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NATIONAL ASSEMBLY HANSARD - 21 JUNE 2012 VOL. 38 NO. 44

  • Thursday, 21st June, 2012.

    The House of Assembly met at a Quarter-past Two O'clock p.m.

     

PRAYERS

MR. SPEAKER (in the Chair)

ANNOUNCEMENTS BY MR. SPEAKER

VOLUNTARY TESTING AND MALE CIRCUMCISION

MR. SPEAKER: I wish to remind hon. members that ZIPAH's main event on Voluntary HIV testing and Male Circumcision is there tomorrow Friday, 22nd June 2012 commencing at 0830 hours. The procession begins from Kwame Nkrumah entrance to Africa Unit Square and the members are requested to be punctual.

MINISTERIAL STATEMENT

THE MINISTER OF TOURISM AND HOSPITALITY INDUSTRY (ENG. MZEMBI): Thank you Mr Speaker, this Ministerial Statement to Parliament on United Nations World Tourism Organisation UNWTO 20th Session General Assembly has been prompted by Hon Cross who asked me under questions with notice to outline in the first instance the Ministry's plans to ensure the success of the 2013 UNWTO Conference to be held in the town of Victoria Falls in October 2013 and secondly to give a report on the progress that has been made regarding the preparations for the conference.

I would like to thank Hon. Cross for raising this pertinent question at this point, unfortunately I was out of the country on Government business on the 13th of June when I was expected to give my answers. Meanwhile because of the great importance of the General Assembly and the interest shown in it by the Zimbabwean public whom you represent hon. members; I have since conferred on the matter with Speaker and we decided that we make a full Ministerial Statement. My statement will answer the question of the hon. member in full but go beyond that and update the House on where we are currently with the Ministry's mandate in which we are hosting the UNWTO General Assembly.

Mr Speaker Sir, let me start by giving some background on the UNWTO; its purpose and brief historical background. The UNWTO is one of the 17 specialised agencies of The United Nations set up to carry out various functions on behalf of UN. These agencies in addition to the UNWTO include UNICEF (New York), FAO (Rome), IFAD (Rome), ICAO (Montreal), ILO (Geneva), IMO (London), IMF (Washington DC), ITU (Geneva), UNESCO (Paris), UNIDO (Vienna), UPU (Bern, Switzerland), World Bank Group (Washington DC) WHO, (Geneva), WIPO (Geneva), UNHCR (Geneva) amongst others. They are all not necessarily headquartered in the UN Headquarters of New York; they are spread between London, Montreal, Washington DC, Geneva etc.

The UNWTO headquartered in Madrid, Spain serves the forum for tourism purposes and as a practical source for tourism knowhow. It deals with all questions relating to tourism; it is a significant global board concerned with the collection coalition of statistical information on international tourism. It plays an important role in connecting the development of responsible tourism paying attention to the interests of developing countries. It also encourages the implementation of global code of ethics for tourism with a view to ensuring that member countries tourist destinations and businesses maximise the positive economic, social and cultural effects of tourism and fully reap its benefits while minimising its negative environmental impacts.

The UNWTO is committed to the achievement of the United Nations Millennium Development Goals, particularly the alleviation of poverty. The origin of the UNWTO stems back to 1925 when the International Congress of Official Tourist Traffic Association (ICOTT) was formed in The Hague. The UNWTO is also said to have originated from the International Union of Tourism Publicity Organisation, (IUOTPO) which, after World War II restructured itself into the International Union of Tourism Organisations (IUOTO).

The 20th Session of the IUOTO General Assembly held in Tokyo in 1967 saw the need to establish a relationship with the United Nations. In 1970 the IUOTO General Assembly voted in favour of forming the World Tourism Organisation (WTO) and after its ratification by the prescribed 51 states, the WTO came into operation in November 1, 1974, with its headquarters in Madrid, Spain.

In 2003 the WTO General Council and the United Nations agreed to establish the WTO as a specialised agency of the UN. The significance of that collaboration would be in the increased visibility it gives the WTO and the recognition that would be accorded it. Tourism would be considered on equal footing with other major activities of human society.

To date, the following have been Secretaries General of the united Nations WTO:

1975 - 1985 Robert Lonati (France)

1986 - 1989 Wilbald Pahr (Australia)

1990 - 1996 Antonio Enriquez Savignac (Mexico)

1998 -2009 Francesco Frangialli (France)

2010 - present Taleb Rifai (Jordan)

Mr. Speaker Sir, let me now move on to the structure of the UNWTO, with its five organs. The General Assembly is the supreme organ of the organization. Its ordinary sessions, held every two years are attended by delegates of the full and associate members, as well as the representatives from the business council. It is the most important meeting of senior tourism officials and high level representatives of the private sector from all over the world. The UNWTO membership comprises 186 full member states, 400 affiliate members. Affiliate members represent the private sector, educational institutions, tourism associations and local tourism authorities.

Mr. Speaker Sir, let me share with hon. members, past general assembly venues from 1975 to 2011 as follows:

1. Madrid, Spain May 1975

2. Torremolinos, Spain September 1977

3. Torremolinos, Spain September 1979

4. Rome, Italy September 1981

5. New Delhi, India October 1983

6. Sofia, Bulgaria September 1985

7. Madrid, Spain September - October

1987

8. Paris, France August - September

1989

9. Buenos Aires, Argentina September - October

1991

10. Bali, Indonesia September - October

1993

11. Cairo, Egypt October 1995

12. Instanbul, Turkey October 1997

13. Santiago, Chile October 1999

14. Soul, Republic of Korea/Osaka Japan September - October

2001

15. Beijing, China September 2003

16. Dakar, Senegal November 2005

17. Cartagena de Indias/Colombia November -

December 2007

18. Astana, Kazakhstan November 2009

19. Gyeongju, Republic of Korea October 2011

Bids to host the General Assembly are received by the Secretariat which then tables them and subjects them to a vote by full members of the organization. In the absence of a competent bid by a nation State, the General Assembly is hosted by Madrid, Spain.

In 1975 Regional Commissions were established as subsidiary organs of the General Assembly, the UNWTO has six Regional Commissions, which normally meet once a year. They enable member states to maintain contact with one another and with the Secretariat between sessions of the General Assembly to which they submit their proposals and convey their concerns. The Commissions are composed of all full members and associate members from that region. Affiliate members from the region participate as observers. The six Regional Commissions are Africa, the Americas, East Asia and the Pacific, Europe, the Middle East and South Asia. I will at end of this week be leading a delegation to Calabar, Nigeria, where the 93rd session of the Commission for Africa will be held. Zimbabwe is a member of the Executive Board of Africa Commission.

Next is the Executive Council whose task is to take all necessary measures in consultation with the Secretary-General, for the implementation of its own decisions and recommendations of the Assembly and report thereon to the Assembly. The Council meets at least twice a year. The council consists of full members elected by the Assembly in the proportion of one member for every five full members, in accordance with the Rules of Procedure laid down by the Assembly with a view to achieving fair and equitable geographical distribution. The term of office of members elected to the council is four years and elections for one-half of the council membership are held every two years. Spain is a permanent member of the Executive Council.

Zimbabwe was elected to the Executive Council in 2009, for a four-year term which expires in 2013 at the 20th session of the General Assembly, when we shall assume the position of President in session until the next General Assembly in 2015. We were last in the Executive Council in the 1980s. Like any other organisation, the UNWTO executes its mandate through a system of committees. It has the following committees:

The World Committee on Tourism Ethics

The Programme Committee

The Committee on Budget and Finance

The Committee on Market and Competitiveness

The Committee on Statistics and the Tourism Satellite account

The Committee on the Sustainable Development of Tourism

The Committee on Poverty Reduction

The Committee for the Review of applications for affiliate membership.

The fifth organ is the Secretariat and is led by a Secretary-General who currently is Taleb Rifai of Jordan, who supervises about 110 full-time staff at UNWTO's Madrid Headquarters. He is assisted by three Executive Directors. These officials are responsible for implementing UNWTO's programme of work and serving the needs of members. The affiliate members are supported by a full-time Executive Director at the Madrid Headquarters. The Secretariat also includes a regional support office for Asia-Pacific in Osaka, Japan, financed by the Japanese Government.

Mr. Speaker, let me elaborate on the vital role of tourism in the global economy. Tourism continues to play an increasingly critical role in the global economy and is now the globe's third largest industry with direct earnings of over US$1.3 trillion, from about 980 million arrivals, and an overall impact on the world's economy of over US$6 trillion. The sector employs over 260 million people, which means one out of every 12 persons in employment on this earth are in tourism and travel. Unfortunately Africa contributes only 4% to this performance. Africa's arrivals in 2009 were only 60 million, yielding total earnings of US$40 billion, almost half of these attributable to North Africa. Let me take a moment to deal with some essential characteristics of tourism. What has happened to tourism in North Africa, with the Arab Spring and in Kenya. With election related political unrest, really underscores two characteristics - the vulnerability as well as resilience of tourism to any disturbances and instability that may occur in a destination. For instance in early 2011, tourism in North Africa suffered from the shocks of political change. A number of countries issued travel warnings for North Africa. Tour operators re-routed their customers and cancelled pre-booked trips. In 2010, Egypt had received 14 million visitors. Tourism was also the second largest revenue source for the country, generating US$12.5 billion in 2010. Yet in January 2011, occupancy levels in hotels in major tourism areas dropped to single digits, leaving small tourism entrepreneurs with little to no income. Approximately

210 000 tourists had left the country in the last week of January costing the country US$178 million.

By April 2011, with some travel bans lifted, tourists began to return to Egypt. While it will take time for Egypt's tourism sector to reach its former volume, there is a belief among tourism stakeholders that Egypt's popularity as a historical and cultural destination will continue to be what drives tourists to visit the 'new Egypt'. There are many examples of other destinations bouncing back after major setbacks.

In Zimbabwe, the need to maintain the current peace and security cannot be over emphasised. Without peace and stability, we can kiss good bye to any hopes of a tourism boom that we may be entertaining, including the hosting of the UNWTO General Assembly in 2013. His Excellency, the President said as much when he urged us to conduct national elections this year and keep 2013 clear for the hosting of the General Assembly.

However, we can take comfort in the resilience of the sector as demonstrated by what has happened in Kenya and Egypt in the last few years and indeed as also been shown by the resurgence of our own tourism after a number of years in the doldrums.

Zimbabwe tourism has the capacity after bouncing back to actually blossom, and in fact according to the World Travel and Tourism Council Economic Impact Report, it has been projected to be the second fastest growing tourism sector in terms of contribution to GDP, after China.

Unfortunately, writers of some newspaper columns and like Muckraker of the Independent weekly seem to find this difficult to believe leading them to suggest that I perhaps created these projections, yet these are made on the basis of research and analysis done by the WTTC in collaboration with Oxford Economics. We have amongst us some people still stuck in the colonial mindset where they cannot see a prosperous Zimbabwe.

Mr. Speaker Sir, let me now turn to the relationship between Zimbabwe and the UNWTO. Zimbabwe had disengaged from the UNWTO for most of the decade preceding the Government of 2009, the Inclusive Government.

On appointment to my current portfolio in 2009, I immediately put emphasis on Zimbabwe's total re-engagement with the international community at all levels, bilateral, trilateral, regional and international.

My first meeting with the then acting but now substantive Secretary General of the UNWTO, Taleb Rifai, took place at the WTTC Summit of May 2009 at Florianapolis, Brazil. Here I was informed that Zimbabwe had been deregistered from the UNWTO because of outstanding dues.

I immediately pledged payment and Zimbabwe's commitment to the UNWTO, its mission and principles, particularly as they relate to developing economies and to poverty alleviation.

After paying our outstanding dues to the organisation by June 2009, we were at the General Assembly at Astana in Kazakhstan, elected to the organisation's Executive Council. I have leveraged this seat to make serious inroads into the biggest traditional tourism markets of the West, in spite of being under EU and American sanctions.

