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The virtues of isolationism


Jul 5th 2007
From The Economist print edition

Robert Mugabe should be a pariah, not a regular feature on the summit
circuit

AFP
ANOTHER week, another stark contrast in how to deal with Zimbabwe's
president, Robert Mugabe. In a blistering attack on Mr Mugabe's rule, the
Roman Catholic Archbishop of Bulawayo, Pius Ncube, said that the state of
the country was now so bad that foreign governments (particularly Britain's)
should intervene to "remove" Mr Mugabe from power. Meanwhile, at an African
Union summit in Ghana, Mr Mugabe was, as usual, feted by his fellow African
leaders, where he pronounced on the virtues of pan-African unity.

Not only that, but the African Union is also insisting on Mr Mugabe's
presence at a summit with the European Union to be held in Portugal in
December. The Portuguese, who took over the rotating European Union
presidency on July 1st, are making better links with Africa a priority of
their six-month presidency. They say they would prefer not to have Mr Mugabe
(who is already subject to an EU travel ban) at the summit, but that it
would be worse to lose the summit altogether.

It is shameful that African leaders continue not only to shield but also
positively to promote Mr Mugabe in this way. Apart from anything else, it
makes a mockery of the noble talk of human rights and good government the
African Union spouted when it relaunched itself five years ago. Instead, the
African Union is coming increasingly to resemble its discredited and
unlamented predecessor, the Organisation of African Unity, a
mutual-protection club for dodgy presidents. The continent's leaders should
by now be confident enough to see Mr Mugabe's harping on about African
solidarity against imperialism for the self-serving smokescreen it is.

Every week brings grimmer news about the impoverishment and degradation of
what used to be one of Africa's most prosperous countries. Zimbabwe's
official inflation rate has now passed 3,700%; unofficially it is a good
deal higher than that. The government's only response has been to try to
impose a price freeze by force, arresting 194 people in the process. Shops
have shut down and factories have stopped production because they could only
carry on at a loss.

Mr Ncube's courageous outburst reflects the huge frustration that is
building up inside Zimbabwe as the country falls into ruin. He also has a
special animus against the president. Apart from witnessing the worst of Mr
Mugabe's regime over the full 27 years of its existence, Mr Ncube was a
priest in Matabeleland when Mr Mugabe first turned on those he saw as
potential opponents there and massacred some 20,000 people, most of whom
were entirely innocent civilians.

For that reason, Mr Ncube's appeal to the West to remove Mr Mugabe should be
taken as a cry of pain, not a reason for the West to invade. Mr Ncube
stressed that any intervention should be non-violent. And he knows that the
threat of Western interference, particularly by Britain, the former colonial
power, is one of the few ways in which Mr Mugabe can still drum up domestic
support. So although the West is preparing to put Zimbabwe back on its feet
once Mr Mugabe is gone, it is only the Africans, and particularly the
southern Africans, who can apply the strong pressure needed to get rid of
him quickly.

Say no to the African Union's blackmail
Yet the Portuguese do now have a way to give the African Union a much-needed
jolt. They should refuse to let Mr Mugabe come to Lisbon. That will force
Africa's leaders to reconsider their priorities. If that stops the summit
from taking place, so be it: a firm stand would send a powerful message of
solidarity to all those in Zimbabwe who long to be rescued from their
plight. Welcoming their tormentor to Lisbon for the sake of a jamboree would
be a corresponding disgrace.


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Zimbabwe bans bulk buying as shops run empty

Reuters

Thu Jul 5, 2007 4:48AM EDT

By MacDonald Dzirutwe

HARARE, July 5 (Reuters) - Zimbabwe authorities ordered businesses on
Thursday to stop selling basic goods in bulk to avert shortages after an
official price freeze triggered a frenzied buying spree that has emptied
most shop shelves.

President Robert Mugabe's government last week ordered businesses to roll
back prices to June 18 levels after wild increases of up to 300 percent
within a week following the plunge of the local currency on a thriving black
market.

Spiralling prices have pushed inflation above 4,500 percent, the highest in
the world, underscoring an eight-year economic recession that has ravaged
urban workers the most and sparked foreign currency, fuel and food
shortages.

"Wholesalers and retailers should desist from allowing bulk buying of basic
commodities," Obert Mpofu, the Minister of Industry and International Trade,
told the official Herald newspaper on Thursday.

Mugabe denies charges he has presided over the country's worst economic
crisis since independence from Britain in 1980 and instead says the West has
sabotaged the economy to punish him for seizing white-owned commercial farms
for blacks.

Over the past week shoppers have been buying sugar, cooking oil, flour, salt
and maize-meal in bulk, leaving shelves empty while manufacturers have
stopped producing. They say the price freeze is not viable given the price
of other goods and raw materials continue to skyrocket.

Police had to be called in at a supermarket in central Harare early on
Thursday to control a huge crowd that had jammed the shop after word quickly
got round that sugar was available.

"We heard there is sugar here that is why there is all this commotion,"
Rosemary Marawa said as she tussled in a long queue which also included
uniformed police and soldiers.

Some people have formed teams to trawl shops in the capital and buy whatever
basic goods they can in bulk.

Mugabe has accused businesses of being drafted in a conspiracy by his
Western foes to topple him from power by increasing prices without
justification. He warned his government could seize and nationalise the
companies.

More than 200 business people -- including a ruling party senator -- have
been arrested for defying the price freeze, which economic analysts say will
only entrench the black market.

Police also said they had unearthed huge quantities of sugar, soap and
cooking oil -- all in short supply -- at a site in Harare and suspect the
goods were being hoarded to create artificial shortages in the market.

"The public is urged not to be involved in panic buying of commodities whose
prices have been reduced as sustainable continuous supplies will be
provided," Information Minister Sikhanyiso Ndlovu told the Herald.


