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NATIONAL ASSEMBLY HANSARD 15 MARCH 2018 VOL 44 NO 48

PARLIAMENT OF ZIMBABWE

Thursday, 15th March, 2018

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

PRAYERS

(THE ACTING SPEAKER in the Chair)

ANNOUNCEMENTS BY THE ACTING SPEAKER

PETITION RECEIVED FROM MEDIA MONITORING PROJECT OF ZIMBABWE

          THE ACTING SPEAKER (HON. MARUMAHOKO): I have to inform the House that on Tuesday, 27th February 2018, Parliament of Zimbabwe received a petition from Media Monitoring Project of Zimbabwe beseeching Parliament to exercise its oversight function and protect the rights of Chiredzi residents to water and sanitation.  The petition has since been referred to the Portfolio Committee on Environment, Water, Climate and Hospitality Industry. 

INVITATION TO A FAMILY LAWS MEETING

          THE ACTING SPEAKER: All members of the Women’s Caucus are invited to a meeting on Family Laws on 21st March, 2018, starting at 0830 hours to 12 noon at the Cresta Oasis Hotel.   Please be punctual. 

          The Minister of Finance and Economic Development having presented a Notice of Motion.

          HON. GONESE:  On a point of order. Thank you Mr. Speaker, I just want to seek some clarification because this is an issue that has been of great concern to the population in general. Since it has been tabled; under normal circumstances when we are to take note, it is just tabled and then we can peruse it at our leisure.  My question is whether we will be given an opportunity to ask questions, seek further clarifications regarding the contents of that report bearing in mind its importance and its general effect on the general population.

          THE ACTING SPEAKER:  I hear you Hon. Gonese.  I am informed that the Minister has given notice of the motion to be debated in the House.  So, you will have the opportunity to debate.

          HON. CROSS:  Can copies of this report be availed in a timely manner so that we can read it before the debate takes place?

          THE ACTING SPEAKER:  I am sure the copies will be made available to every Member of Parliament. 

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

          THE HON. MINISTER OF FINANCE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT (HON. CHINAMASA):  Mr. Speaker Sir, with the leave of the House, I move that Orders of the Day, Numbers 1 and 2 be stood over until the rest of Orders of the Day have been disposed of.

          Motion put and agreed to.

SECOND READING

CIVIL AVIATION AMENDMENT BILL [H. B. 4, 2017]

          Third Order read:  Second Reading: Civil Aviation Amendment Bill [H. B. 4, 2017].

          THE MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. GUMBO):  Thank you Mr. Speaker.  I wish to present to Parliament the Bill to separate the operations at Civil Aviation Authority of Zimbabwe. 

          Background

          Mr. Speaker, on 25th March, 2014, Cabinet approved that the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural Development proceed with the unbundling of the Civil Aviation Authority of Zimbabwe (CAAZ) into two entities, that is, the Airports Management Company of Zimbabwe and the Civil Aviation Authority of Zimbabwe. 

          The rationale for the unbundling of CAAZ being that;

a)   The CAAZ in its current form is performing the dual role of regulator and operator in the aviation sector and this results in the Authority being conflicted in the discharge of its duties as it is both a referee and player.

b)   International best practice dictates that there be separation of roles in regulations and operations to ensure that there is effective, efficient and transparent enforcement and monitoring of operations.

c)   The current set up has been creating problems in that in the event of aircraft accident or incident, the CAAZ has to conduct the investigations and report to the Minister responsible.  The investigations can be subjected to compromises as CAAZ may find it difficult to attribute negligence to itself.

          d. the International Aviation Authority industry worldwide is placing major emphasis on safety and security matters, hence the independence of the regulator from operations as paramount to avoid regulatory capture.

          e. the split will improve performance, efficiency and effectiveness in service delivery.

          f. aviation industry players have support the split in order to do away with the conflict of interest inherent in an authority that performs regulatory and operational functions.

          2. International Best Practices

          In order to arrive at the recommended structure of forming two entities; that is, the Airports Company and the Regulatory Authority, the Ministry was informed by the following international best practices:

i.                   Kenya and Zambia; two separate entities with model consisting of

 airports company and the Civil Aviation Authority (Regulator and Air Navigation Services) are in place;

ii.                Ethiopia, Namibia, Botswana and United States of America; single

entity model operating as the Civil Aviation Authority (Airports and Air Navigation Services and Regulator); and

iii.             South Africa; three separate entities model with Airports

Company, Air Navigation Services Company and the Civil Aviation Authority (Regulator).

          The Ministry has taken a conscious decision to set up two entities, bearing in mind the level of development of the aviation sector at this stage. It is imperative that we avoid burdening Treasury with State enterprises which will require bailing out due to the shrunken nature of the industry. Furthermore, the air navigation and air traffic control functions shall remain in the regulatory authority until such time as the industry has grown and is viable to make air navigation and air traffic control a standalone entity.

          3. Airports Management Company of Zimbabwe (Pvt) Limited

          The Company is registered under the Companies Act (Chapter 24:03) and registration was effected on the 21st August, 2014 under registration number 6907/2014.

