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Zimbabwe crisis negotiations deadlocked

Yahoo News

By Nelson Banya 26 minutes ago

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - Negotiations between Zimbabwe's ruling ZANU-PF and
opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) were deadlocked on Monday
after negotiators failed to agree on a power sharing agreement, an MDC
source said.

"The talks have reached a deadlock and cannot be moved forward. Apparently,
the ZANU-PF negotiators were only mandated to negotiate around the vice
presidency and nothing else," the MDC official told Reuters on condition of

Senior negotiators from ZANU-PF and the MDC started the talks last Thursday,
with the objective of finding a solution to the country's political and
economic crisis, including the possibility of forming a unity government.

The negotiations followed preliminary talks that started on Tuesday after
President Robert Mugabe and MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai signed a deal on
the framework for discussions to end the deadlock over Mugabe's re-election
on June 27 in a poll boycotted by the opposition because of violence.

The MDC official said the opposition was unwilling to accept a deal for the
post of vice president for Tsvangirai, who won the initial March 29 election
but failed to get enough votes to avoid a run-off vote.

"The MDC is the largest party in parliament and all they could offer was the
vice presidency? Obviously, the MDC's position is that that's not
acceptable," the official said, adding that the ZANU-PF negotiators had
reportedly left because of the stalemate.

Tsvangirai's spokesman George Sibotshiwe said the MDC chief had traveled to
South Africa on Monday, but was on "private business" and would not meet
with his negotiators.

But the MDC source said Tsvangirai would meet the negotiators on Tuesday,
before proceeding to a meeting of the Southern Africa Development Community
(SADC)'s organ on politics, defence and security in Angola on Wednesday.

Worried by a crisis that has flooded neighboring states with millions of
refugees, SADC and the African Union (AU) have pushed for a power-sharing
deal in Zimbabwe.

The southern African grouping appointed South African President Thabo Mbeki
mediator between ZANU-PF and the MDC last year.

Tsvangirai's MDC insists that he be the leader of any unity government
because he won the first round of voting.

ZANU-PF, however, has said it will not accept any deal that fails to
recognize Mugabe's re-election or seeks to reverse his land redistribution
program, which has seen the government seize thousands of white-owned farms
beginning in 2000.

The parties also disagree over how long a national unity government should
remain in power. Tsvangirai's MDC wants fresh elections held as soon as
possible, while Mugabe, who has ruled since 1980, wants to carry on with his
new five-year mandate.

(Writing by Muchena Zigomo)

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Zimbabwe opposition chief flies to SAfrica

Yahoo News

by Aderogba Obisesan 1 hour, 25 minutes ago

JOHANNESBURG (AFP) - Zimbabwean opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai flew to
South Africa on Monday amid claims by his party that talks on ending the
country's political crisis had run into trouble.

Although Tsvangirai's spokesman said the visit was private, a source in his
office said he had come to consult with his team of negotiators.

Meanwhile a spokesman for South African President Thabo Mbeki, the long-time
mediator between Zimbabwe's ruling ZANU-PF party and Tsvangirai's Movement
for Democratic Change (MDC), denied any suggestion that the talks were in
deadlock a week after both sides signed up to full-scale negotiations.

Tsvangirai spokesman George Sibotshiwe confirmed to AFP that the MDC leader
had flown in from Zimbabwe.

"We arrived this afternoon," Sibotshiwe said. "We are here for private

Another source in his office however, speaking on condition of anonymity,
said Tsvangirai was to meet with senior lieutenants who have been
negotiating with Zimbabwean government representatives for the past five

"He is going to meet his negotiators for consultations," said the official.

Opposition sources said they were becoming bogged down over what position
Tsvangirai would get in any government of national unity.

"They have offered Morgan the post of third vice-president and nothing else,
which is obviously a position totally unacceptable to the MDC," said one MDC

"This shows the complete lack of sincerity and the need to really address
the issues and problems Zimbabwe is facing."

Tsvangirai's arrival comes a week after he signed a deal with President
Robert Mugabe to begin talks on sharing power after a months-long election

The talks are being held at a secret venue in the Pretoria area, with the
MDC represented by the party's secretary-general Tendai Biti and Justice
Minister Patrick Chinamasa heading the ruling ZANU-PF party's delegation.

No one from ZANU-PF was able to comment on the MDC's claims although
Information Minister Sikhanyiso Ndlovu had earlier told state media that
"the dialogue process is going on smoothly and we are sure that a positive
outcome would be achieved."

"The talks will definitely succeed," he told the Herald newspaper.

A spokesman for Mbeki refuted any suggestion that the talks were deadlocked.

"I don't know where that comes from," he told AFP.

"The talks are continuing very well. I speak on behalf of the facilitator so
I know what's happening."

Tsvangirai pushed Mugabe into second place in the first round of voting on
March 29 but he pulled out of a June 27 run-off presidential election after
a wave of deadly attacks against his supporters.

Mugabe, who has ruled the former British colony uninterrupted since 1980,
then won the one-man poll by a landslide and was sworn in for a sixth term
in office.

Tsvangirai spent much of the period in the immediate aftermath of the March
election abroad, basing himself in South Africa, before returning home for
the final stages of the campaign.

He had been unable to travel in recent weeks as he had run out of space in
his passport, according to MDC sources.

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Zimbabwe negotiators hunt mole, sell world media a dummy

By Mduduzi Mathuthu
Last updated: 07/29/2008 20:14:38
NEGOTIATORS from Zimbabwe's major political parties sold the world media a
dummy on Monday after a story "leaked" out suggesting power-sharing talks
being held in Pretoria, South Africa, had broken down, New can

The story is untrue.

The real aim of the leak, this website has learnt, was to smoke out a mole
on the periphery of the talks thought to be selling stories to the media -
against the spirit of a media blackout agreed between the negotiators.

The South African government, which is facilitating the talks, denied any
knowledge of the talks breaking down after the Associated Press ran the
false story - leaked to Johannesburg Bureau reporter Michelle Faul. Much
later, the Reuters news agency also fell for the trap.

New has learnt that the negotiators were uneasy with a group of
officials - mainly from the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC)
faction led by Morgan Tsvangirai - seconded to shadow the party's chief
negotiators Tendai Biti and Elton Mangoma.

On top of the two negotiators allowed for each of the three parties - Zanu
PF, MDC-T and MDC - at least two "support officers" from each party are
allowed to sit through the meetings.

New has confirmed with several sources that MDC-T has Lovemore
Moyo and Theresa Makone as support officers and the MDC has Moses Mzila and
Miriam Mushayi. They sit through the talks but offer no input, only
discussing privately with the appointed negotiators at intervals. It was not
immediately possible to confirm the Zanu PF 'support officers'.

On Monday, a South African newspaper reported that MDC-T had sent a
"technical team" to the talks which includes his political adviser Jameson
Timba, Professor Elphas Mukonoweshuro and Innocent Chagonda. Also present at
the talks in an unexplained capacity is Isaac Maposa of the Zimbabwe
Institute, the Cape Argus reported.

New understands that all the negotiators took a decision to
brief one or more of the officials on the periphery of the talks with a
"false story" to see how long it took for it to get out.

In no time, the "mole" had contacted the Associated Press and the story was
soon picked up by world media - including the BBC which had quotes from its
own MDC sources suggesting the talks had broken down over Zanu PF's
insistence that Tsvangirai must be a third Vice President.

The Associated Press, again quoting MDC sources, said Zanu PF negotiators
Patrick Chinamasa and Nicholas Goche were on their way back to Harare "to
consult with President Robert Mugabe". None of this is true, authoritative
sources tell New

President Mugabe, Tsvangirai and MDC leader Arthur Mutambara all signed a
historic memorandum of understanding which prohibits the parties from
talking to the media in any detail about the talks.

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SA mediators say MDC-ZANU PF still talking

By Lance Guma
28 July 2008

South African mediators claim talks between the MDC and ZANU PF were making
progress. Mukoni Ratshitanga, a spokesman for President Thabo Mbeki, said
both parties aimed to conclude the talks in 2 weeks time and that so far
'the talks are proceeding well.' Under a Memorandum of Understanding signed
by Mugabe, Tsvangirai and Mutambara, the negotiators are not allowed to leak
information to the media. This has meant all reporting on the talks is
speculative, but it is know that the MDC want a transitional authority that
creates the framework for fresh elections, while ZANU PF is pushing for a
unity government.

Only last week sources claimed the negotiators were on the verge of a deal
making Mugabe a titular head of state without any powers, with Tsvangirai
coming in as Executive Prime Minister. The cabinet would be split equally
between ZANU PF and the MDC, while the Mutambara MDC got 1 cabinet post. It
was also said this government would run the country for 2 years and oversee
a new constitution leading to fresh elections. ZANU PF however was said to
be stalling at the idea of Mugabe wielding no powers. What the eventual
structure of the agreement will be, remains to be seen.

Commenting on the talks, the Global Zimbabwe Forum have added their weight
to calls for the mediation process to be broadened to include all
stakeholders. Although they welcomed the signing of the Memorandum of
Understanding between ZANU PF and the MDC, the forum is worried the talks
will result in unilateral amendments to the constitution without
consultation. The Forum also said issues affecting people in the diaspora,
such as dual citizenship and voting rights, among other issues, needed to be
addressed. They also said any final deal between ZANU PF and the MDC should
be endorsed by an all inclusive national conference.

Meanwhile South African newspapers were ablaze with the story of how
delegates to the power sharing talks were not happy with their accommodation
at the Ingwenya Country Escape hotel in South Africa. Reports say the hotel
cost South African taxpayers R750 000 to book exclusively for the Zimbabwean
negotiators. It's not clear who amongst the delegates raised the complaints.
They are said to have demanded rooms that had mini-bars and were unhappy
that the venue was three, as opposed to five stars. The delegation were
moved after 24 hours to a hotel more 'suitable.' Most people interviewed by
Newsreel said the delegates complaints were an insult to the suffering
people in Zimbabwe.

Meanwhile the Cape Argus newspaper is claiming that Tsvangirai and Mugabe
are talking in Harare, through intermediaries. The report says decision
taken here will feed into the talks taking place in Pretoria. One source
said the 'real talks' were taking place in Zimbabwe. Morgan Tsvangirai's
spokesman has denied these reports, but with a media blackout in place it's
impossible to find the truth.

SW Radio Africa Zimbabwe news

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Zimbabwe Political Violence Continues Despite Talks


By Peta Thornycroft
28 July 2008

Negotiations between Zimbabwe's two main political parties to form an
inclusive future government are underway in Pretoria, South Africa. But
while Zimbabwe's leaders have agreed to end political violence, Peta
Thornycroft reports for VOA that violence continues.

There is a news blackout on negotiations between Zimbabwe's ZANU-PF Party
and the Movement for Democratic Change in Pretoria, South Africa.

The only statements about the negotiations have come from ZANU-PF, which
lost its parliamentary majority to the MDC in the March 29 elections.
According to the statements published in the Zimbabwe state media, the
negotiations will not lead to MDC rule.

The parties have committed themselves to negotiating "an inclusive
government" within two weeks, during the talks mediated by South African
President Thabo Mbeki. All Mr. Mbeki will say is that talks continue.

Meanwhile, the political violence that has plagued Zimbabwe continues. The
violence began after President Robert Mugabe's ZANU-PF was beaten by Morgan
Tsvangirai's MDC in March 29 elections.

Violence escalated until Mr. Tsvangirai withdrew from a June 27 presidential
run-off in which Mr. Mugabe later claimed victory. International observers
say the run-off was neither free nor fair.

Human rights monitors say the violence has diminished somewhat, but since
the parties agreed to talks a week ago three people, all known MDC
supporters, have been killed.

In other incidents, a Zimbabwean freelance journalist was savagely beaten in
his Harare home. He was later allegedly accused by police of bringing
Zimbabwe's name into disrepute.

And, political scientist John Makumbe was questioned by police last week. He
was accused of fabricating cases of political violence, according to the
state press.

In at least three Zimbabwe districts there is still political tension and
many people who fled their homes say they are still too frightened to return

In Buhera, in the Manicaland Province, human rights monitors say there are
25 paramilitary bases controlled by ZANU-PF youth that are still
operational.  In other districts, bases continue to be dismantled, but in
many cases ZANU-PF personnel who worked there are still in the districts.
Many people say they are fearful of them.

