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Mugabe flies into Zanu PF storm

Written by Xolisani Ncube, Staff Writer
Sunday, 08 July 2012 14:06

HARARE - President Robert Mugabe flew back home yesterday facing a test of
his leadership to heal a rift created by the disbanding of district
coordinating committees (DCC) in his turbulent Zanu PF party.

Mugabe, who has been in the Far East over the past week seeking medical
assistance, returned home amid mounting unrest in his faction-torn party.

At a moment he must be enjoying a quiet time and resting, he is facing a
disintegrating party raven with widening fault lines.

Mugabe’s deputy, Joice Mujuru, has already warned fellow party leaders of
being dishonest and feeding lies to the veteran ruler.

In pointed remarks at a faction led by her adversary Emmerson Mnangagwa in
the race to succeed Mugabe, she said there has been a lot of obfuscation
that has gone on.

Mujuru, the biggest beneficiary of the disbandment of DCCs, insinuated that
the party had made the right decision. She spoke as the Mnangagwa faction,
which was the biggest loser after pumping millions of dollars into campaigns
for the DCCs, was crying foul over the controversial decision.

The DDCs were disbanded while Mnangagwa was away, and Mujuru was said to
have personally engineered that move.

Mujuru, in her address to party supporters during a field-day held in
Chegutu East constituency on Friday, accused her fellow compatriots of
feeding Mugabe with lies.

“VaMugabe vanonyeperwa, tinovaudza zvatinofunga kuti ndizvo zvakanaka,
tinotsvaka mashoko akanaka ekuvaudza kana tichitaura navo tigomakwenenzvera
kuti vatifarire uye kuti vafunge kuti zvakanaka zvatiri kuita (Mugabe is
told lies, we tell him what we think is okay. We look for sweet words which
we organise so well so that he thinks we are doing good things),” said

Zanu PF political commissar Webster Shamu validated Mujuru’s candidacy,
describing her as Mugabe’s first born.

“Totarisana muZanu PF nemuchimurenga medu ndivo dangwe ravaMugabe.
Tinodzidza kwavari kuti unozvibata sei,” Shamu said of Mujuru.

(Mujuru is Mugabe’s first born, we learn a lot from her).

The battle to succeed Mugabe has turned so nasty with Mnangagwa declaring
that he was “jinda guru”. (Top aide).

Allegations of vote buying and candidate imposition were rampant in DCC
elections forcing Mugabe and his politburo to dissolve the structures.

Fist-fighting and bloodshed characterised DCC polls with provinces such as
Manicaland and Masvingo inviting the wrath of the police, who had to fire
warning shots to disperse angry crowds.

Zanu PF spokesperson Rugare Gumbo last week almost named a clique of senior
politburo members who were in the habit of vote-buying during the DCC polls.

He said the clique is led by people with ambitions of toppling Mugabe
without following laid-down procedures.

“The district coordinating committees were being used by some ambitious
people within the party who wanted to rise to the top. There was a lot of
vote-buying. It was divisive.

“There was also a lot of corruption,” Gumbo said.

Although the Daily News on Sunday could not reach Mnangagwa for comment,
members of his faction say they were left shell-shocked by the disbanding of
DCCs and as of now, they will have to go back to the drawing board to
re-strategise on how to tackle the vicious succession race.

It is just the latest setback for the former CIO boss and Mugabe’s 2008
chief election agent.

In 2004, Mnangagwa was so close to clinching the vice president’s post, but
Mugabe pushed for a clause in the party’s constitution stipulating that one
of the two vice presidents should be a woman.

This automatically meant Mnangagwa was not to go for the post ahead of
Mujuru who had the full backing of “the kingmaker”, retired army general
Solomon Mujuru who died last year.

With Mugabe jetting back home yesterday, he comes face to face with his
burning party that has no grassroots structures ahead of crucial polls
expected within the next 11 months.

