By Tererai Karimakwenda
21 November 2012
Soldiers deployed in Hurungwe, Mashonaland West province, are reportedly
campaigning for ZANU PF by forcing villagers to divulge their political
affiliations and threatening to evict them from the area if they refuse.
But a local activist told SW Radio Africa the majority of the soldiers are
recent graduates from the youth militia training camps in Hwange, who have
returned to live among the villagers in order to monitor opposition
A report by the Crisis Coalition said Chief Ephraim Matawo is working under
instructions from the soldiers to compile a list of villagers in his area,
which also includes the political party they support. The information is
turned over to the military.
Crisis said despite the intimidation, three villagers from Zvipani in
Hurungwe West reportedly refused to give up their personal details,
insisting that the party they support is their secret and questioning why
the information was to be handed over to the military.
The three brave villagers, named as Simbarashe Mbareta, Josphat Muringapasi
and Tawanda Mavhondo, were summoned by Chief Matawo and forced to pay a $25
fine. They were also threatened with eviction from Zvipani village.
A local activist from Makonde told SW Radio Africa that the villagers know
these soldiers are not part of the mainstream army. They are local youths
who dropped out of school earlier this year and were recruited into ZANU-PF’s
youth militia training programmes.
“Before they were recruited chiefs were involved in the exercise. They had
to identify the recruits and most came from Matawo and Makonde areas. They
went for training in Hwange and what we feared at the beginning is happening
now. They graduated from 6 months training and returned to live among the
villagers,” our source explained.
The activist, who chose not to be identified, said it is not clear whether
these youth militia are part of the main army, but they are referred to as
He added: “They were not given a formal place to camp. They live with their
parents and guardians, so that they can hear what everyone is saying and
minimise opposition activities.”
This confirms reports by the Crisis team, who said that villagers fear the
exercise is a ZANU-PF strategy to identify MDC-T supporters to be victimised
by the army and youth militia.
Crisis said soldiers are also campaigning for ZANU PF in Masvingo and
Manicaland provinces. Traditional chiefs in Nyanga North and South were
recently visited by soldiers from the 3 Brigade in Mutare, for so-called
“orientation programmes. In Bikita traditional leaders were allegedly
ordered to attend meetings at the army headquarters.
There are real concerns that ZANU-PF is mobilising army units in order to
duplicate the violent mayhem that was attributed to the military in the
run-up to the 2008 presidential runoff. ZANU PF supporters and officials,
army officers, war vets and youth militia, went on a violence spree that
left over 500 MDC-T supporters dead, tens of thousands injured and half a
Wednesday, 21 November 2012
Moses Moyo, the MDC Matabeleland North Secretary for Home affairs, yesterday
escaped death by a whisker following an attack by gun totting Zanu PF thugs
at his home last night. The gunmen threatened Moyo with death for being an
Moyo managed to call the police from Saucetown after he blocked the Zanu PF
members’ car from escaping. Police arrested the two Zanu PF members -
Takesure Mbano, the Zanu PF Secretary for Security and Tinashe Chikara. A
docket was opened at Saucetown police station –RRB -1396184.
These hoodlums were driving a Toyota land Cruiser registration number-ABR
2473. The serial number of the gun pointed at Moyo is C426474-7,65 Calibre.
They threatened Moyo with death saying that he does not deserve to own a
plot since he is aligned to the party of excellence.
The MDC continues to condemn harassment of its members by Zanu Pf
functionaries especially in Bubi-Umguza District where Obert Mpofu uses his
ill gotten wealth to target members of the MDC. The party stands aware of
Mpofu’s machinery of violence, which is well oiled by money siphoned from
the Chiadzwa diamonds.
The MDC calls upon all citizens to vote out these thugs whose glory is
derived from fighting against peace for all Zimbabweans. It is clear that
Zanu PF thugs are on the prawl in Matebeleland to orchestrate yet another
genocide against the people in the region.
It emerged yesterday that Tinashe Chikaka, is employed by the dead party’s
Harare province but is causing havoc in Bubi-Umguza district. Such acts are
reminiscent of the Zanu PF genocide tactics during the Gukurahundi era.
Obert Mpofu has shamefully sanctioned these actions against our people in
the region targeting those affiliated to the MDC. The party stands firm
against this retribution and calls on all peace loving Zimbabweans to
condemn the violent activities by Zanu PF.
The Last Mile: Towards Real Transformation!!!
By Alex Bell
21 November 2012
Two ZANU PF members, including one employed by that party’s security
division, have been arrested in Bulawayo after threatening an MDC-T official
The pair, Tinashe Chikara and Takesure Mbano, the ZANU PF Secretary for
Security, was arrested on Tuesday after storming the property of MDC-T
member Moses Sivalo Moyo. Moyo was threatened with violence by the pair, who
were armed with a gun, and ordered to leave his home. According to the
MDC-T, Moyo was targeted solely for being an opposition activist.
Moyo, who is also the MDC-T Matabeleland North Secretary for Home Affairs,
took matters into his own hands and stopped the ZANU PF pair from leaving
his property by blocking his driveway.
SW Radio Africa’s correspondent Lionel Saungweme reported that Moyo also
managed to disarm Chikara who was wielding the gun. He then drove the pair
to the police station in Saucetown and opened a case. The ZANU PF members
were still being held in custody on Wednesday under unclear charges.
“The assumption at the moment is that this was intimidation. The modus
operandi here is associated with the CIO and, given that Moyo is an MDC-T
activist, it is assumed this was deliberate intimidation,” Saungweme said.
Moyo was one of the many victims of ZANU PF led violence during the
turbulent 2008 election period, that saw hundreds of deaths, and thousands
of beatings and attacks. During that time Moyo suffered broken ribs after
being attacked on his property by a gang of ZANU PF militia.
By Tichaona Sibanda
21 November 2012
The MDC-T has accused police spokesman Chief Superintendent Oliver Mandipaka
of gross insubordination, for waging a propaganda war against Prime Minister
Morgan Tsvangirai in Buhera, Manicaland province.
Mandipaka, who is believed to be using police resources to campaign for the
Buhera South constituency in the 2013 parliamentary elections, has been
going around the area demonising Tsvangirai and the MDC-T.
The party accused Mandipaka over the weekend of attempting to disrupt
Tsvangira’s field day program at his rural homestead at Humanikwa Village in
Buhera. The top cop coerced villagers in the area to demonstrate against the
Pishai Muchauraya, the provincial spokesman for the party in Manicaland,
said it is only proper for Mandipaka to resign from the force before
engaging in full-time politics. As it is, according to Muchauraya, Mandipaka
is still on the ZRP payroll and that in itself disqualifies him from
engaging in politics.