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SA insists on Mugabe invitation

Mail and Guardian

Paul Simao | Pretoria, South Africa

05 July 2007 02:22

South Africa and other African nations will insist that
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe be allowed to attend a long-delayed
summit between the European Union (EU) and Africa later this year, the
government said on Thursday.

Mugabe and more than 100 other Zimbabwean officials are banned
from travelling to EU nations under sanctions imposed in 2002, a restriction
that threatens to derail an EU-Africa summit scheduled for December in
Portugal.

The African Union has said its 53 members should decide who to
send to the meeting.

"I think Africa will not move on its position of what
constitutes the African delegation," South African Deputy Foreign Minister
Aziz Pahad said at a news briefing in the capital Pretoria.

"Today, it is Zimbabwe [under pressure], tomorrow it could be
us."

Pahad said he was encouraged by comments from senior Portuguese
officials, including its foreign affairs minister, suggesting the political
crisis in Zimbabwe and Mugabe's presence should not block a summit.

Portugal holds the rotating six-month EU presidency, giving it
additional sway over how to approach the problem of Mugabe's invitation. The
Portuguese term will expire in early 2008.

Widely accused of abusing human rights, suppressing political
opposition and driving Zimbabwe's economy into the ground, Mugabe became
persona non grata in much of Europe in 2002 after winning an election
described as rigged by international observers.

South African President Thabo Mbeki is brokering talks between
Mugabe's government and representatives of Zimbabwe's main opposition
Movement for Democratic Change under a mandate granted to him earlier this
year by the Southern African Development Community (SADC).

Pahad said he believed Mbeki had briefed other SADC nations on
the talks, but gave no further details.

The issue of the 83-year-old Zimbabwean leader, who has vowed to
run for another term as president next year, is the main reason the EU and
Africa have not held a summit since their first effort in Cairo seven years
ago.

Britain, which ruled Zimbabwe under its former name Rhodesia
until independence in 1980, is believed to be among the EU members most
opposed to inviting Mugabe to Portugal. Under EU rules, any member can veto
the invitation.

The summit would likely focus on areas requiring closer
cooperation between Europe and Africa, notably trade, migration and the
establishment of an energy partnership.

Spain, Italy and other southern European nations are struggling
to cope with illegal immigration from Africa.

Consumer shortages
Meanwhile, in Zimbabwe, the most basic goods are disappearing
from shop shelves.

Long queues of shoppers now form early in the morning at many
Harare supermarkets and shops, hoping to grab essentials such as sugar and
oil amid a price crisis that has sharpened already desperate consumer
shortages.

Zimbabwe's latest shopping nightmare comes after the government
last week ordered a 50% cut in prices to fight galloping inflation, a move
critics say is bound to worsen the country's economic problems.

On Wednesday, Zimbabwe state media reported manufacturers, state
firms and some retailers had agreed to cut prices in compliance with the
government order, but privately many grumble the drive is unsustainable.

The official move to exert price controls came after a wild week
that saw the price of many basic goods jump by more than 300%. - Reuters


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Govt concerned about Zimbabwe's economic crisis

SABC

July 05, 2007, 17:45

Aziz Pahad, the deputy minister of foreign Affairs, says for South Africa
the solution to Zimbabwe's political, economic and social issues has become
fundamental. He expressed government's concern on the effect of Zimbabwe's
economy on South Africa.

Briefing the media in Pretoria, Pahad referred to Zimbabwe's inflation rate
of around 5 000%. He says about three million Zimbabweans are estimated to
be in South Africa. Pahad says there is no way they can prevent the flow of
Zimbabweans into South Africa and this is why the government is concerned
about the neighbouring state's situation.

Meanwhile, the important Africa-European Union summit, already held up for
seven years, is still in the balance because of the EU travel ban on Robert
Mugabe, the Zimbabwean president. However, Pahad welcomed indications from
the current EU president and host of the summit, Portugal, that Mugabe might
be welcome after all.


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Implats concerned about power supply in Zimbabwe

Reuters

Thu 5 Jul 2007, 9:30 GMT

By Eric Onstad

JOHANNESBURG, July 5 (Reuters) - The world's second biggest platinum
producer Implats <IMPJ.J> said on Thursday it was working on ensuring a
steady power supply for its mines in Zimbabwe, hit by a severe economic
crisis and hyper-inflation.

Chief Executive David Brown told Reuters so far there had been only minor
problems with electricity in Zimbabwe, the company's major future growth
area.

He said in an interview the company has been lucky to operate successfully
in Zimbabwe over the past six years despite economic crisis, but it was now
concerned about power supplies.

"Certainly the issues that are starting to come through is the consistency
of electricity supply, which obviously is quite crucial for our business,"
he said.

When asked if there had been outages, he replied: "There's been some minor
stuff, but certainly not on a major scale... electricity supply is probably
one of the risk factors of doing business there at this particular point of
time."

The company was working on making sure power supplies did not have a major
impact on its business there, he added.

"There's a number of solutions that are being worked on, and certainly we
are communicating with the various parastatals to make sure we solve the
issues," he said, declining to give details.

Implats has a majority stake in Zimplats Holdings Ltd <ZIM.AX>, which it
hopes will boost annual output to 1 million ounces of platinum per year in
the long term from 90,000 ounces currently.

The firm also has joint venture along with Aquarius Platinum Ltd
<AQPJ.J><AQP.L> in Zimbabwe's Mimosa mine.

WELL PLACED FOR NEW LAW

Brown said Implats was well placed for planned legislation to require
companies to sell 51 percent stakes to local Zimbabwean investors.

