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SENATE HANSARD - 18 JUNE 2009 VOL. 18 NO. 21

PARLIAMENT OF ZIMBABWE

Thursday 18th June, 2009

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

 

 

PRAYERS

(MADAM PRESIDENT in the Chair)

 

ANNOUNCEMENT BY MADAM PRESIDENT

 

ELECTION OF DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON OF COMMITTEES

MADAM PRESIDENT: Standing Order No 10 (1) provides that as soon as practicable after the commencement of every Parliament and from time to time thereafter as necessity may arise, the Senate shall appoint one of its Senators to be Deputy Chairperson of Committees and shall be entitled to exercise all the powers of the Chairperson of Committees excluding his or her powers as Deputy President of the Senate. I now call for nominations.

SENATOR CHIEF MTSHANE: Hon.Madam President I nominate Senator Chief Charumbira to be the Deputy Chairperson of Committees.

SENATOR MOHADI: I second.

MADAM PRESIDENT: I shall take it as nominated that Chief Charumbira shall take the position of Chairperson of Committees. Hon. Senator Mohadi and Hon. Dr Sakupwanya are going to be the other members of the Chairperson's panel.

SENATOR RUGARA: Madam President I wonder whether the nominations have been closed after only one nomination so that if the House does not agree, they have to vote. That is democratic. There was an Hon. Member here ready to nominate somebody and as it is that was not taken and now I hear this. Is it that he has been nominated or he was elected to the office of the Deputy Chairperson of Committees.

MADAM PRESIDENT: As you know that in the inclusive government prearrangements are done before we come to the House to carry out whatever had been agreed to by the three parties and Chief Whips so this is one of the issues but if you insist...

SENATOR RUGARA: Yes I want to persist because it is not democratic. Because this has been within the inclusive government there have to be some resemblance of democracy and that is not it. I insist.

MADAM PRESIDENT: This was the agreement that have been in the lower House. It was agreed.

SENATOR GUTU: We know nothing about what is happening.

MADAM PRESIDENT ĺ I think you were informed.

SENATOR GUTU: I am in agreement with my colleagues and I am also completely taken aback. I was not耠aware and 䁉 was nt informed. I was supposed to be in Ѵhe picture from the Chief Whip hon. Gonese so can the issue Ѣe stood over.0

SENA  OR MAKORE : I rtand here to nomInate!Senator Gutu as ChairperSon of the Commiôtees.

SENATOR MARAVA: I$3econd.

MA⁄AM PRESIDEOT: Now 職e 䁨ave`tw nominations Hon. Chmɥf Charumbira and Hon. Senator Gutu. Those who are for Senator Chief Charumbira come to my right side and those who are for Senator Gutu come to my left side -[ AN HON. SENATOR: That is undemocratic we should use the ballot]. That is perfectly correct practice. This is a rule of Parliament.

SENATOR MAKORE: Madam President, it seems on my left side, they knew about this before than the other side....

MADAM PRESIDENT: Order, order, hon senator, it is unfortunate that Senator Gutu as Chief Whip did not communicate anything to senators.

SENATOR GUTU: Madam President, I was totally in the dark and I am still totally in the dark. If I had been told that in advance - I was going to communicate that.

SENATOR MARAVA: Since the whole thing was secret, why can we not just have a secret vote?

MADAM PRESIDENT: I am going to suspend business for 15 minutes.

Business was suspended at 1445 hours and resumed at 1500 hours

MADAM PRESIDENT: Order, when we took the short break, we had received two nominations for the position of Deputy Chairperson of Committees. We have Hon Chief Charumbira and Hon. Senator Gutu. We are going to vote and I shall call for people from the left and the right hand side to come and help in the counting of votes when we are done with the voting. The Clerk will begin the process.

