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co-chairs report progress in constitutional talks
Posted by Tichaona Sibanda
on Tuesday, January 8, 2013 in COPAC | 2 comments
MDC-T spokesman Douglas
By Tichaona Sibanda
08 January 2013
The COPAC co-chairmen
representing parties to the GPA have reported progress
in their efforts to
overcome differences holding up the finalization of the
It appears all the sides have made concessions on the four
co-chairmen have met in the last two weeks. There have
‘intense’ discussions to remove remaining obstacles to the
The process ran into significant
difficulties last year with all parties
failing to agree with six chapters
dealing with the devolution of power,
executive authority, national
prosecuting authority, peace and
reconciliation commission, land committee
and running mates.
Douglas Mwonzora, the co-chairman representing the
MDC-T, told SW Radio
Africa on Tuesday that following four meetings in the
last fortnight, they’ve
provisionally managed to iron out everything, with
the exception of the
issue of running mates.
Mwonzora disclosed that
on devolution, at the insistence of ZANU PF, they
inserted a preamble that
describes it as not meaning ‘cessation or
divisionism, but an answer to
‘On the land commission, we’ve agreed that the
appointment of the executive
committee would involve parliament. Since
Zimbabwe will not be in a
perpetual state of conflict, we agreed that the
national peace and
reconciliation commission will be removed from the
constitution after 7
years,’ Mwonzora said.
Although the Nyanga North
MP was non-committal about the remaining
difference on running mates, SW
Radio Africa is reliably informed the COPAC
chairs felt the discussion
needed the input of the principals, the
individuals most affected by this
provision in the constitution.
‘In the interim, the co-chairs have
decided to retain the running mates
clause in the constitution and deal with
what happens in the transitional
period, between now and the
‘It has been recommended to the cabinet committee to work out
provision that will deal with the selection of the Vice Presidents
transitional period,’ a source said.
Mwonzora confirmed that
the cabinet committee will meet in Harare this week
to try and deal with the
issue of the running mates, as well as tentatively
agreeing on the issues
that the co-chairs thrashed out in the last two
registration activists live in fear
By Jeffrey Muvundusi, Own
Tuesday, 08 January 2013 10:38
BULAWAYO - Voter registration
activists in Bulawayo are living in fear
following a clampdown by the police
to stop further registration of first
time voters in the city widely
regarded as an MDC stronghold.
Helen Tsepiso Mpofu, who has for the past
years been spearheading voter
registration in Bulawayo under the Youth
Initiative for Democracy in
Zimbabwe (Yidez), told the Daily News yesterday
that officers from police
secretive unit, Pisi, had been deployed to
investigate issues to do with
voter registration in the city’s high density
“Since Thursday last week, Pisi officers have been going around
investigating and interrogating our members on the voter
Mpofu, who is Yidez Bulawayo coordinator, said.
police are asking for the number of people we have registered so far as
as inquiring more on the whole process we have been undertaking for a
“As if that was not enough, I personally received a call from a
officer who identified himself as Agrippa Mabanda from Southampton
along Main Street. He interrogated me about my interest in the voter
registration process,” she said.
“Most of our members now fear for
their lives because knowing how the police
are being used by Zanu PF, we
really take this issue seriously,” she added.
Since Thursday, areas such
as Makokoba, Mzilikazi, Mpopoma, Nkulumane and
Bulawayo central have
received constant visits by the Pisi agents.
Some of those questioned,
Sizalobuhle Phiri and Simbarashe Chakauya, who are
Yidez coordinators in
Makokoba Constituency, confirmed being interrogated by
a Pisi officer only
identified as Ncube.
Mpofu, also an MDC activist in Bulawayo, described
the latest development as
a clear example of intimidation by Zanu PF, adding
the team would not be
“This is nothing but just intimidation
to our members and we are not taking
a step backwards. In fact, we have
raised the issue with the national
leadership and subsequently written a
letter to Jomic (Joint Monitoring and
Implementation Committee) raising the
matter,” she said.
Yidez director, Sydney Chasi, told the Daily News that
his office was still
in the process of gathering details.
have received reports that the police have been going around
our members in Bulawayo but I am still trying to engage our
lawyers. As of
now, we don’t have finer details,” said Chasi.
Contacted for comment,
Bulawayo provincial police spokesperson Mandlenkosi
Moyo said he was not
aware of the matter.
“I will find out,” is all he could say.
move by the police is believed to be an attempt to tactically condense
number of voters in the region considered an MDC stronghold ahead of the
watershed elections expected this year.
Ignore Politicians' Plea For Peace
Arthur Chigoriwa, Chris
Villagers in Chipfunde in Uzumba constituency,
Mashonaland Province, say the
plea by political leaders to desist from
violence appears to have fallen on
deaf ears because there is a lot of
intimidation by suspected Zanu PF
Kasere Zaranyika, the
provincial secretary of the Movement for Democratic
Change (MDC) wing of
Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, told VOA Studio 7
that as a result of the
intimidation some villagers now have to walk for
more than 15 kilometres to
the next village to access grinding mills.
There is also fear that some
Zanu PF supporters who allegedly raped women in
the run-up to the 2008
elections were not prosecuted and may be on the prowl
ahead of the coming
Meanwhile, as tension builds up in the run-up to the elections
been raised over the deployment of the military in some places
But the Zimbabwe National Army says this is
to protect the country against
Mozambique’s RENAMO rebels from getting into
Political commentator, Qhubani Moyo, who is also the organizing
the MDC wing of Industry Minister Welshman Ncube says the
deployment is a
ploy by Zanu PF to intimidate people in those regions to
vote for President
Robert Mugabe’s party.
Elections Unlikely by March
HARARE — Bickering over Zimbabwe's proposed new constitution is
chances the government will comply with a court ruling to hold
elections by March 31.
Practically speaking, a new
constitution must come before new elections in
Zimbabwe, because southern
African leaders want to ensure the elections are
committee submitted a draft constitution to parliament last July, but
Zimbabwe’s main political parties have yet to agree on what changes to make
before the charter is put before voters in a referendum.
Minister of Constitutional and Parliamentary Affairs, Eric
he cannot say when the referendum might be held.
“I really wish I could
tell. The earlier we have a constitution, the
earlier we have a
referendum. If we had a constitution maybe this week or
next week, it means
that we immediately go to parliament and we go for a
thereafter,” he said.
Disputes between main parties
constitution-making process is at an impasse because of disputes
main parties in the coalition government - President Robert
party and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s Movement for
The parties disagree on a proposed reduction of presidential
powers and the
inclusion of gay rights laws, among other things. As a
result, Zimbabwe is
unlikely to meet a court ruling to hold national
elections by 31 March.
McDonald Lewanika heads the Crisis in Zimbabwe
Coalition. He says there are
other factors which will make an election by
the end of March unlikely.
“We had heard of an accelerated calendar with
regards to election
preparation processes," said Lewanika. "That has not
taken place. And more
importantly, the conditions that are supposed to be
there to ensure that
this election process is free and fair are nowhere
being achieved; a case in
point is the constitution-making process which is
basically in limbo at the
Matinenga has been leading
discussions aimed at narrowing differences on the
constitution. He says
areas of disagreement have gone down from more than
30 to about five since
July of last year. He says he wants the issue
really think the people out there are tired. I am tired too. I think
next two weeks will give us an indication as to where we are going in
of the constitution,” said Matinenga.
Even if areas of disagreements are
solved, it is unlikely that Zimbabwe will
have elections by March since the
constitution requires a 90-day notice
before voting can take
No funds for elections
And there is another hurdle to
jump over: money. Last month Zimbabwe’s
finance minister Tendai Biti said
the country did not have funds for the
referendum and the
“2013, the biggest challenge is funding the elections and the
he said. "It is clear that our resources are not going to be
enough. It is
quite clear that the international community has to come in
The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission has asked for nearly
$200 million to hold
the referendum and the elections. Earlier this week,
Biti said he had
released $1 million to ensure voter registration begins.
PF clings to Mugabe goodies
Tuesday, 08 January 2013 10:46
Zanu PF says it cannot share goodies dished by President Robert
non-party members, even those it wants to lure ahead of this
The $20 million presidential farming input scheme
launched recently in all
of the 10 country’s provinces has been a bone for
contention between Zanu PF
officials and poor villagers being denied access
because they hold no
Officials at the forefront of the
scheme such as Ernest Marodza, the
Mukaradzi Zanu PF district chairperson,
say there is nothing to be ashamed
of in denying non-party members the
Marodza told a gathering in his district at the weekend that only
loyal followers should benefit from such schemes. Mt Darwin
South MP and
Indigenisation minister Saviour Kasukuwere attended the
“No MDC must benefit from our party. What do you do when your
you because of your flaws? Should you help her when she comes
she is desperate for assistance?” he quipped.
inputs are being financed by our leader, President Mugabe through
gets from his connections,” he said.
Zanu PF spokesperson, Rugare Gumbo
has previously made it clear that the
scheme was designed by his party to
ensure food security and cushion staunch
Marodza emphasised there were other programmes which are national
in which supporters of other parties can benefit
“National programmes should be open to everyone and not just Zanu
Currently we are working on a water purification scheme, which will
the entire community not just Zanu PF supporters,” he
Some political analysts have described Mugabe’s agricultural inputs
as a vote buying gimmick which is turning out to be his biggest
the drive to lure new voters.
