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NATIONAL ASSEMBLY HANSARD - 9 MARCH 2011 VOL. 37 NO. 26

Wednesday, 9th March, 2011

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

 

PRAYERS

(MR. SPEAKER in the Chair)

ANNOUNCEMENTS BY MR. SPEAKER

LAUNCH OF THE INTERNATIONAL DAY OF WOMEN

MR. SPEAKER: All Women Caucus members are invited to attend International Day of Women Launch on Friday 11th March, 2011 in Chinhoyi, Mashonaland West. This announcement comes from the Chairperson of our Women's Caucus.

SWITCHING OFF OF CELLPHONES

MR. SPEAKER: I have to remind hon. members to switch off their cellphones before business commences.

ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITHOUT NOTICE

MR. CROSS: I would like to ask the Minister of Industry and Commerce to make a statement to this House on the status of the deal between ZISCO and ESSAR and the policy of government within that deal towards the outstanding emoluments which are due to staff? Are the staff going to be paid outstanding salaries by the new owners of ZISCO?

THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE (PROF. NCUBE): The status of the deal with ESSAR is that we are in the process of putting the final touches to the written agreement with ESSAR and that those final touches, as of this morning, had been completed and barring any unforeseen circumstances, we should be signing the contract at 1630 hours this afternoon. Hopefully, we will be bringing to an end the long protracted negotiations over this matter and that the investor can, in earnest, begin implementing that which is required to be done at ZISCO. That work includes attending to the various debts that are owed by ZISCO to both foreign and local creditors. The local creditors include the workers, some of whom have not been paid for nearly or for over two years.

The agreement is that the major shareholders, that is ESSAR and the Government of Zimbabwe, which will retain a shareholding of about 32% after the agreement, they will together ensure that the workers are paid their dues. What is due to them is an existing debt and part of what we negotiated is that all existing debts be cleared one way or another. We hope that as soon as possible, once the agreement is signed, the modalities of how we clear these debts and how quickly will then be implemented.

MR. SPEAKER: Hon member in the African attire, kindly revert to your normal sitting place. We normally reserve the front benches for the Executive.

MR. MAZIKANA: I direct my question to the Minister of Labour and Social Welfare. -[HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjection]- I beg your protection from the Talibans Mr Speaker.

MR. SPEAKER: Hon. member, in this House, we do not have Talibans. We have hon. members here, representing their hon. constituencies. Kindly refrain from referring to any hon. member as a Taliban. Hon member, when the Speaker is speaking you are supposed to be seated. Kindly withdraw that statement because you cannot refer to hon. members as Talibans other than honourable.

MR. MAZIKANA: I withdraw. Minister, we have districts like Mbire, Muzarabani, Rushinga and so forth, which have been devastated by lack of rains and crops have completely wilted. Can we get a response on what action the minister is going to undertake to alleviate the plight of Zimbabweans.

THE MINISTER OF LABOUR AND SOCIAL SERVICES (MS. MPARIWA): Thank you Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the hon. member for his question but perhaps I will begin by correcting the name of the ministry that I represent - it is the Ministry of Labour and Social Services please note, Services, not Welfare.

The question I get from the hon. member, though it was not very clear but I will try and clarify it because I think I have understood what the intention was - that there are several districts in Mashonaland Central that are drought stricken. Yes, I do agree and I think the hon. member can recall the question that he asked last year, I think, sometime in October pertaining to the drought - what is the action? What is the policy of Government in terms of saving our communities from starvation or death by hunger?

Number one is that, last year I presented to this House that we carried what we call, 'Hunger assessment/drought assessment' - where we identified several districts to have been drought stricken. As Government, we engaged the donor community who serve in the various districts/constituencies to go and feed but as government also, we allocated ourselves in phases. I think, members can use the institutional memory in terms of what I said for the distribution of the food or drought mitigation strategy.

One, we have where we say we have labour constrained households - what do I mean by that? Labour constrained households are those households who have vulnerable people like elderly, sick, orphans and very young children. Those cannot offer their labour in terms of doing some work or what we call 'Food for work'. Therefore, we go in those households and provide for food assistance without any demand of having them work in the fields or do some kind of community rehabilitation programmes.

Number two, is where we have households that have active members of the household who can perform some kind of work in the community - that is bridges, mending of the roads, irrigation, etc. These ones will offer labour and we said, if you can also still recall. I recall, some two weeks ago before the House adjourned, I answered a question similar to this one; where we are saying, they will have to work for 15 days, that is two weeks and then they get some kind of cash to access food from a depot of their choice but we have been encouraging that food has to be readily available to the nearest depot so that people do not have to walk long distances or having to board transport that will cost more than what they will be paid.

The second portion of the answer is that, through the Ministry of Agriculture, we have carried a drought assessment to just get the preliminary indication because seeing the green, you might mistake it for the real cobs that a person will harvest. We have observed that there are districts that will need assistance and where the hon. member comes from is one indication of such kind of a scenario where we will chip in as government to assist. What we have done as a ministry is the preparation with the exchange of information from the Ministry of Agriculture - various other ministries because it is an inter-ministerial task force that will have to sit in a room and draw the modalities to find how many districts now need food as we prepare for the next crop harvest. If need be, then we will go fully fledged because that is just an indication of the districts in Mashonaland Central, but we may never know what is happening in Manicaland or Mashonaland West. So, as Government, we are prepared to save our citizens/communities in terms of chipping in with extra food; chipping in with NGOs and development partners to assist so that no one starves or dies from hunger.

MR. DZIRUTWE: My question is directed to the Deputy Prime Minister, Prof. Mutambara. Last year when members of the House raised concerns about the inability of citizens of this country to pay electricity and housing rates, the House was promised that there would be an inter-ministerial Committee that will look into it. Can the Deputy Prime Minister please update this House how far the committee has gone because people are still crying about their inability to pay these rates?

THE DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER (PROF. MUTAMBARA): I want to thank the hon. member for that question. The output of the Task Force on Cost Drivers is currently work in progress. We have identified a number of areas where we can cut costs so that we can make the lives of our civil servants and people in general reasonable. What we have done then is to go back to the ministries, Housing, Water, Electricity, Transport to see how we can operationalise cost cutting measures.

So, without preempting the work that is being done by the Committee on Cost Drivers, I would want to say that yes, we have identified areas where we can reduce the costs to our civil servants. We are now thinking in terms of operationalising the findings, I want to thank the hon. member for that question.

MR. DZIRUTWE: Despite your assurance that something is happening - out there, people are having their electricity disconnected because they cannot pay; they are having water disconnected because they owe a lot of money. So, what then can the people do, in the mean time, to mitigate against this kind of thing because they do not have water and electricity?

THE DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER (PROF. MUTAMBARA): Madam Speaker, we must distinguish between matters that reside within ministries - Water as a Ministry; Electricity and Transportation as ministries and matters that reside within the Committee on Cost Drivers.

The issue raised by the hon. member resides in the Ministry of Water and what we can do is to have him put his question in writing so that he can get specific responses from the ministry. However, let me emphasise that we should not look at the work of the Committee on Cost Drivers in isolation. The history behind it is that, as Cabinet, as Government, we are saying how do we improve material conditions of our workers? How do we improve the material conditions of our civil servants? We setup two Committees - one is the one referred to by the hon. member which is the Committee on Cost Drivers. The second one is on Resource Mobilisation that says, can we not somehow find a way of mobilising resources so that we can pay a living wage to our civil servants; so that our Members of Parliament can be paid a reasonable wage.

So, by using the outcomes of the combination of the two committees - the one on Cost Drivers and the other on Resource Mobilisation, we will be able to come up with an answer that will create conditions in the country where our civil servants are paid a reasonable wage; where our workers in general will be able to survive the conditions in our country. I want to thank the hon. member for that question but I ask him to specifically send that question to the Ministry of Water so that he can get answers that are specific to the challenges that he is raising.

MR. MUSUMBU: My question is directed to the Minister of Education, Sport, Arts and Culture. Each year we hear of examination papers leakages, what is the ministry doing to curb this?

THE MINISTER OF EDUCATION, SPORTS, ARTS AND CULTURE (MR COLTART): I am not sure if I have heard the question correctly. If I understood, the hon. member is asking about missing or leaking of examination papers. I think that we need to recognize that the performance of ZIMSEC has improved dramatically over the last two years. When the Inclusive Government began in February, 2009, the examination papers for the November 2008 examinations had not been marked yet. This year the examination papers have been marked and 'A' Level results were produced at the same time Cambridge 'A' results were produced. In other words, we have seen a marking improvement.

However, to get to the question, there are still problems involved in ZIMSEC's operations. It is pandemic, although its performance has improved, there are still problems that have occurred. The hon. member's question, I think arises from one incident which occurred last year where in one school in Masvingo, papers were either stolen or taken out of the school and in that way leaked. That was not the faulty of ZIMSEC. There was inadequate security provisions made by the school in question. However, we need to bear in mind that there are over 2000 secondary schools in Zimbabwe and so to have one school where there has been lax in security, I do not belief it is a bad average.

Anyway, I would like to assure hon. members that by all objective standards, ZIMSEC's performance is improving and I think that is especially so because of the new board under the Chairmanship of Professor Maphosa.

MR. MATONGA: In the absence of the Minister of Energy, I now direct my question to the Leader of the House, the real Deputy Prime Minister. I would like to find out Government's policy on procurement. This is in reference to the fuel that was purchased from a company called Nooh Fuels from South Africa. We understand that there was a directive by the Minister directing NOCZIM to procure fuel direct from them without going to tender. What is the government's position on that matter.

THE DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER (PROF. MUTAMBARA) That is a very specific question that will require technical response from the minister responsible. However, I must say that whatever we do as government, whatever we do as Cabinet, we stay on the straight and narrow in terms of our tender processes and our laws. I would like to suggest to the hon. member to put his question in writing so that he can get a detailed and more specific response from the minister responsible for that ministry.

MR. MATONGA: This is a specific issue on policy, so I would like to find out whether there is a change in policy. This does not require technical response but it is a policy issue because people have to go to tender. Has there been a policy change?

THE DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER (PROF. MUTAMBARA): If the hon. member was listening carefully, he would have noticed that I responded to that question. I said, without preempting the answer from the minister, as a Government we stay on the narrow and straight. There is no change in terms of tender policy framework. Where required by law to go to tender, we have to comply. There is no variation, there is no vitiation from that.

MR MATIBE: My question is directed to the Minister of National Healing. The Commissioner General of the Police, Mr. Chihuri said the investigations for the atrocities that went on in June 2008 are now your responsibility. Are you now making headway in those investigations.

