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

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Sunday Times Australia

Maize a weapon in Mugabe's hands
I HAVE just returned from a trip through the heart of Robert Mugabe's
Zimbabwe. Foreign journalists are forbidden to go there, so I was forced to
travel in the guise of a tourist.

I spoke to the victims of the police torture that is inflicted on even the
most insignificant opponents of Mr Mugabe's terrifying regime.

They told of how boiling plastic was poured on their backs; how they were
held without trial in the most squalid conditions; how they were beaten to
within an inch of their lives.

Many torture victims are never seen again. At least once a week news comes
of fresh abductions, disappearances and murders.

In the streets lurk the perpetrators of this state-sanctioned violence - the
so-called green bombers. They have been trained in the techniques of terror
in Mr Mugabe's special youth camps.

Sometimes they are lazily called war veterans.

In truth, they are Mr Mugabe's equivalent of Hitler's Brown Shirts. Joining
up gives young men access to food, money and - because rape is never
punished - abundant sex.

There are five of these green bomber camps scattered throughout the country.
I was told how those passing through them are taught to hate the peaceful
Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) opposition.

They learn the sinister doctrines of racial purity taught by Mr Mugabe's
evil henchmen. They are taught how to maim, torture and kill. They are
forced to inform on their families and friends.

I was sent to Zimbabwe by Britain's Channel 4 with cameraman Paul Yule, who
filmed secretly. Yule is accustomed to making films in the world's most
dangerous places. He has recently worked in Afghanistan and Chechnya. But
even he had never seen anything like the horror Mr Mugabe is inflicting on
his own people.

Our brief from Channel 4 was to investigate allegations that six million
people - half Zimbabwe's population - are facing starvation. We were to find
out if this starvation was being deliberately inflicted by the government.

To begin with, we travelled to the north of the country. We drove down
potholed roads, stopped and spoke to villagers. It was shattering.

We found desperate people gathering leaves to boil up into a kind of soup.
We discovered them climbing trees to gather practically inedible nuts.

Untreated broken legs and other injuries have become common in the past few
months. One staple was a kind of soft wood. I tried it. It was bitter and
hard to swallow. There was no mealie-meal, the ground maize that is the
staple food of the people. Zimbabweans are beginning to starve and die, in
increasing numbers.

The more we looked into the reasons, the more sinister they became. Almost
every starving person we spoke to told us that Mr Mugabe's Zanu-PF party was
not letting the maize get through because they voted for the rival MDC in
last year's presidential elections. In the Binga area of northeast Zimbabwe,
we learnt that several aid agencies, including Save the Children, were
banned from operating there.

Aid workers and priests dared not speak to us. One aid worker did so, on
condition that his identity was kept secret. He told me how Zanu-PF thugs
had threatened to kill him unless he quit the country. Bravely, he had

We discovered the mechanism by which Mr Mugabe is starving his own people to
death - the state Grain Marketing Board. Through it, his green bombers
control the distribution and supply of mealie-meal.

They make sure that none of it goes to MDC areas. Indeed, we obtained film
of a compound, surrounded by barbed wire, where 132 tonnes of MDC maize had
been impounded by the regime and allowed to rot.

There are roadblocks throughout the country, manned by the green bombers,
who stop and search all cars to ensure the food cannot reach famine areas.
We were able to prove police involvement in this illegal process. At a
secret location, we interviewed one policeman. He is now a hunted man in
fear of his life.

He was tortured after he insisted on investigating crimes committed by
Zanu-PF followers. He told how Mr Mugabe used the police to stop food
getting to opposition supporters.

We proved, too, that Mr Mugabe's henchmen are making fortunes out of the
horror. We caught one of them at it: Kembo Mohadi, the Home Affairs Minister
and a member of Mr Mugabe's Politburo.

The Mohadi family owns a shop, called the River Ranch store, near
Beitbridge, in the south of Zimbabwe, where people are starving.

One night we entered the store, which felt full of menace as off-duty Mugabe
thugs sat about drinking beer. And there, behind bars, were bags of
mealie-meal, on sale at $ZM800 - three times the state-controlled price.

It is an affront to humanity. But in a way, what we discovered over the
border in South Africa and then back in Westminster was almost as shocking.

There is little room here to record what we found out about how South
Africa's president, Thabo Mbeki, lends succour and support to the Mugabe
regime - and about the timidity and inertia of the British Government.

The Blair Government has been dazzled and terrified by the Mugabe rhetoric
against Britain, as the former colonial power, trying to step in and stop
the terror.

While in South Africa we were told the story of the one British minister who
dared to criticise the Mugabe regime. He was Peter Hain, now Welsh
Secretary. Two years ago, as Minister for Africa, he publicly complained
that South Africa had failed to tackle Mr Mugabe.

The South African Government was enraged. The Foreign Affairs Minister,
Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, sent a furious letter to Britain complaining of Mr
Hain's attitude, calling his comments deeply offensive.

She threatened to call off the state visit of President Mbeki to Britain,
scheduled for later in the year. Incredibly, just two days after the letter
arrived in Britain, Mr Hain was demoted to the lowly role of Energy
Minister, a victim of the government's refusal to take a stand on Zimbabwe.
Later, I was reliably told, the South African Foreign Affairs Minister
insisted she had not intended that her letter should have such an effect.

But by then it was too late. Mr Hain was out.

This disgraceful episode is typical of Mr Blair's lacklustre handling of the
Mugabe issue. Right now Britain's attention is focused on whether its
cricket team should play in Zimbabwe during the World Cup.

For England to play there would indeed be an obscenity. But the issue is not
cricket at all.

The real issue is why Britain, and the world, has allowed Mr Mugabe to get
away with torturing and murdering his own people for so long.

We must no longer allow him to do so.
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From The Daily Telegraph (UK), 11 January

Lone voice prepared to take on the terror of Mugabe

Tim Butcher meets the archbishop who refuses to be cowed by intimidation.

Archbishop Pius Ncube's eyes were rheumy and tired but mere mention of
Robert Mugabe was enough to make them sparkle with defiance. "It is my
Christian duty to stand up to evil," the archbishop said from his cluttered
office at St Mary's Catholic Cathedral in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe's second city
and the capital of Matabeleland. "This government has used terror and fear
to silence people for too long. People feel threatened and hounded by an
evil regime and it is important for people in positions like mine not to be
silenced." In Zimbabwe, where the current crisis is dishonestly portrayed by
the Mugabe regime as a battle between black and white, the 56-year-old
archbishop's softly-spoken championing of the suffering black majority
stands out. His is a courageous and almost lone voice, reflecting his daily
exposure to the pain inflicted on his 150,000-strong Ndebele congregation by
Mr Mugabe's predominantly Shona regime.

A queue of supplicants forms each morning outside his office, spelling out
case after case of injustice, brutality and abuse at the hands of Mr
Mugabe's government. "Just go and ask them what they are having to put up
with now," he said. "Because there is no fuel left, minibus drivers raised
the price of a trip 10 times at Christmas because of the price of black
market petrol. So if you wanted to go, say, to see your family at Plumtree
just 120 kilometres away at Christmas you would have to pay 5,000 Zimbabwe
dollars (£70) instead of 500 dollars. Now that is a tremendous amount of
money in Zimbabwe, out of reach for all but a few." A string of Christmas
cards looped above the archbishop's desk as the phone rang repeatedly with
requests for help. Nuns shuttled in and out carrying yet more applications
for assistance. Each time his thick glasses would be pushed back high on his
head as he listened politely, nodding slowly and promising what help his
church's modest coffers could afford. Only once did his dour face break into
a smile.

