February 3, 2013 in News
PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe wants this year’s elections to be held on June 29,
but a faction within his Zanu PF is opposed to the date fearing that the
party is not yet ready for polls, senior officials have said.
BY PATRICE MAKOVA
Sources told The Standard last week that Mugabe had told senior party
officials to prepare for elections on June 29.
“The President [Mugabe] said the cut-off date for an election is June 29 and
not any other day later,” said a Politburo member.
“He wants all the processes leading to elections, including the voter
registration and voter education exercises to be done as soon as possible.”
The official said Mugabe had indicated that he might proclaim the dates for
the elections, at the same time that he would announce the dates for the
referendum on a new constitution.
“It’s a gamble which Mugabe appears set to take,” said another senior party
The Zanu PF official said Mugabe’s confidence of winning stemmed from the
fact that Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai had been weakened by scandals and
the failure by the MDC-T to deliver on many promises the party made when it
joined the coalition government four years ago.
He said Mugabe also believed the party lost the 2008 elections due to the
imposition of candidates and now wanted all top Zanu PF officials to be
challenged during primary elections.
“Mugabe is saying, let the best candidate win, whether he or she is a ‘Young
Turk’ or party veteran,” said the official. “Resistance is however coming
from some senior party officials who want safe seats to be reserved for
Zanu PF was also hoping to win the elections by dangling the indigenisation
carrot to voters who would be promised majority shareholding in
But the official said some members of the faction loyal to Vice-President
Joice Mujuru were against the idea of holding elections on the proposed
They were said to be of the view that Zanu PF and Mugabe had no realistic
chance of winning. “The Mujuru faction is still wary of the protest vote,”
said the official.
Some of the Mujuru loyalists wanted elections next year, while others were
supportive of Ibbo Mandaza’s idea of another GNU.
The faction loyal to Defence minister, Emmerson Mnangagwa wanted elections
in March this year with or without a new constitution, but their idea was
shot down by Sadc and the MDCs. Zanu PF spokesperson, Rugare Gumbo could
neither deny nor confirm that his party now had a date for the elections.
“We will go on what the (GPA) principals say,” he said. Gumbo said depending
on how the constitution-making proceeds, the Zanu PF politburo might meet
soon to decide on party primary elections and national polls.
He reiterated his party’s position that following the recent agreement on
the new draft constitution, there was no need to implement more reforms in
“Reforms will come after elections. If they (MDCs) win then, they will
implement the reforms they want,” said Gumbo. Zanu PF secretary for
administration, Didymus Mutasa, told The Standard recently that it was
individual members and not Zanu PF as a party opposed to early elections.
on February 4, 2013 at 1:17 pm
By Lance Guma
HARARE – Defence Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa has claimed soldiers in
Zimbabwe are free to support political parties of their choice, but cannot
hold positions within the structures of those parties.
“We went to war for us to have power to control the direction of politics in
this country. Soldiers are free to vote for any political party and what
they are not allowed to do is to hold positions in political parties,” he
said in an interview.
“Political parties should come up with good manifestos and individual
soldiers are free to vote for any party which they think has a constructive
policy.” The statement would have been commendable were it not brazenly
Only last year in December a Gwanda-based police officer Assistant Inspector
William Mutsago was branded ‘a danger to society’ and sacked from his job
for allegedly possessing a picture of MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai.
Mutsago, who was based at Gwanda Police Station in Matabeleland South,
explained that he was not responsible for the picture, which was saved on a
memory card. He was nevertheless fired without compensation.
During a ‘kangaroo court’ hearing, Mutsago had argued that he was not the
sole user of the memory card which was also used by other staff, including
those in the press and public relations department.
Despite protesting his innocence, Gwanda Police Station wrote to the Public
Service Commission calling for Mutsago to be blacklisted across public
sector departments, describing him as a “danger to society”.
Mutsago’s wife, a constable also based at Gwanda station, was said to be
awaiting a ruling on an appeal she lodged after she was charged with the
same offence. The Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights were handling the cases.
In 2011, another police officer was fired for playing Simudza Ngerengere, a
song by MDC-T parliamentarian Paul Madzore. Assistant Inspector Tedious
Chisango, who was stationed at Ntabazinduna just outside Bulawayo, was
accused of “teaching police recruits on regime change”.
Monday, 04 February 2013 00:00
Felex Share Herald Reporter
TRADITIONAL leaders will this week seek audience with President Mugabe over
clauses in the Copac draft Constitution which they feel undermined their
authority. The clauses are on land, property rights
and the Judicial Service Commission.
This comes as the Constitution Select Committee is expected to steer a
motion in Parliament tomorrow seeking permission to present the draft.
Parliamentarians are expected to adopt the draft on Wednesday.
But, traditional leaders yesterday said they had been excluded from the
administration of most land except communal land, a move they argued had
left them powerless.
Clause 15.3 (2) of the Copac draft states that: “Except as provided for in
Act of Parliament, traditional leaders shall have no authority, control or
jurisdiction over land except communal land or over persons outside communal
land unless the cause of the action arose within the area of the traditional
The traditional leaders said this was a “new” clause crafted by the Copac
management committee as it diverted from what people said during the
Chief Nembire from Mashonaland Central said the exclusion of traditional
leaders from controlling land was objectionable.
“We have resolved as chiefs to approach the President over the issue this
week,” he said.
“The provision is a throwback to the colonial era where the administration
of land was regulated in accordance with the white settlers’ policy of
racial segregation as reflected in the Land Apportionment Act.
“That Act excluded black people and their leadership structures from having
anything to do with the most productive land in the country and limited
their influence to the so-called Tribal Trust Lands,which were set aside for
Chief Nembire said before the July 18 draft, traditional leaders had in
April last year rejected an initial clause which stated that: “Except as
provided in an Act of Parliament, traditional leaders have authority,
jurisdiction and control over the communal land or other areas for which
they have been appointed and over persons within those communal lands or
Said Chief Nembire: “We asked the management committee to attend to that
issue, but they retreated in Nyanga and changed the wording for us to think
that they had changed it.
“After the Nyanga retreat, we saw that issues that had been agreed on were
reopened. Some provisions were either deleted, altered or completely
“That is where we even started to see the issue of running mates that were
never a parked issue before.”
Chief Nyamukoho from Mudzi said the clause on land would cause chaos .
“It takes the land back to the colonial period contrary to the values of the
“On the land section in the National Statistical Report, Zimbabweans during
the outreach programme said traditional leaders should allocate land,
preside over land and are custodians of land. They never said communal land.
But the new clause seeks to prohibit traditional leaders from having
authority or control over land, except communal land contrary to the views
of the people.”
Chief Siansali of Binga said the authority of traditional leaders had been
undermined on the Judicial Service Commission.
He said the initial Copac draft provided for the inclusion of one person
nominated by the National Council of Chiefs in the JSC.
“After the (Nyanga) retreat we noticed that the provision was expunged from
the current draft,” he said.
“This is objectionable because the inclusion of our nominee on the JSC was
neither a contested issue nor a parked issue. It should not have been
“The inclusion of a chief in the JSC was premised on the fact that customary
law courts are recognised by the same draft Constitution and their presiding
officers are recognised as part of the judiciary.”
Chief Siansali said it was baffling why traditional leaders had been omitted
from the JSC.
