MASVINGO – Zanu PF national political commissar Victor Matemadanda has attacked Members of Parliament (MPs) from his own party for lacking seriousness with parliamentary business, saying many pieces of legislation were lagging behind schedule due to absenteeism.
Speaking at a Provincial Coordinating Committee (PCC) meeting in Masvingo today, Matemadanda, who is also the Deputy Minister of Defence and War Veterans, said many Zanu PF MPs did not deserve to be in parliament due to their unbecoming conduct.
“As Zanu PF, we are the majority in parliament and we do not need anybody’s support to pass any law but what is happening now is that many bills are behind schedule because we hardly have the numbers in parliament at any seating.
“You give them fuel coupons today, tomorrow you don’t find them. You give them the diesel that is due to them, they take it away and use it on their farms or they use it to drive to their girlfriends and boyfriends.
“At one moment the President had to send me to talk to them but they did not change. The President then asked me if he needed to go and do the whipping duties himself and I told him what the MPs were doing was the result of the democratic space he opened up where everybody does as they please,” said Matemadanda.
He said reaching a quorum in parliament was always difficult despite Zanu PF commanding a two-thirds majority.
“What happens now is that we cannot pass laws as swiftly as we want because we don’t have a quorum. The MDC Alliance has realised that weakness on our part and they take advantage of that to stall the passage of laws that are ideal to our vision as the ruling party,” lamented Matemanda.
He also sought to defend President Emmerson Mnangagwa from what he indicated to be malicious attempts to link him to alleged gold smuggler Henrietta Rushwaya who was arrested in Harare recently.
“So here is a President whose own police and intelligence services intercepted and arrested a gold smuggler at the airport. How then do you pin the smuggler on him and create a relationship between them? You say the smuggler is his relative, but who told you that?” said Matemadanda.
There are many bills that need to be debated and finalised, and these include the Zimbabwe Manpower Planning and Development Bill, the Zimbabwe Media Commission (ZMC) Bill, as well as he Cyber Security and Data Protection Bill.
Besides the alignment of many laws to the constitution being long overdue, government is also grappling with the Constitutional Amendment Bill Number 2 which seeks to do away with many provisions of the constitution including the contentious running mate clause which otherwise will limit the President’s powers over his Vice Presidents beginning in 2023.