pres parly address 06-09-11ed.jpgThe Head of State and Government and Commander-in-Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, President Robert Mugabe has called on Members of the House of Assembly to preach the messages of peace and national healing among Zimbabweans.

Officially opening the Fourth Session of the Seventh Parliament of Zimbabwe in Harare today, President Mugabe condemned violence and called for diversity and tolerance among the people of Zimbabwe.

“Let us continue to exert our energy in fostering unity, peace, development and equality of opportunity for all our people. Rather than amplify our differences, lets us find strength in diversity, guided by firm conviction that we are the sole guardians of our sovereignty. I, therefore wish to urge you as Members of Parliament and leaders in your own right, to preach the message of national healing and reconciliation amongst our people. Let us, therefore in unison, say NO! to violence in all its manifestations,” said the President.

He said the country’s foreign policy is focussed in safeguarding independence, sovereignty and natural resources.

“Our foreign policy continues to be anchored on the need to safeguard our hard won independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity. The country commends the Security and Defence Forces for continuing to guarantee peace and tranquillity within our borders,” he said.

Cde Mugabe also noted the progress in the implementation of the Global Political Agreement, saying the principals to the inclusive government have agreed on key milestone issues.

“Significant progress has continued to be made in respect of issues germane to the Global Political Agreement. The parties to the GPA have now agreed on key milestones and timelines in preparations for the holding of national elections,” Cde Mugabe said.

They have also agreed on persons appointed to the Anti-Corruption Commission which was sworn in last week.

The President also said since the constitution making process is now heading for the drafting stage, a mammoth task is awaiting the august house.

“As part of preparations for the elections to be held thereafter, the Referendum Bill, together with the amendments to the Electoral Act agreed by the negotiating teams from the three political parties in the GPA and adopted by Cabinet, will be tabled before this Parliament,” said Cde Mugabe.

Cde Mugabe also said the stable macro-economic environment prevailing in the country is conducive for national development and as such, has yielded in milestone developments such as the recent re-opening of the dormant ZISCOSTEEL as the New ZIMSTEEL.

In order for the country to continue on the economic recovery path, Cde Mugabe said the Parliament will discuss and approve various bills, which include the Zimbabwe Investment Authority Amendment Bill, Income Tax Amendment Bill, Micro-finance Bill, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Debt Restructuring Bill and the Securities Act

President Mugabe also called for full cooperation of all stakeholders in the business community to achieve a win-win situation through the indigenisation and empowerment programme.

“As the implementation of the Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment policy continues to gather momentum, Government looks forward to full cooperation by all relevant corporate stakeholders in order to achieve win-win outcomes. I wish to assure investors that their investments in the country remain safe and to urge them to maintain compliance with the country’s laws,” the President said.

He said the government is committed to empowering youths as the vanguard of the nation’s future through the provision of education, the national youth service programme, vocational skills training, and integrated skills programmes.