"And a Happy Queue Year to you as well," he said in response to a joke that
is now going the rounds, based on the day-long queues Zimbabweans face for
every basic commodity. "Starvation is out there and it is claiming lives all
the time, such as the farmer I heard of last week who had not eaten for six
days and yet took his animals out to look for pasture to graze," the
archbishop said. "They found his body where he had gone to sleep. He was too
weak to survive. People are dying from starvation out there while the
government spends money on weapons and the military. Those who are not in
the ruling party are denied food and condemned to suffer. It is deliberate,
it is evil and it is wrong." Trained for seven years by Jesuits in what was
then Rhodesia, Archbishop Ncube then spent two years studying in Rome before
returning to his place of birth at the height of the independence war of the
1970s. He saw violence perpetrated both by Ian Smith's white regime in the
1970s and by Mr Mugabe's armed campaign against the Ndebele in the 1980s but
what makes his position now so extraordinary is his willingness to criticise
Mr Mugabe publicly.

The organised Church in Zimbabwe has been accused of kowtowing to the Mugabe
government, with Norbert Kunonga, the Anglican Bishop of Harare, causing
outrage when he gave his full support to Mr Mugabe in an open address to
clergy. While the Roman Catholic church has not been afraid to gather
evidence of human rights abuses across the country, the country's seven
other Catholic bishops have not been as outspoken as Archbishop Ncube. As
the Zimbabwe regime's most turbulent priest, Archbishop Ncube knows that his
position is not without peril. His telephones have been tapped, his life has
been threatened and the state-owned press carries a stream of bilious
innuendo about him. Among the most ludicrous accusations are that he has
raped nuns, fathered bastard children and indulged in homosexual acts in
Zimbabwe's prisons. In a country where political assassination is not
uncommon, St Mary's Cathedral looks more like a fortress than a place of
worship, with all of its perimeter wall crowned with coils of razor wire. It
is no accident that he keeps for inspiration a picture of Oscar Romero, the
Catholic archbishop from El Salvador who was shot dead as he celebrated Mass
in 1980 by right-wing terrorists after he had dared to criticise the
government. "Now he showed that we must not seek compromise," Archbishop
Ncube said. "We have to be brave enough to stand up to evil whenever we see

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Genocide Behind Closed Doors.

Hitler knew what he was doing when he gave instructions in 1942, after the
decisions were made to exterminate the entire Jewish population of Europe,
that all news about the programme and its execution was to be strictly
curtailed. The programme agreed to by a special conference of Nazi leaders
called for thousands of people every day to be sent to their deaths in a
deliberate, planned genocidal campaign.

In Rwanda, Hutu radicals killed up to 10 000 people a day, in a carefully
planned and executed attempt to destroy the capacity of the Tutsi to control
the levers of power in the central African region. In the Congo, up to 3
million people have lost their lives in the current conflict in the eastern
Congo - many the victims of local genocidal conflicts.

There are many similarities between these forms of national genocide - the
people who were perpetrators and victims were citizens and from the same
locality, they were Germans, Rwandese or Congolese. Also, they were the
victims of a carefully promoted and planned system of mass murder conducted
by those in power at the time. The murders were carried out behind doors
closed to the media - either by law or simply by the remoteness of the
conflicts and the difficulty of communication. They also shared one other
similarity - the programme of murder and genocide was well documented and
known by those in power in the West and East and those who sit in the
comfortable halls of the UN.

In hindsight these stark tales leave an indelible mark on the conscience of
mankind. That is little comfort for the victims and their families and the
majority of those responsible get away with their crimes.

A simple peasant farmer in western Matebeleland, weak with hunger, gets up
to release his beloved cattle from their pen and slowly walks them to water
and grazing. After this the effort involved is too much and he rests under a
tree in the heat of the day. He never wakes up and when he fails to come
home with the cattle in the evening his family find him dead under a tree. A
low paid worker in Harare loses his job with a security company - he was
found responsible for petty theft, he is unable to buy proper food and in
six weeks he is dead from Aids induced disease. A clerk in a major company
is the only member of her family working - she sends most of her earnings
home to help keep her extended family alive, unable to afford the high
protein diet she needs, she catches a cold and dies in three days. She
leaves two orphans and a destitute rural family that now plans to send a
teenage son to South Africa and to a life of crime that will enable him to
send a few Rand home each month.

These are three true stories from my own sphere of knowledge in the past
month. You can multiply these stories by thousands. The stories and the
statistics mean little to those in the outside world because they cannot be
revealed in a "sound bite" on national television. When a BBC crew came
across a refugee camp in Ethiopia and filmed a small child dying in his
mothers arms, covered in flies, with a swollen belly, there was a huge
outpouring of grief and outrage. Millions poured into the coffers of the aid
agencies, governments scrambled to give their support and personalities made
records and appeals. When the doors are closed to the media, this does not

It does not mean that it is not happening - it is, and it does not mean that
officials in Embassies and UN Agencies do not know what is going on - they
do. What it does mean is that this is a new form of genocide - conducted
away for the glare of the TV cameras and insufficiently dramatic to command
media attention. But its impact on ordinary people - people with families -
people who work and love and suffer silently - is huge and often fatal.

Zimbabwe should have a population of 14 or 15 million. In fact a recent
census revealed that our total population is down to 10,6 million. That
means we are "missing" 4 million people! This population decline has come
about in the past decade. We know that about 2,5 million live abroad - 2
million in South Africa, most is squatter camps and shanties. We also know
that a million people have died of Aids related causes. The rest - who
knows? I suspect high levels of infant mortality in children under 5 years
of age.

We have a population that has infection rates for HIV/Aids that now exceeds
35 per cent of all adults. This means we have over 2 million infected
adults, the majority are women. We have 750 000 orphans - 15 per cent of all
children. Only 900 000 adults have jobs in the formal sense - the rest are
in the informal sector and most earn less than US$1 a day - the bench mark
for being absolutely poor. TB, Malaria and other infectious diseases are

In this environment of human poverty and disease, our government has adopted
policies, which have made every Zimbabwean poorer, disrupted the food
producing industry from its grass roots upwards, and destroyed the
institutions that provide key social support. Hospitals are without trained
staff and medicines, schools are being run by poorly paid and motivated
personnel and must operate without even the most basic amenities and
supplies. Bad macro economic policies have led to a sharp reduction in
economic activity across all sectors of the economy and foreign exchange
earnings have declined to the point where even the most basic needs of the
country cannot be obtained.

Zanu PF under the leadership of Robert Mugabe has turned what always was
going to be a serious health and humanitarian crisis into a catastrophe.
65 per cent of girls of school going age are not in school; educational
standards are falling rapidly - especially for the poor and disadvantaged.
Food production in the subsistence sector is declining under the twin
pressures of HIV/Aids and emigration by the most productive elements in
their society. Decent diets are unaffordable by 90 per cent of HIV infected
adults - let alone the most basic medicines and drugs. This year, under
pressure from all these things, at least half a million people will die.
Perhaps as many adults and children will also succumb to other diseases and
simply hunger.

The fact that the majority of those fleeing to other countries or dying in
their villages and urban homes, are the opponents of Zanu PF and Robert
Mugabe is not being lost on the global community or the media. This
transforms this human tragedy into another form of national genocide - like
Rwanda and the Congo, going on behind closed doors and therefore not
attracting the appropriate response from the global community.

The appeals of the UN system to donors to increase their financial support
for the NGO's struggling to address the crisis in its many forms is not
enough. The problems here are not climatic, or "acts of God", they are
political. The remedies are political. South Africa's deliberate decision to
ignore what is going on and to urge the West to support Mugabe and his
henchmen in what they are doing is, under these circumstances, the same as
those in the West who deliberately turned their backs on the millions of
European Jews who faced the gas chambers in Germany.

If we are to address the crisis in Zimbabwe we must do so at its source -
the corrupt and incompetent administration of a discredited political regime
that is trying to hold onto power to protect itself and its cronies from the
consequences of their actions. Nothing less will do and time has run out for
many with millions more at risk. What Mugabe is doing in Zimbabwe is the
equivalent in human terms of what the suicide teams did to the World Trade
Center in New York every day. I was privileged to actually watch the planes
go into the building and the dramatic consequences. Behind Mugabe's closed
doors his victims will not get the same exposure, or response - not because
the people in power do not know, but simply because they either do not care
or do not see.

Eddie Cross Bulawayo, 10th January 2003.
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Globe and Mail, Canada

Do we put too much faith in democracy?


