"The Zimbabwe Situation" news page
COMMERCIAL FARMERS' UNION
FARM INVASIONS UPDATE
MONDAY 28 AUGUST 2000
continue to build huts on several farms. Police are investigating a report of
labour being assaulted by war vet supporters cutting down trees on Nyachura
Two war vets
were arrested on Sunday, in connection with a missing bull from Von Abo Estates.
The bull had been hamstrung and was dead when found, which enabled an ambush to
be set up leading to the arrest.
Marondera - About 100 invaders were
waiting on the Buckles' farm with a newspaper for a VIP who did not arrive. They
then dispersed and one of them went on to Larkhill, cut down 12 gum trees and
built a structure.
Marondera North - The foreman on Glenisla was
assaulted on Friday. The police could not find the assailant. It appears that he
then burnt down his own house and blamed it on some of the farm
Beatrice/Harare South - Stoneridge/Blackfordby:
Occupiers that were evicted from Stoneridge and Blackfordby are back again, some
with their belongings. They have been peaceful so far. On Donattar the situation continues with 30 occupiers and 20
structures. The brickmakers are still there and have built 9 houses to roof
level on next season's tobacco land. There
is still ongoing cutting of firewood and gum poles in the
- Occupiers stopped ridging on Chakadenga today.
Enterprise/Bromley/Ruwa - Unable to
Macheke/Virginia - The Section 8 Orders
served on Castledene Pines and Castledene Pines Extension were declared null and
void in the High Court. Police reacted to reports of
logs across the Second Chapter road on Castledene Pines. Ridging is continuing.
On Nyador and Riverlea,
hut building and tree cutting were attended to by the Police. A police detail was collected to investigate tree cutting
on Mafuti, but no arrests were made. ZBC footage
showed the Governor resettling people on Fairview. This footage was taken on 21 August.
War vet Master removed cords of fire wood
from Sangwe Farm with tractor and trailer. On Bunya Farm one cow was
slaughtered in the vicinity of a well-used poachers' camp. Axes, spears and
some clothes were found at the site. Dumalan Farm has been occupied, and there
is wood cutting, house building, and cattle have been moved
MASHONALAND WEST SOUTH
Chegutu - On Damvuri war vets are
burning down large mopanie trees and cutting trees. Concession Hill there is hut
building and tree cutting taking place whilst the owner is on holiday.
Kadoma - On Milverton Estates some arrests were made on
Saturday and as a result some people have moved off.
Balwearie has been occupied by 20-30 people. Chakari MIC has asked PGHQ if they
can remove these people.
Masvingo East and
Central - More people are moving onto Bon Domi Farm. On Fomax wire has
been stolen, trees are being cut and Mucheke township is being supplied with
Chiredzi - No
- There are 4 war vets on Denholm cutting trees and erecting shelters. Occupiers stole a roll of
barbed wire from the farmer's shed on Thornhill Farm. Armed poaching was
reported on Chatsworth Farm, and war vets have established vegetable gardens.
Scotch carts are entering Noeldale Farm through holes made in the fence. Trees
are being cut and gates being left open.
- On Fairange Ranch last week a 55 inch kudu was poached last week. Game Scouts
apprehended the poacher, who tried to attack them. They subsequently disciplined
the poacher. On Masapas Ranch international clients shot a leopard last week
which had a snare around it's waist. Land clearing continues on Levanga Ranch.
There are continued veld fires on Mkwasine Ranch.
Police in Chiredzi indicate that
they have not yet received any orders to react, and that they are not permitted
to be spontaneous.
Mwenezi - No
change. The Governor has indicated that a total of 32 farms will be designated
in the area. He also indicated that the police will not move war vets off the
properties and said that people from Gutu will be resettled in Mwenezi.
Middle Save - The Acting DA and his team visited
Middle Save farms to ascertain whether they were suitable for
Odzi - On Alma Farm there have been multiple army vehicles
resettling people onto the farm since Monday 21 August. Ox-drawn ploughs have
been brought onto the farm, Agritex officers have demarcated land, cattle have
been moved onto the farm. War vets are hunting openly with their dogs and have
interfered with farming operations. They have pegged on the prepared lands for
the irrigated crops. All the internal fences have been removed, and along the
southern border the entire game fence has been stolen, together with the treated
poles. This will be reported to the police and action insisted upon. This
property has received a Section 8 Order and Court papers have been served.
still a huge amount of wood being chopped, and grass being cut.
Nothing to report.
Gweru East - Wildebeest Lot 4 has been
reoccupied and building is ongoing. Police say they have been
Shurugwi - On Mont d'Or, Hidden Treasure,
Riversdale and Impaluli logs and trees were put across the roads. Gates have
been opened and cattle are straying. Four goats and two kids have been stolen.
On Beacon Kop the workshop was broken into and between $30 000 and $50 000 worth
of equipment stolen.
be a radio phone-in tonight (29 August) on ZBC Radio 1 at 6:30 pm. The subject
will be the restoration of Law and Order In Zimbabwe. Panellists will be Prof.