‘The Police Act prohibits serving members of the police from participating
in active politics. He is abusing state resources to campaign for the Buhera
South seat and we condemn that,’ the Makoni South MP said.
Muchauraya said they are not worried about his political ambitions as they
view him as a person without political clout.
‘In politics he’s still a novice and poses no threat to the MDC-T. Even his
President in ZANU PF, Robert Mugabe, will be beaten hands down in Buhera
South if he wants to stand as an MP.
‘He’s dreaming and wasting his time campaigning here because he, like some
in ZANU PF before him, will lose dismally in the next election because they
have nothing else to offer to the people of Zimbabwe,’ Muchauraya said.
If Mandipaka wins the right to stand for ZANU PF in the next elections, he
will most likely contest against academic Professor John Makumbe who has
made it known he will be contesting on an MDC ticket.
By Tererai Karimakwenda
21 Novembe 2012
The Anglican Cathedral in Harare and other church buildings that were seized
illegally from the main church by breakaway Bishop Nolbert Kunonga, are
currently being re-possessed and are to be cleansed before they are used
This is according to Harare Bishop Chad Gandiya who addressed journalists in
Harare on Thursday, following this week’s victory at the Supreme Court. The
court ordered Kunonga to return all the properties that he took, because he
left the Anglican Church voluntarily in 2007.
“There will be a cleansing and re-dedication of the Cathedral and all parish
buildings to what they should be, that is holy places and buildings set
apart for the worship and glorification of our God. Some of these places
were desecrated when we were in exile,” Bishop Gandiya said.
Gandiya was referring to reports that some of the buildings seized by
Kunonga had been occupied by criminal elements that used them as brothels.
He added: “The church has planned to have a big thanksgiving service in
Africa Unity Square on December 16. Our friends and ecumenical partners will
come to witness the return of the Bishop’s cathedra……..that is the chair
that was made during our time in exile.”
One of the buildings that had been taken over was the Shearley Cripps Home
in Murehwa, which housed more than 100 orphans. The staff were all evicted
and the orphans left to starve. Bishop Gandiya told journalists that some of
the children were being sexually abused as well.
According to Gandiya, a report was made to the police as soon as they
received word of the abuse two weeks ago, and an arrest was made.
The Bishop also invited back those clergy who had followed Kunonga to the
new Church Province of Zimbabwe, which Kunonga formed after the split. He
said no one will be victimised but they will not be allowed to keep the
positions Kunonga gave them without any proper training.
Bishop Gandiya said utility bills had not been paid in some churches. The
church will ensure that the debts are properly assigned to those who were
responsible, especially since they occupied the buildings illegally.
Gandiya said church leadership, on a parish level, have been taking stock of
everything at the church buildings and consolidating inventories, to make
sure that every item that has ever belonged to the church is accounted for.
“Items that are found to be missing will also be recorded and where
necessary reports will be made to the proper authorities. The prospect of
recovering missing items appears to be remote, but efforts will be made.
The Bishop said they would also ensure that those who occupied their
buildings illegally and caused Anglicans significant suffering, are also
properly rehabilitated, if they admit their sins and repent.
Anglicans hope the transition will go peacefully. But it is feared Kunonga
might resist eviction from the main cathedral on December 16th and use his
links to ZANU PF to hold onto the main church buildings in Harare.
Wednesday, 21 November 2012 11:57
HARARE - Disgraced ex-communicated bishop Nolbert Kunonga and his hangers-on
were in disarray yesterday, with no sign that they were preparing to leave
Harare’s main Anglican Cathedral following a Supreme Court ruling that
returned properties to the mother church.
Kunonga’s Manicaland sidekick Bishop Elson Jakazi defiantly said he was not
going anywhere “for now”.
When the Daily News crew visited the Anglican main Kunonga in a mess
Cathedral in Harare, Kunonga cut a forlorn figure as he sat in the sun
pondering his next move in the wake of his fall from grace to grass.
He refused to say anything as reality sank in.
A reverend who attended to the Daily News crew only identified as Thandi
said Kunonga would come back to us.
“He will talk to you, but not just now. We will be in touch though,” said
In a telephone interview later, Thandi said they were not moving.
“Moving to where? We will move when the time comes, for now we are here,” he
In Manicaland, Kunonga’s proxy, Jakazi, was digging in saying the cases were
“There has been a lot of confusion and I need to clarify something here. We
are separate entities,” Jakazi said. “These dioceses are different and
autonomous of each other. We are not under the Harare Diocese and are still
waiting for the determination of our case.
“It was previously thrown out by the Supreme Court on (October 22) on a
technicality but then we immediately rectified the problem and re-lodged it.
There was never an order relating to the Manicaland diocese and for now we
are not going anywhere.
“For me it is business as usual, there is nothing that has changed. I was
actually surprised to see Julius Makoni (the Manicaland Bishop in the Chad
Gandiya-led Church of the Province of Central Africa (CPCA) commenting in
some sections of the media saying they will be taking back their properties.
That is not going to happen until the court has made a determination. We are
waiting for the trial,” he said.
Jakazi is currently in charge of St Augustine’s Mission in Penhalonga as
well as St David’s Bonda in Mutasa, among a host of properties under the
From Chivhu where Kunonga’s group had taken over Daramombe Mission, reports
indicated that the reeling faction was locked in intense discussions over
their seemingly bleak future.
There were also unconfirmed reports around Harare that some of Kunonga’s
members were in the process of packing as time ticks toward the expiry of a
five-day ultimatum given by the country’s highest court.
“They are caucusing, in groups and seem not to know what to do,” an insider
told the Daily News.
Freddie Saruchera, the Harare Diocese education secretary told the Daily
News that the CPCA’s education board will today meet to deliberate how to
manage the transition and take-over of all the institutions that Kunonga and
his backers now stand accused of running down.
“I cannot implement what I have in my mind. I am meeting the board tomorrow
to get directions. I will have a position by tomorrow afternoon,” said
The Supreme Court on Monday ended a four-year acrimonious battle for the
control of church properties between Kunonga and his main rival Bishop
Gandiya, who is recognised by the international Anglican Communion.
Wednesday, 21 November 2012 07:51
Daniel Nemukuyu Senior Court Reporter
THE head of the independent Anglican Church of the Province of Zimbabwe, Dr
Nolbert Kunonga, who on Monday lost the legal battle to control the
properties of the Anglican Church, yesterday said he was saddened by the
development and spurned an invitation to join the Anglican Church diocese
led by Bishop Chad Gandiya.
