From The Sunday Mirror, 16
Leaked report details abuse of govt
A leaked government audit report of its multi-million dollar
livestock restocking scheme, which was originally intended to benefit newly
resettled farmers under the two land resettlement models, exposes widespread
abuses and manipulation of formal processes to benefit senior government
officials and politicians. According to the secret audit report, of which the
Sunday Mirror has a copy, the government last year advanced Z$450 million to the
Livestock Development Trust (LDT) for the purposes of sourcing and distributing
livestock to communal, old and newly resettled farmers under both the fast-track
and commercial farming resettlement models. The LDT, which falls under the lands
and agriculture ministry, launched the scheme in the first week of March last
year and was supposed to allocate a maximum of five and 15 heifers to successful
applicants under the small-scale and commercial farming models, respectively.
But instead of solely catering for its intended beneficiaries, the scheme fell
victim to senior government and senior politicians, who were allocated more
cattle than was formally permissible. "The whole programme lost focus on
distribution as some individuals got more than one hundred herd of cattle
instead of a maximum of fifteen herd. Some farmers got more heifers than what
they signed for on the hire purchase forms or contract forms," the report reads.
According to sources privy to the audit, some of the senior government officials
who have allegedly irregularly benefited from the scheme include Vice President
Joseph Msika, who was allocated 70 herd of cattle and Mashonaland East governor,
David Karimanzira, who received a total of 40 heifers under the scheme. Other
undeserving senior officials who fraudulently received more than the permissible
number of livestock include Defence minister Sydney Sekeramayi, Higher Education
minister Swithun Mombeshora, Education minister Aeneas Chigwedere, Health
Minister David Parirenyatwa, Mashonaland West governor Peter Chanetsa, and Zanu
PF legislator, Webster Shamu. The LDT bought and distributed over 14 000 cattle
across the country under the scheme at a total cost of Z$471 million, Z$21
million above its allocated budget.
Further, the audit report slams the Trust for its failure to
abide by the programmes enabling agreement by subcontracting the procurement of
cattle to a third party without the approval of the lands and agriculture
ministry. "This was a serious breach of the contract which resulted in the Trust
fund losing Z$24 385 000, in the interim, to bogus middlemen who took advantage
of loopholes in the system," reads the report. The audit reveals that some time
last year, LDT subcontracted a private company, Leswick Investments, to source
3069 heifers worth Z$106 072 300 for its livestock input scheme. The audit also
shows how the company overpriced its livestock, thus prejudicing LDT of the Z$24
385 000. Ironically, Leswick Investments was registered with the Registrar of
Companies on March 12 2002, barely a week after the launch of the livestock
input scheme. The company is alleged to have strong links with a high-ranking
officer in the Airforce of Zimbabwe. The Trust is also accused of having entered
into a contract with Jupiter Insurance Company to insure livestock purchased
under the scheme without the authority of the Government Tender Board. As at
July 8 2002, LDT had paid over Z$15 million to the company as insurance
premiums. Many farmers who experienced livestock deaths have, however,
complained that the company has failed to compensate them.
In an undated and unsigned response to the audit, the LDT
dismisses the allegations levelled against it as baseless and lacking evidence.
The Trust dismisses the audit as having been "motivated by politics". "Some
sections of the community are saying that LDT provided cattle to ruling party
members, and therefore should be disbanded," reads the response. "It is
unrealistic to suggest that a 100 percent success should have been achieved
given the fact that this was a huge programme that was to be implemented within
a very short time and in a volatile political environment," it adds. Contacted
for comment, LDT boss, Forbes Muvirimi defended the programme as having been a
success. "It was a huge programme and, therefore, it is not unusual to find a
few rough ends in it, but generally the scheme was a success," he said, adding
that they had managed to distribute cattle to a significant number of
beneficiaries, notwithstanding the "politics" that prevailed at the time. "We
actually managed to keep the programme on track. There are instances where I had
to cancel the agreements for some influential people who would claim more than
the stipulated number," Muvirimi said. There are fears that the livestock loan
input scheme, which is supposed to be a revolving fund, may actually grind to a
halt owing to serious difficulties in recovering loans from beneficiaries. "The
physical addresses of some beneficiaries could not be established because of
false addresses provided on agreement forms. This is likely to have a negative
impact on the loan recovery strategies," the audit notes. The abuse of the
livestock input loan scheme is the latest in a series of breaches of government
initiatives designed to buttress the land reform programme. There are widespread
reports that senior politicians and influential people have also hijacked the
governments agricultural inputs scheme, which was intended to provide new
farmers with free seed and fertiliser. Large tracts of acquired farmland lie
fallow owing to failure by poor, newly resettled farmers to buy seed in time for
the cropping season.