Senators vote by secret ballot

Senator Gutu - 21 Votes

Senator Chief Charumbira - 33 Votes

Total number of votes - 54 Votes

Chabuka K, Chando M, Chauke, Chibagu G, Chiduku Chief R. M, Chimbudzi A, Chimombe Chief G. M, Chisunga Chief, Chitsa E, Dandawa Chief T. M, Dete A. A, Dube G. T, Dube J, Femai M, Gaule B, Gutu O.C, Dube K, Hlalo M.M, Jacob E, Kabuyanjiri O, Katyamaenza V, Komichi M, Mabika Chief J. T, Made J. M, Madzorere H, Makamure E. K, Makhule R. R, Makore J, Makunde T, Makuyana C, Mandava M. I. N, Manyeruke J, Marava M, Mathuthu T, Mlotshwa S, Msthane Chief L. K, Mohadi T. B, Mtingwende T, Muchenje V, Muchihwa R, Mumvuri D. D. E, Musarurwa Chief E. M, Mutsvangwa M, Muzerengwa T. S, Ncube S, Ndlovu N. K, Nebiri Chief, Ngungubane Chief, Nyamukoho Chief, Rimbi J. M, Rugara K, Sakupwanya S. U, Shana Chief N. Z. J, Sibanda A, Tapela L. A.

Tellers: Senator Gutu seconded by Senator Mlotshwa.

Senator Chief Mtshane seconded by Senator Mohadi.

MADAM PRESIDENT: These are the results of our election. Hon Senator Chief Charumbira has received 33 votes and Hon Senator Gutu has received 21 votes. Therefore Hon Chief Charumbira has been elected to serve as the Deputy Chairperson of Committees. Senator Mohadi and Senator Sakupwanya will serve together with Senator Chief Charumbira as members of the panel.

MOTION

HIV/AIDS MATERNAL HEALTH PROGRAMMES

SENATOR MANDABA: I move the motion standing in my name that this House - concerned with the plight of women due to HIV/AIDS; appreciating Government and Corporate Partners' interventions; calls upon government to scale up HIV/AIDS, maternal and reproductive health pogrammes.

SENATOR MANYERUKE: I second.

SENATOR MANDABA: Madam President I move this motion at a very critical time in terms of our health care delivery. Zimbabwe is one of the countries which had a good and functional health system in the first decade and half after independence. However in the past few years we have witnessed a rapid decline of the sector, placing a burden on women and children in particular. The HIV/AIDS pandemic has worsened the situation.

Although the HIV/AIDS prevalence has declined to 15,6%, more effort needs to be made. As of 2007 there were about 1 320 739 people living with AIDS and of this number, 651 402 were women. 132 938 were children of 0 - 14 age group and they were 115 114 deaths, according to the Ministry of Health. What this means is that we will not be able to achieve some of the commitments such as the universal access by 2010 and the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in particular. Goal 3 - promote gender equality and empower women. Goal 4 - reduce child mortality. Goal 6 - combat HIV/AIDS, Malaria and other diseases.

Zimbabwe like most other countries in the Sub Saharan Region has high maternal morality ratio. The maternal mortality ratio currently stands at about 555 per 100 000 live births. Unwanted teenage pregnancies, abortion complications, late prenatal care and home deliveries increase maternal morbidity and mortality. It is crucial to note that the major direct causes of maternal mortality and post partum hemorrhage, eclampsia and puerperal sepsis. Other factors contributing to maternal morbidity and mortality include unavailability of skilled birth attendants such as midwives and doctors at the first referral level, inaccessible health facilities, and inadequate transport etc.

It is pleasing to note however that in response to the above challenges, there are now over 3 500 health personnel trained in emergency obstetric and neonatal care. The recent immunization programme is also commended. I also want to applaud the government and donor agencies for their interventions such as the Prevention of Parent to Child transmission programme. There has been remarkable increase in the number of sites offering comprehensive services on PPTCT, now numbering 920 people nationwide. This means that the goal to reduce HIV to children will be achieved if the programme will be scaled up and if all pregnant women can have access to PPTCT by 2010.

