Recovery prospects for Zimbabwe fade on forex woes
Tue Jul 19,
2005 3:05 PM GMT
By Lucia Mutikani
HARARE (Reuters) - Zimbabwe's
long-awaited economic turnaround after six
years of recession is doomed to
fail unless the government liberalises the
exchange rate and instils fiscal
discipline, analysts said on Tuesday.
Official forecasts predict growth
will resume this year, but the country is
still grappling with its worst
economic crisis since independence from
Britain 25 years ago, marked by
acute foreign currency, fuel and food
It also has one of
the highest inflation rates in the world.
The central bank has put in
place measures to revive the economy -- once the
breadbasket of the region
-- but analysts see no prospects for success for
as long as the exchange
rate stays on a crawling peg system and the
reversal will only take place if the exchange rate is liberalised so that
is in line with the purchasing power parity," said Luxon Zembe, president
the Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce.
"Instilling fiscal discipline
is also crucial," he said.
The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe's administered
currency auctions are only
meeting about 10 percent of the foreign exchange
needs of local companies,
which are unable to import vital
On May 19, the bank devalued the local unit by 31 percent to
and allowed it to slide further at the weekly auctions. It was
10,800/dollar at Monday's auction, bringing its depreciation since
devaluation to 16.7 percent.
But black market rates are said to
be double that price.
Analysts argue that the foreign currency crunch
could be alleviated if the
government adopts a managed float system for the
"They have to bite the bullet and liberalise the exchange
rate. There will
be an inflation shock, but it will just be once off," said
one analyst who
wished to remain anonymous.
"Forex shortages are
creating shortages which, together with fiscal
indiscipline, are fuelling
inflation," he said.
Zimbabwe's annual inflation rate accelerated to
164.3 percent in June from
144.4 percent the previous month but is still
lower than its record peak of
623 percent in January 2004.
The bank has forecast inflation averaging between
50 and 80 percent this
year, a target seen as too optimistic by
"We have inflation pressures coming through from money supply
also have the impact of the drought. We are likely to see
over the next months," Zembe said. "Our inflation forecast
for the year is
at around 200 percent, but that might be higher," he
Zimbabwe's money supply grew by 207.6 percent in the year to April
surging by 210.4 percent in March.
Zembe said companies were
operating at 30 percent capacity because of
shortages linked to the lack of
An estimated 600 firms had shut over the past three
years, pushing the
unemployment rate to about 75 percent, he
The government is due to table a supplementary budget -- which
estimate at 12 trillion Zimbabwe dollars to meet a huge food import
well as fuel costs.
It is reportedly seeking to borrow money
from neighbouring South Africa --
the continent's powerhouse -- to cover
those requirements. South Africa
acknowledges talks on the issue may be
taking place, but has given no
details so far.
Money will also be
required to fund a 3 trillion Zimbabwe dollar housing
exercise following the demolition of shanty towns that left
300,000 people homeless.
"The supplementary budget will further worsen
the situation. We must avoid
spending outside the budget. The government
should try to re-allocate
resources. They must also try to ease out on price
controls so as to allow
business viability," said Zembe.
that the economy would shrink by between 2 to 3 percent this
contrasting with the central bank's forecast of a growth rate of
and 2.5 percent.
More fuel deregulation as shortages bite
[ This report does not
necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations]
HARARE, 19 Jul
2005 (IRIN) - Standing for hours by the roadside waiting for
a bus, or
stranded in a queue outside a petrol station that snakes for
Zimbabweans are increasingly used to a fuel crisis that has
government's efforts to resolve.
The latest stab at the problem was an
announcement last week further
deregulating procurement and distribution,
and throwing the doors open to
private business to import and sell fuel at a
gazetted price - an admission
that the forex-starved authorities have been
unable to keep the pumps
"We have always encouraged this
[the involvement of private fuel companies].
In fact, it will help augment
the supplies that are being put onto the
market for the general public," the
official Herald newspaper quoted
minister of energy and power development,
Mike Nyambuya, as saying.
The new approach does, however, have its
critics: Central Bank Governor
Gideon Gono called for fewer private
companies importing fuel rather than
more, and accused some of them of
misusing foreign currency allocations.
"Such abuses include diversion of
fuel funds, where, for instance, the
Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe had to battle
for a full month with 15
fuel-importing companies which had failed to
account for US $12.4 million
worth of foreign exchange allocated to them,"
Gono said in a monetary policy
statement in May.
In the first four
months of 2005, the central bank allocated US $50.4
million to private oil
companies given the responsibility of importing fuel
by means of a "Special
Purpose Vehicle". Around 120 companies are licensed
to bring in fuel, but
Gono wants that whittled down to 20.
Zimbabwe needs around US $750
million a year to cover its fuel bill but,
given the economy's steep
decline, that figure could be far less, analysts
suggest. Previously the
state-owned, corruption-tarnished National Oil
Company of Zimbabwe held the
monopoly on procurement.
Petrol sells for Zim $10,000 per litre and Zim
$9,600 for diesel at the
official price, and 10 times that rate on the
Opposition Movement for Democratic Change legislator
predicted a boom in the parallel market if more companies
were allowed to
"The black market is going to thrive as a
result of the liberalisation of
fuel procurement. This defeats Reserve Bank
of Zimbabwe Governor Gideon
Gono's policies to reign in the black market,"
he said recently in
The impact of fuel shortages is felt
throughout the economy. "Bread, for
example, is in short supply because some
major bakeries depend on fuel for
production and distribution," said chief
executive officer of the Zimbabwe
National Chamber of Commerce, Innocent
He insisted that there was an urgent need to open the market
companies, saying, "The government should move in fast and invite
procurers of fuel as possible. The advantage is that these companies
the capacity to source foreign currency from different sources and, as
are aware, the government cannot go it alone because it does not have
sufficient money to pay suppliers."
Makwiramiti suggested that the
government play a monitoring role to ensure
the private sector did not
overprice fuel, but warned against excessive
control, as this would
discourage the industry.
Economic analyst John Robertson said while
deregulation was welcome, it was
not enough to end
"Deregulation could help improve the situation, but the fact
is that it
might take us a long while before the situation can normalise. It
make any sense to liberalise fuel procurement without addressing
of how the government can improve the inflow of foreign
currency," he noted.
Oil prices on the international market have been
rising, making it even more
difficult for the government to pay for fuel. A
barrel of oil now costs
around US $60, up from US $12 in
'They won't steal my car - there's no fuel' Basildon
July 19 2005 at 05:48PM
Harare - Noel Mapuranga
parked his car in a queue at a filling station
in Harare's dormitory town of
Chitungwiza three weeks ago.
Since then, he has failed to get the
petrol he needs to drive his car
back home, five kilometres from the garage.
The car remains abandoned in the
queue, alongside others.
Mapuranga said on Monday that he did not bother about his vehicle's
in the queue "as I doubt that any car thief will get enough fuel to
steal my car while I am away".