          The functions of the Company are, but not limited to:

a.     Acquiring, establishing, developing, maintaining, managing,

controlling and operating aerodromes in Zimbabwe.

b.    Establishing, providing and maintaining roads, approaches, apparatus, equipment, buildings and facilities in connection with aerodromes.

c.     Providing any service or facility for the purposes of –

i.                   The landing, parking or take-off of an aircraft;

ii.                The handling or cleaning of an aircraft, the supply of provisions to

an aircraft, including, but not limited to, food, oils and fuels or the emergency servicing of an aircraft on an apron; and

iii.             The handling of aircraft passengers or their baggage or of cargo at

all stages while they are or it is on the premises of such airport, including the transfer of such passengers, their baggage or such cargo to and from an aircraft.

iv.             Undertaking any other lawful activity at any aerodrome.

d)   Planning, designing, constructing, equipping, maintaining, repairing, adopting, modifying aerodromes as approved by the Aviation Regulatory Authority and the Government of Zimbabwe, for the authorised carriage by air of passenger, baggage, cargo or freight.

e)    Providing such services as the Board considers could properly be provided by the Company, and to charge for those services such as fees as the Board may determine from time to time.

f)     Developing identified aerodromes in Zimbabwe as regional air transportation cargo and passenger hubs and support airline hub operations as well as carry on the business of shipping, forwarding, re-forwarding, clearing and transport agents and bonded warehouses.

g)    Providing safety and security measures for the handling of passenger, baggage, cargo and aircraft and that of personnel in accordance with local and international standards and recommended procedures.

h)   Entering into agreements with any person connected with the business of passenger, cargo and freight at domestic and international air terminals.

i)      Entering into agreements with State bodies, or any person or grant to such State bodies or persons rights or concessions in connection with the Company business and other operations.

The initial Directors of the Company as per the requirements of the

Companies Act (Chapter 24:03) are Mr. Munesushe Munodawafa, former Permanent Secretary in the Ministry and Mr. Nyikadzino Chifema, the Acting Director Air Transport Department. However, the company has not yet been registered as a State Enterprise under the Public Finance Management Act (Chapter 22:19), as the Ministry awaits the approval of the Bill.

          3. Civil Aviation Amendment Bill

          Salient features of the Bill are that:

          Clause 3 amends Section 5 of the Civial Aviation Act (Chapter 13:16) relating to the functions of the Authority and provides them as:

i.                   Promote and regulate civil aviation safety and security;

ii.                Develop air transport;

iii.             Provide air navigation services and air traffic control;

iv.             Oversee the functioning and development of the civil aviation industry;

v.                Develop any regulations that are required in terms of the Act; and

vi.             Monitor and ensure compliance with the Act and the ICAO Convention.

Clause 5 amends the current Section 10 to provide for the

appointment of women to the Board of Directors and their numbers shall be at least half of the prescribed members.

          Clause 9 seeks to ensure that the principles of corporate governance are adhered to, by providing for a penalty of a level fourteen fine or imprisonment of not more than 20 years where a Board Member or a Board Committee Member does not disclose their personal interests in a company or firm doing business with the Authority.

          Clause 10 amends the current Section 24 and it now provides for the appointment of a Director General and not a General Manager as is the current position. This is in line with international best practices and recommendations of the ICAO audit conducted in 2008.

          A new Section 44 is now inserted which provides for State Safety and State Security Programmes in the primary legislation. Safety and Security Oversight Programmes were dealt with in regulations and manuals at an operational level. The Bill elevates these programmes so that they are incorporated and now have the force of law.

          Clause 15 Seeks to strengthen the inspectorate responsible for the investigation of accidents and incidents in Section 55, which is now independent and funded by all the players in the industry. The Inspectorate is accountable to the Minister.

          The Memorandum and Articles of Association for the Airports Management Company were approved by the Attorney General’s Office by a letter dated 1st July, 2014 while the draft Bill was approved by a letter dated 28th June, 2016.

          Recommendation:

          To ensure improvement, efficiency and performance in management of operations in the aviation sector in Zimbabwe, it is hereby recommended that the Bill be approved.

          HON. NDUNA: Thank you Mr. Speaker. I want to thank the Minister for bringing the Bill before you. However, your Committee on Transport is seized with the Bill as is required by rules before a Bill is tabled before Parliament that we go for public hearings, which public hearings we have conducted. Just this yesterday, we had Civil Aviation Authority in pursuant to the tabling of this Bill. So, if it pleases you Mr. Speaker, if we can be given another fortnight which is two weeks before we bring a report on Transport and Infrastructure Development in Parliament before the Bill can be read for a second time.

          THE MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. GUMBO): Mr. Speaker Sir, I am informed that the Committee needs some time to look into the Bill and that they would want to bring their report in a forty night. I have no objection to that. I therefore move that the debate be now adjourned.

          Motion put and agreed to.

          Debate to resume: Tuesday, 20th March, 2018.

MOTION

          BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

          HON. GONESE: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. I move that Orders of the Day, Numbers 4 to 7 be stood over until Order of the Day, Number 8 has been disposed of.

          HON. RUNGANI: I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

CODE OF CONDUCT AND ETHICS AND IMPLEMENTATION REGISTER

            Eighth Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on Code of Ethics and Conduct for Members of Parliament.

            Question again proposed.

            HON. ADV. CHAMISA: Thank you Hon. Speaker Sir. I wish to take this opportunity to just wind down this very important motion acknowledging the Members who have already contributed to this very important code. I had an occasion to discuss with the Chief Whips and also with the Speaker of Parliament, who indicated that we have to push this code because it is a statutory provision; it is a statutory requirement but more importantly, it is in terms of our Constitution. So, as Parliament we have lead by example. As Parliament, we have to take the first place in terms of serving with honour, integrity, probity, honesty and transparency particularly, if one has regards to the fact that the purpose of this code is to make sure that Members of Parliament, are able to declare their assets.

