The ZIMBABWE Situation Our thoughts and prayers are with Zimbabwe
- may peace, truth and justice prevail.

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News24

Farmer and workers beaten


Harare - War veterans allegedly assaulted a farmer and two of his workers on
a Mashonda farm in southern Harare on Friday, the Commercial Farmers Union
reported on Saturday.

Spokesperson Jenni Williams said the farmer, Charlie Brans, was allegedly
attacked by 20 war veterans while sitting in his office.

He was beaten across the back and face with a heavy chain and had to receive
medical treatment.

His assailants then broke his office windows and doors before going to the
farm village. Two of Bran's workers were then beaten, and a beer hall and a
hut burnt down.

After the incident a neighbour arrived on the scene with three policemen.

Sorry

Williams said while they were investigating the situation, a local leader
arrived with some war veterans, including two who reportedly took part in
the attack.

The leader made the alleged attackers apologise to Bran but they were not
arrested.

Williams said 19 white farmers were illegally evicted from their farms in
Mashonaland East since Zimbabwe's presidential poll.

She said although such incidents were reported to police their response was
exceptionally slow.

The main areas affected by the looting and evictions are Beatrice,
Marondera, Wedza and Featherstone districts in Mashonaland East.
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Telegraph

'We were the sex slaves of Mugabe's men'
By Brian Latham and Philip Sherwell in Harare
(Filed: 31/03/2002)


THE terror began at eight in the evening and lasted until dawn for Felicia
Matamure. In tears, the young trainee teacher described last week how she
was captured by government youth militia in north-eastern Zimbabwe and
dragged to their camp near Mt Darwin.

There she was gagged and gang-raped by a gang of 10 young men high on drink
and drugs in a horrifying night of sexual abuse and beatings. "They tied my
legs and arms to poles," the distraught 23-year-old told The Telegraph from
a safe house in Harare. "The men took turns to rape me while the others
watched and sang liberation songs."

Felicia was untied at dawn, but threatened with death if she fled the camp.
Undaunted, she escaped the next night and tried to report the case to the
police, only to be turned away. "They were not interested," she said. "The
war vets and the militia are above the law."

She said there were dozens of other abducted women at the former school that
has been turned into a militia camp. Some were made to wash and cook, others
were forced to sleep with the gang-leaders. Most were too scared to flee
because of the retribution that their family or village would face.

Lilian Nzirawa's ordeal was just as appalling: the militia forced her into
their camp, ripped off her dress and slashed her underwear with knives.

"I was tied, gagged and blindfolded while they raped me," she recalled.
After about an hour, her abductors removed the blindfold, but took it in
turns to rape her again as their comrades cheered and sang revolutionary
songs.

With tears rolling down her face, Lilian, in her early twenties, said she
recognised some of her assailants as local men from her home area near
Bindura, 60 miles north of Harare. "All I want is justice and all I can do
is cry," she said softly.

Both Felicia and Lilian are now in hiding but risked their lives to reveal
the horrors they endured; their names have been changed at their request.
Their revelations come as the militia and war veterans indulge in a new wave
of political violence.

After resorting to rampant electoral fraud in this month's election,
President Mugabe is desperate to ensure that the MDC can never again mount
such a strong political challenge to his regime. Across the country,
opposition activists have been attacked, forced to pay heavy "fines",
hounded from their homes and - in at least six cases since the election -
killed by Zanu-PF mobs.

White farmers are also being targeted: in Zanu-PF's Mashonaland strongholds,
dozens have been forced from their homes in revenge for backing for the MDC,
while Terry Ford was shot dead on his farm at Norton.

It is local black MDC activists who are bearing the brunt of the
anti-opposition crackdown, however. Laina Marowa, Tsanangurai Marowa and
Dorcas Maneni fled into the bush in the eastern Manicaland province after
serving as MDC polling agents. Mobs had turned up outside their houses and
local Zanu-PF leaders had ordered them to pay "fines" of almost 50, a small
fortune in rural areas.

Across the country, the MDC estimates that 1,200 of its election agents are
on the run and there are countless reports of abuse at militia torture
camps. Photographs obtained by The Telegraph reveal that new recruits are
still being trained in the Bindura area, 100 miles north of Harare.

Sexual assault has also been used as part of this new strategy of terror:
one 15-year-old girl was repeatedly raped by youth militia shortly after the
election because they could not find her parents, both MDC activists.

According to Dewa Mavhinga, a research officer with the Zimbabwe Women
Lawyers' Association (ZWLA), there are more than 1,000 female sex slaves
being held in 56 militia camps.

