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NATIONAL ASSEMBLY HANSARD 30 MAY 2019 VOL 45 NO 58

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PARLIAMENT OF ZIMBABWE

Thursday, 30th May, 2019

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

PRAYERS

(THE HON. SPEAKER in the Chair)

ANNOUNCEMENT BY THE HON. SPEAKER

PETITION RECEIVED

          THE HON. SPEAKER: I would like to inform the Hon. House that on 15th May, 2019, Parliament received a petition from Mr. Mtuso Dhliwayo from the Zimbabwe Environmental Lawyers Association (ZELA) beseeching parliament to push for the review and alignment of the mining laws to the Constitution.  The petition has since been referred to the Portfolio Committee on Mines and Mining Development. 

          HON. A. NDEBELE:  Thank you Hon. Speaker.  I wish to rise on a point of privilege anticipated by 68 (d) of our Standing Rules.  With your indulgence, I wish to point out that I have raised a number of requests for Ministerial Statements which are still outstanding.  If you may, this is a reminder that the Minister of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services owes me one such Ministerial Statement and so does the Minister of Youth, Sport, Arts and Recreation.

Hon. Speaker, I have notices that for some time now, Members have raised similar requests.  In the life of the other Parliament I had asked the Minister of Mines and Mining Development to come and explain the existence of some Russian owned mine in the Gwai Area which I thought was in direct conflict with our flora and fauna in that area and that Statement never came and this is a House of record.  So I wish to point out Hon. Speaker that maybe if you put your heads together with the Hon. Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs and the Standing Rules and Orders Committee, we possibly need to establish another Committee of this House that will follow up on such outstanding parliamentary businesses.

I do not know what you may want to call it Hon. Speaker – whether it is Business of Government Committee or Parliamentary Resolutions Implementation Committee.  However, what is in a name, save to emphasise that let the province of that Committee be to follow up on matters that Hon. Ministers promise us as back benchers to ensure that these are delivered timeously.  I wish to thank you Hon. Speaker. 

THE HON. SPEAKER: Thank you Hon. Ndebele. I have taken note and as soon as I vacate the Chair here, I will be speaking to the Hon. Minister Mutsvangwa and Hon. Minister Chitando.  I will seek an explanation as to why they have not come over.  The other Hon. Minister who is due to give a Ministerial Statement is Hon. Chasi and he is here and he is going to do so today.  There is also Hon. July Moyo, Minister of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing, he is on his way from Kwekwe and he should be able to give his Ministerial Statement as well on a very important subject which was requested on how the donations in cash and kind have been accounted for so far. 

On the latter part, you also raised a very important point and that is a mechanism to ensure that the decisions of this House are implemented fully.  In other jurisdictions, they have what they call Government Assurance Committee.  I shall therefore present this item before the Committee on Standing Rules and Orders for consideration accordingly.  I think it will be a very important Committee. 

          HON. MASANGO: Thank you Mr. Speaker. I would like to thank the Papers’ Office for availing information to us in our pigeon holes. However, Mr. Speaker, I would like to draw your attention to the PRAZ launch today. The programme was written 29th May yet it took place today. I call upon this House to kindly notify of any changes of dates especially on such important dates where His Excellency would be officiating. As Members of Parliament, we were invited to attend and play our representative role so as to represent the people who voted for us. With your indulgence Hon. Speaker, may such important functions be announced in the House and hoping that when we have such important events, may all scheduled meetings be suspended so as to allow all invited Members of Parliament to attend.

          Lastly Mr. Speaker Sir, I would like to congratulate Zimbabwe on the launch of the Procurement Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (PRAZ). This will enhance transparency, efficiency and effectiveness in public expenditure and procurement procedures towards a zero corrupt Zimbabwe. I thank you Mr. Speaker.

          THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Masango, we shall endeavour to ensure that Hon. Members are advised of very important dates where they may want to present themselves, but we shall be selective in that regard because not all public engagements may require the presence of Members of Parliament at all times. The latter part on the Procurement Board, I think you can bring that as a motion and you can express yourself accordingly in terms of what you feel about the establishment of that new Procurement Board.

MINISTERIAL STATEMENT

STATE OF THE ENERGY SECTOR

          THE MINISTER OF ENERGY AND POWER DEVELOPMENT (HON. CHASI): I wish to thank the House for this opportunity to give a statement on the state of the energy sector in the country. Mr. Speaker, I believe that this is a very serious matter which is of immense public interest and I would plead that Hon. Members give me the opportunity to deliver my statement without undue heckling. I want to start Mr. Speaker, by saying that the energy sector is as good as the governance that we have got over it. I am going to be speaking about this in more detail later on in the speech but I want to start by ensuring that we are all at the same level regarding roles and responsibilities.

I want to speak about the Energy Regulatory Authority Act of 2011. This is the Act that creates the regulatory board that we commonly refer to as ZERA. This Act contains in Section 4, a panoply of mandates for ZERA, in fact about 18 of them. The responsibilities of this authority range from importation, transmission, distribution and many other aspects of the petroleum industry. ZERA is given unfettered power to preside over this industry. I also want to say that the same law requires that as ZERA does its work, it must not be subject to direction by anybody. I want to underline that anybody also refers to me as the Minister responsible for energy.

I also want to state my role as Minister of Energy and Power Development so that Members understand and are clear. The law also stipulates that the role of the Minister is simply to issue general policy direction. I have given this preface so that the Hon. House is very clear as to what is expected of me and what is expected of ZERA itself. In broad terms, I have clarified the role of ZERA and the role of the Minister – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – Please, excuse me I cannot speak.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Minister …

HON. CHASI: They are distracting me …

THE HON. SPEAKER:  No, no – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – Hon. Minister, cool down.

HON. CHASI: Mr. Speaker, I have given the background relating to the law because I intend to be legal in everything that I am going to be doing.

Mr. Speaker, I want to underline that regulation is about law and I want to apply the applicable law. I also want to state that the problem we have in this sector arose from disrespect for the law, lack of corporate governance and I will be able to demonstrate that as I go through the statement. I then want to say having identified that problem, because I have read a lot about each of the parastatals, it is quite evident to me that whether structure or foreign currency is in place we will not be able to sort out the issues at hand unless we deal with the issues of corporate governance.

As a result Mr. Speaker, it is necessary that we carry out a review from a corporate governance point of view of each and every parastatal that is under the ambit of the Ministry to examine whether we have adequate and proper skills within the board, and also skills within management of the parastatals. The country’s vision in this area is to achieve universal access to sustainable and modern energy in Zimbabwe by 2030. The mission is to ensure the provision of adequate and sustainable energy supply through formulating effective policies and regulatory framework. For those who may care to know, these are the pieces of legislation that are relevant to the sector which I would urge those with an interest to be familiar with - the Electricity Act, the Energy Regulatory Authority Act, the Rural Electrification Fund Act, Zambezi River Authority Act and the Petroleum Act.

          I also want to take this opportunity to inform Hon. Members of the various policies and plans that are in place in this particular area. We have got the National Energy Policy Act of 2012; the Independent Power Producers Policy which is actually under development;  National Integration Energy Resource Plan which we have commenced work on; Rural Energy Master Plan also under development; National Renewal Energy Policy which we intend to launch in the not too distant future; then the National Bio Fuels Policy which we also intend to launch in due course.

          Performance of the Power Sector – I want to make reference to current electricity supply status; the situation of electricity in the country.  I want to draw the attention of the Members here present that the situation is dire and that as a nation, we must be strategic in our planning for energy and also its use.  The electricity sector is currently dominated by State owned power generating transmission and distribution companies; Zimbabwe Power Company and Zimbabwe Electricity, Transmission and Distribution Company. ZPC has a total of five power stations in operation.  I have attached a table there so that when this is circulated, Members will be able to see but these are basically Kariba Power Station, Hwange Power Station, Harare, Munyati and Bulawayo Small thermals. All in all, when fully operational, this gives us 2 260 mega watts.

           Mr. Speaker Sir, the hydrological condition of Kariba Dam has been the subject of discussion of late.  As of last week the dam was 32%, and as of Monday, it had dropped to 29%.  So, we can all do the mathematics involved in that to show and understand the problem at hand in terms of reduction of water levels at Kariba.  If that trend continues at that pace, this means that in theory, within 14 weeks, Kariba will not be able to deliver power.        This means that those who were responsible at ZESA in particular, ought to have understood the magnitude of this problem and taken steps to plan for it in accordance with the issues at hand.  I will speak to that later on. 

          I now move to Independent Power Producers – a number of IPP’s also generate electricity to feed on to the national grid. These include sugar and ethanol producers that primarily generate for own use and sell excess to ZETDC.  They include Hippo Valley, Triangle and Green Fuels.  These sugar producers are also net importers of electricity. Their installed capacities are shown in the diagram that I have here, but all in all, it is about 136 mega watts arising from IPP’s. 

          If I move on to actual electricity demand and supply profile and I think this is very important for us to understand the implications of what is happening and what may happen in future regarding power and then the overall impact on our economy.  Zimbabwe’s current average internal electricity generation is about 1200 mw.  The country’s maxim demand is estimated at 1 700 mw giving a supply demand gap of about 300 to 500 mw at maximum which is usually met by exporting from ESKOM and Kabora Basa of Mozambique. 

          So, I want to empasise that we have got a gap in terms of availability of power versus what we consume every day. The challenges and proposed mitigation measures – the country is currently faces with a power supply deficit which has seen some of the ZESA customers being load shed for as long as 10 hours and in some instances, I have had complaints from members of the public that they have gone beyond that time which exceeds the time that may have been stated in the schedule by ZESA. 

This deficit is due to a combination of factors some of which I now turn to: - Receding water levels at Kariba Dam.  I think I have already made it clear.  This has resulted in the Zambezi River Authority now rationing water between Zambia and Zimbabwe.  There is an arrangement between us and Zambia regarding management of water on the Zambezi, so, further depleting water that is available for generation of power.  So, each of the two power stations in other words, the Zambian one and our own, are now allowed water enough to generate an average of 358 mw per day, much reduced from what traditionally has been available.

 An improved rainy season in 2017/18 saw the water allocations increased to allow each power station to generate an average of 480 mega watts per day.  Currently, the receding water level at Lake Kariba has resulted in the sealing down of power generation in order to comply with reduced water allocation by the Zambezi River Authority.  The reduced power generation has resulted in load shedding and I am sure all of us are familiar with it and its effects.   In order to match power supply demand, load curtailing as it also know by others, is currently averaging 350 mega watts and we expect this amount to rise to 600 mega watts in June, given that it is going to  be very cold and people will begin to use heaters and other warming devices which may include electric blankets and all.  The peak that causes us to load shed and I know that there are many misunderstandings about load shedding; it is a very tortuous decision to make but it is a necessary one that has got to be done.  The peak arises from about 6 to 9pm at night, when people get home, all the lights are switched on, the stoves operate, televisions and so forth.  The increase in our consumption on any day is so significant that, I want to appeal to all of us here within our own families and our own constituencies to do whatever we can to conscientise our families and constituents to conserve power. 

Performance of Hwange Power Station

Hwange Power Station is currently performing below its average due to its obsolete plant long past its life.  This general comment is applicable to almost all the infrastructure that relates to the generation of electricity, which means that we must, in some instances, invest in maintenance and invest in new installations or renewable methods of coming up with power.  The reduced power generation has resulted in load shedding in order to match power supply and demand.  I want to emphasise that if we continue to consume at the rate that we are doing, if we continue to leave our houses with lights on all the time, Government buildings with lights on all the time, things can only get worse.  If we continue to use bulbs that consume a lot of power, things can only get worse.  There are things that can be done to make more power but there are things that we have to do to ensure that we are all responsible when it comes to consumption of power.  

There are remedial measures Mr. Speaker, that we are working on as a Ministry to ensure that we save on power.  It is very expensive, we are short of foreign currency so we cannot afford the luxury of just spending power having swimming pools running 24 hours and people never swim.  Maybe they swim once in six months.  We are not just going to concentrate on supply.  Everyone, including those who are shouting must be responsible, first in how you consume electricity – HON. MEMBERS:  Inaudible interjections.] –

THE HON. SPEAKER:  Order, order.  It will help Hon. Minister, if you run through your written Statement so that when there are issues arising, we can expand on the Ministerial Statement.

THE MINISTEROF ENERGY AND POWER DEVELOPMENT (HON. CHASI):  As you please Mr. Speaker Sir.  I have dealt with the performance of Hwange.  We have challenges there due to obsolete equipment.  We need to put more power to make sure that it is operating at full throttle.  I also want to deal with thermal power.  We rely on coal and we do have coal supply challenges. Currently, ZPC is receiving coal supplies from two main suppliers, mainly the Hwange Colliery and I do not need to repeat the state regarding the state of that entity and its capacity.  The other one is Makomo.  The company also receives much smaller quantities from Zambezi Gas.  Of late, the thermal power station or power stations were facing coal supply challenges due to liquidity constraints, pricing as well as foreign currency shortages.  The price of coal was recently increased from $326. 50 to RTGS$886 per metric tonne in order to address the concerns of the suppliers. 

Reduced Electricity Imports

Zimbabwe is a member of the Sothern African Power Pool (SAPP) and is interconnected to all its members.  Further, it is located at the regional geographical centre, making it the hub for power trading in the SAPP network.  ZETDC has power purchase agreements to trade electricity with ESKOM of South Africa and HCB of Mozambique.  The shortage of foreign currency in the country has had a negative bearing on electricity supply as ZETDC is struggling to meet its electricity is approximately $830 million.  As a result, of this, importers are reluctant to supply electricity to Zimbabwe and ZETDC is currently getting very minimum imports from outside.  Zimbabwe is also exporting 80 megawatts of power daily to Namibia in fulfilment of a loan used to fund ZPC’s contribution to the funding of the Kariba South Extension Project as required by the main financier, China Exim Bank.

Electricity Infrastructure Vandalism

This Mr. Speaker, is going to be a key determinant in the success or failure of the generation of electricity in the country and its distribution to the public.  Electricity infrastructure vandalism has also contributed to a number of areas having no access to electricity in the country.  Transformers are being stolen daily and there is a deficit at the moment.  I am told of 2000 transformers that were stolen that need replacement.  These transformers are not cheap and are as much as $50 thousand each.  It is necessary to take action to stem the thefts that are occurring

Intervention measures in the power sector

Load shedding is not a sustainable method to deal with the problems that I have spoken to.  Load shedding is not sustainable for exporters that are earning the country’s much needed foreign currency and contributing to economic growth of the country.  For every unit of unsaved power arising from load shedding of productive sectors, the country losses, according to research, $3.20 in its GDP.  We have transformers that have gone missing in farming areas and now the thieves have moved to the high density areas where they are operating in groups and action needs to be taken. 

However, there are quick win interventions in power imports from ESKOM and HCB.  The power imports of up to 400 megawatts can be unlocked by a bankable plan to both ESKOM and HCB.  The imports would securitise power supply for the exporting mines and industries and release power for the other customers, some of whom are prepaying.  It is proposed that exporters pay their electricity bills in foreign currency in proportion to their foreign currency retention percentage.  This arrangement is estimated to raise $11 million against an estimated bill of $14 million per month. 

