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Government halts seizures of land under treaties

http://www.newzimbabwe.com

31/12/2012 00:00:00
by Staff Reporter

IN a major policy shift on the land question, government announced on
Tuesday it was halting seizures of all white-owned farms covered under
bilateral treaties.

The state was forced to review its course after being hit with a 25 million
euros bill by a group of 40 Dutch farmers who successfully sued for damages
after they were driven off their properties by the Zanu PF government.

With zero-recourse in Zimbabwe, the farmers took their grievances to the
International Court for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID), which
ruled in 2009 that government should compensate them for their losses, plus
interest.

While President Robert Mugabe has previously vowed no payment for any
properties, Land Reform Minister Hebert Murerwa appeared to suggest a
complete change of approach on Tuesday.

“Although under Zimbabwean law government can legally acquire such farms, in
view of the ongoing litigation in the ISCID, we have taken the decision not
to settle persons on farms covered by BIPPA for now,” Murerwa told the
Herald newspaper.

“Government will abide by the provision of the agreement and at the same
time we do not want to increase our liabilities.”

Murerwa added that offer letters already issued to black settlers to occupy
such properties were being revoked.

The policy change follows deliberations by Zanu PF at its December
conference on a report compiled by the party admitting that the land
seizures were illegal and that the state had the obligation to pay the
aggrieved farmers.

The document revealed that out of 153 farms covered by bilateral agreements,
116 of them have been expropriated under Mugabe’s chaotic and often violent
land reforms that displaced more than 4,000 whites and left thousands of
black farm workers without a paycheck.

While the party acknowledged the country had an obligation to compensate the
farmers in line with Bilateral Investment Promotion and Protection
Agreements and international law, it concluded that government was too broke
to make any payouts.

“The Dutch farmers who took the country to the International Court for
Settlement of Investment Disputes and won have not been paid,” the Zanu PF
report said.

“In addition, a German family, the Von Pezolds, has also taken us to the
ISCID for their farm which we acquired and partly resettled. We are framing
our defence with the Attorney General’s Office. The Von Pezolds claim is in
the region of US$600 million.”

The SADC Tribunal also ruled four years ago that Zimbabwe’s land reforms
were “racist” and ordered compensation for dozens of farmers.

But government protested the ruling and caused a regional political storm
that led to the disbanding of the tribunal.

Farmers who have lost their properties covered by bilateral treaties include
citizens of South Africa, Denmark, Belgium, Switzerland and others
countries.


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Zuma tackles Mugabe



Staff Reporter 2 hours 57 minutes ago

SADC-APPOINTED facilitator to the Zimbabwe crisis South African President
Jacob Zuma’s facilitation team yesterday challenged principals to the Global
Political Agreement (GPA) to ensure a free political environment this year
to ensure Zimbabwe becomes “a normal society again”.
In an interview with NewsDay, the facilitation team spokesperson Lindiwe
Zulu said Zuma remained committed to resolving the political impasse in
Zimbabwe and hoped that the region would continue supporting them ahead of
crucial elections later this year.
“We are taking a short break, but the issues are never out of sight and we
hope this year will be better and all the parties will have a new resolve on
implementing the Global Political Agreement (GPA) and bring Zimbabwe back to
normalcy so that people can go about their day-to-day lives in a normal
way,” Zulu said.
“On the overall, all we want (is) to go back to normalcy. We have a strong
vigour to get Zimbabwe to have a normal life like the other countries in the
region and hopefully the whole region will assist Zimbabwe.”
Zuma has shot down President Robert Mugabe’s previous attempts to force an
election before implementation of key electoral reforms. Other principals
are MDC-T leader Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai and MDC-M Deputy Prime
Minister Arthur Mutambara.
The Southern African Development Community (Sadc) has, however, recognised
MDC leader Welshman Ncube as a principal since his fallout with Mutambara
over leadership of the party. Zuma, who recently won re-election as leader
of the African National Congress, was tasked by Sadc to ensure peaceful
implementation of the GPA and reforms in the country ahead of elections.
Zimbabwe is expected to conclude the constitution-making process in the
first quarter of this year and then conduct a referendum before holding
harmonised elections.
Classified as one of the “hotspots” in the region and in need of Sadc
intervention to end the impasse, Zimbabwe plummeted into a near war zone in
2008 following Mugabe’s narrow defeat by Tsvangirai leading the regional
bloc to intervene. The intervention led to the formation of a coalition
government.
In his end-of-year message, Tsvangirai said: “The year ahead is replete with
challenges for Zimbabwe: the conclusion of the constitution-making process;
the national referendum; a watershed election and the hosting of the UNWTO
(United Nations World Tourism Organisation) conference.
“As leaders, we have publicly pronounced our desire for peace and security
in the final stages of this unfolding process in our country. I hope we can
walk the talk and ensure that we match our words with concrete action.”
Mugabe, in an interview with a local weekly before he flew to the Far East
for his annual vacation last week, said the new year should guarantee peace
in the country.
“We should find ways of achieving them (free and fair elections) and that
then would mark the totality of these achievements and progress by our own
nation.” - NewsDay


