07 Jul 2012 14:52 - Sapa
Zimbabwean state television has claimed Africa's oldest leader Robert Mugabe
looked "fit and strong" following a medical check-up in Singapore.
Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe arrived home Saturday from Singapore where
he went for a medical check-up amid increasing concerns about his health,
state media said.
State television, which showed him alighting from a plane and shaking hands
with the Vice President Joice Mujuru and several senior government
officials, said he looked "fit and strong."
Africa's oldest leader left Harare on Monday for what officials said was a
"routine" health check.
The 88-year-old, who has ruled Zimbabwe since 1980, often makes visits to
the city-state for medical treatment and underwent cataract surgery there
Mugabe's wife Grace recently told state media that her husband was still
fit, rises as early as 5:00 am and consistently does his daily exercises.
"They say Mugabe is a very old man… but he is very sound and lucid… and very
energetic, too," Grace was quoted as telling the Sunday Mail last month.
Mugabe's last visit to Singapore in April sparked rumours over his health,
with media reports suggesting he was fighting for his life in hospital,
allegedly for treatment of a cancer-related ailment.
WikiLeaks last year published a 2008 US diplomatic cable saying that central
bank chief Gideon Gono had told the US ambassador at the time that Mugabe
had prostate cancer and had been advised by doctors that he had less than
five years to live.—Sapa.
06 July 2012
Violet Gonda | Washington
Roy Bennett, the exiled treasurer general of the Morgan Tsvangirai-led MDC
formation says democratic forces in the country should continue pushing for
reforms to ensure the next elections are free and fair enough to produce a
government that will be able to restore Zimbabwe’s former glory.
In an interview with VOA, Bennett describes President Robert Mugabe's Zanu
PF party as "a dead party led by old men bickering like old women," adding
the dissolution of its district co-ordinating committees last week is a
symptom of "a terminal disease."
“The only glue holding this dead horse together is the love of money and
violence. In any free and fair election," Bennet said, "they will be blown
to the wind. That is why Mugabe's apparent desperation for an election is a
“We did not begin the struggle to stroke the hand that kills. No more GNU -
a miserable and malnourished mongrel fathered by an illegitimate and
diseased village dog. Zanu PF, get out of our way. Let's finish it now."
Attacking the government of national unity, Bennett said he feared the party
is working hard to ensure there's another power-sharing arrangement after
the next vote, to ensure it remains in charge, and getting legitimacy from
the MDC formations.
“The MDC is propping Zanu PF,” he added. “Zanu PF continues holding on to
power using the military junta and controlling absolutely everything, and
the MDC is giving them the playing field to continue looting and to continue
moving diamond revenue outside the country.”
On the controversial subject of black empowerment, Bennett said his party
believes in broad-based economic empowerment, but not the program currently
being implemented by Indigenization Minister Saviour Kasukuwere.
He also told the VOA the founding values of the MDC were being eroded,
adding the party should not commit itself to another governing coalition
with Zanu PF, should there be need, or necessity.
But the treasurer general’s statements are in sharp contrast to recent
comments by his party’s secretary general and Finance Minister Tendai Biti.
Biti is quoted in the state-run Sunday Mail newspaper singing praises of Mr.
Mugabe's leadership. He described the president as seductive, calm,
unflappable and a fountain of stability. Bennett, in self-imposed exile in
the United Kingdom, does not agree.
The self-exiled politician said his party now needs to fight hard for
reforms that will bring about free and fair elections instead of propping up
Zanu PF in an inclusive government that has now outlived its usefulness.
“It’s fine to have the U.S. dollars and shops full of food, but the people
on the ground don’t have the money to buy the stuff and when the people on
the ground are battling," said Bennett. "So we need to bring absolute and
complete change and empower the people.”
Written by Richard Chidza, Staff Writer
Saturday, 07 July 2012 14:56
HARARE - Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara was in lofty praise of Prime
Minister Morgan Tsvangirai yesterday, describing him as “the
Mutambara was introducing the Premier to Budiriro residents and dignitaries
gathered in the high density suburb for the launch of the Water Conservation
and Zero Litter campaign.
