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SENATE HANSARD 17 NOVEMBER 2016 VOL 26 NO 13

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PARLIAMENT OF ZIMBABWE

Thursday, 17th November, 2016.

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

PRAYERS

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

ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITHOUT NOTICE

*HON. SEN. MUMVURI: Thank you Madam President.  My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Mines and Mining Development.  Considering that Zimbabwe has a lot of minerals on the ground, what is Government doing to explore those minerals fully through which we can make quite an efficient investment in our country?  I thank you.

*THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF MINES AND MINING DEVELOPMENT (HON. F. MOYO): Thank you Madam President.  I thank the Senator as well.  It is true that as compared to other countries our minerals are many.  Most countries have about 10 to 20 minerals yet in our country we have between 50 and 60 minerals that can be mined and explored, but we had not done any exploration since the 1990s.  To rectify that matter, we have a Bill which will be presented in the Senate.  I think as of now, it should be going to the National Assembly.  It is on exploration so that the 8.75% which is provided by MMCZ which was used to promote minerals will now be coming to help the exploration company.

When the Bill comes to Parliament, we will be looking at our policy on exploration, a policy which will facilitate which minerals we are supposed to mine first and exploring those minerals to what level so that we can exploit them to support the economy at the right level.  The Bill, the company on exploration and the funding of mining from MCZ will cause us to start this programme which is big.

Again, to help in that matter, we entered into an agreement with China about three years ago to help us in that exploration throughout the country, to do what is called a geochemical survey.  They look at all our land and see where there are minerals, then they exploit so that we know how much and what mineral is there.  That work was being done for the past two or three years and we will be getting reports from them.

A few months ago, we signed an exploration agreement with the Ministry of Mines in Japan which is called Jogmec. They were already in other countries working on explorations in the SADC region using their headquarters which is in Botswana. They do what is called geo-physical work where a satellite is used to take pictures of our country and the pictures will be penetrating down 5 to 10kms underground to see what is there.  Thereafter, they will make a follow up with those drones taking other pictures. Thereafter, when we see that this is where there is a much density of minerals, we will use helicopters with machines dangling close to the ground.

We gave Japan a quarter of our country to explore and the other three quarters, we are negotiating with other countries to see which country we can favour with such work so that we can get reports and see as to which country was competent enough in doing that. When those reports have been submitted, the reports are ours but we only allow those companies to use those reports as well since we will not be paying for those services so that those companies can invest ahead of other companies from other countries.

Those are the programmes that we are doing on explorations. We want such things to be carried out in our five year plan which we are working with. If other countries enter into agreement with us, we will come back and make a report on that so that you can see the development on the whole programme.

HON. SEN. CHIMHINI: My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Mines and Mining Development. What have you put in place as a mechanism to put to closure the question of the alleged missing US$15bn from Chiadzwa?

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF MINES AND MINING DEVELOPMENT (HON. F. MOYO): The issue of the US$15bn was mentioned by those that are in Cabinet and the Executive, that is, His Excellency, the President. At our level as directors and Deputy Ministers, we have not been tasked to do anything but what I can do is that we already have our programme as a Ministry where we are carrying out an audit using an international company.

It is normal practice for companies to reconcile their activities and geology that we had predicted and the geology that came out – the minerals that we had estimated, the minerals that came out and the prices that we had estimated. That audit has been put in motion but the US$15bn – talking as an engineer, it is quite a general statement and I am not sure where you will be starting from because you say US$15bn or saleable equipment of what was in the ground or what was mined. So, I am not too sure what that figure was referring to.

+HON. SEN. MKWEBU: Madam President, my question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Mines and Mining Development. My question is, what does the law say about disputes on mines?. Who should stop the two disputing parties?

HON. F. MOYO: For protocol reasons, my Acting Minister is here and I would like to seek his permission to answer or I refer the question to the Hon. Minister.

THE ACTING MINISTER OF MINES AND MINING DEVELOPMENT (HON. SEN. DR. SEKERAMAYI): Madam President, I authorise the Deputy Minister to give an appropriate reply. I thank you.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF MINES AND MINING DEVELOPMENT (HON. F. MOYO): Could I be allowed to comment in English so that I am accurate. When two parties are in a dispute, they are only attended to by the Ministry as long as their case has not been referred to court. The cases can be referred to court by the disputing parties or by one of them who will not be happy with a final decision that will have been made by the Ministry. The Minister’s decision will be the final internal decision beyond which any member who is not happy will then take the matter to court.

