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SENATE HANSARD 13 NOVEMBER 2018 VOL 28 NO 16

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PARLIAMENT OF ZIMBABWE

Tuesday, 13th November, 2018

The Senate met at Half-past Two o’clock p. m.

PRAYERS

(THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE in the Chair)

ANNOUNCEMENTS BY THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE

INAUGURAL MEETING OF THE ZIMBABWE WOMEN’S PARLIAMENTARY CAUCUS

          THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE:  I wish to remind all female Members of Parliament that the inaugural meeting of the Zimbabwe Women’s Parliamentary Caucus (ZWPC) has been scheduled for tomorrow, Wednesday, 14th November, 2018 at 0830 hours in the Senate Chamber.  You are kindly requested to be punctual. 

INAUGURAL MEETING OF THE JOINT BUSINESS OF THE HOUSES COMMITTEE

          THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE:  I also wish to inform the Senate that the Inaugural Meeting of the Joint Business of the Houses Committee will be convened on Thursday, 15 November, 2018 at 0900 hours in the Senate Chamber. 

INVITATION TO CATHOLIC MASS

          THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE:  I wish to inform the House that there will be a Catholic Mass tomorrow, Wednesday, 14th November and that all Catholic and Non Catholic Members are invited to attend. 

INVITATION TO SPORTING ACTIVITIES MEETING

          THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE:  I wish to inform the House that all Senators interested in sporting activities are invited to a meeting tomorrow, Wednesday, 14th November, 2018 at 1200 hours, in the National Assembly Chamber.

NON ADVERSE REPORTS RECEIVED FROM THE PARLIAMENTARY LEGAL COMMITTEE

          THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE:  I have to inform the Senate that I have received Non-Adverse Reports from the Parliamentary Legal Committee on all Statutory Instruments published in the Government Gazette during the months of June, July and September, 2018.

 I have also received a Non-Adverse report from the Parliamentary Legal Committee on all Statutory Instruments published in the Government Gazette during the months of August, 2018, except Statutory Instruments Numbers, 148, 149 and 163.  

MOTION

NATIONAL POLICY ON PERSONS LIVING WITH DISABILITY

          HON. SEN. TIMVEOS: I move the motion standing in my name that this House-

            COGNISANT that Zimbabwe enacted the Disabled Persons Act [Chapter 17:01] in 1992;

          ALSO COGNISANT that Zimbabwe ratified the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and enacted Constitution of Zimbabwe Amendment (No. 20) Act in 2013;

          CONCERNED that no efforts have been made to domesticate the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and also to align the Disabled Persons Act [Chapter 17:01] to the Constitution of Zimbabwe leading to a piece-meal  approach to disability issues;

          ALSO CONCERNED by the absence of a comprehensive National Disability Policy in Zimbabwe, resulting in the continuous marginalisation of people with disability in national development issues;

          NOW, THEREFORE, calls upon Government to urgently formulate a comprehensive   National Disability Policy and review the Disabled Persons Act [Chapter 17:01] in line with provisions of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and the Constitution of Zimbabwe Amendment (No. 20) Act.

          HON. SEN. SHOKO:  I second.

          HON. SEN. TIMVEOS: Thank Mr. President for affording me this opportunity to debate such a very important motion.  I also want to thank the PWDs that were meant to come and listen to the motion.  They have not arrived yet.

          Mr. President, the National Disability Policy must be crafted in such a way that it is clear that ‘disability issues are human rights issues’.  The policy must clearly accord PWDs the following rights and that the Government of Zimbabwe must allocate financial and material resources in each budget and calendar year to enable and ensure that PWDs enjoy such rights without any limitations and hindrance.

          Equality and non-discrimination;

          -Mr. President, the Government must recognise that all persons are equal before and under the law and are entitled without any discrimination to the equal protection and equal benefit of the law.

          -It should also prohibit all discrimination on the basis of disability and guarantee to persons with disabilities equal and effective legal protection against discrimination on all grounds.

          Women with disabilities;

          -The Government must recognise that women and girls with disabilities are subject to multiple discriminations, and in this regard should take measures to ensure the full and equal enjoyment by them of all human rights and fundamental freedoms.

          Children with disabilities;

          -The Government must take all necessary measures to ensure the full enjoyment by children with disabilities of all human rights and fundamental freedoms on an equal basis with other children.