A Statutory Instrument to this effect is being considered.  The foreign currency generated would go towards meeting the current power import bills plus a portion for the amortisation of arrears.  In addition, a portion would be used to fund the procurement of critical generation spares to sustain output of the old Hwange Power Plant.  Critical transmission, grid stabilisation and distribution spares such as transformers, prepaid metres and so on, would be also funded from these inflows. 

The replacement of 2000 vandalised transformers would see power restored to over 25 000 customers that have gone for long periods without electricity.  These include schools, clinics, growth points, farms, businesses and domestic points. 

          The Hwange power station expansion flagship project whose groundbreaking was commissioned last year is under consideration and will remain on track including repayments for Kariba South Extension.  An urgent support bail out of RTGs 63 million monthly from Treasury is required to enable ZETDC to continue supplying electricity to the nation and support economic activities.  This will cover the funding gap created by the absence of a tariff adjustment which recognises the monetary policy and introduction of the interbank market to cover foreign currency purchases. 

With the current tariff, ZETDC is collecting between RTGs 60-70

million against a monthly budget of RTGs 130 million to cover the bare essentials.  ZESA is technically solvent and I am sure Hon. Members are fully aware of this.  It is struggling to fully fund operations.  The severe cashflow crisis being experienced would see operations grinding to a hault in the not too distant future, unless support is rendered as the funding gap increases every month cumulatively, as people fail or decide not to pay the bills.  The price of critical generation consumables has increased by an increase of 250%.  Coal suppliers at the moment are agitating for a price review.  Import duties should be exempted.  We submit on diesel for power generation and importation of critical spares for the generation transmission and distribution networks.

Overtime, once stability in the economy has been achieved, ZESA can be allowed to have a staggered approach to increasing tariffs in order to achieve cost reflectivity or in sync with economic activity.  There is need to review the tariffs in order to cater for inflation and make the tariff cost effective.  We have a number of priority projects  that need to be executed diligently. In order to address the power deficit in the country, a number of priority projects are at different stages of implementation by ZESA.  I will just mention the names of the projects:

Hwange Power Station Expansion Unit 7 and 8, Bulawayo Power Station repowering.

          We also have candidates of projects that we would like to pursue with vigour in view of the dire situation that we face on the power side.  These are the Gairezi Mini-hydro, the Batoka Hydro Electric scheme, Mutare Peaking, Insukamini Solar Power plant and Harare Thermal Power repowering.   

There are also a number of transmission projects.  Several projects are lined up to reinforce the grid and boost the country’s transmission grid’s capacity for wheeling power to enable it to perform its key role in the regional power trade.  The list includes Zizabona and Mozisa interconnectors, the Alaska-Sherwood, Alaska-Karoi and Orange Groove-Triangle lines. Currently ZESA is in the process of securing funding for these projects.  Prepaid meter project is also currently being implemented to enhance revenue collection by ZESA which will help in sustaining operations.

We need to put emphasis on demand side management.  As I averted to earlier on, we need to deal with matters of energy efficient lighting.  The Ministry will be promoting the use of energy efficient light bulbs (LEDs) in order to reduce demand in buildings and at household level.

We are also going to be promoting solar water heaters in place of electric geysers for water heating.  Statistics compiled so far indicate that from January to April 2019, up to 3000 solar geysers had been installed.  There is meaningful progress being made but we need much more than this if we are going to save on power.

Ripple control of electric geysers – using the ripple control system, ZESA is able to switch off electric geysers at night and during the peak periods in order to reduce domestic demand.  This will help manage electric demand in the morning and evening peak periods. 

We intend to launch a Switch off Switches (SOS) campaign that will sensitise the public to save power.

Let me now turn to the fuel supply situation.  Generally, the fuel supply situation remains constrained due to what we believe is panic buying on the part of consumers.  Because of panic buying, not all service stations have fuel at any one time – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Order Hon. Members. 

HON. CHASI:  This results in queues at service stations that may be having fuel.  The market is receiving reasonable volumes of fuel to keep the country running.  Panic buying originates from speculations that fuel prices are going to increase sharply.  Some fuel retailers actually make unilateral increases to such levels as we had in the past week. 

On bonded fuel stocks, the country always has fuel stocks at NOIC’s bonded storage in Msasa.  This fuel belongs to international oil traders and does not belong to us.  It is fuel that is stored there for ease of access. 

The country continues to blend petrol with ethanol in accordance with the law.  The blending ratio varies, depending on the availability of ethanol on the market. 

Interbank foreign exchange rate – the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe had been providing foreign currency for fuel procurement even after the parity between the US$ and the bond note had been removed.  However, the system as Members are aware has now been changed to the interbank rate. Oil companies are now supposed to access foreign currency at the interbank rate.  Even the letters of credit for fuel procurement are now priced at the interbank rate as pronounced by the Reserve Bank. 

The interbank rate also applies to ethanol.  The price of ethanol was last pegged in 2016 when the parity between the US$ and the bond note was still in place.  After removal, the producers of ethanol obviously seek to have that revised.

Challenges in the petroleum sector – the main challenge is shortage of fuel on the market.  The efforts being made to ensure fuel availability include: issuance of letters of credit to oil companies by the Reserve Bank for fuel procurement, negotiating with international oil traders for long term fuel supply arrangement, curbing malpractices in the industry compound the challenge by causing artificial shortages of the fuel and enforcing discipline in the consumers to stamp out or minimise fuel boarding.

          Fuel Price Fluctuations

          The other challenge is related to fuel price fluctuations. In the past, fuel price changes were caused mainly by the changes in the price of fuel on the international market. Such changes were usually minimal. Now the Interbank Rate, at least up to the time it stabilizes, will also be causing fuel price changes. Currently, the changes are upwards and more significant than the price changes caused by the international prices of fuel.

          To curtail the fluctuations in the short-term, the Reserve Bank will hold the fuel exchange rate constant for two weeks. In the long term, the Ministry will be proposing a Fuel Stabilisation Fund which would act like a subsidy to cushion the consumers from acute fuel price increases.      Legacy Debt

          Due to foreign currency constraints, the oil industry has accrued a huge debt for fuel supplied in the past. This resulted in the oil companies being unable to extend further credit, preferring to be paid up-front. Given the foreign currency challenges that the country faces, it is proving difficult to pay upfront for enough fuel to meet demand, hence the establishment of Letters of Credit for current consumption.

          The Ministry continues to engage the Reserve Bank to come up with modalities to extinguish the debt. The oil companies also continue to raise concern over the issue. Their view is that Government is focusing only on paying for new suppliers, ignoring the legacy debt.

          Promotion of New and Renewable Energy Sources

          The country has abundant Renewable Energy resources that have largely remained untapped, especially for large scale power projects. These include solar, biogas, biofuels and wind energy sources. The Ministry seeks to increase the share on renewable energy sources in the supply mix. In order to accelerate the uptake of renewable energies, the Ministry has completed the drafting of two key policies.

          Current state of Renewable energy projects

          Several renewable energy projects are underway as detailed briefly below:

(a )    Mini-hydro power projects in Eastern Highlands are contributing more than 30 MW to the national grid. ZESA has already engaged a contractor to develop the 30MW Gairezi mini-hydropower plant and ZERA has licenced a reputable IPP to develop the 15MW Tugwi-Mukorsi mini-hydro power station. Detailed feasibility studies and technical designs are underway.

(b)     The rural Electrification Fund has distributed solar mini-grids to schools, police posts, business centres and rural clinics.

(c )    The Rural Electrification Fund is promoting Biogas Digesters for institutions and households. To date, more than 60 institutional (large scale) digesters and numerous domestic digesters have been built. In addition, more than 80 builders have been trained to construct biogas digesters.

(d)     The Ministry is also promoting the adopting of solar water heaters. Since January 2019 to date, records show that more than 3 000 solar geysers have been installed. The Ministry aims to promote the installation of more than 250 000 solar geysers by 2030.

(e)     The Ministry is also promoting solar street lights. This is evident in Harare, Chinhoyi, Beitbridge and other local authorities. To date, more than   1 200 solar lights have been installed countrywide.

(f)     Working closely with the Internatinal Renewable Energy Agency IRENA), the Ministry has developed a Solar Atlas for Zimbabwe and has also identified sites that are suitable for developing wind power plants. Going forward, the Ministry intends to go to tender for wind power plants at these sites.

(g)     The Ministry is also keen to accelerate the development of 3 x 100MW solar projects at Gwanda, Munyati and Insukamini.

          Licensing of Renewable Energy Projects

          The law allows private players or IPPs to generate additional power to the grid. These projects have faced a number of challenges such as: inability to reach financial closure, currency risks and profit repatriation issues, requirements for risk mitigation through Sovereign Guarantees and limited capacity of the local financial sector to finance the projects.

          Going forward, the Ministry will continue to engage Treasury on financial risks and guarantee issues, migrate from Unsolicited Energy Auction in order to attract cost effective projects and also streamline and improve licensing procedures among others.

          Renewable Energy Policy and Biofuels policies

          These policies have been submitted to Cabinet for approval. Primary objectives of the Renewable Energy Policy include setting of overall targets for renewable energy, promoting investment in the renewable energy sector by providing specific incentives; providing National Project Status to all the renewable energy projects, recommending of Prescribed Asset Status for renewable energy projects and specific incentives for promoting third party sale of power.

          In conclusion, as articulated above, it important that we must have an effective corporate governance framework for all the players that are in this field. Significant investment is required in Zimbabwe’s Power and fuel sector in order to make the country self sufficient and thereafter export energy products. My Ministry welcomes investment in this sector and will continue to work on policy frameworks to make the investments viable, but of importance Madam Speaker is the fact that we would like all information that investors would need in order to decide to invest in this sector to be publicly available together with the attendant incentives.

          Lastly, service delivery in energy sector like the other sectors of the economy is also severely affected by foreign currency challenges. Going forward we expect to see a highly disciplined sector that is regulated properly with provisions of a self regulation where that is applicable. I thank you. 

          HON. GONESE: Thank you very much Madam Speaker Ma’am.  I have points of clarification from the Hon. Minister, in particular in relation to issues of the price when it comes to fuel.  I know he just mentioned that this is related to the interbank rate and I appreciate that.  However, Madam Speaker Ma’am, there is one aspect which the Hon. Minister did not advert to.  I know that this is under the direct purview of the Hon. Minister of Finance and Economic Development but the Hon. Minister of Energy and Power Development being responsible for this very important issue, when it comes to the issue of price, there is a factor which I think the Hon. Minister should address his mind to.  I want to find out whether he has done so. 

          Has the Hon. Minister looked at the impact of the duty which is levied on fuel and this is money which goes to Government?  The Hon. Minister must be aware that prior to the increase of the 14th of January 2019, the duty on fuel was about 46 cents and prior to that it was actually the highest in the region. 

In view of the difficulties and economic challenges which the people of Zimbabwe are going through, has the Minister considered making representations to the Hon. Minister of Finance and Economic Development that duty be scrapped completely?  Because, when you look at the price of fuel and the impact of the interbank rate, and also the ripple effects that it has on pricing in general, is this not something which the Hon. Minister should be addressing his mind to, that duty should be scrapped completely or at the very least, that it be put back to pre-14th January levy which is about 46 cents?  That is my point of clarity which I want the Hon. Minister to address.

          HON. NDUNA:  Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am.  I have just six points of clarity.  The Hon. Minister spoke about 1 500 solar street lights and this is quite applaudible.  Would he therefore, given that scenario, not request the Minister of Finance and Economic Development to get the solar systems, solar gadgets and infrastructure duty free in order to make sure that we use what we have to get what we want without further taxing the unsuspecting users of power?

Then the second one, the Hon. Minister spoke of vandalism.  I am quite alive to the fact that at some point ZESA used to connect 600 000 customers and by this time it could have connected 1200 000 customers but due to vandalism of copper gadgets, transformers and the power lines, we are still at 600 000 users.  We could have elongated or made sure we increased the capacity of the users.  I ask therefore, that in conference and in a tete-a-tete with his counterpart, if they can revoke the licences of those that deal in copper.  If those licences can be revoked immediately because we do not have a copper mine.  So, we should withdraw all copper licences Madam Speaker Ma,am.  That is my suggestion. 

The third one is, the Minister spoke of the shortage of diesel and fuel.  It is my hope that the Minister can conference with his counterpart the Hon. Minister of Finance and Economic Development and see reason in global fuel players coming to invest here in Zimbabwe because a lot of them can give any nation five years advance fuel and only request that they be paid after five years in hard currency.  It is my hope that the Minister can see light in my intervention in order that we get these global fuel players coming to give us fuel currently and only recoup their monies after five years. 

Fourthly, on the issue of governance that he spoke about in regulating the power sector, in particular ZERA;  I ask that immediately there be a Statutory Instrument that gives direction to the primary Act that directs ZERA in its operations so that the Minister does not only get this oversight wishy-washy over ZERA but actually directs it in its operation.  This is an organisation of strategic national importance for them to be like a board which is not appointed according to the dictates, interviews and interventions of Parliament like the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission where we as a country are having quite a big deficit.  We want to make sure that the people get enough and optimum power.  It is my clarion call that the Minister has a lot to do to be given powers in order to be involved in the power sector. 

In the last point, the issue of parity has already been spoken to by Hon. Gonese.  It is my humble suggestion that whilst we are finding mitigating factors or ways to mitigate this catastrophic limited supply of fuel, garages and local fuel suppliers here be allowed to import fuel duty free until the next rainy season.  We know that we are going to have more power coming in because of the uptake of the water in the Kariba Dam.  Because of that, we are then going to have reduced fuel usage. Our generators are not using fuel but whilst we are waiting for those rains, if they can be given duty free importation.  It reduces the lack of availability, it reduces the prices of our fuel; if the two Hon. Ministers can also conference the Minister of Finance and Economic Development and the Hon. Minister of Energy and power Development, that currently and until such a time that we have enough power, generators be imported duty free.

These are my suggestions and the Minister is more than happy to take it or leave it, but I hope and pray Madam Speaker Ma’am, that those issues be taken on board. 

HON. CHOMBO:  Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am.  On your speech Hon. Minister, you indicated that there is supposed to be a culture change.  That is one thing that you can control and the forex component you cannot and all the other things but there is supposed to be a culture change within the nation at large. 

You mentioned that we have to limit the usage of electricity to just have at least one room lit, the types of globes that we use and even leaving the heaters on and so forth. I really want to know if you have any programmes that you have planned, like power service sensitisation programmes for the whole country for them to have that culture change and be able to appreciate their contribution. As you have said, it is not only you to be able to address this problem and yet it has to be everybody.

HON. CHASI: Hon. Gonese made reference to the issue of duty on fuel. I want to say that as a general rule, we are in constant engagement with the Minister of Finance and the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, not only them but with everyone who is a stakeholder and a player in the industry. Today from 0700 hours I was meeting together with the RBZ Governor players in the industry and I think that as we continue with that engagement we are going to be making significant progress.

