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Communique: Extraordinary Summit of the SADC Heads of State and Government: Presidential Guest House, Pretoria, Republic of South Africa, 26-27 January 2009

1. The Extra-Ordinary Summit of the SADC Heads of State and Government met at the Presidential Guest house in Pretoria, Republic of South Africa on 26-27 January 2009. The Extraordinary Summit met to review the implementation of the Zimbabwe Global Political Agreement.

2. The Extraordinary Summit was chaired by H.E. Kgalema Motlanthe, Chairperson of SADC and President of the Republic of South Africa

3. The Extraordinary Summit was attended by the following Heads of State and Government or their representatives:

Botswana H.E. President Lt. Gen Seretse Khama Ian Khama

Lesotho Right Honourable Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili

Mozambique H.E. President Armando Emilio Guebuza, Deputy Chairperson of the Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation.

Namibia H.E. President Hifikepunye Pohamba

South Africa H.E. President Kgalema Motlanthe Chairperson of SADC

Swaziland H.M. King Mswati 111, Chairpeson of the Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation

United Republic of Tanzania H.E. President Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete

Zambia H.E. Rupiah Banda

Zimbabwe H.E. H.E. President Robert Gabriel Mugabe

Angola Hon Assuncao Dos Anjos, Minister of External affairs

DRC Hon.Alexis Thambwe Muamba, Minister of Foreign affairs

Seychelles Honourable Patrick Pillay, Minister of Foreign Affairs

Malawi Hon George Chaponda, Minister of Local Governmnt and Rural development

Madagascar Hon Dr Denis Andriamandroso, Madagascar Ambassador to South Africa

Mauritius Mr Anund Priyay Neewor, GOSK, Secretary of Foreign Affairs

4. The meeting was also attended by His Excellency Thabo Mbeki, Former President of the Republic of South Africa and SADC Facilitator on the Zimbabwe Political Dialogue, Leaders of MDC Formations, Right Honourable Morgan Tsvangirai, Prime Minister Designate and Professor Welshman Ncube,representing Professor Arthur Mutambara, Deputy Prime Minister Designate of the Republic of Zimbabwe, and the Executive Secretary of SADC, Dr. Tomaz Augusto Salomão.

5. In his opening remarks, His Excellency President Kgalema Motlanthe, Chairpeson of SADC and President for the Republic of South Africa welcomed all delegates to the meeting and re-affirmed SADC’s commitment to finding a lasting solution to the implementation of the Zimbabwe global political agreement.

6. The Extraordinary Summit noted that the people of zimbabwe are faced with difficult challenges and suffering that can only be addressed once an inclusive governmnet in in place.

7. In view of the above, the Extraordinary Summit decided as follows:

(i) the parties shall endeavour to cause parliament to pass the constitutional ammendemnet 19 by 5 february 2009.

(ii) the Prime Minister and the Deputy Prime Ministers shall be sworn in by 11 february 2009:

(iii) the Ministers and Deputy Ministers shall be sworn in on 13 february 2009, which will conclude the process of the formation on the inclusive governmnt.

(iv) The Joint-Monitoring Implementation Committee (JOMIC), provided for in the Global Political Agreement shall be activated immediately. The first meeting of JOMIC shall be convened by the facilitator on 30 January 2009 and shall, among other things, elect the chairpesons;

(v) The allocation of ministerial portfolios endorsed by the SADC Extraordinary Summit held on 9 November 2008 shall be reveiwed six (6) months after the inauguration of the inclusive governmnet.

(vi) The appointements of the Reserve Bank Governor and the Attprney General will be dealt with by the inclusive government after its formation

(vii) The negotiators of the parties shall meet immediately to consider the natioanl security bill submitted by the MDCT-T as well as the formula for the ditribution of governors:

8. The Extraordinary Summit expressed its appreciarion for the efforts of His Excellency Thabo Mbeki, Former President of the republic of South sfrica and the Facilitator of the political dialogue on Zimbabwe in helping to find an amicable solution to challenges facing the Republic of Zimbabwe and encouraged him to continue with his facilitation efforts.

9. The Extraordinary Summit commended the political parties to the Global Political Agreement for their opennnes and constructive engagement in finding a lasting solutio to the challenges facing Zimbabwe.

10. SADC shall remain seized with the Zimbabwe situation in keeping wth its obligations as guarantor of the Global Poliical Agreement.

11. The Extraordinary Summit directed the chairperson of the SADC to present the African Union at its forthcoming summit a progress report on the implementation of the Sham- El-Sheik Resolution

12. The Extraordinary Summit received a brief on the prevailing security situation in the Democratic Republic of Congo and supports the govermnet efforts to findimng a lasting solutionb to the conflict in the Eastern part of the country. The government of the DRC expressed it gratitude to SADC for the support thau far rendered.

13. The Extraordinary Summit also urged the interantional community to continue providing the people of the Democratic republic of Congo with humanitarian assistance.

14. His Excellecy President Kgalema Motlathe officially closed the extraordinary summit

Pretoria, Republic of South Africa
27 January 2009

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MDC's Response to the SADC Communique of the 27th of January 2009, Tswane South Africa

January 27th, 2009

We came to this summit with five (5) outstanding issues which are:

1. The Enactment of Constitutional Amendment Number 19
2. The definition of National Security Council legislation
3. Equitable allocation of portfolio ministries
4. The appointment of Provincial Governors and other senior positions.
5. The Breaches of the MOU and the GPA

It was our expectation that the SADC processes would be above board and be
beyond reproach. Regrettably once again we note that Mr. Mugabe was allowed
to sit in during the closed session of the plenary meetings. Thus once again
Mr. Mugabe has been unfairly allowed to be a judge in his own cause.

As far as the merits are concerned, our expectations were again that SADC
would come up with a just resolution to the outstanding issues in the
interest of Zimbabwe and all the parties concerned.

Quite clearly the conclusions reached as reflected in the communiqué fall
far short of our expectations. Most importantly they do not accord with our
National Council resolutions of the 14th of November 2008 and 12th of
December 2008.

It is important that finality be brought to this issue and therefore our
National Council will meet on Friday 30th of January 2008 to define the
party position.

Via MDC Press Release

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Deal? No deal? SADC's Zimbabwe "breakthrough" in doubt

Africa News
By Clare Byrne Jan 27, 2009, 16:34 GMT

Harare/Pretoria - Zimbabweans reacted sceptically Tuesday to conflicting
reports out of a Southern African summit about a possible breakthrough in
the four-month standoff between President Robert Mugabe and opposition
leader Morgan Tsvangirai.

'It doesn't look good from here,' said John Makumbe, a political scientist
at the University of Harare in Zimbabwe. 'It appears Tsvangirai came under
extreme pressure to make concessions, and that there was minimal pressure on

'We'll see when the MDC (Tsvangirai's Movement for Democratic Change)
national executive meets at the weekend. They're likely to throw out the
whole thing,' Makumbe said.

Earlier, the MDC blasted as 'malicious' assurances given by Zimbabwe's
neighbours at the end of a 12-hour summit in South Africa that the party had
overcome its misgivings and agreed to join Mugabe in a power-sharing

'It's completely malicious,' Joseph Mungwari, spokesman for Tsvangirai told
Deutsche Presse-Agentur dpa.

'There was no agreement,' Joseph Mungwari said. But in a statement the MDC
was much less emphatic, saying that while the outcome fell 'far short of our
expectations,' the agreement would be put to the party's top body.

After the talks between nine heads of state and government from the
15-nation SADC and senior officials from the five other members, SADC
executive secretary Tomaz Salamao, reading from a communique, said: 'the
prime minister (Tsvangirai) and the deputy prime ministers shall be sworn in
by February 11, 2009.'

The swearing-in of ministers from Mugabe's Zanu-PF and two factions of the
MDC would take place two days later, ending the process of the formation of
the inclusive government, according to SADC.

Remaining sticking points in the implementation of September's power-sharing
accord, which sees Mugabe remain president, would be dealt with afterwards,
SADC said.

When asked whether the MDC had agreed, South African President Kgalema
Motlanthe said: 'Yes, of course they will ensure that the amendment 19 (that
makes Tsvangirai prime minister) is enacted.'