Jonathan Moyo, Minister of Information, and John Nkomo, Minister of Home
Affairs. Contributions from members of the public are invited. Express your
Plot to replace Mbeki? -
Govt still hasn't released
MDC funds - DNews
15 000 families displaced -
20 000 AIDS orphans on farms
White man among evictees -
Third Bulawayo Music
From The Times (UK), 29 August
Business leaders 'in plot to oust Mbeki'
JOHANNESBURG - The South African
intelligence service is investigating allegations of a conspiracy by British and
American business interests to replace President Mbeki with Cyril Ramaphosa, the
trade unionist turned entrepreneur. The Afrikaans newspaper Rapport said that
evidence of a plot to destabilise the country was discovered by South African
diplomatic missions. The British and American business leaders and politicians
were said to be alarmed at the way Mr Mbeki had handled Zimbabwe's land reform
crisis and the Aids issue. The group wanted Mr Ramaphosa to stand against Mr
Mbeki in the ruling ANC leadership elections in 2002 because of his "youth,
sound business sense and strong support within the party", the newspaper added.
An ANC spokesman, Smuts Ngonyama, said that "forces
with nefarious plots to overthrow President Mbeki will meet the wrath of all
South Africans". He suggested that the allegations might be the work "of
sinister forces trying to destabilise the organisation". Mr Ramaphosa dismissed
the reports as "ludicrous and insane". He said that "stories of plots are aimed
at destabilising the ANC" and that South Africa would need an ANC-led Government
for many years.
From The Daily News, 28 August
Government fails to give MDC funds
THE government is now in breach of the
Political Parties (Finance Act) after failing to disburse funds due to the
opposition MDC within the regulatory 60 days which have since lapsed. The MDC
secretary-general, Welshman Ncube, said last Friday his party was still in the
dark as to how much they were entitled to as the government had not gazetted
anything concerning the matter. "The 60 days have lapsed and no announcement has
been made. We will be hearing from relevant government officials on what could
be the problem," Ncube said. The MDC won 57 of the 120 contested seats in the
June parliamentary election, becoming the country's first official major
opposition party since independence in 1980.
Under the Political Parties (Finance) Act,
the government must publish a notice within 60 days of the last day of the
parliamentary election announcing the share each contesting party would receive.
Last week, Ncube said, the permanent secretary in the Ministry of Finance and
Economic Development, Charles Kuwaza, told him that the government was still
considering the disbursement of funds to MDC. Under the Act, a party must win
the support of at least five percent of the voters in a general election to
qualify for state funding. In this year's budget, Zanu PF got $65 million, after
winning 117 seats in the 1995 election. Ncube said the MDC had expected an
announcement to be made through last Friday's Government Gazette.
From The Daily News, 28 August
Land reform leaves 15 000 families homeless
Nearly 15 000 farm workers and their
families in Mashonaland Central and West provinces are now homeless since the
launch of the fast-track land redistribution programme last month as the
government forges ahead with the controversial acquisition of commercial farms.
Philip Munyanyi, the General Agricultural and Plantation Workers Union of
Zimbabwe (GAPWUZ) secretary-general, said yesterday: "The fasttrack programme
has displaced over 15 000 people in Mashonaland Central and West. Affected
families are being told to seek places to live
elsewhere. This is happening everyday so the figure may have since risen." He
said some of the affected workers had not received their salaries after their
employers fled from violence on the farms.
Hundreds of commercial farmers abandoned
their properties after gangs of Zanu PF militias went on the rampage and invaded
more than 1 000 farms countrywide. They accused the farmers of influencing their
workers to vote against the draft constitution in the 12 and 13 February
national referendum. The government launched the accelerated land reform
programme in July. The programme kicked off with the resettlement of villagers
on 200 of the 804 commercial farms which the government acquired for
resettlement following amendments to the Constitution and Land Acquisition Act.
The programme has spread to all the country's 10 provinces and has identified
over 3 000 for designation.
Beneficiaries are selected by committees
made up of traditional leaders, councillors, representatives of war veterans,
district and provincial administrators and governors. Munyanyi said selection
criteria sidelined farm workers. "At our last count only 50 out of more than 700
farm families had been resettled in Centenary and Shamva. War veterans are
asking for party cards in their vetting exercise and some farm workers are being
punished for having supported the MDC in the June election," Munyanyi said.
"What we need is not speed and figures. We need a fair land resettlement policy
which caters for everyone regardless of their political affiliation."
Matabeleland North governor Obert Mpofu
told villagers and war veterans at the launch of the accelerated land
redistribution programme in Bubi district early this month that MDC supporters
would not be considered for resettlement. But Ignatius Chombo, the Minister of
Local Government, Public Works and National Housing said: "No one is going to be
left out in the exercise." Munyanyi said his union had invited the Minister of
Lands, Agriculture and Resettlement, Joseph Made and all Members of Parliament
to a meeting next week to discuss the fate of displaced farm workers.
From The Daily News, 28
20 000 Aids orphans on
THE HIV-Aids pandemic has left about 20 000 orphans on
Zimbabwe's commercial farms, according to a survey conducted by Farm Orphan
Support Trust. Women on the farms said they did nothing to protect themselves
from the disease, according to a recent survey. Men did not see their role in
preventing the disease, said Sue Laver, who conducted the survey over a one year
period. Laver found that 46 percent of the men reporting to clinics in farming
areas were HIV positive and up to 32 percent of the women attending ante-natal
clinics were affected by the virus. "Monitoring the same community for a year
showed that there was no difference made by the intervention, hence the same
percentage of HIV positive cases were found," Laver said. Laver was speaking at
a training workshop in Harare attended by 25-farm based trainers. The workshop
was conducted by the Farm Community Trust of Zimbabwe in conjunction with the
Ministry of Health and Child Welfare. Zimbabwe now has more than 600 000 orphans
from the Aids pandemic. The trust has established a pilot programme in the
Mazowe and Zvimba districts, to assess the needs of farm workers.
