The ZIMBABWE Situation Our thoughts and prayers are with Zimbabwe
- may peace, truth and justice prevail.

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Subject: Pride and Dignity

Dear Family and Friends,
When I got to the front of the queue in the supermarket the teller remarked that I didn't have many groceries in my trolley. I laughed and said that what I had was all I could afford. He said I shouldn't worry, I should just go and get what I need and then pay by cheque. Again I laughed and said the cheque would bounce. No problem the teller said, we'll send the bounced cheque to the government and tell them to pay the bill because they are the ones who took the farms, didn't pay for them or any of the assets and it was that mess that has left the whole country barely surviving. The teller knows me well, I've been shopping there for fifteen years but this was an amazing little conversation. Normally people whisper these sort of comments, look over their shoulders to see who may be listening or simply don't say things like this at all.
Equally amazing is the fact that it's taken this long for people to find the courage to say it like it is. In three and a half years I've had thousands of letters from people who ask me: What the hell is wrong with you people in Zimbabwe, why do you put up with what's going on? I wish I knew what the answer was because as each new catastrophe errupts, we all say: Ah, this is it, this is the thing that will bring the nightmare to an end. We thought that when farms were being grabbed and given out to government officials, people power would stop it. Then when there was no maize, sugar, oil and flour we said that would do it. Each time bread has soared in price, from 48 dollars last year to 1000 dollars today, we thought that would cause an uprising. Then when petrol completely disappeared from service stations and now, when the banks haven't got any money in them - each time we think this is it, people just won't stand for it. But amazingly enough the masses just stagger on saying "nothing to do."  
I think there are lots of reasons we Zimbabweans behave the way we do. Maybe we are a nation of cowards. Maybe we are paralyzed by fear. Maybe are waiting for someone to come riding in on a white horse to save us. Or, maybe it's  because we just don't want another war. I think that we all know that if the chaos in Zimbabwe descends into an armed civil war then that really will be the end of hope. We know that wars don't end in 3 weeks or even 3 years and that the physical and mental destruction they cause takes decades and decades to repair. I believe that civic society in Zimbabwe, and the opposition political party, have shown immense maturity by not calling for an armed uprising. Zimbabweans have proved to the world that not all opposition politics in Africa means rebels with guns. We all know that the end is near now. The government knows it too. We know that when Zimbabwe emerges into a democracy it will be a more united and dignified country than ever before. Already there are resolutions being tabled that  a Truth and Justice Commission will be established.  Amongst other things it has been agreed that past human rights abuses will be redressed, both pre and post colonial, and that people will be made to answer and pay for their crimes - whether that involved stealing someone's farm and assets or murdering and raping. Zimbabwe has learnt that sweeping things under the carpet is not the answer because sooner or later you have to lift the carpet up.  Until then we all keep hanging on, turning the other cheek, trying to help others in worse positions than ourselves and, if we can, making a stand. Robert Mugabe and his government and greedy supporters have destroyed most everything in the country now. They may be the financial winners but have blood on their hands. We are the moral victors and the one thing this government can never take from us is our pride and dignity. Until next week, with love, cathy. Copyright cathy buckle, 16th August 2003.
"African Tears" and "Beyond Tears" are available in the UK, USA and Canada through: ; in Australia and New Zealand through: and in Africa from and
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South Pacific condemns Zimbabwe over human rights

By Michael Perry

AUCKLAND, Aug. 16 — The 11 South Pacific members of the Commonwealth
condemned Zimbabwe on Saturday for continuing human rights abuses, saying no
progress had been made to end its suspension from the grouping.
       Leaders of the Pacific states, which include Australia and New
Zealand, issued a statement at the end of the Pacific Islands Forum noting
their ''grave concern at the situation in Zimbabwe, in particular continuing
serious human rights abuses and the worsening economic crisis.''
       They said Zimbabwe was showing an intransigence in its refusal to
move back towards democracy.
       Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe has been accused of intimidation and
vote rigging during the March 2002 presidential elections, leaving his
African state racked with political violence.
       Earlier at the forum, Australian Prime Minister John Howard said
Mugabe was an ''unelected despot'' and Zimbabwe should not be readmitted to
the 54-nation Commonwealth. Howard chairs a Commonwealth troika, which
includes South Africa and Nigeria, set up to judge democracy in Zimbabwe.
       In March, Zimbabwe's one-year suspension from the Commonwealth, a
group of mainly former British colonies, was extended until the end of the
year after Australia, South Africa and Nigeria reported no progress in the
restoration of democracy.
       South Pacific leaders said the next Commonwealth leaders summit in
December in Abuja, Nigeria, would permit an objective discussion of
Zimbabwe's suspension, ''including further action that may be required to
address the deteriorating situation.''
       ''Leaders considered that concrete and practical responses by the
Zimbabwe authorities... were urgently required by the suffering people of
Zimbabwe,'' the statement said.
       ''Such responses were also essential prerequisites for any return by
Zimbabwe to full membership of the organisation.''
       Earlier this month, Mozambican President Joaquim Chissano said after
talks with Mugabe that he felt there was movement toward improving the
volatile political situation in Zimbabwe.
       But Pacific leaders said calls for the ''rule of law to be
restored... for political dialogue to be resumed, and for political violence
to be brought to an end, remained unheeded.''

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Amin death turns focus on tyrants
Saturday, August 16, 2003 Posted: 6:27 AM EDT (1027 GMT)

NAIROBI, Kenya (Reuters) -- Ugandans say former dictator Idi Amin, who died
in Saudi Arabia on Saturday, used to keep the severed heads of rivals in his
refrigerator and once placed some on his dining table to remind guests he
was not to be crossed.

After almost 25 years of comfortable exile in Saudi Arabia, Uganda's
"butcher," who also fed the remains of victims to Lake Victoria's crocodiles
at one point, died aged in his late 70s unpunished for his crimes.

He is unlikely to be the last tyrant to see out the end of his days

Haiti's Jean Claude "Baby Doc" Duvalier, who fled his island in 1986 after
an upsurge of popular protest against his brutal 15-year rule, has been seen
driving his red Ferrari around the French Riviera.

Ethiopia's Mengistu Haile Mariam, whose "Red Terror" was marked by purges,
war and hunger, has been on a ranch in Zimbabwe granted refuge by his friend
President Robert Mugabe.

Uganda's Milton Obote, accused by domestic opponents of being even more
brutal than Amin, is in Zambia, while Paraguay's Alfredo Stroessner, who
gained a reputation as an iron-fisted leader who sheltered Nazi war
criminals, is in Brazil.

Sierra Leone's former rebel leader Foday Sankoh, indicted for war crimes and
reviled for launching one of Africa's most horrific wars, died in hospital
on July 29, never having faced trial for murder, rape, sexual slavery and

Liberia's Charles Taylor, indicted by a U.N.-backed court for his role in
Sierra Leone's savage conflict, has been granted asylum in Nigeria.

As Amin lay on his death bed, many Ugandans asked themselves how such a man
could escape scot-free.

