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National Assembly Hansard 10 January 2018 Vol 44 No 29

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PARLIAMENT OF ZIMBABWE

Wednesday, 10th January, 2018

The National Assembly met at a Quarter-past Two o’clock p.m.

PRAYERS

(THE ACTING SPEAKER in the Chair)

MATTER OF PRIVILEGE

ABSENCE OF MINISTERS

HON. GONESE : I rise on a matter of privilege. Thank you very much Mr. Speaker Sir. As we are all aware, today is Wednesday and on Wednesdays it is Question Time. In terms of the Constitution of Zimbabwe, Section 119 in respect of the role of Parliament, it is very clear that this august has got an obligation to protect this Constitution and also to ensure that the provisions of the Constitution are upheld and that all state institutions and agencies of Government at every level act constitutionally and in the national interest.

You are also aware that in terms of Section 107, it is the obligation of all Hon. Vice Presidents, Ministers of Government and Deputy Ministers to attend Parliament. Whilst I am happy that the Leader of the House has now walked in but my concern is not new. The challenge we have today is that Hon. Ministers and Vice Presidents are attending a meeting of an organ of a political party. In respect of the provisions which I have cited, we must act in the national interest. Acting in the national interest in my opinion means that we must put Government business and matters of the State above matters of the party.

It so happens that the Head of State is also the First Secretary of the governing party and it also happens that the Secretary for Administration also happens to be the Minister of Home Affairs. I want to believe that the two of them in their capacities as Head of State and Minister of Government respectively should actually prioritise the matters of this nation because as you can see we have got the cameras from ZTV; they are here and the nation of Zimbabwe is expectant. We are having the first Wednesday of the year and members of the public, the people that we represent expect that today matters of concern are going to be articulated and posed to the Hon. Ministers.

Unfortunately, most of the Ministers are attending that Politburo meeting except for the Minister of Mines whom I see and who is not a member of the Politburo and obviously, the Minister of Justice. I believe that it is not fair to the people of Zimbabwe that questions are only posed to those two Ministers when in fact the Head of State and the Secretary for Administration of the governing party have put matters of their party ahead of matters of the nation of Zimbabwe.

It is not a new concern and we have raised it before. One would have expected that with the new dispensation which is now turning out to be not so new, the more things appear to change, the more they remain the same. It appears that they are remaining the same. One would have thought that we were going to have a different approach; we were going to have a scenario where matters of the State are put above matters of the party.

In this regard, I would like your office to express this concern firstly to the head of this institution who also happens to be attending the same Politburo meeting and his deputy who is now the Secretary for Women’s League and is also attending that same meeting. But, put across our concerns to them firstly as heads of this institution, that as Members of this august House we are worried that some things are just continuing in the way that they were happening before the new dispensation. Those are our concerns. I thank you.

THE ACTING SPEAKER (HON. MARUMAHOKO) : Thank you Hon Gonese. Your concerns are taken very seriously. It is not the first time for you to stand up in this august House and complain about the absence of Hon. Ministers. Yes, your concerns are taken seriously. We will discuss that one with the powers that be.

HON. NDUNA : I rise on a point of privilege. Yes, indulge me Mr. Speaker. I ask your indulgence in that the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education if he so wishes, if he can favour this august House with a Ministerial Statement seeing that schools have started. He has been doing quite a very good job going on radio so vociferously about children going to..

THE ACTING SPEAKER : Order, can you resume your seat. Hon. Member, it would have been prudent for you to put it through a question so that we have more time for questions than discussion. I will give you an opportunity to ask a question to the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education.

HON. NDUNA : It is not a question.

THE ACTING SPEAKER : Can you pose a question to the Minister. I will give you that opportunity.

HON. NDUNA : The Minister we are talking about is not here. I am asking through you for there to be favoured this House with a Ministerial Statement that is going to see our children not being turned away from school so that he clarifies the position of children staying in school and not being chased away.

THE ACTING SPEAKER : Point taken Hon Nduna. I thought the Minister was here. He is not here. We will liaise with him.

ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITHOUT NOTICE

HON. P. D. SIBANDA : My question will be directed to the Leader of Government business and with your indulgence Mr. Speaker, may you allow me to preface my question because it pertains to issues that are currently happening. In my constituency, we have experienced about five Zimbabwean citizens last year who were murdered along the Zambezi River for purposes of taking body parts including their heads to Zambia. We have had a number of our fishermen along the Zambezi River being attacked by armed people from the Republic of Zambia and being robbed of their boats and engines. My question to the Leader of Government Business is, what is our policy with regards protection of citizens of this country that are living along the borders with other countries, with specific reference to protection of citizens who live along boundaries which are made up of water bodies? Thank you

THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. I would like to thank the Hon. Member for the question. The policy of Government is that everyone should enjoy the peace and security that can be afforded by our security forces. However, as regards the specific issue that the Hon. Member has referred to – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.]-

THE ACTING SPEAKER: Order, order! I thought this was a very important question. The Minister is trying to answer and you are making a lot of noise at the back.

HON. ZIYAMBI : Thank you Hon. Speaker. The policy of Government is that everyone must enjoy the peace and security that can be afforded by our security forces; that is their duty. However, as regards the specific issue that the Hon. Member has raised, I think I will raise it to the Minister of Home Affairs with a view of ensuring that there is more security in that area given the circumstances that he has mentioned.

HON . NDUNA: Indulge me Mr. Speaker. Now that the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education is now here, with your indulgence, if you may allow me to proffer that question to him. If you then say a Ministerial Statement is okay for that matter, only then can I proceed. But, if you can allow me to ask him the question in particular about children going back to school not being chased away for lack of fees and all that seeing that this is the beginning of the term.

THE ACTING SPEAKER : Go ahead and ask the question.

HON . NDUNA: My question goes to you Hon. Minister of Primary and Secondary Education. You have been going on and on, on radio about children not being chased away or supposedly who are not supposed to be chased away from school, in particular primary school education. May you clarify and make it clear to this House what Government policy is regarding children not being chased away from schools for lack of fees in this dire economic edge that we are going through.

THE ACTING SPEAKER : Hon. Nduna, if my memory serves me right, I saw the Minister on television talking about the same issue that you are raising now.

THE MINISTER OF PRIMARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION (HON. PROF. MAVIMA) : Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. Let me thank Hon. Nduna for that question even though he has made it clear that I have been on radio and you have also confirmed that I have been on television clarifying our policy. I have articulated the same policy here in Parliament and my predecessor, Dr. Dokora has on several occasion articulated the same policy here in Parliament.

However, for the avoidance of doubt, let me state that we are bound by our Constitution to respect the right of the learner to education. On that basis, no school is supposed to turn back any learner for non-payment which we have already said before. Having said that, our parents have to realise that they have an obligation together with Government to pay. I am appealing here to these national leaders who sit in this august House who have constituencies to work with us in encouraging the parents to pay. It is not about just banks. Order! - [Laughter.] -Yes, the reason why I had to shout order is because this is a very important issue that every Member of Parliament has to take seriously. This issue is about the future of Zimbabwe and we need to take it seriously. We are saying let us help each other so that we make sure that our education system remains viable and functional so that we can prepare future leaders of this country.

As far as the payment system is concerned, we have instructed our schools to provide a variety of payment methods including ecocash. Some schools are operating on ecocash. Schools in the urban areas, most of them are now on Point of Sale and also bank transfers. All schools in Zimbabwe have bank accounts where someone can make a deposit. So, let us encourage parents to pay so that we can keep our education system viable and functional.

THE ACTING SPEAKER : Order, order! Hon. Members, may I plead with you, the cameras are watching you. Do not force me to ask you to go outside in front of the cameras.

*HON. NDUNA : There are orphaned children who are of school going age and cannot afford to pay the fees that we are talking about. The Minister is saying that the parents should pay the fees at a later date but there are children who are orphaned without parents. In my constituency, I have advised them to go to school. So, I want to find out what is going to be the fate of such orphaned children?