In an interview with ZBC last night, Dr Kunonga said he could not associate
with proponents of homosexuality.
“We will continue as a church. It does not matter whether we are in
buildings or not. We are a church that is totally against homosexuality,” he
“I am saddened by these developments. In it we see that homosexuality has
prevailed,” Dr Kunonga said.
He said he was not worried about who controls buildings but insisted what
concerned him was the level of moral decadence affecting Zimbabwe, which he
said church leaders were ironically supporting.
Dr Kunonga is still at the Harare Anglican diocese office where he said he
is plotting his next move. He refused to disclose where his followers would
Bishop Gandiya had said the door was open for Dr Kunonga and his camp to
join the church.
“The door is open for those who want to come back to the church but
obviously we will follow church rules,” he said.
On Monday, Dr Kunonga lost the legal battle to control Anglican Church
properties after the Supreme Court ruled that he and his followers were no
longer part of the Church of the Province of Central Africa.
The superior court vested control of the church property to Bishop Gandiya.
It appears most of the churches in the diocese had been rented out to
private colleges and crèches whose operations have been thrown into
disarray following the Supreme Court ruling.
Anglican priests and parishioners from most parishes in Harare’s
high-density suburbs yesterday visited the churches and introduced
themselves to the tenants as the new owners.
Some of the tenants claimed that they were threatened with eviction, a
development that resulted in some quickly resolving to relocate to other
Most pupils were busy writing end-of-year examinations when the college
authorities received instructions from members of the Anglican Church of the
Province of Central Africa.
The principal of Crystal College based at Anglican’s St Michael’s parish in
Mbare, Mr Irvine Bhachisi, said the college’s future was uncertain following
the Supreme Court ruling.
“The incoming Anglican authorities were here and they introduced
“We are not certain of our stay here. It is really a transitional period and
it is sensitive. We are going to sit down with the church authorities and
table our proposals.
“But from my own assessment, the new owners are co-operating and we may
survive,” he said.
Mr Bhachisi said Crystal College has an enrolment of 150 pupils and it had
been offering high standards of education.
A reverend from the Bishop Kunonga side was moving around the church
premises inspecting the properties with the incoming authorities in
preparation for a hand-over take-over.
Bethel Academy that operates from St Faith’s Anglican Church in Budiriro
said they would move out today.
The principal, a Ms Muunganirwa, said she had been notified of the eviction
plans and that she was now moving her pupils to one of Bethel Academy’s
“The incoming authorities informed us that we should move out although they
did not give us a date to do so. Considering that we have other centres, we
have resolved to move our classes to those,” she said.
Mr Kiven Dzikamai, who operates Shalom College at St Andrew’s Church in Glen
View, said the new authorities had visited the church warning them of some
“They have been here this morning introducing themselves as the legitimate
owners of the properties. We talked and they informed us that anytime they
may be changes to our operations.
“We do not know what to do neither do we have anywhere to go. Our children
are currently writing their end-of-term examinations and I hope there will
not be any disturbances,” said Mr Dzikamai.
Mrs Mapuranga, who operates Little Intellects Creche at the same premises,
said she hoped her children’s graduation on December 4 would not be
“Children at my creche are graduating on December 4 this year and I hope by
that day, we will be still here. The new church authorities said they will
come back to us after sitting down with others,” said Mrs Mapuranga.
The Kunonga priests could not be found at the church houses.
Most of the houses were locked while children and some elderly relatives
could be seen at some of the houses.
Jophie College at St Joseph’s Church in Dzivaresekwa demanded to see a copy
of the court order before any talks.
An administrator at Jophie College who refused to be named said:
“They came here yesterday talking of the court order and informing us of the
eviction intentions but we demanded to see a copy of the order first before
we engage in any talks,” she said.
Wednesday, 21 November 2012 07:52
Daniel Nemukuyu Senior Court Reporter
DEFENCE Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa has filed a US$1 million lawsuit
against Alpha Media Holdings over claims that he was leading a faction
fighting to succeed President Mugabe. Minister Mnangagwa says in the court
papers that an article published in the Zimbabwe Independent newspaper on
11 2012 was false and highly defamatory of him.
The article entitled “Mnangagwa ready to rule” appeared on the front page of
the newspaper edition.
Independent editor Dumisani Muleya is cited second defendant in the lawsuit.
Part of the article read: “Defence Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa has for the
first time openly declared his interest in taking over from Robert Mugabe
as the leader of Zanu-PF and the country, in remarks showing the succession
battle in the party is intensifying.
“Mnangagwa told the Zimbabwe Independent last Friday at Heroes Acre during
the burial of Zanu-PF Politburo member Edison Ncube he was ready to govern
if given an opportunity.
“This virtually confirmed that he is positioning himself to succeed Mugabe,
remarks which could anger senior Zanu-PF officials and fuel factionalism and
internal power struggles ahead of the next elections. I am ready to rule if
selected to do so, Mnangagwa said”.
Dube Manikai and Hwacha law firm are representing Minister Mnangagwa.
The article, according to Minister Mnangagwa’s lawyers, alleges that he was
leader of a faction fighting and involved in power struggles with other
Government officials to succeed the President of Zimbabwe.
“The article is false in that the plaintiff never made the remarks
attributed to him in the article nor did he speak to the Zimbabwe
Independent or anybody else as alleged,” the plaintiff’s declaration read.
As a result of the defamatory article, the minister argues, his reputation
and good name was damaged.
He claims that he suffered defamation damages to the tune of US$1 million
plus costs of the suit. The summons was issued on July 20 this year.
Artherstone and Cook law firm instructed Advocate Erik Morris to act for
Alpha Media and Muleya.
The defendants’ lawyers filed a notice of exception to the declaration on
the basis that it did not disclose any cause of action.
The words complained of, according to the lawyers, were not defamatory per
se and that they were not damaging to the minister’s name and reputation.
Adv Morris filed heads of argument on September 17 2012 in which he stated
that the article did not specifically allege that the minister was a leader
of a faction although there was an implication.
“In most organisations, be they political, sporting or cultural, there is a
vying for leadership. That is precisely why elections are held. The mere
fact that an election is needed is an indication that two or more persons
are seeking the vacant post and that therefore there exists plurality of
“There is nothing to suggest that plaintiff is fanning division or creating
dissent. (It is) merely that he is one of a number of people, including Vice
President (Joice) Mujuru, who are interested in standing for office once the
present presidential incumbent steps down or otherwise vacates office,” read
part of the heads of argument.