"While he is calmly exhausting his life-span in the splendour of a Saudi
Arabian hospital, our people are breathlessly struggling in the attempt to
salvage some life out of the debris of his destruction," a comment in the
New Vision newspaper said recently.

While many former tyrants are unlikely ever to face criminal proceedings for
their wrongs, analysts say the world today is more intent on trying those
once considered immune.

"There has been a real sea-change in the attitude of the international
community," Amnesty International's Christopher Hall told Reuters in a
recent interview.

"In the past, crimes were seen as political or diplomatic problems, now they
are seen as ordinary crimes of rape, murder, that all states have a duty to
investigate and to prosecute."

The 1998 arrest of Chile's Augusto Pinochet in London sent a message that
the days of impunity for tyrants were ending, even though he was later
released on grounds of poor health.

United Nations tribunals for crimes committed in the former Yugoslavia and
Rwanda have also drummed that point home.

More significantly still, analysts say the establishment of an International
Criminal Court (ICC) may have set international law on an irreversible

"Times are changing...exile is becoming harder to find," Human Rights
Watch's Reed Brody wrote in a recent editorial.

"It is unfortunate that Idi Amin will die in his "tent" without being
brought to justice for his crimes, but the world is a smaller and smaller
tent. One day the Idi Amins of this world will find they have nowhere to

Only about 90 countries -- with the notable exception of the United
States -- have so far ratified the ICC, which will be a permanent tribunal
to try individuals for the most serious international crimes such as
genocide and war crimes.

Ugandans will have to find their own ways to reconcile the wrongs of Amin's
1971-1979 rule. While many wish they had seen him punished, others say the
page should be turned on the past.

"He should be accorded a state burial as a former president," Kampala shop
owner Badru Mulongo said. "People say he killed many people but I think
there is no leader who has not killed."

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Sunday Times (SA)

Mugabe re-appoints police chief

Saturday August 16, 2003 17:24 - (SA)

HARARE - Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe has extended the term of the
country's police chief, who has been in office since 1991, for another year,
according to state media.

Commissioner Augustine Chihuri has been the country's substantive police
chief since 1993, although he headed the force since 1991, in an acting

Chihuri, 50, this year resigned an honorary position he had been awarded at
the international police agency Interpol after criticism that the
appointment was an endorsement of the Mugabe administration.

British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw attacked the appointment, saying it was
"an insult to the people who have suffered at the hands of the Zimbabwean
police and other state security apparatus in that country."

Chihuri served on Interpol's executive committee for six years from 1996,
and on stepping down received the honorary vice presidency of Interpol's
executive committee for a three year term, in line with standard practice.

Zimbabwe's police force has been accused of brutality, especially against
opposition activitists, but Chihuri has denied
the allegations saying his force is professional and well-trained in human
rights issues.

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From ZWNEWS, 15 August

Fringe cuts

Robert Mugabe has made it to the Fringe of the annual Edinburgh Festival via
a five-piece acoustic rock band, Mann Friday. The band, led by Zimbabwean
Rob Burrell, 25, performs each evening against a background of stills, some
as beautiful as sunset over the Victoria Falls, others disturbing: a woman
dying of AIDS, bloodied victims of Zanu PF thugs, a starving child. The show
is titled Zimbabwe Ruins, and Mugabe stares briefly from one of the stills
which, with the music and song, chronicle the country from shortly before
1980 independence - the group are all in their mid-20s - to the past four
years of accelerating violence, corruption and decline. Zimbabwe Ruins has
attracted a fair amount of attention for a fringe show - one of the hundreds
of gigs, short plays, readings, and comic or would-be comic turns performed
during August by often obscure artists in compact venues round the Scottish
capital. The Times of London carried a news story, and Edinburgh's Evening
News called Zimbabwe Ruins "A tale to empower every race, colour and creed."
For the group, recently arrived in Britain and hoping to make it in a highly
competitive world, the political message of this show is only a part of what
they hope to be about.

"We're not a human rights awareness group or anything," said Burrell. "We
decided to kill two birds with one stone - to play as musicians and at the
same time raise awareness of the situation in our country." Three of the
group are Zimbabweans, all born in Harare: Burrell, Angus Wakeling and Ryan
Koriya. The others are South African Justin Cocks, who teamed up with
Burrell at Rhodes University in South Africa, and Briton JP Sutcliffe. In a
style briefly reminiscent of Alexandra Fuller's account of growing up as a
white child in Zimbabwe, Burrell intersperses the music with a commentary on
his own life. For example, "I am 12 and I am a white boy with a maid called
Maria." And later Maria is dying of AIDS, and the 17-year-old Burrell and
his family visit her in a township in a room with no power. Then comes the
song: "Hold My Hand, I'm Tired." There are stills of 22-year-old "war
veterans" seizing white-owned farms, of opposition Movement for Democratic
Change offices burned and defaced, of elephants wandering lazily in the
bush, of a Harare suburban garden in flower; of mountain trails in Zimbabwe'
s Eastern Highlands. The finale to this entertaining and moving performance
with its sense of longing for a land that's been left had the audience
clapping along to the thudding beat of "Be Yourself, Be Nothing Else - And

Elsewhere on the Fringe, Zimbabwean theatre company Over the Edge is
performing Wole Soyinka's play King Baabu, a "hilarious, explosive and
thoroughly African reworking" of Alfred Jarry's Ubu Roi (1896), which
satirised the French bourgeoisie, and which was itself a rewrite of
Shakespeare's Macbeth. The play traces the rise and fall of an African
dictator. Soyinka recently explained the play's relevance to Zimbabwe,
saying: "The Zimbabwean episode, for contemporary times, belonged squarely
in the theatre of Ultimate Cynism and the Grossness of Greed." The
Guardian's theatre critic described the performance: "Its
rough-around-the-edges style only adds to its energetic charm, and the
actors grow in confidence as this bloody tale unfolds. The term "shotgun
wedding" is given new meaning in a show that sees the funny side of an
African tragedy."

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Farmers continue to be offered tiny amounts by the government for their
land and improvements.  These amounts are again being discounted if the
farmer wants the whole amount as a lump sum rather than over a 5-year
period at government interest rates.  Some of the amounts being offered are
being discounted 95% from the true valuations.  Do not compromise your
title deeds and your lifetime's work with accepting such deals!

Come into JAG and get one of our facilitators to assist you in completing a
full JAG Loss Claim Document.  Be in control of your future!  Don't give up!

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Please send any material for publication in the Open Letter Forum to with "For Open Letter Forum" in the subject line.


Letter 1: Ben Freeth

Large Scale Commercial Agriculture - The Way To The Future

In a country where large-scale commercial agriculture has all but been
destroyed for the time being it is interesting to note some of the trends
in agriculture worldwide.  The Guardian newspaper printed an interesting
article reprinted in the Independent on 15 August 2003.