The Daily News recently
revealed that anger was simmering in many rural and
following unfair distribution of maize seed by Zanu PF
which saw only their blue-eyed boys benefiting.
transparency and accountability in the distribution of
“Let me know if you fail to benefit from these programmes so that
trace who would have taken your share,” he told the
“Whether it is a party or national programme, those in charge
should be able
to account for what they received.” - Wendy Muperi
Govt acquires pothole patching equipment
Tuesday, 08 January 2013 00:00
Workmen fill potholes using the newly-acquired pothole patching machine in
Lewis Tembo Herald Reporter
Government has acquired two state-of-the-art pothole-patching machines for
the rehabilitation of the country’s major highways. The machines, worth US$555
000, would be first used in Matabeleland
South and Mashonaland East provinces.
Speaking during the unveiling of the machines in Harare yesterday,
Transport, Communications and Infrastructural Development Minister Nicholas
Goche said the machines would speed up the pothole re-filling exercises going on
along the country’s highways.
“These state-of-the-art machines will see large areas that need patching
being covered within a short period of time,” he said.
“You shall notice that potholes that required almost a day to be refilled
using the current method, would take only one and a half hours.
“The machines will be for highways only as the roads in urban areas are
always covered by local authorities.”
Minister Goche said illegal sanctions imposed on the country by the West
were hampering road maintenance programmes.
“As a result, we have not been able to access lines of credit, nor receive
any developmental assistance from what used to be our traditional donors.
“Consequently, we have a huge back-log in terms of road maintenance, a
situation which is aggravated by the fact that our road network is aged and in
some respect has almost outlived its lifespan.”
Government, Minister Goche said, would continue sourcing funds to
rehabilitate, widen and dualise the country’s roads.
“We have so far managed to acquire an additional US$150 million from the
Development Bank of Southern Africa for the first phase of rehabilitation,” he
The first phase would result in the dualisation of the Harare-Bulawayo road
starting from Norton to Kadoma. There are two major bridges and it is a distance
of about 120km.
Minister Goche said there had been much progress in the rehabilitation and
widening of the Plumtree-Bulawayo-Harare-Mutare highway. “Road markings are in
progress and should be completed soon and we are expecting to record significant
progress between Bulawayo and Mutare within the next 12 months,” he said.
He said dualisation of the Harare-Beitbridge Road was expected to commence
this year as Government had found strategic partners.
“Similarly, Government has engaged potential co-operating partners for
funding of the Harare-Chirundu road as we are concerned at the number of
accidents, particularly in the Makuti area.
“I am hopeful that we will be able to record significant progress on the
funding of this project within the next six months,” he said.
Minister Goche said the rehabilitation of black spots such as the 80-100km
peg on the Harare to Masvingo road were a priority and the portion that was
undergoing rehabilitation had since been re-opened to traffic.
“Additional work to complete the remaining portions of that road will be
undertaken once funding becomes available,” he said.
Government aims to increase the number of machines to one machine per
province from the current two machines for the whole country.
Zimbabwe National Road Administration chief executive Mr Frank Chitukutuku
urged motorists to pay their vehicle licences to ensure road rehabilitation.
“This is the only way we can see an improvement on the country’s major roads. An
improvement in our roads will also reduce road carnage,” he said.
Home Affairs finds Beitbridge chaos solution
SA will send more immigration officers to Beitbridge to speed up the
clearance of travellers. Picture: Jacob Moshokoa/EWN
Eyewitness News | 7 hours ago
JOHANNESBURG - South Africa has agreed to send more immigration officers to
Beitbridge to speed up the clearance of travellers and cargo.
It also says it wants to build additional roads for heavy vehicles at the
country's border with Zimbabwe.
Since last weekend, Beitbridge has been overwhelmed by tens of thousands of
travellers trying to get back to South Africa after the Christmas
Officials have said the border post experienced an average of about 26,000
people passing through the port of entry daily in the past few days.
Home Affairs Minister Naledi Pandor said South Africa did not anticipate
the huge volume of traffic this year.
Her Zimbabwean counterpart, Kembo Mohadi, held discussions with her on
Monday to discuss what he called the “terrible” situation at Beitbridge.
Pandor has promised to deploy more immigration staff to Beitbridge with
Extra clearance points will be set up outside the buildings to try to ease
the massive backlog.
A team of reporters from Zimbabwe's state media on Tuesday said they were
briefly detained by South African police yesterday while trying to cover chaos
at the border.
at Beitbridge Border Post as chaos continues
by Sports Reporter
STAGNANT traffic remained backed up for more
than 10km at the Beitbridge
Border Post Monday as the unfolding chaos almost
spilled into a riotous
Tempers and frustrations were so
high that South African authorities had to
beef up security, witnesses
Traffic into the neighbouring country started swelling last week as
thousands of Zimbabwean nationals working in that nation began heading
Slow processing on the South African side caused a backup of
vehicles stretching up to 20 kilometers or so along the roads
Bulawayo and Harare, sparking outrage from both sides of the
“This is insane, the situation here is indescribable,” said
Ndebele, who revealed that he had slept in line for three
nights, and still
“The problem is with the South African
customs and immigration side, and
given our experiences in the past few
years, some of us are tempted to think
that there is a xenophobic element
Zimbabwe immigration officials, struggling with the congestion
their counterparts across the Limpopo, were said to be furious
South African authorities.
The congestion has sparked
outrage even at government level with Home
Affairs Minister Kembo Mohadi
protesting to his South African counterpart
“We had a
discussion this morning with Minister Pandor over the terrible
Beitbridge,” Mohandi told the Herald.
“She indicated that they will
immediately deploy more immigration officers
to the border and open up more
clearing points at their side of the border
[adding that] they had not
anticipated the volume of traffic to increase
judging from the previous
Education Minister David Coltart also expressed concern
saying the chaos did
not bode well for Zimbabwe’s tourism
“The situation at Beitbridge remains intolerable, unacceptable
and a major
obstruction to Zimbabwe ever attracting significant tourists
Africa,” Coltart said.
Beitbridge is the busiest border
post in Southern Africa, handling about
9,000 travelers into South Africa in
a single ordinary day. But officials
say the figure soars to over 25,000
It also handles 2,000 small cars and 1,500 mostly
commercial trucks daily
during peak days.
& Zim urged to end border crossing nightmare
By Alex Bell
The governments of both South Africa and Zimbabwe are being
collaborate and bring an end to the chaotic situations at the
border post, where days of congestion have only just started to
The border has been the scene of chaos since last week with tens of
thousands of people returning to South Africa after their Christmas
holidays. The result was a sometimes 20 km stretch of cars waiting for their
turn to cross the border, forcing many travellers to sleep in their cars for
days. The frayed tempers, irate motorists and reports of near riots, later
saw South Africa beef-up its security presence at the border crossing, to
prevent the anger turning into violence.
Local businessman Moffat
Ndou told SW Radio Africa that the situation was
understanding,” and should have been prevented. He said the
problem was on
the South African side, where too few immigration officials
deployed to clear the queues.
“It is the worst I’ve seen it since I’ve
been in Beitbridge, so really the
worst in years. It should never have been
allowed to happen. It is busy
every year and it must not be allowed to
happen again,” Ndou said.
Ndou described how local businesses in
Beitbridge were seriously affected,
with people unable to get to work
because of the congested roads. He also
urged the governments of both
countries to collaborate to ease the
congestion, because of the high number
of Zimbabweans working in South
Co-Home Affairs Minister
Kembo Mohadi on Monday contacted his South African
Pandor, who in turn promised to immediately increase the
immigration officials at the South African side of the birder.
explained that the congestion has slowly started to clear since Monday
Pandor said the large number of travellers was
underestimated and South
Africa was unprepared for the crowds. But many
Zimbabweans, who took to
social networking websites like Facebook and
Twitter to share their
experiences, said the situation could easily been
anticipated and prevented.
Online users said the chaos is expected every
year because of the large
number of Zimbabweans working in SA.
them was Education Minister David Coltart who took to Facebook to
the situation, calling the congestion a ‘national embarrassment’.
He told SW
Radio Africa on Tuesday that the situation was “entirely
border congestion is an issue that has repeatedly been
discussed at cabinet
level for years.
“Far from resolving the issue it now appears to be
getting worse… there
needs to be regional commitment and action to ease the
congestion at the
borders,” Coltart said.
He added that a number of
short and long term measures need to be seriously
opening a second border to help cope with the flow of
traffic from central
Africa down to the economic hub of South Africa’s
short term though, there needs to be radical action and changes. We
stop reacting to crises and instead we need a proactive approach to
Four family members killed in
FOUR family members, including a school
pupil, died on the spot when a Toyota Hilux truck they were travelling in was
involved in a head-on collision with a Zupco bus near Connemara Open Prison
along the Harare-Bulawayo Road yesterday morning.
A passerby views the wreckage of a
Toyota Hilux which collided head-on with a Zupco bus along the Kwekwe-Gweru Road
yesterday morning, killing four people on the spot.
The accident occurred around 11.30am.