THE MINISTER OF NATIONAL HEALING (MR M. M. NDLOVU): I am very grateful that I have just been appointed as the new Minister of Home Affairs and I am sure the question should be directed to the Minister of Police. Nevertheless, the Commissioner of Police does not fall directly under the organ on National Healing but however, I do appreciate the question that has been raised. I want to assure the hon. member to say that the organ on National Healing, Reconciliation, Integration is gravely concerned about the issue of violence that we took that statement with a lot of seriousness that it deserves as an organ because precisely, that undermines our work of national healing of all the wounds with a lot of attention that it deserves.

However, the specifics around the promises made by the Commissioner of Police do not follow within our purview but let me assure you that tomorrow precisely at 1030 hours, we will have a meeting with the relevant ministries including the Ministry of Home Affairs to persue that issue so that we can assure the citizens of this country that the state is there to protect their lives as it should be.

MRS SHIRICHENA: My question is directed to the Minister of National Housing. Can the minister explain how the 8 member inter-ministerial committee works out modalities of ensuring the equitable distribution of financial resources to all civil servants?

THE MINISTER OF NATIONAL HOUSING AND SOCIAL AMENITIES (MR MUTSEKWA): Let me thank the hon. member for raising that question which I regard as pertinent. It is true that we set up a ministerial committee to supervise the equal distribution of the loans that we give to civil servants. As chairman of that committee, I am talking about my ministry, we made every endevour to ensure that firstly, the committee understands what their parameters are and how we intend to do this particular job. The briefing that I got from the committee is that the everything was done and done perfectly in order to assist and help the remotest civil servants in the country. However, it is very possible as I have always said, that this money might have not reached every needy person. So I am welcoming any other comments, remarks or complaints that could be arising, especially from Members of Parliament regarding that particular fund.

I have said so because it teaches us, since this loan scheme is going to be an ongoing exercise. Secondly, it helps us to trace and see how and where the faulty lines are.

MR. KANZAMA: Thank you Madam Speaker, my question is directed to the Minister of Industry and Commerce, Prof. Ncube. It seems like most of our big companies are continuing to close down because there is no support from the Government. How far have you gone on the disbursement of the US$70 m that the government promised the industry? What are you doing to improve government revenue from the industry?

THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE (PROF. NCUBE): I thank the hon. member for the question in respect of the continuing closures of companies and indeed the continuing below expectation performances of companies, the reasons are many and varied. The most important and critical of them is the lack of access to adequate long term lines of credit at affordable rates of interest. Our economy still does not have sufficient money for the productive sector to access. Whether that money relates to the various schemes by Government or relates to the ordinary financial institutions which operate in this country, that remains a major challenge that we face in the business sector. Some of the problems are, in some ways, self inflicting, some relate to the inability of Government sometimes to work with speed and cohesion. The facility you refer to is a facility which is generally managed by the Ministry of Finance or at least the disbursement thereof as well as the rules under which the facility is accessed, again is the responsibility of the Ministry of Finance. I can say that the monies were disbursed as long ago as September of last year. I regret that up to today, not a single business has in fact been able to access that money and the reasons vary from time to time. When we approach the banks to assist the businesses, the Ministry of Industry they tell us that the Ministry of Finance has not given them the rules, therefore they can not disburse the money to anyone because they do not have the rules to do so. When we talk to the Ministry of Finance, they tell us that they have issued the rules and we have a tug of war between the Ministry of Finance and the banks this matter. As I speak to you, yesterday I was still speaking with the Minister of Finance about this matter and my permanent secretary has also been speaking to the permanent secretary of finance about this issue. As of yesterday, the Ministry of Finance assured me that since some of the underwriters of that fund, the Afrexim Bank and African Development Bank are here for the seminar or conference, I am sure he will try and ensure that some of the issues relating to these issues are resolved before they leave. In the next day or so next week, that problem would have been resolved. Let us say it has been in the bank for some time now and we should have resolved that issue by now. I thank you Madam Speaker.

MR. MUNGOFA: Thank you, my question is directed to the Minister of Mines. The question relates to the closure of SMM mines. Have you, of recent, discussed problems arising in those mines with the Minister of Justice because the people have taken so long before they are paid their wages and salaries. We are told that they were last paid two years ago I do not know whether you can give a statement as relates to that?

THE MINISTER OF MINES (MR. MPOFU): I would like to thank the hon. member for proffering that question. Yes it is government policy to liaise with ministries and have taken action into the activities of another ministry, specifically for this one. It has to do with mining, so the fate of the mines falling under SMM which, previously, were owned by Mr. Mutumwa Mawere who is now a South African citizen - yes I did pay a visit to the area concerned and also did liaise with the workers management and board members. It has something to do with the legalities followed by the Minister of Justice in terms of the management of SMM in the interim as a result of the problems that government has observed in the interim. I could actually say that issue is under focus, we are aware of the problems being faced but to have a more appropriate and detailed response, I would advise the honourable member to pose his question in writing to the hon. Minister of Justice Mr. Chinamasa under whose purview the current issue is being handled. I thank you.

MR. CHIKWINYA: Thank you Madam Speaker, my question is directed to the Minister of Industry and Commerce. On the second of President Mugabe announced that he wanted to repossess about 500 companies whose directors are harboured in countries he termed hostile, with specific regard to sanctions, how does this remark interrelate with your policy as a ministry in Industry and Commerce with regard to protection of companies which are already established in Zimbabwe?

THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE (PROF. NCUBE): Thank you very much Madam Speaker, I can not say that it is not a policy of the Inclusive Government to repossess companies. It is not one of the policies in the Inclusive Government to take other people's properties. To move in that direction, it has been discussed in the Inclusive Government and I hope we are now, as a ministry going to continue. I can say most definitely the matter has not been discussed in the Inclusive Government and clearly therefore, we continue as a ministry, to pursue the agreed policies of the Government and they do not include that aspect.

MR. MAZIKANA: I direct my question to the Minister of Constitutional and Parliamentary Affairs. Last year the whole of the country carried out a constitution making exercise and private individuals hired out there vehicles for use during the exercise. What reassurance can you give them as regards to their outstanding balances that they are owed?

THE MINISTER OF CONSTITUTIONAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (ADV. MATINENGA): I thank Hon. Mazikana for bringing up this question. The issue of meeting commitments is the issue which lies in the hands of the Parliamentary Select Committee. As we all know, that committee is wholly funded by the Government of the Republic of Zimbabwe. Other partners also show cause and associate themselves in participating to support this critical process in the country.

The persons which you refer to hon. member are classified like everybody else as creditors. I can tell you that the ministry, the Government is aware that an amount of US$4.12 million is owed to various creditors. These include the persons you refer to.

You are aware that I made a statement on Tuesday appreciating the money that has been disbursed for this critical process by the Ministry of Finance which amounts to US$5 million. It is anticipated that this amount of money will be ready by the end of the week and COPAC will be able to access this money by the end of this week or early next week.

As Government, we appreciate that when we give people a job, you must let them do the job. We then expect that COPAC will look into this issue. It will look at the money which is at their disposal and obviously look at how they are going to meet certain liabilities including the liabilities that you make reference to and also make sure that they are going to provide for money to carryout certain critical processes in the constitution making. That is going to be determined and I am sure that COPAC is going to make money available in order to meet these creditors.

MR. MUSHONGA: My question is directed to the Minister of Education. What is the Government policy with regards to the current training of the youth brigade members at rural primary and secondary schools and also the teaching by war veterans in primary schools of the war history, which is being conducted in Mashonaland Central? In particular, it is being conducted in Mazowe Central. I have a letter which was written by youth officers to the headmaster of KakoraPrimary School to the effect that that training is starting this week.

THE MINISTER OF EDUCATION, SPORT, ARTS AND CULTURE (SENATOR COLTART): The policy of the Ministry of Education is that only qualified teachers and those accepted by the Public Service Commission are entitled to be on school premises and to teach children. If there are any instances where people are not qualified, are not accepted as teachers in terms of our Education Act, action will be taken against those people.

Regarding the issue of reports of war veterans teaching history in schools, the same applies, only teachers who are qualified to teach any subject should teach. I have made my position very clear in this regard. I especially implore all members of this august House that the least political ministry in government should be the Ministry of Education. Children deserve to have a peaceful environment to live and be educated in. If we turn our schools into partisan institutions, we are going to undermine the future of this coming generation. That is the policy of the Ministry of Education and this is a long standing policy, it is not new. There should be no partisan, political activities that take place in any of our schools. That is why I have announced, on several occasions, that no schools should be used anywhere for partisan political activities.

We are now working on comprehensive education regulations which will specify that schools will not be used for partisan political activities of any kind. I think it is important to all hon. members, if they are genuinely interested in the future of children in their constituencies, that they support this policy.

There are alarming statistics that come out of reports that were produced last year involving the intimidation of teachers. We have seen a reduction of qualified teachers in rural schools because they have asked to be transferred to other areas. What follows is this: where there is a drop of qualified teachers in schools, we see a proportional drop in the pass rate of Grade 7 and other examinations in those schools. If hon. member are genuinely interested in the plight of children under their care, then we all need to agree to make sure that schools are politics - free zones, where there is no intimidation.

MR DUMBU: My question is, is your ministry involved in this acrobatic behaviour and if so, what is your ministry's policy regarding the rather misleading drive of the takeover of Triangle and Hippo Valley Sugar industries by war veterans and ZANU PF leaders? There is growing concern in my constituency because Zaka West constitutes a greater fraction of the workforce in these industries.

THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE (PROF. NCUBE): Madam Speaker, I thank the hon. member for the question. The sugar industry is a very strategic and key industry in our economy. My ministry has the responsibility for that industry and in particular, for the relationship that the country has with the EU in terms of the sugar adaptation strategy of the country. We have been paying careful attention to the sugar industry, with particular reference to the need to ensure that by the time the quota preferences that we have as a country under the EU-ACP relationship expire, we must have improved the levels of our production of sugar. We must also have improved the value addition chain in the sugar industry. We have been working therefore, tirelessly, to try and assist the sugar industry in the Lowveld. In this regard, we have been working with the small holder farmers to, for instance, convert their irrigation schemes from electricity driven ones to gravity ones under the funding of the EU. We have also been directing that funding to ensure that the re-planting that is so necessary takes place in the sugar industry. We are also aware in the ministry and have done studies in this that many of the sugar farms - if I may call them that, on which people were resettled continue to lie idle and unused as of now. We have also suggested and Government and the EU have also agreed that the first pilot land audit should actually be done in the Lowveld in the sugar industry. In that regard, we will obviously, as Government, be very concerned that there are any threats or further takeovers of any sugar industry by anybody of whatever political description.

It is my hope that infact, those allegations are not true because it is certainly not Government policy to further disrupt the sugar industry. Government policy is actually to ensure that we increase our sugar production to a million tonnes in the shortest possible time certainly by 2013 when our preferences expire and we are expected to be at full production of sugar in this country. I thank you Madam Speaker.

