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NATIONAL ASSEMBLY HANSARD 19 OCTOBER 2016 VOL 43 NO 06

PARLIAMENT OF ZIMBABWE

Wednesday, 19th October, 2016

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

PRAYERS

(THE HON. SPEAKER in the Chair)

          HON. GONESE:  I have got a point of order Mr. Speaker.

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Please let us not get into the habit of making points of order each time we have to ask questions.

          HON. GONESE:  It is clear Mr. Speaker that Hon. Ministers are not taking the business of this House seriously – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] – We have raised this point before.  In terms of Standing Order Number 63, Ministers who are unable to attend sittings of Parliament must seek leave from the Hon. Speaker in writing. 

I have pointed out before that at the beginning of each session where we are supposed to have question time, it is good practice for the Chair to inform us as to which Ministers have sought the requisite leave of the Speaker.  As we stand now, we have no idea as to who has been granted leave, who is being truant and those who are absent without official leave.  That is the first point Mr. Speaker that the Chair should inform us that he has received applications for leave from certain Ministers so that we are aware and we do not speculate as to who is not there.  As it is, I only see two members, Hon. Mushohwe and Hon. Mashayamombe.  Hon. Mashayamombe is not a Minister, so it looks like it is only one Minister who has sought such leave because he is the only one on the Order Paper.

Furthermore Mr. Speaker, if the Leader of the House is not there, he should designate a Minister who stands in his place so that if we have got policy questions to be directed to the Leader of Government Business, we are guided as to who to direct those questions instead of us simply trying to guess as to who we should direct such questions.  That is the point of order I have Mr. Speaker.

THE HON. SPEAKER:  You are right Hon. Gonese.  There are two reasons; the first one is that I received notification from the Leader of Government Business, Hon. Vice President Mnangagwa through the Chief Whip that because of change of schedule in the arrival of His Excellency, the President, some members of Cabinet as is the practice, have gone to meet him.  There are others who have given written notification and these are Hon. Zhanda, Hon. Ndhlovu, Hon. Mumbengegwi, Hon. Mathuthu, Hon. Madanha and Hon. S.K. Moyo is on sick leave. 

As to the designation of the Acting Leader of Government business in the House, I was hoping that Hon. Chinamasa would be in at any given time.  He is the designated Leader of Government business in the absence of the Vice President, Hon. Mnangagwa.

          In that regard, having sought the indulgence of Hon. Gonese, I would request the House to direct questions to the Ministers so present and we proceed with business hoping that the rest of the Ministers should be in at any given time.

ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITHOUT NOTICE

          HON. CROSS:  My question is directed to the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education.  I would like to ask the Minister what he is doing to decongest the State primary schools in the country following the introduction of the ECD programme?

          THE MINISTER OF PRIMARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION (HON. DR. DOKORA):  Thank you Hon. Speaker and I want to thank the Hon. Member for raising that question.  It affords us the opportunity to reiterate as we have done previously to say that in the mapping of school institutions and their capacities that we undertook in 2013.  We were able to establish, exactly at that time, what schools were over-crowded and therefore needed to be decongested and what new schools in new spaces needed to be constructed.

          That exercise was completed and we looked to the resource mobilisation and that resource mobilisation was split between two possible sources.  One, the State through (PSIP) the public sector organ for infrastructure development and bilateral loans which eventually became the joint venture programme which we presented to Cabinet and was approved; we have done two important things.  One, we have appointed a Financial Advisor to the Ministry which is the Infrastructure Development Bank of Zimbabwe (IDBZ) and the Infrastructure Bank has in turn advertised for consultants. 

          You will agree with me that if you are going to deliver schools on a joint venture basis, you will need some independent consultants to be able to say, is the kind of infrastructure that is being put up value for money?  So, I am hopeful that maybe before the end of this year, I will be in a position to say that programme has begun but we have done the necessary things that I am legally expected to engage in.  I thank you.

          HON. P. D. SIBANDA: (Spoke in Tonga.)

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Minister, I will help you a little bit.  I am sure you can follow because the language is similar to Korekore; the question pertains to the shortage of teachers.

          *HON. DR. DOKORA: I am very grateful for the Hon. Member’s question on teachers regarding infants.        We talk of ECD A; ECD B, Grade 1 and Grade 2 – all these teachers are referred to as infant teachers.  As a Ministry, we receive our teachers from Teachers Training Colleges that fall under the purview of the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education Science and Technology Development. 

          I admit that we have a shortage of infant teachers regardless of some of these who are assisting us called, para-professionals.  These are just a stop-gap measure because the main aim is to have fully qualified trained teachers from these colleges.  As a Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education, we are not a training institution but only utilise the available capacity.

          HON. P. D. SIBANDA:  Mr. Speaker, on a point of order, the Hon. Minister did not answer my question properly.  My question was not concerning the availability of teachers.  Teachers are not there …

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  But that is what he answered. – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – Yes, that was answered and he agrees with you but the responsibility is with the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education Science and Technology Development.

          HON. P. D. SIBANDA:  There are trained teachers Hon. Speaker that are there but are not employed.

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order that is fine, you may clarify.

          HON. P. D. SIBANDA:  (Spoke in Tonga.)

          HON. DR. DOKORA: Thank you very much Mr. Speaker, I thought I was responding to the Hon. Member’s question.  I either ask the Hon. Member to submit a written question or get the indulgence of some translation.

          I am lost because I thought I answered the question.  I thank you. – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order, in essence, the question is, there are trained teachers already who are not employed by the Ministry.  They are there, why are you not employing them?

*HON. DR. DOKORA:  When we talk of trained teachers, as the

Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education, we are talking of any person who has a qualification in any subject like History or Geography and we say that person is a teacher.  As a Ministry, we believe that a teacher should be able to teach in the subject which he was trained. 

Hence, my request is if you have any of these trained teachers who are qualified in infant teaching, please direct them to my office.  I will definitely employ them.

HON. CHAKONA:  My question is directed to the Minister of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development, Dr. Made.  I would like to find out when Government will start distributing inputs to – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – rural farmers…

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order Hon. Members, I cannot follow the question, can you speak in whispers please?  Please repeat the question.

HON. CHAKONA:  My question is directed to the Minister of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development, Dr, Made.  I would like to find out when Government will start distributing inputs to farmers in rural areas.  We understand that command agriculture has kicked off but we also want to find out when the rural farmers will start benefitting for the purpose of the coming agricultural season.

THE MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, MECHANISATION AND IRRIGATION DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. MADE):  Agriculture inputs distribution has started across the country.  It includes inputs for cotton – cotton seed as well as the generality of the household areas and some areas have started receiving the fertilizers.

HON. CHAKONA:  In which areas has this distribution started because in our province we have not yet seen anything.

THE HON. SPEAKER:  That is a detailed operational question that should have come under written questions.  So you can submit it for next week.

HON. MAWERE:  I had wanted to direct my question to the Minister of Health and Child Care who is absent and in his absence, I thought the leader of the House would be available. So I will rest my question because he is also not around.

HON. CHAMISA: On a point of order Hon Speaker.  There is a question that was raised by Hon. Sibanda in Tonga.  You could see that the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education was struggling…

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order Hon. Member.  Can we be procedural?  That point of order should have been raised immediately after the Hon Minister had finished speaking. We cannot allow that, therefore, I beg your indulgence, now that we have gone to another question so that we proceed sequentially.  

HON. MUNENGAMI:  I would like to find out from Hon. Made where Government is getting the money for command agriculture?  Is Government borrowing the funds or is it being funded by Treasury?

THE MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, MECHANISATION AND IRRIGATION DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. MADE):  All the funds that are borrowed by Government from whatever source are borrowed through the Minister of Finance and Economic Development.  He is the one who is responsible for negotiating the borrowing of resources.

HON. MUNENGAMI:  Can the Minister just confirm whether the money which is funding command agriculture was borrowed or not?

HON. DR.  MADE:  As I indicated, all the funds that are used for agriculture are borrowed and in that case, it is the Minister of Finance and Economic Development who is responsible.