The Executive Council seat has given me access, not only to tourism and travel bodies, but also into Government establishments in capitals like London, Berlin and Washington. Our intention in this regard has been to promote the use of tourism for people-to-people diplomacy ahead of, and in preparation for political diplomacy at Foreign Affairs level. We have insisted everywhere we go that even when states have, in anger, fallen out with one another; the last bridge that must be left standing is people-to-people contact.

In this context Mr. Speaker Sir, it is my pleasure to inform the House that the UNWTO-affiliated Africa Travel Association (ATA) which is also affiliated to the African Union, elected this Minister to their Presidency at their 2012 37th Annual Congress held at the Victoria Falls last May. ATA promotes American travel into Africa, and Americans are currently the lead source market for international arrivals into Zimbabwe.

Mr. Speaker Sir, it is our very intensive engagement with the UNWTO, and our seat on its Executive Council that emboldened us to compete for the hosting of the organisation's 20th session of the General Assembly. The right and honour to co-host the 2013 General Assembly with Zambia at the Victoria Falls was unanimously bestowed on us by the 19th session of the General Assembly held in October 2011 at Gyengjou, Republic of Korea. The other bids for hosting the 2013 General Assembly were from Russia, Qatar, Turkey, Colombia and Jordan.

Following the award of the honour to host the 2013 General Assembly, the Government of Zimbabwe declared the hosting of the mega-event a national event. A Cabinet Committee on the co-hosting of the 2013 UNWTO General Assembly was established and is chaired by Vice President, Hon J.T.R. Mujuru. She is also the Patron for Tourism with me as lead Minister, and an Inter-Ministerial Working Party of Officials, chaired by the Deputy Chief Secretary in the Office of the President and Cabinet, Rtd. Col. C.M. Katsande, is the Secretariat.

Furthermore, a Victoria Falls Local Area Sub-committee reporting directly to the Inter-Ministerial Committee was established. The Victoria Falls Local Area Sub-committee is composed of three sub-structures, namely, the Provincial level chaired by the Governor and Resident Minister, the District level chaired by the District Administrator and the local level chaired by the Mayor of Victoria Falls.

The task of the Inter-Ministerial Working Party of Officials is to ensure efficient accomplishment of tasks and an integrated approach to planning and implementation of developments, the Inter-Ministerial Working Party of Officials set up eight sub-committees covering the following areas:

· Resource mobilisation sub-committee chaired by the Deputy Chief Secretary, assisted by the Secretary for Economic Planning and Investment Promotion and the Secretary for Finance

· Infrastructure sub-committee chaired by the Secretary for Transport, Communications and Infrastructural Development

· Environmental Management sub-committee chaired by Secretary for Environment and Natural Resources Management

· Standards, Marketing and Promotions sub-committee chaired by Secretary for Tourism and Hospitality Industry

· Media, Information and Communications sub-committee chaired by Secretary for Media, Information and Publicity

· Entertainment and Events sub-committee chaired by Secretary for Education, Sports, Arts and Culture

· Security and Accreditation chaired by the President's Department

· Protocol sub-committee chaired by Secretary for Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker Sir, in preparation of the co-hosting of the General Assembly, the Government of Zimbabwe and the Government of Zambia have met three (3) times through the Zimbabwe-Zambia Joint Steering Committee (JSC) on the co-hosting of the event. The JSC is chaired by the Permanent Secretaries for Tourism of the two countries.

Zimbabwe and Zambia have managed to jointly market and promote the co-hosting of the 20th session of the General Assembly at the following travel Fairs; FITUR in Spain in January, 2012, International Travel Bureau (ITB) in Germany in March, 2012, the Moscow International Travel Fair in March, 2012, the Russian and Arabian Travel market, April, 2012 in Dubai.

Mr. Speaker, let me pause here, I think for us to be able to connect all and some of these activities to Parliament it may be prudent in the near future that you designate some of your Parliamentarians to accompany the Hon. Minister and his executive delegations to some of these fairs so that we keep the whole plan complete. So, I refer you to look into your budget and see if you cannot designate the Portfolio Committee on Environment and Tourism plus other members outside this Committee to accompany us so that we have a connection with the people's representatives concerning this General Assembly.

On my part, I have addressed global forum invitations to speak at events in Chicago, Las Vegas, New York, Libreville, just recently in Gabon, last week Madrid, Mauritius and more recently in Durban where we signed a memorandum of understanding with the Republic of South Africa on tourism cooperation covering the General Assembly under a section on mega events.

The UNWTO secretariat will continuously visit us to monitor compliance with their guidelines for hosting the General Assembly and they have visited three times, with the last visit being that of the Inspector General himself who is the Secretary General of the organ DR. B. S Maunganidze, from 27th February, 2012 to 3rd March, 2012. The team inspected the conference venue, hotels, airports, entry ports and health facilities and made logistical recommendations thereof. The UNWTO inspection team comprised of the Executive Director, Mr. Zoltan Somogyi, Mr. helder Thomas, Deputy Director for Africa and Ms. Blanca Peral, Programmes Coordinator. The team was satisfied with the preparations Zimbabwe and Zambia have made so far to co-host the General Assembly next year.

On the sidelines of the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair the Minister of Tourism and Hospitality industry and the Minister of Tourism and Foreign Affairs Cde. Lubinda, in Zambia signed a Bilateral MOU on Tourism Cooperation between the two countries witnessed by the two Excellencies, President R.G. Mugabe and President C. Sata at our State House. The signing of the Bilateral MOU paved the way for the signing of the co-hosting MOU that I appended my signature to, together with my counterpart in Zambia. It also paved the way for the signing of the Trilateral Host Agreement that was signed between the two Heads of State of Zimbabwe and Zambia and the Secretary General on the 29th May, 2012 at the Victoria Falls bridge. The two Heads of State appended their signatures to the UNWTO Golden Book on Tourism, which signifies our country's commitment to the growth and development of sustainable tourism. Let me now turn to the progress so far achieved in terms of infrastructural preparations for the co-hosting of this event.

Mr. Speaker, we have tabled with Parliament a table of what we envisage to be the legacy projects which should be implemented in Victoria Falls. I think this would please Madam Khupe because these projects are in her region. A Convention centre and ancillary structures for a tourism theme park including three to five star hotels, a casino, museums, a shopping mall etc, all on one thousand two hundred hectares of land that has been specially allocated and designated for the purpose. It is now consistent with our own desire to declare the Victoria Falls a tourism hub, in line with preceding blue prints on economic recovery. So, the Government of Zimbabwe is considering up to a billion worth of offers from around the globe responding to this need. Offers are coming in various forms on the basis of BOT, BOOT and private sector participation. All design work has been completed and we are at the stage where draft environmental impact assessments are taking place.

Mr. Speaker Sir, it will please this Parliament to note that the Victoria Falls Airport upgrade project is now work in progress and concessional funding of up to US$150 million has been secured from China Exim bank for the upgrading of the Victoria Falls Airport. What we envisage in the future is that the Victoria Falls Airport will become an air traffic hub in the same sense that Addis or Tambo airports are. We will be able to land wide bodied aircrafts directly without having to pass through other cities like Harare and Bulawayo.

There is work in progress at the Harare International Airport for those who have been travelling of late. The upgrading work includes ongoing new radar systems that are required at the site. Mr. Speaker Sir, there is work that is taking place at the Victoria Falls border post and Kazungula, and preliminary assessment was done by the Regional Integration and International Cooperation Ministries to fulfill this.

There is work that has taken place in upgrading health facilities for the Victoria Falls hospital. Premier Services Medical Aid Society (PSMAS) is putting up an outpatient hospital and we had the pleasure of testing some of their products during the ATTA congress. They came in very handy with such efficiency, so this is part and parcel of what work is taking place in Victoria Falls.

Let me also take this opportunity to say that; let us not just see investors as light skinned people who are coming through the Zimbabwe Investment Centre. Let me take advantage of this platform to appeal directly to you hon. members to lobby, advocate and bring forward projects that can be taken up by this 1200 hectare park. You must think outside the box as this is your opportunity for empowerment and we are waiting to receive more submissions should you have anything that you also want to do that falls within the context of the enhanced Victoria Falls combination master plan.

On the planned infrastructural development associated with the General Assembly, we had a choice between two approaches. We could go the "COMESA" way and put up very temporary structures in the form of tents as we did for the COMESA conference in 2009. This approach has been labeled "a very temporary vision" of the sub-sector of tourism with the acronym MICE, which I will elaborate on shortly. Alternatively, we could go to the "CHOGM" way and put up a permanent fixed legacy structure, which is what we did in 1992 when we prepared for the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting by way of putting up the then Sheraton and the HICC.

We have opted for putting up legacy assets to be forever associated with the legacy even of the UNWTO General Assembly, as what happened in South Africa with the 2010 World Cup Final. This should be the case even if we are compelled by circumstances to put up semi-fixed structures in the interim, provided we start on the legacy structures before the General Assembly is held in August 2013. The legacy assets will forever be associated with the UNWTO General Assembly, which may only revisit us after 350 years.

The House will be pleased to know that the UNWTO Executive Council at its 93rd session in Madrid, Spain last week passed a resolution expressing its satisfaction with the signing of the Tri-lateral Host Agreement by the Heads of State of Zimbabwe and Zambia, and the UNWTO Secretary General for the co-hosting of its 2013 General Assembly by the two countries. That deal is therefore signed and sealed. We will be welcoming the world to the Victoria Falls in August 2013.

Mr. Speaker Sir, Let me take this opportunity to briefly share with the House my thinking on the way forward with our national tourism.

It is our policy, going forward, to emphasise both international and domestic tourism in Zimbabwe, in as much as we might seem to be emphasising international tourism at the moment. This is because of our preoccupation with the General Assembly, otherwise going forward will be putting equal effort on our domestic tourism, because it is, in many respects, the anchor of our international tourism.

At the international level our mantra will be "Africa is a single product with diverse modes of expression", at both product development and destination-marketing levels, with the Victoria constituting the continent's tourism and air travel hub. Zimbabwe will also be one of the leading advocates urging Africa to speak with a single strong voice on all international fora, whenever issues of African interest are discussed. This must all be done with view to raising Africa's share of global tourism revenue from the current 4% to above 10% by 2020.

At the domestic level, we shall start with the operationalization of the National Tourism and Heritage Council, to which we have just appointed persons form a whole cross-section of our society. This body will play a critical role in advancing clear policy for our domestic tourism, in which the Ministry's Provincial Tourism Officers will play a leading role on the ground.

Tourism contribution to Zimbabwe's GDP must be 15% by 2015 with revenue earnings of US$5 billion and above.

Mr. Speaker, Sir, earlier on I referred to MICE which I said I would elaborate on, it stands for Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions.

Following the construction of International Convention Centre, a legacy structure, and the development of Tourism Theme Park, at the Victoria Falls, it is our intention to develop Victoria Falls as the leading African MICE centre. I shall very soon be approaching Cabinet with a paper proposing to set up an International Convention Bureau to sources international conferences and meetings, from all our Sectors and Ministries, to be held at the Victoria Falls and at other conference centres in the country like the HICC, Nyanga, Kariba, Masvingo (the ZCC Shrine) and Chitungwiza (the UFM). We will be a successful MICE centre in the mould of the Republic of Korea, which rakes in millions of dollars from hosting international conferences.

Mr. Speaker Sir, let me turn to the role of Government in the Tourism and Hospitality sector. Going forward, the Ministry will seek to play an active role in the Hospitality Industry, well beyond the current one of a mere regulator. The Ministry will seek to reactivate its past role as a development agent, in which role it owned assets like the RTG through its Zimbabwe Tourism Development Corporation (ZTDC).

In hindsight we realise that it is the GoZ which is in a position to drive infrastructural development in the sector. We will continue to build, while positioning our assets to be run by renowned franchise operators on a win/win basis. Government must be a shareholder within the broad context of our empowerment principle. We cannot be content with just being a landlord as it is the current case with the Rainbow Tourism Group (RTG).

