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New battle lines drawn

http://www.timeslive.co.za

JAMA MAJOLA | 15 April, 2012 00:51

A fierce battle has erupted within the Select Committee of Parliament on the
New Constitution (Copac) - pitting Zanu-PF factions supporting and opposing
President Robert Mugabe's controversial early elections agenda against each
other.

The early polls are also resisted by senior Zanu-PF officials and both
Movement for Democratic Change factions.

Copac, which has 25 MPs, was established in April 2009 under the Global
Political Agreement to draw up a new constitution before free and fair
elections are held.

Information gathered by the Sunday Times this week shows that Zanu-PF
factions battling over Mugabe's succession have taken their fight to Copac,
where an intense power struggle is raging. The fight pits a faction led by
Defence Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa against another one loyal to Mugabe. The
camp led by Vice-president Joyce Mujuru is also involved.

Mugabe's hardliners, who charge the process has been hijacked by a coalition
of internal and external forces bent on ousting their leader, want Copac to
fast-track its operations to facilitate early elections this year without
fail - with or without a new constitution.

Mugabe returned from Singapore on Thursday amid a storm of speculation about
his failing health. Although the latest reports were unfounded, he failed to
clear the air.

He could not explain why he had been away for a fortnight if he was not
battling health problems. Ministers said Mugabe ignored the issue in cabinet
on Thursday, raising suspicions he might actually be sick. Those close to
him insist he is battling prostate cancer.

Mnangagwa's faction, which controls Copac through co-chairman Paul
Mnangagwa, wants to delay the elections until next year, to knock out Mugabe
on age and health grounds.

Mujuru's faction, although fighting for political supremacy within, also
wants Mugabe blocked as the Zanu-PF candidate.

Zanu-PF succession battles playing out in Copac exploded into the public
this week, with Mnangagwa openly clashing with party strategist Jonathan
Moyo. Moyo described Mnangagwa and his Copac allies frustrating Mugabe's
agenda as a "mafia" and warned them to stop. It is unusual for senior party
officials to fight so publicly.

"As the curtain falls on the discredited Copac drafting process, the Copac
mafia realises that its strategy of abusing the process to block or delay
elections has been exposed, given that the constitutional roadmap for the
inevitable holding of elections this year is set to be firmly decided next
month," Moyo thundered.

"The Copac mafia has become desperate and is now resorting to fallacies, and
scare tactics about devolution and a women's parliamentary quota to force
the adoption of a draft constitution to secure the mafia's floundering
regime change or succession interests," he said.

Annoyed by Moyo's remarks, Mnangagwa hit back, saying his party's election
strategist was "crazy" and fuelling the fight.

"He is crazy, what he is saying is not true at all, we know his motives. We
are, however, expecting to complete the draft next week," Mnangagwa said.

Senior party officials say Mnangagwa is angry that his former ally Moyo is
now fighting against his faction. In 2004 Mnangagwa and Moyo were involved
in a failed bid to topple Mugabe. Mugabe recently upped the ante after he
started cracking down on Mnangagwa's faction within Copac, ordering it to
finalise the constitution-making quickly so that next month he could
announce when elections would be held.

Morgan Tsvangirai and his MDC-T, as well as MDC-N leader Welshman Ncube, are
also opposed to Mugabe's agenda. They have been accused by Mugabe loyalists
of working with the Mnangagwa faction.

Mnangagwa said this week, after being given an ultimatum by Mugabe, that the
draft constitution would be given to the management committee made up of GPA
negotiators, Copac's three co-chairmen and the Constitutional and
Parliamentary Affairs Minister before it goes to the principals, who want to
take charge of the situation before it deteriorates into chaos.


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Moyo scoffs at Copac impeachment threat

http://www.newzimbabwe.com

15/04/2012 00:00:00
††† by Staff Reporter

ZANU PF politburo member Professor Jonathan Moyo has told the constitutional
select committee to ‘bring it on!’ after two co-chairs of the body
threatened to charge him with contempt of Parliament, leading to possible
impeachment.

Cheesed-off by Prof. Moyo’s criticism of their conduct in the ongoing
constitutional reform process, COPAC co-chairs Douglas Mwonzora (MDC-T) and
Edward Mkhosi (MDC) said the Tsholotsho North legislator could face contempt
charges when Parliament resumes sitting.

“Professor Moyo is clearly in contempt of Parliament. His abuse of COPAC has
gone beyond fair criticism. The committee will seek to have him charged for
contempt of the House,” Mwonzora said, according to the Sunday Mail.

“At law, he can be charged and we are confident that, if the law is strictly
followed, he will be found guilty. We are not trying to suppress criticism,
but we will not tolerate abuse of the body (COPAC).”

Mkhosi added: “We shall approach the Speaker when sitting resumes next month
to thrash out the issue of Prof Moyo’s un-parliamentary behaviour. If he has
a bone to chew with the committee, we believe that the right platform to do
so will be in Parliament.

“We are confident that even members of Zanu PF within the committee will
support this position. Prof. Moyo has no grounds whatsoever to refer to the
body as a mafia.”
The select committee is expected to discuss the proposed action against Moyo
at a meeting set for Monday.

But Prof. Moyo shot back: “ … they will get more than they have bargained
for, given that the making of a new constitution is not their personal
business but the business of every Zimbabwean.

“COPAC is not a parliamentary process and cannot therefore sustain any
charge of contempt of Parliament against anybody. Yes, the formation of
COPAC was announced in Parliament in 2009 and Parliament was involved in the
running of COPAC up to the chaotic first stakeholders’ conference.