+HON. MLILO:  My question is directed to the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education.  What is Government policy regarding learners’ rights especially during the rainy season?  I am asking this question because there is a school in Luveve called Cowdry Primary School.  It has been under construction for quite a long time but it is not yet complete.  We know that learners should not be disturbed by the vagaries of the weather and they should be protected.

THE MINISTER OF PRIMARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION (HON. DR. DOKORA):  I would have liked to respond in Ndebele but for now, allow me to respond in English so I can do so properly.  You asked on the infrastructure aspect and it is Government policy to put up infrastructure to house all our 4.2 million learners.  We do so in the framework of partnerships.   To then say, where there is inadequate infrastructure, the kids are open to the elements – of course if we have a policy to provide infrastructure - we do have a policy that seeks to protect all the children and their rights in terms of access to quality education.  I am not so certain whether it is a particular case which is being placed in a larger frame but I can confirm we have a policy and we have taken steps to ensure that we can deliver infrastructure within reasonable time.  

HON. MLILO:  Hon. Minister, your response is well noted but in the interim, what steps is the Ministry taking to prevent the disaster that is looming, particularly in Cowdry Primary School that I mentioned.  This school only has about five classes.  What it means is that the rest of the students are learning under trees and now that we are going towards the rainy season, what measures do you have in place to protect these children against bad weather, which can lead to diseases like pneumonia or even death. 

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order, that is a specific issue, it has nothing to do with policy.  You should ask that question under Written Questions.

          +HON. MISIHAIRABWI MUSHONGA: My question is directed to the Minister of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development.  We are talking about command agriculture, may you please explain whether command agriculture will also include support in cattle ranching, not only in maize because according to the regions and seasons of this country, some of these are good at animal husbandry and others for agriculture.  Are we taking care of animal husbandry because in my constituency animal husbandry is the main agricultural business?

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, vehicle ML, black in colour, registration number ABL 3627 is blocking other vehicles.  Can the owner please remove the vehicle, otherwise it will be clamped and towed away.

+THE MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, MECHANISATION AND IRRIGATION DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. MADE): I want to thank Hon. Misihairabwi-Mushonga for such a pertinent question regarding command agriculture. Command agriculture is going to take care of animal husbandry in Matebeleland North, Matebeleland South, part of Midlands and the southern parts of Manicaland.  So, it is going to give the support on livestock in general in those areas except may be irrigation schemes. 

          So, there has been a request that we include livestock and the livestock will not only include the beef.  It will also include dairy, small stock such as goats, sheep, poultry and the piggery.  So, we are working on that programme. 

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Isupplementary ngesi Ndebele ithiwani? Ukuphinda umphehlo!

          +HON. MISIHAIRABWI-MUSHONGA:  Hon. Minister, when you look at the advertising on command agriculture, we realise that the advertisements do not talk about animal husbandry.  Is it in the pipe line that in your next advertisements and announcements, you are going to tell farmers who are into animal husbandry to be on the look-out for such advertisements so that they can also access finances towards command agriculture finance? 

          +HON. DR. MADE:  In my previous response, I said we received requests from animal husbandry farmers and we are looking into the request.  As a priority, we were looking at the maize inputs support programme initially and hence our next step will be to introduce a programme on animal husbandry whose special emphasis is on cattle. 

          HON. CHAMISA:  I have a point I wanted to make the other time.  Now that Hon. Misihairabwi-Mushonga spoke in Ndebele …

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Now you are being procedural.

          HON. CHAMISA:  Indeed Hon. Speaker, I had to catch you somewhere, so I am glad. I got you – [Laughter.] -

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  I caught you first.

          +HON. CHAMISA:  Thank you Hon. Speaker.  Yes, our problem Mr. Speaker is that we do not have interpreters so that the Ministers can be able to follow the contributions from Hon. Members who will be talking in the different languages – [Laughter.] -

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Sizwile.

          HON. CHAMISA:  I had to speak in Ndebele but the point is that we are a 21st Century Parliament.  In terms of our Constitution, Section 6, we have 16 languages that are official.  Hon. Sibanda spoke in Ndebele and Hon. Misihairabwi-Mushonga spoke in Tonga and Ndebele.  We should be comfortable to speak in our mother languages but then be able to have the proper translation within Parliament.  So, it is just a point Hon. Speaker, to say we want to be following all the debates whether in Tonga or Chewa.  We must be proud of our languages.  I just hope from a point of order, it will make sense but also even for the broadcasting of Parliamentary debates, if we are able to also have sign language for those who are not able to listen. It is in the Constitution Mr. Speaker.    If we can also have sign language so that debates are followed by our differentially able citizens in this country. Thank you.

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  What Hon. Chamisa is raising is definitely constitutionally grounded.  However, I throw back the debate. It is up to this Parliament to make sure that Parliament has a sufficient budget to institute automatic translation in all languages.  So, the ball is with us in Parliament to pass the correct budget and buy the gadgets that are necessary for automatic translation but the point has been made.

          *HON. PHIRI: My question is directed to the Minister of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing.  What is Government policy regarding pre-paid meters for accessing water because when you look into our Constitution, it says access to clean and safe water is a right of every citizen of Zimbabwe. 

  * THE MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT, PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON. CHINGOSHO): I want to thank the Hon. Member for that question.  The policy of the Ministry is that we are encouraging local authorities to start using pre-paid meters and we have observed that the local authorities do not have sufficient funds to roll-out this programme so that residents can access water through pre-paid meters. 

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order.

          *HON. PHIRI: My supplementary question is that the original question was not responded to fully. I said the Constitution of Zimbabwe says the citizens of Zimbabwe have a right to access clean and safe water and hence, if these local authorities are allowed to lay out prepaid metres for the water, it will mean that whosoever has not paid for the water will not have water.  Water is unlike electricity whereby if you do not pay for electricity, you do not access it. In the case of water, if your water is  cut because you cannot access the payment, your rights have been abrogated. I thank you.

          *HON. CHINGOSHO: I am very grateful to the Hon. Member who asked this question. I will respond to this question and according to the way this question was put. Whilst I may try and scramble through this question, I will advise the Hon. Member to put this specific question in writing so that it can be fully responded to. – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.]-

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order. One hallmark of humanity is humility. If the Hon. Deputy Minister has agreed that he does not have the answer, it can be put in writing. That will give the Hon. Deputy Minister sufficient time to research.

          *HON. ZVIDZAI: Thank you Hon. Speaker for giving me the opportunity to ask this question which I will direct to the Deputy Minister of Home Affairs, Hon. Mguni. We are now preparing for the general elections in 2018 and the people of Zimbabwe were clamouring for a new voter’s roll which is clean. We have had some responses from ZEC who have said they will be using a bio-metric voter’s roll. They are encouraging every member to register. We are saying when somebody is registering, the most important document is the National I. D.

So, my question is as a Ministry, what steps are you taking to make it easy for the people of Zimbabwe to access these National I.Ds? This is because in some areas - especially in the rural areas, people have to travel long distances. The other problem is that when somebody has lost his National I.D., the replacement fine or payment is $10.  We are talking of the people in rural areas where there is this liquidity crunch. My question is, are you going to get some moratorium whereby those who lost their I.Ds will be able to get them free of charge?

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS (HON. MGUNI): Home Affairs ...

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order. I was not aware that the Deputy Minister should have advised the Chair that the Acting Minister of Home Affairs is around rather than standing up to try to answer.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS (HON. MGUNI): Excuse me Mr. Speaker. I was saying Home Affairs has got an Acting Minister in this august House in the form of Dr. O. Mpofu. I thank you.  

THE ACTING MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS (HON. DR. O. MPOFU): Thank you Hon. Speaker. I want to thank my colleague, my former Deputy Minister for raising that question. It is quite a comprehensive question which would require serious consultations. As Acting Minister, I think it will only be fair that we refer this to the substantive Minister when he comes. – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.]-

HON. ZVIDZAI: I have a supplementary question Mr. Speaker.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order. You cannot have a supplementary question on an unanswered question. So, what is going to happen is that the Hon. Minister has deferred that question to the substantive Minister who should bring a response next week.

