by Own Correspondent Friday 08 August 2008
JOHANNESBURG - Talks between Zimbabwe's rival political parties are likely
to yield a compromise pact modelled on the French system, with an executive
prime minister and an executive president sharing power, ZimOnline has
The international media has been awash with reports that opposition MDC
party leader Morgan Tsvangirai is on his way to become executive prime
minister with President Robert Mugabe reduced to a purely ceremonial role.
But ZimOnline has established that all these reports are not true.
The Star newspaper of Johannesburg even went as far as quoting a document
that it said was a draft agreement confirming the executive premiership for
Tsvangirai and a ceremonial presidency for Mugabe whom the newspaper said
would also be granted blanket immunity from any future prosecution.
ZimOnline is authoritatively informed that this was in fact a draft
discussion paper by one of the MDC factions participating in the talks which
had been inputted by South Africa and not a draft agreement as reported.
Our sources, who agreed to speak on condition they were not named, said
Mugabe's party ZANU PF had flatly refused to have the veteran leader demoted
to a ceremonial role and insisted he would have to retain some executive
powers if the negotiations are to produce a deal.
President Thabo Mbeki, who reports had said would travel to Harare on
Thursday for a meeting with Mugabe, Tsvangirai and Arthur Mutambara - leader
of the smaller MDC formation - was in fact in his country and had a number
of activities planned for Friday, including receiving accreditation
documents from several new diplomats to Pretoria.
ZimOnline is informed that Mbeki - southern Africa's chief mediator in the
talks - will now travel to Harare this weekend to mediate a meeting between
Tsvangirai, Mugabe and Mutambara that will tackle some outstanding issues
about the power sharing system.
"The principals (Mugabe and Tsvangirai) will iron out a number of
outstanding issues and concretise the draft agreement in the presence of
Mbeki . . . ," said a source.
The source added: "If all is agreed the agreement would then be referred to
experts for the requisite legal drafting needed to effect constitutional
amendment number 19 to pave way for Tsvangirai's inclusion in government,
among other things.
"Mbeki will also fulfill his wish to greet his fellow SADC (Southern African
Development Community) peers with an agreement on Zimbabwe in hand at their
summit in Johannesburg next week."
It was not immediately clear whether Tsvangirai would ultimately accept
sharing executive powers with Mugabe.
Tsvangirai had put forward two positions which his larger formation of the
MDC considered non-negotiable. These were that he should either be at the
very top of any new unity or transitional government to emerge from the
talks or at least become executive prime minister with Mugabe demoted to a
The talks had almost collapsed after ZANU PF had offered Tsvangirai the
Sources said progress had since been made since the talks resumed on Monday
but they emphasized that this progress did not mean that Mugabe would become
a "wholly ceremonial King".
Zimbabwe's feuding political parties began dialogue about two weeks ago in a
bid to break a long-running crisis that took a turn for the worse following
Mugabe's disputed and violent re-election in the June.
The SADC and the African Union have leaned heavily on Zimbabwe's political
leaders to form a power-sharing government seen as the most viable way to
end a political and economic crisis seen in severe food shortages, deepening
poverty, 80 percent unemployment and the world's highest inflation rate of
more than two million percent. - ZimOnline
by Patricia Mpofu and Wayne Mafaro Friday 08 August 2008
HARARE - Zimbabwean civic society groups say they are going to use a summit
of regional leaders in South Africa next week to raise their objection to a
government of national unity between President Robert Mugabe's ruling ZANU
PF party and the opposition MDC formations.
A power-sharing government is seen by Southern African Development Community
(SADC) leaders as well as the African Union as the most viable way to
resolve Zimbabwe's long-running political and economic crisis
But civic society groups have long said Zimbabwe's future cannot be
guaranteed by an "elitist power-sharing pact" between the country's most
Fambai Ngirande, the spokesman for the National Association of
Non-Governmental Organisations (NANGO) said the civic groups would organise
protest marches, demonstrations and public meetings to draw the attention of
SADC leaders to ordinary Zimbabweans' objection to a unity government.
South African civic society groups will also take part in the protests in
solidarity with their Zimbabwean colleagues, said Ngirande.
He said: "We are going to the SADC summit to press for the Zimbabwe people's
rejection of the proposed government of national unity and the elite
power-sharing arrangement being fronted by President Thabo Mbeki (the South
African leader is SADC's chief mediator in the Zimbabwe talks).
"A number of solidarity actions will be undertaken at the event, including
marches, demonstrations and public meetings."
Zimbabwe's feuding political parties began dialogue about two weeks ago in a
bid to break a long-running crisis that took a turn for the worse following
Mugabe's disputed and violent re-election in the June.
Zimbabwean and South African officials speaking separately on Thursday
described the power-sharing talks as progressing "very well" although a
widely expected meeting between Mugabe and main MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai
did not take place.
Mugabe's spokesman, George Charamba, said no such meeting took place because
none had been scheduled, adding that South African President Thabo Mbeki -
chief mediator in the talks - was not coming to Harare as had been reported
However impeccable sources told ZimOnline later on Thursday that Mbeki would
now be travelling to Harare this coming weekend and will facilitate a
meeting between Tsvangirai, Mugabe and another MDC leader Arthur Mutambara
that will tackle some sticking points standing in the way of a power-sharing
deal between the three rivals.
Meanwhile Zambian immigration authorities on Thursday deported more than 10
Zimbabwean civic activists saying meetings they were due to hold "were aimed
at destabilising dialogue" between ZANU PF and MDC.
The activists, among them, Abel Chikomo from the Media Monitoring Project of
Zimbabwe (MMPZ), Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition director Xolani Zitha and
spokesperson Mcdonald Lewanika, and Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights
director Irene Petras, had gone to neighbouring Zambia for a series of
consultative meetings on Zimbabwe's slowly unfolding transition process.
"The Zambian immigration officers alleged that the meeting was bent on
disrupting ongoing dialogue between ZANU PF and MDC," said one of the
activists, adding they were deported upon landing at Lusaka International
airport. - ZimOnline
by Red Cross Friday 08 August 2008
This preliminary emergency appeal seeks CHF 27,755,314 (USD 26,837,020) in
cash or in kind to support the Zimbabwe Red Cross Society (ZRCS) to assist
260 100 OVC, HBC clients and their household members within its community
home-based care programme across 25 districts in the country's 10
administrative provinces for nine months.
The food supply situation in Zimbabwe has deteriorated significantly in
recent years. The country has been facing stern socio-economic decline since
2000, a vulnerability compounded by the aggravated impacts of climate change
such as drought, low crop performance and limited irrigation.
All these factors have combined to lead to severe shortages of basic food
across the country. Estimates suggest that up to 5.1 million people may be
without access to food by the end of 2008. In addition, Zimbabwe, like so
many countries on the African continent is suffering appallingly as a result
of HIV and AIDS. The pandemic claims an estimated 2,300 lives every day.
This preliminary emergency appeal, launched at the request of ZRCS, is
therefore intended to provide vital support in responding to immediate
humanitarian needs in the following areas across 25 districts of the country's
· Procurement and distribution of basic food items;
· Agricultural support and livelihoods recovery;
· Water and sanitation (WatSan interventions).
This operation is expected to be implemented over nine months, and will be
completed by May 2009. A final report will be made available by 30 August
2009 (three months after the end of the operation).
The food security situation in Zimbabwe is likely to be the worst ever on
record in 2008. By December, approximately 5.1 million people will not have
access to food. This extremely worrying situation will only be addressed
through the joint efforts of all relevant actors. The Red Cross - ZRCS and
the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies
(IFRC) - is in this regard only one important player.
An exceptional accumulation of negative factors have created this
unprecedented humanitarian situation. Unpredictable weather patterns,
drastic socio-economic decline and a deepening humanitarian crisis have left
millions of Zimbabweans without access to sufficient food, while the HIV and
AIDS pandemic continues to ravage the country as it claims an estimated
2,300 lives every day (According to MoHCW1: Herald Newspaper on 1 November
2007). The country's predominantly subsistence agriculture economy is
particularly prone to the changing weather patterns induced by climate
change. To worsen the situation, Zimbabwe is struggling with the world's
highest inflation rate (over two million per cent as of end July 2008). As
most rural communities are dependent on agricultural production this
financial strain has a significant effect on food security and livelihoods.
According to the 18 June 2008 Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) and
World Food Programme (WFP) joint crop and food supply assessment (CFSAM),
the total number of food insecure persons in rural and urban areas will be
2.04 million persons for the period between July and September 2008, rising
to 3.8 million people between October and December 2008 and peaking to 5.1
million people between January and March 2009. This is approximately 45
percent of the total population. The capacity of the government to import
food will be constrained by soaring food prices, and unavailability of
foreign currency in the country. The expected harvest may only reach 40 per
cent of the needs for 2008/2009.
This dire situation comes on the back of a difficult 2007. The 2007 rainy
season was characterised by inconsistent rainfall, a pattern that lead
alternatively to droughts and floods across the country.
According to the Zimbabwe meteorological department, by January 2008, 95 per
cent of the country had received 150 perent of average rainfall. These
inundations in many areas of the country led to flooding, leaching, erosion,
limited farming activities and late planting. This in turn affected national
A June 2007 CSFAM estimated that national cereal production for large grain
(maize) and small grain (sorghum and millet) was 44 per cent lower than 2006
estimates. Maize production was 46 per cent below the 2005/06 level and 13
per cent below the 2004/05 level. National production of main season maize
is estimated at 575,000 tonnes, which is 28 per cent lower than 2007
production (using CFSAM estimate of 800,000 tonnes).
This downward trend of cereal production has also affected the 2008 farming
season. According to the Ministry of Agriculture's agricultural food
security briefs from December 2007 to February 2008, the fertiliser supply
situation remained depressed throughout the season. Only seven per cent of
the targeted 600,000 tonnes of basal fertiliser and ten per cent of top
dressing fertilizer that was needed reached farmers on time.
The Ministry of Agriculture update on the 2008 winter wheat season notes
that only about 12 percent of the targeted farming area had been prepared
for planting by 16 May 2008 - itself only 43 percent of the area planted in
2007. Once again, limited availability of fertilizer is having serious
impacts on planting prospects for the next harvest in November. Only 24
percent and 19 percent of required Compound D and top dressing fertilizers
respectively are available. At the same time, high seed costs and slow
disbursements of loans (Agribank has disbursed only three per cent of funds
required by wheat farmers) are hindering preparations.
Ministry of Health and Child Welfare
There is continued contraction of economic activity in all sectors,
infrastructural degradation (particularly in the agricultural sector
including capital asset depletion - irrigation structures and equipment) and
the loss of productivity and the higher social and medical care burden
caused by the HIV and AIDS pandemic. Although economic decline and food
insecurity impacts across all sections of Zimbabwean society, the sharpest
impact will be felt by the most vulnerable communities, including those
households affected by HIV and AIDS.
Coordination and partnerships
The ZRCS is initially targeting 12.5 percent of the estimated total of
vulnerable people from July - September 2008. It is understood that other
agencies will also carry some of the caseload.
WFP is for example planning to launch a USD 205 million food security appeal
WFP will probably, after the government, be the single largest provider of
food in Zimbabwe during this project period. ZRCS and the IFRC will
coordinate its own efforts in close collaboration with WFP and other
partners to avoid overlap.