“After that conference all hell broke loose and COPAC literally left
Parliament in every sense but name. Since then COPAC has not conducted
itself in terms of any standing order or rule of Parliament; none
whatsoever. Parliament’s presiding officers have had no role whatsoever in
COPAC.”

Prof. Moyo said if anyone should face contempt charges it was COPAC
themselves for disregarding the views of the majority of Zimbabweans
gathered during the constitutional outreach programme.

“The views of the people have not officially been published, arguably to
enable the Copac mafia to ignore or manipulate them as we have indeed seen
happen,” he said.

“The same contempt has been shown in how the COPAC mafia has responded
against anyone who has said anything critical of COPAC’s work or critical of
the outcomes of some of its work in progress.

“Critical voices have been routinely labelled as laymen who should not be
listened to as if the COPAC mafia is unaware of the fact that the
overwhelming majority of its own members are not lawyers.

“According to one of its co-chairs Munyaradzi Paul Mangwana, (COPAC’s) first
working draft constitution … had at least 70 percent of its content smuggled
onto the draft outside the views of the people.

“Who smuggled this content? Smuggling is mafia business and 70 percent is a
very high figure and both considerations justify the conclusion that there’s
a COPAC mafia that uses the false cover of a people-driven process to
smuggle into the draft constitution its own or some dark views typical of
mafia-like behaviour.”


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Mujuru not backing down from succession battle

http://www.timeslive.co.za

MARK SCOFIELD | 15 April, 2012 00:51

Vice-president Joyce Mujuru is the next in line to succeed President Robert
Mugabe, according to the country's constitution and Zanu-PF's hierarchy.

Yet, the problem is that Mugabe has never openly backed Mujuru's succession,
a situation that has opened up intense rivalry and infighting over the years
among Zanu-PF bigwigs jostling for the top job.

In an interview with the state media on the eve of his 88th birthday in
February, Mugabe acknowledged that he had not groomed a successor. Emmerson
Mnangagwa, the Defence Minister, who is touted as the leader of a faction
opposed to Mujuru's rise, was reported by the UK's Telegraph this week to
have struck a "gentleman's agreement" to succeed Mugabe after polls.

But senior Zanu-PF officials canvassed this week by the Sunday Times
insisted that the party's hierarchy would be followed to avoid any splits
that would weaken it if anything happened to Mugabe.

Rugare Gumbo, the Zanu-PF spokesman, dismissed as "nonsense" intimations
that Mnangagwa was the frontrunner to succeed Mugabe. "He is way down the
hierarchy of the party, how is it possible that he can leapfrog everyone
else in front of him? There is no way that can happen," he said.

Simon Khaya Moyo, the party's national chairman, said: "Leaders are elected
at congress which is held every five years and that is the way things are
done.

"All this succession talk is similar to the divide and rule tactics used by
the colonisers to weaken the continent, and in this case it is aimed at
weakening the party."

As Mugabe returned from Singapore on Thursday morning, Mujuru welcomed him
at the airport in a gesture observers said underpinned the fact that she
remains at the forefront of both party and national affairs.

In political quarters, it was feared that the death of her "kingmaker"
husband, Solomon, would weaken her grip on party affairs, but she has not
shown any signs of backing down from the race to succeed Mugabe.


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Former Top Ranking Army Officer Denies Mugabe Links In Marange

http://www.radiovop.com

Harare, April 15, 2012 - Retired army Colonel and top loyalist to President
Robert Mugabe, Tshinga Dube has dismissed suggestions he has been assigned
to the powerful job of being Marange Resources chair to safeguard Mugabe's
political interests.

Retired Colonel Dube, a ZANU PF Politburo member, described his critics as
habitual fault finders who have chosen to ignore that he has also chaired
various other firms in the country with little or no controversy.

“I have been chairman of more than 10 or more organisations but they did not
find fault with that. I do not see why they are now raising a furore when I
am chairman of Marange resources, just because there is more interest in
Marange, I do not think these statement are even worth answering to them,”
said the soft speaking politician-cum-businessman.

Marange Resources is owned by the Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation
(ZMDC) and operates one of the four concessions mining at the controversial
diamond fields.

Dube was also a ZMDC board member for eight years.

Critics, especially from the Non Governmental Organisations , are concerned
about the systematic secondment of senior army and police personnel to
management structures of diamond mining firms in Chiadzwa where government
has 50 percent stake in four of the five companies, with suggestions that
they are there to raise funds for a Zanu PF campaign for the next elections.

These includes; Martin Rushwaya, the permanent secretary in the Ministry of
Defence, Oliver Chibage and Nonkosi M. Ncube, both police commissioners and
Munyaradzi Machacha, a ZANU PF director of publications.

Also among the lot is Morris Masunungure, a former army officer and Romeo
Daniel Mutsvunguma, a retired army Colonel in the Zimbabwe Defence Force.

But Dube insisted his secondment to Marange Resources was based on merit
while also denying the claims of the involvement of security commanders in
the country's diamond mining activities was political.

“It is not true,” he said, “How do you pick somebody purely out of loyalty
if he is illiterate. To run a company requires skill and a broad knowledge
of administration. If otherwise you will pick someone because he is very
loyal to you and those are all the credentials he has, then you are certain
he will run that company down.”


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35 children in prisons as hunger, disease stalk jails

http://www.timeslive.co.za/

SIMPLICIUS CHIRINDA | 15 April, 2012 00:51

Zimbabwe's prison service is on its knees. Prisoners face a shortage of
food. Scurvy and pellagra have also set in, along with water-borne diseases
like typhoid and cholera.

