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Zimbabwe - A New Year Revolution!?

"Ten years from today,
what will you wish you had done now?"
                                                                                             - John Mason -

There is something very special about the first of January of any year. A chance to wipe the slate clean, to start anew, to breathe new life into ourselves; in essence, the first day of the rest of our lives. We are all united on this one. No matter where we may be in the world, we get a chance to start afresh. So, what resolutions will  we be making on 01/01/06?

Before we mull over what we would like to achieve this next year, surely we have to look back at the year we are leaving behind. For to build any dream, we must surely base it upon a solid foundation which is rooted deep within our moral, spiritual and emotional values. What are the experiences which we can take from the past 365 days and cherish or what lessons have we learned? Only then, can we "see" what our hearts and souls truly want from life. Only then, can we plan how to get there.

On the Zimbabwe map, how can we know where we want to go if we don't have the ability to accurately assess where we are right here and now? I am not talking about those of us still living here. I speak of all of you out there. No matter where you physically live in the present tense, if a part of your heart experienced a part of your life journey on Zimbabwean soil, then I warmly invite you to share a little time with me to stop, reflect, form our individual resolutions and then perhaps, to go our seperate ways toward our mutual destination: a spiritual Zimbabwean New Year Revolution!

Looking back over this year, on the surface it's a disaster! The economy, the politics, the daily injustices and terrible conditions under which so many of our people try desperately to live their lives and raise their children.

Fuel, electricity, water, schooling, medical facilities, one decent meal ... these are luxuries for the majority of the population including ourselves many times this last year!!. For all intent and purposes, one could rightly argue that to live here is dangerous, unpredictable, perhaps even irresponsible when planning for the future both for ourselves and our families. Like statistics, one could justify any one reason to leave or to feel hopeless and depressed with the numbers of those suffering, those who struggle every day, those who have seen the dark side of politics / the law / the economy.

Yet, in looking back at all this, dare I tell you that I see the "reason" behind the reasons for leaving or falling into the dark abyss of emotional despair. The meaning becomes clearer with each year that we walk together through this valley of the shadow of the death of our hopes and preconceived ideas of what and how it all should be.

This year has afforded us some of the best opportunities to make a difference in so many lives and so many situations. All around me, I have witnessed people on a massive scale who simply followed their purpose and shone their light for all around them to follow towards triumph in every sector of our family, community and personal lives. The universal outpouring of help in kind, in empathy and in person right through the echelons in our society especially with the destruction of so many homes and livelihoods early this year right up to this time. National and international reactions buoyed us when the angry political waters threatened to drag us under. Indeed, our faith in humankind was strongly reinforced!

In truth, there are activists all around and amongst us! Those who speak out and up about what is true and right; no matter the consequences. Those who quietly visit the mortally ill, the destitute, the homeless. Those who work tirelessly to improve the lot of our orphans, to give them the things that cost nothing but are more precious than gold: love, time, education, friendship and hope.

Those who do all manner of things to raise funds for our aged, our physically and mentally disabled, our starving, our tortured, our sick and our abused.

Those who work diligently in their respective jobs; daring to believe and uphold their principles and personal code of conduct so that they may live their work in line with how they themselves feel that it should be done. A friend recently found himself in prison based on false accusation from a high ranking member of the police force. Prepared to face the worst, he was amazed to experience good treatment and respect from both other prisoners and wardens themselves. At the end of the process, the system delivered, the policeman disciplined, the case thrown out and the judge severely reprimanded those who should have stopped the offending policeman from proceeding with imprisonment with no evidence! I am not saying that this is the norm, but just like the true stories portrayed in the movies "Schindler's List" or "Hotel Ruanda", it shows us that the power of one is immeasurable! Imagine if each and every one of us focused all our effort and all our God-given resources to do whatever we possibly can to make a contribution towards our mutual vision of a new Zimbabwe? If every one of us acted in faith. Anything is possible.