      Saturday, January 11, 2003 - Page F3

      We all need faith -- a gospel truth that applies in equal measure to
us non-churchgoing types. Many of us worship at the altar of democracy, a
potent creed that often leads to missionary crusades overseas. We ballot
worshippers take seriously the rhetorical question posed by American
essayist Sarah Vowell: "What is voting if not a kind of prayer, and what are
prayers if not declarations of hope and desire?"

      We are aggressive in our pursuit of this hope, to the point that we
are sometimes happy to see force used to bring light to the non-believers,
as in Germany, Japan and Afghanistan, and maybe even in Iraq.

      So it is especially painful when our faith is called into question by
those who have pulled the curtain aside and examined the entrails of our
deity. The most formidable challenge I've yet confronted comes from Amy
Chua, a law professor at Yale University. Ms. Chua has spent much of the
past 10 years developing a very original thesis about the paradoxical
effects of democracy and market economies on the developing world, and she
is about to publish it under the title World on Fire.

      "The global spread of markets and democracy," she concludes in this
well-grounded study, "is a principal, aggravating cause of group hatred and
ethnic violence throughout the non-Western world."

      She feels no joy in this heresy. "It's a very tough issue, and I can
only conclude that we are making a mistake by simply imposing free
elections, by themselves, on the developing world," Ms. Chua told me the
other day during a break between lectures. "I'm actually in favour of both
markets and democracy, but I fear that the U.S. has been exporting the wrong
version of free-market democracy -- a caricature."

      Ms. Chua began to develop her alarming thesis a decade ago, after
observing what had happened over and over in southeast Asian countries. Her
roots are in the Philippines and she is ethnic Chinese, a member of the
minority that dominates that country's economy and politics. She learned
from her Philippine relatives that her aunt had been killed in an angry
ethnic uprising. Soon, she would recognize this as part of a pattern.

      In those days of the early 1990s, our faith in democracy seemed
unshakable. Popular democratic uprisings had peacefully overturned the
tyrannies that governed the Soviet Union and most of Eastern Europe, and the
Tiananmen Square uprising seemed to portend similar changes in China. The
majority of the world's nations had democratic elections, and many of us
were willing to take seriously Francis Fukuyama's claim that history's end
had made liberal democracy the only thinkable option.

      In September of 1996, American diplomat Richard Holbrooke was among
the first to question this utopian vision. On the eve of the first elections
in Bosnia, he began to have cold feet. "Suppose the election was declared
free and fair," he said, but those elected turned out to be "racists,
fascists, separatists, who are publicly opposed to peace and integration.
That is the dilemma."

      A year later, that dilemma was given a name by the political scientist
Fareed Zakaria, whose hugely influential essay, "The Rise of Illiberal
Democracy," spelled out the central problem: "Democratically elected
regimes, often ones that have been re-elected or reaffirmed through
referendums, are routinely ignoring constitutional limits on their power and
depriving their citizens of basic rights and freedoms. . . . Democracy is
flourishing; constitutional liberalism is not."

      Today, illiberal democracies are the world's biggest problem. What
were we to conclude when Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf recently
denied his country free elections for another five years, out of fear that
the people would choose a Taliban-style theocracy over the general's
liberal, rights-respecting but thoroughly undemocratic regime? There is no
good answer.

      We have been scarred by the deadly effects of democracy in the
Balkans, in Rwanda and elsewhere. Some influential thinkers have declared
that the whole democratic project should be abandoned, at least for now.

      "To think that democracy as we know it will triumph -- or is even here
to stay --is itself a form of determinism, driven by our own ethnocentrism,"
Robert Kaplan wrote in his book The Coming Anarchy. His argument is that
democracy should be put off, and economic development and prosperity should
be allowed to flourish (under dictatorships) first.

      Ms. Chua's thesis is both less pessimistic and more interesting, since
it is built around a dynamic of race and culture that hasn't previously been
given a name. She has noticed, in almost every non-Western country, a group
she calls the "market-dominant minority." These she defines as "ethnic
minorities who, for widely varying reasons, tend under market conditions to
dominate economically, often to a startling extent, the 'indigenous'
majorities around them."

      Croats in Yugoslavia, whites in South Africa, Chinese throughout
southeast Asia, Ibo in Nigeria, Lebanese in west Africa -- these are the
sources of tension between free markets and free elections.

      "Democratization," she wrote, "by increasing the political voice and
power of the 'indigenous' majority, has fostered the emergence of
demagogues -- like Zimbabwe's Mugabe, Serbia's Milosevic, Russia's Zyuganov,
Bolivia's Great Condor, and Rwanda's Hutu Power leaders -- who
opportunistically whip up mass hatred against the resented minority,
demanding that the country's wealth be returned to the 'true owners of the
nation.' "

      Iraq, of course, is ruled by a market-dominant minority, the Sunni
Muslims of Baghdad. Will the sudden imposition of democracy, without the
tight constitutional controls that Ms. Chua considers vital to preventing
this problem, turn Iraq into another Bosnia or Rwanda? This is an important

      While Ms. Chua, like me, retains her faith, this challenge is going to
need more than silent prayer.
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The Age

It's not always about the game
January 12 2003
By Paul Weaver

Regardless of whether World Cup matches are boycotted in Zimbabwe, the game
has already been tarnished. Leading players and administrators stand accused
of being incapable of telling right from wrong.

Few people look to politicians for moral guidance but cricket folk,
apparently unburdened by conscience, do. They should look to former England
bowler Tom Cartwright instead.

Cartwright, an outstanding craftsman for Warwickshire, Somerset and England
in the 1960s and '70s and now an award-winning coach, was always one of the
game's shrewdest thinkers.

He refused to coach in what was then the Rhodesia of Ian Smith in 1969 and
told Somerset he did not want to play against South Africa in the ultimately
cancelled 1970 tour.

Most famously, he withdrew from the 1968-69 tour to South Africa, which led
to Basil D'Oliveira taking his place. After the tour was cancelled South
Africa was isolated from Test cricket for 22 years.

Cartwright had toured South Africa with England in 1964-65 and was upset by
what he saw.

"If I was playing for England today I would refuse to go to Zimbabwe. How
could I play cricket when, just down the road, starving people are queuing
up for food?

"The Zimbabwe decision should have been made by the ICC and not each
country's board. The England board is faced with a difficult decision. They
should say no. But if they decide to go, it is up to each player to stand up
and make his personal choice. Everyone should be free to opt out. That would
certainly be my decision."

Cartwright, 67, is something of a rarity in the game where right-wingers,
like right-handers, predominate. In his admirable book Fragments of
Idolatry, he tells of the time Somerset's Bill Andrews was told to remove a
Labour leaflet from his front window.

Cartwright, born in a miner's cottage in Coventry with no running water, is
of the left. "I used to feel a bit isolated in the dressing room. Mike
Brearley used to talk to me about South Africa but some seemed afraid of
expressing opinions. In 1970 I was told that out of 330-odd professional
cricketers, only seven were uncomfortable about playing South Africa.

"At the time all the county chairmen seemed to be Cambridge blues and all
the administrators Oxford blues. I don't think much has changed.

"But it's so naive when people say that cricket and politics shouldn't mix.
In the case of South Africa they brought politics into the game. Apartheid
in cricket was a political statement. I know the situation in Zimbabwe is
very different but the same principle applies.

"But we're not just talking about South Africa or Zimbabwe. Look at the
committee at your local cricket, football or rugby club. Politics is
everywhere and it's ludicrous to suppose otherwise."

Cartwright, whose medium pace was legendary for its accuracy and seam
movement, took 1536 county wickets at 19.11 and had seven centuries in his
13,710 runs, at an average of 21.32. He was unlucky to play only five Tests
for England.

He became Somerset's player-coach in the 70s, helping to develop the talents
of Viv Richards, Vic Marks, Peter Roebuck and, especially as a bowler, Ian
Botham. He became the national coach in Wales and was awarded the MBE in

Values have never changed for Cartwright. "I've been to both South Africa
and Zimbabwe and what really saddens me more than anything is that there was
a wonderful opportunity for meaningful change. But short-term greed has been
followed by long-term catastrophe."