"These militia are now in celebration mode," he said. "They act like they're
unafraid of anything."

The victims fall into three categories. "Some are promised money," he said.
"Others go in because they're ordered to and they're too frightened to
disobey. The last group are taken into the camps as punishment for
supporting the opposition MDC."

The fear that they will be discovered and killed by their former tormentors
is common among escaped sex slaves, according to Mr Mavhinga. "They have
been told that they will be hunted down and killed by the militia and the
war veterans," he said.

Even once they have escaped, the stigma attached to rape in rural areas
means that women's suffering continues. "They can't just admit they've been
raped because they fear their husbands will not have anything more to do
with them," said Mr Mavhinga.

Felicia confirmed the problem as she broke down in tears and explained that
she was married with a small child. "My husband works in South Africa. When
I escaped I wanted to phone and tell him but I just couldn't do it. By the
time I spoke to him, he had heard. When he answered the phone, he just said:
'I know'. That was it."

Asked if she will ever see her husband again, Felicia smiled sadly and shook
her head. "I don't think so," she said.

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Zimbabwe farmers demand government protection

Zimbabwe's 4,000 white farmers have demanded government protection to stop
premature evictions and looting of their belongings and land.

The farmers have reported an upsurge in violence, evictions, and looting of
their property after Robert Mugabe's victory in disputed presidential
elections.

The union representing the farmers said they fear the violence was part of a
campaign of retribution against them by Mugabe.

He who accuses whites of supporting the opposition Movement for Democratic
Change in the election.

Since the election on March 9-11, 19 farmers have been illegally evicted and
there have been 31 cases of looting in the Mashonaland East province
southeast of Harare, one of eight rural provinces.

At least 2,000 farm workers have been driven from their homes and jobs in
the corn and tobacco province.

White farmers became targets of violence two years ago when armed militants
loyal to Mugabe began occupying their farms with tacit government approval.

The militants demanded the farms be seized and distributed to the country's
millions of landless blacks. Whites make up less than one percent of the
Zimbabwe's population but own most of its farmland.

Critics say Mugabe has used the land issue to garner support and deflect
attention from the country's crumbling economy. Despite promises to
redistribute the land to poor blacks, many of the farms have been given to
loyal lawmakers and confidantes of Mugabe.

In the latest attack on a white farmer, Charlie Brans, a man in his 50s, was
beaten with a chain on Friday on his farm near Beatrice, 35 miles south of
Harare. Mr Brans received emergency treatment for wounds on his back after a
group of about 20 ruling party militants stormed his farm office, smashing
windows and doors, the union said.

Story filed: 17:39 Sunday 31st March 2002

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MSNBC

Mugabe celebrates victory with warning to rivals



HARARE, March 31 Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe on Sunday celebrated
his controversial re-election with a warning to rivals that he will deal
with protests against his government with an iron fist.

In a clip broadcast by Zimbabwe state television, Mugabe told
hundreds of guests at a victory party at his Zvimba rural home, 100 km (65
miles) northwest of Harare, there was no question of a re-run of the March
9-11 presidential poll, which critics say he won fraudulently.
''The people made their choice...and that choice must be respected.
We will not brook any protests, any attempt to cause problems,'' he said, in
a speech which alternated between the local Shona language and English.
''This is a post-election period and no nonsense will be tolerated.
Those who want to rebel and to cause lawlessness will be beaten to the
ground like they have never been beaten,'' he said.
Mugabe was cheered by his supporters as he made the threat at a party
which was attended by Zimbabwe's Defence Forces chief General Vitalis
Zvinavashe.

NEW PHASE
''If they (the opposition) think we will be soft, that's gone. We are
in a new phase, a new chapter and we have a very firm government, very
firm,'' he said.
Mugabe said he had large national support and the opposition
supporters in the capital Harare and the second city Bulawayo were behaving
like islanders with no idea of what was going on around them.
''They are better advised to carry on with life than pretend they
represent a national programme,'' he said.
In a preliminary report on the presidential poll last Tuesday, the
opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) charged Mugabe had only
beaten its leader Morgan Tsvangirai after inflating voter turnout in rural
areas, stuffing ballot boxes and locking out voters in the opposition's
urban strongholds.
Tsvangirai has branded Mugabe's victory ''daylight robbery'' and has
spurned suggestions from southern African leaders that he should join a
government of national unity.
Zimbabwe was suspended from the Commonwealth for a year on March 19
after the group's election observers accused Mugabe of electoral fraud.
The Zimbabwean government dismisses the fraud accusations, saying
they are being pushed by Western powers who want to see Mugabe ousted
because he is seizing white-owned farms for landless blacks.
Mugabe's governing ZANU-PF party on Wednesday ruled out a re-run of
the presidential election, saying the poll had been conducted in ''a free
and fair manner.''
The party's top politburo said Mugabe -- Zimbabwe's ruler since the
former Rhodesia gained independence from Britain in 1980 -- had been legally
elected for a six-year term and ZANU-PF ''will not tolerate the talk and
whisper in subversive circles about a re-run of the presidential election.''

