Back to Index
Roundup Bulletin No. 08 - 8th Parliament - 2013
Southern African Parliamentary Support Trust
December 10, 2013
Last week two
motions were introduced in the National
Assembly. Hon. Alexio Musundire (MDC-T Zengeza East) moved a
motion on the proliferation of illegal housing structures. Hon.
Priscilla Misihairabwi-Mushonga moved a motion on the temporary
relocation of the sitting of Parliament to Bulawayo to allow renovations
to be done on the current building. The Permanent Secretary of the
Ministry Local Government, Rural and Urban Development appeared
before the Local Government Portfolio Committee to give oral evidence.
to Portfolio Committee Membership
The Speaker informed
the House of changes in the membership of the Portfolio Committees
as follows: Hon. Dorothy Mashonganyika (ZANU PF Harare Proportional
Representation) has moved from the Portfolio Committee on Communication,
Technology, Postal and Courier Services to the Portfolio Committee
on Mines. Hon. Alfred Mufunga (ZANU PF Muzarabani North) has moved
from the Portfolio Committee on Public Works to the Portfolio Committee
on Foreign Affairs.
on the Presidential speech
the debate on the Presidential speech
this week. Members spoke on the problems facing the mining sector
concerning the community share ownership schemes as well as the
poor state of most roads in Zimbabwe.
on the Relocation of the Sitting of Parliament
On Tuesday 3 December
2013, Hon. Priscilla Misihairabwi - Mushonga (Proportional Representation,
MDC) moved a motion on the temporary relocation of the venue for
the sitting of Parliament preferably to Bulawayo.
This would allow the
renovation of the chamber, whose current sitting capacity has become
inadequate to accommodate all the Members of the National Assembly.
Seats in the National Assembly were increased to 270 from 210 in
the previous parliament yet the the the sitting capacity of the
current Chamber is 150 members. Hon Lucia Matibenga (Kuwadzana,
MDC T) seconded the motion. Members across the political divide
supported the Motion. Most Members felt that the current Parliament
needed more space to allow a more conducive environment for debating
as well as upgrading of other facilities to meet world class standards.
However Hon. Lilian Zemura (Proportional Representation, ZANU PF)
felt that the proposed renovations could wait as government had
other pressing priorities.
on Proliferation of illegal structures
On Wednesday, Hon. Alexio
Musundire (Zengeza East, MDC T) seconded by Hon. James Maridadi
(Mabvuku-Tafara, MDC T) introduced a motion in the National Assembly
calling for Government to take remedial measures by putting in place
sustainable housing programmes and pro-poor settlement plans. They
also urged government to take action against illegal land developers
and unregistered cooperatives. Hon Joseph Chinotimba (Buhera South,
ZANU PF) spoke on the need to have planned and acceptable housing
structures. He pointed out that haphazard settlements were some
of the causes of cholera and other associated diseases. All the
members that debated on this motion concurred with Hon. Musundire’s
argument and saw the need to protect their constituents against
inhumane demolitions of “illegal” housing structures
without alternative accommodation to the affected residents.
Committee on Local Government, Rural and Urban Development
The Permanent Secretary
of the Ministry of Local Government, Rural and Urban Development
and National Housing, Mr Killian Mupingo and 13 other officials
from the Ministry appeared before the Local Government, Rural and
Urban Development Portfolio Committee on Tuesday 3 December 2013.
The Permanent Secretary
acknowledged that there was a decline in service delivery by the
Ministry but they were trying their best to carry out their given
mandate. He said the Ministry has a backlog of 1,5 million people
that want residential stands and some as a result of desperation
are falling prey to dubious cooperatives. He said this was is out
of their control.
Regarding the demolition
of illegal housing structures, he said this was part of government
effort to restore order in the City. Mr. Mupingo informed the Committee
that his Ministry was currently conducting an audit of the illegal
structures in the City of Harare and Chitungwiza. This exercised
was coordinated by the Deputy Minister’s office. The team
of 24 experts have been working for the past 23days and will table
a report which the Ministry will submit to the Cabinet for policy
Mr. Mupingo also informed
the Committee that his Ministry in the process of reconfiguring
Government buildings so that they become user friendly to people
living with disabilities.
The Ministry was considering
having satellite cities to decongest Harare and also adopting proper
technology to manage solid waste.