His predicament echoes that of
thousands of other motorists left
stranded by a four-year fuel shortage
which peaked this month.
Mapuranga and other
motorists have either resorted to cycling to work
or walking to industrial
areas, 25km from Chitungwiza.
A bicyle is a luxury few can afford
with inflation reaching 200
percent this month.
become the main mode of transportation for Zimbabwe," he
Zimbabwean authorities had been hoping tobacco auction floors, which
in April, would raise money to help import fuel.
growers said they didn't have the fuel to deliver the
tobacco to the
auctions in the first place.
The fuel crisis has had serious ripple
effects on food supply as
manufacturers scale down operations or fail to
Mapuranga said he could not find sugar, cooking oil
Other basic foodstuffs like bread are being rationed
whenever they are
available at shops, with each customer being restricted to
regardless of the size of his or her family. Most Zimbabwean
from four to as many as 12 individuals.
problem is particularly dire for the hundreds of thousands of
to find accommodation after the destruction of their homes in
government's "Operation Drive Out Trash".
Some are held at the
government's holding camp at Caledonia Farm,
where living conditions have
been described by a group of South African
church leaders led by Anglican
Archbishop for Cape Town Njonkonkulu Ndungane
as "indescribable" and
The South African clergymen have come back to Zimbabwe
a second time
to discuss - with local non- governmental organisations - how
best they can
raise donations to alleviate the suffering of the
To those who remain in their homes, water and power cuts have
the order of day.
"No words can best describe the
suffering here. You have to see
everything with your own eyes to believe,"
If it's true that South Africa will help Zimbabwe with a
aid package, then Mapuranga says that is "music to my
"I am sure the poor here will welcome any help from wherever
relieve our suffering..."
The South African cabinet is on
Tuesday expected to consider throwing
a controversial lifeline loan to
Zimbabwe, in exchange for political and
follows "intensive interactions" by the South African government
Zimbabwean Reserve Bank governor Gideon Gono
met South African Reserve
Bank governor Tito Mboweni and Treasury officials
The South African government is refusing to confirm or
deny that the
expected loan is conditional on political and economic reforms
Robert Mugabe's government. - Foreign Service.
This article was originally published on page 4 of Cape Argus on July
SA Takes Hard Line On Mugabe Bail-Out
July 19, 2005
Posted to the web July 19,
Karima Brown, Dumisani Muleya And Jonathan
IN YET another sign of a perceptible
change of attitude, government says it
will use its financial leverage over
Zimbabwe to force President Robert
Mugabe to effect political and economic
change in his country.
This would be in return for a bale-out of the
economy, and comes a week after Mugabe asked SA for
a $1bn loan to help his
country stave off expulsion from the International
Monetary Fund for failing
to service its debt.
Joel Netshitenzhe said yesterday that while no loan
agreement had been
reached yet, it "is quite possible that the discussions
assistance that Zimbabwe required".
Analysts said the delay in announcing
the details was due to SA wanting to
"tie Zimbabwe to a set of stringent
political and economic conditions".
SA has been pressing Mugabe to speak
to the opposition Movement for
Democratic Change (MDC) and to institute
economic reforms. Mugabe's request
for a loan, which comes against the
backdrop of a rapid economic meltdown in
Zimbabwe, allows SA to make tough
Netshitenzhe said yesterday SA and Zimbabwe were still engaged
"Our government has been having intense discussions with the
how we can assist them in their programme of economic
recovery, as well as
matters pertaining to the normalisation of the
political situation in that
He said any loan agreement
would have to be tabled before the cabinet and
confirmed by Parliament
before it was granted.
News that SA is considering placing conditions on
its aid to Zimbabwe is the
latest sign that it is moving up a gear in its
diplomatic efforts in
Political analyst Aubrey Matshiqi
said Deputy President Phumzile
Mlambo-Ngcuka's visit to Mugabe last week was
to warn the Zimbabwean
president to "change course" if he wanted SA's
continued support. Mbeki met
MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai for talks last
Warm comments from both Mugabe and the MDC about Mbeki's
recently are a sign that the new thrust is beginning to bear
Matshiqi said SA's tough stance was intended to anticipate the
condemnation that Zimbabwe was expected to receive in an imminent
Nations report on its notorious urban clean-up campaign, Operation
In a move that analysts said could prove politically
tricky for SA, Mugabe
is to visit China this weekend with a similar loan
Political analyst Nic Borain said Mugabe could be trying to play SA
Borain said: "SA would not want to lose its
geostrategic influence in the
Southern African Development Community to
China and this might be a push
factor for SA to exercise
He said the South African public would need to be convinced
that SA, which
has always enjoyed leverage over Zimbabwe, would exercise it
and not be as
flexible as it had been in the past.
from western countries in 2002, has now turned to Asia for
Meanwhile, former Mozambican president Joaquim
Chissano said yesterday that
Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo, current
chairman of the African Union,
had asked him to serve as the union's envoy
to Zimbabwe and to "consult with
the leaders of Zimbabwe".
Hefty cheque won't change Zimbabwe - analyst
July 19, 2005,
Analysts say it is wishful thinking to imagine South Africa will be
dictate terms to Zimbabwe over its internal politics. Earlier
the so-called clean-up campaign in and around Harare had been
stopped at the
request of the South African government.
reportedly be in exchange for a R6,5 billion loan. However Iraj
Pan African Investment and Research CEO, says to date the
Zimbabwe has shown total disregard for efforts by other
countries to end the
crisis and it is highly unlikely that a loan would
bring about any real
He says he cannot imagine either the ruling Zanu-PF or the
amending their policies simply to secure financial favour.
Mail and Guardian
Zimbabwe: Dreaming of freedom
Hartnack | Harare, Zimbabwe
19 July 2005 02:28
Zimbabwean government has again refused to license one of the country's only
independent daily newspapers, which has been banned from publishing for more
than two years, the state-owned Herald newspaper reported on
Samuel Sipep Nkoma, chief executive of the company that
published the Daily News, said on Tuesday he had not yet received a copy of the
decision by the government's Media and Information Council.
reported that council chairperson Tafataona Mahoso refused the newspaper's
request on Monday because it employed unlicensed journalists and had attempted a
court challenge of the country's media laws -- including provisions for two-year
prison term for journalists working without accreditation -- without initially
submitting to the registration process.
Andrew Moyse of the Zimbabwe
Media Monitoring Project said the decision demonstrates the bias of the Media
and Information Council.
"It goes to demonstrate the totally arbitrary
nature in which the law itself comes down to a biased group of individuals doing
the government's bidding, the absence of real democracy. The idea of freedom of
expression simply doesn't exist in those people's minds," said Moyse.
a recent column in the government-controlled Sunday Mail, Media and Information
Council chairperson Mahoso described "neo-liberal journalists" as "moral
parasites" and said white people were "not human".
The ruling Zanu-PF
party maintains a monopoly over broadcasting and daily newspapers. Only three
major independent weekly papers survive while three others have been shut down.