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Zim Standard

Patriotism and loyalty

Sunday Opinion By H Makoni

Most African leaders, among them die-hard dictators, have often justified
their continued grip on power by arguing that they were duly elected through
the "one person, one vote" system and that therefore there was no need to
question their style of government. Some even go further and try to convince
the rest of the world that Africa has its own type of democracy, quite
different from the way it is perceived by the rest of the world!

According to these leaders, the murder, plundering of the economy,
corruption, inefficiency in the public sector, misinformation of the
electorate, suppression of opposing views and elimination of opponents are
all supposed to be our brand of democracy.

Is it any wonder therefore that the majority, if not all, of the so-called
independent and democratic SADC and OAU countries do not see anything wrong
with the way the Zimbabwe government has been behaving towards its people
since 2000?

Without going into the intricate details of what constitutes a democratic
society, allow me to dwell on this often abused phenomenon of "one person,
one vote" and the attendant sovereignty that derives from such a system.

In my opinion, no nation in Africa (or indeed anywhere else), can claim to
be democratic and sovereign if the process through which that nation was
born, does not take into consideration some of the basic tenets that are
supposed to accompany this process.

Of paramount importance, is the need to educate the electorate on what they
should not only expect, but demand, from those they put into power through
their votes.

People should be made aware of what their responsibilities are towards their
government, and equally, what they should expect in return. If a government
that is voted into power does not respect those who sustain the economy of a
country through payment of taxes and other forms of contributions, and
instead prefers to value some individuals' loyalty to the party, then that
government does not deserve to be in power.

If people are not free to change their minds on any party that they might
have voted for before, then there is no point in holding elections. If
people are herded like cattle to attend political meetings or rallies, then
whatever comes out of these people at the ballot box is bound to reflect the
same fear that was instilled in them in the first place. If people are
forced to attend "reorientation classes" in some absurd and entirely foreign
doctrine that does not identify with our own backgrounds, again, when they
cast their vote, they are merely expressing the wishes and views of their
'mentors' and not their own.

Which brings in the issue of foreign 'observers', whose role is supposed to
be that of adjudicators during elections. Do these observers play any
meaningful role, especially considering that they come only a few days
before the elections and in some cases, as happened in this country, they
are from countries perceived to be friendly to the ruling party?

In any event, what will these people observe in such a short period of time?
Is this not like a prison inspector coming to inspect the conditions under
which prisoners are kept after four years, at which time the poor souls
might be in in such a state that they cannot say how they have been treated
over that period, or they may have been thoroughly subjected to such
physical and mental torture that they are beyond repair. In the presence of
the guards, everything will appear normal to the inspector and he is bound
to go back to his superiors with the wrong impression.

While I agree that these 'observers' cannot be a permanent feature in
foreign countries, I however feel that the approach they should adopt should
be one of studying the political culture prevailing in the country and of
particular importance, watch out for any signs of fear and uneasiness among
the people. This task would require psychologists-cum-politicians, and not
ordinary people.

They should also observe the type of rhetoric and language used,
particularly by the ruling party, because this is the one that can make any
election free, that is, if it is not afraid of something. They have all the
security apparatus and public funds at their disposal, and therefore, are
the ones most likely to influence the vote one way or other. They can also
carry out their threats in the knowledge that they have the backing of
"security" agents at their disposal.

Opposition parties may try to cause trouble, but the effectiveness of such a
campaign strategy will not result in flawed election results, because the
effect of the terror campaign is minimal.

How many so-called "democratic republics" in Africa came into power through
the vote? Have people once asked themselves what is so sovereign about being
oppressed and denied a voice?

What is supposed to be the top priority of any country with more than 3/4 of
its citizens living below the poverty datum line? Is it the formation of a
huge army that is purported to 'safeguard' the interests of the people and
defend it from imaginary enemies? Or is it the amassing of deadly weapons
and luxury cars for the leaders that makes the people proud of their
country?