The Managing Director
17th March 2003
WALK to FREEDOM and support for calls to end the TORMENT!
In Zimbabwe 56%
of the population is female and traditionally it is the
mother who must
provide sustenance despite meager budget. We believe that it
is the women who
are at the end of the suffering chain and it is they who
suffer in silence.
The time has come for women to arm themselves NOT WITH
WEAPONS OF WAR AND
DESTRUCTION but with their God given weapons - their
hearts, minds and their
voices. Women of Zimbabwe Arise, (WOZA) was formed
to end that silence and
lobby to end the suffering.
We, the women of Zimbabwe, who are wives,
mothers and sisters, appeal to you
to assist us to vocalize this torment. We
seek not feminist ideals but
rather to make it known that we will not stand
by and let the torment
continue unabated. It is in our homes that we tend the
tortured and sadly
turn away the starving.
We talk of our concern for
our families, of our pain when we see their pain.
We, the women, sit for days
and weeks and months in queues - waiting and
waiting for food that does not
arrive. While we wait, our children wander
the forests searching for roots
and seeds and even insects to eat.
Share our despair, the men we love and
rely on, face the humiliation because
they cannot provide for us. Eight out
of ten of our husbands are without
formal employment. Those in jobs earn so
little money that they can barely
buy basic foods. 200% inflation has made
wages meaningless. Some of our
husbands rise at 4 am to walk 20 km to work,
to avoid the taxi fares. They
work all day on nothing to eat and arrive home
so late and so tired they can
do nothing. Often they beat us up just out of
We wish to tell you of our anguish as mothers of school
children have no hope of work, and worse still, are now being
youth militia training. Last year, we were brutalised by our own
our communities. Our daughters, who were forced to train as militia,
returned to us raped and many are diseased.
Our sons have been
taught the language of violence and intolerance. As
mothers, we weep
privately to see our families being divided and our family
by the men who rule our land.
Can you imagine the horror of a mother who
sees her week-old baby assaulted
for her political beliefs?
imagine the hopelessness of a mother whose child is denied access to
care because of his parents' political beliefs?
Can you imagine the
endless frustration and simmering anger when our
children cannot eat because
we, their mothers, do not have the right
political party card to produce at
the selling point?
We write to you as employers of the nation. We know
Zimbabweans to be people
of compassion and integrity, and that you are
capable of imagining our pain.
Our children are hungry, our men are angry and
we can no longer comfort
We ask that you provide a copy of this
letter to your employees, both male
and female and that you work with us as
we mobilise them on the walk to
FREEDOM from TORMENT. If they are late for
work spare them and if they join
us in our peaceful protests, do not deduct
this time from their salaries, as
it is a compassionate
Before our nation is torn apart, help us to sow love where there
is hatred -
this is the work of a mother! Help us to rescue our families from
and repression and despair. SOKWANELE means enough is enough means
Signed: The Women's Council, Women of Zimbabwe Arise
email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
strong! We are not here to play, to dream, to drift. We have hard work
and loads to lift. Shun not the struggle; face it, 'Its God's gift. Be
it matters not how deep entrenched the wrong, how hard the battle
day how long; Faint not, fight on! Tomorrow comes the song." By
CALL TO MASS ACTION - MUTARE
This is a follow up to the original message from Councillor
Action starts on Tuesday 18 March 2003.
You are all required to stay indoors, at home, on Tuesday.
(There could be people assigned to make sure this happens). On Wednesday
everybody is asked to go to the Manicaland Governor's office to demonstrate.
People should find their way there preferably in small numbers to avoid being
stopped on the way. Once there the Members of Parliament will lead the people
followed by the different leaders i.e. Province, District, Ward, Branch and then
the rest of the people will rally behind them. (You can confirm with your Ward
or Branch leaders or phone 020-68817 to confirm). Everybody is advised to carry
at least a 2 litre bottle of water and a face towel. You will wet your towel and
breathe through it if tear gas is used. Try to breathe normally in order to
inhale less gas. If you get a chance throw back the tear gas.