“All other members of the judiciary are represented on the JSC,” he said.
“The main function of the JSC is to advise Government on a matter relating
to the judiciary or the administration of justice. As judicial officers, we
are capable of providing invaluable input.”
Chief Nyamukoho said: “The removal of traditional leaders from the JSC was
not commensurate with the principle that the traditional court system should
be respected, which is agreed issue 6 of the Agreed Issues on page 57 of the
list of proposed Constitutional issues document of November 14, 2011.”
President of the Chiefs Council Chief Fortune Charumbira said the Copac
management committee took advantage of the chiefs’ absence to tamper with
the initial agreement.
“The Select Committee had done well but everything was altered and deleted
by the management committee where we are not represented he said.
“I am not happy with the issue and there were members of the Select
Committee who are in agreement with us, but said their hands were tied and
could not make changes.”
If the draft is adopted by Parliament, public awareness campaigns would
begin to educate the generality of Zimbabweans on the contents of the draft.
All political parties have agreed to campaign for a “Yes” vote in the
By Tichaona Sibanda
04 February 2013
Traditional leaders want to have an audience with President Robert Mugabe
this week to discuss the contents of the new constitution, as they feel some
of the clauses have made them powerless.
It’s unlikely the chiefs would be able to convince Mugabe to make changes to
the charter, which would need the support of other principals in the GPA to
The traditional leaders told the state media over the weekend that they had
been excluded from the administration of most land, except communal land, a
move they argued had left them with no powers.
Douglas Mwonzora, the COPAC co-chairman representing the MDC-T, said there
was no chance the draft will be subjected to any changes at all. COPAC will
present the draft to parliament on Tuesday for debate and adoption, possibly
‘We have taken note of their concerns but unfortunately as responsible
citizens we couldn’t take farming land, commercial farms for that instance
and put them under chiefs. The chiefs want to move away from capitalism to
feudalism and that’s not right at all,’ Mwonzora said.
Our correspondent in Harare, Simon Muchemwa, told us many people are
surprised at the timing of the chiefs’ complaints as they had ample time to
study the contents of the draft, even before it went to the second all
stakeholders conference last year.
Muchemwa said the problem lies with the fact that the chiefs aligned
themselves to ZANU PF, and were told what to say by officials from the
former ruling party.
‘The chiefs and other ordinary members of the party received instructions
from ZANU PF on what to say in the constitution. Most of what they said was
not constitutional and ended up not being included in the new charter,’
‘The chiefs, for reasons known to them, were being told what to say by ZANU
PF. They never bothered to let their personal feelings known and they have
to take the blame for that,’ he added.
By Alex Bell
04 February 2013
The European Union (EU) is being urged to wait for real reforms in Zimbabwe
before they consider lifting the targeted restrictive ‘sanctions’ in place
against the Mugabe regime.
The leadership bloc has indicated it will consider lifting all the measures
after the completion of a ‘credible’ constitutional referendum. The
political parties in the coalition government have finally agreed on a draft
constitution, bringing the almost four year process to an end.
The EU head of delegation to Zimbabwe, Ambassador Aldo Dell’ Ariccia, has
been quoted as saying last week that this is a step in the right direction.
“The EU stated that a peaceful and credible constitutional referendum would
justify a suspension of the majority of all restrictive measures,” he said,
adding: “In this context, the recent agreement on the Constitution draft is
a welcome step in that direction.”
The EU last year suspended some of its restrictive measures, which are
targeted against key individuals within ZANU PF and companies linked to the
regime. The Europeans had said the partial relaxing of the measures was as a
result of “progress.”
But there is serious criticism of this position, because of a lack of real
change on the ground. The reforms promised by the Global Political Agreement
(GPA) have not happened, human rights defenders continue to be targeted with
intimidation and arrest, and there are worrying indications of a potentially
violent election this year.
At the same time, the EU is basing its decision on a referendum of a
constitution that analysts have said is fundamentally flawed, with some
human rights being ignored. The enshrining of the death penalty into law is
just one area the EU should be protesting, but they have made no mention of
this or the fact that a hangman has finally been appointed in Zimbabwe to
ensure this constitutional law is protected.
Dennis Benton from the London based pressure group the Zimbabwe Vigil said
Monday that Europe’s position is suspicious. He told SW Radio Africa that
the “EU seems desperate top engage with Zimbabwe on any terms,” saying it is
no accident that European officials paint the Zim situation with a “positive
“They are desperately keen to get rid of sanctions and vie with the Chinese
in terms of commercial interests,” Benton said.
The Vigil has for years been pressuring the EU to stand by its restrictive
‘sanctions’ until there is evidence of real change, and Benton said that
this should include waiting until after an election. He said international
observers and real reforms need to be evident before there is even talk of
lifting the measures.
The US ambassador in Zimbabwe meanwhile has reportedly expressed fear of
another stolen election this year. Ambassador David Bruce Wharton, quoted by
the Sunday Mail, cited the presence of government troops across the country
and a campaign of intimidation against civil rights advocates by ZANU PF.
“We are concerned by the deployment of Zimbabwe Defence Forces throughout
the country on nominal ‘administrative service’ duty who may seek to
influence how community will vote,” he told the newspaper.
He added: “We are also concerned that elements of the state have commenced
with a concerted campaign to intimidate civil society and that the state-run
media and various other state institutions show a consistent pattern of bias
in favour of one particular party.”
By Tendai Mhlanga
Published: February 4, 2013
Zimbabwe’s prison boss General Paradzai Zimondi on Friday for the first time
opened up to the media inviting journalists from both private and public to
his offices where he announced that they were free to tour any prison of
their choice at anytime. This was after the prison service was rocked in
fear of three prisoners who are satanists and who uttered threats on the
As the three satanists asked for razor blades, a red coffin and red candles,
General Zimondi swiftly called journalists to interview them, becoming the
first time prisoners were given an open press conference.
Zimondi, in power since 1998 had before not been willing to give prison
information to journalists. The prison boss at the media conference admitted
that he had not been visible and pleaded to journalists to use the new media
“I invited you all to choose a prison of your choice within Harare today and
understand more about the welfare of inmates. You are all so welcome to
visit any prison in the country if you have an issue to write about because
they are our prisons and those incarcerated there are our relatives although
they might have wronged society,” Zimondi said.
scared of Satanists… Gen Paradzai Zimondi
Turning to the welfare of inmates Zimondi said food supplies had improved
but buildings needed upgrading.
Zimondi’s sudden turning to journalists came soon after self proclaimed
satanists made utterances viewed as threats on the authorities including
asking for a red coffin for their religious worship sessions.
To prove that their religion is growing, the Satanists even wrote to prison
authorities demanding all sorts of paraphernalia so they can grow their
mission. Among the things that they have asked for are razor blades, a red
coffin and red candles, but prison authorities insist that they will not
grant them their wishes, a report by The Standard reveals.
The self-proclaimed Satanists are also accused of being in possession of a
substance that looked like human blood, but they insisted that they have
done nothing wrong and ought to be released.
“They are afraid to take us to court because they know we did nothing
wrong,” George Lungange, one of the devil worshippers said. “There is
freedom of worship in Zimbabwe, we should be freed.”
Fear Of The Unknown
Kucaca Phulu, a human rights lawyer, quoted by The Standard, said the
self-confessed Satanists had been in remand prison for quite a long time and
the case should be brought to the courts to be finalised.
