The ZIMBABWE Situation Our thoughts and prayers are with Zimbabwe
- may peace, truth and justice prevail.

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Zim Std
Cindy Anderson's heart-break 
COMMERCIAL Farmers Union (CFU) spokesperson, Jenni Williams, has her hands full as the Robert Mugabe regime on its controversial fast track land seizure programme.
When Charles Anderson was gunned down in the prime of his life, on 2 June, Williams was the first person to take down the details of his murder.

I met a tearful Cindy Anderson, 42, at the Commercial Farmers Union headquarters on 11 June 2002, just nine days after the murder of her husband Charles, 44, who had been her teenage sweetheart.
She had been comforting her son Richard, 9, who is still overcome with grief at the loss his father.
As his mother tucked him into bed he wept, telling her that he could not live without his dad.
Charles Anderson was shot and killed by gunmen armed with an AK 47 assault rifle.
The farm, Dunmaglas of Norfolk Estate, is 378 hectares in size and is located in the Glendale/ Mazowe farming area of Mashonaland Central.
The tragic events that unfolded on that day are widely believed to have begun on 22 May 2002 when a cabinet minister's driver gave two youths an unauthorised lift in a ministerial Mercedes Benz.
When the driver stopped en route, the youths attacked him. They then searched the vehicle and stole an AK47 assault rifle. The incident was reported to the police.
On Sunday 2 June, after an evening out in the capital some 75km away, the Anderson family drove to Cindy's parents on a neighbouring farm to pick up their domestic pets left there overnight.
Back home, after unlocking the gate, Cindy went up to the house ahead of the boys. When she approached the door, she noticed wood shavings on the floor and that the Yale lock had been tampered with. After conferring with Charles, it was decided that he would go around the back of the house for a better view of what was happening. The couple told their children to lock themselves in the vehicle.
Since Cindy had a hand-held radio she tried to get an urgent message out to her neighbours to tell them that she had heard shots shortly after her husband had gone to investigate.
Cindy said: "I do not really know how many shots I heard, but shortly afterwards, I saw some men with the gardener, Michael Tom, and the cook, Edmore, walking towards me carrying something heavy.
"One of those men saw me and came towards me screaming 'Lie down, I will shoot you'. I quickly switched off the radio and threw it into the tall grass. Before I lay down I saw a very tall man who also seemed to be armed. I was very worried as I did not see Charles."
While Cindy was lying face down at gunpoint she kept begging her assailants over and over again: "Please bring my children to me."
The man tried to silence her pleas. "I will shoot you".
Eventually, the tall man went to the vehicle and ordered the children to unlock the truck and get out.
"Daniel did not walk fast enough so he was kicked in the back to hurry him up. They did not let the boys come to me, but kept them close to the truck where the gardener, Michael Tom, was standing and watching the scene unfold.
"I believed I was going to die and was relieved to see Tom push my sons' heads down because he thought I was going to be shot and did not want them to see that happen. The man had returned to hold his gun over me and kept repeating, 'I will shoot you'. Tom then pleaded for my life."
At this point Cindy''s cellphone worn in a pouch around her waist began to ring, but the man guarding her immediately took it away and demanded to know where the money was kept.
"I believe this distracted him and that's probably why I was spared. I still had not seen Charles and was worried by his unexplained absence."
Cindy said the next moments went by in a blur as the intruders tried to locate keys to a green truck. "Fearing more assaults, I suggested they take the truck we had come in and they drove off suddenly with the cook and gardener as hostage. As I gathered my distressed sons to me, I saw a man in a bright green overall running after the truck as it sped away. It looked like he had been left behind accidentally. I am told he was then given a lift by another vehicle.
Cindy then went into the passage of the house. "There was blood everywhere, on the walls and floor. I saw my husband's body lying in a pool of blood. Half of my husband's head had been shot away; fragments of his skull were splattered on the floor. I did not know what to do, I just held his hand close to me and cried. I then just put a blanket over him to prevent shock.
"Even in my fearful and confused state I just knew that I had to gather my thoughts for fear that my husband's murderers would return and harm the children, so I tried to get a gun out of the gun cabinet to protect them, but could not get in as the locks had been tampered with."
Cindy then had to get her sons to safety.
Cindy explained: "I grabbed the spare keys for another vehicle and loaded the children and dogs in it and we left. I had to explain to Daniel and Richard that their father had been shot in the head and it looked bad and we needed to get away to safety. I told them to pray to God that their father would be all right. Sometime later, I was told that my husband had died.
"Farmers who came to the house confirmed signs of distrubance in all the rooms. Only days later was it apparent that only portable electronic and personal effects had been taken. Most of these personal items were recovered from the truck the assailants had stolen from us."
In their panic to leave the scene of the crime, the assailants had used the Andersons' red Nissan 2.7 pick up as a get away vehicle. Some six kilometres away along the Chiweshe communal area road they had an accident and were forced to abandon both the wrecked vehicle and their loot.
It is alleged that the man in the bright green overalls then came across the accident involving the get-away vehicle and asked the driver to drop him off so he could supposedly track the assailants through the bush.
The story took a further twist when Cindy went to the police station. She said: "I told the police that a man wearing the green overalls had apparently flagged down a Zesa truck to get a lift in pursuit of the get-away vehicle. At the police station an inspector told me that it had not been a Zesa truck, but the vehicle of someone much closer to the incident."
Later that afternoon, at about 3pm, Cindy asked to go to the house to get some clothes for the children. "My husband's body was still lying there in a deep pool of blood, just lying there, because the police had still not arrived. The reality of his death and our loss came into focus and I broke down."
Cindy expressed disbelief that the police had still not dusted for fingerprints by the time she returned to obtain more school clothes for the children. She found police at the farm with one of the accused whom they had captured. They were video-taping him as he recounted his version of the incident.
"Although, a clean up had been done, I found pieces of my husband's hair and fragments of his skull as my sons and I packed their school clothes. I tried my best to clean my husband's bloodied watch before giving it to Daniel. Daniel insisted that the blood stains were OK because it was his dad's blood."
Cindy reflected on the options that had probably been open to the family on the day.
"I keep thinking: Did we do the right thing by going in to investigate? We could have just got back into the car and left. my husband would still be alive and my sons would have their father to love and guide them in the years ahead. I will agonise about this point for a long time-why we did not just drive away at the first sign of intruders."
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Zimbabwe on brink of starvation
June 30, 2002 Posted: 4:23 PM EDT (2023 GMT)

HARARE, Zimbabwe (AP) -- Long lines of people waiting for corn meal snake
through the streets of a nation that was once the breadbasket of southern
Africa. Some wait for days, sleeping in lines so they won't lose their

Girls 13 and under are being married off for the bride price to buy
expensive black-market food. Many people are getting one meal a day.

And Zimbabwe's hunger crisis is sure to get worse.

Drought, a crashing economy and a land reform program that has destroyed
commercial farming have pushed millions of Zimbabweans to the brink of

Five other southern African countries are also facing severe hunger this
year, but Zimbabwe is by far the worst off.

The U.N. World Food Programme says nearly half of its 13 million people will
need food aid. A country that used to export food to hungry neighbors will
need to import a staggering 2 million tons of grain just to get through the

"This is unprecedented," said Andrew Timpson of Save the Children UK. "We're
very worried indeed."

The harvest has just ended, and already the country is running out of corn,
the staple food. It is about to use the last of its wheat, and supplies of
cooking oil and animal feed are dwindling.

With no hard currency reserves and an economy shredded by political unrest,
the government will almost certainly be unable to import enough grain to
feed its people, even with hundreds of thousands of tons of donated food,
economists and aid workers said.

Meanwhile, much of Zimbabwe's most productive farmland lies fallow as the
government continues its efforts to seize nearly all the land owned by the
nation's white commercial farmers, by far Zimbabwe's most productive food
producers, and redistribute it to landless blacks.

The government says it is rectifying a hated legacy of British colonial
rule. But human rights activists accuse it of using the seizures to reward
its supporters with land while punishing white farmers and their hundreds of
thousands of farm workers, who are seen as opposition stalwarts.

The government is also accused of using hunger as a weapon, shipping
state-subsidized grain only to strongholds of President Robert Mugabe's
ZANU-PF party.