Mr. Speaker Sir, I would like to address some challenges that we will face. Clearly there are some very serious challenges that we need to keep in sight and continuously try to address as we contemplate advancing Zimbabwean, an indeed African tourism.

One leading challenge is the clearly premeditated media onslaught and negative branding of Africa, including, of course, Zimbabwe, by major western media houses, at the instigation of their Governments. A major characteristic of Zimbabwe's social and economic meltdown period was isolation, estrangement, a heavily sponsored negative image, and distortion and misrepresentation of our then Government policy positions. This resulted in Zimbabwe losing most of its brand equity, with the inevitable downward spiral of tourism.

In the rest of Africa accent has been put on highlighting insecurity and strife. Witness the "cowboy" style coverage of wards and protests in Libya, Egypt, and Tunisia, whose coverage has since assisted the attempted recovery of European economies either by blatantly moving in to acquire resources, as was the case with Libya, or subtly instilling into their citizens fear to venture our thereby increasing their own domestic and regional tourism, as is happening in Europe.

Other areas of focus, in a bid to negatively brand Africa, have been diseases like yellow fever, malaria and cholera in Central Africa, an ebola in the DRC. We never seem to get past these, yet Europe is assisted by the same media to rapidly get past Mad cow and NH3. Through highlighting famine, countries like Ethiopia and Mali have been rubbished even through images accompanying western songs like "we are the World", which have accomplished very little.

Images of street kids and beggars are shown to disparage Africa's brand, whilst British adult street kids languishing at the entrance to Zimbabwe House on the Strand in London, are never covered by the BBC.

Mr. Speaker Sir, the Occupy Wall Street Movement in the USA, and similar movements in the West have attracted less severe coverage tan the Arab Spring, where efforts at stabilisation are ignored by mainstream media, whilst recurrence of protests is generously covered. Meanwhile the Economic Recession and its attendant civil disobedience in Europe are glossed over, to give the States and the collective regional configurations some respite.

Crime in some parts of Europe and the USA is a culture, their movie themes confirm this, but it is only "acting" we are told. But in reality how many times do we see or read about entire schools held at gunpoint, or innocent children shot in cold blood by crazy fellow Europeans?

Mr. Speaker Sir, there is no effective response to this kind of onslaught except on insisting on telling one's own story.

In Zimbabwe, the following my appointment to head a stand-alone Ministry of Tourism, and the adoption of the sector as one of the economy's pillars by pioneer and successive economic blueprints, we wasted no time and plunged, with great passion into a campaign to rebrand, reengage, and reposition destination Zimbabwe at home and abroad, bilaterally and multilaterally.

On the back of a highly aggressive international thrust anchored by our new brand "Zimbabwe, A World of Wonders", fronted by the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority, we in no time witnessed the lifting of negative travel advisories by the entire international community.

Our next step was re-entry into influential international tourism bodies, with an eye on securing seats on their governing councils. Today we can say we are in the cockpit of regional and international tourism, with our immediate past Chairmanship of RETOSA, our Presidency of ATA, our seat on the UNWTO Executive Council, and our up-coming Presidency in session of the UNWTO General Assembly.

No other sector in Zimbabwe has done better than tourism in terms of reengaging and repositioning the country in the international community than tourism. I believe Mr. Speaker Sir, that if we had been availed even ten percent of the fiscal support that other sectors, like Agriculture, have received, for purposes of developing our domestic tourism, we would have done as much with that sub-sector. Mr. Speaker Sir, if Egypt can raise as much as $12.5 billion from tourism only, surely Zimbabwe can do better than our total GDP at less than $5 billion, which we are revising downwards!

Mr. Speaker Sir, turning to Africa, I must say the continent has, in this regard, no option but to work on Brand Africa in our individual and collective sense. We must deploy all media and all genres of communication available. We must support policies and activities aimed at winning this propaganda war. A master strategy to deal with this problem at continental level is now imperative. We must fight images with counter images. In this regard we must revisit our media editorial policies which must address the need to counter negative branding of Zimbabwe, and indeed Africa.

Another challenge that our tourism faces at both the Zimbabwean national level and at the African continental level is that of Destination accessibility. Tourism only happens when people arrive. Inter-city and inter-country accessibility, especially by air in Africa is in a deplorable state, except through a few airlines like Ethiopia Airlines, Kenya Airlines, and South Africa Airlines. We need to look closely at how these airlines are structured. We also need to study those African States that have adopted an Open Sky Policy and do a cost/benefit analysis of their stance to determine the best way forward.

We have already proffered several options and proposals of how we can go forward with our national airline, but still await action by the responsible Ministry.

Yet another challenge is the adoption of self-serving policies, as well as outright disabling approaches, inimical to African development, on the part of the West. We are for instance witnessing the introduction of high Airport Departure Taxes for European tourists who might wish to visit long-haul destinations in Africa. The effect of this is to ensure that European citizens spend all their money in their own countries or in the region.

Worse still, we have, in recent times seen the tendency by western economic powers to disengage from global associations and agencies that are supportive of African development. The most recent one is of course Canada's decision to pull out of the UNWTO because President Mugabe has been honoured by that organisation.

Mr. Speaker Sir, I see an anti-African conspiracy in all this. Africa needs to respond with all the rigour it can muster. Brand Africa needs to work for its own enhancement, see and position itself as a single product that is highly diverse. This could be done on the basis of regional blocks aligned to existing regional economic blocks, like the Kavango/Zambezi (KAZA) Transfrontier Conservation Area, bringing together five countries, offering more than 52 tourist activities, with seven airports within its circumference. In West Africa the "Slave Route" can be rebranded as the "Freedom Route", promoting re-entry into Africa! The Silk Route in Eurasia is an appropriate bench mark for us.

Africa as a domestic and regional tourism market, with a deliberate BRIC-leaning strategy, will migrate the mischief of Europe and the USA as outlined above. Going together with this strategy must be greater commitment on the part of Africa to facilitate access, connectivity, and entry within the continent. We need a whole new paradigm, liberalizing visa regimes, introducing our own "Schengen" Visa for Africa, keeping it simple with electronic approaches, and liberating Africa from itself, by allowing unfettered travel within the continent by its citizens and diaspora.

Mr. Speaker Sir, a mega-eventing Africa, with a clear MICE strategy that does not allow us to attend every other region's meetings, conferences, and exhibitions in the world, except our own. Gabon Africa Cup of Nations 2012, South Africa FIFA World Cup 2010, and the planned Zimbabwe/Zambia UNWTO General Assembly are good examples of what we can do.

I sincerely believe that if we can do, not all of the above, but only 30%, Africa can be guaranteed at least a ten percent share of global tourism performance by 2010, with all the attendant social and economic benefits. Tourism is a low hanging fruit in the "Garden of Eden" but for now only selected countries elsewhere other then Africa are enjoying it, but they will soon be exposed by the increasing knowledge and inquisitiveness of the "Gentiles".

Mr. Speaker Sir, as I draw to a close let me speak about The Total Significance of Hosting the UNWTO General Assembly. I sincerely hope Members of the House fully grasp and comprehend the social, political, and economic implications presented by this once in a life-time opportunity to host a mega-event as large and looming as a UNWTO General Assembly.

We are talking about delegations representing up to 186 governments, tourism industry operators, spouses, business associations, academics, more than 400 journalists from various media houses, including major global networks like CNN, BBC, ICTV, Aljazeera, France 24, and name them all.

At the social level, the sense of pride and self-worth to be instilled in all Zimbabweans as hosts to the world will run deep and leave indelible memories. Never before in the history of Zimbabwe has an event so united a people around a vision of hope for the future! An event that allows us to genuinely showcase who we are and why tourism should be supported to make people happier and more hopeful. You all felt it before when we brought the COSAFA Cup to Zimbabwe, and when we brought the Brazil National Team to play the Warriors on the eve of World cup 2010. Imagine that feeling twenty-fold!

The political and brand equity that the event will bring to Zimbabwe is of a magnitude never felt in the history of this country before, aside from that associated with that blissful night of 18 April 1980. The presence of up to 186 world governments in the Victoria Falls will be an unparalleled endorsement of destination Victoria Falls, destination Zimbabwe, and destination Africa.

The economic opportunities for both, the local and foreign investor, are almost limitless. They range from accommodation infrastructure, communications technology, surface and air transport infrastructure, leisure and entertainment infrastructure, restaurants, and various services. The opportunities are both pre and post the mega event.

This, Mr. Speaker Sir, is the opportunity that presents itself before us in the form of the 20th Session of the UNWTO to be held at the Victoria Falls in August 2013.

I must conclude though with a plea, Mr. Speaker Sir, that we all commit ourselves to ensuring that we have the necessary peace and security and stability to make the whole world feel at home in Zimbabwe. It is equally important that we all work with the necessary unity of purpose on the ground, to ensure that we achieve all our set objectives in relation to this event. I thank you all. Ndatenda. Siyabonga.

MR. SPEAKER: Thank you very much Honourable Minister for the detailed presentation and update to this august House on the state of preparedness with regards to the upcoming event, in 2013. I will allow honourable members to seek clarification and raise a few questions to the Minister.

*MR. MAZIKANA : Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. Allow me to first congratulate Zimbabwe as a country, Zimbabwean citizens and our own Minister for doing such a magnificent job. That is for us to be chosen as the co-host with Zambia, for never before has this happened as he has said. That should be stuck on our memories as never before.

MR. SPEAKER: Order, order. Honourable member, you need to ask questions or clarification.

*MR. MAZIKANA : Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. Honourable Minister, I thank you for your proposal to Parliament that the Portfolio Committee on Natural Resources and Tourism be involved. However, I was thinking that would you not see it much better, seeing that we are only 12 months away from the date when this conference has been held, for us to go to provinces. So that different stakeholders in all provinces would come up with sensitisation workshops before the onset of the rains this year. Honourable minister, we are ready and we want to get ready for this event.

ENG. MZEMBI: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. I just want to thank the honourable member. His is not a question but he is simply complimenting our work and commenting but he has a fundamental point on sensitisation and popularization, so that this event is collectively owned by the generality of our people and I think Parliament must facilitate to do that. It is a very important point. The success of any mega event is a function of the turnout of both local and international delegates. I think that is what he is seeking to affirm.

MR. CHIKWINYA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. Also thanking the Minister for all the success that has been registered, which he alluded to in the report. My point Mr. Speaker Sir, is that the minister raised the issue of the media and the role of the media, especially towards this event and also with regards to the tourism industry in its entirety.

My question therefore is that, I view the tourism industry, not necessarily as an event based on the WTO Summit which we are going to hold, but as an industry which is supposed to be sustained throughout all our economic development policies. Therefore, what mechanisms are you putting in place to engage the international media which you have alluded to, that most of them are hostile and therefore painting a bad picture on Zimbabwe and Africa, what mechanism are you putting in place to engage the same media houses so that they can see the true picture of Zimbabwe, of which we are now, especially in the absence of any other differences that might arise to disturbances like what we had before? What mechanisms are you putting in place to engage these media houses so that they can assist you in portraying the image of Zimbabwe which we are trying to portray so that we can achieve a successful hosting of the WTO summit?

ENG. MZEMBI: Thank you honourable member. This is a very pertinent question. I will just simplify it to say that even in our ordinary circumstances in homes, there is nobody who visits a neighbourhood where the father and mother are always fighting, just as a basic principle. So we need in our own internal situation, to communicate the best positives and attributes about us as a people. We do not need to peddle to the international community or anybody our negatives because they do not serve anyone's interest in the first instance. Nobody will come if they get an impression that we are in conflict when in actual fact, we are not. Every time that we go out there, we try and allay that, but it can only be assisted by an editorial trust, both from state media and independent media that recognizes this principle.