“If there are certain illegal acts like murder, then they must be
investigated,” he said. “If not then this looks like a case of religious
Phulu said Satanism was not a crime and urged authorities not to use the law
to placate fear of the unknown.
Despite the dominance of Christianity, Zimbabwe has freedom of religion
enshrined in the constitution. Even the new draft reinforces freedom of
conscience, which allows anyone to worship in a manner they chose.
“Every person has the right to freedom of conscience, which includes freedom
of thought, opinion, religion or belief and freedom to practice and
propagate and give expression to their thought, opinion, religion or belief,
whether in public or in private and whether alone or together with others,”
reads the draft.
“Any religious community may establish institutions where religious
instruction may be given, even if the institution receives a subsidy or
other financial assistance from the state.”
Useni Sibanda, the head of the Christian Alliance, said the constitution
allowed for freedom of worship, but since the country was predominantly
Christian, Christian values and morality were likely to carry the day.
“If they infringe on other people’s rights then that will be a major
concern,” he said.
“As Christians we believe in only one God and any other form of worship is
Sibanda said this was a spiritual matter and might prove impossible for the
courts to deal with it.
“What is needed is co-operation between (Christian) church leadership and
the state so we can find a solution to this,” he said.
In a largely conservative state like Zimbabwe, Satanism is hugely frowned
upon and unacknowledged.
Allowed to tour prisons
After his address journalists were asked to choose a prison within Harare to
tour and meet prisoners without restrictions.
Journalists opted for the Harare Remand Prison where, according to the its
Officer-in-charge, Chief Superintendent Billiot Chibaya, the complex was not
The prison is currently holding 611 inmates against a capacity of 900.
“Food and clothing supplies for inmates have greatly improved as compared to
what happened in the past few years,” he said.
Several Zimbabweans on social networking website Facebook at the weekend
said that the prison boss is afraid of Satanism hence the sudden turn to
BY RAY NDLOVU, FEBRUARY 04 2013, 09:36
ZIMBABWE’s draft constitution deal reached last month by President Robert
Mugabe, Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai and Industry and Commerce Minister
Welshman Ncube could dominate proceedings in Parliament, which opens on
Tuesday for its first session this year.
Legislators are widely expected to push through the compromise draft
constitution adopted by the three principals, in an effort to edge the
country closer to holding elections and end the four-year-old power-sharing
There are strong indications a referendum will be held either at the end of
next month or in early April. A clash, however, looms between Mr Mugabe’s
Zanu (PF) and the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) over dual
citizenship, for which the draft constitution does not make provision.
The draft recognises only Zimbabwean citizenship by birth, descent and
registration. Zanu (PF) remains opposed to dual citizenship — fearful of the
large numbers of diaspora-based Zimbabweans who would be constitutionally
allowed to vote in the next election.
"There is no dual citizenship, and there will be no diaspora vote, the
country does not have the funding for it," Justice, Legal and Parliamentary
Affairs Minister Patrick Chinamasa said. About 2-million Zimbabweans are
estimated to be living in South Africa, with many having moved to the
neighbouring country between 2000 and 2008 at the start of the land
invasions and again at the height of economic decline. Those registered will
have to return to Zimbabwe to vote.
Mr Chinamasa’s statements contradict those of Mr Tsvangirai who last month
in Davos, Switzerland, insisted that the draft document would have a
provision for dual citizenship. The MDC enjoys widespread support in
Zimbabwe’s diaspora population and hopes to cash in this support for votes
in the looming polls.
The failure to address dual citizenship, among other shortcomings in the
draft document, has seen civic society group, the National Constitutional
Assembly begin mobilising members to cast a "no vote" in the referendum.
Human Rights Watch warned last week that most Zimbabweans abroad could not
return to vote for legal or financial reasons. It also said Zanu (PF)
officials and members of the military were allowed to vote abroad, while
others were not.
Zimbabwe Democracy Institute chairman Rashweat Mukundu said the country had
been "led down a garden path" and undertaken a costly $50m constitutional
exercise, only for Zanu (PF) to emerge the ultimate victor of the process.
3 February 2013
ZImbabwean President Robert Mugabe's youngest son, Chatunga, 16, was
expelled from a Catholic school last week.
Chatunga was born to Mugabe after the marrying his wife Grace in 1996.
Mugabe family spokesman Lawrence Kamwi declined to answer questions put to
him yesterday about why Chatunga had been expelled from St George's College,
where many of Zimbabwe's Catholic elite are educated.
Harare's Daily News published a report on Friday on Chatunga's expulsion,
saying the official word is that he has been voluntarily|withdrawn from
school and is being educated at home.
The Mugabes' eldest son, a talented basketball player, failed his final
school examinations in 2011. Their daughter, Bona, 24, is|studying to be a
chartered accountant in Singapore, having graduated with a Bachelor's degree
in Hong Kong.
St George's College staff have declined to comment on Chatunga's expulsion,
but an insider said: "This would have all been worked out in advance with
the first family. So they won't be shocked.
"This boy has been in some difficulties at the school before now."
Chatunga was widely seen to be a "wild" and "spoiled" boy by people who
travelled overseas with the Mugabe family.
"The two oldest kids are so|well-behaved, but Chatunga is so bad," said a
regular member of the family's travelling group.
Grace Mugabe was feted at the opening of a school named after her in the
Mazowe area, about 30km west of Harare this week.
The primary school, the Amai Mugabe School, was built on land she took from
white former farmers.
It will charge children about R20 000 a term for boarding fees, which is
considerably more expensive than most other Zimbabwe private schools.
Harare's Newsday newspaper carried several pictures in its Saturday edition
showing the double-storey school building, which includes 27 classrooms, and
an art and music centre.
Scores of poor families were forced to leave their homes, or abandon their
small plots to make way for the school.
Independent Newspapers spoke to one of them last year, who provided a
diagram of where he lived before being evicted by Grace Mugabe's allies from
his plot in Mazowe.
Mugabe established what she says is an "orphanage" for children, also in
Mazowe, on the first piece of land she took in 2003 from an old white
Since then she has taken a |productive dairy, also in Mazowe, and at least
five more farms in the Mazowe area and further north of Harare.
Robert Mugabe bought one farm in 2000 and took a further four adjoining it
Those farms were run with resources provided by the state.
Now there are persistent reports that Grace Mugabe has taken over 1 600ha of
citrus lands belonging to a failed company, Interfresh.
At the opening of the new school this week, Mashonaland Central governor
Martin Dinha said he was not "ashamed" to give Grace Mugabe more land.
"I would like to thank you for building this school in Mazowe," Dinha told
Mugabe and his wife.
"We offered you land and we will continue to offer you land for other
projects if you want it.
"We will do it in broad daylight and we are not ashamed of it.
"Detractors can say what they want, they can write what they want, but this
is our land in Mashonaland Central and we will do what we want with it." -
Independent Foreign Service
By Alex Bell
04 February 2013
Residents living in different suburbs across Harare are appealing for urgent
intervention, after days without fresh water have raised fears of the spread
of potential diseases.
Mainly western areas of the capital have not had fresh water since last
Thursday. This includes the densely populated Mbare suburb, as well as Glen
View, Budiriro, Rugare, Sunningdale and others.