Once it was Cartwright's cricket that stood out. Today it is his principles.
And a game anxious to present itself as a morality-free zone should listen
to his wise words. In a bleak and mercenary world they sound as uplifting as
a trumpet blast.

- Guardian
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New security appraisal could avert Zimbabwe crisis
Ralph Dellor - 11 January 2003

International Cricket Council president Malcolm Gray has met the new
chairman of the England and Wales Cricket Board, David Morgan, and the
result could be a reprieve for the ECB from their dilemma over going to
Zimbabwe for the scheduled World Cup match on February 13th.

The ICC have stated that England must honour the contract they signed to
play their World Cup matches according to the fixture list agreed by all the
competing countries long ago. The Government, since Christmas, has been
putting pressure on the ECB to forfeit the game for fear of giving a
propaganda boost to the intensely disliked Mugabe regime in Zimbabwe.

The only grounds on which the ICC would contemplate freeing the ECB from
their contract - breach of which would cost English cricket a substantial
sum of money for which the Government has refused compensation - is on the
grounds of security. A delegation including ECB chief executive Tim Lamb
went to Zimbabwe and gave the country the all clear as far as the safety of
players, officials and spectators was concerned at the end of last year.

Since then, however, there have been fresh outbreaks of violence with hungry
mobs rioting in Harare and Bulawayo where fixtures are due to be played.
This offers the ICC an opportunity to send another inspection team to
Zimbabwe. They have already gone some way towards acknowledging the
deteriorating security situation by forming a standing committee to keep an
eye on developments. A safety and security delegation will be arriving in
Nairobi on Monday to assess conditions there and a similar delegation could
be sent to Zimbabwe as a result of the formation of this standing committee.

Mr Gray said, "We have obviously been watching what has been happening in
Zimbabwe and it might be we will have a more formal look at it in a couple
of weeks.

"If things have changed, we have processes in place that will allow us to
change if we need to, right up to the start of the matches."

Such a move might offer England a way out of their predicament. The
Australian Cricket Board might also welcome the move, for they too have come
under pressure to pull out of their fixture against Zimbabwe in Bulawayo on
February 24th.

Apart from the immediate financial penalty resulting from breaking the ICC
contract, English cricket could face further losses running into many more
millions of pounds. If England do not play in Harare, it is highly likely
that Zimbabwe would withdraw from their proposed tour of England next
summer. Then the ECB would face expensive claims from broadcasters and

In addition, there is a danger of a serious division in world cricket should
England and Australia boycott Zimbabwe while other countries, notably India
and Pakistan, are prepared to fulfil their fixtures.

All these considerations are weighing heavily on Mr Morgan's mind as he
faces a major crisis within his first few days in office.

"I want cricket to be united and I think it has to go ahead for the game to
remain united," he said. "I am significantly worried about a possible split
in world cricket.

"It's a possibility, and a worrying possibility, that Zimbabwe won't come to
England to play in the Test and one-day series this summer. That's more
important than some of the financial considerations."

Meanwhile Mr Gray has made it clear that the ICC will not get involved in
the various political issues and confine itself to matters that affect
cricket alone.

"Our position is a relatively simple position. We have the ability, the
confidence and responsibility to ensure the safety and security of the
players, the officials and people attending the matches.

"Equally, we do not have the confidence, ability or mandate to make
judgements on the political issue, that is the role of government.

"You have to remember the ICC is a classic international body made up of 85
member countries and they have very diverse political, religious and
cultural backgrounds. They will have different views as to the various
regimes in various countries."

Having said that, the ICC cannot be isolated from wider political
considerations. While the governing body will doubtless work within its own
clear parameters, it would be a convenient solution for everyone, with the
possible exception of the Zimbabwe Cricket Union, if matches were to be
moved away from that troubled country on the grounds of safety and security.

© CricInfo
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South African minister hails Mugabe land grab

Mungo Soggot in Johannesburg, Andrew Meldrum in Harare, and agencies
Saturday January 11, 2003
The Guardian

The South Africa labour minister, Membathisi Mdladlana, said in Zimbabwe
yesterday that his country had a lot to learn from President Robert Mugabe's
programme of land reform.
The political opposition in South Africa denounced his remarks as

Mr Mdladlana said during a tour of farms that it was "important that black
people should also own land that they till, and know how to produce food and
be self-sufficient and sustainable".

The South African Press Association also quoted him as saying that South
Africa had a lot to learn about land reform from its neighbour.

His comments were trumpeted by Zimbabwe's state press as strongly supportive
of Mr Mugabe's land seizures, which are widely seen as the primary cause of
the country's current famine.

An estimated 8 million of Zimbabwe's 13 million people are threatened with
starvation, according to the UN and other international bodies.

The black farmers being resettled by Mr Mugabe's Zanu-PF party have not been
given title to the land, which remains in the hands of the state.

The South African Democratic Alliance opposition said Mr Mdladlana's
"support for Zanu-PF's land redistribution programme is chilling".

Its land affairs spokesman, Andries Botha, said: "President Mugabe and
Zanu-PF's violent and unconstitutional 'redistribution at all costs'
programme has resulted in the complete collapse of Zimbabwe's
agrarian-dominated economy.

"This hardly sounds like the example South Africa should be following."

The editor of the newspaper Zimbabwe Independent, Iden Wetherell, said: "The
South African labour minister allowed himself to be led around by Zimbabwean

"They took him to a few showcase schemes purporting to prove that the land
redistribution programme has been a success... when it is patently clear
that the systematic destruction of Zimbabwe's agricultural sector has been

Since South Africa's transition to democracy in 1994, the ANC government has
pursued a cautious land reform programme.

President Thabo Mbeki has said that land invasions will never take place.

Even so, Mr Mdladlana's words will exacerbate the fear that some in the
South African government sympathise with Zanu-PF.

South Africa is tackling land reform in two ways: it is assessing claims
from people who say they were unfairly forced off their land under apartheid
and it is distributing state and other land to formerly disadvantaged

The government's land programme got off to a slow start, and only 7% of land
earmarked for redistribution has been transferred. The process has
accelerated in the past three years, however.

Last year the director general of the government's department of land
affairs, Gilingwe Mayende, told a newspaper that white farmers supported
land reform and were voluntarily offering land for redistribution to
landless black people.

South Africa would not follow Zimbabwe's example, he added. The support of
landowners would help the government to redistribute 30% of agricultural
land to landless communities by 2015.

Carl Opperman of Agri Wes-Cape, a farmers' organisation, said he was
surprised by Mr Mdladlana's remarks.

Farmers in the Cape had drawn up extensive plans for reform, given them to
the government, and were now waiting for a response.

"We are waiting for government to put money into land reform," he said.

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Police arrest Harare's MDC mayor
            January 11, 2003, 18:45

            Police have arrested Elias Mudzuri, the opposition mayor of
Harare, on allegations that he was addressing an illegal meeting, a
spokesperson for the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) said.

            Police picked up Mudzuri and three officials of the local
residents' association in the Harare township of Mabvuku while he was
holding a report-back meeting to residents there, said Nkanyiso Maqeda.
"They then decided to arrest everyone else who was at the meeting," he said.
"They took away about 100 people who are at the police station now."

            Mudzuri was told by police he had been arrested for failing to
obtain police permission to address the meeting, in terms of draconian new
security legislation which allows police to ban President Robert Mugabe's
political opponents from holding meetings. No police comment could be

            Mudzuri is one of the MDC's five mayors around the country,
running the councils of the capital, Harare, the western city of Bulawayo
and three other towns, who broke decades of corrupt control by Mugabe's
ruling Zanu-PF party when they won municipal elections in the last two
years. However, all of them have come under sustained harassment from the
party and security authorities trying to force them out of office and
restrict their ability to administer their areas.

