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New Zimbabwe

Food crunch closes Mugabe's torture training camps

By Agencies
Last updated: 10/08/2004 23:03:22
ZIMBABWE'S controversial state-run youth training camps have been closed due
to a cash crunch, a senior government official was quoted as saying on
Friday.

Sensly Chatiza, acting secretary in the ministry of youth development, was
quoted by the state New Ziana news agency as telling a parliamentary
committee that the six centres set up three years ago had shut down.

"All the six training centres have closed due to lack of funds," he said.
"We have exhausted our budget allocation for 2004 and we have even run out
of salaries for the staff."

The training centres have been widely criticised by the opposition, church
groups and civil rights organisations who claim they were being used to
train youths to terrorise and torture opposition supporters.

Young women who said they were former inmates of the camps claimed in a BBC
documentary shot this year as well as a bishops' conference in South Africa
last year that they had been raped in the camps.

But government dismissed the allegations as "unfounded rubbish," saying the
youths were given lessons in a range of subjects including technical skills,
health issues, entrepreneurship and disaster management.

More than 20 000 youths had attended the camps since they were started in
2001, Chatiza said.

The trainees at the camps are locally referred to as "Green Bombers" because
of the green military fatigues they have to wear.

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Daily News online edition

Civil servants forced to bankroll welcome bash for murder suspects

Date:9-Oct, 2004

CIVIL servants in Buhera are angry over a decision by the Zanu PF
leadership at Murambinda Growth Point to force them to each contribute
towards a bash to celebrate the release from jail, on bail, of three ruling
party activists who are facing murder charges.

Webster Gwama, Morris Kainos Zimunya (better knon as Kitsiyatota) and
Johnson Mudzamiri were released on $5 million bail each. They all face two
charges of murder.

They are alleged to have murdered Tichaona Chiminya and Talent Mabika
during the run-up to the 2000 parliamentary election. The three Zanu PF
activists together with Joseph Mwale, a top CIO operative, allegedly beat up
the two before setting on fire the vehicle they were in.

They died as a result of the burns. The three were arrested and
arraigned before the courts facing murder charges and were eventually
released on bail by High Court Judge, Justice Chinembiri Bhunu.

Mwale, is however, still at large although his whereabouts are known.

Mwale is widely known to be operating from Mutoko District, 143 km
north east of Harare.

After the release of the trio from prison, the Zanu PF leadership at
Murambinda ordered that all civil servants contribute ZW$5 000 each for a
bash to welcome the alleged murderers. It is not yet clear when the welcome
bash would be held.

"It is very disappointing," said one civil servant based at the growth
point. "We are being forced to part with $5 000 each to bankroll a welcome
party for these guys who were released from prison."

The civil servant said they had no choice but to contribute because
failure to do so could result in dire consequences.

"Obviously if you refuse to pay they (Zanu PF members) would see you
as a supporter of the opposition. Belonging to the opposition here can be
very dangerous."

Tension is already mounting in Buhera North ahead of next March's
parliamentary poll. Morgan Tsvangirai, the MDC leader, lost Buhera North to
Kenneth Manyonda, the Deputy Minister of Industry and International Trade,
in 2000.

Chiminya and Mabika were campaigning for Tsvangirai when they were
murdered. The High Court has since nullified Manyonda's victory citing
massive intimidation and violence by Zanu PF supporters.

Manyonda, however, still sits in the august house because he has
appealed against the High Court ruling.

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Zim Online

Mugabe dangles 100 000 hectares of land in Museveni's face
Sat 9 October 2004

HARARE - President Robert Mugabe has offered 100 000 hectares of prime
agricultural land to Uganda in order to cement ties between Harare and
Kampala, sources told ZimOnline yesterday.

The land, offered to Uganda's President Yoweri Museveni during his
visit to Harare earlier this week, would be allocated to farmers from the
east African country wishing to undertake agricultural ventures in Zimbabwe,
sources said.

"Mugabe told Museveni that he could offer 100 000 hectares to Ugandan
farmers immediately in order to cement ties between the two countries and on
his part Museveni promised to try and assist in securing fuel for Zimbabwe,"
said a top Mugabe aide, who did not
want to be named.

Zimbabwe is in the grip of an acute fuel crisis because there is no
hard cash to pay foreign suppliers.

