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SENATE HANSARD 01 NOVEMBER 2017 VOL 27 NO 12

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PARLIAMENT OF ZIMBABWE

Wednesday 1st November, 2017

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

PRAYERS

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

ANNOUNCEMENT BY THE HON. PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE

COMPLETION OF BIO-DATA FORMS

          THE HON. PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE:  I have to advise all Hon. Senators that they are required to complete and submit their bio-data forms by Thursday, 9th November, 2017.  The forms can be collected and returned to the office of the Director Public Relations, Office No. 312, Third Floor, Parliament Building or Office No. 4, Third Floor, PAX House.  The bio-data is required for applauding on the Parliament website and the mobile App. 

          Before we go to Notice of Motion No. 1, I am advised that it was not given in accordance with the provisions of Standing Orders.  So, may Hon. Sen. Makore please give the notice afresh after making the necessary consultations with the Clerks at the Table? 

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

HON. SEN. MAKORE:  I move that Order of the Day, Number 2 be stood over until the rest of the Orders of the Day have been disposed of.

HON. SEN. MLOTSHWA:  I second.

Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

HON. SEN. MLOTSHWA: I move that Order of the Day, Number 3 be stood over until the rest of the Orders of the Day have been disposed of.

HON. SEN.  MAKORE: I second.

Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

HON. SEN. MAKORE:  I move that Order of the Day, Number 4 be stood over until the rest of the Orders of the Day have been disposed of.

HON. SEN. CHIMHINI:    I second.

Motion put and agreed to.

MOTION

FIRST REPORT OF THE THEMATIC COMMITTEE ON SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT GOALS ON SDG NO. 3

Fifth Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on the First Report of the Thematic Committee on Sustainable Development Goals on SDG No. 3.

Question again proposed.

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

HON. SEN. TAWENGWA:  I second.

Motion put and agreed.

Debate to resume:  Wednesday, 2nd November, 2017.

MOTION

PRESIDENTIAL SPEECH: DEBATE ON ADDRESS

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

Question again proposed.

*HON. SEN. MAVHUNGA:  Thank you Madam President for giving me the opportunity to make my contribution on the Presidential Address by His Excellency on 12th September, 2017 when he addressed both Houses, the Senate and the National Assembly.  I am very grateful to Hon. Sen. Chief Charumbira and Hon. Sen. Chief Mtshane who brought this motion which gives us a chance to make a contribution on the Presidential Speech.

In his statement, His Excellency gave us an agenda which we have to follow as the Fifth Session of the Eighth Parliament of Zimbabwe.  Most importantly, he was very grateful for what we had done especially in the alignment of laws where there were 206 which had to be aligned, but what is only left is that we have a few which still have to be aligned and that means we were so hard working.  We should be proud of what we did and this is no self praising but it shows that we are hard working, we are diligent.

In his address, His Excellency said in the remaining laws which need to be aligned we need to look at the Bill on marriages.  As we are all aware, there are different laws pertaining to marriages.  We also know there is Section 511; there is the traditional or cultural marriage law and we also have another type of marriage of which the law allowed polygamy.  We are now saying when we look at all these laws on marriages, there were some sections which go against the Constitution. We know the Constitution is the supreme law of the country.

 In one of the laws which we were supposed to align, there is a clause which allowed a man to marry a girl aged 16 years as long as the child consented to the marriage.  We now need to realign and say the only consent to marriage should be by someone who is 18 and above.  His Excellency said we need to have a look at the Marriages Act which combines all the different forms of marriages we had in the past.

I know that in the past this House or maybe both Houses had problems with early marriages especially on young girls.  Most of them would drop out of school and just go and sit at home.  They are immature and as a result, they are abused at home and cannot defend themselves.  They cannot be self sustaining because they are young.  They have shallow minds.  We can also look at the advent of some none communicable diseases such as cancer.  These also attack them. 

When we look at some of the things that happen when there is intercourse with somebody who is younger, there is going to be damage of the sexual organs.  Again, there is fistula which happens because someone has given birth before they are mature.  At times what is worrisome is that there are very few clinics help these children whose reproductive organs will have been damaged.  We need to craft laws which will compel people to marry when they are mature, prepared for the marriage life.  So, it is up to us as Hon. Members to align these laws so that there is progress.