Correspondents for some overseas media, including The Guardian newspaper, have
Police shut the Daily News down two years ago, seizing
computers and other equipment and detaining journalists, including
In 2001, the newspaper's presses were blown up in a military-style
operation hours after a government minister called the daily "a threat to
No one was ever arrested or prosecuted.
Daily News and Daily News on Sunday kept publishing through contract printers
until President Robert Mugabe passed the 2002
Access to Information and
Protection of Privacy Act, subjecting all newspapers and journalists to a
stringent licensing system.
The newspaper failed in a 2003 Supreme Court
challenge to the Act, which the paper called an infringement of constitutional
rights to free speech. A lower court judge who ruled the newspaper was
temporarily entitled to publish was forced to flee the
Meanwhile, in South Africa, the Democratic
Alliance has asked Foreign Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma to clarify whether
South Africa will provide a loan to
This follows reports
that the government is considering lending $1-billion to its cash-strapped,
crisis-stricken northern neighbour.
"I have today written to Foreign
Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma asking her to clarify whether South Africa will
provide a loan to Zimbabwe, and if so, what the conditions are for the granting
of such a loan," said DA spokesperson on Africa Joe Seremane on
South Africans deserved to know whether or not their tax money
would be financing the regime of President Robert Mugabe, he said.
members of the international community, including the International Monetary
Fund, are moving towards cutting economic ties with Zimbabwe.
African government must therefore be mindful of the fact that the impression
will be created that we are propping up an illegitimate regime in Zimbabwe,
which has shown its own people no mercy," he said.
If any financial aid
is granted, it should be used towards easing the suffering of ordinary
"Unless strict conditions are attached, there is every
chance that the money will be used to enrich the Zanu-PF ruling elite, as well
as to finance the Mugabe regime's relentless intimidation and oppression of the
Seremane said he had asked Dlamini-Zuma, in his
letter, to give an assurance that should the government decide to extend a loan
to Zimbabwe, certain conditions would be attached.
These should include,
that the money was used to purchase basic commodities such
fuel and electricity, and clear evidence was provided as proof of
that an immediate and permanent end was put to "Operation
that urgent steps were taken to address the plight
of the millions of Zimbabweans left homeless by this
Seremane also warned that any money loaned to Zimbabwe
"will have to come from somewhere".
"It was not budgeted for, which
implies that some projects here at home will have to forego their financing in
order to finance the loan to Zimbabwe. I have also asked the foreign minister to
explain how they will finance the Zimbabwe loan," he said. - Sapa-AP, Sapa
MMPZ Statement on Denial of an Operating Licence to Associated Newspapers of
19 July 2005
The Media Monitoring Project Zimbabwe
considers the refusal by the Media and
Information Commission (MIC) to grant
Associated Newspapers of Zimbabwe
(ANZ), publishers of The Daily News and
The Daily News on Sunday, to be a
flagrant denial of justice. The grounds on
which the MIC has denied ANZ an
operating licence are misdirected and
contravene the Supreme Court's
decision directing the MIC to consider a
fresh application for a licence
from the ANZ.
The ANZ submitted a fresh
application for a licence to the Media and
Information Commission in March
2005 following a ruling of the Supreme
Court, which determined that "the
issue of registration of the applicant
(ANZ) as a mass media provider is
remitted to the commission de novo." Once
the application for a licence to
operate had been submitted to the Media and
Information Commission by the
ANZ, it was expected that the MIC would
consider the merits of the ANZ
application against existing criteria for
granting licences to mass media
service providers without prejudicing the
ANZ on the basis of past lack of
compliance with the law.
However the MIC decided to deny ANZ a licence
"having found that the
applicant contravened Sections 66, 72, 76 and 79 (6)
of the Act (AIPPA)."
Its reasons for denying ANZ a licence
- The Applicant published without a licence in 2003 (Section
- Failure by the applicant to deposit copies of its
the MIC (Section 76)
- The applicant employed
unaccredited journalists (Section 79(6))
The MIC's reasons for refusing to
grant ANZ an operating licence go against
the determination of the Supreme
Court that the ANZ's application was to be
dealt with de novo (as a fresh
application). ANZ has not published a single
issue since its submission of
an application for a licence in mid-March 2005
and consequently, for the
purposes of considering this particular
application, has in no way violated
Sections 66 and 72 of AIPPA. Whether or
not ANZ had previously published
without a licence in 2003 is an immaterial
consideration in this
ANZ has yet to publish and as such cannot be expected to have
copies of its publications with the MIC and the National Archives
prescribed by Section 76. The ANZ could not be expected to employ
journalists as its employees could not be accredited before it
granted a licence.
MMPZ believes these reasons for denying ANZ a
licence are misdirected and
lack a basis at law. ANZ's application for a
licence should have been dealt
with against laid down criteria for
considering applications for licences by
mass media service providers on a
The grounds upon which ANZ has been denied a
licence are irrelevant in a
process that seems designed to unduly delay the
applicant's exercise of
constitutionally guaranteed rights. Furthermore MMPZ
considers the refusal
by the MIC to grant the ANZ a licence as an affront to
freedom of expression
in Zimbabwe. MMPZ anticipates that the ANZ will be
"accorded the same
protection accorded all citizens who are law-abiding" by
following frustration of its attempts to "comply with the
MMPZ believes the ruling clearly demonstrates the undemocratic
the MIC to circumvent the due process of the law and the deeply
nature of the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act
that provides the MIC with this authority. Since September 2003 the
forced four newspapers to close down - all for reasons that do not
Zimbabweans' constitutionally guaranteed rights to freedom of
The excessively restrictive provisions of AIPPA allow the MIC to
curtail the activities of media service providers and
journalists for what
amount to petty administrative "offences" and are part
of a system that is
designed to undermine democratic norms of press freedom
and the free flow of
Anne Tibaijuka, the UN envoy to
July 19, 2005, 06:15
A United Nations envoy who investigated Zimbabwe's demolition of shanty towns
will present a report of her findings to Kofi Annan, the UN secretary-general,
in the next few days. According to the Zimbabwean government, the demolitions
are part of a clean up campaign to rid urban cities of crime and illegal
Anna Tibaijuka, the UN envoy, is expected to brief reporters at
the UN headquarters in New York, on her exhaustive fact-finding mission to
Zimbabwe. The envoy says that the report is expected to be made public by Friday
The United Nations estimates that 200 000 people have been
left homeless in the nearly three-month campaign to demolish shacks and other
unauthorised dwellings. The Movement for Democratic Change has denounced the
blitz as a campaign of repression and says up to 1.5 million Zimbabweans have
By Tichaona Sibanda
Five asylum seekers in Botswana are accusing the police in
country for failing to provide them with adequate security against
security agents from Zimbabwe.
Themba Nkosi our
Bulawayo correspondent was in Botswana on Saturday
and was briefed of the
security concerns of the five asylum seekers.