            It is the first time any MDC mayor has been arrested, but
Mudzuri, popular for attending to the capital's rutted roads and trying to
repair its crumbling infrastructure, has been subjected to what is widely
regarded as a smear campaign by the state media, accusing him of corruption
and incompetence. The government last week announced its plans for Mugabe to
appoint ruling party "city governors" to try and break the influence of the
opposition party's rulers. - Sapa
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Sunday Times (SA)

Zimbabwe steps up security at resorts

HARARE - The Zimbabwe government has stepped up security in its top tourist
resorts ahead of the World Cup cricket matches due to be played in February,
the state radio said.

Six out of 54 World Cup matches are scheduled to be played in the Zimbabwe
capital, Harare and the country's second largest city of Bulawayo in
February and March.

Measures have been put in place to make the country "a safe tourist
destination", the radio said.

It reported Home Affairs Minister Kembo Mohadi as saying those who planned
to visit the country should "ignore the falsehoods being peddled by the
country's detractors" on the security situation.

The England cricket team is set to play a match here on February 13 despite
pressure from Prime Minister Tony Blair's government to boycott the fixture.

The England and Wales Cricket Board said on Thursday they would only revise
their decision to send the team if the security situation deteriorated.

There have been growing concerns over security here following food riots
last week in Harare and Bulawayo and the murder of an Australian tourist at
Victoria Falls.

Australia issued a travel warning for Zimbabwe Friday to all its nationals
saying economic hardship in the southern African country "is leading some
people to desperate and criminal activity, and has increased the risk of
incidents of civil disorder".

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Business Day

ICC forms special Zim committee

LONDON - The International Cricket Council (ICC) have formed a standing
committee to monitor whether or not games at the forthcoming World Cup can
be played in Zimbabwe.
The African nation is due to host six out of the 54 World Cup matches when
the tournament gets underway next month, but food riots in the capital
Harare and Bulawayo have raised safety concerns.

ICC president Malcolm Gray told the BBC: "The committee will keep a watching
brief over security and will act if need be."

There has been widespread opposition to the Zimbabwe matches, with
politicians and human rights groups saying they should be played elsewhere
in protest at the policies of President Robert Mugabe.

The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) have come under strong pressure
from the British Government to pull out of their match against Zimbabwe in
Harare on February 13 although ministers have stressed that the final
decision is one for the cricket authorities alone.

Elsewhere, the Australian and New Zealand governments have also expressed
their concerns although both now appear resigned to their teams playing in

The ICC have always maintained that the only reason for moving matches from
Zimbabwe would be on safety and security grounds.

They sent an inspection team to Zimbabwe in November and their report
concluded that it was still safe for matches to go ahead there.

And Gray insisted: "You cannot take the issue of security and relate it to
the political question as to whether England goes or not.

"I think the England cricket board has been doing a miraculous job and the
management have taken a strong stance," the Australian added.

"If any team doesn't go to the World Cup they won't be looked upon kindly by
fellow members of the ICC."

And ECB chairman David Morgan is also worried by the possibility of a split
in world cricket, with India and Pakistan having both made it clear they are
happy to play their matches in Zimbabwe.

"I want cricket to be united and I think it (the Zimbabwe leg of the World
Cup) has to go ahead for the game to remain united," Morgan said.

"It's a possibility, and a worrying possibility, that Zimbabwe won't come to
England to play in the Test and one-day series this summer.

"That's more important than some of the financial considerations."

Nevetheless the ECB, who failed to get a compensation guarantee in the event
they did not play in Zimbabwe from the British government on Thursday
following a meeting with sports secretary Tessa Jowell, are worried by the
financial implications of withdrawal.

It is expected they would have to pay to the Rupert Murdoch-owned Global
Cricket Corporation (GCC), the World Cup rights' holders, some $1.6-million
in the event of an Harare boycott.

And they are also worried they could face losses of up to 10 million pounds
(16 million dollars) if Mugabe forces the Zimbabwe team to pull out of its
Test tour of England in retaliation.

The four-man ICC committee consists of Gray, ICC president-elect Ehsan Mani,
chief executive Malcolm Speed and South African cricket board president
Percy Sonn.

The ECB's 15-member management board are due to meet on Tuesday at Lord's
and expected to give the go-ahead to England's participation in Zimbabwe.

The bulk of the matches in the February 8 - March 23 tournament are being
played in South Africa and contingency plans are in place for fixtures to be
moved there if Zimbabwe is deemed unsafe.

Meanwhile, an ICC inspection team is due to arrive in Kenya, where two
matches are scheduled, on Monday to assess its security arrangements after
doubts about its suitability as a World Cup venue were raised in the wake of
terror attacks in Mombassa in November.

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The Times
January 10, 2003

Banishing act
by Helen Rumbelow
Once Zimbabwe's Madonna, Portia Gwanzura now fears for her life

THERE ARE FEW clues to the former glory of Portia Gwanzura. She struggles to
make ends meet in a gloomy Coronation Street-style terrace on the outskirts
of Wigan, far from the mansion with servants she occupied as head of a
musical empire in Zimbabwe. Instead of cruising in her fleet of
chauffeur-driven Mercedes, befitting Zimbabwe's foremost female singer, she
sits on an old stained sofa and cannot do much except watch the rain
This outspoken woman, dubbed the "Madonna of Zimbabwe" for being the most
powerful businesswomen in her country's music industry, has abandoned her
life's work to seek political asylum in Britain. She inspired awe in
imitators, alarm in rivals, and named her band Hohodza (or "woodpecker")
because she relishes the challenge of cracking the hardest opposition. What
could make a woman like Portia Gwanzura so afraid? "Before I say anything, I
just want you to know that if you hear I've died in an accident, it wasn't
an accident, it was the Zimbabwean Government," she says. "People who speak
out in Zimbabwe get silenced, one way or another. The ones who leave are the
only ones with a chance to tell the truth."

Gwanzura never meant to get her music mixed up in politics. She was born 35
years ago in a rural mud hut, and would amuse her friends with songs as they
walked several miles to school across the plains. As soon as she could, she
moved to the capital, Harare, where she realised she would never make it in
the male-dominated music industry without some serious financial clout.

So began years of setting up businesses, from beauty salons to car
dealerships, also fitting in two children, before she had the money to set
up Hohodza. She hand-picked the 12 band members by auditioning young
school-leavers, believing them to be easier to train to her vision of a
blend of traditional folk songs and modern pop.

"My aim was to be one of the best groups in the world, but I knew I was
starting something very new and difficult," she says. "If you are a female
musician in Zimbabwe you are seen as a kind of loose woman. I just had to
stop caring about that."

These were the golden years, for her and Zimbabwe, and her band, which draws
strongly on national pride, went from strength to strength. They had ten hit
albums in as many years.

Hohodza picked and mixed different musical traditions from across Zimbabwe,
using the mbira - a thumb piano - and xylophone as well as drums and
guitars. They toured Europe twice, building up a respectable following, and
their latest album, Zvinoda Kushinga (Strength is Needed), was edited in

"We were free," says Gwanzura. "Zimbabwe was one of the most visited
countries in the world, we had lots of food, lots of hope."

It is a sign, she says, of how confident people were then that when the
Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) - President Mugabe's Opposition - asked
her to play at their launch in September 1999, she agreed. "I didn't think
twice. We were asked because we were one of the biggest bands, and I felt
Mugabe was making a lot of mistakes. I didn't think there would be a

As a household figure she wasn't surprised to be approached by two men in
suits after a gig the night before the MDC concert. "They said, 'Portia, are
you playing for the MDC?' I said, 'Yes, I'm looking forward to it'." She
smiles at her own naivety.

She says that they then showed her their passes from the Central
Intelligence Organisation (CIO), the feared Government security agency, and
warned that her life would be in danger if she went ahead. "The band was
shocked. We sat down to talk about what to do, and we could only think about
stories we had heard of people being disappeared by the Government. We
thought we could be next."

They stayed away from the launch, but it was the last time that she wanted
to be cowed by Mugabe's regime. Guilty about letting the MDC down and
disturbed by her unpleasant brush with the Government, Gwanzura was
converted to the Opposition overnight.