Attempts to reach Museveni's Kampala office by phone from Harare for
comment on the matter were fruitless yesterday.

Zimbabwe's Foreign Affairs Minister Stan Mudenge refused to comment
directly on the land offer but told ZimOnline that the two leaders had
discussed trade and land reform issues. He said: "The discussions (between
Mugabe and Museveni) included trade and the land
reform issue. That is all I can say."

During his two-day visit to Zimbabwe, Museveni visited black-owned
farms in the country. The Ugandan President defended Mugabe's chaotic and
often violent land redistribution scheme under which the Zimbabwean leader
seized white-owned land without paying and gave it over to landless blacks.

This is not the first time Mugabe has attempted to use land seized
from white farmers to win friendship and support.

About three years ago Mugabe offered 720 hectares of land just outside
Harare to Libya's President Muammar Gaddafi in exchange for fuel. Gaddafi
was also promised mining concessions before the deal went sour and
eventually collapsed last year.

Zimbabwe and Uganda fought against each other through proxies in the
Democratic Republic of the Congo war. But Mugabe and Museveni appeared to
have buried the hatchet with the Ugandan leader voicing full support for his
Zimbabwean counterpart. - ZimOnline
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Zim Online

Chinese telecoms supplier demands slice of Zimbabwe's mineral resources
Sat 9 October 2004

HARARE - Chinese telecoms supplier Huawei Investments has demanded
that it be guaranteed a portion of Zimbabwe's minerals and future tobacco
produce before it can supply US$160 million worth of telecommunications
equipment needed for a second fixed
telephone network, it was learnt this week.

Huawei also wants a 20 percent hard cash down payment before equipment
is delivered and another 40 percent after delivery. The remainder will be
paid in cash, tobacco, chrome or platinum once TeleAccess, a private company
licensed to operate the telephone network, finished rolling out the project.

TeleAccess, owned by ruling ZANU PF party crony, Daniel Shumba, was
given the license to set up a fixed telephone network to rival the existing
one owned by the government in January 2003.

To date the company, which under telecoms regulations was supposed to
have finished rolling out the network by last June, has not even begun work
on the project.

According to sources, TeleAccess's financial advisers, the Commercial
Bank of Zimbabwe, last week told Parliament's Portfolio Committee on
Transport and Communications that Huawei feared the Zimbabwean firm might
not be able to raise hard cash to pay for
equipment because of forex shortages in the country.

The bank's managing director, Nyasha Makuvise, is said to have
indicated that they were now structuring a deal under which TeleAccess will
contract tobacco farmers and mining firms to produce the crop, platinum and
chrome which could be exported to generate hard
cash to pay the Chinese firm.

"Makuvise said the Chinese are very sceptical about TeleAccess'
ability to raise enough foreign currency given the shortages being
experienced in the country and are not going to supply anything until they
are guaranteed the tobacco and minerals," said one source
who attended the hearing.

Makuvise is also said to have told the parliamentary committee that
delays by the Postal and Telecommunications Regulating Authority to allocate
frequencies to TeleAccess had at one time also stalled negotiations with
Huawei.

The Chinese firm wanted confirmation that TeleAccess would be
allocated the frequencies before they could commit themselves to supplying
equipment.

Foreign suppliers wary of the current political and economic crisis in
the country now demand cash upfront before delivering goods or services to
Zimbabwe.

The few international companies still willing to risk supplying
Zimbabwe on credit have of late however demanded firm guarantees mostly in
the form of tobacco or minerals before releasing goods. - ZimOnline
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Zim Online

Chief pledges to weed out MDC supporters from area
Sat 9 October 2004

MATABELELAND SOUTH - A local chief here has ordered his subjects to
join the ruling ZANU PF party or face expulsion from his area.

Chief Malaki Musuku of Matobo district, about 60 kilometres south-west
of Bulawayo, told his subjects at a meeting this week that he and other
traditional leaders in the province had been empowered by ZANU PF to remove
all opposition Movement for Democratic
Change (MDC) party supporters from their areas.

Speaking at a rally at Natisa rural business centre in the area, which
this reporter attended, Masuku also claimed that he was recording the names
of all villagers who boycott meetings of the ruling party so they could be
punished.