* THE MINISTER OF PRIMARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION (HON. PROF. MAVHIMA ): We have the Basic Education Assistant Module (BEAM) programme. That is the scheme that will assist the vulnerable children. Let me explain to you how this module is assisting kids. Children under BEAM are enrolled at schools even if the school is not paid by BEAM, the children can still access education until the Government department of social welfare has paid for their fees. Schools are experiencing challenges in terms of late payment of fees but children under BEAM are not being denied education nor are they being chased away from school for non- payment of fees. BEAM is operational though it pays late but those who fall under BEAM are able to access education.

*HON. KWARAMBA : The issue that the Minister is talking about is important but what he is saying is not what is happening in rural areas. Currently, the children who sat for grade seven examinations whose fees were not paid by BEAM are not getting their results until they pay fees. I actually paid for one student who could not access his results under the BEAM programme.

THE HON. SPEAKER: What was the question?

*HON. KWARAMBA: What I am saying is that the Minister should put it in writing so that the headmasters are aware of that policy pronouncement.

THE HON SPEAKER : You did not pose a question.

*HON. KWARAMBA : I do not know how I can pose the question because I think it requires a Ministerial Statement.

THE HON. SPEAKER : Order, when one Member is up, you cannot just stand up and want to be recognised. Let us follow procedure.

*HON. KWARAMBA: I want to ask is if the Minister is aware of what is happening in schools that children are not accessing education. Those who fall under the BEAM programme are advised to first pay and are not getting their results until they pay.

HON. PROF. MAVHIMA : We have received some complaints and we are dealing with complaints everyday about situations, not necessarily BEAM alone but also from those parents who have been paying from their own pockets. The instruction to our headmasters is very clear. We have told them not to withhold results but to make a payment arrangement with the parents. However, there is a call now for communication with the headmasters so that we do not have these issues again. As soon as I leave this place, I am going to communicate with the permanent secretary so that she communicates with our structures to erase that problem for good.

*HON. MUNENGAMI : The Minister first said the parents should own up and pay the school fees. Is he saying that he is now in agreement with the Minister of Finance on the fact that they are no longer able to pay the teachers under the ECD programme. After some time we also heard the Minister of Education saying that the teachers will now be paid by the Government. So, now there is inconsistence in terms of policy pronouncement. Our request is for the Minister to clarify to us the actual position. Is it that parents need to look for funds to pay the ECD teachers or it is the duty of Government to ensure that these teachers are paid?

HON. PROF. MAVHIMA : Let me say that there is no policy inconsistence between ourselves and the Ministry of Finance. The teachers who are in-stream and teaching ECD continue to be supported by Treasury, so there was no policy change there. We needed to recruit about 6000 additional teachers for ECD – almost 6 000 on number, but Treasury indicated that, at this particular point in time, we do not have the fiscal space to do that. In actual fact, the several meetings which we have had with the Minister of Finance and Economic Planning as well as at the level of our officials, the Ministry of Finance has promised that as soon as the fiscal space permits, we are going to allow the recruitment of additional teachers. Therefore, we are going to continue the same way we did last year with the current resources in ECD that we have. Where schools can afford to add, they are allowed to add, using SDC funds and that will alleviate some of the problems that we have. Schools have done this with other areas where there is a shortage and because we do not have adequate funds coming from Treasury, schools have come along and helped us.

THE HON. SPEAKER : Order, I am advised that the maximum number of supplementary questions has been exhausted. On the ECD issue the Hon Minister has been very explicit so there is no need for a Ministerial Statement in that regard. As far as fees are concerned and denial of students or pupils to go back to school, the Minister has committed himself to immediately instruct the Permanent Secretary to ensure that students are not denied access to school. Nothing more can be further from the truth. Thank you.

HON. CHAKONA: Thank you very much Mr. Speaker. My question is directed to the Minister of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing, Hon. Moyo. I will preface my question so that it becomes clear...

THE HON. SPEAKER: Ah! No statement before questions, just ask questions straight to the Minister.

HON. CHAKONA: My question to the Minister is that there are a lot of illegal structures in urban and rural areas. What is the Ministry’s policy with regards to either regularisation or destruction of those illegal structures so that the objective of attaining 400 000 houses can be met? I thank you.

THE MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT, PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON. J. MOYO): Thank you Mr. Speaker. I want to thank the Hon. Member for asking me the policy of Government regarding unplanned settlements which are found all over the country. We are in the process of regularising some of them, but we start with the premise that the home seeker is genuine in wanting to have shelter over their head. Unfortunately, in the process - because of this demand we created a number of people who became business people who wanted to take advantage of many home seekers that are there in the country, but our premise is that the home seeker is a genuine person.

Our second aspect is that those who have settled in wetland areas and those who have settled in areas that are reserved for services such as sewerage and other places will get our first priority in order to find alternative accommodation or stands for them. The second aspect that we have is that because these settlements have no access to services such as sewerage or water, we think it causes hazards in the running of the municipalities, cities or towns in our country. Therefore, we need to pay attention so that we can bring those services to the people.

So, in the hierarchy of things, we want to protect our environment so that our water bodies such as those which provide water to cities are not polluted because people have no places where they can build their own sewerage systems or septic tanks, and they rely on going to the bush - and that is our priority. This is because those wetlands are very fragile. We also think that we owe it to the environment to make sure that we attend to it.

The second attempt is to make sure that we bring services to the people. At the same time, we are aware that there are a number of people who have benefitted unduly because of this situation and we will let the law take its course. Of course, we will provide information where we have information and I think we have some information about what has been going wrong. The policy is very clear that people want accommodation and they want to be settled so that their families can have a roof over their heads.

Going forward, we have said no unplanned settlement is allowed in any part of the country and our department of Physical Planning as well as local authorities must be alive to the fact that we have a planning regime which requires that any settlement in this country is under some form of one local authority or the other. It is either in the rural district council area or it is in the urban council area and those councils have the responsibility as planning authorities to approve those plans. I thank you Mr. Speaker.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, while I was putting on my gown I followed a point of privilege raised by Hon. Gonese concerning attendance by Hon. Ministers. I want to put the record straight. The planned meeting of the ruling party where some members of Cabinet are Members was planned on the understanding that Parliament was only going to sit next week. We were not supposed to have come this week. Secondly, it is agreed after my conversation with His Excellency that because a number of Ministries do not have Deputy Ministers, in future arrangements will be made that there is no clash in terms of dates for Wednesday questions. I thought I should clarify that.

*HON. MAHOKA: Thank you Mr. Speaker...

HON. ADV. CHAMISA: Sorry, just a point of order Hon. Speaker.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Why do you now allow the Hon. Member to ask?

HON. ADV. CHAMISA: In terms of procedure, it is something that is very important on what you have said.

HON. MAHOKA: Ndini ndarecognizwaka.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Can we converse?

Hon. Adv. Chamisa having approached the Speaker’s Chair.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Just a second. Sorry can we hear the Hon. Adv. Chamisa.

HON. ADV. CHAMISA: Thank you Hon. Speaker Sir. It is not good to fail to acknowledge good things when they are done by good people. You have done a very responsible thing Hon. Speaker to make an appropriate apology to Parliament and to indicate that these were circumstances beyond our control. This is responsible from your office and from your Chair. We want to acknowledge it as Parliament but more importantly, we must thank you for also leaving the Politburo to come here to preside over this Parliament.

It is very important and the reason I am doing that is because we always attack when there is an omission and a commission that is an infraction on our Parliamentary duties, but when it is done properly, we must thank you. I just wanted to acknowledge this so that we are progressive where there is need but where there is dereliction and also a lackadaisical approach, we will always come pouncing like a pounced hammer to make sure that things are in order. – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.]-

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order. Hon. Adv. Chamisa, we thank you for your acknowledgement of the circumstances. Hon. Members, there are these two vehicles that have obstructed other vehicles –[HON. ZWIZWAI: NdeyaChinotimba.]- Hon. Member, I think I have suffered you a lot, please can you go out. I called you twice the other day and I warned you that you do not interrupt the Chair that way.