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DCCs disbanded over succession: Zanu PF

Written by Richard Chidza, Staff Writer
Sunday, 08 July 2012 14:23

HARARE - President Robert Mugabe pulled a master stroke in disbanding Zanu
PF grassroots structures, dealing a heavy blow to presidential aspirants who
wanted to use the structures to reinforce their presidential bid, the party
spokesperson has said.

Zanu PF spokesperson Rugare Gumbo came within a whisker of mentioning
Defence minister Emmerson Mnangagwa by name in an interview aired on South
African television news channel e-TV on Thursday evening.

“The district coordinating committees were being used by some ambitious
people within the party who wanted to rise to the top. There was a lot of
vote buying. It was divisive.

“There was also a lot of corruption,” Gumbo said.

The channel said Mnangagwa’s opponents within the party were accusing him of
“packing the DCCs with his supporters,” and using money to prepare for the
battle to succeed Mugabe.

The TV channel said Mnangagwa boasted the support of the military and
analysts were predicting the Zanu PF legal secretary would most likely not
take the move to disband the DCCs “lying down,” and would plot a counter

In announcing the dissolution last week Mugabe said the DCCs were divisive.

“We are afraid that the DCCs have become a weapon that is dividing the
party,” said Mugabe.

University of Zimbabwe lecturer, John Makumbe said the disbandment of the
DCCs would in the long run, affect the composition of powerful party
structures such as the Central Committee and the Politburo.

“The DCCs were a mechanism to control the party branches and this determined
in a big way the composition of the Central Committee and Politburo,”
Makumbe said.

“This would then ultimately affect who takes over from Mugabe at congress.”

The political scientist, who has declared an intention to run on an MDC
ticket, said Mugabe’s disbandment of the influential structures was not a
sign of who he wants to take over after him, but a sure indication that he
wants to be the one who makes the final decision on who takes over.

“It could be anybody, someone who is not in the running at the moment. It
could be someone like Sydney Sekeramayi but Mugabe wants to show that he has
the final say,” said Makumbe.

“The President in the meantime has done a huge favour to Joice Mujuru and a
disservice to minister Mnangagwa,” he said.

Political commentator Ibbo Mandaza said the fight for Zanu PF leadership had
so far been shelved by the dissolution of the DCCs.

“It gives an advantage to Mujuru for now,” he said.

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Jabulani Sibanda terrorises Zaka

Written by Wendy Muperi, Staff Writer
Sunday, 08 July 2012 14:22

MASVINGO - Villagers in Zaka told Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai yesterday
that war veterans leader Jabulani Sibanda was terrorising them again ahead
of crucial polls set for next year.

Sibanda was in Masvingo on a Zanu PF campaign programme dubbed “Operation
Kubudirana Pachena”.

Sibanda has been threatening MDC supporters with death if they continue
supporting the former opposition movement.

Zaka’s four constituencies are under MDC.

He has since left Masvingo, although he religiously pays a visit to the
province for an indoctrination of the grassroots in Zanu PF propaganda.

Tsvangirai, who was in Masvingo Province to assess Constituency Development
Fund projects — an initiative brought about by the inclusive government to
enable legislators to embark on developmental projects.

Luke Tamborinyoka, Tsvangirai’s spokesperson said his boss was taking
complaints from villagers seriously.

“The PM received reports that the community was now living in fear following
the recent visit by Jabulani Sibanda. People now live in fear for their
lives,” Tamborinyoka told the Daily News on Sunday.

Tsvangirai told the villagers to desist from violence and live in harmony.

He appealed to all political parties to live and deal with each other in
harmony irrespective of their political ideologies.

“PM Tsvangirai called on the different party leadership of Zaka to co-exist
in peace and allow every political party to hold its rallies freely without
interference,” Tamborinyoka said.

The premier’s spokesperson said Tsvangirai challenged government officials
responsible for food distribution to do so in a non-partisan manner for the
benefit of every Zimbabwean.

Reports of MDC supporters being denied food aid because of their political
affiliation have been rampant, and according to Tamborinyoka, Tsvangirai
promised the villagers to take the matter up to Cabinet.