Adv Morris contends that the lawsuit was “an abuse of process in that the
minister was seeking to enrich himself to an egregious extent for something
that no reasonable person could possibly take umbrage”.
The matter is yet to be set down for trial at the High Court.
by Staff Reporter
THE University of Zimbabwe (UZ) scrambled to the Supreme Court Tuesday to
block the auction of property worth more than a quarter of a million dollars
which included a whole library and about one hundred vehicles.
Former employees Kwanele Muriel Jirira and Loius Masuko had moved to auction
the property, which also included Vice Chancellor Levi Nyagura’s official
Mercedes Benz in order to satisfy a whopping US$300,000 award against the
institution for unfair dismissal.
But Justice Vernanda Ziyambi granted a chamber application seeking to block
the move which was sought by UZ lawyer, Advocate Thabani Mpofu.
“The university has been granted an application for leave pending
determination of the appeal,” he said.
The UZ account at CBZ bank had also been frozen as part of the legal action
but Advocate Mpofu said the moves were illegal since the institution had
appealed the compensation award at the Supreme Court.
“The respondents have no right to execute at law by virtue of the appeal
noted to this honourable court by applicant and almost by fact that an
appeal against the award suspends the award appealed against,” he said.
Previously employed by UZ as research fellows and based at the Institute of
Development Studies, Jirira and Maseko were redeployed to from the institute
to the university’s economics department as a part of a restructuring
The pair however, argued that the redeployment was unlawful as it
contravened their contracts of employment adding that they were not
qualified to teach in the economics department although they fulfilled the
duties while refusing to take up offices at the department.
A disciplinary hearing found them guilty leading to their dismissal.
They however, approached the Labour Court where they won their case and were
the UZ was ordered to pay Jirira US$156,852 and Masuko US$134,362.
The award was upheld at the High Court resulting in the UZ appealing at the
By Alex Bell
21 November 2012
The suspension of the Southern African region’s human rights court is now
set to be tackled at one of the highest levels in Africa, after the African
Commission on Human and People’s rights agreed to hear a formal complaint
about the matter.
The African Commission ruled on Tuesday that the complaint lodged with it on
behalf of Zimbabwean farmers Luke Tembani and Ben Freeth, against SADC
leaders for suspending the regional human rights Tribunal, was ‘admissible’.
The ruling was made at the 52nd Ordinary Session of the African Commission
on Human and People’s Rights held in Cote d’Ivoire.
The complaint by Tembani and Freeth was filed as part of the ongoing battle
for the future of the Tribunal, which was suspended by SADC leaders over its
rulings against the Zimbabwe government. The court had ruled that the land
grab was unlawful, and then held Zimbabwe in contempt of court for refusing
to honour its original ruling.
The court also held the Government of Zimbabwe in breach of the SADC Treaty
and other international legal obligations. But instead of taking action
against Zimbabwe, SADC leaders suspended the court in 2010 for a review of
its mandate. Two years later the court remains inactive. Regional justice
ministers have proposed that the court only be reinstated with a very
limited human rights mandate, which blocks individual access to the court.
All 15 SADC leaders have been cited as respondents in the landmark case
launched by Tembani and Freeth, which was originally made to the SADC
Tribunal last year but will now be heard by the African Commission. It is
the first time in legal history that a group of heads of state is being
cited by an individual as the respondent in an application to an
Freeth told SW Radio Africa on Wednesday that the Commission’s “courageous”
decision is a “breakthrough.”
“Never before have 15 governments been brought before a Commission of this
nature and held accountable. The Commission agreed to hear our case on the
basis that it (the Tribunal suspension) goes against the African Charter and
against what Africa believes in terms of the rule of law. So we are very
excited,” Freeth said.
Freeth and Tembani’s legal team now have 60 days to compile their arguments
and make further submissions to the Commission. SADC will also be given a
chance to respond, before a hearing expected sometime next year.
“The rule of law is so linked to development and the wellbeing of people. So
what is happening in Southern Africa is severely retrogressive for the rule
of law and human rights,” Freeth said.
He added: “They (the Commission) have realised that what has happened is
very serious not only for Southern Africa, but the whole of Africa. The
credibility of African justice is in the reckoning.”
By Tichaona Sibanda
21 November 2012
Next month’s round of parliamentary primaries for the MDC-T will likely
produce some interesting and shocking results, according to party insiders.
Out of all its sitting parliamentarians and senators who won in 2008, there
are predictions a good number will not make it past the primaries, as they
have failed to deliver.
But a number of party heavyweights like Secretary General Tendai Biti and
organising secretary Nelson Chamisa are considered safe and are likely to
win the right to stand again, uncontested in the primaries.
SW Radio Africa is reliably informed that there is heightened tension in the
party as party activists jostle for the right to represent the party in the
‘There is going to be some instability in the weeks preceding the primary
elections. My good guess as has happened in 2005 and 2008, the majority of
sitting MPs who will fall by the wayside are those in urban rather than in
‘In urban areas you have constituents who are more enlightened and demand
the very best from their MPs. A number of them follow the progress of their
representatives in newspapers and from radios and televisions and it will be
easy to see who has delivered or not,’ one party source said.
Political analyst Sanderson Makombe predicts MDC-T supporters would rather
elect their parliamentary candidates on merit, and not their standing in the
‘There is this feeling that the party elected the wrong people during the
last party primaries. They’re allegations some of them paid their way
through to ensure their victories, resulting in the defeat of true,
competent and legitimate candidates,’ Makombe said.
He continued: ‘Some of the current crop of councillors and MP’s are
embroiled in corruption and loss of integrity, so much that they face a huge
task to convince people to re-elect them. There will be shocks certainly as
some senior MPs will definitely lose the right to represent the MDC-T.’
Bulawayo, November 21, 2012--Plumtree Magistrate Stephen Mavuna has been
arrested and appeared in court on charges of criminal abuse of office.
Mavuna who was arrested on Friday in Plumtree appeared before Bulawayo
Magistrate Tawanda Muchemwa on Monday on charges of contravening Section 174
of the Criminal Law that of Criminal Abuse of office following disappearance
of court records at Plumtree Magistrate Court.
Allegations against Mavuna who has been Plumtree Magistrate since 2009 are
that he presided over several criminal matters, and imposed sentences that
required records of proceedings be sent to the Regional Court for review and
appeal before a Judge of the High Court within seven days after imposing
But contrary to the provisions Mavuna failed to submit records of
proceedings and kept the records in his office which led to their
disappearance and have not been recovered up to date .
Mavuna is also accused of having done disfavour to the appellants by denying
them justice. This happened between period 2009 and 2012.