A recommendation I am giving is that the government should revisit the principles of the Almar Ata Declaration of 1978, which place emphasis on Primary Health Care. The Primary Health Care approach is key in ensuring that health systems direct resources towards health needs, particularly in disadvantaged communities. Maternal and Child Welfare issues are an important component of strategies to improve health and development. Currently, there is an increasing number of women not able to access maternal and reproductive health services. The other problem is that health institutions charge exorbitant fees.

Government policy on free health and antenatal care is not being adhered to. As a result some women and children die at home. There is therefore urgent need to review the policy on user fees. Not all people have the advantage of Mrs. Kumali who has the Good Samaritans paying R13 000 charged for the delivery of the triplets, that was just for the delivery of the triplets. She still needs money to pay for her medication.

Zimbabwe employs the approach whereby all HIV and Aids programmes are decentralised to the provinces, districts and primary health care levels where they are integrated into the health care services through comprehensive prevention, treatment, care and support services. These programmes need to be strengthened as well through appropriate funding and human resources support.

On the other hand, reproductive health has not received the importance and priority it deserves; yet it is very central to poverty and reduction. Male participation remain low despite having in place programmes such as the "Engendering HIV campaign" which is aimed at involving men in HIV and Aids activities out of a realisation of the limited role of men in HIV programmes such as the prevention of parent to child transmission and home based care.

There is need also to scale up 'Men As Partners Programme' (MAP), which is an initiative designed to work with men on HIV and Aids and reproductive health. MAP notes that the current gender roles give men the power to influence women's reproductive health. The thrust is to reinforce the men's utilisation of Voluntary Counselling and Testing. This is important in combating HIV and Aids. Currently, there is also ongoing debate and consultations on the scaling up and integration of male circumcision into reproductive health, HIV/STI prevention programmes.

Women could also benefit if the microbides, which is a gel used to prevent HIV infection could be made available and affordable.

The country is on record within the category of countries such as Uganda on employing a comprehensive reproductive health care package that includes family planning, safe parenthood (Pregnancy delivery and Post-delivery services), prevention and treatment of sexually transmitted infections including HIV and Aids, information and counseling on sexuality, abortion care, cancers of the reproductive system, prevention and management of infertility, adolescent sexual and reproductive health (ASRH) and reduction of violence against women. We now call for increased resources towards the implementation of the "Safe Parenthood Initiative (1987) "which calls for government and partners to make maternal and Neonatal Health (MNH) a priority. Almost all the causes of Maternal and Neonatal deaths are preventable if only the pregnant parent can be supported by the partner, family and community.

In conclusion, we also as Parliament need to adopt the provisions of the regional frameworks on HIV and Maternal and reproductive health into national laws and ensure their implementation. I thank you.

THE MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, MECHANISATION AND IRRIGATION DEVELOPMENT: I move that the debate do now adjourn.

Motion put and agreed to.

Debate to resume: Tuesday, 23rd June 2009

 

MOTION

GOVERNMENT POLICY ON ARTS, SPORTS AND CULTURE

Second Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on lack of a strategic policy on Sports, Arts and Culture in Zimbabwe.

Question again proposed.

SENATOR KOMICHI: I would like to contribute towards the motion that was raised by Senator Gutu. It is true that the Inclusive Government requires a strong policy that would support our young men and women to be involved in sports because definitely we should actually take sports as an industry. If we look at the financial support to that industry, it is not as high as other industries that we know. We can actually put a small amount of money that will assist our sportsmen. When you put a small amount of money for athletes, then they can go outside to South Africa, China or Malaysia and do some work for themselves and reduce unemployment in the country. We also need to appreciate that this country last month in May experienced or produced one of the greatest athletes who is known as Stephen who won a marathon of 89km race in South Africa. He performed extremely well and surpassed the former gold medal holder who was a Russian by 9 minutes. When he overtook the former champion, the former champion responded by walking instead of competing. This man called Steven was heralded in South Africa and all newspapers covered his story. He could not sleep or eat because all people in South Africa were phoning him. He then decided to run away from South Africa and come back home.