Cells are overcrowded and there is a shortage of inmates' uniforms. The
terminally ill have to share lice-infested cells with healthy prisoners. And
worst of all, children jailed with their mothers have to share these
conditions.

Two Movement of Democratic Change female activists, Yvonne Musarurwa and
Rebecca Mafikeni, have spoken out about their time at Chikurubi female
prison, where they were remanded on charges of killing a policeman in May
last year.

The pair told how they had to scoop raw sewage out of their prison cells
with their hands because the sewer system was not working. "There is no
sugar right now, there is no cooking oil," said Mafikeni.

According to human rights organisations, the bad prison conditions are in
contravention of the International Bill of Human Rights, which requires the
state to provide a safe environment for prisoners.

Last week Deputy Justice Minister Obert Gutu told local media that inmates
at Chikurubi Maximum Security Prison were surviving on sadza with roasted
peanuts after government banned food assistance from humanitarian
organisations. "The International Committee of the Red Cross and other
humanitarian organisations have been providing additional food assistance to
prisons for the past few years before they were stopped last year," Gutu
said.

He said government had no money to look after the prisoners adequately. In a
report presented to the House of Assembly during the 2012 budget allocation
to the Zimbabwe Prison Services (ZPS) last year, the chairman of the
parliamentary portfolio committee on justice, legal, constitutional and
parliamentary affairs, Douglas Mwonzora, confirmed that the withdrawal of
aid had affected the prison operations.

"Investigations of prisons by the parliamentary thematic committee on human
rights showed that prisoners' conditions had become so dire that some of
them were suffering from food deficiency diseases such as scurvy and
pellagra. Apart from food shortages, prisoners have a critical shortage of
uniforms and stay in overcrowded rooms at Chikurubi and Harare Central
Prisons.

"This has resulted in the spread of communicable and water-borne diseases
such as diarrhoea, cholera and typhoid. The justice system does not make
provisions for children jailed together with their mothers," said Mwonzora.

ZPS and Ministry of Justice officials say children are not budgeted for
because of the assumption that they cannot commit crimes.

There are 35 children in Zimbabwe's 42 prisons. The Zimbabwe Unemployed
People's Association (Zupa) has called for the revamping of the country's
justice system so it can cater for children's needs.

"The shocking revelations that some 30 toddlers are incarcerated with their
mothers in squalid prisons calls for urgent remedial intervention," said
Zupa.

Several of these children in jails are being breastfed but are forced to
live in the squalid conditions.

The Ministry of Social Services also makes no provision for these children.
"Part of the solution in the meantime may require that the breast-feeding
women prisoners serve their sentences in their areas of origin to enable
relatives to assist," said Zupa.

The Zimbabwe Association for Crime Prevention and Rehabilitation of the
Offender (Zacro), an organisation advocating for justice in prisons, has
also implored government to look into the needs of the children when
budgeting for prisons.

Gutu told the Sunday Times: "Zimbabwe's prison system was not designed to
accommodate children. We have 35 babies in our prisons. Ideally kids should
not be kept in prison with their mothers. We should have facilities where
children are protected. You don't want to have kids who grow up in
incarceration .

"We should have more open prisons for female prisoners. Having children
incarcerated affects their social and moral development."

Gutu has made a passionate plea to government to prioritise funding for
prisons. He said he was not seeking to turn "jails into three-star hotels
but places where people's human dignity can be safeguarded".

He said prisoners were eating porridge without sugar in the morning, sadza
and roasted nuts in the afternoon and sadza and cabbage for supper. "Jail is
jail. It cannot be a hotel and I understand that. But we have to at least
adhere to our own specifications for prisoners' diets."

In December, the government prescribed new dietary requirements for
prisoners, stipulating that they should get a balanced meal and essential
foods daily. Gutu said Zimbabwe had no capacity to look after its prisoners
at the moment and still needed the help of aid agencies to meet its
obligations.


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Mudede Incompetent ZANU PF Activist and Liar: ZAPU

http://www.radiovop.com

Bulawayo, 15 April 2012--The opposition Zapu said Registrar General Tobaiwa
Mudede is an “incompetent liar and a Zanu (PF) activist” who should not be
part and parcel of any election process in Zimbabwe.

Addressing journalists at Bulawayo Press Club on Friday evening on “Voter
Secrecy in Zimbabwe” Zapu’s national secretary for legal and special
affairs, Steven Nkiwane said Mudede and his office should be booted out of
the voter registration process.

“Mudede is liar, who is also incompetent, his office should be detached from
doing voter registration in Zimbabwe, and he is also a Zanu PF member. When
we met him last year in Kadoma during the Constitutional Parliamentary
Portfolio Committee (COPAC) outreach programme, he told us voter
registration has began countrywide. But that is a lie because† right now ,if
you visit any of his offices countrywide they will tell† you that† the voter
registration process† for next election has not started,” said Nkiwane.

Speaking at the same occasion Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara’s
spokesperson Morgan Changamire said “Zimbabwe voters’ roll is in shambles
and should be cleaned before next elections are held.”

Dates for Zimbabwe’s next elections are yet to be announced. But Zanu (PF)
says it wants the polls this year. Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai says
polls should be held only after full implementation of reforms agreed to
under the Global Political Agreement (GPA).
The breakaway MDC faction led by Professor Welshman Ncube says it is
impossible to hold elections this year, indicating that the polls can only
be held in 2013.

Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) says the country needs more than US$200
million to fund both the constitutional referendum and elections.

