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polls unless goals met - Zuma mediator
JOHN NQINDI | 08 April, 2012
South African President Jacob Zuma's facilitation team in the
political impasse says it will see to it that the goals set by
political settlement are met.
President Robert Mugabe
recently declared his Zanu-PF party would make sure
referendum was conducted in May and then push to announce
an election date
Zanu-PF has threatened to oust Zuma as Zimbabwean mediator in the
But Lindiwe Zulu, spokeswoman of Zuma's team, said: "We have not
in Zimbabwe. We are still engaged with the three principals to
ground in electoral reforms. We made it clear that there won't
in Zimbabwe unless the set goals are met."
periodic review, the Zimbabwe Peace Project revealed that since
its intentions clear to hold elections this year there had been
increase in political violence. Mugabe last week described the
government as an "animal' in his renewed call for elections.
has said it would only participate in an election when the
constitution-making process was finalised.
"The MDC is ready, but
will only participate in an election when all the
conditions for a free and
fair election are met," it said.
Many people feel Zuma has slowed down on
the Zimbabwe debate, particularly
because of the internal politics he is
facing within his ANC party.
But Zulu denies this: "That is not an issue
at all. Even though we do not
yet have a date to come to Zimbabwe, we will
eventually come. We have
commitments we are working on before coming there,"
Zapu leader Dumiso Dabengwa said this week Zanu-PF's call for
manipulative. "There are some politicians who want to derail
constitution-making process, so that the people go to polls under the
Lancaster House constitution, which was only meant to be a transitional
document," he said.
Constitution Will Not Guarantee Fair Polls: Dabengwa
Harare, April 7,
2012 – ZAPU President Dumiso Dabengwa has warned of a
public backlash if
President Robert Mugabe and his Zanu PF party proceed on
path to overturn the wishes of the people in the current
Dabengwa told a public meeting in Harare Wednesday evening that
by Mugabe, his former boss, to make self serving constitutional
during the current drafting process was foolhardy.
constitution has been passed by the person; that is the people’s
constitution and no individual, no matter what position he has, has the
right to subvert that constitution,” Dabengwa said.
“The people of
Zimbabwe would stand up to it. The people would be able to
stand up and say
‘No we will not accept that manipulation’.”
Dabengwa said ZAPU and the
majority of Zimbabweans made it overwhelmingly
clear during the Copac
outreach programme they preferred devolution of power
but Mugabe was trying
to block the popular idea from seeing the light of
Home Affairs Minister gave a surprise thumps up to the current
making process being run by his political opponents and further
not be destructed by repeated calls for the abandonment of the
Zanu PF politicians.
“What is most important is what the people said from
the outreach programme
and from the indications that have already been given
by Copac, it looks
like they captured most of the issues that the people
brought forward,” he
“The drafters of this constitution are the
same drafters who drafted the
1999 constitution and they already have that
expertise and experience and we
hope this time they will be more careful to
ensure that what the people said
is not be manipulated and changed to other
The former PF ZAPU intelligence supremo was however
quick to add that the
adoption of a new constitution will not guarantee good
governance under the
“A new constitution can set the
frame for a democratic election but it
cannot itself guarantee free and fair
elections," said Dabengwa.
"Individual politicians and political parties
can either guarantee the
framework or subvert it. The constitution must
contain provisions that
guarantee the separation of powers such that there
is no abuse of power by
any organ of the state."
together with a group of former PF ZAPU stalwarts broke out of
Zanu PF 2008
to revive the party, said Mugabe has benefited unfairly from
lacerated Lancaster House Constitution.
He derisively said the compromise
ceasefire document was the longest ever
transitional constitution he has
ever come across.
Robert Mugabe strikes secret deal to hand
Zimbabwe power to Emmerson Mnangagwa
Robert Mugabe has struck a secret "gentleman's
agreement" to hand over power in Zimbabwe to his feared defence minister,
Emmerson Mnangagwa, sources close to the two men have revealed.
Insiders say that
Mr Mugabe, aged 88 and now in office for three decades, will stand as Zanu PF's
candidate in elections one last time before handing over to Mr Mnangagwa, a
former spy chief nicknamed "The Crocodile" for his ruthless reputation.
In the clearest
sign yet that he is being groomed for the top job, Mr Mnangagwa, 65, was
recently dispatched to Tehran where he met Iranian President Mahmoud
Ahmadinejad, a key anti-Western ally.
Zanu-PF strongman succeed Mr Mugabe would help ensure that other powerful party
members avoid any future scrutiny about wealth gained through illegal land
seizures, and avoid possible prosecution at The Hague.