            We had contributions from Hon. Members like Hon. Dr. Shumba who contributed quite positively, Hon. Mandipaka who supported the implementation of this very important code, and Hon. Mpariwa who also raises the importance of the issue of enforcing accountability by Members, particularly Members of Parliament. There were also contributions from Hon. Mutseyami, Hon. Tshuma who were all in agreement with this code. Hon. Maridadi also seconded the views that were raised by Hon. Tshuma and I want to thank all Hon. Members who contributed.

            This code Hon. Speaker Sir and Hon. Members of Parliament, is going to provide accountability as I have indicated transparency and conformity to the good governance principles as embodied and espoused in our Constitution in terms of Chapter 9 of the Constitution. This code is very important in order to allow Members to demonstrate high standards of ethics which are consistent with their important public interests role, which role is already encapsulated in the Constitution.

I am sure you are aware Hon. Speaker that His Excellency the President, Cde. E. D. Mnangagwa made an undertaking to create a responsible transparent and accountable State that is sworn to high moral standards and deserved roads and we are taking the lead as Members of Parliament because we cannot be lagging behind. We want also want to make sure that declaration of assets is given the necessary legislative framework and this work in a long a way to try and address those issues.

Having said that Hon. Speaker Sir, I do not wish to waste a lot of your time because there is generally an agreement by Hon. Members that this is a necessity, a significant milestone by Hon. Members to declare our assets in terms of this code and this code is not just a code of ethics but is a code of morals, principles and it is also a code of what we define as good behaviour.

Motion that;

RECOGNIZING that in 1999, Parliament adopted the final report of the Parliamentary Reform Committee (PRC); and one of the recommendations contained in the report was that of establishing a Code of Conduct and Ethics and Implementation Register for Members of Parliament.

ACKNOWLEDGING that the Constitution of Zimbabwe, in Section 198 provides for the enactment of an Act of Parliament which must provide measures to enforce the provisions of principles of public administration and leadership, including measures to―

(a)    require public officers to make regular disclosures of their assets;

(b)   establish codes of conduct to be observed by public officers; and

(c )    provide for the disciplining of persons who contravene the provisions of Chapter 9 of the Constitution or any code of conduct or standard so established.

NOTING that the recommendation by the PRC and the requirement by the Constitution culminated in Standing Order 49 of the Standing Rules and Orders of the National Assembly.

COGNISANT of the approval of the Code of Conduct and Ethics and Implementation Register by the Committee on Standing Rules and Orders on 21st of April, 2016.

            NOW, THEREFORE, resolves that the Code of Conduct and Ethics and             Implementation Register be adopted, put and agreed to.

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

          HON. GONESE: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. With your indulgence, I move that we revert to Order of the Day, Number 7, which has been stood over to make way for Order of the Day, Number 8.

          HON. D. SIBANDA: I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

FIRST REPORT OF THE PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON HIGHER AND TERTIARY EDUCATION, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT ON THE PROJECTS FUNDED BY ZIMBABWE MANPOWER DEVELOPMENT FUND IN TERTIARY INSTITUTIONS (ZIMDEF)

          HON. DR. MATARUSE: Thank you Hon. Speaker.  I move the motion standing in my name:

          That this House takes note of the First Report of the Portfolio Committee on Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development on the projects funded by Zimbabwe Manpower Development (ZIMDEF) in Tertiary Institutions.

          HON. GONESE: I second.

          HON. DR. MATARUSE: Thank you very much.  I am going to present a report on our tour on a project which was financed by ZIMDEF. Most of the activities have been overtaken by events but I will try to summarise and highlight the most important issues.

          ZIMDEF was given a mandate to develop High-Tech manpower mainly in tertiary education.  Initially, it was with polytechnical education but now it has taken over universities and teachers’ colleges.  At the same time, the Minister added a new mandate to it that is going to deal with STEM.  We started visiting the main ZIMDEF building which was built at a cost of about $23 million and this houses ZIMDEF.  Most of the space is rented to banks, other supermarkets and the like.  So, they are getting a lot of revenue from letting out the main ZIMDEF House.

          From there, we proceeded to Chinhoyi University where they constructed Chinhoyi Hotel, which is the Chinhoyi University of Technology (CUT).  It is a teaching hotel which teaches Hotel and Catering. 

          We also noted that the laboratories were incomplete so they completed the science laboratories because we inherited a university which was a polytechnic and initially, it was a teachers’ college and had inadequate infrastructure.  So, they completed laboratories and the computerised laboratories.

          The major project they are sponsoring at Chinhoyi University is the artificial insemination of cows.  They have already expanded it to involve the community and by that time they had inseminated 300 cows in Mashonaland West.  Their vision is that they want to expand that project to all the provinces in the country. 

          We noted that at Chinhoyi University, the dining hall is incomplete, it is a PSIP project and the students take turns to have their meals.  The Committee was really worried by that and are recommending that the project be completed.  I understand that in the Budget, something has already been allocated to complete that dining hall. 

