The Vigil welcomes signs that the MDC is emerging from its catatonic state following the stolen elections. Five months after we at the Vigil demanded new elections the MDC has now come on board and demanded a rerun.
In an end of year statement Tsvangirai said: ‘The lesson from the July 31 poll is that all reforms, including security sector and media reforms, that were agreed to under the GPA are mandatory’. Hallelujah!
Tsvangirai goes on ‘We will be embarking on a global advocacy campaign to the AU, SADC and the internal community on the need for the reversal of the fraudulent result of 2013. In short, the sustainable way forward is another election that will guarantee a return to legitimacy.’
Tsvangirai fails to explain why the MDC dropped its legal objections to the election results but the Vigil hopes the party will co-operate with our campaign to mount a court challenge based on, among other things, the failure to produce the voters’ roll. We would have thought that lawyer and party secretary-general Biti would have led the charge but he is now apparently working for the other side. We asked for help from the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights on 28th November but have had no response. Here is our request to them:
‘I hope you heard about our ‘Restore Zimbabwe’ All-Stakeholders’ Diaspora Conference in London last month.
For full report of the conference, check: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/vigil-news/campaign-news/537-restore-zimbabwe-conference-london–thursday-24th-october-2013. For diary of 2nd November when conference resolutions were adopted, check: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/the-vigil-diary/541-diaspora-rejects-rigged-elections–zimbabwe-vigil-diary-2nd-november-2013
The purpose of the meeting was to agree a common platform and strategy for diaspora action on the Zimbabwe crisis following the fraudulent July elections.
Several resolutions were agreed including that we should explore the possibility of a legal challenge to the validity of the elections, especially in light of the refusal to release the voters’ roll.
We read that some people in Zimbabwe are thinking along similar lines and we will be happy to co-operate with them in any way we can. In particular, it has been suggested that we could approach the Bar Association in London for support. As you know they have taken a close interest in Zimbabwe.
We would welcome any comments and suggestions that ZLHR could make.
On behalf of the ‘Restore Zimbabwe’ Task Force’
We at the Vigil – deluged by rain on the winter solstice – agreed with Tsvangirai’s assessment of Chinamasa’s budget as ‘mere fantasy’. A forecast of 6.1% economic growth in the coming year appears to have been plucked out of thin air. Perhaps diamonds will come to the rescue? But the long-hyped Antwerp auction raised a mere $10 million for some 280,000 dirty carats. The government will apparently get $1.5 million of this (so they say): hardly enough for Mugabe’s next shopping trip for monkey glands.
The question we ask is where will the government’s money come from? Goblin Chinamasa appears to hope it will come from us in the diaspora. We apparently send home $1.6 billion a year already and he reckons we are stupid enough to put it straight into his pocket, as if we had forgotten Home Link. See what the writer Petinah Gappah says about the proposed goblin bonds (see: No, Minister. An Open letter to Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa – http://nehandaradio.com/2013/12/20/no-minister-an-open-letter-to-finance-minister-patrick-chinamasa/). What chutzpah for the goblin to ask for money from us while denying us the vote!.
- We wish all our supporters and followers a happy Christmas and hopefully a better new year.
- We were joined by a group from ‘Nations without States’ which included Ndebele representatives protesting about Gukuruhundi.
- Thanks to Patricia Masamba, Shylette Chipangura, Mary Muteyerwa, Fungayi Mabhunu and Cephas Maswoswa who were with us early on a very miserable day to help set up.
For latest Vigil pictures check: http://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/. Please note: Vigil photos can only be downloaded from our Flickr website.
FOR THE RECORD: 28 signed the register.
EVENTS AND NOTICES:
- Next Swaziland Vigil. Saturday 28th December from 10 am to 1 pm outside the Swaziland High Commission, 20 Buckingham Gate, London SW1E 6LB.
- Zimbabwe Action Forum (ZAF). Saturday 18th January 2014 from 6.15 pm. Venue: Strand Continental Hotel (first floor lounge), 143 Strand, London WC2R 1JA. The Strand is the same road as the Vigil. From the Vigil it’s about a 10 minute walk, in the direction away from Trafalgar Square. The Strand Continental is situated on the south side of the Strand between Somerset House and the turn off onto Waterloo Bridge. The entrance is marked by a big sign high above and a sign for its famous Indian restaurant at street level. It’s next to a newsagent. Nearest underground: Temple (District and Circle lines) and Holborn.
- Zimbabwe Vigil Highlights 2012 can be viewed on this link: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/the-vigil-diary/467-vigil-highlights-2012. Links to previous years’ highlights are listed on 2012 Highlights page.
- The Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe (ROHR) is the Vigil’s partner organization based in Zimbabwe. ROHR grew out of the need for the Vigil to have an organization on the ground in Zimbabwe which reflected the Vigil’s mission statement in a practical way. ROHR in the UK actively fundraises through membership subscriptions, events, sales etc to support the activities of ROHR in Zimbabwe. Please note that the official website of ROHR Zimbabwe is http://www.rohrzimbabwe.org/. Any other website claiming to be the official website of ROHR in no way represents the views and opinions of ROHR.
- Facebook pages:
- Zimbabweans United for Democracy (ZUNDE). For more information about this organisation, check: www.zunde.org.
- Useful website: www.ipaidabribe.org.zw where people can report corruption in Zimbabwe.
The Vigil, outside the Zimbabwe Embassy, 429 Strand, London, takes place every Saturday from 14.00 to 18.00 to protest against gross violations of human rights in Zimbabwe. The Vigil which started in October 2002 will continue until internationally-monitored, free and fair elections are held in Zimbabwe. http://www.zimvigil.co.uk.