Magistrate Muchemwa granted Mavuna free bail and postponed the case to 30
There has been an increase in the number of judicial and police officers
involved in corruption cases in the recent years which analysts attributes
to poor salaries. Most judicial officers are getting salaries below US$500
Last year Zimbabwe magistrates went on nationwide strike that crippled the
judiciary sector demanding better salaries and improved working conditions.
The magistrates were joined by clerks of court and court interpreters
effectively paralysing the judicial system.
The magistrates were demanding payment of $600 for trainee magistrate, $1
000 for junior magistrate, $1 500 for senior magistrate, $1 700 for
provincial magistrate, $2 000 for senior provincial magistrate, $2 500 for
regional magistrate, $3 000 for senior regional and deputy chief magistrates
and $3 300 for a chief magistrate.
The Zimbabwe magistrate said they earned far below their counterparts in
South Africa and Namibia.
By Jeffrey Muvundusi, Own Correspondent
Wednesday, 21 November 2012 13:43
BULAWAYO - For the second time in a row, a Daily News discussion forum in
Bulawayo on the legacy of the late national hero, Joshua Nkomo, was banned
by police yesterday — on the flimsy excuse that it was “political”.
The Officer Commanding Bulawayo Province Chief Superintendent Rangwani
summoned the Daily News’s Southern Region operations head, Ray Matikinye to
Bulawayo Central Police Station early yesterday to deliver the news, almost
a month after the paper notified them of the event as required under the
draconian and anti-democracy Public Order and Security Act (Posa).
ANZ Group Editor Stanley Gama said the inexplicable banning of any
gatherings to remember, honour and discuss Nkomo’s contribution to Zimbabwe
did not engender confidence about the government’s Police ban Joshua Nkomo
lecture commitment to both media freedom and free polls next year.
“I think the media community and Zimbabweans at large have a good reason to
be very afraid as we approach national elections slated for next year. What
with Big Brother, in the form of police and the intelligence service,
watching and meddling in everything because they can?” he said.
The ban of the discussion forum, which was to take place in the city on
Thursday, is the second one this year after suspected CIO operatives ordered
the Daily News to cancel a Joshua Nkomo memorial lecture in July that was
billed to take place at the National University of Science and Technology
Reports then indicated President Robert Mugabe wanted to be part of the
In the latest assault on the freedom of expression in the country, Rangwani
yesterday revoked the clearance that the Daily News had been granted as
required by Posa, citing the “political” nature of the discussion forum and
the “profile” of the headline discussants.
“We have decided not to sanction such a meeting because of its political
nature. You are quite aware of the provisions of Posa and by virtue of the
profile of the main speakers and the emotive nature of the debate
surrounding Dr Joshua Nkomo, we cannot allow you to go ahead with this
meeting,” Chief Superintendent Rangwani said.
“You should be aware of the consequences if you dare go ahead with the
event,” he warned ominously.
Zapu leader Dumiso Dabengwa, historian and academic Phathisa Nyathi and
retired veteran journalist and former PF Zapu cadre Saul Gwakuba Ndlovu,
were due to address the meeting whose focus was on the legacy of the late
veteran nationalist Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo.
The discussion was also expected to bring to the fore different perspectives
key to solving the nation’s myriad socio-economic and political challenges.
Civic society groups, students, academics and political party
representatives had been invited to grace the much anticipated forum.
Top human rights lawyer Aleck Muchadehama said the gathering is not of
apolitical nature and the discussions are organised for academic discourse.
He said no notice is required to be given under Posa for such gatherings.
Muchadehama added that such meetings are specifically exempt from the
requirements of Posa.
Pedzisai Ruhanya, director of Zimbabwe Democracy Institute said: “It is
clear that police are receiving instructions from Zanu PF. It is a result of
the misguided views that the party has that the celebration of national
heroes is a preserve for Zanu PF.
“The two (Zanu PF and police) should be ashamed of the treacherous behaviour
related to the legacy of Nkomo. Banning a newspaper lecture that wants to
celebrate the liberation hero shows their insincerity.
“It is clear that they did not like Nkomo given what they did to him after
1980. But they must allow Zimbabweans who want to celebrate their
independence through their national hero do that.”
Zanu PF spokesperson Rugare Gumbo declined to comment.
Spokesperson for Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s MDC Douglas Mwonzora
said: “The ban is unreasonable and unjustified. Zimbabweans should be
allowed to discuss issues that affect them. The ban is high-handed and
designed to mask Zanu PF’ incompetence and intolerance.”
Wednesday, 21 November 2012 13:14
HARARE - World lenders are close to a deal with Zimbabwe’s coalition
government for $10 billion in debt relief, Finance minister Tendai Biti has
said, as multilateral financial institutions seek to help Harare shore up
its ailing economy.
International Monetary Fund (IMF), World Bank and African Development Bank
(AfDB) officials and negotiators for Zimbabwe’s fragile coalition government
were working to finalise an agreement, Biti said in his budget statement
presented last Thursday.
Progress on the aid package, which had been caught up in controversy in the
coalition’s political turmoil, appears to reflect a cautious easing of
Western sanctions and a desire to show economic goodwill to help revive the
longstanding Western-Zimbabwe partnership, strained by a decade of
socio-economic and political turmoil.
Biti said a deal was being brokered under the Zimbabwe Accelerated Arrears
Clearance Debt Development Strategy (Zaads) — mooted in March 2012 — and
will include a waiver in unpaid debt.
Zimbabwe has of late sent a clear signal to the multilateral financial
institutions of its intention to comply with a tough economic structural
adjustment regime if the world lenders write off the $10,7 billion debt.
The debt write-off could help Zimbabwe gain access to fresh capital to shore
up its stuttering economy and bankroll urgent infrastructure needs.
“Zimbabwe’s external debt is now estimated at more than $10 billion and for
more than a decade, the country has been in default, with arrears now
estimated at $6,1 billion,” Biti told Parliament.
“This has constrained development cooperation with external partners,
particularly in the areas of long-term infrastructure investment, official
development assistance and in some selected instances, private investment.
“It is in this regard that government has been engaging multilateral
financial institutions, the IMF, World Bank and AfDB, for debt resolution,
including some debt relief under a recovery programme that would support
sustainable stabilisation and boost the credibility of the country’s
reforms, that way catalysing cooperating partners’ and creditors’ support.”
The inclusive government, formed after disputed 2008 elections, has helped
to transform the pariah image of Zimbabwe and persuade the West to begin
rolling back sanctions after three years of dramatic economic reforms.
