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Drama in Parliament- ‘ministers running like kids after seeing Chiwenga’

There was drama in Parliament on Wednesday when several cabinet ministers ran back into the house after seeing Vice-President Constantino Chiwenga entering.

Ministers have a tendency of ‘disrespecting’ the National Assembly with some not attending the crucial question and answer session conducted every Wednesday.

Chiwenga entered the Parliament late yesterday. As he was arriving, according to Norton legislator Temba Mliswa, some ministers who were already leaving trooped back quickly.

Mliswa described the development as “embarrassing” and a sign that the ministers disrespected the leader of government business in Parliament Ziyambi Ziyambi.

He, however, thanked Chiwenga for coming to the National Assembly and exhibiting the authority that forced ministers to attend Parliament business.

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The independent MP started by asking about solutions for the problems facing the Public Service Medical Aid Society (PSMAS).

He asked: “I have a point of order in terms of PSMAS which has been closed and Hon. Members are all subscribed to PSMAS to support the Government. Right now when we are sick, where do we go? It is an emergency issue and our families are on PSMAS.

“I have 19 children and their medical aid is on PSMAS and if one of them is sick, what do I do now when we are in this situation? This is a service that we have already paid for. Clarity is sought from you Vice President and Minister of Health on PSMAS which has closed.

“Where can Members of Parliament go to when they are sick when they have already paid medical aid which is being deducted?”

Mliswa added: “I want to end by thanking you for coming to this House. There are certain Ministers that have left this august House. When they saw you coming they ran back like little kids showing that they do not respect the Leader of Government Business.

“I do not know why they have not gone to continue with businesses that they were going to do in their offices. Hon. Ministers, you must be ashamed to see yourselves running like small kids because the Vice President is here. You must be here whether he is here or not.

“Hon. Ziyambi has been having a tough time. Today we have just censured Members of the Cabinet and Deputy Ministers who are not coming to Parliament. You must know that Hon Vice President. Ndanyara kuona vanhu vakuru kunge vachadonha pamapinda muno umu.”

Chiwenga responded to the issue of PSMAS saying that he had directed the opening of some of its clinics that had been closed due to financial difficulties.

The former Army General further stated that the government had deployed medicines and equipment.

“Having said that, we have said all PSMAS institutions must be opened and we have put medicines,” Chiwenga said.

“I have directed the Permanent Secretary and the staff to open all PSMAS institutions which had closed down. We are putting medicines into those institutions so that our people get attended to.

“The issue of what should be done now, it is a matter which we will be discussing with the Ministry of Finance, the regulator and all stakeholders concerned, to say in the meantime, whilst the investigations are going on, we want the services because people will not stop to be sick. Therefore, they have to be attended to.” Chiwenga said.