Zimbabwe shocker – 76 percent of MPs are HIV positive!


So, the question that I am asking to Members of Parliament who are still in this House, is that as we debate this motion, which is why a lot of people came to me and said let us not move it today and I said I cannot take another two weeks of sleeping after what I saw. It is very clear what we need to do. We need to make a decision in this House that says police needs to go to those places where we know children are being abused. The first thing is to arrest the criminals and secondly, to take those children and put them in places of safety, but we need a long term solution to this process. We cannot have a social welfare system that knows we have orphans that are coming from HIV/AIDS that have absolutely no plan about how we deal with those children.

In other areas, we would be having a Call Centre where anyone who knows that there is an orphan can come in and phone and say there is a problem here, but we should be having a system in which these kids can be reintegrated into families because one thing that is good about our African process is that you never get a child that does not have a village and family. The reason why most of these families are unable to look after these children is that sometimes they are so poor that it makes it difficult for them to come and take those children.  So, you tell me that in a country like ours, where we have these types of cars that we are driving, we are unable to make a decision to put aside a certain amount of money that will take care of the children in this particular country?

You know how selfish we are as a people, when HIV/AIDS started hitting on us, when people started dying, we immediately came up with an AIDS Fund so that we can go and buy drugs for ourselves because we want to live.  Seventy-six percent of the people who are sitting in this House are living with HIV/AIDS and are taking ARVs but we are unable to – [AN HON. MEMBER: Inaudible interjection.] – yes, very true.  You are unable to take out a little bit of money and put it aside so that it can be used to take care of these children, it is sad Mr. Speaker. It is sad, I am not saying it to other Members of Parliament only but I speak for myself too, because it is not right that I come and sit here and there is a child who is eight or nine years old and is being raped every day and abused.

You know what?  What is sad is that, as I sat in that room with Hon. Maridadi, when he asked each one of them why they were doing it, they said, ‘I have a little sister of mine who is two or three years and we live in a shack.  If I do not go and get the 25 cents, and put it together so that I can buy bread tomorrow, she may actually die of hunger.’  We as a people think it is alright that we can spend money travelling and doing the things that we are doing, yet we cannot afford to put aside a little bit money so that these children can be looked after.

In conclusion Mr. Speaker, mine is very simple.  As I said, we make a decision because we can do that as Parliament; that we instruct the police to go to those places instead of instructing the police to go and sort out the queues of fuels and a problem that we have created for ourselves.  Let us send the police to go and pick these kids who need help, not tomorrow but tonight.

Secondly Mr. Speaker, the Minister needs to come here, she needs to come and give us a Ministerial Statement and explain to us.  After she heard about the things that were happening, what have they done around the reports of Katswe.  Thirdly, we need to deal with and stop the abuse that is going on around Katswe Sisterhood.

In July, Members of Parliament were taken by Katswe to Hopley House.  They went and saw those nine-year olds.  I will not forgive the group of people who went to that place because if you have gone there and seen what I saw, the first thing you would have done was to come to this House and say something needed to stop.  However, we did not do that, we need to deal with it, and we need to address that issue and Katswe need to be allowed to do the work that they are doing.  It is shameful that today Katswe holds letter from provincial administrators, I do not know from what legal perspective, but provincial administrators in this particular country who have said Katswe cannot operate.  What is their crime?  They exposed children who are being abused.  It is shameful and sad that we as a nation, a Government and a people are allowing that to happen.  I thank you Mr. Speaker Sir.


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The Insider

The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.


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