The firm agreed a deal last year to get credits towards the 51 percent
requirement by giving up some unused mining claims in Zimbabwe, which has
the second richest resources of platinum after South Africa, the world's
biggest producer of the metal.

The Zimbabwe government also agreed to give credits for building roads and
other infrastructure towards the local ownership rules.

"I think the value of those credits probably need to be finalised, but
certainly the principle is established and is accepted," Brown said.

The credits, however, would not meet the full 51 percent requirement and
Impala Platinum Holdings Ltd plans to sell a stake to local investors, he
added.

"Between the 51 percent and these other items, there would have to be a gap,
and that gap would have to be filled. We have always been comfortable with
the fact that there should be some indigenisation."

Brown said he was unable to comment on comments by President Robert Mugabe,
who threatened last month to seize foreign companies, including mines, he
accused of economic sabotage as part of a campaign to oust his government.

"I don't know the context in which statements like that were made, so it is
very difficult to comment on how those statements might have an impact on
us. I's not particularly clear at all."


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Social distinctions fade in the face of survival

United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs -
Integrated Regional Information Networks (IRIN)

Date: 05 Jul 2007

HARARE, 5 July 2007 (IRIN) - A senior Zimbabwean police official has
employed five young men to sell foreign currency on the streets of the
capital, Harare, but while the police play cat and mouse with the illegal
dealers, his "employees" conduct their business undisturbed because they
cannot be arrested.

"We sell the foreign currency openly because we are untouchable. Some
constables arrested me at one time, even though I had informed them that I
was working for their boss. They have been transferred from Harare and after
that no-one dares touch us," said one of the dealers, who identified himself
as Peter.

He claimed that a number of police officers were selling foreign currency
and using their positions to ensure that their agents were protected from
arrest.

Besides dealing in foreign currency on the parallel market, the police
official also has other "employees" who vend vegetables or cigarettes, and
cellphones confiscated from unauthorised vendors.

As Zimbabwe's economy plumbs new depths, some police officials have joined
the ranks of company executives who have resorted to moonlighting as
dealers, running intricate networks in the informal market to supplement
their income.

A police spokesman, Assistant Commissioner Wayne Bvudzijena, told IRIN, "It
is illegal to sell foreign currency in the streets, be it policemen or
ordinary Zimbabweans, they will be arrested."

Something extra

Every Friday, Stanley Cele, 48, the managing director of a vehicle spare
parts company in Harare, takes bags of assorted essentials - ranging from
imported cooking oil, laundry soap, detergents and even sweets - to sell at
his workplace.

He enlists the help of some of his colleagues to encourage others to buy the
goods; those who purchase items have their names written down and are given
the option of paying at the end of the month when they receive their
salaries.

There is a large sign that prohibits hawking on the firm's premises. "I am
aware that there are people out there who scoff at me, saying that as a
managing director I am not supposed to be seen hawking; they say it reduces
my esteem as the head of the company but I don't care, I have to survive,"
Cele told IRIN.

The stranglehold of Zimbabwe's seven-year economic recession, characterised
by runaway inflation - currently at around 4,000 percent - acute shortages
of essential commodities, power and foreign currency, has left 80 percent of
the population living below the poverty datum line.

Many company executives are augmenting their incomes in ways that would be
unacceptable in a normal economy. "As a manager, before the economic
meltdown I used to be fussy when junior employees brought their items,
mostly buns for breakfast, to sell on the company premises. Of course, I
have now swallowed my pride," Cele said.

Cross-border traders

His wife quit her job as a nurse at the beginning of the year to start
cross-border trading, bringing into the country the items that Cele sells to
other staff and the employees of neighbouring companies.

She has joined the thousands of others who go mainly to neighbouring South
Africa and Botswana to buy goods for resale in Zimbabwe, a business that is
proving to be the mainstay of many families.

Most basic commodities are not readily available on Zimbabwean shop shelves
but can easily be found on the streets. By bringing the goods to the people
at work instead of selling them on the streets, Cele ensures quick sales.

He said his company, which used to have branches nationwide, has hit a low
ebb because they were finding it difficult to source foreign currency -
scarce in banks but available on the parallel market at exorbitant rates -
to import the spare parts that were the company's core business.

"We are performing well below capacity and salaries have been stagnant for a
long time, and if things continue like this we might be forced to close
down," said Cele, whose take-home pay is a paltry Z$10 million (about US$77
at the parallel market rate of Z$130,000 to US$1).

Crossing the line

He has to keep up appearances, going out for lunch with other executives and
wearing expensive clothes, but this cannot be sustained on his meagre
salary.

Cele admitted that he sometimes used unorthodox methods to force his
employees to buy his goods.

With poor monthly incomes, most of them were reluctant to buy too many items
in case they were left with no money, but Cele, particularly near the end of
the month, held general meetings with them and brought out his goods after
addressing them. "I know they are forced to buy because they want to curry
favour with me and believe that that is the best way of keeping their jobs."

However, other employees have also started hawking, plunging the company
into chaos and virtually turning the premises into a marketplace; even the
security guard in the firm's reception area has set up a stall outside the
gate, selling cigarettes, sweets and bananas.

"Almost everyone is doing it because that is the only way to earn a
semblance of a living, but we are careful not to bring in goods that the
boss is selling because that would mean we are directly competing with him,
and that could easily cost our jobs," Absalom Mutsvangwa, the guard, told
IRIN.

"Second hand clothes, sugar, vegetables and slaughtered chickens are among
the most popular commodities on sale, and employees are now spending most of
their time doing that instead of their duties. Workers from the surrounding
factories inundate the firm, especially during lunchtime," he said.

Innocent Makwiramiti, an economist and past chief executive officer of the
Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce, said it was not surprising that
company executives were resorting to other means to augment their salaries,
because industry was performing poorly.