There are curfews in place in the northern parts of Mashonaland East
province, in parts of Manicaland and Mashonaland Central, according to human
rights monitors who have traveled around those districts in the past 10

Police have not responded to questions put to them about the violence.

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MDC members, activists, abducted

MDC Infor. Dept 28 July, 2008 06:34:00
Despite the talks in SA, ZANU-PF militia continue their war on members of
the MDC across the country.

2 MDC activists, Witness Maambire, the then Chief Election to Samuel
Muzerengwa (MDC senator for Buhera) and a friend were abducted at gun point
by Colonel Morgan Mzilikazi at Chapanduka Business Centre on 24/7/08. The MP
elected for the area Mr. Naison Nemadziwa who was in the company of the
abductees had to run into the mountains for his safety.

The three had gone to fetch 17 MDC activists who were tortured on 17/7/08
and sustained very bad cuts all over the body and broken legs and arms.
When they were at Chapanduka Business Centre, they parked their open pick up
truck.  The MP Mr. Nemadziwa got off the truck and went into the nearby
village to fetch the injured persons leaving Witness Maambire, who was
behind the wheel and his assistant in the truck.

Colonel Morgan Mzilikazi and a big number of armed militia came to the MDC
truck and abducted Witness Maambire and his colleague at gunpoint.  They
also took their vehicle by force.  Villagers who were nearby had to tip the
MP to flee into the nearby mountains.

It is not clear whether Witness Maambire and his colleague were taken to a
torture camp at Jori or other torture camps around Buhera.  The whereabouts
and safety of the MP are also not known.  The injured 17 people are also
still in Buhera.

Honorable Nemadziwa was also abducted at the High Court in Harare three
weeks ago and dumped in Buhera before being arrested and taken to the Police
where he was charged with inciting violence.

The case has been reported to the Zimbabwe Republic Police, Mutare
Provincial Headquarters and the report was received by Assistant
Commissioner Chagonda who however could not give us police escort to go and
rescue the abductees.

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ZANU-PF militia violence in Buhera South

image Mr. Jori, a victim of ZANU-PF militia torture. The picture shows the hole left by the militia's torture methods.

Political violence, spearheaded by ZANU-PF militia, continues in Buhera South, Manicaland Province.

WILSON JORI(65) from Ward 28,Jori Village,Headman Chimombe,Chief Nyashanu in Buhera South was fined 8goats and 18chickens for being an MDC sympathiser before being severely assaulted and tortured after he was forced to attend a ZANU PF rally on 17/07/08.

Jori said ZANU PF militias forced all people in Chimombe Village to attend what they termed ' victory celebration meeting' on the fateful day at around 1000hrs.It was during the meeting that the militias demanded the goats and chickens from all MDC sympathisers and later beat them severely on their back and buttocks using electrtric cables,wire,logs and sjambocks 'to be certain that they have rejoined ZANU PF'.

Among the militias were Peter Madangure,Musi Chikobvore,Benson Mandizha,Tungamirai Matanga,Peter Chatikobo,Kuda Murove,Muchuru Mazenge,Akira Munamati and ZANU PF losing cancellor candidate Boas Chimombe.Since then Jori has been leaving in agony in Buhera without medication as they are being avoided by the same group to travel.He was fortunate to escape to Mutare MDC offices yersterday 22/07/08 for treatment.

Besides Jori there are more than 20 MDC activists in Buhera South who have deeper wounds and are developing maggots as the ZANU militias are denying them freedom to move from one place to the other and seek treatment. T hey are suffering in agony with some failing to sit and sleep properly.

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CIO implicated in Journalist’s death

By Investigations Unit ⋅ © ⋅ July 28, 2008 ⋅
The dreaded Central Intelligence organization has been implicated in the
mysterious death of The Times newspaper journalist Richard Mills in Harare.

Mills was found dead in his hotel room two weeks ago but his family was
informed of the death last night, after his remains and personal belongings
were returned to the family.

Police in Zimbabwe say he committed suicide.

On the morning before he was found dead Mills had just interviewed a white
farmer who was almost beaten to death after speaking out against Mugabe
because land and property was being illegally usurped.

The circumstances surrounding Mills’s death follow a pattern by the CIO,the
deaths are disguised as suicide. On the 19th April this year CIO forced
Moses Bashitiawo from Uzumba Maramba Pfungwe, Kavamba ward, to climb a tree
with a rope round his neck and jump. His relatives were forced to bury him
that same night.

Just last week an MDC activist Hilton Chironga, his mother, sister and a
neighbour were forced to drink a poisonous Chinese made herbicide at the
Howard area of Chiweshe. Chironga suffered horrific facial injuries,
described as corrosive burns, his face is now disfigured is in serious
health condition. Another person who was with Chironga identified as
Madamombe has already died from the poison.

Mills’s father, Richard Mills Snr said the family does not believe the
Zimbabwe police official version of his son ’s death, particularly as his
son had just adopted a seven-year-old boy the very day he died.

“It doesn’t appear to us to be the actions of someone who is about to take
their own life,” said Mr Mills.

“For now we want to lay him to rest but we will be looking for answers to
some of the questions that we have.”

Journalists have become a constant target in Zimbabwe for exposing ZANU PF’s
reign of terror. The state would prefer the official version that there is
no violence and in cases where its irrefutable the MDC is accused.

Last year a freelance cameraman, Edward Chikombo, was abducted and killed by
Central intelligence operatives after he smuggled out of the country
television pictures of the badly injured opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai
after he was beaten by police on 11 March 2007.

Mills is survived by his wife Zoe, son Finn, parents Richard and Patricia
and sisters Pamela and Tara.His funeral will be held at Roselawn Crematorium
at 3pm on Tuesday he was 41.

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Questions mount over death of undercover journalist in Zimbabwe

From The Belfast Telegraph (UK), 28 July

By Claire McNeilly

The funeral of Northern Ireland photojournalist Richard Mills will take
place tomorrow - with his grieving family refusing to accept he committed
suicide. Mr Mills (42) was on an undercover assignment for The Times
newspaper in Zimbabwe when the tragedy occurred two weeks ago. The
Zimbabwean authorities said the renowned lensman, brother of local BBC
television news reporter Tara Mills, died of asphyxiation by hanging. But
the exact circumstances surrounding the July 14 fatality are still unclear,
making it even more difficult for his family to come to terms with their
dreadful loss. And his heartbroken father, Richard Snr, said he was finding
it almost impossible to accept that his only son died by suicide. "The
official line is that he took his own life," said Mr Mills. "But we're
getting conflicting stories. That's probably the most difficult thing. The
death certificate says he died from asphyxiation due to hanging. We find
that incomprehensible. It's totally out of character for him."

The award-winning frontline photojournalist, who had worked on assignments
in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan, had been due to leave Zimbabwe the day
after he died. "We have evidence from emails he sent to his wife Zoe (41)
that he was looking forward to moving into their new house in Scotland and
he was looking forward to coming home to see his son Finn (5)," added Mr
Mills. "Also, the morning before he died he signed a guardianship for a
young Zimbabwean boy - the son of friends - who was going to school in
Edinburgh. "These are not the actions of someone contemplating taking their
own life. You can see where questions arise for us." In fact, when the
devastating call came, 69-year-old Mr Mills thought something had happened
to his daughter-in-law, an RAF squadron leader stationed in Basra. "When the
phone rang at 5.30am it was the padre from Basra. I automatically assumed he
had bad news about Zoe . . . then he told me Richard had been killed. We
might ask for an inquest here," he added. Richard was working on a
particular assignment when he died. "That morning, Richard had interviewed a
white farmer who was almost beaten to death after speaking out against
Mugabe because land and property was being illegally usurped. He felt he was
doing a very important job," he said.

A funeral service for Richard is due to take place at Roselawn Cemetery
tomorrow at 3pm. As the Mills family attempts to get to grips with the
shocking news of Richard's death, tributes have been pouring in from friends
and colleagues across the world. Among them Martin Fletcher, former foreign
editor of The Times. He sent a poignant letter to the award-winning
photojournalist's wife Zoe, describing his colleague as a "wonderful, warm,
funny, big-hearted man". "Richard was like no other photographer I have ever
worked with," he said. "He would not rest until he got the perfect shot. I
remember him making me drive up and down a back road in Zimbabwe umpteen
times until he secured precisely the right picture of a man selling a
pitiful bunch of carrots on the verge. Often he took great personal risks
for the sake of his craft."

Mr Fletcher also spoke of their adventures together: "He was brave. There
was nowhere he would not go. But he was also soft-hearted and was very moved
by the plight of Sarudzai Gumbo, the eight-year-old Aids victim whom we
found in Zimbabwe and whose life he tried to save. He did so much for her -
getting her into a private hospital, arranging for a specialist to see her,
visiting her whenever he went to Harare." Richard's 69-year-old father, also
called Richard, meanwhile, is trying to come to terms with his heartache.
"His son Finn had been staying with us and I talked to Richard a number of
times the week before he died," he said. "He called every day. He told me he
was hoping to get back to London on Monday, July 14, and he hoped to be in
Belfast on Wednesday. That's another mystery. He was due to come home the
day after he died." He added: "Richard was always upbeat and positive. His
mother and I worried about him. I asked him if his work had a profound
effect on him and he said: 'You get used to it'. "He tried to protect us to
a certain extent. He did a piece on the most dangerous road in the world,
between Kuwait and Baghdad, for example, and we only saw it after it
happened." The editor of The Times, James Harding, said Richard's death had
come as a great shock. "Richard was an outstanding photographer. We are
deeply shocked and saddened by his death," he said.

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Economic Standstill as Country Waits Talks Outcome

The Nation (Nairobi)

28 July 2008
Posted to the web 28 July 2008

Kitsepile Nyathi and agencies

Zimbabweans kept in the dark about the ongoing secretive talks between the
country's major political parties have only one wish: a deal that will halt
an economic decline that is gathering pace every day.

President Robert Mugabe's ruling Zanu PF and the two factions of the
Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) last Thursday began talks to end a
political impasse caused by the disputed June 27 one candidate presidential
run-off election.

Except for the memorandum of understanding setting the agenda and time frame
for the dialogue that was signed amid pomp and funfair by Mr Mugabe and his
arch rivals Mr Morgan Tsvangirai and Professor Arthur Mutambara of the MDC,
everything is being done in secret.

Today, South African President Thabo Mbeki said the Zimbabwe parties are
continuing with negotiations to resolve the country's political crisis.
"Those negotiations among the Zimbabweans are continuing," President Mbeki
said in a briefing in Pretoria.

The South African leader is overseeing the talks between President Robert
Mugabe's ZANU-PF and the opposition Movement for Democratic Change.
President Mbeki and other African leaders have pressed President Mugabe and
Mr Tsvangirai to negotiate a national unity government, which is seen as the
only way to avert further violence and reverse an economic slide in

Zimbabweans regard the talks as the most important political development
since the Lancaster House talks that ushered the country's independence in

The parties gave themselves a seemingly unrealistic deadline of two weeks,
which means that they must strike a deal by August 4. "I have taken a one
month leave to see if things will change," said Mr Stanely Choruwa, a
lecturer at the National University of Science and Technology (NUST). "If
these talks don't succeed, I will have no choice but to go and look for work
either in Botswana or Namibia."

Many of his colleagues in Zimbabwe's seven government run universities did
not bother applying for leave and they had perfect excuses.

"I got paid $80 billion (less than US$1) last month and it is not enough for
a two way bus ticket," said Ms Sithembile Ngulube, an instructor at the
University of Zimbabwe. "I can't afford food for my family let alone
transport to work every day."

At one of the universities security guards were roped in to invigilate
examinations early this month after academic and non-academic staff downed
tools demanding more pay.

President Mugabe's interim government has also given up negotiating with
doctors, nurses and teachers who now regularly go on strike when their
meager salaries are decimated by inflation.

Professionals working for international aid agencies feeding almost a third
of the country's population are perhaps the only ones still able to survive
Zimbabwe's hyperinflation because they are paid in foreign currency.

With inflation figures officially pegged at two million per cent but put at
10 million per cent by independent economists, Zimbabwe's economy in
recession for the past nine years appears to have reached the proverbial

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Could inflation fell Mugabe?

Monday, 28 July 2008 14:13 UK

A man buys tomatoes for Z$20bn each in Harare, 23 July 2008

By Andrew Harding
BBC News, Harare

How do you make sense of money in a country with an unofficial inflation rate soaring past 15m%?

Many Zimbabweans seem to have given up trying.