 There are references to solar lights being duty free. I think those are matters that will also be covered in the insensitive and there are already some incentives for the promotion of solar power. Vandalism, as I indicated we need to take a very serious view of what is happening and I want to underline that fact that it does not matter what we do in this sector. If vandalism continues at the rate at which it is going we will not be able to get all those who should be having power to get it.

There has been referencing to licensing for copper. This is a problem and we believe that the ubiquity of these licenses is creating an opportunity for people to steal copper from the transformers and export them legally outside. We are also going to be reviewing the penalties and making proposals to make amendments to the law regarding possession of copper. Those found in possession are not receiving sentences that are deterrent in-so-far as we are concerned, given the challenge – [HON. CHIKWINYA: 10 years?] – possession.

Now, Hon. Nduna spoke about governance. I did speak to this when I began to say that everything has got to do with governance and that as a Ministry, we are focusing on governance issues in all the parastatals, particularly ZESA for the reasons that I believe are notorious. I believe that the last issues pertaining to parity and generators being duty free and so forth are matters that my colleague, the Minister of Finance and I can deliberate upon and see what can be done on that front to ensure that we get continuous service.

Hon. Chombo has made reference to culture change. To be quite frank, the only way that we can control or influence conduct as Government is if we come up with specific laws that will either encourage or discourage something. But as I said earlier on, it is incumbent upon members of this House and everyone in this country to consume power responsibly. We of course have ideas on what we should do to further deal with the demand side of power. I thank you.

HON. MUSHAYI: On a point of clarity, the Hon. Minister has highlighted the shortage of fuel and procurement as the challenges that we face in the fuel sector. My question to him is, in February, 2019, the then Minister of Energy said that we had procured 24 months supply of fuel in the country. The question that I ask which arises out of it is that we were lied to as a nation. Where has this fuel gone because we could not have consumed this fuel in four months? Lastly, he also said that he had seen evidence of payment towards the procurement of that particular fuel. Where has the foreign currency gone?

HON. MUSABAYANA: My question of clarity to the Minister of Energy and Power Development is in light of the dire fuel situation that is obtaining in the country. What is the Ministry doing to ensure that there is equitable distribution of fuel to farming communities or those remote areas since he has said that his Ministry is working towards universal access to sustainable energy supply because we have areas like Wedza that have not had fuel in service stations for more than six months?

Hon. Minister, the other question that I have is on the issue to do with the President’s vision of 2030. The President is very upbeat about the Vision 2030 and I am asking for clarity from the Hon. Minister if we have an energy and power infrastructure development strategy that spans 15 to 50 years so that it feeds into the President’s 2030 vision.

Madam Speaker, gold, oil and sometimes the US$ are the three major commodities that are precious on the global market and these commodities are sometimes used as store of value. My question is - what is your Ministry doing to ensure that the fuel they procured is only for consumption by motorists and not kept as a store of value because there is a difference between the parallel rate and the interbank rate, meaning there is a gap for arbitrage. It means people can start to hoard and store fuel as a commodity or store value.

My other point of clarity is on the school of thought that says de-regulate the fuel sector and allow free market forces and only concentrate on subsidising critical and productive sectors like agriculture, public transport and Government operations so that it will relieve pressure on the excessive use or need for Government to source for foreign currency. So, I need clarification on that.

My last issue is on the demand side that we were talking about that we need to manage the demand side. I notice that Europe, Brazil, the Americans and some African countries like Botswana, including Zimbabwe are still using those bulbs that consume a lot of energy but do we have implementation of that policy because when you walk into shops, you still find these high-power bulbs in the shops.  Where is the implementation to ensure that we serve energy?  I thank you.

          HON. RAIDZA:  My point of clarity from the Hon. Minister’s Ministerial Statement is regarding the issue of solar installation on Government buildings.  Would it not be ideal for the Ministry to power Government buildings and other public institutions as a way of encouraging the private sector to realise that it is possible to use conventional electricity as a stop gap measure taking into consideration the prevailing challenges that we are experiencing as a country?

          The other issue that I did not quite understand is to do with bringing in investors in our solar industry as a way of avoiding the issues of Chivayo saga.  We want to get clarity on what the Ministry is doing with regards to purchasing electricity from these investors rather than Government investing directly into activities like the ones of Chivayo?  I thank you.

          HON. CHASI:  Thank you Madam Speaker. With reference to the issue that has been raised by Hon. Mushayi.  I have not seen the statement that she made reference and really do not want to comment about it because I am not aware of that statement.  As a result, I am unable to say that there was fuel that was bought or not – that is beyond me and is something that I am not familiar with.

          Hon. Musabayana raised a very important question which I had occasion to discuss with the industry this morning – the rationalisation of distribution.  I am advised that we have about 600 or so service stations across the country and as Government, we have an interest in ensuring that fuel gets to every corner of the country.  We have noticed and agreed with stakeholders that we need a way of ensuring that there is rationalised distribution of fuel and at particular times like now when there is where there is a shortage.  We also need to be sensitive to the economic activity that requires petroleum at a particular time.  So an agreement was reached today that the regulator and players meet and come up with a framework that allows them to make informed decisions around where and what fuel should be delivered.

          Store of value, this has been a problem and the prices of our fuel has generally been lower compared to neighbouring countries like Zambia.  So we have had serious instances of mischief that we have requested that they be investigated – where people have been effectively getting foreign currency from our system, buying fuel and being paid outside the country.  We were alerted to this development this morning and have asked that the players abide by the law and policies of the country and that they take the requisite steps to return the money.

          On deregulation, I think that it is a debate that we can have for a long time – there are pros and cons about what we have at the moment.  Which is why I made reference to possibilities of self-regulation by the players in certain instances but we retain the current legal framework in place.  For example, one issue that I posed to them this morning was if you look at the challenges that developed at some point with regards to fuel coupons, we said that it was possible that as players, they could agree that those coupons could have been usable at various fuel stations but they needed to agree and come up with a code of conduct or Memorandum of Agreement (MOU) that allows and details how that is done.

          The problem being, we have instances whereby people have prepaid for fuel but are not allowed to access the commodity even when it is available.  There are also instances where service stations are refusing to accept anything else apart from the United States Dollar.  We have pointed out the impropriety of that practice and that we would be keeping our fingers on it to check who is engaging in that type of practice.

          The issue of solar energy in Government departments – I agree with Hon. Raidza regarding that.  We need to make efforts to remove as much as possible consumers of power from the grid during the day, then they can move back onto the grid during the night.  We believe that this is a key strategic matter that requires Government support.  We need to attract investors to come and do this and it will also assist us even in the rural areas for people to begin improving on economic activities there.  We would like to come up with a package of incentives, some are already in place and make them public – including the map that I referred to where it is optimal to have solar energy; then market this to investors both locally and internationally – that way, we will be able to improve not only on the levels of our power but also save on foreign currency.

          HON. T. MLISWA:  Madam Speaker, let me first of all take this opportunity to congratulate the Hon. Minister for being appointed Minister of Energy and Power Development.  Hon. Minister, you said it exactly the way I would have said it and this is where the problem is.  There are people, Madam Speaker, who are given foreign currency to buy fuel.  The fuel industry is not a productive sector.  They then sell fuel in foreign currency like he said and where does that foreign currency go?  It goes to the black market – it does not go back to buy fuel.  So clarity is sought that what then happens to these players who are receiving foreign currency from the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, sell in foreign currency but do not use this foreign currency to buy fuel or remit to the Reserve Bank?  So the black market now thrives from that – clarity needs to be sought.

          The other issue on that one, the Hon. Minister had an interview with the Zimpapers television station.  He mentioned that there were cartels because we have got to hit the nail on the head – there were cartels.  There are cartels in the fuel industry but people are not prepared to name them.  How far have you gone as the new Minister in dealing with them? The day you will reveal these cartels to the President, that is the day the fuel industry will have sanity.  Here, we are given an opportunity before we name and shame them, especially myself.  I have them but you said you wanted to investigate.  These cartels must be exposed. 

The other issue is, what are you doing about people who are getting foreign currency to buy fuel and not buying fuel.  It does not take a rocket scientist to say, we gave Hon. Mliswa $10 to buy things for $10 but I buy for $5.  Arrest them, you have them.  Why are we wasting time and why are people suffering because of a few individuals.  We cannot allow a situation like that to continue yet we know who they are, yet the records are there with the RBZ.  Let an investigation be done tomorrow and see the money given to these companies. Did they bring the fuel that is meant to come in?  If not, let them go to Chikurubi because this country is suffering as a result of them.  There is no debate there. 

The other issue is, why we are allowing the Reserve Bank to keep giving money when we can allow these companies to bring in fuel.  Total is an international company, Trafigura is an international company.  They are all international companies.  The only companies which would have to be exempted are indigenous companies but these are international companies Madam Speaker, making money outside.  Let them use their own foreign currency offshore, bring in the fuel and it is liberal.

I do not know why we keep on blaming the RBZ and allowing the RBZ to remit the foreign currency, taking from the productive sector and giving to a non-productive sector.  The Professor of economics here, Hon. Prof. Mthuli Ncube totally agrees with me that there is never any economy where you take from the productive sector and give to non-productive sector and expect anything out of it.  I would want to hear how you expect that to happen. 

The other issue is the ethanol given to Billy Rautenbach is for blending but the fuel is still costing more Hon. Minister, yet we are saying to be blending.  Why is it that we have one white man who has monopolised ethanol?. What is so great about him?  he claims that it is because he was on sanctions, how many blacks have been on sanctions in this country?  Just because of one white man, who is he to destroy this sector?  Who is he eating with?  Who is he moving around giving monies to?  We are tired.  Billy Rautenbach cannot be bigger than this country and allow this country to suffer.  The war veterans who fought for this country even suffer.  He never went to war, he never held a gun but today he talks about sanctions.  Who has not suffered from sanctions?  What is so special about one man?  Ethanol, Triangle can sell it cheaper but you closed Triangle and said Billy can do it.  This is the corruption Hon. Minister you have to deal with.

My last question, how are you going to deal with these tendencies which have destroyed this country?  I can tell you, the sooner you deal with them, you will be the most commended Minister in this country because you would have dealt with corruption.  Fuel is critical in the stabilisation of the economy.  The Minister of Finance sitting there, cannot be blamed for this, especially him being new in this system where there is so much corruption.  He is equally shocked by the corruption which is there.  No wonder why, when we are asking questions here, he cannot expose his colleagues.  Corruption is rife in the industry, how are you going to deal with it?  Thank you.

HON. CHIKWINYA:  Thank you Madam Speaker.  The Minister in his presentation split his presentation into two.  He first made the power supply presentation and then the fuel supply presentation.  I will try to package my points of clarity along that scale.  First of all Madam Speaker, the Minister tries to disassociate himself from ZERA which is the Energy Regulatory Authority.  Madam Speaker, ZERA is established in terms of the ZERA Act of 2011 as he said.  That Act is superintended or administered by the Minister of Energy and Power Development, so the Minister cannot come to Parliament which deals with policy issues and say myself, as a Minister, have my own functions and ZERA has its own functions, no one must interfere with ZERA when yet he is the superintended of ZERA.  What the nation expects from its elected leadership which is Parliament, which is the highest concentration of political leadership, is that we need answers on the ground.  The Ministers and MPs are there to provide answers where ZESA is an implementing organ.  Hon. Minister, what we need is a direction for ZERA to be able to provide the services as required in terms of the Act, according to the 18 functions that he told us. 

The second issue is, according to Section 3 (2) (g) of the Constitution which says, ‘The principles of good governance which bind the State and all institutions and agencies of Government at every level include in (g) transparency, justice, accountability and responsiveness’.  It is incumbent upon the Minister who is superintending these Government agencies to be responsive.  We do not have power currently in the country and it is incumbent upon the Minister to be responsible.  We cannot then be able to shift blame to other Government agencies that are under his ambit and then the Minister expects us to make him come clean on that.  We need to respect the principles of our own Constitution as dictated.

Madam Speaker, the Hon. Minister gives shocking statistics.  He says, as of Friday, Kariba was 29% full and it is left with 14 weeks supply of power.  Madam Speaker, this is shocking.  We have investment which is depending on power whose business plan are five years.  We are only five months into the year and we are expecting power in the next two and half months to be depleted from minus 358 megawatts.  Madam Speaker, we share Kariba power supply with Zambia.  Zambia is currently producing two thousand megawatts a day, consuming two thousand megawatts a day.  What is it that Zambians are doing which we are not doing?  What is so special about the Zambians political stability or political set up which we do not have in Zimbabwe?  The Minister must feel challenged that his counterparts in Zambia are able to deliver and we are failing to deliver.  These are the answers which we need from him as a Minister.

Madam Speaker, I am happy the Hon. Minister of Finance is here.  Only yesterday, he claimed that Zimbabwe currently sits at a surplus cash of US$100 million as expressed in RTG$600 million.  We cannot celebrate as Members of Parliament and the nation to have a Minister who sits in Cabinet, chaired by the President, celebrating success of US$100 million and have a Minister of Energy coming to this House again and say we cannot import power.  It cannot be.  This Government is held by the principle of collective responsibility.  That is why they have one Cabinet meeting.  Lucky enough, to Hon. Minister Mutsvangwa, after every Cabinet meeting, she comes out to give a collective Cabinet decision making matrix.  We cannot celebrate silos of decision making to say, the Minister of Finance is doing good.  He has surplus but the Minister of Energy cannot be blamed because there is no foreign currency, we cannot.  We need energy as a matter of urgency in our households. 

The other issue that I need clarity on is that what happened to the Gwanda Solar Project?  Are we sure that we can sit here, proud to have alter ego of representing our people and then the whole nation of 17 million can be duped by one individual who ate $5 million and only managed to build one-roomed cabin which is equivalent to Mbizo maME.  The Minister must come clean on what happened to the Gwanda Solar Project. 

Madam Speaker, I will move over to fuel and there are only a few issues.  The Hon. Minister was appointed on a Thursday, the Wednesday before I, Settlement Chikwinya had asked his predecessor Dr. Jorum Gumbo a very simple question, when can Zimbabweans drive into a garage, access fuel and drive out?  The answer given was that in the next few days because Government at that particular day had issued 18 million LCs.  I think his answer was so wrong to the extent that the President saw it fit to remove him from office.  He then appointed Hon. Chasi.  The same question is before you Hon. Chasi – when can Zimbabweans drive into a garage, fill in their tank and drive out, pass through KFC buying 2 piecer chicken?  When can we have such a scenario?  This is your mandate and this is all what the people of Zimbabwe want.

The other issue is, what are we doing about alternative sources of energy like gas?  The President went to Lupane and officially opened the Lupane gas project.  What is happening to it?  We must be able to provide alternative sources of heating energy.  Currently we are importing gas. If you go to Zuva at Fourth Street, gas is being sold at RTGs 9.70 per kilogram.  It is beyond the reach of many but I am sure if we are going to tap our gas from Lupane, it can lend cheaper. What are we doing about gas?