In some areas, people must show party membership cards to get food; in
others, food is distributed at ruling party meetings, said Tawanda Hondora,
chairman of Zimbabwe's Human Rights Forum.

On at least one occasion, ruling party militants temporarily prevented
Zimbabwe's Roman Catholic Justice and Peace Commission from feeding hungry
children and pregnant women.

"They wanted to do the distributions themselves," said Tarcisius Zimbiti,
the commission's acting director.

Zimbabweans increasingly have to buy corn on the black market for two to
three times the price of state-subsidized corn in a country with 60 percent
unemployment and 122 percent annual inflation.

"It is too tough to survive," said William Marimo, 39, who lives in the
rural slum of Porta Farm, 20 miles west of Harare, the capital.

A three-month drought at a crucial phase of the growing season is mainly to
blame. But even Zimbabwean officials acknowledge the land seizures made
things worse.

"It compounds, it exacerbates, but it is not the primary cause of the
problem," Finance Minister Simba Makoni said.

Zimbabwe produced only about 480,000 metric tons of corn this year, about a
fourth of what it grew two years ago.

Commercial farmers brought in 850,000 metric tons of that 2000 harvest on
400,000 acres. This year, they planted about 40 percent of that area,
harvesting only 185,400 metric tons.

The winter wheat on what remains of Vernon Nicolle's farm is about knee-high
now, right where it should be despite the weather, thanks to high-tech

On nearby land his family used to own, there is nothing but weeds, he said.

Until recently, Nicolle, 58, and his extended family produced one-quarter of
Zimbabwe's wheat crop on their 12 huge farms.

Nine of those farms are gone now, seized by the government, and parts of the
remaining three are occupied by armed ruling party militants and
inaccessible to the farmers.

The Nicolle family was able to farm winter wheat on only one-fifth of the
land it used to cultivate. Some of the settlers and militants on the other
land planted wheat, but didn't irrigate it, Nicolle said. Those seeds have
not even sprouted.

With their experience, expensive irrigation equipment, fertilizers and
pesticides, commercial farmers generally coax about five times more food out
of an acre than small-scale farmers, food experts say. During this year's
drought, they were 10 times more productive than small-scale farmers.

Experts predict this year's winter wheat crop will at best total only
150,000 metric tons, less than half the normal harvest. But that was before
the government ordered nearly all white farmers to stop working their fields
by June 24 -- regardless of whether crops were already planted -- and
prepare to leave their houses.

Government officials did not return messages seeking comment. But they have
defended their land policies, saying that after two decades of independence,
many Zimbabweans were frustrated that whites, less than 1 percent of the
population, controlled the country's wealth, and that about 4,500 white
commercial farmers owned one-third of the nation's farmland while 7 million
black farmers shared the rest.

After encouraging ruling party militants to occupy many of the commercial
farms two years ago, Mugabe's government targeted 95 percent of white-owned
farmland for rapid seizure and redistribution.

Zimbabwe has suffered severe food shortages before. In 1992, the worst
drought in a century ravaged nearly its entire harvest. But it had a massive
food surplus from the previous year, cash to import food and good relations
with donor countries.

This time there's no surplus. The three top hard currency earners have been
badly weakened: tobacco farming by the land seizures, tourism by the
political instability and gold mining by an absurdly low fixed currency
exchange rate.

Key donor countries are incensed at government-inspired political violence,
Mugabe's land policies and his re-election in March in a ballot that many
international and domestic observers judged flawed.

The government has also created a grain monopoly. If it doesn't let private
companies import grain, "the situation could go from bad to catastrophic,"
said Judith Lewis, regional director of the World Food Programme.

At Porta Farm and elsewhere, no subsidized corn is on sale, and people are

Hungry children fall asleep in school, or drop out because their families
can no longer afford the fees.

Naki Bhilias, 57, worked on a nearby farm until it was occupied last year.
Now she follows combines through the fields of the few remaining farms
gleaning scraps for herself and her husband.

Two years ago, Porta Farm housed about 8,000 families, most farm laborers.
It has since swelled to 12,000 families, many new arrivals having been
expelled from farms where they lived and worked.

The workers have resorted to poaching fish from a river in a nearby national
park and selling them at the roadside.

Since losing his 16-year job on a farm last year, Emmanuel Panganayi has
been forced to illegally collect and sell firewood from the park to feed his
wife and two children.

When that was not enough, he sold off his four chairs to buy a few days'
worth of black-market corn meal. Now he has little left to sell.

"I don't make enough money and things are getting very expensive," he said.
"I will end up selling the bed."
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Business Day

Food becomes Harare's latest weapon

Long lines of people waiting for maize meal snake through the streets of a
nation that was once the breadbasket of southern Africa. Some wait for days,
sleeping in queues lines so they will not lose their places.
And Zimbabwe's food crisis is sure to get worse.

Drought, a disintegrating economy and a land-reform programme that has
destroyed commercial farming have pushed millions of Zimbabweans to the
brink of starvation.

The United Nations World Food Programme says nearly half of its 13 million
people will need food aid. A country that used to export food to hungry
neighbours will need to import a 1,8-million tons of grain just to get
through the year.

Meanwhile, much of Zimbabwe's productive farmland lies fallow.

The government is also accused of using food as a weapon, shipping grain
only to President Robert Mugabe's Zanu (PF) party supporters.

Tawanda Hondora, chairman of Zimbabwe's Human Rights Forum, said that in
some areas people had to show party membership cards to get food, and in
others food was distributed at ruling party meetings.

On at least one occasion, ruling party militants temporarily prevented
Zimbabwe's Catholic Justice and Peace Commission from feeding hungry
children and pregnant women.

A three-month drought at a crucial phase of the growing season is mainly to
blame. But even Zimbabwean officials acknowledge the land seizures have made
things worse.

Zimbabwe has suffered severe food shortages before. In 1992, the worst
drought in a century ravaged nearly its entire harvest. But it had a big
food surplus from the previous year, cash to import food and good relations
with donor countries. This time there is no surplus.

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Mail and Guardian

Mugabe rules out currency devaluation


      01 July 2002 07:41

The Zimbabwe government has ruled out devaluation of the country's volatile
currency despite a foreign exchange crisis that has rocked the country for
years, the state-run Sunday Mail said.

The paper said a special cabinet committee on finance and economic affairs
chaired by President Robert Mugabe last week threw out a proposal by the
country's central bank and finance ministry to devalue the Zimbabwe dollar.

"The Reserve Bank and the Ministry of Finance officials were told that what
they were proposing was untenable," an unnamed source told the paper.

"The officials had inexplicably failed to come up with a complete package to
address the foreign currency situation," said the source.

Zimbabwe has for almost three years experienced an acute foreign exchange
shortage when vital imports of fuel, electricity, basic food stuffs and
other commodities have to be paid for.

The Zimbabwe dollar had been officially fixed at 55 to the greenback for
nearly two years yet on the black market last week it traded for over 800
units to the US dollar.

Government officials say the black market rate is due to a proliferation of
bureaux de change and unofficial money-changers.

Farmers and industrialists have been crying out for a devaluation, but the
government has been reluctant.

The government last devalued the currency in August 2000 by 24%.

While economists believe devaluation would encourage exports and prevent
pending massive job losses, external debt servicing and imports become more
expensive in a country where inflation is running at over 122%.

Zimbabwe is mired in its worst-ever economic crisis, with inflation last
month officially pegged at 122,5%, unemployment levels over 60% and the
critical lack of foreign currency.

International donors suspended aid more than two years ago and tourism has
suffered a slump.

The tobacco sector -- which earns a third of the country's desperately
needed foreign exchange -- has not had any significant impact on the foreign
currency availability in the country since annual sales opened in May. -
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ZIMBABWE: WFP launches massive appeal

JOHANNESBURG, 1 July (IRIN) - The World Food Programme (WFP) on Monday launched an appeal for over US $500 million to provide emergency relief food to six countries in Southern Africa for millions of people threatened with starvation over the next nine months.

The agency needs US $507 million to fund close to one million mt of food, enough to feed 10.2 million people until the next main harvest in March 2003.