          -In all action, concerning children with disability, the best interest of the child shall be a primary consideration.  The Government is the major parent of all children, even those without disabilities. 

          Accessibility;

          -Mr. President, accessibility of buildings, roads, transportation and other indoor and outdoor facilities, including schools, housing, medical facilities and workplaces, these should be accessible to all. Reference is made on the Disability Act of 1992.

          Right to life;

          -Government must reaffirm that every human being has the inherent right to life and shall take all necessary measures to ensure its effective enjoyment by persons with disabilities on an equal basis with others.

          Equal recognition before the law;

          -Government of Zimbabwe must reaffirm that persons with disabilities have the right to recognition everywhere as persons before the law.

          -Government of Zimbabwe must ensure that all measures that relate to the exercise of legal capacity provide for appropriate and effective safeguards to prevent abuse in accordance with international human rights law.

          Access to justice;

          -The Government must ensure effective access to justice for persons with disabilities on an equal basis with others.

          -In order to help and ensure effective access to justice for persons with disabilities, Government must promote appropriate training for those working in the field of administration of justice, including police and prison staff service. 

          Living independently and being included in the communities;

          Persons with disabilities have the opportunity to choose their place of residence and where and with whom they live on an equal basis with others and are not obliged to live in a particular living arrangement and not to be institutionalised.

Freedom of expression and opinion, and access to information – Government must ensure resources are mandatorily availed in a deliberate effort to facilitate the use of sign languages, Braille, augmentative and alternative communication of their choice by persons with disabilities in official interactions.

Government of Zimbabwe must get into partnership with private entities that provide services to the general public, including through the Internet to provide information and services in accessible and usable formats for persons with disabilities, including recognising and promoting the use of sign languages.

Respect for privacy; Government of Zimbabwe must protect the privacy of personal, health and rehabilitation information of persons with disabilities on an equal basis with others.

Respect for home and the family – Government shall ensure the right of all persons with disabilities who are of marriageable age to marry and to found a family on the basis of free and full consent of the intending spouses is recognised.

Article 24 – Education; Government of Zimbabwe shall recognise the right of persons with disabilities to education. With a view to realising this right without discrimination and on the basis of equal opportunity, Government of Zimbabwe shall ensure an inclusive education system at all levels and lifelong learning directed to persons with disabilities.

Health – Government of Zimbabwe shall recognise that persons with disabilities have the right to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health without discrimination on the basis of disability. The Government should provide persons with disabilities with the same range, quality and standard of free or affordable healthcare and programmes as provided to other persons, including in the area of sexual and reproductive health and population-based public health programmes. There should also be accessibility of health resources, including admission, diagnostic, medicinal and rehabilitation are accorded free of charge.

Work and employment – Mr. President, employ persons with disabilities in the public sector and promote the acquisition by persons with disabilities of work experience in the open labour market.

Adequate standard of living and social protection should be provided for under the social schemes under the Department of Social Welfare and National Social Security Authority.

Participation in political and public life; a peaceful environment must be provided to ensure that persons with disabilities engage in political participation, free of their choice, including forming their own political parties and/or movements.

Alignment of the Disabled Persons Act of 1992 to the national Constitution – the Disabled Persons Act of 1992 is an outdated policy. It simply needs repealing. The Disabled Persons Act of 1992 needs to be replaced by a Persons with Disabilities Act, which Act must be aligned to the provisions or articles in the UNCRPD, while the national Constitution of Zimbabwe’s section 83 must be amended so that it becomes explicit of what the Government of Zimbabwe must mandatorily accord persons with disabilities. For clarity, I hereby quote subsection (b) of section 84 of the national Constitution that says ‘explicit’ ‘An Act of Parliament must confer on veterans of the liberation struggle the entitlements due to them’.

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Domestication – Zimbabwe having ratified the UNCRPD in September 2013, it remains a wonder why the Government has not domesticated the convention, as for now the UNCRPD remains a reference point. That is why we are impressing upon the Government to urgently domesticate the convention. This will enable the crafting of policies and enactment of laws that will advance human rights for persons with disabilities.

Rights based approach to disability – it is time Government constantly engages with organisations for persons with disabilities and those from the law fraternity to enable them to appreciate ‘disability as a human rights approach in an effort to run away from the social model of disability’.