After the elections are over, do the leaders ever consult the people on any
crucial decisions they take, or when they change a constitution? How many
black governments conduct referendums during their terms of office to gouge
public opinion of themselves and their style of government? Are members of
parliament really relevant in a country where leaders claim to be more equal
than those who voted them into power, and in situations where loyalty to a
party is considered to be patriotism? Why do most, if not all leaders prefer
to have their "savings" in the so-called former colonial countries instead
of their own?

Why do they expect the people to be patriotic when they themselves do not
lead by example? Why do they send their children to schools outside the
country and expect ours to endure all the hardships of a poorly run
educational system? How many ministers are ever fired for corruption or
outright inefficiency? Or, alternatively, how many are honourable enough to
resign with an apology to the nation? Indeed there are more questions than
answers.

It is only when the electorate is aware of what constitutes a good
government, that Africa can start to earn the respect of the rest of the
world. Presently, the developed world does not have much respect for our
governments, not because of colonial hangovers as we are continually
reminded, but because they have studied the way our leaders govern us and
they know that we are not yet serious about developing our economies.

Loyalty to the country should come before loyalty to a political party or
government that comes and goes. This is an important area of democracy and
patriotism that the electorate needs to be made aware of.

Many governments, particularly in Africa, feel threatened by an enlightened
electorate, hence the reluctance by most of these to educate the people
about good governance. They will continue to hold elections every five or
six years just to hoodwink the people and the rest of the world into
believing that they are practising democracy.

Unfortunately, most of us in Africa will never experience what it means to
be independent and democratic for a long time to come unless and until we
learn to insist on a high calibre of people we put into power. We should all
know that it suits them to have an ignorant, docile and poverty-stricken
electorate and if the majority of the people are poor, the better their
prospects of remaining in power and continuing to give promises that are
never fulfilled.

In my view, a government that comes or remains in power through a mandate
derived from an uneducated, misinformed and intimidated electorate is not
legitimate and therefore cannot lay claim to sovereignty.

It is only when the electorate is free to vote and elect a government of its
choice, without undue influence, intimidation, deliberate misinformation and
with clear objectives that we can say we have reached the level of political
maturity that we should strive to attain, as well as match those systems
obtaining in other truly democratic countries.

In the final analysis, can we say our leaders and governments are legitimate
when voters go into elections under fear and ignorance of what is expected
of them except putting an "X" on an otherwise useless piece of paper?

Judging by the above, how many governments can really say they are worthy of
being called independent, democratic and sovereign in Africa?

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Zim Standard

No more aid from Germany

By Kumbirai Mafunda

GERMANY is to freeze aid to Zimbabwe following President Mugabe's disputed
victory in the 9-10 March presidential elections, The Standard has learnt.


Wieczorek-Zeul, the German minister of Economic Development, was recently
quoted by a German newspaper as saying his country would review all aid
programmes to Zimbabwe following the re-election of Mugabe. Zeul said only
programmes for the combating of Aids and the relief of poverty would be
continued.

Germany's deputy ambassador to Zimbabwe, Werner Koehler, confirmed these
latest developments. "We are in the process of reviewing all existing aid.
Since 2000, we have frozen government cooperation. We have increased
assistance to non-governmental organisations. There has been no money coming
in since 2000," said Koehler."

He said before its decision to freeze aid, his country had taken into
account the Zimbabwean government's departure from the criteria underlying
the rules of German development cooperation worldwide, criteria such as
respect for human rights and the rule of law, active participation of the
people in the political process, commitment to a market-oriented economy and
to development-oriented policies.

"Shortcomings in these areas have led to considerable reduction in official
German-Zimbabwe development cooperation. We are phasing out a bit faster,"
said Koehler.

On existing projects which are currently under implementation, Koehler said
his country doesn't want to leave behind a country in ruins. "We don't want
to pull out of a project we have already started."

The deputy ambassador said the cut back on aid would not affect funding for
programmes of a non-governmental nature. "All the new money that has come
has been channelled to NGOs. It is the state-to- state cooperation that is
going to be affected," said Koehler.

He said basic health programmes, humanitarian and food aid could remain
unaffected if an agreement was reached. Over 600 000 people face mass
starvation in Zimbabwe.

The German move comes in the wake of reports this week that the country was
expected to lose more than $4 billion in development aid this year following
moves by major donors and trading partners to sever ties with Harare after
the country's defective presidential poll. Those severing all assistance to
Mugabe include Norway, Japan, Canada and Denmark.