Intelligence Organisation agents have been
threatening the group with death
since their escape to Botswana.
Two of the asylum seekers said they
are living in constant fear of
being abducted by CIO agents. There is deep
suspicion that Harare has
unleashed a number of agents into Botswana to
trace and monitor the
activities of exiled MDC followers.
Themba Nkosi said a number of Zimbabweans have allegedly been abducted
tortured inside Botswana.
SW Radio Africa
Demolitions 'aluta continua'
By Lance Guma
Barely three days after announcing a temporary suspension of
demolitions in the cities, an office block in the Kopje area of Harare was
destroyed. According to Zimonline, the office complex at the corner of Speke
Avenue and Luck Street was mainly used by general dealers in spare parts,
coffins and wooden furniture. The government had earlier said it would give
residents and businesses 10 days in which to 'regularise their structures.
There was even talk they were easing down the operation to appease the South
African government from whom they are reported to be asking for a billion US
dollar rescue package.
The police at the site are said to have
told reporters they did not
take instructions from newspapers, an apparent
reference to the Herald
article announcing the suspension of demolitions.
They also said they had
strict orders to demolish the building which
allegedly harboured foreigners
involved in shady deals. Armed police details
used bulldozers to bring the
property down as helpless tenants watched in
Daily News Journalist Precious Shumba, says government is
pull the wool over the eyes of the international community.
announced a suspension of the demolitions but are secretly
the operation. He says the same tactic was used when the UN
Tibaijuka visited Zimbabwe. Most rural buses were diverted to the
areas to ease the transport shortage and give a picture of normalcy to
visiting envoy when the truth was that the country had a crippling
Meanwhile in Bulawayo, residents who had been
given sanctuary by
churches there following the destruction of their homes,
have been moved to
a holding camp in Helensvale Farm, 20 km outside the
city. The churches had
resisted the move until such time adequate amenities
like tents, toilets and
clean water were available. It is reported they are
now happy with the new
conditions at the farm but will remain in charge of
the welfare of the
displaced residents in the meantime.
being alleged in several reports that government is using armed
details to seal off the holding camps in an attempt to block the flow
information about the conditions there.
SW Radio Africa Zimbabwe news
Mugabe's friends block Security Council discussion on Zimbabwe
19 July 2005
In a move that surprised
no other countries on the United Nations
Security Council, nations that are
friendly with Robert Mugabe again blocked
discussion of his human rights
abuses during a public debate last week. The
state controlled Herald
newspaper gloated on Monday, claiming Zimbabwe
continues to receive the
support of the international community at United
Nations Security Council
meetings. The Herald said it was Britain that
attempted to get Harare on the
agenda, even though it was Canada that cited
the recent clean-up operation
as an example of a crisis created by a
government's own policies against its
In the debate, Canada's permanent representative to The
said "It is also important to acknowledge that humanitarian
crises are not
solely the result of armed conflict. There are also those
prompted by the
misguided and malevolent policies of governments towards
populations." In this regard, Zimbabwe's controversial cleanup
an appropriate example, especially given that the UN had found
to send a special envoy into the country to
But The Herald chose to ignore this important point,
on how the usual suspects - India, China and Venezuela -
position. Helmoed Romer Heit Man, the South Africa
correspondent for Jane's
Defence Weekly said what happened last week is
nothing new to the Security
Council. It goes back to the Korean conflict and
how the Soviet Union used
its powers in that situation. Romer Heit Man said
proposed changes by
secretary general Kofi Annan might limit the usual
suspects from blocking
important issues, but they probably won't work as no
country with veto
powers will be prepared to give them
SW Radio Africa Zimbabwe news
Historic UK verdict shows torture is a crime without borders
By Tichaona Sibanda
19 July 2005
An Afghan warlord,
convicted on Monday in London of a campaign of
torture and hostage taking in
his homeland, has been sentenced to 20 years
Faryadi Zardad from South London was found guilty at a retrial on
pursuing a reign of fear at checkpoints in Afghanistan in the mid
The warlord fled Afghanistan in 1998 on a fake passport
asylum in the UK.
This is also the first successful
prosecution of its kind in the
world, which the Crown Prosecution Service
described as an historic
conviction that clearly demonstrate that there was
'no hiding place' for
torturers and hostage takers.
Zardad's conviction will certainly send shivers down the spine
Mugabe's central intelligence organisation, which has over the
tortured and murdered many innocent Zimbabweans.
The CIO has also
managed to infiltrate Zimbabweans in the Diaspora and
and 20-year jail sentence will worry many security
operatives in the country
who are guilty of waging a savage campaign against
opposition MPs and
supporters, civic leaders and anyone seen as opposing the
Torture victim and Human Rights Lawyer Gabriel Shumba is
Zimbabweans to take advantage of 'this precedent' and send
human rights organisation that deal with
Shumba said; 'We obviously welcome the incarceration of
warlord, but this is the time for us to harass our torturers from
and expose them to the
SW Radio Africa Zimbabwe
Today's "Herald" has a list of around 2, 578 people
allocated stands in "Hatcliffe Housing Project" - and apart from about 100
stands to SIRDC, it is the very same people who were the original stand-holders
at Hatcliffe Extension new stands! Now they are going to be given back their
stands!! Or so we are led to believe - we'll believe it when we see
After having all their homes and building materials
destroyed -and what will they use to re-build their shelters? And how will they
transport all their furniture and belongings and families back to Hatcliffe
Extension? And how will they all find out about this, when some have gone to
Mozambique, Malawi, Beitbridge, etc - chased "back to their rural areas" by the
And what about the 7 weeks of school that the
children have already missed? And the people on ARVs and other medication who
have been without for 7 weeks already? How many of those have died, or
deteriorated drastically? Who is going to find the orphans and tell
Will all the aid agencies, organisations and
individuals who had invested in Hatcliffe Extension and its residents have the
confidence and the wish to return, now that most of their projects and buildings
have been destroyed?
It appears that the argument that the people of
Hatcliffe Extension held valid lease agreements for their stands has held sway -
and also that the area is in fact suitable for high density housing, despite
Ignatius Chombo's amazing pronouncements in Parliament on 6 July that Hatcliffe
Extension would be re-designed for Police Boarding School teachers' houses and
the Open University!
As the people of Hatcliffe Extension absorb the
full meaning of this latest development in their lives and decide how to react,
we have to thank all those who spoke out and helped them in any way whatsoever -
lawyers, churches, national and international NGOs and aid agencies, activists,
individuals of whatever persuasion - THANK YOU!! Please keep on speaking
NB This is not the end of the saga of Hatcliffe
Extension, or even the beginning of the end - just the end of the beginning, we
hope - please stay in touch! The struggle will definitely
Trudy Stevenson MP
Harare North Constituency
Clinton condemns Mugabe's demolition blitz
Tue 19 July
JOHANNESBURG - Former United States President Bill Clinton has
condemned President Mugabe's campaign of demolitions which has left
of thousands homeless.