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EU unlikely to scrap sanctions — GPA parties

http://www.herald.co.zw

Tuesday, 01 January 2013 00:00

Hebert Zharare Political Editor
The European Union might not remove the illegal sanctions it imposed on
Zimbabwe when it meets in Brussels next month, parties in the inclusive
Government hinted yesterday. Although Zanu-PF and

the MDC-T were unanimous that the embargoes would be extended to February
2014, the reasons the two parties gave were miles apart.

Zanu-PF argued that the sanctions would not be removed as long as Prime
Minister Morgan Tsvangirai was not in power, while the MDC-T claims they
would remain in place as long as Global Political Agreement issues were not
fully implemented.

The EU meets in February to review among other issues its position on the
overt and covert sanctions it imposed on Zimbabwe a decade ago.

Zanu-PF secretary for administration Cde Didymus Mutasa said it was
imperative for the country to understand why the EU imposed the sanctions

“The sanctions were imposed to install the MDC and (Mr) Tsvangirai into
power. I know the sanctions are going to be extended until after elections
(this year). We are not going to have elections before February and this
means the sanctions are going to remain in place until 2014,” he said.

Cde Mutasa said the EU was likely to remove the sanctions after February
2014.
“It is na´ve to think that the sanctions will be removed this February. The
EU might, just as a face saver, remove the sanctions after February 2014,
not because the MDC–T will have won — of course Zanu-PF will win — but will
be ashamed to continue having them in place,” he said.

More than 100 key individuals have been covered under an EU travel ban and
assets freeze imposed in 2002 as the bloc joined Britain in fighting
Zimbabwe over the land reform programme.
Zanu-PF is advocating the unconditional and total removal of the sanctions.

MDC-T negotiator, Mr Elton Mangoma, who has also taken part in the
re-engagement meetings in Brussels, yesterday said he did not expect
positive change from the EU.

He said no meetings had been convened between the EU and the re-engagement
team since May last year.

More . . .

EU thaws on Zim diamonds
We won’t interfere in Zim poll — EU
Juice: A non-progressive, neo-colonial policy
Editorial Comment: EU, US ambassadors must walk their talk
“As far as we went to Brussels and met in May before the EU’s last review
meeting on Zimbabwe we have not given them any new information as the
re-engagement team. I think they are going to assess us based on the
information we gave them before May.

“We have not dialogued with them since May and there will be no new basis to
review their stance.
“We had told them that we were going to have referendum and that has not
happened. We are still squabbling with the draft constitution. If I for one
is disappointed with the constitution-making process, what about the EU,”
said Mr Mangona.

However, Mrs Priscilla Misihairabwi Mushonga was somehow optimistic that
something positive was likely to come out of the EU’s February meeting.