Already, from June to September, seven million people need food aid, rising to just over 11 million from September to November, and peaking at 12.8 million from December until March 2003.

The WFP hopes to supply 67 percent of the food required with NGOs supplying the balance.

"This is WFP's largest emergency operation but it needs donations to succeed and those donations are needed now," said James T Morris, Executive Director of WFP. 

"Southern Africa is already facing an extremely severe crisis, which will only worsen in the coming months. However, it is  still possible for the international community to avert a catastrophe by responding rapidly to this appeal."

The crisis, which affects Zimbabwe, Malawi, Zambia, Mozambique, Lesotho and Swaziland is the worst that southern Africa has experienced for a decade. The situation in Namibia is still being assessed.

Unlike the drought of 1991-92, a variety of factors, ranging from poor rains and floods to regional economic decline and governmental mismanagement, have contributed to the current shortages, the statement said.

WFP's appeal will be targeted primarily at the most vulnerable households, such as families affected by HIV/AIDS and those headed by women, children and the elderly.

The statement said the ability of the region's commercial sector to import large quantities of additional food was of paramount importance and that governments must cooperate with the private sector if there was to be enough food to stave off a crisis.

"The magnitude of the crisis demands that everyone rallies together to save people's lives," said Morris. "No single organisation can hope to deal with this crisis on its own."

Over the next few months, teams of experts would closely monitor the region's food security and the threat of another El Nino phenomenon was under continuous watch.

While each country had different problems, the severity of the overall situation had been exacerbated by high levels of chronic malnutrition and the fact that the region had the highest prevalence rates of HIV/AIDS infection in the world.

"Coupled with rising levels of poverty and a succession of poor harvests, Southern Africa finds itself facing a potential calamity," the statement said.

It was vital to get enough supplies before October when the region's rainy season starts, when many rural areas will be rendered inaccessible.

WFP has set up a logistical and information management centre in South Africa to coordinate the movement of food aid.

Once the food aid arrives, WFP will rely heavily on its implementing partners, including World Vision, Care, Catholic Relief Services, Save the Children and many others to distribute it.

"Fortunately, the international community has already begun to respond to the crisis," said Morris. "However, a lot more needs to be done if the region is not going to have a disaster on its hands. We still have the chance to avert a major humanitarian calamity. But we must act now."

For the full statement:


Tel: +27 11 880-4633
Fax: +27 11 447-5472

UN Wire July 1 2002

ZIMBABWE: U.N. Relief Coordinator Calls For Massive Food Aid
The United Nations on Friday called for a massive food relief effort in
Zimbabwe, where aid agencies say up to 6 million of the country's nearly 14
million people are in need of assistance.  Analysts say drought and
President Robert Mugabe's policy of seizing white-owned commercial farms for
resettlement by landless blacks has led to a 60 percent drop in the
country's staple crop production this year, slashing food availability and
causing prices to skyrocket.

"The situation is very serious ... and unless there is massive effort to get
in aid, it (the food shortages) will have a very devastating effect," said
U.N. Emergency Relief Coordinator Kenzo Oshima at the end of a three-day
visit to the country.  "The magnitude of the problem affecting Zimbabwe is
very serious."  In an apparent reference to Mugabe's controversial land
reform policy, Oshima said, "Our responsibility is not to engage in
political talks but to make sure that the people in need are assisted.  We
let others deal with the political problems."

Oshima said Zimbabwe's needs accounted for about 40 percent of food
requirements for the southern African region, where nearly 13 million people
in Zimbabwe, Malawi, Zambia, Mozambique, Lesotho and Swaziland face
shortages.  The World Food Program last month launched a $400 million appeal
to tackle the region's food crisis (Cris Chinaka, Reuters/ReliefWeb, June
28).  Last week, the United Nations announced that it was mobilizing an
additional 400,000 tons of corn and essential supplies for Zimbabwe.

The U.N. Development Program has agreed on a mechanism to effectively
coordinate food distribution with officials in Zimbabwe, Oshima said.  "The
mechanism, which could be in the form of a committee, would foster closer
dialogue between the government and various relief agencies working to
alleviate the suffering of those affected by the drought," he said.  "It
should be put in place as soon as the modalities are finalized.  Our main
intention is to maximize efforts" (Harare Herald/, June 29).

Mugabe said he intends to nationalize multinational food companies operating
in Zimbabwe, a move the London Times says will likely worsen food shortages,
which are already widely blamed on disastrous government policies.  The
state-controlled Sunday Mail quoted Mugabe as offering companies a chance to
go into partnership with the government (Jan Raath, London Times, July 1).

Commonwealth Secretary General Don McKinnon of New Zealand meanwhile
expressed pessimism over Zimbabwe's prospects for change, saying nothing had
improved in the country since it was suspended for a year from the
organization in March over alleged flaws in the country's presidential
election (BBC Online, June 30).
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W. Va. Doctor Turned Game-Farmer Killed in Zimbabwe

      July 1
      - HARARE (Reuters) - An American doctor who owned a game farm business
in Zimbabwe has been murdered in a car-jacking in the southern African
country, police said Monday.

      Roy Raub, 79, who had retired from practicing medicine and had been
traveling between Zimbabwe and the United States for the last 10 years, was
found dead on the edge of the Gweru-Bulawayo road in southwest Zimbabwe
Saturday night, a police spokesman said.

      His truck had been stolen, the spokesman added.

      Raub was from Mecer County, West Virginia.

      "We are investigating the case as one of suspected murder and
car-jacking," the police spokesman said.

      U.S. embassy spokesman Bruce Wharton said they had no details on the
circumstances of Raub's death and were waiting for a police report.
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Zimbabwe government urged to stop media crackdown

HARARE, July 1 - An international media rights group on Monday called on
President Robert Mugabe's government to stop harassing the private media,
saying it was threatening the future of independent journalism in Zimbabwe.
       In a statement, Article 19 said the government must drop charges
against more than a dozen journalists arrested in the last four months for
reporting ''falsehoods'' or for defamation.
       The London-based organisation also called on the government to repeal
new laws requiring media houses and journalists to register with a
state-appointed media commission, stipulating heavy fines and two-year jail
terms for ''unethical journalism.''
       ''Together with existing repressive laws and continuing incidents of
harassment of the independent media, this has led to a climate in which it
is becoming increasingly difficult for independent journalists to operate in
Zimbabwe,'' it said.
       ''Article 19 calls on the Zimbabwean authorities to drop immediately
all charges currently pending against journalists ...and to stop using
repressive legislative provisions to harass independent journalists.''
       The group said the government was using the laws selectively against
the private media, noting that no journalist from Zimbabwe's state-owned
press had been arrested.
       The Zimbabwe government argues that its new laws are not designed to
suppress press freedom but to instil ''ethical behaviour'' in a sector it
says is being used by its Western enemies to wage a hate and propaganda
campaign against Mugabe.
       Eleven journalists have been arrested on charges of ''publishing
       They include Andrew Meldrum, the Zimbabwe correspondent for Britain's
Guardian newspaper, who went on trial last month, accused of publishing a
false story alleging that Mugabe's supporters beheaded a woman while her two
children watched.
       The government says that story was part of a Western-backed campaign
to damage Mugabe's image since his re-election in March and to advance the
interests of the main opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC).
       MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai has said he was robbed of victory by
Mugabe, 78, in the March 9-11 presidential elections that were condemned as
seriously flawed by many Western nations, including the former colonial
power Britain.
       Mugabe, in power since the former Rhodesia gained independence from
Britain, charges that Western powers want to oust him over his controversial
seizures of white-owned farms and to impose Tsvangirai as leader.
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US Dollar Hits All Time Low On Black Market

The Herald (Harare)

July 1, 2002
Posted to the web July 1, 2002

Masimba Karikoga

RATES on the parallel market dropped sharply at the weekend with dealers
offering as little as Z$150 for the greenback compared to Z$800 in the
previous week.

An investigation by The Herald showed that most commercial banks and bureaux
de change were offering very low rates over the weekend while others had
stopped the trading altogether.

On Thursday, several bureaux de change and commercial banks were offering
about Z$400 for one US dollar.