Germany's programmes in Zimbabwe include: the Programs for Biomass Energy
Conservation (PROBEC); the World Peace Service which supports grassroots
initiatives in the building up of a sustainable and productive environment;
the German Development Service which provides funds for the promotion of
NGOs and for micro projects. There are other programmes including those run
by foundations such as Friedrich Nauman and Friedrich Ebert Stiftung.

Mugabe's fraudulent victory has been condemned by the international
community and described internally as a massive fraud. The Commonwealth
observer team led by former Nigerian president Abdusalam Abubakaar, produced
a damning report on the conduct of the elections. The Commonwealth, a body
comprising mainly former British colonies has now suspended the southern
African country from the Commonwealth.

Soon after the presidential poll, the European Union parliament announced
that it had rejected President Mugabe's victory and appealed to the
international community to do likewise.
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Zim Standard

Life couldn't be better for Mozambican runners

By our own Staff

CHICUALACUALA-Five years ago, Ferenando watched helplessly as Zimbabwean
police impounded his treasured bags of used clothing (mazitye) and locked
him up in a filthy cell at a station in Chiredzi, the agricultural capital
of the south-eastern Lowveld.

He joined several other Mozambican nationals who had been arrested for
illegally entering Zimbabwe to sell their wares. Life in their own country,
ravaged by years of bitter civil war between the Frelimo government and the
Mozambican National Resistance army (MNR), had become so unbearable that
they decided they could not just sit around doing nothing.

Their survival came to depend on trips into Zimbabwe where used clothing was
in great demand. But the Zimbabwean police, eager to stem the entry of the
despised Mozambican, known locally as makarushu-proved to be a hindrance as
they harassed them constantly and confiscated their goods forcing
faint-hearted people such as Ferendando to give up these lucrative trips.

But all that is history. He's back in business, thanks to the presidential
election.

Ferenando, like thousands other Mozambicans, is now assured of entry into
Zimbabwe as and when he wants. Three weeks before the elections, word
reached his village which is close to the Sango border post that anyone not
in possession of a Zimbabwean national identity card could get one easily so
long as he was prepared to vote for President Robert Mugabe.

So Ferenando quickly crossed into Zimbabwe where in the Sengwe communal area
he and his three brothers and sisters, who are domestic workers, easily
acquired birth certificates and national identity cards.

As part of the deal, the three stayed with relatives at Mabalauta in
Chiredzi South constituency until election day when they took part in the
crucial election.

"This election was important because we had been told that we would lose our
newly acquired Zimbabwean citizenship if president Mugabe lost the election
to Morgan Tsvangirai of the MDC. So we were duty-bound to give our
benefactor, Mugabe, the extra vote he needed to ward off the challenge,"
recalls Ferenando who is now a common feature at Sango border post, some
250km from Chiredzi town.
He now goes up and down the two countries conducting business without fear
of harassment by Zimbabwean police.

This and similar stories are the kind a visitor to the south eastern part of
Zimbabwe is likely to hear from people who, only a few years ago, were
regarded as aliens in a country in which they had formerly been despised as
hoarders of scarce commodities.

The Mozambicans who survive on the sale of goods in Zimbabwe are making a
killing in the country as they bring in that hard-to-find US dollar and
trade it on the black market. They then buy goods to sell back home.

"It is no secret here that many makarashu obtained Zimbabwean identity cards
and voted in the presidential election. Some of them are stalwarts of
Frelimo and needed no persuasion to vote for Mugabe.

"In fact, we cannot blame them because it was a deal which benefited all the
parties," said a villager at Malipati Secondary School.
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Detained Journalist Freed In Zimbabwe
Ananova
Sunday March 31, 2002 8:42 PM


A Daily Telegraph journalist being held in Zimbabwe under a new security law
has now been released.

Peta Thornycroft was arrested last week under the new Public Order Security
Act and led to believe she had been charged with "publishing false
statements prejudicial to the state".

She was later charged with the lesser offence of possessing a car with an
incorrect number plate and was held under allegations that she had worked
illegally as a journalist.

She has now been freed after a High Court in Zimbabwe ordered her release.

A Daily Telegraph spokesman said: "We have confirmation that she has been
released and is spending the night with her family in Harare."

He added that the news had come from the paper's Africa correspondent, Tim
Butcher, who has been monitoring the situation from over the border in South
Africa, but no further details were immediately available.

Staff at the paper had earlier expressed concern that despite the High Court
directive Mrs Thornycroft might not be released immediately.

