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VETERANS OF THE LIBERATION STRUGGLE BILL, 2019

M eM oranduM

The purpose of this Bill is to provide for rights and benefits of veterans of the liberation struggle and their dependants; to provide for the establishment of the Veterans of the Liberation Struggle Fund; to provide for the establishment of a Veterans of the Liberation Struggle Board, its composition and functions; to repeal the War Veterans Act [Chapter 11:15]; to repeal the Ex-Political Prisoners, Detainees and Restrictees Act [Chapter 17:10] and to provide for matters incidental to or connected with the foregoing.

The main provisions of the Bill are explained below:

Part I

Clause 1 sets out the short title. Clause 2 provides for the definition of terms used in the Bill.

Part II

Clauses 3, 4 and 5 provides for the establishment of the Veterans of the Liberation Struggle Board and the functions and powers of the Board.

Clause 6 provides for the reports dealing with the proceedings and activities of the Board.

Clause 7 provides for the establishment of a Vetting Section in the Ministry which shall be headed by a Chief Director and the functions of the Chief Director thereof.

Clause 8 provides for powers of the vetting officers and the procedure which they should observe when ascertaining the credentials of any person claiming to be a veteran of the liberation struggle.

Clause 9 provides for appeal procedure for the decisions made by the Vetting Section. The Board, in terms of this clause, minus Chief Director can sit as the appeal board determining appeals lodged against the decisions of the Vetting Section. The Board has got powers to refer back some of the appeals to the Vetting Section for the section to conduct a new inquiry if the circumstances of the case so demand.

Clause 10 provides for the appeal procedure against decisions of the Board. Appeals against the decisions of the Board are lodged with the Minister.

Clause 11 provides that the Minister may give written policy directions to the Board which in turn shall take all necessary steps to comply with such directions.

Part III

Clause 12 provides for benefits and establishment of schemes for veterans of the liberation struggle.

Clauses 13, 14, 15, 16 and 17 provides for veterans of the liberation struggle Fund, its income, object, application and holding of Fund.

Clauses 18 and 19 provides for payments out of Fund and accounts and audit of Fund.

Clause 20 provides for the appointment of an internal auditor to the Fund and his or her functions.

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Part IV

Clause 21 provides for the resettlement benefit relating to veterans of the liberation struggle. Where the State has acquired resettlement land from the veteran of the liberation struggle, the veteran of the liberation struggle shall be entitled to resettlement on another piece of land which is of equivalent size.

Clause 22 provides that beneficiaries shall report receipt of assistance from any other source.

Clause 23 provides for repayment of sums overpaid.

Clause 24 provides for the Minister’s power to enter into bilateral or multilateral agreements with other countries on behalf of the Government of Zimbabwe for purposes of exchanging information and rendering of reciprocal assistance to veterans who had been engaged in combating colonialism.

Clause 25 provides for the Minister’s powers to make regulations.

Clause 26 provides for the offences and penalties.

Clause 27 provides for repeal of the War Veterans Act [Chapter 11:15] and the Ex-Political Prisoners, Detainees and Restrictees Act [Chapter 17:10] and transitional provisions.

The Schedule provides for the meetings and procedure of the Board and Committees, including terms of Office and conditions of service of members, and validity of decisions and acts of the Authority in certain circumstances.

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