“The EU indicated in their last review of the sanctions that they were going
to review their position on Zimbabwe.

“They are re-engaging Zimbabwe on development matters and they are going to
be funding us. We hope they are going to implement what they agreed to do.

“They have committed themselves to be implementing that and we know they are
in the process of doing that,” said Mrs Misihairabwi Mushonga.

When the EU members met in Brussels on 23 July 2012, the council adopted the
following among other issues:
1. The EU is encouraged by the progress that is being made in implementing
the Global Political Agreement by the Government of National Unity in
Zimbabwe. It welcomes the constructive dialogue that has been established in
the process of EU reengagement with all parties in the GNU, including
through the meeting in May this year between High Representative Ashton and
the members of the Zimbabwe Ministerial Reengagement Committee. The EU
welcomes the continued commitment of Sadc to support the implementation of
the GPA, as expressed at the recent extraordinary Sadc Summit in Luanda.

2. The steps taken by the GNU to improve the freedom and prosperity of the
Zimbabwean people justify the immediate suspension of the measures hitherto
applied under Article 96 of the Cotonou Agreement. This will allow the EU to
work directly with the GNU to develop new assistance programmes for the
benefit of the people of Zimbabwe that would come on stream under the next
European Development Fund.

3. The EU welcomes the recent visit to Zimbabwe of the UN HCHR at the
invitation of the GNU. It recognises the improvement that has been achieved
in the human rights situation although significant areas of concern remain.

4. As indicated in February this year and consistent with its incremental
approach, the EU will further adjust its policy to recognise progress as it
is made by the Zimbabwean parties along the Sadc roadmap. The EU agrees that
a peaceful and credible constitutional referendum would represent an
important milestone in the preparation of democratic elections that would
justify a suspension of the majority of all EU targeted restrictive measures
against individuals and entities.

5. The EU reaffirms its partnership with the people of Zimbabwe. It calls on
all parties to seize the momentum to complete implementation of the GPA in
preparation for elections next year. "
It is against this background that other members are pessimistic that the
embargoes will be lifted given that certain issues such the holding of the
referendum and other reforms that the EU wants have not been fulfilled.


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Chombo takes high-priced farm allocated War Veterans

http://www.thezimbabwemail.com

Staff Reporter 20 hours 22 minutes ago

HARARE - Local Government, Rural and Urban Development Minister Ignatius
Chombo has directed three farmers who were given offer letters at Crowhill
Farm to vacate the area to pave way for what he called urban development and
approach the Ministry of Lands and Rural Resettlement to get appropriate
land for agricultural purposes.
It now appears the three are fighting a lost battle, as the government has
finally incorporated the farm into the Greater Harare plan.

One of the farmers, Cde Lindani Maadza, insists that they were allocated
Crowhill Farm under the land reform programme, but Chombo said the land
under dispute is designated for urban development and the farmers should
approach the relevant ministry to get appropriate land for agriculture.

Chombo is believed to be taking most high-priced land around cities and
selling it for his own benefit.

Documents shown to the media show that Crowhill Farm was allocated to three
farmers including Cde Maadza in 2003 under the land reform programme.

However, Minister Chombo revealed that the farm was erroneously acquired as
it belonged to a businessman Ozias Bvute and is currently being subdivided
by Msipa Land Developers for residential stands in line with urban
development statutory instruments.


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Road carnage: Police presence increased

http://www.herald.co.zw

Tuesday, 01 January 2013 00:00

Crime Reporter
GOVERNMENT has increased the visibility of law enforcement agencies on the
country’s major roads to curb road accidents that have so far claimed 166
people. Speaking at a Press conference in Harare

yesterday Transport, Communications and Infrastructural Development Minister
Nicholas Goche said Government was concerned with the increased number of
deaths compared to 2011.

He said it was disturbing to note that road fatalities were increasing
during this period despite the heavy presence of law enforcement agencies.

