Gumbo blames Mujuru debate fiasco on ministers

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Zanu PF chief whip Joram Gumbo said the snubbing of Parliament by ministers and their deputies last Wednesday led to lack of a quorum during the debate on condolences to the Mujuru family following the tragic death of Retired General Solomon Mujuru.

Gumbo insisted the parliamentarians had not disrespected the late national hero and his family as most walked away after realising a few ministers were in the House of Assembly yet the main business of the day was to question ministers.

“Some parliamentarians may have not known that the motion would be moved on the day because the main business on Wednesday is the questions with or without notice. The ministers didn’t come on Wednesday and some parliamentarians went for other duties after realising that the ministers were absent,” he said.

“You also have to know that ministers and their deputies constitute almost half of the House and most of them were not present, meaning the House was already half empty.

Most MPs then decided to go for other duties such as the constitution-making programme resulting in the lack of a quorum.”

Only four ministers Giles Mutsekwa (National Housing and Social Amenities), Gabuza Joel Gabbuza (Public Works), Heneri Dzinotyiwei (Science and Technology) and Eric Matinenga (Constitutional and Parliamentary Affairs) were in Parliament to take questions from MPs that day.

The Mujuru debate was introduced after the question-and-answer session.

MDC-T chief whip Innocent Gonese said he could not comment authoritatively on the subject because he was not in the House.

He, however, said on most occasions when there is lack of a quorum, there would be disinterest from members.

He said given that a Zanu PF parliamentarian had moved the motion, Zanu PF was at least supposed to ensure that its members were in the house for the debate.

The motion was moved by Mwenezi East legislator Kudakwashe Bhasikiti.

Bhasikiti who appeared shocked when legislators started moving out of the house while he was speaking, said he would move the motion again.