MISS A. NDLOVU: Thank you Madam Speaker. I would have directed my question to Minister Mudenge but in his absence, I will ask Hon. DPM, Arthur Guseni Oliver Mutambara. What is Government policy pertaining to the provision of advanced education to the youths of this country, recognising that hundreds of thousands of young people were not able to access 'A' Level places this year?

THE DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER (PROF. MUTAMBARA): Madam Speaker, I want to thank the hon. member for that question. I want to defer it to the Deputy Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education. If he cannot answer then I will come in.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HIGHER AND TERTIARY EDUCATION (SENATOR TAPELA): I want to thank the hon. member for that question. I would request her to put it in writing so that the minister can answer it. If there is anybody else who can answer, I will be grateful.

MR. RARADZA: My question was directed to the Minister of Finance but in his absence, I will ask the DPM to answer. My question is related to the presentation by the Minister of Finance regarding duty free on generators. At the moment, the generators are still being charged duty but the Minister of Finance said as from the 1st of January 2011, there will be no duty on all generators.

THE DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER (PROF. MUTAMBARA): Clearly that is not a policy question, it is a very specific and technical question. I want to encourage the hon. member to put it in writing so that the Minister of Finance can give an adequate answer.

Questions without notice interrupted by THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER in terms of Standing Order Number 34.

ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITH NOTICE

ARTS AND CULTURE SECTOR'S CONTRIBUTION TO THE GDP

1. MR CHIMHINI asked the Minister of Education, Sport, Arts and Culture to quantify the contribution to the GDP by the Arts and Culture sector and inform the House how the Ministry intends to promote this sector which has the potential to generate revenue for the fiscus.

THE MINISTER OF EDUCATION, SPORT, ARTS AND CULTURE (SENATOR COLTART): I have not received the information that I require from my subordinates to answer what the hon. member has asked.

SPECIAL NEEDS TRAINING INSTITUTION

2. MS. MANGAMI asked the Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education to explain:

i) why there is only one special needs training institution for teachers of people with disabilities yet they constitute 10% of the country's population; and

ii) whether the output from the training institution is adequate to meet the needs of all these people.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HIGHER AND TERTIARY EDUCATION (SENATOR TAPELA): We have UCE in Bulawayo and for those that do not know, it is United College of Education in Bulawayo. We have a course on special education and from these intakes that have gone by, we still have some teachers who have no jobs. The programme does not need to be more than one school. However, the ministry has introduced inclusive education whereby special education is also included in the curriculum in ten colleges. The University of Zimbabwe is also introducing a degree in training of teachers for special education.

BENEFICIARIES OF THE PRESIDENTIAL SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAMME

3. MR. SULULU (on behalf ofMR F.M. SIBANDA) asked the Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education to state:

i) the number of students who have been selected and benefitted to study at Fort Hare and other Universities in South Africa since the inception of the Presidential Scholarship Programme to South Africa;

ii) how many students per province of Zimbabwe benefitted;

iii) the selection criteria since inception to date;

iv) the status of 2009-2010 applicants to the same universities in South Africa;

v) the Minister's response to accusations that the selection of would be beneficiaries of the said programme is undemocratic and biased against students/applicants from some provinces; and

vi) the condition of the welfare and privileges of Freedom of Association of the students in the said universities that is in political terms.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HIGHER AND TERTIARY EDUCATION (SENATOR TAPELA): I believe this question has been answered before by the Minister and if he did not answer it, this is the way I am answering. The Presidential Scholarship is administered by the Governor of Manicaland and he is very prepared to come and answer. If he cannot answer that question, there are so many Ministers in the President's Office that would know about this question. The Ministry of Education has nothing to do with it, but if you want to bring it to us, we will be more than glad.

MR. J. GUMBO: I think the minister is not being fair to hon. members of this House. This is a specific question that the minister must answer giving statistics because he knows that the Governor is not allowed to come here. If the minister is not ready, we should ask him to go back to his Ministry and request for details.

SENATOR TAPELA: I am not sure whether the hon. member wants to squeeze blood from me. I said we are not responsible for that and the Governor of Manicaland is prepared to come and answer that question. We cannot answer it. - [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] - May I be allowed to read the written answer from the office?

THE ACTING SPEAKER: Can you allow the minister to respond?

MR. CHIKWINYA: On a point of order! What is happening is that when ministers come to Parliament, they are not ready to respond to serious issues. We spend money and time researching. I think ministers need to take this House seriously. Even the first question, he did not respond. If he is not ready, he should say so rather than ...

THE ACTING SPEAKER: What is your point of order?

MR. CHIKWINYA: My point of order is that ministers need to take this House seriously so that we do not waste time.

THE ACTING SPEAKER: I will allow the minister to respond.

SENATOR TAPELA: I want to read from the paper, the answer to this last question. If you want me to read the first one again, I can do so. The United College of Education offers special education training to qualified ....

MR. CHIKWINYA: We are at question number 3 and the minister is reading question number one.

THE ACTING SPEAKER: The question is number 3.

SENATOR TAPELA: I will read the response to question 3 which is on the Presidential Scholarship. The Presidential Scholarship is administered and coordinated by the President's Department in the Office of the President and Cabinet. I therefore refer the question to the director of the programme, the hon. Governor for Manicaland, Mr Christopher Mushowe.

MR. HOVE: I think the Deputy Minister is being evasive. It is within his right to inform this House anything pertaining to the Higher and Tertiary Education. It is not left to specific individuals who may be running a government programme. I therefore demand, through you Madam Speaker, that the Deputy Minister must answer this question with relevant specific details and statistics today.

SENATOR TAPELA: All I know and all that my ministry knows is that there is a Presidential Scholarship. When they apply, they go to the Governor; when they go for interviews, they go to the Governor - we are not involved, nobody in the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education is involved - [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections] - He has not given us. I do not know, Madam Speaker, whether they want us to demand that? If we should demand …

MRS. ZINYEMBA: On a point of order. I think, the minister should ask for statistics from whoever is running it like the other hon. member said. The minister should say, give me all the information you are doing with that programme - then he has statistics instead of him saying I do not know. Why are we here? We have a mandate to ask as Members of Parliament and not to go to Mushowe, we will go to the relevant Ministry. The relevant ministry should dig enough research to answer us here.

THE ACTING SPEAKER: I will allow the hon. minister to go and research and bring it next week.

ISO 9000 COMPLIANT INDUSTRIES

iii) MR. MADUBEKO asked the Minister of Industry and Commerce to explain whether goods and items that are flooding our markets come from industries that are ISO 9000 compliant and to state which local industries are still ISO 9000 certified.

THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE (PROF. NCUBE): Hon. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for the question that he has asked. Let me say first and foremost, company quality management system certification or product standardisation in Zimbabwe is currently purely on a voluntary basis. There is no law that obliges any company/business to register with Standards Association of Zimbabwe (SAZ), which is itself not a statutory body but is also a private company that does this job.

The same scenario exists in other countries where product quality certification serves as a quality assurance mechanism which may earn such firms market reputation.

In our country Zimbabwe, currently there are over 89 companies producing several lines of products which have voluntarily certified the management systems as well as their products through SAZ and quite coincidentally and interestingly, all those or most of those which are so registered are actually exporters. The hon. member might want to know that the registered companies which are certified with the ISO 9001 are listed in this schedule. I will table the schedule before Parliament, the hon. member might then look at the 89 odd companies which are certified as meeting the ISO 9001 standard by SAZ. Many of the leading companies in this country, particularly the exporters, are on that list.

Just for the record, let me state that ISO stands for International Standard Organisation and the Standards Association of Zimbabwe (SAZ) is a member. It follows that those companies which are registered with SAZ are automatically under the ISO standards, which as we know, vary from 9000 upwards.

Apart from the companies which are on that list, there are also others in Zimbabwe, which are registered that have the ISO 9001 and above but these are registered by other bodies external to Zimbabwe and these bodies will be found mainly in South Africa, United Kingdom and in Germany. So, some of our local companies are registered, not necessarily with SAZ, but with their equivalent elsewhere in the world.

In respect of the aspect of goods which are said to be flooding our markets, we, as a ministry, are aware that we have a lot of imported products which regrettably, we cannot say definitively - one way or the other, whether they in fact meet the ISO 9000 standards that the hon. member has referred to. Many of these are, of course, not registered with the Standards Association of Zimbabwe.

We also know that many local SMEs do not volunteer for certification, largely due to the cost overheads that are involved in the process of certification.

I want to inform this hon. House that because of some of these anomalies, the ministry is currently working on a draft Bill called the Compulsory Specification of Goods Bill, which if enacted, will be the Compulsory Specification of Goods Act which seeks to make compulsory, the standards of some identified consumer goods and services that have a direct effect on the health and immediate environment of our citizens. This legislation will permit, by way of Statutory Instrument to the addition of more services once we have the compulsory specification of goods law in place. It is government's intention to have all imports to be accompanied with Quality Conforming Certificates issued by Quality Qualified Standards Certifying Organisation in their countries of origin and certified by a local customs authority. When we do that and if we do that, this will ensure that we in fact have inspection of goods imported into our country before shipped from their countries of origin. This will help us protect our local consumers against sub-standard goods as well as against goods which may be detrimental to their health but also protect local industry from unfair competition with goods which do not meet the specified standards. We are in the process of working on the legislation to achieve all these things.

Madam Speaker, I now lay on the table the written answer together with the lists of the companies which meet the standards.

DISPUTE BETWEEN THE REPUBLIC OF ZAMBIA AND ZIMBABWE OVER THE NEW VEHICLE NUMBER PLATES

4. MR CROSS asked the Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development to inform the House the current position regarding the dispute between the Republic of Zambia and Zimbabwe over the issue of the new vehicle number plates being used in Zimbabwe.

THE MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (MR GOCHE): The so-called dispute between Zimbabwe and Zambia is just speculative talk, as officially, there has been no formal complaint through legal or diplomatic channels ever lodged by Zambia concerning our vehicle registration system.

For the record Madam Speaker, Zimbabwe and Zambia enjoy very cordial relations and there has never been any dispute between us pertaining to the vehicle registration system we use. In fact Madam Speaker, the Zambian Government sent a very senior delegation to Zimbabwe this year to explore how our vehicle registration system operates, with a view to come up with a similar secure system back in Zambia.

Interestingly, from 8 to 10 September 2010, the Permanent Zambia/Zimbabwe Joint Commission was held in Lusaka, Zambia and issues including those of bilateral cooperation, those of diplomatic in nature and any such 'contentious' ones would be tabled and discussed, which was not the case.

Madam Speaker, let me also take this opportunity to share with colleagues how the Alpha-numeric concept works. First and foremost, the concept is based on patent rights held by the vendor or supplier of the software, which is available to any interested memberState or clients. Based on the foregoing, there is frankly no legal basis for any memberState to claim ownership or patent rights apart from the supplier.