In 1939 Britain had 500,000 farms mostly below 40 hectares.  At that stage
15% of the population was employed in agriculture, but Britain, as it
learnt to its cost during the next 5 years in the 2nd World War couldn't
feed itself.  A policy to reverse this situation was put in place.
Agriculture had to become more efficient.  Never again should Britain be
caught in a position where it did not have enough food for its people. This
situation was addressed:

Within 30 years the number of farms in Britain had almost halved and now
sits around 130,000.  The farms are bigger, more efficient and more
standardised to meet the consumer demands in the supermarkets that sell 70%
of UK retail food.  One percent of the population now owns 70% of the land
in the UK and the country is fed.  (In Zimbabwe we as whites own 18% of the
land and given a free land market this figure would have continued to
decline if the government had put just a small proportion of what it has
put towards the defence forces into purchasing land for a land reform
programme that was in the national interest).

The trend of increasing farm sizes and decreasing the number of farmers in
agriculture is the same across all developed countries.  In the OECD (the
world's 30 richest countries) the number of farms has been declining by
roughly 1,5% a year.  Farmers and their workers now make up only 8% of the
labour force.  The trends of the world's richest countries in agriculture
will continue to be ignored at our peril.

In Zimbabwe we are moving in the opposite direction.  Large-scale efficient
production is, for the time being, essentially a thing of the past; and we
are starving as a result.  The long-term vision for the agriculture of the
future has to be towards well-developed, large-scale units run by private
enterprise.  As it stands at the moment our current land reform programme,
flying in the face of reality, will continue to create the poverty, misery
and chronic economic decline that it already is.  A complete reversal of
these destructive policies with the return to the rule of law will see
Zimbabwe once again the breadbasket of Southern Africa and an economic
driving force to be reckoned with.


Letter 2:

Dear Askia Mohammad
White House Correspondent News

I am fascinated by the response of negro people in North America and Dr
Simbi Mubako's speech at Zimbabwe House on July 29th!

In a country where the negros are the minority and feel that their rights
are being suppressed, they are suggesting that the rights of Zimbabweans be
suppressed too.

Over the past week, more than 300 properties have been designated for take
over by government despite Mr Mugabe's assurance that the Land Reform
Program is now complete. We continue to see marauding gangs of "green
Bombers" roaming the countryside beating up people indiscriminately because
their colour is not black or because they are perceived to be supporting
the wrong party. We continue to see the army being used to go onto people's
property and take it away from the owners because their colour is not black
or they are perceived to be against the government.Despite comments to the
contrary, Mr Mugabe said in his speech on Monday that the people had to
"repent" before he would talk to them and acknowledge that he is president.

Our economic crisis as a result of mismanagement by our government
continues. We are unable to get cash from our banks and pay a premium of
over 20% to "buy" cash on the black market. Our interest rates from the
bank are controlled by government at between 80 and 100% when our rate of
inflation is well in excess of 400%. Our Exchange rate to the us$ is
officially 55:1 for government purchases and 824:1 for "normal" trade. The
parallel rate varies from 3 800:1 to 6 000:1 depending on where you are
sourcing your money. Government had pledged to set aside Billions of
dollars for the purchase of agricultural inputs for the "new" farmers when
they are unable to pay for the ink to print more cash to put into our
economy and they are unable to buy food to feed our starving people.

In the mean time, thousands of real commercial farmers, of all colours, sit
on the sidelines waiting for a conducive environment to go back to their
farms, approach their banks for the finance to grow crops, set up
infrastructure to increase food production, restore the social structures
like schools, clinics, roads, under five's feeding schemes, aids
orphanages, and become involved in the social structure of our society.

At the moment anybody who lifts his head above the parapet without direct
patronage finds his feet removed from under him and his time spent in a
government hotel where he is not fed by the prison services. Quite often he
finds that the measures employed by the police are a little rough in their
handling of prisoners.

In the meantime we ask the people of you believe the
information given to you by the political powers or do you believe the
people of Zimbabwe who are suffering severe human rights abuses?

Yours sincerely
Concerned Zimbabwean

All letters published on the open Letter Forum are the views and opinions
of the submitters, and do not represent the official viewpoint of Justice
for Agriculture.
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JOB OPPORTUNITIES: Updated August 15, 2003

Please send any job opportunities for publication in this newsletter to:
JAG Job Opportunities <>


(ad inserted 06 August 2003)

Employment Vacancy 6th August 2003

Security Manager
Borrowdale Brooke Estate

Contact Brian Moorse, Estate Manager

Tel. 860377
Cell. 091-238-394


(ad inserted 06 August 2003)

A post for a trial balance bookkeeper has become vacant and we are
currently looking. If you know of anyone interested, I'd be grateful if
you'd ask them to contact me on my landlines 481822/873/894/918 or by
email to discuss. Details of the position outlined

We are looking for a Pastel Bookkeeper to run the accounts department for
our small but busy group of companies based in Msasa. The position would
include the following:-

* Cash books
* Trial balance
* Profit & Loss
* Salaries monthly (Belina)
* Wages weekly (Belina)
* Personnel records
* Sales Tax recon. and payment
* PAYE recon. and payment
* Pension
* Creditors recon. and payment
* Debtors (overseeing)
* Filing
* Preparing books for year end

Details of package to be disclosed on application.


(Ad inserted 30 July 2003)



(Ad inserted 21 July 2003)

" Personal Assistant to Managing Director of an Accounting Company.

Very busy position.  Min 5 years experience in similar position, must be
organised and computer literate.  Friendly atmosphere and conveniently
situated offices in Mount Pleasant.  Competitive salary.  Contact Bill
Ferris on 335252. "


(Ad inserted 16 July 2003)

ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICER with some knowledge of photographic and hunting
tourism wanted for Associations.  Varied, interesting work.  Basic computer
skills and common sense main requirements.

Contact Mrs. S. Bown, ZATSO, Box 7241, Harare, with CV, or e-mail to


(Ad inserted 17 June 2003)



DUTIES INCLUDE: Daily Revenue Reconciliation
General Ledger using Pastel
Stock Control
Monthly Financial and Management Reports
Wages using Payplus
Preparing Statutory Returns: Sales Tax, Tourism Levy, Zimdef, Standards

REPLY TO: - Mr Graham Dickens (General Manager)
Telephone: Harare 795555
Fax: Harare 707844
Address: 132 Baines Avenue, Harare


(ad inserted 06 June 2003)

The position of Director of BirdLife Zimbabwe (an NGO) is vacant.  The
organisation is situated in Eastlea and has a staff of about 8 full and
part-time employees.

Interested persons should possess a post-graduate degree (preferably in
biological sciences), have good management skills and have an interest in

Please send CVs either to e-mail address: or post to:
P O Box RV 100,
Runiville, Harare.

D Rushforth (Mrs)
Hon. Secretary
BirdLife Zimbabwe


(ad inserted 13 August 2003)

Farm to lease or sell:

478ha (1180 acres) 55 km from Harare. Listed in Herald 9th May 2003. No
sections, invaders or settlers.

2 spacious homes, 1 with self-contained cottage, pool and granny flat.

Store, workshops, storerooms and facilities for tobacco / paprika / maize /
seed maize.

Tractors, trailers, ploughs, harrows, water carts etc. included.

No equipment for sale individually. No chancers.

Replies by e-mail only please, to


(ad inserted 20 June 2003)

A Small Transport company based just outside of Harare looking for a
mornings only secretary.

Must be a non-smoker.

