Members of Parliament yesterday took Energy minister Zhemu Soda to task over the continuing power outages in the country after the power company data showed that it was producing on 352 megawatts on the day.
Zimbabwe has a peak demand of 2000MW but according to the Zimbabwe Power Company website, Kariba South, the 1,050MW hydroelectric power plant was producing 280MW, and Hwange Thermal Power Station, with a 920MW capacity, was at 72MW.
There was no production at other small power stations. Reports suggest that the power utility was importing 460MW from the region.
The Speaker of the National Assembly, Jacob Mudenda, said there was need for Soda to bring a comprehensive ministerial statement on the power crisis.
Read the whole debate below:
NATIONAL ASSEMBLY HANSARD 1 MARCH 2023 VOL 49 NO 25
PARLIAMENT OF ZIMBABWE
Wednesday, 1st March, 2023
The National Assembly met at a Quarter-past Two o’clock p.m.
(THE HON. SPEAKER in the Chair)
ANNOUNCEMENT BY THE HON. SPEAKER
APOLOGIES RECEIVED FROM MINISTERS
THE HON. SPEAKER: I have received apologies from the Executive: Hon. General Rtd. Dr. C.G.D.N. Chiwenga, Vice President and Minister of Health and Child Care, Hon. O. C. Z. Muchinguri-Kashiri, Minister of Defence and War Veterans Affairs, Hon. Sen .M. Mutsvangwa, Minister of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services; Hon. Dr. E. Ndlovu, Minister of Primary and Secondary Education; Hon. E. Moyo, Deputy Minister of Primary and Secondary Education; Hon. J. Moyo, Minister of Local Government and Public Works; Hon. Prof. M. Ncube, Minister of Finance and Economic Development; Hon. Muswere, Minister of ICT, Postal and Courier Services; Hon. Phuti, Deputy Minister of ICT, Postal and Courier Services and Hon. Garwe, Minister of National Housing and Social Amenities.
ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITHOUT NOTICE
HON. NDUNA: My question is directed to the Minister of Energy and Power Development. When are the debilitating power cuts going to end and what is Government Policy during this period in provision of power to critical infrastructure like hospitals and water treatment plants?
THE MINISTER OF ENERGY AND POWER DEVELOPMENT (HON SODA): Thank you Hon. Member for raising such a pertinent matter of concern, not only to this House but to the whole country regarding when we shall see the current load shedding coming to an end.
There are a lot of efforts that are being made to that regard with the intention that we will have energy self-sufficiency in the country. You might be aware that in 2018, the Government embarked on the expansion of Hwange Power Station with the intention of adding to the grid 600 megawatts which is currently being worked on. One of the units will be coming on line soon. In the meeting that we held just recently with ZESA, they have now confirmed that Unit 7 shall be tied to the grid on the 16th of March. The second unit which is Unit 8, they are still working on and will be coming in a month later to give us the 600 megawatts. I am aware that people would have wanted this project to be completed early but this is the gestation of power stations, especially power stations when they are being constructed. We could not achieve that earlier than the gestation or lead time which was provided for the project but we now have a concrete date that by the 16th of March – according to ZESA; 300 megawatts will start to be fed into the grid.
I think this week we noticed that there was a depressed power supply situation which was occasioned by an unfortunate outage of Hwange where we lost three units successively from the 23rd and 24th of February. Shortly before we lost those three units, Hwange was sending to the grid around 440 megawatts and we came down to 77 megawatts. This is as a result of the age of the equipment which we have always spoken about. The power station was constructed between 1983 and 1986 and the equipment is now due for replacement. The Government has taken an initiative through procurement of a loan facility which is currently being worked on by way of a detailed project report which has been concluded.
In December, the project management consultancy produced a report which now shows the scope of works that are supposed to be done for the six units that are currently in use at Hwange Power Station. The intention ultimately is to restore the six units to their original capacity, the installed capacity of 920 which will be achieved once the rehabilitation exercise has been conducted.
So these are some of the efforts which the Government has put in place to ensure that we achieve energy self sufficiency. We also have the private sector now participating as independent power producers. As we speak, we have a contribution of between 68 to 96 megawatts which are being fed into the grid from the private sector. You might be aware that there was no uptake from the private sector as a result of some perceived risks, especially on the issue of currency but in December, the Ministry of Finance made an announcement of the Government implementation agreement which will de-risk in the areas of the currencies and also on the issue of viability by the off-taker which is ZETDC. Therefore, that is another intervention and that will see acceleration in terms of development of projects by the private sectors that are now participating.
In December, we increased the level of imports to take, of reduced power supply which was occasioned by low water levels from Kariba. We increased on our imports; we used to be importing 300 megawatts which we increased to 500 megawatts, just to take care of the deficit which was created when production from Kariba was reduced.
However, as we speak, our water levels at Kariba Dam have just started to increase – as of this morning, we were at 14% of the live net storage of Kariba Dam, which we think will inform the next review in terms of the water allocation which is supposed to happen in a fortnight. Our hope is that the allocations will be increased and that will also increase on the generation from Kariba.
With regards to Hwange Power Station which I said we lost three units, ZESA engineers are working round the clock to bring back the units. Obviously, if that happens we will be having a generation which should sustain the economy and the country between now until we have substantial…
HON. P. D. SIBANDA: On a point of order. Thank you Hon. Speaker. With all respect, I am quite sure that if the Hon. Minister intended to give a Ministerial Statement, he should have done so. This is no longer answering a question, he is basically doing what he was supposed to do before the question was given. So I propose Hon. Speaker that if the Hon. Minister wants to give a statement then let him do that but for now, let him attend to questions rather than giving a long-winding speech. I thank you.
THE HON. SPEAKER: Unfortunately, communication had not reached the Hon. Minster about the Ministerial Statement. I do not think his answer is long and winding; it is very pertinent and covers an issue that was raised that demanded a Ministerial Statement. I thought the response is quite comprehensive and I do not think the Hon. Minister is untoward in his response. Looking at his face, he was about to wind up his presentation.
HON. SODA: Thank you Mr. Speaker. I have responded to all the questions.
THE HON. SPEAKER: You must watch the British House of Commons in terms of etiquette. You do not shout to be recognised, you just stand up and you will be recognised. Can we stick to that etiquette?
HON. NDUNA: My supplementary will be included on the issue of provision of power to critical infrastructure such as hospitals and water treatment plants that was not answered.
However, I would want to know when he thinks the three units at Hwange will be back on stream because before they shut down, the power was…
THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Member, you are allowed to ask one supplementary question.
HON. SODA: It is Government policy that critical institutions like hospitals and water treatment plants are given priority, especially by way of providing dedicated power supply infrastructure to take care of those institutions including those facilities? Whenever we have shortage of power, those critical facilities must always be provided with electricity. So in case there might be a particular facility which went out on an outage, I would be glad to be advised so that we inform ZETDC to ensure that such facilities are not subjected to load shedding. Also, dedicated power supply infrastructure is constructed on those particular facilities to ensure that power is always available on the facilities. I thank you.
THE HON. SPEAKER: You indicate Hon. Minister that three units are being worked on and the timeline was not given.