My last point is on ethanol.  Statistics have shown that if we import ethanol from Brazil for blending purposes, it lends at RTG 0.50 cents per litre but Billy Rautenbach from Chipinge – 400 km away from here is lending it at RTG 1.70 per litre – [HON. MLISWA:  That is so corrupt.  Who is Billy?] – Why are we then blending?  Is South Africa or Zambia also blending?  If they are blending, how much is it? 

As what Hon. Gonese said, may the Hon. Minister tell us that in percentage terms - if we are going to cost a litre of petrol, what is the percentage of Government tax in there and what is the percentage of cost of doing business?  Maybe we are then able to sit down as Parliament and say, are we not overtaxing ourselves and what can we do within the taxing model.  I thank you.

Hon. Musabayana having stood up to debate.

THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER:  Hon. Musabayana may you take your seat.

HON. CHINYANGANYA: The Government has said that the fuel players are supposed to import fuel at the prevailing bank exchange rate.  We all know that the exchange rate is increasing by the day.  What will happen to the fuel prices? Are they going to remain stagnant or they will be increasing on a weekly basis. 

My second question is on fuel blending.  I once asked the Minister’s predecessor on the issue of blending and he was adamant that unblended fuel does not cover the same distance as blended fuel and he was adamant that blended fuel covers more distance compared to unblended fuel.  This showed his lack of depth in the knowledge of fuel. Why does the Ministry or Government not give people the latitude to choose the kind of fuel they need? Whether it is blended or unblended because blended fuel is destroying our engines.  It is not cost effective.

The other point is, you were talking about saving energy.  We have these monitors that are on 24 hours a day.  Why are we talking about saving energy when we cannot save energy in this House?  Charity begins at home.

The last point I want to make has already been touched by other speakers – why can we not have solar and gas imports duty free so that we conserve the forex that we do not have.  Each and every household will have solar panels and we will know that we will not be using the foreign currency that is in short supply.  These are my interventions Madam Speaker Ma’am.

THE MINISTER OF ENERGY AND POWER DEVELOPMENT (HON. CHASI):  Madam Speaker, I prefaced my presentation by making reference to the law that sets up ZERA. I made reference to Section 4 of that Act and I pointed out that ZERA has got 18 aspects of its mandate that are stipulated there.  Its function deals from the beginning of the fuel chain, the procurement, transmission and distribution.  It also includes dealing with issues of competition. 

The moment you speak of a cartel, you are speaking to competition.  I also made a point that the same law makes it very clear that in its operations, ZERA is subject to no control by anybody and that includes myself.  The last point and I really want people to understand this – the role of the Minister is stated in that piece of law and it makes it very clear that the Minister can only give general policy direction.  I think that is important in answering Hon. – [HON. T. MLISWA:  You know the cartel.] – I am not prepared, neither will I break the law.  If this House desires to give me additional responsibilities in the area of petroleum and power, it is up to it to amend the law, but I am going to deal with the legal framework as it obtains at the moment.  It is not to underplay the issue that is being raised by the Hon. Member but I think the moment we begin to disrespect the very laws that we make and demand Ministers to do things that are clearly illegal, we are sending a wrong signal to the parastatals that we superintend. 

I also made it clear that corporate governance is very key going forward in this sector and that we are going to focus on it and deal with each and every issue that arises, but I want to steer clear from the mandate of ZERA – [HON. T. MLISWA:  If you mention one cartel basa rinopera.] -  What I am prepared to do Mr. Speaker is require ZERA to carry out its mandate and report to me.  In appropriate circumstances, Government will issue the necessary policy direction to ZERA as contemplated by the law.

Issues of violations of exchange control laws – the Reserve Bank has got significant powers to deal with those instances.  I think I have covered the issue of corruption in dealing with the previous case that I have averted to.  In the same vein, I believe I have also addressed Hon. Chikwinya’s question.  I would like to urge Hon. Members to familiarise themselves with the legal framework dealing with our petroleum industry so that law demands that are illegal are made to me. Members might also be interested to note that even in Zambia there is load shedding as we speak at the moment. I made the point to the Energy Committee in the morning that there is a general deficit of power in the region, but I am not going to try and equate this country to Zambia. The economies are different and the Governments are different.

          The challenge that we face with the players is that we work together as a nation. This is why we have taken the position as the Ministry that  we will engage each and every player in the industry, each and every stakeholder and anybody who can assist to ensure that we deal with the issue. It is known that there are issues surrounding that project and in fact, upon assuming office, I made it very clear that that issue has got to be resolved. That issue has got to be resolved and we also need to take the necessary steps to deal with those that have contravened the Public Finance Management Act who were in situ at ZESA when these issues happened. That law is very clear that anybody who causes loss to Government funds or property is liable. So we expect officers that were at ZESA at that point in time who are either negligent or complicit in the country using that investment to be accountable.

          It follows that if there is a multiplicity of people who determine where we are going in terms of resolving this issue and they are not under my control, I am not able to say this is the day that fuel will be delivered to service stations but I can confirm that in discussions today with the players in this industry, they made a commitment that there will be fuel in service stations today. They made that commitment and they assured us that the queues will begin to disappear. – [AN HON. MEMBER: Today?] -

          I think people must listen when I speak. I have said that the players made reference to the fact that they are going to make fuel available. I do not have fuel to put into pumps. On issues of ethanol, what I am able to say at this moment and what I have been assured and I am prepared to do a paper for the purposes of this House, is that the blending has been tested and that it is up to international standards. I am prepared to bring in a paper detailing the experts who have conducted this process. – [AN HON. MEMBER: Inaudible interjection.] -

          I have said that competition issues, the pricing issues are under ZERA. – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] -

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

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: What is your point of order?

          HON. T. MLISWA: Mr. Speaker Sir, Hon. Chasi is a respected person, one of the most efficient Ministers I communicate with but I think he is fast losing his reputation if he does not do the right things. Talk about real issues. ZERA is under him as the Minister of Energy and Power Development. They report to him according to the governance issues and he cannot choose which one to say and so forth. In English they say different strokes for different folks. It does not work like that. The Minister must assure us and must be very assertive and answer the questions. The pricing is the issue - while ethanol is coming from Chisumbanje and you say it is good, the pricing is not viable. People are suffering in this country because of the pricing. Talk to the pricing. Triangle is cheaper. Brazil is 50 cents; bring it over a dollar, how? This is my question Hon. Minister. –[HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] -

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: I have noted your point of order. Let me now give the Minister a chance to respond.

          THE MINISTER OF ENERGY AND POWER DEVELOPMENT (HON. CHASI): Mr. Speaker, I think Members must decide whether we want to run this sector in a professional manner or not. I want to assure this House that I am not going to meddle and do things that will cause me to break... –[AN HON. MEMBER: Inaudible interjection.] -

          Mr. Speaker, I think I should really be allowed to answer unless the desire is not to hear what I am saying. I have said earlier on that my function as stipulated in the law is to give general policy direction. The law is very clear that the price must be fair. It is part of the mandate of ZERA and I have expressed that point that we expect that the public gets value for money, but I am not going to conduct myself in an illegal way. Losing reputation or - [AN HON. MEMBER: Inaudible interjection.] -

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Hon. Mliswa, do you want me to send you out of the House?

          HON. T. MLISWA: Sorry Mr. Speaker.

          HON. S. SIBANDA: Mr. Speaker Sir, what we have noticed from history is that we have seen ZERA announcing fuel prices and we have seen His Excellency President Mnangagwa announcing the prices in January...

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Can you raise your point of order  and not the analysis that you are trying to deliver to the Chair?

          HON. S. SIBANDA: My point of order is that the current Energy Minister is saying he is not responsible for setting energy prices, whereas in previous instances, previous Energy Ministers have done so. That is my point of order. We really need the truth to be told in this House. Thank you.

          HON. MADZIMURE: My first point of clarification - the only institutions that are independent are constitutional commissions.  So, is ZERA a constitutional commission?  If ZERA is making it impossible for the Minister to perform his duties, is the Minister going to move for amendments to the ZERA Act and when? 

          My other question is, the energy policies of this country                          - who is responsible for them if he has no control over ZERA?

          My other point of clarification is that, the Minister talked about the obsolete plant at Hwange which under normal circumstances should have a maintenance schedule that will indicate whether the plant is not obsolete and needs replacement, whether there are any maintenance schedules at Hwange.  Can he also clarify the contradictions between the performance of the plant and the corruption at Hwange and when will the Minister present that forensic audit about Hwange which I think is the actual cause for poor power generation at Hwange and not the age of the plant. 

          My other question relates to the power shortage in the region.  Do we actually have a power shortage in the region or we do not have enough forex to import power?  Lastly Mr. Speaker, whenever there is load shedding, industrialists and even households resort to the use of generators.  At the moment, the Ministry of Energy and Power Development and not ZERA announced a policy where jerry cans should be used. 

Finally on the issue of prices, only recently the fuel supplies – the service stations had increased fuel prices and the Minister was the one who was talking about the reduction reverting to the gazetted price.  So, was he now usurping the powers of ZERA or he is hiding behind so that he avoids being held accountable for the shortage of fuel?  Thank you.

HON. BITI: Thank Hon. Speaker Sir.  My point of clarification and perhaps advice to the Minister is 1) on the issue of ethanol.  The issue of ethanol is not covered by any law in Zimbabwe.  The only law that covers petroleum is the Petroleum Act which was passed way back in the time of the federation and petroleum is defined as two things.  It is defined as petrol and diesel which are all hydro carbons.  It does not cover ethanol which is agriculture.  Ethanol is agriculture whereas hydro-carbon is mining. 

So, the Minister is at large when it comes to ethanol.  The law that introduced mandatory blending of petroleum with ethanol was a Statutory Instrument that was enacted in 2013 by the Minister of Energy and Power Development.  Therefore, it is totally and entirely within the esteemed Minister of Energy and Power Development to actually repeal that Statutory Instrument to address two things that are unacceptable in that Statutory Instrument, which is demand side monopoly and supply-side monopoly.  Supply side monopoly is the law that says we can only purchase ethanol from a company that is in a joint venture with the Government yet there is only one company with a joint venture with the Government which is Green Fuels and the company owned by this dealer Billy Rautenbach. 

I therefore submit to the Hon. Speaker that he needs to read that Statutory Instrument.  But more importantly, he must follow the precedent of Brazil, Malawi, Sweden, United States of America, of actually enacting a new law that deals with alternative biomass energy because the Petroleum Act only covers hydro-carbons petrol and diesel.  That then gives him a full mandate to deal with an unregulated industry namely, alternative energy biomass energy, ethanol energy.

The second is demand side monopoly.  We all love green energy and that is the route to go, but you must give a customer, an ordinary person the opportunity to choose at a gas station, whether to go for cheap ethanol blended or not.  So, the mandatory provision is the mandatory that any gas station must have a pump that is blended and a pump that is not.  That is the freedom of choice that is given.  So, if you go to countries like Sweden, South Africa and countries in Europe, the mandatory on the demand side is not for every consumer to be forced to consume blended fuel.  The mandatoriness is for a gas station to give the consumer choice. 

So, if I want to buy pure unleaded fuel, it is my choice.  If I want to buy blended fuel, it is my choice but you cannot have demand side monopoly because that comes unconstitutional and is a breach of the right to equal protection of the law covered and defined by Section 56.  If you do not do that, you then create the distortion in this country caused by Billy Rautenbach where the price of ethanol and blended fuel – 1) the mix fluctuates.  Sometimes it is 5%, sometimes it is 15% and other times it is 20%, which is a problem.  Why are we not buying from Tongaat Hullet?  Why are we not buying from Brazil? Why are we not buying from the United States of America? Why are we not buying from Malawi?  If we did that Hon. Speaker Sir, the cost of ethanol would be 50 cents.

I want to move to a second issue which is the issue of cartels.  If you look at our current account and the Minister of Finance and Economic Development is here?  Singapore has become our largest trading partner.  We are giving to Singapore over a billion US dollar to buy petroleum but Singapore is a tiny little island State which produced nothing.  So, why are we buying our fuel through Trafigura, a commodity broker based in Singapore instead of going on the open market and buy our hydro-carbon from Kuwait, from Saudi Arabia, from Venezuela? 

So Hon. Speaker, the success of this Minister is going to be determined on whether he can break the stronghold of cartels in the fuel sector in this economy, in particular the following cartels – 1) Trafigura which controls the supply side.  2) Glenco and its indigenous partner that I shall not mention, that all of us know control the pipeline.  3) The retailers, in particular ZUVA, Puma/Sakunda.  Those cartels must be liquidated if the price of fuel has to come down in this country.

Thirdly Hon. Speaker Sir, the price of fuel is in US dollars and we are spending over US$1.5 billion on fuel.  If sanity has to come down, those that are importing fuel in this country must also be allowed to charge in US dollars.  In other words, there has to be a dollarisation of the fuel in this county and that goes without saying Hon. Minister, my brother-in-law. 

On energy Hon. Speaker Sir, Cabora Bassa can sell to Zimbabwe today namhla kathesi 350 mega watts of energy.  Eskom in South Africa can sell namhla today 350 mega watts of energy.  Why is the Government not purchasing and contracting with HBC, why is the Government not contracting with Eskom; the reason is foreign currency.  Why are they allowing foreign currency to be their problem?  We the consumers can pay in hard currency.  So, once again dollarise.  I thank you.

          THE MINISTER OF ENERGY AND POWER DEVELOPMENT (HON. CHASI): Thank you Mr. Speaker.  I want to begin with the last speaker and it is notable in the presentation or the clarifications sought by Hon. Biti that he does not contest the statements or floor that I made regarding the status of ZERA.  I think that is a very clear point and as a lawyer, we agreed that my role is clearly defined in the Act to general policy direction.  That does not mean [HON. MLISWA: Cartel]–

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER (HON. MUTOMBA): Hon. Mliswa!

HON. CHASI:  Hon. Speaker, the point that has been indicated falls within the purview of ZERA. In my supervisory role as the responsible Minister, I will look at every piece of mandate that is in the Act and require that ZERA performs in a particular manner.  I think Members must understand that I have been in office for two weeks.  I think that is a pertinent matter. I have not had time to study Brazil, Malawi, Sweden or USA in two weeks on ethanol.  So, I prefer that I be methodical, very deliberate and make decisions that are evidence based. –[HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear] – That point Mr. Speaker, does not require me to say I have been in office for two weeks and to expect me to have covered each and every aspect of issues in this sector; with respect to Hon. Mliswa in particular, is extremely unreasonable.

          There are issues of maintenance. On the second day after my appointment, I went straight to Kariba to understand what was happening there because that is the basic source of our power and I think that was a proper thing to do.  Thereafter, I have been in a systematic way, which is why I felt it is important that this House must have a basic understanding of this very important sector.  From now henceforth, they can have plans as to what it is that is going to be done.  We are working on an integrated strategy for power in this sector.  We are not looking for five year plans and so forth; we are looking much more beyond that.

          The issue of maintenance of various types of equipment; power plants and so forth, that is clear.  I have made the point that we need men and women who are strategic thinkers because this is a strategic part at board level and needs skilled people in management.  Those are the issues that henceforth we are going to be pursuing and I will be very open with what is happening, give the relevant reports and answer questions as may be required.  Definitely, I am not a Chemist, so I cannot speak on the technical issues relating to ethanol but of initial interest to myself upon getting into office was to understand the processes that were taken to ensure the blending was done properly. 