His Excellency, in opening up the Fifth Session of the Eighth Parliament, talked about the mandatory sentence especially when we look at rapists, the pedophiles and even domestic rape.  These people should be given mandatory sentence because rape is not only by outsiders.  Not only are women being raped, but even men and this also happens in the home whereby the woman will be sexually hyperactive and the man is dormant.  Consequently, the man is forced to indulge in sexual intercourse with the woman.  This is rape and whenever such cases happen, especially when the man is the victim, evidence is needed but this evidence is searched for after three days of the incident.  As a result, all the evidence which may lead to the commission of crime would have been erased and therefore, there is no conviction of the rapist.  We notice that some of these people would have raped children as young as three years because of the belief that if they have sexual intercourse with a child under three years old, they will not contract HIV or that they will become rich.  So, it is up to us to enact this law. Men, men, men, please come out into the open and report if you are raped by your wife in the home.  When assaulted or raped by your women do not just keep quiet because of pride.  It is our wish that this should come to an end.  Mr. President of the Senate, the President, Cde. R. G Mugabe also spoke of thorough investigation and research regarding the trafficking of persons.  This was passed and it is now an Act.  He did say this is still a prevalent problem and we realise that a few months back, some of our girls had to be rescued from Kuwait.  We know people are seeking employment so they are very gullible and if anybody comes offering employment in whatever country, they feel they are going to strike gold, yet when they get to those places these people live like slaves and are forced to do any job.  Some of them are used as sex slaves and at times they are sexually assaulted by their employers. 

We have heard that some of these people are told there are scholarships in some countries and they end up going to countries like Cyprus.  We hope that now that we have a Minister who is going to look into the on scholarships outside the country, we will have thorough investigations and research on some of these scholarships. As Zimbabwe, we train a lot of nurses and teachers.  What would be ideal is that if we train some of those people we look for jobs as a Government just like what happens with countries like Cuba.  They export labour and to avoid trafficking in persons we need to persuade the Government to have Government to Government agreements so that we have people who are employed under a Government scheme, because they may go to countries like South Africa where there is xenophobia; but if there has been a thorough research and there is Government intervention there will not be any of these problems.  So as people of Zimbabwe and as Members of this august House, let us put our heads together for the development of our country and alignment of laws.  I thank you.

          HON. SEN. MUSAKA:  Thank you Mr President for allowing me to also contribute to the debate on the Presidential Speech.  I wish to thank Hon. Sen. Chief Charumbira and the seconder Hon. Sen. Chief Mtshane.  The President touched on a wide range of issues - in depth but I want to zero in on those I think have been very successful and are being implemented.  I will start with Command Agriculture – I think I wish to thank the President, the Government and all those partaking in this project as well as those who responded to the clarion call to join the free Command Agriculture.  It was not forced and those who did not want to do it had the right not to do it. 

However, those who responded to the call have proved everybody else wrong because they were right in the sense that the scheme was very successful and in that regard, we wish to congratulate the leadership, the President and all those who are taking part in it, job well done.  However, there may have been cases where there were excesses.  Perhaps some people did not access the inputs properly and some feel they were left out while some feel they were dispossessed.   In my other speech I appealed to the Chairman of the Committee on Peace and Security to consider investigating those who were saying some communities were disadvantaged by Command Agriculture in particular. So, perhaps it is up to the chairman of that committee to make a decision. 

The President also touched on corruption.  Measures are being taken by Government to correct this anomaly and there are a lot of cases where people are being arrested and some of them being taken to court. However, we should all condemn corruption in the strongest terms.  Whatever the case may be, it is not justifiable.  Inefficiency too - to me, I consider it some form of corruption because some ministries were acting in a manner that is very inefficient and incompetent. We cannot be a nation that is seen on television everywhere with people being dragged at bus stops and some people even dying there. 

There is chaos in our cities and kombis stopping wherever they want to stop.  I think we all should rise up and object to this kind of incompetence.  Whichever ministry is involved, I think this is just unacceptable.  There should be some order and respect for human life and human rights which is not the case now.  The good thing however, is that the President recently made some reshuffles and we hope this is intended to correct this kind of anomaly, ineptitude and  violation of people’s rights.  I think we also should congratulate the President for that.  We do hope that those who were put in the new ministries will actually do their job correctly so that we do not see the kind of chaos that had been happening.

