Thursday 21st March 2002
BOURNEMOUTH DAILY ECHO
KILLED MY BROTHER by Krissy Lloyd
The brother of the Zimbabwean farmer
brutally murdered by Robert Mugabe's
thugs has spoken of his "utter
The tragic footage of Terry Ford lying dead at his farm
near Harare with his
loyal Jack Russell terrier Squeak at his side moved
But for his brother Paul, who saw it from his home in Poole, it
heartbreaking image that he believes should never have been allowed to
"Words cannot describe how I felt when I saw the pictures on
the news - I
was looking at my brother lying there," said Paul 41.
was absolutely gutted.† It is such a tragic waste of life.† He had
lost both farms - why did they have to kill him when there was
The father-of two is now calling for international pressure to be
put on the
Zimbabwean president and all aid to be stopped.
years we have lost lots of people - when is it going to end?" said
left the country in 1981 for South Africa.
"My brother is one of
thousands that have been murdered.† How can this
happen in this
Paul moved to Dorset with his wife Lynn and children six years
plans to travel back to South Africa on Monday to console his
attend a memorial service for Terry.
In spite of his grief
he has been comforted by messages of condolence from
people all over the
"My brother was incredibly popular over there and was well
loved by everyone," he said.
For as long as he can
remember Terry had owned two farms and was the
country's biggest producer of
Two years ago Mugabe's mobs evicted him and his family from one of
The traumatic incident saw his wife Trish suffer a stroke
and in fear for
her and her children's lives they fled to safety in New
Zealand without him.
Despite pleas by his family to leave troubled
Zimbabwe Terry stood firm.†
His second farm was taken last year - leaving
the farmer's livelihood in
"He had death threats against him
but all he lived for was the farm and
farming," said Paul.† "He wouldn't
leave because it was his country."
Terry died when he returned to the
farm house he still owned.
"He always said the only way he would leave
that farm was in a box," said
Paul.† "He loved the land and he died where he
would have wanted to die, but
not under the right circumstances.
Mugabe launches fresh round of farm seizures
By Basildon Peta Zimbabwe Correspondent
23 March 2002
The Government of Zimbabwe has said it will seize hundreds more white farms,
despite rising international pressure on President Robert Mugabe after his
controversial election victory.
The government has published a list of 388 farms, including ranches owned by
South Africa's wealthy Oppenheimer family, for seizure.
Early yesterday hundreds of white farmers and black farm workers attended the
funeral of a white farmer, Terry Ford, who was shot on Monday at his farm west
of Harare. He was the 10th white farmer to have been killed since farm
occupations by war veterans began two years ago.
The Government also announced plans yesterday for massive food imports. The
country is facing starvation due to drought and the chaos which has followed the
occupation of white-owned farms.
The Agriculture Minister, Joseph Made, said the government wanted to import
200,000 tons of corn. State radio reported that over the next 18 months 1.5
million tons of corn will need to be imported.
In its report on the elections, published yesterday, the Commonwealth
observer group said paramilitary youth groups "were responsible for a systematic
campaign of intimidation against known or suspected supporters of the main
opposition party, the MDC [Movement for Democratic Change]."
About 1,200 polling agents of the MDC are on the run from Mr Mugabe's youth
militias. The President is continuing with the military training of hundreds of
his ruling party's young men at camps around his stronghold province of
Mashonaland Central, according to Zimbabwe's only independent daily, the
Daily News. The youths are then unleashed on villagers accused of having
voted for the MDC.
A spokesman for the MDC, Percy Makombe, said most people who had registered
to be MDC polling agents at the 4,500 polling stations around the country were
no longer able to stay at home. "They are on the run and some of them are being
accommodated at the homes of our party officials in Harare," Mr Makombe
The MDC has published a list of 76 homes of its followers and officials which
have been burnt in reprisal attacks. Francis Lovemore of the Amani Trust, a
human rights group, said: "There's an enormous amount of persecution of MDC
supporters around Zimbabwe. Whole areas are on the run."
He said some of the victims of the reprisal attacks were being forced to
perform homosexual acts at Zanu-PF bases as a form of torture. Others were being
raped. The MDC has called on the ruling party to disband its militias.
In attempts to stop increasing violence, particularly in Mashonaland Central
province, MDC officials in Bindura met Elliot Manyika, Mr Mugabe's minister in
charge of the youth brigades. Mr Manyika reportedly promised to appeal to the
Zanu-PF leadership in the province to stop the violence.
