Ministers attend Senate after protest

HARARE - Cabinet ministers and their deputies trooped to the Senate on Thursday in the wake of a demonstration by opposition party legislators against their absence.

Chen Chimutengwende, Senate deputy president, had to thank the ministers who came to the Upper House.

“I would like to welcome the ministers who are here present and so far we have the deputy minister of Youth, Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment, Tongofa Mathias; Chiratidzo Mabuwa, deputy minister of Industry and Commerce; Tsitsi  Muzenda, deputy minister of Energy and Power Development; Samuel  Undenge, minister of Energy and Power
Development;  Ziyambi Ziyambi, deputy minister of Home Affairs; Fred Moyo, deputy minister of Mines and Mining Development; Lazarus Dokora, minister of Primary and Secondary Education and again I say you are welcome,” Chimutengwende said.

After Chimutengwende’s remarks, senators took turns to praise the ministers for attending Parliament.

“I would like to start by saying well done to members of the Lower House for demonstrating against ministers who were not coming to the House. Today (Thursday) the House is full. Thank you very much for that,” said senator Morgan Komichi (MDC)

Opposition legislators demonstrated in the National Assembly on Wednesday against the absence of several Cabinet ministers who opted to attend Zanu PF’s politburo meeting.

This led to Zanu PF spokesperson Simon Khaya Moyo saying his party respects Parliament and ministers should attend.

However, senator Rorana Muchihwa (MDC) added that ministers should attend Parliament instead of sending their deputies.

“Thank you, Mr President. We plead with you to ensure that ministers come to the Senate to answer questions. On many occasions, we get responses from their deputy ministers and we do not get the full responses that we expect.

“We are not looking down upon the deputy ministers but we feel that ministers are shortchanging us. They should show their respect for the Senate,” Muchihwa said.

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