The Alpha-numeric vehicle number plating system is also being widely used in Europe, America and Africa with more than twenty countries having adopted it in Africa, which includes Zimbabwe, Zambia, (partially) South Africa (on plastic), Ethiopia, Egypt, Tanzania, Congo - Brazzaville and Nigeria, amongst a host of other countries.

EFFECTS OF THE PROPOSED BAN OF 5 YEAR OLD VEHICLES

5. MR F. M. SIBANDA asked the Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development to explain:

(i) how the ministry arrived at the conclusion that 5 year old vehicles were the major cause of road accidents in the country; and

(ii) whether the ministry conducted an impact assessment of the effects of the proposed ban of the 5 year old vehicles on transport, general living standards of the people and revenue inflows to the fiscus.

THE MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (MR GOCHE): The import restriction of vehicles with more than 5 years was arrived at after the ministry noted an increase in road traffic accidents attributed to old vehicles that were unroadworthy. The issue of age import restriction intervention should however be viewed in light of the wholesome package of measures which my ministry is introducing to combat road carnages as well as environmental concerns.

Starting with the latter of the two, environmentalists have long established the relationship between older vehicles and smoke emissions which are in excess of permissible levels. Such emissions are common with the older category of vehicles but particularly those that are diesel powered. The negative effects of excess vehicular smoke emissions to the eco-system and to the ozone layer are obvious to all hon. members of this august House.

Government was also footing huge medical bills arising from victims of road traffic accidents culminating from their long stay whilst recuperating in hospitals. The fiscus, through the Civil Protection Unit has equally taken over from insurance companies, the burden of post-crash administration, transportation and burial of accident victims.

Overall medical and rehabilitation costs are perpetually rising and the fiscus is over-stretched.

Loss of valuable lives, some of them being bread winners became highly noticeable and government had to mitigate against this menace.

My ministry conducted an impact assessment of the effects of the proposed ban of the 5 years on transport as follows:-

The majority of the more than 5 year old vehicles that were brought into the country from overseas in the form of conventional buses, trucks and small vehicles hardly moved for more than two months. This is evidenced by the huge volumes of broken down imported vehicles that are parked in most townships, garages, car parks that cannot be repaired because they are beyond state of repair. Such vehicles were therefore brought into the country with less residual value and could not contribute to the improvement of transport in Zimbabwe.

The general living standards of the people did not improve because some of the imported old vehicles were depriving benefit to the importer and the economy of Zimbabwe at large.

Revenue inflows from duty were realized from these old vehicles, unfortunately, the benefit was not realized by the importer or intended users. However, the restriction of importation of vehicles with more than 5 years will still realize import duty to the fiscus because, people will bring in reliable vehicles that have more residual value and the living standards of the people will improve, given that the required vehicles with lesser years will contribute more to the economy of Zimbabwe.

The ministry is not restricting the importation of vehicles which are more than 5 years old. We are only having a plan and facility which we are working on to ensure that:

Transporters replace these old vehicles with new vehicles. They are facilitated with money to buy new vehicles with terms of payment being agreed upon between the banks that will have put in this facility and the transport association. These plans are at an advanced stage to ensure that in this country we have a vehicle fleet that is at least 5 years or less old instead of having these vehicles that are 5 years and more.

I can give you an example that three accidents were caused by vehicles which could not even move on the high ride and the driver has to abandon them when there was fire on the road because he was afraid that he would be burnt. That fire even destroyed the tobacco that he was carrying. I can cite a number of cases that have been brought to our attention about these vehicles. I must say that in doing this, government must do something to ensure that the transporter is assisted in acquiring new vehicles and this is the facility that we are working up on. I shall issue a statement at an opportune time about how that facility is going to be used by transporters.

MR. KANZAMA: I would want to understand what you are going to do with foreign driven cars that are continuing to enter our country through other borders?

THE MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (MR. GOCHE): In this region, it is only the DRC which have left hand drive vehicles. I am not talking about the left hand drive but the old ones. Those vehicles, I think you should have asked what we are going to do with the vehicles which are already in the country which are 5 years and more old?

Those vehicles will continue to be used in the country until they have reached their economic life. What we have restricted is the importation of new and old vehicles. Those that have been imported in the country and are being used in the country will continue to be used in the country until they come to the end of their own economic life. So if vehicles from Malawi which are 5 years old or more and are coming to Zimbabwe, we do not have any restrictions to them. This SADC, we have started discussions about restrictions on these vehicles by all the countries of SADC because of the environmental impact that they have not only in Zimbabwe, but all over the region. We are going to harmonise our regulations in SADC, so there will be harmonised regulations that will deal with these vehicles. Not only the old vehicles but there are also other regulations which are being harmonised within the region such as the importation of left hand drive vehicles . So all these things are being discussed within the region. It is not only Zimbabwe that is being affected, the only country we are having problems with, particularly in the question of left hand drive vehicles, is the DRC which is also part of us as part of SADC because they have the European type - they drive their vehicles to the right hand drive. So that will be discussed, what dispensation will be given to DRC and so on but the question is that this is a region wide programme that we are discussing in terms of harmonisation our regulations. We shall have one driver's licence for the whole region and wholesale of other things that are being harmonised in the region.

COMPLETION OF ROAD CONSTRUCTION PROJECTS

MR. F. M SIBANDA asked the Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development to explain:

(i) why the construction of the following roads has not been completed given that some of the projects were started 10 years ago.

(a) Bulawayo -

Nkayi Road

(b) Bulawayo - Matopo/

Nkezi Road

(c) Gweru -

Silobela Road

(d) Mt Darwin -

Mukumbura Road

(e) Rushinga - Mary MountMission and

(ii) When the Ministry intends to embark on these projects?

THE MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (MR. GOCHE): Mr. Speaker Sir, the hon. member has touched on a number of very important roads nationally. I will endeavour Mr. Speaker Sir, to answer the questions as meticulously as possible:

(a) Bulawayo -

Nkayi Road

This road was originally co-funded by Kuwait and Government of Zimbabwe, 13 km was constructed under Kuwait Fund/Government of Zimbabwe. Around the year 2000, there was a donor flight from Zimbabwe and Zimbabwe funded the construction of 11 km up to the year 2007, at the moment there are 3 bridges which have been constructed but which are not being used because there is no road over them because of shortage of funds. The original project was supposed to end at Inyati. The distance left to Inyati is 23 km. But for now, no time frame can be given due to lack of funds.

(b) Bulawayo-Matopo/

Kezi Road

This road is mainly a narrow mat. 18 km of this road was widened i.e. from 78 to 96 km peg. The section between 45 and 78 km peg which is a narrow mat, that is 33 km is yet to be done. Due to lack of funds, the completion of this project could not be undertaken.

(c) Gweru-Silobela Road

The first 33km of this road which is almost parallel to the Gweru -Lower Gweru is a narrow mat. The rest of the 51 km to Silobela is gravel. Due to shortage of funds it has not been possible to fund the construction of this road.

(d)

Mt. Darwin-Mukumbura Road

The construction of the road started with the construction of the Ruya bridge at the 164 km peg. 33 km road have been constructed to the 197 km peg. There is still 58 km to get to Mukumbura which cannot be completed due to lack of funds.

(e) Rushinga-Mary Mount

The

Rushinga-Chimhanda Road

which leads to Mary Mount was tarred for 10 km with only 4 km left to get to Chimhanda. The distance to Mary Mount which is a gravel road and is not surfaced is 37 km. Again, due to shortage of funds, it has not been possible to tar this road.

It would be prudent to enlighten the hon. members that there are generally two types of surfacing/tarring roads. The high volume roads are properly designed and are expected to generate much more traffic after construction. Examples of such roads are the

Mt Darwin-Mukumbura Road

,

Kwekwe-Nkayi-Lupane Road

and

Bulawayo-Inyati Road

. The cost of these roads ranges from US$450 000 to US$700 000 per kilometre. The second group is what we call low volume roads - where the original gravel road alignment (horizontal and vertical) is not changed much except where there are very sharp corners. Many roads have been constructed using this method e.g 20 km Bulawayo-Solusi, 126 km Kamativi-Binga and 80 km Tsholotsho-Lupane in Matabeleland North 65 km of Plumtree-Mphoengs and 40 km of Bulawayo-Solusi in Matabeleland South. Ngugubane-Mataga in Midlands and 52 km of Karoi-Binga and 5 km Kadoma-Mamina in Mashonaland West, 23 km of Nemwana-Muchakata and 13km Bondolfi-Renco in Masvingo, Landas Mahusekwa and Marondera-St Pauls Musami in Mashonaland East, Mutasa District Offices to London Services which is on the Rusape-Juliasdale Road through Bonda and 18 km Headlands-Mayo Road in Manicaland, 27KM Denda-Muchapondwa and 28km of Guruve-Mahuwe in Mashonaland Central.

MR. SILULU: Some of these roads have taken more than 10 years. I want to quote the Nkayi-Kwekwe road which has taken more than 15 years. I would like to ask if there are any plans to repaire the roads because the road from Kwekwe to Nkayi is in a dilapidated state at the moment. There are Ministry of Roads workmen who are still there. I am being told that some funds were put into these projects. I do not know if the Minister is aware.

MR. GOCHE: The funds for maintenance of the roads to make sure that they are traffic-able are there. If they have not been repaired, it is not because the funds are not there. I think it is a matter of other technical problems that I am not aware of, but funds have been provided for the maintenance of those roads to make sure that they are in a traffic-able state, whilst we make sure that we look for funds to make sure that they are brought to their proper status.

. COMPLETION OF

BONDA MISSION-MUTASA ROAD

7. MR SARUWAKA asked the Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development to inform the House when the surfacing of the road which stretch 4km from Bonda Mission towards Mutasa District Council is going to be completed.

THE MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (MR GOCHE): Madam Speaker, the road linking Rusape-Juliasdale road to Mutasa District Council offices on the

Nyanga-Juliasdale Road

was completed over 10 years ago. But at the present moment there are no funds to surface the 4 km road to Bonda Mission. Therefore, no time frame can be given as regards the surfacing of the 4km stretch. However the road will be graded and kept in a traffic-able condition.

. COMPLETION OF

LOWER GWERU ROAD

8. MR. MADUBEKO asked the Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development to inform the House when the Ministry intends to complete

Lower-Gweru Road

, which was started in 1998 in Vungu Constituency.

THE MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (MR GOCHE): Madam

Speaker, the whole road is 84km. The first 15km was a narrow matt road before independence, the next 31km was built to a 2 lane low volume standard in the 90s, up to about 1998. The last 38km is earth/gravel road. Madam Speaker, it is not possible to complete the last 38km any time soon because of shortage of funds.