“The people of Zaka told the PM the distribution of food was politicised. He
appealed to the administrators to fairly distribute food regardless of
political affiliations. The PM also assured the community to bring the
matter to the attention of Cabinet and (Agriculture) minister Joseph Made,”
he said.

Tsvangirai toured schools, clinics and road projects done under the CDF

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Mugabe approved MPs, ministers’ allowances: Matinenga

Written by Chengetai Zvauya, Parliamentary Editor
Sunday, 08 July 2012 14:21

HARARE - The minister of Constitutional and Parliamentary Affairs Eric
Matinenga has defended the payment of allowances to MPs and government
ministers saying it was approved by President Robert Mugabe.

MPs and government ministers were each paid $15 000 in December last year in
sitting and travel allowances. This is despite that not all of them were
entitled to it.

The money was not paid according to the legislators’ Parliament attendance

But Matinenga yesterday defended the move which he said was a decision made
by Mugabe and Cabinet.

Matinenga told the Daily News on Sunday his ministry was not responsible for
the recovery of the money from the undeserving MPs and ministers.

“I was not in charge of the payments only the President can do so because he
is the one who approved the payments. I will not comment on the statements
that only MDC ministers were paid the allowances leaving Zanu PF ministers
because it is not factual,” said Matinenga.

Clerk of Parliament Austin Zvoma said Parliament was not going to do a
follow-up on the repayment of the money.

“I have no responsibility to collect the money from MPs who were paid their
sitting allowances. I do not control the MPs pay sheet,” said Zvoma.

Zanu PF chief whip Joram Gumbo said ministers did not deserve to be paid the
money as they are covered under their ministerial payments and have to pay
back the money.

“Ministers were not supposed to be paid sitting and travel allowances; it is
only MPs who should make claims to that money. I know mainly MDC ministers
benefitted and you should ask the responsible ministers who facilitated the
payments and these ministers must pay back the money,” said Gumbo.

Gumbo said the ministers had two vehicles and two drivers and there was no
need for them to receive allowances from Parliament as they had executive
benefits from their ministerial jobs.

Cabinet ministers from MDC who benefited are Tendai Biti, Elton Mangoma,
Samuel Sipepa Nkomo, Lucia Matibenga, Tapiwa Mashakanda, Theresa Makone,
Giles Mutsekwa, Eric Matinenga, Jameson Timba, Heneri Dzinotyiwei, Paurina
Mpariwa and deputy ministers Jessie Majome and Gift Chimanikire.

David Coltart and Lutho Tapela from the Welshman Ncube-led MDC also received
the money.

Walter Mzembi, Douglas Mombeshora and Walter Chidhakwa were the Zanu PF

Tsvangirai-led MDC chief whip Innocent Gonese refused to comment on the

“I have no comment to make on the issue of the payments of the money to MPs
and ministers,” said Gonese.

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Stop basking in gone glory: Coltart

Written by Wendy Muperi, Staff Writer
Sunday, 08 July 2012 14:18

HARARE - Zimbabweans should stop basking in the shadow of a long gone
education glory, Education minister David Coltart has said.

Coltart said government should quit priding Zimbabwe as an education haven
because resource constraints have seriously compromised the sector.

“The foundation of our education sector is still strong. We have good basic
curriculum, highly qualified teachers, a deep-rooted passion for education
exhibited by parents, guardians and the children themselves.

“There is no doubt it ends at the foundation, the rest of the structure is
in a crisis, the teachers’ morale is now gone and seriously education is

“There is a danger that we assume that because education was strong in the
past then it will continue like that. We will be wrong. That is not the case
anymore,” Coltart told the Daily News on Sunday.

Zimbabwe’s much touted literacy rate of more than 90 percent has been
disputed as outdated since the figures are based on data collected by the
United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation and the
government more than a decade ago.

Coltart said though government was making “notable” moves towards addressing
the welfare of teachers, there were other educational needs that seriously
require redress.