The IMF, long wary of Harare’s protracted arrears, shifted policy last month
to resume technical assistance to support Zimbabwe’s implementation of a
comprehensive adjustment and structural reform programme that can be
monitored by the Bretton Woods institution’s staff.
Analysts say one way the multilateral financial institutions could influence
the direction of policy in Zimbabwe, a nation at the heart of the Bretton
Woods groups’ regional policy, would be through economic support as Harare
tries to starve off a balance of payments and budget crisis.
Obstacles remained to completing the debt relief deal — which is reported to
involve a mix of debt payment waivers and complicated economic structural
reforms, including retrenchments in the civil service — and it was not
immediately clear when an agreement might be announced.
But even as the negotiations proceeded with the world lenders, Biti also
signalled he was pursuing lines of credit including a R575 million facility
with South Africa; $50 million facility from Angola; 500 million pula
facility with Botswana and $100 million line of credit from India.
Zimbabwe was also seeking food relief from Brazil under the Food for Africa
initiative. - Gift Phiri, Political Editor
Written by Tawanda Karombo/defenceWeb
Wednesday, 21 November 2012 14:22
Zimbabwe has increased its 2013 defence budget to US$356 million, up from
US$318 million this year.
Last year Zimbabwe’s Finance Minister Tendai Biti set aside US$194 million
for defence while this year alone, the government allocated it US$318
million. Ministry of Defence officials have complained in the past three
years that Biti has been Finance Minister that the budgetary support for the
military was paltry. However, some officials and civic society groups are
not happy with the increase in the defence budget to US$356 million.
Zimbabwe has an overall 2013 budget of US$3.8 billion, with education taking
up US$1 billion. Between 1980 and 2009, the Ministry of Defence came second
only to the Ministry of Education as it received more than 20% of the budget
in most years. However, in recent years the defence force has suffered from
decreased funding – around five years ago the military only had money for
rations and salaries, reports the Jane’s information group.
Informed sources say Zimbabwe’s military is in urgent need of money to
effectively boost its recruitment and to buy new equipment, most of which is
said to be out-dated and in urgent need of renewal and replacement is some
“In order to gradually move towards the international best practice
thresholds of 7% of GDP and about 30% of the total budget on the wage bill,
government will continue to maintain the freeze on recruitment (including
for the army and police), save for case by case special dispensations on
critical areas,” Biti has previously told Zimbabwe’s parliamentarians.
A recent parliamentary portfolio committee on Defence and Home Affairs
lamented dwindling defence spending, which it asserted “threatens Zimbabwe’s
territorial integrity and sovereignty over land and air space.”
Zimbabwe’s economy is likely to remain subdued in 2013, a year that is
likely to see the country having elections to end the current coalition
government bringing together Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s MDC and
President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu PF party as well as a smaller MDC splinter
The elections will come against the backdrop of concerns and allegations
that President Robert Mugabe is using the military to roll out campaign
platforms for his re-election bid and that of his Zanu PF party.
The Zimbabwe Independent earlier this month reported that the Zimbabwe
Defence Forces (ZDF) has acquired approximately 1 000 vehicles, worth US$45
million, which may be used in support of Magube’s election campaign.
Apparently the vehicles include Isuzu KB72 4X2 and Isuzu KB72 4X4s as well
as other makes.
Around 40 vehicles have reportedly already been delivered by dealerships.
“The purchase comes as Zanu PF is stepping up its election campaigning by
acquiring 550 cars at a cost of US$14 million to ensure its officials and
foot soldiers reach all corners of the country to mobilise voters,” the
In November last year the Southern Africa Report, which focuses on political
and economic intelligence issues in Africa, said that the Zimbabwe Defence
Forces had taken delivery of “the first of several consignments of Chinese
small arms and equipment,” including 20 000 AK-47 assault rifles, uniforms,
a dozen trucks and 21 000 pairs of handcuffs.
Biti last week said that Zimbabwe’s economy will grow by 5% next year but
emphasised that it “has not entered into a sustainable growth” and recovery
mode and added that “violent elections were the biggest risk” for Zimbabwe’s
economy in 2013. “The biggest risk remains a violent and contested
Hardliners in President Robert Mugabe's former ruling Zanu PF party are
pushing him to approach his fellow Southern Africa Development Community
(SADC) leaders to allow Harare to conduct next year’s elections under the
amended Lancaster House constitution.
The irate party hardliners are led by former Information Minister Jonathan
Moyo and some senior military officers.
But both formations of the rival Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) have
shot down the proposal saying the election roadmap, agreed on by the three
political parties in the unity government, calls for a new constitution and
a raft of other reforms before the holding of fresh elections.
The management committee, comprising representatives of parties in the
inclusive government, is now in charge of the constitution-making process
but there is a deadlock on the issue of devolution and dual citizenship.
The two MDC formations want SADC to intervene to break the impasse, but Zanu
PF says the constitution-making process must be shelved until a new
government is elected which will draft the country’s supreme law.
Zanu PF spokesman Rugare Gumbo told VOA Studio 7 that the MDC formations are
frustrating efforts to complete the writing of a new constitution.
Human rights lawyer and political analyst Dewa Mavhinga said Zanu PF’s
intransigence must not be tolerated by regional leaders.
Mavhinga urged Zimbabweans to unite and confront Mr. Mugabe should he insist
on elections without reforms.
EVERSON MUSHAVA 8 hours 29 minutes ago
FORMER United Nations secretary-general Kofi Annan has rapped African
politics that nurture the “Big Man” system, which he says has created
dictators in the mould of President Robert Mugabe.
Annan, a respected diplomat from Ghana, told the latest edition of the New
African magazine that many dictatorships in Africa were as a result of
politics that encouraged the cult of personality. His comments will debunk
Zanu PF’s theory that Mugabe is considered a hero in Africa.
The 88-year-old leader, who has ruled Zimbabwe with an iron fist since
independence in 1980, also claims Western governments, who were not happy
with his land reforms, gave him the “dictator tag”.
Annan said Africa’s biggest undoing was the habit of blaming the continent’s
colonial past for the problems many nations face today. He said it was time
Africa looked beyond the continent’s colonial past.
“The support for the Big Man system — Robert Mugabe an example — created a
political culture that simply encourages autocrats and dictatorships,” Annan
“The struggle that led to the independence in many African nations,
sometimes led to the creation of national movements, and not necessarily
“When independence was achieved in these countries, they often found
themselves in one big group. This led to the party-regime where the leaders
did not tolerate differences, and stay on.”
He said liberation parties seldom made good political parties in Africa’s
fast-changing political landscape.