"Most executives are no longer held in high regard by their juniors because
of the coping tactics they have been forced to adopt by the current economic
crisis. That has created another problem, in that where a company head is
not respected, performance at the workplace suffers and returns diminish,"
Makwiramiti told IRIN.

The Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries recently indicated that industry
was performing at a third of its pre-2000 capacity, while analysts say the
economy has shrunk to its pre-1965 level.


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Mugabe's policies anger top cronies

Zimbabwejournalists.com

5th Jul 2007 17:02 GMT

By a Correspondent

HARARE - President Robert Mugabe has come under strong condemnation from
colleagues within the top echelons of Zanu PF for ordering the current
massive price cuts that have seen shop shelves going empty after shoppers
emptied them in a buying frenzy.

Sources within the party told zimbabwejournalists.com that top Zanu PF
officials who have their hands right in the national pie and are the major
culprits benefiting from the country's economic collapse, are angryu with
Mugabe for cutting their huge profits through the price cuts.

The Zimbabwean government recently ordered that prices be cut by 50 percent
on basic commodities, a move which has angered those in the business
community and the Zanu PF gurus who were making a killing out of the
ordinary person's misery.

High emotions among top party elites have also come to light following the
arrest of a senator who had defied the government order to cut prices.

Most leading Zanu PF politicians have businesses in food outlets and some
have invested in hotel chains, restaurants and confectioneries.

Mugabe himself is alleged to be a leading investor in Bakers Inn, a backing
confectionery in Zimbabwe but we have not been able to confirm this.

Some of those affected by the price cuts include the Zvobgo family and
retired army general Solomon Mujuru who is the husband too the vice
president, Joice Mujuru. Ignatius Chombo, Leo Mugabe, Oppah Muchinguri, are
some of the affected.

The move to cut prices by 50 percent has led to consumers buying goods in
bulk which has left some supermarkets running dry.

"I know once all this is over, there will be no sugar, cooking oil and soap
in the shops. I have no option but to stock up. I might even resell some if
I get some extra stuff, it's a matter of survival," one consumer said,
referring to the ongoing crackdown.

Recently the state media reported that some firms were raising prices as a
way of frustrating the Mugabe regime.

"There are some private companies which are raising prices as part of a plot
to oust President Mugabe, who has been pilloried in the West for his
controversial policies," said a senior Zanu PF official.

Mugabe critics have however claimed that it is desperate move by the ageing
dictator in making sure he buys votes well in time as 2008 polls will more
likely have intense monitoring.


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Zimbabwe-SA protection deal stalls

Business Report

July 5, 2007

By Donwald Pressly

Cape Town - There had been little progress in protecting South African
businesses that might face nationalisation in Zimbabwe, trade and industry
minister Mandisi Mpahlwa acknowledged yesterday.

Talks on an investment promotion and protection agreement began many years
ago. But when Business Report asked Mpahlwa what progress was being made in
protecting business from South Africa and the rest of southern Africa, he
replied: "We have not come round to signing that agreement."

He noted that he had written to then Zimbabwe finance minister Herbert
Murerwa two years ago, telling him how important it was for South Africa to
have this agreement in place.

"We had bilateral meetings between ourselves and the government of
Zimbabwe . which threw up technical issues." Then there had been a change of
the Zimbabwean finance minister - Samuel Mumbengegwi replaced Murerwa in
February - "which cost us the momentum".

More than two years ago Mpahlwa said a provisional date had been set to sign
the deal. South Africa had maintained for three years before then that the
only hold-up with signing had been the inability to find a mutually suitable
date with Zimbabwe.

The original draft agreement dealt with promotion and reciprocal protection
of investment between the two countries. It would protect the land rights of
South African farmers who own land in Zimbabwe.

Meanwhile, Mpahlwa acknowledged that his department had been slow to arrange
a benchmarked and developmental pricing system for telecoms to help attract
business process outsourcing companies.

"This is something we identified quite early on. The costs of telecoms is
crucial if we are to succeed in attracting investments into the area," said
the minister.

"Unfortunately, we haven't concluded our work," he said, but added that
research by various ministries, including the communications department, was
"quite advanced". He acknowledged that there was a limited "window of
opportunity" to attract the outsourcing market.

Mpahlwa could not give a date when the lottery, suspended in March, would
resume. "We are processing the responses from the National Lotteries Board."

Asked if higher interest and inflation rates would necessitate any
adjustments in scenarios for the accelerated and shared growth initiative,
he said: "We haven't found reason to review any of the projections." Growth
was "deep rooted" because it was not only fuelled by the commodity boom and
global demand. "It is fuelled by a rising level of investment."

Implats moved in without waiting for government action

Johannesburg - Impala Platinum (Implats) yesterday shrugged off trade and
industry minister Mandisi Mpahlwa's admission that the bilateral investment
agreement between South Africa and Zimbabwe was still in limbo.

Eighteen months ago the company was waiting anxiously for the agreement to
be finalised, as it considered expansion in the Zimbabwean context of
runaway inflation and a capricious government. In March 2006 it gave up
waiting and took its chance without government support.

Bob Gilmour, the company's spokesperson, said the mooted pact had been up in
the air for a while and Implats was expanding and operating platinum mines
in Zimbabwe without it. In May 2006 Implats swapped some mineral rights in
Zimbabwe for empowerment credits that allowed it to proceed with the
expansion of its Zimbabwe operations. - Justin Brown


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Government blamed for increasing prison deaths

Zimbabwejournalists.com

5th Jul 2007 16:53 GMT

By Trust Matsilele

HARARE - THE Zimbabwe government has come under strong criticism for the
increasing number of deaths in state prisons. The number is pegged close to
eight thousand, according to a human rights defender.