Mr Mnangagwa, the
former head of Zimbabwe's Central Intelligence Organisation, was appointed
campaign manager by Mr Mugabe during the 2008 presidential election and was
widely blamed for the brutality unleashed after his rival, Morgan Tsvangirai,
edged ahead in the first round of voting.
The prospect of
taking over from the ageing leader gives him a clear incentive to ensure that
elections tipped for later this year go Zanu-PF's way again. Last month, Mr
Tsvangirai's party, the Movement for Democratic Change, claimed that the army
was already recruiting and training jobless Zanu PF youths "on a massive scale"
for a new programme of vote-fixing.
Mr Mnangagwa, 65,
helped orchestrate Mr Mugabe's battle against white rule in the 1970s, during
which he was arrested and tortured by white Rhodesian policemen, rendering him
deaf in one ear.
say he is the one man feared even more than Mr Mugabe, a reputation he gained as
CIO head during the suppression of the rival Zapu party in 1980s, in which
thousands of civilians were killed and in some cases forced to dance on the
freshly-dug graves of relatives.
In later years he
has been seen as Zanu-PF's chief "money man", helping organise lucrative
concessions linked to gold and diamond mining.
Last month he met
Mr Ahmadinejad to discuss further co-operation between Zimbabwe and Iran, which
is known to be eyeing Zimbabwe's uranium for its disputed nuclear program. Mr
Ahmadinenjad said that their shared difficulties as targets of Western sanctions
could be converted into "new opportunities for further development and
In return, Iran's
defence minister, Brigadier General Ahmad Vahidi, pledged to help beef up
Zimbabwe's armed forces. "We will help strengthen their military so that they
are able to protect their land and culture, especially so they are prepared
against the pressures and threats from Western countries," he said.
The pact between
Mr Mugabe and Mr Mnangagwa is alleged to have taken place at State House in
Harare in April 2008, after the president failed to secure an outright majority
over Mr Tsvangirai.
According to a
long-serving Zanu PF minister who witnessed the meeting, the embattled Mr Mugabe
offered Mr Mnangagwa the future presidency if he could help ensure that things
went Mr Mugabe's way in the second round.
"It is common
knowledge within the high ranks of the party that Mnangagwa delivered the
presidency to Mugabe, and that we are in power today because of his efforts,"
the minister said.
"It is on the
basis of this understanding that Mugabe said in his own words that the 'job is
yours when I leave', receiving nods from senior military generals who were also
present that day."
close to senior defence chiefs told The Sunday Telegraph: "Mnangagwa was
told that he had to deliver victory for Mugabe by whatever means or he would go
down with the old man. After that, the two are glued together so tightly unless
Mnangagwa commits a cardinal sin, he is assured of the succession."
Others insist that
there are still considerable hurdles – most notably the feisty Joice Mujuru,
Zimbabwe's vice-president who is known to be favoured by Zanu-PF moderates as Mr
Mugabe's successor for her friendly relationship with Mr Tsvangirai.
Together with her
husband Solomon, a retired army chief, she led a rival faction to Mr Mnangagwa.
But last year, Mr Mujuru died in a mysterious fire at his rural farm, depriving
his wife of a real power base. Some suspect foul play in his death, although it
has never been proved.
So far no date has
been planned for future elections. While Mr Mugabe wants them held this year,
opponents say they should be postponed until new constitutional changes designed
to guarantee a fair political playing field are finalised.
minister claimed that if any election result did not go Zanu-PF's way, Mr
Mnangagwa's backers also had a plan to roll out "choreographed anarchy" which
would allow them to declare a state of emergency.
"In a state of
emergency, civil and political rights get suspended, thus the constitution
itself gets suspended, meaning that the army can potentially impose a ruler of
its choice under the pretext of enforcing peace and stability," the minister
While Mr Mnangagwa
has personally profited from white land seizures - he owns a 1,000 acre farm -
in public he strikes a less anti-British tone than Mr Mugabe.
In a rare
with The Sunday Telegraph last year, he told after Zanu-PF first came to power, he
had even offered promotions to the white policemen who tortured him in the name
of reconciliation. He dismissed talk of Britain having a vendetta against
Zimbabwe - a common claim of Mr Mugabe - and described himself as a "humble
man", baffled as to why so many spoke his name in fear.
In 2010, he also
claimed to have found God, telling mourners at his brother's funeral: "For those
of us comrades who were taught to destroy and kill and have seen the light in
the last days of our lives... our rewards are in heaven."
backing Mr Mnangagwa are said to be air force chief Perence Shiri, police
commissioner general Augustine Chihuri, secret service chief Happyton Bonyongwe,
and prominent Zanu PF politburo member Jonathan Moyo.