Since December 15 2012, 867 people have been injured in 1 030 accidents.
The accidents have been attributed to speeding and human error.

“In this respect, I want to point out that we have since increased the
presence of traffic safety council personnel to remind the public on the dos
and don’ts of driving.

“Further, we have since increased the presence of vehicle inspecting
officers to enforce road-worthiness. While we have no intention of
disrupting the smooth flow of traffic under these circumstances we have no
choice but to increase our presence on the road in the interest of
preserving precious lives,” he said.

Minister Goche reminded public service vehicle operators to ensure that
vehicles are roadworthy, avoid speeding and overloading.

He also urged them to stick to their routes and time tables.
Minister Goche warned drivers to avoid drinking while on duty and to observe
all traffic rules and regulations.

He appealed to motorists to exercise caution during the remainder of the
holiday.
Minister Goche said the situation should be of major concern to every
Zimbabwean, particularly drivers.

“It is the duty of every motoring Zimbabwean to adhere to safe driving, and
that way we all contribute towards saving precious lives.”

Deputy officer commanding national traffic police Assistant Commissioner
Kenny Mthombeni said so far police had impounded 1 196 unroadworthy
vehicles.

“The unit does not have officers who carry out their duties in civilian
attire but in uniforms. I would like to urge the public to report anyone
they see operating in civilian attire,” he said.

The press conference was attended by senior officers from the Vehicle
Inspection Department, Traffic Safety Council of Zimbabwe and the Zimbabwe
National Road Administration.

Meanwhile, national police spokesperson Superintendent Andrew Phiri said
during this period they arrested 780 people for driving while using
cellphones and seven others for drunken driving.

He said a total of 10 826 people were also made to disembark from public
service vehicles they were in for overloading.

“There has been an outcry from members of the public that we were not doing
anything on overloading but we are dealing with the issue,” Supt Phiri said.

He said some of the public service vehicles pick up more passengers on their
way to various destinations even after being arrested and fined.

According to police statistics a total of 11 687 tickets have been issued.
Supt Phiri urged motorists to continue exercising caution and ensure that
their vehicles were in good condition before driving them.

During the same period in 2011, 67 people were killed while 729 others were
injured in 986 accidents recorded countrywide.


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MDC-T 'witchcraft' senator Femai freed

http://www.newzimbabwe.com

31/12/2012 00:00:00
by Staff Reporter

MDC-T senator for Chikomo Morgan Femai, who was arrested last Friday on
allegations he threatened his wife with murder and witchcraft, has been
freed after a withdrawal of charges.

Femai was detained at Matapi police Station in Harare following a domestic
dispute with his wife, who served him the trouble of prosecution by dropping
the case on Sunday.

Police say the row started when the politician’s spouse asked for a divorce
saying she could no longer put up with his promiscuous and violent conduct.

Incensed, Femai is said to have promised to retaliate by either killing her
or deploying witchcraft to make her mentally deranged if she pressed ahead.

But the MDC-T issued a stinging criticism of the police on Monday accusing
them of overreacting by arresting the senator without hearing his side of
the story.

“This was a domestic dispute and the police should not have intervened the
way they did,” said party spokesman Douglas Mwonzora.

“He was not supposed to be in police custody because the case did not
warrant detention; the law enforcement agents should have listened to both
sides of the story first before taking any drastic action.

“Whenever there is a dispute, the police must make sure the people are drawn
together, and not driven apart by unnecessary incarceration. We are happy
that senator Femai is out and enjoying his freedom," Mwonzora added.

Femai is not by any means the only politician who may be going through
marital problems.

Zanu PF chairman Simon Khaya Moyo filed for divorce from his wife
Sibonokuhle Getrude Moyo in August citing infidelity. The couple had been
married for 32 years.

Another high profile politician in the same bracket is Environment and
Natural Resources Minister Francis Nhema who is seperating from his wife of
20 years, Louise Nhema (nee Nkomo).