From a sectoral point of view, as Tourism Minister, we obviously need a conversation with the media to sell our agenda. We need to sell the agenda of the general assembly and what it means for the country, how we feel that brand Zimbabwe can be helped, developed by the assistance of the media. At the international fora, I can assure the honourable member that I have a Cabinet approved undertaking that we can go and do advertorials with international media, including CNN and BBC, to reposition brand Zimbabwe, because the only way to fight, like I said images, is to fight and counter them with your own positive images about your country.

Honourable members, as you retreat to your rooms every night, you see incredible images in the adverts of CNN, you see brand adverts of countries including the United Kingdom, all in 2010 when they followed our own example on Zimbabwe world of wonders. They developed their own front line. They are propagating them and selling them internationally to international audience. I would hope that I gave the response Hon. Speaker Sir, to find CNN media advertorial. That has already been approved. It just needs US$1.5 million and it will cover 588 bytes of 45 seconds each on Zimbabwe.

In those bytes, we should be able to sell, not tourism with the Victoria Falls, but sell brand Zimbabwe. In that byte, we should be able to sell our agriculture, sell our mining, sell our people and sell all our wonders in their totality, because every square inch that we sit on today or that we stand on, represents a tourism product. Victoria Falls can not happen to the exclusion of our politics, of our social and economic well-being. So, I would hope that, that brand caption, the 45 seconds byte which we intend to roll out in January captures the totality of our Zimbabwe and we sell it to the outside world.

MR. MADZIMURE: Thank you Minister. I think the information which you seem to say it is negative, which is portrayed on Zimbabwe, is basically because of what we do. Are you in total agreement in Cabinet that you will not be reckless with your statements? Are you also going to do something with the public media, especially the ZBC? It is now on DSTV and you find the majority of the things about Zimbabwe is about the war and fighting. The public media itself is on the forefront of attacking fellow Zimbabweans. Are you going to engage them so that they change?

Lastly, what is there for the community of Victoria Falls? How many jobs are going to be created? How are the indigenous enterprises going to benefit from the construction and also the furnishing of the convention centres, how are we going to benefit? Have you calculated the net effect as far as the WTO is concerned?

ENG. MZEMBI: Let me start with the bottom end of his question. The benefits to the Victoria Falls. I have already pronounced as part of policy that in concentric fashion, the benefits must accrue in the first instance to the residents of the Victoria Falls. So artisanal work like brick laying, electrical work, plumbing, mechanical, should not see us hiring skills or out-sourcing them from outside the Victoria Falls, if they are present because there is going to be a lot of construction work. Employment is a source of empowerment. As we engage these people in the various projects, we are also empowering them.

They do not have a diamond mine in the Victoria Falls. Their diamond mine is the Falls themselves. So we are very conscientious of the fact that whatever economic benefit that is realised out of these entire nucleus projects for the UNWTO, must benefit in the first instance, the people in the Victoria Falls. If they do not have the capacity, then they go out in concentric fashion, Bulawayo until we get to Harare and internationally. That I have already pronounced and I used the occasion of my visit there, only just a forty-night ago, at the homestead of a Chief to pronounce that you shall benefit in the first instance and I will be very mindful about that and watch out affirmatively to make sure that it happens. In addition to that, we have set aside land, 1 200 hectares. If there are sons and daughters of that region who are able to structure business cooperation models, where they bring in foreign investment riding on their back, surely if they are present, they will be given the first cut because it is happening within the context of where they live and where they were born. So we are conscious of that and I have already pronounced policy on that.

On the issue of public media, let me repeat. This event was declared a national event. I would hope that its declaration as a national event binds everybody around the cause to make sure that we communicate as much as possible, all the positives about Zimbabwe and negate and put behind our back and disregard those few areas that we may be disagreeing on. I have never imagined they could be presented with a more opportune moment to find areas that they agree on and that they disagree on, like the current constitutional process. That is where we should make all the noises and the world will understand that, that is parallel processes where these people are trying to find each other but, when we decide to communicate about who we are as a people, surely we must be united by the national interest and that includes people in the diaspora. If you are unable to do that, then shame on us because ultimately, what we need to do is to make sure that the world knows and learns everything about Zimbabwe, that is positive and that is what the Americans do, the British and also the Chinese.

When it comes to the national interest, they are united. They will disregard everything and face the enemy who has entered the house. I am sure we can assume that basic principle, even in dealing with both public and independent media. Public media must also not unnecessarily respond to taunts or tantrums that might come from time to time from the independent media. They are a national mouth-piece. In my view, some of the issues, we must disregard them as gutter material and forge ahead in selling and promoting a national brand that we want to see as a public broadcaster or national paper. I thank you.

MR. MWONZORA: Thank you very much Mr. Speaker. As a follow up to the question that you have just answered. I am sure every right thinking Zimbabwean is happy about this event coming to Zimbabwe. Have you Hon. Minister, raised it with your Cabinet colleagues, especially the Principals or those involved on the likely negative impact of politically motivated violence and selective application of the law on the successful hosting of this event?

ENG. MZEMBI: Thank you Mr Speaker. Cabinet just like Parliament is like a classroom; you have to say your mission and make sure that it is impressed and I want to imagine that by declaring this event a national event, it means that tourism had successfully showed this event to Cabinet. If we have any dissenting behaviour that is errantness, it must be dealt with within the context of errantness. Having said that, let me say that the decision on dealing with violence; in my own opinion Mr. Speaker, I was at a church last night where we dealt partly with this issue. Have we gone to the fundamentals of what causes it because there will not be a day in the future of Zimbabwe where you have a single family that does not have people belonging to dessenting views or to departing views or belonging to partisanship or belong to different parties. There is not a single family in this country today that can stand on top of a mountain and tell me that they do not have either both MDC and ZANU PF in their families.

So, the issue at the centre of dealing with violence is to deal with the family unit. We must agree at the end of the day that we can differ politically but it does not mean going to war. If you go to the United States there are Republicans there; there are Democrats of 5 ; 6 generations. They have co-existed without having to remind each other with a knobkerrie that you belong either to the Democratic party or the Republican party and they go to elections and the best party wins and it governs. I hope that going forward, we are able to promote that in this Parliament during this session. What in fact we have in this Parliament here is one of the most undemocratic dispensations Mr. Speaker, I can advise that.

I was in Germany recently and chatting with people at Foreign Affairs and they were asking me, "how are you co- existing as parties?" I said we are co-existing and they said no you have a very difficult situation in your country that you are a grand coalition. By grand coalition is when all the big parties are in Government and there is no single party that keeps the checks and balances and it is undemocratic. I would hope one day we would get into a situation where one grand party is in power; the lesser grand is keeping the checks and balances and that is democracy if we want to go forward. What we have now is a very unhealthy situation; the sooner we retire it when the time comes, the better so that we restore democracy in the country but without knobkerrying each other. It is not necessary to take life in order to get into political office and we can tame that if we want here as Parliament to say to our people that anyone who promotes violence should not be voted into office.

MR. MABHENA: Thank you Mr. Speaker I would like to applaud the Minister by recognising the importance of promoting the locality benefiting from the project but my question is there has been three different sites concerning this project. Do we now have the exact site where it is going to be place? There was an area along the Kilo market, there was another area down the Livingstone launch. Now I understand it is right in town at Municipal Offices; where exactly is the project is going to be placed?

ENG. MZEMBI: I am more concerned Hon. Speaker Sir, about the funding. I think the people of the Victoria Falls will direct us to a site that they think is best advantageous to their economy in the Victoria Falls. We had at the beginning more than ten sites but I can not answer now what is in the closing of local committees. I cannot answer that now what is the subject of environmental impact assessments. I think that question will be answered by technocrats.

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

THE DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER (MS. KHUPE): I move that Orders of the Day, Numbers 1 to 4 and 6 to 14 be stood down until Orders of the Day, Numbers 5 and 15 have been disposed of.

Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

RATIFICATION OF THE UNITED NATIONS PROTOCOL TO SUPPRESS AND PUNISH TRAFCKING IN PERSONS

THE CO-MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS (MRS. MAKONE): I move the motion standing in my name:

THAT WHEREAS Subsection (1) of Section 111B of the Constitution of Zimbabwe provides that any convention, treaty or agreement acceded to, concluded or executed by governments or international organisations shall be subject to approval by Parliament.

Whereas the Government of the Republic of Zimbabwe ratifies the United Nations Convention against Transitional Organised Crime on 9th July 2007;

AND WHEREAS the Government of the Republic of Zimbabwe now desires to ratify the United Nations Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children;

AND WHEREAS the entry into force of the aforesaid Protocol is conditional upon ratification by signatory parties in accordance with their respective constitutional procedures;

NOW THEREFORE; in terms of subsection (1) of Section 111B of the Constitution, Parliament resolves that the aforesaid Protocol be and is hereby approved for ratification.

The Protocol entered into force on December 25, 2003. The purpose of the protocol is to prevent and combat trafficking in persons in attention to women and children. It seeks to protect and assist the victims of such trafficking with full respect for their human rights and also to promote cooperation among third parties in order to meet those objectives. Article III defines the term 'Trafficking of person to mean the recruitment, the transportation, transfer, harbouring or receipt of persons by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of coercion of abduction; of fraud of deception of abuse or power or position or vulnerability or dealing or receiving of payments against the consent of a person having control over another person for the purpose of exploitation. For the purpose of this Protocol, child shall mean any person under 18 years of age and the recruitment, transportation, transfer harboring or receipt of a child for the purpose of exploitation shall be considered trafficking in persons even if this does not involve any of the need set forth in sub-paragraph (a) of this Article.

Scope of application - the application of the provisions of this Protocol is confined to the prevention, investigation and persecution of the offense established in accordance with Article iv of this Protocol.

Criminalisation - the provisions of Article iv require a State part to adopt legislative and other measures to establish as criminal offences the conduct outlined in Article III of this Protocol when committed international. Attempting to commit, participating as an accomplice on organising or directing other persons to commit an offence established in accordance with paragraph I of this Article should also be made criminal offences by State parties.

Assistance to and protection of victims of trafficking in persons - Article vi requires a State part to provide assistance to and protection of victims of trafficking in person. Domestic legal or administrative systems for the implementation for the provision of this Article should avail to victims of trafficking relevant information and assistance relating to court and administrative proceedings against offenders. State parties are also required to consider implementing measures, to provide for the physical psychological and social recovery of victims of trafficking.

Article 6 requires each state party to offer in its legal system the possibility of victims of trafficking obtaining compensation for damages suffered.

Status of victims of the trafficking in persons in receiving States

The provisions of Article 7 require a State party to legislate for measures that can meet victims of trafficking to remain in its territory either on a temporary or permanent basis.

Repatriation of victims of trafficking in persons

Article 8 outlines the procedures for the safe repatriation of victims of trafficking in persons including those without proper documentation.

Prevention of trafficking in persons

The provisions of Article 9 requires State parties to establish comprehensive policies, programmes and other measures to prevent and combat trafficking in persons as well as to protect victims of trafficking especially women and children.

Information exchange and training

Immigration and other relevant authorities of State parties are expected under Article 10 to cooperate with one another by exchanging information to enable them to detect and establish the means and methods used by persons engaged in trafficking in persons in order to combat trafficking.

Border measures

Article 11 outlines the measures that State parties should put in by way of border controls that are necessary to prevent and detect trafficking in persons.

Security and control of documents

It is a requirement on each State party in Article 12 to ensure that travel and identity documents they issue are of the highest quality, cannot be easily forged and are issued by the authorised persons.

Legitimacy and validity of documents

Article 13 requires a State party to verify the legitimacy and validity of documents purported to have been issued by it within a reasonable time if requested by another State party.

Settlement of disputes

Article 15 stipulates that any dispute between two or more States concerning the interpretation or application of the protocol that has not been settled by negotiation may be submitted to arbitration after which it may be submitted to the International Court of Justice at the request of anyone of the State parties. It should be noted that this article provides for the compulsory jurisdiction of the International Court of Justice in differences arising out of interpretation or application of the Protocol at the instance of one party. It is advisable that consent of both parties be required.