The country's main trade union conceded yesterday that a national strike
called to protest against intimidation during the election had been a failure.
The few businesses that had observed the strike reopened yesterday on what had
been planned as the last day of a three-day mass action.
Lovemore Matombo, on behalf of the unions, said that new security laws had
hindered strike organisers and that threats by the authorities and bias in the
state-dominated media had stopped workers joining the action.
Wiping out any competition
The inevitable lightness of
By Rushworth M. Kidder. Rushworth M. Kidder is president of
for Global Ethics
Published March 22, 2002
President Robert Mugabe reaped global opprobrium for rigging the
election in Zimbabwe, I found myself asking, "What went wrong?" Not
latest election--that's obvious. No, I mean what went wrong over the
I first encountered him in 1979. I was part of the
London press corps
covering the Lancaster House agreement that transformed
Rhodesia, a British
colony, into the independent nation of Zimbabwe. Mugabe
and his rival,
Joshua Nkomo, sought to succeed Ian Smith and his essentially
Rhodesian Front government. Lord Peter Carrington, foreign secretary
Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, was in the chair. And all of us
To many of my press colleagues, Mugabe seemed the
perfect successor. They
impatiently dismissed complaints about his terrorist
past and Marxist
credentials. Instead, they painted him as the thinking man's
list of scholarly degrees, meshed with his 10 years spent in
trial, produced a seductive blend of martyr, philosopher and
found myself less taken with the man. This is not an
I'm claiming no courageous insight here. As he was
swept into power, I
simply reported on the process. And at first, he seemed
the right choice.
But as the years went by, the downward spiral began. Now
the results are
clear: a ruined economy, a cowed populace, a corrupt
government and a
tyranny propped up by force and fraud. What went wrong? The
answer is not in
Mugabe--just as it's not in Fidel Castro, Slobodan
Milosevic, Saddam Hussein
or the rest of the world's tyrants.
to do with the inevitable lightness of dictatorship--the systemic
of a tyranny to achieve gravitas, to find its moral ballast, to
success. To see why that's so, consider these
broad-brush--between dictatorship and democracy.
- Dictatorship is all
about persons--the "rule of men." Democracy seeks to
be about the "rule of
- Dictators view life through a right-versus-wrong moral
themselves inevitably right. Democracies agonize over
choices, where each side is well-meaning and the highest
right must prevail.
- Since everything else is "wrong," dictators must
win at all costs.
Democrats must be willing to lose--that's the essence of
- To be sure of winning, dictators
create their own external threats and
artificial enemies, justifying extreme
measures and focusing their populaces
on something other than their
government's failings. Democracies try to
analyze real threats and
weaknesses, knowing that only accurate knowledge
can produce effective
- Fearing change, dictatorships draw inward, silence the
sink into paranoia. Embracing change, democracies are good at
outward, engaging different voices.
Bottom line: Dictators
prize loyalty above all else. And that, finally,
accounts for their
inevitable emptiness. With a fixation on allegiance and a
competition from underlings, dictators surround themselves with
colleagues. In choosing government officials, they relegate
experience, and wisdom to secondary roles--not only at Cabinet
right to the bottom of the political food chain. In such a
culture, the pool
of candidates is sharply reduced, holding only those who
pass the loyalty
litmus. The result is perfectly foreseeable: inept
policy, and a slide toward corruption among those
with no higher calling to
office than to sustain the dictator and enrich
wrong with Mugabe? He failed to defend himself against the allure
Painting himself into a corner of his choosing, he cannot now
escape: Like so
many dictators, he must cling to power at all costs, fearing
that to lose
would mean death at his enemies' hands. That's another contrast
democracies: They usually transfer power peacefully, making loss
but not fatal.
The issue here is not peculiar to Mugabe, nor to Africa,
nor even to nation
states. Tyranny crops up everywhere--in families, schools,
corporations, the professions. It's not hard to spot. It puts
It daily grows shallower, lighter, and less effective. And it
tragically, in disarray. It's all about people, and people always
Democracy is all about ideas, which exist far beyond those who think
Government to Resume Talks With IMF
March 22, 2002
Posted to the web March 22,
THE government has asked for
resumption of talks with the International
Monetary Fund (IMF) during the
third-quarter of the year, Ministry of
Finance sources said this
The request the country in the past three years.
resumption of talks follows a meeting held late last month between
Bretton Wood institutions and senior Finance ministry officials, among
Nicholas Ncube, the permanent secretary.