"I just come here to keep my job," said the cashier at a TM supermarket in Harare, where a tin of baked beans cost - at least for the next few hours - a mere 256bn Zimbabwe dollars (worth about US$1 at the current exchange rate).

"It's just ridiculous. We put the prices up several times a day. The salary I was paid at the start of this month cannot even pay for my bus fare here this morning. I am struggling."

It's becoming harder and harder to keep the army, police and civil service happy by paying them in Zimbabwe dollars

Tony Hawkins

The cashier shrugged and then - like many other people I have spoken to while working undercover here over the last two weeks - he smiled awkwardly at the absurdity of it all.

Harare is fast becoming a city of unemployed, impoverished zillionaires - struggling to spend thick wads of banknotes in empty supermarkets before the cash becomes worthless, and increasingly dependent on funds sent home by the millions of Zimbabweans who have already fled abroad.

One meal a day

In the subdued, seemingly half-empty capital, people wait in long queues outside banks to withdraw a maximum of a 100bn dollars a day.

Zimbabweans queue to withdraw money from a bank in Bulawayo, 21 July 2008
Residents have been queuing at banks to withdraw their daily limit

In bars, the price of beer goes up between rounds.

Many people are reduced to eating one meal a day.

Adults leave hungry children at home and walk for hours to work because they cannot afford the bus fare, while the newspapers advertise lotto prizes of a quadrillion dollars.

As the country sinks deeper into a surreal economic twilight zone, many analysts believe it is hyperinflation that is now driving those in power towards the negotiating table.

"Something has to give before very much longer," said Tony Hawkins, a Harare-based economist.

"Which is why some people, myself included, think that the economy will bring down the government sooner than sanctions or anything like that... I would have thought months at the most."

Others believe the ruling elite - backed by hard currency revenues from a few surviving export industries - could hold out for another year or more.

Angry soldiers

But worryingly for President Robert Mugabe, the police and armed forces are not immune to the economic chaos.

Zimbabwe’s Z$100bn note, 22 July 2008
Zimbabwe's central bank introduced a Z$100bn note earlier this month

I watched soldiers push angrily to the front of a queue when a rare delivery of sugar arrived at a Harare shopping arcade last week.

"It's becoming harder and harder to keep the army, police and civil service happy by paying them in Zimbabwe dollars, because the money becomes worthless very quickly," said Mr Hawkins.

Many observers remain optimistic about the country's long-term economic prospects.

"This situation can be healed," said a Western diplomatic source in Zimbabwe. "But not by this regime. Zanu-PF couldn't run a sweet-shop."

A prominent local businessman with links to Zanu-PF agreed with that assessment.

"This thing has just spiralled totally out of control," he said.

But he also noted that "the ruling elite talk about the need for change more than we do".

"Mugabe is not stupid," he added.

"However they acquired their wealth, these people now have a stake in the economy and they see what's happening and know it can't go on... If change comes, it won't take long before this [economy] is fixed - five years at most."

But in the meantime, malnutrition rates continue to rise alarmingly.

Hyperinflation, combined with another disastrous harvest, are driving thousands more Zimbabweans to flee the country.

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Zim economic woes escalate


    July 28 2008 at 09:42AM

Harare - Zimbabwe's bank chief plans new currency reforms - removing
"more zeros" from the plummeting Zimbabwe dollar and raising the limit on
cash withdrawals - to tackle the country's runaway inflation and cash
shortages, state media reported on Sunday.

Previous currency reforms have failed to tame Zimbabwe's inflation -
officially pegged at 2,2-million percent a year, but estimated by
independent analysts to be closer to 12,5-million percent. It also has
become virtually impossible to get access to cash as the country's economic
collapse worsens.

Authorities last week released a new Z$100-billion bank note. By
Sunday, it was not enough to buy a scarce loaf of bread in what has become
one of the world's most expensive - and poorest - countries.

It was reported that central bank reserve governor Gideon Gono said at
an agricultural show at the weekend he would introduce the new measures soon
to ensure cash shortages were a "thing of the past".

To improve liquidity on the market, Gono was going to remove "more

"This time, we will make sure that those zeros that would come
knocking on the governor's window will not return. They are going for good,"
he said. - Sapa-AP

This article was originally published on page 2 of Cape Times on July
28, 2008

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Zim central bank to announce monetary policy

      by Cuthbert Nzou and Nokuthula Sibanda Tuesday 29 July 2008

HARARE - Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) governor Gideon Gono is today
expected to announce his half-year monetary policy statement expected to
outline how the central bank intends to curb run-away inflation and the
shortage of cash in the country.

The monetary policy statement, which analysts said was overdue, comes after
the central bank chief hinted of a post-election "blueprint" that would
turnaround the southern African country's economy that has been on a
free-fall since 2000.

Impeccable sources at the central bank said Gono would announce a reprieve
to the cash shortages that resulted from low daily maximum withdrawals.

"The main focus of this policy statement will be on cash limits," said one
source. "The issue of accommodation (secured and unsecured rates) has been
already addressed, but cash limits continue to be a problem against this
background of soaring inflation."

Earlier this month the RBZ reviewed capital requirements of financial
institutions, which are due to be complied with by September.

Gono, sources said, would also introduce a $500 billion denomination of
bearer cheques, barely a week after introducing a $100 billion note.

The RBZ introduced new 10 million, 50 million 100 million and 250 million
dollar notes during the first quarter of this year.

However, the new notes are now worthless after annual inflation soared to
2.2 million percent as Zimbabwe reels under an economic crisis that
President Robert Mugabe blames on sanctions imposed by Western countries in
a bid to end his iron grip on power.

Critics blame the economic meltdown on repression and wrong polices by
Mugabe, who has ruled Zimbabwe since its 1980 independence from Britain.

Speaking at the opening of the Midlands agricultural show last Saturday,
Gono promised that he would address the monetary challenges affecting the

"I am, therefore, very confident that this coming week will bring about the
much needed relief in our national payment system," Gono said.

Meanwhile, analysts have warned that today's policy statement will be bereft
of "sound economic solutions" owing to the central bank's quasi-fiscal
engagements and continued money supply growth, which they said, was

Gono was not immediately available for comment on the matter. - ZimOnline

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What's in Store for Zimbabweans After the Negotiations

By Emmanuel Magaisa

Here is an analyst playing "devil's advocate". The current talks in a secret
place in Pretoria bring to life a kind of thinking that is not encouraging
whatsoever. The talks follow up on events that has affected the Zimbabwean
public, be they rich or poor, black or white, politicians or whosoever. They
are now being held in secrecy with a complete media blackout, and to the
majority of the people, it is an indication that they are not of some
essence, even though they are the electorate. At this point in time, the
South African presidential spokes personnel is saying that the talks are
taking very good shape. And this is the same message they have been
broadcasting from the moment Mbeki was appointed the mediator.

I conclude that these talks are going to collapse because of a number of
strong points which are going under examination in this article. The truth
of the matter is that Robert Mugabe has lost control of ZANU (PF) and
Zimbabwe. He is just being used as a front by his thugs and perpetrators of
violence and murder, namely leaders of state security in the names of
Chihuri, Bonyongwe, Chiwenga, Shiri and the others close to the securocrats.
Because they cannot let Mugabe go since he is their shield,  they will not
have a setup in which Mugabe is out of the picture or behind the scenes.
They very well know that this would be their end. It is highly unlikely that
they will be pardoned and they would rather fight to stay on, and by force,
brutal force.

As the negotiators were preparing to go to South Africa to start their
negotiations, it is unquestionable that they went there with a package they
are offering to the MDC and the people of Zimbabwe, not vice versa. They
were given a mandate that ZANU (PF) will never compromise and accept a
transitional authority or, or a government of national unity in which Mugabe
will be the ceremonial president and Tsvangirai being the executive Prime
Minister. There is a simple explanation here; ZANU (PF) want power, and they
cannot let their lifeline go.

In the same way that they have shown bad faith in the negotiations
previously, ZANU (PF) will do the same now. They did the same with Joshua
Nkomo's PF ZAPU and they still retained their ZANU (PF) colours. Elections
have come and gone, and people have always spoken, and spoke that Mugabe is
the person they would rather not have at all costs in the Zimbabwean
political fold. In 2005, ZANU (PF) spokesman, Nathan Shamhuyarira said that
ZANU (PF) does not lose elections, but he did not clarify whether he meant
that in a transparent environment or otherwise.  And they have never
officially lost any result, but you and me know that they never won any
election from the year 2000. If they did, why kill, maim, rape, beat and
intimidate people.

Behind Robert Mugabe is a group of power hungry morons who have in essence
thrived on blood like vampires, and they know for certain that they cannot
survive outside of ZANU (PF). Look at people like Enos Chikowore who seemed
to be doing so well during his reign as a cabinet minister. The moment he
was out of that post, he was a pathetic broke dude. Just a check on his
'achievements' in his post, was it not a disaster, and he was allowed to get
away with it. Typical of the Mugabe administration heh. On unsuccessfully
trying to get back into the cabinet, he died of means that I would explore
in this article. Observers say that he was more like a pauper as he could
not settle his debts in a fast declining economy. This group of vampires as
result would not allow democracy to prevail in the country because they
cannot face the people.

The people spoke on the 29th of March and said "no" to Mugabe, but the true
results of that election never saw the light of day. They will do the same
thing, find a way to destroy democracy. Look at the fact that they claimed
victory on June 27, but still continued killing people and abducting
influential MDC officials.

Taking all these into consideration, it is my view that the talks will not
yield any positive outcome to restore democracy in the country. And the
worst scene scenario is that half the number of people negotiating there in
South Africa have not been mandated by their constituencies. Chinamasa, prof
Ncube, Priscilla Misihairambwi-Mushonga, they all lost the elections in
their constituencies, so who are they representing if not themselves.If the
people they were meant to represent them said a big "NO" to them, is it not
pathetic that they are in that position now. And the exclusion of other
stakeholders is indicative of the fact that no positive outcome is desired.

Two weeks is not too long a waiting period anyway. And as if that is not
enough, the circus continues with the negotiating teams refusing the
organised accommodation in place of the luxurious 5* hotels. People, lets us
be wary of the issue at stake and not personal matters.


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JAG - urgent press release communique and farm update reports - Dated 28 July 2008

Email: :

JAG Hotlines: +263 (011) 610 073, +263 (04) 799410.  If you are in trouble
or need advice, please don't hesitate to contact us - we're here to help!

The below report was written by Mr. Dave Drury and details recent events in
the Chegutu area , the SADC Tribunal Judgement and a report on an incident
or series of incidents that took place during the return from Namibia: - THE


Latest forced evictions in Chegutu as communicated to me by Ben Freeth and
Bruce Campbell.

These acts took place whilst we were in Windhoek and apparently continue
after our return.  We were away for 15 - 19 July 2008.

The new developments are summary visits by beneficiaries invading
operational farms on the strength of "offer letters"* signed by "Minister"
Mutasa in April after Parliament had been dissolved and dished out by
Kunonga the Chief Lands Officer in Chegutu.

The farmers affected - as reported to me are - Brian Bronkhorst of Chegutu
(on a farm near Mt Carmel, but not the one which he lives in) ; Kobus
Joubert, whose house was broken into and property looted i.e. food et al;
Thomas Beattie (on a farm which his son Douglas Beattie occupies).

Kunonga acted on the offer letters belatedly. These fresh invasions or fresh
acts took place on Monday 21 July 2008.

Bronkhorst was given until today 24 July 2008 to vacate; Joubert was to
clear off 23 July 2008 and Beattie has apparently been given 10 days to

Kunonga apparently approached Pete Breitenstein - another Chegutu farmer -
for diesel or fuel as Kunonga wanted the "fuel to distribute offer letters
for `his friends'".  Breitenstein has declined to provide the fuel according
to Bruce Campbell.

I have not been able to personally verify these reports but have no reason
to suppose that they are false.  I am further advised that Police Chegutu
decline to react to the various complaints of criminal trespass, looting and
so on.  Perhaps there is yet another policy shift.

Whilst Gilbert Moyo, the notorious Pickstone war veteran who was given carte
blanche to wreck havoc in Chegutu from his militia base camp at Pickstone
(he is beneficiary of Masterpiece Farm , formerly occupied by Dave Ullyett)
for the period March to end of June 2008 has been arrested and Mike
Campbell's Prado recovered, and upwards of 70 other so-called criminals who
were in one way or another tied up with the evictions and looting that took
place against Nicolson, Nicolle's, Seaman, Etheridge, Meredith / Frank Trott
and others, the state on the July 2008 act Chegutu Magistrates Court before
Magistrate Ndowera by consent released 38 "accused" withdrawing charges
before plea, holding on to a handful of attended.