          From there we visited Kwekwe, Bulawayo, Masvingo and Gwanda polytechnical colleges.  What we noted in these polytechnical colleges is that they had equipment which was bought centrally by the Ministry.  We noted that the polytechnical colleges are at different levels of development and buying the equipment centrally could not satisfy all the polytechnical colleges.  We noted that polytechnical colleges need to buy their own equipment themselves instead of that being bought centrally for them.  All of them received automotive equipment, specifically they want to teach jetronic fuel injection system.  They also got computerised wheel balancing equipment and equipment to diagnose engine problems.

          In addition, Kwekwe Polytechnical College had completion of student hostel and they also completed a laboratory and computerised laboratory. 

          We proceeded to visit a catering hotel attached to Bulawayo Polytechnical College and noted that the hotel needs to be fully commercialised.  It caters for the whole region.  We met students from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and some from Rwanda and we strongly believe that if that hotel is commercialised, the polytechnic will benefit a lot.

          We proceeded to visit Lupane State University.  It is the newest university and has incomplete hostel.  They have completed one hostel which was hosting both female and male students including lecturers.  We recommended that the second hostel be completed and also the dining hall.  In the Budget, some additional funds have been allocated for that.

          We proceeded to Masvingo and Gwanda State Universities.  Gwanda Polytechnical College is at Epoch mine, it is at its infancy and ZIMDEF managed to convert that mine into a university but the site which was allocated in Gwanda has nothing.  So, we recommended that a lot of money be poured to kick off Gwanda State University.

           In Masvingo, we went to Masvingo State University, it is the fastest growing university in the country.  They got money to buy the stand to build a law school and they were assisted to build it.  They also got money to computerise the Department of Education.  In Masvingo, there are flats which were constructed and are let out to the lecturers for both the university and the polytechnic in Masvingo and some are let out to the university.  So, there is an income generating project for ZIMDEF in Masvingo. 

          In Bulawayo, we visited the National University of Science and Technology (NUST).  NUST are sponsoring...

          *HON MATANGIRA: On a point of order Mr. Speaker Sir.  We are not hearing what the Hon. Member is saying.

          THE ACTING SPEAKER: You are making a lot of noise, that is why you are not hearing. Let us help him by keeping quiet.

          HON. DR. MATARUSE: At NUST, they are sponsoring a DNA project, they can determine – it is used for forensic, identification of people, that is after an accident or being burnt, they can take the tissue, analyse it and identify it.  They are also using that to determine the parent of the children if there is doubt; they are doing it there at NUST.  Anybody can walk in at NUST and have determination of parenthood of a child, if the mother and the child are there, it does not cost much, it costs about $1 000 to determine who the father or the parents of the child is.  So, we recommend strongly that project because we are still sending bodies for forensic analysis in South Africa…

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Hon. Matangira, you said you are not getting what is being said by Hon. Dr. Mataruse here but you are making noise there.

          HON. DR. MATARUSE: The other part of the report, which is on STEM, will be presented on another report, together with other controversial issues.

          Our recommendations as a Committee – we recommend that ZIMDEF should continue providing the service it is providing because literally, it has taken over most of the duties which are supposed to be run by the Government.  It is actually keeping these universities and polytechnics functional.  Most of them received nothing from the Government during that particular year in terms of money to run these institutions.  So, ZIMDEF was actually filling the gap.  So we recommend that this fund remain, people should continue paying and let us support.

          We also recommend specific projects to be supported to the completion especially the Chinhoyi artificial insemination project.  If that   expands, we are going to benefit, they are going to generate something, and they will grow the cattle.

          We also recommend that Hotel St Patrick’s which is the one I talked about which is attached to Bulawayo Polytechnic, should be commercialised so that we get something out of it.

          We recommend that in this coming budget, the Government should allocate money to complete the PSIP projects in all the universities.  At NUST, up to now, it is now over 10 years, the main administration structure is still incomplete.  It needs to be redesigned and then completed.

HON. CHAKONA: I just want to add a few issues that I think are pertinent to the report.  Chinhoyi University is running a very special and important project which is the artificial insemination.  Mr. Speaker, I think you will recall that our National Head used to stand well above 10 million and now has gone down to about 5 million in the country. 

This project if it is well funded, it is the best way of restocking our national health and more so, with pedigree stock.  These guys have got all the types of cattle that are found in this country, from beef master to barman and anything else that you might actually think of.  So, what is imperative is that if the University is properly funded, this project can actually be run in all the 10 provinces of our country so that we can re-stock with the type of animal that is suitable in that particular province that is where the importance of this project is. 

However, what we see is very little funding coming in through to that project.  The farmers themselves are not involved in the project and I think it is imperative that farmers are also drawn in to these projects so that our indigenous farmers can learn how to keep pedigree animals.

At Chinhoyi University of Science and Technology has an incomplete dining hall which has been incomplete for a quite a number of years now such that the current structure is dilapidating and it is also deforming.  So, by the time funds are found it may be very difficult to continue from where they left.  So, I think it is important that any incomplete project especially to do with buildings is given funding with immediate effect so that we do not lose what we have already invested on to the building. 