Call Roxy Ellis on 091 363 987


(ad inserted 15 May 2003)

Tobacco farm managers. Three needed urgently for farms near Harare.  30 -
50 ha crop with irrigation. Great opportunity for a good manager.
Contact Joe Pistorius @ or phone 336722


Positions Vacant

Highly capable farmers required to join a progressive team.
Qualifiers will be men who have the ability to grow within themselves and
to generate growth within a team. Experience and competence in one or many
facets of agriculture will be of interest, in particular irrigation,
horticulture, tobacco and cattle.

Please respond to Carswell Group
Fax: 304415


ad inserted 05 June 2003

I own a 40 Ha smallholding with 1.6 Ha roses (new Meilland varieties) and
some field crops.

The project has an EPZ Licence and is in the process of being developed to
4 Ha of rose production.

The existing manger is, sadly, migrating to South Africa and I am therefore
looking for a suitable replacement within the next 4-6 weeks. Rose growing
experience is strongly preferred but not necessarily a pre-requisite.

A partnership with the right manager would be considered in the medium

Could interested applicants please contact me on 091 61 62 63.


(ad inserted 19 June 2003)

General Manager required to develop and run a cattle/pivot irrigation
Setup/cattle buying teams and abattoir in Masvingo.

Please Contact: Carswell Meats
Telephone number: 308844 339275
Fax number: 304415


ad inserted 18 June 2003

Manager or managing partner for 2ha rose project. Depending on the person,
development of more roses or export vegetables is possible.
Excellent remuneration and an executive house is offered near a town.
Reply to


(ad inserted 14 August 2003)

Busy Supermarket and Workshop have vacancies for husband and wife to assist
in day to day running.  Wife to assist with the Supermarket and Husband to
take over the running of workshop.  Situation - Beitbridge.  Please
contact Rob Elliott on 023 407998 for details or use e-mail address:


(ad inserted 26 July 2003)

Caretaker - Manager required for Bulawayo Power Boat Club based at Lower
Incema Dam approx 65km's from Bulawayo on the Johannesburg Road. Position
requires a person who can supervise labour, attend to maintenance of water
reticulation and electrical supply, run and man the club bar primarily over
weekends.  The position comes with accommodation and services. Interested
parties to contact the following numbers for further details: -

R Jardin on 09880181
R Robinson on 023460817


(ad inserted 03 June 2003)

URGENT - CHIEF INSTRUCTOR required at Chimanimani Zimbabwe.
Contact: The Director, Guy Carey, for details on Chimanimani (026) 2935/6
Fax: (026) 2937
P.O. Box 57, Chimanimani


(ad inserted 06 August 2003)

Position Vacant
A large company in the eastern districts seeks to fill the post of Estate
Manager on the following general terms. Appointment may be subject to a
satisfactory report from an Industrial Psychologist.

Duties: To take control of the estate, reporting to the overall
agricultural manager, being responsible for field supervision, for office
control and planning, and for factory production. These duties will entail
learning and enforcing all present practices to maintain and improve
standards of production and quality. Later, we would expect initiatives to
lead this enterprise to even greater heights.

This post has good promotion prospects for the right person, as the
incumbent gains experience and responsibilities. These duties require a
high level of commitment and long hours of work at busy times. The Company
works a 6-day week.

Qualifications: A BSc in Agriculture or Horticulture; plus at least 8 years
of relevant experience, recently at a senior management level; Capable of
commanding a large workforce through the department managers and with
assistance from the service departments; Aged between 32 and 45 years. A
Diploma plus excellent track record may be considered, but demonstrable
technical and managerial expertise is essential.

o Subsidised housing with lights and water, and 2 gardeners;
o A double-cab vehicle with free fuel within reason; may qualify for the
car purchase scheme after the probation period.
o Company share schemes allow participation in the company's fortunes.
o Annual Commission on performance against targets of production, quality,
profitability, and tasks.
o Competitive Salary, commensurate with qualifications and experience.
o Pension Scheme. Employee contribution is 8%. Must meet medical standards
in this respect.
o Schooling: assistance with school fees for up to four children.
o Company pays 75% of CIMAS monthly rates on any scheme level.
o Leave: 36 calendar days; plus 1 day per month `occasional' leave.

Appointment would be on probation for 4 months, during which one month's
notice applies. The company is looking for a long-term commitment by a
professional seeking a career.
Suitable candidates should submit CVs marked for attention "The Director",


(ad inserted 12 July 2003)

A vacancy exists for 2 teachers - preferably a couple at Mvurachena Primary
School in Chipinge from next term. This is a delightful little school with
a great track record in the education and sporting field. On campus
accommodation would be available.

For more information please contact the headmistress on


(ad inserted 04 July 2003)

scheme and there are further plans to produce cash crops.  Knowledge of
coffee would be an advantage.  Good Salary with normal farm perks to the
right person, to start as soon as possible.  Please reply to "The
Advertiser", 31 Pendennis Road, Mount Pleasant, Harare or or phone 011402607


(Ad inserted 15 July 2003)

Farmsitter wanted for 8th Aug - 4th Sep
Farmer/farm family wanted to caretake house and poultry setup on Darwendale
Dam for the August school holidays.  Renumeration offered.  Email - phone 011 218 770


(ad inserted 20 June 2003)

Farm Manager wanted on a farm in Kwe Kwe.  Please phone 011 407097 or 055


(Ad inserted 03 July 2003)

Lowveld sugar farm requires single man or retired couple to farmsit and /or
manage. To start 1 Sept. Contact Mrs Edwards in Harare on 011 609 960 or
evenings on 498249 for interview ASAP.



(ad inserted 13 August 2003)


Barwick School is situated in the peaceful countryside of Mutoroshanga
about 100km north of Harare. The school itself faces the beautiful hills of
the Great Dyke and surrounded by the Caeser mining village and Barwick
farming community.

We require the services of a matron, as of the Third Term preferably
someone who has nursing experience and who has a lot of drive, to look
after the Grade 5----7 and maintain law and order in the top hostels.
Please contact the Headmaster on phone no:066-8-285/091345352 or


(ad inserted 02 July 2003)

We have an immediate opening for a Citrus Farm Manager in the Nkwaline
Valley, Natal (Empangeni area) RSA.

We seek to recruit a dynamic person for our Citrus Production including
general Estate matters.

The position will report to the Managing Director of the Company and will
be part of the senior management team.

The ideal candidate should be a team player with good interpersonal
relationship skills who is able to make decisions and get on with the
day-to-day business of farming. The candidate should also have the ability
to be allowed to reside and work in RSA.

The varieties of citrus produced on the farm are Marsh and Texas Star Ruby
Grapefruit and Valencia oranges. It would be preferable to have citrus
experience but not absolutely necessary, however a minimum of five years
farm management essential.

Interested parties please contact Shaun Dearlove so that we can discuss in
depth the position, the responsibilities and the package being advertised
(supply a contact telephone number please).

Kindly send your CV and a list of references, to
the following email address;
Marked for the attention of Shaun Dearlove.