Masuku said: "We have been empowered by the government as traditional
leaders to chase those who do not want to support it because they are not
our good friends. You will follow those whitemen who used to own the farms
that you now occupy if you continue acting
defiantly."

ZANU PF national chairman John Nkomo refused to discuss the matter
when ZimOnline contacted him to establish whether the party would act to
stop the chief from coercing his subjects to join the party.

Nkomo said: "Excuse me, is it not you who attended the meeting and
heard what they said? I cannot give you any comment on that."

The MDC, local and international human rights groups have in the past
accused ZANU PF of intimidating villagers in remote rural areas into
supporting the party.

Self-styled veterans of Zimbabwe's 1970s independence war and other
ZANU PF militants have also been accused of unleashing violence against MDC
supporters in order to force them to abandon the opposition party. ZANU PF
denies the charge. - ZimOnline

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Zim Daily

Friday, October 8, 2004

MAHOSO DEMANDS MUGABE'S PHOTO

HARARE - The chairman of Media Information Commission (MIC), Tafataona
Mahoso has given the editor of the weekly independent newspaper, The
Standard deadline to submit a negative of the photograph of President Robert
Mugabe at Harare Agricultural Show that appeared on the front page of the
weekly of August 29.

The Standard published a photograph of Mugabe pulling up his trousers while
visiting some stands at the agricultural show with part of caption reading
"Smarting up", but because of technology, the Standard is unable to do so
because the photograph was taken using a digital camera.

The MIC chairman Tafataona Mahoso claims his commission has received
numerous calls about the photograph, and one complaint came from the
department of Information and Publicity in the President 's Office,
(Jonathan Moyo's portfolio) complaining that the use of the photograph by
The Standard is extremely mischievous and represents a deliberate
denigration of the highest office in the country.

However the editor of the weekly independent paper, Bornwell Chakaodza has
said that the complaint represent a new wave of attempts to silence the
media."The complaint defy logic",Chakaodza said,"Anyone with elementary
knowledge of journalism would have praise over such a memorable photograph."

Chakaodza said there is need to separate the state of Zimbabwe from the
person of the President."We cannot by any stretch of imagination know how a
picture of the president in whatever situation can be said to be
anti-Zimbabwe", he said.

ZIMDAILY CORRESPONDENT
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Zim Daily

Friday, October 8, 2004

CHIMOIO GALA: AN INSULT TO FALLEN HEROES

HARARE - With only a day to go before the so called Solidarity Gala to be
held in Chimoio Mozambique, survivors of the Chimoio and Nyadzonya massacres
have expressed their disappointment and they say they feel insulted by the
musical gala as they have not been consulted or involved in the organisation
of the "gala".

The Chimoio survivors feel that if it was really a solidarity bash to
commemorate the Chimoio massacre they should have been a committee set up
and gather information from the survivors and together with the organisers
and would have come up with a proper commemoration event.

Observers have also questioned the use of drunken youths and mediocre Zanu
PF and aspiring young musicians. Reports from say that the musicians from
Mozambique who are going to take part in the gala are just, but groups of
youths, churning out confused sound.

After improperly exploiting the late Joshua Nkomo and Simon Muzenda's
popularity, Zanu PF has now moved to Chimoio.

Judging from the excessive airtime on national radio and television and in
the state owned media, the Minister of Information Jonathan Moyo has also
ordered the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Holdings Newsnet department that all news
bulletins should carry a story about the Chimoio massacres which will only
lead to opening old wounds

ZIMDAILY CORRESPONDENT

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Zim Daily

Zimbabwe Prisons Turning into Abattoirs

HARARE - It has become a norm for most prisoners in Zimbabwe to
be subjected to unhuman kind like treatment that has gone unchallenged for
too long. Zimbabweans and the international community have a right to know
the suspicious deaths of our political prisoners in Zimbabwean jails.

Prisoners who are perceived to be political misfits by our ruling government
are constantly harassed tortured in jails. There is quite a number that has
fallen victim to the ruling government brutality. A lot of our friends,
brothers, sisters have been locked up for no apparent reasons. Some have
even died in these prisons.

One would try to defend our prison system of course, by pointing out that
there is homosextualism going on in our prisons, and this has caused much of
the deaths in our prisons. Is is something that Zimbabweans shouldn't buy at
all. There is more to these deaths
which need to be uncovered.