Hohodza did everything they could to support the MDC, wearing T-shirts on
stage, flashing MDC membership cards as they sang, and ending concerts with
open-handed waves - the symbol of the MDC - and chanting "chinga" or

As if Gwanzura could not be in more trouble, she married a white Zimbabwean
mechanic called Sean, just as Mugabe stepped up his campaign to blame whites
for the country's growing problems. After the Government's failure to win a
referendum in February 2000, Gwanzura began to believe that the MDC could
win in the elections in June that year.

She wrote a highly provocative song, Zvinhu Zvaoma, which has an
irrepressible, danceable beat but means "things are tough". The lyrics are
an angry indictment of the Zanu (PF) regime: "People cannot afford to buy
food, they are walking miles to find work, children are fainting in schools,
when is it going to end?" The song was quickly removed from the playlist at
the Government-run Radio Zimbabwe, and a DJ who played the song was sacked.
"People wanted to hear it, but if they played it at home it had to be done
quietly, because you wouldn't know if your neighbours were Zanu (PF) and
would get you beaten up," she said. "The only safe place to put the song on
was in your car, with the windows rolled up."

Even before the Government won the election, Gwanzura felt isolated and
doomed. Thomas Mapfumo, the country's best-known and most politically
engaged musician, is now in virtual exile in the United States.

While pro-Government bands such as Tambaoga thrived with songs likening Tony
Blair to an outdoor toilet, Zanu (PF) supporters were demanding to be paid
off in beer to avoid violence at Gwanzura concerts. "Sometimes it was a
relief to turn up at the venue and find Zanu (PF) guys had cleared everyone
away. It meant no one would be hurt," she says.

But soon the beer didn't work any more. Last year, one of her singers was
ambushed after a concert, and given a fatal beating. Gwanzura is convinced
that the killing was political. At a concert last March thugs grabbed the
microphone before she went on stage and shouted, "Down with Portia, don't
let the white puppet live!" The crowd erupted into violence, and Gwanzura
fled, chased by cars full of Zanu (PF) supporters.

"Enough is enough, I thought I'd die," she says. She sold her businesses so
she could fly to Britain with her husband, leaving her two children in
Harare with her father as the couple sought asylum. Weeks later her
11-year-old daughter was killed in a road accident. "I will never forgive
myself," Gwanzura says. "I left Zimbabwe to save myself and she got killed.
I am responsible."

She is not allowed to work in Britain while she waits for news on her
application from the Home Office, and does not have the heart to sing
anyway. She sits at home grieving for all she has lost. Very quietly, her
husband plays her music in an upstairs room. Right now, it is the only
hopeful thing about Gwanzura.
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Comment from ZWNEWS, 11 January

Food riots point to turf wars

To some observers, recent outbreaks of violence in food queues in Harare and
Bulawayo signal the start of widespread rioting as Zimbabweans finally rebel
against the misery of living under Robert Mugabe's regime. But the
instigators of the disturbances were self-styled war veterans and other
pro-Mugabe militants, all imbued with a culture of impunity. What Zimbabwe
may now be facing is not spontaneous uprisings against Mugabe, but
Chicago-style turf wars among rival warlords seeking local monopolies to
exploit a cowed, starving population.

The latest disturbances occurred when war veterans, the mainstay of Mugabe's
violent three-year onslaught against the Zimbabwean population, battled with
police and the newly-mustered Green Bombers for control of food queues. The
first maize distribution disturbance was triggered in Bulawayo's Tshabalala
township Jan. 3 when a local Zanu PF war veteran leader ordered his
supporters to besiege the Grain Marketing Board depot and prevent
distribution of maize to millers he alleged were unsuitable recipients.
Despite the presence at the depot of army personnel and Green Bomber youth
militia, police had to be called, fighting running battles with up to 4 000
people. More than 30 were arrested and brought to court on two days later,
but charges were then dropped - in contrast to the past unrelenting
prosecution of peaceful protesters for the MDC. Three days later in Harare
war veterans attempted to take control of a maize queue adjacent to the
shrine of the Vapostori sect in Chitungwiza. Residents came to the aid of
the police and successfully fought off the militants, who took refuge at the
shrine. The militants stand to make huge profits, apart from satisfying the
hunger of their families and friends. A 10kg bag of meal costing Z$250 can
be resold immediately on the black market for more than Z$1 500. At some
township filling stations, Zanu PF youths offer to escort motorists to the
head of 2 km fuel queues in return for Z$1 000 bribes.

War veterans and Green Bombers have in the past seemed to have frightened
Mugabe's uniformed police, who have turned a blind eye to blatant
lawbreaking. In contrast, political opponents and ordinary civilians
battling to make a living are easily and brutally crushed. For example, on 8
January police simply seized goods in a raid for price control breaches on
vendors at Gweru's main bus terminus. Eight protesting vendors, stripped of
their entire capital and means of livelihood, were arrested on charges of
defying the draconian Public Order and Security Act. That same day, a
fleeting demonstration at Harare's Town House in support of the capital's
embattled mayor, Elias Mudzuri, of the Movement for Democratic Change,
reflected the extreme caution of opposition supporters in confronting the
security forces. After the briefest exhibition of posters and singing of
protest songs, the few score demonstrators fled before a much larger force
of baton-wielding paramilitaries could close in. Police staked out every
street corner and approach to the city centre in reaction to the first hint
of MDC protest at the state media's smear campaign against Mudzuri. His
10-month battle with inherited urban neglect has been obstructed by the
central authorities and by Zanu PF loyalists among municipal staff.

As in the 1990s, when he hesitated to confront ex-guerillas who were angry
at corrupt war disability handouts to the elite, the Zanu PF leadership fear
a head-on confrontation with the militants. War veterans led by the late
Chenjerai Hunzwi were given Z$20 million to ensure Mugabe's June 2000
election victory, when around 200 people were murdered with impunity. A year
earlier Mugabe had awarded them gratuities totalling US$350 million after he
had been barracked by them at Heroes Acre, and after they had ransacked the
ruling party headquarters and besieged an international African-American
conference. Without their terror campaign, Mugabe would have been forced to
concede defeat in the June 2000 parliamentary elections and the March 2002
presidential poll against MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai. The attitude of the
war veterans, a force who - correctly - believe themselves above the law,
was also revealed in the resort town of Victoria Falls where they began
interrogating and intimidating residents following the fatal stabbing a week
ago of an Australian visitor, Peter Stafford, 27, from Adelaide. "You have
brought shame on Zimbabwe," squads were alleged to have told curio vendors
and other residents. Police admitted at least 50 people were detained for
questioning but no arrests had been made.   Tourism Minister Alfred Nhema
said the murder in the rain forest overlooking the waterfall was an isolated
incident perpetrated by "elements bent on undermining Zimbabwe's tourism
industry". But an Australian foreign ministry spokesman said the killing
highlighted the undesirability of World Cup cricket matches taking place in
Zimbabwe next month. Mugabe faces a growing threat - not from ordinary
Zimbabweans, terrorised after three years of unimpeded thuggery by troops
and militants, but from the regime's own security forces and paramilitaries
as they, too, begin suffering from shortages.
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Dear Family and Friends,
I met my neighbour on the dusty, bumpy road that services our houses at the beginning of the week. Every day he has anxiously walked down to look at the maize and beans that he has planted on the verge of our road. The maize is tall now and has begun flowering, the little maize cobs are just beginning to form but for 16 days there hadn't been a drop of rain and the plants are under enormous water stress. Planted between the lines of maize are  beans which are covered with pods that have begun drying and yellowing. My neighbour and I greeted each other and I commiserated with him about the lack of rain on his small crop. For weeks the elderly man has been up before dawn tending the little piece of roadside.  He dug it by hand, weeded it before and after work, spent his precious income on fertilizer and now all he can do is wait for rain. "I pray that God may show me some small mercy and give us rain" he said as we parted. 
We never talk politics in our neighbourhood because mostly we are all just too busy trying to survive these days and leaving my friend shaking his head in despair at his wilting crop, I went in search of vegetable seeds for my garden. Seeds are not easy to find anymore, mostly because the majority of farmers who grew seed do not exist anymore in Zimbabwe - they too have been a casualty in our governments land grab. I finally tracked down some very expensive seeds in a butchery but my shock at their price was overshadowed by the sight in front of me. Sitting in a supermarket trolley was a cow's head - eyes, ears, horns and fur in tact. I made a point of expressing my disgust to the owner of the shop who simply shrugged at my complaints of both the sight of the animal's head and the flies, the hygiene and the health hazard. 
Zimbabwe has slipped into a contagious epidemic of moral decline where no one cares, no one complains and everyone just shrugs their shoulders. There is no doubt that standards will continue to decline in a country where everyone has a price and if you use the name of the ruling party you can literally get away with highway robbery. On the front page of this week's Zimbabwe Independent newspaper is the story of how High Court Judge, Justice Ben Hlatshwayo has moved onto a commercial farm in Banket despite the fact that the property has a provisional court order sparing it from acquisition. Even after repeated letters being served on the legislator by the farmer's lawyers, the Judge told the farmer that he was not moving off and that the farmer should take the matter up with the government. Until next week. with love, cathy. Copyright Cathy Buckle 11th Jan 2003. "African Tears, Zimbabwe's Land Invasions" and "Beyond Tears, Zimbabwe's Tragedy" both now available for order from:  and  
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From theSpectator