Although there has been no official reason given for the water shortages, it
is understood that a main water pipe at the Warren Control pump station
burst last week.
Precious Shumba, the head of the Harare Residents Trust (HRT), said Monday
that there has been no attempt by the city authorities to communicate these
problems to residents. He told SW Radio Africa that most residents affected
by the shortages spend hours queuing for water at the limited boreholes
“In the communities where there are boreholes there are unemployed youths
who have claimed ownership (of the boreholes) and are charging people to get
water and jump the queues,” Shumba explained.
He said this has often forced residents to travel outside the city to find
water. But he said this does not eliminate the risks of contracting water
borne diseases like typhoid.
“The council needs to prioritise this issue. They are trying to treat it as
a minor problem but this is a crisis,” Shumba said.
The spread of typhoid has continued across the country, with local councils
failing to provide clean water. Cases have been reported in different parts
of Zimbabwe since 2011, including Kuwadzana, Mufakose, Bindura, Norton and
Zvimba. Chitungwiza and Kadoma have also reported serious outbreaks.
The total number of people affected by typhoid alone is believed to be well
over than 5,000 officially registered cases. The government’s Health and
Child Welfare’s Dr Portia Manangazira has reported that in January eleven
people died because of diarrhoea, which is the main symptom of diseases like
by Staff Reporter
The Zimbabwe Rural Schools Library Trust will officially launch the Yazi
Odabuka Khona/Ziva Midzi Yako/Remember Your Roots Rural School Library
Development Campaign on 14 February.
Deputy Prime Minister Thokozani Khupe will be guest of honour at the launch.
The date of the launch coincides with International Book Giving Day, a
volunteer initiative aimed at increasing children’s access to and enthusiasm
“The campaign aims at reminding people to look back at rural schools that
groomed them to be what they are today and give a little bit of support to
the same schools and develop library services to ensure their sustainability
as centres of academic excellence,” said ZRSLT founder Driden Kunaka.
The ZRSLT is embarking on a massive programme to establish sustainable
library services at one school in every rural district council over the next
“These school libraries will be the trust’s springboards from which to reach
other schools in a particular district. The trust will also work with
individuals who make initiatives to establish libraries at the rural schools
they went to,” said Kunaka.
Musician, Leonard Zhakata, Goodwill Ambassador for the ZRSLT will hand over
books he has been collecting on behalf of the trust and provide
Monday, 04 February 2013 12:23
HARARE - A group of Zanu PF officials in Manicaland face arrest this week
over the alleged theft of 36 beasts worth thousands of dollars which were
donated to President Robert Mugabe’s birthday bash in Mutare last year.
The development also comes as key members of Mike Madiro’s provincial
executive remain in the line of fire over the alleged plunder of nearly $1
million in diamond money given to the party for its December conference.
With the octogenarian leader’s all-powerful politburo giving the green light
for police involvement into the second matter, senior police officers have
been dispatched to the eastern border town to wrap up the probe and possibly
make arrests, impeccable sources told the Daily News yesterday.
However, national police spokesperson Charity Charamba said she was yet to
be briefed on the matters.
“I have not yet received a briefing from those handling the case,” she said.
With a probe team from the party’s Manicaland branch exonerating Madiro and
company, the Daily News has learnt that investigations have not only
intensified, but the matter is so sensitive that top cops from Harare are
handling the diamond cash loot.
Apart from the provincial chair, others under the cloud include ousted youth
chair Tawanda Mukodza, provincial youth secretary for security Admire
Mahachi and Clever Muparutsa.
While the quartet might have survived the first scalpel on the strength of
affidavits deposed by diamond mine company executives to the effect that no
money ever exchanged hands, the group has remained under the spotlight after
a disbelieving Mugabe’s personal involvement and the cash-theft charges had
been discussed at one of the party’s recent politburo meetings.
At the weekend, police sources said Madiro and his team could have more
charges levelled against them after revelations that they did not declare
the 30-plus beasts sourced for Mugabe’s 88th birthday celebrations in Mutare
“There are indications that they helped themselves with beasts sourced from
party supporters, which were supposed to have been used during the birthday
celebrations of the president,” said the source.
News of the diamond cash abuse and livestock plunder comes as five trucks of
“chicken”, and other goodies – imported in Mugabe and Zanu PF’s name – were
allegedly seized at Beitbridge in December. Efforts to elicit comment from
the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority on this matter have proved fruitless.
However, basic charges against Madiro and team are that they received $750
000-plus from Chiadzwa diamond mining companies in the party’s name, but it
In the circumstances, investigators are also interested in the
rags-to-riches story or lifestyle of some of the group members, as one of
the top officials implicated in the scam is allegedly building a 36-roomed
mansion in Harare’s Mount Pleasant suburb, while others now own a fleet of
top of the range vehicles.
Contacted for comment yesterday, Madiro flatly refused to give his side of
the story and accused this paper of driving a vendetta or campaign against
“What do you want from me? You people from the Daily News are against me.
Why don’t you go and ask the police, don’t call me again,” a fuming Madiro
said before hanging up.
But according to our sources, investigators quizzed some of the accused
officials at Mutare Central Police Station last week.
Those interviewed, include Zanu PF secretary for production and labour in
Manicaland John Chirimambowa on how over 10 beasts were kept at his farm
instead of being submitted to the party for feasting at Mugabe’s birthday
Police sources told the Daily News that some of the beasts were shared among
the top leadership in the province while cash disappeared.
According to the same sources, investigators also interviewed officials from
the mining firms, which donated the cash.
Sources said the group allegedly claimed that the money was to bankroll
party activities, including funding the Gweru conference. Instead of
delivering the money to the party, the officials converted it to their
The matter came to light after Didymus Mutasa, Zanu PF secretary for
administration confided in deputy Commissioner-General Levi Sibanda who in
turn alerted vice president Joice Mujuru.
The matter was later forwarded to Mugabe, who instructed state agents to
probe the case at the same time his party was leading a separate
on February 3, 2013 at 11:53 pm
UNITED STATES – Two Zimbabwean men were indicted by a grand jury in Dallas,
Texas over their involvement in a US$2,6 million income tax refund identity
Tonderai Sakupwanya (33) jailed last year over the false use of a passport,
and Reminico Zhangazha (32) ran the scheme from May 2009 to May 2012, US
Attorney Sarah Saldana of the Northern District of Texas said on Monday.
The indictment charges Sakupwanya and Zhangazha each with one count of
conspiring to commit mail fraud and wire fraud. Its alleged the two men
obtained $2,6 million in federal income tax refunds by electronically filing
false tax returns with stolen personal identification information.
The pair also rented private mail boxes to establish mailing addresses and
establish bank accounts to receive the fraudulently-obtained tax refunds,
according to the indictment. The two men used the cash for their personal
use, it is alleged.
If convicted they each face a maximum of 20years in federal prison and
a$250,000 fine. Sakupwanya, aka “Pound, Webster Rice, Floyd Roberts and
Floyd Robbins,” is in federal custody after pleading guilty in October to
falsely using a passport.
Zhangazha, aka “Boss Remy, Martin V. Masters and Roy Daniel Black,” is also
in federal custody. He pleaded guilty to making false statement in using of
By James Morrison-The Washington Times Sunday, February 3, 2013
The U.S. ambassador in Zimbabwe fears the troubled southern African nation
will face another stolen election this year because the ruling party appears
to have no desire to allow a free and fair vote.