“I commend the government for constantly engaging teachers representatives
to address remuneration issues but outstanding none salary issues are still
a problem. Every day I receive messages from parents complaining over lack
of proper infrastructure.

“There are many schools without desks, stationery, classrooms and the
children in resettled areas are literally learning in tobacco barns. Unless
we address those challenges we will not go far, even the best teacher will
struggle to teach inadequately clothed and hungry children in a barn,” said

Coltart emphasised the need for government to prioritise education and
castigated the extensive travel expenditure by leaders at the expense of
more deserving areas.

“Ironically, the amounts we are spending on addressing educational needs are
still very tiny compared to what we are spending on defence, security and
foreign travel.

“The glory we have been enjoying now is a result of government’s investment
in the first 10 years of independence,” he said.

According to the 2012 national budget, Education got $14,8 million to cater
for the country’s three million children while President Robert Mugabe’s
office and Cabinet received $70 million, defence $66 million and Home
Affairs $30 million.

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Does a Zimbabwe farm invader get refugee status?

SK (Zimbabwe) v Secretary of State for the Home Office 19 June 2012 – read judgment

This case raises the interesting question whether someone who was involved as a member of the ruling Zimbabwe Zanu PF party with farm invasions can be eligible for refugee status. The answer is a definite no: the High Court held that the Upper Tribunal had been entirely correct in finding that a Zimbabwean national, who had beaten farm workers in farm invasions intended to drive farmers and farm workers away from their farms, had committed inhumane acts amounting to crimes against humanity under the Rome Statute art.7(1)(k) and therefore by virtue of the Convention relating to the Status of Refugees 1951 (United Nations) art.1F(a) was excluded from refugee status.

Background Facts

The appellant was a Zimbabwean asylum seeker. She had been actively involved with Zanu PF mobs in two farm invasions, shortly after which she was raped by another member of the youth militia. It was this rape which had led to her leaving Zimbabwe for England, after eleven months in the militia.

Her application for asylum was unsuccessful because the secretary of state found that the Refugee Convention did not apply to her because by her own admission she had beaten farm workers in two farm invasions perpetrated by the government party’s youth militia and intended to drive the farmers and farm workers away from farms in respect of which eviction notices had been served. The secretary of state found that those actions amounted to crimes against humanity under art.7(1)(k) which provides as follows:

1. For the purpose of this Statute, ‘crime against humanity’ means any of the following acts when committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack directed against any civilian population, with knowledge of the attack:

(k) Other inhumane acts of a similar character intentionally causing great suffering, or serious injury to body or to mental or physical health.

The requirement of the context of a widespread or systematic attack on civilian population, of which the individual concerned has knowledge, is known as the chapeau requirement, for it takes its place at the head of the definitions of the listed acts, and applies to each of them. Asylum was refused under Article 1F(a) of the Refugee Convention, so the question turned on what amounts to a crime against humanity for the purpose of that provision. The best working definition is that contained in Article 7.1 of the Rome Statute.

The appellant challenged the findings of the Upper Tribunal, contending that neither of the two requirements in art.7(1)(k), namely that her acts were “of a similar character” to persecution and “causing great suffering, or serious injury” were, as a matter of law, fulfilled. Counsel for the appellant submitted that the troubles on the farms in Zimbabwe have not been internationally recognised as crimes against humanity, and that it is the affront to the whole of the international community and to its conscience that is the hall-mark of such crimes. The acts for which the appellant had admitted responsibility, it was said, simply lacked that hall-mark.

The judgment

The Upper Tribunal had found that these two farm invasions were part of widespread systematic attacks against the civilian population of farmers and farm workers, carried out not just with the full knowledge of the regime but as a deliberate act of policy by it, with the intention of advancing its grip on power, suppressing opposition, and helping its supporters:

These acts were obviously inhumane and were, in our judgment, of a similar character to those in sub-paragraph (h) of Article 7 [the crime of "persecution"]. These acts were clearly persecutory acts against an identifiable group, farmers and farm workers. They were undertaken for political reasons, the suppression of perceived opposition and for the financial advancement of the regime members and supporters. There was a clear racial element in the attacks on the farms, and the farm workers who were a necessary part of the white farmers’ ability to benefit from the farm.