Laws stipulate that once a person is jaild or charged for any crime, he or
she is placed in the hands of the government. In that contex, if a prisoner
dies in custody, then the government is responsible. The government owes
relatives and the general public an explanation on the events leading to
that deaths of anyone in jail. The government has an obligation to keep the
relatives of those in prison informed on what ever ailments, deseases
threaten their lives.

The prisoners like any other individual have the rights to representation by
a lawyer. The prisoners are entitled to medicare, food, warm clothing and
many more civil rights.

There are quite a number of indivuiduals who have died in prison. Just this
week on Monday, the government announced that Ngave Jarukemo Muharukua(35),
a South African citizen and mercenary held in Zimbabwe on alleged plot to
over throw the government in
Equatorial Guinea, died of meningitis.

The question that most of the relatives of this mercenary might be,asking
is, why wasn't he accorded health care in the event that he was ailing in
prison. It's not convincing at all to believe what really happened before
this prisoner died. South Africa should seek for an explanation regarding
this issue, but I can bet my last dollar there isn't going to be a storm in
a tea cup regarding this suspicious death, as it should be, simply because
Thabo Mbeki and Robert
Mugabe are one and the same.

The late Learnmore Jongwe, MDC's mouth piece, died a suspicious death that
even his relatives today, still seek to have answers on what really killed
him in prison. Zanu PF were presented with a perfect opportunity to kill
Jongwe when he was in jail awaiting judgement for killing his wife. He was
sentenced to death, before he was arraigned for his murder charges. Zanu PF
where like valtures just waiting for an opportinity to pounce on him and
that opportinity availed itself in a silver plate. The reasons for his death
are not known.

In the 1980s, there was a business tycoon called Peter Paweni. He died
immediately after coming out of prison. The reason of his death again was
very suspicious. He had not played according to the ruling
Party's rules and that prompted his elimination,and downfall. Many of MDC
supporters and activists have been jailed for no apparent reason and they
have been subjected to torture, beatings. Some of them have died a peaceful,
and qiute death after coming out of
prison.

It looks like once, one is jailed, especially if they are members of the
opposition, or being used as sacrificial lambs, by our ruling party, their
lives change forever. Most of our brothers and sisters who have been jailed
before, and lucky to be still alive would confess that its through the grace
of God that they are alive today. Some of them wouldn't dare narrate what
really happen in prison for fear of reprisals, and because they are still
traumatised, from the horrondous acts that transpire in prison.

There are some members of the Ruling party who are, or have been used as
examples that our government does not entertain corruptionat all. These have
been jailed for a couple of months but have been aquitted without any
charges against them. Reason would mean abvious, that they are not going to
died after this short run in the prisons. Only opposition is not spared, It
looks like there is a special drug that is injected or administered without
these prisoners knowledge that kill them slowly. Why is it that some
individuals have died immediately after realise from jail. Surely they
is need for an independent inquiry before this escalates into something
uncontrollable.

We have to pray for poor Kuruneri who has been forsaken by his masters. We
have to pray for his well being and his healthy, that he doesn't fall ill
and die in prison. Nobody knows really the gravity of
Kuruneri's case and why all his collegues have been exornerated without
going through what he has done. Just hope he is not one of those lambs ready
for slaughter.

The jail guards, and our prisons, should not be used for political gains.
Prisons shouldn't be used for the elimination of voice of dissent. Prisons
shouldn't be meant for MDC supportres and activists only. Zanu PF Officials
should stop the usage of prisons for settling old scores against each other
and those they label as their adversaries.

Prisons are not abattoirs, and prison deaths should be stopped. Lets have
immediate independent inquiry on all those deaths that have occured in our
prisons, so as to curtail the reoccurence of thse suspicious and unnecessary
human suffering.

Eddie Kwaramba

ZIMDAILY CORRESPONDENT

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Yahoo News

Zimbabwe Services Failing, Health Dangers Lurk

Fri Oct 8, 8:02 AM ET

By MacDonald Dzirutwe

HARARE, Zimbabwe (Reuters) - Five-year-old Zimbabwean Felicita Munyoro
fiddles with a soda can as she plays with friends, then bends to fill it
with the murky contents of a burst sewage pipe flowing past her house,
oblivious to the foul smell and the health dangers that lurk.