Urging people to speak out
against the demolition blitz, Clinton said
in South Africa today: "When
President Robert Mugabe ploughs up
neighbourhoods that coincidentally voted
against him, he should be
Clinton's remarks at the
Nelson Mandela Foundation came in the wake of
United Nations secretary
general Kofi Annan's condemnation of the
"I understand non-interference and solidarity with
someone who spoke
out against the evils of apartheid. But you can only take
that so far,"
added Clinton, who hosted Mugabe for a state visit to the US
The incumbent Bush administration has since
slapped Mugabe and most of
his senior officials with travel
The Bush administration has also strongly condemned the
blitz with President George Bush branding Mugabe "a terrible
"If you want credibility you have to fight for basic
can't have credibility if no-one speaks out against ploughing
neighbourhoods," Clinton said.
"Democracy is more than just
majority rule. It is also about minority
rights and minority participation.
I entertained Robert Mugabe at the White
House and tried my best to impress
this on him.
"If you want to build a modern and credible continent
you have to
speak out against the sort of thing Mugabe is doing," he
Clinton is in South Africa as part of a six nation African
visit projects sponsored by his Foundation.
yesterday he was "increasingly concerned" by the
humanitarian impact of
President Mugabe's demolition blitz.
He spoke as his special envoy,
Anna Tibaijuka, headed to New York with
a report on her two-week visit to
Zimbabwe to assess the impact of
Deputy UN spokeswoman Marie Okabe said Annan would receive Tibaijuka's
report in the coming days and study it
before determining the UN's
next steps on the issue.
Tibaijuka is widely expected to deliver a
damning report against the
is increasingly concerned by the human rights
and humanitarian impact of the
recent demolitions of what the government of
Zimbabwe has called illegal
settlements," Okabe said.
Between 300 000 and 1.5 million people
have been made homeless by the
demolition blitz, according to varying
Before the G8 summit in Scotland, Annan also expressed
the failure of African leaders to act against Mugabe.
Zimbabwe solidarity gathering
4 August 2005
A 'gathering' is being held in support of Zimbabwean detainees on the day
the High Court will be hearing applications from Zimbabwean asylum seekers
against their proposed deportations.
For further details contact the United Network of Detained Zimbabweans
in the UK (UNDZ): c/o Committee to Defend Asylum Seekers, BCM Box 4289, London
WC1X 3XX. By phone on: 07904 132 448, 07865 072 926 or 07910 974 647. Or email:
Events listing is provided for information only. Inclusion in this
listing should not be taken to imply that the Institute of Race Relations
supports an event or is involved in organising it.
- High Court, The Strand, London WC2
- Tuesday 4 August 2005, from 9.30am
Training intensified to ease nurse shortage
[ This report does not
necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations]
Jul 2005 (IRIN) - The Zimbabwean government has stepped up
efforts to train
more primary healthcare workers amid growing concern over
healthcare delivery in rural areas.
According to the official Herald
newspaper, rural hospitals and health
centres urgently needed 3,337
A government probe showed that 40 percent of rural healthcare
serviced by untrained nurses, while rural district council
clinics had a
shortage of 1,278 nurses.
Health officials have
embarked on an ambitious training programme that
expects to have at least
one trained nurse stationed at all rural health
centres by January 2007,
after more than 6,000 graduate from training
schools throughout the
At least 200 of the 270 inaugural graduates of the primary care
programme have already been posted to rural health centres, hospitals
Health and Child Welfare Minister David
Parirenyatwa told IRIN on Tuesday
that training more primary healthcare
nurses would boost health delivery
services and that, despite the use of
primary health care workers instead of
registered nurses in rural areas,
national standards of medical care would
not be compromised.
[health] ministry will do everything to support the training programme,
view of current staff shortages. It is our wish to have every rural
centre staffed by at least one qualified nurse and auxiliary
the end of the year." Parirenyatwa said.
Zimbabwe admitted earlier this
year that the country was still losing
trained medical personnel to
neighbouring and overseas job markets, which
offered better opportunities
and conditions of service. The government had
turned to recruiting doctors
and medical specialists from Cuba and Egypt to
However, despite the establishment of several commissions and
spearhead the revival of the health sector over the past two
shortage of human and financial resources has stalled these
South African Churchmen Back in Zimbabwe
19 July 2005
A group of South
Africa clerics is in Zimbabwe to meet with their Zimbabwean
They will discuss their proposed relief campaign for those who
and livelihoods in the country's controversial clean-up exercise.
This is a
follow-up visit to last week's fact finding mission by some of the
After expressing dismay at the conditions under which the
displaced are living, the South African Council of Churches
announced they would launch a relief campaign.
delegation met with South Africa President Thabo Mbeki, who agreed to
support the a humanitarian effort. The clerics decided to send another
delegation to Zimbabwe to assess the level of need. The Methodist presiding
Bishop of Southern Africa, Ivan Abrahams, says the aim of the Southern
Africa Coordinating Council campaign is to support the local churches and
local and international organizations in the work they are already
"There is (are) limited resources here. And, providing plastic
the limited food supply, we were saying perhaps that does not
go far enough
and, again, we are going to take our cue from those people
working on the
ground," he said.
As noble as the churchmen's mission
of mercy seems, not every one in
Zimbabwe welcomes it. Days after their
first visit, the
government-controlled daily newspaper, the "Herald",-
quoting what it called
impeccable government sources as saying the clerics
visit was bankrolled by
British intelligence services. The paper says the
visit was what it called
part of the large campaign by Zimbabwe's
detractors, pushing for a
regime-change agenda in the country. The Herald
says the clerics left
Zimbabwe disappointed, after failing to secure a
meeting with President
Bishop Abrahams shrugged off
the allegations, saying each of the delegate's
fares and expenses were paid
by their respective denominations. He added
that the SACC had communicated
with Mr. Mugabe's office in writing and by
phone and were surprised to hear
President Mbeki telling them that Mr.
Mugabe's office said it had not
received any communication from the South
Africa Council of
The bishop says, although Mr. Mbeki was very keen to have the
with Mr. Mugabe, the meeting might not take place. "If there
is a perception
that local churches and local NGOs (nongovernmental
have access to the president, why should a group from
outside come and
create that kind of access?," he said.
month, an African Union envoy on a fact-finding mission in
Zimbabwe left the
country empty-handed after the government said the
continental body had not
followed protocol when they dispatched him to
Address Nurses' Conditions of Service
July 19, 2005
Posted to the web July 19,
The continual recruiting of Zimbabwean nurses by
outsiders has created a
serious shortage of nurses in rural hospitals and
clinics, where there are
now 3 337 vacancies.
The Ministry of Health
and Child Welfare has taken up the challenge and has
although this means the poor Zimbabwean taxpayer is paying
a huge bill to
train staff for this country, many of our neighbours and a
large number of
English-speaking countries around the world.
