Parly to approach Mugabe over Chefs absenteeism

Parly to approach Mugabe over Chefs absenteeism

LEGISLATORS have tasked the Speaker of Parliament to confront President Robert Mugabe over the continued absence of his ministers in the august House. Each time ZANU-PF’s Politburo and Central Committee meetings coincide with parliamentary proceedings.
The lawmakers would want President Mugabe to reschedule his party programmes in such a way that they do not interfere with the business of the legislative assembly.
ZANU-PF’s Politburo and Central Committee meetings are normally held on Wednesdays and Thursdays, the very days ministers are constitutionally mandated to be answering questions from backbencher legislators in the National Assembly and Senate.
Their continued absence at question time has impinged on the legislators’ ability to exercise their oversight role over the Executive.
It has also caused a gridlock in the business of Parliament, which has perennially failed to accomplish its legislative agenda within the defined period.
Unexhausted motions, pending bills and deferred questions have often been carried over from one Parliament to the other.
Recently, the legislators took the Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Mabel Chinomona, to task after seeing empty seats at the right front row reserved for ministers as they had all trooped to the ZANU-PF national headquarters where a Politburo meeting was underway.
The debate was triggered by Mbizo Member of Parliament, Settlement Chikwinya, who urged Chinomona to write to President Mugabe to reschedule his party’s meetings whenever they clash with parliamentary proceedings.
In her response, Chinomona said the matter would be attended to.
“That one can be taken administratively,” she said.
Ironically, the Speaker of Parliament, Jacob Mudenda, a Politburo member, has been one of the major culprits.
And yet Mudenda has previously issued countless warnings, including threats to slash ministers’ sitting allowances, for absconding Parliament.
The leader of the house, who is Vice President, Emmerson Mnangagwa, has also missed parliamentary session while attending Politburo meetings.
A leader of the house is a parliamentary term referring to the parliamentary affairs minister who leads government business in the august House and can answer questions about any ministry.
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