A Question from the column "Your Problem Soved"

Q. With reference to your 'Celebrity Problem' from Michael Ancram regarding
Mr Straw's spinelessness over Zimbabwe, might I suggest that the
dispossessed farmers have missed an opportunity? What is to stop them from
organising a squatting rota to bivouac the Straw house in Peckham and give
the Foreign Secretary a dose of his own medicine? Such a sit-in would
provide days of amusement for the tabloids, and cause such inconvenience and
intrusion to the Straw household that the Foreign Secretary would soon be
jolted out of his paralysing moral confusion.
Name and address withheld

A. Thank you for this suggestion.
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A final reminder indicating the Theme and Order of Service. This may be a guide to others sharing a common unity in other parts of the world on this day. Please distribute far and wide.
Mike Lander
A Reminder For Next Week

This is an open Invitation should you be in Bulawayo on Saturday 18th January 2003
If not, why not make it a National Event and make it happen in your village, town or city?
Why not International?
Christians Together For Justice and Peace
Interdenominational Service for Peace and Relief from Suffering
Venue: St. Mary's Cathedral Roman Catholic Church
TIme: 8:30
Date: Saturday 18th January 2003
Should you wish to know more about the Service or how you can get involved with Christians Together For Justice and Peace. Please Contact :Fr. Barnabas Nqindi on 09 240582 or e-mail him
at  for the attention Fr. Barnabas Nqindi
                                                                   Theme: Hope for Zimbabwe
  Order of Service


                                                                Welcome - Priest in Charge of Cathedral

                                                                               Lighting of the candle

(A candle surrounded with barbed wire presented to Christians Together by the Churches of Kwazulu Natal, South Africa, and representing the Light of Christ giving light and hope in the midst of the suffering- ''the Light shines in the darkness and the darkness can never overcome it " John chapter 1)  

                                                                                 Opening prayer


                                                                      Address - Fr.Barnabus Nqindi     


                                                                  Belief in ourselves - Anglican TBA

                                                     Overcoming despair and despondence - Catholics TBA

                                                                      Overcoming fear- Graham Shaw

                                                              Achieving Unity in the Body-Albert Chitando


                                                                     `    Closing Benediction             

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VARIOUS STORIES ON Temba Mliswa ......................

JAG Sitrep January 10, 2003
Sport and politics don't mix?
Yesterday, Alan Parsons's wife Jenny went out to the farm with son Andrew Parsons and friend Tim Withers (both 17), daughter Rebecca (11). They were confronted by Mliswa, who has claimed the farm as his own, even though it has only received a section 5 order. He demanded to know what they were doing there since it was no longer her farm, and he was allowed by the police and DA to be there. Jen informed him that was his occupation of her house and farming of her land was wrong. He exploded at that point, calling her a "fucking white bitch" etc. He told her to read today's newspaper to find out what was really going on and how things had changed on the ground. She waited until he was finished, and told him that he was illegally on the property.
Mliswa exploded again, told her that she was to get into her car, and that they were going to the police station. As she was approaching the car, he came up behind her and slapped the back of her head, snapped her necklace, and pulled her earring off. The Parsons got into the car, and started driving out of the security fence, and they were suddenly surrounded by about 30 youths. Men were jumping on the bonnet, trying to grab the keys out of the ignition. They punched Andrew through the window, and Mliswa dragged Jenny out of the car by the neck and tried to steal her cell phone, but she managed to hide it under her shirt.  He slapped and punched Jen a lot. Andrew asked them to leave his mother alone and stared hitting him whereupon a couple of others set upon Jen (about 5 of them). Mliswa called out to them saying "No Marks! No Marks!". A youth came to beat up the son, who had now been beaten to the ground and was begging them to stop hitting him and his mother, four of them laid into him, punching and kicking. Tim was slammed into the canopy face first, and has suffered severe bruising, numbness and a very painful ear. They separated the three whilst kicking and punching them preventing them from helping each other or Rebecca in the back of the truck. The mob then grabbed the three (Jen, Tim and Andrew) and started taking them into the house.
During this debacle, Mliswa continued with his verbal abuse, screaming racial slurs at Jen, between attacks.  Rebecca was screaming and hysterical in the car, asking for help and calling for her mother but unable to get out. She begged the gardener to help her and he refused. After taking them into the house, Jen expressed great concern about Rebecca being left outside on her own but was not allowed to get her and Mliswa ordered two people to fetch Rebecca from the vehicle and bring her in. They took the child out of the car and told her that if she did not stop crying she would "face the same treatment" as her mother. They took her into the house with the others, who were forced to sit and listen, not allowing Jen to sit with her daughter and proceeded to give them a political lecture.
After a while, Andrew stood up and told everyone that they needed to calm down, because things were getting out of hand. This took them off guard and the Pasrons realized that by being submissive and apologizing for any misunderstanding it seemed to pacify Mliswa.  Mliswa told them that the mob could have killed them, and that he was the only thing holding them back and that all he was doing was protecting them. However, after a while, he let them go. He apologised to the children and told them that they had suffered huge trauma but it was a result of their mother's "white arrogance". He said their mother needed disciplining and that this had now been done and they could go. He told them to get off the farm and never come back or they would be killed. Rebecca pleaded with him over the safety of her horse and he informed her that he would take care of things.
They went to see Kelvin Weir, who took control of the situation. They went to the police station. They spoke to Inspector Khumalo, who told them that he now has the green light to arrest Mliswa. Khumalo sent them to the front desk to make two separate reports - one for assault and one for theft. All the locks on the farm have been removed and replaced by Mliswa as well as a Landini tractor and 120 mainline pipes, a heavy duty jack, and a carpet have been stolen. The constable at the front desk informed them there were no RRB numbers as they were out of stock and in future to make reports to the front desk and not direct to the Inspector. His manner was offensive. Statements were made, and they went to the hospital for examination. After examination the medical forms were returned to the police station. Another constable informed them that there was one charge of GBH regarding Jen and two common assault charges involving the 2 boys. The daughter is completely traumatized and requires counseling and medical attention.
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WELCOME home, Temba!
Zimbabwe Independent: May 24 2002

Muckraker learnt that Temba Mliswa was inconsolable this week when immigration officials at Gatwick Airport booted him out of Britain.

The deportation is rather puzzling for a man who brags to having successfully recruited students from over 60 countries from the Caribbean, Africa, the Far East, United States, Middle East and Europe to study in the UK.

When some students recruited by his agency, Education UK Ltd, were deported recently, Mliswa said they had failed to answer questions put to them by British immigration officers.

"I could not have given them my brains. It's not my fault that they failed," he said at the time.