*HON. ZVIDZAI: On a point of order Mr. Speaker.

THE HON. SPEAKER: In terms of what Standing Order?

*HON. ZVIDZAI: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. My point of order is that we have Deputy Ministers in this House. I am standing in praise of our Deputy Ministers because they are very eloquent and proficient in responding to these questions. I have got a feeling that they should be given the chance to respond. The Acting Minister may not be in a position to respond and has said he will refer the question to the Minister, but we know we have a Deputy Minister who should be responding to this. This is a pertinent and crucial question because we are preparing for the elections in 2018 and this should be taken expeditiously. With your indulgence as the lawyers would say, please allow me to refer my question as I stated to the Deputy Minister, Hon. Mguni?

*THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order. In our Shona culture, we have the act of passing on issues to our elders and the elders will make a decision. In this case, the Deputy Minister passed on this   question to the acting Minister and the acting Minister then said he will refer it to the substantive Minister. According to our culture a seniour cannot refer the question back to the junior when it has been handed over to him. I thank you. 

*HON. MAPIKI: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. I am directing my question to the Minister of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development Dr. Hon. Made. What is Government policy regarding the export of beef of Zimbabwe. We have the province of Matabeleland North and South, which are beef – producing constituencies. The CSC is not functioning and this company should be exporting beef to European countries. So, what steps are we taking to revive the beef industry through the CSC?

THE MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, MECHANISATION AND IRRIGATION DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. MADE): I want to thank the Hon. Member for asking the question. First of all, I want to indicate that certainly the CSC is under a programme as enunciated in His Excellency’s Speech, in terms of the turnaround strategy. However, to be very specific anyone who has a market to export to is not denied that opportunity. Anyone who has an opportunity to export can apply to export meat products just like any other commodity in terms of the agriculture sector. 

*HON. MAPIKI: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. Dr. Hon. Made has responded to my question but I am still further asking that what steps has the Government taken to revive the CSC so it may start exporting beef?

*THE HON. SPEAKER: That is a new question.

*HON. MAJAYA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. I am directing my question to the Minister of Home Affairs. What is Government policy regarding what is being done by the police at road blocks because they are spiking cars which are breaking road rules? A lot of accidents occur after vehicles tread through these traffic spikes.

THE ACTING MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS (HON. DR. MPOFU): I want to thank the Hon. Member for raising that question. It is a specific question and she should have evidence to prove that. – [AN. HON. MEMBER: He is not serious.]-

THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Minister if you can finish.

HON. DR. O. MPOFU: Thank Hon. Speaker. I have no even started saying what I wanted to say. She has alleged that police are throwing spikes on public roads. That is a matter that she should specifically point out to this Hon. House. Thank you Hon. Mr. Speaker Sir.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, yes the question verges on some incidences, so perhaps you could ask the question in writing next week.

HON. ZINDI: Thank you Hon. Speaker. My question is directed to the Minister of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development. It has been the policy of Government to ensure that there is beneficiation as a policy. I want to find out what steps the Minister has taken in order to ensure that there is beneficiation, particularly of agricultural produce? I say so because most of the produce especially the highly perishable horticulture produce is being thrown to waste. What steps has the Ministry taken in order to ensure that there is that processing of the horticultural produce and any other produce that can be beneficiated? I thank you.

THE HON. SPEAKER: I am not sure whether that should be directed to the Minister of Agriculture. It would appear to the Chair that this is the question to the Ministry of Industry and Commerce.

HON. ZINDI: Thank you Hon. Speaker. I therefore direct my question to Hon. Mabuwa.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE (HON. MABUWA): Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. May I take the opportunity to appreciate the question and, with your permission, go ahead and respond as the Deputy Minister? The issue that has been raised is quite important, given that as a country we agreed that we are pursuing the delivery of the ZIM ASSET, whose pillar - one of them being beneficiation and value addition. When we look at value addition what we seek to value add is two things here in Zimbabwe. It is the green representing agriculture and the yellow representing the minerals.

Regarding the agricultural products, it is important to note that so far - we are not yet there, but the introduction or the scaling up of manufacturing concerns that look at beneficiation or adding value to our vegetables, fruits and tomatoes that were being brought to waste is one of the priorities that we have.  We have recently commissioned and some of the Members might be aware and might have visited a plant in Norton, which is looking at taking over the fruits that are being used. 

          There is a new investment which is coming in, through the Indians.  There was a ground breaking ceremony where we received and witnessed a ground breaking ceremony of a plant which is coming to invest into manufacturing of beverages, complimenting and coming through Pepsi-Cola.  That plant is envisaged to be going further to introduce the value addition of several vegetables, which include  value addition of greens such that we are going to be producing our own green vegetables; freezing them and we stop the importation of such fruits and vegetables. This plant is not going to be limited to beverages only.

          We envisage that, perhaps if we continue in that direction of value adding our greens or our horticultural produce, we are going to be self sustained and stop the importation.  You have seen that in the Statutory Instrument that we have introduced – the most common one being Statutory Instrument Number 64, we have also removed some of the greens; those that were imported such as carrots, fruits that can be obtained in here et cetera. So it is a very important question and it is a very important area of priority. 

          We are also looking at further investment from local investors and otherwise for us to go into drying of our vegetables and fruits.  There is a lot of work that is being done by Small and Medium Enterprises as a Ministry and the entrepreneurs themselves.  There is also a lot of work that is coming in through the Ministry of Women’s Affairs, where they are teaching women on how to preserve food for our own consumption at subsistence level and also for trading.  I thank you.

          Hon. Zindi having stood up to pose a supplementary question.

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Please take your seat.  I thought the answer was comprehensive.

          HON. ZINDI: Thank you Hon. Speaker.  I thought I am the questioner and if not adequately responded in terms of expectation of my question, as the questioner, I still have the right to raise a supplementary question.

          THE HON. SPEAKER: You can proceed.

          HON. ZINDI: Thank you Mr. Speaker.  I appreciate very much the comprehensive response by the Deputy Minister of Industry and Commerce.  Is the Ministry at all envisaging in terms of expansion of the processing plants because she mentioned just one plant, which is in Norton. – [AN HON. MEMBER: Three.] –.  Okay whatever number, but is the Minister envisaging in the policy to ensure that there are new – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Can you proceed.

          HON. ZINDI: Can you listen please?  Is the Minister envisaging to ensure that there are more players in the processing, since she mentioned the Norton plant; whatever number, whether they are three or more – there are a number of farmers out there who can process on their farms.  What is the policy in terms of ensuring that as well as farmers can process; canning tomato puree, carrot drink and fruit drink but processing on their farms.  I thank you.

          HON. MABUWA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  The response that I gave, I exemplified but it does not mean that, that is all what is happening.  Let me hasten to go straight to the important supplementary question.  I would like to say very much so, we encourage it.  We can either promote the farmer by making them partner with other people who want joint ventures or the farmers themselves, like she said if she wants to produce carrot drinks and she does not have the investment, she can come to the Ministry or farmers can come to our Ministry and we can discuss their proposals.  They have to put up proposals that are of course convincing to the people with the purses so that they enter into joint ventures or they get funding, which is of course from the banks.  Currently, I should mention that those funds are expensive.  We are trying to see if we can get Industrial Development Funds that are affordable to entertain this value addition approach being undertaken by farmers. 

          It is also good to know that joint ventures is the way to go.  If you are a farmer, go to the one who has the knowhow of manufacturing and then you become a joint venture and you get involved in a value chain approach.  I thank you.

          HON. KHUPE: My question is directed to the Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Services.  According to the ZIMVAC Report, about 1.4 million people require food assistance whereas in actual fact, more than 4 million people require food assistance.  What is Government doing to bridge the gap between the 1.4 and the 4 million so that all the people who require food assistance get that food?