Motlanthe also maintained that the MDC had given in to a SADC proposal that
it share control of the home affairs ministry with Mugabe's Zanu-PF. The
ministry was hotly disputed by the two.

Before the summit, the MDC had balked at Mugabe's proposal for the
distribution of cabinet posts between the parties. The MDC also been
demanding that dozens of its members that have been arbitrarily detained or
disappeared in recent months be released.

The extraordinary SADC summit, SADC's third such summit on Zimbabwe in under
a year, comes as Zimbabwe's health and economic crises spill over into the

At least 33 people have died of cholera in South Africa in recent months as
sick, hungry Zimbabweans stream across the border. Zimbabwe's own death toll
is close to 3,000 since August, when the outbreak began in crowded
townships. Half the population of around 11 million requires food aid.

European Union slapped sanctions on more of his allies and allied companies
Monday, citing the regime's 'ongoing failure to address the most basic
economic and social needs of its people.'

Reacting to the summit outcome, Phillip Kwaragaza, a pastor, in Harare said:
'Our president is too hard a nut for SADC to crack. SADC cannot help. We now
depend on God to intervene, like he did with the Israelites.'

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Zimbabwe Opposition Disputes Agreement on Power-Sharing

Failure to Find Compromise Keeps Nation's Government Unsettled
By Karin Brulliard
Washington Post Foreign Service
Tuesday, January 27, 2009; 12:07 PM

JOHANNESBURG, Jan. 27 -- Zimbabwe's fragile power-sharing pact remained in
limbo Tuesday, after Southern African leaders said the nation's rival
parties had come to an agreement but the main opposition party denied that.

Leaders of the 15-nation Southern African Development Community met Monday
in Pretoria in what was depicted as a last-ditch effort to salvage a deal
between Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe and the opposition. After 14
hours of negotiations that ended at dawn, South African President Kgalema
Motlanthe told reporters that opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai would be
sworn in as prime minister Feb. 11, after parliament passes a constitutional
amendment creating the position.

But Tsvangirai's party, the Movement for Democratic Change, swiftly issued a
statement indicating that was not the case. While a communique issued by
SADC addressed some of the opposition party's demands -- including, for
example, a call for the parties to discuss the assignment of provincial
governors -- the MDC said it had not gone far enough.

"Quite clearly the conclusions reached as reflected in the communiqué fall
far short of our expectations," the MDC said in a statement, adding that the
party's leadership would meet this weekend to discuss its next move.

The continued impasse leaves Zimbabwe mired in political and economic
crisis. Inflation is sky-high, hunger is widespread, and sanitation systems
have collapsed, contributing to a cholera epidemic that has killed nearly
3,000 people since August.

The power-sharing deal was signed in September, six months after general
elections in which the MDC won a parliamentary majority and Tsvangirai
outpolled Mugabe. Tsvangirai withdrew from a runoff, citing state-sponsored
violence against his supporters, and Mugabe won as the sole candidate.

But the deal soon broke down over its implementation and the opposition's
complaints that Mugabe, who has ruled Zimbabwe for 28 years, betrayed the
spirit of the deal by trying to railroad them into a junior position.

The opposition has refused to enter a unity government unless dozens of
detained and allegedly tortured opposition and civil society activists are
released unconditionally, a demand the SADC communique did not mention. The
regional body also stuck to a previous recommendation that the MDC and
Mugabe's party share control of the home affairs ministry, which oversees
the police that were used in the last year's crackdown on the opposition.
The MDC considers that idea untenable.

A ruling party spokesman said Tuesday that Mugabe would form a government
regardless of the opposition's qualms.

"The dialogue about a unity government has been closed," said Bright
Matonga, the deputy minister of information. "We will not be taking any more
of their demands. They have been shifting goal posts for months. . . . Very
soon the president will start the process of forming a new government."

A special correspondent in Harare, Zimbabwe, contributed to this report.

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Morgan Tsvangirai mustn't share power with Robert Mugabe

Telegraph View: Morgan Tsvangirai and Zimbabwe's MDC are right to be wary of
the attempt to bounce them into forming a unity government with Robert
Mugabe's Zanu-P.

Telegraph View
Last Updated: 2:06PM GMT 27 Jan 2009

Morgan Tsvangirai and Zimbabwe's Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) are
right to be wary of the attempt to bounce them into forming a unity
government with Robert Mugabe's Zanu-PF.

Behind the move is the 15-member Southern African Development Community
(SADC) which made its play last night after 14 hours of talks in Pretoria.

It asserted that Mr Tsvangirai would be sworn into office as prime minister
on February 11 in a revival of the power-sharing deal signed by the MDC
leader and Mr Mugabe last September.

Kgalema Motlanthe, the South African President, when asked if all parties
were signed up to the new unity agreement, was unequivocal: "Yes, of course".

He appears to have jumped the gun. The MDC said the agreement fell "far
short of our expectations" and the party leadership will consider its formal
response this weekend.

It should reject the deal. It is now evident that its chief beneficiary will
be Mugabe whose position will be shored up by an agreement that will see him
retain the whip hand. It is evident that SADC has no intention of imposing
any real pressure on Mr Mugabe; its response to this humanitarian
catastrophe has been supine throughout.

Until SADC accepts that Mugabe's monstrous behaviour is unacceptable and
makes clear it wants him out, the tyrant will continue to cling to power.
The only African leader to emerge with much credit has been Kenya's Prime
Minister Raila Odinga who has called on Zimbabwe's armed forces to oust
Mugabe and end his "murderous reign".

And murderous it remains. The cholera epidemic Mugabe claims does not exist
has taken 3,000 lives, making it among the worst in history. Half the
population is dependent on food aid and the economy has disintegrated. The
central bank in Harare now prints a 100 trillion Zimbabwean dollar note - it
is worth about £20.

For Mr Tsvangirai to throw in his lot with the despot would simply serve to
give this loathsome regime a fresh legitimacy. He should resist SADC's
blandishments and make clear that Mugabe has to go.

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Why 'power sharing without the sharing' surprised no-one here

Last Modified: 27 Jan 2009
By: Channel 4 News

The feeling on the streets of Zimbabwe was that there was little hope of
agreement being reached between the MDC and Zanu PF at the SADC summit in
Pretoria, writes Helen.

None of the signs were looking good.

Despite the fact that the MDC won the popular vote in the 2008 March
elections, their party continues to be criticised, blamed, insulted and
condemned in almost every issue of the state controlled newspapers and on
every radio and television news bulletin.

Over thirty MDC and civic society activists have been picked up by Secret
Police and other security personnel in the past two months and have been
held without charge or trial for weeks at a time.

The whereabouts of some are still unknown, weeks after they disappeared.
Others have been tortured in custody and have been denied medical
attention - even after high court rulings ordering immediate medical care.

Regardless of the September agreement to actually share the running of
Zimbabwe, Mr Mugabe stormed ahead alone and appointed 10 Provincial
Governors all of whom are ex-officio Senators thereby giving Zanu PF a
majority in the Senate.

He appointed a new Attorney General, re-appointed the Reserve Bank Governor
and allocated major ministries to Zanu PF - leaving only minor positions for
the MDC. A number of MDC MPs have also recently found themselves being
charged by Police leaving the MDC's House of Assembly majority in jeopardy.

Two days before the SADC Summit, Zanu PF were already closing the door and
made their intentions quite clear. Accordint to Patrick Chinamasa, Zanu PF
Chief negotiator, "Our position is that we will not meet any new demands
made by the MDC."

One day before the talks a friend showed me his January pay advice and this
barely legible piece of paper says it all. Six zeroes have been removed from
the printed notice due to space constraints.

In January this middle manager earned 14 trillion dollars. 7.6 trillion
dollars was taken by various government deductions leaving a nett monthly
income of 6.7 trillion dollars.

On the day of the SADC summit in South Africa, a loaf of bread was selling
for 10 trillion Zimbabwe dollars, or 1 US dollar - more than a middle
managers entire monthly salary.

Another friend said he hadn't been able to follow the news of the SADC
Summit because an electricity pole had fallen down and stayed on the road
for 4 days. The state run electricity company said they had: no vehicle, no
fuel and no pole.

14 hours of talks behind closed doors left SADC saying an agreement had been
reached. Zanu PF said nothing. The MDC said they had not accepted the
position given by SADC.