A spokesman said: "The release has been ordered, there is no doubt about
that, but there is sometimes a gap between what is ordered and what actually
happens.

"She was originally told she had violated the Public Order Security Act but
they (her lawyers) built a case undermining that, so they then invoked the
new media law called the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act
saying she hadn't registered her work as a journalist."

He added: "But details of the Act have only just been announced and it takes
three months before it fully comes into force, so it was rather a weak case.
It did not take a judge long when the case came before him to decide she
should not be held in custody."

Guardian

Reporter In Zimbabwe Ordered Freed

Sunday March 31, 2002 6:20 PM


HARARE, Zimbabwe (AP) - A High Court judge on Sunday ordered police to free
a British newspaper reporter being held on the charge of violating
Zimbabwe's severe new media laws.

Judge Mohammed Adam said he found no reason for the detention of Peta
Thornycroft, 57, a correspondent for the Daily Telegraph and two South
African newspapers.

``There were never any grounds for her arrest. The accusations she is not
entitled to work as a journalist are absolute nonsense,'' Adam said in his
ruling.

It was not immediately clear when the journalist would be released.

Thornycroft was arrested Wednesday in Chimanimani, 300 miles southeast of
Harare, her lawyer Tapiwanashe Kujinga said. She was investigating reports
of reprisal violence by ruling party militants against opposition supporters
following presidential elections earlier this month.

President Robert Mugabe was declared the winner in the widely criticized
election being marred by political intimidation, violence, and vote rigging.

Thornycroft had been warned she could not work as a journalist without
proper government accreditation. Working without state accreditation was
made illegal under the sweeping Access to Information Act signed passed in
February.

She was the first journalist arrested under the media act that has been
criticized as a government tool to muzzle the independent media.

Thornycroft, a British-born Zimbabwe citizen, had some 30 years of
experience as a reporter and under the media laws had not yet been
officially required to seek official government accreditation by the state
media commission.

As part of its crackdown on the independent media, Mugabe's government also
threatened to prosecute Geoff Nyarota, the editor of the country's only
private daily newspaper, on a story his paper ran about a presidential
election run-off.

Information Minister Jonathan Moyo wrote Nyarota asking him to correct what
Moyo termed ``deliberate falsehoods'' or face legal action under the new
media laws.

The Daily News reported last week that the African Caribbean
Pacific-European Union Joint Assembly in Cape Town had passed a resolution
calling for a fresh election.

Jailed journalist 'is tired of Zimbabwe'
By Brian Latham in Harare
(Filed: 31/03/2002)


THE lawyer acting for Peta Thornycroft, the Telegraph's jailed Zimbabwe
correspondent, said yesterday that he was submitting papers demanding her
release. Tapiwanashe Kuchinga said he was "mustering all the hope he could"
that Thornycroft would be released today.

"I've asked Tendai Biti [a trial lawyer and the opposition Movement for
Democratic Change's shadow foreign minister] to make an urgent application
to the High Court in Harare," said Mr Kuchinga.

Thornycroft, 57, speaking from a police cell in Zimbabwe's eastern border
city of Mutare yesterday, said that she was "bored and very tired" and that
prison conditions were "absolutely abysmal".

Thornycroft has been charged under Zimbabwe's new draconian media law - the
Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act. She was arrested last
week in the south-eastern district of Chimanimani.

Thornycroft tripped in her cell last night, injuring her foot and knee.
"There's no light in here," she said, adding that she had otherwise been
well-treated "with one or two exceptions".

Angola's armed forces and the Unita rebel movement signed a ceasefire pact
yesterday with the aim of ending a 27-year-old civil war, the Portuguese
news agency Lusa reported. Government troops killed Unita's long-time rebel
leader Jonas Savimbi last month, raising hopes for an end to the fighting.
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News24

'We could not ignore the observers' - Obasanjo

Lagos - Nigeria's President Olusegun Obasanjo has admitted he was reluctant
to suspend Zimbabwe from the Commonwealth but said the grouping's report on
the country's March elections had been "impossible to ignore," Sunday papers
reported.

Obasanjo, speaking on local radio Saturday, charged that many minds had been
made up on Zimbabwe before the controversial March 9-11 election was held.

Referring to a Commonwealth summit in early March, just ahead of the
Zimbabwe vote, Obasanjo said: "Before we went to Australia, many heads of
state of Commonwealth nations had made up their minds on Zimbabwe."

"I warned the prime minister of Australia (John Howard) before the meetings
that their position was capable of dividing the Commonwealth and that was
when he slowed down," Obasanjo added.