He came into this country and people hoped that at least he would be recognised by government. Nobody recognized him - even just to be given a welcome party. Before he left South Africa, he said, "I won the greatest event far much bigger than the Olympics. Kirsty Coventry was given US$100 but I should be given US$101 because I am greater than Kirsty". He is actually the world champion and I am sure that this shows that the government has no policy over the issue of sports.

You will find that people from SADC actually come here in this country to look for sports men and women. They recruit our boys and girls to make money in their own country. I am aware of one club and all members of that club are Zimbabweans. Those clubs are making money out of our own children. Most of our kids are dumped and when they come back home they come with nothing because there is no policy. One friend of mine said if you come to the countries around us I will show you Zimbabweans that are being exploited because they go to those countries and fit into the policies of that country, yet their own home country does not have policies to protect them.

We need government to look into this and as government we should play a big role in motivating our own people. There are some countries that are not rich as ours and they have produced great people because they have policies towards sports. We need to be able to support those kind of activities. We do have some organizations in the country that would play this role - such as ZIFA, the Sports and Recreation Commission, which we believe should be funded. Probably we need to take proactive roles in coordinating our sports like rugby, football, netball etc. We believe this Sports and Recreation Commission should be well funded so that they are able to carry out their activities in the country. They should be able to identify talent even in the rural areas like Kanyemba, Gokwe, Gwanda, Binga and so on. We should be able to nurture them as a country.

We actually recommend that government should enact legislation through Parliament that would protect our people when they go out so that we can get revenue out of that. What I have noticed is that what is happening at the moment with our children who stay in areas such as Mbare, Mufakose, Nkulumane and Hwange - they actually go by bus to Cape Town and do training over a month. They come back and stay here for three months and then go back for training. So, you can see the contrast that is there. Our children are exploited through those contracts, yet if we had a proper system, they would go through those systems.

Truly speaking if you look at the number of boys and girls in this country and if we establish a proper sport and culture policy, we will be able to reduce unemployment up to 45% because we have children that are strong and talented.

Finally, I would like to recommend that efforts should be put in place to make sure that we celebrate the history of Steven. I think we will do our country proud and encourage our children to get involved in various activities.

SENATOR CHIEF NGUNGUBANE : I would like to thank Senator Gutu for bringing up such an interesting debate to this House. He covered three aspects - mainly, culture, sports and arts. I would like to zero in on the aspect of sports. Our sport has been in the doldrums for a very long time. One of the problems that we have is that we continue to take sports as recreation and not as being competitive. First and foremost, maybe we need to change the abbreviations S.R.C. To become Sports Commission.

I would want to look at sports as an industry. The Ministry of Education, Sports and Culture puts little emphasis on the aspect of sports, arts and culture, giving it more bias towards education. Sports is no longer a recreational activity but it is now an industry. Sports offers employment and with the world recession in mind, sport has turned out to be one of the most paying industries, for example, Real Madrid is putting in a bid on Christiano Ronaldo for 18 million pounds and out of that the player is entitled to 10%. That means that the player will take 8 million pounds before bonuses and a weekly wage of 150 000 pounds per week.

Sport should be taken seriously because it offers employment. It keeps our children away from the streets and away from substance and drug abuse. Sport keeps our children occupied. With regards to this, I would like to see a new ministry created that will take care of sport and culture as a whole. -[HON. SENATORS: Hear, hear]- Mr. President, sports is an industry and with such a ministry all the problems of sports will be taken care of.

Secondly, I would like to look at the sports calender at our schools. The calender makes sports to be seasonal. Athletics is done during the first term, while rugby, soccer and netball are played during the second term. Cricket, swimming and baseball are played during the third term. Such a scenario leads to skills breakdown and there is no continuation.

Primary school children must have the continuation of skills development throughout the year regardless of what sport they are playing. The Ministry of Sports and Culture should formulate a policy where school sporting disciplines must be done throughout the year as opposed to being seasonal.