I visited Harare Childrens' Home on Christmas Eve ... what love, dedication, inspiration comes from those angels running that sanctury for 82 of our orphans! Discipline, community, friendship, direction, education and purpose given to every single child in a family environment which must be relying almost exclusively on charity. Go down there and give a child a hug ... you will be amazed what you will receive in return!! I promised the matron (working there 23 years) I would ask for any donations of clothes (socks and pants most important) , shelves for their library and almost anything you don't want is carefully restored and deeply appreciated. So ... passed that on to you :)

This year has seen courageous men and women of every colour standing up to speak out and against higher powers when our schools were threatened. We are all united when it comes to our childrens' health or education for those are the tenets upon which we avail every purposeful action in our day, regardless of political affiliation or cultural background, race or colour! Our teachers have stood firm when taking our children into their hands ... even when the stormy waters threatened to engulf their schools, their livelihoods, their sanity. They will never know just how indebted we are to them for guiding our children through these dark days with dicipline, courage, spirit and principle ... even when it seemed that all around were losing all of theirs!

So, with all this in hindsight, we look forward to 2006. We can dread what lies ahead and wait to see what happens, hoping that "things will change". Or we can build on the strength of that rock called community that we have unearthed especially these last few years and our hope will be that of living long enough to see the fruition of all that together we have worked towards. This is the revolution that is inspiring us today; that God's purpose for us has actually come almost full circle. The revolution in our evolutionary wheel is almost complete. I can't tell you when it will be, but by every indication our circle of life in the birth of our new nation is well and truly in motion!

Our "New Year Revolution for Zimbabwe" is one where we take matters into our own hands. We have our own "clean up". For example, if each of us paid someone on the street desperate for a meal or a few bucks, whatever we could afford so that they could pick up say, two plastic bags full of rubbish - we would be making a difference to both our environment and our community (not to mention our own sense of purpose).

If we stopped moaning about the municiple lack of fuel to come out and clean up and instead, if we did something. Are we to watch our environment become a health hazard and a rubbish dump or are we going to proactively take a pride in our immediate surrounds and make it our responsibility to see to it that every blade of grass, living insect and human being that ventures into our neighbourhood has a beautiful, clean and healthy place to live and play?

If we could forgo our DSTV subscription or a few monthly luxuries (would amount to US$500 equivalent a year) so that we could ensure that our teachers' pensions are garanteed long after they have given their all to ensuring our kids have a fantastic education, we will have invested in not only our generation, but the generations to come and who will take over from us in rebuilding this country. We can reassure them on many things but the simple fact right now is that with their pension secured, our education is secured. I beg every parent-teacher's association to look seriously into this critical concern ... and soon!

If each of us could simply treat every member of our community with respect, patience and understanding, ensuring that every time we meet a soul, we leave them a little happier, brighter or hopeful, then we are in the business of public relations - and the backbone of any society is either strengthened or weakened by the ability of it's individual members to work and play together on common ground and mutual understanding, and never forget that the children are watching us, taking what they see with them into the future of this country. Walk your talk and watch the magic unfold!

If each of us, within our ability, could speak, write, email, say a few words, act out a play, sing a song from our heart to another human being that promises hope, love, understanding and empathy, we have contributed to a national "uprising" in spirit! I heard Henry Olonga's "Our Zimbabwe" sung at Kirsty Coventry's celebration of her achievements function ... not a dry eye in the house and the power to stir our dreams from their slumber in those words was tangible! Henry ... if you get to read this - your spirit lives on my friend; you are not and never will be forgotten and I look forward to the day we bring you home with a hero's welcome, and sing your prophetic and visionary words as a new national spiritual anthem!

So,  in closing, let us look to this new dawn in our history as completely within our control. Our response to every single situation is in our hands and if we listen carefully to our hearts, they will lead us to doing what is right and good for the country and people who have formed us. After all, this is the place where we were born; mentally, physically, emotionally, spiritually. I invite you to be a part of our country's New Year Revolution - by continuing to believe and work tirelessly towards our dream. The best way to know our destiny friends and countrymen ... is to go right out there and create it for ourselves!! Come, take my hand and let us walk together ...  God Bless you. God Bless us. God Bless Zimbabwe in 2006.

Debbie Jeans

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Mugabe Enjoys The Good Life In The Far East While Zimbabwe Burns

Zim Daily

Friday, December 30 2005 @ 12:05 AM GMT
Contributed by: Reporter

President Robert Mugabe is set to spend a month of luxury with his family in
the Far East as part of his annual holiday. Mugabe, who is already on leave
will tour picturesque tourist destinations in Malaysia and China away from
the hustle and bustle of the Zimbabwe situation. The ministry of Information
and Publicity announced the vacation that will see presidential apprentice
Joyce Mujuru harnessing the presidential robes.