After the elections, the Nigerian government initially said they had been
flawed but basically "legitimate".

However, Commonwealth observers headed by former Nigerian military ruler
Abdulsalami Abubakar issued a damning report on the elections saying they
were conducted in an atmosphere of fear and intimidation and did not reflect
the free will of the people.

Days later, a "troika" formed of Howard, Obasanjo and South African
President Thabo Mbeki agreed to suspend Zimbabwe from the Commonwealth for a
year.

"Unfortunately, the Commonwealth Monitoring Group returned a verdict which
we could not ignore," Obasanjo said.

The comments are among the first Obasanjo has made publicly on the Zimbabwe
issue, which has proved embarrassing for African leaders.

At the London press conference where Zimbabwe's suspension was announced,
both Obasanjo and Mbeki declined to speak to reporters.
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Zim Standard


Trouble in ZRP

By our own Staff

A FURORE has erupted within the police force following the exclusion of some
police officers from promotions effected last week, despite their
involvement in campaigns for President Mugabe in the recent presidential
election.

Police sources told The Standard last week that the promotions had led to
serious discontent within the force with some officers, including war
veterans, feeling that they had been shortchanged.

According to the sources, a number of police officers had anticipated
rewards for their campaigns for President Mugabe in the 9 and 10 March
election which Mugabe won under highly controversial circumstances. During
the run-up to the 2000 parliamentary election as well as the recent
presidential election, the police force was turned into a virtual Zanu PF
wing, harassing opposition supporters and officials at will and forcing the
MDC to cancel several rallies.

The new draconian Public Order and Security Act, gave the police the power
to stop meetings and rallies.

"The promotions have left a sour taste in the mouth. Most of us who
campaigned for Mugabe did not benefit and it is unfair. Mugabe won the
election and naturally we expect our efforts to be recognised. Some of us
were at the forefront of the campaign and we cannot be treated like junk.
What is disappointing is that there are people who we know did not campaign
for a single day, but were promoted. They were sitting in their offices
while we were out there in the field. It is not fair," complained one
policeman who did not benefit from the largess.

The Standard understands some officers, mainly war veterans, took the issue
up with police commissioner, Augustine Chihuri. It was not, however, clear
at the time of going to press how Chihuri had reacted to their complaints.

Police spokesman, Assistant Commissioner Wayne Bvudzijena, is believed to
have been left out of the promotions, much to the surprise of his
colleagues.

According to sources, war veterans in the force expected to be automatically
promoted following interviews which they regarded as a mere formality : "The
members of the interview board did not ask us much and we were interviewed
in our vernacular languages to make things easier.

When contacted for comment, Assistant Commissioner Wayne Bvudzijena had this
to say: "In any promotion exercise, there are those who are promoted while
others are left out. We cannot promote the whole organisation. You should
know that we do not deal with politics. We deal with crime."
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An email received....

Dear friends around the world, many of you have
asked for an update on the
situation here in Zimbabwe. We
have been deliberately trying to keep a low
profile. Avoiding even watching the
news helps us to manage the
stress. The farm situation seems unchanged. I have
no news on the Baileys who
were being kept hostage in their
home. They too are trying to play things down in
an attempt to let the
situation cool down. Our area near Gweru
is relatively quiet, but many other farming areas
continue to be subjected to
ongoing violence and lawlessness. It
seems that the authorities here are adept at
ignoring world opinion, court
rulings and even the will of the
majority.

Food is critically short. One can still buy meat,
bread, milk, flour etc if you
have the financial means, but the
mass of people who need maise meal to survive
cannot find it to buy! The people
of Zimbabwe are a peace
loving and gentle people. They have accepted the
rigged outcome of the
elections and seem resigned to a
hopeless future. We hope that the world doesn't
mistake this lack of 'mass
objection' as a sign of legitimacy for
the elections.

The latest personal headache for many is having to
apply for a new birth
certificate. I spent the day in Bulawayo
to get mine. If one of your parents was born
anywhere outside of Zimbabwe, it
seems that the authorities are
denying renewal of passports etc. This is
unconstitutional and can be fought in
court, but who has the resources
to pay lawyers ? After my day spent in lines
queing for papers, many asked me "
So Chris, what do you think is
going to happen here now? Will we make it? Will
Zimbabwe survive? Will we be
here to see democracy
triumph?" I didn't have an answer, so I turned to
the Lord and prayed: " Lord,
you've gotta help me! What do I tell
everyone? What do YOU think? What is going to
happen here in Zim? Is there a
future for peace-loving people?"
Then I turned to our daily bible reading called
'Daily Light' and read the
passage for the evening. WOW! Talk
about a rhema of God's word! He truely spoke to me
through those scriptures.
Let me share some of them:

1 Cor 10:13 "God is Faithful!"
1 Peter 4:19 "So then, those who suffer according
to God's will should commit
themselves to their faithful
Creator and continue to do good."
2 Cor 1:20 "For no matter how many promises God
has made they are all 'Yes' in
Christ."