Ambassador David Bruce Wharton cited the presence of government troops
across the country and a campaign of intimidation against civil rights
advocates by the Zimbabwe African National Union-Political Front and its
party chief, Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe.
“We are concerned by the deployment of Zimbabwe Defense Forces throughout
the country on nominal ‘administrative service’ duty who may seek to
influence how community will vote,” he told the Zimbabwe Mail newspaper in
an interview published Friday.
“We are also concerned that elements of the state have commenced with a
concerted campaign to intimidate civil society and that the state-run media
and various other state institutions show a consistent pattern of bias in
favor of one particular party.”
Mr. Mugabe and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, leader of the opposition
Movement for Democratic Change, have agreed on a new constitution and plan
to hold a referendum on the charter at a date to be announced. Presidential
elections would follow.
Mr. Tsvangirai entered a power-sharing government with Mr. Mugabe after the
2008 elections, which were riddled with widespread violence mostly from
Mugabe thugs. More than 200 people died and thousands of opposition
supporters were beaten, arrested or tortured.
Mr. Mugabe, a former rebel leader in power since 1980, reportedly is
battling with rivals within his party who are maneuvering to replace him.
Mr. Mugabe, who will turn 89 on Feb. 21, is believed to be suffering from
The company said Friday that two lawmakers, including tourism minister
Walter Mzembi from the ZANU-PF party, took control of its Renco gold mine
two weeks ago.
Author: Nelson Banya
Posted: Monday , 04 Feb 2013
HARARE (REUTERS) -
Zimbabwe's RioZim Limited has gone to the High Court to fight off seizure of
a gold mine by allies of President Robert Mugabe, who accuse it of flouting
a black empowerment law, the company said on Friday.
RioZim said two lawmakers, including tourism minister Walter Mzembi from
Mugabe's ZANU-PF party, took control of its Renco gold mine, 300 km (200
miles) south of Harare, two weeks ago.
"Minister Mzembi arrived at the mine... He called a public meeting and
announced that RioZim had not complied with the indigenisation obligations
of the country and hence they were taking over Renco," RioZim said in a
People not employed by the mine blockaded it, resulting in daily production
losses of $150,000, said RioZim.
It said the minister had appointed a local member of parliament as general
manager and directed all staff to work under him.
The MP was now using threats and intimidation to bar RioZim directors and
management from the mine while denying them access to the company's gold
bullion, the firm added.
Mzembi furiously denied RioZim's accusations, saying he only became involved
with the mine when Renco workers lobbied him as their local MP to intervene
in a pay dispute.
"That's political slander. I'm surprised by their statement, which seeks to
politicise what is a dispute between them and their workers," he told
"I have no interest in the mine's shareholders except to say they must
comply with the laws of this country. I have never taken an ounce of gold
from Renco, nor do I intend to, but my people are crying for justice."
Renco - formed in 2004 when Rio Tinto Plc sold off most of its Zimbabwe
assets - produced 11,000 ounces of gold in the first half of 2012, when it
resumed operations after shutting down at the height of Zimbabwe's
hyperinflation crisis in 2008.
RioZim was saddled with $50 million of debt and on the verge of collapse in
2012 but was saved when New York-based private equity fund Global Emerging
Markets took a 25 percent stake.
Major mining firms in Zimbabwe, including leading platinum producers Anglo
American Platinum and Impala Platinum, have been forced to surrender
majority stakes to local investors under the Mugabe-led black empowerment
Saviour Kasukuwere, the minister in charge of the process, was not available
to comment on the RioZim seizure, but has been quoted in local media
describing the move as "irrational".
"We want law and order in this country and we don't want indigenisation to
be dragged into the mud," he was quoted as saying in private newspaper
February 4 2013 at 08:00am
Zimbabwe’s state-run Deposit Protection Corporation needed $135 million
(R1.2 billion) to meet its capitalisation requirements and pay depositors
who lost money during the nation’s decade-long recession, the Sunday Mail
said yesterday. The corporation had paid depositors who lost funds in the
collapse of four financial institutions, the body’s chief executive, John
Chikura, told the newspaper. More than half of depositors at Genesis Bank
had been reimbursed, while those at Royal Bank had not been paid, the Sunday
Mail reported. – Bloomberg
BY VINCE MUSEWE, FEBRUARY 04 2013, 08:30
WE HAVE heard it all before. Zimbabwe has the second-largest platinum
reserves in the world next to South Africa, the largest alluvial diamond
reserves in the world, significant gold, chrome, coal and so on. Once upon a
time it was a world leader in the production of lithium minerals, chrysotile
asbestos and ferrochromium. Its chief minerals were coal, gold, platinum,
diamonds, copper, nickel, tin and clay.
Zimbabwe also produced iron ore, palladium, rhodium, selenium, silver, tin,
barite, hydraulic cement, clays, emeralds, feldspar, graphite, kyanite,
limestone, magnesite, mica, nitrogen, phosphate rock, quartz, sulfur, talc,
and vermiculite. The list goes on.
Zimbabwe is truly blessed with a wide range of minerals and a big resource
base, which offer unlimited upside potential in prospecting, mining and
beneficiation. There has been a claim by some that Zimbabwe is the richest
country on earth in untapped natural resources per person. The question is:
so what’s the problem?
The fundamental issues we face in taking full advantage of this endowment
include the lack of leadership, accountability, business ethics and an
antiquated view of the world, including how we do business.
Despite the serious investment in education in the past, Zimbabwe has failed
to advance and maximise its competitive advantages, especially human
capital. As a result, we have seen an economy characterised by patronage,
which is slow to react to new opportunity, inconsistent and rather myopic in
policy, and which is clearly unable to accelerate social development and
suffers from leadership paralysis.
Fear of change has shut out new thinking and new opportunities.
Unfortunately, this paradigm has slowly crept into how we do things in
Zimbabwe, whether in business or politics. A clear example is how we have
totally mishandled the diamond finds in Marange.
Where there is no transparency in governance and a plutocracy in power, it
is difficult to exploit opportunities quickly and completely. Unless, of
course, you are Chinese. Democracy in Zimbabwe is certainly a critical
factor for the fair and expeditious exploration, extraction and
beneficiation of its mineral resources.
But in addition to that is the rapid development of infrastructure and the
adoption of world-class business processes and technology. As far as I know,
these have never really been the priorities of Zanu (PF), especially in the
past 10 years. This is because the party has been in survival mode and, like
any thief who is under hot pursuit, they must figure out how much they can
make today, while tomorrow can look after itself.
In my opinion, the potential for investors in the Zimbabwean mining sector
is not about the hard facts and figures — these are well known and speak for
themselves. It is more about effectively dealing with the soft issues. That
is to say those emotional and psychological issues that have prevented us
from unleashing our full potential as a country. Those issues are the very
ones that continue to lead to the public remonstration by our president of
the west and its allies, but the private acceptance of their expertise,
know-how and technological advantage.
Some argue that it is dangerous to rely on mining-led growth because of
unreliable resource prices and the lack of interconnectedness of the mining
sector in Zimbabwe to the rest of the economy.