The meeting was held at
the Ministry of Finance offices.
Sources said the decision to delay the
talks was because of an anticipated
"It was agreed
that a follow-up meeting be held either in August or
September because of the
anticipated cabinet reshuffle," the sources said.
"Nothing firm was
discussed and further meetings were deferred to the
third-quarter of the year
because we anticipate some administrative changes
President Mugabe is expected to announce a major cabinet
the end of this month following his controversial
re-election in the March
9/11 presidential poll.
Since 1997 Zimbabwe
is not receiving any form of aid from both the World
Bank and the IMF which
has led to other donors suspending aid as well.
The non-resumption of aid
has affected the country's balance-of-payments
position which is presently in
a negative position. Both the current and
capital accounts are in
As of January 25, Zimbabwe's current account was nearly minus
while the capital account stood at minus US$400 million.
has been further worsened by the continued poor
performance of the export
sector, which has been on the decline since
Foreign currency inflows continue to decline, from US$70 million
tobacco selling season to US$30 million monthly. The country has
to experience acute foreign currency shortages resulting from low
and parastatal debts. This outlook has been further compounded by a
foreign currency deficit accumulated since 1999.
payment arrears are estimated to have closed the year at
billion and clearing this deficit would require at least 12
domestic debt is $226 billion while the foreign debt is over
By September last year, Zimbabwe's debt to the IMF had shot up
staggering US$16,6 million, up from US$52,7 million in August. It
stands at almost US$70 million. The continued rise in the debt has
caused by the failure to settle the debts in time, resulting in the
Due to continued defaulting by Zimbabwe, the IMF
has since April been
exploring possible avenues to suspend Zimbabwe's
S. Africans Must Learn from Zimbabwe's Mistakes:
†† JOHANNESBURG, March 22 (Xinhuanet) -- South
Thabo Mbeki on Friday urged his countrymen to learn from
s mistakes and avoid similar problems at home.
†† In an article
published in the ANC (African National Congress)
Today, Mbeki said that
Zimbabwe held important lessons for South
Africa, especially in building a
non-racial society, as well as
issues of social transformation.
fact that Zimbabwe had been independent for 22 years,
showed that these were
not easy matters to deal with, he noted.
†† "As a country we must learn
everything we can from the
experiences of our neighbor, so that we do not
that have been made ... At the same time, we have to continue
strive to ensure that the negative consequences of such mistakes
spill over to any of the countries of our region."
†† "Our approach to any
adverse matter that might arise in
Zimbabwe must ensure that we do not
encourage the emergence of
similar adverse responses in our countries," Mbeki
†† Zimbabweans, he said, had a common task to identify
themselves what was in their national interests and the
challenges that faced them, regardless of race, ethnicity
†† They also had to build a truly non-racial society, as well
ending any ethnic tensions that might exist, Mbeki said.
Zimbabwe's suspension from the Commonwealth for a year,
Mbeki said the
54-member body was committed to supporting Zimbabwe
's process of
reconciliation, facilitated by Nigeria and South
†† It had also
agreed to urgently assist Zimbabwe to address the
current food shortages,
help resolve the land question and support
its economic recovery.
"(These) lay the basis for Zimbabwe to extricate itself from
and economic crisis it confronts, with the support
of the Commonwealth and
the rest of the world," Mbeki said.
†† South Africa was inextricably linked
to Zimbabwe and had sought
to contribute everything it could to help
solutions to these problems, to avoid a further worsening of
situation, he said..
†† It was South Africa's duty to work diligently
to help realize
the goals set by the Commonwealth, he said.
†† "We will
have to approach our collective task in an honest and
without being driven by any desire to create a
situation of confrontation.