It is the Ministry that stops the two parties from operating as long as the matter is within the jurisdiction of the Ministry. When the parties take the matters up to the courts of law, we do not have a say but normally the courts of law will simply make decisions. Stopping of operations is done by the Ministry. The first point that stops operations is the Provincial Mining Director. That is where the actions are taken to stop operations.

*HON. SEN. GOTO: My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Agriculture about the death caused to cattle due to anthrax. What steps are you taking because people are consuming carcasses of these dead animal and they are falling sick. I thank you.

*THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE (LIVESTOCK) (HON. ZHANDA): I thank Hon. Goto for her question. As a Government, we treat four diseases such as anthrax, rabies, foot and mouth and newcastle. These are the four diseases that Government is expected to treat and the rest of the other diseases should be treated by the farmer.  When we hear that there has been an outbreak of anthrax like we had in Hwedza, we dispatch our specialists to investigate the situation on the ground and we start taking preventive measures by inoculating cattle.  We urge the people not to consume carcasses that have succumbed to diseases. 

If livestock dies on its own, we urge you not to consume it because you do not know what the cause of the death is.  It is true that some people consume these dead cattle because we will not be aware of it until we get to know about it only when people are now hospitalised.  But, our policy is that, once we become aware of such an outbreak, we rush to that affected area and take corrective measures.  Hon. Madanha phoned me and people in Hwedza are having their cattle treated.  I thank you.

          HON. SEN. TIMVEOS:  Thank you Madam President.  My question goes to Hon. Minister Sekeramayi.  I want to find out how far you have gone with the Arms Trade Treaty?  The last time you spoke about it you said that stakeholders were working on it.  So, I would want to know how far.  Actually, I represented Parliament last year when we went and now I am a member of the Parliamentary Forum on Small Arms and Light Weapons.  So, sometimes when you send your hon. members, they then follow up to say where have you gone and we need answers, but most of the time we do not have them.  I am hoping that you will help me with at least enlightening me on how far you have gone with the Arms Trade Treaty?  Thank you.

          THE MINISTER OF DEFENCE (HON. DR. SEKERAMAYI):  Madam President, I want to thank the Senator for her inquiry.  We are still in the process and as soon as the process is completed, I will come to this hon. House and advise appropriately.  We are not yet through.

          HON. SEN. B. SIBANDA:  Thank you Madam President.  Could I ask the Deputy Minister of Mines and Mining Development what the prevailing and projected policy of Government is with regards to mining claims that occupy farmland while the owner of the farm continues to bear the full cost of rates and development levies?

          THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF MINES AND MINING DEVELOPMENT (HON. F. MOYO): Thank you Madam President.  The answer is that, farming and mining are treated as different commercial ventures.  So, the farmer meets their obligations and the miner also meets their own obligations – their mining fees that they have to pay while the owner of the farm pays the rental fees.  The miner also has obligations towards the farmer under certain circumstances.  If the mine is going to occupy part of a farm which was intended by the farmer for a specific project, where the farmer may have to forego that project or relocate it to a different port of the farm, then the miner must compensate the farmer.  The miner should not mine within certain distances of permanent structures particularly your permanent residence or structures like your dams and water systems. 

All the discussions that create a proper relationship between the miner and the farmer to ensure amicable relationships are supposed to be chaired and assisted by our Ministry.  So, in every province, if there are issues that relate to miners and farmers, our Ministry is obliged to call the parties to explain the law that relates to farming and the law that relates to mining and try and assist the parties to be able to mutually exist.  Thank you.

HON. SEN. B. SIBANDA:  Thank you Madam President.  Minister, I seek your indulgence to understand me clearly and properly.  I am saying, I recognise the privileges or the rights of the miner but let us suppose that up to 25 hectares of land may be fenced off if you are doing ranching, you have lost 25 hectares of your land but you still pay the full rates.  Does that sound fair to the Minister? 

THE HON. PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE:  I hope that Hon. Members will ask your questions based on the policy of the Ministry and not on personal basis.

HON. SEN. B. SIBANDA:  Madam President, I probably have no better way to put it because that is what I intended to find out.  If the Minister can help me with the policy?

HON. F. MOYO:  Thank you Madam President.  The policy is that, if your farm is above 100 hectares in size, it is considered that the farm is big enough for you to be able to still exist with your projects if you are displaced from a certain part of the farm by the miner.  If it is below that, then the miner has to specifically negotiate with you and get your consent.  If you withhold your consent, then the miner will demonstrate to Government that in fact what they are trying to do may be more beneficial to the nation than what you are trying to do and the decision may then be made in favour of the miner or in favour of yourself.  But, all negotiated.  Thank you.