Signature ratification, acceptance, approval and accession

Article 16 provides for the signature ratification, acceptance, approval and accession to the Protocol by State parties.

Article 17 - Depository and Languages

It is stipulated in Article 20 that the Secretary General of the United Nations is the designated depository of this Protocol.

I am recommending this Protocol to Parliament for its ratification so that we can deposit the instrument with the United Nations. I thank you Mr. Speaker.

MR. CHIKWINYA: Firstly, I want to thank the Hon. Minister for bringing in this Protocol before Parliament for our consideration. In February thereabout, the Parliamentary Committee on Media, Information and Communications Technology together with the Human Rights Thematic Committee went for a workshop to analyse the protocols and treaties which Zimbabwe has ratified versus the legislative framework in place to make them operational. What we managed to discover and which is actually my short point of presentation to the minister is that, we as Zimbabweans are very good in ratifying so many protocols and registering them with the United Nations therefore presenting in my view, smokescreen effect to the effect that we have the intention and we are like the rest of the world in adopting these standards.

Mr. Speaker, if you go to Section 11B of the Constitution, it will then tell you that this protocol can only have effect in Zimbabwe subject to a Parliamentary legislation that then operationalises the protocol. What I am presenting to the minister is that it is not enough to ratify a protocol, what we want are the legislative pieces, the Acts of Parliament which then makes the protocol enforceable in the country. This is where we are lacking, we have so many protocols. The protocols are countless. If you go to the register of the United Nations, you will find that Zimbabwe is so committed to these very good things, but if you then come back to the country, we have no operational instruments to put them into effect. If one is to go to the United Nations tomorrow and say Zimbabwe does not want trafficking of persons especially women and children, that is good, that is fine but in the absence of a law which says if you do this you are subject to these penalties, that is not good enough. I celebrate least the production of this protocol. However, I want to think that maybe there is a new dispensation in the form of my very Hon. Minister Makone in this portfolio. I am sure that in the very near future if not in the next few months, we are going to be seeing a bill before Parliament to support these protocols. I thank you.

MR. SPEAKER: Thank you. In the Parliamentary language we normally refer to it as domestication of that particular protocol.

MR. CROSS: I think the House should certainly adopt the protocol and I hope we will do it this afternoon, immediately after this discussion. I think members need to know that human trafficking in Zimbabwe is a much bigger problem than everybody realises. We do not recognize it because as Hon. Chikwinya has pointed out, we have no effective legislation to deal with it. Anybody who has been /associated with the Beitbridge Border Post knows that trafficking across the border is extremely easy and it is rampant. I think that Zimbabwe needs to ratify this protocol urgently and then I think we need to do exactly what Hon. Chikwinya has suggested which is to examine our legislative basis and to ensure that we are in a position to enforce it as quickly as possible. Thank you Mr. Speaker.

MR. HOVE: Thank you Mr. Speaker, I rise to support the ratification of this protocol. However, like Hon. Cross has rightly referred, the problem of trafficking in Zimbabwe has become very serious and endemic. We now have individuals who have managed to buy houses as a result of trafficking. There are a number of Zimbabwean women or young women who have been bought air tickets purportedly to go and work indecent jobs in the Middle East as well as Asia. In actual fact they are being taken there for prostitution purposes as well as drug trafficking as a way of freeing themselves from paying back for the air tickets that they have used to take them that far.

It is a vicious cycle that they never seem to work sufficiently to free themselves. So, the bringing in of this protocol is much welcome relief and I want to concur with Hon. Chikwinya in that our Co-Ministers of Home Affairs should move with speed and craft a law that gives severe punishment to the perpetrators. The sad thing is, initially it began with foreigners but right now there are Zimbabweans who have taken charge of trafficking of fellow Zimbabweans.

When you go to Matabeleland, there is also issue of trafficking of body organs; I think it should also be captured in this Protocol whereby there is harvesting of organs for ritual purposes, 'muti' or 'sangomas'. With these few remarks, I want to really support the Minister of Home Affairs for bringing this Protocol for ratification. Thank you.

MR. MADZIMURE: Thank you Mr. Speaker, thank you Minister for bringing this Convention to the House. I think Mr. Speaker, I will raise the same concern as my colleagues. I am saying so because we were also expecting another Convention from the same ministry which has not come for a long time, the Convention against torture. It has not come and I hope the Minister is going to ensure that the Convention which was signed by the President on behalf of Zimbabwe quite a long time ago will come. This is because if you link the Convention against torture to this Convention, they can also work hand in hand. Therefore, I would want to compel the Minister to bring the same Convention. Going back to the Convention at hand, Mr. Speaker, I was listening today from one of these international medias, it is regarded as one of those countries where there is high rate of trafficking.

People may not understand why we are being rated so highly. We are being used by a number of countries as a gateway because we have got no law which deals with trafficking. If you go to Beitbridge, you see people who are completely different from Zimbabweans, especially the Somalis and Ethiopians. They always use Zimbabwe as a gateway. We also have got situations where a lot of our people are out there not voluntarily but because they were persuaded that they will get lucrative jobs and they are used as sex slaves.

In South Africa, Zimbabwe is one of those biggest contributors of human trafficking to the extent where Zimbabwe was being asked to put in place measures to stop human trafficking during the World Cup. Zimbabwe during that time saw sense in it and started working on the Anti-human trafficking Bill which I would also want the Minister to go back and peruse through their files. I think they will find that there is a Bill which was meant to be brought to the House before the World Cup. There was concern that in SADC there is Zimbabwe, Swaziland, Angola who have not ratified and they also have loose laws regarding the issue of trafficking.

I would want the Minister to consider the issue of internal trafficking which is also there. Mr. Speaker, we have a lot of house maids who are paid paltry wages like what happened a few weeks ago where a maid hanged herself because she was being paid $25. What happens is that people are brought from the rural areas and are promised lucrative jobs. When they come here they are told 'ndakakubvisa kumusha usina kana bhutsu, hauna kana cent rekudzokeresa', and they are given that paltry wage. As we look at trafficking in terms of people going out of the country and being sent out of the country or people using Zimbabwe as a hub, we must also look at ourselves internally. What measures do we have to ensure that when that happens, those who will have done that will then face the music?

I was talking to someone who was saying he is now going ' kumapositori kundobvunzira kuti sei mwana wake akatiza kumusha achienda kunosevenzeswa kuWarren Park'. It is all trafficking and he does not know what to do and whom to report. You take the matter to the police and they will tell you he wants to work, he needs a job. What measures would be taken to make sure that those who will have enticed the child to come and start working will be brought to book? Therefore I urge the hon. Minister to make sure that as soon as we ratify, the same agents will have to ratify, to create an enabling environment, and make sure that the whole Convention is domesticated. Lastly, Torture Convention to please come to the House for us to ratify it and then domesticate. Thank you Mr. Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: Hon. Dzirutwe, I will ask you to speak from where you usually sit, that is a Front bench normally for the Ministers.

MR. DZIRUTWE: Thank you Mr. Speaker, I will be very brief in my contribution. My contribution is the general norm we have in this country for Parliament to be asked to ratify Protocols that will be as old as 10 or 15 years. I wonder why it takes so long. I am happy the Minister has brought this Protocol to the House, never mind it is 6 years old. We are hoping when it goes back to Cabinet, she will tell her colleagues that this Parliament is very particular. We want things that happened during the same year to be brought to this House so that they get ratified. There is a time where we have serious situations where we say Parliament does not have any business yet there are so many Protocols lying in different ministries not being acted upon. I commend the Minister for bringing this one; it is not too old, at 6 years by Zimbabwean standards. Can we make it better? Thank you Mr. Speaker.

Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

THE DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER (MS. KHUPE): I move that Order of the Day, Numbers 1 to 16 be stood over until Order of the Day, Number 17 has been disposed of.

Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

PEACEFUL PRE AND POST-ELECTIONS TRANSITION

Seventeenth Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on the peaceful transition of governments.

Question again proposed.

MR. CHIKWINYA: Thank you Mr. Speaker, the motion touches basically at the core of the environment to which we are currently heading to in as far as our political landscape is concerned, and therefore I have been compelled to also put my submissions to this debate.

Madam Chair, yesterday, the mover of this debate, whom I really want to thank at this moment for bringing in this very pertinent motion, cited an example of countries which managed to peacefully transit from one government to another. I will not labour to repeat the same in as far as Zambia, Malawi, Senegal and Lesotho recently are concerned.

My point of departure is that I want to take a leaf from what has happened in Ivory Coast, Mali, Egypt, Kenya and also in Zimbabwe in the last elections of 2008. Madam Speaker, we have seen the involvement of the military in all these countries which has been talked about since yesterday. To that point, I want to relate to the fact that in 2008, after the March 29th elections, the country became a war zone in as far as violence was on the increase is concerned. My point is that whilst it was a direct coup-de-tat in Ivory Coast or in Mali, as Zimbabwe, we are under a soft coup. We have politicians who are currently being influenced by the gun. The gun is currently directing the politics of Zimbabwe. We have politicians who are currently being directly influenced by the military. If you look at our current scenario in Zimbabwe, you will find that there is systematic overt and covert influence of the military in Government influence.

Yesterday when the mover of the motion was presenting his motion, he said that ECOWAS, in the face of Ivory Coast and Mali and the AU, made direct intervention with regards to restoring normalcy and dysfunctional democracy in the said countries. I am not very sure how SADC can also have a direct influence in the situation we have currently in Zimbabwe. I feel very, very sorry for My Excellency, the Head of State or the purported Head of State and Government, who is supposed to be the Head of State and Government in real terms, but is currently not, since he is under siege from the military. If you look at the strategic entities of Government, be they parastatals or strategic ministries in terms of permanent secretaries, you will see that in each and every one of those seats, there lies the hand or face of a military personnel.

Madam Speaker, I was moving in the streets of Harare today, even where I come from in my constituency in Mbizo we have become a police state. In a functional democracy the police are supposed to be the face of hospitality. If I get lost in Harare, I should be able to approach a policeman - that is why they are uniformed and they should be able to assist me, but the police in our country have become a face of brutality. They stop commuter buses yielding button sticks. If you want to find your way and ask a police officer, first of all they arrest you and want to charge you if you are not carrying your national identity documents.

We have become a police state and therefore we are under a soft coup as a nation in Zimbabwe. From the elections of March 28, this country reverted back to liberalisation and we have seen this manifestation because the President himself is not even in the control of the country. Article 2.7 of the International Law recognises sovereignty. Despots and dictators of this world, especially in Africa have used this article to trample upon the human rights of their citizens on the pretext that any other international countries can not intervene, on the basis that they will be interfering with sovereignty. I am glad to say recent cases in Libya, Ivory Cost and Mali have shown that the international community have done away with article 2.7, they have done away with the issue that you are protecting your sovereignty when you are trampling upon the human rights of your fellow citizens.

They have now adopted a confrontational approach where there is evidence that human rights are being trampled upon and I want to applaud the international efforts which were made in Libya, Ivory Cost in arresting and putting back to functional democracy the despots and dictators who had trampled upon the human rights of the people. This is a lesson to us as we debate this motion on transition after elections that when the leaders of Zimbabwe trample upon the human rights of the people of Zimbabwe during elections, they will not be spared from what happened in Libya and Ivory Cost.

Madam Speaker, I also want to take this opportunity to thank SADC. Whilst some of us should have advocated for a more aggressive approach, I think SADC, realising the situation in Zimbabwe - the stance they have taken is quite commendable. I also want to take the opportunity to commend the recent Luanda outcome where the principals to the Global Political Agreement and all the parties represented thereto were told to go and implement the outstanding provision of the political agreement before we can talk of elections. The issue behind completion of outstanding issues is because that these are the road marks or stepping stones for a free, fair and credible election which is non-contestable.

