility will also offer training on good laboratory practices and other capacity building activities.  Already, NBA has a superstructure (which is a flatlet) which needs to be renovated and transformed into Biosafety Level 1 and 2 laboratories.

          In view of the above, the NBA wrote to the Ministry requesting for funds to set up a reference laboratory manning all biosafety levels to enable handling of high risk category organisms and the Ministry is amenable to avail funds to this effect.  It is our view that biotechnology research and development should be allowed in our institutions while the NBA supervises that research.

          2. INSTITUTIONAL FARM

          There has also been need for the National Biotechnology Authority to have an institutional farm in order to contain health and safety risks of undertakings involving biotechnology processes and products.  The NBA regulates the development, use and application of biotechnology processes and products.  The NBA therefore, requires land to carry out operational research, including confined field trials (CFTs).  According to the NBA Act of 2006, it is a legal requirement that before a permit is issued, controlled field trials (CFTs) are conducted.  In view of this issue, the NBA has written to the Ministry of Lands and Rural Settlement requesting for an institutional farm to be used for conducting CFTs and other research and development projects.  We still await a response from the Ministry of Lands and Rural Resettlement.

          3. ESTABLISHMENT OF THE NATIONAL BIOTECHNOLOGY FUND

          Madam Speaker, the National Biotechnology Authority has proposed through my Ministry to establish a Biotechnology Fund as is required by the NBA Act; in order to bridge the gap between research, development and the industry, given that researchers come up with new products which fail to reach the commercialisation stage.  The management and control of the Biotechnology Fund shall, subject to this Act, be vested in the Minister as Trustee of the Fund.  The purpose of the Fund is as follows:

-         To promote biotechnology research in institution

-         Fostering and stimulating demand for any product of biotechnology;

-         Research into the improvement of the production, manufacture, processing; storing or marketing of any product of biotechnology;

-         The training of persons to be skilled, competent and efficient in the field of biotechnology;

-         The provision of technical, consultancy and advisory services to persons engaged in the marketing of products of biotechnology;

-         The provision of technical, consultancy and advisory services to persons engaged in the marketing of products of biotechnology;

-         Any undertaking which in the opinion of the Minister, is calculated to promote biotechnology.

4. PUBLIC AWARENESS AND EDUCATION

          Madam Speaker, the National Biotechnology Authority contributes to various parliamentary Committees where it makes various presentations on biotechnology and other new emerging technologies.  In these Parliament meetings, policy makers receive factual information and current research outcomes on biotechnology and biosafety issues.  The NBA had an opportunity to present at a workshop for parliamentarians in Masvingo in September 2015.

          The NBA through its networks in various countries, has managed to arrange Seeing is Believing Tours of BT cotton field trials in countries such as Malawi, Burkina Faso and Sudan.  This is part of the organisation’s public awareness and education tools aimed at influencing policy and decision making through practical experiences.  I thank you Madam Speaker.

          HON. DR. MATARUSE:  Thank you very much Madam Speaker for giving me this chance to thank the people who contributed to the production of this report namely: the Committee on Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development, the National Biotechnology Authority, the Ministry of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development and special mention, Hon. Dr. Made came physically to present and educate the Committee.  The Ministry of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development and the Committee on Agriculture, chaired by Hon. Chitindi.  Finally, I thank the Deputy Minister for analysing the report thoroughly and, responding to it. 

I have noted five very important extracts from the Minister’s report.  Firstly, the adoption of these technologies, which means, the biotechnolocy, the nanotechnology, and the nanobiotechnology is more relevant and sustainable.  That is a commended report. 

Secondly, the nation needs Biosafety Reference Laboratory Level 4 to handle very minute and sophisticated organisms.  4 – the National Biotechnology Act, provides for the establishment of a fund and the Ministry has responded that, it is going to implement that Act.  The subject is highly technical and it is new, so it needs further education or continuous education and awareness and the Minister has actually reiterated that.  We appreciate that too.

The National Biotechnology Authority needs land to conduct confined field trials and the Ministry has accepted that and we hope that the Ministry of Lands and Rural Resettlement is going to act positively and urgently.  With this in mind, I now request the House to adopt the Committee report.  Thank you very much.

Motion put that the First Report of the Portiolio Committee on Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development be adopted.

Motion put and agreed to.

On the motion of THE MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, MECHANISATION AND IRRIGATION DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. MADE), the House adjourned at Fourteen Minutes past Five o’clock p.m.    

National Assembly Hansard Vol. 43 NATIONAL ASSEMBLY HANSARD 15 FEBRUARY 2017 VOL 43 NO 36