ZRCS works in collaboration with several partner Red Cross societies
including the British, Danish, Japanese, Finnish, Swedish and Norwegian Red
Cross Societies, in implementing the integrated CHBC programme and
complimentary programmes. With the support of partners, ZRCS has developed
capacity to plan, deliver, monitor and report on programming. Partners have
also provided additional in-country expatriate technical support to the
ZRCS has developed and will maintain various partnerships with key technical
organisations including, FAO, WFP, Tree Africa and ICRAF, who provide
technical input and support on implementation and training. Officers from
the Zimbabwe government's Agricultural Research and Extension Services
(AGRITEX) provide training and information on improved farming practices,
seed variety selection, and general crop production management. The officers
are also involved in the monitoring and evaluation of livelihood projects.
ZRCS is a member of the Agriculture Coordination Working Group (ACWG), which
is made up of various agencies including WFP, UNICEF, AGRITEX and the
Zimbabwe Civil Protection Unit (CPU) and the IFRC also participates.
There are a number of factors that could feasibly impact on the
implementation of this emergency operation. An important concern, at
present, is the accessibility to vulnerable communities in the light of the
current political instability. In terms of procurement, delays could arise
as a result of logistical challenges related to transportation, access to
fuel and customs regulations. There could also be hiccups in the supply
chain: if the operation is not supported early enough in the planning
process there is a risk that regional food supplier might run-out of food,
forcing the IFRC to use continental or overseas suppliers, which would
invariably increase the price of food commodities and thereof delays in
In the event of a rapid-onset disaster during this food security operation
timeframe (e.g. floods), the implementation could be slowed down as focus
and resources would, temporarily, have to be diverted to the immediate
disaster response. In order to cope with the previous issues of capacity,
this appeal includes the need for resource to cover temporary human resource
support by recruiting a number of local staff.
The assumption is that the IFRC and the ZRCS will have full compliance from
local authorities and also that most of the procurement will be done
directly by the IFRC or through in-kind support from donors. Any in-kind
donation will be well coordinated with the IFRC in-country team to avoid
delays, consistent type of assistance and avoid breakages of the
food-pipeline. The assumption is also that significant support for this
appeal will be received in August 2008 in order to ensure all necessary
procurement is done by the end of August 2008, so that ZRCS is able to
distribute to all beneficiaries within sufficient time for the next planting
season in November.
Planned Red Cross and Red Crescent action
A significant part of the Zimbabwe Red Cross Society's (ZRCS) operational
focus lies on its HIV and AIDS programming. Operating through its network of
trained community-based volunteers, ZRCS provides community-based home care
(CHBC) for 16,762 chronically ill people as well as 49,519 orphans and
children made vulnerable by HIV (OVC). As a follow-up to this initiative,
the ZRCS is at present piloting an antiretroviral treatment (ART) programme
for 1,500 HBC clients in Chivi and Mount Darwin. The ZRCS has 25 CHBC
project sites in the country's eight provinces. In all, Red Cross volunteers
assist 260,100 people through this programme including the 193,819
dependents of the target groups outlined above.
The CHBC programme will serve as an entry point for this emergency food
security operation, in an effort to speedily capitalize on already
established structures. The initial focus of ZRCS is therefore to provide
food assistance to the 260,100 vulnerable clients - a caseload spread across
Zimbabwe's eight provinces. This figure represents approximately 12.5 per
cent of the population that FAO and WFP estimate will require food
assistance from July to September 2008. The ZRCS is willing to re-assess the
situation as it evolves and is prepared to increase its reach if needed,
depending on its own capacity, the needs of affected communities and work of
other humanitarian and governmental actors. The prognosis is that the food
security situation will reach its peak in January up to March 2009 with
about 5.1 million food insecure people.
The largest food security operation previously conducted by the ZRCS was in
2006 - an effort that reached and supported 140,000 beneficiaries, a figure
that will be almost doubled under this current proposed operation.
Previously in 2002 and this 2006 operation, ZRCS distributed food aid in
coordination with WFP. During the recent acute food insecurity situations,
ZRCS has also distributed food aid to CHBC clients who received assistance
through the Red Cross integrated HIV programme. The people living with HIV
(PLHIV) and their dependents are particularly vulnerable to inadequate
access to food.
The ZRCS livelihoods programme was established in 2004 with funding from the
British Red Cross and the United Kingdom's Department for International
Development (DFID) and the Finnish Red Cross. The funding support for the
programme ended in July 2007. The ZRCS livelihoods programme hence has been
on of the five countries in southern Africa who received funding support
from Finnish and Norwegian Red Cross Societies during 2007 and 2008.
However, there are still gaps which are requiring long-term funding in-order
to strengthen the livelihoods programme.
From precedent experiences, it has become clearer that longer-term
interventions need to be addressed during emergency operation in order to
mitigate the impact of food shortages in the future. This is partly achieved
by building community-based coping mechanisms and strengthening the capacity
of Red Cross volunteers at the very local level.
As outlined above, the 2008 CFSAM report indicates the total number of food
insecure people persons in rural and urban areas will reach 5.1 million
people by March 2009, which is approximately 45 per cent of the total
Table 1: Projected National Requirements 2008/2009
08/09 Needs Expected Harvest 2008 Government Import Requirement Deficit
2,080 million MTs 848,000 MTs 850,000 MTs 382,000 MTs
Table 2: Estimates of food insecure individuals in rural and urban areas
Province Jul-Sep 2008 Oct-Dec 2008 Jan-Mar 2009
Manicaland 285,400 535,100 713,400
Mashonaland Central 154,600 289,800 386,400
Mashonaland East 187,000 350,600 467,500
Mashonaland West 126,300 236,800 315,700
Masvingo 252,200 472,800 630,400
Matebeleland North 127,500 239,100 318,900
Matebeleland South 148,500 278,400 371,200
Midlands 243,800 457,200 609,500
Rural Provinces 1,525,300 2,859,800 3,813,000
Urban & peri-urban 515,500 966,600 1,288,800
Total 2,040,800 3,826,400 5,101,800
Source: FAO/WFP Crop and Food Supply Assessment Mission (CFSAM to Zimbabwe,
18 June 2008
With the total annual national utilization of cereals at about 2.080 million
tonnes to cater for the projected population of 11.865 million, the
shortfall of the national production is estimated at 1.232 million tonnes,
of which the maize deficit accounts for about one million tonnes.
Availability of maize grain is now restricted to making it difficult to
access from the formal market. High transport costs are being borne by the
communities since the grain is being sourced from distant markets.
Supplies from the Grain Marketing Board (GMB) have been erratic and some
districts have not received any supplies.
Table 3: National Estimates of required food assistance in 2008/09 (MTs)
Province July-Sept 2008 October-Dec 2008 January-March 2009 Total
Manicaland 10,274 19,263 25,684 55,221
Mashonaland Central 5,564 10,432 13,910 29,906
Mashonaland East 6,732 12,623 16,830 36,185
Mashonaland West 4,547 8,525 11,366 24,438
Masvingo 9,078 17,022 22,695 48,795
Matebeleland North 4,592 8,609 11,479 24,679
Matebeleland South 5,345 10,092 13,362 28,729
Midlands 8,777 16,458 21,943 47,178
Rural Provinces 54,908 102,953 137,270 295,131
Urban and peri-urban 18,558 34,797 46,396 99,751
Total 73,470 137,750 183,670 394,880
Source: FAO/WFP Crop and Food Supply Assessment Mission (CFSAM) to Zimbabwe,
18 June 2008
Needs identified through the on-going ZRCS assessments include urgent food
aid for food-insecure households. There is also an urgent need of assisting
poor households to resume crop production activities in the next
agricultural season. ZRCS is appealing for a total of USD 26,837,020 for the
operation to be implemented in nine months (the appeal coverage will extend
to 12 months as some staff and costs will be required for activities before
and after the actual nine-month distribution/implementation period),
focusing on food aid and livelihood recovery programme; including water and
sanitation and disaster risk reduction activities as well.
Surveys conducted by FAO/WFP and the Zimbabwe Vulnerability Assessment
Committee (ZIMVAC) in the previous years have identified districts that have
higher levels of food insecurity than others throughout the country. The
districts identified are illustrated in the map below. The districts' food
insecurity is ranked from high to low. It is important to note that most of
the medium to low insecurity districts now fall under highly insecure
categories due to the lean periods and harsh economic environment.
Most of the ZRCS' 25 target project sites are within areas of high food
insecurity. The community home-based care (CHBC) clients and OVC will be
targeted as the entry point as these groups comprise of extremely vulnerable
households that will require food assistance since household food production
has been compromised. However, there will be on-going assessments to include
other vulnerable groups meeting the National Society's selection criteria
who also need food assistance.
These will be inline with the National Society's capacity at hand.
The priority need of the beneficiaries as identified by surveys conducted by
the ZRCS is food aid.
Most beneficiaries highlighted that they could not implement livelihoods
activities or farming activities on empty stomachs. Food needs will be
addressed through direct food distribution in rural areas and in urban
areas. Food aid is the single largest budget line in this appeal - a result
of the current global food crisis and soaring inflation within Zimbabwe.
Support for agricultural production and livelihoods recovery including water
and sanitation activities will be conducted to address medium to long-term
needs. The number of beneficiaries will vary depending on the nature of the
activity, taking into account the capabilities of beneficiaries and levels
of community effort to enable effective resource utilisation. Some
activities although targeting specific households, will benefit the
surrounding communities indirectly (model gardens, wells, dams etc).
The proposed operation
The strategic plan of the operation is guided by the IFRC's four Global
Agenda Goals2 and seeks to achieve two strategic objectives:
The IFRC's activities are aligned with its Global Agenda, which sets out
four broad goals:
1. Reduce the number of deaths, injuries and impact of disasters.
2. Reduce the number of deaths, illnesses and impact from diseases and
public health emergencies.
3. Increase local community, civil society and Red Cross Red Crescent
capacity to address the most urgent situations of vulnerability.
4. Reduce intolerance, discrimination and social exclusion and promote
respect for diversity and human dignity.
1. The provision of timely emergency relief to meet the basic needs of the
most affected by the food security crisis and,
2. The provision of early recovery support to restore and improve
agricultural resilience of the most vulnerable people in target areas.
Food aid will initially be targeted towards CHBC clients, OVC and their
household members in the eight provinces and 25 project sites that the ZRCS
operates in (refer to tables 5 - 7 below for detailed breakdown of these
groups). Direct food aid is more appropriate in Zimbabwe due to the national
shortage of basic food commodities on the open market (the voucher system is
viewed as not feasible under current socio-economic circumstances). ZRCS
will continue to attend WFP coordinated food aid meetings where humanitarian
agencies share information on areas of operation to avoid double dipping.
The planned recovery activities will help beneficiaries to be more self
sufficient in the future.
These will include the establishment of sand dams, protection and deepening
of wells, micro-projects, conservation farming, piloting of treadle and
elephant pumps. Results from ZRCS assessments and programme reviews
indicated the need to strengthen integration of water and sanitation and
livelihoods interventions. Most livelihoods interventions are
agriculture-based and it recommended having reliable water sources to ensure
high yields and sustainability.