Hon. Senators, let us debate this motion positively because all of us live with people with disability and we need to fight in their corner so that this treaty (the United Nations Conventions on the Rights of Persons with Disability) is actually domesticated. I thank you Mr. President.

THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE: Thank you Sen. Timveos. May I remind Hon. Members that there have been some complains about members not getting Order Papers in time. Parliament staff has actually put your Order Papers earlier on in your pigeon holes. So, you may collect the Order Papers from your pigeon holes and from now onwards this will be the modus operandi.

HON. SEN. SHOKO: Thank you Mr. President. This issue that we are talking about is an issue that affects every one of us in this House and outside the House; therefore it affects the citizenry as a whole. We are seeing a trend where the Government is dragging its feet to implement a convention that they signed. A convention on the rights of persons with disability was ratified in 2013 by the Seventh Parliament and up to date, no law has been domesticated. This ratification of the UN Convention has not been domesticated. What I mean by domestication is that it becomes part of the laws of the country. Unfortunately, this has not been done and its five years now. Look, I do not want to repeat the words of our Hon. Speaker of saying the issue of inertia takes precedence in all the things that we do. We believe that things should have been done and we would not be debating this issue in this House Mr. President.

The issue of incorporation into our laws is very important for any treaty or any convention that we sign out in this country. If that convention is not domesticated then it will not affect our people. We need our people who are disabled not to be discriminated. They should be put on the same level as we are. The example that I can give you is that if we domesticate this law we will then find that the people that are disabled are going to get equal treatment. A very simple equal treatment that I can tell you about is; you still find a building that is not accessible to the disabled people yet that is a very simple issue. So, domestication of the convention will help us to put disabled people on equal footing with us who are still saying we are able to climb steps or do whatever. It is very important Mr. President, that we domesticate this convention.

Mr. President, there is an Act that was passed in 1992. That Act, if you check it properly and questions have been raised in this House, it says there should be a Director for Disabled Persons in the Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare. This has not been implemented. The disabled persons and some of our Hon. Members here have asked why that is not being implemented. So, Mr. President, that is very important for the Government or Executive to put into practice what is in that Act.

Mr. President, there is also another issue of the National Disability Board. In February 2012, a National Disability Board was appointed and that board existed until February 2017. From that time Mr. President, no board has been appointed to deal with the issues of the disabled persons in this country which I think is very unfortunate. We do not believe that should continue as it is, the Minister who is responsible for that must take precautionary measures.

          Mr. President, we were discussing the issue of budget last week and we believe that when the budget allocations are made, the Ministry must have adequate resources in the department that deals with disabilities.   At least there would be an amelioration of a situation where we are talking about the other issues that are not in place.  We know that the issues that we are talking about; the Minister might say these issues involve costs, but if you look at the period when the convention was signed, 5 years ago, certainly we should have done something.  Thank you.

          HON. SEN. KHUPE:  Thank you Mr. President.  I would like to express my gratitude to Hon. Sen. Timveos for raising this hot issue among disabled people, a very important section of the community of Zimbabwe.   I will not go into detail trying to explain a number of things because I will be repeating what the Hon. Senator had actually given us.  I totally agree with her sentiments as a representative of the disabled  with a  mandate of the disabled community, I think if I had authority and if there was a grant award of disability inclusion, Hon. Sen. Timveos would be the first recipient.

          I would want to correct Hon. Sen. Shoko that the disability body was actually appointed.  The then Hon. Minister Kagonye had put that in place, only the lack of funding is missing.  Since July, we have never met; the last time we met is immediately after the board had complained to His Excellency, E. D. Mnangagwa when we met him on the 31st July, 2018.  The then Minister and Hon. President of Senate raised the issue and said we have got a board which is not sitting because Treasury is not releasing funds.  His Excellency quickly pledged to give us the money the following week.

          So, whilst we have a listening President, on the contrary, we have un listening Ministers who are given the job.  A good example, with due respect to the Minister is that two weeks ago during the Question and Answer time, the Minister declared that the Draft Disability Policy will be there in 10 days time but up to now there has never been consultations, the draft is not there.  So, I am trying to highlight how disabilities are taken as insignificant issues. 

          Hon. Senators, if all of us could be singing from the same hymn book and same tune, disability issues would have been dealt with long back.  The real predicament affecting disability and development is the Constitution.  I agree that we need to do these disability policies but you cannot strengthen the shadow of a tree when the tree itself is bent.  You need to strengthen the tree; it is the one which causes the shadow where you can enjoy and sit but as long as the Constitution has got some challenges, I think what we will be doing is piecemeal. 