Hon. Zwizwai having approached the Speaker’s Chair.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order. Is Hon. Chinotimba here? The Hon. Member has apologised and so the matter rests there. Yes, he has apologised so the matter rests there. Right, these are the two vehicles, AEE 2642 and ABE 8681. If they are not removed, then they will be clamped.

*HON. MAHOKA: The Minister explained concerning people who are settled on wetlands but some of that land was actually allocated to those people illegally. Nevertheless, those houses built on wetlands can be destroyed by the responsible local authorities. Therefore my question is; what is Government policy concerning the protection of those people who had built their houses there? Are they going to be compensated for the houses they have built there or the houses are just going to be destroyed and it ends there?

THE HON. SPEAKER: It is against the policy pronounced by the Hon. Minister Moyo. So, it does not arise.

HON. MAONDERA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. My supplementary question to Hon. Minister Moyo…

THE HON. SPEAKER: There is no supplementary. I have discounted that question. So, I want a new question.

HON. MAONDERA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir for your indulgence. My new question is directed to the Hon. Minister of Local Government, Hon. Minister Moyo. What is Government policy regarding heavy vehicles…

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, you are an Hon. Member. The Standing Orders say, you address the Hon. Ministers as Hon. Ministers.

HON. MAONDERA: Thank you Hon. Speaker. Thank you.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Yes.

HON. MAONDERA: Hon. Minister, my question is; what is Government policy regarding heavy vehicles and haulage trucks going to residential areas given the fact that most of them are causing accidents? Just like today in Glen Norah, we have lost three lives; two children and one man. They have been crushed by a trailer of a bus that came off its horse. What is Government policy relative to stopping those vehicles and haulage trucks from going to residential areas in all urban local authorities? Thank you.

THE HON. SPEAKER: I am really agonising but I am leaving it to the Hon. Minister.

THE MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT, PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON. J. MOYO): Hon. Member, our planning policy in urban areas includes transportation without excluding inter-provincial transportation. It allows heavy vehicles to pass through particular routes and not through any other routes. So when a truck is now found in a residential area, it is most likely that the driver will have broken the law because the zoning does not allow it to be there. Thank you Mr. Speaker.

*HON. MAJAYA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. My question is directed to the Leader of the House, Hon. Minister Ziyambi. What is Government policy concerning banks that are denying people from opening new accounts as of now and yet a person will have just assumed employment but unable to open a bank account?

The Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs having risen to answer the question.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Leader of the House, you are taking over my chairmanship. I was going to correct the Hon. Member. The Minister responsible is here and I am sure he can answer.

*THE. DEPUTY MINISTER OF FINANCE AND ECONOMIC PLANNING (HON. MUKUPE): Thank you for the correction. What I want to say is that banks are private enterprises and they have the right to put policies that regulate who can open a bank account with them. There is no policy that forces them to open an account for anyone and it is entirely up to them to accept you to be their client or not. What I know is that there are banks such as P.O.S.B whose operations are directed by Government policy and those have no way of denying you opening an account with them. Hence, I urge those who have failed to open bank accounts with other banks to consider going to POSB.

HON. P. D. SIBANDA: Hon Minister, from the back of my mind, I thought there was a Government policy of inclusivity in terms of banking. Now, if you are saying those that cannot access …

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, no prefix please. Go to the question.

HON. P. D. SIBANDA: Thank you Mr. Speaker. Hon. Minister, is it not Government policy that there should be inclusivity in terms of banking and accessibility of banking services by every Zimbabwean? Is it not Government policy that Zimbabweans should access banking services easily?

HON. MUKUPE: I thank you for that question. Indeed, it is Government policy that banking services have to be inclusive and accessible. However, it does not necessarily mean that when you are talking about inclusivity, you have to force every bank to accept opening an account for every applicant. That is why we say entities like the POSB can be found in high density areas and some of the most remote areas to ensure inclusivity. In terms of accessibility, the banking services are accessible to you whether in electronic form, physically and in any other medium possible. That is what we are saying in terms of our policy; be it mobile banking or swipe machines and that is what we talk about in terms of accessibility. We have done that in terms of our policy thrust. Therefore, we have made sure that banking services are accessible. I thank you.

Hon. P. D. Sibanda having risen to ask another supplementary question.

THE HON. SPEAKER: You cannot ask a supplementary question twice Sorry, you cannot. No, that is not a ministerial statement.

HON. ZINDI: Thank you Hon. Speaker. My question is directed to the Hon. Minister of Mines. What is the policy of the Ministry with regards to artisanal miners whom they have actually asked to open bank accounts? Also they have spent three months without paying them because they have not opened the bank accounts. What measures have they put in place in order to ensure that gold does not find its way on the black market because artisanal miners were depositing their gold with Fidelity? What measures have they put in place in order to curb that leakage?

THE MINISTER OF MINES AND MINING DEVELOPMENT (HON. CHITANDO): Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. I acknowledge the question from the Hon. Member. The Ministry has been working very closely with the mining associations to ensure that all gold mined finds its way to Fidelity. There is a Gold Mobilisation Unit deployed and more members will be deployed in the coming week to ensure that all gold mined finds its way to Fidelity.

*HON. ZINDI: Thank you Hon. Speaker, I think the Hon. Minister did not understand my question. Let me ask in vernacular language….

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order,

HON. ZINDI: Ooh gosh!

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, you cannot say ohsh to the Chair.

HON. ZINDI: I said gosh!

THE HON. SPEAKER: Yes, you cannot say that!

HON. ZINDI: I withdraw.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Also, do not imply that the Hon. Minister does not understand English, so can you ask the supplementary in English?

HON. ZINDI: Hon. Speaker, it was not intended to undermine the Minister in terms of ….

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order, ask the question.

HON. ZINDI: Mr. Speaker Sir, it was not intended to undermine the Minister in terms of his proficiency to understand English, no, but perhaps, I am the one who failed to explain myself, hence I did not get the response that I wanted, that is why I want to use Shona.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Please, ask the supplementary in English.

*HON. ZINDI: Hon. Speaker, ndoda kuti nditi – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – Ndakumbira. Hon. Speaker, the Ministry of Mines and Mining Development informed artisanal miners that no one will be given cash and they were advised to open bank accounts whilst at the same time the Ministry had not plugged the loopholes to ensure that there are no leakages in terms of gold. They were now taking the gold and selling it to other illegal dealers. So, what measures have they put in place to ensure that they plug these illegal leakages to ensure that gold finds its way to Fidelity. He has told us that they have in place a Gold Mobilisation Unit to ensure that all gold is taken to Fidelity and that it goes to Government. It is now three months since this was announced. There are those artisanal miners who are mining gold who have not been paid because of that pronouncement to open bank accounts. So, what is it that they intend to do to ensure that gold does not find its way through illegal means? I thank you.

HON. CHITANDO: There are three aspects which I would like to respond to the Hon. Member’s question. The first aspect is that we are encouraging all gold producers including artisanal miners to open bank accounts so that transactions can be done through the banks. At the same time, we are working with Fidelity to ensure that cash is disbursed for those deliveries. Also, in terms of the Gold Mobilisation Unit, I recognised and accept that the presence in the field has not been adequate. So arrangements are in place to ensure that there is more coverage by members of the Gold Mobilisation Unit. In the last two weeks, we have had the unit going out and reaching out to a number of operational areas throughout the country. I thank you.

HON. ZWIZWAI: Thank you Mr. Speaker. I want to thank you for forgiving me the time I angered you. May God bless you. My supplementary question to the Hon. Minister of Mines and Mining Development is related to the leakages. In the past, on the issue of leakages in the Ministry, you gave a pronouncement of 15 billion missing and that a Ministerial Statement will be brought to Parliament. Hon. Chidhakwa left office without bringing the Ministerial Statement on this issue. Since he has come in as new Minister, my request is that he should inform us on the progress regarding the issue of a Ministerial Statement on the missing $15 billion worth of diamonds. Hon. Speaker, it is an issue to this august House so that you give a ruling. This is something that should be explained to the people and should be done in vernacular so that people understand especially those in rural areas. I thank you.