          HON. SEN. CHIPANGA:  My follow up question is, Minister, you spoke of 100 hectares and supposing I have 200 hectares and then in the process of my operations, someone appears and then says, I have found deposits of minerals here.  What is your policy supposing I say, no, forget it and I will then take over the mining myself?

          HON. F. MOYO:  Thank you Madam President.  The clarity is that, below 100 hectares, the farm is considered to be small and the farmer must within reason be protected.  Above 100 hectares, the farm is considered to be big enough to allow negotiations which must still take place but they are different from the negotiations where your farm is small.  You still have to negotiate if it is above 100 hectares and if it is 200 hectares, the miner still has to negotiate with you if they want to take a part of your 300 to 400 hectare farm that you were already using for other reasons or had plans that you can demonstrate the business plans, you still need to seek compensation. 

On the issue of you wanting to mine, unfortunately, the law will not allow you to; say somebody has discovered and you are then interested because you are the owner of the farmer.  It recognises you only as the farmer.  When the other person has discovered minerals in your farm, they have done so because they are miners, you cannot then say, I want to do it myself.  I know that it is an issue that is under debate at the moment in the new Bill where some people are saying the law must say the farmer should always have some equity.  However, these are just discussions, at the moment, the law provides that you cannot block the person who would have discovered the minerals on the basis that it is your farm.  It is not possible.  Thank you.

HON. SEN. CHIPANGA: My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Agriculture. This has to do with ‘Command Agriculture.’  Hon. Minister, are you in a position to tell the House whether the programme is on course and that the results will be as desired.  I thank you.

THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE (LIVESTOCK) (HON. ZHANDA): Thank you Madam President.  I want to thank the Senator for the question.  Yes, I can confirm the programme is on course.  However, what I cannot confirm is the results which are going to be measured at the end of the season, depending on the outlook and outcome of the season and also on other factors that come into play during the agricultural season.  I can confirm that the programme is on course.  I thank you.

HON. SEN. CHIMHINI: Thank you Madam President.  My supplementary question is that, I want to believe that ‘Command Agriculture’ is voluntary.  Have you also considered using the prison inmates in terms of enhancing what you want to achieve?

HON. ZHANDA: Thank you Madam President.  I want to thank Hon. Sen. Chimhini for the supplementary question.  Yes, the programme is voluntary.   However, where there are irrigation facilities in the form of water bodies, surely those water bodies belong to the State and we would obviously, from a Government point of view, want to make sure that that resource is used for the benefit of the people. 

In terms of using prisoners, I think what we can confirm is, where there is land and facilities at the prisons, yes, we have also contracted those prisons to produce on behalf of the country.  Whether prisoners will be involved at that level or not, I do not think from the human rights perspective, we should use them willy-nilly, taking them from prison and deploying them in various farms and so on.  I do not think it will be desirable.  I thank you.

*HON. SEN. MAKORE: Thank you Madam President.  My question is directed to the Minister of Defence.  After the budget, we observed that 90% is consumed by salaries, so 10% is left for capital projects.  We hear that recruitment is underway in the provinces, can you enlighten this House on what the policy provides regarding recruitment under these circumstances.  I thank you.

*THE MINISTER OF DEFENCE (HON. DR. SEKERAMAYI): Thank you Madam President.  Every country has soldiers; they are just as good as the generality of the people in that they are young, middle aged and those who are old.  The old ones will retire, there will be recruitment to replace those who would have retired.  There are those who fall ill to the extent that they will no longer be able to perform their duty as soldiers.  It is good practice to recruit so that we maintain the strength of our army.  There are also those who pass on.  Therefore, we have such factors to content with. 

At the moment, since we are in a time of peace, there is no conflict, we are maintaining the same levels.  We are not adding anything to our current establishment.  The recruitment which is happening in each province is being done to ensure that we maintain the establishment that we currently have in line with our economy and the size of our country; we are maintaining the status quo.  Thank you.

*HON. SEN. MANYERUKE: Thank you Madam President.  Hon. Minister, can you enlighten us on the issues of recruitment so that it would be broadcast because the recruitments are province bound but there are other areas that are remote and your provincial headquarters are only in the cities and towns.

* HON. DR. SEKERAMAYI: Madam President, when recruitment is taking place, we have the youth who are between 18 to 22 years of age, we publish in the newspaper and province by province to ensure that the army is made up of everyone from each geographical location of this country.  In remote areas as you say, we try and endeavour that we broadcast on radio stations as well so as to inform them that there will be recruitment taking place.  No place in our country should be disadvantage by not having soldiers recruited in our army.  We will ensure that there is adequate publicity so that no one is disadvantaged.  However, if they fail due to failure to meet the requirement, it will be another issue. I thank you.