“I want to introduce you to the man, the man who is responsible for
government policy and the supervision of all ministers,” Mutambara gushed.
“He is commander-in-chief of policy and maybe commander-in-chief of the
army, it is none other than the Right Honourable Prime Minister Morgan
Tsvangirai,” Mutambara gushed to rapturous applause.
A flattered Tsvangirai revelled in Mutambara’s praise, but chose to be
“I know the deputy prime minister likes to present things dramatically — you
all know him. But I must warn you, do not stretch it. You must be careful
not to commit treason,” Tsvangirai chuckled."
“There is lawfully only one commander-in-chief of the army and that is
President Robert Mugabe.”
Mutambara has developed a knack for gushing praises on his coalition
partners and once described Mugabe as “a consistent leader with
organisational capacity and strategic vision.”
06 July 2012
Tatenda Gumbo | Washington
The United Kingdom's Department for International Development, DFID, has
pledged its continued support for Zimbabwe's Basic Education Assistance
Module, BEAM, dispelling reports that along with the United Nations Children
Fund, it would soon stop assisting poor schools and students in the country.
DFID maintained in a statement Friday its support of the education program,
targeting 400,000 under-privileged and orphaned school children.
At least $15 million has been allocated to the initiative so far this year,
most of it covering the first and second school terms. The British
government says disbursements for the third term are to commence shortly.
The department said a company called Crown Agents is managing its current
funding to the education program, which includes monitoring the delivery of
funds directly to the bank accounts of primary schools.
It added that it is providing more than $36 million to the second phase to
"support the ministry of education, sport, arts and culture’s efforts to
bring quality education to all children in Zimbabwe, with a special focus on
orphans and vulnerable children."
Reports of the British department pulling out were triggered by comments
attributed to the ministers of education and labor voicing concern over the
DFID program coordinator Peter Taylor says the UK is committed to the BEAM
program and assisting the government of Zimbabwe provide education to all.
"Everyone will appreciate how important it is for children to get a good
education, to improve their life chance and their livelihoods," he said.
The basic education program is a government and donor-funded initiative
targeting vulnerable primary and secondary school children. Negotiations are
currently underway for the funding of the 2013 school year.
By Staff Reporter 19 hours 52 minutes ago
HARARE - The embattled Youth and Empowerment Minister Savious Kasukuwere is
now isolated as another organisation with close links to Zanu-PF Affirmative
Action Group questioned the implementation of the indigenisation and
economic empowerment programme, amid concerns that it was benefiting only a
Addressing delegates at an AAG engagement meeting with the Attorney-General’s
Office in Harare yesterday, AAG president Mr Keith Guzah, flanked by
flamboyant controversial Harare businessman Phillip Chiyangwa asked why the
indigenisation programme was seemingly benefiting a few consortiums.
These damning outbursts comes in a week when Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe
governor Gideon Gono launched a scathing attack on Kasukuwere saying the
bank takeovers were illegal.
“Our economy has been ‘consortiumised’ (sic). We should ask ourselves that
through the indigenisation programme, are we not simply empowering the same
people over and over again?” Gozah said.
“We keep hearing that consortium such-and-such has taken shares in this and
that company, but who exactly is benefiting from the 51 percent equity that
is supposed to be indigenised?”
The Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Act was signed into law on March
9, 2008, and the related regulations were gazetted as Statutory Instrument
21 of 2010.
The law basically requires that all foreign-owned firms operating in the
country sell off at least 51 percent of their equity to indigenous
But in response to the AAG’s concerns Attorney-General Johannes Tomana said
the consortiums were legal entities which were entitled to benefit from the
“The idea of the indigenisation programme is that the controlling stake of
the key economic contributors should be held by people who have a permanent
interest in the success of the country, not those with external interests,”
said Mr Tomana.
“Consortiums consist of individuals that by law are allowed to benefit from
the indigenisation programme and it is these individuals that will then
engage global capital on our behalf to unlock real value.”