We also observed that when equipment is bought centrally especially for the polytechnics, they buy uniform equipment which may not sometimes fit in the buildings that it is supposed to be placed.  We observed that some of the equipment which was bought five years ago is still un-commissioned and it is still sitting there not being used.  What it means is that somebody is just buying equipment and then distributing it to Polytechnics not to their particular specification.  So it is important that when equipment is being bough each polytechnic specifies the type of equipment that they want to use for the particular subjects that they would be teaching. Mr. Speaker, I also want to add that Great Zimbabwe University has done some wonderful work.  They have expanded and done very well but I just want to say they have got a state of the art law school which was built in town.  That law school is next to a market popularly known as Kuchitima and all the noise that comes from that market affects the school.  I think it is important that the university negotiates with the City Council so that the market is removed from there or re-located to another place because it is cheaper to relocate the market than to relocate the school which is basically a state of the art and it was opened by the former President Cde. Robert Mugabe. 

The Law school also houses one of the state of the art libraries that were also built at the same with the college.  So, the infrastructure that is at the school is very expensive and it is next to a market where music is being played; where there is so much human traffic coming through to the market and this affects the students.  I think our recommendation is that Masvingo City Councils re-locates that market so that we give the correct environment to the Law School.

          Also, Great Zimbabwe University has got a number of income generating projects, like they have got brick making project and it is generating income for the university and the bricks that are being molded there are also used for the construction of their various projects at the university but what we are trying  to getting is if they are given enough land to actually do these projects, the university can generate more income in line with …

          HON. MARIDADI: On a point of order.  I am getting a bit worried, Hon Chakona is supposed to second the motion on the report which was presented.  What he is talking about is a completely different motion.  He is not speaking to the issue of ZIMDEF.  He is now talking about music being played at markets; expansion and so on.

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER (HON. MARUMAHOKO) Order, order! Hon. Member, he is on course.

          HON. CHAKONA: Mr. Speaker, what I am trying to get at is if ZIMDEF is going to finance what we are talking about it is actually going to improve the situation at these universities.  All these projects were funded by the ZIMDEF and the Chairman had made it clear that even the Law School was funded by ZIMDEF.  What I am trying to get at is that ZIMDEF has done a great work and it is doing wonderfully well.  All these process…

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Hon. Chakona continue debating, you are on course.

          HON. CHAKONA: Thank you Mr. Speaker.  Anywhere, I was almost through in what I was explaining in terms of Great Zimbabwe University that they have income generating projects and these projects were funded by ZIMDEF and if at all, more funds could be made available, the university can be self sustaining.  All I am trying to get it is that most of these projects were funded by ZIMDEF and if at all ZIMDEF could continue to do that because that is their mandate.  The mandate of ZIMDEF is manpower development and these universities are actually training students during that course.  I thank you Mr. Speaker.

          *HON. MACHINGURA: Thank you Mr. Speaker…

          Hon. P. D. Sibanda having shook his head.

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Order, order! Hon. Member, why are you shaking your head?

          HON. P. D. SIBANDA: Hon. Speaker I am laughing to her.  I was laughing as I was shaking my head.  She said something behind my back and then I was laughing …

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: I know why you were shaking your head.  Take your seat.

          *HON. MACHINGURA: Hon. Speaker, I want to add a few words to this debate.  It is very true that ZIMDEF is doing a lot of good work in our colleges and universities.  It shows that they have got a lot of money because if we hear of misappropriation of funds it means they have a lot of money.  Where I want to contribute is on the sourcing of equipment which is being used in technical colleges because I do not know whether these people have got knowledge on specifications of equipment that is needed.  On the delay of commissioning of equipment, when the state of the art machinery was bought, it was said that it was obsolete, so that is why the commissioning was put on hold. 

They wanted to investigate whether Zimbabwe was a dumping ground but it starts with the people who go there.  They should go there with knowledge, even the buildings that are being constructed; the infrastructure, it should be followed up because you find that ZIMDEF puts money into construction of a building which is supposed to be very good but the workmanship will be very poor because no one is making a follow-up.  You will find that within a short space of time, the buildings start collapsing. 

In Bulawayo, we are grateful of a School of Hotel and Catering, it is like a hotel just like Holiday Inn in Bulawayo.  I want to encourage Hon. Members that when you go to Bulawayo you should go and support that project at St Patrick’s.  It is a very project, I think all the other colleges should follow suite, those who offer hotel and catering.  I thank you.

HON. P. D. SIBANDA: Thank you Mr. Speaker for giving me an opportunity to also contribute to this report on the operations of ZIMDEF.  I am just going to talk about two things; I will talk about the lack of continuity of Government programmes and projects.  Secondly, I am going to touch on how at times Government projects and programmes marginalised the already marginalised.

Before I get to that Hon. Speaker, I just want to appreciate the idea behind the concept of ZIMDEF, to develop manpower in this country.  At times when you go out of Parliament and interact with members of the public, especially during public hearings, that is when you come to appreciate that this concept of human development in this country has taken us somewhere.  We are a country that you can stand up and be proud of in terms of the capacity of human power.  It is such ideas that have brought us to the level that we are currently.

However, it is also important to take note that when you talk of ZIMDEF, then you can also begin to talk about other parastatals; quasi-Government institutions.  Whilst all parastatals and quasi-Government institutions; the idea behind them is noble.  I however be cry the stripping of assets and resources from those organisations for political end.  Specifically speaking to the issue of ZIMDEF, we are all aware that last year when the issue of the ZIMDEF funds were raised, it is very critically clear that even as individual were being pin- pointed to have abused resources but at the end of the day the beneficiary of the resources that came out of ZIMDEF was ZANU PF as a political party.