(ad inserted 19 June 2003)

We are a well-established Land Survey practice with offices in Durban and
Kokstad, South Africa. We are presently seeking an experienced Land
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Applicants may contact Mark Turnbull on 031-2662278 or email on


(ad inserted 23 May 2003)

PLEASE CONTACT: DEREK SHIRLEY ON +27-83-228-1414 OR +263 11- 600-155


(ad inserted 12 May 2003)

If you are interested I have an enquiry for someone to supervise setting-up
of following in Angola:

1) PIG FARMS. I can connect you with good contacts.

Most of the products will be required for the American communities involved
with oilrigs etc, so I imagine a fairly high quality wanted. I don't have
all the info/specs yet, just establishment of interest. Also no idea where
in Angola, (but assume close to Luanda), or size of outfits, money
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Let me know if you are interested. Email:



Cattle farming business in Ghanzi District, Northwest Botswana for sale.
(The owners moving for kids schooling.) Comprises 2 well-developed freehold
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accommodation, workshops and storerooms etc, etc Walk-in / walk-out deal
BWP4 500 000-00 (Approx US$ 775 000-00). All serious offers will be
Contact Mike on (267) 72290622 or e-mail


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As a horticulture consultant in Kenya I know of some jobs coming up which
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staff, in particular senior (project no. 2) project manager, book
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Contact D H Gray


(ad inserted 03 July 2003)

A commercial Enterprise in Malawi is looking for the services of General
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A successful applicant must have:
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3) Strong organizational and administration skills.
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5) Formal qualifications essential.

Please contact the managing director on



Tobacco managers wanted in Malawi: 2003/4 seasons 100ha Flue cured 100ha
Maize African tobacco managers of Malawian extraction wanting to relocate
with costs paid and paper work facilities. Malawian Passport Holders will
obviously be given preference. Respond to JAG's email address and we will


(ad inserted 06 July 2003)

Shareholder/s sought for farming venture. Export fresh produce production
and potential for other cropping activities.
· 500ha, 180ha cleared.
· Excellent water supply
· Uniform Class 1 soils throughout
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Tel: 091 602815


(ad inserted 27 May 2003)

My sister and her husband live in Nigeria and a gentleman called John
Coumantaris who owns a few farms and ships there and who has his base in
New York, has asked my family to advertise in Zimbabwe for a farm manager
to run his farm in Kaduna, North Nigeria, doing mixed farming.

His E Mail address is:


(ad inserted 06 June 2003)


Our Company is one of Tanzania's larger Coffee Producing Companies located
in Arusha, Tanzania. We currently farm more than 500 HA of mature Arabica

We seek to recruit a dynamic person for our Coffee Production including
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(ad inserted 05 July 2003)

Assistant Manager required for an 80-hectare tobacco project 70 km north of
Lusaka. Position available immediately.
Please contact Mr Mike Goodwin on +260 95 702 718 (cell) or +260 1 611 222
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(ad inserted 27 May 2003)

Mkushi, Zambia: position available for assistant manager for 160 ha
tobacco, 400 ha commercial Maize. Must have Gwebi or Blackfordby diploma or
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age. Please reply: 04 497924 or 091 223 626 or 011 208 089 or e-mail: or write to The advertiser, Box 241, Mvurwi.


(ad inserted 08 August 2003)

For Attn of Mr Richard Tigner

Dear Mr Tigner,

I am contacting you in response to information given to me, and subsequent
to a conversation with Mr John Hanley of the University of Exeter.

We understand that you have a dairy scheme for which you are looking for
farmers who may wish to participate, and that there have been various trips
to Europe to recruit farmers to become engaged in the project.

I understand also that you have been looking for people with the funds to
invest in the opportunity as well.

You may also be aware that there is a particularly difficult situation in
Zimbabwe (Southern Africa) where the Govt of the day has forced 85% of the
former farmers off their land and as a result has all but destroyed the
farming industry.

As a charity, the Zimbabwe Agricultural Welfare Trust is well connected
with many of those deposed farmers, and it may well be that some may be
interested in opportunities you may offer. Some may have funds they could
invest, but others would be looking for any kind of opportunity.

Please would you get back to me with any details you may have that could be
of some interest to these farmers.

I am copying this email to the Justice for Agriculture Team in Zimbabwe and
I would ask that when you reply to me, you copy your reply to them.

Thank you for your help.
Yours aye,

James Maberly
Chairman, Zimbabwe Agricultural Welfare Trust
Dear Mr Maberly,

I am a farm management specialist with Iowa State University, a land grant
university established in the mid-1800's.  Iowa is an important part of the
US dairy industry, producing just under 3% of the total US milk, number 9
in total milk processed and number 12 in milk produced per cow.

New dairy farmers would find available feed and dairy production
facilities.  Some local crop farmers have also indicated they are ready to
sell land for construction of a dairy facility, sell the dairy producer
feed and use the manure produced on the dairy for crop production.  We have
begun working with some Dutch farmers in moving to the US since they have
limited opportunities there, but for different reasons.

The most difficult part of the process of developing a dairy here is the
immigration process; at this time an exemption has been applied for to the
US government's immigration service that may make immigration easier.
There are some financial investment requirements for one visa type that may
be eased.  There is another visa type that does not put the immigrant on a
citizenship track.  An application for citizenship could take place at some
other time however.

It is possible that we may assist the farmers you are in contact with, but
additional information about there needs, financial resources, skills and
goals than I currently have.  Please respond to this email at your
convenience.  Thank you.


(ad inserted 28 July 2003)

Nurse Relocation and Recruitment Services of Australia is wishing to
discuss nursing opportunites in Regional Australia. Regional communities
are welcoming and supportive of overseas nurses. We have several hospital
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retraining/upgrading opportunites available if you have not nursed for a
while. Please contact the Director, Margaret Gaussen at or phone/fax +61 3 55 743 234


For the latest listings of accommodation available for farmers, contact (updated 15 August 2003)

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Mail and Guardian

MDC marches to a different beat

      Angus Shaw | Harare

      16 August 2003 10:13

The Zimbabwean opposition said on Friday it would not join a government of
national unity with President Robert Mugabe's ruling party, widening the
rift on possible negotiations between the parties to end Zimbabwe's
political and economic chaos.

Paul Themba Nyathi, the chief spokesperson for the opposition Movement for
Democratic Change, described suggestions of a unity government with Mugabe's
Zanu-PF party as a gimmick designed to demoralise opposition supporters.

"What we seek from dialogue is to find a route toward the restoration of
democracy in the country. Anyone who thinks that the MDC seeks unity with
Zanu-PF is engaged in delusional politics," said Nyathi.

"If Zanu-PF and Mugabe think that the MDC seeks to march alongside them,
they are gravely mistaken."

He was responding to allegations printed on a pamphlet that the opposition
was "moving toward a unity government" in its preparations for new talks
with Mugabe's party. Nyathi said he believed pamphlet came from the ruling

He accused Mugabe's party of "seeking to redeem their image" by promoting
the idea of a coalition government.

Earlier this week, Mugabe himself dashed hopes of a compromise with the
opposition, seen as the only hope of dragging the country out of economic
and political chaos.