On Friday, the rates went down to about Z$300 to US$1 while on Saturday the
rate had reached Z$150 for the greenback.

The slump in the rates has been attributed to a number of reasons among them
the Government's threat to cancel licences for commercial banks and bureaux
de change involved in illegal forex deals.

This created nervousness as several people with foreign currency were
desperately trying to dump the money, which has led to the glut, several
economists said yesterday.

One of the major contributing factors is the speculation over the
Govern-ment's intention to cancel foreign currency accounts for both
individuals and companies who are believed to be the main culprits in
fuelling parallel market rates to their benefit.

A senior Government official said last night the Government was seriously
looking at the whole situation to put in place corrective measures before
the situation gets out of hand.

"Government is seriously working on the loopholes that have fuelled the
black market and is considering several measures.

When it threatened to close down bureaux de change, this sparked panic among
the illegal foreign currency dealers which is one of the reasons that has
led to the crash of the United States dollar on the black market," said the

Economic consultant, Dr Samuel Undenge, said speculation rather than market
forces drove the black market rates.

"These people create artificial shortages so as increase the rates. They are
responsible for the high rates that are prevailing in the market," he said.

Dr Undenge said he did not advocate the cancellation of foreign currency

What is needed is proper management of foreign currency accounts, he said.

A Harare resident said that he sold his US$500 at Z$350 on Saturday.

"I had no option but to sell the money at that rate which was actually high.
An official at one bank (name supplied) which usually buys foreign currency
at the black market rate told me that they were not buying foreign currency
last week.

"Several bureaux de change were not buying either. Those that were still
buying were offering the lowest rate," said the resident on condition of

The latest development comes after revelations that the Government told the
Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe and Ministry of Finance and Economic Development
officials to put in place contingency measures to curb the parallel market.

There has been growing speculation in the market that the Zimbabwean dollar
would be devalued.

However, last week, the Government told Ministry of Finance and Economic
Development and Reserve Bank officials that the devaluation of the
Zimbabwean dollar was not on the cards.

Instead, the Government advised Reserve Bank officials to put in place
measures to curb the black market particularly by commercial banks and
bureaux de change.

The Government has maintained that further devaluation of the Zimbabwean
dollar alone would not rescue the country from the economic crisis, which is
characterised by worsening poverty levels unless it is part of a
comprehensive economic package.
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The acquisition of either maize or roller meal is having a huge effect on everybody’s lives. There are queues everywhere – at GMB, millers, supermarkets, rural stores and just anywhere where maize should be available. When it is obtained the prices vary considerably with prices for a single bucket going for up to $1200 and a milled 20kg bag for over $1000. When people are starving price controls fall away in favour of the racketeers. Needless to say one’s political affiliations do play a huge part, especially when it comes to GMB distributions which are illegally supervised by war veterans.

The main road importation route from RSA runs through our province and the situation on the roads, especially at night, has become extremely dangerous. This recently came to the forefront when a maize haulage truck was involved in an accident with a bus, which tragically resulted in the horrific deaths of 37 trainee teachers.

Heavy trucks supplying crucial maize for Zimbabwe and neighbouring countries ply our roads in a continuous shuttle, and it may soon become like the Hell Run which supplied maize to Zambia many years ago. Most of the Zimbabwean haulage contracts is being given to "small-scale" operators, which is highly commendable, except that many of these trucks are breaking down continually along the route, becoming a danger to oncoming vehicles, especially at night. It is not uncommon to encounter at least half a dozen broken down trucks or wrecks from accidents in a single trip to Harare.

The 1800ha of winter maize being grown under irrigation on the sugar estates is not looking too bad, and should supply food for the nation for a few days – if it survives the frost. The same applies to some rather poor stand of maize being grown in vleis in some communal lands. Last season no significant maize was grown in either communal areas or by settlers on our farms.

At a recent meeting a disillusioned war veteran said, given the choice he would rather have 1ha of irrigation rather than 20ha of A1 dryland settlement because he has not had a crop for the last 2 years!

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Zim Std
Mugabe to root out gays 
(By Walter Marwizi)
PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe, embarrassed by allegations of homosexuality levelled at members of his administration, has ordered a witch hunt to flush out gays and lesbians in his government, The Standard has learnt.
Official sources told The Standard last week that Mugabe, who caused outrage among homosexuals worldwide-including gay rights activist Peter Tatchell-by describing them as "worse than dogs and pigs", issued the order for the crackdown on "sexual perverts" two weeks ago.

"The president made it clear that the world would see him as a hypocrite if he attacked British Prime Minister Tony Blair for having a cabinet full of gays when these very same people are said to be in his administration. He indicated that Mugabe had long been advised that everyone who wined and dined with him was of the 'right' sexual orientation," said the sources.
Mugabe has, in the past few years, openly paraded his deeply entrenched hatred for homosexuals attacking them relentlessly over a practice he considers repugnant.
During the March presidential election, an embattled Mugabe, facing criticism from Britain and other western nations, turned the heat on Blair calling him a "gay gangster" and blasting him for having homosexuals in his cabinet.
At many of his country-wide rallies Mugabe actually boasted that his own cabinet was full of amadoda sibili (real men) who could distinguish between "Adam and Eve and Adam and Steve."
Little did the veteran politician-whom critics say has lost his grip on his beleaguered administration to young opportunists handpicked for his government in July 2000-realise that hardly two months after the presidential poll one of his worst nightmares would become a reality-one of his right hand men would be accused of involvement in a homosexual relationship.
Testifying in the High Court last month, MDC legislator Job Sikhala said he had heard of a rumoured homosexual relationship between Moyo and Alum Mpofu, the disgraced former chief executive of the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC), while the two were still in South Africa.
At that time of the alleged affair, Moyo was a lecturer at the Witwatersrand University while Mpofu was a researcher at the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC).
Moyo, however, dismissed the allegations as mischievous saying he had only come to know Mpofu when he attended an interview at the ZBC last year.
"Mugabe's order leaves no sacred cows. Everyone in government from junior ministers like Jonathan Moyo to vice president Simon Muzenda is under the microscope. It is clear that anyone who is caught on the wrong side will go. Mugabe is uncompromising on that matter," he said.
Dr Nathan Shamuyarira, the Zanu PF secretary for information and publicity told The Standard that the position of the party on the matter of homosexuals was clear.
"Our position is very clear. It has been spelt out by the president and the central committee on several occasions," said Shamuyarira who however said he was not aware of a witch hunt in government.
Last month, MPs from both Zanu PF and MDC called for a probe into allegations of homosexual tendencies said to be prevalent at the state-run broadcaster.
The allegations surfaced when Mpofu, whose appointment to the ZBC had been sanctioned by Mugabe, following a recommendation by Moyo, was caught in a lewd act with another man at Tipperary's night club in Harare. Mpofu resigned in disgrace a few days later following the publication of the scandal in The Standard.
A month later, a disc jockey with 3FM, Kevin Ncube, was fired from ZBC after a man claimed he had tried to sodomise him. Ncube is still to face trial. 
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Zim Std
Nabanyamas turn to Civil Court 
(By Loughty Dube)
BULAWAYO-The family of Patrick Nabanyama, the MDC activist who disappeared before the 2002 parliamentary elections, are planning to institute civil proceedings against the six war veterans acquitted of his murder by the High Court.
"The court's ruling was fair because the evidence presented in court was not enough to warrant a prosecution for murder since the body was not found, but the family is finalising the process of instituting civil proceedings for damages against the six war veterans," said a family spokesperson who preferred to speak on condition of anonymity.