The truck had four occupants heading towards Gweru while the bus, which had 51
passengers, was going the opposite direction. National traffic acting police
spokesperson Assistant Inspector Chakanza confirmed the accident
“On approaching Connemara Open Prison,
the Toyota 2,4 truck encroached into the opposite lane, resulting in the head-on
collision and all the occupants died on the spot. No one was injured in the
bus,” he said.
Asst Insp Chakanza said another vehicle,
an Isuzu KB truck, which was following behind the Toyota also hit the back of
the truck but no one was injured. He said the bodies were taken to Gweru
Hospital mortuary for post mortem. “Their names will be released once next of
kin have been informed,” he said.
The incident comes after police said
they had deployed more officers along the country’s major roads to ensure that
there was sanity on the roads during the opening of the
Asst Insp Chakanza said they had also
deployed their officers at some of the bus terminuses and places where pupils
board their buses to various schools. Such places include Rotten Row, Fourth
Street bus terminus and Mbare Musika in Harare among others.
“There are also our public relations
officers and officials from the Traffic Safety Council of Zimbabwe who are
carrying out awareness campaigns at these places,” Asst Insp Chakanza
He urged motorists to ensure that their
vehicles were roadworthy before putting them on the roads. “They should check
their tyres, wipers, lights and braking systems among others before travelling.
We are expecting a heavy traffic flow,” he said.
Asst Insp Chakanza said drivers should
avoid drinking and driving. He said public service vehicles should have all the
“We want to urge all motorists to abide
by all road rules and regulations. We will not hesitate to bring to book anyone
found on the wrong side of the law,” Asst Insp Chakanza said. Since December 15
to yesterday, 219 people have been killed while 1 084 others were injured in 1
403 accidents recorded countrywide.
Of the 1 403 accidents, 119 of them were
fatal and police also arrested 11 644 motorists for overloading, 937 for driving
while using cellphones and impounded 1 471. Police also issued 13 667
border jumpers swept away by river
THREE people were swept away by a flooded river in Mphoengs,
last Wednesday while trying to cross the border into
The victims, whose bodies have yet to be recovered,
were identified as
Pocenta Ndlovu, 18-month-old Rachel Ndlovu and a woman
only named as Edith.
Police say the three were dropped off by a suspected
driving a South African-registered car, who asked another
suspect to help
them negotiate the Ramaokgwebane River into Botswana while
he waited the
Acting Matabeleland South police
spokesperson Assistant Inspector
Christopher Ngwenya said rescue operations
were still afoot, adding though
that they don’t expect to find the three
“Knowledge Ndlovu of Madlambudzi area in Bulilima District, who
a Quantum omnibus to South Africa with 15 passengers, dropped
off the three
and hired Khulayo Sibanda to assist them cross into Botswana,”
“At about 8pm, Ndlovu received a call from Sibanda telling
him that Pocenta,
Edith and Rachel had been swept by the Ramaokgwebane
Ngwenya said police were investigating the matter.
police conducted a deep water search for the trio, but they were never
found. Investigations are still in progress.
“We advise the public to
get proper documents to cross the border legally
rather than resorting to
using dangerous ways to go outside the country,” he
witnesses travelling to South Africa on Saturday reported
people being swept away by the crocodile-infested Limpompo
remains unclear if there could be a connection between the two
Many Zimbabweans escaping poverty back home frequently cross
and South Africa illegally, putting their lives at all kinds
Zim warned about flood dangers
after kombi washed away
The flooded Runde River in
By Alex Bell
Zimbabweans are being warned
about the dangers of potential flooding in the coming weeks, as a search
continues for four people suspected to have drowned in
Police have launched a search
for the bodies after a kombi was washed away while crossing the flooded Runde
River at Chilonga Bridge in Chiredzi on Sunday. The kombi was being towed by a
tractor which was also washed away.
Masvingo provincial police
spokesperson Inspector Peter Zhanero said the accident happened after the kombi
driver, identified as Forward Mapengo, tried to force his way across the bridge
by being towed by the tractor.
“The driver, who had four
passengers on board, approached the flooded bridge and realised that it was
impassable. He tried to cross by being towed by a tractor which was going in the
same direction. However, while they were halfway through, both the tractor and
the kombi were washed away,” Zhanero said.
He said three passengers in
the kombi, including the driver, drowned while another one who was on the
tractor suffered the same fate.
“Three people who were in the
kombi drowned while one managed to swim to safety. Of the four people who were
travelling on the tractor, three managed to escape while one could not make it,”
Zhanero said, adding the police sub-aqua unit was still searching for the
The Met office has since
warned that heavy flooding is expected to affect parts of the country in the
coming week. Senior Meteorologist Jonathan Chifuna is quoted by the ZBC news as
warning people “to be extra cautious as we predict upcoming floods which might
be directly linked to the current wet spell.”
rises in Chisumbanje over land row
By Tichaona Sibanda
Heavily armed police had to be summoned on Tuesday to arrest
Chisumbanje who had tried to claim back their land, taken over
multi-million dollar Ethanol plant.
The villagers are being
detained at Chisumbanje police station, facing
charges of invading private
property. The land row between the villagers and
Billy Rautenbach, who owns
Macdom the company running Chisumbanje Ethanol
plant, has been simmering
since the start of the rainy season a few weeks
villagers are accusing Rautenbach of invading their land illegally
initial agreement allowed him to use 5,100 hectares of land. There
reports the controversial businessman has illegally grabbed a
number of hectares, most of it from the villagers who are
Pishai Muchauraya, the spokesman for the MDC-T in Manicland
confirmed that 15 villagers had been taken from the fields at
Tuesday. He said the villagers had gone back to their land to
till it, as
instructed by a cabinet committee headed by Deputy Prime
Mutambara and his committee were at the
plant towards the end of last year
to diffuse the potentially explosive row
that threatens to engulf the area.
It was decided during a meeting, chaired
by Mutambara, that Macdom should
stop its expansion project until the issue
of land for the villagers had
been dealt with. The committee ruled that the
villagers would meanwhile work
on their fields until such a time as the land
row had been resolved.
‘The villagers simply went back to work on their
fields as instructed by the
cabinet committee, but some overzealous
employees at Macdom are working
against that. The villagers contend that
Zimbabwe went to war for land but
they are surprised the same land is being
taken from the blacks and given to
a white (Billy Rautenbach).
of the villagers have lost everything, including their livestock, as
longer have the pastures or land to farm. Muchauraya said efforts
made to convene a high level meeting to resolve this land dispute.
Destroy Zimbabwean Crops, Pastures
The Agricultural Research and Extension Services
(AREX) and some communal
farmers say almost all provinces have been invaded
by an armyworm which is
destroying hundreds of hectares of crops and green
AREX officials told VOA Studio 7 that the outbreak started a
week ago in
some parts of Mashonaland Central, Mashonaland West, Midlands,
North and Manicaland provinces.
Officials, who did not
want to be named, said they are struggling to control
the spread of the pest
due to chemical shortages.
They are currently assessing the situation in
most parts of the country and
expected to submit a detailed report to the
Ministry of Agriculture within
the next few days.
Some farmers in
Matabeleland North and Manicaland provinces, said they are
failing to access
chemicals from AREX and retail shops.
Gasten Shiri of Manicaland said the
armyworm is spreading at an alarming
rate. “The situation is critical in
this province as we are not getting the
Communal farmer, Khabo Malinga, of Lupane District,
Province, said almost all farmers are planting maize for
the second time
following the destruction of crops that were planted at the
end of November.
Land and Agriculture Minister Joseph Made was not
immediately available for
The pest, which can wreak havoc in
fields if left to multiply, derives its
name from its feeding habits. It
eats everything in an area and once the
food supply is exhausted, the entire
“army” will move to the next available
Servants Divided Over Salary Negotiations
Jonga Kandemiiri, Arthur
Serious divisions have emerged among civil
servant unions following a move
by the Zimbabwe Teachers’ Association and
former Apex Council chairperson
Tendai Chikowore seeking government
recognition to spearhead salary
negotiations with government
Chikowore last week wrote to Public Service Minister
requesting permission to lead negotiations on behalf of
This follows Matibenga’s decision to snub the
current Apex Council
leadership after some unions disputed elections that
saw David Dzatsunga and
his colleagues ushered into office.
Council represents all of Zimbabwe's public sector unions.
Teachers Association Chief Executive Sifiso Ndlovu told VOA Studio
his association came up with the decision to try and revive stalled
negotiations with the government and that all the unions agreed when
But Progressive Teachers’ Union of Zimbabwe president
Takavafira Zhou said
they never endorsed that idea adding that Chikowore had
no mandate to
represent civil servants.
Current Apex Council
chairman David Dzatsunga said Chikowore was meant to
lead the salary
negotiations for three months only if all unions agreed.
Teachers Association (ZIMTA) says teachers should form their
own council to
negotiate salaries on behalf of educators.
Addressing about 100 teachers
in Chinhoyi at a belated ZIMTA provincial
annual general meeting at the
weekend in Chinhoyi, a member of the
organization’s national council,
Johnson Madhuku, said ZIMTA is now
advocating for a breakaway educators
council because the currently Apex
Council doesn't address serious issues
faced by teachers.