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Tongogara widow demands probe

http://nehandaradio.com

on January 1, 2013 at 1:24 pm

ANGELINE Tongogara, the widow of former Zanla commander General Josiah
Magama Tongogara, has demanded that she be driven to the scene of the
accident where her husband died mysteriously 33 years ago, saying the
circumstances surrounding his death were still haunting her.

Angeline with husband Josiah Tongogara: “I was just told he was involved in
an accident; usual driver I knew, didn’t go” she said.
Angeline told the State-owned Sunday Mail newspaper over weekend she was
still in the dark over the cause of the accident and was bitter over the way
President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu PF government had handled her husband’s
death.

“I was just told he was involved in an accident. His usual driver, the one I
knew, didn’t go with him on this day. He went with another driver. His
secretary was Oppah Muchinguri (now Zanu PF women’s league secretary) and
she was in the same car with him when the accident happened. I was told that
he was the only one who had died.

“As the wife of Cde Tongo and as the mother of his four children, my request
is that: ‘Please, please can you arrange for me to go and see where my
husband died?’ As long as I am alive, it still troubles me,” she said.

She also claimed she was not afforded an opportunity to carry out a full
body viewing of her husband’s corpse nor was she invited to witness the
exhumation and reburial of his remains at the National Heroes’ Acre in 1981.

“I removed the cloth starting from the head and I saw the wounds, but as I
was about to pull away the cloth so I could see the whole body, Josiah
Tungamirai came and said: ‘Why are you letting her touch this body?’ I was
injected and I passed out. I don’t know what happened from there. When I
woke up, I was now at the President (Robert Mugabe)’s house.”

General Tongo, as the late Zanla commander was affectionately known, died on
the spot after his vehicle crashed in Mozambique on December 26, 1979 as
most war cadres were heading home after a ceasefire had been declared.

Since then, several theories have emerged over cause of his death with some
pointing to assassination by his party rivals.

A United States Central Intelligence Agency intelligence briefing of
December 28, 1979 said: “Tongogara was a potential political rival to Mugabe
because of his

. . . ambition, popularity and decisive style. On the same day, the US
embassy in Zambia reported: Almost no one in Lusaka accepts Mugabe’s
assurance that Tongogara died accidentally. When the ambassador told the
Soviet ambassador the news, the surprised Soviet immediately charged ‘inside
job’.”

Former Rhodesian Prime Minister Ian Smith also insisted in his memoirs that
Tongogara’s “own people” killed him, and that he had disclosed at the
Lancaster House talks in London earlier that year that Tongogara was under
threat.

“I made a point of discussing his death with our police commissioner and
head of Special Branch, and both assured me that Tongogara had been
assassinated,” Smith wrote.

A former detective in the Law and Order section of the now defunct BSA
Police (replaced by the Zimbabwe Republic Police) saw photographs of
Tongogara’s body.

The photographs showed three wounds, consistent with gunshot wounds, in his
upper torso. The undertaker’s statement was not a formal autopsy report and
as such was dismissed by all, but senior Zanu politburo members.

In spite of all these rumours, a pathologist for Mashfords Funeral Home in
Zimbabwe, confirmed, in a television documentary in 1982 titled Tongo, that
the theory of gunshot wounds on Tongogara’s body was false as he personally
inspected the body. He confirmed that the injuries he found were consistent
with road accident trauma.

Another theory is that he was killed by the Rhodesian Special Air Service
commando unit.

Tungamirai, the then Zanla High Command’s political commissar, relates that
on the night of the fatality, he and Tongogara had been travelling with
others in two vehicles from Maputo to Chimoio.

Tungamirai, who is also now late, said he was in the front vehicle. It was
dark and the roads were bad. Tungamirai’s car passed a military vehicle that
had been carelessly abandoned, with no warning signs at the side of the
road.

After that, he could no longer see the headlights of the following car in
his rear-view mirror. Eventually he turned back, and, as he had feared, they
found Tongogara’s car had struck the abandoned vehicle.