Zimbabwe’s elections have in the past been blighted by violence and charges
of vote rigging, which saw the European Union (EU) and United States
slapping sanctions on President Robert Mugabe and senior members of Zanu
(PF).


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Zimbabwe youth groups protest cops’ $50 bail on murder charges, criticize bias in courts

http://www.washingtonpost.com/

By Associated Press, Published: April 15

HARARE, Zimbabwe — Zimbabwean youth groups are condemning the release on $50
bail for each of six policemen accused of beating a mineworker to death.

The Zimbabwe Youth Forum said Sunday that their release shows bias in
courts, considering a youth leader and 28 alleged accomplices in the prime
minister’s party have remained in jail awaiting trial for nearly a year on
allegations of murdering a policeman.

The forum said even police commanders acknowledged a breakdown of discipline
led to the mineworker’s death and injuries to 11 others during a theft
investigation last month.

The forum described the police bail ruling Thursday as another “shocking and
glaring case” of skewed rulings by courts packed with loyalists of President
Robert Mugabe.


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Major water crisis looms in Byo

http://www.thezimbabwean.co.uk

A major water crisis is looming in Bulawayo when the council is expected to
decommission one of its major dams, Umzingwane in July this year.
14.04.1201:22pm
by Zwanai Sithole Harare

Speaking at a water summit organised by Habakkuk Trust in Bulawayo recently,
council engineer Ian Mthunzi said with the current dam levels and present
consumption patterns, it is likely that Umzingwane dam will be
decommissioned between June and July this year.

“Once the dam has been decommissioned , the city ‘s ability to meet demand
will be compromised as it would be able to receive a combined total of 148
000 cubic metres of water a day from the remaining dams, namely lower Ncema,
Inyankuni and Insiza,” said engineer Mthunzi.

He said the water will be not enough to meet the city’s demands. ” There is
a possibility of below average rainfall again for the coming season. We need
to have contingent plans in advance,” he said.

Muthunzi said council is also looking at the duplication of the Insiza
pipeline. “This duplication will cost $21 million and will be implemented in
about 10 to 18 months from the time the financial resources are available,”
he said. Bulawayo has got five major dams namely, Insiza, Lower Ncema,
Umzingwane, Upper Ncema and Inyankuni dam.

The current city’s daily water consumption rate is 114 975 cubic metres a
day. Over the years, Bulawayo has been facing perennial water shortages
which have been attributed to the increasing high water demand in the city.
The city’s population currently stands at about 1, 5 million and the last
dam to be built was commissioned in 1976.

Since that period no single dam has been built to correspond the city’s
increasingly population. The city’s water dams are also heavily silted due
to upstream gold panning.

Last year the city’s major, Thaba Moyo told The Zimbabwean that the city
needed a new supply dam every 10 years to meet its increasing water demand.


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MDC supporters arrested in Kariba

Sunday, 15 April 2012

Four MDC members were yesterday arrested in Kariba for convening a meeting to discuss travel arrangements for the late Deputy Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development, Senator Tichaona Mudzingwa’ s funeral.

The arrested members who were briefly detained at Kariba Police Station before being released on condition that they report to the police on Monday are District Secretary George Masendu, Robbie Tigere, the Youth Secretary, Farai Chinobva and Elijah Garisamoyo.

In arresting the members, District Police Officer Mundanda and Officer In Charge Taderera said the group did not notify them of the meeting. This is clear abuse of power as the Public Order and Security Act (POSA) does not require that the police be notified when people want to converge for the purpose of holding a funeral. As a party, we condemn the partisan manner in which the police are operating and we immediately call for security sector reforms.

The crackdown on MDC supporters by the police has intensified in recent weeks, ahead of the forthcoming elections.

On Friday, Matabeleland South Women’s Assembly chairlady, Nomathemba Ndlovu was arrested in Gwanda while distributing the Prime Minister’s newsletter.
Ndlovu is being charged under the draconian POSA.

Earlier last week, the police arrested Abisha Nyanguwo, MDC Chief of Staff for allegedly bombing ZANU (PF) Gweru offices in December 2011. He appeared before a Gweru Magistrate and was remanded on $500, 00 bail.

The people’s struggle for real change: Let’s finish it!


--
MDC Information & Publicity Department


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Tragic news

I regret to inform you that Bobbie Irving a tobacco farmer of the Horse Shoe Farming District was brutally assaulted on the first of April and died in hosptal, in Harare, on the 8th of April† His widow Cristine is on Facebook and Horse Shoe Farmers District is also on Facebook where you may find more information. I have not been able to find any news reports of the tragic event.


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MDC official up for distributing PM’s newsletter

http://www.dailynews.co.zw/

Written by Sharon Muguwu, Staff Writer
Sunday, 15 April 2012 09:05

HARARE - He might be the country’s Prime Minister, but Morgan Tsvangirai
cannot even have his word out without the police interfering.

One of his top officials, Nomathemba Ndlovu, from Matabeleland South
Province on Friday found out the hard way how her boss is still hostage to
powerful security sector forces fiercely loyal to President Robert Mugabe.

Ndlovu, the MDC Matabeleland South women’s assembly chairperson is facing
criminal charges for distributing the Prime Minister’s newsletter.

Tsvangirai uses the newsletter, distributed to the public for free, to push
his office’s agenda.

According to the MDC, police in Gwanda took Ndlovu in after accusing her of
contravening the harsh Public Order and Security Act (Posa) for giving out
copies of the newsletter to residents in the town.

Gwanda police spokesperson Tafanana Dzirutwe said he was unaware of the
incident.