They are said to
have been told to keep quiet about it, but Maj-Gen Nyikayaramba, recently
promoted into post by Mr Mnangagwa, could not resist a boast at a recent rally
in Bikita in Masvingo province: "President Mugabe will rule for a while and then
leave office for his top lieutenant, the Crocodile," he told shocked villagers.
ex-leader Muluzi says vice president must take over
Sapa-AFP | 06 April, 2012
Malawi's ex-leader Bakili Muluzi on Friday called for
after the death of President Bingu wa Mutharika,
saying the vice president
must automatically take power.
calling for a constitutional order, for continued peace and order. The
of Malawi are very clear that the vice president takes over" when the
sitting president can no longer govern, Muluzi told a news
"We have to avoid a situation where there is disorder. Let us
constituion. We have no choice but follow the constitution. It's
important that there must be peace and calm," he said at his home
the commercial hub Blantyre.
Hospital and political sources
have confirmed that Mutharika died following
a heart attack Thursday, but
most ordinary Malawians have yet to receive the
news due to an official
silence in the state media.
"It's important that the government announces
the condition of the president
as soon as possible so that the nation is
informed," Muluzi said.
Mutharika had been trying to force Vice President
Joyce Banda from office,
after he expelled her from the ruling party in
2010. She since formed her
own party and emerged as one of Mutharika's
Mining Executives to Meet Zimbabwe's Indigenization Minister Over Equity
The executives who declined to be named told VOA Studio 7 they
reverse Indigenization Minister Saviour Kasukuwere’s plans to
their shares without due compensation
Gibbs Dube |
Executives of some mining firms in Zimbabwe whose 51
percent shares are
being targeted by the Ministry of Indigenization under
indigenization program say they are expecting to hold high
level talks with
state representatives next week.
The executives who
declined to be named told VOA Studio 7 they expect to
Minister Saviour Kasukuwere’s plans to appropriate
their shares without due
They said it is still unclear whether Kasukuwere will
proclamation which is not enforceable by any law in
Kasukuwere said Thursday all mining companies that have not yet
a 51 percent stake to indigenous people have ceded them to the
Buletsi Nyathi of the Youth in Mining Council
said affected firms should
seek help from the ruling parties and Southern
Community. “This needs a political solution otherwise
these mines will end
up in the wrong hands,” said Nyathi.
Zimbabwe says it will review proposed mining fees after a mining
uproar saying the steep increases will hurt the sector.
this week during a mining conference held in Harare, mines
permanent secretary Prince Mupaszviriho said his ministry was
impact of the fees on the mining sector. The government early
announced high fees for firms mining platinum, diamonds and other
in a bid to boost revenues from the sector.
Registration fees shot up
more than 1,000 percent with diamond claims rising
up to $5 million as well
as coal, natural gas and mineral oils to $100,000
Economist Eric Bloch said a review of the fees will help boost the
adding the government needs to find realistic means to address the
presented by industry players.
Chombo Is A
Cruel Man: Zvidzai
Bulawayo, April 07,2012-- Deputy Minister of Local
Government and Urban
Development Sesel Zvidzai who is also an MDC-T member
has blasted Minister
Ignatius Chombo saying he is a “cruel man” abusing the
Urban Council Act by
continuing to fire and suspend mayors
Zvidzai ‘s sentiments came after Chombo on Thursday
suspended Gwanda mayor
Lionel De Necker who belongs to the smaller faction
of the MDC on
allegations of defying his orders .
“He is a cruel man
who is abusing the Urban Council Act firing MDC mayors
and councilors day
in, day out. He is destroying the country’s local
authorities using this
Act, he still can’t believe that Zanu PF is no longer
running our towns and
cities,” Zvidzai told Radio VOP on Friday.
Zvidzai added: “The Urban Council
Act should actually be repealed as it is
giving too much power to
Chombo has been crossing swords with the former opposition party
Zanu PF party began losing control of urban councils to the MDC.
Minister Morgan Tsvangirai recently said Chombo was attempting to
the MDC by dismissing elected councillors ahead of watershed polls
held most likely next year.
The Elected Councillors Association of
Zimbabwe (ECAZ) an association which
represents councillors has also been
lambasting Chombo for trying to
decimate MDC councils.
Early this year
the Chombo fired MDC-T Mutare mayor Brian James on
misconduct. He claimed the suspension of James was in the
ensuring sound local governance for effective and efficient
in Mutare City.