Madhuku said the Apex Council has failed to meet the
needs of teachers,
especially in negotiating for a living wage and improved
marshals resurface at city ranks
on January 8, 2013 at 2:12
HARARE – Touts and rank marshals have resurfaced at some city
four months after a clean-up exercise that saw over 500 of them
Police round up touts at the Speke Avenue rank in Harare
last year as part
of the blitz to rid the city of rank marshals and touts
te-rrorising commuters and extorting money from kombi
The marshals, who are mainly visible during the peak hours, are
be the brains behind the sprouting of undesignated bus stops
city. When it is daylight the commuter omnibuses operate freely
disturbances or threats from the touts.
The chaos is
noticeable early in the morning and in the evening during peak
Mesa, an omnibus driver plying City-Mabvuku, said rank
marshals come during
the evening. He said they were now using dangerous
weapons if one fails to
hand over the US$2 they demand.
“Rank marshals have come to the ranks
when it’s dark and during peak hours.
They know police officers will be away
and they demand US$2. They also
threaten us with unspecified punishment,” he
Christine Chimusoro (22), a regular passenger from Mabvuku who says
usually boards the omnibuses back home around 6pm, confirmed the return
the touts. “Touts are back and I have seen some demanding cash from a
and they even threatened to drag him out of the vehicle,” she
Harare provincial spokesperson Tadious Chibanda said they had
reports about the return of the touts and rank marshals. “We
reports that touts are coming back late in the
“Whoever encounters them must alert the police officers on the
said. Last year rank marshals assaulted two soldiers in uniform
Charge Office rank after they came to rescue of commuters who were
harassed. The Herald
Angel takes umbrage at Biti 'miracle cash' taunt
SPIRIT Embassy founder Uebert Angel Mudzanire
on Sunday lambasted Finance
Minister Tendai Biti for challenging him to
“produce” $10 billion required
to retire government debt, saying “miracle
money” was not meant for those
who dipped their fingers in national
Angel also said the money was not for those who had failed to
“I am sorry minister (Biti), the miracle
money is not for someone who has
failed to account for his duties or for
thieves in government,” Angel said.
Angel said although some people
seemed alarmed by the “miracle money”, there
were greater miracles coming
this year, which he branded Epikaizo — Year of
the Shadow of God — and those
writing negatively about him would get tired.
“Under this year’s theme,
the Year of the Shadow of God (Epikaizo), big
things are going to happen,”
he told worshippers on Sunday.
“These (issues about miracle money) are
small things that you are talking
“All the newspapers writing
about Angel, you are going to get tired.”
United Families International
Church (UFIC) founder Emmanuel Makandiwa, who
recently prophesied that
Zimbabwe was headed for a gold rush that would see
people picking up the
precious mineral from the ground as God begins to
offer divine solutions to
the country’s challenges, on Sunday said people
might not understand their
predictions and their way of life.
Without making reference to Biti’s
challenge during his sermon also on
Sunday, Makandiwa said: “I am living in
the supernatural sphere.
“People should brace for more foresights in the
short distance future. Many
miracles are going to be revealed.
will continue to equip my church with the understanding of spiritual
Biti on Friday challenged Angel and Makandiwa to prove the
their “miracles” by helping the country secure $10,1
billion, $260 million
and $200 million to liquidate government’s external
debt, balance domestic
arrears and fund the referendum
This followed claims that Angel had enabled his congregants
receive money in their hands, pockets and bank
The “miracles” reportedly happened in Botswana last year during
Miracle Night and at the City Sports Centre in Harare during his New
Eve service dubbed Crossover with No Carryover.
“I respect the
men of God, Angel and Makandiwa, because of the miracles they
“But if they are printing real money, I am asking them to
deposit the money
in our (Treasury) account at CBZ (Bank) so that we can pay
some of our
arrears,” Biti was reported as saying at the
Meanwhile, Tourism and Hospitality minister Walter Mzembi in an
yesterday came out guns blazing defending Angel and Makandiwa,
two should not be persecuted as they constituted the country’s
Mzembi’s said the two prophets were contributing
positively to the country’s
tourism sector because of the international
response to their “religious
“Today, I believe securing
an appointment with (Nigeria’s) TB Joshua is a
nearly impossible feat for
ordinary people, because of the international
response to this famous
religious attraction,” he said.
“So don’t persecute the local prophet. I
endorse religious tourism itself as
a source of revenue.
“Who is the
bereaved or the aggrieved in this case? Has anyone been
“These are miracles that happen when God’s presence
has been invited in a
specific spiritual environment and moment in time, the
glory of God.
“There is no case between the prophets and their
congregations, many of them
well-heeled, educated and literate people who
are looking for spiritual
solutions to their myriad of
“It’s the external audience and competitor churches that are
than the supposedly bereaved.Why?”
He said if Treasury
needed the money, it should go to a church led by its
“If Treasury wants miracle money and solutions, it must go to
church led by
its minister,” Mzembi said.
“I go to UFIC and Spirit
Embassy from time to time in solidarity with the
exceptional support they
are giving to tourism, notwithstanding my own
“They are a
major tourism attraction. Their benchmark is TB Joshua of
Nigeria to whom
some of our affluent classes quietly and discreetly go for
Makandiwa is on record as saying he can assist
people to amass material
Rains Bring no Respite to Thirsty Bulawayo Residents
WASHINGTON DC — The Bulawayo City Council says its
tight water rationing
regime will continue, citing poor rains that have
failed to boost the city’s
The local authority shuts
down water four days per week, a situation that
has left residents in dire
straits and even caused a lot of company
say their supply dams have only received 0,35 percent of
water from erratic
rains that have fallen since November. But residents are
Bulawayo Progressive Residents Association water affairs
Anglistone Sibanda told VOA the city council doesn’t appear
committed to addressing the water issue.
The water crisis in
Zimbabwe's second largest city of Bulawayo has reached
with the local council tightening its rationing measures
residents of the precious liquid at least three days a week.
lies in the heart of the semi-arid Matabeleland region. A
ambitious plan to draw water from the Zambezi River to the city
a pipe-dream, though officials say the project is now underway.
could be next target for Zim government
By: Tawanda Karombo
8 Jan 2013
International refined foods manufacturer Nestle invested $12m into
Zimbabwean operations in 2012 despite the uncertainty surrounding its
in Zimbabwe as the government has not yet decided upon its
compliance plans. However‚ the Swiss company has reiterated
to its operations in the country.
In Zimbabwe‚ Nestle
manufactures foodstuffs for babies and also makes
cereals and powdered milk
under various brands. The company‚ according to
informed sources‚ is
treading carefully in Zimbabwe following a previous run
in with the
government after announcing that it had stopped procuring milk
President Robert Mugabe's dairy farm.
However‚ Nestle Zimbabwe says it is
committed to continuing with its
operations in the country‚ adding that the
operating environment in the
country‚ although fraught with challenges and
uncertainties‚ is "stable".
"Nestle Zimbabwe has been in Zimbabwe for 53
years both in times of economic
downturns and in times of prosperity and
surely the company will manage the
situation as it comes in order to secure
its survival for a long time to
come‚" said Nestle Zimbabwe executive
director Farai Munetsi‚ in response to
Independent economic analyst Moses Moyo said the company would
be on the
government's checklist for indigenisation compliance. Economists
investment analysts are worried that President Robert Mugabe and his
party could be using the empowerment policy to drum up support ahead
elections expected this year.
"Despite doing well and enjoying a
good market share‚ the indigenisation
policy is still a scare for the
company and this has to be settled to enable
it to be certain of its future
in the country‚ especially with threats that
have previously been made
against the company‚" said Moyo.
Munetsi said Nestle Zimbabwe's
"indigenisation proposals" were still under
consideration by the government
and added that the two parties "are still in
discussion" over the
Zimbabwe is a key market for the company in the Southern African
which is said to have the fastest growing population. This will
further growth demand for the company's products.
September this year‚ Nestle Zimbabwe set up a new cereals manufacturing
and upgraded another.
The manufacturing plant in Harare is operating at
54% of capacity‚ above the
average capacity for most manufacturing companies
in Zimbabwe although there
is room to ramp this up. Munetsi said it was
difficult to measure the
company's market share as "products are not
consistently in the market"
while there is also strong competition from
The subdued capacity utilisation for the foods manufacturing
led to high imports which are however covering up for the
Analysts said companies
such as Nestle Zimbabwe are likely to continue
encountering problems that
persisted in the country in 2012. These range
from a tight liquidity crunch
that has driven up the cost of borrowing‚ and
erratic and unreliable power
and water supplies.
Tuesday, 08 January 2013
Issue - 495
Two MDC Youth
Assembly members in Chivi Central, Masvingo province spent New
behind bars after a Zanu PF thug made a fabricated police report
them of possessing firearms and threatening to torch his homestead.
two MDC youths Obvious Chigwende and Upenyu Mandizvidza of Dombo village
Chivi Central Constituency were at Riverside Business Centre on New Year’s
Day where they were discussing the state of political affairs in the country
when they met one Carious Chidhiya, a member of the Zanu PF
Chidhiya accused the two of being political sell-outs and
with unspecified action come election time.
analysts have warned that the latest incidents of political
be a clear indication that the state and Zanu PF machinery
will be unleashed
to subvert the will of the people in the next elections.