He called on his opponents to "repent and re-orientate themselves" before
national political dialogue could resume, saying "there cannot be unity with
enemies of the people."

South African President Thabo Mbeki and Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo
have tried bringing the two parties to the negotiation table for more than a

Talks failed after the opposition refused to recognise Mugabe's re-election
for another six-year term last year. The MDC is challenging the results in
court, claiming the vote was marred by rigging and intimidation by ruling
party militants.

These allegations also saw Zimbabwe suspended from the Commonwealth.

Australian Prime Minister John Howard on Friday branded Mugabe an "unelected
despot" and said his nation should not be readmitted to the decision-making
councils of Britain and its former colonies.

Howard was speaking on the sidelines of a Pacific leaders' meeting in

Zimbabwe is suffering its worst economic crisis since independence in 1980,
with official inflation at 370%. Black market trading in scarce food and
gasoline puts inflation closer to 700%.

Local currency shortages are blamed on the out-of-control inflation, the
central bank's inability to print money quickly enough and the hoarding of
cash amid uncertainty in the crumbling economy.

The deepening economic crisis is blamed partly on the state program that
seized thousands of commercial farms from the white minority for
redistribution to black settlers. The programme is also blamed for greatly
exacerbating a hunger crisis that threatens nearly half of the population.

The UN food agency estimates about 3,3-million Zimbabweans are currently in
urgent need of food aid. Mass starvation last year was only avoided by
international food aid. - Sapa-AP

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Gadhafi is called root of instability all across Africa

Free-spending leader backs pariahs

Douglas Farah
Washington Post
Aug. 16, 2003 12:00 AM

Despite the efforts of Col. Moammar Gadhafi to gain international
legitimacy, the Libyan leader remains active in conflicts across Africa,
usually on the side of leaders who are pariahs to the world.

Gadhafi's adventures are not the same as his government's support for
international terrorist organizations, especially those that directly
threaten the United States. But U.S. and European officials say his use of
his country's oil wealth to project influence around the African continent
is irksome and dangerous.

"If it were anywhere but Africa where he was meddling, we would scream
bloody murder," said a former U.S. official who dealt with Libya. "Because
it's Africa, we tend to shrug and let it go."

Even as the Bush administration welcomed Libya's statement Friday accepting
responsibility for the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Scotland in 1988, a
senior U.S. official said there continues to be "serious concerns" about
Gadhafi's African designs. The official cited Chad, Zimbabwe, Liberia and
Sierra Leone as being of particular concern.

"Gadhafi's money gives him entry into many places, and he seems happy to
spend it to gain influence," a U.N. official said. "If you look at the worst
situations in Africa, you can almost always find Gadhafi's hand."

He assisted President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe in July 2001 when Mugabe was
facing international sanctions over political violence, a tough re-election
battle and crippling fuel shortages. Gadhafi not only donated $1 million to
Mugabe's campaign but agreed to barter a deal that gave Zimbabwe $360
million a year in oil.

Twice in 2001, Gadhafi rushed hundreds of troops, along with dozens of
helicopters and tanks, to the Central African Republic to back the embattled
government of then-President Ange-Felix Patasse. Hundreds of Libyan troops
remained in the impoverished country until the end of 2001, providing
security to Patasse. Patasse was ousted in March in a military coup.

For years, Gadhafi was a supplier of weapons to the brutal Revolutionary
United Front rebels in Sierra Leone and to former President Charles Taylor's
rogue government in Liberia. Taylor was long a Gadhafi protege. When Taylor,
under indictment by a U.N.-backed court for crimes against humanity, was
facing military disaster this month, Gadhafi flew in an airplane load of
weapons and ammunition. The cargo was intercepted, and Taylor was forced
into exile Monday.

In the 1980s, Gadhafi trained scores of African revolutionary leaders,
including those whose names are synonymous with brutality and corruption:
Taylor of Liberia, Foday Sankoh of Sierra Leone, Laurent Kabila in the
Democratic Republic of Congo, Idriss Deby of Chad, and Blaise Compaore of
Burkina Faso. Libyan training camps "became the Harvard and Yale of a whole
generation of African revolutionaries," Stephen Ellis wrote in his book, The
Mask of Anarchy: The Destruction of Liberia and the Religious Dimension of
an African Civil War.

Now, Gadhafi's dream seems to have turned away from revolution. His longtime
interest in Africa has grown since the late 1990s, when the Libyan leader
felt betrayed and abandoned by the Arab world, diplomats and analysts have
said. The turning point was in 1997, when Arab states refused to ignore U.N.
sanctions against his government, while many Africans did, as Gadhafi

His goal is to create a single non-Arab Africa, with no internal borders and
one army, legislature, judicial system and currency. His proposed capital of
the new nation is Tripoli. His mantra, repeated at pan-African conferences
and state visits, is "Africa for Africans. This land is ours. We are the
masters of our continent."

To further his dream, Gadhafi oversaw the transformation of the Organization
of African Unity into its successor, the African Union, which is supposed to
work toward uniting the continent.

To ensure that Libya could get the votes it needed to move its agenda
forward, Gadhafi paid debts and dues of at least 15 nations, totaling
millions of dollars, diplomats have said. In a sign of the sway Gadhafi
holds, 42 heads of state, out of the 53 member countries, showed up at the
inaugural conference in Libya in 1999.

In exchange for his largesse he often extracts deals that go far beyond
simply voting in international bodies.

Shortly after ensuring the survival of the Patasse's government, Libya and
the Central African Republic signed a deal giving Libya a 99-year lease to
exploit all of that country's natural resources.

In Zimbabwe, Gadhafi took ownership of at least 20 luxurious properties
after rescuing Mugabe, as well as getting a stake in some of the few viable
state enterprises still operating, according to diplomats and published

"He may be mad, but he is not crazy," one U.S. government official said.
"Nobody in Africa likes him, but everyone is afraid (to anger him). And he
has an open checkbook when you need it. Money talks."

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Daily News

      ‘Unelected despot’

        AUSTRALIAN Prime Minister John Howard yesterday branded President
Robert Mugabe an "unelected despot", and said Zimbabwe should not be
re-admitted to the Commonwealth.

      Zimbabwe was kicked out of all decision-making councils of the group
that comprises Britain and mainly its former colonies after

      Mugabe’s regime was accused of intimidation and vote-rigging in the
March 2002 presidential elections.

      Speaking on the sidelines of a Pacific leaders’ meeting in Auckland,
New Zealand, Howard said unless Zimbabwe moves back towards democratic rule,
it "should definitely remain suspended".

      "There’s no sign that Zimbabwe’s position is altering," he added.

      "Zimbabwe as a nation continues to suffer the ruin of a country that
has been in the hands of an unelected despot."

      Howard also said Mugabe should be barred from the next Commonwealth
meeting, scheduled for December in Nigeria’s capital Abuja.

      "I don’t think it would be helpful for the Commonwealth if Mr Mugabe
were to come to Abuja," he said.

      However, South African President Thabo Mbeki’s spokesman Bheki Khumalo
told the Daily News yesterday that Zimbabwe’s re-admission into the
Commonwealth would be decided by consensus at a summit of the group in Abuja
in December this year.