Recently, he also sent a team to probe the Bulawayo City
fears he was up to no good.
Chombo says the reason why
he is dismissing MDC mayors and councillors is
because most of them are
Local Gov't Minister Under Fire for Suspending Gwanda
Residents in the small town, the capital of Matabeleland South
also came to the defense of ousted Mayor Lionel De Necker,
describing him as
a hard working public servant who cared less about
politics, but more about
Ntungamili Nkomo |
The Movement for Democratic Change formation headed by
Minister Welshman Ncube launched a broadside Friday at
Minister Ignatias Chombo for suspending its Gwanda
Residents in the small town, the capital of Matabeleland South
also came to the defense of ousted Mayor Lionel De Necker,
describing him as
a hard working public servant who cared less about
politics, but more about
Minister Ignatias Chombo
accused De Necker of defying his orders. Over the
years, Chombo, a Zanu PF
official, has targeted MDC municipalities,
suspending councilors in a
crusade widely viewed as politically-motivated.
MDC Organising Secretary
Qhubani Moyo accused Chombo of trying to
destabilize the Gwanda council,
dominated by the former opposition.
He said the move had given his party
new impetus to advocate devolution of
power to prevent ministers like Chombo
from overreaching and unfairly firing
"We will use
every avenue available, politically and legally to make sure
unjust act is overturned."
Gwanda resident, Jaston Mazhale told VOA that
De Necker served the town
well, adding his removal was regrettable.
Lashes Zanu PF Over Neglecting Huruva
Chivi, April 07,2012- Zanu PF
Member of Parliament (MP) for Chivi North
constituency and Masvingo
provincial political commissar Tranos Huruva’s
family members have come out
with guns blazing attacking Zanu PF for
neglecting the ailing MP who has
been battling for his life for close to a
Huruva who was
involved in a road accident while traveling to Harare was
at the Harare’s West End clinic before the family took him
to South Africa
where he is still in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU).
What irks the family
members worst was the fact that despite Huruva holding
a very powerful
provincial party position, no single Zanu PF member ever
bothered to either
phone or visits their troubled member.
“They are just silent, never
bothered to ask us whether our father is
getting better or worse. It really
shows their lack of concern, selfishness
and lack of unity. I am sure there
is no one member from Zanu PF really
knows where my father is being
treated,” said a lady who claims to be Huruva’s
daughter. She however,
preferred anonymity due to ‘the nature of the story’.
“It’s pathetic that
my father’s supposed friends from politics have just
decided to dump him at
a time when he really needs them most,” she added.
Huruva is reported to
have suffered serious internal injuries with some
medical reports said to
have confirmed some fractures of his ribs.
But Zanu PF provincial
chairman Lovemore Matuke refused to comment on the
issue saying the media
has nothing to do with people’s private lives.
“You should be looking for
other stories than this one… I think it’s not
good to write about private
lives,” said Matuke.
JAMA MAJOLA | 08 April, 2012 00:16
Zimbabwe's Mines and
Mining Development Minister Obert Mpofu - who was
recently accused in court
of demanding a $10-million kickback from Core
Mining and Mineral Resources -
has completed the takeover of the struggling
ZABG Bank, consolidating his
grip on business and politics.
The move came as Mpofu, a senior Zanu-PF
politburo member, steps up efforts
to build a business empire and position
himself to become vice-president -
and possibly enter the race to succeed
President Robert Mugabe.
Mpofu owns a swathe of businesses in different
sectors of the economy.
His accumulation of wealth, which coincided with
him becoming mines minister
after the discovery of diamonds in Marange, has
set tongues wagging, with
his critics alleging he is corrupt - charges he
has consistently denied.
Armed with a PhD, Mpofu is building a power base
in Matabeleland region and
across the country to consolidate his position in
Displaying his growing popularity and influence, he recently
threw a big
party at his Nyamandlovu base in Matabeleland North province to
his 60th birthday.
This week, Mpofu added another key asset
to his business portfolio with the
acquisition of the Zimbabwe Allied
Banking Group (ZABG), which, together
with several other banks, is
struggling to meet the regulatory minimum
recently reached an agreement with Unicapital of Mauritius and Mpofu's
Trebor & Khays to take it over and recapitalise it.