“We were at
Riverside Business Centre with our friends when we met Chidhiya
us of being sell-outs. He also said he would deal with us in a
come election time. We told him the MDC is a non-violent party and
party was going to win resoundingly in the next elections to be
year,” said Mandizvidza.
“We also told him that Zanu PF is now
ideologically bankrupt and that the
former ruling party is no longer popular
with the electorate. This
apparently angered him and he accused us of being
political puppets. He then
made a fabricated police report claiming we
produced fire arms and
threatened to torch his homestead. He also claimed we
were carrying out
clandestine military training in South Africa in order to
violence against Zanu PF,” said Chigwende.
On the same day
the two MDC members were surprised when seven armed police
confronted them. “They intimidated us and we were taken to Chivi
Station where they detained us for two nights. The police accused us
insulting Mugabe, of banditry and trying to topple the Zanu PF leader
power,” they said.
The two were on Monday handed over to the police Law
and Order Section in
Masvingo where they were charged with improper conduct
and undermining the
authority of the President and were fined US$20 dollars
In Hurungwe West, Mashonaland West Province, reports filtering in
over 400 families’ resident in ward 7 face eviction for allegedly
an illegal settlement.
According to sources from Hurungwe,
the Karoi Town Council received names
from village heads of people
ostensibly living illegally in that ward
despite others having stayed there
for over 25 years. It is alleged that the
evictions are politically
motivated as the ward voted into council an MDC
councillor who has since
However the MDC supporters reaffirmed their unbridled
resolve to complete
the change saying Zanu PF’s intimidatory tactics and
harassment will not
The Last Mile: Towards Real
Zimbabwean kids held in SA prisons
MONDAY, 07 JANUARY 2013
HUNDREDS of Zimbabwean children are in South Africa
awaiting deportation and there are reports that they
are being held in
appalling conditions near Johannesburg and Musina, despite
calls from legal
and medical human rights groups to improve
Immigration authorities say about 43 000 Zimbabweans were
South Africa in 2012.
Among the deportees were
accompanied and unaccompanied minors. Up to 600
unaccompanied minors were
sent back to Zimbabwe by South African authorities
for Human Rights (LHR) of South Africa reported that between October
December 2011, 86 children aged between two and 17 were deported by the
LHR is presently representing five Zimbabwean boys
detained at Musina Police
Station and a Congolese teenager being held at the
facility just outside Johannesburg.
The minors have
been detained longer than the stipulated maximum 120 days
South Africa’s Immigration Act and Immigration Regulations.
LHR executive director Kaajal Ramjathan-Keogh, the South
Act prevents the detention of children for immigration
purposes and states
that they cannot be removed without a court order.
“Section 138 of the
Children’s Act prohibits the unlawful detention of
children as well as their
removal without a court order,” said
Ramjathan-Keogh. “The Children’s Act is
applicable to all children living
within South African borders. It does not
exclude children who have entered
the country through irregular channels,”
LHR says in a report, Monitoring Detention and
Immigration in South Africa,
children are often held together with adults in
overcrowded cells in
contravention of immigration laws, further raising
concerns about the safety
and general well-being of
“Conditions at detention facilities, including at the Lindela
Centre, which shelters detained women and children, and
facilities in the Musina area near the Zimbabwean
border, also remain well
below minimum standards,” reads the
“Regarding detention facilities in the Musina area, children are
detained and deported with adults, even though this is against the
The report further claims detention cells at
Lindela and Musina are in bad
condition as some detainees interviewed by LHR
complained of inadequate
meals and sleeping in dirty cells with
“These cells do not have the requisite capacity
to hold the numbers of
Zimbabweans who are arrested and the overcrowding in
the cells is a serious
“LHR continues to monitor these
detentions in Musina and lobbies for
improved conditions there,” states the
However, the decrepit conditions of detention and the threat of
have not deterred Zimbabwean minors from illegally crossing the
River into South Africa without any form of
According to Professor Lesiba Matsaung of the United Dutch
who runs two shelters for boys and girls and founder of
Musina, up to 30 women and girls come to the shelter every
week, while the
boys’ shelter has up to 50 males seeking refuge every
“All of them jumped the border illegally,” said Matsaung. “Some of
females are as young as 13. hen they arrive here, some tell us they were
gang-raped at the border. Some are also raped here in Musina by people who
lure them to secluded areas after promising to help them with shelter, jobs
and food,” Matsaung said.
Matsaung said the shelters provided by his
church also offered counselling
to rape victims, but added that older rape
victims were reluctant to report
violations partly because of fear that the
perpetrators may seek revenge as
well as the stigma associated with
“Most of them do not want us to open criminal cases with the police
of fear of victimisation by the perpetrators. But elderly women also
opening criminal cases to avoid going to court, which means exposing
their families and partners,” Matsaung said.
Africa is a signatory to the Convention of the Rights of the
states that unaccompanied or accompanied migrant children must
necessary humanitarian assistance, Zimbabwe’s undocumented
minors hoping for
a better life across the Limpopo risk being detained in
conditions and in some cases, enduring physical and verbal
abuse from South
African immigration authorities - ZimDiaspora/Independent.
won't revive Zimbabwe
07 January 2013
says Zanu-PF continues to insult our intelligence with its
The fallacy that indigenization will revive
Are we so naive to believe that a political party that has been
in power for
thirty two years and failed dismally can suddenly be the
creating wealth for all of us?
After listening to the
economic crisis within the European Union and the
solutions that are being
promoted, I remain frustrated if not angry, at how
we have got things so
wrong here in Zimbabwe. All over the world,
presidents, including those
seeking to occupy office, are trying to grapple
with how to restore economic
growth within their economies and how to create
more jobs to address the
widespread unemployment and poverty.
Their sole focus is on how to
stimulate their economies through new
investments in technology and
encourage entrepreneurs to invest in their
countries in order to create
jobs. They are competing for investors and
doing all they can to attract
them into their countries. They are all at
pains to try and convince voters
of their integrity and how they will create
a transparent and accountable
government that promotes free enterprise
prosperity for all and individual
In the mean time, here in Zimbabwe, ZANU (PF) is doing all it
actually discourage foreign investment. It even has the audacity to
that we do not need foreign capital and must revive the Zimbabwe
dollar as a
solution to the lack of money. They are talking up how we must
now take over
existing companies in all sectors as opposed to creating new
reviving those that are operating at low capacity as is the case
indigenous owned enterprises.
The army has even become an
economic expert, and is suggesting that if
necessary, we must sit on our
mineral resources (e.g. platinum) until they
decide who can invest. We all
know that this means that we must all wait
until they get "suitable
partners" to partner with them as is the case with
our diamonds. Forget the
fact that millions of Zimbabweans are desperate for
jobs and poverty is
increasing by the day.
If indeed ZANU (PF) were serious about our future,
I think first they would
admit that they have made serious mistakes in the
past and try to convince
us that it will not happen again. They would admit
that their economic
policy has not led to the development of Zimbabwe but
rather to its
underdevelopment and the concentration of wealth in a few
hands. They would
apologize to both victims of gukurahundi and offer
reparations and do the
same for those who suffered under operation
They would open up the airwaves and agree to a land audit
and tell us how
they will revive agriculture. If indeed they want to
they would begin to at least demonstrate that their
agenda is about the
ordinary Zimbabwean and not merely holding onto power.
More important, they
would purge their party of the oldies and inject
younger fresh thinking
Zimbabweans to take the country forward.
old and very wise lady in Highfields (a township in Harare) sat me down
recently and asked me the following rather sad questions; Are we so naive to
believe that a political party that has been in power for thirty two years
and failed dismally to manage the economy can suddenly be the champion of
creating wealth for all of us under empowerment or indigenization? Can a
political party that has spectacularly failed to ensure consistent energy
supplies, clean water, tarred roads, and access to affordable health,
education and housing, suddenly be competent enough to provide
Is it imaginable that a political party that has failed our
and stifled potential by hounding black entrepreneurs and
amongst us, claim that today they want ordinary Zimbabweans to
have a stake
this economy. Can a political party that seems so scared of an
new communication technologies such as the internet; really lead
us into the
I too, continue to be dumbfounded at how
ZANU (PF) continues to insult our
intelligence that they indeed have a plan
and that 100% indigenization will
lead to economic growth and job creation.
We need only look at their record
in agriculture and the diamond mining
sectors. It is hardly about you and me
and our economic well being. That has
never been on the agenda because if it
was, we would not be where we are
I would advise that ZANU (PF) does some soul searching and realize
goodwill that they may have created in the past has all but
because they simply have shown no compassion to Zimbabweans. The
important but dwelling on it does not allow us to shape a new
younger energetic and more exposed Zimbabweans now come to the
times have moved on.