Women are advised not to use any cosmetics i.e. lotions,
perfume, lipstick, etc as some of these react badly to tear gas. People should
not wear outstanding colours and should try to stay together within the
This action will continue until the objective is
ABANDON THE WORK, CLOSE THE SHOP AND JOIN THE MARCH FOR
CFU REPORT MONDAY 17TH MARCH
COPA are making an
application to the Reserve Bank to import 40 000 litres of diesel to assist
farmers harvest summer crops and to plant winter cereals. Should you wish to purchase some of this fuel
please contact our office with the following details:-
AREA OF SUMMER CROPS TO BE HARVESTED (HA)
AREA OF WINTER CEREALS TO BE PLANTED (HA)
LITRES OF DIESEL
NEAREST CALTEX DEPOT:
The Reserve Bank may not approve out
Provided the importation is approved diesel will
be sold at a price calculated using an exchange rate of 800 : 1
(price guide + $300 / litre).
Payment will have to be made before
Please would Commodity, Regional and FA Chairmen advise members who
do not have access to e.mail.
MANAGER COPA, ZCPA & ZGPA
A meeting with
trade representatives was held on the 13th March, 2003. Pertinent
issues arising from the meeting are as follows.
As was the case
at the Trade Meeting in January the question of the general non-availability of
fuel again was the dominating issue at this meeting. There was one
representative from the fuel industry and two representatives from the motor
regarding fuel supplies is critical and at present diesel is scarcer than
petrol. Fuel is trickling in from Libya and the Middle East and is dependent on
forex being found to pay for it. Monthly forex inflows into Zimbabwe are
currently around a fifth of what they normally are at this time of the year.
deriving different formulas to ease the situation for certain sectors of the
economy that have operations which are more vulnerable to the scarce fuel
situation (eg. transport and bus companies). An introduction of a fuel coupon
system for these sectors is being contemplated by the relevant Ministry and
Noczim. Some service stations are being penalised for selling fuel into
containers by having fuel supplies withdrawn from them.
It was pointed
out that fuel must be made available for the movement of tobacco to the sales
floors when these open in April. Tobacco marketing must be efficient to help
alleviate the forex shortage position and enable Zimbabwe to procure essential
imports like fuel.
proportion of local transporters are involved in World Food Programme relief
work and survive the fuel crisis by filling up in RSA through the auspices of
that organisation. Many farmers with smaller rigs have been involved in the
distribution of food at a local level.
Bank exposure to
agriculture is much reduced because there is no security and no value can be
placed on property. Uncertainty is exacerbated by the destruction and
commandeering of property and crops. There is a marked reluctance to providing
direct credit to new farmers, and up to 25% of loans to this sector in the
past have been bad. Losses made in the agricultural sector have been masked by
profits generated by the interest rate spread between bank deposits and loans
and in foreign exchange dealings.
The two larger
fertilizer companies report that they have zero stocks. The industry is facing
four main problems a) the lack of forex to import sufficient potash and other
ingredients, b) controlled prices which do not cover costs, c) poor supplies of
ammonium nitrate from Sable and super phosphates from Zimphos respectively, and
d) severe external and internal transport constraints due to NRZ being unable to
function efficiently. Supplies of fertilizer for the winter cereal crops are
under threat because of these factors. The industry is pushing for a review of
fertilizer prices by government.
chemicals are still reasonable but the industry is reluctant to hold stocks. The
sizes of the various crops are an unknown element at this time. A three month
lead time is needed for imports.
Products are very
expensive and production viability in all livestock sectors is affected. Price
differentials between the two manufacturers should narrow as one company that
has up to now relied on locally produced ingredients has now started to import
costly raw materials as local supplies dry up. Output from this company was very erratic until recently but is now set to
still survives on servicing equipment and selling spares. Very little new
equipment is being sold. The market for second hand equipment is fairly buoyant
and demand is strong. Imports of cheap ploughs and other implements are being
made to the detriment of local manufacturing.
representative reported that telephones in occupied farms are being used by
occupiers after the owners have been evicted. It is up to the owners so affected
to ensure that telephone services are terminated as they are liable to pay for
the bills until this is done. The non-availability of fuel is affecting repair
work to telephone services to farms. The organisation is looking into the
feasibility of charging forex for international calls.