From Pan Africa News Agency, 28
White man among
Harare - A homeless white man was among independence war
veterans Zimbabwean police evicted last week from white-owned farms they had
seized around Harare, demanding to be resettled on the properties. The Herald
daily newspaper identified the white man only as Murehwa, and said he had
settled on Stone Ridge farm with his black girlfriend. Hundreds of police
evicted the former guerrillas from the farms, and demolished makeshift homes
they had built, but the government has since reversed the decision to forcibly
remove the war veterans. The ex-guerrillas have led a national campaign to force
white farmers, who control much of the country's arable land, to give up some of
their farms for resettlement of those who have no land. The newspaper quoted
other war veterans as saying Murehwa had registered for resettlement, but it was
unclear he took part in a seven-year guerrilla war which ended British colonial
rule of the country in 1980.
THE THIRD BULAWAYO
MUSIC FESTIVAL : APRIL 2001
As many of those receiving this will know, there have to date
been two week-long Bulawayo Music Festivals. They were both enormously
successful, attracting world famous musicians such as soprano Dame
Felicity Lott, violinist Tasmin Little, pianists
Seta Tanyel, Leslie Howard, Graham Johnson, Piers Lane and
Hamish Milne and cellist Colin Carr. Perhaps
even better-known is BBC radio personality Edward Greenfield
who played a large part in the first festival and subsequently devoted
an entire programme to it on the World Service. People travelled from all over
Zimbabwe to spend the week at the festival and a few came from further afield,
both South Africa and Britain. "This was the most wonderful musical experience
of my life" was one opinion expressed to us and it summed up the views of many.
We have already received many thousands of dollars from people determined to
secure first place in the queue for seats at the next festival.
We have engaged another top flight line-up of artists for
next April - pianists Margaret Fingerhut and Ronan
O'Hora, violinist Rafal Zambrzycki-Payne, violist
Nokuthula Ngwenyama (Zimbabwean-born, pursuing her professional
career in the USA) and bassoonist Kim Walker - all of whom are
happy to come to perform in Zimbabwe, despite the poor press! The Odeion
String Quartet from South Africa will also take part
again as well as local musicians, and we believe that we have planned a third
festival to match, perhaps even surpass its predecessors.
But.... the problem is, of course, money. Both previous
festivals have relied heavily on sponsorship and for each of them we have had
major sponsors who, among other things, covered all of the international air
fares. Perhaps not surprisingly in view of the situation in Zimbabwe at the
moment, sponsorship is not easy to come by (to say the least of it!) and it
seems unlikely that any of the major sponsors for the previous two festivals
will support us at the same level for the third, if at all.
We have gone through our budget with a fine toothcomb, sucked
our thumbs as to what the exchange rate might be by next April and guessed what
we think people will be prepared (or able) to afford for a festival. The final
calculations seem to suggest a shortfall in the region of a million dollars -
Zimbabwe dollars, that is! But translated into real money, that's not very much
for a festival - under £13 000.00 (or US$20 000.00) at the current exchange
Although the Festival is a relatively small enterprise, it is
widely acknowledged to be very professionally organised, bringing credit to all
involved and, for those of us with faith in a long term future for the country,
we believe that such events can promote a positive picture, with consequent
benefits for all concerned. We think it is important for the Festival to go
ahead as a morale-booster too and are hopeful that we can raise some of the
money we need locally. But we're also of the opinion that a million will be a
very long haul indeed, partly because the Festival is run on an entirely
voluntary basis and none of those involved can devote their entire energies to
Zimbabwe's music and the necessary fund-raising, however much they might like
So we are looking for support across the widest possible
spectrum and hope that some of the readers of ZimNews might be able to help us
find sources for this money in some way. If there's anyone out there with £5
000.00 to spare, we should, of course, be delighted! - two such donations would
more than see us through and, if there were the possibility of one or two really
major sponsors, we'd be very happy to give them extensive coverage at the
More realistic possibilities perhaps include:
sponsorship of the Festival, either in general or a specific
aspect, by anyone reading this.
suggestions from anyone reading this of possible sponsors.
Names to contact and reasons why they might consider sponsoring the festival
would obviously help us to make the right approach. These could be Zimbabwean
companies or perhaps British-based companies or businesses with African or
specifically Zimbabwean connections.
there's also the possibility of philanthropic organisations
with an interest in music (perhaps here in Zimbabwe but more likely in Britain)
which would contribute and trusts that might be prepared to give sponsorship in
return for performance of music by a particular composer.
We would be more than grateful if anyone with an interest in
music who has read thus far would consider helping in some way - and we wait in
hope for an avalanche of replies!
With thanks and best wishes,
Deborah Barron ~ Michael Bullivant ~ Derek
Here is a copy of a letter sent to
me by Rob Grant. I have in the past asked if anyone is interested in taking part
in action against Mugabe and you wish to support Rob's initiative please will
you respond to him at the following address.