The AG said Zimbabweans should not be debating whether or not a law was
right or wrong.
“Debating takes place in Parliament. Gazetted laws should simply be obeyed.
It is the abiding of our laws that gives guarantee to foreign investors,” he
Meanwhile, according to the official blog of Youth Development,
Indigenisation and Empowerment Minister Saviour Kasukuwere, the Government
has gazetted frameworks for compliance for a number of economic sectors
through the General Notice 280 of 2012.
Reads part of the notice on the blogsite: “Having gazetted the first two
sector frameworks for compliance with Indigenisation and Empowerment in 2011
on mining and manufacturing, the Government of Zimbabwe has gone a step
further to gazette for the remaining sectors.
“These are finance, tourism, education and sport, arts, entertainment and
culture, engineering and construction, energy, services, telecommunications,
transport and motor industry sectors.”
For instance, the notice states that all financial institutions have one
year in which to comply with the 51 percent indigenisation requirements.
06 July 2012
Blessing Zulu and Gibbs Dube | Washington
The war of words between Zimbabwe's Indigenization Minister Saviour
Kasukuwere and Central Bank chief Gideon Gono over the transfer of majority
bank shares to local blacks has escalated, exposing fissures and policy
discord in the shaky coalition government.
The spat between the two intensified in the past few days after Kasukuwere
gazetted a notice last Friday targeting foreign banks for indigenization.
The financial institutions were given one year to comply with the law.
Gono said in a statement the notice is null and void. The central bank
governor said Kasukuwere, a shareholder in the collapsed Genesis Investment
Bank, “is not a fit and proper person to deal with banks having been
involved with the failed indigenous bank”.
Gono, backed by Finance Minister Tenda Biti, Prime Minister Morgan
Tsvangirai and Education Minister David Coltart, says Kasukuwere is acting
The empowerment minister hit back Thursday in a Facebook entry accusing Gono
of being "immature". He said there was no going back on the indigenization
of the financial sector.
The International Monetary Fund has warned Harare of the destabilizing
effects of tinkering with the financial sector.
But Kasukuwere’s legal adviser Psychology Mazivisa said there is no going
back on the empowerment program, adding his ministry is simply following the
Parliamentary budget and finance committee chairman Paddington Zhanda said
Gono is misleading the nation as Kasukuwere is simply implementing the law,
good or bad.
Independent economic consultant Luxson Zembe said Harare must exercise
caution on indigenizing foreign-owned banks.
July 7, 2012, 1:55 am
It’s the ‘same old same old’ in Zimbabwe. Issues raised long ago and
apparently all sorted suddenly re-surface years later. Even with a Coalition
Government, it is still Zanu PF ideology that dominates and Zanu PF will not
give up until they get what they want. And, what they wanted – and still
want – is total land ownership. Having taken over white-owned farms from
2000 onward, it seemed logical to assume that the issue was settled but it
still goes on. Today, Friday, comes the news that a Marondera farm has been
invaded, not by war vets but by senior government officials leaving. 80 farm
workers and their families homeless.
When cabinet ministers them selves are die-hard fanatics like Saviour
Kasukuwere, it’s not surprising that he once again raises the subject of
‘Who Owns What in Zimbabwe’. What he doesn’t have the courage to define is
who exactly he means by the term indigenous and whether a white – or brown -
person can be considered an indigenous Zimbabwean? The answer is clearly in
the negative for Kasukuwere and he has his master’s whole-hearted approval
when it comes to the question of ownership. Speaking a week ago Robert
Mugabe said foreigners should only get 10% of Zimbabwean businesses. Mugabe
was addressing the Central Committee of Zanu PF at the time so, of course,
he used the opportunity to attack the west. “Be wary of the west taking over
Africa” he warned the faithful. That was in the week when the EU announced
that it had funded water projects in Chivi which have directly benefited
100.000 people and the UK has already given $300 million since February. In
contrast, Mugabe’s friends from the East, the Chinese, gave 200 workers the
sack and dismissed them without notice or severance pay.