Strangely, when given 63 questions to tackle by the same officials, he managed to answer only five. What did he have to hide?

The Herald managed to make the whole episode look as if Mliswa was the victim of British brutality.

"Mr Mliswa voluntarily refused to enter Britain after being subjected to what he described as inhuman political interrogation by the British Immigration officials for his pro-Zanu PF sentiments," it helpfully said.

We sincerely hope that Mliswa was not deported under a Section 8 notice, requiring him to leave all his possessions behind in the UK to be looted by Labour Party officials. And we wish him well in having to live - like the rest of us - under a government that has made all prospects of a better life very remote indeed.

Mliswa calls in Chinotimba
Blessing Zulu
Zimbabwe Independent: 19 April 2002

TEMBA Mliswa, the controversial United Kingdom-based Zanu PF publicist, has enlisted the services of Zanu PF Harare political commissar Joseph Chinotimba as mediator in a row between Mliswa and nine deportees who claim the former sports trainer failed to refund their deposits after they paid him to facilitate their entry to the United Kingdom.

Mliswa is running a recruitment agency, Education UK Ltd, which specialises in the recruitment of students, teachers and nurses. The company charges desperate Zimbabweans a hefty fee, often as much as 10 times the parallel market exchange rate, to facilitate their entry into the UK but dozens have been turned around at Gatwick Airport by British immigration officers and sent home.

When news of his failure to repay the deportees was carried in the Zimbabwe Independent last week, Mliswa immediately summon-ed the nine and admonished them in the presence of Chinotimba. Mliswa could not be reached this week as he has returned to England.

Asked to comment, Chinotimba said the deportees were a troublesome lot.

"I am surprised that they are besieging Mliswa's office demanding money," he said.

"They wanted to go to London and they went. That they were turned back at Gatwick is irrelevant, at least they fulfilled their wish of seeing London. Zimbabweans must sit here, why should they run away from here?" Chinotimba asked.

One of the deportees said Mliswa had called them to his offices on the pretext that he was going to make restitution. He however began to threaten them in the presence of Chinotimba saying he would not refund any money until they had disclosed who leaked the story to the Independent.

"Mliswa told us that we were free to go and report anywhere but we were not going to get our money back," said another deportee.

Mliswa asked the deportees to bring their passports to his office for him to arrange another attempt to enter the UK.

Chinotimba said he knew Mliswa as a friend but said he had nothing to do with the dispute.

Mliswa, come back home as the great patriot you are
Zimbabwe Daily News: 11 April 2002
IT has been interesting to read the comments of the so-called sports consultant, Temba Mliswa, who advocated that Zimbabwean athletes boycott the Commonwealth Games, due to be held in Manchester, England, in July/August this year.
This is a noble idea, but Mliswa must lead by example.

He should start with himself, by coming back home and not choosing to dispense his advice from the comfort of the United Kingdom or the United States.

If he has not decided, I suggest that the European Union and the US government do him a favour, especially because of his links to the ruling party.

He formed a partnership with Leo Mugabe and John Fashanu sometime ago, while his recent comments on Members of Parliament Job Sikhala and Tafadzwa Musekiwa clearly show which camp he is in. As a great patriot, Mliswa should come back and contribute to the fiscus.

UK-bound Zimbabweans conned
The Zimbabwe Independent, 12 April 2002

Controversial Zanu PF publicist Temba Mliswa is running a recruitment agency in London which has seen Zimbabweans anxious to enter the United Kingdom turned around at Gatwick by British immigration officials and sent home. Mliswa's company, Education UK Ltd, whose British office is given as Wembly Point, 15th Floor, Harrow Road, Middlesex, promises applicants placement in the UK on payment of £100 (or $400 000 if paid in Zimbabwe) as a registration fee. The company specialises in the recruitment of students, teachers and nurses and claims to have offices in Sri Lanka, Ukraine, Russia and East Africa. The company has so far failed to refund nine people who were deported in February alone. Mliswa is the company's director for Southern Africa. One of the deportees said Mliswa, a former national soccer team fitness trainer, had taken them for a ride. "His company assured us that everything would be okay as they had assisted many Zimbabweans who had gone abroad," said one woman who spoke on condition of anonymity. "I cannot disclose my name because I might be victimised by Mliswa who is well-connected to the ruling party. Besides I might not even be able to recover the $400 000 I paid," she said.

"In order for us to help you," says the company's prospectus, "you must first register with us. The cost of registration is £100 for five years if you are applying for the UK and £520 if you are applying for the United States." Education UK Ltd claims to assist applicants gain admission to education programmes overseas. "This means that after registering, we can help you to gain admission not just for one course, but also for many different courses," the prospectus says. Contacted for comment, Mliswa said: "Look, I am not an immigration officer. I only assist people to have their papers in order. If they fail to answer questions at the airport that is not my problem. I cannot assist them with my brains. Those people should have paid me £100 before leaving but they did not," said Mliswa.

Another deportee said Mliswa was not being honest. "Mliswa had given us a letter which we were supposed to show immigration officers at Gatwick. But once we mentioned his name, we were immediately deported. They said he had sent many people to the UK claiming they would only stay for two weeks and they had just vanished," the deportee said. An official from the British High Commission said they had no arrangement with Mliswa's company. "I have never heard of this company and we have no dealings with Education UK Ltd," she said. Mliswa also claimed that people were being deported because of the Aids scourge. "Let us not blame (Robert) Mugabe for these deportations. Many Zimbabweans who go there are straining the British health system as they will be infected by the deadly Aids virus," he said.

Temba’s call
Financial Gazette (Zim): 3/21/02 1:33:05 AM (GMT +2)

DM this week got a long-distance call from Temba Mliswa, the young Zimbabwean fitness trainer based in London, after I wrote last week that it was difficult to believe Mliswa was in the habit of audio-taping his dinner guests.

Mliswa says he stands by his story in the Sunday Moyo that MDC legislators Tafadzwa Musekiwa and Job Sikhala are always begging for money from ZANU PF bigwigs such as Philip Chiyangwa.

In fact, says Mliswa, both Musekiwa and Sikhala even owe him more than $300 000 he paid for their tickets on the ill-fated trip to London which the duo must surely now wish they had never undertaken.

Mliswa says far from being a hatchet boy for Mugabe, the ruling ZANU PF party dismays him because it has failed to address many concerns for Zimbabweans, including those involving sports.

The young rugby trainer says the only reason he exposed Musekiwa and Sikhala was because he was disappointed by their love for money that would ultimately expose them to corruption if they attained higher offices.

The nice thing about Mliswa’s calls, though, is that the London-based fitness trainer strives to make his point rationally without getting too emotional.

He is a far cry from some ZANU PF-aligned businessmen and ministers who rant and rave at the slightest hint of criticism.
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It has been a hideous couple of years for all of us - for those outside the
country, as well as those inside.   We have lost a bit of confidence in
ourselves and taken a psychological battering at the very least.

We have to move on and we will - but there is no doubt that whether you are
still in Zim, or wherever you have gone to , nobody understands you quite as
well as another Zimbo at this stage - and we are now so widely spread that
even that is difficult.

So talk to your dearest friends and relatives and arrange to  meet up in Aus
in October - we've put a fun and nonsense programme together, with the
tempter of possible world rugby tickets too (if you book early.)   By the
time you've played for your own school in hockey or croquet, had a mighty
Mashonaland vs Matabeleland singalong at the Heckova Hooley party  and
caught up with old mates at the Makulu Braai, you should be back to your old
self again!

There is an early-bird registration fee for bookings before the end of
February - with a variety of accommodation on offer from backpacker hostels
to apartments and hotels - so get your registration in - and let's all
restore our confidence together!  

Have a look at the website and if you are
interested in looking at other opportunities in Aus, there's a whole lot of
info on that too.   We'll need 300 to go ahead with this, so let us know as
soon as possible - and check those airline availabilities because of the
world cup.   If you would like us to fax the registration form to anyone,
get them to send us a short fax or email to us as below.

The Zimbabwe Connection
Phone/fax:      +61 - 8 - 8278 2397
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