HON. SEN. MURWIRA: Thank you Madam President.  My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Agriculture.  Wheat was harvested, may you please enlighten us on whether we have sufficient wheat for the country until the next season.  I thank you.

*THE MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE (LIVESTOCK) (HON. ZHANDA):  I thank Hon. Sen. Murwira for the question.  We are not yet through with the harvesting of wheat but at the moment, we are getting closer to 60 000 tonnes.  It has exceeded last year’s harvest.  Be that as it may, we do not believe that the 60 000 tonnes will suffice the supply of bread and other such products for a year.

We expect that the final figure would have been higher than that so that so that we import less wheat.  I thank you.

*HON. SEN. KOMICHI:  My question is directed to the Minister of Defence.  In terms of Section 208 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe, has anything been done in terms of aligning the Constitution – what has been the progress so that those issues can now be brought before Parliament?

*THE MINISTER OF DEFENCE (HON. DR. SEKERAMAYI):   Madam President, may the Hon. Sen. ask a straight forward question so that people will know exactly what he is asking.

*HON. SEN. KOMICHI:  Are you going to align the Defence Act with the national Constitution?

HON. DR. SEKERAMAYI:  As a law abiding force, yes, we are aligning the Defence Act with the Constitution.  That is how it should be.

HON. SEN. MUSAKA:  I thank you Madam President.  My question goes to the Minister responsible for Psychomotor Activities in Education.  Minister, visibility is lacking.  In my constituency, we are being askedwhere is the Minister who is preaching practicality?  Kuveza mugoti and kugadzira mapadza to mend the cycle – they are demanding for infrastructure and not just preaching. 

Can you assist and clarify?  People need infrastructure and not just theory.

*THE MINISTER OF STATE FOR LIAISING ON PSYCHOMOTOR ACTIVITIES IN EDUCATION (HON. HUNGWE): I would like to thank Hon. Sen. Musaka for the question as regards to what is happening to my Ministry. You are the first since the last six months to ask me a question. 

People were surprised about the origins of this Ministry because since 1893 to the present day, we did not mention anything about psychomotor but you say mapadza nemigoti were being made.  Along the way, this has been forgotten so it was decided that there should be such a Ministry to ensure that these old practices and other technical subjects be done, hence the creation of this Ministry. 

There are two things that will occur when you start a new Ministry; you will not have adequate preparations to ensure that the Ministry hits the ground then you have to strategise on how you are going to start.  You need policy and you need to understand strategies. You also need to find out what the public opinion is. 

We did that and consulted you.  You can also invite me in your area so that I can come there and spend days there talking to you.  I have gone to several places.  Initially, I dealt with Hon. Members and also spoke with experts, engineers and those that have retired.  I would want to report to you that I was able to see the first person who became the schools inspector in this country.  The black schools inspector is now in Bulawayo and is now a lawyer.  He went oversees and he wondered how he had come up with such a policy because this had been forgotten.  This Ministry would create a change in the mindset since there will be a paradigm shift.  So it is difficult to send people to their past. 

I spent the whole day with Lot Senda Moyo in Bulawayo – he is the first black schools inspector to find out if they were supporting our intentions.  There are countries like Germany, Malaysia and India that have the same practice.  We also want to consult them and find out what their views are. 

At the moment, it is no longer a department, the President said that the Ministry should be expanded – issues to do with curriculum development should also be done by the same Ministry and it should have its own department and accommodate some of the things that we are doing now. 

That is the position where we are now.  What we await is the budget so that we will be able to do everything.  People appear as if they observed that the system of education since 1893 to date – people that are educated and hunters are spending time loafing and yet they have certificates hence this Ministry is a blessing.  Maybe someone is going to complete it but the President appointed me to be the pioneer because I was there at the time of Lot Senda Moyo.

The making of mitswi, migoti, maturi and the cooking institutions like Musondi – you will recall Hon. President that there was a place in Concession where they would do some sewing as to enhance the women.  It was referred to as Musonedi.

The idea is that the Ministry be expanded to deal with such issues.  I thank you.

*HON. SEN. MAVHUNGA:  Thank you Madam President.  My question is directed to the Minister of Agriculture (Livestock). In terms of crop production as regards command agriculture, we have seen some movement.  What are you doing in regards to livestock production?

THE DEPUTY MININISTER OF AGRICULTURE (LIVESTOK) (HON. ZHANDA):  I would like to thank the Hon. Senator for such a question.  It is true that command agriculture is a product that we are doing which is different from livestock.  In command agriculture they are given feritlizers, seed maize and herbicides.  They plough for a few months.  Should there be adequate rains, they will be able to harvest and it ends there.  Livestock is different.  It is a different ball game all together.