Table 4: Summary Food Requirements for the Red Cross operation (MTs)
MT Aug Sept Oct Nov Dec Jan Feb March April Total
Maize 2,601 2,601 2,601 2,601 2,601 2,601 2,601 2,601 2,601 23,409
Beans 468 468 468 468 468 468 468 468 468 4,212
Oil(1,000lts) 117 117 117 117 117 117 117 117 117 1,053
CSB 780 780 780 780 780 780 780 780 780 7,020
Grand Total 3,967 3,967 3,967 3,967 3,967 3,967 3,967 3,967 3,966 35,694
Table 5: Summary of Targeted Beneficiaries - HBC Clients
HBC Clients Household Members
Province Male Female Total HBC Male Female
Total household members Total HBC+HH members
Masvingo 1,572 1,699 3,271 4,910 5,542 10452 13723
Mat North 1,167 1,585 2,752 4,795 6,126 10921 13673
Mat South 1,192 1,663 2,855 4,542 4,580 9122 11977
Midlands 510 562 1,072 1,411 1,532 2943 4015
Manicaland 642 757 1,399 1,373 1,487 2860 4259
Mash Central 980 1,308 2,288 2,749 2,853 5602 7890
Mash East 424 731 1,155 1,349 1,464 2813 3968
Mash West 883 1,087 1,970 1,158 1,470 2628 4598
TOTAL 7,370 9,392 16,762 22,287 25,054 47,341 64,103
Table 6: Summary of Targeted Beneficiaries - OVC Clients
Boys Girls Total OVC Household Members Total OVC and households members
Masvingo 1,212 1,321 2,533 7,599 10,132
Mat North 3,668 3,990 7,658 22,974 30,632
Mat South 3,929 5,895 9,824 29,472 39,296
Midlands 1,323 1,414 2,737 7,176 9,913
Manicaland 5,841 6,319 12,160 36,480 48,640
Mash Central 1,445 1,538 2,983 8,949 11,932
Mash East 1,498 1,568 3,066 9,198 12,264
Mash West 4,210 4,348 8,210 24,630 32,840
TOTAL 23,126 26,393 49,519 146,478 195,997
Table 7: Summary of All Targeted Beneficiaries (OVC plus HBC Beneficiaries)
Province Total HBC
+ HH members Total OVC + HH members Total HBC + OVC + HH members
Matebeleland North 13,67330,63244,305
Matebeleland South 11,97739,29651,273
Midlands 4,015 9,913 13,928
Mashonaland Central 7,89011,93219,822
Mashonaland East 3,96812,26416,232
Mashonaland West 4,598 33,18837,786
TOTAL 64,103 195,997 260,100
The activities outlined below have been designed to meet the minimum
standards demanded by the Sphere project's Humanitarian Charter and minimum
standards3 in disaster response.
Objective: To meet immediate food needs of 260,100 vulnerable people (52,020
households) for nine months through monthly food distributions in targeted
areas until the next harvesting season.
Expected results Activities planned
· Improved nutrition status of beneficiaries.
· Safety-net provided for vulnerable households.
· Assisted children have improved capacity to concentrate at school.
· Distribution of food packs (maize 10kg, beans 1.8kg, cooking oil 0.5
litres and 3kg corn soya blend per individual per month) to 260,100
vulnerable people and their households in rural and urban areas.
(Food packs are based on WFP standard of 2,100 Kcal per person per day)
· Monitoring and evaluation of relief activities and reporting on relief
Agricultural Production and Livelihoods Recovery Objectives:
1. To build agricultural recovery and stabilise household food production of
100,930 people (20,186 households) through distribution of agricultural
inputs, strengthening community seed banks and supporting agricultural
management for nine months
2. To establish sustainable systems that protect livelihoods through diverse
interventions to improve household income, food security, nutrition status
and self sufficiency of 128,500 people (25,700 households) for nine months
Expected results Activities planned
· Increase in area under agricultural production
· Improved access to agricultural inputs in the next farming season
· Increase in household food production.
· Livelihood projects are implemented in line with country strategic plan
· Cost effective input usage
· Significant increase in yields
· Improved nutritional status of beneficiaries
· Improved household income
· Improved household food security
· Distributing recovery seed packs consisting of 10kg maize, 10kg sorghum,
5kg beans, 5kg groundnuts, 100kg ammonium nitrate and 50kg compound D
fertiliser to 20,186 rural households (100,930 people)
· Training beneficiaries on seed preservation and seed storage.
· Training beneficiaries on better farming techniques.
· Conservation farming trainings with technical support from AGRITEX
benefiting 2,500 people (500 households).
· Training 60,000 people (12,000 households) in nutrition promotion.
· Distributing vegetable seeds (five varieties) benefiting 128,500 people
· Installation of low cost water pumping technologies i.e. 500 treadle pumps
and 20 elephant pumps
· Conducting a total of 50 training sessions in market linkage and vegetable
· Providing 200 families (1,000 people) with three goats each.
· Training the recipient households on animal husbandry. Goats are passed on
to an additional 200 households (who in turn will do the same), three months
after their first set of kids.
· Implementation of specific projects such as bee keeping, mushroom
production, aquaculture and crafts, based on viable project proposals and
feasibility assessments benefiting, 100 projects benefiting 1,000 people in
total in each region.
· Provision of 100 water troughs at water points for domestic animals.
Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene Promotion
Objective: To improve access of households to safe water and health and
hygiene promotion for 3,000 vulnerable households (15,000 people) in 25
Expected results Activities planned
· Access to sustainable safe and adequate water for both human and animal
· Improved behaviour change through hygiene promotion activities.
· Rehabilitating 200 water points (hand pumps and apron).
· Conducting a total of 50 Participatory Hygiene and Sanitation
Transformation (PHAST) training targeting 15,000.
· Training 200 water point committees in community-based management (CBM).
The IFRC southern Africa Zone logistics department in close collaboration
with the ZRCS logistics department have extensive experience working with
other organisations based in Zimbabwe, such as WFP and European Commission
Humanitarian Office (ECHO). The IFRC southern Africa Zone logistics
department in collaboration with the regional logistics unit (RLU) in Dubai
is experienced in providing services in major operations and is conversant
with customs clearance and other requirements in Zimbabwe.
The food distribution points (FDPs) will be monitored by ZRCS provincial
officers and trained volunteers. In conducting all these logistics component
processes, the ZRCS logistics structures from the headquarters to the IFRC
zone level will be strengthened in order to ensure adequate support to the
The food is delivered to FDPs and distributed on the same day to identified
representatives of registered CHBC clients and OVC. Care facilitators are
on-site at the distribution points to ensure accuracy of the process.
Monitoring is undertaken at FDPs to ensure that ration sizes are maintained,
and to investigate issues such as travel distances, modes of transport and
statistics related to household members sharing the food.
Capacity of the National Society
ZRCS is a volunteer driven organisation, which depends on community-based
volunteers (approximately 30,000 at present) working with the most
vulnerable. ZRCS has a long standing experience working with communities
across the country. The community-based approach will be enhanced through
the capacity building of staff and volunteers to monitor and evaluate
projects and to participate in data collection. Community consultation will
take place through the participatory approach exercise to identify ways of
supporting the entire community's food security and to strengthen the social
protection around the most vulnerable.
Specific volunteers have been identified for the agricultural recovery
programme. These volunteers and lead farmers will continue to reach the
targeted households, cascading information and assisting in monitoring
projects and are key facilitators of community action. Volunteers will
receive inputs to use in their own plots as model gardens and they will
continue to work closely with AGRITEX officers to train lead farmers in each
ZRCS staff members are committed at all levels (national, provincial and
district) to ensure effective and efficient implementation of all
programmes. The national food security team is made up of a food security
and livelihoods programme officer, programme assistant and a secretary,
skilled in programme management, agronomics, and research and data
management. There are also food security and livelihoods officers in all
provinces working with the district and ward levels.
In some provinces there are also district officers who help to coordinate
and monitor projects.
ZRCS has also established a monitoring and evaluation (M&E) unit at national
level. The department is focused on building the capacity of staff and
volunteers to effectively monitor programmes. This will help in the
production of quality, impact-based reports through the development of
indicators, M&E plans, and development of data bases and mapping of
strategies to meaningfully involve beneficiaries.
The National Society will continue to work with existing government
structures such as AGRITEX to ensure sustainability of projects. AGRITEX
will assist in monitoring and providing technical support to beneficiaries
in implementing and managing agricultural projects. Technical partners such
as FAO, WFP and the Ministry of Agriculture will assist through joint
monitoring and evaluation visits with ZRCS staff and volunteers. Evaluations
conducted at the mid and end points of the operation's phases will enable to
identification of programme weaknesses as well as successes which can then
be captured as best practices. Partners have also provided additional
in-country expatriate technical support to the WatSan, HIV AIDS and
Cognisance must be given to the challenges that a large scale operation of
this kind can place on the ZRCS. This appeal caters for capacity issues
through the engagement of temporary staff such as finance and logistics
officers, dedicated solely to this programme.
Capacity of the IFRC
A Federation Country Representation office (FCR) was established in Zimbabwe
in January 2008 following a request from ZRCS. The FCR is dedicated solely
to the support of the ZRCS and will enhance the capacity of ZRCS staff to
manage this integrated programme. The IFRC has coordinated the development
and implementation of past food security operations in Zimbabwe.
Food insecurity has been the major humanitarian challenge in southern Africa
as a whole since 2002 and the IFRC has strengthened capacity in response and
sustainable recovery programmes.
The objective of the FCR is to coordinate and capacitate the National
Society to effectively respond to disasters such as the food security
operation, to provide technical advice and training in priority areas on
request and as and when necessary. Back-up is also available from partner
Red Cross societies based in Zimbabwe such as Danish and Norwegian Red
For this specific operation, the IFRC will engage two technical delegates
and one local officer to strengthen logistics, procurement and finance and
provide continuous technical support. One driver will also be recruited
under this programme. Two delegates will comprise of the relief coordinator
who will counterpart with the ZRCS national food security and livelihoods
officer, while the logistics delegate will counterpart with ZRCS logistics
officer. They all report through the national programmes coordinator. The
third will be a finance person directly relating to the finance officer and
reporting through the finance manager while the forth will be a driver for
Due to the strong emphasis on logistics and finance most purchases will be
made directly by the IFRC and finances will be closely monitored to minimize
exchange rate losses.
The relief team will be supported by IFRC Southern African Zone disaster
management, health, water and sanitation, finance, logistics and planning,
monitoring, evaluation and reporting (PMER) departments. The zone was
established in Johannesburg in 2008 as part of the IFRC's recent global
restructure. Assuming many of the responsibilities previously handled by the
IFRC secretariat in Geneva, the zone office is responsible for directly
supporting the development of Red Cross society capacity in Southern Africa
as well as for providing strategic and technical assistance.
Budget Item Priority Cost (CHF)
Food relief (maize, beans, CSB, oil) 1 16,836,593
Seeds, plants, fertilizers 1 3,447,255
WatSan 1 246,250
Vehicle procurement (cars, motorcycles, bicycles) 2 108,150
Livelihoods training 1 111,720
Computers/ telecommunications (cameras, laptops, printers, fax) 2 30,765
Warehousing and distribution (rental, customs fees, loading etc) 2 3,966,645
Vehicle maintenance costs (fuel, service, insurance, spare parts) 2 143,911
Federation personnel 3 292,920
NS personnel 3 599,328
Consultants fees 3 9,975
Workshops and training (capacity building, evaluation) 1 47,250
Travel 2 5,195
Information materials (visibility / publicity) 2 11,550
General expenses (administration) 3 21,263
Communication (postage, courier, telephone, internet) 3 40,950
Professional fees (audit) 3 31,500
Programme Support Recovery 1,804,095
Resource Mobilisation and Alternative Strategies
In the event that funding is received late or the appeal is under-funded,
there are several strategies, which could be applied to modify this appeal.