Currently PSIP funds are targeting dualisation and rehabilitation of trunk roads. The other incomplete projects including this one, require alternative funding. The only alternative is ZINARA funds. However, funds from ZINARA are not adequate to cover all projects nationally.

SURFACING OF

WEST NICHOLSON-MBERENGWA ROAD

9. MR. S NCUBE asked the Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development to inform the House whether the west Nicholson-Mberengwa road is ever going to be surfaced, and if so to state when this would be done.

THE MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (MR GOCHE): The answer to question number 9 has been misplaced, I will bring the answer next week.

POLICE OPERATIONS IN INSIZA CONSTITUENCY

24. MR NCUBE asked the Co-Ministers of Home Affairs to explain to the House why the police for example, in Insiza Constituency require transport, even for very short distances, when clearing livestock for purposes of sale.

THE CO-MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS (MRS MAKONE): Mr Speaker, the ZRP is constitutionally mandated to enforce law and order and most importantly, to put in place crime prevention measures. The issue of stock clearance is a crime prevention strategy to counter the incidence of stock theft. It is therefore expected that those who seek to dispose of stock should get stock clearance.

In carrying out their day-to-day duties and owing to resource constraints bedeviling the country and ZRP in particular, most of our stations do not have operational vehicles. As a result, our officers have to walk, cycle or get assistance from the supportive community in the discharge of their duties. In some cases, complainants or those seeking assistance provide transport. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that and those seeking stock clearances are not an exception.

Police officers are not supposed to demand transport from those who want their cattle cleared as alleged, but most of those who have cattle to clear come to stations driving and have in most cases always been willing to provide transport to the police so as to expedite their clearance. Where police vehicles are available, the police have always used and are supposed to use their own. The problem that bedevils the police is that it has not been receiving adequate support from the fiscus. Many stations are operating without vehicles now and have been relying on the benevolence of the corporate world and individuals. This fact is well documented. Under such circumstances, the police cannot be seen to be refusing assistance given to them in pursuance of their constitutional mandate.

ACQUISITION OF DOCUMENTS BY ORPHANS

25. MR SITHOLE asked the Co-Ministers of Home Affairs to state the measures put in place to assist children who have lost both parents to acquire primary documents.

THE CO-MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS (MRS MAKONE): Mr Speaker, in terms of the Births and Deaths Registration Act [Chapter 5:2], orphans can have their birth registered by the next of kin of the deceased parents on production of parents' death certificates. In addition, the Department of Social Welfare, through its probation officers, in liaison with the Registrar General's Department, can cause the birth of an orphaned child to be registered in terms of the Birth and Deaths Act [Chapter 5:02] as read with the Children's Act [Chapter 5:06]. Such children are also covered by the provision of the National Action Plan for Orphans and Vulnerable Children where the Department of Social Welfare can help in the registration of the births of abandoned and orphaned children, including those who are placed in children's homes.

ACCOMMODATION FOR GLENDALE POLICE OFFICERS

26. MRS ZINYEMBA asked the Co-Ministers of Home Affairs to inform the House when accommodation for the Glendale Police Residents would be constructed as the police officers are forced to commute to areas as far as Concession, Mazowe and some of them are even lodging around Glendale, a situation that compromises the performance of their duties.

THE CO-MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS (MRS MAKONE): Mr Speaker, the problem of accommodation for officers is not limited to ZRP Glendale alone, but is a countrywide problem demanding attention. Police officers from various police stations have resorted to seeking alternative accommodation outside police camps and end up paying exorbitant rentals from their meagre salaries whereas it is an obligation for government to provide residential accommodation to members. The police has since embarked on a force expansion programme to ensure police to public ratio is reasonable but that has not seen a corresponding response in terms of the provision of accommodation facilities. As it is, more than half of the more than 30 000 strong force are staying outside police establishments. This does not augur well in terms of police discipline. It is also apparent that there is little support from the fiscus.

The ZRP is not an income-generating organisation, it solely relies on government support for all its needs. Lack of support has also resulted in other projects suffering a stillbirth and not seeing the light of the day. Besides Glendale police, a host of other projects have suffered a similar fate. Take for instance the CID headquarters building whose construction started well back in 1998, has remained so because of funding constraints. Similarly the Bulawayo sub-regional transport workshop shares the same fate. Once monies are availed, the houses in question will be completed and our police officers will stay within the camps. But as it stands, the problem will remain so for the unforeseeable future or until the police get adequate support from the fiscus.

HISTORY ON NTABAZIKAMAMBO

27. MR MADUBEKO asked the Co-Ministers of Home Affairs to explain why the history and legacy of Ntabazikamambo the last King Mambo's capital in Matabeleland North near Shangani is not talked about

since it is one of the last centres of the powerful RozviKingdom in Zimbabwe.

THE CO-MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS (MRS MAKONE): Hon Madubeko can be assured that the history and legacy of Ntaba Zika Mambo, the last capital of the Rozvi Mambos in Bubi District of Matabeleland North is very much a part of the heritage protection, conservation and promotion programme that Government is implementing under the auspices of the National Museums and Monuments of Zimbabwe. Chirisamhuru is the last Mambo King who died in Mambo Hills, a cultural landscape whose values derives from its history, its spirituality, its association with the 1st and 2nd Chimurenga as well as its geology and natural history.

Ntaba Zika Mambo is a proclaimed National Monument and is therefore a protected heritage resource under the NationalMuseums and Monuments Act, Chapter 21: 11. Because of its high heritage value, the monument is classified as a Class 1 National Monument. Class 1 National Monuments are given conservation management on a consistent basis through the deployment at the site of a resident staff. Ntaba Zika Mambo therefore has a resident team of National Museums and Monuments staff who, on a daily basis, attend to the National Museums protection and conservation requirement.

Secondly, given its spiritual importance and significance, Nkata Zika Mambo also has resident traditional custodians. The traditional custodians work together on a daily basis with resident NationalMuseums and Monuments staff to ensure that the elements that give the cultural landscape value are protected and enhanced.

Through the traditional custodians and with the active support and participation of NationalMuseums and Monuments, three ceremonies are held on site annually. For 2011, the calendar of ceremonies is as follows:-

First Ceremony - 18 - 20 March

Second Ceremony - 17 - 19 May

Third Ceremony - 9 - 11 September

The ceremonies are national in character as participants are drawn from different communities throughout the country, and beyond.

In the context of the land redistribution programme, the boundaries of NtabaZikaMamboNational Monument were redrawn. Previously, the national monument was only a single hill with stone walling. With the concurrence of the Ministry of Lands, the entire Mambo Hills have now been of historical and spiritual value.

Currently, under preparation is a Management Plan that details what Ntaba Zika Mambo is all about, its full geographical extend and justification for it, the values that Zimbabwe must preserve to maintain the integrity and significance of the monument as well as the practical steps the organization will take to address these.

In terms of Standing Order Number 33, Questions without Notice was suspended.

FIRST READING

NATIONAL INCOMES AND PRICING COMMISSION AMENDMENT BILL, [H.B. 10, 2010]

THE MINISTER OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE presented the National Incomes and Pricing Commission Amendment Bill [H.B. 10, 2010]

Bill read the first time.

Bill referred to the Parliamentary Legal Committee.

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

THE DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER (PROF MUTAMBARA): I move that Order of the Day, Numbers 1 to 3 be stood over until the rest of the Orders of the Day have been disposed of.

Motion put and agreed.

MOTION

FIRST REPORT OF THE PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING ON THE CONSTITUTIONALISATIONOF HOUSING

2. Introduction

The Portfolio Committee on Public works and National Housing resolved to get an appreciation of how sector stakeholders to the Ministry of National Housing and Social Amenities supported the activities of communities in addressing housing issues. Furthermore, The Committee sought to understand the processes these communities used to secure land, develop infrastructure and houses as well as the challenges encountered in order to find the possible ways to overcome these challenges. It also resolved to establish the effectiveness and efficiency of the housing delivery options and support programmes available to the stakeholders. These resolutions were arrived at after the realization that solutions and recommendations on housing issues made at both the Victoria Falls Communiqué and the National Housing Convention were good but would not offer short-term and immediate solutions to the escalating housing crisis in our nation. Thus, the committee sought to discover, through visiting Epworth and Kariba Town Housing Projects supported by Zimbabwe Homeless Peoples' Federation in partnership with Dialogue on Shelter for the Homeless in Zimbabwe Trust, the strategies that they are employing. The committee then consolidated a position to this cross cutting- issue after consultations with sector stakeholders.

3. Objectives

The objectives of the visit were as follows:

2. To appreciate the interface between the Ministry, Local Authorities and the Housing Communities.

3. To understand the pro- poor development strategies used to address poverty and homelessness.

4. To develop a wealthy first- hand information from poor communities that defines their own settlement realities.

5. To recommend to the Executive specific actions to take in order to address, alleviate and rectify human settlement shortcomings.

4. Methodology

The Committee employed the following methods in order to achieve its goals:

1. Written submission from the National Housing Convention

2. Oral evidence from Ministry of National Housing and Social Amenities.

3. Oral briefing from sector stakeholders

4. Study visits on an incremental approach

5. Capacity Building Workshop with the Ministry of National Housing and Social Amenities in partnership with sector stakeholders.

5. Findings of the Committee

a) Summary of the Pro-poor Development Strategies used

Prior to conducting infrastructure and housing projects on a big scale, Zimbabwe Homeless Peoples' Federation (ZHPF) undertakes pilot projects either through a house model or pilot sanitation blocks exhibitions.

These pilots and house models serve four purposes as follows:

i) To showcase their capabilities and practicalities of their solutions.

ii) To demonstrate new innovations regarding urban challenges.

iii) To provide a training platform and develop skills in readiness for the subsequent scaled-up projects or replication on a wider scale.

iv) To make negotiations with local authorities and central government easier through witnessing these models.

Members of the Zimbabwe Homeless Peoples' Federation create

grassroots-centred pools of funds through housing savings schemes. These are augmented by external funds outsourced from funders channelled through Dialogue on Shelter. The financial resources mobilized are then used to negotiate with Local Authorities and government for securing affordable land. Members are allocated virgin land that they service after negotiating successfully.

The Federation then uses the model of incremental development whereby priority is given to the most important facilities and then gradually followed by the least basic ones. Incremental development is done on either infrastructure or housing development. Water and sewer are put first while roads come at a later stage on infrastructure development. At the beginning those basic services are used communally, and then families graduate into individualized connections when they can afford them.

In housing development, poor communities start both with a single or two-roomed unit with a temporary toilet and a stand -pipe and upgrade their structures until the whole house is complete.