The residual category of crimes against humanity listed in the Rome Statute should of course be interpreted conservatively and must not be used to expand uncritically the scope of “crimes against humanity” . But, as Rix LJ sets out in para 61 of the judgment, The critical feature of the requirement of “similar character” was that “other inhumane acts” should be, by their nature and the gravity of their consequences, of comparable character to the other enumerated crimes under art.7(1). They plainly did not, otherwise, have to share the elements of those other crimes. If they did, they could not be “other” inhumane acts. The critical epithet in any event was “similar”, not “identical” or “same”. It was clearly contemplated that violence short of killing or an intention to kill could fall within art.7(1)(k). Similarly, it was contemplated that violence might lead to serious consequences other than bodily injury, consequences such as “great suffering” or injury to “health”, mental or physical, as the text of art.7(1)(k) revealed.

What constituted “other inhumane acts” of similar character was a matter of evidence, but also for judgment, and could depend on the circumstances. The “chapeau” requirement itself, namely the need of the context of a widespread or systematic attack on civilians, would necessarily underline the gravity of the crime. The crime had to have, in its context, in its intention, and/or in its consequences, an aspect that went beyond the nature of merely domestic crime, and called for international sanctions. The expulsion of persons from their homes, accompanied by terror and the burning of their homes, so that the victims lost their livelihood, might have similarities with both the crime of persecution and the crime of forcible transfer of population, even in the absence of discrimination and against the background of a domestic law which might purport to state that the victims lacked the element of being lawfully present which was necessary to the crime under art.7(1)(d) .

Rix LJ found it significant Campbell and others v. Republic of Zimbabwe (SADC (T) Case No 2/2007), the SADC tribunal held that the farmer applicants had been discriminated against on the ground of race, and their farms improperly expropriated without compensation in breach of international law. (Anyone who has seen the documentary about the events leading up to this case, and the protracted litigation itself, Mugabe and the White African, will appreciate the gravity of the crimes committed against the applicants).

The Court found that the evidence before the Upper Tribunal had fully justified its findings in relation to farm evictions in Zimbabwe. There were serious reasons for considering that the appellant had participated in events of the utmost seriousness, partaking of acts in the nature of discrimination, persecution, forced displacement of persons and inhumane acts. It was plain that, for the purposes of “other inhumane acts”, the consequences of acts of violence had to be great or serious, either in terms of suffering or injury. The Upper Tribunal had not misunderstood the statutory language or its fact-finding duties. Its findings that the intention behind the farm invasions was to cause great suffering or inflict serious physical or mental injury, and that aim was achieved, were binding on the instant court, but in any event were clearly justified on the appellant’s own admissions as to what she did or participated in. It may be that Zimbabwe has avoided the “extreme calamity” of genocide that has befallen other countries, such as Rwanda and the Balkan states:

It is not surprising that such prosecutions [before the International Crimes Tribunal etc] portray the worst of crimes against humanity, especially in the context of ethnic cleansing. Even so, “other inhumane acts” (or their equivalent) have been charged or found proved in circumstances short of murder or mutilation to the victims of the crimes.

In short, where the conduct in question involves direct participation in severe beatings and joint enterprise responsibility in the two farm invasions as a whole, and where this is done as part of a widespread and systematic attack on such farms for political and discriminatory aims such as can fairly be described as persecutory and as involving the forcible transfer of populations (whether or not amounting to those separate crimes), the Upper Tribunal was fully justified in concluding that, pursuant to 1F(a) of the Refugee Convention, the appellant should be excluded from refugee status.

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‘Biti in love’ – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary – 7th July 2012

On international Gay Pride day in London, VigilBlockbusters are proud to present our new production ‘Biti in love’.