There is very
little new development, and nearly all work concerns the rehabilitation of old
schemes involved in horticulture. Arda and Arex are pushing heavily for the
development of schemes for winter maize and wheat but finance and the capacity
of the irrigation companies to undertake the work are major constraints.
Parallel market rates for forex govern the prices of PVC and aluminium products,
and other imported irrigation equipment.
specifically stated that this is a Commercial Farmers' Union communique, or that
it is being issued or forwarded to you by the sender in an official CFU
capacity, the opinions contained therein are private. Private messages also
include those sent on behalf of any organisation not directly affiliated to the
Union. The CFU does not accept any legal responsibility for private messages
and opinions held by the sender and transmitted over its local area network to
other CFU network users and/or to external addressees.
Zim inflation up 220.9% in February
Posted Mon, 17 Mar
Zimbabwe's consumer price index rose by a record 220.9 percent in
to February from 208.1 percent in January, figures from the
Statistical Office showed on Monday.
Escalating inflation is
one of the scourges of an economy now in its fourth
year of recession.
Zimbabwe is battling acute foreign and fuel currency
shortages while half the
country's 14 million population face starvation.
From AFP, 16 March
Zimbabwe police fire tear gas to disperse rally,
Harare - Police in Zimbabwe Sunday fired tear gas to
disperse hundreds of
people at an opposition rally, and one person died after
being run over in
the ensuing panic, an eyewitness and the opposition said.
Around 50 riot
police officers fired tear gas to disperse Movement for
(MDC) supporters in the low-income suburb of Kuwadzana
where a by-election
is due to be held later this month, an AFP photographer
witnessed. He said
there was an altercation between the police and the MDC's
candidate for the
area, Nelson Chamisa. Opposition spokesman Paul Themba
Nyathi told AFP that
two MDC vehicles had accidents as they tried to flee the
scene. Chamisa was
slightly injured when his vehicle rolled, while another
ran over a bystander, killing him, Nyathi said. However,
Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) television said that the
bystander was killed
when Chamisa's campaign team rammed a crowd. One person
has been arrested,
ZBC added. Political tensions are running high in
Kuwadzana, in western
Harare, ahead of this month's by-election. The poll
will pit the MDC against
President Robert Mugabe's ruling Zanu PF
Contacted for comment on the police action, police spokesman
Mugariri said two rallies were scheduled for the same venue, ZANU-PF
morning, and the MDC in the afternoon. "As ZANU-PF were withdrawing
venue, there was a clash between ZANU-PF youths and MDC youths," he
Police dispersed the crowd by firing tear gas, he said. The
accuses police of hampering their political activities in
opposition stronghold, and in the neighbouring suburb of
Highfield, where a
by-election is also to be held. The clashes in Kuwadzana
came as the
opposition called Sunday for mass action against President Robert
government starting next week. In press advertisements the party
"peaceful action carefully calculated to express discontent and
the state of affairs within our nation." The country is
from high unemployment, food and fuel shortages as well
inflation, all of which are increasing hardships for ordinary
Voice of America
Zimbabwe Prepares for Possible Anti-Government
17 Mar 2003, 14:49
Police fire tear gas during clashes between ZANU-PF
supporters and opposition MDC supporters at a MDC rally in Kuwadzana
Zimbabweans, mostly in urban areas, are bracing for the possible start of mass
action Tuesday to protest the government's economic and human rights policies.
For the first time since presidential elections a year ago, the opposition
Movement for Democratic Change has called for mass action. It is due to begin
Tuesday with what is called a stay away, a strike by workers in all types of
businesses and industries. The party has not said when the action will end.
Many workers have said they plan to stay at home, at least on Tuesday.
Previous calls for a stay away by civic groups, and even the Congress of
Zimbabwe Trade Unions, have largely been ignored in the past year.
time, it appears that the main opposition party's call will get a better
response. Several business leaders say they will not open their doors on
Tuesday. Until now, businesses have ignored all calls for protest action.
Zimbabwe is currently suffering from high unemployment, food and fuel
shortages, and record high inflation.
Civic leaders say they expect the
police to react strongly to any mass action.