Unicapital, as the new major shareholders, will inject
ZABG so it can meet its minimum capital adequacy ratio
About $15.3-million will go towards recapitalising the
$12.5-million will be for the statutory minimum capital
Mpofu and the other new investors are to raise a
ZABG was critically undercapitalised, with a
negative core capital of over
$15-million. It tried to secure $5-million
from Treasury to cover the gap
and was facing closure until Mpofu came on
The bank was last year given until September 30 this year to
minimum capital requirements following a protracted demerger
process in the
last quarter of 2010, before the deadline was changed to
ZABG used to be 92,8% government-owned. It was formed after the
of Royal Bank, Barbican and Trust Bank at the height of the
Reserve Bank governor Gideon Gono gave
struggling banks an April 1 deadline
to meet minimum capital requirements or
Local banks are reeling from a chronic liquidity crunch,
with a number of
them facing closure or collapse. Zimbabwe has 26 banks,
most of them
struggling due to liquidity problems.
Gono said on
Thursday that ZABG, together with Royal Bank, which is also
"will escape the chop as they have succeeded in courting
who have put their offers on the table".
He said ZABG, which might
attract deposits from diamond mining companies if
Mpofu influences them to
bank with it, had been given two weeks to obtain
regulatory approvals from
various authorities in and outside Zimbabwe,
adding the bank would "emerge
stronger and better managed".
Mpofu's consolidation on the business front
after the acquisition of ZABG
will strengthen his bid to replace
Vice-President John Nkomo and possibly
enter Mugabe's succession
The ambitious minister is battling for political supremacy and
Matabeleland region against his fierce rival, Zanu-PF chairman
Moyo. The two clashed over factionalism and infighting in Zanu
PF at a
stormy politburo meeting last week. Mugabe had to
However, Mpofu's business consolidation and political
manoeuvres are dogged
by criticism of his ambitious political agenda and
corruption, which he always denies.
MDC-T MP Eddie
Cross recently slammed Mpofu for "personal accumulation of
and the creation of a massive business empire".
Mpofu is suing MDC-N
chairman Goodrich Chimbaira for allegedly telling a
rally in Nkayi,
Matabeleland North province, recently that the minister's
acquired through a corrupt patronage system. Mpofu was not
leader who split the nation
Reuters | 08 April, 2012 00:16
president Bingu wa Mutharika, who died this week, liked to portray
as the all-knowing "economist-in-chief", presiding over an
of boom years in the destitute southern African state.
Instead, he is
more likely to be remembered as an old-fashioned African
picked a disastrous fight with foreign donors and ordered a
anti-government protesters in which 20 people were killed - a
moment for the peace-loving "Warm Heart of Africa".
The mixture of relief
and jubilation that greeted the 78-year-old's death on
Thursday is a far cry
from when he first came to power in 2004.
Then, Malawi's 13 million
people hoped Mutharika would use his experience as
a World Bank technocrat
and regional trade expert to stamp out corruption
and raise the fortunes of
his landlocked and Aids-blighted country.
Educated in law and economics
at home, in India and the US, he had the free
market credentials to get the
largely agricultural economy moving - and for
most of his eight years in
power, it worked. Due mainly to a donor-funded
fertiliser subsidy scheme and
decent rains, Malawi's maize harvests boomed,
pushing annual economic growth
to 10%, one of the highest rates in the
But even during the
good times, the former British colony remained
dangerously dependent on one
product - tobacco, which accounted for up to
80% of forex
As a run of poor harvests hit home, Malawi's currency, the
under severe pressure from businesses desperate for dollars to
buy the food,
fuel and medicines. Yet Mutharika stubbornly refused to
devalue the kwacha
for fear it would trigger runaway inflation, as was
happening in nearby
As the problems mounted, he resorted to
long, rambling speeches, citing
fanciful growth statistics and inviting
unflattering comparisons with
dictator Hastings Banda.
described Mutharika's manner as "professorial, arrogant and
view confirmed a year ago when he expelled Britain's
ambassador over a
leaked diplomatic cable that called him "autocratic and
Britain promptly severed aid worth $550-million, and other
suit, cutting off financial flows that had accounted for as
much as 40% of
As the dollars evaporated, fuel
supplies dried up and food prices soared,
leading to popular unrest and
attacks on Mutharika's economic policies.
Rather than changing tack, he told
foreign donors to go to hell and hardened
his line against all opposition.
After police killed 20 people in nationwide
protests in July, he was
unrepentant, choosing a police graduation ceremony
to tell would-be
protesters he would "smoke you out if you go back to the
Donors and rights groups, and many ordinary Malawians, are
Mutharika gone Malawi can rebuild bridges with the outside world
back on track. "As Christians, we are not supposed to celebrate
Whyson Chitete, a businessman . "But this one is different."