The High Court in Bulawayo last month acquitted the six war veterans-Ephraim Moyo, Simon Rwodzi, Aleck Moyo, Howard Ncube, Julius Sibanda and Stanley Ncube-of charges of having murdered Nabanyama.
The spokesperson said the family was suffering acute trauma as a result of continued threats from Zanu PF supporters and war veterans with an interest in the case.
Because of the threats, a High Court judge, Justice Kamocha, last month ordered round the clock police protection for the family. The proceedings of the case were later heard in camera after witnesses told the court of how they were being harassed by war veterans. A total of 15 witnesses testified in the court case.
"The people involved in Patrick's abduction admitted in court that they had kidnapped, handcuffed and tortured him. We as a family suffered a great deal of trauma during the trial period when the harassment of individual family members was intense. The family will soon sue for damages through the Civil Court," said the spokesperson.
Nabanyama has not been seen since being dragged screaming from his Nketa home a few days before the hotly contested 2000 parliamentary elections. He was the election agent of David Coltart, the MDC MP for the Bulawayo South constituency.
The family spokesperson said while the family would not appeal against the High Court judgment it wanted to see accountability and truth being upheld by the courts.
"We have not given up our quest for accountability, truth and the desire to see justice prevail, but under the current justice system we have preferred to file a civil suit than to appeal against judgment," said the spokesperson.
The Nabanyama family is currently staying at a safe house in the city after being forced to leave their home because of incessant threats from war veterans and Zanu PF supporters.  
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Zim Std
Gweru subscriber scores a first 
(By our own Staff)
WILLIAM Mugumbate of Gweru can celebrate today's World Cup Final in Japan in style as he has won the first prize in The Standard and MultiChoice Zimbabwe Subscribe and Win 2002 Fifa World Cup Korea/Japan competition.
The competition was open to new subscribers of The Standard between 26 May and 28 June 2002.

The draw for the competition was conducted on Friday by Minky Walters, the general manager, marketing, of MultiChoice Zimbabwe with the assistance of Trevor Ncube, the publisher of The Standard. Mugumbate walked away with a MultiChoice decoder, smart card, and a satellite dish, all valued at over $125 000.
The second prize of a DSTV decoder plus 12 months subscription to The Standard went to George Nasho Wilson of Kuwadzana.
The third prize of six months subscription to DSTV Select, and the fourth prize of six months subscription to The Standard were won by Taguma Mahonde of Marlborough and John Geza of Kwekwe respectively.
Ncube expressed excitement at the response the competition had generated. "It is unfortunate that only four people could win. The response was overwhelming. We are grateful to MultiChoice Zimbabwe for coming into the partnership and we hope to do more together. We also wanted to share this wonderful opportunity with our valued readers," he said.
The winners of the prizes are requested to contact Milton Matapure, The Standard's sales and marketing manager to pick up their prizes.
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Zim Std
Mutare residents want Mudehwe out 
By Farai Mutsaka
MUTARE-Residents in the eastern border city of Mutare have called for the resignation of their mayor, Alderman Lawrence Mudehwe, for refusing to adopt an audit report that alleges massive corruption and mismanagement within the council.
Geoff White, the Mutare Residents and Ratepayers Association (MRRA) chairman, said his association had asked Chombo to fire Mudehwe for alleged mismanagement and corruption. The report, drawn by respected accountancy firm, Kudenga and Company, unearthed serious corruption and mismanagement in Mudehwe's council.

The report also alleged irregularities in the way some senior council officials had handled land transactions. The residents' association fears that Mudehwe, who has allegedly refused to adopt the report, could be condoning such activities.
White said the residents had resorted to a rates boycott and had also sought legal advice to force council to adopt the report, which would force it to act on corruption.
"Mudehwe is the chief executive officer in the council and if you look at it, there is enough proof that he is incapable of running this city. We have asked him to step down and we have also written to minister Chombo to take action.
He is lying that his council is doing something about the report. The truth is the whole report has been thrown into the dustbin. There is clear evidence of corruption, but Mudehwe has done nothing about it because he seems to be part of the corruption web. He has to go," said White.
Mudehwe, however, dismissed calls for his resignation and instead accused White of fighting personal wars using the residents' association.
"White is influencing residents not to pay rates yet they want services. We urge residents to ignore these calls and cooperate with council for services to improve. The council did not refuse to adopt the report. In fact we have implemented most of the things in the report. There are of course a few things we have refused to implement and these include the privatisation of our health facilities. Some of the things in the report are also outdated and have already been dealt with. The people implicated were questioned and cleared by the courts," said Mudehwe.
The council recently set up a committee to look into the report.
However, among members of the committee set by Mudehwe are councillors Kenneth Saruchera and Virginia Pinto, who were in the executive committee when the alleged corruption occurred.
Said White: "The committee set up comprises people who themselves should be answerable. Councillors Saruchera and Pinto were in the executive committee when the corruption was occurring so they might have direct involvement. You can't have people who are the accused being the judges.
"Basically the whole purpose of the report was to turn around the fortunes of the city so that service delivery can improve. So we have spoken to our comrades in industry and the feeling is that the report should be adopted. We are currently taking legal opinion to see if we can force council to adopt the report and we are campaigning for a rates boycott. We are now trying to get more people on the rates boycott so that it becomes more effective."
But Mudehwe exonerated the two councillors saying White's claims were unsubstantiated.
"About corruption, this has been their song for many years. We have requested them to furnish us with details so that the people might be arrested; they failed to give us those details but they are still singing the same song. I have never heard a case of corruption involving those two councillors. White is a loser who continues making unsubstantiated accusations," said Mudehwe. 
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Zim Std
Salt shortage shocks nation 
By Kumbirai Mafunda
AFTER months of enduring long, winding queues for basic commodities such as mealie meal and cooking oil, weary Zimbabweans went to the shops last week to find that salt was not on the shelves.
Not even the ever-watchful critics of the bankrupt Zanu PF government could have ever imagined, a few years ago, that salt (munyu, isawudo) would one day be in short supply in this country endowed with abundant natural resources.

But as it has turned out, 22 years after independence, Zimbabwe, once the breadbasket of southern Africa, has become so impoverished that even salt, a 'very basic basic' is now unavailable.
Years of plunder by a corrupt Zanu PF government has laid waste to a country once the shining example of the regeneration of Africa during the early 80s.
Subsequent seizures of productive white-owned farms by President Mugabe and the accompanying violence, also set Zimbabwe on the steep path of decline, which left it on the edge of an economic precipice.
Now, the country is as bankrupt as its leaders responsible for imposing price controls on a number of commodities in a vain effort to stop run-away price increases.
This half-hearted, ill-advised measure has not helped any and has resulted in the unflagging shortage of basic commodities, the latest being salt.
Ordinary people wonder how they can survive without iodised salt, which apart from adding taste to food, helps to avoid the goitre problem.
"If we continue to let Zanu PF have its way, the core of our very existence is threatened. It is difficult to live without mealie meal, cooking oil and worse still, salt. Our lives may never be the same again," says Tendai Mugwari of Glen View, Harare.
Says Paul Masimbi of Marlborough: "At this rate, the government needn't worry about an uprising led by the MDC, they should forget about that. What will happen is that people will rise up spontaneously as these shortages take their toll. Zanu PF will have no one to blame when this happens."
Joseph Makeza of Kuwadzana says it is embarrassing for a country such as Zimbabwe to be bogged down by the "petty problems" it now experiences.
"People can no longer be fooled by the old man (Mugabe). It is not an issue of sabotage by the west, or their white cousins in Zimbabwe, it is a case of economic mismanagement. We are now paying dearly for Mugabe's ego which has seen us isolated from the international community"
Critics say the government's inability to deal with even the most basic problems shows that it has failed to run the country.
Said MDC information and publicity secretary, Learnmore Jongwe: "This is laughable. A country with no salt! However, the fact that this government sat on the problem and did nothing until the present crisis is indicative of the fact that Mugabe has no solutions to the country's problems and is resigned to running the country's economy like his personal tuck shop.
"The blame lies squarely on the Mugabe regime, on its long discarded economic policies and on corruption. All this has caused the decline in foreign currency receipts from sources such as mining, agriculture and tourism."
Godfrey Kanyenze, an economist with the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions, said the chickens were now 'coming home to roost'.
"Government is now being shown that what it claimed was in the national interest (price controls) is coming to nought. Everyone can see that they are now harvesting thorns," said Kanyenze.
Government introduced price controls last year as the country's acute economic situation manifested itself in the skyrocketing of prices of essential commodities.
This has, however, not helped any as shortages have become prevalent and queues, the latest for salt, being the order of the day.
Another economist who refused to be identified said he doubted that the 78-year-old Mugabe was capable of putting the economy on the recovery path. "It is sad that our country has come to this. There is no running away from the fact that Mugabe has mismanaged the economy and the country. He cannot put us back on the right track," said the economist.
"The age factor adds to the pessimism. It takes a strong person to get this economy to work again," added the economist.
Sholden Gono, the managing director of Fine Foods, importers of salt, said the shortages were the result of importers pulling out and opting to procure products which were not controlled.
"The problem is that salt is 100% imported so if the dollar weakens and the cost of foreign currency on the parallel market rises, it will become more expensive for us to import the product whose end price is controlled anyway. In this case one would rather import products that are not controlled," said Gono.
Harare-based economic consultant, John Robertson, said: "These are the predictable consequences of the inappropriate policies of the sitting government." 