          THE MINISTER OF PUBLIC SERVICE, LABOUR AND SOCIAL SERVICES (HON. MUPFUMIRA):  Thank you Mr. Speaker.  I would like to thank the Hon. Member for a very important question.  The figure of 1.4 million which the Hon. Member is talking about is from the original ZIMVAC report, which came out in August, last year.  As we started the food mitigation programme in October, last year, we realised that a lot of people needed food out of the 1.4 million you talked about.  We then went to do a first assessment in January, which indicated that the figure had risen to 2 million.  We did another one in April, which also indicated that the figures had reached almost 4 million.  What we then did was to ensure that we re-visit our ZIMVAC figures and add more people to the original ZIMVAC – it was 1.5 million actually.  This is what we are doing and we have since realised that even the 4 million we have, the figures are increasing, hence we have  now launched communication to all the provinces and yesterday we had all the Provincial Administrators, all the Provincial Welfare Officers and we were supposed to have Provincial Ministers and only one came.  We were directing them that they must go out to their constituencies and make sure that they add more people to the registers.  That includes the elderly, the orphans, the disabled and the chronically ill.  These are the normal vulnerables but we have since realised that because of the drought situation which we are in, there are more people who are not normally venerable who are in need of food assistance. 

So, we are now saying that we need to update the register.  That is the message that I am bringing to all of you to assist in making sure that the registers given to Social Welfare are all inclusive so that we update.  I am sure you are all aware that we have adequate stocks.  As of last week, we had about 320 000 tonnes of maize available and we have also received 19 000 tonnes of rice which is going to be incorporated into the food mitigation programme.  I thank you.

          HON. NDEBELE:  Hon. Speaker, I just have a quick one for the Minister.  When is her definition of ‘vulnerable groups’, going to expand to the extent of including members of the opposition out there -[AN HON. MEMBER: Yes, Hon. Minister, you say vote for ZANU PF or starve.]-

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order.  Vehicle Number ACU 9622, please can it be moved because it is obstructing some other vehicles.

          Order, there is no definition of ‘vulnerable political party members’.  If they are there, this should be brought to the attention of the District Social Services Offices or their relevant organs so that they are taken care of.

          HON. NDEBELE: Hon. Speaker, I have a point of order.  Is the implication that as a Member of Parliament I have no right to raise it on this platform?

          THE HON. SPEAKER: I have ruled on that one, unless you did not listen carefully.

          *HON. S. CHIDHAKWA: Thank you Mr. Speaker. Minister, you talked about ….

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, hon. members are addressed as hon. members, so are the Ministers.

          *HON. S. CHIDHAKWA: Thank you for the correction.  Hon. Minister, we have talked about the vulnerable groups – orphans and the elderly who cannot support themselves.  We have heard of instances whereby whenever there are elections and there are campaigns to be held regarding the elections, the people who attend those campaigns, especially under ZANU PF, we see lorries full of foodstuffs being distributed to the vulnerable groups in those gatherings.  Are we saying that, as a nation, the only people who are supposed to benefit are the elderly who attend these campaigns?  Again, in your address in Norton, you told the gatherings that you were only going to give food assistance to members of ZANU PF party and are you implying that the vulnerable and the poor are only found within the file and ranks of ZANU PF and these other members who do not belong to ZANU PF are self-sufficient in food.  Please explain - [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.]-

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order.  The question is directed to the Minister.  Can we listen to the Hon. Minister please?

          HON. MUPFUMIRA: Thank you Mr. Speaker.  I want to thank the Hon. Member for bringing a false accusation to this House’s attention.  I want to make it clear - [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.]-

          Mr. Speaker, as Government, we are responsible for the welfare of all Zimbabweans regardless of political affiliation.  If I am invited to any function, it is my responsibility to go and explain what is happening in Government.  I am willing to go to any function to go and explain -[HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.]-

          Mr. Speaker, I never ever said that food would be given according to partisan lines – never.  It is the mischievous press which reported wrongly.  I have always said - [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.]-  Mr. Speaker Sir, I have said I am available to any Zimbabwean.  Food is available and we have never said we have run out of food and as a Minister, I am available to all political parties and I will give everyone -[HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.]-  I think people are not aware of the process of food distribution.  Allow me to explain to you - [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.]-

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order.  If any hon. member disagrees with the Minister, you do not use unparliamentary language like kunyepa. The Hon. Minister has challenged you and said she is available, so take up the challenge – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] - Order, order!  The Hon. Minister was winding up.

HON. MUPFUMIRA:  Thank you Mr. Speaker.  I just want to advise the Hon. Members that we have now extended the food mitigation programme and we are in the process of increasing and updating the registers. It is up to the Hon. Members to be part of the local leadership in any constituency to ensure that the registers are updated and people will be given food accordingly, monthly without – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] – I thank you Mr. Speaker.

*HON. CHINOTIMBA:  On a point of order, Mr. Speaker Sir.  It should be put on record that when you were away from this House and there was another Speaker, Hon. Mandipaka raised a motion in this august House – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] – Hon. Speaker, may you please protect me.

Hon. Mandipaka raised a motion regarding the violence perpetrated by members of opposition parties.  Hon. Members said it was not fair to talk about what is being done by opposition parties and yet at the same time, they are now castigating the ruling party, ZANU-PF.  If they do not want the ruling party to debate their affairs, why should they talk about what is happening in ZANU-PF? –[HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjection.]-

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order!  Hon. Chinotimba, the issue you raise of a motion, I think there was a point of order raised by Hon. Chamisa and the Chair is yet to rule.  Secondly, the Hon. Minister has challenged all Members of Parliament to go and organise those people who need subsistence and she says she will come – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] – Hon. Chibaya, go and organise people who want food and the Minister will come – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.]

HON. SARUWAKA:  Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.  Hon. Minister Mupfumira, I want to know whether you are aware of the report by the Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission, which clearly showed that there were problems along partisan distribution of food and support from Government.  I want to know whether she is aware of that report because it came out clear and I am surprised that when she is giving her response she seems to be saying no such thing is happening.

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Can you help the Hon. Minister, where did that appear?

HON. SARUWAKA:  The report from the Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission came out about a month ago and it was clear from the Chairperson of the Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission that there are problems along partisan distribution of Government support.  So, I am actually surprised because we had raised a lot of issues to the Minister in the past indicating that there are those problems.  So, I just wanted to know whether she has received that copy.  If she has not, I can make arrangements so that we can deliver a copy to her office.

HON. MUPFUMIRA:  Thank you Mr. Speaker.  I am surprised that a letter which is supposed to have been written to me in confidence is being talked about by a Member of Parliament who was not copied to – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] –

Mr. Speaker Sir, however, I will respond to his question.  A letter was written by the Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission and it singled out six isolated incidents; two were in Mazowe, two in Bikita and two in Buhera.  Isolated incidents out of the 600 000 households we deal with every day.  However, we said six out of a million is still important – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] -

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order Hon. Minister.  Hon. Members, a question was asked.  Now, we should be mature enough to listen to the answer from the supplementary question.  So, do not heckle the Hon. Minister.  Let her finish her response.

HON. MUPFUMIRA:  Mr. Speaker Sir, the incidents are being investigated because my Ministry has not been involved in the investigation.  As we speak, Ministry officials and human rights have gone to find out exactly what happened because we have never been involved. What I just want to inform the House is, it is not Government or Ministry policy.  We have said we will investigate and if there is anyone who is found on the wrong side of the law, they will be dealt with – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] –

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order!     

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

          HON. NDEBELE:  On a point of order Mr. Speaker.

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Procedurally, I will not allow a point of order.

          HON. NDEBELE:  Mr. Speaker, I move that the time for Questions Without Notice be extended – [AN HON. MEMBER:  I object.] –

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  There has been an objection, so we go to Questions With Notice. 

          HON. NDEBELE:  Hon. Speaker, my point of order flows with the Minister’s response.  I appeal to this House and to your good heart that the Minister perhaps be given time to prepare a Ministerial Statement on this important and very emotive issue.  This is because it is not only of domestic concern but international as well – [HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] – that food is given on partisan lines.  I therefore appeal to you to give the Minister time to prepare a comprehensive Ministerial Statement to that effect.

