Government guaranteed programmes’ beneficiaries must be revealed: Parliament

By ZBC Reporter

PARLIAMENT is requesting information regarding beneficiaries of the Government guaranteed scheme for winter cropping season as well as the Ministry of Lands, Agriculture, Water and Rural Resettlement’s piggery scheme for this year.

In a letter written by Clerk of Parliament Kennedy Chokuda to the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Lands, Agriculture, Water and Rural Resettlement Dr John Basera, parliament through the parliamentary portfolio committee on Lands, Agriculture, Water and Rural Resettlement chaired by Gokwe Nembudziya legislator Justice Mayor Wadyajena is requesting names of beneficiaries under the CBZ facility.

“The above-mentioned committee is currently inquiring in to the financing of agricultural activities. The committee invited you to appear before it several times to brief the committee on the state of preparedness and financing of 2020 winter cropping season and you did not come citing several reasons.

“On the 30th of June, 2020, you appeared before the committee and the committee requested you to submit a comprehensive list of beneficiaries guaranteed by government under the CBZ facility (Command Agriculture) for the current winter cropping season. During the same meeting and subsequent follow ups by the committee clerk, you clearly mentioned that you will never provide that information to the committee,” reads part of the letter.

Clerk of Parliament also warned Dr Basera on the consequences to be faced for failure to avail the rested information.

“To this end the committee is requesting you to submit the following information without fail. Failure to submit the requested information will result in the preferment of charges of contempt of parliament: Comprehensive list of beneficiaries of the Command Agriculture Scheme guaranteed by Government through the CBZ facility for the current winter cropping season and their contact details; Comprehensive list of farmers or individuals who benefitted under the Ministry ‘s Piggery Project in 2020,” reads part of the letter.

Contacted for comment on the issues raised by Parliament, Dr Basera did not answer his mobile phone.

Government has partnered with local banks for the funding of the winter cropping season which has been described as successful considering the number of hectares cultivated under wheat this year compared to previous years.

This year through the help of financial institutions, the country planted 41 000 hectares of wheat compared to 29 000 hectares of the crop last year.

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