This actually presents a big opportunity for Zimbabwe to look beyond the
extraction of its minerals for export as the main source of revenue, but
towards beneficiation and the development of a manufacturing industrial base
that will feed Africa’s growing demand. That, for me, is the thinking we
Indigenisation is of course the Achilles heel. However, remember that in
2000 it was Jonathan Moyo who was the anointed crusader of the Zanu (PF)
election campaign based on the land expropriation disaster. In 2008, we had
Gideon Gono, who presided over an unprecedented destruction of value that
led to the collapse of the Zimbabwe dollar, the obliteration of a number of
banks and the highest hyperinflation the world has known.
Now we have Saviour Kasukuwere, whose indigenisation campaign is again going
to destroy significant economic value and goodwill. This will delay our
economic recovery. However, I predict that sooner or later he will also be
irrelevant as the fresh winds of change sweep him aside. Unfortunately, the
damage will already be done.
From my conversations with the Movement for Democratic Change, however, it
is well aware of the challenges ahead and what needs to be done. Its
blueprint for a new economy is quite clear, especially in the mining sector.
Investors will be offered stability, consistency in policy and a better
governance structure. More important will be the ability of a new government
to replace old thinking.
The other side of 2013 certainly offers some excitement and, if you are in
mining, you want to be part of it.
Zimbabwe president has vowed to fight like a 'wounded animal' to win 2013
elections. But which side will he show if he loses?
guardian.co.uk, Monday 4 February 2013 13.08 GMT
Welshman Ncube, Zimbabwe's Minister of Commerce and Industry and leader of
one of the factions of the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), lost his
grandfather in the 1980s Gukurahundi. The Gukurahundi was a violent campaign
in which thousands of opposition Zimbabwe African Peoples Union (Zapu) party
supporters were killed and beaten by a brigade owing allegiance to President
Robert Mugabe's government.
Ncube shares his experience working with Mugabe in a unity government since
2009: "Ninety percent of the time, I cannot recognise the Mugabe I sit with
in cabinet with the Mugabe who has ruled this country through violence. He
shows real concern for his country and people, like a father. And he can
master detail over a wide range of government matters. If I had only this
experience with Mugabe in government and had not lived through the
Gukurahundi and seen him denouncing Zapu with anger and belief on
television, and you told me he carried out the Gukurahundi, I would say 'no,
not this man, he is not capable of it'. But I saw him."
Another MDC minister, Priscilla Misihairabwi-Mushonga, also struggles to
reconcile the man she thought Mugabe was, before entering government, with
the one she knows today. "I did not think Mugabe believed in things. Now I
know that Mugabe actually believes in things, ideologically, like that the
British are after regime change in Zimbabwe. When he believes in something
he will genuinely defend it. If he believes in an action, no matter how
wrong it is, he will not apologise. That is one hallmark of Mugabe. He is
loyal to his beliefs."
On Mugabe's personality, Misihairabwi-Mushonga says that she had not known
that he was "a serious charmer around women. A very, very, very good
charmer... He also has an exceptional sense of humour. You literally are in
stitches throughout cabinet. But he also has an intellectual arrogance. If
you do not strike him as someone intelligent he has no time for you. There
are certain people who, when they speak in cabinet, he sits up and listens,
and others who, when they speak, he pretends to be asleep."
Nelson Chamisa, the MDC Minister of Information and Communication
Technology, once thought Mugabe was "unbalanced", but adds: "sitting in
cabinet with him, I admire his intellect. He has dexterity of encyclopaedic
proportions. He is bad leader but a gifted politician. Why do I say he is a
gifted politician? He has the ability to manage political emotions and
intentions. But leadership is a different thing. The best form of leadership
is to create other leaders who can come reproduce your vision after you.
Mugabe has not done that."
Simba Makoni is a former member of Mugabe's Zanu-PF party and the
government. He left to form a new opposition party called Mavambo Kusile
Dawn in 2008. Makoni says of Mugabe: "There is a part of him which is
outwardly nationalistic and radical but there is also an inner part of him
which is questioning and doubtful, because deep down he admires things
British. He is conservative."
So who is the real Robert Mugabe? He is probably a cocktail of all these
things, in addition to being a disciple of the Italian philosopher Niccolo
Machiavelli's book The Prince. Machiavelli believed that in order for a
politician to keep power longest, they must have many sides and know the art
of when and how to show the appropriate side. Mugabe has mastered this art.
Last month, he showed his conciliatory side by agreeing a new constitution,
paving the way for a referendum and elections this year. It was reported
this week that the treasury is cash strapped, sparking speculation that
elections may not go ahead. However, the treasury has been without adequate
funds for most of the last 10 years and elections have always gone ahead
when due. Mugabe has vowed to show another of his sides in the forthcoming
election, which is his ability to "fight like a wounded animal", in order to
win. But if he loses, it is unclear which side he will show this time. Will
he concede and walk away? Or will an even more wounded animal come out
Blessing-Miles Tendi is author of Making History in Mugabe's Zimbabwe:
Politics, Intellectuals and the Media, and lecturer in politics in the
University of Oxford's Department of International Development
This blog, cross-posted from Oxfam's website, hopes that Zimbabwean women will vote 'Yes' in the referendum on the new constitution.
Women in Zimbabwe are often excluded from social, economic, and political processes due to patriarchal attitudes and practices (especially the exercise of customary laws), as well as by the general political climate of intimidation and violence. As a result, they are seriously underrepresented in local and national government structures: only 7 out of 33 ministers are women, and only 12 women are cabinet, deputy or provincial ministers out of a total of 69.
Zimbabwe's constitution is currently being reviewed part of the Global Political Agreement (GPA) - a mechanism to try and bring together the three major political parties into a Government of National Unity following the violent elections in 2008. The current government will be dissolved after the new constitution is finalised, paving the way for elections and a new government in October 2013.
Zimbabwean women have not passively accepted attempts to sideline them from political spaces.
Zimbabwean women have not passively accepted attempts to sideline them from political spaces. Even before the constitutional process, there was already a women's movement challenging gender inequality, and many individuals and groups began to advocate for women's rights to be recognised in drafting the new constitution. The groups realised, however, that their efforts would be stronger and more effective if they worked together and the Women's Coalition of Zimbabwe (the umbrella for women's organizations in Zimbabwe and an Oxfam partner), convened a meeting to discuss how they could work together. This led to the creation of the influential 'Group of 20' - also known as the G20.
The Group of 20 is comprised of civil society representatives, academics, and representatives of the Women's Parliamentary Caucus and the Constitution Management Committee of Parliament (COPAC) - all elected for the particular skills and experience they could bring to realising the aims of the women's movement. This diverse group of twenty organisations, from across the political spectrum, is united by the principle that, regardless of political, religion or social background, the women of Zimbabwe should be able to access their rights and to participate in all national processes.
The Group of 20 has become a working space for women to discuss, mobilise, and organise action around the new constitution, both developing policy and strategy, and advocating for specific measures. It also provides a crucial link and feedback mechanism between different women's groups and those drafting the new constitution - as well as donors, political parties, MPs and other civil society actors. Oxfam in Zimbabwe has provided strategic, technical, and financial support to the development of the group.