Known police dockets for some of the attended are Shingirai Bobo Makoni and
Elias John Masalethulini (the latter being the Zanu PF Youth Chairman for
Chegutu) are on remand under CID 135/56/2008.  The evidence listed is being
found in possession of weapons. He held 17 in all, stolen from various
farmers and had a veritable arsenal of weapons.  Apart from that he was also
found with computers, fridges and so on. Masalethulini was found in
possession of stolen household goods as well as four weapons.

Gilbert Moyo who spearheaded many of the atrocities is held under Chegutu
case 200/06/2008, investigated by D. Sgt Majecha, Chegutu CRB 872-3/08

He is charged with robbery as defined in Section 126 of the Criminal Law
Codification Reform Act Cap 9:23 (8 counts thus far).

Quite why he is not charged with attempted murder is a complete mystery
being knowingly associated or directly fired at Ben Freeth on Mt Carmel on
Sunday 20 June 2008 and Bruce Campbell and others during the course of the
afternoon and night.


The SADC ruling is attached.  It needs to be publicized as there is a
finding by the Tribunal that Government has turned a blind eye to its
rulings. ** (Please see below for a copy of the Judgement).


I have also enclosed my Law Society complaint about Mutasa's Legal
Practitioner Gerald Mlotshwa whose antics on the 19 July 2008 are - in my
opinion - unprofessional and unbecoming of a law officer.*** (Please see an
explanatory comment below).

Mlotshwa - to remind you - is a partner of the legal firm called Antonia
Mlotshwa and Co of 8th Floor, Gold Bridge Eastgate, Harare. He acts for the
300 + aspirant interveners.  His prior attempt to intervene in the Campbell
matter in May was dismissed.  His further attempt is to stall the main
Campbell hearing failed on 16 July 2008.

He is the holder of an offer letter for Rydings School and is reported in
the press as having helped himself to 800 million in cash last year (then a
significant sum of money).

Cattle on Rydings have in the interim been looted.  Mlotshwa has close ties
professionally and otherwise with the well-known thug and cousin of Mutasa
called Temba Mliswa of Spring Farm, Karoi.

His antics in Namibia - reported to me by Adrian De Bourbon and Jeremy
Gauntlet in chambers - were apparently appalling and contemptuous of the
judges of the SADC.

I have no doubt he is the author of the Herald articles that have since
appeared (rubbishing) the Tribunal as some Western funded entity - which is
preposterous. **** (Please see a copy of the text of the Herald article

Mlotshwa caused the latest lie of Wednesday 23 July 2008 published in the
Herald under the heading "White former farmers feigned injuries - Lawyer ".
I enclose a copy of the Herald extract for you as well.

Mlotshwa's gloss is that Freeth's injuries are a fiction and that his
appearance in a wheelchair in Windhoek, and with a bandage on his head was

This deliberately fails to take into account the brutal assault perpetrated
on Freeth collaborated by Government medical reports in Chegutu, from Mr
Auchterlonie a respected neurosurgeon, Avenues Clinic, admission reports and
photographs of Freeth and Campbell that went around the world.  Mlotshwa's
reporting and antics are to be deprecated in the strongest possible terms.
Ben Freeth will no doubt instruct me to "sue the Herald and its reporter and


*Below is an Opinion on Offer letters by Mr. Drury:


With the recent rash of offer/allocation letters arriving on farms in the
hands of so-called beneficiaries as part of Operation Clean Sweep, JAG has
recently sought a legal opinion re these letters.  These letters have been
illegally issued by the Minister of Agriculture who has no authority in this
regard as an allocation board under the Land Acquisition Act should have
been legally constituted to deal with not only allocation but vetting of
beneficiaries and properties acquired.  Very few properties have been
legally acquired with the acquisition confirmed by a competent court.  These
letters are being issued with no regard to the due process of acquisition
i.e. Section 5, 8 or 7 relating to the property in question at the time.  In
many cases these letters are being issued for properties under neither
Section 5 notice nor Section 8 orders; also on properties down sized under
the LA3 process; also on properties with High Court set asides or
suspensions of Section 8 orders; or Admin Court withdrawals of such.

It is important that farmers faced with these offer/allocation letters are
very conversant with the law and their legal rights that are being
infringed, in order to effectively challenge these individuals from the

It is with this in mind that JAG consulted with Dave Drury of Gollop and
Blank and requested from him a legal opinion relating to these
Offer/Allocation Letters.  Herewith Dave's reply which is very comprehensive
and revealing.  Farmers faced with individuals brandishing these letters and
demanding that the rightful legal owner should vacate his property forthwith
should contact JAG or their legal representative as a matter of urgency.
Those farmers who, in good faith signed LA3 forms that are yet to be
formalised and have exceeded the 90 day period of their Section 8 orders are
particularly vulnerable in that they are perceived as being outside the law
and illegally in occupation of their properties.

Herewith with appreciation, Dave Drury's legal opinion:

Dear Sirs,

Re: Offer Letters

We refer to your telephone call to the writer and consequent attendance in
conference concerning the suggested approach to be taken by owners and
occupiers of land who are confronted by claimants asserting a right of
ownership or occupation to the land by virtue of offer letters issued by the
Minister of Lands, Agriculture and Rural Resettlement.

The Minister purports to offer land in terms of the Agricultural Land
Settlement Act Chapter 20: 01.  An examination of the Act will establish
that the Minister does not have the authority to consider applications for
land from applicants and to thereafter attend to the selection of the
applicants and then make offers to them unilaterally.

It has been conceded in an affidavit by the Permanent Secretary concerning
the matter of New Haven (Pvt) Ltd v Luke Chirasasa and The Minister of
Lands, Agriculture and Rural Resettlement in Case No. HC 6629/03 which is
pending a set down in the High Court that the Minister has not as yet
appointed an Agricultural Land Settlement Board.  I set out the legal
argument challenging the validity of the offer letters with specific
reference to Advocate A P De Bourbon SC's Heads of Argument filed of record
in that case.

"The establishment of the Board is mandated by section 3 of the Act and is
not a matter lying within the discretion of the Minister.

One of the obligations of the Board is to consider and report on all
applications for leases of holdings in terms of the Act.  See section 6L(a).
The board must select and recommend applicants for leases of holdings in
terms of the Act in terms of section 6L(b).

Section 9 prohibits the issue of a lease in respect of a holding of land
referred to in the Act until the application has been referred to the Board
for its consideration and report.  The Board must then consider the matter
set out in section 10.  (In every case a lease is not in fact issued or
drawn.  The claimant simply moves onto the farm and commences to use the
land for which no consideration is paid to the State.  This is naturally
inconsistent with sound fiscal principle and is not in accordance with
national economic interests).
The power of the Minister to issue a lease in terms of section 8 of the Act
is made subject to the provisions of the Act.  Therefore the Minister can
only act as mandated by the Agricultural Land Settlement Act.  He is
prohibited from dealing with the matter mero moto and must wait for the
Board to invite applications, consider them, select persons for leases, and
make the report.  None of this can happen when the Minister in breach of the
law has failed to appoint the Board."

"The Minister claims an entitlement to lease land arising from the Land
Acquisition Act.  There is no provision in terms of the Land Acquisition Act
which gives to the Minister the power to lease or otherwise deal with land
that has been acquired in terms of that Act.  The power of the Minister to
acquire land in terms of that Act is dependent upon the acquisition
procedure being done in terms of the law.

In failing to follow the procedures laid down in the Agricultural Land
Settlement Act the offer letters are therefore incompetent, invalid and of
no force or effect.  The purported letters of offer and the acceptance by
claimants in fact and law bring about no legal consequences because the law
does not permit the Minister to make the offer, and therefore the claimant
has nothing in law to accept".

An additional point which is not specifically raised by Senior Counsel in
regard to the Minister's contention is that there is a specific law dealing
with the consideration of land acquired by the State and concomitant
consideration of applicants intending to hold the land.  This is the
Agricultural Land Settlement Act which is specific to the invitation of
applications for land, the consideration of land, and the selection of
persons for leases and the making of reports.  The Land Acquisition Act
makes no provision as to this process.  Where there is a specific act
dealing with such issues the legislature clearly intends that the provisions
of the specific Act should be applied rather than any purported generalised
authority to do so in some other Act.  Accordingly, where the Land
Acquisition Act on the face of it and in general terms would appear to
provide the Minister with authority to allocate and demarcate land
consequent to a valid acquisition of land such authority is subject to the
specific provisions and guidelines set out in the Agricultural Land
Settlement Act.  This the Minister has not done.

In practice the Minister has in all cases dealt with offers of land
unilaterally.  In many cases the offer letters are issued and accepted prior
to the publication of a Preliminary Notice let alone service of a valid
acquisition order.  It must follow that you cannot offer something which has
not as yet been acquired.  To do so is incompetent.

The advice given to clients by this firm faced with the summary arrival of a
claimant to the land by virtue of an offer letter has been as follows:

a) a letter is drawn to the attention of the claimant pointing out that his
offer letter is incompetent, invalid and of no force or effect.  The
claimant is advised that he has no right or permission to enter onto the
land and assert any claim of ownership over it.  The claimant is put on
notice that his claim to the land is rejected on factual and legal grounds.
He is advised that any attempt to assert rights over the land will be
resisted with reference to law.  To that end he is advised that the owner
may seek to interdict him and/or that steps will be taken to ensure that he
is ejected should he take forcible occupation.  He is advised that any
interruption of farming activities, threats and the like will be met with a
formal report to the law enforcement agencies (the police).  His actions
will be considered as trespass.  He is advised that any threatened conduct
may give rise to criminal complaints which will be asserted if so required.
Additionally, the owner or occupier will make it clear that any resultant
damage occasioned by the claimant will be met by an action of specific
damages against the claimant personally.

I have already handed up to you, with the consent of Mr Robert Milbank, a
copy letter which preceded an application to the High Court to assert Mr
Milbank's rights.  Obviously each letter will be couched differently
depending on the prevailing facts.  That letter was copied to the local
police station with the request that they take note of the stance of the
owner.  That letter called upon the police to ensure that law be enforced.
They are requested to ensure that the owner and occupier are protected
against any threatened unlawful occupation of their property and that their
property and personal rights be protected in accordance with the common law
and with regard to the Constitution.

To the extent that the request for assistance is ignored and the claimant
persists with occupation, in that event the claimant is best advised to
proceed to Court to obtain an urgent interdict against the invader and such
other relief as may be appropriate in the circumstances.

We confirm that we have handed to you specimen Provisional Orders which have
been obtained by our clients in this regard.

We must point out to you that in one case issue has been taken with joining
the Minister of Home Affairs, the police and other law enforcement agencies
as parties to the application.  Government's claim as to mis-joinder was
based on the argument that the law enforcement agencies are not an
interested party to a civil dispute and that the directions sought were
unnecessary.  It was argued that if directions were given this would have
the effect of deviating their responsibility away from their core area of
investigation of criminal offences and the maintenance of law and order!  I
have asked for specific reasons concerning the ruling of misjoinder.
Despite a considerable passage of time I continue to await such ruling which
I will consider appealing against.

In that particular case I personally attended with clients on the police
prior to launching the application calling upon them to ensure that no
breach of the peace occurred.  I was advised that they required specific
directions from the High Court to act.  This is why they were joined in the
first place!  This factual nicety seems to have been completely disregarded
by the incumbent judge.  All other judges who have granted me orders have
not followed the approach of Mr Justice Bhunu as new appointment to the

Should there be any further aspect that you consider has not been adequately
explained or considered please advise and I will attempt to provide answers
to you.  I apologise for the delay in getting this advice to you but have as
you well know been tied up with numerous urgent applications arising from
the "Operation Clean Sweep" exercise.

We advise accordingly.