Let me repeat my message;
indigenization as contemplated by ZANU (PF) will
NOT grow this economy and
produce the jobs we need. It will not attract new
investors nor will it
attract those in the Diaspora to come back and
contribute. In my opinion,
the campaign to "Broaden empowerment" seems more
about broadening the trough
from which the greedy will continue to feed
while millions of Zimbabweans
continue to live in poverty. No country in
this world has ever put asset
ownership by locals central to its economic
policy and succeeded. It is
indeed an important issue but is not fundamental
We are sadly a divided nation, but I truly believe that all
even those within ZANU (PF), cannot deny the fact that our
country has so
much potential only if we begin to be honest and forthright
on what will
work and what will not. The concentration of economic and
within a single political party is no longer an acceptable
option to most
I therefore encourage those Zimbabweans
who are progressive to raise their
voices and increase their efforts to
ensure that by this time next year, our
country will be in responsible hands
so that for once, we can revive the
dreams and aspirations of 12 million
Zimbabweans who have had to live
substandard for so long, and the 5 million
who have left their motherland
in disgust but long to come back home and
rebuild their country.
For goodness sake, we are much more that we can
ever imagine if only we were
united as a country. Our foremost concern now
must be how we can make
Zimbabwe take its rightful place in
Let those who have ears hear.
Vince Musewe is an economic
analyst in Harare. You may contact him on
Gukurahundi Massacres: Types of Physical Torture (Part 14)
on January 8, 2013 at 10:48 am
PART THREE: ORGANISED VIOLENCE: THE IMPLICATIONS OF THE 1980s
DISTURBANCES FOR ITS VICTIMS
A.Definitions of organised violence
B.Forms of organised violence.
4.)Psychological torture – general
5.)Psychological torture – witnessing of
6.)Psychological torture – Disappearances
C.Consequences of organised violence
D.Consequences of organised violence for
E.Relevance to Matabeleland – conclusion
It is difficult to estimate the costs of the epidemic violence of
the 1980s. Costs must be measured in physical injuries, psychological disorders,
economic damage and social pathology. Some of these costs, such as the medical
consequences of physical injury, can be estimated, at the least by inference and
The key men behind the Gukurahundi
Massacres: Robert Mugabe (President), Emmerson Mnangagwa (then State Security
Minister) and Perrence Shiri (then commander of the 5th
Psychological disorder can be also be estimated, as there is
already a reasonably extensive literature on the effects of organised violence.
The following chapter of this report (Legal Damages), makes some attempt to
indicate the economic costs of the 1980s disturbances. There are, however, very
few indications that social pathology can be easily measured.
indicated in the previous chapters, the scale of violence was very large, and
involved large numbers of people. The experiences reported by these people can
be categorised, and it is the aim of this chapter to put the effects of the
reported violence into a more human perspective.
Firstly, for each type of torture, we will begin with a definition
and some examples, as these are necessary, both for a clear understanding of the
forensic approach involved, and for an interpretation of the reports from
Matabeleland. Then we will look at a specific testimony from the 1980s
disturbances illustrating the given category of torture.
we have gone through the six main categories of torture in this way, we will
make some general observations about the physical and psychological consequences
of organised violence, and of the likely situation now in Matabeleland for
survivors. We will not attempt to quantify any of the categories for the 1980s,
as this would be inappropriate in the absence of direct clinical
will, however, comment upon the likely prevalence of disorders, since direct
comparison with other local and regional samples is possible. We will conclude
with some suggestions for remediation of the ill-effects. Readers must bear in
mind that the case testimonies which will be outlined in this chapter are merely
illustrative, not conclusive evidence for any proposition.
EXISTING STUDIES ON VIOLENCE IN THE ZIMBABWEAN
has been a series of studies into prevalence and effect of organised violence
carried out at two small rural hospitals, at Mount Darwin and Karanga in the far
north eastern corner of Zimbabwe. Although this area was completely unaffected
by events in the 1980s, it is an area that suffered extreme violence in the
1970s, and is the only area where the long term conseqences of organised
violence for Zimbabweans have been studied. As no studies on the effects of the
1980s violence have yet been done, the Mount Darwin/Karanga study may provide
some insight into the effects of organised violence in a Zimbabwean
suggestion is not made dogmatically, and one would expect cultural and
historical differences to have made the 1980s experience discreet for its
sufferers from the 1970s violence. Much of the data in the 1970s studies relates
to war veterans, whereas in Matabeleland and the Midlands in the 1980s, it was
civilians who were affected by the violence: there are problems in extrapolating
from the former group to the latter. Even where Mount Darwin results relate to
civilians, it must be remembered that in Matabeleland and the Midlands, people
have now suffered two consecutive periods of violence, which has compounded the
plight of survivors in these regions.
Interested readers are therefore referred to the list of
references for this chapter, if they wish to pursue what is already known from
the Mount Darwin/Karanga studies. As has been mentioned before in this report,
the techniques of torture used by government agencies in the 1980s were nothing
new in this country: such abuse was widespread in the 1970s.
A.DEFINITIONS OF ORGANISED VIOLENCE
term “organised violence” derives from an initiative of the World Health
Organisation (WHO), and, in Southern Africa, has been given a definition that
both includes and extends the original definition given by the WHO. An
International Conference, and a subsequent Regional Meeting, both held in
Harare, gave the following definition:
“Organised violence is the interhuman infliction of significant
avoidable pain and suffering by an organised group according to a declared or
implied strategy and/or system of ideas and attitudes. It comprises any violent
action which is unacceptable by general human standards, and relates to the
victims’ feelings. Organised violence includes inter alia “torture, cruel,
inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment” as mentioned in Article 5 of the
UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights(1948).
Imprisonment without trial, mock executions, hostage taking or any
other form of violent deprivation of liberty also fall under the heading of
organised violence. The effects of apartheid, destabilisation, civil war, the
forced displacement of people, and political violence constitute organised
violence. Violence which occurs in these situations as a direct consequence of
political repression, although it may appear random, is of a structural nature,
involves violation of basic human rights and can only disappear when human,
social and political relationships are profoundly changed.”
be seen from this definition, the terms covers a very wide range of effects,
from torture to displacement, from deliberate infliction of bodily harm to
economic hardship. This may seem to some to be an unduly wide definition, but it
does bear some relation to reality. It can also be seen, that the events of the
1980s fall well within the definition of what constitutes organised
are other more restrictive definitions, mostly indicated in international
conventions, declarations, and principles.
United Nations Convention against Torture gives a very formal legal definition,
as does the UN Declaration of Human Rights. The African Charter of Human and
People’s Rights gives a very simple and clearly understandable
legal definitions are mirrored in the definitions given by medical and forensic
scientists, all of which emphasise the element of deliberate harm and violations
of humanitarian principles. It is with these forensic perspectives that we
examined the reports of violence in Zimbabwe in the 1980s.
review of the research and clinical studies, it became apparent that some clear
categories emerge, both for types of violence and types of effects. We will
describe these categories below in some detail.
B.FORMS OF ORGANISED VIOLENCE
become conventional in the study of organised violence to view violence as a
kind of stress, albeit a very extreme form of stress. Where man-made stress is
concerned, war, torture, riots, and psychological terror are sometimes
considered to occupy a very similar position on the stress dimension. Despite
their similarity, it is worth specifying the various forms, for, although the
intent behind the violence may be the same – to deliberately harm human beings –
the effects found are by no means uniform.
Organised violence can be very simply
classified into six main kinds:
Physical torture. 2. Deprivation. 3. Sensory overstimulation. 4 Psychological
torture – general 5. Psychological torture – Witnessing of death or torture. 6.
Psychological torture – “Disappearing” of people.
are by no means exclusive categories: it is usually not possible to separate
clearly physical and psychological torture, except in the rare cases of
psychological torture occurring in the absence of physical torture. It is fair
to say that physical torture is always accompanied by verbal threats. In
addition, people can suffer several types of physical torture
person might have been tortured, both physically and psychologically, have seen
this happen to others, and have had a member of her family forcibly abducted and
never seen again. Certainly, most interviewees providing data for this report
suffered multiple types of abuse, as will be clearly illustrated by the cases
seventh category, wounds due to war, might also have been included, for these
will clearly be found amongst people from Matabeleland and other victims of war,
but this category is so obvious in its origin and its effects that it requires
little discussion. Unfortunately, bullet wounds, or limbs missing due to land
mine explosions are all too often the only pathology examined by a
we would point out that the First National Disability Survey, carried out in the
early 1980′s, is a good example of this point: injuries due to war are reported
exclusively as physical injuries. We will thus concentrate on the original six
methods of physical torture have the common element of causing extreme pain in a
position of complete helplessness. This can be illustrated by a simple example
in the difference between being hit by fists and boots in a fight as compared
with being hit by fists and boots whilst being tied up.
Although it is generally futile to attempt any classification of
types of physical torture, since man’s creativity in this area seems to know no
limits, the range of types may be illustrated by reference to the findings from
an international study on torture victims (Rasmussen.1990).