"About 7 800 prisoners have died in country prisons since January this year
and the number is likely to triple by the year end," said Tapera Kapuyi.

"Some reports allege that the deaths are a result of poor sanitation and
living conditions as prisoners are being underfed whilst being overworked."

"Sometimes prisoners go for two days without a descent meal and this is
quite embarrassing since the country's constitution upholds human dignity
regardless of a crime they might have committed," continued Kapuya.

A close relative to the late William Nhara, a former principal directorr in
the government, said that his brother had died after being denied medication
for two consecutive months.

Gilbert Moyo, who was imprisoned for three years for allegedly being
involved in the killing of Cain Nkala, said the issue of deaths was not a
surprise as tens of prison inmates die on daily basis.

"In November 2001 whilst I was in prison about 19 people died on a single
day and reports said they had gone for days without food whilst being
subjected to torture," said Moyo, now exiled in South Africa.

A senior official with the Prison Fellowship of Zimbabwe, speaking on
condition that he would not be named, said that on several occasions they
had urged the Zimbabwean government to revise conditions in which prisoners
were living.

"We have tried to urge the government to revise its treatment on prisoners
since 2004 but there has been no change. We urge all civil societies
advocating for human rights to also participate in shaming evils perpetrated
by the government," he added.


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Zim journalist rots in Botswana prison

Zimbabwejournalists.com

5th Jul 2007 16:47 GMT

By Trust Matsilele

FRANCISTOWN - A former Zimpapers journalist, David Mpofu, has been detained
for five years at Jerald Estate Prison, 20 km outside Francistown, following
the rejection of his asylum application by the Botswana government in 2002.

Mpofu who worked for the government-controlled daily paper, The Herald
before he became an editor of the now defunct Plumtree Post, is refusing to
be returned to Zimbabwe as he fears that his life would be in danger
following alleged death threats from Zimbabwe security agents.

According to his relative, James Mushandu who escaped from the same prison
last March, Mpofu had opted to stay in detention for such a long period
despite poor living conditions as he fears that he might get killed.

"When I was arrested and sent to Jerald Estate Prison in 2004, I met David
there and he told me he has been there since 2002 the time his asylum
application failed and he says he can not go back to Zimbabwe as he fears to
be killed," said Mushandu.

Mashandu said Mpofu's health had been greatly compromised because of harsh
prison conditions.

Botswana is known for its inhuman treatment of illegal immigrants and in the
past some illegal immigrants were reported to have been forced to
masturbate by state security officials.

According to Mashandu, Mpofu left Zimbabwe in 2002 after allegdly exposing
some vote rigging in the Plumtree Post.

After publishing the story he received numerous death threats from state
security agents and Zanu PF supporters, forcing him flee to Botswana and
seek political refugee, which he was denied.

Zimbabwe is one of the leading countries whose journalists have fled the
country due to political instability and most being victims of former
Minister of Information and Publicity, Jonathan Moyo's draconian media laws,
especially the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act (AIPPA)
and Public Order Security Act (POSA).

Mashandu said the prison, which also houses common criminals, is known for
gruesome activities being perpetrated by prison officials on inmates.

"Shaban Ramadan from Burundi was shot dead by one of prison officials as he
tried to escape from Jerald Estate Prison since he wanted to go and try
to apply for political asylum elsewhere," said Mashandu.

Zimbabwe currently tops the list of countries that have forced the largest
number of journalists into exile.

More than 48 Zimbabwean journalists had escaped persecution by the
government between July 2001 and this month.

This accounts for about 20 percent of the total global number of scribes
forced to flee their countries in the past six years with Botswana becoming
one of the country's with a bigger population of Zimbabweans
who have fled persecution and economic meltdown caused by President Robert
Mugabe's failed policies.

In this country there is voluntary repatriation if one's
asylum applications fails but if one opts to stay in the country he or she
is send to Jerald estate prison for detention until they feel safe to go
back to their own home country.

Efforts to get a comment from Botswana officials were unsuccessful as the
officials refused to answer questions from this reporter.


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What Zimbabweans think of Pius Ncube

New Zimbabwe

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
ARCHBISHOP Pius Ncube of the Roman Catholic Church's Bulawayo diocese has
said he supports a military invasion of Zimbabwe to "put down" President
Robert Mugabe by former military ruler, Britain. Here are some of your
e-mails in response:

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Last updated: 07/06/2007 01:10:14
Editor - Every time one is exposed to news from home the situation seems to
be getting more desperate. My initial response has always been that divine
intervention was inevitable.
It has not happened everywhere but where and when it finally comes, it
leaves a very lasting and very welcome change to the defenceless and
voiceless majority. In the basket case of Zimbabwe this intervention is long
overdue. We can not by any shred of the imagination expect that to come from
President Thabo Mbeki's initiative because that is a dead end. The more Zim
burns, the more prosperous our Southern members become thanks to all the
illegal and legal professionals and labourers now resident in that country.

Zimbabweans are hardworking and obedient workers. Who would not want to have
them? And all those investors with an eye for the immense market in Southern
Africa where would they rather be? Mbeki may be anything but a fool. He
knows what is good for his people and Robert Mugabe knows that too. He also
knows that he has no oil so Bush won't be in too much of a hurry to pay
state house a visit. And besides he is also aware that Bush has his hands
full, so his life at the helm of Zimbabwe's destruction is relatively safe.

I know where the Archbishop is coming from. He is far from losing his
marbles unless of course if you are a beneficiary of the status quo. What
the poor man of God is saying is that which ever way you look at it,
bloodshed is inevitable and sacrifices have to be made, are being made and
will continue to be made by Zimbabweans and with a lot of help from very
powerful friends.