The G20 initially conducted a gender audit of the draft constitution to assess the impact on women of all proposed measures and amendments. And it successfully mobilised a wide range of women, from grassroots organisations to national bodies, to advocate around its own 'manifesto' for the constitution. The manifesto makes significant demands - calling for the prohibition of unfair discrimination, the recognition of women as equal citizens, a Bill of Rights to supersede the customary law, and the protection of women from all forms of violence. The Group of 20 also advised on gender-appropriate language for the wording of the constitution.
The G20's advocacy has proved extremely successful and 75% of their demands are reflected in the draft constitution. Sadly, there are still challenges in finalising the constitution, with sticky issues still to be resolved among the political parties. But it is the hope of Zimbabwean women that these issues will be ironed out and Zimbabwe will start on a new page - with a new constitution which promotes gender equality.
The constitution will now go to a referendum and the G20 is calling on women in Zimbabwe to vote YES to what is a genuinely positive development. With support from Oxfam, the group are also running an education campaign to enable women to make an informed vote, based on the implications of the constitution for women - rather than along political party lines as has happened in previous elections.
The inclusion of many of the Group's demands in the constitution marks a real step forward for gender equity and women's rights in Zimbabwe. Women from across society have come together to challenge power-holders and make those drafting the constitution listen.
We hope women in Zimbabwe will vote YES.
BILL WATCH 4/2013
[4th February 2013]
Both Houses of Parliament Will Resume Sitting on Tuesday 5th February
Draft Constitution to be Tabled in Parliament 5th February
When will the Parliamentary debate start?
At a press conference at 6 pm on 31st January the Constitution Select Committee [COPAC] officially announced its intention to table the draft and present the Select Committee’s report when Parliament resumes on Tuesday 5th February. COPAC have emphasised that:
· the draft is for MPs’ information only – it is only if there is a YES vote in the Referendum that it will be gazetted as a Bill which they will be asked to pass.
· only the report will be debated
· they expect the debate to end on Thursday with the adoption of the report.
There is no other equally pressing business competing for Parliamentary time [see below] so completion of the proceedings this week is achievable – unless Parliament insists on debate. But, as the Principals have reached agreement and both MDC parties and the ZANU-PF Politburo have thrown their weight behind the Principals’ agreement, and SADC has been told the constitution is ready for Referendum, the Parliamentary Party Caucuses and Whips will have strict instructions to adhere to COPAC’s timetable.
As the COPAC Select Committee is a joint committee of both Houses, the draft constitution and the report must go to the Senate as well as the House of Assembly. The Senate proceedings can run at the same time as those in the House; there is no need for the Senate to wait until the House of Assembly has finished.
Although private members’ business usually has precedence on Wednesdays in the House of Assembly and Thursday in the Senate, the importance and urgency of the debate on the COPAC report should override everything else.
Little time left
An early conclusion to the proceedings in Parliament is needed – even though Article 6 of the GPA allows Parliament up to a month. Time is very tight. If the Referendum is to be held before the end of March or in early April, and the end of June is now being touted as an election date, the sooner the proceedings are over and the draft constitution can be taken to the country the better.
Also on the Agenda in Parliament this Coming Week
House of Assembly
Bills No Bills are on the Order Paper for when the House resumes. The current Bills and the stages they have reached are as follows:
· Microfinance Bill – still being considered by the Parliamentary Legal Committee [PLC] after its First Reading last year. The Second Reading stage of this Bill cannot commence until the PLC has presented its report.
· Income Tax Bill – gazetted, but has not yet had its First Reading. It awaits introduction by the Minister of Finance. After First Reading it will have to go to the PLC for its report on the Bill’s constitutionality.
· Securities Amendment Bill – introduced last Session and considered by the PLC but lapsed at the end of the Session before the presentation of the PLC’s non-adverse report. The Minister of Finance needs to get the House to restore it to the Order Paper, so that the Second Reading stage can begin.
· Attorney General’s Office Amendment Bill – not yet gazetted, so cannot be introduced yet. The page-proofs are still with the drafter for checking, so it is unlikely to feature in the House until the following week.
[The first three Bills are available from firstname.lastname@example.org. The Attorney General’s Office Amendment Bill is NOT yet available.]
Motions In order of appearance on the Order Paper for 5th February, after the usual motion of thanks to the President for his speech opening the Session, the list includes motions calling for:
· all Government departments to remit all revenues collected directly to Treasury, without retaining funds for own use, and Treasury to ensure adequate remuneration of Government workers
· Hwahwa, Skhombula and Gonakudzingwa prisons be to be recognised as monuments in honour of leaders such as President Mugabe and late Vice-President Nkomo and others who underwent imprisonment in them.
· the Sports Minister to dissolve the Sports and Recreation Commission and make recommendations to Parliament for the achievement of success in al sporting disciplines, and the Finance Minister to allocate adequate resources for sports development.
Bills No Bills are listed on the Order Paper.
Motions Apart from the motion of thanks to the President for his speech opening the Session, the only motion listed for discussion is MDC-T Senator Marava’s motion calling for Government action towards eventually abolishing the death penalty, and in the interim the establishment of a legally binding moratorium on the passing of any more death sentences. [Note: Journalists invited by the Commissioner of Prisons on an official press tour of Harare Central Remand Prison on 1st February were told that there have been no executions in the past 12 years and that there are 76 prisoners, 2 of them women, awaiting execution.]
Private Member’s Bills
Urban Councils Private Member’s Bill Case: Supreme Court Reserves Judgment
The Supreme Court has reserved judgment in this case, having heard argument from both sides in the constitutional application in which Minister of Local Government, Rural and Urban Development seeks an order stopping Parliamentary proceedings on the Private Member’s Bill to amend the Urban Councils Act. Bill Watch 1/2013 explained the background to the case and its ramifications.
Pending the Supreme Court’s decision, further proceedings on this Bill are still suspended in terms of the Speaker’s sub judice ruling of 15th May 2012.
Others Two other Private Member’s Bills reached Parliament last Session, but lapsed uncompleted at the end of the Session:
POSA Amendment Bill –This was stalled in the Senate all last Session, so has gone for well over a year without being dealt with by the Senate. Mr Gonese has indicated that he intends to ask the House of Assembly to send the Bill, as passed by the House, to the President for assent – as allowed by the Constitution [see Bill Watch 2/2013 of 18th January].
Criminal Procedure and Evidence Amendment Bill – Mr Gonese has already put down a motion seeking leave to restore to the Order Paper his original motion, introduced last Session, to bring up this Bill, which would repeal section 121(3) of the Criminal Procedure and Evidence Act [see see Bill Watch 2/2013 of 18th January].
It remains to be seen whether MDC-T MPs will continue to observe the apparent de facto moratorium on these other Private Member’s Bills that we referred to in Bill Watch 2/2013 of 18th January.
In the Pipeline
Media Bill MDC-T MP Settlement Chikwinya has not yet put down a motion seeking leave to bring up his proposed Media Freedom and Transparency Bill. MDC-T have said they must have media reform [among a raft of other reforms] before the election. Opposition from ZANU-PF is likely – speaking for ZANU-PF, Minister of Justice and Legal Affairs Chinamasa has rejected the idea of media reform at this stage. [Note Zimbabwe has dropped 16 places to 133 out of 179 in the latest Press Freedom Index issued by Reporters without Borders.]
Death of Vice-President Nkomo Affects House Voting Strengths
The death on 17th January of Vice-President John Landa Nkomo altered voting strengths in the House of Assembly to:
ZANU-PF 91, MDC-T 96, MDC 8.