I am not saying we should not amend the Disabilities Act, we can do that as a temporary measure but the overall; we need to overhaul the Constitution so that it looks at disability with a straight, inclusive manner.  The present one looks at disability like how a cock looks, it is shaky, and it is not straight.  So, with these few words, I just wanted to say, I am happy Senator Timveos and I will also report it to my constituents that in the Senate there are also people who also support us.  I also wish that all of us could support us in this regard.  Thank you.\

          HON. TIMVEOS: I move that the debate do now adjourn.

          HON. SEN. MAKONI: I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.

          Debate to adjourn: Tomorrow, Wednesday, 14th November, 2018.

MOTION

PRESIDENTIAL SPEECH: DEBATE ON ADDRESS

Second order read: Adjourned debate on motion in reply to the Presidential speech.

Question again proposed.

*HON. SEN. HUNGWE: Thank you Mr. President.  I stand to make my contribution on this motion regarding the speech given by His Excellency, President E. D. Mnangagwa.  I will start by congratulating him because the Lord made it possible for the people of Zimbabwe to elect him as the leader of Zimbabwe.  The people of Zimbabwe had confidence in him and they voted for him overwhelmingly and the people knew that he was a true Zimbabwean, there is no doubt about that.  I will repeat that he is Hon. Emerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa; congratulations for wining overwhelmingly. 

I will extend my congratulatory messages to the President of the Senate, Hon. Mabel Memory Chinomona and also the Deputy President of the Senate, Rtd. General Nyambuya because of winning these positions; being elected to be the Presiding Officers in this Senate.  This is the House which has mature and elderly people who are well organised. 

          I further congratulate Hon. Jacob Francis Mudenda for being elected the Speaker of the National Assembly and I also congratulate his Deputy Hon. Tsitsi Gezi.  It shows that in the Ninth Parliament, the people responsible for electing leaders were organised and focused.

                   Let me now turn to the speech which was given by His Excellency, an intelligent man, a man of integrity and a man of his word.  Hon. President is a man who worked hard, tirelessly and made sacrifices for this country.  He was incarcerated as a very young man because of his political beliefs, which were aimed at freeing the country from the colonial clutches to the people of Zimbabwe; the Black people and because God had a mission for him, he had been sentenced to death for the crimes he committed as young as he was, but there were extenuating circumstances which led the same death sentence to be commuted to a jail sentence.

          When the President opened the First Session of the Ninth Parliament, he talked of many issues of which I will only pick a few.  He knew that he was addressing Parliament and he was setting a target for the making of laws because it is the responsibility of Parliament to make laws, because he has a legal background.  My hope and trust is that this august House is going to work hard and follow the parameters and guidelines given by His Excellency, especially when we look at the Constitution.  Hon. Mnangagwa was one of the forefront runners in crafting this new Constitution; hence he knows the ‘ins’ and ‘outs’ of this Constitution.  He is now saying every Zimbabwean should follow and implement the Constitution.

          In his speech he talked about mining.  We are all aware that Zimbabwe is endowed with a lot of minerals.  Even when we had those illegal sanctions imposed upon us, Zimbabwe was not destroyed because it is endowed with riches, especially minerals which we were given by the Lord, who gave Zimbabwe the blessings, the gift of land and minerals.  We have some among us who are involved in mining.  We were using a derogatory term, calling them makorokoza but the President has said we should appreciate the work which is being done by these small scale miners and this will lead to the growth of this country.  The President said the best term when referring to these small scale miners is artisanal miners because when we are saying makorokoza, we are saying they are illegal miners; they are people who are working against the law but we realise that these artisanal miners are making a lot of contribution to the wealth of the country.

          We also understand that these artisanal miners have made a bigger contribution than established miners in the supply of gold. What we know is if these artisanal miners are given enough and relevant support, the country will definitely grow its wealth.  What is very pleasing about these artisanal miners is that there is no gender discrimination.  We find both male and female in that field of mining.

          Going to the issue of small scale business people (SMEs), the country of Zimbabwe was at the verge of collapsing economically but we want to thank the small to medium enterprises because they were able to uphold the economy of the country and lead to the substance of lives because of their dedication.  The President also recognised this venture and established a Small to Medium Enterprises Ministry.  When we look at places where they are operating from, in areas like Siyaso and Mupedzanhamo, in Bulawayo you will find them at eRenkini, Egodini, they are there. Even in Nkulumane they are doing those small businesses. 