It is a matter that I am going to continue to work on and where appropriate, ask ZERA in accordance with the law to deal with it and achieve the necessary results.  So competition issues, it is very simple for me. I expect that ZERA must ensure a market that is consistent with the prerequisites of the law.  I am not going to be naming people as cartels – [HON. MLISWA: You know you will be fired] – what I can also say is what we need to do in a very direct and deliberate way. When you make decisions, when you are a regulator you base your decisions on information.

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER:  Hon. Minister, address your Chair.

HON. CHASI: I am getting destructed, it is only natural.

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Hon. Mliswa, you are destructing the whole event.

HON. CHASI: Hon. Speaker, what do we need to do? We need a regulator that is empowered, a regulator that has capacity to get information from the market.  We have issues as we speak, about fuel that was exported unlawfully; funds that were externalised – [HON. T. MLISWA: By who?]-

          THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Hon. Mliswa, you are inviting me to send you out right away.

          HON. CHASI: I can answer him. This is precisely why I am raising this point to say that when we have technologies that allow us to know what fuel has been delivered where, because part of the public complaint is that they are told that the fuel is finished after 30 minutes of pumping.  We want to ensure that we have a system that allows us to give information regarding the players themselves; the distribution of service stations, how much has been pumped at a particular service station, et cetera.  When we get to that level, I am sure we will be able to bring sanity to the sector.  I thank you.

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): I move that Orders of the Day, Numbers 1 and 2 be stood over until Order of the Day Number 3 has been disposed of.

          Motion put and agreed to.

COMMITTEE STAGE

MICROFINANCE BILL [H. B. 11, 2018]

          Third Order read: Committee Stage: Micro-Finance Bill [H. B. 11:2018].

          House in Committee.

          On Clause 2:

          THE MINISTER OF FINANCE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. M. NCUBE): I move that Section 2, interpretations, there is a new section to be inserted, paragraph (H) to include the following definition in Section (II) interpretation of the Act. “Minimal capital means representing a permanent commitment of funds by shareholders or deposit taking microfinance institution (net of any loans and advances given to an insider and borrowed capital) which is available to meet losses incurred without imposing a fixed unavoidable charge on the institution’s earnings, and include such of the following elements as available to the institution after making any required deductions.

(a)             Issued and full paid up ordinary shares or common stock.

(b)            Paid up non-cumulative, irredeemable preference shares.

(c)             Reserves consisting of :

(i)                          Non repayable share premiums

(ii)                       Disclose reserves created by charge to net income  in

the financial year immediately preceding the current one.

(iii)                    Published retained earnings for the current year

including interim earnings where these have been verified by external auditors.

(iv)                     Such other elements as may be prescribed from time to

time.

          Amendment to Clause 2 out and agreed to.

Clause 2, as amended, put and agreed to.

Clause 3 put and agreed to.

On Clause 4:

THE MINISTER OF FINANCE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. M. NCUBE): I propose the following amendments for Clause 4 of the Bill (Microfinance Advisory Council) Section 5, (a) (I) of the Bill is amended to read 5 (a) Microfinance Advisory Council “there is hereby established a Council to be known as Microfinance Council consisting of:

a)    The Registrar whose office shall be the secretariat.  Section (a) (v) of the Bill to be amended to read Section 5, the procedure of the Microfinance Advisory Council including the rotation of the Chairperson shall be as prescribed or as fixed from time to time by the Council”.

HON. MUSHORIWA: Thank you Madam Chair.  I have no challenges or problems with the amendments that the Minister has actually put. My only challenge Minister is to do with the composition of the Advisory Council itself.  If you read it, there is no maximum number.  If you read Section 4 (J), it then allows the Minister to appoint such other members as the Minister may deem necessary.  What it means is that we have got 10 members plus any other members.  We cannot have a law that is open ended. We need to have a sort of maximum number.  What will happen is that the Hon. Minister, not necessarily yourself but any other person, may end up nominating as many people as possible and this will make it very difficult even for the Advisory Council to function.

HON. PROF. M. NCUBE: I want to thank the Hon. Member.  The Minister is a very reasonable person and I do not think that they could appoint such a large Advisory Council which would eat into the resources and exhaust resources of the institution.  That would not happen and I say to the Hon. Member he should not be too worried and too concerned about this. It is not a risk issue to be concerned about. We are reasonable people, I thank you.

Amendment to Clause 4 put and agreed to.

Clause 4 as amended, put and agreed to.

THE CHAIRPERSON: We are going back to Clause 4.

HON. PROF. M. NCUBE: Madam Chair, I would like to propose insertion of a new Clause 4 on to the Act and the others will be renumbered accordingly.  This pertains to the exercise of the functions by the Registrar.  Amend Section 5 of the Act by adding subsections 3 and 4 that read as follows;

“(iii)  The Registrar on reasonable written notice to deposit taking microfinance institutions and controlling companies concerned may adopt such sound credential supervisory and regulatory practices that are considered appropriate for the purpose of monitoring and supervising the activities of banking institutions and controlling companies. 

(iv)  The Registrar shall ensure that the standards and practices adopted in terms of Section (I) are made known to the deposit taking microfinance institutions and controlling companies”. Thank you.

Amendment to new Clause 4 put and agreed to.

New Clause 4, as amended, put and agreed to.

On Clause 4, now Clause 5:

THE MINISTER OF FINANCE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. M. NCUBE): On the Advisory Council, Section 5A (1) (a) of the Bill is amended to read:

“5A Microfinance Advisory Council

(1) There is hereby established a council, to be known as the Microfinance Advisory Council, consisting of -

(a) the Registrar, who shall be the Chairperson of the Council; and

(b) a member nominated by the Minister from among the officers of his or her Ministry; and

(c)a member nominated by the Minister responsible for small and medium enterprises; and

(d) a member nominated by the Insurance and Pensions Commission Board established by section 5 of the Insurance and Pensions Commission Act [Chapter 24:21] from among the staff of that Commission; and

(e) a member nominated by the Securities and Exchange Commission of Zimbabwe established by section 3 of the Securities and Exchange Act [Chapter 24: 25] from among the staff of that Commission; and

(f) a member nominated by the Board of Directors of the Deposit Protection Corporation established by section 4 of the Deposit Protection Corporation Act [Chapter 24:29] from among the staff of that Chairperson; and

(g) a member nominated by an association recognised by the Minister as representing banking institutions; and

(h) a member nominated by an association of microfinance institution recognised by the Minister; and

(i) a member nominated by an association that represents consumers and is recognised by the Minister as representing; and

(j) such other members as the Minister may determine.

          (2) If any person or organisation fails to nominate a person for membership of the Microfinance Advisory Council in terms of subsection (1), the Minister may appoint any person as a member to represent the person or organisation concerned.

(3) The functions of the Microfinance Advisory Council shall be –

          (a) to advise the Minister on strategies and policies to develop microfinance business; and

          (b) to promote good financial practices among microfinance institutions; and

          (c) to exercise any other function the Minister may confer or impose on the council.

          (4) Members of the Microfinance Advisory Council shall hold office for such period and on such terms and conditions as may be prescribed or as the Minister may fix.

          (5) The procedure of the Microfinance Advisory Council shall be as prescribed or as fixed from time to time by the Council.”. Thank you.

          HON. MUSHORIWA: Madam Chair, I just need clarification from the Hon. Minister. I am not so sure why you want the procedure to choose the Chairperson and you leave it purely on the Advisory Council. I actually thought that there should be a formula or a way to simply say how do the Chairperson and the Deputy Chairperson, as we find in most of the Bills to just say it should be left to the whims of the Advisory Council. Would it then not make the Advisory Council redundant; assuming that there is actually a deadlock in terms of the appointment or choosing of the Chairperson and the Deputy Chairperson.

          HON. PROF. M. NCUBE: The Advisory Council will be composed of competent people who know that it is important to start and conclude things. I do not think there is any difficulty with having a deadlock just because they have to choose a chairperson on a rotation basis. I do not think we will have any reset and we will make sure that the composition of the Advisory Council in the first place, is composed of easonable people who will do the right thing.

          HON. MUSHORIWA: Madam Chair, I hear what the Minister is saying but remember the Minister is actually operating on the premise that everything is actually good. First, remember when I raised the issue upon the number of the Advisory Council, the Minister said the Minister would be reasonable and will not make several appointments. He also assumes that the people that he is going to appoint or the people that are going to sit there are going to be reasonable. Most of the big mistakes we have seen in this world are done by people that are perceived to be very reasonable and this is the reason why the law has to make sure that the four corners of the law are clear rather than to just say no, we have got Hon. Mthuli Ncube, he is reasonable and is going to act reasonably. We have actually seen people that have acted unreasonably yet they are supposed to be very reasonable.

          HON. PROF. M. NCUBE: I do not know whether the Hon. Member is asking me to say that the Minister will appoint the Chairperson because we have also seen mistakes being made in the appointments of Chairpersons by any process or by anyone. I think really, much of it depends on who we select in the first place, the due diligence we do on them and how we clear them. That is most critical; the experience, their capacity and ability to work with others. We have to make that kind of due diligence on each of the individuals and of course their subsequent behaviour. We cannot guarantee that but I think that is what we will put in place as a process for dealing with the Chairperson. It will work if we have selected the appropriate people. I thank you.

Amendment to Clause 4, now Clause 5 put and agreed to.

Clause 5, as amended, put and agreed to.

Clauses 6 and 7, put and agreed to.

On Clause 8:

THE MINISTER OF FINANCE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. M. NCUBE): Madam Chair, Clause 7 now Clause 8 pertains to the period of registration and the following amendments are proposed. Delete Section 10 (1) and amend Section 10(2) of the Bill to read –

“10 Period of Registration

          (1) The registration of the microfinance institution shall remain in force until it is cancelled in terms of this Act.

          (2) Every registered microfinance institution shall pay the Registrar each year an annual fee of the prescribed amount.

          (3) The annual fee referred to in subsection (2) shall be paid by such date and in such manner as maybe prescribed. I thank you.

          Amendment to Clause 7, now Clause 8 put and agreed to.

          Clause 8, as amended, put and agreed to.

          Clauses 8 to 13, put and agreed to.

          On Clause 14:

          THE MINISTER OF FINANCE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. M. NCUBE): I propose insertion of a new Clause 14 which pertains to the board of Microfinance Institution. As a guide to the Members in the House, it is the last paragraph on page 2.  It should read a new statement be added to Section 20 of the Act which reads as follows: 7. The Chairperson of the Board of Directors of a Deposit Taking Microfinance Institution must be a non executive and independent.

          HON. MUSHORIWA: Thank you Hon. Chair.  I think the amendment that you are proposing does not go enough.  We are coming from a history where we had seen compromised boards.  You go back to the banks and we do not want to have a repeat in terms of the microfinance.  I was actually thinking that you were going to say the Chairperson and probably the majority of the directors on that board should be non-executive.  The problem that we will have is that you will have the chairperson who is non executive and independent chairing a board of about four other executive members.   Generally, the rule of the board of directors is that the majority decision will take precedence.  Remember we have these deposit taking institutions, they are basically more or less like banks because there are depositors’ funds that are at stake. 

          HON. PROF. M. NCUBE: Thank you Hon. Chair, I thank the Hon. Member for that comment.  This pertains to the separation between the position of chairperson and C.E.O, so we want the chairperson not to be the same individual as C.E.O.  So the Chairperson must be non-executive and independent and the C.E.O or managing directors by definition executive.  In some countries, especially in the US, those tend to be the same person, Chairman and C.E.O all come mingled but here we are talking about separation. 

          When it comes to representation on the board, what tends to happen is that shareholders tend to opt or rather recommend their own representatives on to the board.  So the shareholders decide who goes on to the board and who does not. There will be independent directors who are linked to some shareholders, that is normal and I am not sure that we have any risk here, but what we saw was a risk in keeping the position of Chairperson and C.E.O in one person and we needed to separate that.  So, this clause actually enforces that separation.

          HON. MUSHORIWA: With all due respect, Hon. Minister, you are not answering my worry.  If it was just an ordinary microfinance, I would not have a problem, but we are talking of some of these deposit - taking microfinance.  Inasmuch as we will agree that the shareholders are the ones that actually select people to go on the board.  We want a situation where a board, the majority of the board members should be non executive.  I agreed that they are appointed by the shareholder, there is no debate on that but we want to avoid a situation where we will have a microfinance, deposit taking for that matter, and I want to underline the deposit taking nature which will then end up having more executive directors who will overpower one independent chairperson of the board.

          HON. PROF. M. NCUBE: I do not think this advances security of deposits within the institution spectrum.  This clause really pertains simply to the separation of powers and duties between the chairperson and the C.E.O. So this does not rest in one person.  That is really the purpose of this clause.  Shareholders have a right to post directors into their institution; it does not mean that if you have got majority independent directors all is fine because there are also cases of insider lending, because certain shareholders have more influence within the institution.  So, having more independent directors does not guarantee that all is fine; you can also have misappropriation due to certain influential shareholders determining the direction of how loans are given out.  This clause is very clear and narrow in terms of what it is trying to do.  I am not so sure that putting in place what the member is suggesting will protect us much, frankly. 

          HON. MUSHORIWA: Hon. Minister when you crafted the Bill that mind was actually there because if you read under the amendment of Section 20 (1A) which says, ‘the Minister may prescribe the number of executive, non executive and independent directors to be in the board of every microfinance institution…’  What I am basically asking you is to simply go deeper than what is actually contained in there.  We do not want to leave this at the whims of the Minister - because it says, ‘the Minister may’.  We want the Minister to simply state that in terms of the board; the non executive members of the board should be more than the executive directors.  I do not think there is any problem with such an adjustment and amendment. When the Bill was crafted, the idea was to curb the executive director from manipulating the whole system.  So, I do not see any reason why we cannot have more non executive directors than the executive directors to make the decision for the company.

          THE CHAIRPERSON: Just for clarity Hon. Members, Section 41 on our second page, has been changed to Section 14, it was a typing error.

          HON. PROF. M. NCUBE: The amendment and Clause is fine as it is.  I think we are really splitting hairs with over prescription.  I do not think this over prescription is really going to protect us, much depends on the integrity of the people that we put on these boards; much depends on the shareholder who controls these boards. Shareholders have a right to put people who represent their interests on the board.  The Minister may also appoint members – I think really it is okay.  There is just enough leeway to curtail things to make sure there is enough protection, but there are no guarantees.  We cannot also over prescribe.

          Amendment to Clause 14 put and agreed to.

          Clause 15 put and agreed to.

Clauses 17 to 21 put and agreed to.

On Clause 24:

THE MINISTER FINANCE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. M. NCUBE):  This pertains to the limits on shareholding and transfer of shares in microfinance institution.  We add a new Section to Section 34 of the Act to read as follows:  7. Shareholders of the microfinance institutions are to be fit and proper persons.  Thank you.