No by-election is required to fill the seat, as this was an ex officio seat attached to the vice-presidency, not a constituency seat.
Were it not for the GPA, it would not be necessary for this second Vice-President’s post to be filled. Section 31C of the Constitution allows for one or two Vice-Presidents, as the President sees fit. But Article 20 of the GPA, which is in Schedule 8 and has temporary constitutional status for the duration of the GPA, envisages that there will be two Vice-Presidents, to be nominated by the President and/or ZANU-PF.
[Note: ZANU-PF’s Constitution and the 1987 Unity Accord require the party to have two vice-presidents.]
Veritas makes every effort to ensure reliable information, but cannot take legal responsibility for information supplied
BILL WATCH 5/2013
[4th February 2013]
Both Houses of Parliament Will Resume Sitting on Tuesday 5th February
New Regulations to Control Youth Associations
Zimbabwe Youth Council (General) Regulations, 2013
These extremely wide-ranging regulations, gazetted in SI 4/2013 dated 18th January and effective immediately, have been made by the Minister of Youth Development, Indigenisation and Empowerment in terms of section 26 of the Zimbabwe Youth Council Act.
Veritas will be making the complete text of the SI and the Act available as soon as possible as there could be far ranging implications for civil society/NGO/faith based youth organisations.
Section 2 of the SI states that the regulations “apply to all youth associations that are directly or indirectly involved in youth activities”. The term “youth activities” is not defined in the regulations or the Act. Other provisions of the SI state that that no association may operate without being registered in terms of the procedure detailed in the regulations; that registered associations must submit annual reports and accounts, and annual work plans and budgets to the Council; that every registered association must pay an annual levy to the Council by the 15th February each year; that donations to registered associations must be reported and that unregistered associations may not accept any donations at all.
SI’s legality challengeable?
Organisations involved in “youth activities” should consult their legal advisers about the validity of these regulations. As a matter of first impression, the regulations seem to go much further than the Act permits and, if that is so, are liable:
· to attract the attention of the Parliamentary Legal Committee [PLC], which will also be considering whether the regulations are consistent with section 21 of the Constitution protecting freedom of association, and
· to be struck down by the High Court as ultra vires.
Examples of provisions apparently ultra vires are:
· the requirement that all youth associations must register [section 5], when the Act requires only the registration of national youth associations
· provision for a Youth Council CEO [section 4] when the Act already provides for a Director
· the fee for registration [section 5], although the Act does not empower the charging of a fee [the legal rule is that regulations may only prescribe fees if the enabling Act says so expressly or by necessary implication, which is not the case here].
· restrictions on donations to youth associations [section 9] on which the Act is silent.
General comment: the regulations are also liable to cause confusion as they divert attention from the fact that the function of the regulations is to supplement the provisions of the Act, not to spell out a stand-alone set of rules.
RBZ Monetary Policy Statement
Reserve Bank [RBZ] Governor Gideon Gono delivered his Monetary Policy Statement on 31st January [available on the RBZ website www.rbz.co.zw or, if you can’t download, from email@example.com]. Points made by Dr Gono included:
· The Banking Amendment Bill being prepared by Finance Minister Biti needs to be operational by the end of March [Comment: This means more urgent work for Parliament, over and above the Bills listed in Bill Watch 4/2013 sent out earlier today.]
· RBZ and 25 financial institutions have this week signed a memorandum of understanding addressing at least some of the complaints made against banking institutions on matters such as bank charges, interest rates, and lending practices. The MOU takes effect from 1st March; the full text is set out as an annexure to the Monetary Policy Statement.
· RBZ is working on a detailed regulatory framework for mobile banking services to be introduced later this year
· He welcomes the recent Government announcement that it would respect Bilateral Investment Promotion and Protection Agreements [BIPPAs] [see Bill Watch 3/2013 of 22nd January].
The President attended the AU Summit in Addis Ababa which ended on 28th January. The Zimbabwe situation was not on the agenda for the Heads of State meeting, and does not feature in the Summit’s decisions and resolutions. [No communiqué has been issued.]
SADC: SA Facilitation Team Visit
Two members of President Zuma’s facilitation team, Lindiwe Zulu and Charles Nqakula, visited Harare on Tuesday 29th February. They had a joint meeting with the negotiators from all three GPA parties at which they:
· received an update on the constitution-making process and planning for the Referendum
· discussed the long-awaited deployment to JOMIC of two representatives of the SADC Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation, David Katye of Zambia and Colly Muunyu of Tanzania. The two were selected months ago, and their arrival has been expected since November, but repeatedly delayed. They are now said to be due to arrive “any time soon”. The attachment of SADC officials to JOMIC is nearly two years overdue; it was first directed by the Troika of the Organ at its March 2011 Summit in Livingstone.
Reforms – There is no report of reforms being discussed at the meeting, but afterwards ZANU-PF negotiator Patrick Chinamasa said his party would not agree to media law reform or other reforms before the Referendum and elections. MDC-T’s Tendai Biti, on the other hand, said further reforms and compliance with the Roadmap to Elections were essential.
Government Gazette 18th and 25th January and 1st February
Statutory Instruments [SIs] [None of these currently available from Veritas]
Zimbabwe Youth Council regulations SI 4/2013 [see details above]
National Parks fees SI 5/2013 sets out the new tariff of fees, as approved by the Minister of Environment and Natural Resources Management, that will be charged by the Parks and Wild Life Management Authority for its services and the use of its facilities. The twelve categories of fees include entry and accommodation fees, river usage fees, fees for hunting trophies in concession areas, and special fees for activities such as moonlight viewing.
Chartered Secretaries disciplinary by-laws SI 9/2013 sets out new disciplinary by-laws for the chartered secretaries profession, made by the Council of the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators. The previous by-laws, dating from 1975, are repealed.
Collective bargaining agreements
SI 6/2013 contains a brief agreement on the correct classification of rapid response personnel for the purposes of the principal agreement for the electronics, communications and allied industry [SI 247/2006]. SI 8/2013 corrects a mistake in SI 174/2012 about the ordinary hours of work for workers in the printing, packaging and newspaper industry. SI 11/2013 notifies an arbitral award setting out wages for the detergents, edible oils and fats industry for 2011 and 2012.
Manpower development SI 13/2013 sets out the requirements for certification as a carriage and wagon fitter in the mechanical engineering industry.
Local authority by-laws SI 7/2013 contains the Kusile Rural District Council’s new by-laws about sand abstraction and excavation.
General Notices [GNs]
Government Financial Statement GN 16/2013 notifies the publication in the Gazette of 18th January of the consolidated statement of financial performance for October 2012.
Order against CIMAS Medical Aid Society under Competition Act GN 23/2013 of 25th January contains the Competition and Tariff Commission’s decision against CIMAS over its practice of directing members needing dialysis to a centre in which it has an interest and at the same time refusing to reimburse members’ claims for dialysis procedures at another dialysis centre. The Commission found this to be a “restrictive practice” contrary to the public interest in terms of section 32 of the Competition Act, and accordingly ordered CIMAS  to desist from directing its members to a specific service provider and  to honour members’ claims for reimbursement for procedures at any dialysis centre, at a rate specified by the Commission in the order.
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