“I am in Bulawayo doing some Trade Fair business. What I can do is refer you
to our operations office, they will give you the right person to talk to,”
he said.

Efforts to get through to the operations office were fruitless.

The MDC said one assistant inspector Machingura summoned Ndlovu to Gwanda
Police Station on Friday.

She was arrested and charged under Posa upon arrival at the station.

Media reforms are part of the unfulfilled power sharing Global Political
Agreement issues that have kept fragile coalition government partners
haggling.

Despite cosmetic reforms that allowed the licensing of newspapers, police
are still accused of harassing media practitioners, while media products
deemed anti-Mugabe are banned in volatile pro-Mugabe areas.

The licensing of independent radio and television stations to break the
state’s monopoly has also left coalition partners at each other’s throat.

Tsvangirai says the awarding of two commercial radio licences to pro-Mugabe
entities, Zimpapers and Zi FM shows how genuine media reforms remain a pipe
dream.

Mugabe’s loyalists defended the licensing process as fair.


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Minister: Zimbabwe Diamond Mining to Expand in 2012

http://www.israelidiamond.co.il

15.04.12, 08:38 / Mining

Zimbabwe's Mines and Mineral Development Minister announced last week that
the southern African country's diamond industry has been steadily growing
for the last two years and that it is projected to continue to grow
significantly in the coming year, boosting the national economy as a whole,
according to Mining Weekly.

Minister Obert Mpofu told a Chamber of Mines meeting in Harare that despite
having to confront obstacles such as energy shortages, insufficient funding
and out-of-date equipment, Zimbabwe's diamond mining industry would continue
to show gains. The mining industry as a whole was expected to grow by 15.8%
in 2012, mineral exports would grow by 13.3% this year, and diamond mining
would† grow by 3.3%, Mpofu said.

The minister noted that Zimbabwe's that two years ago, mineral exports grew
by 138%, generating $1.6 billion, and that last year exports grew by 39%,
generating $2.6 billion, Mining Weekly reported.


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Teachers refuse to distribute condoms in schools

http://www.newzimbabwe.com

14/04/2012 00:00:00
††† by Staff Reporter I Radio VOP

TEACHERS have rejected a proposal to distribute condoms in schools as a way
helping fight the spread of HIV and AIDS.

The Zimbabwe Teachers’ Association (ZIMTA) said the proposal, made recently
by the National Aids Council (NAC), was unacceptable and unworkable.

“You can’t introduce condoms in schools; there is no way we can allow 10 to
12 year- olds to have sex,” Zimta chief executive, Sifiso Ndlovu said at the
association's annual conference in Bulawayo.

“These kids don’t know much about their bodies yet and you want to confuse
them further by allowing them to engage in sex.”

The NAC recently said it would propose various legislative amendments to
enable teachers to distribute condoms in schools and help curb the spread of
HIV/AIDS.

The practice is already underway in neighbouring South Africa where children
who are 12 years and above have the right to access condoms under the
country’s Children’s Act of 2007.
However, Ndlovu said Zimta members rejected the proposal outright.

“As educationists there is no way we can allow the distribution of condoms
in schools. This will confuse the mental and physical development of our
children,” he said.

Zimbabwe's epidemic was one of the biggest in the world until the number of
people infected almost halved, from 29% to 16%, between 1997 and 2007.

Researchers attributed the huge decline to changes in people’s sexual
behaviour because of improved public awareness of AIDS deaths and a
subsequent fear of contracting the virus.

Other important factors included the influence of education programmes that
helped shift people's attitudes regarding multiple concurrent sexual
partners in extramarital, commercial and casual relations which increased
the acceptability of condom use.


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Teenagers from 11 countries advise on future of higher education

http://www.universityworldnews.com

Paul Rigg15 April 2012 Issue No:217

The private for-profit IE University in Spain has turned to 16- to
18-year-olds from 11 countries for advice on the future of higher education.

The teenagers – from countries as diverse as America, Colombia, Germany,
India, Peru, Romania, Slovenia, South Africa, Turkey, Wales and Zimbabwe –
flew to Madrid to give their views.

IE University is owned by the business Instituto de Empresa SL, and has
campuses in Segovia and Madrid.

Founded in 2009, the junior advisory board (JAB) of IE is a highly select
group of pre-university students. The institution employs their insight,
energy and excitement to ensure that its educational programmes remain
innovative.

“This edition of JAB has focused on the importance of new communication
technologies between students and university, the need for diversity in
languages, and the importance of international relations and social
entrepreneuralism,” said Arantza de Areilza, IE spokesperson and dean of the
school of arts and humanities.

This year the meeting, which took place from 27 to 30 March, had five new
members. The fact that some students have returned to IE over several years
has fostered both enthusiasm and the possibility of developing more complex
ideas.

For example, Monica Brova, from Galati in Romania, has just completed her
second consecutive stint as a JAB representative in Madrid.

“Initially I was attracted to the innovative idea of a university allowing
high school students to express their expectations of higher education,” she
says. “But I also realised that the JAB would offer an unparalleled
opportunity to learn about university life and education.”

Brova feels that university education must steer away from the traditional
model of “huge lecture halls and limited individual attention”, to offer
instead a more flexible approach that is tailored to students’ individual
needs and learning styles.

“Universities should aim to educate by fostering the growth of the whole
person,” she said.

“Specifically, after discussions with fellow JAB members and IE professors
over these past few days, I have realised that there is an evolving
relationship between nations and the role of non-governmental actors, such
as social media, as catalysts of change.

“Students of the future will need to speak three or four languages to
communicate effectively and keep themselves informed about these
developments in current affairs.”

