Second-hand clothes, shoes ban backfires

FINANCE minister Patrick Chinamasa was yesterday asked to reverse a ban on the importation of second-hand clothes and shoes or risk his Mid-Term Fiscal Review being rejected by the National Assembly.

BY VENERANDA LANGA

Members of Parliament from across the political divide said they would not pass the Finance Bill to operationalise Chinamasa’s 2015 Mid-Term Budget Review in its current form because it was insensitive to the poor.

The review proposes a number of austerity measures that include a ban on second-hand clothes for health reasons and an upward review of surtax on motor vehicles older than five years.

The MPs demanded that Chinamasa should revise the policy statement to ensure it protected vulnerable members of society, deal with food security issues and promote job security, among other things, before they could pass it.

Chinamasa, in his presentation last Thursday, revised downwards the 2015 National Budget from $4,2 billion to $3,9 billion.

Proportional Representation MP Ruth Labode (MDC-T) said Chinamasa should lift the ban on second-hand clothing, saying only importation of used undergarments should be prohibited.

Bulawayo South MP Eddie Cross (MDC-T) said the banning of second-hand clothes should not be taken lightly as most poor Zimbabweans would “go naked” if denied access to them.

“About 96% of the population is unemployed, with two and a half million selling in the streets and 500 000 in artisanal mining (panning) and these are symptoms of the economic crisis,” Cross said.

“If we deny our people access to cheap clothing which is a fundamental welfare issue, they will go naked if we force them to buy new clothes because they cannot afford them.”

Another Proportional Representation legislator, Priscilla Misihairabwi-Mushonga (MDC), said the ban should have been confined to second-hand underwear, which posed a health risk.

“Banning of second-hand clothes should be very specific to issues to do with undergarments,” she said.

“I still hold that position and I hope doctors here will buttress the point that they cause fungal infection and pubic lice.

“When you talk about undergarments, you talk of people putting on these things on the most sensitive parts of human anatomy.

“So, when I brought up the used panties, it was as if I was doing human anatomy and if I had spoken of it without showing the underwear, I am sure Chinamasa was going to say I am a drama queen.”

Misihairabwi-Mushonga caused a storm in the House recently when she paraded second-hand undergarments to support her call for a ban on the imports.

Bikita West MP Munyaradzi Kereke (Zanu PF) also criticised Chinamasa’s proposal saying the ban on second-hand clothes was not supported by any facts on the ground.

“While protection of local industries is laudable, banning of the sale of second-hand clothes is an argument losing traction.
Some of the imported bales contain new clothes,” Kereke said.

“In my view, if a household can buy clothes at $1, it is not necessarily bad given the circumstances of hardships. “Imposing duty on second-hand clothes to raise revenue will not do much.

“We need to look at how government can fund and retool local industries. We cannot divert attention from production and focus on needless tension.”

Binga North MP Prince Dubeko Sibanda (MDC-T) weighed in saying vendors would be affected by the ban.

“Banning of second-hand clothes will impact on the economy and the majority of vendors will not have disposable income and at the end of the day, it is going to depress inflation to even lower levels,” he said.

Buhera South MP Joseph Chinotimba (Zanu PF) said the ban was unwise because many people were going for months without salaries and if denied access to second-hand clothes, they would end up wearing tattered clothes.

“The Mid-Term Budget should be scrutinised and taken back to Chinamasa for revisiting before passage because it is not pro-poor,” he said.

“We have blocked second-hand clothes and so what are the fired people now going to sell?

“Ministers must be careful and consult people before churning out policies and statements.”

Chirumanzu-Zibagwe MP Auxillia Mnangagwa (Zanu PF) said the ban on the importation and sale of second-hand clothes would fuel divorce as it would result in most families losing their only sources of income.

Meanwhile, the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Finance and Economic Development chaired by David Chapfika (Zanu PF) said the Mid-Term Budget statement failed to attend to poverty reduction issues such as food security and introduce measures to harness revenue into the fiscus.