ACTIONS SPEAK LOADER THAN
Thanks for your e-mail this
morning, although it sickened me thoroughly to
read about what has
I have sent this one (as with others) to friends (some in
government) in the
States, to show them what is happening.
before....WHAT CAN WE DO??
You sent an e-mail out before, when Dave
Kruger and I asked if there is
support out there for the farmers, and if so,
let us act....we referred to
the British demo's and the like - but there was
I do not believe we can just sit back, or at best, just send
to friends lamenting the situation. Please, please - everyone,
can we do
something, anything - hell, I don't know what exactly, but any show
support would be great.
Any ideas..? - if demonstrations outside
the Zim embassy on the days of the
Zim stayaway is one of them, then count me
in - if anyone has ANY other
ideas, count me in for them as well.
again Dereck, I must ask for your help - if 10 people on your
respond, it's a start.
Thanks and regards
The situation is worsening
rapidly..... following on from the tragic story of the death of chief tracker, John Mugwise, on a Zimbabwean game farm (8 August 2000 - Noahs Ark...)....
Rubbing salt into the bitterest of wounds, the local police,
compliant with the reign of terror, concluded that Mugwise had committed
suicide, even though he was found with handcuffs attached to one
"There's no knowing what he went through," Rutledge said.The changes
seen at Dindingwe since April point to an environmental crisis that awaits as
white farms and game parks are closed down. "There's little water here and
within a year this will be desert - and the squatters will move away
Rutledge said. Experts in Harare warn that the cost to wildlife of
Mugabe's chaotic rule will be heavy. "This is, or was, one of the world's
treasure houses," said Don Heath, editor of African Hunter magazine. "But in
the national parks the battle was lost some time ago." Heath said that as early
1993 Mugabe had allowed most of the country's white rhino to be poached
With corruption endemic in the Wildlife and
Parks Directorate, up to
1,500 elephants are thought to have been killed in
the Zambezi valley last his colleagues believe predators such as Zimbabwe's
7,000 cheetahs and
20,000 leopards have suffered most. The veterans blame
the big cats for attacks on their cattle and have used packs of dogs to hunt
them down. Thousands of zebra, impala, kudu, eland and other antelope have been
slaughtered with automatic weapons and sold for meat. "The squatters want
everything off the land so it is safe for cattle," said Heath. Rutledge and
other rural whites are clinging to the forlorn hope that Mugabe's promise to
expropriate more than 3,000 farms is mere hot air.
They hope that the threat
of more nationwide strikes, such as a "stay away"
last week, coupled with
spiralling inflation and food shortages, could make the government think again
before pursuing policies aimed at keeping Mugabe in power after the 2002
presidential elections, when he will be 78.
A call from a Zimbabwean : 28 August 2000
UNITED AND HAVE A 15 DAY STAY AWAY .. START DATE 1 SEPTEMBER 2000 TO 16
SEPTEMBER 2000 STAND UNITED WITH OUR FARMERS AND OUR WILD LIFE IF YOU AGREE TO
THIS STAY AWAY .. PLEASE FORWARD TO EVERYONE YOU POSSIBLY CAN "
Zimbabwe to Provide Housing Plots for War Veterans - Reuters - Aug
26 2000 10:26AM ET
Zimbabwe veterans tell leader to quit - Times UK - August
Zimbabwe's war veterans leader rejects ouster bid: report - HARARE,
Aug 28 (AFP)
Mugabe Acts True to Form (COMMENTARY) - Harare (Zimbabwe
Standard, August 27, 2000)
More Farm Seizures Announced, Uncertainty in
Agriculture Deepens - HARARE, Zimbabwe (AP)
Zimbabwe Seizes More Farms - The
Associated Press - Aug 25 2000 8:18PM ET
Zimbabwe to Provide Housing Plots
for War Veterans
Reuters - Aug 26 2000 10:26AM ET
HARARE (Reuters) -
Zimbabwe is to provide 100 residential plots to veterans of its 1970s liberation
war after police this week destroyed illegal huts erected on occupied
white-owned land, a local government leader said.
chairman of a commission running the capital Harare, said the plots would be
allocated as a matter of urgency.
``Additionally, the city of Harare has
identified farms on the outskirts of the city which the government will be asked
to acquire as soon as possible for future housing developments,'' Chanakira said
in a statement sent to Reuters on Saturday.
Police this week destroyed
houses under construction and burned down makeshift huts on farms on the
outskirts of Harare, a move the government later said it regretted after a
protest by war veterans at President Robert Mugabe's offices.
Mugabe gave formal notice that the government would appropriate 509 white-owned
farms to resettle blacks, bringing to 1,542 the number of properties he has
ear-marked for compulsory acquisition to resettle landless blacks.
government has started moving peasants onto 211 farms it has acquired without
objection from the farmers, under a ''fast track'' program in which it plans to
resettle people in 100 farms in each of the country's eight provinces before the
start of the rainy season around October.
Mugabe has passed legislation
allowing him to acquire the farms with no obligation to pay compensation for the
land if former colonial power Britain does not provide the funds.
plans to acquire nearly half the 12 million hectares (30 million acres) owned by
about 4,500 white farmers to resettle peasants as redress for the seizure of
land by British colonists over a century ago.