These people need to have a fund which is set aside for them so that they can grow and not remain as small scale enterprises.  They may even become big enterprises which we see today.    When colonialists came into this country, they also started small but they were forcing our forefathers to work in their fields and business ventures and they have now grown big.  If we support those small scale enterprises and artisanal miners, they will grow into big business ventures.

          I would like to thank the City Council of Harare for the stance they have boldly taken by removing the illegal vendors from the streets of Harare.  Now the City of Harare will soon regain its sunshine city status.  We want to work towards that.  We have some people who have negative thoughts, who were saying the Government removed these illegal vendors and cannot be proud of a clean city when people have been driven into poverty but we do not realise that these vendors were operating from places which lacked sanitary and ablution facilities and they had to mess wherever they were.  Therefore, it was good to remove them. 

          What we now want is to have these vendors relocated to special designated places and it is up to us as individuals to follow these vendors and create business for them where they have been located because we want to retain the sunshine city status of Harare.  I did say that our President is a war veteran.  In his speech, he talked about the welfare of war veterans and collaborators.  The Deputy President of the Senate is also a war veteran; we have war veterans and collaborators in this House.  All these people worked hard towards the liberation of Zimbabwe and it is imperative that we create a welfare fund and a conducive atmosphere for these people who fought for the liberation of this country.  I know that immediately after the war, these people worked so hard for the liberation of the country.  We were not given proper gratuities; some are paupers and some are beggars.  Even when there was land redistribution, some of these people were overlooked. We need to revisit the welfare of the war veterans, the collaborators and the ex-detainees which the President emphasised on.

 He again talked about corruption, corruption is a cancer, corruption is destructive, corruption is a demon which has to be destroyed, we have to nip it in the bud and uproot it.  There are some people who when you want service from their organizations, they will then say please give me money so that I may give you my services.  In this august Senate, let us call for punitive sentences for people who are convicted of corruption; for instance long term incarceration will be an ideal sentence for such people. 

          I will conclude my contribution because there are a lot of things which were mentioned by His Excellency.  The issue I am talking about is something which really troubles me: I am not very comfortable with that.  I know muno mune varume vakuru nevakadzi vakuru. I know some of you, you are going to be angry because I have raised this issue, if I provoke you, please forgive me.  I must say it for the good of the nation.

          *THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE: We do not have elderly women and elderly men but we have Hon. Senators in this Senate.

          *HON. SEN. HUNGWE: The issue I want to raise is that this Senate has mature people.  Amongst us there are very few who are below the age of 50 and this means we are the elderly.  Where I come from, when we talk of the elderly - we call them vasharukwa. These are the people who give guidance and advise the youths. The President presented his speech as an elder and he was giving us his vision through his address when he was opening the First Session of the Ninth Parliament.

          During his speech for this Session, he laid out the ground work of the laws which we are going to promulgate.  Some of us boycotted the opening speech delivery and I am saying as Zimbabweans, that does not help us by moving out and boycotting a speech by His Excellency because it is our responsibility that we construct and we build this country.  Like in a soccer game, a team has strikers, defenders and goal keepers, they are one.  As it is now, we are working as one; we are working towards the welfare of Zimbabwe.  We are working for the progress and development of our country.  As members of the Senate which is made up of senior citizens, let us work for the development of our country.  I have said in a nutshell, let me be courageous enough to give piece of advice to my fellow parliamentarians in this august Senate, we are one and we are patriotic Zimbabweans.

          *HON. SEN. ZIVIRA: Thank you Hon. President. I will talk about the removal of vendors from the streets of Harare...

          THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE: I think you want to debate on the motion of vendors.  Can you make up your mind?

          *HON. SEN. ZIVIRA: Yes.

          THE HON. DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SENATE: Thank you Hon. Senator. You can do that later.

          HON. SEN. MUZENDA: Mr. President, I move that the debate do now adjourn.

          HON. SEN. MOHADI: I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.

          Debate to resume: Tuesday, 14th November, 2018.

MOTION

DEVOLUTION OF POWER

          Third Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on the call for devolution.

          Question again proposed.