Given that Zimbabweans
simply must have access to decent health care, and at
a minimum, this means
someone qualified within 5km, the ministry had no
option but to increase the
number of nurses it is training.
It is doing more than just boost the
training numbers. For the short-term it
is looking for retired nurses who
are still fit and want to work to re-enter
active service. And it is
training a new group of primary care nurses.
This new group of nurses
should not be seen as a decline in standards. It
should be seen as
re-emphasising the thrust on primary health care, and
At the child health level, for example, simply
vaccinating all babies and
small children, monitoring progress and teaching
mothers how to look after
their infants better not only provides huge
benefits to the babies, but also
to those who pay for the health
Simply put, if babies do not fall sick they do not need expensive
beds, doctors and nurses. In practical terms, halving the number of
who fall ill through cheap preventative medicine, means that these
facilities can be available when needed for the much smaller
number who need
them, even in a developing country.
boosting the output of nursing graduates and re-stressing
primary care, we
also have to look at the conditions of service of our
nurses so that the
leakage is reduced.
Professionals who work in the rural areas, and nurses
they should have decent housing and most of the amenities
in the big cities have. And if this means upgrading our
rural clinics then
we must do so.
The shortage of nurses, after all,
does not hit all Zimbabweans equally.
Private hospitals and doctors'
surgeries in the big cities do not have
vacancies. Their pay scales,
conditions of service and location ensure that
they have no problem in
Even the public sector in the major urban areas is not
seriously hit, at
least at the nursing level. Most municipalities fill
obviously by attracting staff from rural areas who want
to move into the
cities. So it is the rural areas which bear the brunt. The
more remote, the
worse off they are.
This is why, in tandem with the
laudable increase in numbers being trained,
we also need to look at what can
be done to make rural work more attractive.
Good housing is one way, but
serious consideration should also be given to
some sort of "hardship"
allowance, which will have to come out of central
government coffers since
most rural areas will not have the money.
In time the problem will be
reversed. In most developed countries, where
rural areas and small towns are
highly developed, it is usually easy to
attract the more experienced
professionals who want to leave the rat race
and raise their children in a
more secure environment. Inner cities have the
most vacancies and have to
recruit foreigners, like Zimbabweans.
But until that time comes, Zimbabwe
must cope, and must come up with the
multiple strategy of training more
health staff and thinking of ways to make
them want to go where they are
Daily Mirror, Zimbabwe
Defiant Porta Farm squatters return
issue date :2005-Jul-19
Donor organisations reportedly
providing shelter , food
DEFIANT Porta Farm squatters, whose homes were razed
during the clean-up
exercise, have traced their way back to the illegal
settlement and are
erecting new structures, albeit with the assistance of
The squatters, who were relocated to Caledonia Farm when
Murambatsvina/Restore Order descended on them, ran away from the
camp and returned to Porta Farm last week.
When The Daily Mirror
news crew visited the 15-year-old settlement on the
outskirts of Harare
yesterday, the residents were busy erecting new
structures, including tents,
in defiance of government efforts to relocate
them to habitable
People were busy at the farm pitching up tents, reportedly provided by
Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace (CCJP), while basic
like food, were provided by the United States Agency for
Development (USaid) and Islamic organisations.
for Porta Farm squatters Felistus Chinyuku told this newspaper
that most of
the people transferred to Caledonia Farm had since returned to
"Nearly everyone who was forcibly evicted from this compound and
Caledonia Farm has returned and life is going on as usual,"
"The compound has more than 1 200 people now as those that
allocated pieces of land in nearby farms have returned after they
ordered out of the said farms."
Chinyuku went on: "Four tents were
provided to us by the CCJP and we are
expecting more because they promised
to give us 12 tents. The USaid provides
50kg of mealie-meal per family and
four litres of cooking oil per household.
Islamic organisations are also
She said most of the people had run away from Caledonia Farm
because of the
scarcity of food and poor accommodation despite the
off loading foodstuffs to those affected by the
She added: "We have received a lot of support from donors and
wishers. They also provide us two blankets per family."
foods, labelled USaid, were all over the place when The Daily Mirror
Efforts to get comment from CCJP and USaid officials proved
A woman who "escaped" from Caledonia Farm a few
days ago to join her husband
vowed never to return to the transit camp,
citing serious shortages of basic
"I spent a week at
Caledonia Farm and I will never go back to that camp. We
were sleeping in
the open in this chilly weather and we were not provided
with food or other
"I lied to police officers at the camp that I was going to
buy food and ran
away leaving behind my children and property," the woman
She said she did not have money to move her children from Caledonia
adding sneaking away with her whole family would have proved
"We were subject to abuse there. The police would on a daily basis
to go back to our original roots saying Caledonia Farm was only a
camp," the woman added. Yesterday police spokesperson, Assistant
Commissioner Wayne Bvudzijena declined to comment on the return of the
residents at Porta Farm.
He said: "I will not comment on the
Efforts to get a comment from the minister of local government,
Chombo were in vain last night as his mobile phone went
Harare City Council's spokesperson Leslie Gwindi said the
consult relevant authorities on the matter.
consult the relevant ministry on the way forward," Gwindi
between squatters at Porta Farm and the local authorities dates back
when the Harare municipality tried to destroy the squatter
The municipality's efforts hit a brick wall when High Court
Sandura stopped the eviction in a landmark ruling (case number
He ruled that the residents were entitled "to inhabit their
they are relocated to suitable permanent homes."
clean-up exercise hit the settlement last month, the residents
contempt of court charges against Chombo, Minister of Home Affairs
Mohadi and Police Commissioner Augustine Chihuri.
They argued the trio had
breached Sandura's ruling and "prayed" for their
imprisonment for contempt
of court, but Judge Justice Tedius Karwi dismissed
the application with
costs last week.
Daily Mirror, Zimbabwe
Chebundo gives food to Kwekwe clean-up
The Daily Mirror Reporter
issue date :2005-Jul-19
least 200 families who were displaced by the clean-up operation in Kwekwe
last week received various foodstuffs and over 360 blankets sourced by the
city's MDC Member of Parliament, Blessing Chebundo .
Chebundo sourced the
items from the business community of Kwekwe and they
through different religious groups.
Speaking at the handover of some of the
donations to 136 families at Amaveni
Pentecostal Church, Chebundo said he
had been moved by the plight of the
people, especially young children and
the elderly who were now sleeping in
"For the past week, I was
so much touched by what I saw after going round
the constituency to assess
the effects of the unfortunate operation by the
government. I saw many
families who were either living or sleeping in the
open, where their former
dwellings used to be, or had their household
belongings in the back yards of
their friends' or relatives' houses,"
Chebundo said. The Kwekwe legislator
also distributed food and blankets to
93 displaced families in the
high-density suburb of Mbizo.