On junior development - there is a popular Ndebele adage that says 'isigogo sigoqwa sisemanzi' and it simply means that you teach a child skills at a very tender age. Training at schools should start at an early age because children can easily conceive skills as opposed to adults. For example, the Black brothers, Byron Black and Wayne Black who became successful, started playing tennis at an early age of 5 years. That is why they were successful in the singles and doubles. They played tennis league. However, it is disappointing that since their retirement from Davies Cup, the tennis scenario in Zimbabwe is going down. If we are to produce future stars, we need to start training at very tender ages. Mr President Sir, in Zimbabwe this has been done. With regard to junior development programme, that is when we had junior teams like the soccer under 17s and under 20s teams but there are complaints of bias. We need to revisit junior tournaments like the Peter Ndlovu tournaments which identified players like Joseph Kabwe and Baleki Chisoni. We had the schools rugby tournaments at boys' schools. The Coca-Cola schools tournament which identified football power houses like Prince Edward, Churchill and Mutare Boys High, only to mention a few. The modern group of players playing football in Zimbabwe came from these schools. Mr President, it is important that we engage qualified personnel to train junior development at grassroots level. We need personnel to train juniors at kindergarten, primary level, secondary level and tertiary level. People like the late Reinhard Fabisch cited that our national team laked a serious skills appreciation. The national team players had difficulties in the passing of the ball and ball control.

I propose that the government, through its arm should formulate the policy which makes it possible for teams playing in professional leagues to have junior teams. There should be national junior leagues and we should have a lot of these. One example that comes into mind is the Soccer Academy which is currently on top. Mr President, those are younger players who have developed proper skills and managed to work with other players who are much more like them. We need to have academies which will provide accommodation to children, pay for their fees and cater for all their needs. As a country, we need to create high performance centres. Such institutions supported by our policies will find that our children are already qualified when they are still young and that will help to improve the skills and do away with the problems of training and development.

Some schools and our institutions are not providing administration and management courses for sports administrators. As a result of this, some football administrators are not appropriately trained to organize and run clubs and organizations professionally. In Zimbabwe it would appear that any one with money is considered capable of running sport. Mr President, I propose that colleges, schools and tertiary institutions must, and I want to underline the word; 'must' introduce sports administration and management courses and programmes.

ZIFA is not clear and transparent when it comes to junior development prgrammes. There are no synchronized development programmes. There are no synchronized national development programmes . Schools organise tournaments on their own. Junior leagues also organize their own tournaments, the Sports and Recreation Commission is also involved with the youth games. This is a duplication and a waste of human and financial resources. Another problem related to junior football is that of age cheating. Again cheating is done by club officials, parents and obviously with some unscrupulous ministry of Home Affairs officials who facilitate the issuance of birth certificates and passports. The issue of over aged players does not give us benefits. For example, our Under 17 national team won the qualifiers of the Africa Youth Championships last year, but when it came to the finals played in Algeria, 90% of the selected players could not make the grade because they were over aged. These players escaped going to DNA tests to ascertain whether the ages they had given them tallied with the DNA test. However to everybody's surprise all, but two players escaped camp teaming for feat that they would be caught.

LEVIES AND TAXES

Clubs are failing to fully develop the game of football due to the taxes and levies charged on the gate taking. After football matches, clubs pay a lot of levies, viz-a-viz Sports and Recreation Commission 6% of gross. Local Authorities get 20% of gross and VAT, PSL gets 10% of net takings, ZRP average of US$4 per hour, this increases with the rank of the official on duty. I believe with the plight of the national association, with the plight of the clubs, ZRP has a national obligation to prevent crime. Why then do they have to be paid for the services that they should provide to football games. Food for thought. ZRP should not be paid for such services. ZIFA gets 1% of net.

Then other expenses include payment of cashiers, attendants and costs of printing tickets. Clubs are left with less than 50% of the gross takings, before they pay their expenses such as player salaries and allowances, transport costs and camping costs. This leaves clubs with little revenue to plough into junior development. Some players like Muzondiwa Mugadza, Chamu Musanhu among many others, quit football because it is not better paying and settled in the United Kingdom where they are doing menial jobs. I propose that there be a reduction in levies so that clubs or national associations could survive.