          +HON. SEN. NCUBE: Thank you Mr. President.  I am also grateful to Hon. Sen. Mwanzora for introducing this motion on devolution in this Senate. I will not repeat what was said by other Hon. Senators because a lot of Senators made contributions on this motion, so I will not bore this Senate by repeating what they said. All we are calling for is that we have to follow what the Constitution says and we did agree and we adopted this Constitution because we had wide consultation with the people in 2013.  The public gave input as to the Constitution which they wanted. Amongst the lots of things they wanted was that there has to be a system of Government and what they said was that the wealth of each of these provinces should be used by the people of that particular area where that natural resource is found. The Hon. Member who spoke before me advised that in the last session, he had moved this motion in the Eighth Parliament, but the motion was not adopted by the House.

          I am glad this motion on devolution has been reintroduced and I realised that Hon. Members of this august House saw that this is an important motion. Devolution is important and devolution is progress. I am very happy because when I was watching news on ZTV, devolution is a very wide topic and involves a lot of aspects of life because I noticed that when people were making contributions and talking, some of them were not aware of the depth of the issue of devolution.

          There is a man called Mr. Nyabadza who is the leader of ARDA. The man was so emotional and emphatic. He was saying ARDA is responsible in that area for growing wheat. That wheat is harvested and it is ferried to Harare where it is processed and value added. When that wheat comes to where it is grown in the ARDA Estates, it does not come back as wheat but it will be a finished product. That is why we are saying in each of the provinces where we have these natural resources, and natural products, the people of that particular area should benefit. When we add value, there should be benefits to those people in that area.

          Let me look at Binga. Binga is a very big fishery area and has a lot of fish from the Zambezi and Kariba Dam. I did my research and found that the people who register on fisheries, such as cooperatives or companies apply for permits. In order for them to have their application submitted, they apply in Harare. I was told that the application fees for a fishing permit is US$3 000.00 and the application is sent to the Department of Parks and Wildlife. When we peg the application fee at US$3 000.00; I only noticed that there were only two people of Binga who had applied for permission to do fishing.

          If they have increased, I am not sure that it would have happened after my research. So, you can imagine that only two people from Binga being the only people who are going to do the fishing in such an area. I am not calling for segregation and say other people should not come and benefit because we are all Zimbabweans. Let us have a quota system whereby we give preference to the people of Binga because when you charge such an amount, where will the people of Binga get such an amount of money?

          If we could implement devolution, we will say the people who come from those areas where we have those natural resources can easily access their natural resources because they should be benefitting from them. They should derive their livelihood because that is where they get money for food, education and health. Therefore, they should have easy access to the natural resources of their country. Mr. President, I am emphasising that this House should call for the implementation of devolution. This should have been done long back and I am saying it is not too late. I am making this contribution after other Hon. Members have made their contribution.

          I grew up in Bulawayo and during the time when I was growing up, I remember seeing some houses being constructed for the public. I asked myself why people were constructing houses. The Municipality and the Government; I am talking of Bulawayo because this is the place I know better. I realised that the City of Bulawayo would start by constructing beer halls. Whenever there is a place where they wanted to construct houses for the public, they would start by constructing a beer hall and people would go to those areas and drink beer. Beer was not very expensive and people benefited from them.

          Let me explain what I am saying. When money has been taken or has been accumulated from the beer sales, after the Council has done all and have paid for all the expenditures, the profit would be used for constructing houses. They would build complete houses with all the necessary rooms, roofs, electricity and water including the bulbs. When you get into that house, you are given the keys to a complete house. The Council would also construct clinics in that area. They also construct schools and recreational centres. You hear a resident saying they now have houses, schools, recreational facilities and people will be very happy.

          There were a few cases of thuggery because people were benefiting. We noticed that Government became greedy of the money which was accumulated by these local authorities and Government started saying they need to be paid a certain levy, a certain percentage. When you look at the percentage given, it means they were taking on the surplus which was used in creating recreational facilities and houses for the people of Bulawayo. What is now happening is that the Council no longer constructs houses and the country cannot implement its projects.

          The Council was constructing houses and started by constructing what we called shell houses, an incomplete building with no windows and doors. You are then given the house so that you complete the houses as an individual because constructing a finished house was becoming a burden for the Council. In the long run, the Council ended up allocating people stands so that an individual owner would construct that house on his own using his own expenses. This is because of greediness that was displayed by Government in levying these local authorities instead of letting them develop their areas of jurisdiction. These Councils should be empowered through devolution so that they lead to the development of these areas.