“The committee recommends all revenue collected by departments should be channelled to the Consolidated Revenue Fund,” Chapfika said.

“The minister proposed to reduce employment costs from 80% to 40% without stating how he intends to do so.

“This is either by reducing the size of the civil service or reducing salary levels.

“Government does not have the financial resources for retrenchment packages and sending employees without payment will be in violation of the labour laws and Constitution.”

Sibanda said Cabinet should also be affected by retrenchments as there were several redundant ministries which government was failing to fund.

“We need to show serious political will on retrenchments because we cannot talk of retrenching the people on the ground without retrenching ourselves up there,” he said.

Mabvuku-Tafara MP James Maridadi (MDC-T) said the budget lacked measures to protect employees, adding civil servants who would be fired should take government to the International Criminal Court.

Chinamasa last week said there was need to cut the civil service wage bill from the current 83% to 40% of revenue.

“You cannot talk of retrenching civil servants when during election campaigns you promised ZimAsset would create 2,2 million jobs,” Maridadi said.

“Otherwise civil servants should take government to the International Criminal Court if they are retrenched.”

Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare minister Prisca Mupfimira insists that the government would not retrench workers, but would find means of cutting down employment costs.

35 Responses to Second-hand clothes, shoes ban backfires

  1. Tendai Chaminuka August 5, 2015 at 8:22 am #

    zanu yakarohwa 10-0 neMDC.Chamisa argues a dangerous labour case inodzingisa vanhu basa sezvinonzi Smith ndiye achiri kutomga.Ukuwo Priscilla anonyengedza Parliament kuti mabhero avharwe leaving many people with nothing to earn a living from.ZANU ndinoziva iri vanhu asi apa yaposha.They have diverged from their principles.The danger of using a party as a tool to make riches.Herbert Mangurenje Ushewekunze warned you mdara when he was the Political Commissair.

    • gulaz August 5, 2015 at 9:46 am #

      Tendai Chaminuka uri saskum chairo.Priscilla NEVER said second hand clothing must be banned but second hand UNDERWEAR.nonsense yemunhu.

      • Tendai Chaminuka August 5, 2015 at 9:56 am #

        Ko tatukana here.Ipfungwa dzasiyana

      • Joel Mugadza August 5, 2015 at 12:29 pm #

        I dont remember pricillar achiti mabhero ngaabhaniwe, even in her comments about the budget she mentioned “underwear” not clothes. chamisa did not write the law, he simply interpreted the laws as it shuld. Comments likes yours Tendai cause despondence

    • Obert August 5, 2015 at 1:33 pm #

      Neither Chamisa nor the judge made the law.We have to thank them for revealing a legal loophole(if it is one).It is up to Parliament to plug it (if they can or are willing to).How do you pay someone if you cant?

  2. fireman August 5, 2015 at 8:57 am #

    If u fail guys, tell the nation not kungochinja chinja zvinhu iye Chinamasa kana huri husiku zvaho wy cant u go kuna Biti for more information about about how to run the finance ministry and Mugabe also to go back to your opponent Tsvangirai and surrender the keys very simple than kungodzana dzana mochitadzisa nyika kufamba now minicipal police yesterday yaifamba yechitorera madzimai emisika muEastlea i dont no hama kuti mueastlea mamutown here varume mabasa akapera they try to sell their tomatoes so that they may survive movatandanisa hamurwadziwi muri vanhu vakaiita sei. Chinamasa if u cut the number of civil servants wer do u expect to get tax macompany are closing instead of protecting those companies so that anotopinza vanhu vakawanda mowana tax urikutoti vadzingwe woiwanepi manje. look u now put tax nekuma gas is it fare guys be serious

  3. martz August 5, 2015 at 9:37 am #

    Think of farmers first. They make the industry tick by supplying produce and purchasing implements. Mabhero do exactly the opposite as well as being hazardous. Those crying for mabhero show their incapacitate to think of real measures needed such as streamlining workforce to adapt to technological changes. Chinamasa is right a million times for the industry.