The question which is very topical is what you are doing to revive that national herd?  It is difficult to answer that question.  The 5.3 million cattle…

An Hon. Member’s phone having rung.

THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE:  Maybe I have forgotten to remind you these days.  May you switch off your phones.

*HON. ZHANDA:  The problem that we have is that the cows that we have are not calving because a calf is supposed to calve every year.  Our national calving rate is around 44% to 45% instead of 80%, which means that out of our 10 cows, eight are supposed to calve every year.  That is what is recommended.

The level of calving has gone down.  For cows to calve, there are two things that would need to be done; we need to see the genetic blood line, how old it is and how attractive is it.  It means that it has low fertility if it does not look strong.  Furthermore, the other issue could be the ratio of bulls will not be sufficient or good.  We are looking into that issue so that that knowledge is given to the farmers because we might even have Senators in this august House who first have their tea and then release the cattle around 10.00 a.m. and then they are penned again around 4.00 p.m.  So, such a cow is useless.  It will not calve.  Then there is also the issue of pasture development. 

There has not been any development in pastures.  Our cattle are grazing all over.  We should have a communal grazing system and they then rotate the areas where they will be grazing so that there are sufficient pastures.

In terms of genetics, we are using artificial insemination introducing other bulls and we would also be introducing good genetics.  Also, we are discouraging inbreeding because that idea of having a calf being sired by a bull and that bull goes on to sire with the same cow and the next calf of that cow.  It is not good.  As blacks, we do not see cattle ranching as a business and we are not very careful about the way we treat our cattle.  So, we are trying to educate our farmers so that they appreciate the importance of cattle.  I thank you.

+HON. SEN. A. SIBANDA:  Minister, I hear that there is a programme that people are being given some beasts.  People actually requested to be given beasts by Government.  I hear that there are financial institutions so that you can be facilitated to buy beasts even in Botswana.  We want those beasts, how do we apply for those beasts?  How do we make such applications so that we can get those beasts and how much are they paid for?

HON. ZHANDA:  Madam President can I reply in English?  I want to thank the Senator for the question.  If I understood her very well on the issue of applying for a facility to get some cattle and I think you talked about the importation of animals from Botswana.

There was a scheme, what we used to call the Cattle Grazier Scheme which resided at CSC, a long time ago.  That was the scheme that used to finance people.  People would apply to CSC for that Grazier Scheme and then they would be allocated some money to go and buy those female animals and at the end of five years or whatever it is, they would then be required to pay through slaughtering through CSC.  That was the main scheme that supported CSC for it to be viable.  That was the cornerstone of the CSC throughput. 

We have no resources to start that scheme at the moment, but we are really working hard to find resources to start that scheme again because that scheme is very important for the cornerstone of the livestock sector, particularly in relation to Matabeleland.

What we have done at the moment is, we have started it on a very small scale using our CSC ranches where we are putting people who have got their cattle there and they pay us through the protégé of those animals.  Those animals are the ones that, at the moment, we have started giving to other farmers, particularly in Matabeleland South and in Masvingo, Chiredzi and Mwenezi.  That scheme is slowly building up, but we are hoping that one day obviously, finance would be available and as finance would be available, we definitely would want to roll out that scheme because as we work towards opening up CSC, that would be the main source of supply to CSC throughput.

As to the importation of animals from other countries, we only allow where we have got a superior breed, where people want to bring superior breeds in terms of genetics of the bloodline for the purposes of enhancing our own cattle in this country, but before you import obviously, our vets and the vets in that country would have to work on the issue of diseases.  What diseases do they have in that country, where are the animals coming from, are they coming from a disease free area or whatever it is and our vets, nine out of 10, would have to go into that country to verify because one of the things we would want to avoid is to import animals that are not disease free.

When you have identified it, obviously, blood samples and other things - in actual fact, the vets of the two countries know exactly the procedures that they have to engage.  Once it has been okayed, then we will give you a permit to import and obviously, other quarantine requirements will also come into play.  So, if you want to import using your own money, you can apply and we always entertain those applications.  I am sure I have answered your question.  Thank you.

Questions without Notice were interrupted by the HON. PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE in terms of Standing Order Number 62.

          HON. SEN. MLOTSHWA:  I move for the extension of Questions Without Notice by 15 minutes.

          HON. SEN. MUMVURI: I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.