HON. PHULU:  I just noted something.  It says the Registrar, in terms of the latest amendment, should be able to recover expenses of investigations from penalties.  Is that where we are? 

THE MINISTER FINANCE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. M. NCUBE):  Madam Chair, if I can assist.  It is the second from the bottom which pertains to limits of shareholders.  Thank you.

HON. MUSANHI:  On a point of clarity Madam Chair.  I just want to understand what does ‘fit and proper’ mean?

THE MINISTER FINANCE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. M. NCUBE):  This is standard in financial institutions.  This must be persons or individuals without any prior crimes, misdemeanours, malfeasance or terrible record.  That is what we mean by ‘fit and proper’, that they could be custodians of depositors’ funds and they will not put any risks to those funds.  I thank you.

HON. MUSHORIWA:  I think that amendment Madam Chair is a wrong amendment.  You cannot say a shareholder has to be fit and proper, unless you are saying the director.  A shareholder surely, why me, a poor person wanting to put my $10 into a microfinance - be fit and proper?  It should have said the directors not shareholders.  I do not think there is any law the whole world where a shareholder has to be proper and fit.

THE MINISTER FINANCE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. M. NCUBE):  I think my honourable friend is mixing up the depositor and shareholder.  The depositor is the one who puts their monies for safekeeping on lending and they get their money back.  The shareholder is a partial owner of the company and owns shares.  It is normal for deposit sharing institutions for shareholders to be vetted.  The Reserve Bank does that at the moment before they issue licences to deposit taking banks.  This is normal, it is not abnormal at all.  Thank you.

HON. MUSHORIWA:  I think the Minister is not being fair.  It is not normal and let me clarify.  There is no confusion in my mind pertaining to the depositor and the shareholder.  What I am saying is that a company can have a number of shareholders, including the minority shareholders.  Unless you are going to qualify this by saying the majority shareholder but what stops the minority shareholder, the small shareholders that want to contribute to the shares or capital of that company, why should it be so strict to say, the person has to be fit and proper.

THE MINISTER FINANCE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. M. NCUBE):  We have to be strict Madam Chair because this is a deposit taking institution.  We do not want individuals or persons with dreadful records to be custodians of depositors’ funds and do nasty at the end of the day.  We are doing this at the moment with normal banking institutions.  So, we are just following what we are already doing.  Thank you. 

HON. T. MLISWA:  On a point of order Madam Chair.  I just came from the place where coupons are distributed and there are no coupons for Members of Parliament as we speak.  It is disturbing.  Most of them will be leaving this place late.  Can that matter be brought to the attention of the Speaker that the way Members of Parliament are being treated is like young kids?  We cannot be sitting here at peace and there are no coupons and we do not know how we are going.  Can that issue be dealt with immediately because it is a sad situation up there and I feel for those who are travelling long distances?

THE CHAIRPERSON:  Thank you Hon. I am sure that has been noted - though now we are in Committee and I would feel that it is not the right platform for us to be discussing such issues.  I think the administration is taking note of that and I am sure something is being rectified for us to ensure that Hon. Members would be able to get their coupons.  Worth noting again, it has been an instruction from the Hon. Speaker that all coupons are going to be issued after the House adjourns.  I am sure that is something administrative.  Thank you Hon. Mliswa.

+HON. R. MPOFU:  My eyes are dry, I need to get some medication which can only be obtained from my doctor in Bulawayo on Friday (31st May, 2019).  I cannot get to Bulawayo because they are refusing to give me coupons for my journey.

THE CHAIRPERSON:  Thank you very much Hon. Mpofu.  That is worth noting but I now, like what I have said to the previous speaker, I think we are now disgressing from what we are supposed to be discussing here.  I know this is a matter of welfare for Hon. Members but I am sure we can be able to talk of it when we are out of Committee.  For now, we are in Committee.  Again, one thing we should also note is that Friday is also a sitting day.  Therefore, according to what the Speaker has already said, that means that if it means that tomorrow we are supposed to be meeting, that means our coupons will only be given tomorrow.  Let us wait until the House adjourns then we will be in a position to note that.  However, issues are dealt differently because of the conditions we have.  I am sure Hon. Mpofu, the administration is hearing, that is something that is going to be dealt with at a personal level.  I am sorry for that Hon. Mpofu.  Thank you

*HON. R. MPOFU:  You can see there is nothing in these medicine containers and I need to replenish my supplies. 

THE CHAIRPERSON:  It is okay Hon. Mpofu.  That will be dealt with, it is something which is personal.  May you approach the Chair?  May someone please kindly assist Hon. Mpofu so that she approaches the Chair – [HON. T. MLISWA:  How could she approach the Chair when she cannot see?] – I said, may someone assist her so that she can approach the Chair.   That will be dealt with at a personal level.  Thank you – [HON. T. MLISWA:  Zvanyanya zveParliament izvi.] – [HON. R. MPOFU:  Inaudible interjections.] – It is okay Hon. Mpofu.  It is something which is worth noting.  I am sure that is something that will be dealt with differently because of the condition that she has.  It is something that can be addressed.  It is not a very difficult issue.  I am sure part of the Speaker’s panel is here, they will be able to help her get the coupons. 

          HON. MUSHORIWA: On a point of order Madam Chair.   Madam Chair, if you check, right now we are in the Committee stage. The challenge that we are facing is because everybody who is sitting here is no longer paying attention to this because they are thinking of going home in their mindsets.  I know there are very reasonable members who were commenting on this Bill but they are no longer applying their minds to this Bill because the minds are now totally out.  I think what the Speaker’s Panel should prescribe to the Speaker is to simply say that we will not have Bills on Thursdays if that is the case because most of the members will not even pay attention to this Bill.

          THE TEMPORARY CHAIRPERSON (HON. MAVETERA):   Since it is an issue that you are raising, for now we are in Committee Hon. Members.  Let us take this business seriously – [HON. T. MLISWA: Inaudible interjection.] - Hon. Mliswa, I think I have said this clearly.  Coupons will be availed to Hon. Members but according to the information that I am getting now – they are not yet ready because we have not adjourned the House.  This is a simple issue.  We need to adjourn the House and then you go to where you are supposed to receive your coupons and see if you will not get your coupons – [HON. T. MLISWA: Madam Chair, some of us are going to Dumiso Dabengwa’s memorial at 10 a.m.] -    Yes, that has been noted but according to Hon. Khumalo who is also a fellow Speaker’s Panel member, he is saying that currently the coupons are not yet ready but you will be able to get them soon after adjournment.  We are left with a few amendments before we close down.  We can deal with these issues after Committee.  Let us finish up and then we will indulge so that the issues can be addressed.  Everything has to be dealt with accordingly.  Thank you Hon. Members.

          Amendment to new Clause 24 put and agreed to.

New Clause 24, as amended, put and agreed to.

          Clauses 25 to 27 put and agreed to.

On Clause 28:

THE MINISTER OF FINANCE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. M. NCUBE): New Clause 28 is proposed and pertains to expenses of investigation.  The proposal is to amend Section 41 of the Act by adding subsection 3 as follows; the registrar may recover the expenses of the investigation from monetary penalties imposed on micro-finance institutions in terms of Section 37 of the Act.  I thank you.

          Amendment to new Clause 28 put and agreed to.

New Clause 28, as amended, put and agreed to.

Clauses 29 to 33 put and agreed to. 

House resumed.

Bill reported with amendments.

Bill referred to the Parliamentary Legal Committee.

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI):  I move that we revert to Order of the Day, Number 2 on the Order Paper.

Motion put and agreed to. 

COMMITTEE STAGE

CONSUMER PROTECTION BILL [H. B. 10, 2018]

Second Order read: Committee Stage: Consumer Protection Bill [H. B. 10, 2018].

House in Committee.

          On Clause 1:

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON.  ZIYAMBI) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE (HON. M. NDLOVU):  Hon. Chair, I put the amendment proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce of the Long Title, that on page 5 of the Bill, in line 4, delete the word “Agency” and substitute with “Commission”, and Amendment of Clause 1 on page 5 again of the Bill, in line 13, delete the word “Zimbabwe”. I thank you.

          Amendment to Clause 1 put and agreed to.

          Clause 1, as amended, put and agreed to.

          On Clause 2:

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE (HON. M. NDLOVU): Thank you Hon. Chair. I put the amendment proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that:

          On Clause 2, on page 5 of the Bill in lines 17 and 20, delete the word “authority” and substitute with “Commission”.

          On page 6 of the Bill, in line 1, delete again the word “Agency” wherever it appears and substitute with “Commission”.

          On page 6 of the Bill, in line 7, delete the word “Authority” and substitute with “Commission”. I thank you.

          Amendment to Clause 2 put and agreed to.

          Clause 2, as amended, put and agreed to.

          Clause 3 put and agreed to.

          On Clause 4:

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE (HON. NDLOVU):  Thank you Hon. Chair. I put the amendment proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce on Clause 4 that:

          On page 10 of the Bill, in line 29, delete the word “Agency” and substitute with “Commission”.

          On pages 10 and 11 of the Bill, delete Clause 4 and substitute with the following:

“4      Establishment of Consumer Protection Commission

          There is hereby established a Commission to be known as the Consumer Protection Commission which shall be a body corporate capable of suing and being sued in its corporate name and performing all acts that body corporates may by law perform. I submit.

          Amendment to Clause 4 put and agreed to

          Clause 4, as amended, put and agreed to.

          On Clause 5:

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of  THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE (HON. NDLOVU) Thank you Hon. Chair. I put the amendment proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that on Clause 5, on pages 11 and 12 of the Bill, in line 6-13, delete Clause 5 and substitute with the following:

“5.     Composition of Commission

          The Commission shall consist of the Chief Executive Officer who shall be an ex officio member and not less than seven and not more than twelve members appointed by the Minister after consultation with the President and of whom at least-

(a)     one member shall be qualified or experienced in environmental        matters;

(b)     one member shall be qualified or experienced in agriculture     matters;

(c)     one member shall be nominated from the Ministry responsible for    Industry and Commerce;

(d)     one member shall be qualified or experienced in competition and     trade matters;

(e)     one member shall be qualified or experienced in standards and          quality matters’

(f)     a legal practitioner registered as such in terms of the Legal        Practitioners Act [Chapter 27:07];

(g)     one member shall be qualified or experienced in energy matters;       and

(h)     five members from accredited consumer protection advocacy   groups shall be qualified or experienced in consumer protection     matters.

(2)     In appointing members of the Commission, the Minister shall-

(a)     designate one member as Chairperson and another as Vice-      Chairperson of the Commission: Provided that if the Chairperson is male, the Vice-Chairperson shall be female or vice versa;

(b)     endeavour to ensure that at least half the appointed members are       women;

(c)     ensure fair regional representation; and

(d)     takes specific measures to ensure the inclusion and representation     of persons with disabilities.

(3)     A member of the Commission other than an ex officio member, shall hold office for a period of not more than five years and may be eligible for re-appointment for one more term upon satisfactory performance, unless his or her appointment is terminated in terms of the First Schedule.

(4)     The conditions of the Commission members shall be as specified in the First Schedule.

(5)     For the Commission to better discharge its functions in terms of       Section 6, it shall have the powers specified in the Second Schedule.

(6)     The Secretary of the Commission shall be the Chief Executive          Officer and as such shall be-

(a)     responsible to the Commission for the administration and        management of its affairs;

(b)     in charge of all administrative, executive and other staff of the           Commission and

(c)     responsible for causing a proper records of the minutes to be kept;   and

(d)     in all such matters and at all times, be subject to the direction and control of the Commission.

(7)     The Secretary of the Commission shall exercise such powers and      perform such duties as the Commission may delegate to him or her        in writing from time to time.

(8)     Any delegation of functions in terms of subsection (7)-

(a)     may be made generally or specifically and subject to such        conditions, restrictions, reservations and exceptions as the Commission may determine;

(b)     may be revoked by the Commission at any time;

(c)     shall not preclude the Commission itself from exercising such delegated functions.

(9)     With the approval of the Minister and in consultation with the Chief Executive Officer, the Commission may employ such other members of staff as it considers necessary to further is functions. I submit Mr. Chairman.

          HON. PARADZA: Mr. Chairman, on the appointment of the Commission, can we not transfer that to Parliament, to the Standing Rules and Orders Committee rather than the Minister to say the usual - our Committee on Standing Rules and Orders to appoint that.

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of  THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE (HON. NDLOVU) Thank you Hon. Chair. In the Constitution, there are independent commissions that support democracy and those ones are the ones that Parliament has been given powers to ensure that they play a role in the appointment of Commissioners. This Commission, if we are to do that, we will be usurping the powers of the Executive in doing their work. It is not a Commission that supports that. So, your proposal while appreciated is rejected. I thank you.

          HON. K. PARADZA: On the appointment of the Commission, can we not transfer that to Parliament’s Standing Rules and Orders Committee rather than to the Minister.

          HON. ZIYAMBI: In the Constitution, there are Independent Commissions that support democracy and those ones are the ones that Parliament has been given powers to ensure that they play a role in the appointment of Commissioners. This Commission, if we are to do that, we will be usurping the powers of the Executive in doing their work. It is not the Commission that supports that.  While I appreciate your proposal, it is rejected. I thank you.

          Amendment to Clause 5 put and agreed to.

          Clause 5, as amended, put and agreed to.

          On Clause 6:

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): I move the amendment standing in my name that;

      On page 12 of the Bill, in lines 14 - 44, delete Clause 6 and substitute with the following—

6   Functions of Commission

The functions of the Commission shall be to

   (a)   protect consumers from unconscionable, unreasonable, unjust or otherwise improper trade practices; as well as deceptive, misleading, unfair or fraudulent conduct; 

(b)    conduct conciliation and arbitration between parties;

(c)   promote fair business practices;

 (d)   co-ordinate and network consumer activities and liaise with consumer organisations and the competent authorities and agencies locally and outside Zimbabwe to protect consumer interests;

(e)    promote consumer confidence, awareness, empowerment, and the development of a culture of consumer responsibility, through individual and group education, vigilance, advocacy and activism;

(f)     provide for a consistent, accessible and efficient system of consensual resolution of disputes and redress arising from consumer transactions;

 (g)    refer matters to and appearing before any court of law, as permitted or required by this Act;

(h)    negotiate and conclude undertakings and consent orders;

(i) issue and enforce compliance notices in terms of section 69 of this Act;

(j)    receive complaints concerning alleged prohibited conduct or offences, and dealing with those complaints;

(k)    investigate and evaluate alleged prohibited conduct and offences;

 (l)   maintain a record of and publish annual reports on consumer complaints and the outcomes of any hearings;

 (m)   encourage and assist governmental and official organisational  support to further the interests of consumers and consumer organisations;

 (n)   refer to the Competition Commission or any other relevant Authority any concerns regarding market share, anti-competitive behaviour or conduct that may be prohibited in terms of the Competition Act [Chapter 14:28] or other relevant Acts;

(o)   cooperate with other consumer protection authorities to obtain redress across borders for consumers affected by fraudulent and deceptive commercial practices;

(p)   promote international co-operation in the comparative testing  of consumer goods and services and to facilitate exchange of test methods, plans and results;

 (q) recommend the effective implementation of this Act and any  other laws affecting consumers;

  (r) monitor—

(i) the consumer market to ensure that prohibited conduct and  offences are prevented, detected and prosecuted; and

(ii) the effectiveness of accredited consumer groups, industry  codes of conduct and alternative dispute resolution schemes, service delivery to consumers by organs of state, and any regulatory authority exercising jurisdiction over consumer matters within a particular industry or sector;

(s) regulate the accreditation of consumer protection advocacy  bodies and industry associations; and

(t) exercise any other function that may be conferred or imposed  on the Commission by or in terms of this Act or any other enactment.”.

