The debate on the National Peace and Reconciliation Commission Bill was adjourned last week when tempers flared in the House with Norton legislator Temba Mliswa threatening to square up with Uzumba Member of Parliament Simba Mudarikwa who had allegedly shouted “pfutseki” at him.
Vice-President Phelekezela Mphoko, who is also the Minister of National Healing, Peace and Reconciliation, asked for the adjournment because it appeared that members did not understand what they were supposed to be discussing.
Although tempers were high, most of the legislators supported the bill but Kwekwe Central Member of Parliament Masango Matambanadzo said parties needed to caucus first because members were not seeing eye to eye.
Mkoba legislator Amos Chibaya said he could not understand why some Members of Parliament were not supporting the bill when they had gone out to hear people’s views and some of them were in the Select Committee that helped draw up the constitution as the commission was enshrined in the constitution.
Below is what transpired leading up to the adjournment.
*HON. MATAMBANADZO: Thank you Mr. Speaker for affording me this opportunity to add my voice to this debate. Although I would want to debate, the members on the opposite side are making noise.
I rise to say a few words. I am of the view that yes, there are certain things that need to be looked into in this Bill. I believe that the spirit of the Bill has already been tainted by the members on the other side. The members of the opposition should go and caucus. We should also go and caucus. Because when I was listening, I observed that we are no longer seeing eye to eye and we will not come up with a healthy Bill. We should go and caucus as parties. There were issues pertaining to this Bill being taken to public hearings. The members of the public were not in agreement with this Bill in its form. Peace has already been achieved because the leaders of the liberation army, the late Vice President Joshua Nkomo and His Excellency President Mugabe buried the hatchet and came up with the unity accord.
The Bill was taken to the public. I went to Mutare and when we went there, we were told that Hon. Majome was assaulted in Mutare because of this Bill. Why would you want to proceed with such a Bill? How can we proceed with a Bill that is not acceptable to the ordinary members of the public? Let us scrutinize the Bill as political parties in our Caucuses – thereafter, we will then come back to this august House and make amendments instead of being at each other’s throats.
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