Zimbabweans aren't confused or surprised. We are tired, sick, hungry and
broken, just as we were yesterday and in September 2008 and in March 2008.

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AU Summit May Force Zimbabwe Power-Sharing Deal

By Peter Heinlein
Addis Ababa
27 January 2009

Africa's top diplomat has suggested that leaders gathering at an African
Union summit might force a solution to Zimbabwe's political stalemate. A.U.
Commission Chairman Jean Ping also expressed satisfaction with developments
in Somalia, despite the fall of a key town to Islamic extremists.

African Union closely watching situation in Zimbabwe

Chairman Ping says African leaders are watching very closely the Southern
African Development Community summit aimed at creating a government of
national unity in Zimbabwe. If the regional group known as SADC fails, as
reports from Pretoria appear to indicate, Ping says the African Union summit
beginning Sunday could take its own action to break the impasse.

"For sure we will ask SADC to make a report and the other heads of state and
government will pronounce themselves on this, and a decision might be taken
by the heads of state," Ping said. " This is what I think will happen if we
follow the regular procedures."

Ping: power sharing impasse has created continental crisis

The A.U. chief says the lack of agreement on a power sharing deal between
President Robert Mugabe's ZANU-PF party and rival Morgan Tsvangirai's
Movement for Democratic Change had created a continental crisis of a
magnitude that the summit could not ignore.

"In Zimbabwe the situation for us is clear enough. I told you we consider
that if a country can solve its problems by itself, why should we intervene?
We leave it to the country if course. But if a country cannot do it and a
sub-region, SADC or West Africa's ECOWAS can help in solving the problem, we
leave it to them," he said. "We help them, but we leave it to be solved by
the region, and if the region cannot, then we move to the African Union and
the U.N."

Ping declined to specify what action the summit might take, saying that was
up to the leaders to decide.

Mugabe, rival Tsvangirai welcome to attend AU summit

He noted that President Mugabe has never missed an A.U. summit, and
suggested Mr. Tsvangirai would be welcome, too. But he said the A.U.
accredits countries rather than individuals to the meetings of heads of
state, meaning it would be up to President Mugabe's government whether Mr.
Tsvangirai could attend as an official.

The former Gabonese foreign minister also says he is not surprised at the
fall of the Somali town of Baidoa, which was overrun Monday by the Islamist
extremist group al-Shabab after Ethiopian troops ended their two year
occupation. He noted that neither government forces or A.U. peacekeepers had
been in Baidoa, which had been used as the provisional seat of parliament
while it was under Ethiopian control.

"Since the beginning we were not in Baidoa," he said. "Our forces were not
there, and we knew the situation like that, the tentative [temporary]
occupation of Baidoa might happen, and we shared this preoccupation with

Situation in Baidoa, Somali also cause for concern

Ping told reporters Ethiopian officials had told him they were fully aware
that Al-Shabab fighters would move into Baidoa as soon as Ethiopian troops
left. He also said Uganda and Nigeria are set to announce contributions to
the A.U. peacekeeping force AMISOM that will substantially boost its current
strength of 3.500 troops.

The A.U. chief says he is encouraged that forces of the moderate Islamist
ARS, or Alliance for the Reliberation of Somalia, had unexpectedly stood
between peacekeepers and Islamists extremists who had tried to take
positions in the capital, Mogadishu.

The ARS is currently in the process of joining forces with Somalia's
transitional government. The transitional parliament, meeting Monday in
Djibouti, voted to double its size so ARS members could be included, and the
Alliance leader, Sheik Sharif Sheik Ahmed announced his candidacy for the
country's vacant presidency.

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Mugabe's party considers unilateral government

By CELEAN JACOBSON, Associated Press Writer Celean Jacobson,
Associated Press Writer - Tue Jan 27, 11:20 am ET

PRETORIA, South Africa - Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe's party said
Tuesday it is prepared to form a government on its own if the opposition
won't join it - a move certain to anger the West.

Patrick Chinamasa, spokesman for Mugabe's ZANU-PF party, said the government
should be sworn in on Feb. 13, as proposed by regional leaders earlier in
the day. He said his party would give the opposition a few more days to
decide whether to join in a unity government.

Zimbabwe has been virtually without a government since an inconclusive
presidential vote held almost a year ago. The opposition Movement for
Democratic Change says it won't join a government until issues including
ending state-sponsored violence against dissidents and determining a fair
distribution of Cabinet posts are resolved.

Nqobizitha Mlilo, a spokesman for the MDC, told The Associated Press that
"the MDC has not agreed to go into government of national unity" and its
leaders would meet Friday to decide their next step.

A government without the opposition would likely be condemned by the West -
the European Union on Monday added 62 individuals and companies to a
blacklist freezing assets and barring travel to those who funnel money to
prop up Mugabe and his clique.

But Mugabe is accustomed to Western criticism, and may find support among
African leaders who see the opposition as blocking a solution.

In a communique Tuesday, nine nations' leaders and Cabinet ministers from
four other countries said a Zimbabwean prime minister - the post Tsvangirai
is to hold - will be sworn in Feb. 11 after parliament passes a
constitutional amendment creating the post. Ministers would be sworn in Feb.
13, the statement from the regional bloc said.

The opposition said the conclusions of the summit of the Southern African
Development Community, "fall far short of our expectations."

An opposition statement Tuesday said the summit had failed to address
concerns including the equitable sharing of Cabinet posts and the abduction
and alleged torture of opposition members by government security agents and

The opposition has consistently resisted pressure to join a coalition
government, in which it is agreed that Mugabe would remain president, until
these disputes are resolved.

The impasse over forming a government has stranded Zimbabweans in a
prolonged economic crisis. Half the population in a once-prosperous nation
is reliant on international food handouts and a cholera epidemic caused by
the collapse of water services has killed almost 3,000 people.

In Harare, the Zimbabwean capital, political scientist Eldred Masunungure of
the University of Zimbabwe agreed with the opposition that the summit
"resolution doesn't resolve anything."

He called it "a victory for Mugabe and ZANU-PF, but there isn't much for the
people of Zimbabwe to enjoy."

The summit, however, agreed to Mugabe's demand that the opposition first
enter into government, then resolve outstanding issues.

The leaders also sided with Mugabe in insisting that the rival parties
should share the Cabinet portfolio of home affairs - important because it
oversees the police accused of kidnapping and brutalizing opposition

Both Mugabe and Tsvangirai are under pressure. Some of Tsvangirai's allies
say he never should have agreed to serve as prime minister under Mugabe,
while Mugabe is constrained by military and civilian aides who don't want to
give up power and access to corrupt gains.

Leaders at the summit appeared to ignore pressure from all fronts, including
Roman Catholic bishops of southern Africa who called on them to stop
supporting Mugabe or accept complicity in a "passive genocide" of
Zimbabweans dying of hunger and disease.

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President Obama leads US drive to topple Robert Mugabe in Zimbabwe

January 27, 2009

China and Russia have blocked previous moves against Robert Mugabe in the UN

Tim Reid in Washington and Jonathan Clayton in Johannesburg
President Obama wants a fresh approach to toppling Robert Mugabe and is
discussing with aides an unprecedented, US-led diplomatic push to get tough
new UN sanctions imposed against the Zimbabwe regime, The Times has learned.

During talks Mr Obama has had with his top Africa advisers in recent weeks,
the central idea they focused on was taking the issue of Zimbabwe before the
UN Security Council, but for the first time to combine such a move with an
intense diplomatic effort to persuade Russia and China not to block the

According to a senior aide present at the discussions, the goal of taking
the issue of Zimbabwe to the Security Council would be to pass a series of
"strong" sanctions, including a ban on arms sales and foreign investment.
They also want to expand significantly the number of ruling Zanu-PF party
officials subject to sanctions.

Last July, after Mr Mugabe was accused of rigging the elections to stay in
power, China and Russia, who have significant financial interests in
Zimbabwe, vetoed moves to impose UN sanctions. Mr Obama and his aides
believe that, with the growing international outcry over conditions there
and the devastating loss of life from the cholera outbreak, Beijing and
Moscow can now be persuaded at the very least to abstain when the issue of
sanctions comes to another vote.