HON. CHITANDO: I will answer the question in two parts. Firstly, with respect to gold leakages, I can assure Hon. Members that there will be a Ministerial Statement before the end of this month whereby a number of interventions are being crafted more so in line with the 100-Day Action Programme. Secondly, with respect to the diamonds, there will be some diamond sales in February and then another statement will come in place which will cover modalities.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Minister, there is a legacy issue which was raised by the Hon. Member, a statement on the alleged 15 billion dollars worth of diamonds that are not accounted for. That Ministerial Statement did not come through.

HON. CHITANDO: I acknowledge the question and also the legacy issue. What I want to assure the House is that like I implied earlier on, there is a sale. During the last year 2017, no diamonds were sold. There will be a first batch which is due for sale in February and when that happens, a modus operandi which covers the controls and accountabilities relating to that will be announced without fail – [AN HON. MEMBER: Point of clarity.] –

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order. Here is a questioner. Can you clarify the question?

*HON. ZWIZWAI: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. I want to thank the Hon. Minister for the statement that he will bring to the House when diamonds are sold in the future. We applaud that as the august House. It shows that there is now transparency but my question was not on that. My question is on the issues that happened before the new dispensation or the new era. There are diamonds worth $15 billion that were not accounted for and were mentioned by the former President at the airport after his visit to China. That issue was questioned in Parliament and Minister Chidhakwa, your predecessor gave a commitment to the Hon. Speaker that he would bring a Ministerial Statement to explain and clarify what happened to those diamonds, where they went and account for the $15 billion.

So, my question is what measures do you have as a Ministry, because your permanent secretary was not changed. What changed are only Ministers. What plans do you have or when do you think you will be able to bring a statement to account for the $15 billion worth of diamonds that went unaccounted for?

HON. MLISWA: On a point of order Mr. Speaker. As the Chairman for the Mines and Energy Committee, we are seized with the matter and I think it would be proper to allow the Committee to do its job. It is important that we follow the due process. We have already resolved that we shall bring all the parties involved to answer. So, for us to have the Minister responding to that would prejudice our work as a Committee at the end of the day. May you allow our Committee to discharge its duties pertaining to this issue? Thank you Mr. Speaker – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order.

HON. CHITANDO: Mr. Speaker Sir, I heard the supplementary question from the Hon. Member. There is a process which is underway which was initiated to give a comprehensive response to that and that will be given in due course. In the meantime, if there are any specific details which the Hon. Member wants covered in that process, that I request could be put in writing – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order. I think let us allow the due process of investigation through the Committee on Mines and Energy and the two, I am sure should come up with a comprehensive report that will be delivered by that Committee. I believe the Committee will engage the Hon. Minister and the Ministry so that there is some investigation in detail. Thank you.

HON. MUTSEYAMI: Supplementary question.

THE HON. SPEAKER: There is no supplementary on that.

HON. MUTSEYAMI: On the first question that was asked by Hon. Zindi.

THE HON. SPEAKER: No, you are being unprocedural. You should have asked that question immediately after Hon. Zindi.

HON. MUTSEYAMI: The question arose to the Hon. Minister as a result of the supplementary question from the Hon. Member and by then I was as well asking a supplementary question.

THE HON. SPEAKER: It should have been done immediately.

HON. MUTSEYAMI: How could it have been done immediately when we were having the same floor at the same time? – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order. You cannot do that. You can ask a fresh question.

HON. HOLDER: Thank you Mr. Speaker. My question is directed to the Minister of Mines and Mining Development, Hon. Winston Chitando. Could he update this House on the reopening of the Shabani Mine that is currently in process?

THE MINISTER OF MINES AND MINING DEVELOPMENT (HON. CHITANDO): Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. Firstly, I would like to probably recap on what has been happening on Shabani Mine in the sense that the reopening of Shabani Mine has largely been hampered by lack of capital. I am sure what the Hon. Member is referring to is, there is currently some activity happening in the area which is two-fold. Firstly, Mr. Speaker, there is in progress now, dewatering of the mine in Mashava which, I am sure, Hon. Members would know has been flooded for a while. That dewatering process is underway as we talk now, and we expect that the mine will be dewatered by December. At the same time, Mr. Speaker Sir, we have recognised that to partly address issues relating to funding of the mine, we have identified reprocessing of one of the dumps as a low hanging fruit.

As we talk now, we do have about 50 people at the dump, mobilising to start the reprocessing of the dump which should commence by May this year wherein we expect to have 150 people peaking at 350, to reprocess that dump. The whole game plan being that the funds that will be raised from the reprocessing of that dump will then be used to reopen Mashava Mine when we finish dewatering in December this year. The Hon. Member is right, there is some activity that is taking place; but it is limited at this stage to dewatering of the mine in Mashava and commencement of reprocessing of the dump in Zvishavane to get low hanging fruit, the cash to enable us to start reopening Mashava.

HON. HOLDER: My supplementary question is, has Government found a new investor or is it ZMDC or African Associated Mines - if that can be clarified.

HON. CHITANDO: Thank you Mr. Speaker. On whether an investor has been found, the answer is no. The mine falls under ZMDC at the moment, so what is happening is Government is working together with the administrator and ZMDC on plans to ensure that the mine or some of the operations get back to generating employment and revenue for the country. I thank you.

HON. DR. SHUMBA: Thank you Mr. Speaker. I would like to have the Minister of Mines and Mining Development clarify the issue of reopening the mine, the issue of recapitalisation of the mine, in light of the reconstruction law pertaining to SML. It is impossible, Hon. Speaker, that we may progress on the issue if the issue of ownership is still in dispute. I may also want to get maybe the Leader of the House to assist in regard to the policy of the expropriation and return of assets that were owned by black businessmen in this respect. Thank you.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Can you address the question to the Hon. Minister of Mines and Mining Development first and foremost.

HON. DR. SHUMBA: Thank you Mr. Speaker. My address is to the Hon. Minister of Mines and Mining Development, Minister Chitando. Thank you.

THE HON. SPEAKER: And not to the Leader of Government Business.

HON. DR. SHUMBA: Indeed.

HON. CHITANDO: Mr. Speaker Sir, I am not sure whether I quite understand the question, but I will try to answer it. I think if I get the question well is, what are the plans to recapitalise and reopen the mine? I am not sure whether that is the question, Mr. Speaker Sir.

THE HON. SPEAKER: The question is, Hon. Minister, you are reconstructing and revamping the mine, have you sorted out the issue of ownership of that mine.

HON. CHITANDO: Currently, Mr. Speaker Sir, there is an administrator who is taking charge of the day to day operations of the company and in line with trying to revive the economy the plans have been put in place to get back some of the operations into a generative stage so as to generate employment and revenue for the country.

HON. MUSANHI: My question is directed to the Minister of Mines and Mining Development. Minister, the Mines and Minerals Act has been outstanding on the amendments for a very long time. When is it going to come to this House for amendment?

THE MINISTER OF MINES AND MINING DEVELOPMENT (HON. CHITANDO): Mr. Speaker, there are already plans for a meeting with the Parliamentary Committee on Mines and Energy to look at a number of issues which include the outstanding matters relating to amendments to the Mines and Minerals Act. So, maybe if we could be given the chance to engage the Parliamentary Committee and then give a statement after that engagement.

THE HON. SPEAKER: The questioner appears not to be satisfied. The Chair understands that - when do you think you will bring the Bill to Parliament so that it is debated in Parliament and passed as a law, it is the timeline.

HON. CHITANDO: Mr. Speaker Sir, we have a scheduled meeting with the Parliamentary Committee on Mines and Energy next week at which those issues, the outstanding matters, will be discussed and I am sure soon after that - I am not sure what the lead times would be as to from the Committee meeting to coming back into Parliament, but I would like to think - certainly, we need closure on amendments to the Mines and Minerals Act, because it also gives the investors peace of mind.

HON. DR. SHUMBA: I would like to remind the Hon. Minister of Mines and Mining Development that his predecessor had already conceded to all the issues that the Mines and Energy Portfolio…

THE HON. SPEAKER: You want to remind the Hon. Minister or you want to inform? He was not there, how can you remind him.

