Welcome to Parliament of Zimbabwe live blog. We will be giving you a coverage of the events as they unfold at this Pre-Budget Briefing Seminar being held at Pandhari, Lodge Harare.
Members of Parliament have now settled down in their seats in anticipation of the arrival of the Speaker of the National Assembly Hon. Adv. Jacob Francis Mudenda. The Speaker will deliver the key note address at this seminar.
The Acting Clerk (extreme left), Ms H. B. Dingani calls upon the Speaker to deliver the keynote address.
The Speaker now delivers the keynote address, whose main objective is to strengthen the capacity of Members of Parliament in budget formulation and prioritisation ahead of the Pre-Budget Seminar to be held from 2-6 November 2016 in Bulawayo.
The proposed theme for this year’s Pre-Budget Seminar is “Enhancing transformative economic development through domestic resource mobilisation and utilisation.
The Speaker of the National Assembly Hon. Adv. J. F. Mudenda delivers the keynote address.
Highlights of the address:
– Government is faced with very little fiscal leg-room with virtually no space to manouvre because of a shrinking revenue base and unrelenting demands on the expenditure side.
– The net effect of these structural problems is the under performance of the national economy.
Members of Parliament follow the proceedings.
Domestic Resource Mobilisation, principle is not only peculiar to Zimbabwe, as several countries have gone through it and the evidence is there for us to see and believe that we can as well do it.
The performance of tax revenue mobilisation has been generally below target as a result of structural factors such as low per capita, large informal sector, sophisticated tax evasion and avoidance techniques, large peasant agricultural and struggling manufacturing sector implying very low effective tax bases despite the growth profiles.
Parliament needs to reign in on the scourge of corruption which has gradually become endemic in the Zimbabwean society.
The Speaker commends the efforts being taken by Mr Basil Nyabadza in turning around the fortunes of ARDA.
The country needs to assure the informal sector that formalisation of their operations does not entail reduction in their profits but provides opportunities for further growth.
The Committee on Small to Medium Enterprises should come up with proposals for strengthening linkages and creating an enabling environment for SMEs development.
It is my expectation that the Committee on Mines and Energy will take a lead at the Pre-Budget Seminar in calling for greater efforts to market our mineral resources.
Speaker officially opens the Pre-Budget Briefing Seminar.
Mr John Makamure , the Executive Director of Southern African Parliamentary Support Trust, is now unpacking the Key Concepts and Terms of the National Budget Structure.
Mr Makamure making his presentation.
Budget must be anchored on realistic assumptions and MPs must be critical on the assumptions that the budget is premised on.
The budget process is a very complex process because Parliament must be monitoring different budgets at different stages.
The Deputy Minister of Mines and Mining Development, Hon Fred Moyo follows the proceedings.
The Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on Finance and Economic Development Hon David Chapfika chairs the session while Ms Helen B. Dingani whispers to the Speaker of the National Assembly Hon Adv. Jacob Francis Mudenda.
Members of Parliament should take note of Section of 305 (3) which
requires that there should be separate estimates of revenue and
expenditure given each of the following:
– each Commission established by this Constitution;
– the office of the Auditor-General;
– the National Prosecuting Authority;
– the Council of Chiefs; and
– any other institution prescribed in an Act of Parliament.
Each Committee is expected to consult its stakeholders before it presents its report at the Pre-Budget Seminar. The first section of the report should give an overview of the Ministry’s performance, informed by the interaction with the relevant Ministry.
The Portfolio Committee should also assess the gender dimension of the budget
The priorities shall also be informed by the Committees own analysis of the budget.
If the Committee feels there are sections to be amended in the legislation, it should point out these proposed changes and justify the need to do so.
Specific recommendations of the Committee should be highlighted. These guidelines are not an end themselves but they should help the Committees to come up with meaningful budget contributions.
The Financial and Quarterly reports to be submitted by the Ministries to Parliament should now be uniform, following the approval of the guidelines by the Liaison and Coordination Committee.
The Committee must be convinced by the Ministries responses to the concerns raised by the recommendations of the Auditor-General and must ensure that it performs its oversight of the Executive function fully.
Hon. Sen. Nyamayabo Mashavakure urges Parliament through the Speaker of the National Assembly to ensure that the Budget takes into consideration the needs of people living with disabilities.
The Senator representing people living with disabilities, Ho. N. Mashavakure makes his contribution.
Hon. Amos Chibaya poses a question to the presenter.
Hon. Ronald Muderedzwa makes his contribution.
Mr Samuel Tarinda, Deputy Director -Economic Research, Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe presents the topic, Enhancing Economic Growth Through Domestic Resource Mobilisation.
Mr S. Tarinda, Deputy Director-Economic Research, Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe
Hon Paurina Mpariwa introduces the presenter.
Highlights from Mr S. Tarinda’s presentation:
– It is vital when budgeting, to address the economic challenges timeously.
– Revenues have been constantly below the target in the recent years.
– The structure of the budget show that recurrent expenditure is predominant, with the employment costs taking 96% of Government expenditure.
– The private sector should be driving the mobilisation of financial resources.
– There is need for the creation of confidence in the banking sector by the majority of the people so that more deposits can find their way into the sector.
– The government should come up with policies to plug financial leakages.
– Exports should be the cornerstone of our economy hence the Central Bank’s incentives towards the exportation of the goods.
Hon. Sen. Angeline Masuku flanked by Hon Sen. Charles Tavengwa on the left and Hon David Chapfika makes her contribution.
The Speaker of the National Assembly gives the closing remarks.
The Speaker of the National Assembly Hon Adv. J. F. Mudenda.
Hon Adv. J. F. Mudenda urges the large retail players to desist from the habit of buying goods from small players who in the process are circumventing Statutory Instrument 64.
He urged the retailers and Chinese nationals to use the banking system and further urged Government to ensure that once they have deposited their money into the banking system, they should be allowed to withdraw all their money on demand.
The Speaker has officially closed the seminar.
Thank you for following this blog.