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order.  Hon. Minister, do you think you can give a Ministerial Statement to update the nation on the drought relief situation? – [AN HON. MEMBER:  She is duty bound to do so.] –

          HON. MUPFUMIRA:  Thank you Mr. Speaker.  If you may allow me to narrate the process now, I can.

          THE HON. SPEAKER:  We are out of time Hon. Minister.  If you can prepare a Ministerial Statement updating the nation on the drought relief programme at your convenient time.

          HON. MUPFUMIRA:  Yes, Mr. Speaker. 

ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITH NOTICE

PLANS TO ASSIST RETRENCHED WORKERS AT ZISCO STEEL.

1. HON. H. NCUBE asked the Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Services whether the Ministry has any plans to assist workers who were retrenched at ZISCO Steel in Redcliff town with food aid since they lost a source of livelihood.

THE MINISTER OF PUBLIC SERVICE, LABOUR AND SOCIAL SERVICES (HON. MUPFUMIRA):  Thank you Mr. Speaker.  In response to Hon. Ncube’s question, my Ministry has not made specific plans targeting retrenched workers at ZISCO Steel who, as stated by the Hon. Member have lost their source of livelihood.  However, let me take this opportunity to inform the Hon. Member that the Government of Zimbabwe, through my Ministry, has put in place social protection programmes to alleviate hardships that may be faced from time to time.  The programmes include Public Assistance, Harmonized Social Cash Transfers, Health Assistance and the Food Deficit Mitigation Programme. 

Public Assistance

Public assistance is a Government social safety net which aims to cushion vulnerable groups of people and is governed by the Social Welfare Assistance Act (Chapter 17:06).  Public Assistance provides a means testing criteria through the use of assessment forms by the District Social Welfare Office.  Among those targeted under the Public Assistance are the elderly, the disabled and families in distress.

Assistance that can be accessed under Public Assistance includes medical assistance, pauper burials, travel warrants and repatriation of destitute foreign nationals to their countries of origin.  Under the Public Assistance Programme, vulnerable persons are also given a monthly allowance of US$20 per household in order to cater for their welfare.

Those requiring assistance can make applications through their respective District Social Welfare offices that are found in every district of the country.  Applications are made on household basis and not as groups.  However, with specific reference to food aid that is accessed through the Drought Food Mitigation Programme which the Hon. Member may be referring to, applications for assistance are made through the respective village, ward and District Drought Relief Committees. 

For those communities in the peri-urban areas of Redcliff, they may be covered once the results of the recently completed ZIMVAC Urban Assessment of people requiring food assistance are released.  Food assistance will then be targeted to the identified households in peri-urban centres.

The National Social Security Authority (NSSA), through the National Building Society has put in place a US$5 million facility to assist retrenched  workers establish income generating projects.  This will be a revolving fund so that it can assist as many affected workers as possible.  Details will be provided once the facility is finalised.  It is therefore prudent that the Hon. Member should advise those in need to approach their nearest Social Welfare offices.  I thank you.

HON. GABBUZA:  Thank you Madam Speaker. The Minister talked about the ZIM VAC assessment method.  We heard from the initial assessments that ZIM VAC produced a vulnerability level of 1.4 million but later, assessments produced were up to 4 million.  If you look at that gap, how does the Minister explain this very big difference?  Is it the method which was wrongly used?  What could be the reason for such a wide margin difference if proper assessment was done?

HON. MUPFUMIRA:  The Hon. Member has a valid question.  Maybe the House needs to understand how ZIM VAC operates or how we get our figures.  It has nothing to do with the Ministry of Public Service, Labour and Social Services.  At the beginning of any agricultural season, there is an assessment that is made through the Ministry of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development after we have planted our crops, to find out how much has been planted.  We get a first assessment and as the agricultural season progresses, there is a second assessment around February/March, which is done to find out how the crops are growing.  Then in May, when we know what is going to be harvested, another assessment is done. 

There is a committee comprising all the development partners

and the Food and Nutrition Council who chair that committee.  They look at the figures of what is going to be harvested or what has been harvested.  Then based on their observations from planting to harvesting, they come up with the ZIM VAC figure which is given to my Ministry.  This figure depicts all the areas that need food and those that do not need food in the whole country.  So, the first report that they produced in August indicated 1.5 million or 300,000 households were in need of food but because of the drought, whilst people had planted so much, a lot of it was not harvested. 

This meant that the expected deliveries to the GMB did not materialize and became inaccurate.  As the Ministry was distributing food to the original vulnerable people, we discovered that there were so many distress calls for food relief.  So, as Government, we directed that a second ZIM VAC be done and that is how we got these figures.  As you are aware, people harvest around July/August so, as the season progresses the worst season is between January and March and that is when the requirement for food increases.

          Government saw the need to increase the ZIM VAC figure and have ceased to work with the original ZIM VAC figure.  That is why I was saying that yesterday we had all the Provincial Administrators who we asked to speed up the addition of all the people who were affected on their registers.  So, in a nutshell, this is how it happened.  Under normal circumstances ZIM VAC figures are reliable as they are produced by Government and other non-State actors like the development partners.  It is a document which is supposed to be accurate but for this agricultural season it was not accurate.  As Government, we have accepted that and ensured that all the people in the various provinces that have been affected should be included on the registers, hence that variance.

          *HON. PHIRI:  I want to start by thanking the Hon Minister for the sterling work of feeding the whole of Zimbabwe.  My question is on the distribution of the food.  Is there a schedule that shows the time and venue so people are aware where and when they are supposed to collect their food?  In most cases we have heard that they distribute to different places but other people do not receive their share.  If they approach the district office, they are told to write a letter which they do not respond to.  If the schedules are there, can they also be given to MPs so that they can communicate to their constituents the venue and time of distribution.

          *HON. MUPFUMIRA:  I am very grateful for the comment made by the Hon. Member.  I have been giving you lessons on the operations of ZIM VAC.  At National Level, we have what is called a Mitigation Drought Relief Committee which is being spearheaded by the Vice President Hon. Mnangagwa.  In the provinces this is led by the Provincial Administrators and the many Ministries involved in welfare including Traditional Leaders.  We also have NGOs and members of the different churches also coming under the Provincial Administrators.  This cascades down to the Ward Level where registers of beneficiaries of such programmes are kept.  Now, because of the Elnino induced drought, we have increased the number of people who are in this programme because we are aware that many people have been affected by this drought.  So, the procedure is that you go to your province and your Provincial Administrator will follow the schedule of distribution which shows the distribution centres and the beneficiaries as well as the dates.  People should not engage the Ministry on issues pertaining to food distribution.  You should also avoid interfering with the food distribution process but just work hand-in-hand with the officers doing the drought relief food distribution.  I thank you.

          HON. KHUMALO:  In the rural areas the people who are getting food are given one 50kg bag regardless of whether there is one person or 10 people per household.  When NGOs come they give $5 per person per household.   Can the Minister clarify that anomally?  

          HON. MUPFUMIRA: I want to make it clear that Government does not give money at all for food deficit programmes.  This is done by those NGOs that can afford to give the cash that you referred to. As far as Government is concerned, we work with ZIM VAC which gives food per household.  So if they say 50kg per household per month, that is what we do and there are no variations.    I thank you. 

          HON. KHUMALO:  I was not answered properly on drought relief.  I am saying here are two different households, the other one has 22 family members and the other has one family member, they are all on public assistance.  How do you try to balance in terms of supporting these people?

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER:  Hon. Khumalo, in terms of policy, the Minister has adequately answered your question and maybe she will have to do a research to clarify the issue but I think she has answered your question.

MINISTRY’S POSITION ON THE NGEZI – MBERENGWA MNENE WATER PIPELINE

4. HON. T. ZHOU asked the Minister of Environment, Water and Climate to explain the Ministry’s position on the Ngezi–Mberengwa Mnene water pipeline since this project was planned long back and the pipeline is now a white elephant.