HON. DR. SHUMBA: No, I am trying to ask a question but in order not to ambush the Minister, I have to give him a bit of space to understand.

THE HON. SPEAKER: You want to inform, not to remind.

HON. DR. SHUMBA: Has the Hon. Minister of Mines and Mining Development taken note that his predecessor had conceded to all the legislative issues that were outstanding regarding the Mines and Minerals Amendment Bill?

HON. CHITANDO: Mr. Speaker Sir, there were a number of issues which are outstanding from amendments from that Bill and the responses which were made by my predecessor have and will be taken into account in the deliberations when the Bill comes back to this House. Thank you.

HON. MAKONYA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. My question is directed to the Deputy Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Hon. Minister Mukupe. In this new dispensation we had some people who had contrabands of cash in their hide outs. My question is when this money was impounded, where is it being kept? Was it returned for safety to the Reserve Bank since it was an amount of $10 million?

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order. In terms of the judicial process when a matter is before the court it is subjudice. You cannot discuss it. Thank you.

*HON. NHAMBU: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. My question is directed to the Minister of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing, Hon. J. Moyo. What is Government policy regarding rural local authorities such as councils who are allocating stands to banks who will then build houses in those areas but the house will be beyond the rich or the targeted group which is the low wage income earners? – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] -

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order. Hon. Nhambu, your question is very operational, it is not policy.

*HON. PHIRI : Thank you Mr. Speaker. My question is directed to the Minister of Home Affairs or if he is not here to the Leader of the House. We have a lot of people who are failing to register as voters because they cannot access long birth certificates in particular the elderly. As Government, how can you relax these rules so that these elderly people can access this precious document for voter registration?

* THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): I want to thank Hon. Phiri for this question on these long birth certificates. The officers in the Registrar-General’s office would want to first of all access and certify that your parents were genuinely Zimbabweans and even if one of the parents is a Zimbabwean, you can also be given that long birth certificate. In this case when you are an elderly person who no longer has any parents, there will be some investigations that have to be carried out. What is essential is that when you go for registration, you need that long birth certificate because it shows the details of your mother and father.

*HON. PHIRI: I want to thank the Minister for his response. As it is now, we are on the last stage of the biometric voter registration and the Minister is saying there are going to be some consultations regarding the acquisition of a long birth certificate but time is not on our side.

*HON. ZIYAMBI: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. I am going to hold consultations today with the Minister of Home Affairs so that he can tell me how the elderly people can access these long birth certificates when they no longer have witnesses such as their fathers and mothers who are long dead.

*HON. CHIBAYA: Thank you very much Hon. Speaker. As a supplementary question...

*HON. PHIRI: On a point of order Mr. Speaker Sir.

THE HON. SPEAKER: What is your point of order?

*HON. PHIRI: We have a member who is in this House who is using a derogatory term referring to the people of Malawi an origin as mabrandaya or manyasaland which is a derogatory name, we refer to such people as tribalists – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, Hon. Phiri, we want to know who said that?

*HON. PHIRI: It is the short Member of Parliament who is sitting on the other side of the House – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order. Can the Hon. Member withdraw the statement?

HON. PEDZISAI: I withdraw my statement Mr. Speaker.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, I did not hear you Hon. Member.

HON. PEDZISAI: I withdraw my statement Mr. Speaker.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Thank you.

*HON. CHIBAYA: Thank you very much Hon. Speaker. My supplementary question is on acquisition of long birth certificates, Hon. Ziyambi, regarding the question asked by Hon. Phiri. We are aware that the process of registering voters in the BVR is coming to an end. There are still long queues and at a time, only few people are registered yet there are long queues. What processes are you taking so that you can ease this problem of people acquiring their identity documents so that they can engage in the biometric voter registration programme?

*HON. ZIYAMBI: I thank the Hon. Member for the supplementary questions. The officers from the Registrar General and the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission were working in unison whereby somebody would acquire the necessary documents and then go and register in the biometric voter registration. My hope is that the people from the Registrar General’s office will also be part of the group which is going to do the mop up exercise so that it is easier for people to acquire these necessary documents. If the Hon. Member is aware of some places whereby the officials from the two departments have not visited for operations and registration, please submit the names so that we can direct mobile teams to go and register those people.

*HON. CHIBAYA: My supplementary question to the Hon. Minister is that the Minister has given the response to the long birth certificates but the problem which is inherent in this programme is that we have aliens who came to this country and only had identity cards but fortunately as you have made a new ruling that children who were born by aliens – if they have these long certificates and identity cards, they can change these certificates. We now have these aged parents who only have the certificates which they brought from their country of origin. The problem they face when they go to the Registrar General’s office to get citizenship, they are denied the long birth certificate because they never had the chance of acquiring this document.

As a Ministry, what are you doing to alleviate the problem that is being faced by these people who cannot acquire the documents because they never acquired the required documents at that time?

*HON. ZIYAMBI: My response will be based on the Constitution of our country. Section 43 says that “…a citizen of a country which became a member of SADC established by a treaty signed at Windhoek in the Republic of Namibia on the 17th of August 1992 or he or she was ordinarily resident in Zimbabwe on the publication date…” This means that if you can prove what is written down here so that the officials are satisfied that you were definitely a citizen or resident in this country for a continuous period, they will accept and then give you the necessary documents. My plea is that if there are any problems being faced by the aliens, it means that people are being illogical or are acting illegally because the High Court has said aliens have to be registered but there are requirements which one has to fulfill according to the Constitution and you can also access registration as a voter.

HON. GONESE: I move that the time for Questions Without Notice be extended.

HON. TOFFA: I second.

*HON. MUNENGAMI: On a point of clarity Hon. Speaker…

THE HON. SPEAKER: I have not recognised you. You do not speak before I recognise you.

HON. MUNENGAMI: I am sorry Hon. Speaker.

THE HON. SPEAKER: Can you proceed briefly?

*HON. MUNENGAMI: In brief as the Hon. Speaker has stated, we have some of our residents in this country who have identity documents marked ‘alien’. When they go for registration at the Registrar General’s office, they are being denied the chance of being citizens of Zimbabwe - the main reason being that they do not have long birth certificates. When this case was brought to the High Court, they were told that if they have a long birth certificate and an identity card which is marked ‘alien’, they can register but we have people who do not have long birth certificates but only have an identity card marked ‘alien’ – how can they be assisted?

*HON. ZIYAMBI: I have explained this before. The problem we are facing is not a problem of registration as being done by the people at the Registrar-General’s office. What you are talking about is the acquisition of a citizenship of Zimbabwe. These people should first of all prove that they have been residing in Zimbabwe for such and such a time. There are some requirements which are needed so that they can prove that they have been resident in Zimbabwe. We need some foolproof measures because we have some corrupt people who will take advantage of this situation and register. These people need to be vetted. What we know is that the people who have the right to vote are citizens of Zimbabwe, bona-fide citizens of Zimbabwe. The people in the Registrar General’s office should be satisfied that the person who has come with an identity card marked ‘A’ without a long birth certificate, they have to be shown – that is definitely a bona-fide resident of Zimbabwe and has been in the country for such a time as required by the Constitution.

*HON. MACHINGAUTA: My supplementary question to the Hon. Minister is, is the Minister aware that when the office of the Registrar General promised to go around the country to issue identity cards, they did not do that? Is the Minister also aware that when people need the services of the Registrar-General’s office, they have to go a day earlier so that they put up there and be the first to be served in the morning? If he is aware, what steps is his Ministry taking to alleviate this problem?

HON. ZIYAMBI: This appears like a new question because people have been asking questions on birth certificates. The question is talking about an incident whereby people are taking long in the queues and that they are even putting up at the Registrar-General’s office so that they can be served earlier. We need to visit this office and make enquiries as to why people are putting up there. I request that the Hon. Member put the question in writing so that we can direct it to the Minister of Home Affairs and receive a comprehensive response.