          Amendment to Clause 6 put and agreed to.

          Clause 6, as amended, put and agreed to.

          On Clause 7:

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): I move the amendment proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that;

      On page 13 of the Bill, in lines 1 - 33, delete Clause 7 and renumber the subsequent clauses accordingly.

Amendment to Clause 7 put and agreed to.

          Clause 7, as amended, put and agreed to.

          On Clause 8:

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): I move the amendment proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that;

      On pages 13 - 15 of the Bill, in Clause 8, delete the word “Agency” wherever it appears and substitute with “Commission”.

On pages 14 of the Bill, in line 25, delete the word “Authority” and substitute with “Commission”.

Amendment to Clause 8 put and agreed to.

          Clause 8, as amended, put and agreed to.

          On Clause 9:

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): I move the amendment proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that;

      On page 15 of the Bill, in lines 6, 9 and14, delete the word “Agency” and substitute with “Commission”.

Amendment to Clause 9 put and agreed to.

          Clause 9, as amended, put and agreed to.

Clauses 10 to15 put and agreed to.

On Clause 16:

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI):  I put the amendment proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that on page 18 of the Bill, in line 17, delete the word “Authority” and substitute with “Commission”.

On page 18 of the Bill, lines 37, 40 and 42, delete the word “Agency” and substitute with “Commission”.

Amendment to Clause 16 put and agreed to.

Clause 16 as amended, put and agreed to.

Clauses 17 to 30 put and agreed to.

On Clause 31:

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI):  I put the amendment proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that on page 29 of the Bill, in line 28, delete the word “Agency” and substitute with “Commission”.

Amendment to Claus 31 put and agreed to.

Clause 31 as amended, put and agreed to.

Clauses 32 to 44 put and agreed to.

On Clause 45:

HON. NDUNA:  I want to applaud the Minister for this Clause, but I also want to add that the agreement should not be in fine print.  There should be no fine print anywhere.  All print should be legible in the same bold first print so that the consumer can knowingly go into that agreement.  There should not be any fine print of any nature.  This is known to be prevalent especially in the insurance sector and in sectors that you want to impede on any effective and efficient agreement appendage by the consumer in particular. 

I think this should also go down to the other clauses that follow, but there should not be any fine print either by the insurer, in particular Old Mutual and other insurance or pension financing houses.

HON. ZIYAMBI: Hon. Chair, I propose that we put it as it is.  We should not just over legislate and be very academic.  I understand his concerns.  I thank you.

Clause 45 put and agreed to.

Clauses 46 to 48 put and agreed to.

On Clause 49:

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFIARS (HON. ZIYAMBI):  I put the amendment proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that on page 43 of the Bill, in lines 13, 18, 22 and 26, delete the word “Agency” and substitute with “Commission”.

Amendment to Clause 49 put and agreed to.

Clause 49 as amended, put and agreed to.

          Clauses 50 to 65 put and agreed to.

          On Clause 66:

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE (HON. M. NDHLOVU): Thank you Hon. Chair.  I put the amendment proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce to Clause 66 on page 51 of the Bill - in lines 5 and 19, delete the word ‘Agency’ and substitute with ‘Commission’.  I thank you.

          HON. MUSHORIWA: Hon. Chair, I just want an assurance from the Hon. Minister.  I think what the Hon. Minister has done should be commendable, in the sense that they took cognisance of all the issues that were raised by Parliament and I think they need to be applauded for that.  My own query is to say, because these amendments came, there are likely to be some hygienic issues where there may be one area or the other that needs small changes, especially from the Commission and Agency. The Minister has to have the power, which is now under the Commission. In the sprucing up of the document, will it be done or will the drafters be in a position to do it post this Committee Stage.  I think there may be one or two areas that may have one or two mistakes like the Minister of Industry and Commerce was saying yesterday.

          HON. ZIYAMBI: I think that is the reason why we are going through clause by clause to ensure that.  I could have lumped them to say, wherever in the Bill, there is the word ‘Agency,’ change to the word ‘Commission.’  So, I am going clause by clause to ensure that it is also captured in the Hansard so that should there be any contestations, we can then also refer to the Hansard  to say what is it that was put to the House.  I think we will be able to do that and ensure that the Bill that will be transmitted would have been spruced up the way you suggest.  However, I want to thank you for the compliment that the recommendations put forward by the Commission were duly considered by the Minister of Industry and Commerce and incorporated into the Bill.  I thank you.  I so submit Hon. Chair.

          Amendment to Clause 66 put and agreed to.

          On Clause 67:

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE: Thank you Hon. Chair. I put the amendment proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce for the insertion of a new Clause 67 on page 51 of the Bill, after line 21 to insert the following Clause, which becomes the new Clause 67 which reads;

“67  Enforcement of rights by Commission.

(1)  Any person who has failed to have their dispute resolved through alternative dispute resolution may approach the Commission in the prescribed manner and form concerning the dispute;

(2)  Upon initiating or receiving a case in terms of subsection (1), the Commission may:

(a) refer the case to another regulatory authority with jurisdiction over the matter for investigation; or

(b)  direct an inspection to inspect or investigate the case within fourteen days; or

(c)  conciliate or mediate the case.

          (3) At any time during an investigation, the Commission may designate one or more persons with relevant expertise to assist the inspector conducting the investigation.

          (4) The Commission may:

          (a) initiate the proceedings where it considers necessary; or

          (b) when directed to do so by the Minister or on the request of ;

          (i)  an accredited consumer advocacy group; or

          (ii) a regulatory authority; or

          (iii)  any person acting in the public interest or on behalf of a group

 or class of affected persons;

refer a case to court concerning any alleged prohibited conduct.

(5)  The Commission may issue a notice of non-referral to the complainant in the prescribed form where the:

(a)  case appears to be frivolous and vexatious; or

(b) facts alleged in the case do not constitute grounds for a remedy in terms of this Act; or

(c)  case has prescribed in terms of the Prescription Act [Chapter8:11]”

          I so submit Hon. Chair.

          New Clause 67, as amended, put and agreed to.

          Clause 68 put and agreed to.

          On Clause 69:

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE: Thank you Hon. Chair.  I put the amendment proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that wherever there is ‘Agency,’ and we need to substitute with ‘Commission,’ the drafters will take care of that.  Accordingly, we can go through all those Clauses.  On page 52 of the Bill, in lines 2, 27, 30, 33, 35, 39, 41 and 43, delete the word ‘Agency’ and substitute with ‘Commission.’

          Amendment to Clause 69 put and agreed to.

          Clause 69, as amended, put and agreed to. 

          Clause 70 put and agreed to. 

          On Clause 71:

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE:   I put the amendments proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that, on page 53  of the Bill, in lines 11, 15, and 23, delete the “Agency” and substitute  with “Commission. 

          Amendments to Clause 71, put and agreed to.

          Clause 71, as amended, put and agreed to.

          On Clause 72: 

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE:   I put the amendments proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that, on page 53 of the Bill, in lines 29, 31, 34 and 35, delete the word “Agency’ and substitute with “Commission”.

          Amendments to Clause 72 put and agreed to.

          Clause 72, as amended, put and agreed to.

          On Clause 73: 

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE:   I put the amendments proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that, on page 54 of the Bill, in lines 2 and 8, delete the word “Agency” and substitute with “Commission”. 

          Amendments to Clause 73 put and agreed to. 

          Clause 73, as amended, put and agreed to.

          On Clause 74:

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE I put the amendments proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that, on page 54 of the Bill, in lines 13 – 28, delete the word “Agency” and substitute with “Commission”. 

          Amendments to Clause 74 put and agreed to.

          Clause 74, as amended, put and agreed to. 

          Clause s 75 – 76 put and agreed to.

          On Clause 77: 

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE:   I put the amendments proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that, on page 56 of the Bill, in lines 7 and 8, delete the word “Agency” and substitute with “Commission”. 

          Amendments to Clause 77 put and agreed to.

          Clause 77, as amended, put and agreed to.

          On Clause 78: 

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE:   I put the amendments proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that, on page 56 of the Bill, in lines 11, 15, 17, 21, 31 and 37, delete the word “Agency” and substitute with “Commission”.

          Amendments to Clause 78 put and agreed to.

          Clause 78, as amended, put and agreed to.

          On Clause 79: 

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE:   I put the amendments proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that, on page 57 of the Bill, in line 13, delete the word “Agency” and substitute with “Commission”. 

          Amendments to Clause 79 put and agreed to.

          Clause 79, as amended, put and agreed to.

          On Clause 80:

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE I put the amendments proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that, on page 57 of the Bill, in lines 17, 19, 20, 22, 27 and 28, delete the word “Agency” and substitute with “Commission”. 

          Amendments to Clause 80 put and agreed to.

          Clause 80, as amended, put and agreed to.

          On Clause 81: 

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE:   I put the amendments proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that, on page 58 of the Bill, in line 12, delete the word “Agency” and substitute with “Commission”.

          Amendments to Clause 81 put and agreed to.

          Clause 81, as amended, put and agreed to. 

          Clause 82 put and agreed to. 

          On Clause 83:

          On insertion of New Part VIII: 

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE:   I put the amendments proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that, on page58 of the Bill, after line 22, insert the following part – “Part VIII – Financial Provisions. 

Funds of the Commission

(1) the Minister in consultation with the Commission and shall, subject to the constitution drawn up for the regulation of the fund in terms of Section of the Public Finance Management Act [Chapter 22:18], establish the Consumer Protection Fund. 

(2) The Consumer Protection Fund shall be applied for the purpose of enabling the Commission to fulfill its functions in terms of Section 6 and to capacitate consumer organisations.

(3) The Consumer Protection Fund shall consist of –

(a)  monies appropriated by Parliament for the achievement of the objectives of the Commission;

(b) monies received by the Commission by virtue of the regulations made in terms of this Act;

(c) monies obtained by means of loans raised by the Commission with the approval of the Minister, in consultation with the Minister responsible for Finance;

(d) interest on investments; 

(e) donations, bequests, grants, contributions or royalties received by the Commission with the approval of the Minister;

(f) fees, levies and other income accruing to the Commission from registration, accreditation or any services provided by the Commission; 

(g) such other monies as may vest in or accrue to the Commission, whether in the course of its operations or otherwise; 

(4) The Commission shall employ its funds to defray expenses in connection with the performance of its functions.

(5) The Commission shall in each year at such time and in such forms as the Minister may determine, submit a statement of its estimated income and expenditure for the ensuing financial year to the Minister for approval. 

(6) The monies referred to in subsection (3) shall be employed by the Commission in accordance with the approved statement of income and expenditure referred to in subsection (5) above and any unexpected balance shall be carried forward as a credit to the following year. 

(7) Subject to the provisions of subsection (6), the Commission may invest any portion of its funds in such manner as the Minister with the concurrence of the Minister responsible for Finance may approve.

          Amendment to Clause 82 put and agreed to.

          Clause 82, as amended, put and agreed to.

          On Clause 83:

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE (HON. M. NDLOVU):  I put the amendments proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that on page 58 of the Bill, in lines 26 to 35 delete the word ‘Agency’ wherever it appears and substitute with ‘Commission’

          Amendment to Clause 83 put and agreed to,

          Clause 83, as amended, put and agreed to.

          On Clause 84:

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI) on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE (HON. M. NDLOVU): I put the amendments proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce, that on page 58 of the Bill, delete the word “Agency” and substitute with “Commission”.

          On page 58 of the Bill, in lines 12, 16, 19, and 20, delete the word “Agency” and substitute with “Commission”.

          Amendment to Clause 84 put and agreed to.

          Clause 84, as amended, put and agreed to.

          On Clause 85:

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI), on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE (HON. M. NDLOVU): I put the amendments proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that on page 59 of the Bill, in lines 21, 22, 24, 27, and 31, delete the word “Agency” and substitute with “Commission”

          Amendment to Clause 85 put and agreed to.

          Clause 85, as amended, put and agreed to.

          On Clause 86:

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI), on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE (HON. M. NDLOVU): I put the amendments proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that on page 59 of the Bill, in lines 34 and 37 delete the word “Agency” wherever it appears and substitute with “Commission”

          Amendment to Clause 86 put and agreed to.

          Clause 86, as amended, put and agreed to.

          On Clause 87:

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI), on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE (HON. M. NDLOVU): I put the amendments proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that on page 60 of the Bill, in lines 3, 11, and 13, delete the word “Agency” and substitute with “Commission”.

          Amendment to Clause 87 put and agreed to.

          Clause 87, as amended, put and agreed to.

          On Clause 88:

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI), on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE (HON. M. NDLOVU): I put the amendments proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that on page 60 of the Bill, in lines 25, 26 and 29, delete the word “Agency” and substitute with “Commission”.

          Amendment to Clause 88 put and agreed to.

          Clause 88, as amended, put and agreed to.

          On Clause 89:

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI), on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE (HON. M. NDLOVU): I put the amendments proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that on page 60 of the Bill, in line 38, delete the word “Agency” and substitute with “Commission”.

          Amendment to Clause 89 put and agreed to.

          Clause 89, as amended, put and agreed to.

          On First Schedule:

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI), on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE (HON. M. NDLOVU): I put the amendments proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that on page 60 of the Bill, after line 45, insert the following Schedules: ‘First Schedule (Section 5 (3) and (4);

FIRST SCHEDULE (Section 5 (3) & (4))

PROVISIONS APPLICABLE TO COMMISSION

Paragraphs

1.    Interpretation in Schedule.

2.    Terms of office and conditions of service of members.

3.    Disqualifications for appointment as member.

4.    Chairperson and vice-chairperson.

5.    Vacation of office by member.

6.    Dismissal or suspension of member.

7.    Filling of vacancies on Commission.

8.    Meetings and procedure of Commission.

9.    Committees of Commission.

10.    Remuneration and expenses of Commission and members of committees.

11.    Validity of decisions of Commission.

12.    Minutes of proceedings of Commission and committees.

13.    Members of the Commission to disclose certain connection and interests.

 Interpretation in Schedule

1.“member” means a member of the Commission.

Terms of office and conditions of service of members

      2.(1) Subject to this Schedule, a member shall hold office for such period, not exceeding three years, as the Minister may fix on his or her appointment.

(2)  A member shall continue in office after the expiry of his or her term until he or she has been re-appointed or his or her successor has been appointed;

      Provided that a member shall not hold office in terms of this sub-paragraph for longer than six months.