"It is predicated on China and Russia going along and this Administration
will certainly undertake a new round of constructive diplomacy with Russia
and China on a whole range of options," the aide told The Times. "It will
depend on an arc of Obama diplomacy in the coming months."
Pressure on China and Russia will also be coordinated with Britain and
France at the UN. "To get even an abstention would be a tremendous victory,"
the aide said.

A key figure in any new approach will be Susan Rice, Mr Obama's UN
ambassador, who was Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs in the
Clinton administration and is a Zimbabwe expert.

"Susan is extremely aware of what is going on in Zimbabwe and she feels very
strongly that there is a tremendous miscarriage of justice in that country
and that it has to end," the aide said. "Once she has her feet on the ground
she is going to turn her attention to this issue."

During her Senate confirmation hearings earlier this month, Dr Rice said
that the US would take a leading role at the UN in tackling the "thorny
challenges of peacekeeping in the context of Darfur and Congo and the
autocracy in the context of Zimbabwe".

Mr Obama and Dr Rice are also understood to be anxious that Morgan
Tsvangirai, the leader of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change,
does not agree to a power-sharing deal with Mr Mugabe that has been under
negotiation for weeks.

They and other Western diplomats were encouraged by the collapse of talks
yesterday that regional leaders had convened to make progress on the main
issues blocking the formation of a unity government. Mr Tsvangirai was
offered the option of sharing with Mr Mugabe, but the opposition leader
refused to accept because he was not given control over the Zimbabwean
police - the main tool of oppression in the country.

Leaders of the MDC reacted angrily to claims by southern African mediators
that an agreement had been brokered to form a unity government by the middle
of next month. They accused the Southern African Development Community
(SADC) of trying to railroad them into a deal that kept the main levers of
power in Mr Mugabe's hands.

The US and Britain are anxious that Mr Tsvangirai does not weaken and sign
up to a power-sharing deal because the failure to reach an accord helps
clear the way to take the issue back to the UN. Zimbabwe will again be
discussed at the African Union's annual summit this week, in Addis Ababa,
the Ethiopian capital, but little progress is expected to be made.

"We have leverage over Russia and we are working on China," one diplomat
told The Times. "If SADC talks fail, then the African Union fails, then the
deal is dead in the water and the way is clear to take the issue back to the
Security Council."

Significantly South Africa, which is viewed by Western diplomats as an
"enabler" of Mr Mugabe and unwilling to take him on, has stepped down as one
of the Security Council's non-permanent members and can no longer lobby
China and Russia for an alternative approach, which it has done in the past.

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Rift between Tsvangirai and Biti alleged

January 27, 2009

By Mxolisi Ncube

JOHANNESBURG - Allegations of a leadership wrangle have rocked Zimbabwe's
mainstream opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) party.

However, a party spokesman categorically denied this during an interview
with The Zimbabwe Times Tuesday afternoon.

Party insiders told The Zimbabwe Times in Johannesburg Tuesday that if not
immediately tamed, the fresh wrangle, said to be between party President
Morgan Tsvangirai and Secretary General, Tendai Biti, might lead to either a
"boardroom coup" or a second split of the party in less than five years.

The sources said that factionalism, which first emerged after the party
withdrew from the Presidential run-off of June 27, 2008, which Tsvangirai
boycotted leaving President Robert Mugabe to contest alone and eventually
claim victory, grew after the power-sharing agreement that was signed three
months later and worsened on Monday.

"There has always been bad blood between the two leaders since the run-off
vote," said one source.

"Things got worse when Tsvangirai eventually signed the power-sharing
agreement with Mugabe on September 15, against advice from other top party
officials, led by Biti, who wanted out of the deal, after the document had
been altered."

The sources said that Biti and a few other top party officials were against
a unity government that leaves Mugabe fully in charge of the country, saying
that instead, the MDC should mobilize for fresh polls.

"However, Tsvangirai said that he had been assured by mediator, Thabo Mbeki
that Mugabe would honour the signed agreement and also make sure that the
original document is used to form the basis of the government.

"Mugabe himself also made that undertaking during a meeting between him and
the opposition leaders, after Tsvangirai had been put under pressure by his
party to refuse signing the deal."

The rift allegedly continued to widen as Mugabe later proved to have duped
the MDC into signing that altered document.

"Other leaders suggested that the MDC should pull out of the power sharing
agreement if Mugabe kept his stance, but that decision was held back by the
President each time it was to be made, as he hoped that Mugabe would later

"Things got worse on Tuesday morning, after Tsvangirai agreed to form the
unity government with Mugabe, despite having assured the executive in Harare
on January 18 that he would not bow down to pressure and would rather pull
out of the deal if the party's demands ere not met," said another source.

Biti is said to have castigated Tsvangirai for allegedly agreeing to form a
unity government with Mugabe, without any written assurance by the
84-year-old leader that the MDC's outstanding demands would be met, after
the extraordinary summit held by the regional Southern African Development
Community (SADC) in Pretoria between Monday and Tuesday.

"Biti is very angry with him and it seems that the Secretary General has the
backing of other party top officials in this.

"What is left now is for the matter to be tabled before the National
Council, which looks most likely to turn down the agreed SADC proposal,"
said the source.

"The other officials within the party say that if this unity government is
formed in the basis provided, then the MDC will lose support, while Zanu-PF
gains and want out unless all conditions set by the party are met."

South African President, Kgalema Motlanthe, who is also the SADC chairman,
told reporters in Pretoria Tuesday morning after the summit, which took
about 14 hours, that there had been a unanimous agreement among SADC heads
of state and the Zimbabwean political leaders that a government will be in
place by mid-February.

SADC also issued a follow-up communiqué, which said that the much-vaunted
all-inclusive government would have been fully implemented by February 13.

Biti is said to have the backing of the party's powerful treasurer, Roy
Bennett, while Tsvangirai is backed by his deputy, Thokozani Khupe and party
organizing secretary, Elias Mudzuri.

In a brief response to The Zimbabwe Times Sibotshiwe, professed ignorance of
the alleged rift within the MDC.

"I cannot say anything because I have not heard about that alleged rift,"
said Sibotshiwe Tuesday afternoon.

No comment could be obtained from official MDC spokesman, Nelson Chamisa,
who was part of Tsvangirai's delegation in Pretoria.

But, responding to the SADC communique, a statement issued by the MDC
through Chamisa said the conclusions reached at the summit fell short of its

"It was our expectation that the SADC processes would be above board and be
beyond reproach," the statement said. "Regrettably once again we note that
Mr. Robert Mugabe was allowed to sit in during the closed session of the
plenary meetings. Thus once again Mr. Mugabe has been unfairly allowed to be
a judge in his own cause.

"As far as the merits are concerned, our expectations were again that SADC
would come up with a just resolution to the outstanding issues in the
interest of Zimbabwe and all the parties concerned.

"Quite clearly the conclusions reached as reflected in the communiqué fall
far short of our expectations. Most importantly they do not accord with our
National Council resolutions of the 14th of November 2008 and 12th of
December 2008."

The statement said in a quest for finality the MDC National Council was
scheduled to meet on Friday, January 30, to define the party's position.

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Zimbabwe pupils turned away as teachers strike

Tue Jan 27, 8:35 am ET

HARARE (AFP) - Zimbabwean schools turned pupils away Tuesday on the opening
day of the academic year as teachers protested monthly salaries that due to
run-away inflation are as low as three US dollars.

More than 80 percent of teachers had heeded calls to strike, continuing with
action that had begun last year, said Raymond Majongwe, head of the
Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (PTUZ).

"Teachers are sending a clear message that we are suffering. Government must
start engaging us positively," Majongwe told AFP.

Schools in the capital Harare asked pupils to return home after teachers
failed to show.

"We have reached an 80 percent success rate as teachers did not report for
work across the country. We will be hitting the 100 percent mark on
Thursday," Majongwe warned.

Zimbabwe's education ministry had put back school opening day by two weeks
to Tuesday, blaming a delay in the marking of last year's exam papers.

Many Zimbabwean teachers have fled to neighbouring countries in recent years
because of the low salaries and the economic crisis ravaging the once
prosperous southern African country.

The strike comes with Zimbabwe still in the grip of a political crisis four
months after President Robert Mugabe signed a power-sharing deal with
opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai.