I want to urge the principals in the Global Political Agreement and all the parties represented there that they should take the SADC guidelines seriously. We have an opportunity through the Constitution making process which is currently underway and the Management Committee in Nyanga, that the people of Zimbabwe spoke. The representative of all political parties captured and rightfully so agreed and managed to produce a draft but Madam Speaker there is a chaos faction in ZANU PF. The faction does not want the confirmation of the Global Political Agreement to go through and does not want Zimbabwe to hold elections under conditions which will produce credible elections. They are beneficiaries of the chaos scenario.

I now take time to read articles by the Hon. Prof. Jonathan Moyo because he is the representatives and information officer of the chaos faction. He wrote an article in the Sunday Mail which was alluded to 'what is the meaning of a repeat to 2008'. I got very worried that another hon. member from ZANU PF repeated the same mantra which now brings me to the conclusion that ZANU PF - actually the first thing is to know the definition of propaganda which is to unite yourself, and believe in your own lies then actually channel out the same lies. ZANU PF believes in its own lies. In his submission, Hon. Prof. Moyo and another hon. member who made the same submission, in this House which made them legitimate for me to respond upon said that; after the March 28 elections there was violence in Zimbabwe because the UK, US and western countries including France had interfered with Zimbabwean elections.

My question is that in your own conviction if you believe that these countries interfered in the elections of Zimbabwe, to what extend is that possible and what did they do? The Hon. Prof. Jonathan Moyo further goes to say they announced that Morgan Tsvangirai had won the March 28 elections, which was fact so anyone could have said that. Does that announcement give you the right to go and kill Tonderai Ndira and Joshua Bhakacheze, does it justify the killing of 500 people who were killed from the period March to June in 2008. This is why I said ZANU PF believes in its own mantra and then it acts on and believes its own lies.

Madam Speaker, I want to relate to the fact that the world has been watching. Zimbabwe has been on spot-light and there is no longer going to be a period whereby any political party is going to go into power riding on the blood of its fellow citizens. There is no longer going to be a time where there is going to be a President who will be conferred the grand star status of the presidency like what happened on June 29, State House riding upon the blood of 500 people, it will never happen and this is high time the chaos faction understands that.

In terms of mechanisms, what mechanisms do we have for us to achieve the details of the motion? I welcome another member of the chaos faction who has just walked in.

MR. HLONGWANE: Madam Speaker on a point of order, if the member can clarify what a chaos faction is? The point of order is that the hon. member can not refer to a liberation movement as a chaos faction, so can he withdraw because it is insulting.

MADAM SPEAKER: There is no point of order hon. member.

MR. CHIKWINYA: There are institutions that are integral to the running of an election; there is the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission, Police, Intelligence Service and the Army itself. The statements that we have heard coming from other institutions which are integral, which are of importance when it comes to the electoral environment are not necessary. I am glad that the Prime Minister yesterday in his submission to Parliament made it quite clear that we need to differentiate between individuals of those institutions and the institutional integrity of those constitutional institutions when it comes to how we relate to them. The party which sponsored me into Parliament is very much aware and respectful of the so many soldiers, police and intelligence officers who are doing their work professionally and we want to applaud them for doing that.

We are however very much alive to the fact that there are some individuals who are abusing their positions and office and trying to tarnish the image of those institutions. These very same individuals have benefited in one way or the other by uttering these unconstitutional statements, much to the happiness and bootlicking of their leaders upfront. What I want to say is that the world is watching. On the 8th April in 2008, His Excellency, the President agreed to hand over power to Morgan Tsvangirai because he had known that he had lost the elections. However, the military told him that he should not step aside, he should simply become the glove in hand and that is why we are facing these problems today because the glove is getting worn out. You are going to be exposed day in and day out, we will see who the hand is and we are now beginning to see who the hand is. The utterances by these Major Generals are now exposing to us that who is the hand and who is actually the master of the person who is on the Chair.

Madam Speaker, we want to come to the issue of the election mindset. Yesterday, one Member raised the issue that, "why do you pre-announce that if you win the elections you are going to send the people to The Hague. The party which sponsored me into Parliament, which is the MDC, led by the Leader Morgan Tsvangirai, has never announced that if it wins elections, we are going to send people to the Hague and you should get our correct and official position from our spokesperson or President.

We, however, understand that there are people of guilty mindsets, who have seen cases of precedence, other African leaders and despots being given 50 year jail sentences. Today Hosni Mubarak is on life support machine, having 80 years on his back which is de fact,o a life sentence in jail because of the actions that he did in murdering the people of Egypt. So, if you know that you took part in the murdering of Tonderai Ndira, if you took part in the murdering of Joshua Bakachesa, if you know that you took part in the murder of Magura, you stand very right and you are very correct in that one day, you will face the full wrath of the law.

It is not the MDC which is saying that, it is your own conscience which is telling you that you must face the law one day. What you can only do is to plead with us the leaders of tomorrow that please, I messed up, I am not going to be doing that again.

Madam Speaker, a Constitution is a document or a set of laws normally negotiated or produced under conditions of mistrust. Because citizens of a country or citizens of a nation do not trust each other, they produce a Constitution so that they can put in checks and balances. We come from various political parties which have their various histories and therefore we are at a position whereby we must actually supposed to be producing one of the best constitutions to safeguard the history and also put in place a future that is beneficial to every Zimbabwean who is going to live within that. I therefore take this opportunity to issue the fact that within our Constitution, we must put in place transitional mechanisms that make sure that there is a bridge between winning an election and getting into state power.

What we have seen is that in the past, political parties have won elections but failed to achieve state power because they have been mechanisms or lack of them, which have allowed for those in the seats or for the status quo or for those in the Government which will be leading in that day, to refuse to vacate power. Therefore, we must put in place transitional mechanisms which must make sure that once you lose elections, you must accede to the people's votes and therefore, you must vacate peacefully.

Madam Speaker, I will wind up by saying the mover of the motion, yesterday gave the conditions to a free and fair election, which came to about 20. I implore upon this House to adopt those conditions and chief among which, (and I am happy that the Deputy Prime Minister is here), we have a problem Madam Speaker, that Parliament agrees to motions and resolutions fair and fine, but the Executive is not acting on the motions and resolutions of Parliament, rendering it ineffective virtually. It renders Parliament a talk show. People, we are here and we are discussing that we need a peaceful transition. We make a resolution that, and I want to agree that even Members of ZANU PF, in their submissions yesterday, were agreeing that we must not have violence. There must be free and fair elections. Therefore we are going to be resolving that. I am sure that we need a free and fair transition. We need proper transfer of power in the event that one has won elections. We need a proper handover and takeover like what has happened in Zambia, Malawi, Senegal and Lesotho. The problem is that once it is Parliamentary resolution, we expect the Executive to take it seriously and put in place the mechanisms so recommended by Parliament. I thank you Madam Speaker.

MR. S.S. KHUMALO: Thank you Madam Speaker, for giving me this opportunity to debate this noble motion. Allow me also to thank the Hon. Member Chitando, for raising the motion. The motion is noble in that it yearns for free and fair elections, it yearns for a smooth transition Madam Speaker, a situation where the players will accept the outcome, the results.

It also envisages an outcome that will be accepted the world over. We certainly need to be respected the world over. We certainly need to be respected by the family of nations. Madam Speaker, elections are the benchmark of democracy all over the world. They are a gauge whereby a country is marked in terms of democracy. It is democracy in a true sense because in essence, democracy means the participation of the masses, the participation of the people. All over the world, democracy is marked by free and fair elections. That is maybe in the past and in the recent past, we have heard our erstwhile friends, our colleagues on the other side, stammering for elections because they certainly know that elections are the ones that actually guarantee you as a Government. You are respected because of holding elections but now they know certainly that they will not follow the norms and precepts of elections.

So, Madam Speaker, I wish that we could go back into history a little bit, because some of the times, history is very important in the sense that it helps us to diagnose the problems that we are currently facing because if you think of the struggle and why the people of Zimbabwe had to engage in the protracted armed struggle, it is because of the simple fact of free and fair elections as one of the reasons. One of the main reasons was one man one vote because as a people, we were disenfranchised and we were not allowed to vote.

Now, having attained independence, it is a shame Madam Speaker, a great betrayal, where you find those that are said to have liberated Zimbabwe, denying the very masses of Zimbabwe to practice and exercise their right which is part of the core business of the struggle.

Madam Speaker, since I have said I would want to go back to history; as soon as 1980, after we had the Lancaster House Agreement, we then went on to elections. Madam Speaker, as a people, we have never known peace. After we had engaged in a protracted struggle, we were then subjected to harassment and intimidation whereby even those elections of 1980, were not really free and fair. Of course they were not challenged but you think of how people were subjected to torture, how people were harassed, especially those members of ZAPU, there were a lot of places where ZAPU was not allowed to penetrate, to campaign. So, you can see for yourself that even the results themselves were not projecting the will of the people.

In essence, we have never known peace and ZANU PF is the one that actually brought the culture of violence. The election violence was actually introduced to the masses by ZANU PF. It continued up until 1985. There was no free election. Of course I would want to refer to the issue of Gukurahundi. The issue of Gukurahundi Madam Speake, was not about enforcing law and order. It was about eliminating members of the opposition. ZANU PF has never tolerated opposition. ZANU PF fears opposition. Up until now, in fact, before I go to the era of 2000, in 1987, there was some lull in terms of violence at some point and it somewhat went down because ZAPU had been swallowed then. So there was no reason for violence because like I am saying ZANU PF fears opposition. We went on to the elections of 1990 and there was no violence up until MDC was formed. When MDC was formed, hell broke loose because MDC then provided a formidable challenge which they had never expected. As I said, they had already swallowed ZAPU. In 2000 when hell broke loose, we saw another proliferation of violence whereby people who were in ZANU PF and those people who were state agents were the very people who were sponsoring and instigating violence. I want to say that, Madam Speaker, the number of people who died after the struggle, a case of black against black, is more than the number of people who died during the struggle. This alone is a shame in itself. So this is why there is every need to consider that we have free and fair elections and to consider that we have a smooth transition.

This is why Madam Speaker, in 2008 - yes, there was somewhat free and fair election On March 29, but then after ZANU PF had really felt a heavy blow and a heavy defeat, they then engaged in another type of violence whereby people were murdered. We started hearing of happenings that we usually read of in North African countries whereby people were being chopped hands. There was the issue of long sleeves and short sleeves.

I remember during the election campaign towards the run-off, I went to Harvest House and what I saw there was very pathetic. You would see men and women cohabiting in a squeezed place. People were running away from violence. It really surprised me. What is wrong with us Zimbabweans? Why can we not take a cue from our neighbours? Just across, we have Zambia; they have had a peaceful transition. Just across again, in Botswana, we have seen them changing governments without problem. In South Africa, they have had democratic elections since they attained independence, but what is wrong with Zimbabwe really?

Some of the times you tend to ask yourself, what is happening when you hear the head of state telling the nation that the genocide that took place during Gukurahundi was a moment of madness. You would ask yourself also that in a country like Zimbabwe do we have a bunch of mad people running the country? Why should this madness be allowed? That madness took a long time. You then ask yourself again Madam Speaker, that what is wrong with us Zimbabweans? Why can we not consider something that is normal just like what other countries are doing because if we are going to follow this kind of trend, I am afraid we will have another GNU? People never voted for a GNU.

The former speaker stressed the point that in 2008, there was a winner and this is why the results took over a month to be announced. It was because just to announce that someone who is not ZANU PF has won, those people who were tasked with the duty of announcing the result could not say it that someone who is not ZANU PF had won. We continue to get stories from some quotas in the army or in the police announcing and declaring that they will never respect an election result which does not pin point ZANU PF as the winners.