He took a swipe at the manner in which, the
clean-up operation had been
"It is unbelievable that the
government has decided to embark on such a move
without giving people enough
warning and time to find alternatives. In my
view, there is absolutely no
amount of reasoning that can justify a
programme that 'kills first' in order
to bring good living standards. Our
government has erred, and this is the
reality," Chebundo added.
The government has, however, embarked on a $3
programme that will see the resettlement of people
affected by the clean-up
campaign and those who had been on the housing
waiting lists of various
urban councils being housed..
More than 5 000
houses are expected to be built under the first phase of
by the end of next month.
Daily Mirror, Zimbabwe
Producers evade gazetted prices
issue date :2005-Jul-19
MOST basic commodity producers
are reportedly evading the recently imposed
price controls by producing
expensive substitutes, the Consumer Council of
Zimbabwe (CCZ) has said in a
"Many producers are increasingly evading controlled products by
they supply the market with expensive substitutes, which
probably gives them
a better return," read the statement.
The trend is
more conspicuous in the production of bread where producers
expensive bread, rolls and fancy cakes as an alternative to
Most supermarket bakeries in the city are producing "whole wheat"
whose price is double that of a standard loaf which cost $ 4 500.
The consumer watchdog partly attributed the current basic commodity
shortages bedeviling the country to producers who are not happy with the
"Producers are not happy with the prices of goods they
particularly those making controlled products", the CCZ
This situation has forced many retailers to overcharge most basic
beyond the gazetted price.
The recommended price of a 750ml of
cooking oil, for example is $ 16 000
but consumers are buying the product at
$ 30 000.
At the same time when the CCZ is calling on retailers to stick
gazetted prices, the organisation has maintained that regular price
are inevitable if industry is to realise a good return on their
"The issue of pricing particularly that of controlled products
be regularly revisited if industry is to realise a good return on
investment", they said.
Meanwhile, most manufacturers of basic
goods have attributed the
shortages to the unavailability of foreign
currency that has seen the
majority of them operating below capacity. The
country is reeling from
acute foreign currency shortages that are
threatening to bring down the
industrial base of the economy to its
Daily Mirror, Zimbabwe
Harare Hospital employees evicted
issue date :2005-Jul-19
ELEVEN employees of Harare
Central Hospital and their families who were
squatting behind the health
centre's premises for over a year were recently
evicted under the on going
The employees were ejected a fortnight ago.
When The Daily
Mirror visited the hospital after the destruction of the
camp, remnants of
cardboard boxes and plastics, which were used to erect
shacks, and broken
furniture could be seen all over the place.
Initially the employees used to
stay at compound at the hospital, which was
demolished in February 2004 to
pave way for the construction of a new
The employees included
nurse aides, mortuary attendants and other staffers.
The demolition of the
compound did not go down well with the workers, who
then erected shacks as
The new settlement had no ablution facilities and
was not fit for human
Christopher Tapfumaneyi, the hospital's
medical superintendent, could not be
reached for comment at the time of
going to press yesterday.
DANIEL FORTUNE MOLOKELE: FACING REALITY
Our appointment with our destiny
Last updated: 07/20/2005
"You and your generation must begin to formulate and express
views on all and every issue. My generation is on its way out, whether
like it or not. We have done our part, at times not as well as we might
(Ndabaningi Sithole to his younger brother
Masipula in 1977 from the
book, 'Struggles Within a Struggle')
In the past few weeks, I have taken sometime to engage myself in a
and profound discourse on the critical issue of generational
rather thoughtful and deep soul searching experience has been
occasioned by some recent events in my life. In particular, it has
strategic involvement in the process of setting up the first ever
coalition of Zimbabwean civic society organizations based abroad.
As history would have it, on 4th June 2005, the organizations based in
Africa launched the Zimbabwe CSO Forum that consists of at least
different organizations based in the country. And as fate would have
was also elected to lead the process as its interim Chairperson.
many who know me would already know, I am that kind of person who
does not seek a position just for the sake of it. I do not think I
power monger even though I say it myself. Throughout my public
career that has spanned over the past decade, I have always
a position as a decision of responsibility and not some mere
I have always believed that assuming a position of
of necessity be derived from a very thoughtful process.
One should not
accept a post if they do not have a strong conviction about
it. But even
more, one has to have a sense of visionary strength to take the
forward. People do not necessarily follow an individual unless
if they are
convinced such a person has a sense of direction and
That then of course brings me to one of my favorite pet
mean that of developing a sense of purpose and destiny. There is
concomitant with that, the need to identify with the needs of my own
I do believe in the concept of generational
speaking, the leadership process is somewhat structured
in a generational
level system. To be more specific when it comes to Africa,
I believe we are
now at the third generation level and slowly moving towards
the fourth level
of generational leaders.
The first generation
of African leaders consists of Kwame Nkrumah,
Haile Sellassie, Leopold
Senghor, Jomo Kenyatta, Julius Nyerere, Samora
Machel, Kamuzu Banda, Kenneth
Kaunda, Seretse Khama, Joshua Nkomo to mention
but a few. That last of such
leaders includes the likes of Nelson Mandela,
Sam Nujoma and our very own
Robert Mugabe, among others. These are the
so-called nation founders or
fathers. (Please forgive me for my rather
The second generation of leaders include the likes
of Ketumile Masire,
Daniel Arap Moi, Joachim Chissano, Yoweri Museveni,
Jerry Rawlings, Fredrick
Chiluba, Ali Hassan Mwinyi to mention but a
Then the third and current group of leaders includes the likes
Festus Mogae, Thabo Mbeki, Olusegun Obasanjo, Benjamin Mkapa, John
Paul Kagame, among others. This is the group that also houses the
Joyce Mujuru, Emmerson Mnangagwa, Simba Makoni and Morgan
mention but a few. It is also the same group that has
Mugabe to overstay in power.
also believe that Zimbabwe has now reached the level where
we need to start
talking about a new breed of leaders. This is the fourth
generation kind of
leadership. It is the generation that grew up in the
It is the generation that emerged into public light
in the late eighties and
This is the group that should be preparing to take the
into the future. To this group belong such famous former
like Welshman Ncube, Tendai Biti, Trevor Ncube, Brian
Mutambara, Tawanda Mutasa, among others.
what I want to say clearly and in no uncertain terms is that each
one of us needs to realize that they have their own generational
and responsibilities. Whether we like it not, we are born to
write our own
piece of history and bequeath the next generation with a
specific legacy. It
is thus guaranteed to any one of us that history and
posterity await to
judge us in terms of our generations contribution.
Ndabaningi Sithole succinctly put it, his own generation's
task was to fight
for the independence of our country. This was their duty
and can never be
repeated by any other generations.
The duty of the subsequent
generations was to consolidate the gains of
our 1980 independence in terms
of opening up life opportunities to all
irregardless of any form of
Each and every one of the readers of this article
should thus realize
that there is need to stop blaming the older generations
for their failures.
Time is not on our side. We need to focus ourselves on
our own challenges.