  4. justin August 5, 2015 at 9:45 am #

    Some of the points raised are just dull.
    @James Maridadi, ICC? Retrenched and take gvt to ICC? Zim is not a signatory to the the ICC. Am MP must know that for sure

    Ami Mnangagwa deserves special mention for being an idiot

  5. Todd August 5, 2015 at 9:45 am #

    Vanhu ava vauraya nyika takatarisa. Zvikwereti zvavo havadi kubhadhara and instead they put a law to protect themselves. Mapurazi vanawo havabhadhare magetsi nevashandi vacho. Vanoda zvemahara. Zvino chionai zvovoita. Mwari pindirai

  6. justin August 5, 2015 at 9:48 am #

    @ MP Maridadi. lobour cases are civil matters not criminal matters. ICC means INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT

  7. maita August 5, 2015 at 9:50 am #

    Banning of second hand clothes is laudable but in a functioning economy. Seriously some clothes true cause some serious deseases like fungal infection whether it is a shirt or an underwear or a jean.

  8. gutter poet August 5, 2015 at 9:57 am #

    Our MPs are a huge disappointment..Second hand clothes are being banned not to fix the traders but to get the economy back on its hinges..Look at the cotton value chain from the farmers who are getting a pittance for their cotton to the processors of the fabric who can not sell it..With over a million silent people depending on it why should a handful of traders put the over a million households who depend on the cotton value chain? Should parliament not be discussing about job creation which same cotton industry has been responsible for a chunk? In its heydays the textile and leather industry used to employ thousands..and what will happen to the huge investment in idle machinery in these sectors? Was this debate done before or after lunch given the amount of funnies coming from that house of late?

    • Pastor Farie August 5, 2015 at 10:43 am #

      Munguva ya Smith mabhero aiwako wani. Munguwa ye ESAP handiti ndipo pakatanga mupedza nhamo. Taiti tikaendesa donje ku Cottco topihwa mari tobva taenda kuMupedza nhamo.

      Problem haisi pa Bhero apo iri pama Maitiro.

  9. Yawning August 5, 2015 at 10:23 am #

    @gutter, u are missing something here, people are suffering right now so we need instant gratification. Who would fund the industries you have said connected to the cotton production? Where were the funders when things were getting this nast? I think the gradual revitalisation of the industry without banning ‘bales’ would also gradually chase those who sell out too! Ini zii zvangu…..

  10. Fungai Mhani August 5, 2015 at 10:35 am #

    Mabhero akazotanga kuwuya pakatanga kuvharwa macompany emuno,Factory yekukadoma payakavharwa hurumende yaiti ichaita kuti ishande seyazvairikuita mazuvaano (kuvhara).
    Hurumende ndoyakonzeresa mavendors nekuti vatadza kuronga kugadzirisa hupfumi hwenyika.Zupco,zesa,Nrz,Gmb avamazita emabig companies ataiziva but vapedza havo kuvharisa. Vanobhana mazitye nekuti ivo vane mari dzekunotenga nyowani,hanzi second hand cars dzawura economy koWillovale motokari industry hamutenge ikoko wani,even recently there was an article about buying a big fleet outside the country,why cannot you buy from willovale motokari industry.
    Maihwe taneta nemi thought you should know

    Anatawurayi no action

    • Pastor Farie August 5, 2015 at 10:44 am #

      Munguva ya Smith mabhero aiwako wani. Munguwa ye ESAP handiti ndipo pakatanga Mupedzanhamo. Taiti tikaendesa donje ku Cottco topihwa mari tobva taenda kuMupedza nhamo.

      Problem haisi pa Bhero apo iri pama Maitiro.