The first of these could be the reduction of the appeal time frame to six
months thus cutting the budget while covering the entire targeted population
in all project areas. Priority until August 2008 will be given to
agricultural starter packs taking into account the planting season
(November) after which increasing vegetable seed procurement could be an
option as these are not as time-bound as cereal crops.
Thomas Gurtner Bekele Geleta
Director Secretary General
Coordination and Programmes Division
How we work
All International Federation assistance seeks to adhere to the Code of
Conduct for the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement and
Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO's) in Disaster Relief and is committed
to the Humanitarian Charter and Minimum Standards in Disaster Response
(Sphere) in delivering assistance to the most vulnerable.
The International Federation's activities are aligned with its Global
Agenda, which sets out four broad goals to meet the Federation's mission to
"improve the lives of vulnerable people by mobilizing the power of
Global Agenda Goals:
· Reduce the numbers of deaths, injuries and impact from disasters.
· Reduce the number of deaths, illnesses and impact from diseases and public
· Increase local community, civil society and Red Cross Red Crescent
capacity to address the most urgent situations of vulnerability.
· Reduce intolerance, discrimination and social exclusion and promote
respect for diversity and human dignity.
For further information specifically related to this operation please
· In Zimbabwe: Emma Kundishora, Secretary General Email email@example.com;
firstname.lastname@example.org , Phone: Tel: +263.4.332638; +263.4.332197;
· In Zimbabwe: Peter Lundberg; Country Representative, Zimbabwe Country
Email email@example.com .Phone: Tel: +263.4.705166; +263.4.720315,
· In Southern Africa Zone: Françoise Le Goff, Head of Zone Office,
Email firstname.lastname@example.org; Phone: Tel: +27.11.303.9700;
Fax: +27.11.884.3809; +27.11.884.0230
· In Geneva: John Roche, Operations Coordinator, Email: email@example.com;
Phone: +41.22.730.4400, Fax: +41.22.733.03.95
APPEAL BUDGET SUMMARY
Zimbabwe Food Insecurity Appeal No.
Construction Materials 0
Clothing & Textiles 0
Seeds & Plants 3,447,255
Water & Sanitation 246,250
Medical & First Aid 0
Teaching Materials 111,720
Utensils & Tools 0
Other Supplies & Services 0
Total Relief Needs 20,641,818
Land & Buildings
Vehicles Purchase 108,150
Computers & Telecom Equipment 30,765
Office/Household Furniture & Equip.
Other Machinery & Equipment
TRANSPORT, STORAGE & VEHICLES
Storage - Warehouse 510,405
Distribution & Monitoring 3,456,240
Transport & Vehicles Costs 143,911
International Staff 292,920
Regionally Deployed Staff 3,300
National Staff 236,880
National Society Staff 359,148
WORKSHOPS & TRAINING
Workshops & Training 47,250
Information & Public Relations 11,550
Office running costs 21,263
Communication Costs 40,950
Professional Fees 31,500
Financial Charges 0
Other General Expenses 0
Programme Support - PSR 1,804,095
Total Operational Needs 7,113,497
Total Appeal Budget (Cash & Kind) 27,755,314
Net Request 27,755,314 -- ZimOnline
Tribune Staff/AFP 07 August, 2008 01:32:00
A human rights group is putting together a case that will see ZANU-PF
militia perpetrators of violence and rape against women prosecuted
A human-rights group on Thursday announced it was collecting legal evidence
of politically motivated mass rape by Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe's
youth militia to build a case for prosecuting the men responsible.
AIDS-Free World, set up by the former UN special envoy for AIDS in Africa,
Stephen Lewis, said it would shortly dispatch lawyers to southern Africa to
collect testimony for prosecutions that could take place domestically or in
an international tribunal after Mugabe leaves power.
"The legal definition of a crime against humanity is a widespread and
systematic attack against a civilian population," the group's legal
director, Noah Novogrodsky, said on the sidelines of the International AIDS
Conference in Mexico City.
"We believe members of Mugabe's inner circle who turned [ruling party]
ZANU-PF's youth militia into rapists and killers are responsible for crimes
Betty Makoni, founder of a Zimbabwean grassroots groups for girls called
Girl Child Network, said that her organisation had collected evidence from
53 women who had been raped by the youth militia, and private doctors had
accumulated evidence for many more.
The tally of known cases "may be up to over 700 now," said Makoni. "No
single perpetrator has been arrested."
Makoni said that the mass rapes occurred after the stalemated March 29
election in Zimbabwe, when many male members of the opposition went into
Militiamen in rural areas toured villages demanding that women identify
brothers, husbands and fathers who were members of the opposition, and beat,
tortured or raped them to get the information, she said.
"If you don't tell the youth militia where the suspected opposition members
are, they insert pesticides in your vagina," Makoni told a press conference
hosted by AIDS-free World.
"A lot of them had sticks inserted into their vagina... pushed in there in
order for you to tell them 'I will never never support the opposition'."
Victims included a 13-year-old girl who was abducted and traded to a youth
militiaman in exchange for goat, and a 60-year-old woman raped by 18
"I'm talking about an old granny, whom I saw in the morning, with the power
to look after her grandchildren, but in the evening, she's in the bush, with
the semen dribbling from 18 men," said Makoni.
After one gang rape, a woman was told, "we are coming again until you give
birth to a ZANU-PF child," Makoni said.
Police turned away women who sought to file a complaint for rape, and many
women, suffering vaginal bleeding and other serious injuries, who asked for
help at state hospitals were told by doctors "'I don't want to cause trouble
for myself. I don't have a choice but to turn you away'," said Makoni.
"They are co-perpetrators and accomplices in crimes against humanity," she
"Rape is still taking place," she said, adding that the latest case she had
received occurred on July 24.
One of the biggest worries of the rape victims was that they may have become
infected by the AIDS virus. Zimbabwe has one of the highest rates of the
human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) in the world, with 15.3 percent of the
adult population infected.
But getting an HIV test was difficult and expensive, and many women were too
afraid to find out, she said.
Novogrodsky said the legal mission was "to record the names of the
perpetrators. We want to take the statements of the witnesses while the
memories are still fresh. We don't want to allow a culture of denial or
He admitted that there was scant hope of prosecuting rapists or those who
may have ordered the assaults while Mugabe remained in power.
But, he said, there were excellent chances of prosecution domestically or in
an international trial, in the same way that Liberian warlord Charles Taylor
and Serbian Radovan Karadzic had been put in the dock.
The evidence could also be used in any future Truth and Reconciliation
Commission in Zimbabwe, an idea modelled on the experience of post-apartheid
Africa, he added.
By Patience Rusere
07 August 2008
Despite reports of progress in South African-brokered Zimbabwean
power-sharing talks, police in Harare on Thursday raided the offices of the
Crisis In Zimbabwe Coalition seeking information on its directors, in
particular National Director Xolani Zitha.
Crisis Coalition lawyer Tawanda Chiurayi told reporter Patience Rusere of
VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe that the raid constituted harassment as
information on the directors of the Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition, an
umbrella for civic groups, is a matter of public record.
Elsewhere, civil society sources said about 10 activists from various groups
were deported Thursday from Zambia after immigration authorities there
claimed the activists were trying to disrupt the ongoing power-sharing
Those deported included Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights Chairwoman Irene
Petras, Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum Chairman Abel Chikomo, Combined
Harare Residents Association Chairman Barnabas Mangodza and officials of the
Kenya office of the National Constitutional Assembly, a leading Zimbabwean
civic advocacy organization.
VOA could not reach the individuals said have been deported. Sources said
they were trying to hold a consultative meeting on the country's proposed
By Jonga Kandemiiri
07 August 2008
A farm in the Zimbabwean district of Rusape, Manicaland province, has been
invaded by militants led by self-styled war veteran Agatha Mugomba, who told
the farm's current owners she has an offer letter from the Ministry of
Lands, Land Reform and Resettlement.
Thousands of white-owned farms were invaded by war veterans and other
militants starting in 2000 when the government of President Robert Mugabe
launched a land reform program that most experts cite as the root cause of
the country's precipitous economic decline.
Today only a few hundred farms remain in white hands, and many of those
remaining have come under attack by pro-government militants in the wake of
the March presidential and general elections, which gave rise to months of
often deadly political violence.
After the militants invaded Masasa Plot July 29, farmer Gavin Woest and his
family remained barricaded inside their home while the invaders sang
revolutionary songs outside.
Woest told VOA he has been farming on the plot for 10 years and was
surprised to hear that the ministry had given Mugomba a letter offering the
property for acquisition.
Woest's lawyer, Leonard Chigadza, told reporter Jonga Kandemiiri of VOA's
Studio 7 for Zimbabwe that his client is seeking a high court order to expel
By Carole Gombakomba
07 August 2008
A Zimbabwean child rights activist told delegates to the the 17th
International AIDS Conference in Mexico City on Thursday that rape as a form
of political violence seems likely to boost the rate of HIV infection among
women and girls in the Southern African country.
Girl Child Network Director Betty Makoni charged during a session organized
by AIDS-Free World of Canada that many women and girls were subjected to
rape and torture by militia members allegedly under the control of the
ruling ZANU-PF party during a wave of political violence that followed March
elections and was mainly directed at the opposition.
AIDS Free World said it is now documenting such crimes and is naming alleged
rapists with the intention of bringing them to justice. Makoni said it will
not be difficult to name names, because most of the perpetrators are
individuals known to residents of the localities, often remote rural areas,
where the alleged sexually based attacks took place.
Makoni said most of the cases were reported to the police, but that
government doctors were reluctant to document the crimes, or administer HIV
Makoni told reporter Carole Gombakomba of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe that
her main concern at present is to help rape victims heal physically, but
added that given the high HIV prevalence rate in the country, many victims
could find their plight even more dire.
By Patience Rusere
07 August 2008
New outbreaks of diarrheal disease are affecting thousands of residents of
the Zimbabwean capital of Harare, according to local officials who blame the
failing water system.
Deputy Mayor Emmanuel Chiroto said the latest outbreak has hit the Harare
districts of Letombo Park, Masasa Park, Warren Park and Glen View. He noted
that diarrhea has been a chronic problem for residents of the Mabvuku-Tafara
district for some time.
Chiroto said he could not provide exact figures as to the number of
residents who have fallen ill, explaining that most of them cannot afford to
seek treatment at a clinic or hospital.
Zimbabwe's municipal water systems have been increasingly troubled in part
due to the age of facilities, but also because authorities lack hard
currency to buy purification chemicals.
Chiroto told reporter Patience Rusere of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe that
the city is trying to wrest control of the water supply from the Zimbabwe
National Water Authority, which took over all municipal systems last year,
to assure residents have safe drinking water.
By Blessing Zulu
07 August 2008
Power-sharing talks between Zimbabwe's long-ruling ZANU-PF and both two
formations of the Movement for Democratic Change concluded Thursday in
Pretoria, according to sources close to the talks, and the resulting
agreements were set to be handed over to President Robert Mugabe and MDC
leaders Morgan Tsvangirai and Arthur Mutambara.
Sources in Harare and Pretoria said South African President Thabo Mbeki was
expected to go to Harare on Sunday to encourage the principals to approve
the accord. Mbeki, mediator in the crisis for the Southern African
Development Community, had been expected in Harare Thursday, but the
negotiators asked for more time, political sources said.