During the incremental development process, a contractor could be

engaged but the members would be involved actively from the design process to clearing and installation of sewer and water services in order to cut costs.

b) Observations- Epworth Local Board

It was submitted to the Committee with regret that about 1% of the houses in the area meet the housing standards. It was also pointed out that over 65% of the people in the town are informally settled. There are seven wards in Epworth of which wards 1 to 6 have numerous people in informal settlement while a few are formally settled in serviced stands. All ward seven people are informally settled in unserviced stands.

The Zimbabwe Homeless People's Federation has over 40 000 people with 27 chapters countrywide and has a Memorandum of Understanding with the Ministry of National Housing and Social Amenities of how their federation works. The members who are largely women provide cheap labour to build their own houses whilst they contract an expert builder to supervise their work. They also involve council inspectors who come at every stage of building and assess whether their structures are in line with the recommended standards.

Rentals are paid to the council by all landowners. Lodgers pay $25 to

landlords while the landlords in turn pay US$12 to the Local Board. Every landowner pays these rates irrespective of whether their stands are among those serviced by the board or not. The burden of servicing the wards has been thrust on everybody's shoulder.

ZHPF got stands from the council, which was in charge of developing the land and members were allocated stands by ZHPF. Members in the ZHPF normally assist in the settlement of debts for orphans who would have lost their parents. However, the Council does not write off any debt and expect the children to carry over the debt and pay up outstanding arrears.

Funding is the problem that the council is facing and has crippled development in the area at the moment. Currently, there are over 300 000 people who are informally settled and as such, Government intervention is necessary and unavoidable if the town is to develop and meet the standards required by the Urban Councils Act. The Federation reiterated that Epworth Local Board should not be treated as a town like Chitungwiza since 300 000 people are still informally settled.

It was submitted to the Committee that the administration of the housing projects were politicised and that there was an element of the involvement of the external hand which ought to be stopped if housing projects were to be successfully realised. There was also an issue of overcrowding in the area and there is need for government to intervene and help the Board to acquire nearby farms.

The ministry officials, in view of the above submissions, pointed out that the ministry would incorporate the recommendations from the Victoria Falls Housing Convention and that it was also considering reviewing the National Housing Policy and ensure that Zimbabwe is in line with international standards. The ministry hoped to incorporate some of the following issues;

a) Ensuring 0% eviction rate in the country to ensure that the poor are protected in societies.

b) Ensuring that the Community Based Organisations pay about 20% of the total cost of land.

c) Instituting policies to ensure that the vulnerable groups are accommodated, because as of now, the policies are inhibitive and do not guarantee housing to the poor.

c) KaribaTown

It was submitted to the Committee that the ZHPF was originally given

one stand on which they were to demonstrate their ability to built houses for the people in their Federation. The model house was built in 2002 and has 5 rooms with water and sewer system in place. After this house was built, Kariba Council was satisfied with the effort done by the Federation and it was allocated stands in the Batonga and Garikai area a take over from the Garikai/Hlalani Kuhle.

The Committee witnessed that the Batonga beneficiaries were

staying in temporary shelters built of scrap metals on their stands with the permission from the Local Authority. This was done as a way to assist the poor to build their houses first, without having to pay any rental charges while they pay rates only to the Town Council.

The ZHPF was allocated virgin land and they managed to develop stands in the Batonga area on their own with technical assistance from the Kariba Council, especially on laying the water and sewer pipes as well as the development of roads. The land was sold at half the total price because it was virgin and required the Federation to develop it on behalf of the council. There were 27 houses connected to the sewer system whilst the others were to be connected as soon as the work was completed. Some areas were water logged and required special foundations that were very expensive for the members of the Federation.

The Committee also toured the Garikai Residential Area and observed the following:

The Garikai area was being developed but members had a major challenge of big rocks that were discovered during the development stages and that hindered their progress. The committee observed that the rocks were such a challenge for the ZHPF to remove because they required expensive machinery and manpower that were an extra expense to the poor.

The Committee was told that the co-operative was allocated land that

was not serviced in 2003. The Co-operative developed the land using their own funds and contracted the services of the town engineers and town surveyors. During the servicing of the land, they were met with several challenges such as huge rocks and swampy areas, which were very expensive to service.

It was submitted to the Committee that Local Authorities are running

out of land for housing development, as was the case with Kariba Town Council. The committee is of the opinion that more land ought to be acquired for settlement to alleviate housing shortages. The are instances, where there were delays in the approval of the Master Plans from local authorities and the Committee implores the Physical Planning Department to expedite the process of the Master Plan approval.

The Committee concluded that the biggest challenge in Zimbabwe is

that housing is not taken as a basic human right and thus would not be accorded he priority it deserves from the Government. The poor people who stay in slums are normal people who do not live in such situations as a matter of choice but are forced by circumstances and as such, the Government should fight hard to address the situation so as to restore dignity to its people.

d) Overall observations

It was interesting to note that the whole process mirrored the community through effective participation and the community owned and identified with the development. Communities were the agents and actors of development rather than mere beneficiaries. Thus, they developed a strong sense of ownership of both their successes and failures. Community involvement significantly reduced the cost of housing development projects and made them affordable through contributions in the form of " sweat equity".

A striking aspect that was witnessed by the Committee was the Federation's strategy that put women in the forefront in all the activities that addressed homelessness and poverty. They led the process of problem identification and development of solutions to both household and community issues. Women worked side-by -side with lead builders as they assisted in the construction of houses. The reason put forward was that women bear most of the challenges of and are hit hard by poverty. The other reason was that, women were given that space to balance this previously marginalized group. Thus, if women's lives are changed, the whole community changes.

e) Wild Geese Lodge Workshop

It was submitted to the Committee that the extent of homelessness is reaching unsustainable levels in social, environmental and economic terms and that the protection of people's housing rights is seriously lagging behind. The right to housing underpins other social and economic rights and infrastructure is the backbone of an effective and efficient housing delivery process.

It was presented to the Committee that Local Authorities require about 35 000 hectares for housing alone though they are currently incapacitated to deliver their mandate in terms of housing delivery by the withdrawal of donor support, disappearance of the housing sector funding, inability of banks to provide mortgage loans and skills flight.

The Committee noted that it is difficult for any citizen to enjoy other basic rights like health, education and the right to participate in one's development without secure and adequate housing. It is likewise difficult to effectively reduce extreme poverty without addressing human settlement shortcomings.

The Committee regrets that there are no clear institutional

mechanisms that enjoin public institutions to plan for and respond to human settlement development issues at both local and national levels.

6. Recommendations

From the findings made by the Committee, there are four major areas that recommendations can be made as follows.

a) Land and Security of Tenure

As a matter of policy, emphasis is made on the development of full services first before plots are occupied. This has impacted negatively on the fast delivery of land and this has been the case with the low income groups visited by the committee. Poor communities can only afford infrastructure services on an incremental basis as has been shown above. The committee's recommendation is that Government adopts alternative models such as ecological sanitation to allow the poor to develop houses and accelerate housing delivery. The Committee also recommends that the Government ensure during land allocation that a balance be struck by the Local Authorities, in land allocation between the CBOs and the private developers. The Government needs to address the issue of security of tenure so that children continue to benefit from the settlements even after their parents die.

b) Infrastructure

As evidenced by the great initiatives of the ZHPF, the committee recommends that measures be put in place by the Government to subsidize the provision of on-site and off-site infrastructure. A recognition of the strategy of incremental development would facilitate the revision upwards of the development periods. Incremental developmental ought to be accepted by the Government and viewed as a normal way of development for organized low income groups .In view of the fact that the provision of housing is the responsibility of Government, it is the Committee's feeling that Government work in partnership with Community Based Groups on housing issues even in the planning process.

It is worth noting that, transporting construction materials from the suppliers to communities is very expensive and prohibitive to low income housing development. The committee recommends that subsidies be put in place for communities wishing to transport their building materials. Subsidies may not necessarily be money alone but the cost of development can also be cut, for instance, through approval fee exemptions on bulk standard plans or offering of engineering services to CBOs' developmental work. In addition, the government can incorporate and promote innovative low cost housing designs or plans which make it cheaper to construct houses.

c) Finance

Notwithstanding the savings for housing schemes witnessed by the Committee, the Government can also avail alternative financial options for housing for the poor, and this will alternatively improve the pace at which construction projects are developed. This window can take the form of a Housing Development Bank controlled and owned by Community Based Organisations. This housing finance ought to be channelled directly to the Community Based Organisations.

Further compounding the plight of the poor in housing is the fact that there is no budgetary allocation to housing, mechanisms that were set up such as the IDBZ have largely failed to cater for the needs of low income earners; currently there is lack of clarity on how to access resources from this institution. Housing has been given limited recognition by the congested IDBZ because it caters for too many interests. Therefore, the Committee recommends for a budgetary allocation from the fiscus and to receive a 10% budget allocation towards housing to augment and boost funds of the low income group raised through housing saving schemes.

In recognition of the contribution of women in the ZHPF to housing development the Committee recommends that the Government increases the quota of disadvantaged and socially excluded groups accessing social housing , such as the elderly, people with disabilities, people living with HIV and AIDS, disadvantaged women and child headed households.

The Committee, however, acknowledges and appreciates the Government's efforts through the Ministry of Finance for allocating US25 Million dollars in the 2010 Budget as seed money for National Housing Development Loan Facility, officially launched on the 24th September 2010, which operates as a revolving fund , and that US16 million dollars has been disbursed from the Infrastructural Development Bank of Zimbabwe (IDBZ). The national Housing Loan Facility would be complimented by the National Housing Loan Guarantee Scheme that has been resuscitated by the injection of US2 Million dollars as seed capital from the fiscus. The National Housing Loan Guarantee Scheme would afford the beneficiaries the capacity to borrow from financial institutions. The Minister of National Housing and Social Amenities called for project proposals from local authorities to be submitted for appraisal and prioritisation so as to come up with projects in every province.

The Committee recommends for the updating of the housing waiting lists for the beneficiation of the housing loans and calls upon Local Authorities to have layout plans and engineering drawings approved to benefit from this development.

d) Legislation and Policy

The Committee is aware that the Ministry of National Housing and Social Amenities is in the process of reviewing the National Housing Policy which will be availed in due course. As this is a very welcome and noble development, relevant policy framework and monitory structures need to be established and to guarantee a pro-poor housing policy.

The importance of shelter for all citizens cannot be over emphasized. Bearing in mind that Zimbabwe is a signatory to the Universal Declaration of human Rights of 1948, where housing is mentioned among other rights as a basic human right, it is opportune and expedient that housing and infrastructure development be enshrined in our new constitution. The Committee recommends that housing should be enshrined in the new constitution under the bill of rights as a basic human rights issue.

Over and above the fact that it is government's first and foremost priority to deal with the problem of housing, there are obvious reasons and benefits of enshrining housing in the new constitution as outlined below.

I) Reasons

Providing for housing in the constitution compels public institutions to effectively plan for and respond to human settlement issues.