HON. SODA: These are faults that are being attended and I am not able to give specific timelines to say the units will be back after two days or three days because usually when a unit comes out of the grid, they require time to cool the whole system before any maintenance can be undertaken but the timelines will be very difficult to give, given that they have to also ascertain the works that have to be done. Knowing how critical the situation is, they will try by all means to ensure that the units are brought back with urgency. I thank you.
HON. P. D. SIBANDA: Thank you Hon. Speaker. Hon. Minister, what is the anticipatory capacity of …
THE HON. SPEAKER: No, no, you address the Chair.
HON. P. D. SIBANDA: Thank you Hon. Speaker. Hon. Speaker, I want to find out from the Hon. Minister …
THE HON. SPEAKER: That is better.
HON. P. D. SIBANDA: The anticipatory capacity of ZESA of encountering faults such as the ones that the Hon. Minister indicated; looking at the fact that there was no pre-warning to the industry and the communities that there would be depleted power production in the country. I thank you.
HON. SODA: Thank you Mr. Speaker. The outage that happened at Hwange was a forced and unplanned one which I said is coming as a result of the age of the equipment being used for power generation. Inasmuch as the industry, including all other consumers, would have wanted to be warned, it is unfortunate because these outages are not planned. If it were a planned outage, for instance the annual maintenances; yes, warnings would have been sent by the power utility but it is unfortunate that it is not possible for now until we have dependable equipment like the expansion project that is currently being worked on. I thank you.
HON. DR. MASHAKADA: Thank you Hon. Speaker Sir. Through you Hon. Speaker Sir, I want to ask the Hon. Minister that, given the huge capital expenditure and the long gestation period required on thermal and hydro power generation, what is the Government policy on grids and green energy transition which is a low hanging fruit whilst the implementation of thermal and hydro projects is ongoing? Thank you.
HON. SODA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. Mr. Speaker, the Government has a whole policy that was launched in 2019 – the National Renewable Energy Policy. It articulates how we will transition from the use of fossil fuels to renewable energy. We have very good potential for generation in Zimbabwe from solar; also wind is being ascertained as to what potential can be harnessed from wind. We also have the bio-gas that is also being articulated from the same Renewable Energy Policy.
Mr. Speaker, the same policy comes with some incentives especially to the private sector knowing that Government alone cannot carry the load. The private sector has been invited to participate, especially in the area of power generation, which they can sell to the power utility as the off-taker or directly to consumers of their preference. So, we have a whole policy that speaks to how we shall transition to clean energy sources that are mostly renewable.
We are also exploring potential for gas to energy that can be done within the country, especially with the prospects of getting gas from Muzarabani. All that is being worked on Mr. Speaker Sir, as a way of diversifying our energy mix. I thank you.
HON. T. MLISWA: On a point of order Mr. Speaker Sir. The Hon. Minister was not asked about the Renewable Energy Policy, he was asked about the implementation…
THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order! You do not argue that way, ask a supplementary question.
HON. T. MLISWA: Hon. Minister, can you tell this august House, how many megawatts have been achieved through the renewable energy projects that you are talking about?
HON. SODA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. Inasmuch as the question requires some research, I will provide the response. We have around 90 licenced investments on renewables of which 20 have been developed. The 20 are providing between 68 to 96 megawatts which is being supplied to the grid. I thank you.
HON. HOUGHTON: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. My supplementary question is that I was informed earlier this week that …
THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order! Can we hear the Hon. Member!
HON. HOUGHTON: I was informed that three of the turbines at the Kariba South Power Station have failed now. Is there any truth in that? Thank you Sir.
HON. SODA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. Apparently, they are not three; there are four units that are not on service at Kariba Power Station. This is as a result of annual maintenance that is being undertaken.
The Zimbabwe Power Company (ZPC) has just taken advantage of the low water allocations that are being provided by the ZRA at Kariba. They are utilising that window to do their annual maintenance. Currently, we have four that are on service but they cannot also use them all given the water allocations. We have three that are ready and producing 350 megawatts and one is on standby which has not been dismantled but four have been dismantled for the purposes of annual maintenance. I thank you.
THE HON. SPEAKER: We have had four supplementary questions now, so we cannot have more than four supplementary questions.
HON. GONESE: On a point of order Mr. Speaker Sir.
THE HON. SPEAKER: A point of order when there is no debate, honestly!
HON. GONESE: It is not debate but it is a proposal Mr. Speaker, that since it is an issue which affects our nation, if the Hon. Minister could be asked to make a Ministerial Statement so that all issues relating to the generation of electricity to the challenges which are being faced by the industry can then be addressed. I thank you.
THE HON. SPEAKER: Thank you very much Hon. Gonese. My judgment tells me that the Hon. Minister has covered key issues and I do not think there is need for a Ministerial Statement.
+HON. NOWEDZA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. My question is directed to the Minister of Transport. In the past, the Cabinet discussed the construction of the Nkayi Airport. The people of Matabeleland are grateful to that upgrading. However, they have some expectations that the Bulawayo Road, for a long time has dilapidated…
+THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Member, kindly ask your question.
+HON. NOWEDZA: My question Mr. Speaker is when will this road be maintained since it is the one being used by all buses in the community?
*THE MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURE DEVELOPMENT (HON. MHONA): I would like to thank Hon. Nowedza for the question that she has asked so that I will alert the whole House…
+THE HON. SPEAKER: When will you start to speak Ndebele?
*THE MINISTER OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURE DEVELOPMENT (HON. MHONA): Mr. Speaker Sir, in the short future, I will be responding in Ndebele. I am originally from Kalanga and Ndebele. I thank you. Mr. Speaker Sir, I am very happy for the question that she asked about Bulawayo-Nkayi Road that she said buses and vehicles cannot travel on that road. Honestly, contractors are now taking machinery to that area so that they proceed to rehabilitate and tar 15km of that road. By the time you come back to this House, you will be testifying that the work has started.
Going on the other route of Nkayi to -Victoria Falls, right now we are going after all the most dilapidated roads like Lupane- Victoria Falls. All the roads are now dilapidated. We are rehabilitating that road. If you see us selecting areas such as those between Bulawayo and Beitbridge, the aim of the Government is to ensure that those roads are rehabilitated like what we are doing on the Harare-Beitbridge and Harare-Chirundu Roads. Right now we are targeting the most destroyed roads. It is not only Matabeleland with bad roads. There is Gwanda-Maphisa also that needs rehabilitation. Thank you so much Mr. Speaker Sir.
+THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Nowedza, did you understand him clearly.
+HON. NOWEDZA: Yes Mr. Speaker Sir.
+THE HON. SPEAKER: Yaah, you have to teach him Ndebele – [AN HON. MEMBER: Inaudible interjection.] – Hon. Moloekela, this has to be discussed outside Parliament.
+HON. MATHE: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. My supplementary question is an additional question to what Hon. Nowedza has just asked. The Minister should explain to this House when the Bulawayo-Nkayi Road will be rehabilitated in respect to last year’s budget or it is now the 15km that the Minister has just alluded to as per this year’s budget? Let him clearly explain to the House.
THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Minister, in short, do you have sufficient budget?
*HON. MHONA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. My mother was Ndebele and I can understand Ndebele a bit. Thank you very much. I would like to thank His Excellency, the President Dr. E. D. Mnangagwa for the budget that we are using for the Emergency Road Rehabilitation Programme 2. That is the budget that we are using on rehabilitating the 15km and the budget is already there. I would like to thank you for the kilometres that I mentioned before. They are tallying with the budget that we have. We will not end there but we want to reach Nkayi. Those who know the Kwekwe-Nkayi-Lupane Road, we are also going to rehabilitate this road but we are going to use another budget from the partners working together with Government.
*HON. MLAMBO: My supplementary question to the Minister is that whenever they are mentioning about projects in this House, you will think that everything is in order. Last time I asked about the route from Chipinge going to Mt. Selinda through to the Mozambican Border. Up to now they have not done anything. We once had graders in place but they were removed and everything is now lying idle. In other areas they are rehabilitating. Honestly, when are they coming to rehabilitate the road which was damaged by Cyclone Idai?
*HON. MHONA: It is true what he mentioned that before we had a company which was contracted. I promised that I was going to chase that company away and contract a company which can work diligently. That company which was not operating well was removed. Next week I will be in Manicaland and I promise you will come and testify here that there will be a new company contracted to work on that same road.
*THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, yes we are allowed to laugh but you must laugh in a respectable manner, knowing that you are Hon. Members. Hon. Mlambo, you have to make sure that next week you meet the Hon. Minister concerning that road.
HON. MAHLANGU: My supplementary to the Minister is: he said the stretch from Bulawayo to Nkayi is 15 km – or maybe I misunderstood him because that road is in a sorry state and I think it is now more than 10 – 20 years that road being in that state and the tarred section is very short. So, if he says the road is 15 kilometres, it means it does not get to Nkayi Centre. Can the Minister also give us a timeline in which the road is going to be rehabilitated because I remember Hon. Mathe asking about the Nkayi Road and the Minister gave the same answer that they are in the process of doing that road and had already dispatched equipment to work on the road? Today again equipment has been dispatched to Nkayi. So, now we want a timeframe in which the road is going to be finished but to me, 15 km is too short considering the road is dilapidated.
HON. T. MLISWA: On a point of order!
THE HON. SPEAKER: No, no, before the Hon. Minister answers and you want a point of order?
HON. T. MLISWA: Yes.
THE HON. SPEAKER: On what basis?
HON. T. MLISWA: Mr. Speaker Sir, it seems these questions are becoming specific and I am also going to ask about Chibero Road to Ngezi when he is going to do it. It will result in every Member of Parliament asking about roads in their areas because we are all going towards elections and we want to do something – they seem to be specific questions. It is either the Minister comes. This is the Emergency Road Rehabilitation Programme and he can be asked to give an update on all of them through a Ministerial Statement because I also have roads which need to be fixed in my constituency, and so does everybody else. May we be holistic about this? Let the Minister come with an updated report on the roads that he said he would fix and the progress to date. That is all we need. From there we can interrogate further – [HON. R. NYATHI: Including Boterekwa.] – Boterekwa Road yekumusha kwedu uku yakaipa.
THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Minister, would you be happy to do that because what Hon. Mliswa is raising is correct. Every member from each constituency will start talking about their own roads, so it will be a bit clumsy. Questions must be more national than specific. If you want to ask specific questions, do so in writing.
HON. MHONA: Thank you Hon. Speaker for your usual guidance. I also want to thank Hon. Mliswa – I will do precisely that to apprise the august House on the current status quo of Emergency Roads Rehabilitation Programme.
(v)HON. MAFUTA: My question is direct to the Minister of Health. Bearing in mind that Government introduced devolution in 2013 and extended in 2018, what is Government’s policy on devolution of cancer treatment services to district hospitals?
THE MINISTER OF HIGHER AND TERTIARY EDUCATION, INNOVATION, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. MURWIRA): The Hon. Member is asking what Government policy is on the issue of devolution concerning decentralising cancer treatment to district hospitals. The policy is very clear. We would want to do treatment at the lowest possible unit. It is just then a function of resources but when it comes to policy and policy intentions, we want to be where the people are, which is at the lowest unit of Government presence in terms of health services.
HON. CHINYANGANYA: I want to thank the Hon. Minister for his response. What is Government doing to make sure that the policy is fulfilled because cancer has now become one of the killer diseases and as we speak, we do not have cancer machines even in the bigger hospitals. Can government ensure that those small clinics in rural areas or even provincial hospitals are equipped with cancer machines? I thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.
THE HON. SPEAKER: I thought the Hon. Minister was very clear on that. Resources are inadequate, that admission was made.
HON. CHINYANGANYA: Yes, the resources are inadequate but what is government doing? It should be pro-active Mr. Speaker Sir. I thank you.
THE HON. SPEAKER: Thank you, the question is on pro-activity.
HON. DR. MANGWIRO: Hon. Speaker, I would like to thank Hon. Chinyanganya for that supplementary question. If I was not clear at the beginning that our policy is to be everywhere, we follow our policy through budgetary allocations successively every year to ensure that our aspirations are met. As we speak, there is a lot of acquisition of equipment which is happening and every year it is according to availability of budget but action is taking place. Thank you Hon. Speaker Sir.
HON. WATSON: Thank you Hon. Speaker. It has been requested that the Minister of Health comes with a comprehensive statement on the state of the health delivery service in the public sector and I think it is long overdue. These questions should be answered because I do not think it only applies to cancer machines but I think the public health service delivery is collapsing. I thank you.
THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Minister, are you acquiescing to the request?
HON. DR. MANGWIRO: Yes Hon. Speaker, we agree to the request but with your permission Hon. Speaker, I do not endorse the statement that the health system is collapsing. Hon. Speaker, we are one of the most…
THE HON. SPEAKER: Just a minute, did someone say the government is collapsing?
HON. DR. MANGWIRO: Yes, she did.
THE HON. SPEAKER: Oh you said the health delivery system.
HON. DR. MANGWIRO: Hon. Speaker, we would be very happy to bring a statement but as I said I would not agree with the sentiments that the health system has collapsed. We have as we speak the lowest number of COVID-19 deaths and lowest figure of cholera deaths. That statement cannot be sustained by facts. -[HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible Interjections.]-
THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Minister, I think in your statement you will have to indicate that on the contrary we are hoping that the impression will be corrected accordingly.
HON. DR. MANGWIRO: Thank you Hon. Speaker, the topic sentence has already been done.
HON. T. MLISWA: On a point of order Hon. Speaker Sir. With all due respect, I think the issues of health are very sensitive. We are paying PSMAS as we speak but we cannot be treated. –[Laughter.]-
THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Molokela, I did say your laughter must be measured.
HON. T. MLISWA: Mr Speaker Sir, I think with due respect, the health delivery system is not performing well. We are all paying PSMAS and money is being deducted throughout the civil service but there is nowhere to go. All the PSMAS hospitals are closed.
THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Mliswa, you are making a pertinent statement. Why do you not wait for the ministerial statement and then you can debate accordingly.
HON. T. MLISWA: I think I should add to what should be addressed in the ministerial statement. Can the Minister also talk about why the PSMAS hospitals are closed yet people are paying PSMAS every month? What has government done to ensure that all of us who are sick can go to another hospital where we can be looked after because people are not getting the needed attention and they are dying? If he can include that especially the PSMAS issue which we are all beneficiaries of. I do not know why Members of Parliament were clapping yet you know that when we are sick we cannot fly but he is a Minister and he can fly out. We have to deal with hospitals here. So, I am actually ashamed that you are actually busy clapping when you know that you can die here without receiving treatment. The Ministers will be flown outside.
HON. MATHE: On a point of order.
THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, you cannot raise a point of order before I have responded. Procedure must be followed Hon. Mathe. The Hon. Minister, in his ministerial statement, should include the aspect that is being raised by Hon. Mliswa.
HON. DR. MANGWIRO: Thank you Hon. Speaker. We will do that.
+HON. MATHE: My point of order Mr. Speaker Sir is raised on a statement that the Mnister should clarify why the Ministry of Health and PSMAS are not performing well. So can he also give clarification on all the areas that are not performing due to sanctions because as a Parliament we cannot ignore the presence of the sanctions in this country and expect things to move smoothly? We cannot. May we have a statement in this Parliament on things that have been affected by sanctions and that are affecting the whole country and everyone? I thank you.
THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Mathe, you raised a point of order. Listen to what I am going to say. Hon. Minister, I am sure in your response or statement, you indicate the constraints.
HON. P. D. SIBANDA: My question is directed to the Hon. Minister of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water, Climate and Rural Resettlement. I am not quite sure if he is in….
THE HON. SPEAKER: That is not your problem. Just ask your question.
HON. P. D. SIBANDA: Thank you Hon. Speaker. I will preface my question by commending the Ministry for starting fish farming projects throughout the country. However, my question is – what is the Ministry doing to ensure that the depletion of fish populations in these numerous national projects is curtailed so that there is continued production in that particular area?
THE HON. SPEAKER: Did you say ‘depletion’?
HON. P. D. SIBANDA: Indeed, Hon. Speaker.
THE HON. SPEAKER: You mean depletion, alright.
THE MINISTER OF HIGHER AND TERTIARY EDUCATION, INNOVATION, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. MURWIRA): I would like to thank Hon. Sibanda, first of all for the compliment on the fisheries programme that Government is rolling out throughout the country.
Coming to the issue of fish stocks, of course, Hon. Sibanda did not specify exactly where the fish stocks are being depleted. However, I have to point out that fish stocks have been going down in Kariba. This is both a national and international issue because we share Kariba with our neighbour Zambia. We will be working with our Zambian counterparts in making sure that we conserve the fish stocks by also restocking Kariba, especially when it comes to Kapenta because Kapenta used to have several tonnes of harvest from the 1990s but from the 1990s to now, it has been going down.
From a policy perspective, it is our policy to ensure sustainability so that we continue having the required fish. However, when it comes to areas where there is depletion like in Kariba, we will be working with our counterparts in making sure that we bring back the fish population and even begin to increase the fish population in Lake Kariba.
HON. P. D. SIBANDA: My supplementary question to the Hon. Minister is, in areas where fish stocks are depleting like Kariba where he has given an example, the Government agencies responsible for licencing of fishing business continue to increase licence fees whilst fishing stocks are depleting. What is, possibly this will require his colleague on his right; what is Government policy with regards to assisting the fishing business to remain thriving in areas where fishing stocks are depleting?
THE MINISTER OF ENVIRONMENT, CLIMATE CHANGE, TOURISM AND HOSPITALITY INDUSTRY (HON. S. NDLOVU): The first issue to acknowledge is that indeed our stock levels of fish are depleting. It has been happening for quite some time and the main reason has been overfishing but also the need to increase enforcement expenditure especially from fish poaching. I am sure that the Hon. Member is also aware that part of the strategies we have implemented is to introduce what we call moon light days where there are days where fishing is not allowed in the river. This has been successfully implemented on the Zimbabwean side to give time for our fish to reproduce. In a month, fishing takes place around 22 days. We have certain days that we allow for reproduction.
The underlying cause is that the capacity particularly in Kariba for fishing, combined for Zimbabwe and Zambia a total of around 500 fishing boats. Infact in total, Zimbabwe has an allocation of around 265 with Zambia around 235 depending on time to time assessments. As we speak, Zambia has more than 1300 fishing boats in there and Zimbabwe is close to 500. We have been taking measures to restrict issuance of new permits but also to increase the costs which the Hon. Member is asking so that we are able to meet the compliance cost.
Almost every night, we are out there looking for poachers and we are arresting them every night. For us to be able to protect that resource that is depleting, we need to continue to unlock resources. It is a painful period and I acknowledge especially for fish farming as a business at the moment but our understanding is, if we are able to conserve what is there, restock overtime, we will be able to increase profitability.
HON. P. D. SIBANDA: Hon. Speaker, I seek your indulgence. There is a part of my question that was not attended to.
At a time as this one when fish stocks have depleted, why should Government continue to charge fishing businesses the same exorbitant licencing fees instead of responding to the decline in the business.
HON. S. NDLOVU: I thought I had responded to the Hon. Member’s question in that it is mainly the cost associated with compliance; that is making sure that we deal with poaching issues that we have maintained our licencing. Our belief also is that the people in the fishing business will also realise that the depleting stocks are also a result of over fishing and poaching as we have been working with them. The institution charged with the mandate of dealing with poaching is National Parks and the resources they deploy to address poaching come from the fishing licences. That is why we cannot reduce otherwise it accelerates the rate of depletion that the Member is worried about. I thank you.
HON. NDUNA: Thank you Madam Speaker Maam. What is the Hon. Minister doing about speculators or people who take fishing licences for onward leasing to other people as opposed to utilizing them at the primary inception? Is there an audit process for the number of fishing licences that have been pushed out of the market in order to curtail the fishing that he has spoken to and about?
HON. M. NDLOVU): Thank you Madam Speaker Maam. We balance the need for our people in the fishing industry to remain in business with over regulation. When somebody has a fishing licence and they have operating constraints, and they need to have partnerships with people with fishing rigs, it is surely not for Government what one has to do with the fishing licence they have.
We have strict measures where people have licences and they are not able to utilise them, they have challenges in renewing them for sure, but if they can prove that they were able to operate, we are able to renew for them. So, it is not really for Government to prescribe who people will go into partnership with when they have the licences. There are some who have licences whose fishing rigs are malfunctioning and they have the latitude to work with those who have fishing rigs. I want to assume that is what the Hon. Member was speaking to.
HON. T. MLISWA: Hon. Minister, you clearly articulated that there are 265 licences given to Zimbabwe and 235 licences given to Zambia. So why are you exceeding that? Why have you allowed that to exceed to a thousand? Is that not corruption and why not cut it immediately because there is already a self regulatory system in the number of licences issued? Is that not the incompetency of your Ministry?