Despite the official optimism being expressed in Pretoria, the Zimbabwean
government cast a shadow over outlook by moving to block a proposed
consultation visit by United Nations Assistant Secretary General for
Political Affairs Haile Menkerios.
Menkerios is a member of the high-level reference group recently formed to
support the talks. The reference group also includes delegates from SADC and
the African Union.
Sources in Harare said the government noted that Menkerios's visit was not
announced in advance, while top officials including Mr. Mugabe will be on a
long Heroes Day holiday.
But the same sources reported suspicions among Harare officials that
Menkerios has been sent by U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on behalf of
the United States and Great Britain, setting up what they denounced as a
The U.N. secretary general's assistant spokesman, Farhan Haq, told VOA that
Menkerios is still in Pretoria and "arrangements for him to travel to Harare
are still to be worked out."
International Crisis Group Senior Analyst Sydney Masamvu told reporter
Blessing Zulu of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe that a breakthrough is likely -
but cautioned the deal must be signed before celebrations are in order as
anything can happen in politics.
Njabulo Ncube Political Editor
DANIEL Shumba, the leader of the United People's Party (UPP), has threatened
to sue South African President Thabo Mbeki if he is not immediately included
in the on-going SADC-mediated talks.
Mbeki will be in Harare today to meet President Robert Mugabe and opposition
leaders, Morgan Tsvangirai and Arthur Mutambara to discuss the finer details
of a power-sharing deal between ZANU-PF and the Movement for Democratic
Shumba was barred from submitting his papers as a candidate in the March 29
presidential election to the nomination court in February after failing to
meet the deadline.
However, in a judgment last Friday, the supreme court ruled that the refusal
of the nomination court to accept Shumba's papers was not in accordance with
Section 46 (7) of the Electoral Act.
Documents in The Finan-cial Gazette's possession indicate that based on the
Supreme Court ruling, Shumba on Tuesday engaged a South African law firm,
Van Huyssteen Incorporated Atto-rneys, whose offices are in Houghton,
Johannesburg, to write to Mbeki about the need to include him in the
negotiations to work out a solution to the Zimbabwean crisis.
In papers submitted by his lawyers, Shumba argues that ballot papers for the
March 29 presidential election included his name as one of the candidates.
Shumba's lawyers contend that he is "entitled to participate in the on-going
consultations that are taking place concerning the affairs of Zimbabwe under
the auspices of Honourable President T. Mbeki appointed by the SADC
countries as the facilitator in this regard.
"Our client has a direct and substantial interest in the outcome of the
talks; any process of consultation concerning the democratic future of
Zimbabwe is fundamentally flawed if it is limited to only two parties,"
reads part of the letter Shumba's lawyers wrote to Mbeki.
Shumba notes that his UPP is not the only minority party excluded from the
He believes civic society organisations and human rights groups should also
be included in the negotiations but questions the inclusion of Mutambara,
who did not contest the election.
Mbeki's office has acknowledged receiving the letter.
"The existing structure of the talks is indicative of unfairness, imbalance
and lack of proper thinking in as much as not all individuals and parties
who contested the elections on March 29 are included in the talks," said
lawyers representing Shumba.
"For instance we are instructed that Arthur Mutambara, who did not contest
the elections and was in fact allied to Simba Makoni before the election and
only subsequently, after the election, formed an alliance with the
Tsvangirai faction of the MDC, is included in the talks."
MASVINGO - There was an uproar in Gutu, one of
the province's biggest districts last week when ZANU-PF councillors stormed
out of a swearing-in ceremony after their Movement for Democratic Change
(MDC) counterparts who comprise the majority, took advantage of their
numbers to elect members of their party as committee chairmen.
The councillors, whose assumption of office
was delayed owing to the political impasse that ensued after the March 29
harmonised elections, met at Mpandawana growth point to choose a council
chairman, as well as heads of various committees.
The councillors were at each other's throats
over power sharing in the local authority between the two main political
The MDC, which has 25 councillors against
ZANU-PF's 16, voted for Daniel Jinga of ward 38 as council chairman and
another MDC member, Jameson Makovere, of Ward 20 as his deputy.
This sparked an uproar, with ZANU-PF
councillors demanding that someone from their party should be Jinga's
deputy. This was turned down by the MDC councillors.
The ZANU-PF councillors, as well as some local
chiefs in attendance, then walked out after sensing that this voting trend
would continue in the election of chairpersons of the various committees.
But undeterred, the MDC group proceeded to
elect committee chairpersons in the absence of the ZANU-PF councillors.
Amid the chaos, the two parties' supporters
broke into song to taunt each other, creating tension that threatened to
degenerate into violence.
The election of committee chairpersons in the
absence of ZANU-PF councillors was however, nullified and will now take
place after a swearing-in ceremony.
Observers said the walkout was a ploy by
ZANU-PF to dilute the power of the MDC in local authorities, most of which
are now dominated by the opposition party.
At Nemamwa, which houses the Masvingo Rural
district council, as well as Jerera growth point, the councils are MDC
In terms of Section 80 of the Urban Councils
Act as amended by Section (4a) of the Local Government Laws Amendment Act
number 1 of 2008, the Minister of Local Government, Public Works and Urban
Development, Ignatius Chombo, can appoint "special interest" councillors.
But such "special interest" appointees have so
far proved to be losing ZANU-PF candidates.
In Gutu, Chombo's "special interest"
appointees will bring the number of ZANU PF councillors to 21 while in
Masvingo, losing ZANU-PF candidates, including businesswoman Namatirai
Chivhanga, were roped into the new council.
Clemence Manyukwe Senior Political Reporter
JUSTICE Minister Patrick Chinamasa's co-accused in his trial in 2006 on
allegations of trying to defeat the course of justice will be prosecuted
next month despite a court having acquitted the minister on the same
Chinamasa, two senior Central Intelligence Organisation operatives in
Manicaland Innocent Chibaya and Dennis Masiya as well as Rusape District
Administrator Cosmas Chiringa and Manicaland businessman Robson Makoni were
arraigned before a Rusape magistrate in 2006, for allegedly pressurising
state witnesses to withdraw their testimonies against National Security
Minister Didymus Mutasa's supporters who were facing political violence
Chinamasa was acquitted after being tried separately from the four others
who have now been informed that they will be prosecuted on the basis of the
Charles Warara, a lawyer representing one of the accused persons, confirmed
the latest development to The Financial Gazette.
"The Attorney General's Office has notified us that the trial will continue
next month. The accused persons want this to close and look at their
rights," Warara said.
During his trial Chinamasa described himself as a "political victim" with
media reports at the time suggesting that the court case was one of the
intrigues between ZANU-PF factions led by Emmerson Mnangagwa and Solomon
Mujuru that were vying for power in the event of President Robert Mugabe's
Last year Levison Chikafu, the law officer who served as prosecutor during
Chinamasa's trial resigned from the AG's Office to join former finance
minister Simba Makoni's Mavambo project. In the March 29 harmonised
elections, Chikafu stood as an independent but lost the Headlands House of
Assembly seat to Mutasa at a time when Chinamasa was linked to Makoni's
While dismissing suggestions that he was backing the former Politburo member
who dumped ZANU-PF in February, Chinam-asa described his prosecution as
"They started with the spread of falsehoods against me around the so-called
Tsholotsho incident and they went on to mount a malicious criminal
prosecution in 2006 and now we have this," Chinamasa said.
Chinamasa has emerged in recent months, as the most vociferous defender of
President Mugabe's rule, earning him the chairmanship of the ZANU-PF
information committee formed to spearhead the party's presidential re-run
campaign after the disputed March 29 poll won by Morgan Tsvangirai of the
THREE Cabinet ministers have blocked the ejection from Intersew Flats in the
Harare central business district of ZANU-PF members some of whom kidnapped
and assaulted a city lawyer as he tried to serve them with eviction orders.
The irate tenants took the legal practitioner, Stuart Nyamushaya, to the
party's provincial offices where he was assaulted. He suffered serious
Three ruling party supporters appeared in court last month in connection
with the lawyer's assault, but The Financial Gazette established this week
that political pressure was brought to bear on Nyamushaya to withdraw the
charges against the suspected assailants.
Documents at hand show that as a result of the intervention of ruling party
politicians, the tenants will not be evicted as ordered by the High Court.
Local Government Minister Ignatius Chombo chaired a meeting, which was also
attended by Mines Minister Amos Midzi and Agriculture Mechanisation
Minister, Joseph Made, where it was "agreed" that alternative accommodation
should be found for the tenants.
Midzi attended the meeting in his capacity as ZANU-PF's Harare provincial
"The ministry and City of Harare will work with representatives of the
tenants to identify suitable unutilised buildings and open land where they
can be relocated," a ministry document says.
"By copy of this letter, the Director of Planning Services in the city of
Harare is requested to work with the Director of Housing in the Ministry of
Local Government, Public Works and Urban Development in carrying out the
Alternative accommodation for the affected tenants should be found in three
Sources that attended the meeting on Tuesday said Midzi insisted that the
court order should be respected but his colleagues shot this down.
In an interview on Tuesday, a Harare lawyer Moses Kambesere said he had
brought Nyamushaya and the three ZANU-PF supporters who were being charged
with kidnapping and assaulting him together and "they agreed in principle to
withdraw the matter."
Kambesere said he was a neutral mediator between the parties.
Nelson Chenga Staff Reporter
A COCKTAIL of impediments threatens to dry up Harare's water taps while raw
sewage continues to contaminate the city's water reservoirs.
The main constraints pertain to chemical costs, poor funding, an unrealistic
tariff regime, frequent power cuts and a half-hearted approach to water
management policies, officials say.
"The combination of water shortages and sewerage spillages expose urban
populations to a great risk of water-borne diseases," Zimbabwe National
Authority (ZINWA) chief executive officer, Engineer Albert Muyambo warns
amid increasing chronic diarrhoea outbreaks.
All the water supplied to the City of Harare and its environs is virtually
free, judging by the unrealistic tariffs levied.
In addition, out of the overall water supplies, only 25 percent of total
daily requirements reach consumers.
A further drop spells doom for the almost three million people living in and
around the capital, Chitungwiza and Norton.
As of last month ZINWA was spending more than $20 quadrillion ($2 million
re-valued) per day to treat one cubic metre of water (an equivalent of five
200-litre drums) yet at the end of the month residents were expected to pay
a $500 trillion ($50 000 re-valued) in water bills.
Water treatment alone costs an equivalent to $60 quadrillion monthly yet
consumers are paying an average of less than a cent of the new currency.
The cost of chemicals needed to treat raw water was pegged at one
quintillion ($100 million).
At the sewerage plants where waste is treated before being recycled into raw
water supply reservoirs, the cost of installing filters has shot up to
US$2,5 million in addition to the US$500 million required for major
Though the situation has prompted some in government to "agitate for serious
approaches to help improve the water situation in Harare fast" many are yet
to heed the wake up call.
Blaming government officials for not pushing water management issues hard
enough a ZINWA official, who chose to remain anonymous, protested: "People
are not appreciating the economic value of water at a time when the costs of
managing water are escalating."
In the meantime, ZINWA, with the assistance of the United Nations Children's
Fund (Unicef), hopes to commission at least 20 boreholes in Mabvuku and
Tafara high-density suburbs where taps ran dry many months ago.