Across town in the capital Harare's leafy suburb of Borrowdale, Takunda Hove
has woken up early for the sixth day in a row, in order to drive early to
work and use the shower facilities because the water tap at home has run
dry.

"I have children here and I worry every day about the possibility of a
disease outbreak in the neighborhood. I don't know if these problems will
ever be sorted out," says the 37-year-old father of three.

Hove plans to drill a borehole on his property, a luxury that the majority
of poverty-stricken urban dwellers, like Felicita's parents, cannot afford.
Frequent water cuts force them to trudge to neighboring areas in search of a
piped supply, while others resort to hazardous wells and streams.

In Harare, authorities recently announced 18-hour daily water cuts in most
residential suburbs, blaming the cuts on a decrepit main water pump station
servicing the city.

The water shortage is the latest scourge to hit Harare, once one of Africa's
cleanest urban centers and dubbed 'the Sunshine City,' but which like the
majority of Zimbabwe's towns has seen a degeneration of basic services as an
economic crisis bites.

FALLING REVENUES

Urban councils, largely run by the main opposition Movement for Democratic
Change (MDC), say falling revenues and interference from President Robert
Mugabe's government have left them ill-equipped to cope with growing
populations.

Built in then colonial Rhodesia to cater for a smaller population,
Zimbabwe's urban infrastructure is creaking under the weight of hundreds of
thousands of people who have flocked from the rural areas in search of jobs.

Road potholes lie unrepaired for years while burst water and sewer pipes are
common in most residential areas.

Japhet Ndabeni-Ncube, the MDC mayor of Zimbabwe's second city of Bulawayo
and chair of all urban councils, says a government freeze on rates payments
has crippled city budgets.

Figures show that Bulawayo needs more than 360 billion Zimbabwe dollars
($68.05 million) for its 2004 budget, but will only be able to raise half
the amount because of the rate freeze.

"Since the freeze on rates we are suffering; we live from hand to mouth. We
are now allocating the few resources on priorities so that services do not
totally collapse," Ndabeni-Ncube told Reuters.

"We are aware of the health threats posed by water cuts and the garbage that
is sometimes collected only after a fortnight."

MDC councilors see the rates freeze as a deliberate ploy by Mugabe's ruling
ZANU-PF party to woo back urban voters who blame the government for the
country's economic problems and have largely rallied behind the opposition
at elections since 2000.

RATE HIKES NOT JUSTIFIED

The government argues that rate hikes are no longer justified because the
country's economy, grappling with one of the highest unemployment rates in
the world is rebounding under a new monetary policy which has stabilized
prices and the Zimbabwe dollar.

But most residents still have to contend with erratic water supplies as
cash-strapped councils struggle to procure imported treatment chemicals
while burst sewer pipes and mounting rubbish piles pose a serious health
hazard.

"This is not the image of a city we want in the 21st century," said Michael
Davies, chairman of the Combined Harare Residents Association.

"The threat of diseases like cholera is real not only in Harare but in all
cities. Provision of vital services like water and rubbish collection are
the bedrock of a city."

With over 70 percent unemployment, unregulated street vending has mushroomed
in most cities, often in areas without the necessary sanitary facilities
like garbage bins.

Last month the MDC announced it was withdrawing all of its councilors from
the capital's municipality, saying the government had made it impossible to
effectively run the city.

But local government minister Ignatius Chombo blames the rundown state of
Zimbabwe's cities on incompetence by an opposition party he says has failed
to live up to the expectations of the electorate.

As the political tug-of-war rages on, Felicita Munyoro gambles with disease
each time she ventures out to her filth-ridden playground, while a leisurely
bath at home remains a pipedream for suburban dweller Hove.

($1=5290 Zimbabwe Dollar)

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Daily News online edition

Why Africa is poorer 40 years later

Date:9-Oct, 2004

AFRICA is the only continent to have grown poorer in the last 40 years
ago.

This means that since 1964, seven years after Ghana's independence,
more Africans may have gained political independence, but have not
experienced a material improvement in their lives in tandem with the advent
of full nationhood.

Zimbabwe is a prime example. People are poorer today than they were at
independence in 1980. A few may boast of having cheated or stolen their way
into wealth, but the majority have achieved little or no improvement in
their material status since independence.