(3)  Subject to paragraph 1, a member shall hold office on such terms and conditions as the Minister may fix in relation to members generally.

(4)  A retiring member is eligible for re-appointment as a member:

      Provided that no member may be re-appointed for a third term in office.

(5)  The terms and conditions of office of a member shall not, without the member’s consent, be altered to his or her detriment during his or her tenure of office.

Disqualifications for appointment as member

3. (1) The Minister shall not appoint a person as a member and no person shall be qualified to hold office as a member who

          (a)     is not a citizen of Zimbabwe;  or

          (b)     has, in terms of a law in force in any country¾

          (i)      been adjudged or otherwise declared insolvent or bankrupt and has not been rehabilitated or discharged; or

          (ii)    made an assignment to, or arrangement or composition with, his or her creditors which has not been rescinded or set aside; or

          (c)     has, immediately preceding the date of his or her proposed appointment, been convicted¾

          (i)      in Zimbabwe, of an offence involving dishonesty;  or

          (ii)    outside Zimbabwe, in respect of conduct which, if committed in Zimbabwe, would constitute an offence;

             and sentenced to a term of imprisonment imposed without the option of a fine.

(2)  A person who is—

          (a)     a member of Parliament; or

          (b)     a member of two or more other statutory bodies;

shall not be appointed as a member, nor shall he or she be qualified to hold office as a member.

(3)  For the purposes of sub-paragraph (2) (b), a person who is appointed to a council, board or other authority or other authority which is a statutory body or which is responsible for the administration of the affairs of a statutory body shall be regarded as a member of that statutory body.

 Chairperson and vice-chairperson of Commission

4. (1) The chairperson and vice-chairperson of the Commission may at any time, by written notice to the Minister resign their offices as such.

 (2)    Within three weeks after being notified of a vacancy in the office of chairperson or vice-chairperson of the Commission, the Minister shall appoint another member to fill the vacancy;

 (3)    The vice-chairperson of the Commission shall perform the functions of the chairperson whenever the chairperson is unable to perform them or the office of the chairperson is vacant.

Vacation of office by member

5. A member shall vacate his or her office and his or her office shall become vacant¾

      (a)         three months after the date upon which he or she gives notice in writing to the Minister of his or her intention to resign, or on the expiry of such other period of notice as he or she and the Minister may agree; or

      (b)         on the date he or she begins to serve a sentence of imprisonment imposed without the option of a fine¾

          (i)      in Zimbabwe, in respect of an offence involving dishonesty; or

          (ii)    outside Zimbabwe, in respect of conduct which, if committed in Zimbabwe, would constitute an offence; or

      (c)         if he or she becomes disqualified in terms of paragraph 2 (1) (a), (b) or (c) or in terms of sub-paragraph (2) of that paragraph, to hold office as a member; or

      (d)         if he or she is required in terms of paragraph 3 to vacate his or her office.

Dismissal or suspension of members

6. (1) The Minister may require a member to vacate his or her office if the member¾

      (a)         has, subject to sub-paragraph (3), been found to have conducted himself or herself in a manner that renders him or her unsuitable as a member; or

      (b)         has failed to comply with any term or condition of his or her office fixed by the Minister; or

      (c)         is mentally or physically incapable of efficiently carrying out his or her functions as a member; or

      (d)         has been absent without the permission of the Commission from two consecutive meetings of the Commission of which he or she was given at least seven days’ notice, and there was no just cause for the member’s absence.

(2)  The Minister, may suspend a member¾

      (a)         whom he or she suspects on reasonable grounds of having been guilty of conduct referred to in sub-paragraph (1) (a); or

      (b)         against whom criminal proceedings have been instituted for an offence in respect of which a sentence of imprisonment without the option of a fine may be imposed and while that member is so suspended he or she shall not carry out any functions as a member.

(3)  A member suspended in terms of sub-paragraph (2) (a) shall be given notice in writing of the grounds for the suspension and may, within fourteen days of being so notified, make written representations to the Minister showing cause why no finding of misconduct rendering him or her unsuitable to be member of the Commission should be made.

(4)  The Minister, after consultation with the President, shall require a member suspended in terms of subparagraph (2) (a) to vacate his or her office if¾

      (a)         no representations are made by the member in terms of subparagraph (3); or

      (b)         the Minister finds that, notwithstanding representations made in terms of sub-paragraph (3), the member is guilty of the misconduct alleged.

Filling of vacancies on Commission

7.  On the death of, or vacation of office by, a member, the Minister may appoint a qualified person to fill the vacancy:

       Provided that if as a result of the vacancy the number of members falls below the number specified in this Act, the Minister shall fill the vacancy within three weeks.

Meetings and procedure of Commission

8. (1) The Commission shall hold its first meeting on such date and at such place as the Minister may fix, being not more than three months after the fixed date, and thereafter the Commission shall meet for the dispatch of business as often as is necessary or expedient and, subject to this paragraph, may adjourn, close and otherwise regulate its meetings and procedure as it thinks fit:

Provided that the Commission shall meet not less than six times in each financial year of the Commission.

(2)  The chairperson of the Commission ¾

      (a)         may at any time convene a special meeting of the Commission; and

      (b)         shall convene a special meeting of the Commission on the written request of not fewer than two members, not later than fourteen days after his or her receipt of such request.

(3)  Written notice of any special meeting shall be sent to each member not later than seven days before the meeting and shall specify the business for which the meeting has been convened:

      Provided that if, in the opinion of the chairperson, the urgency of the business for which the meeting is to be convened so requires, notice of not less than forty-eight hours may be given.

(4)  No business shall be discussed at a special meeting other than:¾

      (a)         such business as may be determined by the chairperson of the Commission, where he or she has convened the meeting in terms of sub-paragraph 2 (a); or

      (b)         the business specified in the request for the meeting, where he or she has convened the meeting in terms of sub-paragraph 2 (b).

(5)  The chairperson or, in his or her absence, the vice-chairperson shall preside at all meetings of the Commission:

        Provided that, if the chairperson and the vice-chairperson are both absent from a meeting of the Commission, the members present may elect one of their number to preside at that meeting as chairperson.

(6)  Five members shall form a quorum at any meeting of the Commission.

(7)  All acts, matters or things authorised or required to be done by the Commission may be decided by a majority vote at a meeting of the Commission at which a quorum is present.

(8)  Subject to this Act at all meetings of the Commission, each member present shall have one vote on each question before the Commission and, in the event of an equality of votes, the chairperson shall have a casting vote in addition to a deliberative vote.

(9)  Any proposal circulated among all members and agreed to in writing by a majority of all members shall have the same effect as a resolution passed at a duly constituted meeting of the Commission and shall be incorporated in the minutes of the next succeeding meeting of the Commission:

Provided that, if a member requires that such proposal be placed before a meeting of the Commission, this subparagraph shall not apply to such proposal.

Committees of Commission

9. (1) For the better exercise of its functions, the Commission may establish one or more committees and vest in the committees such of its functions as it thinks fit:

      Provided that the vesting of any functions in a committee shall not divest the Commission of those functions in relation to any matter that has not been decided by the committee.

(2)  Where it has established a committee, the Commission ¾

      (a)         shall appoint at least one member of the Commission to be a member of the committee and shall designate that member, or one of those members, as the case may be, to be chairperson of the committee; and

      (b)         subject to sub-paragraph (3), may appoint persons who are not members of the Commission to be members of the committee.

(3)  The Commission shall not appoint a person to be a member of a committee if he or she is disqualified in terms of section 2 from appointment as a member of the Commission.

(4)  The office of a member of a committee of the Commission shall terminate¾

      (a)         in the case of a member who is a member of the Commission, upon his or her ceasing to be a member of the Commission;

      (b)         in the case of a member who is not a member of the Commission, if he or she would be required in terms of paragraph 1 to vacate office had that paragraph and section 3 (1) (a), (b) and (c) applied to him or her.

(5)  Subject to this paragraph, members of committees of the Commission shall hold office on such conditions as the Commission may fix for members of committees generally.

(6)  The chairperson of the Commission convenes a meeting of a committee of the Commission at any time and place.

(7) The procedure to be followed at any meeting of a committee of the Commission shall be fixed by the Commission.

 Remuneration and expenses of members of Commission and members of committees

10. (1) Members and members of committees of the Commission shall be paid from the funds of the Commission ¾

      (a)         such remuneration, if any, as the Commission, with the approval of the Minister, may from time to time fix for such members generally; and

      (b)         such allowances as the Commission, with the approval of the Minister, may from time to time fix to meet any reasonable expenses incurred by such members in connection with the business of the Commission or of the committee concerned, as the case may be.

(2)  The remuneration of a member or member of a committee of the Commission shall not, without the member’s consent, be altered to his or her detriment during his or her tenure of office.

Validity of decisions and acts of Commission

11.  No decision or act of the Commission or act done under the authority of the Commission shall be invalid on the ground that¾

      (a)         the Commission consisted of fewer than the number of persons prescribed in paragraph 8 (6); or

      (b)         a disqualified person acted as a member of the Commission at the time the decision was taken or act was done or authorised:

                   Provided that the Commission shall ratify any such decision or action within a month after it becomes aware that the decision or action was taken in the circumstances described in paragraph (a) or (b).

Minutes of proceedings of Commission and committees

12.(1) The Commission shall cause minutes of all proceedings of and decisions taken at every meeting of the Commission or of a committee of the Commission to be entered in books kept for the purpose.

(2)  Any minutes which purport to be signed by the chairperson of the meeting to which the minutes relate or by the chairman of the next following meeting of the Commission or the committee concerned, as the case may be, shall be accepted for all purposes as prima facie evidence of the proceedings of and decisions taken at the meeting concerned.

 Members to disclose certain connections and interests

13.(1)  In this section¾

“relative” in relation a member means the Member’s spouse, child, parent, brother or sister;

(2) Subject to subsection (4)¾

      (a)         if a member¾

      (i)          knowingly acquires or holds a direct or indirect pecuniary interest in any matter that is under consideration by the Commission; or

      (ii)        owns any property or has a right in property or a direct or indirect pecuniary interest in a company or association of persons which results in the members private interest coming or appearing to come into conflict with his functions as member; or

      (iii)       knows or has reason to believe that a relative of his¾

          A       has acquired or holds direct or indirect interest in any matter that is under consideration by the Commission; or

          B       owns any property or has a right in property or a direct or indirect pecuniary interest in a company or association of persons which results in the members private interest coming or appearing to come into conflict with his functions as member;

      or

      (b)         if for any reason the private interest of a member comes into conflict with his functions as a member;

the Member shall forthwith disclose the facts to the Commission.

(3). A member referred to in subparagraph (2) shall take no part in the consideration or discussion of, or vote on, any question before the Commission which relates to any contract, right, immovable property or interest referred to in that subparagraph.

(4) A member who contravenes subparagraph (2) or (3) shall be guilty of and offence and liable to a fine not exceeding level seven or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding six months or to both such fine and such imprisonment.

          Amendment to First Schedule put and agreed to.

          First Schedule, as amended, put and agreed to.

          On Second Schedule:

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI), on behalf of THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE (HON. M. NDLOVU): I put the amendments proposed by the Minister of Industry and Commerce that:

1.     To acquire premises necessary or convenient for the exercise of its functions and for that purpose to buy, take on lease or in exchange, hire or otherwise acquire immovable property and any interest therein and any rights concessions, grants, powers and privileges in respect thereof.

2.    To buy, take in exchange, hire or otherwise acquire movable property necessary or convenient for the exercise of its functions.

3.    To maintain, alter or improve property acquired by it.

4.    To mortgage any assets, or part of any assets and, with the approval of the Minister, to sell, exchange, lease, dispose of turn to account or otherwise deal with any assets or part of any assets which are not required for the exercise of its functions for such consideration as it may determine.

5.    To open bank accounts in the name of the Commission and to draw, make, accept, endorse, discount, execute and issue for the purposes of its functions, promissory notes, bills of exchange, securities and other negotiable or transferable instruments.

6.    To insure against losses, damages, risks and liabilities which it may incur.

7.    In consultation with the Minister, to establish and administer such funds and reserves not specifically provided for in this Act as the Commission considers appropriate or necessary for the proper exercise of its functions.

8.    To pay such remuneration and allowances and grant such leave of absence and to make such gifts, bonuses and the like to staff of the Commission as it considers fit.

9.    To provide pecuniary benefits for staff of the Commission on their retirement, resignation, discharge or other termination of service or in the event of their sickness or injury and for their dependants, and for that purpose to effect policies of insurance, provident funds or make such other provision as may be necessary to secure for its staff and their dependants any or all of the pecuniary benefits to which the provisions of this paragraph relate.

10.                       To purchase, take on lease or in exchange or otherwise acquire land for residential purposes or dwellings-houses for use or occupation by staff of the Commission.

11.                       To construct dwellings, out buildings or improvements for use or occupation by members of the Commission.

12.                       To provide or guarantee loans made to members of the Commission for the purchase of dwelling-houses or land for residential purposes, the construction of dwelling-houses and the improvement of dwelling houses or land which are the property of its members of the Commission, subject to any conditions that may be imposed by the Commission from time to time.

13.                       To provide security in respect of loans by the deposit of securities, in which the Commission may invest such money as it may consider necessary for the purpose.

14.                       Subject to any conditions that may be imposed by the Commission from time to time, to provide loans to—

(a)  members of the Commission for the purpose of purchasing vehicles or other equipment to be used by the members of staff in carrying out their duties; or

(b)                        members of the staff for the procuring of vehicles which may be resold to such members after five years:

Provided that—

(i)  the Commission may fix further terms and conditions for this vehicle scheme; or

(ii)                       such loan shall not exceed twelve months’ salary or wages payable to the members concerned, for any purpose on such security as the Commission thinks adequate.

15.                       To register, in the Commission ’s name, any property, whether movable or immovable, purchased for any member of Commission or member of staff through loan or loan guarantee until the loan or loan guarantee has been discharged.

16.                       To do anything for the purpose of improving the skill, knowledge or usefulness of members of the Commission, members of staff, and in that connection to provide or assist other persons in providing facilities for training, education and research, including the awarding of scholarships for such training:

Provided that the duration of such training shall not exceed two years.

17.                       To engage in any activity, either alone or in conjunction with civil society organisations and other organisations or international agencies, to promote better understanding of peace building strategies and conflict prevention, management, resolution and transformation.

18.                       To do anything which by this Act or any other enactment is required or permitted to be done by the Commission.

19.                       Generally, to do all such things that are conducive to the performance of the functions of the Commission in terms of this Act or any other enactment.”.

Amendment to Second Schedule put and agreed to

Second Schedule, as amended, put and agreed to.

House resumed.

Bill reported with amendments.   

          Bill referred to the Parliamentary Legal Committee.        

          THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): Hon. Speaker, I want to thank the Hon. Members for their patience.

          On the motion of THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI), the House adjourned at Twenty Three Minutes to Seven o’clock p.m. until Tuesday, 11th June, 2019.

 

 

 

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National Assembly Hansard NATIONAL ASSEMBLY HANSARD 30 MAY 2019 VOL 45 NO 58