Undoubtedly, the Commonwealth will
also adopt a similar posture."
repeated that the future of Zimbabwe must and would be
decided by its
†† "To be productive, our interventions in this regard can only
as friends who act to support democracy, peace, stability
prosperity for all the people of that country," he said.† Enditem
Mugabe Cabinet Might Derail Economic Package: Economists
March 22, 2002
Posted to the web March 22,
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe
is reportedly working hard at assembling
a cabinet to back his policies but
economists have warned that the move may
jeopardise the economic recovery
package South Africa is preparing for that
'There is a good
chance that Mr Mugabe can receive that package but we
expect him to change
his policies. His suspension from the Commonwealth
marks the beginning of
reduced foreign aid to Zimbabwe and he must learn
from that,' said
Econometrix chief economist Azar Jammine.
For an excerpt from the Africa
2002 guidebook, click here.
To buy the book,
The South African government is preparing an economic
that is expected to boost Zimbabwe economically, but the
programme must be
linked to political stability.
Dr Azar said
President Thabo Mbeki's economic recovery plan might face some
President Mugabe continued with plans to form a 'crisis cabinet'
resisting growing international pressure and sanctions.
cabinet' is expected to include controversial Information
Moyo, Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa and Intelligence
Stressing that President Mbeki had stood firm on Zimbabwe,
economist Chris Hart said his decision was a good
'The South African package can be used as a lever to make President
toe the line ... he should decide to come to the negotiating table
opposition party,' he said.
Faced with a 67 percent
unemployment rate and rocketing inflation of 117
percent, Zimbabwe's economy
needs something more than a miracle to recover.
While some economists say
South Africa's package of economic recovery will
be a blessing, others feel
the suspension of Zimbabwe from the Commonwealth
should be seen as an
incentive for Zimbabwean leaders to work together and
turn the country
towards peace and economic recovery.
Malawian President Bakili Muluzi
yesterday called on the Southern African
Development Community to help
Zimbabwe rebuild its economy and attain
political stability and forget about
a re-election, as the recent election
was 'water under the
Pressure piles for poll re-run
GROWING international pressure for an election re-run is likely to
isolate President Robert Mugabe after Zimbabwe's suspension from
Commonwealth this week.
The calls have been backed by Movement for
Democratic Change (MDC) leader
Morgan Tsvangirai who says the recent
presidential poll was stolen by
Tsvangirai yesterday said his
party was pressing for an election re-run in
line with growing international
Tsvangirai, who was on Wednesday charged with high treason
with an alleged assassination plot against Mugabe, said the MDC
fresh election under independent local and international
"We are pushing for the restoration of democracy and
told the Zimbabwe Independent. "That's what we are
going for. There must be
Tsvangirai said his party's
demand for a re-run was in line with established
which provide for the restoration of democracy
through free and fair
Following Zimbabwe's suspension in London on Tuesday,
contained in the Millbrook programme, will assume greater
Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo, who was part of the
troika that suspended Zimbabwe, yesterday defended the club's
saying there had not been "adequate provisions" for a free and fair
told the BBC there would be another election
Obasanjo telephoned Mugabe after the London meeting -
also attended by South
African President Thabo Mbeki, Australian Prime
Minister John Howard, and
Commonwealth secretary-general Don McKinnon - to
inform him of the outcome.
He "erupted", according to
"He (Mugabe) took it badly as one would expect, but I
believe he will
understand," Obasanjo said. Sources said Mugabe was however
mollified by the
prospect of an international package for emergency food
Mugabe, with the support of his African allies, claimed victory
week's flawed poll while Tsvangirai, backed by the Sadc
the Commonwealth, the European Union and the United
States, rejected the
election as "daylight robbery".
call for a re-run follows his rejection of South African-led
press the MDC into a government of national unity. Mbeki's
efforts to hold
off Commonwealth measures against Harare rested on hopes for
accommodation in Zimbabwe.
That is unlikely to be forthcoming as the
MDC, backed by the international
community, insists on a restoration of
legitimacy through a free and fair
Yesterday Zapu, the
Bulawayo-based opposition party, said the election
should be staged again
under UN monitoring.
"The attempt by African leaders, surprisingly
led by Mbeki and the ANC, to
redefine democracy to encompass floggings,
executions and outright genocide
as essential elements in an African context
is outrageous," it said.
"The lowering of democratic standards to
accommodate, legitimise and protect
dictators should be resisted at all
Professor Tom Lodge of Witwatersrand University said Mbeki's
Zimbabwe's suspension after clear signals from his government
Africa considered the election acceptable had bruised
"He looks indecisive and weak," Lodge told Reuters. "He is a
and a very uncomfortable fence it seems to be."