The scene: Spring approaches in Zimbabwe and young Tendai’s thoughts turn to romance . . .

‘He is very calm and seductive. I am sure every woman is in love with him’, simpers Biti.

‘What I have come to realise is that if I have a difficult issue he will unblock it’ . . . ‘I sit with him and talk for hours. You will be surprised at what we talk about. We talk about everything: girls, politics, everything (giggles)’.

A flutter of eyelashes: ‘We find counsel and wisdom in him. His importance in this country will be seen once he is gone. When he is gone then you will see that this man was Zimbabwe’.

Tendai went on to gush that President Mugabe is ‘a fountain of knowledge and, most importantly, a fountain of stability.’ (see: Mugabe seductive, calm, unflappable: Biti –

But he admitted that there were other suitors for the hand of Mugabe. ‘I think Prime Minister Tsvangirai naturally respects President Mugabe and that is very important. And he also understands that there are certain decisions that have to be made by the President . . . I do not think anyone in government denies the invaluability (sick) of his wisdom and experience.’

‘Every Monday at 3 pm the President and Prime Minister have meetings. They have pancakes, tea in expensive chinaware . . . ‘

Finance Minister Biti gave no details of the ‘expensive chinaware’. It might be a state secret or perhaps he doesn’t want to embarrass cherished Robert. But he was eloquent about ‘Zimbabweanhood’: ‘I think’, he panted, ‘in the long term the sacrosanctity of the identity of Zimbabweanhood must not be compromised under any circumstances because it is almost like your birthright; you cannot change it. So the sooner we accept that the better.’

Biti and Tsvangirai are not the only MDC people who have succumbed to the ‘charms’ of Romeo-in-chief Mugabe. There has been a dispiriting succession of them. While we protest outside the Zimbabwean Embassy in London every Saturday year after year we get Quislings stabbing us in the back . . .

Other points

The Vigil was encouraged to receive the following email from Ben Freeth: ‘You at the vigil are all doing such a great job. Well done for your perseverance through the rain and dark and frustration. I think we all are becoming particularly concerned with the MDC’s apparent sanitization of the regime by persistently calling for the lifting of the travel and financial restrictions on the few – for what benefit except for those that are inconvenienced? MDC is not speaking out to the world human rights bodies. It is not visiting police stations where there are wrongful arrests. It is not pursuing court cases regarding crimes against humanity. It is not exposing the massive diamond wealth which has bypassed the people. It is not doing or saying anything regarding the farms that are now idle or the ethnic cleansing that persists. It has not done much regarding trying to change draconian laws. It is not going around the world bodies with dossiers of what has happened in past elections – and calling for internationally supervised elections. No the MDC appears to be fast being swallowed – like Joshua Nkomo was . . . Unless we all see some action from them there will not be a great deal of confidence in people wanting to risk their lives again by supporting them and voting for them.’ We are pleased to say that Ben is planning to visit the Vigil on 10th November and afterwards will address a meeting of the Zimbabwe Action Forum.

It was good to be joined by two South Africans, Andea and Chantelle, from Solicitors International Human Rights Group who are particularly involved in issues to do with sub-Saharan Africa. They plan to come again.

Among other visitors to the Vigil were several Sudanese who asked for our help to mount a similar protest against their President Omar Bashir who is wanted by the International Criminal Court.

A less welcome visitor was a Westminster Council traffic warden who comes from the Ivory Coast. He complained about our opposition to ousted President Laurent Gbagbo who is now facing trial at the International Criminal Court in the Hague.

We were glad to have with us our supporter Caroline Witts from faraway Devon who braved floods there to make her way to Charing Cross where despite all predictions we were spared the threatened deluge. She reports that the new Dean of York Minster was brought up in Zimbabwe. The Dean is the Very Reverend Vivienne Faull now the most senior woman cleric in the Church of England.

The Zimbabwean play ‘The Rain that Washes’ is now moving to the West End. A number of people from the Vigil have been to see it and thoroughly recommend it. It is Christoper Maphosa’s story – he is someone who has come to the Vigil in the past. For full details, see ‘Events and Notices’.

