Occasional Visitors Re-Visited: Attendance in the First Session of the 8th Parliament of Zimbabwe.
This study focuses on the first year of the Eighth Parliament running from September 2013-October 2014. It specifically focuses on the attendance of MPs during the First Session of the Eighth Parliament. Among other things it looks at how each MP attended Plenary Sessions, how Ministers fared in attending Question and Answer Sessions, and whether the cost of maintaining Parliament was commensurate with the trends of attendance as displayed by the different MPs. This main objectives of this project since 2013 is to establish whether Parliamentarians take the business of Parliament seriously, the first of which is to attend, as far as possible, all sessions of Parliament. It further aims to determine whether Parliament is serving its role as the watchdog of the Executive. RAU uses this assessment to identify whether policy gaps lie with the inadequacy of legislative measures or whether they reside with the Executive at the implementation level. The Project also seeks to assess whether the funds that citizens are entrusting to the running of Parliament are being accounted for through the production of valuable quality work by the August House. Here the oversight function of Parliament, including the Portfolio committee system, is probably the most important function by which Parliament can protect the ordinary citizenry‟s interests.