          Government introduced a system which was difficult to be implemented by the people and I am saying if they have devolution, these provincial councils would be developing their own places.  What is obtaining now is that we have people who approach councils, obtain land and promise to service the land.  People are even offered stands in wetlands.  These wetlands are not well drained and there are problems, the reason being that there is no money.  We feel this should be handled by the State and start by servicing those areas before houses are constructed. 

          When we started seeing those areas, they were clean; we had clean air but now there are pungent smells all over the places.  They had efficient sewer systems but now, we have ablution blocks and burst sewer pipes and this is leading to diseases such as cholera.  What I am saying is, Government should implement devolution.  The Government should also look at what has really happened after they had levied these local authorities.  What developmental projects have they carried out?  Local authorities were constructing schools, clinics and houses and we are saying through devolution, these local authorities would start doing developmental projects.  Government is the mother and father of these cities and should be giving resources to these local authorities. 

Some of us were not aware of what devolution means and we are hoping through these debates and discussions, people will realise that if they have their own natural resources in their jurisdictions, they will lead to development because they will guard those resources jealously.   These cities are going to develop because people will be planning on what is good for them and they have all those plans for development.  With those few words, I support the motion.  I thank you. 

HON. SEN. TIMVEOS:  I move that the debate do now adjourn.

HON. SEN. SHOKO:  I second.

Motion put and agreed to.

Debate to resume:  Wednesday, 14th November, 2018. 

MOTION

CASH SITUATION IN THE COUNTRY

Fourth Order read:  Adjourned debate on motion on the call to solve the cash crisis in the country.

Question again proposed.

*HON. SEN. CHIFAMBA:  Thank you Mr. President.  I want to add my voice on this motion which was raised by Hon. Shoko concerning cash crisis.  For sure, if you can say life is easy yet there is no cash, it is very difficult.  Even today I am given US$2000, it is only on paper, it is not there in the banks.  We are having challenges when we get into shops because they are charging in rands and US dollars.  Now, we do not know how many currencies we are using in Zimbabwe.  On paper, they say that we are using bond note which is one to one with the US dollar but for you to get US$100, you have to part with 335 bond notes.  We have a cash crisis. Some schools are even charging in US dollars; nothing is easy in Zimbabwe.  You find a product costing $200 and you are told it is US$200.  We are told US dollar is one to one with the bond note but it is not a true reflection of what is happening.  I think this should be investigated. 

Those who are in charge of our finances should get into shops and see how we are being charged.  If I get into a shop and I am charged in US dollar when I have the bond note, it is a night mare. They should get into these shops and see the currency that they are using so that it becomes easy for us.  In this House, we say US dollar and bond note are at par which is not a true reflection of what is happening out there; we have a cash crisis.  The Ministers responsible should go into the shops because we now have two tier pricing.  Do we have rands in this country?  Where do I get the rand when I am in possession of the bond note?  For me to get the rands, I should have more bond notes.  It is not easy as we might think. 

In our pigeon holes, we found that we had money which was written in US dollars.  I went to my bank and said the information which I have is that my money is in US dollars but they said the bond note will never be equal to the US dollar.  Investigations should be made so that those who are charging in US dollars or rands are brought to book.  You can find a product marked 12 000 bond notes but in US dollars, it is about $2000 or $3000 and in rands it is about R5000.  We are perplexed as a nation.  You should tell us the real currency that we are using so that when you get into the shops that is what you find.  If it is bond note, it should be bond note.  If we are using US dollars in our shops, we should also be paid in US dollars because as a worker, I am being paid in bond notes but the shops are demanding US dollars and it does not tally.  I want to thank you Mr. President. 

HON. SEN. SHOKO:  Thank you Mr. President.  I move that the debate do now adjourn. 

HON. SEN. TIMVEOS:  I second.

Motion put and agreed to.   

          Debate to resume: Wednesday, 12th November, 2018.

          MOTION

NATIONAL DRUG POLICY AND LEGISLATIVE FRAMEWORK

Fifth Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on National Drug

Policy and legislative framework to effectively regulate drug use.

          Question again proposed.

          HON. SEN. TIMVEOS: I move that the debate do now adjourn.

          HON. SEN. NCUBE: I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.