Analysts and ordinary people have attacked the first family for choosing to
enjoy in an extravagant fashion at a time the country is struggling to make
ends meet against the background of galloping inflation and massive brain
drain. "This is ridiculous and heartless of a president to enjoy an opulent
life when his people are under serious economic problems, in normal
circumstances he is supposed to fight with the people", said Mandlenkosi
Sibanda, a Harare resident.

President Mugabe, has of late been on a crusade to befriend the Far East
countries in order to cover up for the isolation by Western Nations. He
offered various business opportunities ranging from agriculture, mining and
manufacturing sectors. Latest statistics from the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority
reveal that Asian countries are the least contributors to Zimbabwe's trade
and tourism circles with only a 15% contingent. Political Analyst Gorden
Moyo dismissed President Mugabe's look East policy as a futile exercise.
Moyo said China and other Asian nations are small players in international

"Mugabe is grovelling to Asian nations for nothing, Zimbabwe will never
salvage any meaningful benefit from these countries", said Moyo Harare
authorities have been under incessant attack from local manufacturers who
were jettisoned out of business by China's cheap and nondurable goods. The
Chinese goods are now sarcastically called Zhing-Zhongs in Zimbabwe. "One
wishes the far east would just swallow him alive and never touch Zimbabwe
soil again" added another disgruntled Harare resident.

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Armed Forces Threaten To Quash MDC Mass Protest

Zim Daily

            Friday, December 30 2005 @ 12:04 AM GMT
            Contributed by: correspondent
            The Zimbabwe government yesterday warned that it will deal
severely with the opposition if it carries out a threat to mobilise
Zimbabweans to roll out mass protests aimed at ousting President Mugabe from
power. The main opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) party this
week said it had resolved to use confrontation next year to end Mugabe's
uninterrupted 25-year rule.

            Home Affairs Minister Kembo Mohadi, said the government took the
opposition threats "very seriously". But he "sternly warned those who would
like to cause unrest and civil commotion in this country under the guise of
freedom of expression and democracy that they will be dealt with severely".
"We will not allow anybody to protest against the Head of State," Mohadi

            Repeating the same mantra, police commissioner Augustine Chihuri
said: "People must eat and learn to fill their stomachs where they are
without dreaming or sometimes being illusionary or sleepwalking." The Home
Affairs chief also told Zimdaily: "Members of the opposition now advocating
for a resurgence of political violence should know that no kid gloves will
be used in future."

            MDC spokesman Nelson Chamisa said this week that the party will
next year mobilise Zimbabweans to take on President Mugabe's government on
the streets in a bid to oust it from power. "There will be mass arrests,
injuries and agony. But that is the price we should be prepared to pay for
our freedom because next year we are going to be as confrontational as we
have never been before," said Chamisa. "We have in the past engaged in a lot
of passive resistance. We will now have a paradigm shift and 2006 will see
us using a different delivery route - fighting fire with fire. It is now
clear that Mugabe's misrule will not be liquidated through elections."

            Tsvangirai repeated his call for peaceful mass action against
Mugabe's government. "The struggle we now want to embark on is not a one-day
wonder or quick fix episode," he told some 40 diplomats in the capital
recently. "They are long, hard and dangerous, taxing the resoluteness of
even the most committed democrats. We face exactly the similar circumstances
as those who struggled before us in many places throughout the world." Later
on Tsvangirai said: "There can be no compromise or surrender. Mugabe must
unconditionally yield or face decisive mass action from the people."
Expressions of dissatisfaction are likely to be met with increased
government sponsored violence.

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Pro-Senate Faction Are Donkeys Eager To Eat Dangled Zanu PF Carrot

Zim Daily

            Friday, December 30 2005 @ 12:04 AM GMT
            Contributed by: correspondent
            By Johannes Mutyanda
            The existence of Zimbabwe African National Union (Patriotic
Front) in the last twenty-five years has been a shrewd act, until now. The
evidence that has come out of the split within the Movement for Democratic
Change of Zimbabwe is nothing new after all. The point is the split failed
but not completely, however. The largely failed part of the split is the
sticking point right into the eyeballs of Robert Gabriel Mugabe, his entire
Politburo, and the evil intelligence. Taking track back memory lane during
the failed Esap I, and perhaps more appropriately Esap II. This serial
program coined by the Bretton Woods institutions was partly responsible for
the creation of the current political challenges Mugabe dares today.