HON. M. NDLOVU: Thank you Madam Speaker. I want to thank the Hon. Member for his supplementary question. Maybe I did not give the proper context. We are now sitting at close to 500 permits coming down from 900, these were issued over time and we are committed to reduce. Where people will be committing offences that warrant termination of contracts we have been quick to do that. So we are coming down, it is an issue of concern that has been raised and it is a challenge we have had for 10 to 15 years. However, I am happy that we are on track in addressing it; we are working with our colleagues in Zambia. We have also reduced, at one point they were more than1 600 but they have come down to 1 300. It is work in progress; it is something that we will continue to work with Zambians.
It is a livelihood issue for communities there; it therefore causes a number of challenges for governments. On the Zimbabwean side, it is a national park area and on the Zambian side, it is a communal area. That is why it is taking much longer to have the issue addressed but I am happy that we are cooperating well with our counterparts in Zambia. I thank you.
HON. T. MLISWA: Madam Speaker, I am still battling that the Government has power. When there was imbalance in terms of the welfare of this country, this Government embarked on a fast track land reform. So why not do a fast track on cancelling these licences? The Land Reform Programme was fast tracked because there was an imbalance; Government could not allow people to continue suffering. Now, you are allowing fish to finish quickly. Why are you allowing fish to be fished when they are young because you need those to also breed? So the more people you are allowing to poach, the more they are killing the breed.
So how long can that programme go for? You said Zambia was 1500, now it is 1300 yet they are supposed to be giving 235 licences. Zimbabwe is down to 900 instead of 265, so the very same fish that you want to breed is being fished. It is a tourist attraction, there is tiger fish, those boat cruises, and it brings real money into the country. How do you attract tourists if you are not able to protect the fish?
HON. M. NDLOVU: I want to also assure the Hon. Member that the strategies we are putting in place both at reducing the number of fishing and making sure that we have breed bays for our fish has managed to save our dwindling numbers of fish. I am quite confident that in the next few years, our fishing stocks will be growing because of what we have started around three years ago which is already beginning to pay dividends.
+HON. MATHE: My question is directed to the Minister of Energy and Power Development. Every year a National Budget is presented that is supposed to cover electricity in the rural areas, schools and the urban centres but I am disappointed because we do not see electricity being supplied to the shopping centres in Nkayi. I want to know when you are going to provide electricity to these areas, especially the shopping centres in the rural areas.
THE DEPUTY MINISTER ENERGY AND POWER DEVELOPMENT (HON. MUDYIWA): Thank you Madam Speaker. I would like to thank the Hon. Member for her question. I can try to respond to the general part of the question but I think the Hon. Member will have to put the specific part in writing.
We have always said magetsi kumaruwa or amagetsi ekhaya! – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – That is what we mean.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, order! May we have order please! – [HON. BITI: Tava kugeza nema buckets kunge Mbuya Nehanda!] –
HON. MUDYIWA: By that statement, we mean exactly that – we are there to provide electricity in the urban centres as well as the rural centres. The area that the Hon. Member mentioned needs a specific answer and that is why I asked her to put it in writing so that we respond with facts.
The Rural Electrification Agency (REA) is responsible for rural electrification. They have a minimal budget that has not been able to fund all their operations and that is why at times you find that they are failing to fulfill what they are supposed to do. We are trying, by all means, to make sure that they complete whatever they started annually – funds permitting. I think I have responded to the question. Thank you.
+HON. MATHE: Madam Speaker, since the Hon. Deputy Minister has responded. I respect the response that she has given to us; but because she said that she cannot provide a specific response that speaks to the issues in Nkayi, I wish for the Hon. Deputy Minister to go and research and give me a specific response that speaks to the issues that I raised on Nkayi specifically. Thank you.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Mathe, please may you put your question in writing.
*HON. MPARIWA: I would like to thank Hon. Mathe for that good question on rural electrification. The Rural Electrification Agency (REA) is responsible for rural electrification. I was going to ask but now I have an appeal.
This is not a new question to REA and now, I would like to request the Hon. Minister to bring a Ministerial Statement stating the areas where they have supplied electricity because other areas have poles only. I heard the Hon. Deputy Minister saying REA does not have money but every time when we do the budget, REA has cash that they take because it is self-funding. I would like to request the Hon. Minister to bring a Ministerial Statement on the issue to do with REA because it helps with rural electrification but we cannot have electricity. I thank you.
*THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Thank you Hon. Mpariwa. I believe that the Minister of Energy and Power Development has understood everything and will bring a Ministerial Statement. I thank you.
+HON. BRG. GEN. (RTD.) MAYIHLOME: Thank you very much Madam Speaker Ma’am. I request to speak in Ndebele just for the day. My question is directed to the Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare and it also touches on the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education, Innovation, Science and Technology Development.
My question specifically speaks to the shortage of teachers for Mathematics and Science in the Matabeleland region. We have noticed that teachers for Maths and Science are needed much in Rwanda and most of our schools in Matabeleland region are still having a zero pass rate for Maths and Science. What measures are being taken to mitigate this issue? There was once an attempt to take students to go and learn Maths and Science in Cuba; as of now, I speak of Umzingwane District. There are more than 45 vacancies for Science teachers but only two have occupied these positions. What measures have been taken by these ministries to curb this shortage of Maths and Science teachers?
We took all the Constituency Development Funds (CDF) and used it to improve our infrastructure for Science laboratories. I want to know the measures that have been taken to mitigate this shortage. Thank you.
THE MINISTER OF HIGHER AND TERTIARY EDUCATION, INNOVATION, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. MURWIRA): Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am. I wish to thank Hon. Gen. Rtd. Mayihlome for the question. He is talking about Science teachers and shortages of Science teachers particularly in Matabeleland South – [HON. BITI: And a disastrous pass rate!] – and the disastrous pass rate as he says.
What are the measures that we are taking on this? Hon. Speaker Ma’am, in 2018, the Government of His Excellency the President, Dr. E. D. Mnangagwa recognised the importance of Science education; and made some measures to it. We made sure that we increase the number of Science offering teachers colleges. It was Mkoba Teachers College; it has a secondary Science teacher’s programme starting from 2018; we have Masvingo Teachers College, it has got a Science teacher’s programme since 2018; we have Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo Polytechnic, it has a Science teacher’s programme since 2018. We have also made sure that Mary Mount Teachers College has a Science training teacher’s programme since 2019.
So, we now have been able to enroll 600 teachers for Science only at Mkoba Teachers College, at Mary Mount Teachers College, at Masvingo Teachers College and Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo Polytechnic which was never there before. We have also bolstered the science teaching programme at Mutare Teachers College, Hillside Teachers College and Belvedere Technical Teachers College. So, the response has been such that last year in 2022, we graduated our first crop of secondary Science teachers. We are looking at having 5 000 secondary science teachers trained by 2025. There are steps that we are taking. When it comes to Matabeleland region that he is talking about, we actually have Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo that is doing that.