HON. NYANHONGO: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. My question is directed to the Hon. Minister of Mines. Hon. Minister, we are made to understand that platinum is associated with other seven minerals. What are we doing as a Government to try and separate those other minerals so that they do not go to South Africa as one mineral, platinum yet we know there are other seven minerals? Is there any measure that Government is taking to make sure that these other seven minerals are separated here in Zimbabwe?

THE MINISTER OF MINES AND MINING DEVELOPMENT (HON. CHITANDO): Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. The Hon. Member is indeed right that platinum is associated with seven other minerals; actually it is eight minerals which do exist in that concentrate. The process of separating those minerals is that firstly, they go through base metal refinery which will systematically remove the base minerals in the concentrate. Thereafter, the residue is sent to a precious metal refinery which will take out the remainder of the minerals.

The beneficiation policy by Government is targeted at having the industry setting up initially smelters because before you get to a base metal refinery, the first stage of value addition is smelting and thereafter base metal refining which will enable the first stage of the extraction of the minerals to take place. Hence, the beneficiation policy and discussion which are taking place with the industry. I thank you Mr. Speaker.

HON. MUTSEYAMI: Thank you Mr. Speaker. My question is directed to the Hon. Minister of Transport. With your indulgence Mr. Speaker Sir, my question is to do with one of our national road which is so much of national importance to the country; the road which stretches from Birchenough Bridge – Tanganda – Chiredzi. The Minister last year in February, specifically pointed out that they had somehow acquired some money to manage the road. With all due respect Hon. Minister, may you update this House as well as the nation as to the update with regard to the take off of the project bearing in mind that you have a clear picture of the condition of the road as we speak today. What is it that people are to expect in terms of getting that road to normal viz-a-viz the situation that we had earlier on with regard to the court case which was disturbing this process for the road to take off.

THE MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. GUMBO): Thank you Hon. Mutseyami for asking that question. It is true that the delay to implement the construction of the road was caused by the dispute which the Hon. Member has referred to. I am glad to say that the dispute is over and I am also glad to say that as we speak the company that is going to do the construction - I think is already on the site or on its way. It is unfortunate that Hon. Mutseyami could not meet with me on Thursday when I was in Mutare where I made that announcement, but I can safely tell the Hon. Member that the waiting is over and construction is now going to take place. The contractor is already on his way.

*HON. CHINOTIMBA: Thank you Mr. Speaker. I am directing my question to the Minister of Agriculture, Hon. Rtd P. Shiri. My question is we experienced the heat wave in the past few days but just yesterday we received some rains. How are you going to assist commercial farmers in acquiring irrigation facilities, especially in the construction of dams so that even if we have very little rains, these farmers are able to irrigate their crops?

THE MINISTER OF LANDS, AGRICULTURE AND RURAL RESETTLEMENT (HON. RTD AIR CHIEF MARSHALL SHIRI): Hon. Chinotimba has asked a very pertinent question regarding the support on programmes on the farms. It is our hope and policy that we need to have a lot of water bodies. We were informed that Zimbabwe has 10 000 water bodies which are dams and we also have rivers which flow throughout the year. Consequently, we have to utilise these water bodies in irrigation programmes. As a Ministry, we are in discussion with the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning particularly the Treasury so that they can allocate some funds so that we can work with other countries that can help in the construction of irrigation facilities, especially those which are redundant or suffering from siltation. We are aware of your problem and are really looking into it. We are also into partnerships with other organisations from other countries that may want to help us in alleviating this problem.

Questions Without Notice were interrupted by THE HON. SPEAKER in terms of Standing Order No. 64.

ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITH NOTICE

POLICY ON INFORMAL SECTOR WORKERS SOCIAL WELFARE

1. HON. MANGWENDE asked the Minister of Labour and Social

Welfare to state the policy in place to cater for the Social Welfare of

workers in the informal sector.

HON. GONESE: On a point of order Mr. Speaker. I have noted that these questions have been deferred since October. Question Number 3 to the Minister of Health and Child Care was deferred from the 18th of October; question number 2 deferred from the 11th of October, question number from the 18th of October, question number 5 from the 18th of October, and question number 6 from the 18th of October as well. The only relatively recent question is question number 7 which was only deferred from the 6th of December.

Mr. Speaker, the purpose of putting questions in writing is to enable the Minister and Ministry officials to respond in writing and there is also a provision that if the Minister is not available, another Minister can be delegated to come to respond on behalf of the Minister. So, as far as I am concerned Mr. Speaker, it is not good enough to say that the Minister of Health and Child Care is not there. He is not required to be personally present, but answers must be prepared by his Ministry officials and the Ministry officials then furnish the Leader of the House with the responses. The Leader of the House then assigns available Ministers. As we speak today, we have Hon. Minister Dr. Gumbo, and we have Hon. Minister Moyo who are both present in the House and if they had been furnished with the answers, they would have been in a position to respond.

I believe that Mr. Speaker, the Hon. Minister of Health and Child Care is showing disdain and contempt of this august institution and I believe that the Administration of Parliament must make it known to the Hon. Minister and his Ministry officials that they should prepare the appropriate responses if the Minister is not personally available, those responses can then be given to another Minister who can respond on behalf of the Minister. That is my observation and I believe that this should be communicated to the Hon. Minister and his officials.

THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER (HON. MARUMAHOKO): Thank you Hon. Gonese, indeed your observations are quite genuine and, it is a worry also to note that these questions have been deferred from October up to today. So, I will ask the Leader of the House to probably direct the officials of Parliament to write to the Minister and raise the concerns that you actually put forward in this House.

ROAD GRADING ALONG SKYLINE-MUBAIRA CHEGUTU ROAD

8. HON. GANGARAHWE asked the Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development to inform the House –

a) Why no road grading has taken place along the Skyline-Mubaira/Chegutu road in the Mhondoro and Mubaira in Mashonaland West Constituency contrary to the assurance given on the 17th of May, 2017 that the activity would be done over a period of one month;

b) To further state whether the second phase which was expected to commence on the 1st of July, 2017, would be on course in view of the fact that the 2017 – 18 rainy season is fast approaching and might affect those roads which were rendered impassable during the 2016 -17 season despite the bill of quantities having been made for Mupfure and Nyagambu bridges.

THE MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. GUMBO): Mr. Speaker, works have indeed commenced on the grading of the Skyline-Mubaira-Chegutu road. However, the grader which was being used has since broken down and efforts are being made to repair it. Works will resume as soon as the grader has been repaired.

Further on the second part of the question; Mr. Speaker Sir, the department of Roads under my Ministry has already started works on the Mupfure Bridge and the project is nearing completion. The Nyagambu Bridge is being done under DDF and is also expected to be completed before the onset of the rains.

Mr. Speaker Sir, I just want to say that, these answers are now coming after a very long time. So, the progress on these roads is far much advanced than the answer that I am giving right now, because this answer should have been given a long time ago but Parliament has not been sitting. So, progress has taken place on the questions that are being asked now. I thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.

REOPENING OF PEACE MINE IN SILOBELA

13. HON. M. M. MPOFU: asked the Minister of Mines and Mining Development to explain why the Ministry has not yet reopened Peace Mine in Silobela in the Midlands Province, considering that when the Ministry closed the mine that it was on the grounds of restructuring the operations.

THE MINISTER OF MINES AND MINING DEVELOPMENT (HON. CHITANDO): Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. With respect to Peace Mine, the mine has initially been under wrangle in terms of the ownership of the mining claims. The long and short of it is that there is a tribute agreement which expired in October 2017 and the registered owner of the claims has indicated that he is not renewing the tribute. So, the issue at the moment is between the owner of the claim and those who wish to mine to enter into a valid tribute agreement. Thank you Mr. Speaker.

ISSUANCE OF A TRIBUTE AGREEMENT TO YOUTHS OF SILOBELA AT MALGREEN MINE

14. HON. M. M. MPOFU asked the Minister of Mines and Mining Development to explain why issuing of a tribute agreement to youths of Silobela at Malgreen Mine has not yet been done given the fact that the mine ceased operations 15 years ago.