For latest Vigil pictures check: Please note: Vigil photos can only be downloaded from our Flickr website – they cannot be downloaded from the slideshow on the front page of the Zimvigil website.

FOR THE RECORD: 57 signed the register.


Next Swaziland Vigil. Saturday 14th July from 10 am – 1 pm. Venue: Swazi High Commission, 20 Buckingham Gate, London SW1E 6LB. Please support our Swazi friends. Nearest stations: St James’s Park and Victoria.

Sixth 21st Movement Free Zimbabwe Global Protest. Saturday 21st July. Meet at the Vigil at 2 pm. There are plans to target the Russian Embassy because of their sale of military helicopters to Zimbabwe. More information as arrangements firm up.

Zimbabwe Action Forum (ZAF). Saturday 5th August from 6.30 – 9.30 pm. Venue: Strand Continental Hotel (first floor lounge), 143 Strand, London WC2R 1JA. Directions: The Strand is the same road as the Vigil. From the Vigil it’s about a 10 minute walk, in the direction away from Trafalgar Square. The Strand Continental is situated on the south side of the Strand between Somerset House and the turn off onto Waterloo Bridge. The entrance is marked by a big sign high above and a sign for its famous Indian restaurant at street level. It's next to a newsagent. Nearest underground: Temple (District and Circle lines) and Holborn.

The Rain that Washes showing at The Lounge, Leicester Square Theatre, from Monday 17th September – Saturday 6th October at 7 pm. For specific dates and to book tickets, phone the booking line: 08448733433 or check: ‘Instantly plunged into a young man’s compelling story of growing up in turbulent Zimbabwe, we live and breathe his extraordinary journey from innocence to escape, finally returning to his homeland to witness the greatest betrayal of all . . . Inspired by a series of interviews between Zimbabwean Christopher Maphosa and writer Dave Carey, The Rain That Washes is a true story that is poignant, political and, most of all, personal.’

Future special ZAF meetings: Saturday 13th October when we mark the 10th anniversary of the Vigil and Saturday 10th November when our special guest will be Ben Freeth. These two meetings will take the place of the regular ZAF meetings in October and November. Both events at 6.30 pm at Strand Continental Hotel (first floor lounge), 143 Strand, London WC2R 1JA. For directions see entry above.

Zimbabwe Vigil Highlights 2011 can be viewed on this link: Links to previous years’ highlights are listed on 2011 Highlights page.

The Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe (ROHR) is the Vigil’s partner organisation based in Zimbabwe. ROHR grew out of the need for the Vigil to have an organisation on the ground in Zimbabwe which reflected the Vigil’s mission statement in a practical way. ROHR in the UK actively fundraises through membership subscriptions, events, sales etc to support the activities of ROHR in Zimbabwe. Please note that the official website of ROHR Zimbabwe is Any other website claiming to be the official website of ROHR in no way represents the views and opinions of ROHR.

ZBN News. The Vigil management team wishes to make it clear that the Zimbabwe Vigil is not responsible for Zimbabwe Broadcasting Network News (ZBN News). We are happy that they attend our activities and provide television coverage but we have no control over them. All enquiries about ZBN News should be addressed to ZBN News.

The Zim Vigil band (Farai Marema and Dumi Tutani) has launched its theme song ‘Vigil Yedu (our Vigil)’ to raise awareness through music. To download this single, visit: and to watch the video check: To watch other Zim Vigil band protest songs, check: and

Vigil Facebook page:

Vigil Myspace page:

Useful websites: which reports on Zanu PF abuses and where people can report corruption in Zimbabwe.

Vigil co-ordinators

The Vigil, outside the Zimbabwe Embassy, 429 Strand, London, takes place every Saturday from 14.00 to 18.00 to protest against gross violations of human rights in Zimbabwe. The Vigil which started in October 2002 will continue until internationally-monitored, free and fair elections are held in Zimbabwe.

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