            The program enabled expose the inability of Robert to feed the
resource that stimulates the economic, instead he went on a binge race
pocketing the financial package that came his way. The traits to deprive,
and oppress have been there Mugabe is not a "dear leader". The Senate
election has and is still sending the wrong and right signals about the
wanton of power.

            That is the challenge that faces Zimbabweans, albeit in a small
way, patience must not necessarily be nurtured, the country is bleeding out
rapidly. That is being done at unprecedented levels. The creation of the
bicameral parliament is sucking in US$4.8 million. That amount of money to
buy duty-free four-by-four the MPs and Senators, for what in a starving
impoverished nation. The government does not have that kind of money, but to
buy out into opposition MPs, Zanu (PF) can get the money anyway anyhow. The
reason why Zanu (PF) is termed Zanu yeropa (the slaughter, the murderer) is
because it does not care what we are going through. We do not advocate
violence of any nature. Zimbabweans we must move into voluntary suffrage to
strike out a cord of well-orchestrated civil disobedience.

            What purpose does it serve to elect an unnecessary cost? If
Mugabe must cushion himself with zombies the cost is warranted only for him.
The significance of the Senate, especially in view of the MDC split, so
lauded by the Zanu (PF)-run media, is a plot to sustain Robert even after he
quits, quitting is tough for him at the moment. Mugabe will face the wrath
equivalent to the NO-VOTE defeat. He is scared. The Senate is an issue that
sent a victorious NO-VOTE success during the February 2000 referendum.
Mugabe lost because the accord of civic organizations and the ZCTU
leadership was concrete, it is still so but Robert's team has found among
the MDC donkeys that are eager to eat the dangled carrot. Robert never gave
up on the senate establishment. Because we defeated him in the NO-VOTE
referendum, his determination to see the senate being set-up effected on the
escalation of violence through the years up to the March 2005 elections.

            When elections we rigged and announced, the violence seized. The
deal had gone through. The back introduction of the Senate was an easy
passage. We cannot enter into any referendum ever! Robert introduced the
backdoor entry of recreating the Senate, this time not through Zimbabwe but
his two-thirds majority MPs. The Senate debate was executed, and elections
held in November 2005. Where did you stand? We are ruled by the influence of
a minority. The pro-Senate faction fell hook-and-sinker into Zanu (PF)'s
political gallery arena. But that is now the pro-senate problem.

            Our concern is addressing the issue that the MDC has never been
split or divided. The MDC had let normal business into the wrong hands, but
God forbids. Evil cannot triumph over Good. The pro-Senate faction will
remain in the cold, the people have shut the door, not Morgan. It is the
suffering masses that struggle to work, farm, service, and is taxed by the
nefarious regime that shut Mugabe's vices out of the MDC. Vanhu varamba.
Morgan is a messenger, an honorable one, given the mandate to protect the
principles of the MDC from the onset, February 1999, and reaffirmed in
September 1999.

            We remember the labor movement leadership hammering consistently
about the workers' living wage. Cornered and battered by a borrowed Esap II
package, Mugabe with no way to run slapped his hand on the table and told
ZCTU to challenge him as a political movement. Plain and simple, "if you
think you can fix it, then change my government". Stubborn huh. That
signaled the first time that the guerilla-leader stopped addressing the
May-Day workers' rallies. The ZCTU took over addressing May-Day rallies at
Rufaro Stadium, and thus began the fix. The workers and all concerned are
still within that fight expect the pro-Senate few. The pro-Senate failed
Mugabe, they will in due course pay their dues.

            The labor movement and all civic organizations were driven to
the same accord - workers' living wage and suffrage - a bond was formed and
forged. The outcome was one consultation after another within the daring
workers' unions. All activities were done underground because the bloody
hound was sensing the sting in the air. The battle to change the political
structure started then, than now. The ideas to split the unions started
then, than now. Within the ruling party's corridors of power, the ZCTU-NGOs
alliance was a dead hit. Changing the structures of government from a
unicameral to a bicameral one was a way out, but only if Zimbabweans would
allow it. Contrary to this the labor-civic marriage worked hard on a change
of the Zimbabwean Constitution only and only if Zanu (PF) would not be the
dominant force to executive the constitutional account.