THE MINISTER OF MINES AND MINING DEVELOPMENT (HON. CHITANDO): Currently, the youths are operating under a registered cooperative called Silobela Youth in Mining and have engaged the owners of Malgreen Mine. In previous engagement between the stakeholders, the issue of funding to run the mine was raised and I am happy to say that there has been interface between the Ministry and the cooperative to try and facilitate funding to ensure that operations resume.

HON. M. M. MPOFU : I am not happy with the answer because currently there are operations which are still happening at the mine. I want to know the Ministry’s position since the mine was opened because there are some people who are pumping water currently there.

HON. CHITANDO : Mr. Speaker Sir, like I indicated, there was a tribute agreement between owners of the mining title and those who were operating it. That tribute agreement expired in October 2017. I will have to check as to who is operating. At the moment, the registered owner of the mining title has the legal right to continue mining even if the tribute agreement has expired. I presume that the registered owner is the one who is operating it.

Previously, those who were operating on the tribute there are no longer legally entitled to operate on the premises. I can only presume that whoever is doing operations there – it is either the registered owner of the mining title or someone who is doing it with the consent of the registered owner of the mining title.

RBZ LOAN BENEFICIARIES IN KADOMA CENTRAL CONSTITUENCY

15. HON. PHIRI asked the Minister of Mines and Mining Development to inform the House the RBZ loan beneficiaries in Kadoma, especially Kadoma Central Constituency.

THE MINISTER OF MINES AND MINING DEVELOPMENT (HON. CHITANDO): The administration and allocation of RBZ fund for the development of gold is done by the Reserve Bank in conjunction with Fidelity Printers and Refiners also at the same time under the conduit of the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development. My Ministry is at the moment in liaison with the relevant counterparts whom I have mentioned to get the necessary information which I will furnish next time in the House. I thank you.

BULAWAYO-HARARE ROAD TRAFFIC LIGHTS

20. HON. PHIRI asked the Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development when the Ministry is going to erect traffic lights on the Bulawayo / Harare road at the ever busy Kadoma Waverly Bus Stop a black spot where several fatal accidents have taken place in the last 3 years.

THE MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. GUMBO): Mr Speaker Sir, indeed Kadoma Waverly Bus Stop is a black spot where several fatal accidents have taken place in recent years. My Ministry’s Department of Roads and City of Kadoma are working towards regularising activities around this busy bus stop by improving it. My Ministry and the City of Kadoma are also looking into the feasibility of erecting traffic lights at the said intersection. We intend to come up with designs and a budget followed by implementation next year.

ALLOCATION OF FUNDS TO KADOMA CITY COUNCIL FOR THE REPAIR OF ROADS

21. HON. PHIRI asked the Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development to inform the House

a) How much has been allocated to Kadoma City Council by the Road Funds to repair the roads that were destroyed by rains.

b) How much money was used to repair Cameron Square in the City Centre and why the project has taken so long to be completed.

THE MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. GUMBO): Mr Speaker Sir, Kadoma City Council were allocated $850 000 by the Road Fund to repair the roads that were destroyed by rains.

Mr Speaker Sir, $100 000 has been used to repair Cameron Square in the City Centre so far and the works are 99% complete. The delay in completing the works is due to a shifted attention following the damaging of roads by last season’s heavy rains.

APPOINTMENT OF CHIEF MSAMPAKARUMA OF KARIBA

23. HON. MACKENZIE asked the Minister of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing to indicate when the new Chief Msampakaruma of Kariba will be appointed considering that three years have passed since the last chief died.

THE MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT, PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON. J. MOYO): Thank you Mr. Speaker. I would also like to thank Hon. Mackenzie for the question regarding the chieftainship of Msapakaruma of Kariba. At the same time, let me inform this august House that Section 4 (1) of the Traditional Leaders Act (Chapter 29:17) states, “In the event of the office of the chief becoming vacant through the death of the chief, the President may appoint an acting chief to preside in his stead for such a period or periods as the President may fix”.

As policy, the Ministry sets the Caretaker chiefs’ term in office at two years from the date of the acting chief’s appointment. The office of Chief Msapakaruma fell vacant on 17th August, 2015, following the death of the then Chief Chacharika Chigwededza who was the substantive Chief. His Excellency, the President, in terms of Section 4 (1) of the Traditional Leaders Act approved the appointment of Chacharika Muchaneta as acting Chief Msapakaruma with effect from 24 June, 2016. It is therefore, clear that 1 year 7 months have passed since the appointment of an acting Chief Msapakaruma.

It is therefore after the lapse of a two year acting period for Caretaker Chief Msapakaruma that is in June 2018 that the Provincial Administrator for Mashonaland West Province will initiate the selection of a substantive chief with the Msapakaruma clan in the earliest convenient time. Thank you.

HON . MANDIPAKA: Hon. Speaker, I would like to find out from the Minister, given the response that from areas where we come from, we have certain chiefs that have been in acting capacity for more than six or so years. How does that come about because they are in acting capacity, they do not give authentic decisions and it is a problem to the populace?

HON. J. MOYO : Mr. Speaker Sir, I can confirm to the Hon. Member and to this House that there are a lot of acting chiefs who have gone beyond the two year term that we have fixed. There are various reasons why it is happening like that. In some instances, the clan that is supposed to choose a new chief will be quarrelling and not coming up with a chief. Coming up with a chief that is acceptable to the whole clan, that lengthens the years of the acting chief. In some cases, there are litigations that are appearing in the courts and as long as those litigations are going on, we cannot select a chief and recommend to the President. Those are the two major reasons why acting chiefs are now taking longer than the two year term that has been set as policy. Thank you.

HON. GABBUZA : From the Minister’s response, he has already set in motion the office of The Provincial Administrator, Mashonaland West to start the selection or the process of selection of Chief Msapakaruma. I thought the new dispensation calls upon the Chiefs’ Council to be in charge of such a process instead of the office of the Provincial Administrator. Can the Minister clarify on that?

HON. J. MOYO : Thank you Mr. Speaker. The Hon. Member is aware that the Constitution requires that the Provincial Assemblies of Chiefs do that work of selection but however, the secretariat to that Provincial Assembly of Chiefs is the office of the Provincial Administrator just as the secretariat of the National Council of Chiefs is the office of the Director for Chieftainship affairs which is in the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing.

HON. MLISWA : Minister, we have a situation where the chiefs as a result of the Land Reform has gone as far as appointing village heads who are not even recognised by the DA’s office and the Government. They continue to have traditional courts charging people goats, cattle and so forth. They do not have a badge to say that they are village heads and I am actually quite worried that what they are doing is illegal, it is fraud. Most people have asked their authenticity of being village heads and no one can say anything about that. What is your response to such village heads who are being appointed by chiefs in commercial farming areas and are not recognised by the Government?

HON. J. MOYO: There is a process of making sure that some chiefs are encamped in commercial farming areas that have been resettled or that still have old farmers, especially the black farmers. Once that has happened, a chief who has been authorised now to oversee an area which was formerly a commercial farming or is still a farming area, once that has happened that chief has a right in terms of the act to start appointing village heads.

However, if there is any chief that has appointed and has not been authorized to appoint village heads in the commercial farming areas, let the Hon. Member give us the name so that we can look at it.

COMPENSATION OF HOME SEEKERS IN KADOMA FOR FAILING TO GET HOUSES AFTER CONTRIBUTIONS TO THE PAY FOR YOUR HOUSE SCHEME

24. HON. PHIRI asked the Minister of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing what measures are being taken to compensate home seekers who did not get their houses after paying in full for Pay For Your House Scheme in Kadoma; e.g. Mr. V. Chikoto No. 052 726 R04 who paid ZW$10 200.00.

THE MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT, PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON. J. MOYO) : Mr. Speaker Sir, let me assure this House that this matter is being looked at because when the scheme was started, there were 8 000 people who contributed towards the said scheme and 4 500 benefited and that left a balance of those who did not benefit. The scheme started in 1995/6 based on a matching basis, where each dollar contributed by a member would be matched by a dollar from the Government with the funding coming from Treasury.

