2 Bills ready for Presidential assent

Source: 2 Bills ready for Presidential assent | The Herald September 10, 2016

Zvamaida Murwira : Senior Reporter

Parliament has sent the Special Economic Zones Bill and the Public Finance Management Amendment Bill to the President for his assent after both regulations sailed through the august House last month. This was announced by Speaker of the National Assembly, Advocate Jacob Mudenda in a Government Gazette published yesterday.“In terms of Section 131 (5) (b) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe, it is hereby notified that on the 25th August, 2016, the Public Finance Management Amendment Bill was transmitted to His Excellency, the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe, for his assent and signature,” reads the notice in respect of one of the Bills.

The notice also stipulated that the Special Economic Zones Bill was transmitted on August 29, 2016.

The Public Finance Management Amendment Bill seeks to enhance transparency and accountability in the management of public resources.

It seeks to fight corruption and abuse of office in parastatals and State entities.

The Bill seeks to ensure that recommendations by the Auditor-General’s office are implemented in the fight against corruption.

Over the years, the Auditor- General has produced several reports with recommendations, but the bulk of them were not implemented due to the absence of an enabling law.

Under the Bill, accounting officers in Government ministries will ensure that public entities or statutory funds have systems in place for planning, allocation, budgeting and reporting on the use of public resources to ensure that they are safeguarded against loss or abuse.

The accounting officer will have powers to order an investigation to be conducted in the affairs of each public entity or statutory fund.

The Special Economic Zone Bill seeks to attract Foreign Direct Investment and stimulate economic growth.

The Bill will establish the Special Economic Zones Authority charged with ensuring that the project is a success.

It provides for implementation of incentives for the operators and businesses located within the authority.

Finance and Economic Development Minister Patrick Chinamasa is expected to administer the law once passed.

Challenges identified in the Exporting Processing Zones are also addressed in the Bill.