Soldiers' pay slashed
National Army's controversial 100% salary increases awarded to
before the presidential election looked distinctly short-term
soldiers this week discovered that their March salaries had been
cut back to
Soldiers who spoke to the Zimbabwe Independent said
salaries of war veterans
and known Zanu PF activists were not affected by the
The army last month awarded salary increments to
infantry soldiers in line
with a new salary regime called the Military Salary
Concept that sought to
reward general duty soldiers ahead of
Members from specialised units such as doctors and
engineers were excluded
from the 100% windfall. Soldiers who spoke on
condition of anonymity said
their salaries for this month were cut by more
"The move to award us salary increments before the
election was a political
ploy to ensure that we campaign for Zanu PF. We now
realise that we were
used," said an irate infantry
Zimbabwe Defence Forces spokesman, Colonel Mbonisi Gatsheni,
claims that the salaries had been reduced.
had their salaries increased in the first place," Gatsheni said.
actually happened is that there was a rationalisation of military
that enabled all army personnel in the same rank to fall within the
salary scale but with different allowances."
He said he was not aware
of any soldiers who had salaries reduced.
The soldiers however said
the net salary for a private in the army fell from
$28 000 last month to $15
000 this month, the pre-election level.
The soldiers are not the only
ones duped into campaigning for Zanu PF in the
presidential election, it
seems. Thousands of youths who unleashed a reign
of terror were still to be
paid more than $18 000 they were each promised
for campaigning for Zanu
MDC exposes more Zanu PF electoral fraud
THE Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) has released fresh evidence
election irregularities by the ruling Zanu PF party in the
The evidence implicates top Zanu PF
officials and members of the Zimbabwe
Republic Police who are accused of
intimidating voters and swinging the
voting in favour of their
Shuvai Mahofa, the deputy Minister of Youth, Gender and
is at the centre of the scandal. It is said she abducted
an MDC polling
agent at Nerupiri polling station in Gutu, Masvingo
"A female polling agent was abducted by Shuvai Mahofa on
Saturday March 9
and forced to sleep at Mahofa's homestead. She only returned
to the polling
station the next day," said the report.
Macheka, Zanu PF's unsuccessful mayoral candidate in Chitungwiza, has
been cited as having broken electoral regulations.
in 15 people who were found by the fraud detecting devices
to have already
voted," said the report. "Initially they were not allowed to
Macheka pushed his weight and they ultimately voted," it said.
report said ballot books were not accounted for. Registrar-General
Mudede refused to disclose the number of ballot papers that had
In Mutare North at the Chief Hall, ballot books
401-500 and 501 to 600 went
missing. In Shurugwi 600 ballot papers were also
The report said in Hurungwe the polling stations were not at
"The mobile polling station officers were
sometimes operating like ice-cream
vendors. In Hurungwe, for example, the
box was not at Dixie Farm and on Sunday it did not appear at
We are still wondering where it had gone to," the report
"In Mazoe West the mobile polling station moved to Tonga Town-
ship and the
MDC polling agent was chased away," said the
The report also said ballot boxes were not properly
sealed at Rusike and
Chibvute primary schools in Goromonzi.
Mine in Mazowe West, there were no seals on the ballot boxes and
agent was also chased away. At Chisape School in Hurungwe East the
was not permitted on the box.
The police were accused of harassing
MDC election co-ordinators in Shamva
and allowing Zanu PF militia to harass
and kidnap MDC polling agents thus
delaying or frustrating their
At Chikuku Primary School in Guruve North further police
"A policeman arrived in a Defender
vehicle and ordered both the Zanu PF and
MDC polling agents to leave the
room. The two were only called back after
three hours by the presiding
officer. All the polling officials, including
the presiding officers are
known Zanu PF activists. Police refused to give
their force numbers to the
MDC agent," the report said.