“The sort of qualities that make dynamic and revolutionary fighters, are not
necessarily the same qualities you need to run a nation. This leads to
difficulties,” the veteran diplomat added. “African governments are becoming
more sensitive to democratic demands. “This is because civil society is
putting pressure on the politicians to do the right thing.
“We are now at the stage where we are seeing the generational change of
leaders, who are better educated and would know what they want from
themselves, and their fellow citizens.”
Mugabe’s previous administrations have used State security institutions to
Opposition and civil activists are still routinely harassed even after the
formation of the inclusive government four years ago as Zanu PF retained
control of security ministries. - NewsDay
Staff Reporter 21 hours 53 minutes ago
HARARE - The National Sports Stadium which had been provisionally selected
as the venue for the final of the country’s richest and biggest knockout
tournament, the Mbada Diamonds Cup, is unavailable until next year as it is
undergoing yet some more repairs two years after it was handed over by the
Chinese, this time prompting reports of major structural damage cover-up.
In 2010, the Chinese government handed over the refurbished Zimbabwe
national sports stadium to the Zimbabwean government on Saturday.
The stadium was built with the assistance of the Chinese government in 1987,
but was closed for renovations for the three years.
The 60 000 seater stadium is now closed again and is undergoing extensive
When reporters visited the stadium this Tuesday afternoon, Chinese experts
and contract workers from the Ministry of Local Government, Rural and Urban
Development were busy working.
The workers were busy removing the grass turf and laying new drainage pipes
a procedure which can take about two months.
On a highly publicised even in 2010, Chinese amabssador to Zimbabwe Xin
Shunkang handed over the "new-look" 60,000-seat stadium to the Zimbabwean
government at a colorful ceremony where the government was represented by
Media, Information and Publicity Minister Webster Shamu, Public Works
Minister Teresa Makone and several senior government officials.
The Chinese ambassador revealed that the refurbishment was done at a total
cost of 10 million US dollars.
He hailed bilateral relations between Zimbabwe and China, saying these had
continued to expand over the years.
"The construction and refurbishment of the stadium cement the traditional
friendship between our two countries," he said.
Vice President Joice Mujuru thanked the Chinese government for renovating
the stadium and for its assiatnce in other areas of the economy.
She said the extensive work done by the Chinese contractors had transformed
the stadium into a world class sports stadium.
"The installation of new state of the art electronic and electrical
equipment as well as the overhauling of civil works has enabled the stadium
to meet the Confederation of African Football standards," she said in a
speech read on her behalf.
The vice president hailed Zimbabwe's "Look East" policy through which it has
sought to deepen cooperation with Asian countries including China.
Minister Makone reassured that the Zimbabwean government will strive to
maintain the stadium and keep in good condition.
"The national sports stadium shall be in the hands of the Government of
Zimbabwe and it will be run professionally," she said.
Among others, China Jiangsu, the Chinese contractors, refurbished the VIP
lounge, upgraded two substations, installed a new scoreboard complete with
control room and replaced all ablution facilities.
Two football pitches were also overhauled while part of the tarmac was
Last night, a government source said there are recurring major structural
damages to the stadium without revealing details. He told our reporter that
the matter is a highly sensitive issue invoving high level Zimbabwean and
Chinese government officials.
Chinese are not well known for structural engineering and safety is not a
In September this year in China, a lift at a construction site killed 19
workers after it plummeted 30 floors in freefall.
The accident reportedly occurred when a cable broke, causing the metal
contraption to plunge 328 feet (100 metres) down the tower.
All building work in Wuhan city, central China, has now been halted while
the municipal government carries out security checks.
Work safety is a big problem in China, where regulations are routinely
Although the government says it is taking measures to reduce fatalities,
more than 75,500 people died in work-related accidents last year, according
to the State Administration of Work Safety.
by Moses Chibaya
MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai may have helped President Robert Mugabe stay
in power after ditching, at the eleventh hour, an opposition deal to fight
the 2008 polls as a united front, MDC leader Welshman Ncube has claimed.
Once beaten twice shy, Ncube ruled out the prospect of another unity pact
with Tsvangirai ahead of next year’s general elections, insisting the MDC-T
leader could not be trusted to keep his word.
“In the run up to 2008 elections almost 18 months before the elections we
deployed our best cadres meetings in South Africa, meetings in Botswana
meetings everywhere with the MDC-T trying to build a coalition,” Ncube told
NewZimbabwe.com at his party’s Bulawayo offices over weekend.
“We even had the presidents of the two parties (in our case) Arthur
Mutambara and Morgan Tsvangirai holding meetings culminating in our signing
of an agreement at Pandhari Lodge (in Harare) that we were going to fight
the election as one.
“(But) two to one week before the seating of the nomination court, our
colleagues within the MDC-T rejected an agreement which had been negotiated
by their president their secretary general and others; they simply said No!”
Ncube’s claims were however, dismissed as inaccurate by MDC-T spokesman,
Douglas Mwonzora, who insisted that there was never a deal for the
opposition to contest the poll as a united front.
Mugabe, who has ruled Zimbabwe since independence in 1980 received his
biggest scare in 2008 when he lost the first round of the Presidential
ballot to Tsvangirai. The Zanu PF leader won 43.2% of the vote against 47.9%
for Tsvangirai. Simba Makoni, who was backed by the Ncube’s MDC formation,
secured 8.3% of the vote.
Tsvangirai later pulled out of the run-off, accusing Mugabe of brutalising
his supporters leaving the Zanu PF leader to claim a second round win with
85.5% of the vote.
The regional SADC grouping then intervened to help facilitate a unity
government after the hotly disputed poll, resulting in Mugabe retaining the
Presidency while Tsvangirai became Prime Minister.
Fresh polls to replace the coalition administration are now scheduled for
March next year, but Ncube insisted that his party would go it alone.
“Ideally no one can contest the need for those ‘democratic forces’ working
for the re-democratisation to come together and be able to work together
against the institutionalisation of Zanu PF rule as we have known it over
the last two years there is no contest on that,” he said.
“(But) we were betrayed before. We are not going to set up ourselves for
betrayal which is why we are not taking the initiative to anyone. We have
had a very bad experience of being abandoned.
“This time we are saying we are planning for one scenario and working for
one scenario fighting an election on our own. We building our party to be as
strong as possible it is not our primary strategy (united front).”
Mwonzora however, said they would not be going down on their knees to beg
Ncube for an electoral alliance.
“If Welshman Ncube wants to go it alone he can proceed. We are not begging
him to unite with us,” he said.
“(Still) we welcome any unity of purpose to remove Mugabe and we urge all
the opposition parties to put the interest of the people first rather than
their narrow and parochial interest.”