In terms of policy, the policy is very clear. The pace might not be as fast as we want it to be but training takes its own course, and in terms of policy, we are now very clear – the policy has recognised the need to increase that. We also have got a supplementary science teacher training programme at Bindura University of Science Education. The Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education sends teachers there for continuous training. We recognise that for a country to be able to develop, it must have knowledge of science technology and innovation. So the Government of His Excellency the President Dr. E. D. Mnangagwa puts science at the centre of the country’s industrialisation and modernisation agenda. All problems that might be there are just transient. We are moving. I thank you.
+HON. BRIG. GEN. (RTD.) MAYIHLOME: I thank you Madam Speaker. We heard the Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education but on the ground, there is nothing like such. On the ground, we are facing parents who are paying school fees for nothing, who are sending their children to school for nothing. Of what importance does it have to pay school fees for a child who is not being taught those subjects? We should not come here to speak about things to please each other because the President is saying we leave no one and no place behind. We are saying when are these schools going to have Maths and Science teachers? What is the Ministry doing in order to have Maths and Science teachers available in the Matabeleland region like any other places? Thank you.
HON. PROF MURWIRA: Madam Speaker, we agree with Hon. Gen. Mayihlome that we have a problem. This is exactly why we are responding to that problem. When we have an issue, we normally say, problems do not go by shouting at them or shouting loudly about the problem. This is done through strategic solutions. To this end, we have said just last year, we graduated 600 teachers. We did not have them because you cannot distribute what you do not have. If you have a distributive economy, it must also have a productive economy, a productive side. Normally people talk about wanting to have this also but when it is not there, you cannot have it. What we have concentrated on is making sure that we have got those teachers and now we can talk about distribution.
In acknowledgment that this problem is being highlighted; His Excellency the President, when he was in Beitbridge, actually spoke to the problem of Matabeleland South in terms of science teachers and he gave us an instruction to make sure that we train more science teachers and deploy them in areas of shortage. So the movement is towards solving that – [HON. MADZIMURE: Inaudible interjection.]
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order Hon. Minister. What is your point of order?
HON. MADZIMURE: Madam Speaker, Hon. Mayihlome is very specific. There is a shortage of around 40 science and mathematics teachers and his question is, when is the Ministry going to deploy those teachers for the children to be able to learn those subjects that they are expected to write exams end of this year.
HON. T. MLISWA: On a point of order. Madam Speaker, I think we need to be fair. Hon. Mayihlome is correct. He spoke about 42 Umzingwane and that is specific. It is not a national issue and the best thing is probably for the Minister to indulge Hon. Mayihlome, invite him for a cup of tea. He is a General so he needs to be given respect and respond to those issues. If you now start touching on Umzingwane, I will go to Chegutu district as well and people will talk about their districts. Let us just limit it to a national issue but I implore you to visit the General. He fought for this country and he is suffering for the people. Invite him for a cup of tea tomorrow, you lose nothing and make sure that you give him the 44 teachers he requires. Thank you.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Thank you Hon. Mliswa. As you have said, he is the General, may the Hon. Minister please respond to his question. Thank you.
HON. PROF. MURWIRA: Thank you very much Madam Speaker. I think from a policy perspective, we have responded to the general national problem of the shortage of science teachers and we have said we now have trained science teachers. The issue of 42 is very specific. What I can only say is we have heard Hon. Mayihlome. We will take that to the specific Ministry so that, that issue can be looked into. Now the good thing Madam Speaker is that we can now talk about distribution because we have produced them. In the past, there was nothing. I thank you.
*HON. RAIDZA: On a point of order Madam Speaker. We have heard what has been said by the Minister – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjection.] –
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: May the Hon. Member of Parliament be heard in silence please.
*HON. RAIDZA: We are asking the Minister to bring a Ministerial Statement clarifying on the extent of the problem so far since the policy is very clear and there is training of teachers. In our communities there are trained teachers of Maths and Science but they are not being recruited. We need the Minister to explain to this House the number of trained teachers as well as those they have deployed and in which provinces so that we understand our problem as a country. The Minister is correct, there are teachers being trained at colleges but they are not being recruited. This is a problem that we are facing as a country. It is not only found at Hon. Mayihlome’s province. We have noticed that the recruitment is mostly on other subjects such as Shona, History and others but for these critical subjects, there is no recruitment, yet we have trained and qualified teachers for these subjects. I thank you.
*THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Thank you Hon. Raidza. I believe the Minister has heard you and he will do as you have asked.
HON. CHINYANGANYA: Thank you Madam Speaker. I want to thank the Hon. Minister for his response. We appreciate what the Government is doing in trying to increase the numbers that are being trained. At the end of the day, it is not that the Government has not been training teachers but it is because of the brain drain that we have these shortages. So what is the Government doing to make sure that those who will have been trained are not lost through this brain drain because the Government is losing a lot of resources in trying to train those teachers but at the end of the day we are losing these trained people?
HON. PROF. MURWIRA: I wish to thank Hon. Chinyanganya for that supplementary question in terms of the fact that he said we have been able and we are now training teachers but how do we retain them and make sure that there is no brain drain. One of the most important issues is that people always move, it is true and we will continue training some but at the same time, Government continues to improve the conditions of service in the teaching profession. It cannot be solved in one day but definitely the arrows are looking north and we believe that with the movement of time, as we train more, the economy grows and as we work harder we will be able to retain some. It is also a mark of success of a nation when you see your people in demand elsewhere.
*HON. MUDARIKWA: In terms of education, our schools have enough teachers but they are producing zero percent. This Minister, we are discussing on the issue of our pass rate in schools but we need the Minister of Local Government because they are the ones who supervise the schools, but local authorities do not have a mechanism to supervise. So we are requesting the Minister of Local Government as the responsible authority how they are supervising all the schools that are producing low pass rates. We have two authorities; the schools under church administration and those under the responsibility of the councils or local authorities. The mission schools have no problems in terms of pass rates but our local authorities or councils do not have capacity to monitor and assess the education systems within the council schools. That is the major problem.
HON. T. MLISWA: My point of order is that procedurally this is supposed to be a new question directed to the Minister of Local Government if we have to follow the rules of Parliament. You cannot sneak it in and I think he was on the floor attending to these issues. His questions have not ended unless they have ended and we need to start again – as it is a totally new question directed to the Minister of Local Government.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: That was the last supplementary question since it was the fourth supplementary question.
HON. T. MLISWA: He was now directing the Minister to Local Government. He was saying this is an issue which is under Local Government instead of directing asking the Minister of Local Government. At that point he was supposed to be stopped so that he directs the question to the Minister of Local Government because if you follow Madam Speaker, at no point did he direct the question to the Minister of Local Government. He was trying to talk about the role of the Ministry of Local Government in this and it was not a question. With your indulgence, can he direct the question to the Minister of Local Government so that we can follow the procedures of this House?
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Mudarikwa, please may you direct your question to Minister of Local Government.
*HON. MUDARIKWA: Madam Speaker, let us assist each other when we are discussing issues that affect the nation…
*THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Mudarikwa, we have to follow the procedures in this august House. Please, can you respond to whether you were asking a supplementary question or it was a new question because I have your name on the list here.
