The ZIMBABWE Situation
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Harmonized elections in June 2013?

By Tichaona Sibanda
11 June 2012

The country’s next presidential and parliamentary elections are likely to be
held in June 2013 as parties to the GPA are reportedly in agreement on this

Last week Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa told a Sapes Trust panel
discussion that the country was likely to hold general elections in June
next year under the current constitution.

But a senior MDC-T official told SW Radio Africa that they agree with
Chinamasa’s June 2013 date, but disagree on going to a new poll with the
current constitution.

‘If people remember well, we’ve been pushing for a June 2013 poll but under
a new constitution. Even our colleagues in the other MDC formation have been
saying the same,’ the official said.

Until the recent SADC summit that was held in Luanda, Robert Mugabe and
Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai have been at odds over the election date,
undermining their already shaky coalition.

But the Luanda summit blocked Mugabe’s push for elections without reforms,
putting an end to ZANU PF’s ‘kamikaze plot’ to hold elections in 2012.

The regional bloc had found itself in the middle of a political tug-of-war
between ZANU PF and the two MDC formations on the timing of the next
election in Zimbabwe. Analysts have long feared that any election without
reforms will see a repeat of the 2008 violence that the MDC-T say killed
hundreds of their supporters, while tens of thousands were tortured and

Dewa Mavhinga, regional coordinator for the Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition,
said parties to the GPA should not be pre-occupied about the timing of
elections, but whether there would be ideal conditions for free and fair
‘The parties should be occupied with drawing up electoral conditions that
will level the political field and allow Zimbabweans to cast their vote
without fear,’ Mavhinga said.

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Evicted Farmers Supplying Bulk Of Imported Maize

Bulawayo, June 11, 2012- The bulk of imported maize being supplied to hungry
Zimbabweans is coming from former white commercial farmers evicted during
the 2000 chaotic land invasions and now farming in Zambia.

Recipients of the government's grain loan scheme in Matabeleland were last
week shocked to discover that the names on the stickers on the grain bags
were of former white farmers.

The Zimbabwe government has imported 300,000 tonnes of maize from Zambia to
feed millions of its citizens who are facing starvation.

Following the chaotic land seizures, most white commercial farmers, who were
dispossessed of their farms fled to Zambia where they bought new farms.
Since then Zimbabwe, which used to be southern Africa's bread basket, has
been buying most of its maize grain staple from Zambia, to augment available

“Last week I received two bags of maize grain under the grain loan scheme
from the Grain Marketing Board (GMB) depot in Insiza. One of the bags had a
green sticker inside written, 'supplied by Michel Handris', a former Karoi
commercial farmer. The sticker had also the contact details of Handris, who
is now farming in the southern parts ofZambia,” said Edmore Ndlovu.

Villagers who spoke to Radio VOP, in Umguza, also confirmed receiving maize
bags with stickers bearing names of former white commercial farmers.

“We are now required to destroy all the Zambian bags and repackage the grain
in our local bags," said a GMB source.

He said that the fact that some former Zimbabwean farmers were supplying
maize had angered some senior Zanu (PF) officers and the minister of

Zimbabwe faces a one million tonne maize deficit due to drought, with nearly
half of the national crop coming up for harvest this month failing due to
poor rains.

Agriculture Minister Joseph Made recently said nearly 45 percent of the
maize crop that was planted last farming season was a completewrite-off.

The country needs at least 2, 2 million tonnes of maize to feed itself
annually but Made said Harare currently has only 400,000 tonnes of maize
stocks, which must be complemented by imports to prevent hunger.

Donor organisations say they are re-assessing their assistance to Zimbabwe
to see how they can cope with the shortfall in both crop and funding. Last
year the United Nations said it would raise nearly $200 million for aid
efforts in Zimbabwe with half going to food security for more than 1.4
million people. But a funding shortfall affected the donor groups' efforts
to assist.

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GPA parties delaying Zuma’s trip to Harare

By Tichaona Sibanda
11 June 2012

South Africa’s ambassador to Zimbabwe, Vusi Mavimbela, has accused parties
in the GPA of delaying President Jacob Zuma’s visit to Harare.