Clara BŁtow from Munich, Germany, agreed. “In the international relations
workshop we emphasised the importance of always being up to date. If you
want to act in a global environment, you need to have a clear view about the
effect that one action can have on everything else.”

Responses received from several of the JAB members seem to confirm that
future undergraduates will be looking for innovative universities that
employ the latest teaching methods and challenge their students.

“Today’s youth don’t fear leaving their comfort zone or diving into a
culture that is totally different to their own: they increasingly want to
leave their own country and study in a diverse cultural environment,” said
BŁtow.

Avneesh Mehta (17), who was encouraged to apply to be a JAB member by his
student counsellor in Mumbai, India, was clear that a much more diverse
group of students are now looking at the “overall grooming” a university
offers, rather than focusing purely on academic results.

“We want something different and unique."

Mehta said IE was an example of an institution that focused on overall
student development. “When a student applies to IE, they don’t just need the
grades; they need the profile and personality. When a student graduates from
IE, they’re not just ready to take up a job; they are prepared to take on
the world.”


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Great survivor runs out of options

http://www.theaustralian.com.au

††† by: R.W. Johnson
††† From: The Times
††† April 16, 2012 12:00AM

IT was an unusual homecoming. Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, supported
on the arm of his wife Grace, strolling across the tarmac of Harare airport
last Thursday, spitting venom at the world's media - which an aide had said
was "driving an imperialist agenda" - after his 10th trip in 16 months to
Singapore for cancer treatment.

Mugabe, 88, was supposed to have returned on Monday, but then said he would
not be back until at least Thursday, triggering excited rumours in Harare.

The news editor of the Zimbabwe Mail was so overcome that his paper led with
a story Mugabe was dead. He has been sacked. No doubt this frenzied
speculation - and the effect it has within Mugabe's ruling Zanu-PF party -
led to a further change of plan, with the President hurrying home much
earlier.

The latest private opinion polls show Mugabe's support down to just 5 per
cent in the towns and 15 per cent in the countryside.

Support for Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, leader of the Movement for
Democratic Change, is at 65 per cent.
Rec Coverage 28 Day pass

Once Mugabe's Zanu-PF loses power, the remnants are likely to rapidly
collapse and there will be wholesale regime change, with a far more
pro-Western government under Tsvangirai that could thrive on foreign aid and
investment. Until last year, Mugabe's two rivals for the succession had been
Emmerson Mnangagwa, the former head of the secret police who was responsible
for the thousands of deaths in Matabeleland, and former guerilla leader
Solomon Mujuru.

However, Mujuru and his mistress were burnt to death in a mysterious fire
last August. Many believe Mugabe has designated Mnangagwa, known as
"Crocodile", as his successor.

Mugabe has been desperately pressing for an early election so he can run for
a final time as President - he is certainly the best candidate Zanu-PF has,
although he has had to rely on violence and intimidation to win the previous
two times.

However, Jacob Zuma, South Africa's President who heads the Southern African
Development Community, has shown surprising backbone in holding Mugabe to
his promise of constitutional reform, insisting that no election can be held
till those reforms are in place. That means no election until next year -
and creating a nation of presidential health-watchers. Mugabe was shocked by
the fall of ally Muammar Gaddafi in Libya and insists there is a NATO plot
to overthrow him. Last month, several Zimbabweans facing charges of treason
escaped with fines and community service for screening videos of the Arab
Spring.

While Mugabe has shown skill and cunning in prolonging his mastery, he has
now reached a point where his exits are blocked. The two certainties are
death and taxes - Mugabe has dodged taxes, but there are limits to what even
he can manage.

The Sunday Times


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Stop politicising food aid

http://www.sokwanele.com/thisiszimbabwe/archives/7526

April 15th, 2012

I was shocked recently when I attended an event in Muzarabani† Mashonaland
Central Province.† Villagers had gathered to receive donations of maize and
I personally witnessed politics being applied on the choice of
beneficiaries.

The gathering was led by members of the Grain Marketing Board (GMB) and soon
turned into a political rally, with traditional leaders following the way of
the GMB officials, all backed by the presence of unidentified individuals
wearing black wearing suits and dark glasses, ordering the production of
ZANU(PF) party cards from villagers.

The maize and seed being distributed was sourced through government’s Grain
Marketing and was coming through President Mugabe grain scheme.† Indeed, the
maize and seed packs had Mugabe’s stickers on them.† It is the same scheme
which early this year was abused by the party’s politicians who were
castigated by President Mugabe.

Segregation of villagers at the gathering meant subjection of opposition
party supporters to starvation as they failed to produce the ZANU (PF)
cards.

Is this the way food aid should be distributed?

Should everyone subscribe to a certain political party in order to access
food aid?

I later learnt from villagers who had been turned away, that those perceived
to be anti-ZANU (PF) were not allowed to look for alternative sources of the
seed and maize by militant Zanu PF supporters.

Food Aid has over the years been used by ZANU (PF) to lure votes.
Politicians should not take advantage of hungry villagers but instead should
initiate projects which benefit the communities who will in turn vote for
them if they are satisfied with the initiatives of those politicians.

This entry was posted by Beven Takunda on Sunday, April 15th, 2012 at 7:28
am


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Farm workers trapped in poverty

http://www.sokwanele.com/thisiszimbabwe/archives/7552

April 15th, 2012

It’s harvest time and farmers are now taking their tobacco to the market.
Some of the small scale farmers smile all the way to the bank, but it is the
large scale growers who are raking in huge profits from tobacco sales.
These are the old commercial farms that† require a lot of labour.