Current energy and project funding problems besetting Zimbabwe have delayed
the rehabilitation of 11 more boreholes in the plush suburbs of Highlands
and Greendale while 12 new boreholes are near completion in Mabvuku and
Although Zimbabwe's economic problems that merged around 2000 are a
convenient scapegoat, water woes in Harare and its environs are a disaster
that has grown steadily since independence in 1980.
According to ZINWA officials, demand has increased in the past 28 years due
to rapid population growth, while the capacity to deliver has plummeted.
As a result, Harare's major water supply plant at the Morton Jaffray Water
Works cannot meet the 1 020-megalitre daily water demand.
Half of the 440 megalitres produced at the Morton Jaffray Water Works is
lost daily in the distribution channel.
Accusing fingers have been pointed at ZINWA, which has been blamed for the
collapsing water supply system.
Harare and Chitungwiza are now campaigning to manage their own water
Norton, also grappling with the challenge of providing enough water to its
residents, could soon join the bandwagon.
However, Walter Mzembi, the Deputy Minister of Water and Infrastructural
Develop-ment says: "We feel pointing fingers at each other and inciting
'warlike' water management has become such a complex matter that solutions
are becoming hard to come by given the fact that a population of about three
million in Harare and Chitungwiza and Norton depend on under-utilised water
purification plants at the Morton Jaffray and Prince Edward plants. The
Price Edward plant produces just about 60 megalitres daily".
ZINWA took over water management in the capital from the Harare City Council
According to records, the change over was necessitated after major
development funders - the World Bank and the European Investment Bank -
raised concerns about the manner in which the city's water was being
By this time the City of Harare was battling to manage water supplies with
an ageing and collapsing pipe network.
So, ZINWA assumed an enormous task entailing water resource management,
clear water production, overhauling a rusty water supply network as well as
increase capacity to meet rising demand for domestic and industrial
consumption while waste treatment created new challenges.
Water reticulation and sewer rehabilitation programmes have been affected by
the drying up of funding from traditional sources such as the World Bank and
the European Union, that used to facilitate multilateral and bilateral aid
Harare's main raw water supplier, Lake Chivero already is "carpeted" with
water hyacinth nourished by nutrients from sewerage waste directly
discharged into the lake.
It is only a matter of time before fish start dying once the lake becomes
over-saturated with nutrients and eventually fails to support water
An environmental disaster akin to one in the early 1990s looms.
With a crumbling national economy hampered by an uncertain political future
and a slow-to-act government bureaucracy weighing down ZINWA's water
management efforts, things have finally come to a head.
But the fight for control of the water management system could worsen the
situation given the fact that past problems remain unsolved as new ones
The Herald recently quoted Chitungwiza mayor Israel Marange as saying: "We
support a breakaway from ZINWA. We are ready to assume the management of
water and sewer reticulation. We want to improve water supply to the
community and industry. We feel ZINWA should be responsible for bulk water
But, officials at ZINWA expressed surprise at disgruntlement voiced by
councils and doubted that their wish for autonomy would be granted.
They said handing over water management to local authorities would entail
government backtracking on its policies after amending the Water Rights Act
to legalise the formation of ZINWA.
A reversal would be long and tedious, involving lobbying through Parliament.
Harare and Chitungwiza, for example, would still need government assistance
for the removal of sludge that is underway at the Firle and Zengeza sewerage
Mzembi has defended ZINWA and attributed the parastatal's perceived failures
to poor funding and an unrealistic tariff regime.
"ZINWA always begs for money to pay for chemicals, to pay salaries,
infrastructural development and consumables and that puts it in a very
vulnerable position.We are agitating for sustainability and self sustenance
because we know if problems are scrutinised and addressed ZINWA can deliver.
"We would like water to be affordable but at the same time the situation we
are in requires realistic pricing and measures that would ensure the water
authority does not run out of chemicals."
While the squabbling continues, taps are fast running dry and it may be a
matter of time before a real disaster befalls the capital.
. . . as starvation looms
MASVINGO - Most boarding schools have been forced to close early to avert a
hunger crisis, as the dire food shortages have not spared institutions of
higher and tertiary education.
Masvingo, a drought-prone province has been hit by severe food shortages for
the past five years due to poor rains and lack of farming inputs that saw
the last farming season becoming 'the mother of all poor agricultural
seasons' due to lack of proper government planning.
All this is despite the fact that the province boasts massive water bodies
that can be harnessed for irrigation purposes.
Severe food shortages, according to students, have also impacted negatively
on colleges and universities in the province such as the Great Zimbabwe
University, as well as the Masvingo Technical College.
Most students from boarding schools around the province were all over town
this week as most schools closed earlier than the official closing date
after they ran out of mealie-meal, cooking oil as well as other basic
commodities. The official closing date is today.
Notable schools that sent students home early after they completed writing
their mid-year exams were the Reformed Church in Zimbabwe-run Zimuto,
located a few kilometres out of Masvingo town and Pamushana Mission in
The situation was also said to be dire at other boarding schools such as the
Roman Catholic-owned Mutero, Serima, and Gutu and Dewure high schools in
Other boarding schools advised parents pick up their children earlier as the
schools are struggling to feed them.
Although the school heads remained mum on the issue, students who spoke to
The Financial Gazette this week said while the authorities had struggled to
feed them, the situation had gone out of control the past three weeks.
"We were just eating to survive, being fed a daily diet of cabbage and
hardly ate any beef for the whole term.
"The quantity of food we were served was reduced drastically after the
school authorities said they had insufficient basic commodities," said a
student from Mutero High school.
The student, looking malnourished, said on better days, they had tea without
bread, but on bad days, they only had watery porridge in the morning.
But acting provincial education director in the Ministry of Education,
Sports and Culture, Clara Taridzo Dube professed ignorance of the matter,
insisting that it was illegal for schools to close earlier than the official
date without notifying her office.
"I am not aware of that. As far as I am concerned, no single school has
asked for permission to close early.
"We are going to launch investigations and penalise them," said Dube.
She said some schools had remained open until today. Masvingo, a province of
more than 1,5 million people, is failing to feed itself amid reports that
peasants in the rural areas are surviving on wild fruits as they cannot
access maize meal at the Grain Marketing Board (GMB), or cannot afford the
exorbitant prices charged on the parallel market for a bag of maize.
A 50kg bag of maize-meal, which should be obtained from the GMB at less than
$50, will not cost anything less than R200 on the informal market.
IT is almost certain that the resolution of the country's political impasse
is now on the horizon. The anxiety gripping Zimbabweans as the negotiations
edge closer to the climax speaks volumes about the high expectations on
their part to see an end to the excruciating suffering spawned by the
bickering between the main political parties.
Last month's signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) by the major
political actors in the country paving the way for the talks being held in
South Africa became the precursor to the elusive resolution of what had come
to be known as the Zimbabwe crisis.
The signing of the MoU also bolstered the shaky confidence of Zimbabweans,
including that of the doubting Thomases, who initially could not believe
that the boisterous ZANU-PF and the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC)
could commit themselves to ending a festering socio-political crisis that
was threatening to destabilise the entire southern African region, through
One hopes that the impending political settlement between the two MDC
formations and ZANU-PF will coincide with the Heroes Day commemorations on
Monday, so that the dawn of a new era in the country's political history
becomes a fitting tribute to the fallen heroes who made supreme sacrifices
to the nation so that its citizens can enjoy peace and prosperity.
Zimbabweans have endured the worst economic crisis in history spanning nine
years. It is only natural that after going through such an agonising phase
in their lives they are now pregnant with expectations for a better future.
There is a danger, however, that the expectations being built around
whatever political arrangement likely to emerge out of the negotiations
might come back to haunt the nation if they are not fulfilled. There is
therefore, need for the country's political players to guard against a
crisis of expectations, which if not managed property, might undo whatever
would have been achieved through the negotiations.
It means therefore, that instead of spending a lot of time congratulating
each other after the talks and massaging the egos of those who led the
process to bring about a political settlement, Zimbabweans should quickly
get back to business.
The polarisation and hatred caused by years of political infighting and
government's scorched earth policies do not augur well for the country's
development. The immediate challenge is for the political leadership to
embark on a process of national healing to soothe the emotional wounds
inflicted on both sides of the political divide.
Such national healing should be backed by concrete steps to cater for those
affected by political violence in the run-up to the elections in which army,
police and intelligence chiefs betrayed the nation by aligning themselves to
specific political parties.
It is not going to be a stroll in the park. There should be some form of
safety nets to cushion those who will find the going tough without
necessarily creating a dependence syndrome.
Zimbabweans should also not lose sight of the fact that the March 29
elections and the sham June 27 poll failed to produce winners to take charge
of the economy hence the country has for the past four months operated in a
vacuum, which needs to be filled as a matter of urgency.
Then there is hunger lurking in the shadows. This week reports emerged that
up to five million people may be at risk of chronic food insecurity by the
beginning of next year because of the anticipated poor harvests caused
largely by poor planning.
Despite acknowledging the pitfalls of the land reforms and the need to
re-organising the country's agriculture as the first step towards turning
around its economic fortunes, farming preparations have always been at sixes
and sevens with key inputs such as fertilizers, seed and chemicals, reaching
the intended beneficiaries well into the farming season. The funding for the
farmers has been insignificant and not well structured.
As it is, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent
Societies is appealing for almost US$26.6 million to assist 260,100
vulnerable people yet those who are supposed to be at the forefront of such
initiatives in Zimbabwe are doing nothing about the looming famine.
This comes also amid reports that a United Nations (UN) report released on
June 18 suggests that Zimbabwe's 2008 winter harvest may only produce about
40 percent of national needs, which means the country would have to import
wheat to cover the deficit.
The UN report projects that there will be more than two million food
insecure people for the period between July and September this year, rising
to 3.8 million between October and December and peaking at 5.1 million
between January and March next year.
This figure (5.1 million) represents approximately 45 percent of the country's
population and gives a clear indication of how severe the situation is and
Instead of this being a concern to international organisations alone, a
rejuvenated administration emerging locally should immediately mobilise
resources to ensure famine is averted.
The Ministries responsible for the civil protection unit, social welfare,
finance and agriculture should come up with a workable plan of action,
clearly outlining how they intend to respond to the crisis.
Without getting it right in agriculture, the nation will continue to lose
critical resources through the importation of grains to bridge the deficit
of either the staple maize or wheat. Tied to ensuring food security is the
need to overhaul the country's economy and to rid it of the politics of
patronage that now pervades industry and commerce.
While it does not need a rocket scientist to figure out what needs to be
done to take the economy forward, the current leadership has been hesitant
to deal with the multiple exchange rates, price controls and a host of
arbitrage opportunities in the pricing of fuel, maize, etc.
THE police force has not done itself any favours in recent years by
resorting to political rhetoric as a substitute for professional and ethical
Their behaviour reminds me of a minister who was reputed some years ago, to
tell subordinates that whenever they encountered a situation requiring
elaboration and explanation with specific facts that needed to be kept away
from the public, they should let him know and he could "go political and
This, of course, meant resorting to bombastic tirades that did nothing to
shed light on the issues at hand but focused on blaming scapegoats.
By all accounts, Police spokesman Chief Superintendent Oliver Mandipaka
seems to place a lot of faith in this approach, judging by the energy he has
devoted towards discrediting University of Zimbabwe academic, John Makumbe.
The UZ lecturer, who is also the chairman of Transparency International, has
been taken to task for failing to substantiate claims made when he appeared
on a television programme about continuing political violence in the
aftermath of the June 27 presidential run-off. He said the violence had
resulted in some villagers taking to the mountains.