TYPES OF PHYSICAL TORTURE (from Rasmussen.
beating (head) 73%
Electrical torture 54%
Physical exhaustion 34%
Climatic stress 33%
beating (genitals) 20%
Submarine (“wet”) 19%
Suspension by arms or legs 6%
Banging head 15%
Abnormal body position 13%
Torture by heat 13%
Suspension on bar 10%
Submarine (“dry”) 6%
torture (rape) 3%
down stairs, out of window 1%
1980s disturbances: relating this to statements made to compilers of this
report, all of the above types of physical torture, with the exception of the
last two, occurred in the 1980s disturbances. The prevalence of various types of
physical torture in different parts of the country varied, but research has not
been analysed comprehensively enough at this stage to result in tables offering
precise ratios for all these categories, although general trends can be
Certainly, it is quite obvious that beating, severe beating, and
beating on the head were the most common forms of torture in the 1980s, in all
regions for which records now exist. For named victims across all categories of
physical torture, over 80% reported beatings. This number increases to more than
90% if unnamed victims involved in mass beatings are
addition, the Matobo pilot study suggested that there were greater refinements
in physical torture in 1984, and in particular that sexual torture was more
common at this time. Further study will be needed to establish the precise
ratios of these various types of abuse in the 1980s.
form of physical torture which was reported from all districts on file as having
occurred in the 1980s, was the use of burning plastic: burning plastic bags
would be dripped on to restrained victims. There are photographs on file of
people scarred as a result of this form of torture.
common for different kinds of physical torture to be given at the same time:
people can be beaten while being suspended or tied up in unusual positions:
furthermore, physical torture can be accompanied by other kinds of torture.
Almost every interview on record relating to the 1980s, reports the use of
verbal abuse – psychological torture – in conjunction with one or more kinds of
physical violence, either observed or personally experienced.
considerable research effort has gone into identifying methods of physical
torture, and new variations are found all the time. It is also apparent that
methods seem to spread across the planet, and there is no form of physical
torture that seems specific to any one culture. Not only the current study, but
also the recent study of Zimbabwean war veterans in Mount Darwin endorses this,
giving evidence of most of the forms of torture mentioned by
most torture studies, beatings of one kind or another are by far the most common
methods of abuse. The beatings can be generally all over the body, but some
countries show a preference for a particular kind of beating. Falanga, or
beating the soles of the feet, has been frequently reported in Middle Eastern
countries, but there are reports of its use in African countries too. Electrical
torture is popular because of the extreme pain that it causes, as well as the
few scars that it leaves.
point to grasp here is that any physical harm caused deliberately is torture,
and thus any procedure or object can become torture or be used in
PHYSICAL TORTURE IN THE 1980s
be seen from the summary of the reports, many persons (65%) experienced some
form of physical torture.
Beatings constitute about 80% of the physical torture reported,
with electrical shock, submarino, suspension, abnormal postures and rape all
reported. The picture is actually little different to the kinds of abuse
reported in other Zimbabwean studies. The following case, Interview Case Number
1679 TD illustrates a not-uncommon story.
On the 10th June 1983 at 4 pm I was taken from my workplace in a
Puma vehicle, along with 2 others who worked for another store in Tsholotsho. We
were taken to Mbamba Police Camp, about 40-50 km away. When we got there we were
separated. My friend and I were accused of telephoning Bulawayo to warn our
masters to stay away, because the killers (the 5 Brigade) were still
The 5 Brigade had made it known that they wanted to kill my
master, Y, and my friend’s master, K. They had gone to hide in Bulawayo. I was
beaten and lost 4 teeth on the spot, and 12 others after this. My friend was
tied with his hands and feet together. They would hang him head down and feet up
until he was paralysed in both hands and feet. He died from this in 1993. From
1983 he was on and off in hospital.
individual received blows to the face, which were severe enough to cause the
loss of teeth, and may well have resulted in further injuries. There would be
queries about possible hearing loss, as well as possible minor brain
friend experienced a severe form of suspension, which would have resulted in
joint injuries, especially if he had experienced beatings at the same time as
the suspension. The paralysis reported is unclear, but severe nerve damage is
also a consequence of suspension. This case also illustrates the difficulty in
separating out the different types of torture that these two men experienced. At
the least we would have to consider physical torture, psychological torture,
deprivation, and witnessing as possible experiences.
addition to beating, some brief mention must be made of the other forms
reported. Some survivors have reported the use of electrical shock, and this is
a very severe form of abuse, which may result in physical damage in the form of
lesions, and very frequently leads to long standing psychological disorder. Here
it is enough to point out the effects of what is termed “aversive
Aversive stimulation, which is most frequently some form of
electrical shock has been shown to have long-standing effects: one animal study
of the effects of electrical shock showed complete suppression of all behaviour,
including eating, in a squirrel monkey given very mild shock, and aversive
conditioning has been used for the suppression of anti-social or disabling
behaviour in the field of psychiatry. Under psychological torture following,
there is mention of a persistent sexual disorder reported by one man in
Mashonaland who had been sexually tortured through the use of electrical shock,
and there are likely to be similar cases in Matabeleland, as the following case
from the CCJP Confidential Report on Torture in Zimbabwe
They then blindfolded and handcuffed me with my hands at the back
and leg ironed me. Then they started beating me with a pick handle or some such
stick. They beat me under the feet and on the back. I was lying face downwards
as they were beating me. The pain was too severe for any description, I fainted
in the process. When I gained consciousness,…., who was senior to the man
beating me came and gave orders that they use electric shock on me. They used
the field electric telephone. The instrument works on battery power. Wires were
tied to my genitals, then they would wind the machine. On winding the shock runs
through the body and I was screaming. The shock threw me down but I could not
remove the wires because I was handcuffed. While I was screaming, they would dip
a large family size towel in water and then tie it around my face covering the
nose, so that I was breathing in water through my nose and mouth. This treatment
caused me to faint. They poured water on me until I gained consciousness.
Afterwards, that same day (at night) I was taken to Kadoma at Eiffel Flats. In
the morning my feet were swollen so much and I could not pass urine, for my
genitals were swollen and painful.
case illustrates how many forms of torture are used simultaneously. This man
suffered falango, or beating of the feet, together with more general beating,
sexual torture through use of electric shocks, and asphyxiation. Tying up,
suspensions, being placed in abnormal positions are all reported by the 1980s
survivors, and the likely result is that many of them will have persistent joint
injuries, which cause pain and suffering, affecting both their capacity to work
and indulge in social activities. Certainly, survivors claim such injuries in
their interviews, and many claim current medical records in support of ongoing
it is worth commenting that the data from studies of survivors from the
Liberation War indicate that many persons are still suffering persistent pain
more than 2 decades after the original abuse, so we cannot be complacent about
the effects of human rights violations in the 1980s.
Matabeleland reports show some differences too with the Mashonaland reports and
war veteran reports.
example, as in the case above, there are on the 1980s records, more cases of
falanga, and this form of abuse produces very severe and crippling long-term
effects. Additionally, the medical records from Matabeleland show people with
severe injuries due to beatings and other forms of physical abuse. It will be a
matter of urgency to offer the proper physical rehabilitation for these
Deprivation is separated from psychological torture in the
Southern African setting because it happens very frequently that people are
detained in circumstances that lead to ill-treatment, but where the intention is
not deliberately to use the detention as torture. For the victim, however, the
effect of the deprivation can be the same as torture. The point here is that
torture is not just a matter of what was in the mind of the perpetrator or the
person doing the detention, but it is also a question of what the victim
believed was happening.
Deprivation should be understood as representing extreme stress,
frequently causing exceptional discomfort or pain.
Deprivation covers a variety of different experiences, summarised
below in Table 2.
TYPES OF DEPRIVATION (From Reeler.
Incommunication, minimal food and comfort: overcrowding for more
than 2-3 days.
of water (more than 48 hours).
Immobilisation, restraint, total darkness for more than 48
of sleep (less than 4 hours per night).
of needed medication or medical care.
this is not an exclusive list, but it covers the kinds of treatments that are
forbidden by most human rights conventions or conventions relating to the
treatment of prisoners or detainees. Furthermore, these forms of abuse can be
very difficult to assess in many countries where the above forms of ill
treatment are so common as to be felt that they are “normal” methods of treating
prisoners. Patients will frequently be accustomed to these methods, or know that
they are routinely practised, so that they will not remark upon them for
DEPRIVATION IN THE 1980s
Deprivation has long-term effects, and we must mention both the
specific deprivation suffered by those who were detained, and the more general
effects of the food embargo and curfews. To deal with the first, we must here
mention the effects of the detention in Bhalagwe, which was distinct from the
interrogation centres such as Stops Camp.
Detention on its own may not have adverse consequences, but
combined with psychological torture and deprivation, long term adeverse
consequences become more likely.
obvious consequence for those who have experienced detention, is a deep fear of
authorities and places from where authorities exercise their power: police
stations, offices, and the like. Many survivors are likely to have strong
anxiety at having to enter such places, or having to attend any official
gatherings. Political rallies, voting, and similar events are quite likely to
bring back strong post-traumatic responses. Furthermore, those who suffer
psychological disorders as a consequence of their detention, may well retain
traumatic memories of their detention, and these will be all the more powerful
if detention was accompanied by torture or the witnessing of
Bhalagwe Camp appears to be the one setting where specific
deprivation occurred: conditions here were designed and enforced in a way to
induce maximum discomfort. Those detained at Bhalagwe in the first day or two,
before the camp was full, have reported that in spite of the fact that there
were holding sheds standing empty, detainees were deliberately crowded in to a
few sheds, to the point where there was virtually no space to sleep at night.