Ø It creates institutional mechanisms for responding to human settlement development issues at both local and national levels.

Ø It gives Local Authorities a clear and appropriate mandate on housing.

Ø It creates a basis for the strengthening of organizations involved in human settlement development and management.

Ø It simplifies and strengthens specific and allied housing legislation, policies and programs.

II) Benefits

Ø Providing for housing in the constitution deepens democracy and broadens development by increasing security, dignity and reducing vulnerability of citizens. It creates a clear empowering framework through communities or citizens to articulate their demand for human settlement services to the central Government and Local Authorities thus reducing homelessness, destitution and enhancing our national image.

Ø Providing for housing in the constitution frames the adaptation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Habitat 11 Agenda and empowers the Legislature and the Executive in terms of enacting legislation, policies, standards and bye-laws, for instance, the ongoing process of reviewing the National Housing Policy stands to benefit from the constitutionalisation of housing hence ensure state responsiveness and allows the broadening of alternative and more particularly human settlement and management approaches.

Ø Providing for housing in the constitution instructs the national and local budget framework to adequately support human settlement planning, development and management enabling the government to set aside a determinate resource percentage for human settlement development and management and guarantee allocations of funds to housing projects. Current constraints in funding, available designs, technology and implementation of maintenance models will be addressed.

Ø Providing for housing in the constitution enables the Ministry of National Housing and Social Amenities to efficiently and effectively carry out its role in coordinating research, monitoring and evaluation activities in relation to the promotion, enjoyment and production of housing rights. Thus, it creates an effective tool for local, national and international resource mobilization and ensures effective and efficient use of land earmarked for human settlement development.

Ø It contributes to the national vision of providing sustainable human settlement by allowing the application of participatory processes throughout the development cycle, that is, - planning, design, technology selection, implementation and management of infrastructure and housing development -as well as the management processes.

6) Conclusion

In a nutshell, human life revolves around habitat issues. Social, political and economic progress is never attainable if human settlement issues are sidelined. Provision of adequate housing and access to basic social services should be the Government's top priority in order to eradicate extreme poverty in our nation, attract investment and bring confidence and stability into the housing sector.

MR. CHIMHINI: I stand to support the report that was presented by Hon. Mpukuta. First of all I think this report comes at the appropriate time that we are discussing a new Constitution for Zimbabwe. I feel it is an opportune time because we can now incorporate the views that came from different stakeholders relating to issues of shelter.

Madam Speaker, we cannot talk of addressing poverty before we start talking about addressing issues of shelter. I want to put it to the House that we need to start thinking seriously about addressing the issue of shelter and the issue of housing. If we go back to 2005, we realize that after Murambatsvina of 2005 so many people were displaced, almost up to a million people and I think all those people are still affected. This is the time we should be thinking in future whether we should evict people before we start thinking of alternative accommodation. This is the time we should be talking about what we want as a country in terms of addressing the issues of housing and shelter.

We have not as a country taken seriously the issue of housing. If we look at the housing waiting lists throughout the country, we continue having these numbers increasing, but I am not too sure whether you have taken time to analyze who is benefiting from the land or houses that are being provided. Are we not having the same people who continue benefiting while the marginalized people are not getting anything? It is a big challenge for us as a country that as we talk about a new Constitution we come up with a budget allocation, say between 10 to 15 percent that can address the question of housing. What we have at the moment is that we continue talking about it, we indicate we do not have sufficient funds, but everybody knows that we have money that should be coming from Chiadzwa. Can we not take money from the proceeds we get from Chiadzwa and put an allocation that can assist in the provision of housing in the country?

It is common knowledge that to put up a standard house you need something like US$4 thousand. Given the salaries people earn in this country, how many people can afford a shelter or their own house? So it is a challenge to the Government of Zimbabwe that we may need to look at how best we can assist each and everyone to get decent accommodation.

We need to make recommendations regarding tall, poor laws and policies. When we talk about housing, at times we are asked to provide certain necessities like water, sewer, roads and many others; but many times we fail to provide those. So we are recommending as a committee that we may need to look at how we can cut off with sewer and water and maybe have communal toilet. In that we are saying people can put resources up and try to put up a shelter rather than to ask for the basic necessities which may not really enable people to start building their own houses.

Madam Speaker, we have the national housing loan facility which is not well publicised. I wish the minister were here so that we can talk about this very seriously. How many people are benefiting from the national housing loan facility? In our view it appears only a handful and at times it is not even clear the criteria that is used in selecting the beneficiaries. We are also aware of the existence of people who have been involved in corrupt activities. Yesterday there was a lot of talk about corruption in this House and we are saying as we debate the shortage of housing in this country we may also need to look at corruption within the provision of housing in this country.

We have had so many conferences, we have had so many conventions where people have talked about housing and recommendations have been made. What boggles the mind is the implementation. We have not been able to implement what people have discussed at various conventions. Take for example the Victoria Falls one and the one that was held in Zimbabwe last year. When we ask what we have done with those recommendations; it is just a question of debating in conferences and as government we should be serious in terms of what we want to do.

We have been allocated the US$12. 3 million by the minister in the national Budget meant for housing. The question is has this money been given already to the ministry and if the minister has been given this money, has it been allocated to the most needy people or we are talking of people who have properties already who have benefited? We are challenging the transparency and accountability so that we start looking at housing as an issue that has to support those people who are marginalised and those who cannot afford to start building their own housed. It may be very difficult to get those funds.

There is Operation Garikai which we have talked about for a very long time. We want to ask have people really benefited on the Garikai and who are the people that have benefited on this programme? Are we not talking of the same people who have been benefiting? So we are saying we go back to Operation Murambatsvina of 2005, we look at the Operation Garikai and we look at the transfer of Operation Garikai to local authorities and make an assessment whether we are addressing the shortage of housing and I would want to say Madam Speaker, this is the time we should talk very seriously about housing when we start talking about the new Constitution. If we do not do that, we will continue harping about their wishes and we will continue talking about the best practices, but in practice, we will not be doing anything that can assist the marginalised people. Madam Speaker, we were informed in Epworth and Hatcliff that housing cooperatives have been seriously politicized. We are making a special appeal in our report that we move away from politicisation of housing projects. We may have a group of people coming together to put up their resources and start building, but once we have a hand that comes in, we will begin to talk about party politics in housing; and again it is the marginalized people who will not benefit from this politicisation of houses.

Last but not least Madam Speaker, our appeal to the government and to this House is that as we go back into thematic committees, let us start talking about housing as an issue. That is a basic human right, the basic fundamental right and it is incumbent upon us as Members of Parliament to stop just harping and start talking about housing as an issue that requires urgent attention and serious consideration by the government of today. I thank you Madam Speaker.

THE DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER (PROF. MUTAMBARA): I move that the debate do now adjourn.

Motion put and agreed to.

Debate to resume: Tuesday, 22nd March, 2011.

THE DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER (PROF. MUTAMBARA): I move that Orders of the Day, Numbers 5 to 14 be stood over until the rest of the Orders of the Day have been disposed of.

Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

RATIFICATION OF THE ZIMBABWE-BRAZIL AGREEMENT ON CULTURAL CO-OPERATION

THE MINISTER OF EDUCATION, SPORT, ARTS AND CULTURE: Thank you Madam Speaker. I move the motion standing in my name

THAT WHEREAS Subsection (1) of Section 111B of the Constitution of Zimbabwe provides that any convention, treaty or agreement acceded to conclude or executed by or under authority of the President with one or more Foreign States or Governments, or International Organizations shall be subject to approval by Parliament'

AND WHEREAS the Zimbabwe-Brazil Agreement on Cultural Cooperation was concluded in Brazil, on 16 September 1999;

AND WHEREASthe entry into force of the aforesaid Agreement on Cultural Cooperation is conditional upon ratification by the Parties in accordance with their respective constitutional procedures;

AND WHEREASArticle 11 of the Agreement on Cultural Cooperation provides that the Agreement shall be subject to ratification by signatory states;

NOW THEREFORE in terms of Sub-section (1) of Section 111B of the Constitution, this House resolves that the aforesaid Agreement be and is hereby approved for ratification. Madam Speaker,

1. In terms of Section 31H (4) (b) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe, the President has the power, subject to the provision of the Constitution, to enter into international conventions, treaties and agreements. By virtue of Section 31H (5), the President is required to act on the advice of the Cabinet in the exercise of this function.

2. The cultural Cooperation between Zimbabwe and Brazil was concluded on the 16th September 1999, in Brazil.

3. The objectives of the Agreement are to:

(a) encourage cooperation and exchange between each country's cultural agents and institutions in order to achieve the goals provided for in the Agreement.

(b) support the activities carried out in its territory in favour of the artistic and cultural expressions of the other country;

( c) encourage exchange of information regarding all areas of activities covered in the Agreement;

(d) promote the exchange of cultural material and persons related to the areas and sub areas of activities in the General Code of Activities;

(e) encourage the establishment of Cultural Institutions and friendship associations in each other's countries.

6. In terms of Article 11(2) of the Agreement, the Cultural Cooperation between Zimbabwe and Brazil shall remain in force for an indefinite period unless one of the Parties presents a notification of termination through diplomatic channels. In this case, the notification termination shall enter into force 6 (six) months after receipt of such notification of termination.

7. At its meeting held on 23rd March 2000, Cabinet approved the foresaid Agreement.

8. It is desirable that Zimbabwe should ratify the aforesaid agreement.

9. Accordingly, Madam Speaker, I respectfully call upon the Parliament of Zimbabwe to approve the ratification of the Cultural Cooperation between Zimbabwe and Brazil.

Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

RATIFICATION OF THE INTERNATIONAL CONVENTION AGAINST DOPING IN SPORT

THE MINISTER OF EDUCATION, SPORT, ARTS AND CULTURE (SENATOR COLTART): I move the motion standing in my name that:

WHEREAS sub-section (1) of Section of the Constitution of Zimbabwe provides that any convention, treaty or agreement acceded to, concluded or executed by or under the authority of the President with one or more ForeignStates or Governments or International Organisation shall be subject to approval by Parliament;

AND WHEREASthe International Convention against Doping in Sport was signed on 19 October 2005, in Paris, France;

AND WHEREASthe entry into force of the aforesaid Convention shall be subject to Article 37 of the Convention;

NOW THEREFORE in terms of Sub-section (1) of Section 111B of the Constitution, this House resolves that the aforesaid Convention be and is hereby approved for ratification.

In terms of section 31H (4)(b) of the constitution of Zimbabwe, the President has the power, subject to the provision of the Constitution, to enter into international conventions, treaties and agreements. By virtue of section 31H (5), the President is required to act on the advice of the Cabinet in the exercise of this function. The aforesaid Convention was signed on the 19th October in 2005.