Yours faithfully

David Drury
Gollop and Blank

** The SADC Tribunal ruling was as follows:


CASE NO. SADC (T) 11/08











This is an urgent application filed by the applicants on 30th June
2008, seeking in substance, a declaration to the effect that the respondent
is in breach and contempt of the orders of the Tribunal of the 13th
December, 2007 and 28th March, 2008 (CASE NO SADC (T) 2/07 In the Matter
between Mike Campbell (Pvt) Ltd and The Republic of Zimbabwe CASE NO SADC
(T) 02/08, In the Matters between Gideon Stephanus Theron versus The
Republic of Zimbabwe and two others, CASE NO SADC (T) 03/08, Douglas Stuart
Taylor-Freeme and three Others versus The Republic of Zimbabwe and two
Others, CASE NO SADC (T) 04/08, Andrew Paul Rosslyn Stidolph and fifty eight
Others versus The Republic of Zimbabwe and two Others, CASE NO SADC (T)
06/08, Anglesea Farm (Pvt) Ltd and twelve Others versus The Republic of
Zimbabwe and Another respectively) and of the respondent's representative's
formal undertaking to the Tribunal, on 28th May, 2008, of compliance with
the orders.

The two orders specified that the respondent should take no steps,
or permit no steps to be taken, directly or indirectly, whether by its
agents or by orders, to evict from, or interfere with the peaceful residence
on, and beneficial use of, their properties in respect of the applicants,
their employees and the families of such employees.

At the outset of the hearing of the application, learned Counsel for
the respondent made a request for a postponement of the hearing for one hour
in order to consult with his principals.  The Tribunal granted him an
adjournment of thirty minutes. When the hearing resumed, learned Counsel
for the respondent made a formal motion for a postponement in order to
adduce evidence in rebuttal.  The Tribunal did not accede to the motion,
since on 14th July 2008 a counter-affidavit had already been filed on behalf
of the respondent and that Counsel had sufficient notice of the hearing to
adduce counter evidence.

We have considered the counter-affidavit of the respondent, which is
substantially to the effect that there is a state of lawlessness prevailing
in the country and that the authorities have difficulty in addressing the
problem of intimidation and violence committed by certain people.

We hold, however, that the applicants have adduced abundant material
to show that the existence of the failure on the part of the respondent and
its agents to comply with the decisions of the Tribunal has been
established.  In this connection, we need only to reproduce the letter of
11th June, 2008 sent to the legal firm Coghlan, Welsh and Guest, the
advisers of the applicants, where it is amply demonstrated that the
respondent's aim is to prosecute the applicants for remaining on their
lands, and subsequently evicting them therefrom upon conviction, and which
reads as follows:


Attention: Mr. A.N.B. Masterson


Previous correspondence refers.

The provisional order of the SADC Tribunal cannot and has not suspended the
Attorney General's Constitutional responsibility to prosecute violators of
any of Zimbabwe's existing criminal laws such a section 3 of the Gazetted
Lands (Consequential Provisions) Act.

As I stated in my previous minute to yourselves the Attorney-General's
Office is proceeding with the prosecutions.

Yours sincerely,

J Tomana

CC: Acting Attorney-General - Justice Patel

Consequently, pursuant to Article 32 (5) of the Protocol on Tribunal, the
Tribunal will report its finding to the Summit for the latter to take
appropriate action.

We make no order as to costs.

Made this 18th Day of July, 2008 at Windhoek in the Republic of Namibia.

H.E. Justice Dr. Luis Antonio Mondlane

H.E. Justice Ariranga Govindasamy Pillay

H.E. Justice Isaac Jamu Mtambo, SC

H.E. Justice Dr. Rigoberto Kambovo
H.E. Justice Dr. Onkemese Basta. Tshosa

***Explanatory Note: Mr. Drury's report refers to harassment by Mr. Mlotshwa
on his and Mr. Ben Freeth's return from Namibia where Mr. Mlotshwa in
essence suggested that Mr. Freeth's injuries were a charade. The incident
was subsequently misrepresented in the Herald at the instigation of Mr.
Mlotshwa. The event was precipitated by the unavailability of a wheel chair
at Johannesburg and Harare Airports which forced Mr. Freeth to walk rather
than get the medically mandated assistance. The matter including the
harassment of Mr. Alex Masterson has been reported to the law society of
Zimbabwe. The letters Mr. Drury refers to cannot be published as they are
sub judicae.

Mr. Drury has since reported his version of events backed up by Mr. Freeth's
photographs, medical report and Mr. Masterson's brief statement to the
Herald but the newspaper appears to have not to have acted on his report.

****The Herald Article was as follows:

23 July 2008
Posted to the web 23 July 2008

SOME white former farmers, who have taken their land case to the Sadc
Tribunal in Namibia, faked injuries which they claimed were inflicted on
them by Zanu-PF supporters in the run-up to the March and June elections in
a bid to elicit the tribunal's sympathy, it has emerged.

Enraged resettled farmers have described the conduct of the white farmers as
a ploy to demonise Zanu-PF and the Government and whip up emotions in order
to win sympathy from the tribunal as part of the wider agenda to create a
basis for the West to impose more illegal sanctions on Harare.

One of the white farmers, Ben Freeth - who is a British citizen - went to
the Windhoek court in a wheelchair with a bandaged head.

Freeth, who attracted much attention, sat close to the judges while
international media filmed and interviewed him.

The Zimbabwean Embassy in Namibia described Freeth's antics as melodramatic
and stage-managed to perpetuate the lie that Zanu-PF supporters beat up
white farmers in the run-up to and after the March and June elections
accusing them of violating an interim order issued by the tribunal in
December last year.

Freeth was, however, seen at Hosea Kutako Airport in Windhoek, Namibia,
minus the wheelchair while waiting to board a flight to Johannesburg on

He was also spotted at Oliver Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg
walking normally when he boarded his flight to Harare where he arrived and
left the airport unaided.

Resettled farmers have further said the motive behind the exaggeration and
stage-managing of the injuries cast grave doubts on the authenticity of the
assault claims while lawyers have described the whole issue as another bid
to drag Zimbabwe back on to the Security Council agenda.

Mr Gerald Mlotshwa, who is part of the defence team led by Mr Farai
Mutamangira representing the resettled farmers, said they would bring
Freeth's case to the attention of the tribunal when the case resumes in

"What I am basically saying is that he was in the wheelchair during the
proceedings and 48 hours later he was walking freely at Oliver Tambo
International Airport and at Harare International Airport," said Mr

Efforts to contact Freeth on his mobile number last night were fruitless.
Early this month, he was quoted by the Times of London on its online edition
accusing President Mugabe of "conducting a racial war to drive out the few
remaining whites in Zimbabwe and seize their assets to pay his debts to the
henchmen who had terrorised the opposition".

He also told of the way he was allegedly abducted and beaten up by Zanu-PF
supporters claiming they made him sign a statement withdrawing the land case
from the tribunal.

Recently the New York Times admitted it had lied to the world in a vain
attempt to demonise the Government that Zanu-PF supporters had broken the
legs of an 11-month-old baby. In its June 26 edition, the New York Times,
America's most influential paper, carried a picture of the boy whose legs
were in bandages and quoted his mother as claiming that Zanu-PF youths had
broken her son's legs by slamming them repeatedly on the ground.
In a bid to build a case against Zanu-PF, the paper took the baby for a
medical examination in Harare where it emerged he suffered from club feet
and was never beaten up.

A medical report issued by doctors who carried out the examination said the
X-rays showed no evidence of bone fractures. The paper was forced to retract
its claims, saying the baby's mother had admitted to lying because she
wanted financial assistance.

The stunt by the white farmers is the latest in a series of lies peddled by
the West against the Government with the assistance of their embassies here
and the opposition through stage-managing political violence to ratchet up
pressure on Harare.

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Zim farmers turn to Nigeria


    July 28 2008 at 03:14PM

Johannesburg - Zimbabwean farmers have turned to Nigeria to continue
farming on the African continent, John Michael Abul, the deputy governor of
Nigeria's Nasarawa state said on Monday.

"Our state alone has 15 Zimbabwean farmers who have relocated," he
told the South Africa-Nigeria Business Forum in Johannesburg.

Nasarawa state had vast arable land for commercial farming, fishery
development, wildlife and forestry conservation, he added.

Agriculture was the mainstay of the state's people - with over 70
percent of the population involved in subsistence farming.

Areas for investment in the agricultural sector included sugar cane
plantations, sugar refineries, flour mills and rice processing.

Nasarawa state was located in the middle belt zone of Nigeria.

 Other areas for investment included minerals and tourism, Abdul
said. - Sapa

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Fertiliser Shortage Hits Winter Crop

BULAWAYO, July 28, 2008 - The current shortage of ammonium nitrate in
the country has badly affected the winter crop, it emerged this week.

Farmers who spoke to Radio VOP said the shortage was affecting their
operations, adding that ammonium nitrate is in short supply at a time when
most of their winter crop is showing signs of stress.

"My crop is at knee-level and unless I apply fertilizer now, I am
bound to make a big loss," said Clemence Siziba, a newly-settled farmer in
the Umguza area of Matabeleland North Province.

Siziba said despite numerous promises by officials from the Zimbabwe
Farmers Union, all farmers in his area had not received a single bag of
ammonium nitrate. The farmers also questioned why there was a continued
shortage of fertilizer when the government had reportedly availed foreign
currency for the purchase of chemicals required for the manufacture of

An official at Tshabalala Grain Marketing Depot said the depot ran out
of fertilizer last week and she was not sure when the next delivery would be
made. The fertilizer shortage comes as a major blow to the country amid the
world-wide increase in food and fuel prices.

With the price of bread currently at $200 billion, the failure in the
winter wheat crop is likely to lead to a continuous sharp rise in the price
of the basic foodstuff as government is forced to continue importing wheat.

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Zeros Cause ZSE Crash

HARARE, July 28, 2008 -The Zimbabwe Stock Exchange's electronic
trading system collapsed on Friday owing to too many zeroes on some
counters, Radio VOP can reveal.

In an interview with RadioVOP, ZSE CEO Emmanuel Munyukwi, said there
were now too many zeroes on major counters and the system could no longer
cope. The ZSE was now doing recordings manually.

He said Rio Tinto Zimbabwe Limited, Kingdom Meikles Africa Limited and
Econet Wireless Limited, were among the companies whose share prices have
skyrocketed to more than Z$1 trillion, resulting in the system failing to
register the exchange of shares on the advanced system. The system was
bought from South Africa last year.

Munyukwi said the bourse capitalisation now stood at more than 21
zeroes which could not be computed on the system. On Friday the bourse's
electronic recording system had to be switched off.

Munyukwi said while this did not disrupt trading, it inconvenienced
the business community as shares now had to be written manually resulting in
slow progress.

Meanwhile, Emmanuel Munyukwi, has warned Phillip Chiyangwa, the
chairman of ZECO Holdings to stop making reckless statements in the media or
risk having his firm booted out of the bourse

Despite making numerous media interviews and statements about ZECO's
intended listings outside Zimbabwe, the company has still not officially
approached the ZSE about its listing plans on the Johannesburg Stock
Exchange (JSE) or in the DRC, said Munyukwi.

He said it was dangerous for Chiyangwa to continue making public
statements without the ZSE's as well as shareholder approval.

Munyukwi said Chiyangwa should realise that the ZSE had regulations
and he needed to issue a cautionary statement first before going public
about any issue. He warned that ZECO could be booted out of the ZSE because
it was not following bourse procedures.

Chiyangwa has been in the news recently, telling Zimbabweans that he
intended to list on the JSE. He has not issued a cautionary statement to
that effect, which is a necessary procedure on the ZSE.

Chiyangwa says he is negotiating with a South African firm, SAL
Limited, after which he intends to cross the border and jointly list ZECO on
the ZSE and JSE. This has however riled the ZSE because he has not
officially informed the bourse of such plans.

Munyukwi said the ZSE had no record whatsoever about ZECO's lavish and
ambitious plans to merge with any company.

Meanwhile, Munyukwi said the ongoing talks between the MDC and Zanu PF
could help the bourse secure more business if they are successful. He said
it was worrying that there were currently no new listings on the ZSE because
of the poor economic climate.

In an exclusive interview with Radio VOP, Munyukwi said he had hoped
that the talks would help the bourse secure more business from foreign
firms. He said foreign executives, especially from the US and UK, were
sitting on the fence waiting for the results of the talks currently underway
in South Africa.

Munyukwi said counters such as Old Mutual and Rio Tinto Zimbabwe,
which had foreign shareholders, were very jittery at the moment.
Shareholders in such counters did not know what to do and were awaiting the
results of the talks.