In a story published in the state press on July 26, Mandipaka says police
"summoned" Makumbe to furnish them with more information to back his
"He only referred the officers who quizzed him to a hostile newspaper, The
Zimbabwean and said he had got some of his information from the pirate radio
station run by the Voice of America."
The state paper quoted Mandipaka as saying after visiting Makumbe at the UZ,
police had dismissed his claims as being unfounded and designed to cause
alarm and despondency.
Makumbe was accused of misleading the nation into believing that violence
was still prevalent "yet there were no cases of violence since the elections
ended", the state paper's story said.
Is it any wonder that state agents have been implicated in the perpetration
of retributive violence if the police force's investigation of its incidence
is limited to harassing and interrogating anyone who expresses concern about
it or informants, who give them tip-offs about the latest incidents? This is
a classic case of shooting the messenger instead of investigating the
allegations he has made.
Mandipaka and his colleagues do not seem to be aware of the fact that it is
not incumbent on Makumbe to prove anything, the onus is on the police force
to quell the violence and prove to the nation that they are capable of
guaranteeing the safety of all Zimbabweans. They can only do this by
executing their duties in a non-political and non-partisan way.
But alas, the police seem only keen to comment on violence when it is
politically correct and expedient to do so. Their onslaught against Makumbe
is a ploy to divert attention from the real issues considering that they
have reacted with deafening silence to the verdict reached by the African
election observer missions that monitored the June 27 run-off that the poll
was marred by violence.
Election observers from the African Union, the Pan African Parliament and
the Southern African Development Community unanimously condemned the run-off
as not having been a free and fair election and thus not representing the
will of the people of Zimbabwe because of the violence.
Why have the police not told the nation why they failed to quell this tumult
when they had repeatedly vowed in the build-up to the March 29 elections
that there would be "zero tolerance" to violence?
The unanimous condemnation of the June 27 run-off by the election observers
and the outside world suggests there was 100 percent tolerance to the
political violence widely alleged to have been perpetrated by state security
agents and ruling party youth militias after March 29.
Why does Mandipaka not give the nation chapter and verse on this instead of
And instead of labelling The Zimbabwean a hostile newspaper, the police
should investigate the heart-rending stories of victims of state violence
following the publication of pictures of their horrific injuries by the
Did the law enforcement agents establish that those pictures were not of
flesh and blood fellow citizens who are as entitled as anyone else to call
this country their motherland and to live in it in safety and freedom?
A transparent way to follow up on the paper's allegations would have been to
organise facility trips for journalists to the affected areas to establish
the truth for themselves. The police only draw attention to their political
partisanship and lack of professionalism when they resort to nit-picking
instead of regarding any allegations about violence as tip-offs to
There have been reports about abductions, murders, displacements, rampant
raping of women and girls, brutalising of children and the seizing of
livestock and food from villagers by militias. Why have these not caused the
police any concern?
The police seem more bent on abrogating the freedom of Zimbabweans to speak
out compassionately against these horrors than quelling the barbaric acts.
Last year opposition leaders, trade union officials and lawyers were
brutalised by the police and pictures of them with punched faces, smashed
skulls, broken legs and bruised bodies appeared in the newspapers. In some
instances, police were said to have resorted to force either after being
provoked or because the victims were resisting arrest.
Mandipaka has never taken the same trouble as he has done with regard to
Makumbe, to explain to the public exactly how principled and professional
law enforcers can be provoked into committing brutal acts of violence
against defenceless citizens in their custody and whether such unstable
officers should be retained in the police force.
He has never elaborated on how trade union officials could resist arrest
when they were already in police custody when they were battered in October
Juniors Marire, Economic Viewpoint
ECONOMIST Erich Bloch, speaking at the Institute of Chartered Accountants of
Zimba-bwe, recently said it would take six years to achieve full economic
He said it would take three years to get back to where the economy was
before it went into decline and a further three years to bring it to where
it should be.
He premised his argument on the possible "good" outcome of the inter-party
talks between ZANU-PF and the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC).
He said recovery would start within the next three months. He edged
businesses to act more forcefully than in the past to bring about a social
contract. A social contract would be a key factor in any turnaround, he
said. I would like to argue to the contrary.
l The outcome of the inter-party talks will certainly influence economic
outcomes in this economy. It is my belief that the two sides to the talks
have to possess some degree of compromise if the economy is to take off.
However, the fact that the ruling party politiburo resolved that
l The land reform exercise is irreversible
l That there should be non-interference by the West
l The June 27 presidential run-off poll results were non-negotiable.
The last condition of the above three points will be the bone of contention.
We have read and heard the G8, United Kingdom and United States argue that
they would want the talks to be premised on the March 29 elections results,
rather than the June 27 ones.
What this implies is that any outcome of the talks that is based on the June
27 poll results will be regarded as an abortion of mission and a politically
Further it will communicate imposing of more sanctions on the Zimbabwean
people. Although AU and UN envoys have been accommodated in the talks, that
per se will not anchor investor confidence.
The talks will kick-start turnaround and economic growth if, and only if,
they communicate a major shift in policy paradigm, otherwise it is an
overzealous and premature conclusion to say the economy will start to heal
in the next three months.
l As analysts we should not forget that the indigenisation drive that we are
currently implementing is dealing a heavy blow on the economy.
It is destroying the wings for economic take-off. In the past week or so,
over 400 British companies were identified and earmarked for indigenisation
as a proactive stance to forestall capital flight.
I believe that economic empowerment is a big solution to poverty but it
should have been administered through new business formations rather than
through disruptions of already productive entities.
In fact, this empowerment drive has increased investment risk in Zimbabwe so
much that business confidence is at its lowest. Moreso, the indigenisation
drive has not in any significant way contributed to the fiscal revenues.
Rather, the indigenised entities are a drain to the fiscus as the Ministry
of Finance and the Ministry of Small and Medium Enterpri-ses year
in-year-out pump out financial resources without reciprocation in the form
of tax payments from the beneficiaries.
In fact this drive has burgeoned budget deficits and budget deficits will
remain a big challenge that will undermine any possibility of economic
l For as long as the National Income and Pricing Commission is in place and
all the various other stringent controls in this economy, there will not be
significant improvement in capacity utilisation, let alone new investments.
Instead the status quo will obtain.
So what economic recovery are we prophesying?
l Portfolio inflows, particularly of foreign direct investments, are needed
to jump start the economic recovery and take-off. The problem we face is
that of country risk and no significant portfolio inflows can be
Price controls, exchange controls, indigenisation policy and such like
interventions deter foreign direct investment and domestic investment
inflows. The country will have to remain dependent on the East for FDIs.
Whether there will be a lot of fruitful investment deals from the East
remains largely unascertainable. Economic growth, thus, is not expected any
l Regarding the social contract, I doubt any possibility of its
implementation in Zimbabwe. There is a high degree of mistrust between
business and government in particular.
The three social partners, namely government, business and labour, should be
ready to suffer the brunt of economic correction. Business would have to
suffer price freezes and continue to produce to full capacity.
Now with the proposal by the central bank to freeze prices for the next six
or so months, things can get worse.
We are starting at a point in time when firms are struggling to survive.
How much more distress will they face when prices are frozen, bearing in
mind that they have not yet fully recovered from the price blitz of 2007?
Labour will have to suffer wage freezes and remain motivated to work through
Government has to rationalise expenditure, cut luxuriant expenditures and
other packages given to senior officials. Piecemeal atte-mpts to implement a
social contract in the past saw NIPC institutionalised.
Business alone suffered from blanket price freezes. Labour was sparred from
wage freezes and government has continued to grow in size, recurrent
expenditures and other luxuriant allowances to senior official have
continued to increase.
This is where the whole system crumbles. Government should streamline
ministries and eliminate duplication of effort. So turnaround efforts are
undermined here and a social contract remains a lost dream.
l Dollarisation could be adopted because it has provided a solution under
hyperinflation in many economies. However, authorities might not accept this
option for pride reasons.
Bloch's argument that dollarisation does not work in Zimbabwe is a weaker
Dollarisation does not imply use of US dollars only but any other foreign
currency unit. Implementing a parallel currency system would soft land the
crisis in this economy. We can partly use US dollars, the rand and our
In fact, this economy is heavily dollarised, suggesting that we have a deep
rather than a shallow US dollar and rand market. What makes the inflows into
the formal forex market small is because the exchange rate was not
For as long as holders of forex can sell willingly to banks but that
willingness is not reciprocated by banks when the people want to buy forex,
they will rather supply their forex to the parallel market.
The priority list according to which forex is sold is tantamount to fixation
of the exchange rate. Thus the productive sector will have to augment forex
requirements by sourcing it on the parallel market, a situation that leads
to further decline rather than recovery of the economy.
In a study I carried out, I found out that an increase in money supply by I
percent will lead to an outright economic decline. The idea being that an
increase in money supply will increase inflation. However, the interactive
effect between inflation and the tax system erodes business profitability.
Allowable depreciation is based on historic cost of an asset and under
hyperinflation, the allowable depreciation becomes highly insignificant. It
therefore pushes up taxable profits and lead to over taxation of companies.
Equally, if inflation is high the price of replacing a capital item when it
wears out is much higher than the allowed depreciation. This creates a
strong disincentive to invest in plant and growth by firms.
How then can we argue for speedy recovery given loose monetary and fiscal
In conclusion, it should be noted that the outcome of the talks will in a
way foster economic recovery if investors perceive a major shift in the
policy paradigm and that the political structure and infrastructure does not
largely benefit the incumbent system.
If it largely benefits the incumbent system, there will be no significant
FDI inflows, thus making it difficult for the economy to take-off.
The pre-crisis position of the economy can be reasonably indexed to the 1996
national economic performance. At that time, there was no capital flight, no
deindustrialisation, no policy flip-flops, no sanctions, no capacity
underutilisation and no price controls but there was strong agricultural
performance, strong manufacturing performance, mining performance and a
better managed macro economy.
l The views expre-ssed in this article are those of the author and not the
Ministry of Finance and the Zimbabwe Economic Society (ZES). ZES articles
are co-ordinated by Lovemore Kadenge (president) and he can be contacted on
Cell: 0912732873 or e-mail: lovemore.kadenge@g mail.com
Synodia Bhasera Staff Reporter
l Bottle tops in short supply l Foreign brands invade market
THE National Incomes and Pricing Commission (NIPC) last week ordered
National Breweries (Natbrew) - a subsidiary of Delta Corporation Limited -
to slash the price of clear beer to July 22 levels, as it also emerged that
the country's largest brewer is struggling to secure sufficient quantities
of bottle tops to meet demand.
Guzzlers woke up to a present surprise mid last week when the price of clear
beer, which had gone up to above $800 billion before the lopping off of
zeros, softened to around $300 billion for a quart.
Industry sources told The Financial Gazette this week that the boon for the
country's beer drinkers was a result of an NIPC directive, which saw Natbrew
rolling back its prices for lagers to July 22 levels.
The sources, however, warned that the directive by the state-run NIPC might
result in shortages of beer hitting the local market and the re-emergence of
a parallel market for clear beer.
"It is sad that the NIPC is not learning at all from its past mistakes.
Controlling the price of luxuries such as beer and cigarettes does not help,
all it will serve to achieve is to reduce taxes collected by ZIMRA and to
create a black market of the controlled products," said a source.