ZANU PF as a political party or any other political that is going to be in Government any other time, I think we should learn to distance our hands from the pots of resources that are being held in quasi-Government institutions.

HON. CHAKONA: On a point of order.  Our report is about ZIMDEF projects.  It is not about ZANU PF or political parties.  The report is about projects that were funded by ZIMDEF, it is not to do with ZANU PF; it is nothing to do with political parties.

          THE ACTING SPEAKER: Order, order please.  Hon. Member, if you could stick to the contents of the report. 

          HON. P. D. SIBANDA:  Hon. Speaker, let me try.

          THE ACTING SPEAKER:  Order.  I know you have been trying to put me onto it but get to the subject.

          HON. P. D. SIBANDA:  I am not trying to put you Hon. Speaker.  I appreciate that you understood me but my colleague could not have understood me.  We are talking about projects that have been funded by ZIMDEF.  We are all aware and it is in the public domain that last year allegations that were raised against the former Minister ended up pointing to the fact that fuel that was bought by ZIMDEF was handed to ZANU PF.  That is a project as well which was being funded by ZIMDEF.  However, it does not appear in the Committee report but we have to talk about it.  ZIMDEF and any other quasi-government institutions should stop funding political parties and maintain the mandate that they were given.  I think that is important Hon. Speaker.  I thought it was important that I should mention it. 

          On the lack of continuity of Government programmes Hon. Speaker, last year before this so-called new dispensation came into place, the Hon. Minister who was the patron for ZIMDEF.

          THE ACTING SPEAKER:  Order Hon. Member.  What do you call the so-called?

          HON. P. D. SIBANDA:  I think views are different on that. It is not an agreed position that it is a new dispensation – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] – Hon. Speaker, it is not an agreed position.  I have my personal position on that so-called new dispensation.  No wonder why I call it so-called – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] –

          HON. MATANGIRA:  Point of order!

          THE ACTING SPEAKER:  What is your point of order?

          HON. MATANGIRA:  My point of order Mr. Speaker is, when people adhere to the past then they are past tense.  We are where we are and we are going ahead.  The new dispensation has no segregation, whether ZANU PF or MDC.  We did it together, we are where we are together and we are going ahead together. So I think my point of order is, the Hon. Member must withdraw the so-called dispensation – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] –

          THE ACTING SPEAKER:  Order please.  Hon. Member, you may proceed but please desist from raising such points.

          HON. P. D. SIBANDA:  Thank you Hon. Speaker.  What I was saying is that last year, the Hon. Minister who was responsible for ZIMDEF was Prof. Jonathan Moyo and his deputy is my brother, seated over that side.  Hon. Speaker, they started a project in which ZIMDEF was to go and fund the learning of sciences in schools which was referred to as STEM.  Why am I talking about lack of continuity in Government?  Even in private business, a business supposed to be an ongoing concern.  We do not change where the business was going because we have changed the manager. 

The talk that is currently in the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education Science and Technology Development is such that STEM has no longer become a priority.  As we speak, this year I am sure Government has not funded new students for STEM.  What this means is that the STEM project was a Jonathan Moyo – Gandawa project.  When Jonathan Moyo and Gandawa move on, a new person will come with their personal project.  I do not think that is a normal functioning of Government.  I do not see normal governments performing and functioning in that way.  One want to believe that a Government is a system and once a system has established that these are the goals and objectives that we want to achieve, regardless of the change of faces that are manning that area, the project should continue – [HON. J. TSHUMA: Inaudible interjections.] – unfortunately we are not in the Central Committee.

THE ACTING SPEAKER:  Hon. Member, can you please address the Chair. 

HON. P. D. SIBANDA:  Hon. Speaker, that having been said, I want to believe that the STEM was a good project for this nation.  It was like we were heading in a very good direction.  It meant that as a nation we were going towards a scenario where we are going to develop our own scientists in various fields and now we have cut that short.  When you look at a Government that plans in that manner, it shows that it is a short term Government.  It does not plan in the long term because if it was planning in the long term Hon. Speaker I believe that what had been established was supposed to continue. 

Just to look at the disturbances that have been caused by this discontinuation of that programme, because this was a Government project or programme, almost all schools have started to invest in science laboratories.  Now because we have been abruptly stopped that programme that had been designed by Government, we have changed policy.  We are already back into the gear of inconsistency in terms of our policies.  Many schools are left stranded and they do not know what to do.

At a very personal constituency level Hon. Speaker, I was affected by this change in Government policy.  At the time of the new dispensation, I had already received a letter from the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education Science and Technology Development to the effect that my request for funding of two science laboratories in my constituency had been approved and it was heading towards purchase of the required material.  Now, when I go to the new dispensation, I am told that we have put everything on hold.  The schools that we had received that Government promise had already started investing in science subjects.  They have got students who passed science subjects and they do not know where to take those children any more.  All this is coming on the basis of a Government that is failing to adhere to normal policy of an ongoing concern. 

Hon. Speaker, I am of the view that the current Government should not bring in new things and think that because every time it wants to change everything, then that becomes a new dispensation.  No, it becomes a new chaos.  So, the idea should not be because we have changed the face of the President so we need also to change the face of policies.  Policies should continue in the direction that they were going because we need predictability.  When it comes to policies we need predictability.  We cannot Hon. Speaker sustain a scenario where we are going for elections in the next four months, a new Government comes in then we discard each and every policy.  We cannot do that.  A nation cannot survive under those kind of circumstances. 