      Khumalo said by phone from Pretoria: "One country cannot determine the
fate of Zimbabwe. The issue of Zimbabwe’s re-admission will be determined by
consensus at the Commonwealth summit in Nigeria."

      Signalling widening rifts within the three-member special committee
comprising South Africa, Nigeria and Australia that suspended Zimbabwe from
the Commonwealth last

      year, Khumalo criticised Howard saying the Australian leader’s stance
would not help resolve the Zimbabwe issue.

      He said: "This increasing rhetoric by Prime Minister Howard ahead of
the summit will not help matters."

      South Africa is mobilising African support for Zimbabwe’s re-admission
into the Commonwealth, which brings together some of the world’s richest and
poorest nations.

      Pretoria is also pushing Mugabe and his ruling ZANU PF party to resume
dialogue with the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) to
strengthen its case for Harare’s re-admission in Abuja.

      But an initiative to revive dialogue between Zimbabwe’s biggest
parties led by local church leaders appears to be stumbling because ZANU PF
is undecided on whether to endorse the initiative, according to party

      Although both Mugabe and MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai promised the
leaders of the Zimbabwe Council of Churches, Evangelical Fellowship of
Zimbabwe and the Zimbabwe Catholic Bishops’ Conference that they were
committed to resumption of dialogue, ZANU PF is still to present its
position paper to the three-member church team.

      The MDC, which this week warned it had not abandoned mass action to
force Mugabe to negotiate, has already submitted its position paper.

      ZANU PF chairman and Special Affairs Minister in Mugabe’s office John
Nkomo yesterday dismissed Howard’s criticism of the Zimbabwean leader,
saying Canberra should keep its hands off the southern African nation.

      Nkomo said: "Howard is an irrelevant person on all issues pertaining
to Zimbabwe. He is not qualified to speak on behalf of Zimbabweans where
Zimbabweans themselves have decided that Mugabe was their choice."

      Staff Reporter/AP

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Daily News

      Police disperse striking guards

        POLICE yesterday fired tear-gas to disperse striking security guards
who had besieged their company, to force management to address their demand
for higher wages.

      The 200-odd workers of the privately-owned Safeguard security company
went on strike, demanding a minimum monthly salary of $72 380 from the
current $47 000, while the security company’s management is offering the
workers a minimum of $62 660.

      The striking workers gathered at the company’s headquarters in the
Graniteside industrial area and ordered office employees, including the
management to vacate their offices.

      "It was after we had ordered everyone out of the offices that the
management decided to call in the riot police who started beating everyone
and also used tear-gas to disperse the workers," one of the guards said.

      A director at Safeguard, Vanswell Masengu, said he was not able to
comment on the issue as he was still being briefed on what had taken place

      "I cannot comment on what happened as I was out of the office when the
strike started and at the moment I am being briefed on what exactly took
place," Masengu told the Daily News.

      It is alleged that four of the workers who included a female guard had
to be treated of

      injuries allegedly after being beaten up by the police.

      After dispersing, some of the guards later moved around the industrial
sites and the city centre ordering other guards from their company manning
business premises to abandon their posts.

      One departmental store in Harare was forced to call in a new security
company to man the premises after all Safeguard security workers left to
join the strike.

      "Our management has shown that it is unwilling to co-operate with us
and as a result we have resolved to stay at home until our issue is resolved
than to meet at the company’s premises as the riot police will be called in
again and beat us," a safeguard security worker told the Daily News.

      Staff Reporter

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Daily News

      A case for an Independent Electoral Commission

        REPORTS by the opposition Movement for Democratic Change party that
it has unearthed 6 000 phantom voters in Gweru city once again brings to the
fore the need for an Independent Electoral Commission to run elections in

      According to the opposition party, an audit it carried out of voters’
rolls for Gweru supplied by the Registrar General (RG)’s Office revealed
thousands of people listed to vote in council elections in the city but who
did not reside in the municipality.

      Other names were listed but there were no addresses to show whether
they lived in Gweru or even in Zimbabwe in the first place.

      And God knows how many more thousands of ghost voters will turn up at
the polls on 30 and 31 August in Gweru and in other municipalities to tilt
the scales not in favour of the people’s choice, but in favour of the
powerful and well connected.

      The lame excuse given by that useless body called the Electoral
Supervisory Commission (ESC) – that the listing of voters’ names in the
wrong wards or against the wrong addresses was because of the continuous
movement of people from one area to another – only goes to show exactly why
Zimbabwe’s electoral machine needs a complete overhaul.

      ESC spokesman Thomas Bvuma said: "Some people may have been registered
a long time ago and people are moving to new areas like (land) resettlement

      "Those are factors which should be considered by people going through
the voters’ rolls. In fact, people are moving to new residential areas
without effecting transfers on the voters’ roll with the RG’s Office. That’s
a general problem that exists."

      But who said voters should not change homes once they are registered
in a particular area?

      Does it not occur to Bvuma and the Registrar General, Tobaiwa Mudede,
that the voters’ rolls need to be updated – and updated by Mudede’s office
and not by voters – on a literally continuous basis?

      Is it any wonder then, that Zimbabwe’s voters’ rolls are in shambles
and elections are always chaotic if the best that those in charge of
preparing and maintaining the rolls can do is to sit in their offices
waiting for voters to come forward and update the register?

      The validity of any election begins with a clean and accurate voters’
roll, something which Bvuma and Mudede should be aware of.

      Part of the reason why President Robert Mugabe’s re-election last year
is being contested is because of the anomalies in the voters’ register used
in that election.

      But clearly it would be futile to expect Mudede or Bvuma, some would
say the entire government, to appreciate the importance of a proper voters’
roll in an election.

      What Zimbabwe needs is an independent authority charged with
registering voters in the country and maintaining a proper roll of those

      The current flawed Electoral Act should be literally thrown away and
replaced with fair and democratic legislation empowering the independent
electoral authority or commission to run transparent and truly democratic

      Without these changes to ensure that Zimbabweans can freely choose who
and who should not lead them, this country is doomed.

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Daily News

      No use negotiating with Mugabe now

        There is no doubt at the back of my mind that Robert Mugabe will not
leave office voluntarily. His Heroes’ Day speech clearly shows that his
mindset is like that of former Yugoslav dictator Slobodan Milosevic.

      Even after he was deposed, Milosevic still demanded a role in Vojisluv
Kostunica’s government.

      No dictator has ever relinquished power voluntarily.

      Therefore, when Mugabe calls for the opposition to "repent" and "walk
like us, talk like us and dream like us", this is a clear indication that he
is himself still dreaming that he has many more years left to continue
ruining the country.

      I say no, no no. It is high time we stopped talking about negotiating
with him and took decisive action against this man and his group of looting

      Jennings Rukani


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Daily News

      Mugabe has undone most of his heroic legacy

        THIS year’s Heroes’ holiday was memorable for all the wrong reasons.
We are in our fourth year of the fuel crisis, with no end in sight to it at
all. The President and his ministers have their guaranteed supply of cheap
fuel, but virtually no one else does.