On Wednesday it was announced that the Government had given banks one
year to cede 51% to local blacks. So, there we have it, from the horse’s
mouth. Saviour Kasukuwere was quite specific: ownership was to be handed
over to black people; white Zimbabweans born and bred in the country are
virtually non-people when it comes to land ownership. It is no longer just
banks that must be indigenised, Kasukuwere has now included hotels,
educational institutions and telecommunications. The Reserve Bank Governor,
responded by stating that only seven out of twenty four local banks are
foreign owned. As for mines, the Minister of Mines behaves as if they are
his personal property to allocate to whoever he sees fit. This week he
pledged gold, diamond and platinum mines to police and military officers. No
wonder they are such fervent supporters of Zanu PF!
The indigenisation issue has caused chaos and confusion in all the
affected sectors. David Coltart the Education Minister has described the
move to indigenise private schools as ‘illegal’ but perhaps more relevant is
the question: who are the precise owners of private educational
institutions? For the most part they are church- owned. Peterhouse, the
prestigious school in Marondera is owned by the Anglican Church; St George’s,
another highly respected school in Harare, is owned by the Catholic Church
as is Kutama - which Mugabe himself attended. All of these institutions are
already run by indigenous, black churches. So who or what exactly is being
This move to indigenise is, in fact, no more than a political ploy by Mugabe
intended to assure the electorate that under Zanu PF they will all be bosses
but the brutal truth is that indigenisation is racism of the worst kind -
and it is unworkable.
Not to worry, as Zimbabweans say, for the next three years we’ll have
Chinese news programmes to cheer us on our way and the exiled white farmers’
imported maize to feed us. Who was it said, “Zimbabwe will never be a colony
Yours in the (continuing) struggle, Pauline Henson.
Dear Family and Friends,
We don’t know if we’re on our heads or our heels in Zimbabwe after
the latest government notice about indigenisation. It seems the farms
and mines are not enough and next up for grab are businesses, banks,
schools, and virtually every privately owned entity. The best way to
tell it is with quotes.
The latest indigenisation saga caught our attention with a question by
a NewsDay reporter to Zanu PF’s Minister of Youth, Empowerment and
Indigenisation, Saviour Kasukuwere. The journalist asked the Minister
if his ministry would consider an empowerment model proposed by
Reserve Bank Governor Gideon Gono. Minister Kasukuwere’s response,
quoted in NewsDay was: “F***k you, I have no interest in that. You
don’t ask me about the governor (Gono)! Get out of my office! Get
out of my office! Get out now.”
Next came front page headlines which screamed: “Govt to grab private
schools.” General Notice 280 of 2012, published in the Government
Gazette laid out regulations for the indigenisation of nine major
sectors. This included schools with a net asset of one dollar which
are to be required to have a 51% indigenous ownership. The notice
applies to privately owned pre schools, primary and secondary schools,
colleges and universities. NewsDay newspaper wrote: “The
indigenisation programme that initially targeted mines, is now a
blanket plan… covering finance, tourism, arts and entertainment,
engineering and construction, telecommunications and the motor
Minister of Education, David Coltart, immediately responded to the
government notice urging schools, their boards and trustees to:
“continue the good work they are doing and disregard this so called
provision which is illegal and unenforceable.”
While the assault on private education was in the spotlight, the
threat to banks was growing. The Indigenisation Minister said all
foreign owned banks had a year to dispose of 51% shareholding to
“indigenous Zimbabweans.” Indigenous Zimbabweans only refers to
people with black skin, even if people with other skin colours were
born and have always lived here, as have their parents, grandparents
and great grandparents.
Prime Minister Tsvangirai then issued a statement about the
indigenisation threat to banks and schools saying: “There is no such
government position.” The PM said the Indigenisation Minister had no
power to: “project an image of a voracious government keen to
compulsorily grab almost all institutions and companies in the
country.” Finance Minister Tendai Biti said the regulations outlined
by Minister Kasuukuwere in the General Notice were: “of no legal
effect, an absolute nullity. In any case, if you indigenise a bank
what are you indigenising? A building or computers?”