*HON. MUDARIKWA: It is a supplementary question because the issue of education cuts through other ministries in that besides it being the responsibility of the Ministry of Education, it is also under the purview of Ministry of Local Government and Ministry of Public Service. These three ministries…
*THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Mudarikwa, let me assist you. I had just given you the floor in respect but it was not procedural and the others notice. You were supposed to ask as a new question to the Minister of Local Government.
HON. BITI: My supplementary question to the esteemed Minister of Higher Education, Hon. Prof. Murwira, is that we have a problem of a kwashiorkor of Science teachers in the country and that is why across the board there are no Science teachers and we are having these disastrous pass rates. Why did the Government abandon the STEM curriculum which was ensuring that Science is embedded and entrenched at high school? Why was also the Indigenisation Empowerment Programme abandoned?
HON. PROF. MURWIRA: I wish to thank Hon. Biti for the question. This is a very useful question which enables us to explain. STEM Programme and I made a Ministerial Statement here; Science Technology, Engineering and Mathematics have never been abandoned. What was happening during that time was the training of students in Science who are not teachers. The question which we then said was; how do you train students in Science with no Science teachers? So, the Science training programme was a money siphoning programme and it is on record. We saw behind it.
We took the money and we are using the money to train teachers instead – [AN HON. MEMBER: Where?] – At Belvedere, Mkoba and others. I can tell you there is no more money being stolen at ZIMDEF – [AN. HON. MEMBER: Did you recover the money?] – Different question. The issue is; now we cannot try to hide behind that other programme because it was very corrupt and we have evidence to it but we are now training teachers in STEM so that they can go and teach. The simple question Hon. Speaker Ma’am was, how do you send students to learn science where you have said there are no Science teachers? Who do you train? We issued a ministerial statement explaining this issue in this august House. Therefore, we are fully in science and that is why you see the products of science in this country are increasing at an exponential rate because the Government of Dr. E. D Mnangagwa is focusing on science, technology and innovation. The issues which Hon. Biti raised are very important because they enable us to tell the House and the nation that it was not a STEM programme. It was a money siphoning scheme. I thank you.
HON. BITI: My point of clarification Madam Speaker is that I think STEM is very important. We have too many people in the humanities and our country has gone nowhere because of humanities. I would therefore urge the Minister to depoliticise and defactionalise the programme and not focus on the past but just focus on the importance of science in our schools. We need science from Form 1 to Form 6 and forget about who introduced it. Sciences are important because lawyers and teachers are killing the country, so let us have rocket scientists like Arthur Mutambara who can move our country forward. We are tired of History teachers like me. I thank you Madam Speaker.
HON. PROF. MURWIRA: I wish to thank Hon Biti for his clarification and I would not agree with him more. It is very important to do science and we are focusing on it. That is why we are teaching people who will go and teach our children in the schools. You need a teacher first before learning can take place and that is very important. There is nothing political about this issue at all because it is about making sure that we properly do STEM programmes by training teachers properly so that they can train our students everywhere. This is where the clarity of the issue is.
As a country, we did what we call the National Critical Skills Audit between December 2017, when the new dispensation came in and April 2018, and these are the results: Our skills levels in science, technology and innovation are 3% and our deficit is 97%. In medicine, our skills levels are 5% and deficit is 95%. In engineering, our skills availability is 6% and unavailability is 94%. In law, we actually found out that the skills availability is also about 20% and a deficit of 80%. In commercials and humanities, we have an excess of 121% and what I am trying to say is that we are very conscious, we are measuring and taking care of this country in that area. That is why this country has a satellite in space because we are focusing on science. This is why this country is able to produce oxygen. The most important thing is that we are in the right direction; we are not on opposite sides when it comes to science, technology and innovation with Hon. Biti. We are actually saying the same thing. So, it is not a question but a compliment. I thank you.
*HON. TEKESHE: Madam Speaker, my question is directed to the Minister of Local Government. The whole country agreed that we should stop the use of spikes when stopping motor vehicles because they were causing deaths. However, I was amazed to see municipal police in Marondera using spikes which nearly resulted in an accident. So, I am seeking clarification as to why spikes are still being used yet the whole country agreed that spikes were outdated and a thing of the past. I thank you.
THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT AND PUBLIC WORKS (HON. CHOMBO): Thank you Hon Tekeshe for the question. As a policy, the use of spikes has been discontinued and I am surprised that they are still being used in some areas. I would appreciate it very much if you can bring that issue to our office or any local authority so that it is addressed because it is now illegal.
HON. MADZIMURE: My question is directed to the Minister of Youth, Sports, Arts and Recreation. Madam Speaker, on the 24th of February 2022, Zimbabwe was suspended from international football by the world governing body FIFA. We all know that playing soccer has become big business and a source of livelihood for our children. At the same time, the age of a child does not stop because Zimbabwe is not participating. Right now we have got under 20s in Egypt, we have had under 18s in Morocco (AFCON). This is where our children’s skills are identified by scouts who will be there for that particular purpose. We have now gone for a full year without Zimbabwe participating. What is the Ministry doing to ensure that Zimbabwe quickly has its suspension lifted because it is a serious indictment on our children that as a country we have decided that we do not care and the Ministry does not care about what will happen to our children as far as their development is concerned? Economically, countries like Senegal – Sadio Mane has improved a simple …
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Madzimure, can you ask your question.
HON. MADZIMURE: Sorry Madam Speaker, some of these questions must have a context for the Minister to understand. So, I want to know when Zimbabwe will specifically be readmitted and what has the Ministry done to ensure that all the transgressions that caused the suspension are stopped?
THE MINISTER OF HIGHER AND TERTIARY EDUCATION, INNOVATION, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. MURWIRA): Hon. Speaker Ma’am, I wish to thank Hon. Madzimure for his question on football. It is true that Zimbabwe was suspended and suspension is not an issue that can be celebrated. However, it is important that the sports administration is cleaned but the process of cleaning has its own life-span. It is very important to know that the SRC and Zimbabwe community, including ZIFA itself are cleaning their act and we expect them to do so and pave way for the conditions of Zimbabwe to be readmitted. We cannot say when we are going to be readmitted as a specific answer because we did not suspend ourselves.
However, it is our wish that this issue is resolved as a matter of urgency. It is also important to know that what we are talking about is international football. This suspension is not saying our children should not play football, no. The league is on, Division 1, Division 2 and the national league – they are on. We are not saying we enjoy any suspension but sometimes it is necessary to swallow a bitter pill so that tomorrow you are okay. It is public knowledge about what has been happening in our football – but sometimes when a remedy is being given; sometimes when you want to take a thorn out of the toe, for some of us who were in the village, we were always having thorns, sometimes somebody would refuse with a thorn but it is good for the thorn to be removed.
What we are basically saying is that it is important that the country cleans itself so that football becomes clean but this is done by stakeholders within that field so that we do not have “games” but real games. Our people are still in international football playing for clubs elsewhere and clubs are working. It is in the interest of Zimbabwe to have clean sport. However, we are saying we wish this problem (just like what Hon Madzimure is saying) gets solved as soon as possible. We are in agreement that it should be solved as soon as possible and we are working on it as a country and not as ‘them and us’. I thank you.