Is he still a man of God you may ask? Your guess is as good as mine but
hands up all those that still do stuff they used to five years ago, haven't
been involved in some sinister maneuvers here and there so as to make ends
meet in the difficult times that we live in? Yeah just as I thought, this
Government has changed our lives for ever and mostly for the worst. Breaking
up families, homes and marriages! We are now scattered all over the globe
missing home like crazy but knowing that we can't go back. I don't have the
energy or space to go into the reasons why, but may God make the Archbishop
have a very long life and as for Bob, well, we need him to account for the
atrocities.
Sam Mapulango

Editor - That is highly irrational thinking. His ideas are archaic. Is he
not seeing what is happening in Iraq? How did the dual occupation of that
country help the people other than bloodbath? What a poor archbishop!!
Pasi Neupenzi
UZ

Editor - Quite simply the man is an embarrassment. Is this best we expect
from our clergy?
S. Mutsatsa

Editor - I think it's high time this man just quit the pulpit and got
full-time into politics. There's nothing holy from his little mouth. He's no
longer just a Mugabe critic. Recolonisation is never an option. In a way,
he's admitting that Mugabe can't b defeated, and that's bull***. To hell
with him!
Nashie
South Africa

Editor - Mugabe should go!
Edmore Mupisaunga

Editor - Yes Mugabe has his sins as red as blood, god will judge him for
that but here on earth and in Zimbabwe we will not allow Britain again to
invade us, they have done it before which is the cause of all this that we
are in today. Do not be desperate archbishop Ncube, our god is a god of
justice blessed are those who wait on him.
Virimai Chipere
Lyo
France

Editor - If you have 12 relatives and friends dying due to mismanagement of
the country, why not support an invasion that saves 12 lives for eternity?
There are so many silent voices ready to join the invasion as soon as they
hear the sound of the gun.
WaMutema
J. Matongo

Editor - I respect the Archbishop's bravery in speaking against the
injustice and suffering of the people of Zimbabwe. However, calling for
military invasion from the super powers especially at this time when there
is a mess in Iraq and Afghanistan demeans the mental status of the
Archbishop.

His utterances can only be forgiven in the context of a desperate situation
we are in but an invasion is not an option. He should not take advantage of
Zimbabwe's situation to express his ignorance. It is the likes of him that
strengthens the fallacy of Zanu PF that they are the right custodians of our
country and only they can defend it.

Zimbabweans, let's move away from raising high anyone who opposes Mugabe but
only those whose contributions are constructive and can help in attaining
our second independence (so to speak) much quicker. Sudan and Palestine also
comes to mind. People need not to suffer more!!!
Nixon Mandigo

Editor - The Bishop has lost it. As much as we would like change in Zim, the
issue does not merit a British mandate for a lasting solution because this
is generally resented by a majority of people I've met. Any interference in
Zim should only be instigated and carried out by the UN or under the
auspices of the UN. Any direct involvement by the Brits would certainly
smack of recolonisation!

Therefore, from that stand point, I don't sanction the Bishops views, no,
not at all!!
Goneshell Masendeke

Editor - This Ncube Bishop is very stupid. He should be reminded that
Zimbabwe is not easy to invade, without the people going underground to
start guerrilla warfare. You can't take Zimbabwe again. Kutora munda iye
munhu atombo taster kuti mari iri muvhu? Kunofiwa! Mugabe should be handled
with care, otherwise a lot of people, including your relatives will die. He
is not foolish and the British aren't either.

They know the repercussions of that before they act. In fact they don't
think by heart like Ncube but by brains. Ndariite chikuruku chekunyepera
maBritish richi
puwa mapounds rakanyarara. Makes me feel sorry on how dip sometimes colonial
minds can be damaged. Born in colonial Rhodesia, still hallucinating to
return! Hototi mavende.
Moses Chirwa

Editor - Ncube has a point but the language he uses weakens the point. We
are all in agreement (except for a small minority) that Mugabe has done more
harm than good to a lovely country and he does not have enough time left for
him to make any significant change to a battered economy.

Therefore he should leave politics and the leadership of the country to
those who can make an impact for the benefit of the country economically. If
the truth was to be said Mr Mugabe has outlived his usefulness and is now
more of a liability to the country and surely we are better off without him.

Having said that, I do not agree with Ncube when he advocates for external
force to remove Mugabe. Mr Mugabe must use the few remaining senses and quit
politics quietly. We can not afford to shed blood over an 83 year old
individual. Zimbabwe is a several trillions bigger than him.
Ndlovu, V

Editor - The Archbishop should learn to keep quiet and stop acting as the
official spokesperson of the Zimbabwean masses. His rants do a great
disservice to those fighting for political change and by making such
irresponsible statements he plays into the hands of Zanu PF who have always
claimed that the opposition is a product of Britain. The western media are
giving him too much space to express these misplaced comments and it clearly
exposes their agenda.
Jameel Asani

Editor - I agree things are bad at home but want I don't understand is one
man saying or selling the country because he wants to rule. Who gave him the
mandate to represent us? Zimbabweans, who said he is a good leader! I think
this Priest has lost his mind or has been given too much sugar or tea.

From his statements he is a worse dictator to Mugabe because at least we put
Mugabe into power which he is now clinging onto whilst the Priest wants to
be given the crown through blood shed or the barrel of the gun. Clearly this
man has his own agenda and not the people of Zimbabwe at heart.

I basically think he should bear in mind that Zimbabweans are too educated
to fight for an individual. Maybe he should go buy beer for the unemployed
but this only works whilst they are still drunk because when they sober up
they will realise how stupid he is. Change can only come from within Zanu PF
and only if and only if we stop making noise and let the man retire. People
benefiting are making noise encouraging him to stay on.

If a builder is completing a building and has built rubbish, let him finish
and you thank him and as soon as he leaves get a new one to start afresh. If
you confront him, he will destroy the house and start afresh so as to get
his credit at your expense.