It is my view Hon. Speaker that the new Minister who also happens to be a Professor, equivalent to Prof. Jonathan Moyo, why should he not continue with the policies that were started by his colleague for the benefit of the whole nation?  If he wants to stop those policies, why does he not enquire from the nation?  Find out from members of the public on whether they agree with stopping the policy or continuing with the policy. 

On the issue of marginalisation of the marginalised Hon. Speaker, when I heard this report, infrastructure was built in Chinhoyi, that is Mashonaland West where the previous President came from, - [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – you might not understand because somehow you are –

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Order please!

          HON. P. D. SIBANDA: Hon. Speaker, infrastructure was built in Bulawayo and at polytechnics but what about those areas that do not have polytechnics or universities? How are they benefitting from this public resource? That becomes marginalization of the already marginalised, because what we are doing is that we are creating a project and programme that is funding on already funded projects instead of us starting new projects. Therefore, next time when we come up with such a policy Hon. Speaker, it is important that these programmes start by funding new things in areas where there is no infrastructure of higher education that exists.

For example, it could have made sense Hon. Speaker, right now if you go to NUST all the engineering students, the majority of them come from Mashonaland and the reason is purely because Matebeleland does not have schools with science laboratories. One would have thought and I actually approached the former Minister Prof. Jonathan Moyo about that issue and he told me that, you know because I come from Matebeleland I cannot invest money in Matebeleland. He thought that he would be seen as corrupt but all other Ministers – I believe that they either take Government resources to wherever they come from or they take resources to where they are required. I think we should have a development trajectory that looks into areas of need, rather than fearing what people are going to think about me.

ZIMDEF should invest into science laboratories in areas where there are no science laboratories so that in terms of our manpower development, there is equity and there will not be any discrepancies between certain regions and other regions. I believe that the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education should continue with ZIMDEF and STEM but now they should go and invest in areas where infrastructure does not already exist. I thank you.

HON. MARIDADI: I wish to add my voice but firstly I wish to thank the mover of the motion Hon. Dr. Matarutse and the seconder. Mr. Speaker, we are having this conversation here where there seems to be a bit of discord amongst Members of Parliament for a few reasons.

Firstly, ZIMDEF is a statutory fund established in 1996 with the sole purpose of manpower planning and development. There are more than 100 funds in Government and ZIMDEF is one of them. ZIMDEF is cash rich. Now, funds like ZIMDEF must be presented to Parliament and must appear in the Blue Book as a statutory fund. Spending money from that fund must be approved by Parliament. I am imagining a scenario where the Minister of Finance would have come to Parliament to say in terms of the Public Finance Management Act I am presenting this budget and there are these statutory funds here. The statutory fund called ZIMDEF is going to be spent this way and Parliament would have debated it, and money would have been deployed according to the dictates of this House.

Now, let me go to the meat of the matter. ZIMDEF constructed their office for $23 million and that is a lot of money Mr. Speaker. If you go to Midlands State University, there are no residential facilities for students. The $23 million would have constructed enough residence for all the students at Midlands State University. In Gweru today, we have heard so many reports in newspapers and even the Portfolio Committees that have visited Gweru saying that students are taking to prostitution, especially female students - because they are not funded adequately. They do not have good accommodation.

You go to a household where the landlord is letting three rooms and one room is let to about 3-5 students sharing, with each one paying $30 per month. There is a scenario whereby female and male students co-habit because of lack of accommodation. I am thinking if $23 million had been presented to this House by the Minister of Finance as statutory money which is in the ZIMDEF fund, I can guarantee you that this Parliament would have resolved that $23 million goes to construct accommodation for students either at Midlands State University, University of Zimbabwe, or any other university for that matter and not gone into constructing an office worth $23 million just for top management of ZIMDEF.

Mr. Speaker, I want to talk about the issue of STEM and I think Hon. Sibanda was very eloquent in the way he spoke about it. Today in Mabvuku, I was approached by parents of students at Mabvuku High School. The students were in Form Two going to Form Three and their parents invested so much money for them to do science subjects. They have passed those science subjects. They were doing those science subjects on condition that when they get to Lower Six, Government through the STEM project would take over the students and take them through to Upper  Six, hoping that they would pass and go to university. Because the current Minister has discontinued STEM, what it means is that the nation has been jolted.

Here was a programme and for the life of me, I remember very well when this STEM project was presented in this Parliament by Prof. J. Moyo. The Secretary for Information then said no, no this project is not a Prof. J. Moyo project. This STEM project is a programme of Government approved by Cabinet and in any case it did not start two years ago, it has been there for a long time. It is only that Prof. J. Moyo has verbalized it and given it life. Mr. Speaker, when you have programmes that are started by individual Ministers that do not come to this Parliament, you have a situation where money is not deployed correctly and where a potentially good policy is stopped because there is a change of guard in the Ministry or wherever it is.

So, Mr. Speaker, my prayer to this House in contributing to this motion is that statutory funds and there are so many of them, there is the Number Plate Fund and others, must be brought to this Parliament. The money must be used according to the dictates of the Public Finance Management Act. When the money is brought to this Parliament, this Parliament then decides what should be done with that money and that money will not be wrongly deployed.