A summit of regional leaders on Tuesday gave Mugabe and Tsvangirai until
mid-February to form a unity government, but the opposition refused to
commit to the latest timeline.

Zimbabwean teachers were this month paid 26 trillion Zimbabwe dollars, worth
just three US dollars on the parallel market where most currency trading is

Teachers went on strike for the greater part of 2008 demanding to be paid
salaries in line with the ever rising inflation, last estimated at 231
million percent in July, but believed to be even higher now.

The teachers are demanding monthly salaries that would amount to 2,200 US
dollars (1,670 euros) before they will return to work.

Schools have proposed charging fees in foreign currency as the Zimbabwe
dollar loses value every day.

Last year's examinations papers are still to be marked.

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Uncertainty mars new school term as doors stay closed Tuesday

By Alex Bell
27 January 2009

Confusion and uncertainty marred the reopening of schools for the New Year
on Tuesday, as only private schools are reported to have welcomed students
back to class.

The two week postponement of the opening of schools for the New Year was
announced at the start of the year, after 2008's end of year exam results
had still not been announced. The Education Ministry said the postponement
would allow teachers' time to 'finish' marking the exams, but in fact the
problem was that teachers were refusing to return to work until their
demands for better working conditions and salaries in foreign currency have
been met. Those exam results have not yet been released.

Teachers have remained committed to the ongoing strike that contributed to
the almost total lack of schooling in 2008. Teachers Unions have already
said that schools are not yet prepared for the new term, and Tuesday's
reopening seemed unlikely to go ahead as planned. Experts have predicted
that the attendance rate is set to dramatically plummet this year from last
year's low record of 20% attendance. At the same time, the government has
made no promises to pay teachers the monthly salary of US$2000 they have
demanded; as a result no teachers were set to return to class.

On Tuesday, state schools were forced to turn students away after teachers
failed to turn up for the New Year. Its understood private schools, which
were prepared to reopen as scheduled earlier this year, finally got the
academic year underway. But for thousands of state reliant school students,
their studies are likely set to be put on hold for an indefinite amount if

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Students lash out as universities stay closed

Tuesday, 27 January 2009

HARARE - As the universities remain closed, disgruntled University of
Zimbabwe (UZ) students have destroyed vice chancellor's official brand new
Mercedes Benz by throwing stones to smash its windows. It is also believed
that part of the psychology building had its windows stoned and one of the
security guards was beaten up in an unplanned demonstration held at the
university campus on January 21.

No arrests have been made as the notorious riot police, known for its
brutal hand on protestors, arrived when the students had already dispersed.
The UZ protestors were demanding that the lecturers continue to teach and
end the semester as soon as February.
They called for the Mugabe regime to resolve the outstanding issues
that have caused the lecturers to go on strike, such as paying their
salaries in US dollars and providing them with the appropriate paper to sit
the coming exams.

Most students blame Mugabe's policies for the collapse of the
institution which was once ranked the best in southern Africa. They say that
the regime must come to an end and should meet the demands of striking
lecturers so that the universities can open.

"They are playing with the nation's lives, a year had passed now since
lectures were suspended," said a student.

Analysts are expecting a significant drop in the number of students in
universities should the fees be paid in US dollars as suggested. Fees would
be between US$600 and US$800 per semester which they believe is out of the
reach of average Zimbabweans.

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Only US dollars can buy education

In better days
HARARE, 27 January 2009 (IRIN) - Zimbabwean teachers ignored the start of the new school term on 27 January and remained on strike, demanding the payment of their salaries in US dollars.

The opening of schools had already been delayed by a week after teachers refused to mark the 2008 public examinations, which has affected the grading of pupils due to enter secondary school. Teachers are demanding US$2,300 a month.

Sifiso Ndlovu, chief executive officer of the Zimbabwe Teachers Association, told IRIN that the strike was basically solid. "The teachers did not report for duty throughout the country and in the poorer parts of urban areas. The school gates and classroom doors were open, but there were no teachers to teach the pupils."

He said some teachers at schools in the affluent suburbs of the capital, Harare, and Zimbabwe's second city, Bulawayo, had reported for duty, but did not conduct lessons.

"From our inquiries, they were hoping to strike deals with parents so that they could be paid in foreign currency and receive other incentives such as groceries, but we would not want to encourage such a development as it is only [short-term]. We want to have teachers whose welfare is completely guaranteed."

An IRIN correspondent visited several schools around Harare and confirmed the no-show by educators. In Harare's high-density suburbs, only head teachers were present, while children had either been told to go home or were playing on the school grounds.

''It is up to you, as the parents, to decide what should be done to ensure that your children get an education''
At David Livingstone Primary School, concerned parents huddled around a teacher who announced that she would not report for duty on 28 January as she did not have the money for bus fare.

"It is up to you, as the parents, to decide what should be done to ensure that your children get an education. If I have no money to come to school then I will just stay at home," she said.

The parents immediately convened a meeting and set up a committee that would be responsible for the teacher's welfare.

There was a similar scene at Haig Park Primary School in the wealthy suburb of Mabelreign, where the few teachers who turned up chose to discuss 'options' with the parents, but there appeared to be no takers. The teachers said they would return if they received news that they would be paid in foreign currency.

Meanwhile, teachers are already in the private tuition market, providing lessons to the children of panicked parents. They are responding to an economic crisis in which hyperinflation has rendered the local currency worthless, and the economy is now almost completely dollarised.

The Zimbabwe government blames sanctions by the West for the country's predicament. Most analysts accuse President Robert Mugabe of implementing disastrous policies that have ruined the economy and triggered a humanitarian emergency.


[This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations]

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Daily cholera update and alerts, 26 Jan 2009

 Full_Report (pdf* format - 205.6 Kbytes)

* Please note that daily information collection is a challenge due to communication and staff constraints. On-going data cleaning may result in an increase or decrease in the numbers. Any change will then be explained.

** Daily information on new deaths should not imply that these deaths occurred in cases reported that day. Therefore daily CFRs >100% may occasionally result

A. Highlights of the day:

- 2817 cases and 102 deaths added today (in comparison 655 cases and 26 deaths yesterday)

- 70.7% of the districts affected have reported today (41 out of 58 affected districts)

- 88.7 % of districts reported to be affected (55 districts/62)

- Revised figures for Kwekwe Deaths deaths from 24 to 21 after data cleaning

- Cumulative Institutional Case Fatality Rate 2.1%

- Daily Institutional Case Fatality Rate 1.2%

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Cholera Claims Almost 3,000 Lives In Zimbabwe - WHO

GENEVA (AFP)--The death toll from the cholera outbreak in Zimbabwe is
approaching 3,000 and within reach of the worst case scenario of 60,000
cases, the World Health Organization said Tuesday.

The outbreak, which started in August, has killed 2,971 people and infected
56,123 others, according to the latest WHO figures released Tuesday.

The previous count, issued Friday, recorded 2,773 deaths with more than
50,000 cases of infection, and the WHO said it expected the waterborne
disease to advance further.

"It's one of the worst and largest outbreaks of cholera," WHO spokeswoman
Fadela Chaib told AFP.

"The situation of cholera is not under control, it's even out of control,
and it will remain so for the near future.

"We're seeing the worst case scenario of 60,000 within reach," she added.

The numbers are expected to grow with the onset of the rainy season in

The U.N.'s health agency estimates that about half of Zimbabwe's population
of about 12 million are at risk from cholera because of poor living

The worst case scenario for health experts involves 1% of a vulnerable
population being infected - in Zimbabwe's case, about 60,000 people, Chaib

  (END) Dow Jones Newswires

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Questions raised over cholera threat to 2010 World Cup

By Alex Bell
27 January 2009

As Zimbabwe's cholera death toll continues to rise, and as fears grow that
the epidemic has yet to reach its peak, concerns have been raised about what
the disease will mean for the 2010 Soccer World Cup in South Africa.

Zimbabwe's neighbour has also been hard hit by the cholera epidemic that
officially has claimed almost 3000 lives in Zimbabwe, and the infection rate
is fast approaching the 'worst case scenario' of 60 000 cases predicted
earlier this year.