Tongogara was sitting in the front passenger seat.

Angeline joins a growing list of the families of several other former army
bosses who have died under unclear circumstances and are demanding answers
from government. These include families of the late General Solomon Mujuru
and Zimbabwe National Army Brigadier-General Paul Armstrong Gunda, among
others, whose deaths remain unexplained to date.

Mujuru’s elder brother Joel yesterday said the family was still pushing for
answers over the mysterious death of General Mujuru in an inferno at his
Beatrice farm in August 2011.

“We are still pushing government and we are also demanding answers from
government. I can’t wait to get answers on what exactly happened to him,”
said Mujuru.

Justice and Legal Affairs deputy minister Obert Gutu said: “There is need
for transparency and openness in the unfortunate deaths of these people. It
is surprising that she (Angeline Tongogara) has not been taken to the scene
of the accident, it raises more questions than answers on what really
happened to the late liberation icon. She should have been the first to be
taken to the scene as the widow of the late Tongo.”

Zanu PF secretary for administration Didymus Mutasa said although he had
heard about Angeline’s disgruntlement, he was not in a position to comment
on the matter.

Pressed further, Mutasa said: “I have heard that she is complaining, but I
can’t comment because I don’t have information yet. I can only comment if I
get all the details on what exactly she said.”

Rangarirai Gunda, the widow of the late Brigadier-General Gunda, was
recently quoted saying she would not be silenced in her quest for answers
about the death in 2007 of her husband in a mysterious train crash. Zimbabwe
Mail


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Tamborinyoka spends Christmas out of hospital

http://nehandaradio.com

on December 31, 2012 at 4:31 am

By Lance Guma

Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s spokesman Luke Tamborinyoka, who was
battling for his life in the intensive care unit of the Avenues Clinic in
Harare last month following a car accident, was discharged from the same
hospital sometime last week.

He suffered head injuries, broken ribs, a perforated lung and lost a lot of
blood when the rear tyre of his Toyota Prado burst near Domboshava causing
the vehicle to overturn several times before it landed on its roof.

Last month a worried friend told Nehanda Radio “Luke is in a very difficult
position right now. The head injuries are very serious. We are praying for
him as we speak. He lost a lot of blood and it’s not looking good.”

An MDC-T official today told us Tamborinyoka was now “up and running and
spent Christmas with his family at their rural home in Domboshava. He is in
very good spirits. His miraculous recovery is God’s testimony on two legs.”

Asked when he might be back at work, the official said “it’s his choice; he
will have to take his time.” The news will come as a huge relief for family
and friends of the former Daily News journalist now Tsvangirai’s spokesman.


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Erratic Rains Prompt Farmers to Start Planting Crops

http://www.voazimbabwe.com

Gibbs Dube
31.12.2012

Though field conditions remain drier than normal for this time of year,
erratic rains have prompted many communal farmers in Matabeleland, Masvingo
and other regions to start planting crops.

Everson Ndlovu, a development and relief aid worker in Tshelanyemba communal
lands, Matabeleland South Province, says some farmers in the region are
taking advantage of the rains to plant maize and drought tolerant crops such
as sorghum and millet.

A Gutu farmer, who asked to be identified as Mukoma Mike, says most farmers
in Gutu District, Masvingo Province, remain confident that they will have
good harvests this season despite the late rains.

According to the government’s Meteorological Services, some parts of
Zimbabwe are expected to receive above normal rains this season.

However, Meteorological Services Department director Tichaona Zinyemba
declined to comment on the rain outlook, saying he is on leave.

Zimbabwe’s cabinet recently revised upwards the number of people in the
country who are likely to need food assistance from 1,6 million to 2
million.

The Zimbabwe Vulnerability Assessment Committee (ZIMVAC) had originally
estimated that over 1.6 million people would be food insecure between
January and March next year, the peak hunger months in the country.

The hardest hit areas are Masvingo, Matabeleland North and South, and - most
worryingly - the normally food secure Mashonaland Central Province.