  11. natty n August 5, 2015 at 10:57 am #

    minister some of the things ask God for wisdom, stop consulting witchdoctor, ok in easy term Repent from your evil ways or else yo tym is out not political but your life because God is ready to destroy evildoers

  12. Machote T August 5, 2015 at 11:04 am #

    This Chinamasa thing is crazy and too political than economic. People are being fired everyday, and instead of making economic interventions to the affected groups of society, he is busy reviewing everything upwards. Prices of goods have generally been falling, yet its now the minister himself who is hiking everything up. If Zanu PF wants to win 2018 elections, Chinamasa and his barbaric economadness should be removed and replaced with a professionally qualified mind to run that portfolio. Pasi naChinamasa.

    Tofanezhara

  13. chibaba August 5, 2015 at 11:16 am #

    typing……

  14. candid August 5, 2015 at 11:31 am #

    Misihairambwi is clowning in parliament. Underwear brand new or second hand is cheap. Its a matter of personal choice. This is a strictly private matter about how one wants to treat their private parts. How do we know if Priscilla herself is not wearing second hand underwear? Surely parliament has other more public and important matters to discuss.

    • mushandi August 5, 2015 at 4:31 pm #

      i think you are right here…………..

  15. wezhira August 5, 2015 at 11:44 am #

    I think u smoke something dangerous…. and it’s not marijuana coz as fo mbanje yu can reason but fo u it seems yu ar dull or u own a boutique along chinhoy street. e economy is no longer bad but now dead u can’t even see it ,…..fo e sake of progress Zimbabweans at this situation don’t nid yo contribution

  16. Jack Bauer August 5, 2015 at 11:51 am #

    Priscilla is the typical old school vulgar populist MP. Where in the world is used underwear not being sold? I thought the recent ruling was to enable the Minister to cut labour costs from 80 to 40%!!! As for Maridadi who was even notorious for being ludicrous as a dj, his ignorance is no surprise, its his temerity to display it in public that boggles the mind.

  17. Cholera August 5, 2015 at 12:03 pm #

    they say they want to protect the general populace from infections found in the used underwear, what about the cholera, dysentry, and all the plethora of other diseases the same public is suffering from after being forced to drink tap water contaminated with human exctreta? So the protection is selective huh?

  18. manyawi August 5, 2015 at 12:11 pm #

    Justin, please note that criminality even refers to situations where governments fails to fulfill labour laws guiding conditions of employment of people as it is presenting now. Revisit this issue before yo attempt to defend indiscipline with government

  19. Buja 365 August 5, 2015 at 1:48 pm #

    tofa nenhamo

  20. Richardo August 5, 2015 at 2:04 pm #

    Min of Fin is lost. Second hand clothes were there from the nineties and there is no record of infections. New clothes in shops should be reasonable priced so as to attract buyers. At the moment our choice is towards second hand clothes which we can afford.