          HON. SEN. MLOTSHWA: My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Tourism and Hospitality Industry. Minister, tourism versus bond notes – I want to know what will happen to our tourists that are using visa cards or master cards when they come here. I know when they want to pay they will pay direct but what will happen when they want some money to use? Are they going to withdraw bond notes or are they going to withdraw other currencies? I thank you.

          THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF TOURISM AND HOSPITALITY INDUSTRY (HON. A. NDLOVU): I would like to thank the Hon. Senator for raising such a question and to let her know that our Ministry works very closely with the RBZ as well as the Zimbabwe Council for Tourism which represents and protects the interests of the industry in our country for us to be able to see the tourism sector being able to add value to the economic revival agenda of our country.

          As she may be aware, the monetary authorities in our country have been promoting the use of plastic money and most tourists who come to Zimbabwe, as she rightly says are already used to the use of plastic money and they do not move with a lot of cash. As and when the bond notes are introduced because right now they are not yet there, as she may be aware they will only be applicable for use in our country. I am sure that everyone who comes to Zimbabwe will be able to enjoy their visit in our country as they come as tourists and should they need cash as they leave the country, just like the Governor of the RBZ and the Minister of Finance and Economic Development articulated, they should be able to be given their money in hard currency. We do not foresee any challenges with the coming in of bond notes as and when they finally do come. Madam President, tourists are already used to the use of plastic money. I thank you.

          *HON. SEN. MALULEKE: My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Agriculture and it is in line with command agriculture.  Do you have plans to give us sorghum seeds for planting in dry lands?

          *THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE (LIVESTOCK) (HON. ZHANDA):  Thank you Madam President. I would want to thank Hon. Senator for such a question which is important. It is true that in dry regions like Manicaland, Matabeleland North, Matabeleland South and part of Midlands which are dry regions where there is less rainfall, the Government urges farmers not to plant maize because there are insufficient rains. We ask them to plough small grains like rappoko, sorghum and finger millet. That is what we urge them to grow because people can harvest sufficient quantities of food.

          I am sorry to say this Madam President, that in our culture we no longer eat sadza made up of rappoko, finger millet or other small grains which are good to our health. In light of the climate change which is now a reality, the rainfall patterns are now different from what they used to be in the past. It will never rain like it used to then. If you were to take that line of thinking we will be misdirecting our thinking. As Government, we urge people to grow small grains but because we are no longer growing these small grains we have a difficulty in having such small grain seeds. We were thinking that we would contract those that are in the irrigation areas to produce the seed so that we can promote the production of such small grains. I thank you.

          HON. SEN. CHIEF NYAMUKOHO: My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Agriculture. I have tried in my area of jurisdiction – I am right out in Mudzi and this is at an area where I bound Mozambicans and other chiefs round about me. I have 200 village heads whom when I tried this, I found it working, I have already this year supplied them all with a bag of mealies each. They are the fathers of the village and they should know who has got and who has not got. My order was, if you can help those that you can help with the little bit I have supplied you, I said 200 bags and that is real and also 80 bags of nyemba above that.

          Looking at my area, I have talked to the people and we have agreed that I want to occupy an area where I can plough for them and feed them like I have done now. I have done that practically and it has worked and I want to continue. The continuation will come in this manner, I have asked them to give me all the land that they cannot occupy in the area of my jurisdiction and this is where I have ploughed and have been able to do it.

          I have again talked to them so lately and said look, I want to plough for you again this year. Unfortunately, we have not got sufficient rains but whatever it is, we will try and struggle with whatever we have. I am saying, you give me all the land that you cannot use and I want to plough it myself but I will make use of you, the people to plough that land. They have accepted my idea. This year, they are yet to share.

          THE HON. PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE:  The Minister is waiting for your question Hon. Chief because this is a Question and Answer Session.

          HON. SEN. CHIEF NYAMUKOHO:  Minister, my question is, can you allow me to occupy the land that they have given me to plough.  They will be like our normal farmers who are all over Zimbabwe who pay people for the labour they give him.  I promised my people that I will pay them as well for digging the area, ploughing, and for whatever jobs that are needed in the agricultural system.  I will pay the people for all the labour that they provide to my land but as I said, I promised them that I will give them like I have given them now, the 200 bags of mealies or whatever that comes out from the land.

          My question is, if I am allowed to do that – the people will be paid for all the jobs that they will do in my field.  It is my field.  They have given me the areas where I can do the ploughing.  If that is acceptable, I have found that, that way it will work.

          THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE (LIVESTOCK) (HON. ZHANDA): Thank you Madam President.  I want to thank the Senator for that question and advice.  First and foremost Hon. Senator, I want to thank you for your efforts that you are doing in wanting to feed your people. 