Unfortunately, behind the celebrations, lies an unsung hero; the labourer
who is only getting a pittance from back breaking farm work.

The big farmer in Zimbabwe has it all, he does not pay for the inputs as the
government provides fertiliser, seed and even tractors.

Recently we† learnt that most of the farmers are not paying their power
utility bills andneither do they do not pay for water. The immunity from
settling bills goes even further to paying workers well below accepted
standards, or not at all.

Recently I was in Marondera and came face to face with the glum face of
poverty, brought on by all these farm labourers endure.

Their children have dropped out of school because there are no schools in
the vicinity.† Even if therewere schools nearby, the parents are too poor to
send their children to be educated.† So the vicious cycle for the workers
continue, with children dropping out of school in order to help support the
family and just like their parents, the children are doomed† to be trapped
in farm life for unforeseen years to come.

Apart from being trapped in the jaws of poverty, the farm workers are also
subjected to abuse as at times they are beaten, or caught in the middle of
cell phone farmers fighting over land.

These farm workers† have nowhere† to go for the employers, in most cases are
politicians, soldiers and police officers who break the law with impunity.

This entry was posted by Simon Moyo on Sunday, April 15th, 2012 at 7:36 pm.


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Water Woes and The sad life of Murambatsvina victims

http://www.sokwanele.com/thisiszimbabwe/archives/7536

April 15th, 2012

Mothers deliver on the road, children have dropped out of school and water
is a privilege.† This is the sad story that one meets when you visit the
slum dwellers whose decent homes were destroyed by President Robert Mugabe
in 2005 Operation Muranbatsvina.

Last month Zimbabwe marked International Water Day with the rest of the
world.

The people who live in the muddy, shanty towns created by Mugabe, such as
Hopely and Hatcliffe also were supposed to mark this significant day.
Ironically instead of loving the life bringing rains, the residents hate the
season with a passion because their card board homes leak and their unpaved
roads are inaccessible whenever the clouds open.

It is a sad story indeed that the government is failing to provide shelter
and water, which are both rights under the law.† The OCHA report makes for
sad reading, with 8 million people with limited access to WASH/health
services (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene), 1/3 of the population uses unsafe
water (ZIMVAC 2010), 1140 cholera cases were recorded in 2011, although
districts affected cholera decreased by 50% fatality increased from 2.1 to
3.9 in 2011.

It’s heart wrenching that in this day and age some 33% people still use the
“bush toilet”, worse still when it is an urban settlement.† And the cycle
does not end there, for with poor sanitation, conditions for the outbreak of
water borne disease outbreak are ripe, and epidemics ensue.

And when this happens, people in the slums do not have a clinic close by
because the government has forgotten about them.† Add then a pregnant woman
who is forced to give birth unattended by professionals, and you have a grim
picture of what is happening in modern Zimbabwe.

This is a country where 100 children die daily, it is a nation which loses
eight women out of a thousand die while creating life.† This is Zimbabwe.

Hopley and Hatcliffe which are both President Robert Mugabe’s creations are
the microcosmic examples of an uncaring government.

This entry was posted by Simon Moyo on Sunday, April 15th, 2012 at 7:23 am.


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Busy Independence Saturday – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary: 14th April 2012

As Mugabe reaches 32 years in power, the Vigil is preparing to mark Independence Day by presenting our petition to 10 Downing Street in an attempt to ensure that the elections threatened this year are supervised by the UN.†

A letter accompanying the petition thanks Prime Minister David Cameron for his recent promise to Tsvangirai to help Zimbabwe hold free and fair elections and asks the UK to pass on the petition, which has been signed in the past two years by more than 12,000 people from all over the world who have passed by the Vigil.

The petition reads: ‘We call on the Security Council to ensure that the next elections in Zimbabwe are free and fair. We look to the United Nations to supervise the electoral process and the handover of power to a new government and believe peace-keeping troops will need to be in place before, during and after the polling.’ It will be handed over at the Prime Minister’s official residence at 4.15 pm on Saturday 21st April by six representatives of the Vigil.

Some people have asked us (1) why we have approached the UK government and (2) why we are petitioning the UN. The answers are (1) because we are in the UK which is a permanent member of the Security Council and (2) because the UN has ultimate authority and we have already petitioned SADC and the AU with no result.

SADC promised last year to send three delegates to help overcome problems in the implementation of the GPA. None has yet arrived. We have been told for months that President Zuma is to visit Harare to bang heads together. A date has still to be set . . . Meanwhile, Mugabe continues to insist there will be elections this year whether or not reforms have been made or the MDC agrees.

The Vigil fears a scenario in which Zanu PF, in desperation because of Mugabe’s failing health,† collapses the GNU, calls elections and again bludgeons its way to a victory which is accepted again by SADC and the UN. We fully realise the UN is less interested in Zimbabwe than if there was a violent uprising there. But we hope our petition will help persuade it not to recognise the gangster regime on the horizon.

The visit to Downing Street coincides with the latest demonstration outside South Africa House† called by the MDC in the diaspora to put pressure on President Zuma to make sure the GPA is implemented by Mugabe. Vigil supporters will be there as usual. See Events and Notices for timings.

Other points

††††††† The Vigil was disgusted by the MDC’s hypocritical statement on the death of President Mutharika, speaking of his ‘wise council and remarkable efforts in finding solutions to the Zimbabwe political crisis’ (see: Resolutions of the MDC National Council – http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/apr14_2012.html#Z17).

††††††† The Vigil got the following text message ‘Breaking news!!!! Message from Mugabe’s doctor in Singapore. We did all we could but UNFORTUNATELY he’s still ALIVE’.