  21. wonder mhepo August 5, 2015 at 2:06 pm #

    Zimbabwe has descended into a vicious circle. Its the case of being caught between a rock and a hard place. Back to the drawing board guys. There are many issues that need to be addressed. To address them, we Zimbabweans nee to recognize and accept the fact that we have made serious blunders on many fronts. First, our politics needs to be genuinely inclusive, free and fair to a standard acceptable by SADC, AU, and the international community i.e, UN. We may wish to argue that it is sanctions; but these came because of the real or perceived impression that there was lack of transparency in our political processes which, admittedly were marred by political violence. It was for this that sanctions or restrictions were put in place, quite separate from the MDC encouraging their imposition. Who forgets 2008? People died, limbs were cut, torture happened. And in a modern, 21st century. These were the reasons for the imposition of restrictions.
    Second, our macro economic environment needs to be put right, to be competitive and to gene) and retrenched – have turned to vending because our unproductive economy. I seriously think that, while 51-49 % margin of local ownership of companies may have some positive qualities, they are not apparent in a depressed economy. At the moment, government needs to pay attention to ensuring ethical business practices, build confidence in the market. At the moment, the Zimbabwe market is characterised by zero confidence in basic ownership guarantees since the land redistribution exercise that threw caution to the winds and chose the chaotic path of land occupation. Unfortunately, the land seizures did not yield sustainable agricultural production which would have boosted employment opportunities, but became a drain to the economy in that the Governor of the Reserve bank then undertook to subsidize farmers with his farm mechanization programme which farmers did not pay for. At the moment, Government wishes to let beneficiaries of the mechanisation to go scot free and not pay for it and burden the tax payer. This is clearly unbelievable!
    Third, government needs to fight corruption. Corruption is now endemic in our society. Some have said that it is a cancer that threatens the viability of our economy. My observation is that Zimbabwean corruption has become so much a part of society because it started from the top. Government pays lipservice to fighting corruption, when the same people are benefiting. For example, the heated debate on second hand clothing by MPs is because the MPs stand to lose a lot: many of them own or have a stake in these second hand trading malls either as leasing space to vendors or actually having their own wares. Such corruption is also the reason why ZUPCO collapsed as MPs and government functionaries bought kombis to generate money. Examples abound.
    In short, to bring sanity to our economic malaise we need to ensure a transparent political playing field where parties get into power on merit of ideas that change the nation and not on the basis of violence and patronage; we need to return to take our rightful place in the community of nations by having sensible economic policies and fight corruption wherever it is to restore confidence in our own processes.

  22. el-dodo August 5, 2015 at 3:01 pm #

    Used clothes have been around since time of the struggle for independence. Buying used clothes is no choice but a neccesity. Mbanje,crango, bronco are all illegal but readily available to the partakers so would be used clothe & shoes. Life is different,some throw birthday parties worth millions yet some wont in their life time. What does human rights say about choices, & freedoms.

  23. Tshuma August 5, 2015 at 3:32 pm #

    Ndakaseka nezuro news hour paine campaign to support ban of second hand clothes. Ndakaona vana chiremba nevarimi ve cotton vachiita makwikwi kuti mabhero abhanwe. Vana chiremba vachiti vanoitira utano nokuti hazvina kunaka kupfeka mbatya dzakambopfekwa nevamwe. Ini ndikati ko zvavanofuka masheets nemachira mumahotera, malodge nemuzvipitara ava singazivi kuti ndivanaani vakambo mashandisa. Ndiyani akambotakura magumbeze kuenda nawo kuhotera kana kuti ndiyani anokumbira hotera kumuisira magumbeze matswa pose paanopinda muhotera? Ko iko kuchipatara tinongo fugiswa mazitye wani akasiyiwavo nevamwe vairwara? Gore rino tichadzidza.

  24. studio77 August 5, 2015 at 4:30 pm #

    Tshuma warova inonzi summary yenyaya, kubaya panhongonya chaipo mwana wamai. Ndiko kunonzi kutaura uku.

    • mushandi August 5, 2015 at 4:44 pm #

      vabaya dede nemukanwa

  25. mecohem August 5, 2015 at 5:22 pm #

    just as Micheal responded I am amazed that any body able to get paid $4334 in 4 weeks on the internet
    ——————– ◐◐◐◐◐◐◐◐◐◐ w­w­w.o­n­l­i­n­e-j­­o­b­s­9­­.­c­o­­m

  26. Max August 5, 2015 at 6:23 pm #

    Hee lets tax churches, hee let’s ban second hand clothes, hee let’s ban this and that….whilst unemployment is at 96%. Wisdom from God is necessary before dealing with issues of national importance.

  27. lovemore329 August 6, 2015 at 3:33 am #

    Guys enough is enough the problem is ZANU, these guys have reached a point where they have run out of ideas. Countries like Zambia and Malawi they are benefiting @ our expense because of these crooks. Please Robert and your clowns please have mercy on us Pliiiiiiiiz.why can’t you just step down you have failed us

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