DUTY ON SPORTING EQUIPMENT

The duty on sporting equipment makes it difficult for clubs to import adequate equipment for developing young players. Clubs, national associations require football boots, training costumes, shin guards, nets, medicine, balls and uniforms. All these attract high duty levied by ZIMRA. This does not affect the clubs, schools , academies and sponsors. Sponsors who pour huge sums of money in the development of the sport do not seem to have any tax benefits. Perhaps that is the reason why there are few corporate organisations that are keen to sponsor sport in Zimbabwe. I propose that government should review charges on sporting equipment.

INFRASTRUCTURE

Madam President, there is need to maintain the existing sporting infrastructure , some sporting infrastructure have become dilapidated. We need money to properly maintain sports infrastructure. We need to decentralize the development of infrastructure to ward levels in the rural areas.

LACK OF SPORTING OF DISCIPLINES IN SCHOOLS AND TERTIARY INSTITUTIONS

Madam President, it is disappointing that certain sporting disciplines are not offered in schools and and tertiary institutions. Sporting disciplines like hockey are not offered at former 'B' schools. Sporting disciplines like volleyball are not offered at primary private schools . Government should put in place a policy where all sporting disciplines are offered at all schools and tertiary institutions so that minority sports do not die a natural death.

REMUNERATION

Sport and development in Zimbabwe could be taken to dizzy heights if sports administrators are paid very well. Sports has suffered because players have deserted Zimbabwe due to lower remuneration in order to take up citizenship in countries where sports personalities are well paid. Honorable Gutu mentioned some of these players who have taken up citizenship in other countries which is a sad development in our state.

DEVELOPMENT OF OTHER STAKEHOLDERS

Other stakeholders like local authorities need to review programmes they once pursued. Such programmes included the twinning of cities like what happened to Bulawayo City Council and the City of Aberdeen. Youths teams from Bulawayo sent teams to Aberdeen. Sporting cooperations can be created from Zimbabwe to other countries so that they could identify junior talent. Before the onset of political tension between Zimbabwe and countries in the European Union and the Western world. We need to have teams from the United Kingdom coming here to play. One team that comes into mind is Coventry City where they identified Peter Ndlovu while he played for Highlanders. He did not go via South Africa like what most of our players do. We hope that as political relations improve, the twinning of cities, the twinning of clubs could be set up. This will help us export quality players at a very tender age to the lucrative league in Europe.

MARKETING

We need to market our players to overseas markets. There are various marketing strategies that could be used. One that comes into mind is having our premier league games getting screened on DSTV. For example Zambia have their league games screened on DSTV.

Finally I would like government to investigate through the Sports Commission, on national associations which are not performing well in earnest time. I challenge government, Parliament, Sports Commission, National Association to formulate and implement government policy in good time and this could possibly help reduce problems bedeviling sport in Zimbabwe. I thank you.

THE MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, MECHANISATION AND IRRIGATION DEVLOPMENT: I move that the debate do now adjourn. Motion put and agreed to.

Debate to resume: Tuesday, 25th June, 2009.

ANNOUNCEMENT BY THE DEPUTY PRESIDENT

TRANSPORT TO THE NATIONAL WOMEN'S CONSTITUTIONAL SUMMIT

THE DEPUTY PRESIDENT: The bus to ferry women MPS to the National Women's Constitutional Summit at Rainbow Towers on Friday, 19th June, 2009 and 20 June, 2009 will depart from Parliament building at 0800 hours in the morning.

On the motion of THE MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, MECHANISATION AND IRRIGATION DEVELOPMENT, the Senate adjourned at Twenty-Five Minutes to Five O'clock p.m. until Tuesday, 21st July, 2009.

 

 

 

 

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Senate Hansard Vol. 18 SENATE HANSARD - 18 JUNE 2009 VOL. 18 NO. 21