However around 2004/5, Government withdrew its matching dollar and the Ministry had to work only with Members contributions. The economic situation that occurred after that, around that time made matters worse in terms of the actual delivery of housing units and the scheme was then suspended in 2007 when the economic changes got worse. Mr. Speaker Sir, when the country then dollarised those who had not benefited started approaching the Ministry asking for their stands and houses. The Ministry of Finance was approached to give guidance on the matter since some were even asking for reimbursements.

Needless to say, to date we are still to be furnished with a conversion rate. Faced with this scenario, the Ministry then adopted a position of giving the said beneficiaries first offer or refusal preference in any new projects of their choice that were being initiated or implemented by Government. However, they were expected to meet some of the costs of the stand or house in the new scheme that they would have chosen but just like any other beneficiary of the said scheme, until such a time when Government reaches a position on how the Zimbabwe dollar funds will be treated. We are also in discussion with the Mr. Choto whose Identity Number is on the Order Paper in order to see how we can accommodate his situation. I thank you Mr. Speaker.

WRITTEN SUBMISSIONS TO QUESTIONS WITH NOTICE

PROMOTION OF VALUE ADDITION AND BENEFICIATION OF MINERALS

16. HON. NDUNA asked the Minister of Mines and Mining

Development to:

(a) Inform the House what the Ministry was doing to incentivise

and promote value addition and beneficiation of minerals as a way of ensuring that Zimbabwe gets optimal value from its mineral resources as envisaged in ZIM ASSET;

(b) inform the House whether the Ministry instituted any

monitoring mechanisms to ensure that platinum producers migrate to base metal refining by December, 2017; and to further state the progress made to date in compliance to this policy.

THE MINISTER OF MINES AND MINING DEVELOPMENT (HON. CHITANDO): The issue of mineral beneficiation and value addition stands at the heart of my Ministry, Ministry of Mines and Mining Development. As a way of promoting local beneficiation and value addition, Government through my Ministry, set aside quotas for diamonds (at least 10% of local production) and granite (at least 10% of local production). Engagement with producers is still underway with all the key members.

Level of Beneficiation

Export Tax on Un-beneficiated Platinum (%)

PGM Concentrate

5

White Matte

2.5

PGM and Base Metal

1

Precious Metal Refinery

0

Furthermore, Government through my Ministry opened up a chrome ore export window in 2015 as a way of capacitating small scale miners and existing chrome smelting facilities to expand their smelting capabilities and promote establishment of new smelting facilities. Companies with potential to set up chrome smelting facilities were prioritised in allocation of chrome claims which were negotiated and ceded back to Government. In this respect, I am pleased to report that so far 12 companies have set up smelters while the Ministry is processing applications for three other potential smelters.

Also, a number of projects are being worked on under the Government’s Rapid Results Initiatives (RRI), to come up with incentives and promote local beneficiation of minerals in Zimbabwe. The quick wins being worked on include granite, platinum Group Minerals (PGMs) and chrome. The Ministry is in discussion with the platinum producers individually and collectively to do value addition. Thank you.

REMARKING OF ROADS COUNTRY-WIDE

19. HON. CHIDHAKWA asked the Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development to inform the House what plans are in place to remark roads in the country considering that some markings are no longer visible especially at night.

THE MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT (HON. DR. GUMBO): The Ministry is carrying out the Emergency Road Rehabilitation Programme which is addressing the state of the roads countrywide. Provisions for road markings have been included in the programme as it is one of the safety features that we prioritise in road maintenance. For example, Enterprise Road has been recently resealed and carriageway markings have been done. Further to that, the Department of Roads acquired a state of the art road marking machine which is currently being used in Mashonaland West Province along Darwendale Road. Plans are underway to procure two more road marking machines to cover other provinces.

APPOINTMENT OF INTERVIEWING PANEL FOR THE TOWN CLERKS AND HEADS OF COUNCIL DEPARTMENTS

25. HON MASUKU asked the Minister of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing to inform the House who appoints the panel that interviews Town Clerks and Heads of Council Departments.

THE MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT, PUBLIC WORKS AND NATIONAL HOUSING (HON. MOYO): Mr. Speaker Sir, the employment procedure is as follows:

1. The employment of Town Clerks and Secretaries

a. A Town Clerk/Secretary post should be filled within three months of the vacancy arising.

b. The advert for the post must comply with the minimum qualifications set out by the Ministry.

c. Where the acting Town Clerk/Secretary or the Head of Human Resources intends to apply for the job, the applications should be received at a separate address and recorded independently.

d. The short listing process should be undertaken independently by a private consultant or a panel of independent persons.

e. The interview for the Town Clerk/Secretary should be carried out by a panel of professionals with the Chairperson of the Committee responsible for Human Resources matters as a member.

f. The interview panel would make recommendations to Council.

g. The Council will make recommendations to the Local Government Board.

h. Upon receipt of the approval from the Local Government Board, the candidate will be engaged on a performance contract basis with conditions of service as set out in the Council conditions of service and rationalized salary directive.

2. Employment of a Head of Department or Deputy Head of Department

a. A head of department or deputy post should be filled within three months of the vacancy arising and with the concurrence of the Minister.

b. The advert for the post must comply with the minimum qualifications set out by the Ministry.

c. The short listing process should be undertaken by the Town Clerk/Secretary.

d. The interview for the head of department or deputy should be carried out by a panel of professionals chaired by the Town Clerk/Secretary and with the Chairperson or the committee responsible for human resources matters as a member.

e. The interview panel would make recommendations to council.

f. The council will make recommendations to the Local Government Board.

g. Upon receipt of the approval from the Local Government Board the candidate will be engaged on a performance contract basis with conditions of service as set out in the council conditions of service.

HON. MLISWA : On a point of order Hon. Speaker Sir, according to Section 56 (1) of the Standing Order Rules, “Pursuant to the provisions of Section 137 of the Constitution, the quorum of the House must be (70) Members” and as such it is important that Members of Parliament respect their duties and attend Parliament because this is a waste of taxpayers’ money. We cannot continue working like this with this economic and political order that is there. This is a betrayal to His Excellency who is working tirelessly to ensure that this country moves forward.

I am very disappointed that the ruling party is the biggest culprit in undermining the President in this new economic order. Therefore, Mr Speaker Sir, it is important that we play to the rules of the game and as Members of Parliament, we become serious when comes to the discharge of our duty so that we turnaround the fortunes of the people of Zimbabwe and support His Excellency Cde. Emmerson. Dambudzo Mnangagwa. This is sad and it is a betrayal to the founding principles or the struggle and the welfare of the people of Zimbabwe. Thank you.

Bells rung .

A Notice having been taken that there being fewer than 70 Members, the bells were rung for Seven Minutes and a Quorum still not being present, THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER (HON. MUTOMBA) adjourned the House without question put at Five Minutes to Five O’clock p.m. pursuant to provisions of Standing Order Number 56.

NOTE: The following Members were present when the House adjourned:

Bhebhe A; Chibagu G.; Chigudu M.; Chikuni E; Chikwinya N; Chitindi C; Dziva T. M; Gabbuza J.G.; Gangarahwe G.; Gezi T; Gonese I.T; Guzah N. K.; Holder J; Kadungure D. A; Kazembe K; Khanye N; Khumalo M; Machingauta C; Mackenzie I; Mahoka S. ; Majome F. J; Mandipaka O; Marumahoko R; Mataruse P. ; Mavima P; Mawere V. M.; Misihairambwi-Mushonga P.; Mlambo W. B. J; Mliswa P. T. ; Moyo L. ; Mpofu S. ; Muchenje F. ; Mudambo T. ; Mudarikwa S. ; Mudyiwa M. ; Mukwangwariwa F. G. ; Mukwena R. ; Munengami F. ;

Mutomba W; Ndhlovu Annastancia; Ndlovu N; Nkomo Mail;

Paradza K; Phiri F. P.; Rungani A; Saruwaka T. J. L.; Shongedza E; Sipani-Hungwe O.; Toffa J; Tshuma J.; Uta K.; Zhou P.; Zhou T. ; Ziyambi Z.

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National Assembly Hansard National Assembly Hansard 10 January 2018 Vol 44 No 29