Friday, March 11, 2011

The Minister of Industry and Commerce Welshman Ncube Wednesday told Parliament it was unlawful for Zanu PF to encourage the seizure of foreign-owned entities as this was contrary to policies agreed upon by the inclusive government.

Ncube said this during a question-and-answer session in the House of Assembly while responding to questions from Mbizo MP Settlement Chikwinya and Zaka West MP Festus Dumbu (both MDC-T) who had raised concern over recent threats by Zanu PF to take over foreign-owned industries, conservancies and sugar estates.

“On March 2, (President Robert) Mugabe announced government’s intention to repossess 500 companies whose directors come from countries considered by Zanu PF hostile to Zimbabwe, with specific reference to issues of sanctions,” said Chikwinya. “How does this relate to the Ministry of Industry and Commerce with respect to investment?”

Ncube replied: “I cannot at this instance do more than say that it is not the policy of the inclusive government to repossess any company.

“It might be the intention of one of the political parties in the government and not the other parties in the inclusive government. I cannot say the matter has not been discussed in the inclusive government and therefore we continue to distance ourselves from that behaviour.”

Dumbu then asked Ncube about the threats by war veterans and Zanu PF leaders to take over Triangle Sugar Estates.

“In terms of the quota preferences that we have as a country under the EU-ACP relationships, by the time those expire, we must have improved the level of our production and increased the value addition chain in the sugar industry,” Ncube said as a ministry they had realised that sugar plantations occupied by newly resettled farmers continued to lie idle.

“The government and the EU have actually agreed that the pilot land audit should actually be done in the Lowveld in the sugar industry and in that regard, as government we are concerned about the threats of further takeover of the sugar industry,” said Ncube.

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MDC Youth Assembly Secretary General

MDC Youth Assembly Secretary General
MP candidate for Matopo South