The government has
sanctioned the invasion of some 1,000 commercial farms by self-styled liberation
war veterans since February, which the Commercial Farmers Union, grouping 4,500
mainly white farms, says has severely disrupted agricultural production.
Zimbabwe veterans tell leader to quit
Times UK - August 28, 2000 -
FROM JAN RAATH IN HARARE
MEMBERS of Zimbabwe's War Veterans' Association
voted yesterday to expel their leader, Chenjerai "Hitler" Hunzvi, accusing him
of running the organisation "like a dictator" and embezzling £40,000.
vote may lead to division of the movement that has become President Mugabe's
Praetorian Guard. It led the violent invasions of 1,500 white-owned farms and
ran a campaign of savage intimidation for the ruling Zanu (PF) party of before
elections in June.
Mr Hunzvi refused to accept his dismissal. "They are
just wasting their time. I am still the chairman of the association," he said.
Andy Mhlanga, the leader of the putsch, said: "We have taken this action
because Comrade Hunzvi has become dictatorial and is now running the veterans'
association like his personal poultry project."
An attempt to oust Mr
Hunzvi was made last year but he survived when thousands of veterans rallied
Zimbabwe's war veterans leader rejects ouster bid:
HARARE, Aug 28 (AFP) - Monday, August 28 6:34 PM SGT
fiery war veterans' leader Chenjerai "Hitler" Hunzvi, who was voted out of
office by colleagues at the weekend, has refused to accept the decision and says
he is still in charge, press reports said Monday.
Andy Mhlanga, the
secretary general of the Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans Association,
said Sunday Hunzvi had been voted out at a meeting of the association in Harare,
because he had become dictatorial.
But Hunzvi, whose supporters have led
the often-violent invasions of hundreds of white farms here since February, has
refused to accept the decision, saying the meeting did not follow procedure and
accusing Mhlanga of mounting a coup, the state-run Herald said.
Mhlanga is trying to usurp power," the paper quoted Hunzvi as saying.
am still in charge because he failed to follow legal procedures," Hunzvi
Saturday's meeting was attended by provincial leaders and the
secretariat, but Hunzvi said Mhlanga "should have invited us, the concerned
executive, and at least 5,000 members to endorse" the vote, the Herald
Mhlanga has insisted that the vote is valid, because eight
representatives of the group's 10 regions voted to remove Hunzvi when only five
representatives were needed for a quorum.
"We have taken this action
because comrade Hunzvi had become dictatorial and was now running the war
veterans association like his personal poultry project," Mhlanga
Under Hunzvi's lead, thousands of war veterans and their supporters
have invaded about 1,600 white-owned farms since February, in an often-violent
campaign marked by killings, beatings, kidnappings and other forms of
Hunzvi has denied any responsibility for the violence, but
has steadfastly defended the campaign, which aimed to speed up a government land
reform programme taking land from whites to give to blacks.
This is the
second time that an attempt has been made to oust the controversial leader from
the chair of the war veterans association, which he has held since
The first bid was made last year, but failed to succeed.
term as chairman of the veterans' group is not supposed to end until
Meanwhile, Hunzvi said he had called for an extraordinary meeting on
September 26 to explain to the membership the latest developments in the
Hunzvi was elected to parliament in the June elections. He
is currently facing several legal challenges, including charges that he
embezzled funds from Zexcom, a company owned by liberation war veterans.
A medical doctor by profession, Hunzvi is also accused of defrauding a
government-run war victims' compensation fund by exaggerating his own war
injuries to inflate his medical claims.
Mugabe Acts True to Form
Harare (Zimbabwe Standard, August 27, 2000) - When earlier this
week Home Affairs Minister John Nkomo ordered police to demolish illegal
structures put up by so-called war veterans on private properties around Harare,
the more cynical immediately started to place bets as to what President Mugabe's
position would be upon his arrival from a business trip to Maputo.
were adamant in their belief that Mugabe would, upon being accosted by the war
veterans, plead ignorance about what had been taking place in his absence, and
assure them that they could continue to occupy the land and enjoy their
And that is what happened, more-or-less. Instead of
supporting hardworking Minister John Nkomo's resolute stand against lawlessness
and what has fast been degenerating into a free-for-all, Mugabe once again
pandered to the stupid demands of a group of people who in the last 36 months
have caused untold havoc to the economy, to the general tranquillity prevailing
in Zimbabwe, and brought stress to its people.
Today they want $50 000
plus pensions for participating in the war of liberation, tomorrow they disrupt
organised agriculture claiming that it is their land, and the next day it is
something else. It does not even occur to them that the only people who get paid
for participating in armed conflict are mercenaries - not people who claim to be
War heroes are people who selflesslessly, and not in
anticipation of any reward, sacrifice life and limb for their country. But these
people demanded, and were given payment for their participation in the war.