Mr. Speaker, I want to talk about corruption. Corruption that we have in this country, the corruption in Government is in two forms. It is in Government procurement, and that which takes places at parastatals and statutory funds. If we did not have parastatals falling under parent ministries, Ministers would not be involved in corruption at parastatals. There is not a single Minister in this Government ever since 1980 or a single parastatal that has not been caught with a Minister with their hands in the cookie jar. This is because some of the parastatals are cash rich. ZESA, ZINARA and ZMDC are an example.

Just two days ago, we invited the senior management of ZMDC to Parliament to give evidence and they said they got instructions from the Minister to donate $2,9 million to a political party, the reason being that the money does not come through Parliament. If that money had been given to Treasury as a statutory fund and Treasury had put that money in the Blue Book and that money had been put before this Parliament for disbursement, there is no way a political party or any Minister would have given an instruction to the Minister of Finance to donate that money to a political party.

Now, when you have a rich fund like ZIMDEF, you know we are all humans. When a Minister is made patron of a fund that has $100 million and he has discretionary powers of how that money should be spent. We are all humans, the tendency to want to use that money for personal gain is there and there is a not single Member of Parliament here who can tell me that if they are put in charge of a fund as rich as ZIMDEF or number plates, they will not be able to get some of that money for their personal use.

I can guarantee you that the US$400 000 that is alleged to have been misused by the former Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education, God help us, is only US$400 000. He could have spent more. Someone else could have spend more like US$4 million or US$40 million of that money and we are so lucky that because of things that were happening in ZANU PF, someone was quick to notice this and blew the whistle. Prof. Jonathan Moyo could have spent more, but the explanation as to how he spent the money, he bought bicycles for chiefs in his constituency. How about people in Mabvuku? Do they not need bicycles? If chiefs in Tsholotsho need bicycles, how about chiefs in Binga where Hon. Sibanda comes from? How about chiefs where the former Minister Edgar Mbwembwe also comes from, do they not also need bicycles.

Mr. Speaker, the problem is that it is because we are putting the cut before the horse. All that money should come to this Parliament according to the dictates of the Public Finance Management Act. If that is brought to this Parliament, we will not be having this discussion. Construction of a hotel at Chinhoyi University is a noble idea, but how much money was put into the construction of that hotel, even the procurement of material to construct that hotel, nobody knows. I can guarantee you that this hotel was probably constructed at a cost of US$1.5 million, but if you go to the ZIMDEF books, probably US$3 million was allocated for the construction of that hotel. And what happened to the other US$1 million, it is anyone’s guess.

So, my recommendation to the Committee Chair Hon. Mataruse is that ZIMDEF must surrender the building they constructed for US$23 million to the Government of Zimbabwe, to Treasury and Treasury must auction that building. That money should be put into constructing halls of residents for children that are suffering at Midlands State University. You cannot have ZIMDEF Chief Executive sitting in an office where there are three air cons when our children, us the tax payers are languishing at Midlands State University. We cannot have that. We cannot have our children, our 19 year olds taking part in prostitution because they need accommodation. We cannot have that when a building worth US$3 million is sitting there not generating anything for Government.  With those words, I would like to say, please take my recommendation and I thank you.

HON. MUDEREDZWA: Thank you very much Mr. Speaker Sir, for giving me the opportunity to make a contribution to this very important subject matter. First of all, I would like to thank Hon. Dr. Mataruse for leading the discussion on issues to do with ZIMDEF and what it is supposed to do in this nation. I agree on Hon. Members’ contributions that touch around transparency and accountability of funds as administered by ZIMDEF. The genesis of ZIMDEF is that the money that is being used by ZIMDEF comes from subscriptions or contributions from the private sector and the public sector.

So, both the private sector and the public sector are stakeholders in ZIMDEF. I think my worry is around governance issues on how those finances are being administered. I am not aware as to the composition of board of directors of ZIMDEF. I do not know whether they are more from the public sector and very few from the private sector. Since I highlighted that the main contributor historically is the private sector, the members of the board of directors should come from the private sector. If that happens, there is going to be a better scrutiny on how these funds are being used. I am just hoping that the new Corporate Governance Act is going to strengthen issues such that the monies that are being contributed by the public sector are put to good use.

Mr. Speaker Sir, I totally agree with all other Hon. Members that the existence of ZIMDEF is very important in our human development thrust and it should continue, but there should be need for us to infuse the thinking of the private sector into ZIMDEF because these are the people who are making contributions on the understanding that the students are going to learn things that are going to benefit the private sector. If they are hands-on in this issue, you will realise that most of the mistakes that have been taking place will have been corrected.

So, I am just urging the new Minister of Higher Education to make sure that he is going to scout around and look for people who are able, people who are driven and motivated from the private sector to also contribute towards the formation or the renewal of the board of directors of ZIMDEF. That is the area that I wanted to highlight. I would like to thank you very much.

HON. RUNGANI: Mr. Speaker Sir, I move that the debate do now adjourn.

HON. TSHUMA: I second.

Motion put and agreed to.

Debate to resume: Tuesday, 20th March, 2018.

On the motion of HON. RUNGANI seconded by HON. J. TSHUMA, the House adjourned at Seventeen Minutes to Four o’clock p.m. until Tuesday, 20th March 2018.  

 

 

 

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National Assembly Hansard NATIONAL ASSEMBLY HANSARD 15 MARCH 2018 VOL 44 NO 48