HON. MUTSEYAMI: Madam Speaker, as I will be debating this motion – at most times I did my research, I will be dwelling much on putting reference to my notes. In our country, Madam Speaker, we became independent in 1980 and at that time we had stables for vendors where they would sell their wares mostly in the urban dwellings.
As we progressed with our independence, we had an increase of our population and by then, we had an awash of industry in most cities across the country – Mutare, Harare, Bulawayo and Gweru. As we speak, our country is estimated to be having a population of about 14 million people, but as we have progressed to today, we have lost almost 80% of the formal industries that we had during the time then. Against that situation, the country has experienced a higher population. With this population, mostly we look at the urban dwellers in terms of their upkeep as opposed to the rural dwellers.
Urban dwellers, mostly in whatever they are expected to have, they survive on cash and the situation we have today, about 92% of our population in this country is not formerly employed. There is a high rate of unemployment and people by virtue of us being human beings; we have to look for other alternatives in order for us to survive. You would find that poverty is one of the most serious challenges that we experience almost throughout the whole world. The UNDP report in 2013 was speaking to a situation of having 30% of the world’s population who are living in poverty and amongst that, as we look at that estimate of the percentage, we have as well people in our country.
In our country Zimbabwe, ZIMSTATS indicates that 38% of our urban households are living in poverty and most of these people who are living in poverty are classified as poor and they have to eke out a living. Now, when we look at the aspect that these people need to survive, what is it that they are doing in order to survive? People are engaging in the informal sector industry, they are into vending, they are vendors.
Most of these vendors, their targets of potential buyers are found in the CBD, be it in Harare, Bulawayo or Mutare. To make matters worse, we have had a situation whereby Government was promising all these people 2.2 million jobs during the last election and it never happened. Now, we go into this new election which has been disputed left right and centre in this country and of those who have disputed that election, it is us, the Commonwealth and the European Union. They have disputed that election and they have put recommendations of what is best which will give best results for this country not to have a disputed result. If you go to the website everything is there and clear. You can read it through and through.
You would find that we have a population of people who are so much into what is going on in this country. Take for instance the MDC party. Its president had more than two million votes while the ZANU PF party had more than a million votes and of those millions, all these people are above 18 years of age and they are the people who are meant to eke out a living. They are first time voters, they have a potential in most cases to do the best on their own, but they cannot access employment.
Madam Speaker, my appeal is that this country must put in place markets, stable wares in the urban areas so that we manage.
HON. TOGAREPI: On a point of order, Madam President.
THE HON. DEPUTY SPEAKER: What is your point of order? – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.]- Order Hon. Members, order.
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