The question now is how to move forward the
irregardless of the shortcomings of the previous
generations. History and
posterity will only judge us by what we did not do
and not what we felt the
other generations should have done for
Our current national duty is to consolidate the gains of that
and to ensure that democratic project does not collapse. That duty
includes the need to fight and ensure that the political losses that
country has had over the last decade or so are totally reversed. But
more critical, our duty is to develop the country's socio-economic
to its full maximum. We have no excuse. Not even Mugabe is a valid
In fact he had his own Ian Smiths to deal with and he persevered
This comrades, is our appointment with our
CONTACT DANIEL: email@example.com
Daniel Molokele is a human rights lawyer based in Johannesburg. He has
elected as the Interim Chairperson of the Zimbabwe CSO Forum (South
chapter) National Committee. His column appears here every Monday
Murder in the name of Marxism
Last updated: 07/20/2005 03:34:03
KARL Marx, founder of
communism, progenitor of socialism and a hater of the
classes, has been repeatedly touted as the greatest
philosopher of all time.
Fine and dandy!
But how can it be that a man whose name despots have used
grotesque levels of barbarism is hailed as a hero of the
Perhaps it boils down to a matter of interpretation. The
philosopher greater than any others -- and Marx's influence has
colossal as it was utterly disastrous.
wrote: "Philosophers have only been interpreted the world in
the point however is to change it."
That he certainly did. Francis Wheen
notes in his biography: "Within 100
years of his death, half the world's
population was ruled by governments
that professed Marxism as their guiding
His ideas justified the slaughter of more people than any other
since time being. His creed of 'equality and freedom' became a
religion that ruled half the world and enslaved hundreds of
Under his name oppression, torture, starvation and genocide
routine practises of brutal governments all over the
Without Marx, there would be no Cold War. No Iron Curtain. No
His influence on world affairs has been bigger than that of any
philosopher. But 'greatness' surely means approval. How can we approve
man whose belief spawned so many monsters, President Robert Mugabe
Marx's followers and apologists might accuse me of missing the
being simplistic arguing he alone cannot be held responsible for
misinterpreted his creed, those who justify their own
The monsters and dictators wilfully distracted great tracts of his
philosophy, selecting bits such as victory of the proletariat that would
resonate with their people. Marx, they rightly claim, would have turned in
This might be true but does it absolve Marx from the
horrors that have been
committed in his name?
While his followers
massacred millions, Marx personally would never hurt a
fly and lived the
poverty-stricken bourgeois existence of an intellectual in
Some rulers excuse their behaviour at every turn by citing their
Marxism. They are happy to kill millions of their own people
ideal Marxist society, his classless Utopian paradise.
1975, Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge created their Marxist Year Zero in
Cambodia, two million were killed.
In 1974, Mengistu Haile Marian and
his Marxist Dergue overthrew Emperor
Haile Selassie in Ethiopia murdering
Perhaps the most glaring abuses have occurred in Africa
dictatorships from colonel Gaddafi's Libya to Robert Mugabe
have kept our
continent in the middle age.
Mugabe, widely feted by
the Liberal left when he became the first Prime
Minister of Zimbabwe on a
Marxist ticket, has in over two decades in power
systematically ruined the
country and turned it into a poverty-stricken
campaigns of terror bear all the marks of a shameless Marxist struggle
against whole groups of totally innocent people where the result is
starvation, murder and tragedy.
To all those old liberal supporters
of Mugabe in the West who say Mugabe has
gone mad. I reply: not mad but
Macdonald Chimbizi, is a Zimbabwean journalist based in the
Application Seeking to Declare Police Cells Inhuman Dismissed
July 19, 2005
Posted to the web July 19,
THE Supreme Court yesterday
dismissed a constitutional application seeking
it to declare as inhuman and
degrading, living conditions in police cells
the court condemned cells at two police stations - Highlands and
Harare - as "inhuman and degrading" and ordered police to
upgrade them in conformity with set international standards.
court reiterated that the situation at the condemned police stations
not be used as a reflection of what exists at all cells throughout the
Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions secretary-general Mr
Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) and Ms Nancy
Kachingwe, who was
arrested and detained at Highlands and Matapi police
stations in June last
year, applied for an order declaring all police cells
inhuman and degrading.
ZLHR said conditions in police cells were inhuman
and degrading citing
Highlands and Matapi police stations as examples of
cells that breached the
constitutional rights of Zimbabweans.
his judgment yesterday, Chief Justice Godfrey Chidyausiku said
cells throughout the country could be inhuman or degrading, it
unfair to use Highlands and Matapi police stations as a yardstick
"Accordingly, I cannot grant the relief sought in the draft
order . . . ,"
Justice Chidyausiku said before giving an order to have
facilities at the
two cited police cells upgraded.
Principle Six (6) of the United Nations Body of Principles, no
any detention or imprisonment shall be subjected to torture or
inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.
It further provides that no
circumstances whatsoever may be invoked as a
justification for torture or
other cruel, inhuman or degrading or
were important in providing the court with useful
guidelines for the
determination of the case.
Said Justice Chidyausiku: "I have no doubt, in
my mind, that the holding
cell that the court inspected at Highlands Police
Station in which Ms
Kachingwe was detained overnight, does not comply with
elementary norms of
human decency, let alone, comply with internationally
During the hearing, the Chief Justice
was accompanied to Highlands Police
Station by Justices Wilson Sandura,
Misheck Cheda, Luke Malaba and Elizabeth
Gwaunza --- to see for themselves
the alleged deplorable conditions.
The court found that Ms Kachingwe and
Mr Chibebe were detained under
conditions that constituted inhuman and
degrading treatment in violation of
deplored, in particular, the failure by the police to screen the
rest of the
cells to enable inmates to relieve themselves in private.
The court ruled
that the failure by the police to provide standard
inhuman and degrading treatment that is prohibited by
the supreme law of the
"The evidence clearly established that Mr Chibebe was subjected
treatment," he said.
The court declared that the condition
of detention at Highlands and Matapi
as inhuman and degrading and ordered
the police to take immediate measures
to correct the situation.
respondents are directed to take immediate measures to ensure that the
holding cells at Highlands and Matapi have toilets that are screened off
from the lining area, with flushing mechanisms from within the cells,
washing basins and toilet papers," he said, with his fellow judges
The Minister of Home Affairs, Cde Kembo Mohadi, and
Augustine Chihuri were cited as respondents in the
Mr Chibebe and his two co-applicants had in their
case wanted the cells to
be upgraded to conform to international
Although the State had conceded that they were poor, it was
argued that the
matter was outside the Constitution and that Zimbabwe could
not afford to
upgrade the cells.
The State also argued that the
rights sought by three were socio-economic
and the application was tainted
in pre-suppositions that were unattainable.
Advocate Eric Matinenga
instructed by Mrs Serah Moyo of Honey and
Blanckenberg represented the
applicants, while Mr Collen Mudhara, formerly
with the Attorney-General's
Office, appeared for the respondents.