THE MINISTER OF ENVIRONMENT, WATER AND CLIMATE (HON. MUCHINGURI):  I want to thank Hon. Zhou for the question.  Madam Speaker, the Ngezi-Mberengwa water supply project was designed in the 1900s to benefit Mberengwa Centre, Mnene Mission and its two service centres.  The implementation of the project also started in the mid 1990s.  Part of the project to supply water to Mberengwa Centre was completed.

The other part to supply water to Mnene Mission and its service centres, which are 22 km from the source were not completed.  The project was being funded by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) through the African Development Bank.  During implementation of the project the IMF suspended its funding of projects in Zimbabwe because of the illegal sanctions imposed by its masters and this was one of the projects that was affected.

Madam Speaker, the Ministry through ZINWA is sourcing for funds to complete the remaining parts of the project so that there is a lasting solution to the water supply for Mnene Mission and its two service centres.  In the interim Madam Speaker Sir, I am pleased to inform Honourable Members that the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development has agreed to assist my Ministry with funds for drought mitigation and improving water supply for the command agriculture programme.  As such, we intend to prioritize critical areas such as Mberengwa in mitigating the water shortages through sinking boreholes were possible.  I thank you.

CONSTRUCTION OF DINGANI DAM

6. Hon Nkomo Mail asked the Minister to Environment, Water and Climate to inform the House on what progress has been made in the construction of the Dingani Dam at Mzola Central area in the Lupane West Constituency.

THE MINISTER OF ENVIRONMENT, WATER AND CLIMATE (HON. MUCHINGURI): I want to thank Hon. Mail Nkomo for the question.  Madam Speaker, the Dingani dam site is on the Mzola River, a tributary of the Tshangani River.  This site was identified as a good dam site and the dam will be used mainly for irrigation.  However, due to the financial challenges the country and the Ministry is facing, it has not been possible to do the feasibility studies for the dam site.  Once resources are available the feasibility study and designs will be done so that the project will be ready for implementation.  Due to climate change and the changing weather patterns, it is essential that we develop  as many dam sites as possible so that we achieve food security in all parts of the country and Dingani dam is one such dam we are prioritising.  Thank you.

PLANS FOR DAMS IN SILOBELA

7. HON M.M. MPOFU asked the Minister of Environment, Water and Climate to inform the House:

(a)               When the dam wall for Exchange Irrigation in Silobela will be raised to harness more water  for irrigation purposes.

(b)            State when the Ministry will de-silt the following dams in Silobela: Exchange and Mayorca dams.

(c)             Whether the Ministry has any plans to build new dams in Silobela as the area is prone to drought.

 

THE MINISTER OF ENVIRONMENT, WATER AND CLIMATE (HON. MUCHINGURI): Madam Speaker, Exchange Dam is one of our big dams in the Gwayi catchment which is used by small-scale farmers for irrigation purposes.  Currently, there are no plans to raise the dam war.  However, if this is a request, my Ministry and ZINWA will carry out a feasibility study to establish whether raising the dam will make any economic sense and also establish how many metres would be required so as to optimise the catchment area. Regarding the desiltation of Exchange and Mayorca dams, my Ministry has launched the desilting programme with emphasis on the small to medium dams which have now very little capacity to hold water due to siltation. In Gwayi catchment 5, five dams were selected for the desilting programme. That is one dam per sub-catchment. We have five sub-catchments. Unfortunately, both the Exchange and Mayorca Dams are presently not on the list. However, the desilting programme is an ongoing programme and this will be considered in the next stages, funds permitting.

Regarding the second question which is aimed at enquiring whether my Ministry has any plans to construct new dams in Silobela as the area is prone to drought; my Ministry, through ZINWA, is continuously identifying new dam sites and carrying pre-feasibility studies on the identified sites. Once funds are availed by the Ministry of Finance, we will not hesitate but embark on the implementation of these programmes. We presently have several sites that have designs ready for implementation when the resources are available. Investigations will be done in the Silobela area to identify suitable sites followed by feasibility studies and designs. I thank you Madam Speaker.

*HON. CHAMISA: Thank you Madam Speaker. My question is directed to the Minister in connection with what the Government is doing. Looking at how important our dams are, what is the Government doing so that when people are allocated land to stay in the rural areas, they should live in harmony with the Government and the local authorities so that people will not engage in stream bank cultivation? People are cultivating in wet lands which is interfering with our dams because I see that is where our problems are emanating from for the life of our dams. This is because when people are cultivating near the rivers, this is why we are having challenges with our dams. So, what is Government doing to revamp the dams that we have? I was reading a very big document which was produced in Rhodesia. There was a proposal that many dams should be constructed in Zimbabwe, but up to now, those dams have not been constructed. I am directing this to Hon. Kashiri.

HON. MUCHINGURI: Thank you Madam Speaker. I would want to thank Hon. Chamisa for such a pertinent question. I agree with him totally that this issue of protecting our dams, whether it is wells or rivers, is not hindered by desiltation only. We should look at where the siltation is coming from. Looking at how people live, there are programmes where the headmen are involved where people should do contour ridges. The problem is that no one is supervising that because it is a law that we should have contour ridges. It is not only that, but even during the colonial era, people were not allowed to have many cattle.

We also looked into that because people were no longer following it. We came across headmen who were selling land and most of the people are illegal settlers. So, the Government, after investigating that even if we desilt the dams, it is not a solution because we are not addressing the challenges that he has pointed out. What we cannot deal with is climate change because if it does not rain and the Government is not in a position to build new dams, without revamping the irrigation that is there, we have about 10,000 dams which vary from small, medium and large. We should utilise the dams that are there because most of them are not working. This is because we did not have money. We should resettle people from the wetlands. These problems are not a challenge of the Ministry only because people are engaging in gold panning and deforestation.

So, the Government said that we should put in place an inter-ministerial committee which involves the Ministry of Lands, the Land Resettlement Ministry, Home Affairs Ministry and the Ministry of Mines. We were tasked to come up with a master plan of land use on how people use land and how people are resettled. We will come back to you and inform Parliament on the progress that we are making as the Government. I thank you.

HON. P. D. SIBANDA: Thank you Madam Speaker. My supplementary question to the Hon. Minister is how do you compensate those people that you would have removed from their areas of settlement because you intend to build dams in the areas where they are settling? 

HON. MUCHINGURI: Thank you Madam Speaker. Allow me to thank Hon. Sibanda for that important question. It is Government policy that wherever there is a development, either of a road or a dam which affects the communities that surround that identified area, they would automatically be compensated by Government and that affects almost all dams that have been built in the country. Where such compensation has not been advanced, we are more than ready to look at the presentation as he is aware, because I know that even Tokwe Mukorsi Dam, when we had that disaster, we moved people from the dam site and we compensated them. I know that there were just a few outstanding funds that we were sourcing. I am happy that funds have been put together by the Ministry of Finance. So, if there are situations which have not been addressed, we are more than ready to look at them and Government will chip in to assist. I thank you.

HON. P. D. SIBANDA: Thank you Madam Speaker. I wanted to understand from the Hon. Minister whether the Government policy of compensation also includes those obligations that were done pre-independence, that were inherited from the pre-independence Government. For example, in the Zambezi Valley, there was the construction of the Kariba Dam and people were removed and relocated and no compensation has been paid up to date. Is the Government alive to those needs?

          THE MINISTER OF ENVIRONMENT, WATER AND CLIMATE (HON. MUCHINGURI): This is a question where some research is required to be done. I request him perhaps to place that on the Order Paper and we will provide that information. For today, it is quite an impossible tall order. I thank you.

          *HON. MAPIKI: Thank you Hon. Speaker. Speaking on the issue of rivers, there is a company called Diamond Drilling that mines on the rivers in Mashonaland East. I do not know what you would say on this issue.

          *HON. MUCHINGURI: Thank you Madam Speaker. I would like to thank the Hon. Member for the question he has brought up. I encountered problems with companies who were engaged in alluvial gold mining who had fraudulently acquired permits. We stopped all the companies doing alluvial gold mining.  There is wealth in our rivers and because of the challenges that we have in trying to rebuild our roads and clinics, it was proper for Government to take over so that they realise money to rebuild our schools and also to look after our environment properly.  All the monies should be channeled to the State. So, those people who are advertising, I have no idea and it is illegal and we want those people to be prosecuted because it is not within the law.