Of common salt and boiled mice  

(over the top By Brian Latham)

AN official in a troubled central African country's department of defunct trade, Comrade Cummerbund, has said it will soon be possible for retailers to import salt at $200 a kilogramme and the good news is that they can then sell it at $100 a kilogramme.

The precious commodity joins a long list of items no longer available on supermarket shelves in the troubled central African country.

The shortages are a result of a revolutionary new form of economics devised by the country's minister of bankruptcy, comrade Powerless Macaroni.

The new economic policy dictates that everything must be sold for less than it costs, thus ensuring massive job losses, empty shelves and a new recipe book that shows new ways of cooking leaves and tree roots.

The new book was brought out after a revised recipe in a schools' home economics textbook advised children to: In a pot, add 1 kilogramme of (soon to be unavailable.) Four tablespoons of (unavailable.) A cup of (hasn't been available for months.) Mix in one litre of (you'll be lucky.) Add a pinch of (also unavailable). Then mix together thoroughly before finding someone who hasn't been disconnected from the mains before cooking in an oven for one hour.

While leaders of the troubled central African country (called chefs because they're the only people with pantries full of food) knew all along that the plan was to make the people live on a diet of air and revolutionary rhetoric, it was decided not to make the plan too obvious.

So. in future recipe books for the children not too weakened by hunger to attend school will promise such healthy delights as green leaf stew, brown leaf stew, grass seed porridge and boiled mouse. Though admitting that the deprivations of these new diets are entirely the fault of farmers who sabotaged the economy with help from British running dogs of imperialism, the book points to the delights of self-sacrifice and assures its readers that boiled mouse is full of essential proteins and vitamins.

"Not only that, but the most equal of all comrades regularly starts his day with a bowl of grass seed porridge, just like those other great revolutionary leaders Ho Chi Minh, Mao Tse Tung and that skinny chap who booted the Portuguese out of Angola."

Of course, the word "regularly" is relative and in the case of the most equal of all comrades could mean once every couple of decades.

Not so, said a critic from the troubled central African country's subdued opposition. "It all depends on your interpretation of the word 'grass' because if it's what I think it is, then it might account for his peculiar behaviour of late."

The opposition member pointed out that a certain foreign gentleman who visited the troubled central African country after it was liberated from the British was a lavish imbiber of grass seed porridge-and its many smokable derivatives.

None of which gets one past the inescapable problem of the scarcity of salt, for in all honesty there are no alternatives to the stuff.

Asked why there was no salt in the troubled central African nation, a spokesman for the ministry of bankruptcy said: "The problem sort of snuck up on us. To be honest, when we were warned that there was a problem looming, we took it with a pinch of unobtainable. Fortunately the people of this country are the unobtainable of the earth, so we know they'll persevere.

That's all I have to say because I must rush now as my wife's just called to say there's a queue forming at the tuck shop on the corner and I'd better join it."
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Magistrate recommends $73 million judgment against Zimbabwe ruling party
By Devlin Barrett, Associated Press, 7/1/2002 18:09
NEW YORK (AP) A federal magistrate recommended a $73 million penalty against
Zimbabwe's ruling party Monday for allegedly torturing and killing political

U.S. Magistrate James Francis issued the 32-page finding in a case brought
nearly two years ago by members of an opposition party who say they were
attacked or saw their loved ones killed in campaigns by President Robert
Mugabe's Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front, or ZANU-PF.

A U.S. law allows foreigners to sue over international crimes that, because
of current conditions, cannot be taken to court in their own countries. Any
court-ordered judgment would be difficult to enforce but could clear the way
for the seizure of any ZANU-PF assets in the United States.

Mugabe and his lawyers failed to appear in court to fight the allegations,
and he and several top lieutenants were eventually dismissed as individual
defendants in the case. His party was eventually found in default, leaving a
judge to decide damages.

After reviewing the horrific stories of eight purported victims, Francis
decided ZANU-PF should pay about $20 million in compensatory damages and $53
million in punitive damages. The report will be sent to U.S. District Court
Judge Victor Marrero, who can accept the findings or alter them.

Messages requesting comment from Zimbabwe's U.N. Mission and its embassy in
Washington were not immediately returned.

Militants from Mugabe's party have illegally occupied hundreds of
white-owned farms in what he has called a justified protest against unfair
land ownership by the descendants of British settlers.

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Zim Std Schools to challenge fees decree  

By Itai Dzamara

ZIMBABWE'S schools, which are operating under a hostile economic environment against diminishing support from government, are planning to appeal against a recent government decree banning any increases in school fees and levies with effect from September 2001.

While the ministry of education, sport and culture conceded that schools' budgets had been severely strained by the escalating cost of living, it has nevertheless directed that any increases effected after September should be withdrawn.

Reads part of the circular that the ministry issued on 22 April this year: "While it is appreciated that the cost of living has been escalating of late, the ministry believes that the escalating cost of living necessitates keeping education costs to the absolute minimum. Therefore, the ministry decided that all schools should charge fees and levies, inclusive of boarding fees, that were applicable at the beginning of the third term of last year."

In separate interviews with The Standard, schools said the new arrangement was not in the best interest of either the students, or the parents.

A Harare independent school has already informed parents of its intention to challenge the directive. "The question is, how can we maintain a quality standard of education by reverting to the level of revenue generated eight months ago, and ignoring the cost increases that have been numerous since then? The answer is simple-this cannot be done. Our headmaster will make an urgent appeal to the ministry in writing," said the school's PTA in a circular to parents.

Several other schools confirmed to The Standard that concerted efforts were being made to challenge the ministry's declaration, which, as is unanimously agreed, is very unpopular with most schools.

A headmaster at a government school in Harare, who requested anonymity, described the declaration as one of the desperate efforts by government to save its increasingly plummeting credibility.

Said the headmaster: "It is purely illogical for schools to charge fees that were promulgated last year, with this terrible inflation and shortage of most basic commodities. Obviously, we all need to come together and tell the ministry of education loudly, that their declaration must be abolished."

A headmaster at a government school in Bulawayo echoed these sentiments. "It is made even worse by the fact that schools are not receiving any funding from government. We virtually have to rely on what we collect from fees and levies. Given that scenario, it is extremely difficult for schools to operate on last year's fees," said the headmaster.

A parent with a child attending a Harare private school said: "All this economic malaise is a product of poor policies by our government. How ironic it is then, for the same government to purport that it is after protecting parents with that unviable declaration. That is shameless hypocrisy, which all progressive parents must treat with the contempt it deserves," said the parent.

Another headmaster at a mission school said: "We are all agreed that this order for us to revert to last year's fees is ridiculous and retrogressive. However, the onus is on schools, in liaison with their parents, to agree on fees and levies that are applicable to the current economic situation. At our school we are in the process of doing precisely that."
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Zim Std
Lies, lies and more lies 
ZIMBABWE is being slaughtered by a parasitical ruling party that will do anything to ensure its dominion over the people-and by a people too apathetic to stand up to the ruthlessness of the ruling party.
True, few people foresaw the insanity of today when it all began two years ago. Fewer still could have prophesied the starvation of millions of ordinary people, while the ruling party, the architects of the starvation, live in pampered luxury and enjoy lavish meals at the people's expense.