ZIMRA, the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority, is the country's revenue collecting
If at all there is going to be shortage of clear beer it may not be a result
of the NIPC's directive after all.
Industrial behemoth Delta Cooperation last week said it has been affected by
the shortage of bottle tops, also known as crowns, despite having enough
beer to satisfy the market.
"We have no shortage of beer but we have problems in getting crowns. We have
enough beer to flood the market," said George Muten-dadzamera, Delta
Corporation's corporate affairs executive.
The sole producer in Zimbabwe, Carnaud Metalbox Zimbabwe Limited, supplies
Metal Box admitted this week it is failing to acquire the foreign currency
required to import the major raw material, tin plate, from South Africa.
"We have no foreign currency to bring the material in the country. We use
imported material from South Africa," said Maxwell Kadzi-ngwa, the company's
The country has been going through chronic foreign currency shortages ever
since the Inter-national Monetary Fund (IMF) pulled the plug on Zim-babwe in
the late 1990s.
The IMF withdrew balance of payments support to Zimbabwe citing lack of
seriousness on the part of President Robert Mugabe's government in pursuance
of Western-backed economic reforms.
A number of other international donor agencies and multilateral financial
institutions have since taken the cue from the Bretton Woods institution,
drying external support for Zimbabwe.
The foreign currency shortages have been made more acute by the poor export
performance and the haphazard land reforms, which have reduced foreign
currency earnings for tobacco, the country's single largest foreign currency
The latest CZI Manufactu-ring Sector Survey revealed that the number of
companies operating below 50 percent capacity as a result of the shortages
of foreign currency among other things has increased from 49 percent to 75
percent in 2007.
Asked whether it was impossible to recycle the crowns, Kadzingwa said: "We
cannot recycle that because we deal with food and its dangerous (to recycle
the bottle tops)," he said.
"Foreign currency should be (made) available, that's the only measure,"
Foreign brands such as Hunters, Heineken, Peron, Amstell and Redds are
flooding the local market as a result of the shortages of crowns.
Shame Makoshori Senior Reporter
AIR Zimbabwe (Air-Zim) broke its silence this week on a chartered flight
scam unearthed by its auditors this year, saying those caught on the wrong
side of the law will face the due processes of the law.
Pride Khumbula, the airline's spokesperson, told The Financial Gazette this
week that AirZim will move to take corrective measures once the
investigations have been concluded.
The probe was triggered by revelations that the national passenger carrier
could have been prejudiced of US$22 000 or more after some of its senior
officials connived to massage flight details in 2006.
It now appears that the investigations have been widened to cover other
flights as Peter Chikumba and his team dig deeper to get to the bottom of
Chikumba, according to sources at AirZim, has adopted zero-tolerance to
crime ever since he took over the reins at the airline as chief executive
officer last year.
"We wish to assert that the company will take the appropriate action against
any employee whose conduct is proved to have prejudiced the company,"
"We are unable to divulge information on this matter as this may prejudice
the investigations, which are currently underway," she said.
According to information gathered by The Financial Gazette, some senior
managers at AirZim connived with Birds Breeding Farm of the Democratic
Republic of Congo (DRC) in 2006 to prejudice the airline of US$22 000 on a
chartered flight to Kinshasa, the DRC capital.
The fraudulent officials lied to the DRC government that President Robert
Mugabe was the one using the flight after attempts to secure international
clearances was denied in that country because AirZim had not given the
prescribed 72 hours lead time.
The Financial Gazette has documents detailing how on May 18 2006 the
officials deliberately und-ercharged flight UMCHT 505 hired by Birds
The audit revealed that the Advice of Charter was fraudulently written as
the series of numbers is reserved for the Chinese made MA60s.
A quotation to charter a B737 from Harare to Kinshasa and back was given as
US$41 920 then but US$22 000 was paid by Birds Breeding Farm because the
officials at the airline purported to have used the MA60, which is cheaper,
hence the US$21 930 shortfall.
Investigations have revealed that the purported MA60's mark up was quoted as
15 percent instead of the then prevailing 25 percent.
Shame Makoshori Senior Reporter
ON Tuesday, Memory Vambe weaved her way through empty shelves of a once
well-stocked supermarket in central Harare.
She was one of the scores of women who braved the chilly weather that
morning to hunt for scarce commodities such as sugar, soap, maize-meal and
toothpaste, among other basics that have vanished from the supermarkets
shelves for more than a year now.
Zimbabwe's manufacturers, protesting against government-backed price
controls, have stopped producing basics, throwing the market into disarray.
President Robert Mugabe's government in July last year ordered companies to
slash pri-ces by half, accusing them of hiking prices in order to foment
public anger against his administration, which has pre-sided over the
country's affairs for the past 28 years.
Business leaders have vehemently denied abating the so-called regime change
agenda, which President Mugabe bla-mes for the economic demise.
The July 2007 blitz-krieg has resulted in basic commodities disappearing
from the formal market, only to resurface on the black market at
Where commodities are produced, they come at punitive prices beyond the
reach of at least 80 percent of the country's population, which is wallowing
Basket in hand Vambe picked up a packet of meat, checked the price and
quickly places it back on the shelf as if she was dropping a piece of hot
She picked a packet of fresh milk from the fridge and did the same upon
checking the prices.
Within a few minutes she was out of the supermarket without having purchased
anything due to the exorbitant prices.
Prices have skyrocketed in Zimbabwe bec-ause of hyperinflation at a time
when the average monthly income has remained stagnant at about $500 billion
before the re-basing of the local currency last week.
The economic crisis has been triggered by the lack of balance of payments
support from the International Mone-tary Fund for nearly a decade now, poor
management of the country's economy, rampant corruption in both the public
and private sectors and the introduction of targeted sanctions by the United
States and the European Union against President Mugabe and his close
Like many others who were taken by surprise by the announcement by the US
and the EU of additions to the sanctions list, Vambe bemo-aned that her
future could be ruined should the Americans and their allies tighten the
noose on local companies and the country's ruling elite.
The US last week widened the sanctions net, adding 17 companies to scores of
individuals already banned from transacting or travelling to that country
Deputy Minister of Agriculture David Chap-fika's Divine Homes, a property
company, was also included while deputy Minister of Youth Development and
Empl-oyment Creation Savi-our Kasukuwere's COM-OIL, a petroleum impo-rting
company, is also on the list.
"This is not a life, we will all die of hunger. The government must just act
to end this madness. Now they say companies have been added to the list of
sanctions. What does the future hold now?" asked the mother of five, a
resident of the high-density suburb of Mbare.
Most people are worried that the widening of the sanctions net could be the
last straw precipitating the collapse of an economy already choking under
massive de-industrialisation, hyperinflation, brain drain and acute
shortages of foreign currency and energy.
Fears heightened this week that the imposition of fresh sanction could dry
up the few lines of credit still trickling into Zimbabwe.
Transactions involving ZB Financial Holdings, for example, could be frozen
once they passed through the US, while any deal that the Minerals Mar-keting
Corporation of Zimbabwe could enter into on the international minerals
markets could also be withheld, leading to an escalation of the economic
Already, there is a law in the US - the Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic
Reco-very Act - prohibiting American companies from transacting with
But local economists were in disagreement this week.
"It will not be of any significant effect to the economy," said Univ-ersity
of Zimbabwe economics lecturer Tony Hawkins.
"The economy is already heading for the rocks very, very quickly and the
sanctions will be of no effect. Comoil could be on the list but whether its
inclusion on the sanctions list will affect the economy depends on whether
it imports the fuel from the US.
"And if you look at the choice of the companies on the sanctions list, why
ZB Financial Holdings and not CBZ, which is more active in supporting
government projects?" argued Hawkins.
Independent economist John Robertson concurred:"It is unlikely that the
sanctions will impact on the economy because there are very few lines of
credit coming into Zimbabwe, sanctions at that level I think are not going
to make any difference," said Robertson.
Synodia Bhasera Staff Reporter
BLACK market activities, which are becoming the in thing in the property
sector, might be brought under control once the authorities agree to the use
of the United States dollar as a medium of exchange, analysts told The
Financial Gazette this week.
The use of the greenback as a form of payment in Zimbabwe, otherwise
commonly referred to as dollarisation, is gaining currency throughout the
country as more and more people are now shunning the Zimbabwe dollar, which
is losing value daily due to hyperinflation.
The knocking off of zeros from the local unit seems not to have helped
But despite being widely in use countrywide, transacting in foreign currency
has remained illegal in Zimbabwe with Local Government Minister Ignatius
Chombo threatening the arrest of all those caught flouting the country's
rigid exchange control regulations.
Some landlords have since appeared before the courts on allegations of
charging rentals in foreign currency.
At least three landlords were arrested within a month recently over foreign
Estate Agents Council chairman Oswald Nyakunika told The financial Gazette
this week that although the government was disregarding transactions in
foreign currency, the push for the dollarisation of the economy has been
"There is a general demand for liberalisation or dollarisation of the
industry in terms of rent or prices paid in line with what has happened with
the foreign currency sector," said Nyakunika.
The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, which has for a long time operated under a
controlled foreign currency regime, this year took the unprecedented step of
liberalising the exchange rate.
The central bank achieved the liberalisation of the exchange rate by
introducing a willing buyer-willing seller concept - a move that was meant
to unlock foreign currency inflows into the inter-bank market.
Should the government agree to the dollarisation of the economy, it means
Parliament, which is yet to sit following the disputed March 29 harmonised
elections and the subsequent talks featuring the country's main political
parties - ZANU-PF and the Movement for Democratic Change formations - would
need to effect the necessary amendments to the Foreign Exchange Control Act,
which prohibits foreign currency deals.
In the wake of the currency freefall, whose roots are steeped in the tragic
Black Friday of November 1997, most property owners are now quoting their
rentals and property prices in foreign currency.
This has, however, come at a huge risk for the unlucky ones.
Early this year, British property tycoon, Nicholas Van Hoogstraten was
arrested for demanding rentals in foreign currency. He is currently on bail.
Writing in his weekly column Matters Legal, The Financial Gazette columnist
Vote Muza said the country was now in desperate need of dollarisation.
"Here I do not mean re-dollarisation of our worthless currency, but rather
floating of the United States dollar as legal tender in all transactions,"
"This is the only practical remedy that the country needs now in order to
kill speculators once and for all.
"Such a bold courageous move, may be embarrassing to make because of ZANU-PF's
perceived hatred of the United States government, but ultimately it may
serve our national interests," he added.
Muza said people start disrespecting the law once it becomes unreasonable,
static and unresponsive to the public's needs and expectations.
" .then such law would have ceased to be relevant.
"Thus the overwhelming use of foreign currency in broad day light by many
members of the public is a clear sign that the law penalising use of foreign
currency as a medium of exchange has become superfluous, absurd and totally
unacceptable," said Muza.
Nyakunika said the dollarisation of the property sector was likely to
attract fresh investments into the property sector and shore up the country's
depleted foreign currency reserves.
Once the industry starts to generate lucrative returns, property owners
might be motivated to undertake repairs and maintenance of their properties,
which had become too costly in view of the negative returns.
"This will curb black market activities and formalise all operations.
"It will also attract and generate additional foreign currency reserves in
line with the Homelink concept that the central bank introduced some time
ago," said Nyakunika.
The property sector, like every other industry in the country, is going
through hard times.
The major challenges include the unavailability of building materials and
the astronomical cost build-ups.
Property players said these challenges have affected the pricing of most
properties in the country.