And they still insist on being called heroes? But back to Mugabe. His
capitulating to these people has left Nkomo looking as if he was the one
engaging in illegal activities, yet he was only exercising his functions
legitimately as the Minister of Home Affairs, to bring some semblance of order
in a country which has virtually been written off by the international
And make no mistake, these land invaders know what card they
are playing; They are fully aware that Mugabe is under pressure from all angles,
and what better time to demand their payback for the mayhem they caused in the
run-up to the June elections? After all, they argue, theirs is his only
remaining constituency, and if they do not get him while all his other chips are
down, he will never pay up. Along with a few other cabinet ministers who
Zimbabweans are pegging their hopes upon to restore law and order in the
country, and rescue an economy now on its last legs, Minister Nkomo must insist
on doing his work professionally, competently, and as he sees best for the
He certainly has the credentials, the vision, and
the support of all right-minded people. He must make it clear to Mugabe that he
is not a political spanner, and that his national interests are greater than to
appease a selfish band of looters and their godfather.
newly-appointed presidential press secretary, George Charamba, claimed on Friday
that Minister Nkomo knew nothing about the police action and was shocked by what
he saw "on TV". Who told him that? The police action was legitimate, and had
been officially sanctioned by those whose responsibility it is to ensure that
law and order prevails in the country.
And that does not include
Charamba and Jonathan Moyo. Professor Moyo might also want to enlighten the
nation on what authority he states that compensation will be paid for the
demolished structures, from which budget or vote, and for what reason.
Are the owners whose land and property was damaged also eligible for
compensation? To Nkomo and others we say do not be deterred by cheap political
propaganda. We can do no more than repeat that the people of Zimbabwe are just
tired of all this nonsense that has unnecessarily been brought upon
More Farm Seizures Announced, Uncertainty in Agriculture
HARARE, Zimbabwe (AP) -- The government named another 509 white-owned
farms Friday it plans to confiscate for redistribution to landless blacks,
bringing to 1,542 the number it has targeted under a hastened land seizure
Farm leaders warn the announcement casts more doubt over the
viability of commercial farming in Zimbabwe's already ailing agriculture-based
The owners of the targeted farms have until Sept. 17 to lodge
objections to the orders, Agriculture Minister Joseph Made, said in an
announcement published Friday in the state-controled Herald newspaper.
Violence on farms and in townships left 31 people dead ahead of June
parliamentary elections. Armed ruling party militants began occupying the first
of 1,600 white-owned farms in February, demanding they be divided up among
President Robert Mugabe has supported the occupations
as a justified protest against inequities in land distribution in a country
where 4,000 whites own one-third of the fertile farmland.
has said it will seize 3,000 white farms totaling about 12 million acres, but
has failed to detail all the properties that will be seized. Many of the farms
will be taken before seasonal rains begin around November, it said.
new list includes land owned by a Roman Catholic church mission outside Harare,
Anglican church property north of the capital, which features a top school for
poor teenage girls, several white-owned nature preserves and part of a sugar
plantation partly owned by South Africa's Anglo-American Corp.
Hasluck, director of the Commercial Farmers Union, said the new seizure notices
did not comply with land reform laws that say farms being redistributed must be
carved up by surveyors and provided with roads and materials to keep them
"There is no carefully thought out resettlement program that
lawful process requires," he said. "They are just listing farms to destroy
The government has admitted its land redistribution program is
broke. The state District Development Fund, whose trucks were to be used to
transport landless blacks to nationalized farms, said on Aug. 10 that most of
its vehicles were out of commission because of shortages of spare parts and
tires and misuse and corruption by officials.
The state Agricultural
Rural Development Authority, intended to provide seeds and tools, said it too
was critically short of supplies.
"You can't just give people pieces of
land and nothing else. There are no resources to kick start them," Hasluck said.
Banks announced earlier this month they had frozen loans to farmers who
defaulted on their repayments during production disruptions caused by the
squatters and to farmers whose properties had been listed for seizure. Farmers
require the annual loans to buy the seeds, fertilizer and equipment necessary to
plant and harvest their crops.
Hasluck said the owners of only about
one-third of the listed farms had enough money to carry on with even reduced
production without loans.
"Others will simply not be able to farm," he
Zimbabwe is suffering its worst economic crisis since independence
in 1980. Inflation has soared to a record 70 percent, unemployment reached 50
percent this year and health and education services have declined sharply.
Tobacco earned $220 million last year and the farmers union has
predicted next year's crops of tobacco and corn, the main staple food, could be
reduced by as much a 40 percent because of the occupations and uncertainty over
Zimbabwe Seizes More Farms
The Associated Press - Aug
25 2000 8:18PM ET
HARARE, Zimbabwe (AP) - The government named another 509
white-owned farms Friday it plans to confiscate for redistribution to landless
blacks, bringing to 1,542 the number it has targeted under a hastened land
Farm leaders warn the announcement casts more doubt
over the viability of commercial farming in Zimbabwe's already ailing
The owners of the targeted farms have until
Sept. 17 to lodge objections to the orders, Agriculture Minister Joseph Made,
said in an announcement published Friday in the state-controled Herald
Violence on farms and in townships left 31 people dead ahead
of June parliamentary elections. Armed ruling party militants began occupying
the first of 1,600 white-owned farms in February, demanding they be divided up
among landless blacks.
President Robert Mugabe has supported the
occupations as a justified protest against inequities in land distribution in a
country where 4,000 whites own one-third of the fertile farmland.
government has said it will seize 3,000 white farms totaling about 12 million
acres, but has failed to detail all the properties that will be seized. Many of
the farms will be taken before seasonal rains begin around November, it said.