            That still remains so today and has culminated in what most of
the world see as the MDC-split. As the momentum gathered force within the
urban areas, and even within some rural areas, certainty gave the
labor-civic union a unique marriage. That marriage confirmed its endorsement
of custody of principles through entrusting the ZCTU leadership with
Movement for Democratic Change because it had the structure and support base
against the milking and butcherman, Robert Mugabe. The values to entrust
this leadership for and on behalf of Zimbabweans set up principles to which
a safeguard was needed.

            Fortunately that safeguard is still there, thanks for once to
Morgan Tsvangirai. The pro-Senate participants carried out the blatant
slaughter of one of the principles. When the MDC was set up, challenges of
never entertaining Zanu (PF)leadership were endorsed. One of these was to
preclude Zanu (PF) in the formation of the Zimbabwean Constitution. Zanu
(PF) never wanted to change the Constitution, it still has not because it
renamed/paraphrased the colonial legislation to suit its bill, that is, to
oppress the hands that it feeds from. The MDC adheres to principles, set
principles, agreed principles, the principles that make Mugabe quiver.

            If you uphold these principles, and never look at the super
corrupt handovers that Mugabe dangles in front of you, then uri munhu.
Tsvangirai stood, initially by the principles that were set, not only by the
labor movement, but also by the larger body, the civic organizations, and
then used the Movement's Constitution to stick his senses out, that is what
a leader does. The constitution was never violated, here is why. First, the
Senate issue is a national issue. Second the sole announcement on national
issues is by the president, and not anyone else. Movement was making a
decision to veto and to protect the entrustment of principles by the
electorate of MDC. Morgan amply executed that avenue. If Morgan has never
appeared a leader, it is these events that maketh him so, a trusted leader,
in spite of a wholesale national council.

            But who was the really winner/loser in all this. It would have
been a crushing defeat for Zimbabwe had Tsvangirai let go the principle on
Constitutional change under Zanu (PF). The other six brothers lost the ball,
the Congress will dictate who was right or wrong. We hope they will scrap
through. The Senate is one issue the Movement will never dance with the
devil about. The split, therefore Zimbabweans, is a litmus test that God
Himself makes out of His wisdom to show us who really is for or against us.
And this split is not the first one. Zanu yeropa has used divide-and-rule
several times but particularly when Edgar Tekere left (was fired as
secretary-general of Zanu (PF) Central Committee) to form Zimbabwe Unity
Movement, it split United Parties to shreds, and who gained, Mugabe, we
lost. We cannot let Robert win again. If you look at this tactic it is a
really old one, used unfortunately, on brothers who see the opportunity of
not missing the very corrupt gravy good train. We are fortunate, as a result
of this "split", two fold, first to know dedicated leaders, and second,
bargain hunters. As an electorate, Zimbabweans, we are learning fast to see
beyond the closed curtains. Our political awareness must not been taken for
granted by anyone.

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'Fall of Zimdollar Signals Beginning of Race'

The Herald (Harare)

December 29, 2005
Posted to the web December 29, 2005


ECONOMISTS believe the sustained fall of the Zimbabwe dollar against other
key currencies in recent weeks signals the beginning of a race to catch up
with the parallel rate.

For others it was likely that a modest gap will remain between the interbank
rate and what holders of free funds are asking from those buying free funds.

The two rates would only come into line once capital inflows are equal to
capital outflows. But as rates converge, the possibility of a single
exchange rate, regardless of the source of funds or desires of users, comes
tantilisingly close.

"It is our view that the interbank rate will stabilise at levels between the
parallel market rate and the fair value rate, before they unify in the
longer term," according to a recent economic report by Interfin Securities.

"It can be clearly seen that the interbank rate is well above the fair value
rate, thus providing an attractive environment for exporters."

By January, the report predicts the interbank rate would be $83 000 against
US$ while the fair value rate would be around $56 700 to the greenback. The
parallel rate is currently fluctuating between $85 000 and $95 000.