As a result of the intimidation, 43% of
the rural polling stations were not
manned by MDC polling agents, the report
Mugabe to appoint 'crisis cabinet'
DESPITE vigorous South African efforts to secure political
Zimbabwe, President Robert Mugabe appears intent upon a
committed to his scorched-earth policies.
sources said South African President Thabo Mbeki's proposals faced
brickwall because Mugabe was contemplating a "crisis cabinet" to
growing international pressure and sanctions after a controversially
The sources said Finance minister Simba Makoni and
International Trade minister Herbert Murerwa - admired by the
and Washington financiers - were facing the
It is thought Mugabe will cling to his old guard in an
and throw out ministers amenable to economic
"The 'ultras' will prevail over the reformers given the
fevered state of the
president's mind," a high-level official source
It is generally accepted in government that the two vice-
presidents - Simon
Muzenda and Joseph Msika - will be retired. Muzenda's
health is on the wane
and Msika (79) is advanced in years.
had difficulties before the election with Mugabe's cabinet in trying
implement economic reform measures that were not in sync with Zanu
Although Mugabe announced during war veterans'
leader Chenjerai Hunzvi's
burial last June that economic reforms had been
discarded, Makoni insisted
in his budget speech in November the programme was
After the budget, Mugabe's lieutenants launched anonymous
against Makoni in the official media of the sort Nkosana Moyo
when he resigned. But Makoni has remained looking West for
Mugabe and his die-hards face East.
Yet Mugabe is
also under pressure to appoint performers. At his inauguration
on Sunday he
threatened to purge incompetent officials.
"Mugabe will reshuffle or
remove ministers like Joseph Made (Agriculture)
and Shuvai Mahofa (deputy
minister of Youth Development, Gender and
Employment Creation)," the official
source said. "This will be an attempt to
appear committed to delivery but it
will still be a 'crisis cabinet' of
Although Made has
religiously implemented Mugabe's disastrous land policies,
he has proved
incompetent. He takes the blame for current maize shortages
and the resultant
Mahofa is said to be going because of concern about
following the death of a war veteran on a farm occupied by
sources said Vice-President Simon Muzenda last week tasked
provincial governor Josiah Hungwe to investigate the issue which
reportedly infuriated Mugabe.
Sources said Mugabe's combative
adherents such as Jonathan Moyo, Patrick
Chinamasa, Elliot Manyika, Sydney
Sekeramayi and Nicholas Goche are set to
form the core of the coming team.
Parliament speaker Emmerson Mnangagwa,
long tipped as the heir to the throne,
is a candidate for one of the
vice-presidential posts, taking over the
nominated parliamentary seat left
vacant when former Industry and
International Trade minister Nkosana Moyo
jumped ship. John Nkomo is also
lined up for promotion.
A reactionary cabinet would undermine a
rescue package the South African
government is preparing. South African Trade
and Industry minister Alec
Erwin last week said Pretoria was waiting in the
wings with a recovery plan
linked to political stability.
Zanu PF militias harass civil servants
ZANU PF militias which hounded teachers from their schools in the
areas in the run-up to the presidential election have opened a new
violence against civil servants believed to have voted for Movement
Democratic Change candidate Morgan Tsvangirai.
teachers and nurses, mainly in Mashonaland East and Central
tried to return to their posts after the poll, have fallen
victim to roving
militia gangs who have been instructed by local Zanu PF
heavyweights to weed
out suspected opposition supporters.
An official with the Zimbabwe
Nurses Association said they were still
compiling names of their members
caught up in the pre- and post-election
Teachers Association (Zimta) chief executive, Peter Mabande, said
it was a pity that the situation was taking too long to normalise
fact the presidential election was over. He said teachers who
during the campaign period were finding it difficult to
return to their work
places as Zanu PF youths were baying for their blood.
"It was our
hope that things would normalise as soon as the presidential
over, but it seems nothing is likely to change as our members
harassed daily," said Mabande.
"The situation has now reached a
crisis level and as a representative body
we believe that all teachers should
feel free to go back to their normal
work places without fear of
intimidation, torture or harassment."
He said teachers who were
victims of violence before the presidential
election remained targets up to
Mabande said that in Chipinge, Masvingo, Mashonaland Central and
of the Midlands, there were reports of attacks which saw hundreds
teachers running for their lives.
"At Checheche primary and
secondary schools and St Peter's school in
Chipinge, reports reaching us say
several teachers were ejected from the
schools as a wave of political unrest
engulfed the district last Friday," he
said. "At the moment we are not in a
position to say exactly how many
schools have been affected due to lack of
communication with those in the
remote parts of the country."