          Debate to resume: Wednesday, 12th November, 2018.

MOTION

SOLUTIONS TO PROBLEMS OF VENDING

Sixth Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on finding solutions

to challenges associated with vending.

          Question again proposed.

          +HON. SEN. NYATHI:  Thank you Mr. President for giving me this opportunity to contribute on the motion that was tabled by Hon. Sen. Chabuka.

          When Hon. Sen. Chabuka was talking of vending, she was referring to the vendors on the streets who are being traumatised and terrorised by authorities.  I will delve into the reasons why there is vending, i.e. the origins of vending and why so many people engage in vending.  We have to look at the reasons why these people are increasing in the streets and if only Zimbabwe had a high rate of employment versus the high rate of unemployment that has led to vending.  We will have few people who will be engaging in vending should more jobs be created and industry revived as nobody loves vending but undertake it through frustration.

          When I was growing up, we had companies like the mines that were producing and the National Railways of Zimbabwe (NRZ) was a hive of activity.  Even before independence, we had gainfully employed people and no vendors being traumatised and terrorised like now.  Mr. President, why is it that we continue to come to this august House to talk about these vendors yet we are supposed to be crafting laws that will lead to the reduction of vendors in the streets.  When the vendors go to the streets, they are doing so in order to eke out a living for the welfare of their families.  They want food on the table, there are no jobs for the fathers and we have noticed that in most cases, the men shun vending as most of these vendors are women who will care for the upkeep of the families.

          What disturbs me is the fact that these people are indulging in vending due to lack of employment in the country.  They suffer at the hands of armed uniformed forces yet they are trying to eke out an honest living.  As we are in this august House, the Senate, with such people of our stature, we should be focusing at the causes of vending rather than concentrating on the vendors who are already in the streets  instead of looking at the reason why they in the streets.  We have a situation, when you get to a burning house, you do not start by looking at who started the fire but you start by relieving and rescuing the victims in the house who may be burnt to death by the fire.  When you have rescued everybody and property, you then start investigations as to the reasons of how the fire started.  Let us not concentrate on the symptoms but let us look at the causes.

          As the august Senate, let us craft laws that will lead to the opening up of business and create room for employment then we will have few people indulging in vending.  No one will engage in vending especially after coming from work and are tired, all they will want is to rest but people indulge in vending because there are no jobs and are poor.  Hon. Members, let me categorically state that today we may be blaming vendors but tomorrow, due to the prevailing economic situation we could be part and parcel of those people who are currently engaged in vending.

          Currently, the country is experiencing cash flow problems.  In Harare, we now have people whom we call, ‘street kids’.  They sleep on the shop verandas, pavements and streets.  We can eradicate that scourge by raising the economy of the country to what it was before independence in 1980.  I thank you.

          +HON. SEN. ZIVIRA:  Thank you Mr. President for giving me this opportunity to talk about the vendors.  I am also grateful to Hon. Sen. Chabuka for tabling this motion.

          I put the blame squarely on the shoulders of the police and soldiers because they are responsible for engaging in running battles with these vendors.  We are aware that local authorities had given these vendors areas from which to operate from.  Local authorities were even levying these vendors and it was a peaceful exercise as councils were also benefitting from the vending sites.  Then the police and soldiers went on to destroy the vending stalls from where the licensed vendors were operating from yet the current Government in the Ninth Parliament promised people that there is going to be ease of doing business and welfare programmes for the people.  All I am noticing is that the living conditions are getting worse and worse by the day.

          Some of the people who are indulging in vending come from rural areas due to the high rate of migration from rural to urban and very few people here. You get surprised if you are told that most of the people are in the rural areas, yet people have migrated to rural areas to urban areas and they do that because that is where they can eke out a living. I am pleading with the Zimbabwe Republic Police and the Zimbabwe National Army that they should desist from fighting these vendors who are trying to eke out a living, because the economic situation in the country is very difficult. So, please have mercy on them.  

          HON. SEN. TIMVEOS: I move that the debate do not adjourn.

          HON. SEN. MOHADI: I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.

          Debate to resume: Wednesday, 14th November, 2018.

          On the motion of HON. SEN. MUZENDA seconded by HON. SEN. MOHADI, the Senate adjourned at Seven Minutes to Four o’clock p.m.

 

 

Senate Hansard SENATE HANSARD 13 NOVEMBER 2018 VOL 28 NO 16