Reliable sources say protests
in local areas, as opposed to city centers, are likely to dominate the mass
action. The strategy is designed to make it more difficult for the police to
prevent or break up the protests.
Sunday, about 50 riot police threw tear
gas and fired live ammunition into the air at the site of a planned opposition
rally. One woman died when she was run over by a vehicle in the subsequent
The rally was planned before a by-election later this month in a poor
suburb west of Harare.
Opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai says the mass
action is intended to be peaceful.
Mr. Tsvangirai is on trial for treason,
for allegedly plotting to assassinate Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe. He
denies the charge. The opposition says Mr. Mugabe stole last year's election
The police have said they are prepared for any political
disturbances, and tens-of-thousands of police and army troops are on call for
the next few days.
Police warn they will crush anti-Mugabe protests
HARARE, March 17 - Zimbabwe police warned on Monday they
ruthlessly with any violence during protests against President
Mugabe's government, called for this week by the
The Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) has called
action'' on Tuesday and Wednesday to protest at what it terms
''oppressive'' rule as the southern African country grapples with
post-independence political and economic crisis.
Inspector Andrew Phiri told the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation
the proposed mass action -- normally a code phrase for a national
was illegal under tough security laws which critics say Mugabe is
silence his opponents.
Phiri said the police would not tolerate any
rallies, demonstrations or violence and would be deployed
numbers to monitor the protests.
''We are calling on
members of the public not to participate in this
illegal call,'' Phiri told
Asked how the police would deal with violent or unruly
said: ''The police will meet them head-on. We will be very
them, but within the limits of the law.''
newspaper advertisements, the MDC has said the mass action was
part of a
national survival strategy to force Mugabe to relinquish power,
79-year-old Zimbabwean leader has held since independence from
Mugabe has been at the centre of a political storm since
2000 when militants from his ruling ZANU-PF party invaded
in support of his land transfer drive.
deepened over opposition charges that ZANU-PF won general
elections in June 2000 after a violent campaign against the
MDC, and over
Mugabe's controversial re-election last March in a poll
critics say was
The Commonwealth group of mainly former British colonies
decided on S
unday to extend a one-year suspension of Zimbabwe at least until
over the disputed polls and land policy.
With the group's
54 nations split on whether the measure should be
Wednesday's one-year expiry, Commonwealth Secretary-General
Don McKinnon said
it would be maintained until a heads of government meeting
Tough security legislation in Zimbabwe forbids the holding of
meetings without police clearance. Mugabe signed the law just before
the March poll.
MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai told a
newspaper at the weekend that
this week's protests would set the stage for a
showdown with Mugabe's
The crisis in Zimbabwe has been
fuelled by soaring unemployment and
food shortages. The southern African
country has suffered an acute shortage
of hard currency since 1999, squeezing
fuel and food imports and threatening
half Zimbabwe's 14 million people with
Mugabe denies mismanaging the economy during his
and accuses enemies abroad of sabotage over his seizure of
for redistribution to blacks.
Reuters Limited. All rights reserved. Republication or
Reuters content is expressly prohibited without the prior
written consent of
No more aid until Harare pays arrears, decides
March 17 2003 at 12:29PM
Harare - The International
Monetary Fund (IMF) painted a gloomy picture of
Zimbabwe's embattled economy
on Friday and ruled out resuming aid until
President Robert Mugabe's
government settled its arrears.
But a visiting IMF team said it was
encouraged by Harare's latest plan to
revive an economy reeling from food,
fuel and foreign currency shortages,
high unemployment and soaring
Foreign lenders, led by the IMF and World Bank, have suspended
to Harare since 1999 over policy differences with Mugabe's
The IMF will vote in June on whether to formally suspend
rights. The team welcomed Zimbabwe's offer to make quarterly
$1.5 million towards its $282.4 million debt to the
"Zimbabwe's economy has experienced a progressive and sharp
the last four years," the IMF team said.
