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New Parliament still owned by China, we only asked to use it for SONA, Budget

New Parliament still owned by China, we only asked to use it for SONA, Budget

Speaker of the National Assembly Jacob Mudenda has clarified that the new Parliament Building in Mount Hampden is still owned by the Chinese government and has not yet been handed over to Zimbabwe.

Mudenda’s clarification comes at a time President Emmerson Mnangagwa is scheduled to deliver the State of the Nation Address (SONA) and officially open the 5th Session of the 9th Parliament of Zimbabwe from the new building.

Mudenda told legislators in the National Assembly, that they had to ask for special permission to use the building for SONA and budget presentation as they could not secure space at Rainbow Towers Hotel’s Harare International Conference Centre (HICC).

‘’I also have to inform the House that the new Parliament building has not yet been officially handed over to the Government of the Republic of Zimbabwe.  A special request was made to hold the Official Opening of the Fifth Session of the 9th Parliament and State of the Nation Address (SONA) at the new Building, which was deemed a suitable venue for the occasion and the Chinese acceded to the request.

‘’Honourable Members will be taken for a familiarisation tour once the handover has been done and Honourable Members will be informed accordingly,’’ he said.

Did Govt conduct rituals at the new Parliament?

Asked by Norton legislator Temba Mliswa on whether traditional leaders had been engaged to conduct rituals at the building before it is used, Mudenda said that will happen in the future when the building has been handed over.

‘’Honourable Mliswa, you came a bit late.  We have discussed this issue already.  We said it is a temporary arrangement.  We could not get a place at the HICC and the building is not officially opened.

‘’I want to inform you that before the digging started, the local chief did what he was supposed to do in terms of chivanhu.  When the building is officially handed over, I think we are also going to do chivanhu first to receive the building.

‘’In the announcement that I made, Members of Parliament will be taken on a tour of the whole building so that they are familiar with the building.  That was announced before you came,’’ he said.

New Parliament still owned by China, we only asked to use it for SONA, Budget

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