What sort of a country are we? We are no longer respected in the world. This is why earlier on I said we need to be respected as a nation. Even as it is, the Global Political Agreement is not being implemented. As it is we are talking of a Constitution whereby there are other people who want to oppose what the masses said. When we started talking of the issue of the Constitution, everyone agreed that our Constitution is no longer working for us. In any case we never crafted the Constitution as a nation. So there was every need that we engage in writing a new Constitution, but up to now, we are going 5 steps forward and 10 steps backwards.

Last week I was reading an article whereby it was being said ZANU PF has brought other issues which are said to be sticking issues, but we need the Constitution right now. We collected the data from the people and that Constitution is the very document that is going to assist us in coming up with a roadmap which is going to outline the proper principles that have to be followed. By the way we need a smooth transition and all those issues are going to be addressed by this Constitution. This is why ZANU PF does not want us to have a new Constitution because certainly ZANU PF does not win a free and fair election. This is why they are afraid.

What we are saying as a people right now is that let us have a new Constitution which is going to address the issue of elections and which is going to bring about a roadmap that is going to give us free and fair elections which is going to be accepted by everyone. Certainly, we do not want to have another GNU.

The other problem that we have is the issue of handover of power. We certainly need to have mechanisms in place that are going to guarantee the winners a smooth takeover, so that those that would have lost the elections must be able to shake hands with those that would have won and congratulate them and they will maybe go to their rural areas and play with vazukurus. They should allow those who would have won to make a new government. I rest my case Madam Speaker.

*MRS. ZIMYEMBA: Thank you Madam Speaker. I would want to thank Hon. Chitando for raising this motion. I have often said that as people's representatives, who were elected by the people, we are the ones who should go back to the constituencies and stop any violence amongst our constituents. As an august House, we are supposed to come up with developmental programmes in a peaceful manner, where there is no satirical attack on others that causes their blood pressure to go high. If we are leaders, we would want to have good citizens tomorrow. Let me say if we are going to have drought this year, should we go around telling that the following year people should not prepare for farming because we had drought. We are afraid and we prophecy a lot. May be there are some amongst us who prophecy. My understanding is that the President has been calling for no violence. I would want to say that if all of us were to heed his message, there are a lot of things that have been said that the institution of Hon. Mrs.Holland, Hon. J. Nkomo, the President, the Prime Minister and others, they suggest that they should go and address joint rallies to show the people that they are together.

We have problems emanating from this House, words that are detrimental to others or that spite others, come to this House. I hear honourable members saying there must be something that we have as Zimbabweans. There is no rigging of an election that can cause nothing to move because in this Parliament, I know that MDC had one person more than ZANU PF. How did that happen? If they had been rigging, how could that outcome be there?

MDC-T had one seat above ZANU PF, how did this occur like that? The soldiers that are being made reference to, they did not come here to shoot people with fire arms because we do not like you. It was 99 against 98. I had one person who positively contributed to SADC that the wishes of SADC should come to fruition and then you hear others who discredit SADC and saying that they prefer the AU. Do you mean that ZANU PF has power to dictate to these people, the soldiers and further go to dictate to SADC? That SADC should play to their whims and fantasies.

You are talking about being the future leaders of tomorrow. What relationship are you creating with SADC unless if you are saying that when MDC is in power; it will remove some of the top soldiers who are referred to as the rats. SADC, when the MDC assumes the reigns of power, how are you going to have good relationship with SADC when at present, you use words to discredit it? There was a debate on the media and there was a mention that the state public broadcaster and newspapers are biased, I would say that they are moderate.

If you were to look at the Daily Newspaper, all they are mentioning is about President Mugabe. Last time they said he was dead and that he has gone to the United Nations to receive medication. To what aid would that prove? Every front page, there is news about Mugabe and his age and they refer to him as an octogenarian, the 88 year octogenarian in an ailing state, meaning that he would die in his house. Why do we have leaders, because there are others who believe in him?

Even the Prime Minister or Prof. Ncube, if they were to be undressed by people who are in their country, then a member would ask, what type of people have we become as Zimbabweans. We should not insult each other like women. We should not talk like women in a polygamous marriage. Eh! You have got a big mouth; you are dark in complexion, that is nonsense. Let us being facts on the table and build Zimbabwe together, sons and daughters of Zimbabwe. You are also pulling ZANU PF down. When you come to power, then we will also pull you down and then nothing constructive will come out of that country.

Politicians are the ones who are destroying people. It is not only ZANU PF or MDC, but it is any other politician because of that hunger for power, we will let you not appreciate the good that anyone would have done. All you see are the bad things. The media, what type of sentiments are we sending to Studio 7. I always read all newspapers. I would be wondering what type of people always talk bad of their own country. This is our country and I will liken it to a family. What type of children are we, when we always refer to our parents as wizards and witches? I have seen people in this House talking about the Hague. It is only those countries that are under-developed, that had dictators. No super-power has ever been tried at the Hague.

There are offenders, because I heard someone referring to the Libyan scenario and the Egyptian scenario to occur. Let us talk of Iraq. Saddam Hussein has been accused of harbouring arms of mass destruction. There was nothing and then they accused him of genocide of 140 people. Play with life like that. I heard one mentioning that it was a good thing that occurred in Egypt, that occurred in Tunisia and in Libya. How many civilians were bombed on the pretext of human rights? Pretext to protect politicians; it was the issue of installing their own leader who is amenable to them so that they can get the wealth of the people.

This interference is the same that applies in Zimbabwe over the issue of diamonds and the chrome that we have. On the issue of soldiers, why do you not ask why soldiers are behaving like this? Zimbabwe did not come on a silver platter. The liberation war was wedged. The Prime Minister made reference to the top army brass barring them from ruling the country and that the majority of the young soldiers would allow them to rule. If this is the scenario, where is the problem, that the older type of soldier accepts ZANU PF and the young ones support MDC? Why do people want to die several times before their death? Fellow hon. members, yesterday I was discussing and saying, as I previously said us politicians, because we are being referred to as your opposition party, we will pull your trousers and your jackets down. We will be retaliating and you will be destroying them and setting them back.

I am saying that this country did not come on a silver platter; there are War Veterans who are still there, who are making observations as you praise Britain and America while you say China is nothing. As people, we should have learnt that when the Prime Minister went there, may be he was not enlightened before because he was being misled. If someone says that it is enough, if you are not careful, I will spend 3 hours here. I understand he was taken to different places, it is a relationship which the leaders would be trying to build with surrounding countries, China and America.

As Parliamentarians let us stop this idea of not treating people as if they are not human beings. When a human being says something that perturbs you or leaves your mouth agape when he goes to the constituency, what type of hot piri piri is he going to pour onto the people?

People were making reference to the history. Minister Makone who was here when she was addressing people in the Zimbabwe Grounds said violence should erupt, we are ready for them, an axe for an axe and that was that. The Prime Minister himself once said if Mugabe does not want to go peacefully we will remove him violently; what did that mean? Nobody is forever yet, we are in a GNU. We have not yet gone for elections. Dzimwe nguva unofarira n'anga inobata mai.

MR. NDEBELE: Thank you very much Madam Speaker for allowing me to debate this motion which was moved by Hon. Chitando yesterday.

Some people talked about ZEC; in my own opinion, ZEC is not a complete abbreviation for our Commission because it does not work like an independent Commission. In other countries, for example Lesotho, their Commission is' Independent Electoral Commission' IEC which straight away shows that the Commission is independent.

In 2008, here in our own Parliament, we showed immaturity where upon after voting for you the Speaker of Parliament, there was witch-hunting and three Members of Parliament were fired from Parliament and this is a bad example. In 2009, some of our Members of Parliament brought some samples of voters' rolls from our neighbouring countries showing us how they independently vote in their countries. In 2010 again, we voted for the Speaker and we voted again Lovemore Moyo, because he had proved that he was a good leader; the votes were doubled but to our surprise, Hon. Mutinhiri was fired from Parliament and what does that mean? It shows that there is no independent election in this

country. Madam Speaker, copying a good practice from our neighbours is not a crime. Let us copy what happened in Lesotho and Zambia recently, the voting was smooth with no violence.

Coming to the polling stations, Madam Speaker, you would find that every polling agent is holding his or her voter's roll from each Party contesting. When calling the name of a person who has entered into the hall to vote, the officer announces the name, identification particulars, the date and year of birth. Before the voter casts his or her vote, all the polling agents have to agree that those particulars are correct and the picture of that person appearing is correct.

Madam Speaker, I propose that ZEC should listen to the general public and to Parliament and should desist from listening to individuals and greedy people. Lastly, Madam Speaker, I propose that ZEC should change and read ZIEC meaning Zimbabwe Independent Electoral Commission. I thank you.

MR. MADZIMURE: Thank you Madam Speaker. I just want to add my voice to this important motion. Zimbabwe has developed a very dangerous culture, a culture where people do not respect each other. I was shocked when I was watching Big Brother Africa, we had two representatives there. One of them, Rockford Josphat had not been nominated by a single housemate so his chances of winning US$300 000 were very high. What we saw the two of them doing especially Maneta, was shocking. It portrayed exactly what Zimbabweans are capable of doing - the level of violence.

Madam Speaker, going to the issue of democracy, what people tend to forget is that when the liberation war was waged, there was no MDC. We only had the ZANLA and ZIPRA army fighting for independence. This must be noted that we fought as a united people. We were fighting for one man one vote. I think that is why people like Mr. Tongogara are not featured a lot in our documentaries because what they used to say is quite different from what we are seeing. Mr. Tongogara used to say that we are fighting the system and not the skin, and we are fighting for one man one vote where an individual will be allowed to express himself or herself. So that is what we fought for, we fought to ensure that the people of Zimbabwe are free and are able to vote. Smith used to say that you must have certain properties for you to qualify to vote and we fought against that. Now that we are independent, every person should be able to vote for a party of his or her choice but this is not what is happening

Madam Speaker, what we tend to forget is that a lifespan of a liberation movement is normally 30 years. Anything beyond that, you will be forcing yourself on the people. This is very true, no single liberation movement has lived beyond 30 years without these problems. Others have managed to do so because they have allowed internal changes to happen. Chama Chamapinduzi in Tanzania, they are still doing that and that is why they still exist. The same applies to organizations like the ANC. In Zimbabwe, one of the parties that we all supported has failed to do so.

Going to the real crux of the matter Madam Chair, the issue of transitional mechanism is what we are talking about. What is that which is required to allow a smooth transition? A smooth transition should be allowed through the enactment of those laws that prepare a nation for that. One of these important institutions that would allow a smooth transition of power is the Electoral Act. What kind of an Electoral Act do we have? The amendments that are necessary to enable the country to conduct an election which is credible should be in place. The issue of an independent Electoral Commission, an Electoral Commission that is not compromised will be able to announce the results. It is also the timing of the announcement of results that is important. It is important that election results are announced in a specified time. In most countries, 48 hours is enough. Zimbabwe is a developed country where the infrastructure is such that all the information from all the polling stations can get to the command centre within 24 hours.

Madam Speaker, what is the role of the army during an election? The role of the military, the police and the Central Intelligence organization is to ensure that peace prevails so that people express themselves freely. Why is it important for people to express themselves freely? They will also take ownership of the outcome of a process. So for people to accept the results of an election, the elections must be conducted in a free and fair manner. The role of the security forces is to prepare and ensure that the ground is level for the politicians to participate. The other important thing to note is the Presidential Powers during the period leading to the elections. You cannot unilaterally wake up and say that we have changed this law because the President would be a contestant. It is important that we have these safeguards to allow for a free and fair election.

I now come to the issue of the involvement of SADC, AU and giving a comparison of the ECOWAS. The issue of coups must be a thing of the past. Noone can say he is the custodian of the independence of a country. We are all custodians of Zimbabwe, cognisant of the fact that we fought for this country. There is no single person who can say that I am the one who represents the dead. If the dead were to rise from the dead and come back and they would be asked if that is what they fought for, they would tell you that that is not what they fought for. They will tell you that they did not fight for the military to be commercialised like what it is today. We now have a situation where companies are being run by the military and the military being involved in the mining of the diamonds.