TITLE DEEDS FOR MR MWENJE DORAH

8. HON. SITHOLE asked the Minister of Local Government Public Works and National Housing to state when Mr. Mwenje Dorah will be given his title deeds, since a letter dated, 5th December, 2005 with reference number 994/15/165 indicates that he had paid the full purchase of the flat.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT, PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON. CHINGOSHO): Madam Speaker, the property (flat) in question was sold and ceded by Mrs. Mwenje Dorah to Tindel Mhlanga and Priscilla Gonese in 2006. According to our records, the flat is now owned by Tindel Mhlanga and Priscilla Gonese. Our records are also indicating that the person in question is Mrs. Mwenje Dorah instead of Mr. Mwenje Dorah. However, the Ministry is processing title deeds for those who have paid up. The file is amongst those being processed.

HON. SITHOLE: Thank you Madam Speaker. My simple supplementary question to the Minister is that the Ministry has been processing the title deeds for the past seven years. For how long should the residents wait for them to get their title deeds because seven years is a long time considering that they fully paid for the houses since the houses were on a rent to buy programme? I thank you.

HON. CHINGOSHO: Madam Speaker, yes I agree with the Member and I want to say that there has been a back log as far as processing of the title deeds is concerned. As far as this particular one, as I indicated, it is amongst those files which are being processed now.

MEASURES TO EASE WATER CRISIS IN CHITUNGWIZA NORTH.

9.      HON. SITHOLE asked the Minister of Local Government Public Works and National Housing to explain the measures the Ministry is taking to ease the water crisis in Chitungwiza North.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT, PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON. CHINGOSHO): Madam Speaker, I would want to thank the Hon. Member for his question. Chitungwiza Municipality is currently seized with the development of a comprehensive water supply strategy for the Municipality including Chitungwiza North. I am glad to inform this august House that the Chitungwiza Municipality has entered into Public Private Partnership arrangement with SESANI (Pvt.) Ltd to ease water crisis in the first implementation phase. To date, a Memorandum of Understanding between Chitungwiza Municipality and SESANI has been signed. Following the signing of the MOU, IDBZ has come on board as the fundraiser of the water project. The project will be divided into two phases to make the water tariffs affordable whereby;

          Phase 1

          Under phase 1, focus will be on upgrading the existing water and sanitation infrastructure to the tune of US$82 million. A Memorandum of Agreement document has been drafted and awaits singing by the two parties concerned. Deloitte and Touché services were hired for purposes of financial modeling and they volunteered to work for free until financial closure. In future Deloitte and Touché will be the financial advisor for Chitungwiza Municipality once the project commences.

          Phase 2

          This phase involves improving raw water security to Prince Edward Treatment Plant by constructing Muda Dam which is 40 km from Chitungwiza at a cost of US$215 million.

          The water and sanitation project has been commercialized and the Municipality will be able to give about 3 000 litres of free water to residents every month. Under the project, the pre-payment system will be introduced for sustainability purposes. Currently, Chitungwiza Municipality owes Harare City Council more than US$6 million. I thank you.

          HON. SITHOLE: Thank you Madam Speaker.  My supplementary question is to do with the water situation in Chitungwiza.  There is now a crisis and the Minister has alluded to the long term measures that are in place to ensure that there is sufficient provision of water.  Is there any medium term solution from the Ministry, regarding for example drilling of boreholes so that people may have water to use while waiting for those long term plans?

          HON. CHINGOSHO: I would like to thank the Hon. Member for the supplementary question.  Precisely, as he had pointed out, the Ministry together with the council are trying to drill some boreholes as a mid-term measure.  Thank you.

          HON. MUNENGAMI: Thank you Hon. Speaker.  My supplementary question to the Hon. Minister is that, he spoke of the Public- Private Partnerships (PPPs) whereby Chitungwiza Council and certain companies like ZESA are involved.  Are you aware that these Private-Public Partnerships have a negative effect, especially to the general public in terms of rates.  It is obvious they are going to increase.  What is your take as a Ministry in as far as these PPPs are concerned between the Chitungwiza Municipality and these companies which are going to cushion the public?  Thank you.

          HON. CHINGOSHO: Yes, the Ministry is aware of that concern but as PPPs; the private companies are not going to dictate as far as the rates are concerned.  This is something that should be agreed upon by those companies and the local authority.  The Ministry is supervising to make sure that there is mutual agreement for the benefit of the community.  I thank you.

          Hon. Sithole having stood up to raise another supplementary question.

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER:  I think we have had enough supplementary questions.  If there is anything that is not clarified, you can as well pose another question.  What is the clarification you need?

          HON. SITHOLE: Thank you Madam Speaker.  The Hon. Minister pointed out that Government, through its mid-term measures is trying to drill boreholes.  He just said the Government is trying to drill boreholes; is the Government facing any problems because the trying part of it, we are not seeing it on the ground.  If the Government is trying, what is the challenge that the Government is facing?

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: I think the Minister answered that question.

          Hon. Munengami having stoop up to raise another supplementary question.

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: I think you have already asked.  You must write your own question and submit it.  I have given you an opportunity and if the answer that the Minister gave to you is not of substance - [HON. MEMBERS Inaudible interjections.]-  Okay, what is your supplementary question?

          *HON. MUNENGAMI: Thank you Madam Speaker.  Let me phrase my question in Shona.  You said the PPPs which are being engaged with the Chitungwiza and independent companies, you have been monitoring them as a Ministry.  May you explain to this House how you view the amounts that are going to be given to Chitungwiza Council so that they benefit from these PPPs?

          *HON. CHINGOSHO: I would like to thank the Hon. Member for the question.  The Ministry is responsible for supervising but it is difficult for me to give the exact figures.  So I will go and check in order to provide a correct figure to this House. 

MEASURES TO REPAIR ROADS IN CHITUNGWIZA

          10.    HON. SITHOLE asked the Minister of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing to explain the measures the Ministry is taking to repair roads in Chitungwiza, since there are many potholes.

          THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT, PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON. CHINGOSHO): Thank you Madam Speaker.  I would like to thank the Hon. Member for asking that question.  It may please this august House to note that the municipality has accessed US$180 000 for routine maintenance from ZINARA.  Currently, Chitungwiza Municipality is working on patching of potholes on all roads used by commuter omnibuses and 15 kilometres of Tilko, Chaminuka, Mangwende, Jenje and Mharapara roads is now pothole free.

          The municipality awarded a tender for pothole filling to Chaminuka and Tilko roads, being funded by ZINARA.  Starting from July 2016, the municipality introduced a special road levy of 50 cents per domestic property, which is dedicated to road maintenance.  All this will augment the money being released by ZINARA since it is also ring fenced for road maintenance purposes only.  I thank you.

          *HON. MACHINGAUTA: Thank you Madam Speaker.  My supplementary to the Deputy Minister is, it was explained that in order for a place to have service delivery, such as in question number eight where you talked of PPPs, you are now saying that Chitungwiza is working on its road networks. In sections I mentioned including Section 301 of the Constitution, there is supposed to be 5% which is to be distributed from the Treasury to local authorities so that they may repair and maintain the roads.  As you are the authority responsible for these Ministries, are these monies being disbursed to the local authorities?

          *HON. CHINGOSHO: Thank you Hon. Member for such a pertinent question.  At the moment, the local authorities were not being given any money and nothing was disbursed to them.  But, we are now holding consultative consultations where we have local authorities putting up some recommendations on dealing with this issue.  They say that they are failing to fully implement their programmes because they are not benefitting from monies which are being generated in their constituencies.  As a result, the consultative meetings are being held with the Ministry and they have been pointing out to the areas which they feel should be giving them access to the finances which are generated from their constituencies.  The Ministry is going to implement some of these ideas coming from the local authorities. 