The Reserve Bank plans to have a unified exchange rate next year. Currently,
the official exchange rate, also known as the auction rate and the interbank
rate, are in existence. The auction rate trades at $26 000 versus the US$.

Insufficient supply vis-a-vis high demand has exerted a lot of pressure on
the local unit, which has been on a free-fall since the start of the year,
and worsened since October.

Since the introduction of the Tradable Foreign Currency Balance System two
months ago the Zimbabwe dollar has lost over 35 percent of its value to the
US$, as market forces moved in to determine the rate of exchange.

The Z$ has fallen to $81 000 from around $61 000 against the United States

Against the British pound it has dropped to $143 100 from nearly $75 000
while versus the South African rand the dollar has dropped to $13 000.

The report said: "We believe that the market-based system, provided it is
allowed to reflect the forces of supply and demand, will likely attract
inflows of foreign currency from the parallel market to the formal market."

However, inflows at the interbank system are still depressed as most
exporters would prefer to hold on to their funds up to the mandatory
liquidation period in anticipation of a further depreciation in the local

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Red Cross Embarks On $1bn Housing Project

The Herald (Harare)

December 29, 2005
Posted to the web December 29, 2005

Midlands Bureau

THE Midlands Chapter of the Zimbabwe Red Cross Society (ZRCS) has embarked
on a $1 billion housing project to provide accommodation for orphans in
Lower Gweru.

In an interview, ZRCS Midlands provincial manager Mr Maxwell Phiri said
three houses for child-headed families were currently under construction at
Insukamini and work was expected to be completed by the end of January.

"The families will get the houses permanently," said Mr Phiri.

However, he said ownership of the houses would remain in the hands of the
organisation to safeguard the children from dispossession and eviction by
greedy relatives.

Vungu Rural District Council provided the stands to the Red Cross for free.

Mr Phiri said apart from providing houses, his organisation was also paying
school fees for orphaned children across the Midlands Province with more
than 2 577 benefiting from the scheme.

He said the society was meeting the fee requirements of 1 065 children in
Shurugwi District while 727 were benefiting in Zvishavane.

"In Gweru we have 788 children who we are paying fees for. We also buy
uniforms for the children.

"The organisation is also providing 10kg of mealie-meal, 500ml of cooking
oil, 2kg beans and 2kg soya blend for each child every month," he said.

He said they had further allocated 10kg of maize seed, 2kg sorghum and
fertilizer to each child-headed household for the current farming season as
a way of enhancing food security.

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Zimbabwean Deportees Meet With Suspicion at Harare Airport


By Patience Rusere
      29 December 2005

About 160 Zimbabweans deported from South Africa by air this week found
themselves detained at Harare International Airport facing the intense
scrutiny of their country's Central Intelligence Organization and local
immigration authorities.

South African authorities removed the Zimbabweans from the Lindela
repatriation camp outside Johannesburg and flew them to Harare on Tuesday.

News reports said that the deportation flight was intended to relieve
overcrowding at Lindela, which drew scrutiny earlier this year after several
Zimbabweans died there.

One of the deportees in Harare said she and others on the flight were
searched upon their arrival and interrogated for hours by security officials
who questioned them about their political affiliations and accused them of
attempted economic sabotage.

Police sources said the deportees were detained for fingerprinting to
determine if they are being sought by Zimbabwean police; if not, they would
soon be freed. But one report said many of the deportees could be held for
up to a week for processing.

An estimated 2 million Zimbabweans have headed south across the Limpopo
River into South Africa seeking economic opportunity and relief from
political crisis at home. Some 300,000 have been deported in the past five
years, South African officials say. Very few of the 8,000 who applied have
been granted political asylum.

Some observers said the deportations looked like Pretoria sending a
political message to Harare. But spokesman Nkosana Sibuyi for the South
African Department of Home Affairs said there was no political dimension to
the high-profile expulsions, which, he said, were in line with Pretoria's
just-amended immigration legislation.

Reporter Patience Rusere of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe asked Mr. Sibuyi
what he made of the harsh reception accorded to the air deportees by Harare

Spokesman Rojers Mudarikwa of the Zimbabwe Action Support Group, an advocacy
organization for Zimbabweans in South Africa, told Studio 7 reporter Rusere
that the Pretoria government expelled the Zimbabweans to punish critics of
its policies.