Zimbabwe seeks to stave off starvation
March 22, 2002 Posted: 5:53 PM EST (2253 GMT)
Zimbabwe (AP) -- Zimbabwe announced plans Friday to import huge
amounts of food to stave off starvation caused by drought and the agricultural
chaos following the occupation of white-owned farms by ruling party
Agriculture Minister Joseph Made said the government was seeking 200,000 tons
of corn from Kenya, Brazil and Argentina. Over the next 18 months, the country
will need to import 1.5 million tons of the staple food, state radio reported.
The fertile, southern African nation was once considered the breadbasket of
Now Zimbabweans wait in long food lines to get bags of increasingly rare corn
meal. In November, the government ordered 200,000 tons of corn valued at $25
million from neighboring South Africa.
The main labor federation, meanwhile, conceded the failure of its national
strike to protest state-backed intimidation surrounding this month's disputed
The few businesses that had observed the strike reopened Friday, which was to
have been the last day of the three-day protest, said Lovemore Matombo, head of
the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions.
He said new security laws hindered strike organizers and "heavy-handed"
threats by the authorities and bias in the dominant state media stopped workers
joining the action.
"We did not do a great job. We admit that. This particular battle might not
have been won, but it is a lesson for the future," Matombo said.
Country marred by violence
At a meeting next month, leaders of the federation will consider possible
further action to protest political violence that has left at least 150 people
-- most of them opposition supporters -- dead since 2000.
Early Friday, hundreds of white farmers and black farm workers attended the
funeral of Terry Ford, 51, who was shot in the head in an execution-style
killing Monday at his farm west of the capital, Harare.
"It is a time of loss and great tragedy. It is not a time to give up and
throw our hands in the air," Pastor Peter McKenzie said as he officiated the
Ford was the tenth white farmer killed since the often-violent farm
occupations began two years ago. Ruling party militants, with tacit government
backing, have demanded the farms be redistributed to landless blacks.
Mark Ford, 28, told the mourners that his father "just wanted somewhere to
live and farm."
"He lived by what he believed, he died by what he believed," he said.
Squatters occupied the farm in 2000, forcing him to take on teaching work at a
nearby Christian school.
Noami Raaff, Ford's fiancee, held the couple's Jack Russell terrier, Squeak,
in her arms. The dog had huddled by Ford's body for several hours after his
Occupations, floods, drought impact supply
The farm occupations, along with floods and droughts, have decimated the
country's harvest as its agriculture-based economy collapsed.
Last year, Zimbabwe produced 1.54 million tons of corn, down from 2.1 million
tons in 2000.
Harvests of tobacco, the main cash crop, also are expected to be down this
year, by as much as 30 percent.
Foreign loans, aid and investment have dried up. Mining has been plagued by
shortages of equipment and fuel and tourism, the third-largest hard currency
earner, has fallen by 80 percent.
Emergency food distribution by the World Food Program to 500,000 people
facing starvation resumed Thursday in south and western Zimbabwe, U.N. officials
The distribution was halted a week before the March 9-11 presidential
elections so as not to "coincide with political concerns," the WFP said.
Official election results showed President Robert Mugabe winning 56 percent
of the vote to 42 percent for opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai, who claimed
the election was tainted and has called for a new vote.
Copyright 2002 The Associated Press . All rights reserved.
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No shaking off poll
curb on monitoring of election just a short-term victory over
PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe's stolen triumph in last week's general
just stresses the contemporary necessity for rulers to have their
legitimacy endorsed by electoral monitors and
During the Cold War, when the west propped up brutal dictators
side with them against the Soviet Union, electoral legitimacy was
as a luxury. But after the fall of the Berlin Wall, electoral
new and fragile democracies rapidly became a fixture of the
"Good governance" became the accompaniment of
structural adjustment policies
imposed on errant or indebted third world
countries, and with it came the
idea of "free and fair" elections as the
foundation of democratisation.
With this background, it is scarcely
surprising many rulers in Africa have
chosen to interpret electoral
monitoring as an expression of western
imperialism, and an intrusion on
national sovereignty. This has been the
position of the Mugabe
This perspective also argues there is no justification for
observe and make judgments on African elections, when African
groups are not extended the same privilege when elections are held
west. Indeed, when you recall the goings-on concerning counting of
presidential race in Florida at the last US election, it is hard not to
a sneaking sympathy with Africanist sentiment that the US can hardly
about flawed elections in Africa with any degree of moral
African rulers who object to international involvement in
monitoring as an intrusion on their sovereignty are right. Yet the
absolute sovereignty has always been a myth. The world is
interdependent and all governments are increasingly hedged
In particular, human rights are
becoming increasingly internationally
regulated, and the right of citizens to
elect their rulers in elections that
are "free and fair" is seen as a basic
attribute of political freedom.