Who would smile when told that if you relinquish power your effort is going
to come to nothing after 44 years?
Kusemamuriwo Deigratia

Editor - Firstly l would like to thank you for bringing this informative
paper to people of Zimbabwe and the world. Keep up the good work. Only a
person who has lost his orientation will not agree with the Archbishop. I
know for a fact that some people in Mugabe's Zanu PF party also need him to
bid the people of Zimbabwe a farewell.

In fact we need more people of Ncube's ideology. Mugabe has overstayed and
any mechanism to remove him from power will not only be welcomed by the
people of Zimbabwe but the rest of the world.

Mugabe must go the Saddam route, Snr Kabila, Charles Taylor, or the Mobutu
way. We are in Diaspora because of this man and are experiencing xenophobia
at its height. l appeal to western powers to unseat this man with violent
possible means. He (Mugabe) does not have dignity and he and his top members
must die like dogs. By now every one knows the extent of damage the man and
his cronies have done to the nation.

This weekend l was in Zimbabwe. My cousin, a Maths teacher who graduated in
Cuba a decade ago showed me his payslip. His salary converts to 80 rands a
month. This is not even a house maid's daily salary. In short I would like
to say that Zanu PF's madness must come to an end. l support the Archishop
that a military intervention is the only solution for the people of
Zimbabwe. If there were contributions towards this, l will also be at
liberty to donate a great potion of my salary for this move. Mugabe must go
and it's not very far before we cross Messina border post to celebrate.
Duduza Nkala

Editor - In my considered opinion, Ncube's comments are absolutely correct
because he is talking about the real history of events as they happen on a
day to day basis. And everyone who lives in Zimbabwe is aware of the
situation which is now unbearable.

Anyone challenging Ncube's assertions is crazy. President Matibili Mugabe's
allegations that western countries are behind the collapse of the country's
economy are pure fiction because there is no "prima facie" evidence to that
effect.

Ncube should not be blamed because he is clearly speaking of the right
information from the horse's mouth. I strongly support him intoto!
Dr L M SIBANDA, UK.
SENIOR POLITICAL ACTIVIST AND DEMAGOGUE

Editor - To be honest, I love debates, but what's there to debate here, why
should anybody take this senile man seriously???

Babethi Lishonile
kanti lifihlwe ngamafu
Bayeeeethe!!

Dalaza kaNdlovu
UK

Editor - Pius Ncube is just a modern day Judas Iscariot of our time. I am
happy he knows the people of Zimbabwe are not ready to follow his stupid
ideas. I will not attend the Roman Catholic Church from now onwards. If such
a diabolic person is an archbishop then they worship Satan.
P Togarepi

Editor - I wish to respond to Archbishop Pius Ncube assertion that stronger
nations ought to invade Zimbabwe in order to curb President Mugabe's
excesses. While I agree with Archbishop Pius Ncube that political change
must occur prior to the normalisation and betterment of the current
Zimbabwean situation, it is on the modus operandi that I differ.

Zimbabweans ought to take their destiny into their hands in order to shape
and build a better future for posterity. An invasion will play into Mugabe's
game plan. Having ruined the one-time jewel of Africa and reduced it to a
beggar's bowl, it would make him appear an innocent victim of Western
machinations should the powerful nations invade Zimbabwe.

What Zimbabweans need to do, is to unite and chart a way forward on how they
can remove this tyrant, against all odds. The 2008 harmonised election could
be one such occasion. If people go out and vote in their thousands in the
next year's polls, no amount of rigging and intimidation would avert their
voice. Voter apathy is one big challenge that Zimbabweans must overcome if
meaningful change is to happen.

I rest my case,
Plato
Zimbabwe

Editor - This mad bishop is satanic, he must go die and leave our beloved
land instead of calling for invasion. He is shameless.
Tinashe Makumbe

Editor - Well, who will be shocked by Pius's utterances that he is prepared
to face the "blazing guns"? This is the problem facing Zimbabwe today, that
publicity centres on useless people who in anyway do not resemble the true
thinking of the majority of Zimbabwe.

Journalism also played a role in the present Zimbabwe quagmire.

Why would these journalists keep on interviewing a person like Ncube who at
one time contradicted himself by saying "people should pray for Mugabe to
die"? In as much as we want outspoken people in Zimbabwe's situation, we
condemn the demonstration of shallow reasoning capacity by our clergyman
Pius.
Oliver Mtyambizi
Tehran
Iran

Editor - He is doing exactly what the Bible says, that is defending the
righteous from the evil. If the Bible says otherwise to the servants of God
then I will certainly choose not to believe in it. He has sacrificed his
whole for the liberation for all Zimbabweans. He is a true hero. I am not
sure God will allow the good Bishop to watch his flock maimed and murdered
knowing well the cause and not be able to at least voice disapproval. He
obviously does not come from the school of thought that equates Mugabe with
Jesus.
Sagwete Chad

Editor - People are getting carried away by this thing called sovereignty of
nations, if nations start to act against citizens then those nations must be
reshaped by all means necessary. As Pius has suggested I agree with him
fully. Didn't the liberation movements such as ZAPU, ZANU, ANC etc seek
foreign assistance?

Did they not source scary weapons from white "master" regimes to fight
against the colonialists? What has changed today? Is it because Mugabe is
pitch black? Would Africans prefer to die of squalor rather than enlisting
the help of former "masters"?

To me it is an absurd proposition based on ego and devoid of principles.
Principles see no colour. Britain, America, China, South Africa etc must
"invade" Zimbabwe and put Mugabe down as the God's man has proclaimed.
Thusi Woyane

Editor - Ncube is okay about bringing this killer man down. But what we need
to be carefull about is the involvement of the imperialist nations like
Britain and USA. Otherwise we need to bring down the devil and remain with
Zimbabweans in control.