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Scores of pupils write wrong exam paper

The Chronicle

By Brian Chitemba

SCORES of Ordinary Level pupils at Mzingwane High School in Esigodini were
in November made to sit for a wrong Geography paper, a development that
might have a bearing on their future, Chronicle can reveal.

Sources at the school told Chronicle yesterday that the original Geography
Paper Two (056974) leaked, leading to the Zimbabwe Schools Examination
Council resetting the examination, (056687).
Chronicle was also shown the papers.
"The person who was responsible for distributing the paper got it wrong and
no one, including the school authorities, noticed," said the source.
The source revealed that the pupils were the only ones in Matabeleland
region to sit for the wrong paper, adding that the school headmaster and his
deputy remained mum on the issue.
The source suggested that the school authorities wanted to conceal the
"mistake" until the OLevel results have been released sometime next year.
"What these people (school authorities) are doing is very bad. I think they
have to be exposed because if people keep quiet, they will repeat it on
another day," he said.
The source disclosed that the Geography Paper Two has not been marked
despite the fact that results would be released in less than two months
"We have phoned ZIMSEC and we gathered that the exam is yet to be marked.
What happens if the paper is not marked considering the pupils' future," he
Repeated efforts to get a comment from the school headmaster, Mr Tapu
Vincent Moyo, were fruitless as he was said to be in Gwanda on holiday.
The ZIMSEC spokesperson, Ms Faith Chasokela, requested the questions in
writing, which she confirmed having received but never replied until the
time of going to press.
"I got the questions but I'm still trying to get in touch with the person
responsible for the examinations. I will get back to you," she said from
The Geography paper was cancelled together with the English 1122/01 and the
Economics 2283/02 examinations after the papers fell off a truck in October
between Chivhu and Murambinda Growth Point when they were being taken to
Manicaland and Mashonaland East Provinces.
This was the second time this year that ZIMSEC public examination papers
have leaked after another truck carrying June examination papers was
reportedly hijacked in South Africa on its way to Zimbabwe.
The driver of the truck was allegedly beaten up and left for dead before his
assailants got away with the consignment leading to the postponement of the

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ZESA receives equipment from China

The Chronicle

Harare Bureau

Zesa Holdings has received a consignment of 166 vehicles and electricity
distribution equipment worth US$11,6 million (about $90,4 billion) from

The consignment is an offshoot of a strategic swap deal Zesa entered into
with China which would see the power utility funding and supporting the
production of tobacco and cotton for export in exchange for equipment that
would otherwise need foreign currency to import.
Zimbabwe is facing foreign currency shortages compounded by sanctions
imposed on the country by Britain, the United States and other Western
This has negatively affected the operations of several companies and
essential service providers such as hospitals who are finding it difficult
to import drugs.
Part of the consignment is already in the country while the rest awaits
The consignment comprises transformers and cables among other things.
In an interview yesterday, Zesa Holdings executive chairman, Dr Sydney Gata,
said the equipment and vehicles would be used in the rehabilitation and
expansion of the urban electricity distribution infrastructure.
"We received a consignment from China during the Christmas holiday and some
of the equipment is ready for installation in our major urban areas,
particularly Harare and Bulawayo, " said Dr Gata.
Dr Gata said the urban rehabilitation and expansion programme was the first
major capital investment Zesa had undertaken and would see worn out cables
and infrastructure being replaced.
"During this phase, worn out cables that often present problems when it
rains and transformers would be replaced," he said.
Electricity infrastructure in Harare and Bulawayo which was installed about
60 years ago has become too old resulting in power cuts whenever it rains.
Ageing electricity distribution infrastructure has resulted in intermittent
power cuts in the country's major urban centres.
Under the arrangement nonregulated Zesa Enterprises subsidiaries contract
farmers to produce cotton and tobacco for export to countries in the Far
East such as China, Pakistan and India.
The crop is valued and exported in exchange for equipment Zesa needs.
Last season 200 tonnes of tobacco were exported at a cost of US$8,5 million
and US$1,5 million was realised from cotton exports.
A consignment of 192 vehicles worth US$22 million for the rural
electrification programme which has seen previously remote and under
developed areas getting electricity was received in March.

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