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Forex Currency As Payment

The residents of Beitbridge, Zimbabwe, seem to be taking the current Forex
frenzy a bit too far, jumping on the foreign currency exchange bandwagon
with gusto.  Instead of requesting payment for services and products in the
Zimbabwean dollar, the currency of the country, they are opting for payment
in the South African rand instead.  The rand is returning so much more on
the Zimbabwean dollar, a sign of 'galloping inflation' in the country, that
people are cashing in on simply to make ends meet.  The border town's
merchants have all been switching currency, some of them with very good

According to an employee in one of Beitbridge's supermarkets, the prices of
goods that are being imported to the town from South Africa are rising.
"You will realise that most of our goods are imported from South Africa and
therefore you will find that of late we have been increasing the prices
almost everyday. This is largely because we would be racing against the
prevailing exchange rate to enable ourselves to purchase more supplies,"
said the employee.

Flea markets and traders have also started trading in foreign currency to
keep their prices at a reasonable level.  One example that has been given is
the price of a pair of trousers at a flea market.  In rand, they are going
for 150 to 250 while at the retail clothing stores they are selling for $3
to $5 trillion Zimbabwe dollars.

Even landlord are starting to charge their tenants rent in foreign currency,
which has forced many people to move out of their lodgings or be evicted
because they could not pay the rent in the new rate.  People in high-density
suburbs are paying R300 per room while low-density suburbs are paying
between R600 and R1000 per room.

"In essence, it seems the use of foreign currency in Beitbridge whenever
conducting any business has been legalised and right now you will note that
some landlords who only recently feared arrest for charging rent in foreign
currency are now openly boasting about it and are not being arrested for
that matter. I feel something has to be done before the situation totally
gets out of control," complained Ms Teldah Sigogo, a resident of Dulibadzimu
where the rent situation is spiralling out of control.

Technically, the residents of Beitbridge are breaking the law and could be
forced to serve jail time for charging foreign currency rates for goods and
services.  It is an illegal practice under Zimbabwean law.  It is
understandable, however, why this is happening as the inflation rates
continue to rise.  Business owners have no other option besides simply
closing up shop, and that would only lead to further decline in the economy.

This entry was posted on Monday, July 28th, 2008 at 5:06 am

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Zim Entrepreneurs Struggle With Pricing Changes

 Monday, 28 July 2008

By Miriam Madziwa*

BULAWAYO: Although leaders may have shaken hands, the pressing reality for
Zimbabweans today, four months down the line from the 29 March harmonised
polls, is coping with the economic crisis.

The optimism for better lives - characterised by more food, medicines, clean
water, banks notes, transport and all other basic necessities - has all but

Instead, the aftermath of the two elections has seen most Zimbabweans
wallowing in deepening poverty. Inflation, now expressed in millions of
percentages, continues its upward spiral, essential services delivery
remains at a standstill, constant changes in prices and notes of legal
tender and shortages of everything from food to bank notes persist.

If anything, the post-election period is bringing the vulnerability of women
and children into stark focus. The economic going is getting tough in
Zimbabwe and only the tough (read men with above average educational
qualifications, strong business support networks and resources) are still
posting profits.

Nevertheless, even these tough businessmen and women with degrees in
Economics and Business Management are the first to admit that it's a
struggle to remain viable let alone record profits. Pricing goods and
services has become a nightmare - just one miscalculation can render a
business insolvent. So confusing is the situation that some businesspeople
privately admit to resorting to thumb sucking figures and then hoping they
do not go bust.

So spare a thought for the average Zimbabwean woman with primary education
surviving on buying and selling basic goods. The prevailing economic
instability has rendered most of these hardworking women "busy
entrepreneurs" with nothing to show for their efforts. Without up-to-the
minute information on inflation figures and exchange rates, many street
vendors and cross border traders are lagging behind in their pricing,
resulting in them toiling for nothing.

I woke up to the desperation of informal traders when an aunt who sells
agricultural produce came knocking on my door requesting for istart (the
colloquial term for start-up capital). A month earlier, I had given her
millions of Zimbabwe dollars to capitalise her business, so I could not
understand why I had to so again.

The penny dropped when she explained that despite having made billions from
the millions I had given her, she learnt she could not afford to travel to
Gokwe with the 100 billion dollars she had made when she got to the bus
terminus and learnt that a single trip would set her off by 200 billion
dollars. Although she had made a huge profit, the amount was not enough for
rent, food and bus fare to travel to Gokwe to buy more produce for resale in

Shortly after my aunt's visit, I shed a tear while in a supermarket queue.
In front of me was an elderly woman (gogo) as old as my maternal
grandmother. Gogo was struggling to count a multi-coloured wad of Bearer's
Cheques that Zimbabweans are using in place of bank notes. When she
eventually finished counting the money, it came to just over one and half
billion dollars. But it was not enough for the box of matches she needed.
Because of frequent power blackouts, matches are essential for meal
preparation even in towns.

I offered to buy her a carton of 10 boxes. While thanking me for the
gesture, she let slip her dilemma. Gogo had spent weeks walking up and down
her neighbourhood selling scouring powder and vegetables hoping to raise
enough money to feed several orphaned grandchildren under her care. Yet
after all the walking and calling out for customers she could not afford to
buy a box of matches.

Added to the pricing challenge is the issue of keeping track of new cheques
and their growing number of noughts. The noughts keep on increasing in
batches of three. For the functionally literate traders who have managed to
do business simply from the colour of bank notes, completing a sale is not

The different denominations of Bearer's cheques have similar colours. It's
easy for example, to mistake a 10,000,000 bill for a 500,000,000 cheque. To
be sure, you have to be able to read the value of the cheque. Then, counting
the noughts is another task altogether.

Even for women lucky enough to have partners and relatives working abroad,
making ends meet from the remittances is no longer easy. Prior to the
elections, those with access to foreign currency were able to stay just a
step ahead of inflation. The situation has changed.

Exchange rates on the lucrative parallel market are trailing behind
inflation. As a result, local families need more greenbacks, Rands and Pulas
to buy food and pay rent and rates. Additionally, black market dealers are
demanding foreign currency for locally produced foodstuffs such as sugar,
mealie-meal, beef and eggs effectively eroding the advantages of holding
foreign currency.

So, for the majority of Zimbabweans especially women and children, the
ballot box has failed to deliver on their basic expectations of improved
welfare. Zimbabwean parents are hoping the country's leaders will quickly
get down to fixing the economy.
(Gender Links)
*Miriam Madziwa is a freelance journalist based in Zimbabwe.

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Zimbabwe Overshadowed Development Issues at EU-SA Summit

By David Cronin

BRUSSELS, Jul 28 (IPS) - The friendly atmosphere at the first ever European
Union-South Africa in Bordeaux, France, at the end of last week may largely
be attributed to how South African President Thabo Mbeki had helped convince
Robert Mugabe, his Zimbabwean counterpart, to negotiate directly with Morgan
Tsvangirai, leader of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change, a few
days earlier.

Although Mbeki had been heavily criticised at home and abroad for not taking
Mugabe to task over a wave of violence and intimidation against his
political opponents, the European Union (EU) officially declared its full
support for Mbeki's mediation efforts.

Because Zimbabwe dominated the discussions, the tensions that have
previously surfaced over trade issues were not the focus of attentions.
Peter Mandelson, the European commissioner for trade, last year alleged that
South Africa was trying to block other countries in its regional surrounds
from signing economic partnership agreements (EPAs) with the EU.

Yet, with Mandelson preoccupied with talks taking place at the World Trade
Organisation's (WTO) headquarters in Geneva, it fell to Nicolas Sarkozy, the
French president, to sound a more emollient tone.

Sarkozy, the current holder of the Union's rotating chairpersonship, said
that the purpose of the EPAs was to ensure that Africa could be in a
''privileged situation''. He indicated that the EU is seeking to use both
the EPAs and the WTO discussions to give Africa greater preferences than
economies such as China that are experiencing faster growth.

''Don't ask us to give the same treatment to every country in the world,''
Sarkozy added.

Data released ahead of the summit conveys the impression that the EU and
South Africa enjoy a mutually beneficial relationship and that a free trade
agreement signed by both sides in 1999 has proven fruitful.

According to Eurostat, the EU's statistics office, the value of exports from
the 27 countries now comprising the Union to South Africa grew from 12
billion euros in 2000 to 20.5 billion euros last year. Exports from South
Africa to the EU, meanwhile, rose from 15 billion euros to 21 billion euros
over the same period.

The net effect was that the EU's deficit in trade with South Africa fell
from 3 billion euros to about 400,000 euros.

Some organisations who have examined the trade relationship say that the
true picture may be more nuanced, however.

Vicky Cann from the World Development Movement (WDM) in London noted that
the EU's principal imports from South Africa include raw materials such as
metal, coal and diamonds. By contrast, more than 50 percent of the Union's
exports to South Africa are manufactured goods, particularly cars and
machinery. The non-governmental WDM does research and advocacy to end

This imbalance illustrates why it is essential that South Africa resists
calls from the EU to dramatically cut its taxes on industrial imports during
the WTO talks that are currently taking place in Geneva, according to Cann.

''Certainly these figures show that the bulk of South African exports to
Europe are basic commodities such as minerals, coal, and metals. The current
high prices of these may well be distorting the overall picture,'' she told
IPS. ''South Africa is locked into a relationship with the EU where it
exports primary materials, not so much value-added goods. That is a critical

''Meanwhile, right now in Geneva, South Africa is defending its domestic
manufacturers at the World Trade Organisation very firmly, and these figures
indicate that it is right to do so, considering the growth of European
manufactured exports to South Africa in recent years.''

While South Africa refused to sign an EPA before an end-of-2007 deadline set
by the European Commission, some of its neighbours accepted what Brussels
officials described as ''interim'' deals that mainly covered trade in goods.
These include Botswana, Namibia, Swaziland and Lesotho. All four are part of
the Southern African Customs Union (SACU), to which South Africa also

Mareike Meyn from Britain's Overseas Development Institute (ODI) argued that
the EU's willingness to conclude separate deals with South Africa and its
bordering countries could have profound implications for regional
integration. ODI is a think tank on international development and
humanitarian issues.

She pointed out that SACU's own rules require its member countries to enter
jointly into trade agreements with the outside world. ''SACU, the only fully
functioning customs union in Africa, has been split,'' she told a European
Parliament hearing earlier in July.

Her observation came despite numerous statements by the European Commission
that one of the most important objectives of the EPA is to foster greater
cooperation at regional level in Africa.

Paul Goodison from the European Research Office, which monitors the EU's
trade policies, also said that clauses in the interim EPAs accepted by some
of South Africa's neighbours are inconsistent with the agreement on which
SACU operates, particularly how it established a common external tariff.

Goodison noted that the interim agreements would require Botswana, Namibia,
Lesotho and Swaziland to levy different tariffs on goods from the EU than
those set down in the free trade agreement that the EU had previously signed
with South Africa.

''The point is that if South Africa is not included in the (EPA), you have
got a situation where the EU is undermining the common external tariff of
SACU,'' he said. ''How do you sustain a customs union when you don't have a
common external tariff? It is fundamental.'' (END/2008)

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Tough luck

Dear Family and Friends,

Watching MDC and Zanu PF leaders signing an agreement to talk, and then
actually shaking hands on Monday the 21st of July, was something of a
miracle. It would be naive to say that this signals the end of the crisis
but it is a single step forward and it cannot have come soon enough.

That's the good news, the bad news is that everything else seems to have
been put on hold while talks begin. It's a paralysis having a devastating
effect and most people simply don't know how to cope from one day to the

The Governor of the Reserve Bank continues to limit daily withdrawals from
banks to 100 billion dollars - this is currently worth less than 20 UK pence
or 40 US cents or 2 South African Rand. It is a criminally cruel policy
which is causing extreme suffering. The daily maximum withdrawal is not
enough to buy even a single scone which this week cost 140 billion dollars.
A single scone, made with imported flour is the height of luxury for the
vast majority of people and entails standing in a bank queue for two days to
buy just one and by the time you have the money in your hand the price has
gone up.

When I got sick a few days ago I stood open mouthed in the pharmacy when I
was told the common penicillin based antibiotic would cost 2 trillion
dollars. They would not accept a cheque and were not interested in
discussing the matter -it was just tough luck! The 2 trillion dollar price
tag represented 20 working days in a bank queue. I phoned another pharmacy
and was told that their price was 1.6 trillion dollars. When I arrived there
an hour later they said the price had gone up and was now 3 trillion

My own experience is being encountered by people from all walks of life
across the country - and I cannot believe that people are not dying because
they simply cannot access even basic medicines. Everywhere there are stories
of such suffering from people who can't get enough of their own money out of
the bank to buy food, medicines, life preserving drugs and the means of
everyday survival.