That in two short years, Zimbabwe has degenerated into a fascist police state is undeniable-and that this was always the intention is certainly arguable. Threatened by the people, Robert Mugabe is hitting back at the people and inevitably the prisons will fill with those few brave men and women who believe in freedom.
Because freedom is certainly not what the ruling party is preaching to the country. Instead, it is preaching race hate, xenophobia and blatant lies. So far it has made honest journalism a criminal offence. Of more immediate and catastrophic consequence, it has made the nation's farmers criminals, second class citizens and declared that they're all racists and fascists.
If anything highlights Zanu PF's capacity for double speak, it is its attitude towards the farmers.
As a direct consequence of the brutal, murderous invasion of thousands of farms, six million Zimbabweans will starve this year. And while those people go hungry, the state's lying propaganda machine manages to blame the very farmers it has stopped from farming for the famine.
The sad truth is that too few of us have stood up to Mugabe's bloodthirsty regime-and that applies to the press too.
Meanwhile society's leaders have acquiesced to their own subjugation. In business, rather than fight for survival, leaders such as those in the Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries have remained silent, leaving it to individuals to take up the cudgels.
And in agriculture, farming leaders-in stark contrast to many farmers-have grovelled shamelessly at the feet of their oppressors.
Well, for agriculture the results are there for all to see. Millions starving, hundreds of thousands dispossessed and thousands out of business, and all because farming leaders were too frightened to fight back.
Still, it's not too late. Zimbabwe is a fine country populated mainly by fine people who do not want to be turned into hungry paupers by an avaricious ruling elite. They want courts they can trust rather than the mockery of justice they see all too often now. They want food in their bellies and they want jobs.
Zanu PF, on the other hand, wants an enfeebled nation to which it can dole out gifts and treats in the expectation that the people will be grateful. That is rubbish and must not be allowed to happen.
So. always we have to go back to the beginning. This entire problem began because Zanu PF knew it stood every chance of losing the June 2000 parliamentary poll to the opposition Movement for Democratic Change. In order to subvert democracy, Mugabe launched what he thought would be a crowd puller: a campaign filled with race hate that saw white Zimbabweans dispossessed of their homes and livelihoods.
It was an ill-considered plan that required constant and usually brutal reinforcement in the form of violent farm invasions and a constant barrage of racist rhetoric in the state-controlled press. But in a sense it failed, because while through violence and intimidation Mugabe won his elections, the farms were invaded by a comparative handful of Zimbabweans.
There are about 12 million people in Zimbabwe, which is where the ruling party's lie becomes apparent because, if all this land was so desperately wanted, those 12 million people would now be firmly settled on the farms.
They aren't-and they never will be. Indeed, now that that this pernicious regime has what it wants, it has started to systematically and cynically boot people off farms to make way for more important and already affluent supporters.
So what is the solution? Partly it lies in defiance, even quiet defiance of the sort Ghandi used so effectively against the British in India. It also lies in the recognition of the fact that true patriotism, as opposed to the sick version touted by Zanu PF, requires sacrifice and courage.
And most of all it requires the death of apathy, because apathy has been Zimbabwe's problem for over a decade. Right now six million of us face hunger, while almost 70% of us are unemployed. Unless something is done immediately, those figures are going to rise and rise fast. It would be a sad day for Zimbabwe, and a source of never ending shame, if the country sat back and watched it all happen, if we accepted the lies and relied on society's leaders to get us out of this stranglehold .
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Zim Std
Mugabe's petition response-a rebuttal 
sundayopinion By John Makumbe
ROBERT Mugabe's response to Morgan Tsvangirai's high court petition deserves a reaction.
In this contribution, I wish to address Mr Mugabe directly and respond to some of the issues that he raises in his spurious article published by the Zanu PF mouthpiece, the Herald (10/06/02).

It is unfortunate, Mr Mugabe, that you start by claiming that you are the president of Zimbabwe. You probably forgot to write the word 'illegitimate' before the word 'president' in your response having stolen the results of the March 9-11 election. Morgan Tsvangirai did not introduce violence into the Zimbabwe political system. I guess you have forgotten the violence of 1982 to 1987 when you hammered, brutalised and murdered at least 20 000 innocent civilians in Matabeleland through your murderous machine, Gukurahundi. You have also forgotten that violence has been associated with every election held in this country since 1985. It was Zanu PF that perpetrated all that violence.You have even forgotten that you once said you have degrees in violence. Indeed, some of the songs that your mindless supporters sing betray your denial of the authorship of violence-Zanu Ndeye Ropa, for example.
The Constitutional Review Commission was not established 'by law', unless you claim to be the 'law' unto yourself. You appointed a grossly partisan Commission under your favourite boot licker judge to ensure that the outcome of the process would make you even more secure in your obsession with power and privilege. The people saw right through you and rejected the daft draft constitution. I believe that was the last time the people of this country made use of their democratic right of choice. The rejection of that piece of garbage was a signal to you that the people of Zimbabwe were determined to put an end to your dictatorship. They waved red cards at you everywhere you went and shouted "Chinja, Guqula". You hated this, and were frightened by it, so you unleashed Hondo ye minda through the war vets and all the unruly elements that you could lay your hands on. The violence has never stopped to this day. We all know which party is violent and it's not the MDC.
True to your desperate objective of staying in power at all costs, you proceeded to commandeer state resources such as vehicles, helicopters and staff during the parliamentary election campaign. You ordered the police not to arrest any Zanu PF supporters guilty of committing acts of violence against MDC members and supporters. But that was not enough; you went on to issue a general amnesty for most of the people that had committed these offences. In other words, you directly and indirectly contributed to the near total breakdown of law and order in this country. Today, this country is on the verge of total collapse because you have become such a heavy liability and a curse to Zimbabwe.
You allege that the petitioner hatched a plot to assassinate you ahead of the elections but you forget that you have always accused any Zimbabwean who dared stand against you in elections with the same falsehood. Some years ago, you alleged that the late Ndabaningi Sithole was plotting to kill you but the matter was so frivolous that it died a natural death on the passing of Musharuka. Today it is Tsvangirai who is plotting to kill you. Young people like Morgan do not go around killing 78-year-old men like you Mr Mugabe. If your allegations are true why not allow the courts to make a determination? After all you have emptied the courts of most of the learned people of reason. It is ironic that in your opposing affidavit you bemoan the fact that not one Western country condemned the so-called 'assassination plot' against you. Perhaps it is because public opinion, both inside and outside Zimbabwe, has heard it all before. When will you learn that your old tired tricks no longer work?
Mr Mugabe, you have a lot of resources at your disposal, resources which belong to the people but which you have commandeered at will whenever you chose. It may be useful for you to make use of some of these resources to, at least, get accurate information about some of the things that are happening in your country. You allege that several civic organisations are affiliates of the MDC because you are unable to understand the anger, frustration and fury that the people of Zimbabwe hold against you for rigging the presidential election. All the organisations that you mention in your pitiful submission comprise Zimbabweans who are so patriotic they refuse to let you continue to ruin this our country without a very serious challenge. Civil society has the responsibility to ensure that the people's rights are protected. You, sir, have been trampling on these rights for a long time, and it is necessary that the civic bodies you allege are affiliates of the MDC intervene to stop these violations.
You claim, Mr Mugabe, that the petitioner, Morgan Tsvangirai, campaigned and lobbied for sanctions against yourself and your underlings and in so doing, compromised Zimbabwe's sovereignty. I think you give this Tsvangirai too much credit, don't you think? The man must be very powerful to be able to influence the US government, the EU, the Commonwealth, Australia, Canada etc against you and this country. Why, he might even try to do the same with Cuba and Libya. But what has the sovereignty of this country to do with smart sanctions against you and your bunch of 'yes men and women'? Nothing! It is you Mr Mugabe who has compromised the sovereignty of this country by your mismanagement of our national affairs. You have reduced us to a pariah state by your dictatorial methods of governance. You have ruined our economy to such an extent that our young people are jumping borders and ship because there is nothing for them here. You have reduced us to eating yellow maize like mombe because of your evil method of governance.
The allegation that the petitioner has subverted this country's constitution and laws can only be categorised as classic self-indictment. Is it not you, Mr Mugabe, who has twisted and turned, amended and vandalised our constitution at every election? Have you not subverted the law by fast-tracking new bills through parliament, and fabricating the decade's most draconian pieces of legislation in an attempt to thwart the will of the people? Was it not you who signed such repressive legislation as the notorious POSA and the repulsive Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act? Both these inane laws whittle away several basic human rights of Zimbabweans. Now is that not the real meaning of subversion of national laws? You have been very good at taking some of the most peremptory measures, dressing them up in legal jargon and calling them the law.
You seem to have a frightful fixation over the petitioner's relations with foreigners. I am convinced you actually believe that the Libyans, Malaysians, Chinese and your favourite December 12th Movement, are not foreigners. There are rumours that you may have mortgaged some of the invaded farms to some of your own brand of 'foreigners'. The petitioner has sold this nation to no foreigner. You use up so much energy attacking Tony Blair and the British while everything that can go wrong is going wrong here in Zimbabwe. We do not care what Tony Blair has for dinner, for goodness' sake. We know, however, that he has dinner; many of us cannot afford to have dinner. This does not include you, of course, sir. Your counterfeit policies have reduced us to the level where we cannot even get mealie meal-sadza chairo? You can blame it on the partial drought that we experienced, but in your heart of hearts you are fully aware that your violent fast-track land-grabbing is the main reason why we are starving today. Perhaps the petitioner is also to blame for the drought.
Time and space do not allow me to respond to some of the other garbage you include in your 'preliminary response'. Suffice it is to reiterate that the majority of the people of Zimbabwe know that you cheated in the election and are therefore an illegitimate leader. I suspect that is one of the reasons why you are finding it extremely difficult to appoint a Cabinet in accordance with the laws of the land. All the men and women who currently sit with you in Cabinet are illegitimate and illegal impostors masquerading as government ministers. Nothing will change the truth that in the March 2002 presidential election you lost miserably to Morgan Tsvangirai of the MDC. I strongly suspect that you may have obtained less than one-third of the votes that Tsvangirai amassed during that election. That explains your anger at all who dare support change, democracy and good governance in this country. One day soon, the history of this nation will be rewritten, and whether you like it or not, you will go down in that record as the dictator who stole the election. No, history will not absolve you. History will indict you.