      At a time many people look forward to visiting relatives in far-flung
parts of the country, this year a record number of Zimbabweans couldn’t.
This was not only because of the fuel problem and the expense of travelling,
but because for the third month, they could not withdraw enough of their own
money from the banks because there is a shortage of currency.

      In our 23rd year of independence, most of the people we are given as
examples of heroes by the Mugabe government have long been dead, and
virtually all the acts of heroism we are reminded of took place before 1980.

      Isn’t it strange that there are so few people in the ruling
establishment who are considered to have been heroic since the attainment of

      While acts of heroism may be most noticeable during times of hardship,
such as during a war, the opportunities for heroic behaviour present
themselves all the time. What changes from time to time are what actions are
considered to be heroic.

      Most people would certainly grant Robert Mugabe credit for his
unflinching pursuit of the goal of majority rule in the liberation war era.
Whatever dirty deeds it is alleged he committed against some of his comrades
will not take away the fact that he was a principled, uncompromising fighter
for independence.

      His pre-independence heroism is all the more reason his
post-independence record, particularly in the last several years, has been
so disgraceful.

      Mugabe is a unique case of someone who scaled the heights of heroism,
only to then work very hard to destroy his own heroic legacy. A ruler who
embodies the commonly understood traits of "heroism" cannot look around
Zimbabwe today and feel proud to be presiding over the country as it is.

      If reclaiming land from a white minority was a heroic act, it needed
to be done in a way that improved the living conditions of the majority
blacks on whose behalf it was being taken. Yet, it is those same blacks
whose lives and prospects have deteriorated, at the expense of a small
number of Mugabe’s cronies. All the pointers suggest that life will only get
worse in the next few years for the millions of Zimbabweans it is claimed
the "Third Chimurenga" was executed on behalf of.

      How has Mugabe undone much of his own once heroic legacy? He has been
as callous and cruel towards his own people as the colonialists were.

      None of those who argue that the whites were/are an arrogant and
irredeemably racist group has explained why "teaching them a lesson" has
meant the rape, torture, dispossession and killing of so many blacks. Where
is the heroism in causing more suffering among the people you claim to be
acting on behalf of than on the "enemy"?

      If many of our freedom fighters gave us inspiring examples of a
selfless heroism in the sacrifices they made to bring about majority rule,
most of our present rulers are splendid examples of anti-heroism.

      One quality that is suggested by the word "hero" is to stand for a
principle despite all the costs to oneself. Mugabe had to endure many years
of imprisonment for his uncompromising stance in favour of dignity and
self-rule for Africans. Yet it is that same Mugabe who looks for all manner
of tactics to limit the freedom of the people he helped liberate to speak,
gather and demonstrate as they wish.

      We now have ministers like Jonathan Moyo, a man who had to repudiate
his whole life’s work to become a member of the Mugabe regime, making laws
limiting the liberties of Zimbabweans.

      And it says a lot about how far ZANU PF has fallen from its early
heroic days that it felt quite comfortable accepting that its former most
eloquent critic could become its principal spokesman. Two parties that once
exemplified courage and principle are now united by their common harlotry.

      Moyo is the most contemptible minister in Mugabe’s regime, not just
because of his undignified, unministerial demeanour. His whole life suggests
that he does not stand for anything, but will blow with the wind, taking any
position he considers to be to his benefit at any given time, the exact
opposite of what a principled hero would do.

      So, among the many things we have learned about heroism is the fact
that it is not a permanent condition. Those who were heroes yesterday can
easily become cowards, prostitutes and villains tomorrow.

      This is why ZANU PF and the government can only recycle the heroic
acts of the dead. All those who were once heroes in the liberation struggle
and are still alive and part of the ruling establishment have given up their
heroism to greed, cowardice, hero-worship and other anti-heroic vices.

      Many of those who were once willing to risk their very lives for
majority rule are now inexplicably afraid to mention how the revolution has
been betrayed by its own authors.

      Those who were once courageous enough to go into battle, knowing very
well they might never experience the majority rule for which they were
willing to risk their lives, can now be bought off and silenced by being
given a luxury car, house or a Cabinet portfolio.

      That is all it takes many of the heroes of yesterday to renounce their
heroic ideals today. One quality of a hero is to think and act beyond one’s
own immediate needs. People like Mugabe, Joshua Nkomo, Herbert Chitepo and
many other liberation era icons were privileged in being educated far beyond
the level that was available to most Africans. They could have done
relatively well for themselves materially by working for the colonial
system. Yet they chose to forfeit personal comfort and gain for a higher,
communal ideal.

      Now the top echelons of our government are chockful of small-minded
men and women who cannot think beyond their next corrupt deal. Some of our
most visible and prominent ministers are common thieves on a big scale –
their thievery known to both the President and the general public.
Well-known crooks have the power and authority to talk about "the rule of
law, according to our laws".

      From the dizzy heights of heroism people like Mugabe and many others
once showed us it is possible to aspire and rise to, we have sunk to the low
level of having a person of the calibre of Patrick Chinamasa as the minister
of "justice".

      By his statements and actions, this is a man who has proven to be the
very antithesis of the lofty ideals of justice and heroism. A person of his
level cannot seem to understand that once having been appointed by the
President, one’s loyalty should be more to the nation than to whichever
individual occupies the President’s chair.

      Hence, you find non-elected appointees like Chinamasa and Moyo
tripping over themselves to prove how "radical" they are to the President
who appointed them, far more than they are concerned about leaving a legacy
of heroism for the good of the nation in their respective portfolios.

      Whereas our pre-independence heroes could be motivated by the dream of
a Zimbabwe they knew they might never get to see, many of our prostitute
ministers cannot think beyond the size of the house and swimming pool they
have seized from some white farmer. This is about as high as they dare to
think and imagine. You cannot expect any heroism from such harlots.

      We have corrupted and limited the concept of heroism by making it a
quality that is conferred on a dead prominent individual, usually a
politician allied to the ruling party. We all have the capacity for heroism
in the many roles we play in life. If we just look to people like Mugabe and
his ministers for heroic qualities, we are sure to become cynical and
disappointed because they no longer represent the best that we are capable
of as a nation.

      While Mugabe incompetently rules over us with his corrupt ministers
and other aides, many Zimbabweans are quietly, heroically overcoming the
many difficulties they have bequeathed us. We are learning survival tactics
and strengths we never knew we had as we struggle to make ends meet in the
Zimbabwe Mugabe and company are leaving us. For instance, many old people
are heroically taking care of their grandchildren, when they should be
slowing down and resting, because of the way AIDS is killing many of us.

      As we lament the cynicism exemplified by Mugabe and his regime, there
are many examples of quiet heroism around us if we could only make the
effort to spot them. The low standard set by our politicians does not need
to be the yardstick by which we judge the prevalence of heroism among us.

      Despite the incompetent, brutal and uncaring way we are ruled by
Mugabe and company, there is enough of a reservoir of unheralded heroism in
Zimbabwe to enable this country to reach its potential once he and his
ruinous, anti-heroic regime have been deservedly kicked out of power.

      By Chido Makunike
     Chido Makunike is a social and political commentator

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