The new list includes land owned by a Roman Catholic church mission
outside Harare, Anglican church property north of the capital, which features a
top school for poor teenage girls, several white-owned nature preserves and part
of a sugar plantation partly owned by South Africa's Anglo-American Corp.
David Hasluck, director of the Commercial Farmers Union, said the new
seizure notices did not comply with land reform laws that say farms being
redistributed must be carved up by surveyors and provided with roads and
materials to keep them productive.
``There is no carefully thought out
resettlement program that lawful process requires,'' he said. ``They are just
listing farms to destroy them.''
The government has admitted its land
redistribution program is broke. The state District Development Fund, whose
trucks were to be used to transport landless blacks to nationalized farms, said
on Aug. 10 that most of its vehicles were out of commission because of shortages
of spare parts and tires and misuse and corruption by officials.
state Agricultural Rural Development Authority, intended to provide seeds and
tools, said it too was critically short of supplies.
``You can't just
give people pieces of land and nothing else. There are no resources to kick
start them,'' Hasluck said.
Banks announced earlier this month they had
frozen loans to farmers who defaulted on their repayments during production
disruptions caused by the squatters and to farmers whose properties had been
listed for seizure. Farmers require the annual loans to buy the seeds,
fertilizer and equipment necessary to plant and harvest their crops.
Hasluck said the owners of only about one-third of the listed farms had
enough money to carry on with even reduced production without loans.
``Others will simply not be able to farm,'' he said.
suffering its worst economic crisis since independence in 1980. Inflation has
soared to a record 70 percent, unemployment reached 50 percent this year and
health and education services have declined sharply.
Tobacco earned $220
million last year and the farmers union has predicted next year's crops of
tobacco and corn, the main staple food, could be reduced by as much a 40 percent
because of the occupations and uncertainty over the seizures.
Hunzvi deposed -
Hunzvi told to quit -
Hunzvi sacked for fraud -
Hunzvi sacked for failing to
denounce evictions - PANA
investigation proceeds - BDay
US tightens visa controls -
From The Daily Telegraph (UK), 28 August
War veterans depose 'Hitler' Hunzvi
Harare â€“ Zimbabweâ€™s so-called war veterans
have deposed their leader, Chenjerayi "Hitler" Hunzvi, as a power struggle in
the movement intensifies. Hunzvi was accused of behaving like a dictator and of
ignoring the grassroots support of the Liberation War Veterans' Association.
Hunzvi, 51, who has the support of President Mugabe, shrugged off the revolt and
claimed his accusers were "renegades". Since February, farm groups supposedly
representing the association have invaded more than 1,700 farms. The integrity
of the movement has been severely dented following the kidnapping and sexual
abuse of children at a farm near Harare. Hunzvi is facing prosecution for
allegedly stealing £50,000 from the association.
The struggle is unlikely to have much
impact on the continuing farm invasions and the breakdown of law and order.
According to a senior official of the opposition MDC: "This is the second time
Hunzvi's followers have thrown him out. They got nowhere the first time and he
stayed as leader. He stays because of Mugabe. Once the president ditches him he
will disappear." The CFU did not expect any change either. one member said:
"Hunzvi is just a willing pawn."
From The Times (UK), 28
Zimbabwe veterans tell leader to
HARARE - Members of Zimbabwe's War Veterans' Association voted
yesterday to expel their leader, Chenjerai "Hitler" Hunzvi, accusing him of
running the organisation "like a dictator" and embezzling £40,000. The vote may
lead to division of the movement that has become President Mugabe's Praetorian
Guard. It led the violent invasions of 1,500 white-owned farms and ran a
campaign of savage intimidation for the ruling Zanu (PF) party of before
elections in June. Mr Hunzvi refused to accept his dismissal. "They are just
wasting their time. I am still the chairman of the association," he said. Andy
Mhlanga, the leader of the putsch, said: "We have taken this action because
Comrade Hunzvi has become dictatorial and is now running the veterans'
association like his personal poultry project." An attempt to oust Mr Hunzvi was
made last year but he survived when thousands of veterans rallied behind
From CNN, 27 August
Revolt splits militant war veterans
group in Zimbabwe
HARARE - A militant war veterans organization that led illegal
occupations of white-owned farms attempted to fire its leader in a revolt that
has split the group, a state-controlled newspaper reported Sunday. Chenjerai
Hunzvi, the outspoken chairman of the National Liberation War Veterans
Association, was ousted after a vote of no confidence was adopted by some of the
organization's officials at a meeting in Harare, The Sunday Mail reported. But
Hunzvi, who did not attend the meeting on Saturday, said later he was still in
control and the ouster bid was carried out by a few "rebels" who had no power to
The meeting was called by the secretary general of the war
veterans group, Andy Mhlanga, who accused Hunzvi of being a "dictator" who did
not consult with colleagues, The Sunday Mail reported. Representatives from
across the country dissolved Hunzvi's executive committee and scheduled new
elections for leadership posts for September 2, the paper said. Hunzvi is
scheduled to appear in court in October on charges of defrauding a veterans
pension fund and Zexcom, an almost bankrupt company in which ex-combatants had
invested their pensions. "We want him to explain what happened to the Zexcom
funds," Mhlanga was quoted as saying. "He is trying to cause divisions among war
From Pan African News Agency, 27
Zimbabwe's War Veterans Leader
Harare - The leader of Zimbabwe's independence war veterans,
Chenjerai Hitler Hunzvi was dethroned in a "palace coup" at the weekend by
members of the ex-fighters' association. He was accused of reluctance to
denounce police evictions last week of the former guerrillas from white-owned
farms they had occupied demanding land reform. Zimbabwe National Liberation War
Veterans Association secretary-general Andy Mhlanga also described Hunzvi as
"dictatorial," and said the organisation would meet next weekend to elect a new
leader. President Robert Mugabe is the association's patron. "We have taken this
action because Hunzvi had become dictatorial and was now running the war
veterans association like his personal poultry project. We are also not happy
because he did not denounce police when they destroyed the war veterans homes,"
From Business Day (SA), 28
A Constitutional Court judgment against controversial motor
industry boss Billy Rautenbach would speed up the national directorate for
public prosecutions' investigation into his suspected crimes, Sipho Ngwema, a
spokesman for the directorate, said at the weekend. The court ruled on Friday
that the directorate for serious economic offences and SA Revenue Service acted
within the constitution in seizing documents and computer records from the
offices of Wheels of Africa, of which Rautenbach was head, last November.