Water and food were also rationed. The following sworn statement was made by a
19 year-old boy to CCJP on the 8 March, 1984. Other archival statements and
statements made in 1996 confirm and further detail conditions at Bhalagwe. (see
Part Two, II and a further statement on Bhalagwe, page
….On 7 February (1984) in the evening we were taken by truck to
Bhalagwe Camp. We reached Bhalagwe around 5 p.m. having left around 3 p.m. When
we arrived we found many people at Bhalagwe, some of whom were being
We were separated men from women into barracks to sleep. In each
barracks soldiers were counting up to 136 people, and if there were not 136
others would be brought in to make up the
We were arranged in three rows, two rows along the walls and one
row in the middle of the building. We slept on our sides because we were told to
squeeze since there was no room. We slept in our clothes with no blankets. We
were not allowed to go out to the toilet at night, but in the morning we could
do so under escort.
On Wednesday morning about 8 a.m. we were taken out one by one to
another barracks building where we were either beaten or given electric shocks.
When the number got up to five we were then taken back to our
I myself was only beaten, but I saw others being given electric
shocks, and when they fainted, water was thrown on them. What I saw is that they
put a wire into the mouth of the victim which is secured by strings that are
attached to his ears. The other wire is put at his back. This second wire is
placed on and off the back of the person. Four people in army uniform, two men
and two women did the electric torturing while the victim was lying
There were many barracks where they were taking people for beating
and electric shock.
Six school boys of whom I was one, plus two soldiers counted the
women. This is how I came to know there were 856 women in the camp. This
counting took place on 11 February in the morning. Then later the same day four
soldiers and six schoolgirls counted the men. After this the soldiers announced
to us that the total number of men in the camp was one thousand, and that of
women eight hundred and fifty six. The soldiers announced to both men and women
these final figures.
The prisoners from Sun Yet Sen were assigned to two barracks while
those from Matopo, Plumtree, Gwanda and Belingwe(Mberengwa) were assigned one
They brought us to Bhalagwe to get information about dissidents.
Questions about this were asked during the
In the morning we used to dig graves, dig toilets, wash army
clothes, wash pots, fetch firewood.
We were given food and water to drink only on alternative days,
i.e. skipping one day when we got neither food nor water. The young men dug the
graves, and the old people buried those who died each day in the camp. Those who
died must have died because of beatings and electric shock. I saw two in my own
sleeping barracks who were found dead one
I was at the camp from 7 – 17 February. Until I left we were being
beaten every day.
On 16 February, all school children were made to sit according to
their respective schools and home areas, counted, and sent back to
On 17 February, all school children were told that we were going
home. Then trucks took us to our homes for going to
In Bhalagwe camp the barracks had asbestos walls and asbestos
roofs. Because I knew the place, I know that there were neither soldiers nor
prisoners at this camp before the curfew was imposed in
At the camp I pretended to be a student, although I had left
school after Form 1, end of 1983, because I had heard in other areas the
soldiers tended to treat scholars slightly
I came to Bulawayo by army puma on 17 February because I had told
them I was schooling in Bulawayo.
When I left home there was widespread hunger. Stores were closed;
no buses were running except government transport. Soldiers were harrassing
people. I have since heard that some people were dying of hunger. I heard this
from a teacher who had come to buy food at the end of
data relating to Bhalagwe may bear some comparison with genocide survivors, such
as those from the Nazi era or Cambodian survivors from the Pol Pot regime. The
data from both these periods indicate very high rates of morbidity amongst
survivors. However, those at Bhalagwe were usually detained for a few weeks or
months, as opposed to years.
within these few weeks , detainees would suffer torture, deprivation, witness
executions and torture, and suffer massive psychological abuse, ethnic in its
focus. Their detention was also occurring in the context of a larger and more
sustained attack on all living in their region at that time.
most outstanding example of deprivation in the 1980s, because it affected so
many people, was the use of the food embargo, denying access to food and other
commodities and services during the early months of 1984. This resulted in the
intimidation and near-starvation of 400 000 civilians. While drought is a common
experience in Matabeleland, the food embargo clearly stands out in people’s
memories as a separate type of experience – that of state induced
curfew months were also accompanied by rallies at which specific threats were
made: it is likely that many were deeply traumatised by these experiences, and
it is probable that the whole process of drought relief that has been so
common-place in the southern parts of Zimbabwe brings back traumatic memories
for many survivors. The following speech was made at a rally, 3 weeks after the
food embargo had been in force.
have it on file as a sworn statement, dated 8 March 1984.
On Thursday, 23 February (1984), the soldiers called a meeting at
Sibomvu (in Gwanda district, Mat South). I went there. The soldiers were under
the shade of a big Ntenjane tree while the people sat around in the sun. The
meeting was from 12 to 4 p.m.. After that they told us there would be no curfew
that evening because some people had come from very
Their leader told us that his name was Jesus. “I am one of the
leaders of the Gukuruhundi”, he said.
These are some of the things he said at the meeting: he had some
gallons of blood in his car. The blood came from people. His life is to drink
human blood. He wanted more blood because his supply was running low. They had
come to this place to kill, not to play. They had come to kill the Mandebele
because the dissidents were found only in their area and not in
Commander Jesus said he found his boys doing nothing – beating up
people instead of killing them. He did not mind thousands of people being
“You are going to eat eggs, after eggs hens, after hens goats,
after goats cattle. Then you shall eat cats, dogs, and donkeys. Then you are
going to eat your children. After that you shall eat your wives. Then the men
will remain, and because dissidents have guns, they will kill the men and only
dissidents will remain. That’s when we will find the
Commander Jesus spoke in Shona while one of the soldiers
translated into Ndebele.
The ordinary soldiers are better. They go around nicely asking
about dissidents and then they go their way. If these ordinary soldiers came we
would be prepared to tell them the truth.
But with 5 Brigade, truth or lies, the result is the
Experiences at such rallies, or detention experiences, could very
easily have caused Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (see section following) in the
sufferers, both acutely at the time, and chronically in continued disorder
from the deliberate policy of deprivation embodied in Bhalagwe and in the food
embargo, there were instances in the 1980s when deprivation existed, but
probably unintentionally so. As previously pointed out, “normal” detention
conditions even when not deliberately worsened by the authorities, often
resulted in deprivation and torture to those experiencing them. Those detained,
for example at Stops Camp in Bulawayo, have reported appalling detention
conditions, including overcrowding and lack of sanitation and food, but it can
not be concluded that this was the result of a deliberate policy: it was more
likely the result of indifference to the situation of
deprivation was a consequence of the week-end long pungwes held in Matabeleland
in 1983/4, although it is unlikely that rallies resulted in less than 4 hours’
sleep a night. Mission staff reported their concern at the effect of these
enforced gatherings on their school-age children, who were exhausted by Monday
morning after a weekend of forced attendance at rallies, where they were not
only deprived of sleep and recreational time, but were subjected to having to
witness violence and verbal abuse (CCJP archives).
Sensory stimulation is often used as a method of torture of
persons in detention, but it does not seem to be so common in community
settings. The aim behind sensory stimulation, which is often erroneously termed
“brain washing”, is to cause mental confusion and distress, and psychological
studies of sensory deprivation, one kind of sensory manipulation, have clearly
demonstrated the damaging effects of such abuse. For example, people subjected
to constant “white noise”, or other forms of constant stimulation, rapidly show
signs of stress, even to the point of beginning to hallucinate if it goes on
TYPES OF SENSORY OVERSTIMULATION
Constant noises. Screams and voices. Powerful lights. Constant
lighting. Special devices. Drugs.
these can be used deliberately, or can be part of the background to detentions.
For example, many people have been tortured in settings where they can hear the
sounds of others being tortured too, and will talk about how terrible it was to
hear the screams and voices of their comrades. This could have been a deliberate
policy on the part of the torturers, but is frequently due to their indifference
to whether other prisoners can hear or not.
SENSORY OVERSTIMULATION IN THE 1980s
specific effects of overstimulation are difficult to produce in a community
setting, since they require a controlled environment in which the perpetrator
can exercise maximum control over the kinds of stimulation that a person can
receive. Overstimulation is therefore reported only amongst those who were
detained in interrogation centres or at Bhalagwe Camp. Deliberate deprivation is
more commonly reported than overstimulation. This is similar to the findings
from Mashonaland studies and those of war veterans.
Detainees have frequently recalled how having to listen to the
screams of others being tortured added to their own terror, but it is not clear
whether the keeping of people in close proximity to the torture cells was the
result of indifference, or deliberation. The following account is taken from the
CCJP Report on Torture.
at Stops camp people were tortured. One boy was so badly beaten and bleeding in
the face that I doubt if he is alive. People were being tortured and beaten
until around 2 a.m. in the night and at 8 a.m. in the morning we heard screams
and cries. They use electric shock and the water and cords for
at Bhalagwe have also described how torture and interrogation began at 5.30 a.m.
every day, and how from that time on, the camp resounded with screams. Apart
from these types of reports, “over stimulation” as a method of torture does not
seem to have been widely used.
high level political detainees have reported some of these more sophisticated
forms of torture, such as being kept in continually lit cells.
Taken from a report on the 1980’s disturbances in Matabeleland and
the Midlands. Compiled by the Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace in
Zimbabwe, March 1997.