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Rights watchdog petitions parly on e-waste policy

A human rights watchdog, Matabeleland Institute for Human Rights (MIHR), has petitioned the Parliament of Zimbabwe to enact a national e-waste policy in order to curb among other things international dumping of obsolete electronic and electric equipment to Zimbabwe through importations.

E-waste refers to electronic products that are unwanted, not working, and nearing or at the end of their “useful life.” These include computers, televisions, VCRs, stereos, copiers, and fax machines and electronic products.

“Now, therefore, your petitioners beseech the Parliament of Zimbabwe to exercise its constitutional role and address the following issue of public concern: Recommend the expeditious formulation of and enactment of a national e-waste policy to regulate and coordinate the documentation, disposal, handling and recycling of e-waste in Zimbabwe as well as the international dumping of obsolete electronic and electric equipment to Zimbabwe through importations,” said MIHR in its petition already before the august House.

Khumbulani Maphosa, Dr Keith Phiri, Chelesile Nyathi, Pastor Nqobizitha Ndlovu, Amanda Phiri and Ishmael Mkandla are cited in the petition, dated 14 May 2021 as the undersigned.

“Wherefore we pray that your Honourable House will be pleased to take our case into favourable consideration, and grant any other such relief as it may deem fit,” said MIHR.

“And your petitioners, as in duty bound, will ever pray.”

National Assembly Speaker, Jacob Mudenda, Tuesday confirmed that the Parliament had received the petition, which he said had since been referred to the relevant committee.

“I also wish to advise the House that on 20th May 2021, Parliament received another petition from the Matabeleland Institute of Human Rights requesting Parliament to exercise its constitutional mandate by enacting a National E-Waste Policy,” Mudenda told the National Assembly.

“The petition has been referred to the Portfolio Committee on Environment, Climate and Tourism.”

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