At the same time, as South Africa gears up for the World Cup, health
authorities there are still fighting to contain the spread of the disease
after thousands of sick Zimbabweans continue to flee across the border in a
desperate bid for medical treatment. The South African death toll has
reached more than 30 with cases reported in at least four provinces, while
the cholera bacteria has been found in major water sources including the
Limpopo river. An estimated R5million is reportedly needed to fight the
disease in the Limpopo province alone where the number of cases has shot up
to more than 3000, with 11 reported deaths.

The questions now being raised are whether the continued spread of the
disease will pose a threat to World Cup tourists? And whether the threat of
losing the coveted title as World Cup host will force the South African
government to change its policies towards Robert Mugabe?

The epidemic has already raised cautious eyebrows in the International
Football Federation's tourism team, who have struck Zimbabwe off the list of
tourist sites. FIFA officials have also issues travel warnings to
prospective football tourists and visiting teams about the cholera epidemic,
and yet the same disease is stalking untold numbers across South Africa.

Meanwhile as Zimbabwe's neighbours have started counting the money expected
to flood Southern African tourism in 2010, the destruction of the country
has become almost total - to a point where even in death Zimbabweans no
longer have any dignity. SW Radio Africa's Bulawayo correspondent, Lionel
Saungweme explained on Tuesday that bodies are 'spoiling' in all major
hospitals and clinics because of the lack of refrigeration systems, and rats
are infesting 'pungent' mortuaries.

"The lips and eyes and noses and even fingertips are being eaten because
there is nowhere to keep the dead bodies," Lionel explained. "Many families
are not even being contacted before the bodies are buried without proper

SW Radio Africa Zimbabwe news

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MDC feels sidelined by Save Zim

27/01/2009 18:06  - (SA)

Johannesburg - Leaders of the recently launched Save Zimbabwe Now campaign
were on Tuesday accused of snubbing MDC leaders.

Speaking during a media briefing organised by the leaders of the campaign in
Johannesburg, Movement for Democratic Change spokesman in South Africa,
Sibanengi Dube, questioned why MDC leaders "who represented the majority of
Zimbabweans in South Africa were being elbowed".

The campaign was launched with much fanfare and earned the support of
high-profile people such as former president Nelson Mandela's wife Graca

Several civil society groups in Zimbabwe and other SADC countries also
pledged to support the initiative.

"The MDC has been at the forefront of highlighting what is happening in
Zimbabwe. One expected leaders of this campaign to involve us. We would like
to get involved because this is about Zimbabweans," said Dube.

Professor Tinyiko Maluleke, one of the campaign's leaders, said it was not
their intention to replace the MDC.

"We do not choose any party. We just want to create a non-partisan platform
to discuss issues affecting the people of Zimbabwe. We do not take any
sides," he said.

It was agreed during the briefing that MDC and Save Zimbabwe Now campaign
leaders would meet to discuss the MDC's concerns.


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Abductees Weekly Update: Week Ending 23 January 2009
Tuesday, 27 January 2009

19 January 2009
• An application (similar to that in respect of Jestina Mukoko) is made in the Magistrates’ Court for referral of certain constitutional issues to the Constitutional Court on behalf of Broderick Takawira and Audrey Zimbudzana. The magistrate indicates that he will hand down his ruling the following day.

20 January 2009
• On Tuesday 20 January 2009 authorities at Chikurubi Maximum Prison allowed Jestina Mukoko to be attended to by a private medical doctor at the Avenues Clinic.

• During the examination Dr Gwatidzo diagnosed that Jestina was hyper-tensive and her blood sugar was too high.

• The doctor also organized for x-rays and an ultra sound scan to establish the extent of damage that had been caused by the torture on Jestina’s feet. During the x-rays Jestina was still in leg irons.

• Dr Gwatidzo explained that he needed to monitor her for a few days and that she was supposed to be checked on every 4 hours due to the fact that she was hyper tensive. However, prison officials refused and Jestina was taken back to Chikurubi, where she has since been admitted at the prison hospital. The admission is against her will and her doctors’ recommendations that she be admitted at a hospital that is fully equipped.

• At Chikurubi Hospital Jestina is being attended to by a one Dr Dobby who examined her again and confirmed that she was indeed hyper tensive and she needed to be monitored and this could not be done when she was in the cells. Dr Dobby then recommended that she be admitted at the prison hospital. The prison hospital is a pre dominantly male facility and there are no facilities for women. Although the matron indicated that she could not be admitted at a male facility the doctor insisted resulting in a matron’s office being converted into a ward. The doctor is regularly monitoring her blood pressure.

• During the evening of 21 January 2009, Jestina slept with leg irons on and only managed to get them removed when the prison officers changed shifts at round 22:00 hours, after she had complained about the discomfort to the attending prison officers who indicated that it was not normal practice to leave a prisoner with leg irons even when they are in hospital and especially while they are sleeping.

• Jestina has since been put on medication, which includes, Hyper tension drugs HCT and Federan.
21 January 2009
• High Court Judge Justice November Muchiya orders Clerk of Court to issue a warrant of liberation in respect of Tawanda Bvumo. Muchiya tells State lawyers that if they want to charge Bvumo they should proceed by way of summons.
23 January 2009
• Harare Magistrate Gloria Takundwa on 23 January postponed to 26 January 2009 the case against freelance photojournalist Anderson Shadreck Manyere who is being charged with alleged acts of banditry in contravention of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act. The case was postponed after Manyere and his co-accused failed to turn up in court as expected. The reasons for their failure to appear in court could not be immediately ascertained.
• High Court Judge Justice Yunus Omerjee grants bail to Bindura Mayor Daniso Wakatama and Tongai Jeki who were accused of making threatening calls to police officers, investigating the assassination attempt on Airforce of Zimbabwe Commander Perence Shiri.
• Tawanda Bvumo is finally released from prison around 2:PM in compliance with High Court Judge Justice November Muchiya’s order of Wednesday 21 January 2009.

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Zimbabwe Stock Exchange Closed Indefinitely, CEO Says

By Brian Latham and Janice Kew

Jan. 27 (Bloomberg) -- Zimbabwe's stock exchange, shut two months after the
central bank accused traders of using fraudulent checks, will remain closed
until the government agrees on a plan to denominate shares in dollars, the
bourse's chief said.

"We've reached agreement in principle to dollarize trading, but there are
still some issues," Emmanuel Munyukwi, chief executive officer of the
Zimbabwe Stock Exchange, said in a telephone interview from the capital
Harare yesterday. "At this point it's hard to say how long it will take or
when trading will resume."

Zimbabwe's dollar, the world's worst performing currency, has plunged to
about 37 million per U.S. dollar at official rates from a 30,000 peg a year
ago, and now trades as much as 40 billion on the black market. The U.S.
currency is used for daily purchases, when it can be obtained, for ease of
transactions. Businesses that trade in Zimbabwean dollars raise prices as
many as four times a day.

Zimbabwe has been mired in a decade of economic recession that caused
shortages of food, fuel and other basic commodities. At least 2,971 people
have died as a result of a cholera outbreak, according to the United
Nations. Inflation is about 89.7 sextillion percent, based on estimates by
the Cato Institute in November.

The Zimbabwe Stock Exchange has been one place where local assets had been
able to make up for some of the currency's devaluation and inflation. The
Zimbabwe Stock Exchange Industrial Index gained 56,436 percent in September,
and 3,765 percent in October, according to Bloomberg data.


Trading was stopped from Nov. 21 after Zimbabwe's central bank accused some
traders of using fraudulent checks to buy shares. Eleven companies and nine
individuals had their accounts frozen on Nov. 20 after the checks totaling
"60 hexillion" Zimbabwe dollars had been used to buy shares, Zimbabwe's
central bank governor Gideon Gono said in a statement.

Lawmakers are discussing whether to use the U.S. dollar, the South African
rand or the Zimbabwean dollar in the national budget, due to be presented on
Jan. 29, the Herald, based in Harare, reported today. They must also decide
whether stockbrokers should be required to lodge dollar deposits with their
bankers or the central bank, Munyukwi said. Zimbabwe's Securities Commission
may demand a $500,000 guarantee from stockbrokers before trade on the
Zimbabwe Stock Exchange resumes, the Herald reported Jan. 21, citing Willia
Bonyongwe, the commission's chairwoman.