The inevitable result is that people that can are pouring out of the country
in their thousands in order to survive. A South African Department of Home
Affairs spokesperson said the number of people arriving at a Refugee
reception area in Johannesburg had gone from 800 a day to more than 5 000 a
day in the past month alone.
Those left at home have this week suddenly found themselves in a strange
place where everything is being charged in US dollars or South African Rand.
A woman outside a medical office in Harare selling bread at 10 Rand a loaf.
Rooms in high density suburbs being rented out for 100 rand a month. Adverts
for cottages to lease at 200 US a month. Meat in a local butchery where only
US dollars are accepted.

The agreement between Zanu PF and the MDC to talk is all very well but while
they do we have no food, no medicines and aren't allowed to draw our own
money out. It feels like slow genocide without bullets and bombs.

I am taking a short break so until next time, thanks for reading,

love cathy

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Zimbabwe national SPCA appeal

ZNSPCA have recently uncovered cruelty in two separate cases in the Harare
area that has resulted in the ZRP taking custody of the animals concerned
and putting them in our care pending Court Proceedings.  Unfortunately the
animals that were so diseased or injured that it was not humane to keep them
alive were euthanased, but there still remains four horses and over 50 dogs
(this number may increase) that need our care.  We have had two kind people
that are sponsoring two of the horses, so we are left with two to cater for
and the dogs.

ZNSPCA are appealing to members of the public for donations of shavings,
hay, horse food and dog food as we are struggling to raise the money to
cater for the animals.  Any donation, no matter how small, will be
appreciated by both us and the animals.

Please contact our offices for further information in this regard - our land
lines are out of order so please use cell numbers : 011 630 403 and 0912 335

Glynis Vaughan
Chief Inspector
156 Enterprise Road, Chisipite, Harare, Zimbabwe
P O Box CH55, Chisipite, Harare, Zimbabwe
Phone: +263 4 497574
Fax: +263 4 497885

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Zim's rival leaders hold secret talks in Harare

From The Cape Argus (SA), 27 July

Fiona Forde and Basildon Peta

Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) leader Morgan Tsvangirai has entered
into talks with Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe in Harare while President
Thabo Mbeki facilitates official negotiations in Pretoria, stoking concerns
that Tsvangirai may sell his party short in a future settlement deal.
According to a number of sources, including MDC and Zanu PF insiders as well
as commentators close to the process, the two men have spoken through
intermediaries in recent days following their face-to-face encounter last
Monday when they agreed to sign up to the Pretoria talks. "The decisions
taken in Harare will inform and feed into the symbolic Pretoria process,"
one source said, while a second agreed that the "real talks" were taking
place between the two rivals in Zimbabwe. "Mugabe has sent everyone to
Pretoria and all eyes are there, but he has Morgan to himself in Harare."
Professor of political science John Makumbe said he was aware of
"undercurrents" in Harare in recent days as the country's Joint Operation
Command leaned on its leader to secure a deal that would ensure their
safety. "The military junta here is very mobile around any agreement between
the MDC and Zanu PF in case it doesn't cover them adequately in terms of
protection," he said. Godfrey Chanesta, Simba Makoni's right-hand man, said
that although he was unaware of such discussions taking place, "it would be
a very natural process if they were, because it would be hard to negotiate a
settlement at this stage without the direct input of Mugabe and Morgan".

Unconfirmed reports suggested Mugabe's henchman Emmerson Mnangagwa, as well
as director of the Central Intelligence Organisation Happyton Bonyongwe,
were involved in mediating between the two. The parallel talks have been
flatly denied by Tsvangirai's spokesman George Sibotshiwe. However, Weekend
Argus understands that MDC insiders fear their leader may settle for too
little and would agree to a future government with Mugabe as president and
Tsvangirai in an inferior role as prime minister, despite the MDC's
long-stated position that it would accept nothing short of executive
power-sharing authority. Tsvangirai surprised the world when he signed up to
the Pretoria talks despite his insistence he would not do so until certain
demands were met, namely an AU envoy at the table as well as the release of
political prisoners. He failed to have both demands met and was told to sign
now and negotiate later. In a weaker position than ever before, he sent his
negotiators Tendai Biti and Elton Mangoma to Pretoria with a mandate to
hammer out a deal that would reflect his party's concerns. Aware it was on
the back foot, the MDC subsequently sent a four-man technical team to South
Africa to support the two negotiators. It comprises Tsvangirai's political
adviserJameson Timba, Professor Eliphas Mukonowe-shuro, Lovemore Moyo and
Innocent Chagonda. Also present at the talks is Isaac Maposa of the Zimbabwe
Institute, but in what capacity remains unclear. He was seen on Friday
escorting Timba outside the Waterkloof venue where the talks are taking
place. The talks at the five-star guest house are scheduled to continue
until tomorrow week, in accordance with the memorandum of understanding.

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Parallel Zimbabwe talks played down

From The Star (SA), 28 July

President Thabo Mbeki has told the cabinet that talks were continuing
between Zimbabwe's main political parties in Pretoria - while a government
source said any "parallel talks" in Harare would be an adjunct to the main
Pretoria dialogue. It has also emerged that President Robert Mugabe had told
his presidential opponent, Morgan Tsvangirai, when they met last week for
brunch, that he had been unaware that Movement of Democratic Change
supporters were being killed by state-aligned forces. A source claimed that
Tsvangirai had then given him a lengthy report on the violence. Three people
are known to have been killed in the first five days following the signing
of the memorandum of understanding between Mugabe and Tsvangirai in Harare
on July 21. Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Aziz Pahad said yesterday he
wasn't aware of any parallel talks in Harare, conducted between
representatives of Tsvangirai and Mugabe. Pahad also dismissed fresh
targeted sanctions against Zimbabwe announced at the weekend. "For us it is
difficult to understand the objectives of new sanctions," he said. On
Friday, the US government added the names of several dozen individuals as
well as 17 companies and parastatals linked to the Mugabe regime. Earlier in
the week, the European Union widened its list of individuals targeted by the
sanctions, which include freezing assets and visa bans. "Let's stop having
outside interference. The Zimbabweans are meeting, let them sort out what
they want for their future. We should not allow outside interference," Pahad

An informed source claimed that "substantive" negotiations between Zanu PF
and the MDC got going only on Saturday afternoon. And on the ground in
Harare there was enormous criticism of the secrecy surrounding the talks.
"Zimbabweans have a right to know and we will have to find a way of ensuring
that some information does get out so we don't have to depend on Zanu PF
leaks any longer," a senior human rights source said from Harare yesterday.
Meanwhile, people injured during the run-up to the second round of the
presidential poll, in which Mugabe was the only candidate, are still
emerging from quasi-military bases controlled by Zanu PF. Human rights
workers say there are 25 full bases still operating in the Buhera area,
Manicaland province, in the remote Gokwe district in central Zimbabwe.
Independent Newspapers last week saw that although the bases in that region
appear to have been dismantled, Zanu PF militia who manned them were still
in evidence, and people were being prevented from returning to their
burnt-out homes. Curfews persist in the Gokwe, Buhera and Mutoko areas and
people cannot move in and out of their villages without paying a "fine" to
Zanu PF youths.

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Local Zimbabweans mourn country in turmoil
Believe Dhliwayo, an AIDS activist who is HIV positive, says before he came to Canada in 2005, 600,000 people in Zimbabwe were denied access to antiretroviral drugs. He continues his work in Canada. July 18, 2008

Staff Reporter

Every morning, Rose Muzorewa awakes with pain in her heart.

It is the pain of separation, of a family missed, of a country mourned. When Muzorewa, 37, watches the news about her native Zimbabwe, she is wracked with guilt for living a relatively privileged life in Canada.

Her only comfort? She can support her relatives back home. As she speaks of her destitute people and her family, Muzorewa's voice cracks and she begins to sob as she struggles to speak.

"This is what drives us to work. Every time I wake up, there is pain in my heart. There are mothers without food, children with broken legs all beaten up, families without a father because he was abducted for supporting the opposition."

Zimbabwe, once the breadbasket of Africa, has endured years of deadly political and economic turmoil, but there is finally a glimmer of hope for peace.

Officials from President Robert Mugabe's ruling Zanu-PF party and the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) are currently negotiating to form a unity government.

Mugabe's government and the opposition have been deadlocked since the Zimbabwean leader was re-elected on June 27 in a poll boycotted by MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai because of violence against his supporters.

Muzorewa, a bank administrator who works from her Barrie home, is one of four Zimbabwean-Canadians who recently shared their memories of living under the Mugabe's despotic rule.

In 2001, Muzorewa and her husband, a supporter of the MDC, sought refuge in Canada, fearful of government persecution. Her husband's uncle, Bishop Abel Tendekayi Muzorewa, was briefly prime minister during the transition from white-ruled Rhodesia in 1979. He lost the 1980 election to Mugabe and the family has been opposition supporters since.

"Never in my dreams did I imagine that I'd leave Zimbabwe. My husband and I had our own cars, we had a beautiful house with a swimming pool. It was a very good life, until this selfish man came," she said, referring to Mugabe. "Coming here, we had to start all over again."

Muzorewa has bittersweet memories of home. She is still haunted by memories of her abduction in the 1980s by the men Mugabe sent to rally support for him. She was a little girl then, travelling a long distance on her way home from boarding school. As she approached her house, she was snatched away. Scores of men, women and children were also forced on the streets to praise Mugabe.

"They were singing war songs, it was raining. We were made to run throughout the neighbourhood from 5 p.m. I only got home at 3 a.m.," she recalled.

"It was hard for me to swallow. People with baton sticks, rain was dripping on us, my uniform was soaked. I was sitting in the mud ... I was not even in the age of voting! It was so frightening; you don't know what they will do to you. My parents were so afraid."

Muzorewa says political corruption has now become blatant and intolerable. This month, Zimbabwean police arrested her niece's relative without charges and demanded $100 (U.S.) for his release, according to Muzorewa. When she sent the money from Canada, the police allegedly asked for an additional $400 to release the man. These financial demands have put a burden on the family in Canada.

Zanu-PF party members are capitalizing on the off-the-charts inflation and selling basic necessities on the black market for triple the regular price. Now Zimbabweans must depend on foreign currency to purchase food and vital goods. Last Monday, the Central Bank issued a Z$100 billion note as hyperinflation rose to 2.2 million per cent.

Kumbirai, a Toronto IT analyst who came to Canada in 2000 and has withheld her last name for fear of exposing her family to government retribution, says rising gas prices here remind her of compatriots back home where the queues for gas began five years ago.

"They can't even afford it. The inflation is skyrocketing everyday. Because of issues like that, you ask yourself, `How are they surviving?'" she says. "If someone goes to work today in the morning, when they come back, the (money quotation) is a different price. The amount of money that you've worked for in a day is useless, it's not worth anything any more."

Kumbirai says people are so desperate for food, they go grocery shopping across the border in Botswana, sometimes even as far as Mozambique and Zambia.

"The supermarkets are empty, there is no food," she said, adding that farmers don't have the resources to farm their land.

Muzorewa added that this year Zimbabwean farmers were blighted with droughts. "Even Mother Nature is against what's happening in Zimbabwe."

People can't afford to send their kids to school. "The education system has crumbled ... even the teachers are not going to school. Their salary will only buy four litres of cooking oil," Muzorewa said.

"We'd love to go home and see our family. You can't even enjoy what you worked for here because people there are suffering."

In phone conversations with family, Muzorewa senses her people have lost hope. "All they think about is how to get the next meal. It doesn't matter if you're educated. Everyone now is poor, except Mugabe and his ministers."

But even if they could find food, Zimbabweans' medicine cabinets remain empty.

Believe Dhliwayo is 37 years old. If he remained in Zimbabwe, he'd be dead. Dhliwayo, an HIV/AIDS activist who is HIV positive, travelled across Zimbabwe to provide support for AIDS patients. Before he came to Canada in 2005, he said 600,000 people there were denied access to antiretroviral drugs.

"It was very hard. You talk to people who are dying, people who are really ill, who are extremely desperate to breathe and have something to eat and have something to help their system that is collapsing," the Toronto man said.

Doctors in Zimbabwe were leaving the country in frustration, Dhliwayo said, adding they didn't have basic equipment, infrastructure or even gloves to do their work.