The ratification of this Convention has been necessitated by the need to promote the prevention of the fight against doping in sport, cognisant of use of doping by athletes in sport and the consequences thereof on;-

7. the athletes health

8. principles of fair play;

9. elimination of cheating; and

10. the future of sport

Article 3, encourages member States to adopt appropriate measures at national and international level which are consistent with the principles of a world Anti-doping Code which is annexed to the Convention.

Article 7 encourages member States to apply the Convention within their respective States, through domestic co-ordination and may, in doing so, rely on anti-doping and sport authorities and organisations for assistance.

In Article 16 Member States are mandated to co-operate and facilitate the task of the World Anti-doping Agency together with other anti-doping organisations in conducting doping control on their athletes on the Member States territory or elsewhere. The Article also mandates Member States to facilitate timely movement of duly authorised doping control teams across boarders when conducting doping control activities together with the timely shipping across boarders, of samples used in the doping control activities.

At its meeting held on 12th April 2007, the Cabinet Committee on Legislation approved the ratification of the International Convention against Doping in Sport. At its meeting held on 16th October 2007, Cabinet endorsed the Convention.

The Parliament of Zimbabwe is therefore called upon to approve the ratification of the International Convention Against Doping in Sport to enable the effective participation of Zimbabwe in efforts against doping in sport.

Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

THE DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER (PROF. MUTAMBARA): I move that Orders of the Day, Numbers 17 to 20 be stood over until the rest of the Orders have been disposed of.

Motion put and agreed to.

SECOND READING

SMALL ENTERPRISES DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION AMENDMENT BILL [H.B. 9, 2010]

Twenty First Order read: Second Reading: Small Enterprises Development Corporation Amendment Bill [H.B.9,2010]

Question again proposed.

THE MINISTER OF SMALL AND MEDIUM ENTERPRISES AND CO-OPERATIVE DEVELOPMENT: I move that the Small Enterprises Development Corporation Amendment Bill [H.B.9,2010] be read a second time. In Zimbabwe Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) are vital to sustainable economic development, employment creation and poverty eradication. The country's best hope of economic recovery lies in fostering MSMEs development and growth. Available information shows that the majority of companies in Zimbabwe currently fall within the micro, small and medium enterprises sector in terms of the definition proffered in the proposed Bill in respect of the number of full time employees, maximum annual turnover and gross value of assets (excluding immovable assets).

MSMEs, with their flexibility and ability to adapt, their low start-up costs, their rapid development and their potential for innovation, provide alternative viable solutions to the serious sustainable economic development, unemployment and poverty eradication challenges facing the country. The ministry recognises the existence of other acts that facilitate economic empowerment of the population.

These include:-

11. SEDCO Act [Chapter 24:12]

12. Co-operative Societies Act [Chapter 24:05]

13. Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Act [Chapter 14:33]

14. Mines and Minerals Act [Chapter 21:05] and many others

However, none of the above is comprehensive enough to cover for the MSMEs sector.

2. Rationale/Justification for the Bill

Mr. Speaker Sir, the rationale for the proposed bill is that in 2002, government came up with the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Policy and Strategy Framework. Implementation of the policy framework faced a number of challenges including:

10. Lack of a supportive legal instrument to set up the relevant institutions for the implementation of the policy

11. Uncoordinated and scattered funding for SMEs development across line ministries

12. Inadequate funding of the ministry for SMEs development programmes and

13. A hostile and unsustainable macro-economic environment among others.

Madam Speaker Sir, there is therefore an urgent need to espouse a pro

SME development coherent policy and strategy framework, co-ordinated and implemented through the medium of a single piece of legislation. Hence, the proposal for the Small Enterprise Development Corporation Amendment Bill.

3. Purpose of the Bill

Madam Speaker, the major purpose of the proposed Bill is to provide for the formulation, enactment and implementation of schemes for sustainable development and growth of MSMEs in Zimbabwe. Instead of coming up with a separate and independent Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Bill, we are proposing amendments to the existing Small Enterprise Development Corporation (SEDCO) Act [Chapter 24:12]. This Bill will amend the Small Enterprises Development Corporation Act [Chapter 24:12](the Act) so that the new Act becomes the Small and Medium Enterprises Act, which will facilitate the establishment of a Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Advisory Council, a Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises fund and schemes.

4. Objectives

Madam Speaker, the proposed Bill seeks to;

v) Provide an enabling legal framework for MSMEs development and growth;

vi)Facilitate provision of sector specific targeted support (rural and urban, youth, women and the physically challenged);

vii) Facilitate provision of infrastructure, technology transfer, market development, trade promotion, entrepreneurship skills development and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) database creation;

viii) Facilitate MSMEs access to finance (grants, lines of credit, equity participation, etc) to enhance their contribution to sustainable economic development, economic empowerment, employment creation and poverty alleviation;

ix)Provide business start ups and formalisation through registration;

x) Provide institutional framework for business advice;

xi)Give the Minister power to regulate MSME development and;

xii) Give the Minister power to formulate different policies and establish different programmes and schemes to enhance sustainable MSMEs development and growth.

Madam Speaker, over and above, the Act will give power to government to ensure MSMEs contribute to national economic development through:-

Transformation of rural areas through use of local resources;

Removal of any restrictions and red tape to increase opportunities,

personal initiative and enhance capacities of MSMEs to compete;

Formalisation of the informal sector;

Facilitating training and provision of advisory services;

Promotion of partnerships and linkages;

Facilitating awarding of tenders and contracts to MSMEs;

Promotion of growth-infrastructure, trade promotion, entrepreneurial skills, acquisition of technology and ICT;

Establishment of supportive institutional framework;

Establishment of supportive MSMEs development schemes;

Creation of MSMEs national database to inform properly on MSMEs, their spread, their activities, their contribution to GDP, sustainable employment creation and poverty reduction and;

Reduction and administration of MSMEs development environment among others.

i) Clauses of the Bill

Clause 1.

Madam Speaker, this clause sets out the Bill's short title and the date on which the Act becomes operational.

Clause 2.

This clause amends the short title of the Act so that it becomes known as the Small and Medium Enterprises Act.

Clause 3.

This clause amends section 2 of the Principal Act deleting the definition of "Small, Commercial and industrial Enterprise" and adding more definitions of micro enterprise, small enterprises or medium enterprise (MSME). The definitional parameters of each of these kinds of MSME are set out in the new Fourth and Fifth Schedules to be inserted into the Act by this Bill. Also, the Small

Enterprises Development Corporation will be renamed the "Small and Medium Enterprises Development Corporation" (SMEDCO)

Clause 4.

Madam Speaker, this clause inserts a new section 2A in the Act, which spells out the aspirations of government with respect to the development of SMEs, or for any particular class of them, and additionally may be implemented with special consideration to women, young persons or under the age of 35 years, disabled persons as defined in the Disabled Persons Act (Chapter 17:01) and persons residing in communal areas.

Clause 5.

This clause will insert new Parts (1A, 1B, to 1C) into the Act.

Part 1A provides for the establishment and functions of the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Advisory Council (MSMEAC).

Part 1B provides for "Small and Medium Enterprises Development Corporation" (SMEDCO), to establish one or more schemes for the provision of assistance to any class of SMEs or to persons who intend to establish an enterprise. Possible sources of moneys required for the implementation of schemes are also identified in this Part.

Madam Speaker, a Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Fund is established in terms of Part 1C, which shall include moneys appropriated by parliament among other sources. This part also provides for the objectives of the Fund and how the Fund will be applied. The Board of Small and Medium Enterprises Development Corporation (SMEDCO), which administers the Fund, shall be required to prepare for the Minister's approval revenue and recurrent expenditure budget and a capital budget for the Fund.

Clause 6.

Madam Speaker, Clause 6 amends section 18 of the Act so that functions of the SMEDCO are added to include the administration of the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Fund and the implementation of schemes established under the Act.

Clause 7

Madam Speaker, clause 7 deals with designated articles. "Designated articles" is defined to mean "any tools, implements or equipment designated by Small and Medium Enterprises Development Corporation (SMEDCO) as security for any loans advanced by it" and any articles purchased with funds from SMEDCO and the Fund. The right of borrowers to dispose of designated articles and the liability of the SMEDCO regarding designated articles is limited to certain prescribed conditions. The loosing of a designated article will not affect the liability of the borrower.

Clause 8

This clause amends section 44 of the Principal Act which deals with regulation-making powers of the Minister. The clause expands the circumstances under which the Minister can make regulations.

Clause 9

Madam Speaker, this clause inserts a new section after section 44 of the Principal Act, to allow the Minister to amend, after consultation with Advisory Council and the Board, the Fourth and Fifth Schedules.

Clause 10

Madam Speaker. Clause 10 inserts new Schedules to the Principal Act after the Third Schedule. The new Fourth Schedule classifies Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises by type, number of employees, annual turnover and gross value of assets (excluding immovable property; the Fifth Schedule provides for the formula for classifying Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises where a single enterprise exhibits features that are peculiar to a micro-, small and medium enterprises; and the Sixth Schedule deals with provisions relating to membership and procedure of the advisory Council. Madam Speaker, it is important here to note that through our extensive consultations with stakeholders including MSMEs, the need to ensure that special groups namely the disabled, the women and the youths are represented on the Advisory Council was emphasized and accepted for implementation.

Clause 11

This Clause incorporates a Schedule of Minor Amendments to the Principal Act (Chapter 24:12) such as section 3 which is amended by the deletion of Small Enterprises Development Corporation (SEDCO) wherever it occurs and its substitution by "Small and Medium Enterprises Development Corporation" (SMEDCO).

Clause 12

This clause amends the long title of the Act so that it includes the promotion and development of micro, small and medium enterprises, the establishment of a Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Advisory Council, the establishment and implementation of schemes to assist MSMEs and to create a fund to help such schemes.

CONCLUSION

In conclusion Madam Speaker, the proposed amendment of the Small Enterprise Development Corporation Act (Chapter 24:12) will therefore give birth to the Small and Medium Enterprises Act which will give effect to the implementation of programmes, projects and schemes that promote the development and growth of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises and enhance their contribution to sustainable economic development in Zimbabwe.

Madam Speaker, any other clauses of the Principal Act (SEDCO Act Chapter 24:12) that have not been affected by the proposed amendments shall remain unchanged. I therefore commend the Bill to the House and move that the Small Enterprise Development Corporation Amendment Bill be now read for the Second time.

Motion put and agreed to.

Bill read the second time.

Committee: Thursday, 10th March, 2011.

On the motion of THE DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER (PROF MUTAMBARA), the House adjourned at Twenty One Minutes past Five o'clock p.m. until Tuesday, 22nd March, 2011.

 

 

 

 

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National Assembly Hansard Vol. 37 NATIONAL ASSEMBLY HANSARD - 9 MARCH 2011 VOL. 37 NO. 26