domestic product has declined by about 30 percent, and is
"Inflation has doubled in each of the last two
years to reach 200 percent at
the end of 2002 and could well rise
Earlier this month the government launched a National Economic
Programme, under which monetary policy was modestly tightened,
controls put under review and the Zimbabwe dollar effectively devalued
Z$824 (R126.23) from Z$55 to the US dollar. - Reuters
UN: Rights Commission Starts Work Amid Concern Over
By Mark Baker
Today marks the start of the UN Human Rights
Commission's annual working
session. For six weeks, the commission -- the
world's foremost body on human
rights -- will review the human rights
situation around the world. But
observers say the commission may be losing
credibility. Its 53 members --
including chair Libya -- comprise some of the
world's worst human rights
violators. Rights groups say the commission must
take steps to ensure its
Prague, 17 March 2003 (RFE/RL)
-- The UN Human Rights Commission starts its
annual session in Geneva today
amid mounting concern over the commission's
commission is considered the world's foremost body on promoting
protecting human rights. Its 53 members meet annually in the spring for
six-week session to discuss the state of human rights around the
This year's session will be chaired by Libya, a controversial
rights groups say has an appalling rights record of its own.
under UN sanctions for its role in the 1988 airliner bombing
Scotland, that killed 270 people.
Libya won the chair
not on merit but because of its location in Africa. By
tradition, this year's
chair was to be an African country, and Libya had
earlier lobbied hard for
African support. Libya's selection was confirmed
this year over strong
objections from the U.S. and Canada.
Rights groups say the session comes
at a time when the body's credibility is
coming under increasing scrutiny.
They say among the commission's members
are some of world's worst human
rights violators. In addition to Libya,
members include Algeria, Sudan,
Zimbabwe, Cuba, China, and the Russian
Federation, which is under fire for
the war in Chechnya.
Kenneth Roth, the executive director of the
U.S.-based rights watchdog Human
Rights Watch (HRW), said these countries in
many cases have joined the
commission not to further its work, but to
frustrate it. "Increasingly, the
membership of the commission looks like an
abusers' defense society because
increasingly the governments flocking to the
commission are not those
determined to uphold human rights but those
determined to frustrate the work
of the commission to avoid their own
condemnation," Roth said.
The UN was not available for comment. In the
past, the UN has said it is up
to the members -- not the UN -- to have a
Last year's session is generally regarded as one of the
successful ever. It failed to condemn, among others,
repression in Zimbabwe,
a hard-line crackdown in Iran, and the abuses in
Russia's crackdown in
Chechnya. A number of other initiatives were
The commission did succeed in appointing special rapporteurs
for Iraq and
Afghanistan and a special representative to report on the
Bosnia and Serbia and Montenegro. They will issue reports later
It's not clear yet whether the U.S. will pursue a
special resolution that
will ask China to improve its human rights record.
The U.S. traditionally
takes the lead role on this, but officials have not
yet committed themselves
one way or the other.
Roth said his group is
afraid that the current situation in Iraq may force
the U.S. to blunt its
criticism of countries like China and Russia, which
hold permanent seats on
the UN Security Council. "The U.S. traditionally
takes the lead on the China
resolution, and one of our concerns there is
that the U.S. is so worried
about gaining approval of an Iraq resolution at
the Security Council that
it's not going to press hard," he said.
But last week, U.S. State
Department spokesman Richard Boucher said the U.S.
would not make Iraq part
of its rights policy. He said it would look at
rights issues "on their
merits" -- presumably not connected to any U.S.
policy objectives in Iraq.
"We will look at each of these situations on
their merits and decide what the
appropriate action is in the UN Human
Rights Commission session," Boucher
Commission watchers say Iraq is bound to play a role, however. They
strongest forces for change on the commission are the U.S. and the
of the European Union, and that any divisions over Iraq could blunt
in reforming the commission.
Human Rights Watch has urged the
commission to take specific action in a
number of countries, including
Turkmenistan, Russia, and Iran.
In Turkmenistan, the group is calling on
the commission to adopt a strong
resolution condemning human rights
violations. HRW says the resolution
should also request the UN high
commissioner for human rights to visit
In Iran, HRW is
urging the commission to reestablish a special procedure to
report on the rights situation. It said the commission should
call on Iranian
authorities to facilitate UN visits.
In Russia, HRW is asking the
commission to adopt a strong resolution on
Chechnya that condemns violations
of human rights and international
humanitarian law by both parties. It also
urging Russia to renew the mandate
of the Organization for Security and
Cooperation in Europe's Assistance
Group in Chechnya.
session is scheduled to end on 25 April.