From Pan African News Agency, 27
US Introduces Stringent Visa
Requirements for Zimbabweans
Harare - The United States has introduced stringent visa
requirements for Zimbabweans, after its embassy in Harare was flooded with
travel applications from locals eager to escape the country's worst economic
crisis in 20 years of self rule. An embassy official said applicants had now to
show proof of a bank balance of 300,000 Zimbabwe dollars (6,000 US dollars)
before they could be granted a visa to travel to the United States to work or
study. The official added that the stiff requirements, which in some cases
demand proof of property ownership in Zimbabwe, had been introduced to prevent
criminals escaping to the United States. Hundreds of Zimbabweans, highly
qualified but unable to find jobs, mill at the US embassy everyday seeking to
emigrate, mainly to find jobs. Most claim they were leaving the country to
study. Zimbabwe's economy has been shrinking for the past four years and
unemployment stands at over 50 percent.
Sunday August 27 9:17 AM ET
Report: Revolt Splits African
By ANGUS SHAW, Associated Press
HARARE, Zimbabwe (AP) - A militant war veterans
organization that led
illegal occupations of white-owned farms attempted
to fire its leader in a
revolt that has split the group, a
state-controlled newspaper reported
Hunzvi, the outspoken chairman of the National Liberation War
Association, was ousted after a vote of no confidence was adopted
of the organization's officials at a meeting in Harare, The Sunday
But Hunzvi, who did not attend the meeting Saturday,
said later he was
in control and the ouster bid was carried out
by a few ``rebels'' who had
power to remove him.
meeting was called by the secretary general of the war veterans
Andy Mhlanga, who accused Hunzvi of being a ``dictator'' who did
with colleagues, The Sunday Mail
Representatives from across the country dissolved
committee and scheduled new elections for leadership
posts for Sept. 2, the
Hunzvi is scheduled to
appear in court in October on charges of defrauding
fund and Zexcom, an almost bankrupt company in which
invested their pensions.
``We want him to explain what happened
to the Zexcom funds,'' Mhlanga was
quoted as saying. ``He is trying to
cause divisions among war veterans.''
Since February, veterans of
the bush war that ended white rule in 1980 have
led violent mobs of
squatters and ruling party militants in illegal land
occupations on more
than 1,600 white-owned farms.
President Robert Mugabe backed the
occupations, describing them as a
justified protest against unfair land
ownership by the nation's 4,000 white
power soared as veterans took control of rural districts and
campaign of intimidation and violence against Mugabe's opponents
parliamentary elections in June.
At least 31 people have died in
the political violence.
WOV VETS The following description of wovvets was
bastardized from the
Roberts Book of Birds, by a well established farmer of blue blood
when he was an Emcee at a full-on function at his local sports club.
The gentleman concerned has a had
a permanent presence of these guys on his
premises since Feb 2000. He has maintained a
sense of humour whilst about it
but his wife has expressed a desire to settle on one of the
Pacific Ocean. If any of you residents can find an opportunity for
his employ pse. advise me and he
will be put in touch.
"WOVVETT. (Spelt w-o-v-v-e-t-t) Intro- a recently discovered
Identification - small to medium size, light brown to black in
colour with a head of tufted
brillo-pad like curls of varying lengths. Voice
- highly characteristic nocturnal ululating
and chanting, sometimes
accompanied by pulsating drum beating when in a frenzied state. Habits
initially gregarious. Usually sedentary during the day - often
seated motionless with finger up
nose on a log/rock or other immovable
object - but with increased activity at night. Previously
known to skulk in
long grass, running fast with head down, weaving between trees. Difficult
flush. Status -
locally common breeding inter-provisional non-resident or
resident (unclear!) Habitat -
preferably rich agricultural land,
alternatively dense undergrowth with ready access to water and
-omnivorous, with a preference for free beef on the hoof to the more
breakfast list. Will eat vegetation but has a strong preference
for hemp smoked as a narcotic.
Breeding - all seasons. Unlike other species
is not into pair bonding. Is known to
copulate frequently with multiple
partners at random. This may result in an Always Infected Dip
known as AIDS."
Well if you can believe that these guys can adopt
such humour after the
attention given to them by such undesirables we have strong