The evidence is everywhere on the continent: more people are dying of
causes closely related to poverty than to an act of God.

The only people really enjoying independence are the ruling elite,
growing fatter and fatter on all the good food they can eat, while their
people starve.

Leaders of the ilk of Robert Mugabe will have ready responses to these
statistics: it's not the Africans' fault, but that of the West.

Mugabe's party is going into next March's parliamentary election with
an appalling record of plunging the nation to new levels of poverty. Why any
voters would be persuaded to vote for Zanu PF on its record of the past 24
years would be a total mystery to any foreigner.

African leaders have convinced some of their people that their poverty
is the sole responsibility of the West because it will not remove farm
subsidies for their farmers, thus opening the door to African farm produce
onto their markets.

But they neglect to explain why this poverty is confined only to the
majority, who are not active in politics, don't have relatives in high
places, don't steal billions from the government, don't run businesses which
profiteer at every opportunity and try to earn an honest living through the
sweat of their brow.

The African Union should look closely at these statistics: is Africa
getting poorer because the West is not helping it, or because African
leaders, in general, are more interested in retaining power than in the
welfare of their people?

Zanu PF is a typical African party. It will do everything to stay in
power, including killing people, but once it is in power, it has no time for
the people.

By and large, this is what has kept Africa so poor.

There are a few bright patches of success here and there, but the
general picture is one of absolute squalor.

Tony Blair has his own agenda in launching his ambitious programme to
fight poverty in Africa. But other foreigners have tried in vain in the past
to rouse African leaders to care more about their people, than about
trinkets for their greedy wives and concubines.

It's not the Blairs or the George Bushes who will make a difference.
It's the Africans themselves. They know why the material benefits of
independence have eluded them.

In most cases, they have selfish, cruel leaders at the helm.

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Daily News online edition

Bid to repatriate Rwandan refugees hits brick wall

Date:8-Oct, 2004

EFFORTS by the United Nations and the Rwandan government to repatriate
thousands of Rwandan refugees in Zimbabwe appear to have failed, The Daily
News Online has established.

The Rwandans are reluctant to return to their motherland citing
security reasons. There are about 3 000 Rwandans staying in Zimbabwe as
refugees. About 200 are staying at Tongogara Refugee Camp in Chipinge, about
440 km south-east of Harare.

The refusal by the Rwandans to return home prompted Karim Abdul, the
Rwandan ambassador to South Africa, to visit Zimbabwe to persuade his fellow
countrymen to return home.

Rwanda does not have a diplomatic mission in Zimbabwe.

Abdul, a Tutsi, tried in vain, to persuade the refugees, all of them
Hutus, to return to Kigali and participate in the rebuilding of Rwanda. But
a Rwandan based at Tongogara Refugee Camp, said they told Abdul they would
not return until their security concerns have been fully addressed.

"Rwanda is not yet safe for us to go," the refugee who refused to be
named, said.

The refusal by the refugees to return comes amid reports that the
Kigali government of Paul Kagame has amassed troops along its western
frontier with the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to ward off an
insurgency by armed bandits from the Rwandan militia, Interahamwe, the
former government soldiers known as ex-FAR and Hutu extremists who have
bases in the DRC.

The armed bandits are accused of masterminding the 1994 genocide which
left about one million Tutsis and moderate Hutus dead.

Media reports from the DRC indicate that the Rwandan bandits are
active and are determined to cause mayhem in the tiny restive central
African country.

Last week there were reports that the ex-FAR, the Interahamwe and the
Hutu extremists attacked a village in Sake in the province of North Kivu,
east of the DRC, killing two people.

Up to 150 houses were looted during the attack. There are also reports
that the Tutsi-dominated government in Kigali has launched a witchhunt
targeting professional Hutus and those perceived to be supporting opposition
politicians or suspected to have been supporters of the previous regime of
the late Juvenal Habyiharimana.

The Kigali administration has launched a massive exercise to have
millions of its nationals scattered all over the world repatriated.
Countries such as Tanzania and Uganda have since closed refugee camps where
Rwandans stayed asserting it was now conducive for them to return home. The
two countries have also withdrawn refugee status from Rwandans.

However, few Rwandans have returned home opting to seek refugee in
other countries such as Zambia, Malawi, South Africa and Zimbabwe.