With the medical care system in shambles, Muzorewa's father died of diabetes without proper care and insulin supplies.

But women bear the brunt of the crisis in Zimbabwe. According to a UN report, women in Zimbabwe have a life expectancy of 34 years. Kumbirai is now 33 years old. "I feel fortunate, I feel blessed," she says about turning 34.

Women's rights activists say that amid the entrenched patriarchy, women and girls are raped, violently beaten and denied access to emergency medical care by the Youth Militia. These young men are trained to torture and kill opposition supporters and their families.

Betty Makoni, an activist who recently visited Toronto, said she is setting up a "Where is your son" campaign where mothers convince their sons to come home instead of remaining with the Youth Militia and harming other families.

But most of the expatriates said they remember better days in Zimbabwe and hope to return one day.

Tarisai, 29, a Toronto accountant who also withheld her name for fear of exposing her family to harm, says her memories of home revolve around family, speaking her native Shona language, and family getaways to their countryside house to visit her grandparents.

"September is my favourite time to go to Zimbabwe with the first rains. It's a very plentiful time, the mangoes. Oh! I miss that! Taking walks around, aimlessly," she says, laughing. "You're picking wild fruit and there's the smell of cow dung, as annoying as that is!" But now, she says, "people are wearing their burden on their faces."

Zimbabweans in Canada

• In 2001, Simba Makoni, Zimbabwe's then finance minister, publicly acknowledged there was an economic crisis. He said foreign reserves had run out and warned of serious food shortages. Most western donors, including the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, had cut aid because of President Robert Mugabe's land seizure program.

• In 2001, Canada experienced a dramatic increase in claims for refugee protection. At the end of that year, there were roughly 33,000 claims made in Canada, rising from almost 23,000 in 1999.

• Zimbabwe emerged as the major source of refugee claimants during this period. The number of refugee claimants from Zimbabwe in 2001 increased to 2,728 from 227 in 2000.

• Zimbabwe accounted for nearly 19 per cent of the overall increase in the refugee claimant population between 1999 and 2001.

• Number of Zimbabwe-born immigrants in Canada: 6,525 (2006 census, Statistics Canada).

• Number of Zimbabwe-born immigrants in Ontario: 3,590 (2006 census, Statistics Canada).

- Compiled by the Star Library

Jul 28, 2008 04:30 AM

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JAG open letter forum - No. 550 - Dated 28 July 2008


Please send any material for publication in the Open Letter Forum to with "For Open Letter Forum" in the subject line.
1. Ben Freeth

Dear all at JAG,

We really appreciate your letter [only received today due to all the

You have done such a wonderful job in getting it all out and bringing such a
focus on the brutalities taking place here.  We so appreciate your prayers
too.  God has spared us to continue on this mighty fight for justice and
peace in this troubled land with you.  It is an honour to be a part of it
and we were so encouraged by the result of the urgent application which has
now come out saying words the effect that their is overwhelming evidence to
show that the Zimbabwe government is in contempt of the tribunal protection
orders and that the evidence will be put before the SADC summit to ensure
compliance etc.  This is a major legal step forward.  The few days in
Windhoek were so encouraging.  God was there!

Mike has just been diagnosed with a broken bone in his foot [bring our break
total to 13 between the 3 of us!] which explains why he is still hobbling.
He still can't hear out of the one ear and is dizzy when walking so please
pray for him as he can't get back to the farm yet.

Thank you once again to the whole team.

Ben Freeth

2. Colleen Taylor

Dear JAG,


Like most born and bred Zimbabweans, I am inclined to be cynical about
"Talks".  Over the years we have seen so many:

Tiger, Fearless, Falls Bridge, Kissinger, Maggie Thatcher, South African
"Rugby Matches", Lancaster House etc etc.  Each time we seem to have lost
more and more and descended further into the pit that we are now struggling
to climb out of.

My late husband came from Belfast, Northern Ireland and that country was no
stranger to "Troubles", in some ways very similar to ours.  There were
pictures on the walls of King William on his horse, saying "Remember 1690"
so they had centuries more reason for cynicism than we do!  There was mayhem
and murder and bombs killing indiscriminately.  The city streets had some
buildings standing alongside others that had been turned to rubble and very
few people ventured into the country unless they were sent there by the
British army.  Eventually the two opposing sides decided it was time to
talk. These talks had their ups and downs and almost collapsed on several
occasions, but eventually they reached agreement and formed a coalition

I was in Belfast recently and saw an amazing TV programme of Ian Paisley a
once rabid Protestant preacher calling down fire and brimstone on the IRA
and his deputy Martin McGuiness previously one of the top members of the
IRA, visiting Washington together to try and persuade Americans to invest in
Northern Ireland.  These two, who had sworn vengeance on each other, were
now apparently good friends.  There was a commentary given by an expert on
body language, who explained how they were not only putting on a good
appearance, but showing by their unconscious gestures that they were
actually concerned about each other's welfare.  This seemed like a miracle
after all those years of bitter enmity.  Mozambique is another example of
how a country can come back to some semblance of order after reaching rock

Perhaps the same thing can happen here.  There are many people of good will
in this country, and many more round the world praying for a solution to our
situation.  Let us try to be positive about these talks and hope and pray
that at last we may get back on the road to returning to peace and
prosperity in our beautiful country. It will not be easy and I am sure there
will be setbacks, but at least we can make a start and positive thinking can
help to influence the outcome.

Colleen Taylor
3. Cathy Buckle

Dear JAG,

Watching MDC and Zanu PF leaders signing an agreement to talk, and then
actually shaking hands on Monday the 21st of July, was something of a
miracle. It would be naive to say that this signals the end of the crisis
but it is a single step forward and it cannot have come soon enough.

That's the good news, the bad news is that everything else seems to have
been put on hold while talks begin. It's a paralysis having a devastating
effect and most people simply don't know how to cope from one day to the

The Governor of the Reserve Bank continues to limit daily withdrawals from
banks to 100 billion dollars - this is currently worth less than 20 UK
pence or 40 US cents or 2 South African Rand. It is a criminally cruel
policy which is causing extreme suffering. The daily maximum withdrawal is
not enough to buy even a single scone which this week cost 140 billion
dollars. A single scone, made with imported flour is the height of luxury
for the vast majority of people and entails standing in a bank queue for two
days to buy just one and by the time you have the money in your hand the
price has gone up.

When I got sick a few days ago I stood open mouthed in the pharmacy when I
was told the common penicillin based antibiotic would cost 2 trillion
dollars. They would not accept a cheque and were not interested in
discussing the matter -it was just tough luck! The 2 trillion dollar price
tag represented 20 working days in a bank queue. I phoned another pharmacy
and was told that their price was 1.6 trillion dollars. When I arrived there
an hour later they said the price had gone up and was now 3 trillion

My own experience is being encountered by people from all walks of life
across the country - and I cannot believe that people are not dying because
they simply cannot access even basic medicines. Everywhere there are stories
of such suffering from people who can't get enough of their own money out of
the bank to buy food, medicines, life preserving drugs and the means of
everyday survival.

The inevitable result is that people that can are pouring out of the country
in their thousands in order to survive. A South African Department of Home
Affairs spokesperson said the number of people arriving at a Refugee
reception area in Johannesburg had gone from 800 a day to more than 5 000 a
day in the past month alone.

Those left at home have this week suddenly found themselves in a strange
place where everything is being charged in US dollars or South African Rand.
A woman outside a medical office in Harare selling bread at 10 Rand a loaf.
Rooms in high density suburbs being rented out for 100 rand a month. Adverts
for cottages to lease at 200 US a month. Meat in a local butchery where only
US dollars are accepted.

The agreement between Zanu PF and the MDC to talk is all very well but while
they do we have no food, no medicines and aren't allowed to draw our own
money out. It feels like slow genocide without bullets and bombs.

I am taking a short break so until next time, thanks for reading, love cathy
Copyright cathy buckle 26 July 2008, To
subscribe/unsubscribe to this newsletter or for information on my books,
please write to:

4. Eddie Cross - Progress

Dear JAG,


I take the fact that the MDC has not walked out of the talks in South Africa
as a very positive sign. They must be making progress and despite the
propaganda put out by both the SABC and the Zanu PF in recent days, I think
this progress is towards a transitional government that will be led by the
MDC. Another feature of this situation that people are not picking up on, is
that for the first time the AU and the SADC have guaranteed the
implementation of the agreements reached in the talks.

We will have to wait for the final outcome - no one is talking about what is
going on behind closed doors and that might be a good thing, providing the
final outcome is acceptable to the rest of us after all our sacrifice and

While focus is on the talks (and rightly so) we must not lose sight of what
is going on here at home. After 4 months the local government councils are
being sworn into office and as I write, the MDC has taken over the
administration of all urban councils in the country. Since 60 per cent of
the population lives in the urban areas, this means that the majority of the
people now live under an MDC controlled administration.

We still have to contend with Chombo who continues to pretend he is the
Minister and in charge. He was defeated in the elections on the 29th March
and holds his portfolio only because the Zanu PF leadership has tried to
hold onto power for as long as possible - illegally. At best he is a
caretaker administrator waiting for a new Minister to be appointed in the
talks. Most probably the new Minister will come from the MDC.

We also control a significant number of the Rural District Councils and in
all hold 700 of these posts throughout the country. Where Zanu PF controls
the councils in the rural areas they will soon discover that they are under
new management from a central government point of view.

This is a very significant shift in power and gives the MDC its first real
chance to start to make a difference in peoples lives. We are taking the
first steps to make that a reality and our Secretary for Local Government is
about to go full time with a small staff to start coordinating what the
councils will be doing. Local government in many ways, is almost more
important to peoples lives than central government. It is the local
authority that delivers water, effluent and waste management, housing,
electricity and roads. It is the local authority that manages primary health
care and educational and social amenities.

The MDC is a Party of the poor - I am sure I have often stated that. So many
urban areas find themselves with councilors who are drawn from street
vendors, blue-collar workers and even the unemployed. In my district I have
two councilors - one a retired lady with very sparse resources and no
transport and the other a vendor also with few resources. They are, however
both excellent individuals, with integrity and a real commitment to their
communities and I am looking forward to working with them.

We have huge challengers - many urban centers are short of water, roads are
in an appalling state, mass transit systems non-functional, effluent systems
broken down and a threat to public health. 40 per cent of the urban
population is not properly housed; we have a backlog of a million housing
units let alone any future growth in demand. Staff are demoralized,
financial systems have broken down, assets looted and there are many
political appointees who are not going to welcome the new administration.

But at least we can now start to tackle these issues and do something about
them. Once the transitional government is in place (in August?) then we can
really start to do things - especially if the new arrangements reflect the
March elections and are accepted by the international community as having
some legitimacy.

In anticipation of a new day dawning, we are now working on how to mobilize
the collective energies of our much-diminished community to start to make
things happen. What I would like to say to every Zimbabwean - at home or
abroad, get involved.

This morning I went to a local picnic site - Hillside Dams. There a group of
local businessmen plus a motley collection of volunteers are cleaning them
up - they have been given a lease over 45 hectares and are building a
restaurant, picnic sites and cleaning up the gardens and the amenities such
as toilets. The roads and paths are being repaired. When I left there were
many cars in the parking area, hundreds of kids and adults playing in open
areas and many braai fires going with a smell of wors and steak.

If you are outside the country - adopt a councilor and support him or her
with funds to run a small office and meet their expenses. Small sums of
money can make a huge impact in this area and is critical to making
democracy work for the people and to improve their lives.

A group of businessmen are right now forming a Trust to mobilize the whole
business community behind community development and the strengthening of the
democracy we are building. Making democratic practice work for everyone -
creating servant leaders who will be honest and accountable. They are
identifying projects - small and large, that can be tackled by the public
and the private sector to their mutual benefit. One group in Bulawayo is
doing a joint venture with the City to manage and recycle wastewater.

We have a country to rebuild - not had a chance to do anything up to now
because of the crazy politics and the imbecilic economics. This is both an
exciting and a challenging task. The international community will help us
get back on our feet and after that it is up to us - we are a rich country
made poor by bad leadership. That must never happen again.

Democracy and development are the key to this. Democracy to hold leadership
accountable to the people they serve and development to lift everyone out of
the cycle of poverty and deprivation that has been our lot for too long.

Eddie Cross
Bulawayo, 27th July 2008

All letters published on the open Letter Forum are the views and opinions of
the submitters, and do not represent the official viewpoint of Justice for

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