*HON. TARUSENGA: When the Minister was responding regarding the roads which are full of potholes in the Chitungwiza Local Authority, the Minister seems to be concentrating on the state of roads which are used by public transport such as these kombis.  We also realise that the roads which are within the houses are also full of potholes and the tar which has been put long back is now in bits and pieces.  It is no longer useful to the residents.

*HON. CHINGOSHO:  Thank you for giving me the chance to respond to the question raised by the Hon. Member.  Yes, we are quite aware that the tar which had been put long back is now fragmented in many places and no longer user friendly.  But, when I was giving the example of the bad state of the roads, I talked about mainly the public roads and please, understand me.  I did not imply that these were the only roads which were going to be worked on in the repair and maintenance work but, they are going to be the initial projects to show that the Ministry is really into the programme of rehabilitating these roads.

 In the budget of the Ministry, it was stated that we need to mend and reconstruct our roads and I do agree whole heartedly that our roads are in a very bad state.  I thank you.

Questions with Notice were interrupted by the TEMPORARY SPEAKER in terms of Standing Order No. 64.

HON. MATUKE:  I move that time for Questions with Notice be extended for another 15 minutes.

HON. MUNENGAMI: I second.

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER:  It will be extended with ten minutes.

CONSTRUCTION OF A SECONDARY SCHOOL AND CLASSROOM BLOCK IN ZVIMBA EAST

13.  Hon. Mukwangwariwa asked the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education to:

a)    State when the Ministry will construct a Secondary School at Shawn / Mede Farm in Ward 26, Zvimba East in view of the fact that pupils are forced to walk long distances of between 15km to 20km to the nearest secondary school.

b)   State when the Ministry will assist in the construction of a classroom block at Nyabira Secondary School, in Ward 26 in Zvimba East.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF PRIMARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION (PROF. MAVIMA): Thank you Madam Speaker.  I would like to thank the Hon. Member for asking that two part question.

On the first part, a) it is the intention of the Ministry of Primary and Secondary education to construct schools to make education accessible to all learners.  As such, the Ministry has embarked on a School Infrastructure Development Programme.  Under this initiative, a number of schools are going to be constructed countrywide and preference will be given to areas with congested schools and communities where learners travel long distances.

However, schools are constructed after a due diligence has be done to ascertain the need.  All constructed schools should be viable to warrant the deployment of teaching personnel.

On the second part, b) of the question, the classroom block which is under construction at Nyabira Secondary School is financed by the School Development Committee.  The Ministry has assisted a number of schools through PSIP programme.  Currently, the fund for PSIP is limited and it is meant for on-going projects and establishing infant education centres and science laboratories.  Thank you Madam Speaker.

HON. NDUNA:  Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am.  I heard loud and clear what the Minister spoke about in terms of establishment of schools after due diligence.  My question however is, he has a present requirement that speaks to a certain amount of land for a primary school and an extent of a certain amount of land, maybe 24 hectares for a secondary school.  Would they not be extended to places such as ours which have limited land for primary school and limited land for a secondary school – a moratorium or a reduction in terms of land size requirement for such schools so that we still have a gap not being more than 5 km to the next school in particular for primary school going ages.  This is my question to the Hon. Minister.

HON. PROF. MAVIMA:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  Without referring back to the requirements for how much land is required for primary and secondary schools, it will be a little bit difficult for me to ascertain that we really need up to 20 hectares of land for a secondary school.  I know that for a primary school we need something like 3.5 hectares or so and why we need that hectarage is because we have to make room for sports fields so that the school is not just offering academic pursuits, but it is also providing opportunities for the development of sporting talents.  So, we feel that 3.5 hectares is quite reasonable for a primary school and I think for a secondary school we are also saying something like between 8 hectares and 12 hectares and not the 20 or so hectares that he is referring to.

Another thing that Hon. Members have to understand is that we are also encouraging the conservation of space.  Most of our new designs for schools are encouraging double storey and multi-storey buildings so that we can conserve land.  So, on a smaller piece of land we can still have the class rooms and have land reserved for sporting fields.  Thank you Madam Speaker.

HON. NDUNA:  I need to know what efforts the Hon. Minister’s Ministry is doing in order to help mitigate that fact because the challenge that we might have is that we end up trying to go further than five kilometers in order to get the 24 hectares that is allowable.  What efforts and what measures are there or his Ministry is embarking on in terms of acquisition of the requisite amount of land, where we have in particular, the newly resettled farmers so that they do not go any further than where they are settled?

HON. PROF. MAVIMA:  I thought the main areas of contention were the urban areas where land is limited.  As far as urban areas are concerned, Madam Speaker, Government is working to construct schools on land that was already reserved for primary schools and for secondary schools.  This is the reason why currently, we have a moratorium on private developers taking land that had been reserved for the construction of Government schools in urban areas and therefore, that land already meets the requirements for the construction of either primary schools or secondary schools.

We do not have much of a problem in the areas that he is referring to, the resettled areas.  We do not have too much pressure on land.  What we may have as a problem in those areas is the population density of those areas, where it will be very difficult to have viable schools within the distances that are specified as minimum walking distances for learners.  So, you have a situation where you will have a primary school with less than what we consider to be a minimum size of a school of 300 because the population density is low.  That is the main issue that we are dealing with and it is not really an issue of the allocation of land in the resettlement areas.  Thank you Madam Speaker.

WRITTEN SUBMISSIONS TO QUESTIONS WITH NOTICE

GOVERMENT POLICY ON WEATHER FORECAST IN MASVINGO

5. HON. MAVHENYENGWA asked the Minister of Environment Water and Climate to explain Government policy regarding the weather forecast for tourist resort areas on the state television and to explain why the Great Zimbabwe Monument which is a tourist attraction in Masvingo is not featuring on the weather forecast bulleting.

THE MINISTER OF ENVIRONMENT, WATER AND CLIMATE (HON. MUCHINGURI): I would like to thank the Hon. Member for the question.  Madam Speaker, there is no Government policy regarding weather forecasting for tourist resort areas on the State Television.  The time allocated for television presentations is very short to show all the tourist resorts, monuments and other places of interest to the general public.  However, the Great Zimbabwe weather forecast is presented under Masvingo.

AUTHORITY FOR THE CONSTRUCTION OF CHIGWAGWA SECONDARY SCHOOL IN ZAKA.

12.    Hon Mavenyengwa asked the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education to state when the Ministry is going to give authority for the construction of  Chigwagwa Secondary School in Zaka since the Community and local Member of Parliament have already mobilised materials for the first block.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF PRIMARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION (PROF. MAVIMA):  The Ministry carried out a mapping exercise in 2013 to ascertain the need for a number of schools in the country.  As we have indicated in our previous sessions, the country needed 2 056 brand new schools.  This figure is likely to have gone up.  In the previous mapping exercise, Chigwagwa was not part of the schools to be constructed because of limited catchment area for a viable school.

Questions with Notice were interrupted by THE HON. TEMPORARY SPEAKER in terms of Standing Order No. 64.

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

HON. RUNGANI:  I move that Orders of the Day Number 1 to 6 be stood over until Order of the Day Number 7 has been disposed of.

HON. MUKWANGWARIWA:  I second.

Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

RESTORATION OF THE MOTION ON THE FIRST REPORT OF THE PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON DEFENCE, HOME AFFAIRS AND SECURITY SERVICES ON THE LANDMINES SITUATION IN ZIMBABWE ON THE ORDER PAPER.

HON. RUNGANI:  Madam Speaker, I move that the motion on the First Report for the Portfolio Committee on Defence, Home Affairs and Security Services on the landmine situation in Zimbabwe, which was superseded by the end of the Third Session of the Eighth Parliament, be restored on the Order Paper in terms of Standing Order Number 73.

HON. MUTSEYAMI:  I second.

Motion put and agreed to.

On the motion of HON. MATUKE, seconded by HON. MPARIWA, the National Assembly adjourned at Four Minutes past Five o’clock p.m.  

National Assembly Hansard Vol. 43 NATIONAL ASSEMBLY HANSARD 19 OCTOBER 2016 VOL 43 NO 06