John Makumbe is a senior lecturer in political science at the University of Zimbabwe.
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Zim Std
Panic withdrawals from FCAs 
(By Paul Nyakazeya)
THERE were panic withdrawals of foreign currency from commercial banks last week, amid speculation that the forex-starved government might close all foreign currency accounts (FCAs) to curb the rampant illegal trade in forex.
Standard Business was also informed that due to the drastic fall of the dollar on the black market, government will soon devalue it by over 260% to trade 200 against the US dollar.

As of Friday on the black market, the US dollar was calling for up to 800 against the local unit, while the pound sterling was trading as high as 1 050, with the South African rand pegged at 75. This compares to a managed exchange rate of 55:1 against the greenback, 83:1 against the pound and 5:1 against the rand.
But finance minister Simba Makoni dismissed speculation of an impending devaluation when contacted for comment on Thursday.
"We would have known about such developments. People are free to say what they want, but what I can tell you is that if there are any developments we would have known about them since the government and my ministry are responsible for making such decisions," Makoni told Standard Business.
He refused to comment on the panic withdrawals of forex that were taking place at commercial banks.
"Speculation is always present on the market," was all he said.
A source at a leading commercial bank however confirmed that the week had been characterised by massive withdrawals from FCAs.
"A number of people were withdrawing their foreign currency. In some cases they left the accounts with only the minimum balances, hoping that the decision might not be reached. From what we are hearing the government is trying to control the black market which has seen a number of people taking advantage of the acute foreign currency inflows by quoting high prices," said the source.
Other banks contacted for comment by the Standard Business confirmed similar trends at their institutions.
They, however, said nothing official had be communicated to them by relevant authorities.
According to Friday's Independent, the issue of runaway black market rates were on the agenda of Wednesday's Zanu PF politburo meeting.
The paper quoted a ruling party insider as saying the meeting had recommended that tight monitoring of commercial banks and bureaux de change be instituted.
The official foreign exchange market has not been active since 2000 when major international donors fled the country citing lawlessness following the invasion of white owned commercial farms by war veterans.
The tobacco auction floors which were expected to ease the forex crisis have not had any impact since the start of the selling season on 14 May

Byo forex dealers outsmart police 
(By Grey Moyo)
BULAWAYO-While government claims it is doing all it can to curb the rampant illegal trade in foreign currency in the country, black market dealers in Bulawayo say they have managed to outwit the police dragnet through a combination of bribes and love affairs with officers, investigations by Standard Business revealed.
The dealers, mostly women, have outsmarted the police and are still in business in Bulawayo's 'World Bank', as the pavements along Fourth and Fifth Avenue have come to be known.

"Some of us are friends, girlfriends, connections, and relatives of senior police officers in the right positions. So they supply us with regular updates and tell us to change positions if any operation is about to begin," said a dealer who refused to be identified.
Bribe taking officers are also alleged to be in constant touch with some businessman who employ the dealers. Once businessmen have been informed of impending swoops, they quickly warn their couriers on the streets, thereby eluding the so-called long arm of the law.
Other dealers attributed their success to innovations introduced into their business approach.
The illegal trade in forex is mostly carried out by members of the vapostori sect who are conspicuous by their white robes.
Said a dealer commenting on recent raids by police in Bulawayo: "Of course it was difficult to operate when the raids began, but we had reestablished ourselves before the end of the day. We went back home where we discarded our white robes for more formal dress and came back to business."
The dealer added that other women dealers had simply melted into the huge vegetable and fruit vendor community which operates along the pavements of downtown Bulawayo, while others have employed men to do business.
"Men are more alert and are not suspects in this business. The formal dress is very effective because police cannot stop everyone and search them for forex. We see them milling around here but they cannot do anything," a dealer told Standard Business on Tuesday.
The following day there was no visible police presence and the white robed dealers promptly returned and took their positions next to pizza shops opposite the Tredgold Magistrates Court. It was business as usual on Thursday morning.
More were still operating from among the vendors while others are reported to have taken the business to the sanctuary of their homes.
Bribe taking police officers are also reported to be supplying regular and precise information on their operations against the forex dealers.
The first police raid netted dozens of dealers huge quantities of forex. A police spokesman, Inspector Smile Dube, told Standard Business that currency seized amounted to about $1 million. The denominations were in US, British, South African, Namibian and Botswana currencies.
He said the raids would continue until Bulawayo's streets were cleared of illegal forex dealers and said those arrested would face charges of contravening the Foreign Exchange Control Act.
Asked to respond to allegations of corruption against police officers in Bulawayo, Dube referred the issue to police chief spokesman, Assistant Commission Wayne Bvudzijena, who said he would only respond after tangible evidence had been presented to him.
"We need tangible evidence over these stories," said Bvudzijena.
With banks and government coffers virtually dry, businesses and individuals requiring forex have been forced to resort to sourcing it on the thriving black market. 
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Zim Std Open letter to Mugabe  

MY name is Hanna Bergstrom and I am a member of Amnesty International in Sweden.

I write this letter to express my concern over the continuing restrictions on freedom of expression in Zimbabwe, in particular the signing into the law of the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act. These restrictions contravene the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), to which Zimbabwe has acceded, in particular Article 19, which guarantees a person's right to freedom of expression and freedom to seek, receive and impart information.

I am gravely concerned over the use of the Public Order and Security Act to silence independent journalists reporting on the government, for example, Peta Thornycroft of the Daily Telegraph and Geoff Nyarota of the Daily News both of whom were arrested and charged for publishing false statements and information on the outcome of the presidential elections in March this year.

I urge the Zimbabwean authorities to repeal the Public Order and Security Act and amend the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act, in particular the chapters relating to the registration and deregistration of media houses and journalists, the jailing of those who break the act and the chapter that gives the Information minister authority to cancel registrations of both journalists and media houses and to launch investigations into the affairs of media houses.

I ask you to investigate the allegations of torture of two newspaper vendors by Zanu PF militia and war veterans on 20 March 2002 in the Zanu PF headquarters in the town of Rusape.

I urge the Zimbabwean authorities to take immediate action against all those who threaten press freedom in Zimbabwe. Furthermore, action must be taken to secure the journalists from any form of threat or harassment during the course of their legitimate work.

Hanna Bergstrom

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