Reserve Bank Governor Gideon Gono said foreign owned banks would not
be seized: “yesterday, today or tomorrow” and described the latest
General Notice as: “devoid of detail and rationality.” Gono said
he was waiting to consult with president Mugabe and that: “his
instructions will be final.”
At the end of it all, those last five words were the most worrying.
Until next time, thanks for reading, love cathy 7th July 2012.
Copyright � Cathy Buckle. www.cathybuckle.com
PARLIAMENTARY COMMITTEES SERIES
[6th July 2012]
Committee Meetings Open to the Public 9th to 12th July
NB: Members of the public who cannot attend meetings, including Zimbabweans in the Diaspora, can at any time send written submissions to committees by email addressed to to firstname.lastname@example.org
Thematic Committee and Portfolio Committees will meet this week, in both open and closed session. The meetings listed below will be open to the public as observers only, not as participants, i.e. members of the public can listen but not speak. The meetings will be held at Parliament in Harare. If attending, please use the entrance on Kwame Nkrumah Ave between 2nd and 3rd Streets and note that IDs must be produced.
This bulletin is based on the latest information from Parliament. But, as there are sometimes last-minute changes to the schedule, persons wishing to attend a meeting should avoid disappointment by checking with the committee clerk [see below] that the meeting is still on and open to the public. Parliament’s telephone numbers are Harare 700181 and 252936.
Monday 9th July at 10 am
Portfolio Committee: Mines and Energy
Oral evidence from the Chrome Miners Association on prices charged to tributors by the smelters in chrome mining and challenges facing the industry
Chairperson: Hon Chindori-Chininga Clerk: Mrs Mataruka
Monday 9th July at 2 pm
Portfolio Committee: Public Works and National Housing
Oral evidence from Mr and Mrs Chikuvanyanga on the Willowvale flats project submissions
Committee Room No. 311
Chairperson: Hon Mupakata Clerk: Mr Mazani
Thematic Committee: HIV/AIDS
Brief from SAYWHAT on HIV/AIDS related matters in Tertiary Institutions
Government Caucus Room
Chairperson: Hon Hon D. Khumalo Clerk: Mrs Khumalo
Tuesday 10th July at 10 am
Thematic Committee: MDGs
Oral evidence from the Ministry of Labour & Social Services on the Older Persons Bill
Committee Room No. Government Caucus Room
Chairperson: Hon Chief Mtshane Clerk: Mrs Nyawo
Portfolio Committee: Industry and Commerce
Oral evidence from:
Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries
b) Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce
c) Employers Confederation of Zimbabwe
on the level of capacity utilisation in the local industry and challenges faced by local businesses
Committee Room No. 311
Chairperson: Hon Mutomba Clerk: Miss Masara
Wednesday 11th July at 9 am
Thematic Committee: Peace and Security
Oral evidence from the Minister of Energy and Power Development on policies and procedures of load shedding on wheat farmers and allegations of corruption in ZESA
Committee Room No. 4
Chairperson: Hon Mumvuri Clerk: Mr Munjenge
Thursday 12th July at 10 am
Portfolio Committee: Media, Information and Communication Technology
Oral evidence from the TelOne Board on its plans for TelOne to remain viable in the Telecommunications sector. [The committee is scheduled to pay a fact-finding visit to TelOne’s stations at the Mazowe Earth Station and the Harare Main Exchange the previous day, 11th July.]
Committee Room No. 413
Chairperson: Hon Chikwinya Clerk: Mr Mutyambizi
Other Committee Proceedings – NOT Open to the Public
Note: Other Portfolio Committees and Thematic Committees will also be meeting during the week, but in closed session. They will be dealing with such matters as deliberating on oral evidence received at previous meetings; considering draft reports; reviewing work plans. The Portfolio Committee on Health and Child Welfare will have a familiarisation tour of the Medicines Control Authority.
Veritas makes every effort to ensure reliable information, but cannot take legal responsibility for information supplied