Zuma who is the SADC appointed mediator on Zimbabwe was recently tasked by a
regional summit to urgently visit Harare and meet GPA principals to resolve
sticking points between ZANU PF and MDC formations.

Speaking at a panel discussion hosted by the Sapes Trust last week,
Mavimbela said he was sitting on a letter from the facilitation team
proposing a date, but the country’s GPA parties had not come back to confirm
if the date was appropriate.

It was expected that following the Luanda meeting earlier this month Zuma
would fly to Zimbabwe to discuss preparations for fresh elections, amid a
widening rift between parties in the GPA.

Robert Mugabe and ZANU PF efforts to fast-track the country to elections
were thwarted at the Luanda meeting where leaders insisted that proper
conditions for a free and fair poll must first be created.

In the run-up to the summit Mugabe sent envoys to regional governments
urging them to back his plans to move more speedily to elections. This would
have meant by-passing many of the conditions for elections spelt out in the
GPA, which ZANU PF and the MDC agreed to in 2008.

But this effort failed as the SADC summit in Luanda stressed the need for
Zuma as mediator to continue his efforts towards the full implementation of
the GPA, including the drawing up of a new constitution and subjecting it to
a referendum.

Our Harare correspondent Simon Muchemwa told us Zuma’s facilitation team,
that includes its spokesperson Lindiwe Zulu, jetted into Harare on Monday on
a fact finding trip.

‘This is how they operate these days. They fly into Harare in the morning
get feedback from the parties and their embassy and fly out in the evening.
We can’t be certain they are preparing for Zuma’s visit but all we know they’ve
been here to get updates on the negotiations,’ Muchemwa said.

Last week, Zulu warned parties in Zimbabwe that SADC, through the South
African President, will not allow an election to happen before the security
sector is reformed.

Her comments came barely a week after a military general said soldiers will
not allow any other leader outside ZANU PF to lead the country, irrespective
of the election outcome. Major-General Trust Mugoba’ stance is a direct
affront to Zuma’s efforts to ensure credible elections and a smooth transfer
of power in Zimbabwe.

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State witness says police started commotion in Glen View cop murder

By Tererai Karimakwenda
11 June, 2012

The trial of 29 MDC-T activists accused of murdering a policeman in Glen
View last May continued Monday, with testimony from the fourth state witness
who surprised the court by saying that the commotion and chaos at the scene
only started when the police arrived.

Defense lawyer Jeremiah Bhamu told SW Radio Africa that this contradicts the
state case, which alleges that Inspector Petros Mutedza was killed when he
went to investigate fights that had been reported at the pub in Glen View.

“His testimony stated otherwise and shows the commotion only began as a
result of the police coming to the scene. We will finish cross-examining
this fourth witness tomorrow,” Bhamu explained.

Witnesses have said Officer Mutedza died during a fight with drunken
revellers and street vendors, whose wares he regularly confiscated. The
police insist he was killed by MDC-T activists who held an “illegal” meeting
at the pub. But the party denies this and allege the arrests were part of a
ZANU PF strategy to destabilise their structures.

The trial finally got underway last Monday, with many of the group having
already served more than eight months in jail. The courts have denied them
bail on several occasions, claiming that they are flight risks. A fresh bail
application was submitted last Tuesday.

Bhamu said the court has still not ruled on issue of bail yet, but defense
lawyers decided to proceed with the trial while awaiting a decision. “We are
not sure when the bail issue will be  decided so it actually works to their
advantage if the trial is concluded,” Bhamu said, explaining that most of
the defendants are likely to be acquitted due to a lack of evidence against

The defense lawyer also said that of the 29 accused only one has been
positively identified by the state witness currently under
cross-examination. “He also practically exonerated all the females from the
case, which means seven of the accused did not participate in the chaos on
the day,” Bhamu said.