Dollar Deposits

The prices of stocks will also have to be re-evaluated and a review of taxes
will have to take place, Munyukwi added. Some 7 percent of the trade on the
Zimbabwe Stock Exchange goes to the government in the form of stamp duty,
value-added tax and commissions, Lalla said.

Zimbabwe's main opposition party will decide this weekend whether to bow to
southern African leaders' insistence that it agree to implement a
power-sharing agreement and join President Robert Mugabe's government.

"In the economic carnage of the last 10 years, the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange
has almost been this one beacon of light," Russell Loubser, chief executive
officer of South Africa's stock exchange, said in an interview on Jan. 20.

The closure of the exchange has left investors with "no vehicle in which to
maintain the value of their dollars," Rishay Lalla, a fund manager at Imara
Asset Management said by phone from Harare today. "The price of stocks in
the last few months have been distorted because of the hyper inflation."

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Sugar producers suspend deliveries

January 27, 2009

By Owen Chikari

MASVINGO - Zimbabwe's sugar producers have suspended indefinitely the sale
of sugar, while demanding that the price of the commodity be pegged in
foreign currency amid reports that workers in the industry have downed tools
demanding salaries in forex.

The country's two sugar milling giants Triangle Limited and Hippo Valley
have stopped delivering sugar arguing that the Zimbabwean dollar is now

The move is likely to further worsen the shortage of the product on the
local market where it has been in short supply since 2007.

Sugar prices in the country are controlled by government and the players in
the industry have to apply to the state to set new prices.

Sources at the two companies yesterday revealed that all sales had been
suspended while those who had booked for supplies had their orders

However the companies will continue to service their external markets

"We have stopped all sugar sales until such a time when we are allowed to
sell the product in forex", said a senior official at Triangle.

"It has become unviable to continue selling the product in Zimbabwean
dollars and we have since formally applied for the prices to be pegged in

"Until this has been done we have suspended all sales".

Chief executive officer of the Zimbabwe Sugar Producers Association, Daniel
Nsingo, yesterday confirmed the development.

"We have to come up with a proper pricing structure because selling the
product in Zimbabwean dollars is no longer viable", aid Nsingo.

It also emerged yesterday that workers in the sugar industry this week
downed tools demanding payment in forex.

A spokesman for the workers said, "We are no going back to work until our
demands are met.

"We need to be paid sustainable salaries hence the industrial action. We are
demanding an average of US400 a month for the least paid worker in the

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Press Release- Former Ambassador to Lecture in Zimbabwe

Former Ambassador, George W. Haley  to Lecture in Zimbabwe

Harare, January 27, 2009- The U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of International Information Programs has awarded a U.S. Speaker and Specialist Grant to Ambassador George W. Haley to conduct a series of lectures and programs on the civil rights movement: the role of non-violent action in advancing civil rights in the U.S. George W. Haley was the United States Ambassador to The Gambia, West Africa from 1998 to 2000. The Ambassador will appear in Zimbabwe and Ethiopia from January 31 through February 12, 2009. The U.S. Speaker and Specialist program recruits and arranges for travel of American professionals to conduct programs or lectures, concerts, workshops, master classes, and formal and informal meetings with professional counterparts throughout the world. The program is administered abroad by the American Embassies and Consulates in the host countries.

Ambassador Haley said he looked forward to these lectures and the interaction with people in Africa, as well as other nations, which he considers highly necessary for the continuation of our nation’s well being. Haley has made countless appearances through the years on the domestic and international scene. A veteran of the Second World War, he graduated from Morehouse College in 1949 and from the University of Arkansas School of Law in 1952 as its second black graduate. His experiences have been numerous and varied in government and private affairs. He practiced law in Kansas and the District of Columbia and is also admitted to practice in Arkansas and the United States Supreme Court. He has served as a deputy city attorney in Kansas City and as a Kansas State Senator. He likes to report that his son, David, currently serving in the Kansas State Senate, represents much of the same district that he represented in the 1960’s. His daughter, Anne, is currently an Assistant City Attorney for the City of Los Angeles.

Ambassador Haley has served as Chief Counsel for the Urban Mass Transportation Administration (now, Urban Mass Transit) in the U.S. Department of Transportation; General Counsel and Congressional Liaison for the United States Information Agency; Chairman of the Postal Rate Commission and as Ambassador to The Gambia. He has also been on several international delegations including two trips to Paris as a part of UNESCO meetings, and ICARA in Geneva, Switzerland.

Ambassador Haley is widely traveled and has made appearances in many countries in Europe, South America, the Persian Gulf, Asia and Africa. Of all his international appearances, the one he prizes most came in Australia when he was invited to have a joint lecture at Bond University with his daughter, Anne, who at that time, was a professor-in-residence in the law school at the University.

Ambassador Haley has received many awards, honors and recognitions. His schools, Morehouse and the University of Arkansas have honored him several times. He was given the Bennie Mays award, which is a coveted honor for a Morehouse Man. He delivered the Commencement Address at the University of Arkansas in 2003 and was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Laws and the following week, he delivered the Commencement Address at Utica College in New York where he was awarded a Doctorate of Humane Letters. The National Bar Association, the District of Columbia Bar Association, The Olender Foundation in Washington, D.C. have awarded him honors.

Haley is a lifetime member of the NAACP, a member of the Sigma Pi Phi Fraternity, the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, The Masons, the Board of Directors of Africare and an active member of Israel Metropolitan CME Church in Washington, D.C.

He is married to Doris Moxley Haley. Mrs. Haley is a retired high school teacher. In addition to their two children, David and Anne, both lawyers, the Haley’s have seven grandchildren. He is the brother of the late Alex Haley, Author of the book, Roots.

# # #

Issued by the U.S. Embassy Public Affairs Section, January 27, 2009

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Government Scheme to Access Forex Blocks Small Business

By Ignatius Banda

BULAWAYO, Jan 27 (IPS) - The ZANU-PF government's efforts to gain access to
foreign exchange (also known as forex) by imposing an expensive licensing
system on Zimbabwean enterprises, enforced with the threat of prosecution,
is undermining one of the last remaining means of survival in the collapsing

According to criteria set by Zimbabwe's Reserve Bank last year for the
foreign exchange licensed warehouses and retail shops (FOLIWARS) project,
businesses intending to sell in foreign currency must deposit 20,000 U.S.
dollars with the bank for them to be issued with a licence.

Bank governor Gideon Gono called the FOLIWARS an 18-month experiment. But
concerns are being raised that the project is forcing many small enterprises
out of the market at a time when local industries have virtually shut down
because of an inability to generate foreign currency reserves previously
earned through exports.

''No one wants to use the Zimbabwean dollar and for us without licences,
this year is going to be particularly tough as our currency has become
useless,'' said an exasperated Tadiwa Furusa, a 32-year-old small
businessperson, in an interview with IPS. ''We cannot keep accepting a
currency which has been pushed out by rampant inflation.''

Local economist Gilbert Psvarai said FOLIWARS is part of government efforts
to obtain foreign currency to finance its programmes after ZANU PF policies
destroyed agriculture, previously the country's major foreign exchange
earner, and industry.

''The central bank came up with this project as part of obvious attempts to
get foreign currency from both business and the consumers,'' Psvarai told
IPS. ''But it is obvious this thing was not well thought out as both
business and the general public are bearing the brunt of pricing in forex,''
he added.

However, companies with ties to ZANU PF are believed to have easy access to
foreign currency. They were largely the first ones to be granted FOLIWARS
licences, enabling them to make super profits at a time when other business
concerns are struggling to raise the licence fee.

For Furusa the year 2009 has not arrived with glad tidings.

The beginning of a new year is usually an opportunity for businesspeople to
make projections for the approaching year. It is a time when they set goals
about opening new branches and increasing staff, in the process creating
employment school leavers. This is especially important in developing
countries where formal employment opportunities are limited.

But Furusa finds himself contemplating leaving the country as his business
is facing increasing difficulties. Zimbabwe's economic crisis shows no signs
of letting up, given the protracted deadlock between the country's main
political parties that have failed to form a government almost a year after

Furusa is a university graduate who has been forced to abandon his
profession as an environmental scientist to sell hardware and run a grinding
mill. Despite the hardships that characterised 2008, he was set for
''greater things'' in 2009.