Remember the massacre of Ndebeles during Gukurahundi and you will understand
Pius Ncube better. After all Ncube has all along been counseling and taking
care of victims of Mugabe's torturing madness and he's thus more aware than
some who criticise him from the comfort of the diaspora.

Ingqwele, Durban Ncube


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Archbishop Williams blames Kunonga for blocking food aid



By Lance Guma
05 July 2007

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams blames Harare's Anglican Bishop
Nolbert Kunonga for blocking church attempts to provide food aid. Williams
is reported to have made the remarks at a meeting held at the Royal
Institute for International Affairs in London a month ago. There had been
suggestions the church use its resources to help feed starving Zimbabweans
but Kunonga is alleged to have said, 'No'. Under the scheme truckloads of
food were to be sent across the Beitbridge border from South Africa to feed
vulnerable groups in Matabeleland.

Archbishop Williams says he asked Kunonga 5 weeks before the London meeting
to, not only rediscover his soul in relation to the Mugabe government, 'but
whether he would contemplate an arrangement which we would willingly broker
with the World Food Programme administered through the Anglican church in
Zimbabwe. The answer was 'No!' The archbishop narrated how 4 years ago he
held discussions with South Africa's Archbishop Njongonkulu Ndungane of Cape
Town to map out a way of helping people in Zimbabwe.

Last year Williams held similar talks with Bishop Kunonga but the response
was also negative. He said the message he got was that any intervention
would be viewed as help coming from the British government and not the
church. Pedzisai Ruhanya a Programmes Manager with the Crisis in Zimbabwe
Coalition said the argument did not make sense as the British government was
already heavily involved in sponsoring humanitarian projects in the country.
He accused government of trying to control food aid and use this to buy
votes ahead of elections.

SW Radio Africa Zimbabwe news


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Mbeki to dump Zimbabweans

The Zimbabwean

05-07-07
Plans are underway for mass deportations for
Zimbabweans if the Robert Mugabe regime fail to bow
down to pressure to constitutional amendments and
transitional government mediation initiated by South
Africa President Thabo Mbeki.

The deportations are to start in January to concede
with Zimbabwe election in 2008.Southern Africa leaders
view the talks as the last effort to solve the
Zimbabwe conflict and are washing their hands if the
mediation fails.

The Zimbabwean has it on good authority that Botswana
is going to follow suit-deporting Zimbabweans.
"Zimbabweans should brace themselves for mass
deportations which is going to sweep across the two
countries. The countries are fade up with Mugabe and
exiles inactive to force or vote Mugabe out," said the
intelligence officer from National Intelligence Agency
who is privy to the plan.

The deportations code named 'Mugabe take your people'
will mean hundred of thousands of Zimbabweans will be
deported even with proper documents. Pretoria have
been frustrated by Mugabe hardness and playing games
while he has destroyed the economy of the country
forcing millions to flee the country.

Mugabe has made it clear his unwillingness to
negotiate with Movement for Democratic Change. "The
deportations will cause confusion in the Zimbabwean
side. At least hundred coaches will leave for Zimbabwe
every day and twenty thousands will be deported in a
week's time," said a South African intelligent agent.

Mugabe will be caught unaware as 'his people' will be
making unwelcome back to roots to vote in enmasse.

The South African government is also irked that some
Zimbabwean exiles are now behaving like Mugabe
supporters who are benefiting from the regime.

Many Zimbabweans in exiles are working against the
democratic forces while members of Central
Intelligence Organisations who are harassing the
activists have infiltrated many civic society
organizations.

"The people who are coming from Zimbabwe are acting as
Mugabe people and they are trying to prop up Mugabe
regime. People will be deported to go and vote in
their country whether with proper documents," added
the agent.

The South African intelligence has been making a long
surveillance on the character of Zimbabweans in South
Africa. They have noticed that the behaviour and
actions of Zimbabwe are the same as Robert Mugabe
supporters.

"We don't know whether we are dealing with Mugabe
supporters or victims of economic turmoil," said the
agent.


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Cricket - KPMG to investigate Zimbabwe's finances


Cricinfo staff

July 4, 2007

KPMG in South Africa have been appointed to carry out the forensic audit of
Zimbabwe Cricket which the ICC insisted on at its annual conference in
London last month. They will be assisted by the KPMG office in Harare.

The ICC studied the findings of a forensic audit undertaken by the Harare
firm of Ruzengwe and Partners and a number of areas of concern arose.

In a leaked document co-written by Malcolm Speed, a number of items were
flagged and he noted that "the auditors and ICC have been misled about these
transactions".

The report concluded: "It is clear that the accounts of ZC have been
deliberately falsified to mask various illegal transactions from the
auditors and the government of Zimbabwe. The accounts were incorrect and at
no stage did ZC draw the attention of the users of these accounts to the
unusual transactions. It may not be possible to rely on the authenticity of
its balance sheet."

However, at the meeting Peter Chingoka, the Zimbabwe Cricket chairman, put
up a robust defence which persuaded the ICC to ask an international firm of
high repute to carry out a second audit. They are due to report back when
the ICC next meets in Dubai in October.

KPMG were appointed by FIFA, football's world governing body, in 2003 to
investigate allegations of financial mismanagement against the Zimbabwe FA.

Even though Speed wrote that the ZC accounts had been "deliberately
falsified" it emerged that the ICC will, nevertheless, pay over millions of
dollars because, it claimed, it had no power to withhold the money.

Many stakeholders inside Zimbabwe who have been ostricised by the
Chingoka-led board have made serious allegations of financial mismanagement
against the executive.

Cricinfo

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