The United Nations World Food Program says the deteriorating food situation
was caused by erratic rainfall and dry spells, limited access to
agricultural inputs such as seeds and fertilizer, a reduction in the planted
hectarage, poor farming practices and inadequate crop diversification.

This year’s cereal harvest was 1,076.772 metric tonnes – one third lower
than that of last year and the lowest since 2008.

To meet the increased needs, the WFP and its partners would undertake food
distribution with regionally procured cereals as well as imported vegetable
oil.

The organization has a food budget deficit of $87 million after setting
aside $119 million for food aid.


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Bankruptcy may force Zimbabwe out of World Cup qualifying

http://www.goal.com

The penniless football association can no longer pay for international
commitments, putting tournament participation in jeopardy for a host of
South Africa-based stars

Jan 1, 2013 8:30:00 AM
By Andre Bell

Zimbabwe might have to forego their 2014 World Cup qualifying campaign
because their football association is bankrupt and cannot pay the expenses
for the March trip to Egypt.

The warning comes from Zimbabwe Football Association (Zifa) vice president
Ndumiso Gumede on the back of instructions from Fifa to clear their debts,
which now total €3 million.

"Fifa has said to us don’t get yourselves involved in games unless you have
a full government guarantee or sponsorship that covers accommodation, match
expenses and all incidentals," he told reporters.

"Unless [the] government chips in and funds the match against Egypt, we are
better off paying a huge fine of about $50 000 (€38,000) to Fifa than
accruing another huge debt to fulfill the game."

Gumede said Fifa’s tough stance had also forced them to review their
international obligations with Zifa now set to withdraw from all games and
competitions for which it does not have substantial financial backing.

Zimbabwe are set to travel to Cairo on the weekend of March 22-24 to resume
their World Cup qualifying campaign before hosting the Pharaohs in Harare on
June 7.

The nation already had to withdraw their Under 20 and Under 17 teams from
the continental championships due to a lack of finances.

"So come January 1, we are not going to take part in any games unless there
are tangible financial commitments to cover for everything, including
incidentals," Gumede added.

"It has been Fifa’s observation that the more we commit ourselves to
fulfilling a lot of matches, the deeper we are sinking in terms of our debt
and when you look at it closely you can see that it is true."


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I wanted to be president

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

Every child growing up in any strata of society, from the leafy suburb of Borrowdale to the dusty streets of Mbare, has an ambition. I remember very well the day I stood in front of my class, telling my classmates what my ambition was. I told them, that one day when I grow up, I would be president of this beloved country Zimbabwe. My dreams were met with a great round of applause and cheers.

This November I just celebrated my 30th birthday, in a world that has done much to suppress my childhood ambition, a role which I certainly no longer pursue because I have realised that the realm of politics in Zimbabwe is a dangerous ground.

Zanu PF despises the youth of our nation and officials from all sectors, including the police and the Army, loudly declare that they will not accept anyone without Second Chimurenga credentials to assume the highest position of office. Our geriatric President Mugabe, who has been in office since 1980, has indicated his intentions to run for another period in office. He just will not give up.

Every day war is declared on us by War Veterans who threaten to go back to the bush should we raise our heads and take action against the aged leader – one who has taken our country from one degree of failure to another.

Since he took over the country, the economy has been on a free-fall, with most companies closed, unemployment over 90%, health and education systems in disarray and continuous food shortages resulting from the disastrous land reform programme carried out by so called war veterans.

As a young person I watch in agony the future of my nation being destroyed. We don’t know what it feels to be employed, most of us resort to vending on street corners with municipal police hot on our tails for trying to make a living. All this for the simple reason that we were liberated and that we were not there to help them.

Our generation is almost lost and I am now worried for my children and their children. There is no light at the end of the tunnel with Mugabe in power. He was President for my Father, now me and will his pact with the devil mean he will preside over my children and their children as well?


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