The major justification for electoral
monitoring in Africa is quite simply
that so many governments have exhausted
their popular legitimacy and trust.
This is, of course, exactly why such
governments try to either exclude or
heavily constrain monitoring
It is also why opposition groups, such as Morgan Tsvangirai's
Democratic Change in Zimbabwe are so desperate to have elections
In any case, monitoring is widely welcomed by ordinary citizens,
recognise the protection of rights it can bring.
are made of electoral monitoring groups, often as much for
political reasons. Yet the techniques and organisational
capacity of major
electoral monitoring organisations have become
The major snags occur when different monitoring
groups arrive at different
This brings us back to the Zimbabwe election. When Sam
to the world the SA observer group accepted the
election was not free and
fair, but the result was legitimate, he was laughed
Likewise, similar statements by Nigerian President Olusegun
behalf of the Organisation of African Unity have been interpreted
signalling African rulers' dismal reluctance to criticise their
By contrast, the report released by three human rights groups
in detail how the election had failed to meet nearly all the
criteria of the
norms and standards of elections in the Southern African
Community. It is in this context that post-election comments by
observer mission members that they reject Motsuenyane's view the
was legitimate are to be welcomed.
Mugabe and Zanu (PF) seem
destined to stay in power. His success in making
various African governments
including apparently that of SA fall in behind
him on the grounds that
repudiation of his victory is a neo-colonial plot,
may give him a short-term
Yet it is the voices of the observer groups which have
and detailed repudiations of his victory which will be
listened to in the
long term. In particular, they have pointed the way in
which the likes of
SA's President Thabo Mbeki must go if he is to rescue
Nepad, the blueprint
for the revival of Africa.
Like the government of
apartheid SA, Mugabe's regime is the legally
constituted authority yet at the
same time devoid of moral and popular
democracy and governance executive director at the Human
Mar 22 2002 12:00:00:000AM Roger Southall Business Day 1st
Zimbabwe Remains in Commonwealth Games
be at the Commonwealth Games in July 2002 to be held in Manchester "The
suspension that has occurred is only from the Councils of the Commonwealth, not
from the Commonwealth itself. Zimbabwe remains a member of the Commonwealth and
as a Commonwealth nation they are invited to participate"
Mr. Mike Hooper
- Chief Executive, Commonwealth Games Federation
Zimbabwe will be allowed to compete in the July 2002 Commonwealth
Games in Manchester despite calls for the country to be banned.
was suspended from the Commonwealth because there had not been adequate
provisions in the country's presidential elections to allow everyone to express
their will New Zealand wants the ban to be extended to the Commonwealth Games,
which are being held in Manchester in July after announcing that it will be
imposing trade and travel sanctions on Zimbabwe.
The Chief Executive of
the Commonwealth Games Federation, Mr. Mike Hooper has however stated
unreservedly that this will not happen.
Mr. Mike Hooper said, "The
suspension that has occurred is only from the Councils of the Commonwealth, not
from the Commonwealth itself. Zimbabwe remains a member of the Commonwealth and
as a Commonwealth nation they are invited to participate".
Zealand Foreign Minister Mr. Phil Goff said his country wants the removal of
Zimbabwe from the Commonwealth Games and stated that they will be seeking the
support of other Commonwealth Member States.
Australian Prime Minister
John Howard has already cast doubt over his country's cricket tour of Zimbabwe
Preparations for the Commonwealth Games are well underway.
An evaluation team inspecting preparations for the Games praised Manchester's
progress to date although there are still concerns over the athletesí village.
One member of the evaluation team and Chief Executive of the Australian
Commonwealth Games Association, Mr. Perry Crosswhite said, "I have been
heartened by this visit as far as the village is concerned, I must say they're
not there yet and I'll be frank about that. This village is difficult and
everyone knows that. It's a small campus in a small area, which seems to have
about 3,000 students normally and they are going to put 4,800 in there. Let's
not be totally rosy about it and this is what it is".
Should all the
1,700 athletes who have said they are coming turn up there would be problems. It
is however expected that between 300 and 400 of these athletes will not