Questions Without Notice were interrupted by THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER in terms of Standing Order No. 68
HON. MADZIMURE: I move that time for Questions without Notice be extended by five minutes.
HON. MARKHAM: I second.
Motion put and agreed to.
HON. MADZIMURE: I wish the Minister of Sport was here listening to your response. Can the Minister be in a position to give us a roadmap? It is not good enough to say that soccer is being played. It is not good enough to say that our players who are outside the country are playing because they only managed to be signed because they had played a number of games for Zimbabwe. No player from Zimbabwe can be signed by a big team without having played for his national team. That is exactly what happens. You cannot be signed by Arsenal if you have not played for Zimbabwe.
HON. PROF. MURWIRA: The supplementary question of Hon. Madzimure is in order. We are in agreement that this issue has to be solved as soon as possible. We also are saying you cannot do a roadmap when you did not suspend yourself. We were suspended by FIFA. It is important we remain focused on cleaning the sport and making sure that I do not give a false answer to say in two or three weeks’ time. It is not true if I say that but the most important issue is that this issue is being looked into. Sport has to be clean, football has to be clean. When it is clean and FIFA is happy, the ban will be lifted but it is a governing body which suspended us, so we cannot tell them when. I thank you.
HON. T. MLISWA: My supplementary question is that Zimbabwe is governed by laws and Acts as well. The Sports and Recreation Commission is an Act of Parliament and as a result, the Minister must respond to the action taken by SRC to ensure that there is proper administration of sport in this country. I have a BA Honours in Sports and Fitness Studies but I am not in the administration of sport in this country, yet we have got criminals in the administration of sport. There has got to be accountability. No wonder why you see Cricket and Rugby in the days we used to play it, there was accountability but now the people who are administering these sports never played these sports at all because the sponsors then were willing to put money into people who were prepared to account.
It is within the laws of this country but is it not that FIFA is interfering with the affairs of this country in terms of the law. I want the Minister to respond to that because we cannot be governed by FIFA. We have got laws in this country that govern us and SRC is enacted through an Act of Parliament which is responsible for the administration of sport in this country. Did they not take appropriate action to ensure that it happens?
FIFA is a cartel of a mafia who, all they want from Zimbabwe are votes and they were favouring this administration which was told to stand down. The Minister must respond to that. There is a forensic audit which the previous administration was guilty of and they have been exposed that they were misappropriation of funds. It is correct that you cannot allow people who misappropriate funds to run sport and as such, SRC took that action. As a result, FIFA are interfering in our affairs. Who is FIFA in the politics of Zimbabwe and in the laws of Zimbabwe? Can you respond to that? By FIFA suspending Zimbabwe, it is pretty clear that FIFA interfered in the politics of Zimbabwe. We are a sovereign nation and we stick to our laws. The SRC did what they did to remove these criminals who FIFA wants to use to make sure that they empower and continue their activities.
FIFA has allowed women to be abused in football and they have done nothing. To hell with FIFA! We do not need FIFA in Zimbabwe. We can play football amongst ourselves and this is the time that football must be developed in this country so that we have many Lionel Messis.
HON. PROF. MURWIRA: Hon. Mliswa has expressed his opinions about football. What I can only say is that we would want the sport to be clean and that we are taking steps to clean that sport. I would not be competent enough to comment about FIFA. I thank you.
ORAL ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS WITH NOTICE
ESTABLISHMENT PROCESS OF KUVIMBA MINING HOUSE
MARKHAM asked the Minister of Finance and Economic Development to explain the following to the House;
The establishment process and date of creation of Kuvimba Mining House;
The legal instrument for its establishment, given that Government is the majority shareholder;
Who the shareholders are, percentage of their shares and what the contributions are in the company;
Where the company is registered and what is its sister or sub companies are;
who are the other shareholders directors with interests in the company and to further clarify whether the directors of the company since its inception have changed;
What the current asset value of Kuvimba Mining House – including definable resources is; and to further confirm whether a tender was issued for any disposal or acquisitions of State assets and/or enterprises.
THE MINISTER OF FINANCE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT (HON. CHIDUWA): Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am. For all the questions asked by the Honourable Member, we are not yet ready, so we defer to next week.
HON. BITI: On a point of order Madam Speaker. The Standing Orders allow us to ask questions on notice to esteemed Ministers. The Constitution of Zimbabwe allows us to hold the Executive to account and to ask these questions. For Minister Chiduwa to come here for four weeks to say he cannot answer those questions is not good enough. Can you kindly place him on terms? We know it is not his problem but can he be placed on terms so that he answers those questions next week. I thank you very much Madam Speaker.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Deputy Minister, please may you bring the answers next week on Wednesday without fail.
HON. MARKHAM: Madam Speaker, since they are my questions may I also have a say. The questions have been sitting on the Order Paper for a particular length of time. If you look at them, I have six or seven questions mostly directed to the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development and they are virtually refusing to answer.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: He is not refusing to answer Hon. Markham, that is why we are asking him to bring the answers next week.
HON. MARKHAM: Madam Speaker, may I just add some more that are not being answered. When my question on the Chinese loans was answered by the Minister of Finance, captured in Hansard and in his filing with the Clerks, he keeps referring to table 2, there is no table 2 to the attachment. Could the Minister also on the Chinese bring us the ‘so-called table 2’ that he referred to when the question was asked on the 4th November? That takes care of the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development. The Ministry of Agriculture has over three months to give us a statement which you ruled on the issue of the re-entry for the tobacco buying programmes in TIMB. Today, not one of them including the deputies has been to this House. I asked at the peak of the wheat receiving system to the same Ministry for a breakdown of what money has been paid to wheat farmers. I am told by the wheat farmers that they have been paid the ZIM dollar component but 95% of the foreign currency is still outstanding.
Again, I have asked four to five times for that and no answer has come. We asked for a statement, they agreed to the statement and we are still waiting. It appears that the Ministers and as you could see by today’s attendance, have no feeling for this House other than contempt. My problem is when that contempt of this House now moves to the Speakers because they have done nothing.
Madam Speaker, I asked for the Justice Uchena Report many times and the Hon. Speaker himself got involved trying to get that thing. We have not received the statement, it is actually on the Order Paper as a question for today and there is no-one to answer. That report was given to the President nearly three years ago. Madam Speaker, coupled with all that, we then also get fed lies by the Hon. Ministers. The Minister of Energy told me in an answer to a written question that Hatcliff will be fully electrified by the end of the year but Madam Speaker, they have not even started.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Markham, all those issues, I think you need to ask the responsible Ministers and they have already gone out.
HON. MARKHAM: They are never here Madam Speaker. The Minister of Agriculture, when was he last in this House? His deputies need directions on how to get to Parliament.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: I advise you Hon. Markham to do the follow up with the Parliament Administration.
HON. MARKHAM: I hear your ruling Madam Speaker, however I must say that I believe that there is a problem with Parliament when you cannot get statements from Ministers delivered here, that is ridiculous.
On the motion of HON. R. R NYATHI, seconded by HON. MATHE, the House adjourned at Twenty-Six Minutes to Five o’clock p.m.