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Roundup Bulletin No. 7– 2012
Southern African Parliamentary Support Trust
March 14, 2012
The Prime Minister,
Hon. Morgan Tsvangirai presented a monthly progress report
on government programmes and activities to Parliament
yesterday. Members also debated the motion on reply to the presidential
speech. The Senate only set for 13 minutes yesterday before it adjourned
immediately after the prayer and announcements.
Proceedings in the House of Assembly
Progress Report by Prime Minister
In his inaugural
progress report to parliament yesterday, the Prime Minister informed
the House of Assembly that it was his duty as Leader of Government
Business in Parliament to update the nation on government programmes
through their elected representatives. He said this was done in
the spirit of openness, transparency and accountability so that
the nation was kept abreast of the challenges affecting the country.
Thus, the Prime Minister pledged to make monthly reports to parliament
and warned that in his next reports he would “name and shame”
under performing Ministers and their ministries.
the good work the portfolio committees were doing to hold the executive
to account. He noted that some Ministers were refusing to appear
before committees when requested to do so and that some Ministers
were absconding question and answer sessions in parliament. The
Prime Minister made an undertaking to ensure that Ministers attended
parliamentary sittings as well as appearing before relevant portfolio
committees when requested to do so.
The Prime Minister
said the evaluation of the performance of Ministers will be based
on the Government Work Programme (GWP) recently adopted by government,
which he tabled before parliament yesterday.
Tsvangirai noted that his monthly progress reports in parliament,
coupled with the Prime Minister’s Question Time, will enhance
the oversight role of the institution of parliament. Hon. Tsvangirai
identified the national census and the current constitution-making
process as the two major activities that government was paying much
of its attention to. He informed the House that Global
Political Agreement (GPA) Principals had taken a keen interest
in the constitution-making
process so that the process was expedited to ensure that all
the necessary structures had been put in place ahead of the forth-coming
The House was
also informed that government was keen on improving and normalizing
relations with countries in the region and the international community
in general. The Prime Minister told the House that the Re-engagement
Committee had begun its dialogue with the European Union (EU).
On the scourge
of corruption in the country, the Prime Minister urged all relevant
government agencies to ensure that “justice [was] done and
any corrupt person [was] arrested”. He said as an independent
body, the Anti-Corruption Commission should not be threatened or
hindered from doing its work professionally; to expose corruption
and ensure that justice was done without favour or bias. In this
regard, he also urged parliament to come up with a mechanism that
will enable it to hold its own Members to account.
The Prime Minister
outlined the following as priorities that government was currently
paying its attention to; abuse of citizens by the police and the
mush-rooming of roadblocks across the country, ethanol fuel project,
challenges faced by the Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority (ZESA),
Air Zimbabwe Challenges and Voter Registration process. On the issue
regarding police roadblocks and cases of bribery, the Prime Minister
informed the House that Cabinet tasked the co-Ministers of Home
Affairs to investigate the issue and report back to Cabinet so that
a decision would be taken on the matter.
The Prime Minister
also bemoaned the slow pace in implementing political, electoral
and media reforms that were agreed to in the GPA. He said the “non-implementation
has largely been due to insincerity, downright arrogance and a lack
of appreciation of the mission of this transitional government and
its general mandate”.
Debate on the
the motion in reply to the Speech the President delivered in parliament
when he officially opened the 4th session of Parliament, Hon. Kudakwashe
Bhasikiti (ZANU PF Mwenezi East), noted with concern that the $40
million fund (Distressed and Marginalized Fund [DiMAF]) earmarked
for the resuscitation of industries in Bulawayo had still not been
released by government. Hon. Bhasikiti also lamented the slow pace
of the constitution-making process.
Muchauraya noted that most of the priorities mentioned in the President’s
Speech had not been achieved, thus making the debate on the Speech
a mere talk-show. He cited the issue of ghost workers’ the
plight of civil servants, challenges facing Air Zimbabwe, lack of
transparency in Chiadzwa diamond mining and access to Anti-Retro
Viral (ARV) drugs by people suffering from HIV and AIDS.
Proceedings in the Senate
The Senate only
set for 13 minutes yesterday before it adjourned immediately after
the prayer and announcements. There were only two items on the Order
Paper for debate and no Senator was interested to debate those two
items and as a result the House had to adjourn because of the apparent
lack of any other business to transact. The President of the Senate,
Hon. Edna Madzongwe, had to remind Senators that they should not
wait for the executive to give them business but to create their
own business through the introduction of motions.
are sitting this afternoon. The priority today in the House of Assembly
is private members’ business, question time and motions by
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