That is the role of a chief but what I also want to advise you Hon. Chief is that, I think you should go beyond wanting to feed them but to teach them how to feed themselves.  If these people continue to depend on you with your good heart, not so many chiefs have good hearts like you and they will have problems after God has done what he normally does to us when we grow old.  So, if you can make sure that you have taught them how to feed themselves and not teach them to always be given something for free.  This is exactly where we are as a nation because everybody now looks at Government for free things and for Government to give you something for free, it must have taken it from him for free. 

So, if you can teach them how to do that.  But, as far as authorisation to occupy their land is concerned, our Ministry of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development has no authority over the land.  It is the Ministry of Lands and Rural Resettlement, particularly in the rural areas; it is the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing.  But, if it is a private arrangement that you have agreed and there is no dispute amongst yourselves as farmers, I do not see any reason but for you to get an authority from the Ministry, it would be difficult.  It will also be difficult for you to get an authority from any other Ministry to take over the land from them particularly in the rural areas.  Otherwise, you can go into a private arrangement and do it and if it works for their benefit – well and good.  I thank you.

          THE HON. PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE:  Thank you Minister and that brings us to the end of our extended 15 minutes.

          We actually should be going to Questions With Notice, unfortunately, we have none.   So, may I kindly remind hon. senators that it is your duty to also send written questions to any Ministry so that, that Minister comes and answers your question orally here in our House - we have none.  So, I am appealing to you Hon. Senators.

          Nhasi uno izuva rekuti tinobvunza mibvunzo zvatanga tichiita izvi.  Tapedza izvozvo pane mibvunzo yatinotumira kumaMinistries yakanyorwa tichida kuti Minister azopindura muno.  Saka, iyoyo nhasi hakuna.

          Ngicela ukuthi sibhale imbuzo kumaMinisters ukuze amaMinisters abuye la eSenate aphendule imbuzo yethu.

MOTION

REPORT OF THE DELEGATION TO THE 68TH SESSION OF THE EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE OF THE AFRICAN PARLIAMENT UNION

          First Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on the Report of the Delegation to the 68th Session of the Executive Committee of the African Parliamentary Union.

          Question again proposed.

          HON. SEN. GOTO:  Madam President, I move that the debate do now adjourn.

          HON. SEN. B. SIBANDA:  I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.

          Debate to resume: Tuesday, 22nd November, 2016.

MOTION

FIRST REPORT OF THE THEMATIC COMMITTEE ON GENDER AND DEVELOPMENT ON THE STATUS OF CHILDREN’S HOMES

          Second Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on the First Report of the Thematic Committee on Gender and Development on the Status of Children’s Homes.

          Question again proposed.

+HON. SEN. MASUKU: Thank you Mr. President.  Firstly, I would like to thank Hon. Sen. Makore and his seconder for the motion on this report that is that is before this august House. Mr. President, when we talk of children’s homes, where orphans or vulnerable children are, I believe it is an issue which involves looking at what kind of home these are.  When we talk of homes, we talk of a place where there is a father, mother and children.  Mr President, it is important that those who want to start these homes should take into cognisance that children should not be removed from their status of being children from our culture. 

          It is important to note that whenever children’s homes are being started, the children should feel that they are under parental care.  I have observed that in some of these homes, they have ensured that there is a mother, besides the administrators, who will represent the motherly role to the children.  There will also be a father who will represent a fatherly role to the children so that these children grow up in a proper home set up.  It is then that we know that the children should grow up.   In so doing they are looked after well in these homes. 

          I also realise that those who start these homes, they start off with good objective of helping the children.  The children in these homes are not only orphans; some are children who would have been neglected by their parents because of poverty or other problems they would have faced.  So, when these children are in these homes, the person who started the home may pass on, but the home should remain to fulfil the initial objectives for which it was started.  How can that be fulfilled?  When there is a home within a community or district, the administration of that district or community should value that children’s home. 

          Mr. President Sir, I have observed that in some communities or districts, we value schools where children get education.  As parents, we also help to build schools so that children can learn.  On the other hand, Government is also building schools.  However, when it comes to children’s homes, that interaction is not there.  We only look up to the founder of that home to continue sustaining that home.  Those children are Zimbabweans; it is their right to live like any other child.  We should also partake to help children within these homes.

          Mr. President, I have heard that the homes that are well established and are being looked after are those that are administered by churches.  We are the ones who attend these churches within these communities or districts.  If we are members of these churches which are running these homes, if there is a children’s home which is not administered by the Church, can that home stumble because it was not an initiation of the Church.  We should also help that home because we also help homes which are under the administration of the Church. The Government should also be involved in helping these children’s homes.    