††††††† Even more macabre was the announcement from the organisers of the Zimbabwe Paralympic Games that the opening and closing ceremonies would be combined into one (Lack of planning and delays cripple Zim’s Paralympic Games – http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/apr14_2012.html#Z14).

††††††† Our friends of the Swaziland Vigil said the demonstration in Mbabane they spoke to us about last week had been broken up by the Swazi authorities. They are worried about the fate of their informant who they had been unable to contact since the demonstration.

For latest Vigil pictures check: http://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/. Please note: Vigil photos can only be downloaded from our Flickr website – they cannot be downloaded from the slideshow on the front page of the Zimvigil website.

FOR THE RECORD: 45 signed the register.

EVENTS AND NOTICES:

††††††† Zimbabwe@32: Reflections: Wednesday 18th April from 2.30 – 5 pm As part of the new Zimbabwe Unwound Project you are invited to Oxford House, Derbyshire St, Bethnal Green, London E2 6HG for an open discussion on what independence means to you. RSVP: info@zimbabweassociation.org.uk as space is limited.

††††††† Fourth 21st Movement Free Zimbabwe Global Protest organized by the MDC diaspora. Saturday 21st April. We meet at the Vigil at 2 pm and move to the South African High Commission at 3 pm. On this day the Vigil will also mark Zimbabwe’s 32nd Independence anniversary by presenting our petition asking the UN to monitor the next Zimbabwean elections to 10 Downing Street at 4.15 pm. We will move from South Africa House at 3.45 pm.

††††††† Next Swaziland Vigil. Saturday 21st April from 10 am – 1 pm. Venue: Swazi High Commission, 20 Buckingham Gate, London SW1E 6LB.† Please support our Swazi friends. Nearest stations: St James’s Park and Victoria. www.swazilandvigil.co.uk.

††††††† Taking Transitional Justice to the Diaspora. Monday 30th April from 5 – 6 pm. Venue: Chatham House, 10 St James’s Square, London SW1Y 4LE. Participants: Moses Mzila Ndlovu, Co-Chair of the Organ for National Healing, Reconciliation and Integration, and Primrose Matambanadzo, Chair of Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum (http://www.chathamhouse.org/events/view/182736).

††††††† Zimbabwe Action Forum. Saturday 5th May from 6.30 – 9.30 pm. Venue: Strand Continental Hotel (first floor lounge), 143 Strand, London WC2R 1JA. Directions: The Strand is the same road as the Vigil. From the Vigil it’s about a 10 minute walk, in the direction away from Trafalgar Square. The Strand Continental is situated on the south side of the Strand between Somerset House and the turn off onto Waterloo Bridge. The entrance is marked by a big sign high above and a sign for its famous Indian restaurant at street level. It's next to a newsagent.† Nearest underground: Temple (District and Circle lines) and Holborn.

††††††† Two Gentlemen of Verona Shona Production at the Globe Theatre, 21 New Globe Walk, Bankside, London SE1 9DT. Dates / Times: Wednesday 9 May, 2.30pm. Thursday 10 May, 7.30pm. Tickets £5 - £35 (700 £5 tickets available) from 020 7401 9919 and www.shakespearesglobe.com. A two-man Zimbabwean riot of love, friendship and betrayal. From Verona to Milan, via Harare and Bulawayo, two great friends, Valentine and Proteus, vie for the love of the same woman. In a triumphantly energetic ‘township’ style, Denton Chikura and Tonderai Munyevu slip into all of the play’s fifteen characters – from amorous suitors to sullen daughters, depressed servants and even a dog – in this new, specially commissioned translation.

††††††† Zimbabwe Vigil Highlights 2011 can be viewed on this link: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/the-vigil-diary/363-vigil-highlights-2011.† Links to previous years’ highlights are listed on 2011 Highlights page.

††††††† The Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe (ROHR) is the Vigil’s partner organisation based in Zimbabwe. ROHR grew out of the need for the Vigil to have an organisation on the ground in Zimbabwe which reflected the Vigil’s mission statement in a practical way. ROHR in the UK actively fundraises through membership subscriptions, events, sales etc to support the activities of ROHR in Zimbabwe. Please note that the official website of ROHR Zimbabwe is http://www.rohrzimbabwe.org/. Any other website claiming to be the official website of ROHR in no way represents the views and opinions of ROHR.

††††††† ZBN News. The Vigil management team wishes to make it clear that the Zimbabwe Vigil is not responsible for Zimbabwe Broadcasting Network News (ZBN News). We are happy that they attend our activities and provide television coverage but we have no control over them. All enquiries about ZBN News should be addressed to ZBN News.

††††††† The Zim Vigil band (Farai Marema and Dumi Tutani) has launched its theme song ‘Vigil Yedu (our Vigil)’ to raise awareness through music. To download this single, visit: www.imusicafrica.com and to watch the video check: http://ourvigil.notlong.com. To watch other Zim Vigil band protest songs, check: http://Shungurudza.notlong.com and http://blooddiamonds.notlong.com.

††††††† Vigil Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=8157345519&ref=ts.

††††††† Vigil Myspace page: http://www.myspace.com/zimbabwevigil.

Vigil co-ordinators

The Vigil, outside the Zimbabwe Embassy, 429 Strand, London, takes place every Saturday from 14.00 to 18.00 to protest against gross violations of human rights in Zimbabwe. The Vigil which started in October 2002 will continue until internationally-monitored, free and fair elections are held in Zimbabwe. http://www.zimvigil.co.uk.

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