And so we continue to trust Him! We continue to
believe that the prayers of
God's people around the world
WILL prevail and that righteousness and justice
WILL be established in Zimbabwe
soon.

Yours in Christ, Pastor Chris.
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Zim Standard

Zapu calls for election re-run

By Loughty Dube

BULAWAYO-Opposition political party, Zapu, has added its voice to the
growing calls for a re-run of the disputed presidential elections. It is
advocating the creation of a transitional government to see the country
through fresh elections conducted under the auspices of the United Nations
(UN).

In a strongly-worded statement released last week, Zapu said it regarded
President Mugabe as a mere pretender to the throne.

"People of Zimbabwe refuse to recognise the legitimacy of Mugabe's
presidency which he clings to in spite of and despite the people," reads
part of the statement which further asserts that within the ever-declining
Zanu PF membership structures, Mugabe continued to be assisted only by "his
cronies and criminal elements such as war vets, youth brigades and corrupt
women's league members."

Zapu said it welcomed the support given by the international community to
the long-suffering people of Zimbabwe, belated though it was.

"The stand taken by the EU, US and now the Commonwealth is a positive move
and is in solidarity with the Zimbabwean masses."

Zapu took a swipe at the OAU and Sadc for endorsing Mugabe's victory, saying
the organisations had taken the view that Mugabe's oppression of the masses
of Zimbabwe was a democratic dispensation to Zimbabweans in the African
context.

"The attempt by the African leaders, surprisingly led by South African
president Thabo Mbeki, and the ANC, to redefine democracy to encompass
floggings, hangings, executions and genocide as essential elements of
democracy in the African context, is most shameful to say the least.

"The lowering of the democratic standards to accommodate, protect and
legitimise African dictators should be resisted by all democratic and
progressive forces in Africa and worldwide," the party said.

The statement goes on to say that the 9 and 10 March presidential election
was fundamentally flawed.

It said the United Nations or a body delegated by it should supervise the
electoral process including the process of voter registration and the
compilation of the voters' roll as it had done in Cambodia.

The main opposition political party, the Movement for Democratic Change
(MDC), citing electoral irregularities, has also called for a re-run of the
polls.

The United States and Britain have unreservedly condemned the presidential
polls saying they were flawed.
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Zim Standard

Chiyangwa fumes at US ban

By Chengetai Zvauya

CHINHOYI member of parliament, Philip Chiyangwa, has attacked the United
States government for imposing targeted sanctions on himself and his Zanu PF
colleagues.

"Why are they interested in Chiyangwa? I do not need anybody to tell me
which country I should or should not visit. Is America our God? To hell with
them. All Zanu PF members will take appropriate action against this move as
we have not committed any crime. We will respond very soon.

"We are going to take steps to match their actions, steps against the
American, British and Swiss nationals working here. We are busy consulting
others so we can chart the way forward," he told The Standard.

"My journeys are confined to countries in Africa. I have banned myself from
other countries in the past five years. They will never see me landing on
their soil."

Chiyangwa flatly denied that he had recently been denied an entry visa into
Australia.

"I have heard this rumour are making the rounds in town and it is not true.
These are malicious allegations by people who want to tarnish my name and
image. You can find out from the Australian high commission whether I have
applied for a visa.

"I have never visited Australia in my life, let alone made attempts to get a
visa from their offices."

Chiyangwa is on a list of businessmen and individuals targeted for personal
sanctions by the US government for allegedly benefiting from their links
with a corrupt Zanu PF administration which has abandoned the rule of law,
perpetrated human rights abuses, and stolen the recent presidential
election.

Meanwhile, an Embassy spokesman in Harare yesterday said the US government
has not and will not divulge the names of persons subject to travel
restrictions.

"We are attempting to notify the individuals affected. We strongly advise
those who believe they may be affected by travel restrictions to make an
appointment to meet with a US Embassy counselor official prior to departing
for the US. The embassy telephone numbers are 250593/4, 703169, 703378 and
703478."