          Mr. President Sir, I would like to say, it is now a song that the Government should do this and that, but we realise that we are the Government as well.  We note that at present, the Government is facing some economic problems.  Therefore, it is up to us to realise that we should not just fold our hands and expect the Government to play a role.  Yes, the Ministry of Public Service, Labour and Social Services visited these homes, but there should be a follow up to look at ways on how they are being helped.  These institutions should not just be left, we should make sure that the children live well.  These children are at home called children’s home.  There should not be a difference between these children and those who are in our homes.  The culture and laws that we teach our own children at home should also be extended to the children in the children’s homes. 

          Like I said before, these children should grow up knowing our culture and not the culture of the children’s homes.  They should not miss that simply because they are at children’s homes.  When they are grown up, it will be difficult for them to interact or even to have proper homes.  Just like those children who would have grown up under the care and authority of their parents, it is important that these children in children’s homes be taught the same manners and culture.

          Mr. President Sir, to add on to what has been said; I want to say that all children are equal.  There is this issue of adoption, you can go and adopt a child and help these children’s homes.  If we do that as leaders, we will make sure that these children grow up under proper parental guidance, will that not help our nation?  I would like to support the idea which was alluded to by other Hon.  Members, it is a very good idea.  With those words Mr. President Sir, I would like to say, we thank you for the report which has something good about children’s homes and exposed the bad aspects about these children’s homes.  What is good should continue and that which is bad should be stopped and we should come in and help to correct the situation.  What is missing in these children’s homes should be corrected.  I thank you Mr. President Sir.

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

HON. SEN. CHIMHINI:  I second.

Motion put and agreed to.

Debate to resume: Tuesday, 22nd November, 2016.

MOTION

SECOND REPORT OF THE THEMATIC COMMITTEE ON GENDER AND DEVELOPMENT ON EARLY CHILD MARRIAGES

Third Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on the Second Report of the Thematic Committee on Gender and Development on Early Child Marriages.

Question again proposed.

HON. SEN. B. SIBANDA: Thank you Mr. President.  I stand to give my heartfelt thanks to Sen. Makore, the seconder and the entire team for bringing this debate to this floor.

I will bring three quotations around which I will talk and I will be very brief.  The first is, I listened to a Member of Parliament in the 80s stating and I quote, ‘It is two men that sit down and determine the value of a woman’. 

The second quotation that I will use is in vernacular which is Ndebele it says ‘umqokolo wendwangu uvuthelwa emlonyeni’.  For those who do not understand that language its means that the fruits that are normally eaten by baboons ripen in the mouth of the baboon. 

The third quotation that I would like to quote I think was from Bill Irvine, a former Member of Parliament who stated that ‘A young man must grow a beard before he comes to Parliament’.  

Those three quotations underline two things.  The first thing is the culpability of men in their abuse of children in marrying them at an early age and a less culpability of women in committing the same crime.  The two other quotations make it clear that there must be maturity before people get to be used for certain functions or for them to bear certain responsibilities.

Mr. President, I think I have made my point about that debate considering that it has been debated significantly.  The last thing I want to mention is that SADC has set the tone for us by providing a prototype of the law that should govern the issue of child marriages.  I urge this Parliament to take a leaf from that SADC contribution and make sure that we develop our own law in order to preserve the girl child and ensure that our own children grow to maturity before we expose them to marriage.

On that note, Mr. President, I thank you.

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

HON. SEN. MASUKU:  I second.

Motion put and agreed to.

Debate to resume: Tuesday, 22nd November, 2016.

MOTION

REPORT OF THE DELEGATION TO THE 39TH PLENARY ASSEMBLY OF THE SADC PARLIAMENTARY FORUM

Fourth Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on the Report of the delegation to the 39th Plenary Assembly of the SADC Parliamentary Forum.

Question again proposed

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

HON. SEN. CHIMHINI:  I second.

Motion put and agreed to.

Debate to resume: Tuesday, 22nd November, 2016.

MOTION

PRESIDENTIAL SPEECH: DEBATE ON ADDRESS

Fifth Order read: Adjourned debate on motion in reply to the Presidential Speech.

Question again proposed

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

HON. SEN. MASUKU:  I second.

Motion put and agreed to.

Debate to resume: Tuesday, 22nd November, 2016.

On the motion of  HON. SEN. CHIEF CHARUMBIRA, seconded by HON. SEN. MASUKU, the Senate adjourned at Eight Minutes past Four o’clock p.m. until 29th November, 2016.

 

Senate Hansard SENATE HANSARD 17 NOVEMBER 2016 VOL 26 NO 13