The majority of the people who are saying that they want to protect

the sovereignty of this country and the independence of this country, they are not protecting the people of Zimbabwe. They are now protecting their own wealth, which is the biggest problem that we now have. We have commercialised even the police. When the police beat you up today, it is not necessarily because they are protecting the country, they are protecting their wealth. You can see how our people are being treated at road blocks by the police. This other day, one of my vehicles was at a roadblock and the licence was confiscated by the police. For the first time, I have never admired a police officer like the one at that road block. He told the five people who were there to go to the police station because they were not upholding the Police Act. When we got to the police station, they were all searched. All of them had some money including monies that were stuffed in a pair of gloves which they were soliciting from the public. People were paying bribes. When that police officer tries to crush a demonstration, it is not because he wants to crush a demonstration, what he is saying is that you are disturbing him, he should be at the roadblock collecting some money and you are demonstrating here. So we now have a commercialised security agent, the majority of all these people are not patriotic Zimbabweans. They are now protecting their own riches and these are the same people who will then try to circumvent a process which is a legitimate process. What we are calling for Madam Speaker, is that we want a free and fair election. This is what we fought for. We fought for an environment where we would allow the winner to lead the people of Zimbabwe. One other thing which I wonder about Madam Speaker, is that how can you then say in a country of 14 million people, more than half of the people say that we want this particular party to lead us and you say no, this is against the wishes of the dead. Does that make sense? Who is representing those who are dead? Those who lost their lives, we respect them and those were the true liberators. The majority of the people who now claim to have fought, if you ask them how many battles they fought, not a single one. You ask the majority of these people, how many white people you killed during the war? They never shot a single person. These are the people who are saying we are the custodians of the liberation history, which is not true at all.

When ECOWAS declared that in Mali they will not recognise the Junta, they set a good precedence. ECOWAS would go to the extent of asking the UN to help it if they are to crush the Junta in Mali. That is exactly the role which SADC should play to make sure that when the people decide, it is the will of the people that must be protected, not the will of a political party or an individual. SADC's role should ensure that a political party that will have won is given an opportunity to lead. During the next election, if it loses another political party that will have won is given the opportunity to do so. This is the only way we can maintain true democracy in our countries. Madam Speaker, we cannot have a situation where you say we can go for election but if we lose, we cannot handover power. What must happen is that we simply declare a de facto coup and say no politics will rule this country, so that the international community will then make a decision. Why do you use a party as a front? We should not use a party as a front. It will be unacceptable. Why do we waste money campaigning? Why do we subject our people to this process? If it is not possible for power to be transferred, it must be made clear that in Zimbabwe, there is no opposition politics. If you have opposition politics, you must be prepared to hand over power. As far as the army is concerned, it is there to make sure that the party which will have won a new election is respected and the army will ensure that any revolt, which is a coup, is crushed. That is the role of the military.

Madam Speaker, I want to thank Hon. Chitando for moving this motion and it is important that we deal with the basic issue of power transfer. These mechanisms must be put in place and make sure that those who will win are given the opportunity to lead the people of Zimbabwe.

MR. MWONZORA: Thank you very much Madam Speaker. I want to thank the mover of this motion and I just want to restate what the motion wants this House to do. Firstly it wants this House to call upon the Government to put into place mechanisms to ensure peaceful pre and post election transition. It also wants this House to urge SADC and the AU to ensure that their member states subscribe to the ethos of AU and the AU Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance.

Mr. Speaker, I had opportunity this afternoon to talk to Hon. Kachepa, the MP for Mudzi, where recently an MDC official was murdered and in which murder Hon. Kachepa's name is whispered about. I asked him whether it is true that he was there overseeing the violence, whether it is true that his motor vehicle was used in the violence and whether it was true that he was commandeering these youths who embarked on violence. Hon. Kachepa denied the charges. I further pressed, on how he felt now that if he had sponsored the violence, how he felt now that the young men who were involved were denied bail and are effectively in custody. What I could tell hon. Speaker is that Hon. Kachepa was very embarrassed and I am sure that anybody who gets involved in violence at the end of the day gets embarrassed by that involvement. Only time will tell of the extent of the involvement of my brother Kachepa.

The motion Mr. Speaker, is a very simple one and it is my duty here to give an overview of what other countries have done when it came to transfer of power. In Botswana, the founding President was Mr. Seretse Khama. After his demise, power went to President Masire, absolutely no bloodshed. From Masire it went to President Mogae, again no single person died. From Mogae, it went to President Khama, again no person was killed.

In Zambia, the founding President is Dr Kenneth Kaunda. He was defeated in an election by President Chiluba and no single Zambian was killed. From President Chiluba, the power was transferred to Mwanawasa, again there was absolutely no bloodshed. From President Mwanawasa to President Banda, that transition was peaceful. From President Banda there was an election which he lost to President Sata and again no Zambian was murdered.

To our brothers and sisters in Mozambique, after the tragic death of the founding President Samora Machel, there was President Chissano, it was peaceful. From President Chissano to President Guebuza, again the election was commended by SADC, there was peace.

Let us go down to South Africa. South Africa during and after apartheid, we must look at how they transferred power. From President Botha to President de Klerk, that transition between those 2 people was peaceful. From President de Klerk to President Mandela, that election was commendable. President Mandela to President Mbeki, again it was peaceful. From Mbeki to President Motlanthe and finally to President Zuma, everything was peaceful.

If we come down home in 2008, 29 March, President Mugabe lost to President Tsvangirai and all hell broke loose Mr. Speaker Sir, people were murdered, people were rendered homeless, and people were banished from their country, people were impoverished and their property was destroyed. This is the reason why we are having this motion, that as Zimbabweans, whenever we are transferring power from one leader to another, there must be peace and the Government must make sure that there is peace.

As the MDC, Mr. Speaker Sir, we are calling on an election that is free and fair. To us, a free and fair election is an election which guarantees the secrecy of the vote, the security of the vote and the security of the voter. That is all we want so that the people of Zimbabwe can vote freely and fairly.

The last election Mr. Speaker, as I have said was characterised by a complete breakdown of law and order, complete selective application of the law and no observance of international practice. There was State sponsored violence, there was partisanship of the armed forces and there was no equal access to the media.

There was murder of the MDC activists and the closure of democratic space. This is nothing to be proud of as Zimbabweans. This is what makes us lose confidence on the international arena as Zimbabweans. It is embarrassing to be coming from a country that does this to its own people.

Violence, in June 2008, was not only meted on Zimbabweans but it was also meted on SADC monitors. We all know what happened at the Sheraton grounds where SADC people were beaten by the militia. All we are saying is that we want a peaceful transition. I have heard many speakers from the other side, ZANU PF talking about MDC wanting violence and I want to set the record straight of what the MDC stands for.

The MDC wants regime change and what that means is that the MDC wants to take over governmental power through peaceful, democratic and constitutional means. I want to repeat that; the MDC wants to change this regime through peaceful, democratic and constitutional means. What the MDC is simply saying to the people of Zimbabwe is that we have a set of values, we have a programme that we want to give to the people of Zimbabwe. This programme can be summarised as follows:

1. MDC is saying that it will bring jobs to the unemployed people of Zimbabwe. Factories and industries must be opened so that our men and women who are of high caliber must find employment.

The Americans have a concept of the dignity to labour and what the MDC is saying is that we want jobs for our people. We want jobs for our youths and unemployed people. Therefore the MDC is saying, make it possible for those with money to come from outside and make the factories and industries run. That is what the MDC stands for.

2. The MDC is saying every Zimbabwean must have food irrespective of political affiliation. Gone must be the days where people are denied food because they are not ZANU PF. The MDC is saying whether you are ZANU PF, Ndonga, Mavambo or the smaller MDC, under our regime you will get equal access to food. That is what the MDC is saying to the people of Zimbabwe.

3. The MDC is saying, under our regime Zimbabweans will have freedom to support any political party of their choice, freedom to travel the length and breadth of this country to lawfully organize for their political parties. So, we are for full freedom.

4. The MDC is calling for peace. We want peaceful co-existence, we want rapport, and we want camaraderie among the various political parties. So, MDC is calling for peace and an end to what happened in Mudzi, and end to what has happened to various MDC and non MDC supporters who were murdered after independence. The MDC will call for anybody who incites violence to be brought to book under an MDC Government.

Those MPs who initiated and sponsored violence in Mudzi will be brought to justice.

5. The MDC calls for democracy and the people of Zimbabwe must choose leaders of their choice without any fear or favour. So, the MDC is for democracy and development. Development Mr. Speaker Sir, does not mean theft or going into an established business and taking it over. Development means the ability to form your own business with support from the State to complement the businesses that are already there. We have Zimbabweans who want to walk into a factory and declare that 51% of the factory is theirs. They want to walk into a bank and declare that 51% of that bank is theirs. That is not development but that is theft or subterfuge. The MDC will help peace loving Zimbabweans, genuine Zimbabweans to form their own businesses.

6. Lastly Mr. Speaker Sir, the MDC calls for fairness. Mr. Speaker, I am a living example of the selective application of the law. In February, 2011, I was accused of having been involved in violence in my constituency. I was arrested and because I was accused I welcomed the arrest so that I could be brought before the courts of law to determine whether I was guilty or not. I was brought before the courts of law.

In 2012, Hon. A. Katsande and Hon. N. Kachepa of Mudzi were implicated in violence. The difference between the violence that I was implicated in and the violence they were implicated in is that the violence they were implicated in led to loss of life. They were never arrested or brought to book.

Mr. Speaker, the second example of selective application of the law in 2011, 29 MDC youngsters were accused of murdering a police officer. They were arrested and brought before the courts of law but they have been denied bail for over a year. In contradiction seven police officers in Shamva murdered an innocent man over a dollar. Within ten days they had been given bail and they had tested freedom. Under an MDC Government, this unfairness will go. Mr. Speaker, I therefore urge the House to adopt this motion. I thank you.

MR. CHITANDO: Thank you Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank all the Members who have contributed to this motion. One thing which you should bear in mind is that it is one of the motions which has been debated by over fifteen Members of Parliament, which is very rare to this Parliament.

Firstly, I would like to thank the following members: Hon. Gwiyo, Hon. Ncube, Hon. Sithole, Hon. Garadhi, Hon. Navaya, Hon. Mahlangu, Hon. Tazviona, Hon. Bhasikiti-Chuma, Hon. Hove, Hon. S. Khumalo, Hon. Zinyemba, Hon. Chikwinya, Hon. Ndebele, Hon. Madzimure and Hon. Mwonzora. If there is anyone whom I have left out, it is not about favour, but I have just missed. One thing which you should know is that both from the MDC and ZANU PF, we are all in agreement that we need free and fair elections, a non violent election. We are saying if we are all calling for free and fair elections and non violent elections, we should have the mechanism for free and fair elections to be put in place by this Government. Yes of course, there are some who feared the Hague, but we should not worry about that, it is a perception, there is nobody who has said you go to the Hague, it is your own perception because they are some skeletons which you fear which are in you cupboard.

Mr. Speaker, let me not elaborate what each hon. member said, but to only say because all the Members from all the political parties have urged the Government to have free and fair elections, I would therefore urge the House to adopt the motion by further saying that we should have peaceful, post election transition in Zimbabwe. I now therefore call upon Government to put in place mechanisms that ensure peaceful, pre and post elections transition and further urge SADC and AU to ensure that their member states subscribe to the ethics, AU Charter on Democracy, Election and Governance. Mr. Speaker, I now ask, with the leave of the House, for the adoption of the motion.

Motion put and agreed to.

On the motion of THE DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER (MS. KHUPE) , the House adjourned at Twenty One Minutes to Six o'clock p.m. until Tuesday, 10th July, 2012.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Last modified on Thursday, 21 November 2013 18:01
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National Assembly Hansard Vol. 38 NATIONAL ASSEMBLY HANSARD - 21 JUNE 2012 VOL. 38 NO. 44