However, regulations set by the country's central bank have shattered his

''In early 2008, before the legalisation of shops using foreign currency, we
were able to sell in the local currency and managed to stay in business,''
explained Furusa.

''Now that the local (Zimbabwean) dollar has become useless we want to sell
in foreign currency but we face arrest from the authorities. It is difficult
because we cannot afford the demands put in place by the central bank for
one to be licensed to sell in foreign currency.''

Zimbabwe's world record recession enters its 10th year and, despite
ostensible efforts by government to promote small-and-medium enterprises
(SMEs), industry officials say banks no longer issue loans to any businesses
as the local currency loses value as soon as it leaves the bank.

''Sourcing foreign currency from the parallel market has meant small
businesses struggle to finance themselves as the local dollar has rapidly
lost value against major currencies,'' according to Thomson Hazvinei of the
Affirmative Action Group (AAG), a grouping that champions the interests of
indigenous business people.

''Banks cannot loan foreign currency and we know banks are not getting any
deposits of the local currency from the people. It is a wonder that some
businesses are surviving right now,'' Hazvinei told IPS.

Local economists, commerce and industry officials agree that the unofficial
''dollarisation'' of the Zimbabwean economy has pushed the local currency
out of use as legal tender in a country where the World Bank says the
economy has shrunk by more than 70 percent since the year 2000.

The inability of small businesses to operate and to create employment has
increased poverty levels, complained Hazvinei.

Said Furusa, ''it is our intention to create jobs but conditions being set
for us by the authorities are making this impossible and that is the reason
why some of us want to quit''.

Judith Hadebe is a cross-border trader who has had brushes with the law for
selling her wares in foreign currency. ''We have to deal with the police who
insist that we sell in the local dollar, but that is threatening our
operations,'' said Hadebe. ''This is despite the fact that our customers are
willing to buy in foreign currency.''

Simba Phiri of the Bulawayo Traders Associations says they are being forced
out of business as they are failing to raise the USD20,000 demanded by the
central bank for them to be licensed to sell in foreign currency.

"By continuing to sell in the local dollar, we risk closure as the local
currency is no longer considered legal tender by both customers and
suppliers," Phiri said.

Early this month the Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce, an organisation
representing businesspeople, called on the government to review FOLIWARS as
it was prejudicing small businesses as they cannot afford the licence fees.

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Residents reject proposal to charge municipal services in forex

26 January 2009


The residents of Harare are in for yet another difficult year as the City of Harare is contemplating charging for municipal services in foreign currency. The Combined Harare Residents Association (CHRA), is reliably informed that the City’s Finance Committee and other Council executives are scheduled to meet today (26 January 2009) to deliberate on how this move will be effected; a move that will relegate more than 80% of the Harare populace to a position where they will not afford to pay for municipal services (since most of them get their income in Zimbabwean dollars). CHRA strongly discourages such a move as it will make municipal services inaccessible to most residents in Harare.


The City of Harare is already charging its health fees in foreign currency with consultation fees for adults pegged at US$5 while children pay US$3. Sources inside the Council also revealed that the City of Harare has been charging residents and corporate companies exorbitant amounts of Zimbabwean dollars in rentals and rates as a way of discouraging payments in local currency. This move has forced some individuals to opt to pay their bills in foreign currency as they cannot access the said Zimbabwean dollars at the banks while those who do not have access to foreign currency have had to face the brunt of services being cut off.


CHRA feels that the City of Harare is giving residents a raw and unfair deal. It should be noted that municipal services are under the Public Services sector and hence they should be accessible to all and sundry. Such services should be subsidized by the Government. Furthermore, the harsh economic environment currently obtaining in the country has forced most people out of employment. The unemployed are finding it difficult to make ends meet as the informal sector was destroyed by Operation Murambatsvina. Even the few residents who are trying to earn a living through vending and other trades have had to brave the continuous harassment from both the municipal and Zimbabwe Republic Police who continuously confiscate their goods. Some are even arrested for selling their goods in foreign currency without licenses from the Central Bank. Those who have been caught buying foreign currency on the streets have had their money confiscated (if not arrested). The banks are not selling foreign currency. It defies logic to think that residents are expected to pay their utility bills in foreign currency when it is clear that they have little or no means of getting that foreign currency.


The Combined Harare Residents Association hopes that the City of Harare Finance Committee and the Council Executive Body will take these points into consideration before making any decisions on the matter and also to avoid misguided decisions that will impact negatively on the livelihood of residents. CHRA remains committed to fighting for the residents’ cause and to advocate for quality and affordable municipal services.



Combined Harare Residents Association (CHRA)

145 Robert Mugabe Way

Exploration House, Third Floor


 Landline: 00263- 4- 705114

Contacts: Mobile: 011 923 2040912 653 074, 0913 042 981, 011862012 or email, and

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A Voice for the voiceless - come to London Vigil this Saturday

By: Adrian Smale

With so many having already lost their lives to cholera I read that the Red
Cross and others may need to pull out of Zimbabwe for lack of funds. The
World's eyes have understandingly been drawn to the situation in Gaza, BUT
with nearly 3 thousand lives  already cruelly claimed by this easily
preventable disease, and the situation getting worst, we have to bring this
back onto the TV and media for the sake of those without a voice who are
suffering right now.

At the Vigil this week someone commented that despite a relatively good
turnout (243 signed the register) where was everyone? They have a point, but
one can only admire the commitment of those who week after week keep the
protest going, and it does matter and it is important. It is easy after so
many years, to simply lose hope. But this we must not do for the sake of the
children of Zimbabwe. How can we in our minds eye or in reality look into
their eyes and say we will not speak out? We must not 'pass by on the other
side" as in Jesus's parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:30), even if the
leaders who can exert real power in the region continue to betray the
principals of justice, freedom and basic humanity.

As I write there was an announcement on Sky news that an 'agreement' had
been concluded but how can anyone have any faith in this when among so many
other things the submission by Zimbabwe Lawyers' to SADC Summit clearly
detailing abuses of power are simply being ignored. Zimbabweans are not
getting the government they voted for or in some cases died for.

Zimfest in the UK last year draw some 5000 visitors including myself. So we
should be able to bring together 500 people outside the Zimbabwean Embassy
at 429 The Strand. We can act to highlight the needs of Zimbabweans both in
Zimbabwe and here in the UK, and give those without a voice, a voice!

So, if you are reading this, why not come to London this Saturday?  Why not
bring a friend or friends, hire a coach if need be; do a banner or bring a
drum or flag? Be creative! See you then!!


Praying for a free Zimbabwe

For more details of the vigil see

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Comment from a correspondent

Comments from your correspondent Lucas Mbambo writing for Zimbabwe Times are
totally misplaced.

Other than that we have heard this line of thinking a gazillion times it is
sad to see there are some among us who think they can make a name for
themselves by repeating this tired mantra.

A people who were able to free themselves from the bondage of servitude via
the armed struggle can hardly be described as cowards. Presently we have the
likes of Jenni Williams, Lovemore Madhuku and many others who are at the
forefront of confronting this regime. If your correspondent imagines that
the whole of Zimbabwe will rise up as one then he must be reading a lot
Grimms and Anderson's fairy tales. This Don Quixotic approach is not going
to happen in Zimbabwe because of the brute force that will meet it. This has
been proven times beyond number.

It should be instructive to note the successes these demonstrations have
scored in China, Cuba, North Korea , Burma(Mynmar) and other places, the
answer is that bones have been broken and lives have been lost. Lucas can of
course come to Zimbabwe and try if he is so inclined. The current leadership
in Zimbabwe has decided to explore other avenues that seem to be yielding
results albeit slowly..Demnstrations are not the only way Lucas my friend
and societies are different and are operating at different levels of their

This of course should be known by now..if maybe Lucas wanted to tell his
friends that he has bought a house in the UK well and good.With the current
international financial crisis Lucas has every right to be crowing about his
good fortune but pretending that he is the receiver general of wisdom by
penning this article which borders on the Johnny Bravo and Sponge Bob Square
Pants cartoons is unfortunate to say the least.Did he give himself time to
look around him before making a clown of himself and his readership with
this nonsense?

Best Regards,


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