Ncube and several other senior figures left the MDC to form a separate part
in 2005 after a bitter dispute with Tsvangirai over participation in the
Senate elections of that year as well as differences over policy and the
general direction of the party.
The acrimonious split has however, been credited with helping divide the
opposition vote and handing Zanu PF an advantage in parts of the country
where it does not have a strong following.
Norwegian students have petitioned their government to allow expelled
students from Zimbabwe tertiary education institutions to resume or continue
with studies in that country through scholarships. The recent plans trail
similar initiatives that were put in place by the Netherlands government
between 2008 and 2009 which saw over 30 expelled and banned Zimbabwe
students resuming studies in different Dutch institutions of higher
learning. Most of the students have now completed their undergraduate
degrees and are now studying towards their masters under the same facility.
The Student Solidarity Trust (SST), a registered non-profit civil society
organization, shall continue to lobby for such study facilities to
complement its education programme that has seen tens of expelled students
graduate every year and being honored at its annual “Against All Odds
Ceremony”. The programme has always been overwhelmed by demand over the
years. The programme has had a lasting impact with notable corporate and
civil society leaders having been assisted through the programme and are now
leading various organizations including Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition, NANGO,
SAY WHAT, Youth Forum, with some in political parties and the corporate
world. The SST extends its appreciation to the Norwegian students and
student organizations that are at the forefront of this initiative. The
organization also acknowledges and celebrates the positive feedback from the
Norwegian government officials, parliamentarians and other stakeholders in
PROVIDING DEMAND DRIVEN SOLIDARITY TO THE STUDENTS COMMUNITY AND BEYOND
Issued : 21st November 2012
The Centre for Community Development in Zimbabwe (CCDZ) held a public
meeting on the Minimum Conditions for Free and Fair Elections at Dombotombo
Hall in Marondera on the 15th of November 2012. The meeting which attracted
more than three hundred (300) participants from various sectors including
political parties, women, youth, trade unions and faith based organisations
provided residents of Marondera with critical civic education on the
conditions necessary for ensuring a ‘Peaceful, Free and Fair Referendum &
The panelists for the public meeting were drawn from CCDZ, Zimbabwe
Democracy Institute (ZDI), a local think-tank and research group , Heal
Zimbabwe Trust and the Media Centre. CCDZ Director, Phillip Pasirayi urged
all stakeholders to a positive role in ensuring that the forthcoming
Constitutional referendum and elections meet the required standards for free
and fair elections.
“We have pronounced ourselves as Civil Society on the kind of legal and
institutional framework under which the next elections should be conducted”,
said Pasirayi. “This framework must address the problems associated with
compilation of the voter’s register and clean up the register to get rid of
ghost voters; the independence of the electoral management body and issues
of political violence”, he added.
Pedzisayi Ruhanya from ZDI took time to analyse the role of the media in
promoting free and fair elections. He analysed it from an administrative and
environmental view. On administration he emphasised that the candidates for
elections should have equal media space in both state and independent media.
He lambasted the current situation whereby only one political has airplay on
the national broadcaster whilst other political parties are portrayed
negatively. He stated that one main characteristic of an election is choice,
contrary to the imposition of some candidates on people.
The Media Centre Director, Earnest Mudzengi stated that soldiers should not
dabble in politics.He urged the Marondera residents to resist being used as
cannon fodder in perpetrating violence. He also said that the prime-minister
and president drink tea together and asked why this cannot happen at
community level.He urged people to unite and work together as they will be
together forever in their communities,unlike politicians who come and go.He
urged the Marondera residents to expose all forms of violence.In his
conclusion he buttressed the fact that the electoral statutes which are now
in place and the constitution are not enough to ensure there is democracy in
the country,’the people have to fight for its implementation and against
selective application of law’,he said.
CCDZ Senior Programs Officer, Tinashe Chatira explained the important task
that women have in the upcoming Referendum and Elections.
Chatira challenged women to not only register to vote, but to vie for
political office. Chatira told the women to take advantage of amendments
that have been made in the Electoral Act which promote gender equality and
attempt to address factors which hinder women’s political participation such
as violence. Women were also urged to be active participants, not
spectators. They were told to take initiatives to create community based
strategies to promote peace and to play their role in all conflict
prevention and management initiatives.
Several critical issues were raised by the participants at the public
meeting. One female Councillor spoke against the barriers that women faced
during the 2008 harmonized elections. She challenged political parties, the
Zimbabwe Electoral Commission and civil society to intensify their advocacy
for these barriers to be removed in the upcoming elections. Other
participants sought clarification over what measures will be put in place to
ensure that all political parties are given fair opportunities to campaign
freely and fairly. Concern was also raised over the media which was said to
be failing to create a level playing field for all political parties ahead
of the Referendum and Elections. Participants also suggested that CCDZ
should engage top level political leadership and the police to ensure that
the law is not applied selectively.
Centre for Community Development In Zimbabwe
Committee of the People’s Charter
21 November 2012
Open Letter to Zimbabwean Minister of Foreign Affairs Mumbengengwi: Act
urgently on Eastern DRC Conflict, Call for Extraordinary SADC and EAC
The Committee of the People’s Charter (CPC) notes with great trepidation and
misgiving the long standing conflict in the Eastern parts of the Democratic
Republic of the Congo (DRC). This is particularly so with the recent
escalation of the conflict and the displacement of innocent and unarmed
civilians in the regional capital of Goma.
While the CPC is aware of the ongoing efforts of the United Nations
Peacekeeping Force (MONUSC) as well as the initiative of the neighbouring
states through their 12 August 2012 Great Lakes Region International Summit,
we are of the firm view that the Zimbabwean government has an obligation to
call for greater urgency in seeking a ceasefire and an end to the internal
displacement of innocent civilians in this conflict.
This is not only because the DRC is a member of the Southern African
Development Community (SADC) but also because Zimbabwe has long standing
ties with the DRC that, in the final analysis, make it obligatory for us to
support and seek peaceful solutions to that conflict.
The CPC has also observed that it is a general trend of the Zimbabwean
government and components of civil society to seek regional and
international solidarity primarily on the basis of our internal problems at
home and rarely do we seek or act in solidarity and support for peoples of
Africa and elsewhere in the world that are in conflict situations.
It is therefore of utmost importance that Zimbabwe, through the Ministry of
Foreign Affairs, formally requests SADC to act with urgency on the matter.
This would include action that should lead to the calling of a joint
Extraordinary Summit on the DRC conflict involving SADC and the East African
Community (EAC) in order to resolve the conflict and with African Union and
United Nations support.