He said the establishment
of Provisional Councils pursuant to the provisions of the new Constitution
was going to be done early next year. The Ministry said there is
need for the necessary legal legislation to regulate their relationships
and conditions of service.
Three motions where debated
in Senate namely the Presidential Speech, Cancer Levy and Alignment
Senator Madelina Bhebhe
(Matebeleland North, ZANU PF) and Senator Dorothy Khumalo (Bulawayo,
MDC) applauded the President for his emphasis that agriculture was
the backbone of the country. They also emphasized that hospitals
and clinics should be built in many areas to curb health problems.
In the education sector Senator Bhebhe urged government to encourage
the girl-child to go to school. Senator Khumalo encouraged the expedition
of devolution so that local people can benefit from the proceeds
which come from the local resources.
Mlotshwa (Matebeleland South, MDC T) and Senator Watchy Sibanda
(Matebeleland South, MDC T) emphasized the need for the government
to expedite the alignment of laws to conform to the new constitution.
They reiterated that women in Zimbabwe who struggled for total emancipation
will not realize this dream if laws took too long to be enacted.
Senator Sibanda argued that it was the duty of Senators to make
laws for the order and good governance of the country but surprisingly
up to date there has not been a bill that has been brought to the
Parliament. She said this was tantamount to short-changing the electorate.
In particular, she called for the repeal of Section 26 of POSA
that violates the right to peaceful protest so that application
of law by enforcement agency does not result in the violation of
Senator Siphiwe Ncube
(Bulawayo, MDC T) and Senator Rorana Muchihwa (Harare, MDC T) concurred
with Senator Lilian Timveous (Midlands, MDC T) who tabled a motion
calling for the introduction of a cancer levy. They noted that the
disease has become a major killer in the country. They argued that
government should assist patients by introducing a levy similar
to the AIDS Levy. The Senators advised government to enlighten people
in rural areas and those in urban areas who seem not to care about
the disease. Senator Madolo Sinampande (Matabeleland North, MDC
T) and Senator James Makore (Harare, MDC T) also lent their support
to the motion.
Thematic Committee on Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)
The Ministry of Public
Service Labour and Social Welfare officials appeared before the
Thematic Committee on MDGs to give oral evidence on the progress
of MDGs in 2013 and 2014 implementation plan.
In their report the Ministry
officials highlighted that Zimbabwe has managed to score success
on some goals and yet on others it has dismally failed due to various
factors. On Goal 1 which is extreme eradication of poverty, Zimbabwe
has not done well since the majority of the populace still languish
in abject poverty. Universal primary education which is Goal 2,
the Ministry reiterated that with its engagement with the Ministry
of Education it has managed to source funding for the BEAM programme
and was working in order to provide child supplementary feeding
in schools so that every child benefits from the programme. The
Ministry highlighted that their major challenge on this goal was
that there were no adequate funds to finance the child supplementary
feeding programme. Reduction of child mortality rate as one of the
goals of the MDGs has proven to be difficult for the country as
the rates have increased from 612 deaths per 100 000 born babies
to 960 deaths per 100 000 live births. This has been further exacerbated
by lack of resources and brain drain in the health sector. The government
has rolled out health acceleration programme in all districts and
through the EU grant it has started to construct shelters for mothers
expecting in all districts.
The Ministry reported
that it had enrolled the cash transfer programme to 13 districts
in the country. The ministry officials informed the Committee that
the ministry had acquired $7 million from donors but urged the Committee
to assist the ministry in lobbying the budget process to allocate
more money for this cause, which is targeted at alleviating poverty.
The oral evidence report
given by the Ministry made it clear that the world agreed that they
should be a successor of MDGs soon after 2015 and the MDGs have
been instrumental in driving down poverty. The Ministry however
noted that one of the weaknesses of the MDGs which have made Zimbabwe
not to realise its goals fully is that MDGs only defined the destination
but it did not define the journey. The successor of MDGs which is
going to be Sustainable Development Goals (SDGS) will bring in a
new dimension and not primarily focus on the social aspect only
as the MDGs did but will stretch to look on the political and economic
The National Assembly
and Senate adjourned to 28 January 2014. However, information at
hand indicates that Parliament has been recalled for the 2014 National
Budget presentation by the Minister of Finance on Thursday 19 December
Visit the Southern
African Parliamentary Support Trust fact
Please credit www.kubatana.net if you make use of material from this website.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License unless stated otherwise.