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President assents to four Bills
The Herald
September 06, 2004

FOUR Bills, which sailed through Parliament in June this year, have now become law after President Mugabe assented to them, according to a Government Gazette published last week.

In a notice in the Gazette, Chief Secretary to the President and Cabinet Dr Misheck Sibanda said Cde Mugabe has assented to the Radiation Protection Act, Acquisition of Farm Equipment and Material Act, Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation Act (Debt Assumption) and the Administrative Justice Act.

The Radiation Protection Act, which seeks to establish an authority to regulate and control the use of ionising radiation by separating radiation safety from chemical safety, was passed by Parliament in June without amendment.

The Act seeks to set up the Radiation Protection Authority of Zimbabwe to regulate the use of ionised radiation.

The ZBC Act (Debt Assumption) seeks to pave way for the State to undertake obligations arising from the corporationís debt following its restructuring and commercialisation, sailed through Parliament in June again without amendments.

The Minister of State for Information and Publicity in the Office of the President and Cabinet, Professor Jonathan Moyo, had argued in Parliament that since ZBC (now Zimbabwe Broadcasting Holdings) was undergoing restructuring, it was not possible for the subsidiaries of the corporation to inherit the historic debt.

The minister said this while responding to concerns raised by Members of Parliament during the committee stage of the Bill. He said the corporation had not received a grant from the Government since 1994 and had managed to continue operating under very difficult conditions.

The Acquisition of Farm Equipment and Material Act seeks to pave way for the acquisition of idle farm equipment and material.

The Act is in response to the successful land reform programme embarked upon by the Government, which saw a lot of farm equipment and material previously used on the acquired farms lying idle because of the prohibitive purchase costs of the equipment or material.

The farm equipment referred includes movable properties such as irrigation equipment not embedded in the ground, ploughs, disc harrows, trailers, combine harvesters, tobacco curers, pumps, sprinklers, among other equipment.

The Administration of Justice Act seeks to confer on all persons the right to administrative action that is lawful, reasonable and procedurally fair. The Bill sailed through with some amendments.

The Act also provides for relief against administrative action contrary to its provisions, which include review of administrative decisions by a competent court.

The Act is also intended to impose upon the State the duty to encourage efficient administration and good governance and create a culture of governance.

Under the Act, administrative authorities would be obliged to justify the administrative actions and administrative decisions that they take, thereby giving effect to the right to dispassionate action.

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