Q & A:
HON. MLISWA: Hon. Minister you alluded to the fact that you have equally cut down on Members of Parliament’s vehicles compared to the Executive. Those are two different departments and Members of Parliament have a mandate to ensure that the effective running of the country comes from them. How can they be under-resourced? Can the Hon. Minister compare the expenditure on cars for the Executive and those for Members of Parliament?
We are only entitled to one car yet they have got a 4 X 4, Mercedes Benz and they are also entitled to cars from parastatals. So, can the Hon. Minister justify why Members of Parliament are put in the same category when we are expected to perform? Can you please do that, thank you.
THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order, Hon. Mliswa, you address yourself to the Chair and not can you! Can the Hon. Minister please, kindly refer to your Standing Orders.
HON. MLISWA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir, I stand guided.
THE MINISTER OF FINANCE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT (HON. PROF. M. NCUBE): Thank you Hon. Speaker, in terms of vehicles for Members of Parliament, those will be taken care of in the fullness of time – we are working on it. We are aware that they have got a lot of work to do in terms of visiting their constituencies and running their programmes. We will do it but in the fullness of time. As of now, we also need to signal as the Executive and as Parliament that we mean business about austerity and that we are ready to meet the people of Zimbabwe halfway. I thank you. – [HON. MLISWA: On a point of clarity Mr. Speaker!] –
THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order, you cannot ask two supplementary questions.
HON. MLISWA: It is not a question but a point of clarity Mr. Speaker Sir.
THE HON. SPEAKER: On a point of clarity but please be brief.
HON. MLISWA: Hon. Minister, you said …
THE HON. SPEAKER: Hon. Minister!
HON. MLISWA: Hon. Minister, Mr. Speaker Sir, you mentioned in the fullness of time. Members of Parliament cannot work according to your schedule. They have a mandate, when are they going to get their cars?
ZANU PF Hon. Members were given cars before the elections and the Opposition including myself do not have cars – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] – We cannot have a situation where there was money spent by the ruling party to buy the cars and members of the Opposition do not have cars – so it is not balanced. In terms of priority, can he then prioritise members of the Opposition to get cars because members of ZANU PF have got cars. – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.] –
THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order, can you sit down please.
HON. PROF. M. NCUBE: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir and I also thank the Hon. Member for the question that they posed to me.
First of all, the business of asset ownership, acquisition and disposal at political party level is the business of the political parties – [HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear.] – It is not the business of the Executive. Now, when it comes to the vehicles of the Members of Parliament, I did say that these would be provided in the fullness of time. We are obviously working on our budgets. I am going to be presenting a Budget Statement at the end of November on the 22nd – that is the date we have proposed. Then at that stage, I will be able to say when I am able to provide Members of Parliament with transport. I am acutely aware of the important work that they do – they do very good work. We will support them as much as possible but as of now, I am not yet ready to buy and provide them with those vehicles. I will do so in the fullness of time. They will be the first to know when I am ready because I will let them know. I thank you.