There is also the issue of early marriages.  We have debated this issue on several occasions.  All the various committees have tackled this issue.  We would like to commend the Government for committing to aligning the laws and it is up to the legislators that this should be implemented.  However, there is a bit of an anomaly here.  The actual age in some cases right now is not clear, especially on what age one can have sex with consent.  The age of getting married is 18 years but you can indulge in sex even at 13 years. 

It then becomes very difficult and recently there was a case where they said you cannot send someone to prison for having sex with a minor.  So, it is because of the inconsistencies in legislation that all these should be corrected.  So we think that when this Bill comes in, it should be thought through, debated and enacted correctly to reflect the issue of bringing about justice and fairness.  With those few words Mr President, I thank you.

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

HON. SEN. TAWENGWA:  I second.

Motion put and agreed to.

Debate to resume:  Thursday, 2nd November, 2017.

MOTION

REPORT ON THE PREPAREDNESS OF THE GRAIN MARKETING BOARD TO HANDLE THE 2016/2017 CROP DELIVERIES AND THE SUCCESS OF THE COMMAND AGRICULTURE PROGRAMME

          Seventh Order read: Adjourned debate on the First Report of the Thematic Committee on Peace and Security on the preparedness of the Grain Marketing Board to handle the 2016/2017 Crop Deliveries and the success of the Command Agriculture Programme.

          Question again proposed.

          HON. SEN. CHIEF GAMPU: Thank you Mr. President.  I also want to add my voice on the motion that was brought into this House by Hon. Sen. Mumvuri, as the Chairperson of the Thematic Committee on Peace and Security, which I am also a member.  Peace and Security Committee looks at issues to do with peace, which covers food security in the country.  We want to thank the Government for bringing such a noble idea of the Command Agriculture.  This programme came at a good and perfect time, most people welcomed the idea.

          We travelled to different places as a Committee, although we were not able to get to Matabeleland but we managed to go to other provinces like Mashonaland West, Mashonaland East, Masvingo and Mashonaland Central.  Throughout our journey, we recognised that most people accepted this programme of Command Agriculture and they were able to plough different types of crops.  What we noted is people of Mashonaland West were able to utilise the programme very well and we want to thank the Government for supporting people from that province.

          Whilst we are thanking the Government for such a programme, we would like also to take note of the fact that as long as we are able to fight drought, that means we can be able to improve the economy of this country.  Therefore, I want to applaud the Government for doing such a good job.  My request is for Matabeleland - when this programme was introduced especially in Tsholotsho, people did not welcome the idea very well because they did not understand exactly what it meant.

          First of all, it was introduced late.  As we speak now, some have joined but we realise that up to now they have not been given the seed.  By now we should be preparing for the next planting season.  Most of the members have welcomed the idea and they have joined the scheme.  We want to thank the Government however, if there are fouls that we have done before, I want to apologise on behalf of everyone and promise that we will join and take up the idea like what other provinces did.  This has assisted in fighting the drought this year.  I thank you.

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

          HON. SEN TAWENGWA: I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.

          Debate to resume: Thursday, 2nd November, 2017.

MOTION

REPORT OF THE ZIMBABWE DELEGATION TO THE INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON PROMOTING STAKEHOLDER AND PARLIAMENTARY DIALOGUE ON ARMS TRADE TREATY (ATT)

          Eighth Order read: Adjourned debate on motion on the Report of the Zimbabwe Delegation to the International Conference on Promoting Stakeholder and Parliamentary Dialogue on Arms Trade Treaty (ATT).

          Question again proposed.

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

          HON. SEN. TAWENGWA: I second.

          Motion put and agreed to.

          Debate to resume: Thursday, 2nd November, 2017.

          On the motion of HON. SEN. CHIEF CHARUMBIRA, seconded by HON. SEN. TAWENGWA, the Senate adjourned at Seven Minutes past Three o’clock p.m.

 

 

 

Senate Hansard SENATE HANSARD 01 NOVEMBER 2017 VOL 27 NO 12