Zimbabwe is seen as a safe haven for asylum seekers particularly from
the Great Lakes Region.

There are about 13 000 refugees in Zimbabwe. They are from countries
such as Rwanda, Burundi, the DRC, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Somalia, Burundi,
Ethiopia, the Sudan, the former Yugoslavia and Afghanistan.

There was no immediate comment from the Harare office of the United
Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.

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Daily News online edition

Noczim arrest

Date:8-Oct, 2004

BRIEFLY - Police have confirmed the arrest of two senior National Oil
Company of Zimbabwe officials, Lenny Mukonoweshure, the chief operations
officer and Lovemore Manduku, the technical manager.

The two are believed to be linked to the diversion of fuel to
privately-owned service stations for personal gain.

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canada.com

Popular commentator axed for "disloyalty" to Zimbabwe soccer team

Canadian Press

Friday, October 08, 2004

HARARE, Zimbabwe (AP) - A popular TV commentator has been fired for
criticizing the Zimbabwe soccer team's play in a World Cup qualifying match.

The government-run Zimbabwe Television, the only TV station in the country,
said in a statement it demanded of its commentators "unswerving loyalty to
the national team, whether it is winning or losing."

Josephine Zulu, head of sports at the state broadcaster, said in the
statement Charles Mabika's commentary broke the station's code of "national
integrity and loyalty."

Zimbabwe suffered a humiliating 3-0 defeat to Nigeria in a Group 4 World Cup
qualifier in Harare on Sept. 6.

The Zimbabwe Football Association subsequently fired its two coaches after
what it described as Zimbabwe's pathetic performance against Nigeria.

Mabika, a popular sports personality known for his exuberant commentaries,
began covering soccer for the state broadcaster soon after independence in
1980 and became the host of a weekly sports program on Zimbabwe television.

He was fired the day after the Nigeria match but no official reasons were
immediately given.

Since sweeping media laws were passed in 2002, the state broadcaster and the
five state newspapers have been used to bolster state propaganda, largely
excluding criticism of the government and coverage of opposition politics.

Under the media laws, the only independent daily newspaper was shut down and
at least 30 independent journalists have been arrested for alleged
violations that include undermining the authority of the state.

The state broadcaster also terminated contracts for the supply of news
footage from the main Western television organizations and scrapped most of
its foreign-supplied programs to ensure at least 75 per cent of all airtime
was given over to what it called "local content."

The Canadian Press 2004
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News24

Black rhino: Dark days ahead
08/10/2004 21:21 - (SA)

Bangkok - Aphrodisiacal qualities attributed to the horn of the rhinoceros
have rammed a hole through protective international laws designed to
conserve the animal.

Conservationists are aghast at the way proposals from Namibia and South
Africa, to allow export quotas for trophy hunting of the black rhinoceros,
have been accepted at the ongoing 13th Meeting of the Conference of Parties
to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (Cites)

"At the end of the day the Cites convention is meant to protect species from
over exploitation and not to facilitate trade," Jason Bell, country director
for the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) in South Africa told
IPS.

"The world needs to take notice of these dangerous decisions being made at
Cites and encourage their governments to vote for conservation and not be
pushed by national lobbies into policies that could lead to species'
extinction," added Erica Martin, the Australian-based spokeswoman for IFAW.

Martin said attempts would be made to revive the issue at the plenary of the
12-day conference ending on October 14, although she expected little to come
out of it going by past history.

Over 1 500 delegates from 166 Cites member countries are in the Thai capital
to deliberate on about 100 proposals and resolutions about various species
of plants and animals.

Net increases through conservation

Cites is a UN-backed treaty that has been in effect for nearly 30 years. But
without any policing authority, its effectiveness is only as good as the
political will and resources of each of its member nations.

Four range states, South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe and Kenya, contain 97.6%
of the remaining wild black rhino population with poaching and habitat
destruction having already decimated its population from a probable few
hundred thousand at the start of the last century to fewer than 2 500 by the
early nineties.

South Africa and Namibia have shown net increases in numbers of the black
rhino between 1980 and 2001 through conservation efforts including
enforcement but activists say that is not good enough reason to allow trophy
hunting.

