By Robert Tapfumaneyi
NORTON legislator, Temba Mliswa says parliament’s different portfolio committees have turned useless as Zanu PF MPs are often whipped into touring party lines to block inquiries against government ministers.
Mliswa, recently relieved of his post as Mines Committee chair over bribery allegations, said most committee meetings often started well but later turn farcical as some MPs start considering how certain actions impacted on their parties’ political ambitions.
“I no longer see value in committee meetings anymore. I see no reason why I should sit in any committee. It’s like you are rubble-rousing.
“I am glad I am not a member any more. I would rather take tax payer’s money go to Parliament and go back to my constituency and work.”
He added, “Some honorables like Felix Mhona (Zanu PF MP and chairperson of Finance Committee) is sharp and articulate but there is a point where he cannot do anything because he has to tore the party line,” said the former Zanu MP.
“The ministers are supposed to be held accountable and what then happens if the minister does not comply with the committees, through the Standing Order Rules, the minister will be in contempt and must be held accountable.
“But that has never happened because the majority of the committee members are Zanu PF members and the cabinet ministers are from the ruling party.
“This is reality. They go and do a caucus and tell their members in various committees’ kunodira jecha (make a mess of) deliberations.
“So citizens must write to the Speaker of Parliament and say we no longer have confidence in this institution because that’s the institution that has oversight but it doesn’t exercise it.
“MDC pains me because it has sixteen lawyers in Parliament and Zanu PF has probably four or five.
“Imagine if those lawyers were speaking but the most painful thing is that it is brilliant minds being faded away.”