"It sends out all the wrong signals - that it is all right to hunt rhinos
and also trade in the animal and its parts," said Shyam Bajimaya an
ecologist with the department of national parks and wildlife in Nepal, one
of the last refuges of the great one-horned rhino.

Bajimaya is fearful that the easing of restrictions in southern Africa could
have an adverse impact on the Asian rhino, which continues to be poached
despite stringent conservation and enforcement efforts, thanks to strong
demand for its horn by wealthy clients in countries like Thailand, China,
Taiwan, South Korea and Japan.

'More concentrated'

The horn from the Asian rhino is smaller but fetches higher prices than the
larger ones from the African species because it is considered to be more
"concentrated".

A kilogram of Asian rhino horn fetches more than $50 000 although higher
prices have been reported.

There are five rhinoceros species that have survived extinction with three
of them living in Asia and two in Africa.

Rhino populations are endangered not only by poachers but also by shrinking
natural habitats they increasingly have to share with insurgent groups armed
with automatic weapons and interested in more immediate issues than animal
conservation.

According to Bajimaya, as a result of the Maoist insurgency in Nepal
authorities in the Chitwan national park, famed for its rhinos, had to
reduce the number of forest guard posts from 32 to about eight.

Hooves, hides

"This naturally encourages poaching and over the last two months we have
seized as many as five rhino horns in Chitwan," Bajimaya said.

"From examining carcasses of rhinos left behind by poachers after sawing off
the horns we find that rhinos are being hunted down with more and more
sophisticated firearms suggesting that the business continues to be
lucrative," she said.

Carcasses are also found with the hooves and hides removed apparently
because even these, apart from the horns and penises, are prized as having
aphrodisiacal properties. In traditional Asian medicine rhino blood is given
as a tonic to women with menstrual disorders.

"People even scoop up the earth on which a rhino may have urinated to be
dunked into water and filtered to make potions," said Bajimaya, wishing that
poachers would be satisfied with the urine and leave the animals alone.
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News24

IMF calls it a day in Zim
08/10/2004 19:33 - (SA)

Harare - The International Monetary Fund, to which Zimbabwe owes US$295m in
arrears, is to close its office at the end of the month after 11 years in
Harare, a move the state-controlled press described as politically driven.

A statement on the IMF website said it would communicate with Harare in the
future via contacts with headquarters staff and regular executive board
discussions.

It said that the closure of the office should not be linked to the overdue
financial obligations.

However, IMF deputy director for Africa Siddarth Tinari said the closure was
the result of hard budget constraint, and that resources could be used more
efficiently.

The state-controlled New Ziana news agency said that the IMFs halt on
lending to President Robert Mugabe's government was part of British-led
international pressure on the country to force it to relent on land reforms.

The government has made no payments on its arrears to Zimbabwe between 2001
and early this year.

In July, the IMF board decided to postpone a decision to finally expel
Zimbabwe, because of the severity of the decision and the fact that Zimbabwe
began making some payments toward reducing its debt.

The country's economy went into a rapid slide from 2000 after Mugabe mounted
his illegal revolutionary land reform programme and drove nearly all of the
country's 4 200 productive white farmers from their land, a move that
effectively wrecked its agricultural industry.

Simultaneously he launched the violent suppression of his political
opponents, a move that economists say has forced 25% of the population,
comprising its best educated and most economically active people, to flee
abroad. - Sapa-dpa
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From The Times (UK), 8 October

Mugabe faces protests

By Jan Raath

Harare - Protesters took to the streets of the Zimbabwean capital yesterday
after President Mugabe introduced a battery of laws to project himself as a
democrat while he crushes dissent ahead of parliamentary elections due in
six months. About 200 pro-democracy demonstrators scattered thousands of
protest leaflets across the city, warning of "diabolic" legislation.
Passers-by bent furtively to pick them up. Among the controversial new laws
is the Non-Governmental Organisations Bill, which will force all charity
organisations to register with the Government or be shut down, have officers
jailed and assets seized, on the say-so of the state-controlled NGO council.
The Government says organisations dealing in "governance" are " harbouring
motives on behalf of the British and American government to destroy the
country". Parliament, dominated by the ruling party, will then turn to two
electoral bills, designed to establish an "independent" commission to take
overall control of the March elections. The commission is effectively
appointed by Mr Mugabe.
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