Following Mutedza’s murder the police made random arrests of MDC-T activists
in a campaign that put the area under a curfew. Many of the accused have
provided evidence, including videotape proof, that they were not even at the
scene of the fight on that day.

The accused include the chairman of the MDC-T Youth Assembly Solomon Madzore
plus several councillors and party activists. In a statement the MDC-T said:
“The 29 are in remand prison most of them since May 2011. This is a clear
evidence of absence of justice, law, freedom and the respect of our own
constitution and agreements.”

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MDC-T official arrested for “insulting” Mugabe with music

By Tererai Karimakwenda
11 June, 2012

An organising secretary for the MDC-T Bulawayo Central branch was arrested
on Saturday for allegedly insulting Robert Mugabe, after a notorious ZANU PF
activist told the police that his phone contained music with lyrics that
insulted the ageing ZANU PF leader.

Nyengerai Stanley Makundidze has been jailed since Saturday, according to SW
Radio Africa’s Bulawayo correspondent Lionel Saungweme, who said lawyers
have been denied access to Makundidze and it is not clear how he is being

Trusted sources said Makundidze was approached by a notorious ZANU PF youth
named only as Charumbira, who assaulted him then grabbed his phone and ran
away. What seemed like a robbery turned to something else when Charumbira
showed up later with the police and Makundidze was arrested.

“There was no provocation whatsoever. Sources said he (Charumbira) phoned
another ZANU PF youth named Buto Gatsi, who is notorious in these parts and
asked what he should do with the phone. Gatsi told him to call the police,”
Saungweme explained.

Our correspondent, who saw the police charge sheet, said the police claim
Makundidze has messages on his phone and music with lyrics that insult
Robert Mugabe. The message and lyrics were not specified. The MDC-T official
is being represented by a lawyer named Chamunorwa.

Last month the MDC-T MP for Epworth, Eliah Jembere, was removed from remand
on charges of undermining Mugabe’s authority at the Bindura Magistrates’
Court. The case had dragged on since his arrest in June 2011, with state
witnesses failing to turn up.

Addressing hundreds of party supporters Jembere had said: “Mugabe mudenga,
Zanu PF mudenga, vabatanidzei, roverai pasi”. (Mugabe up, ZANU PF UP, put
them together and throw them down). The case crumbled after the trial was
postponed several times when state witnesses failed to show up.

A carpenter from Dangamvura was also recently accused of undermining the
authority of the president after making a joke about Mugabe. Watching live
coverage of Mugabe’s 88th birthday celebrations this year Richmore Jazi
suggested the ailing Mugabe must have had help blowing up the balloons.

Jazi was released on US$20 bail and due back in court later this year.
Police have made several arrests of civilians accused of insulting Mugabe,
using Section 33 of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act. After
her visit to Zimbabwe last month the UN’s High Commissioner for Human
Rights, Navi Pillay, said this controversial legislation needed to be

No ZANU PF activists have ever been arrested for their many insults against
Prime Minister and MDC-T president, Morgan Tsvangirai. Lawyers have said the
law is being used to stifle criticism of Mugabe and ZANU PF.

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SA High Court ruling on Zim rights abuses irritates Mugabe

By Tichaona Sibanda
11 June 2012

A recent North Gauteng High Court ruling urging South African authorities to
probe human rights abuses in Zimbabwe has irritated Robert Mugabe, who
described the decision as ‘a direct assault on the country’s sovereignty.’

The Gauteng ruling also called on the authorities to bring perpetrators of
human rights abuses before the International Criminal Court for prosecution.
But the president of the former ruling ZANU PF party said the ruling
constituted interference from’ residual Rhodesian and apartheid forces in
South Africa’.

The ruling last month by Judge Hans Fabricius gave orders to the South
African government to investigate state-sponsored violence and crimes
against humanity committed by government officials in Zimbabwe in 2007.

Mugabe urged the African National Congress to deal decisively with the
matter in remarks made in Harare during the official opening a summit of
former SADC liberation movements. ‘Naturally, as we develop and enact
policies to deliver on these promises to our people such as our land reform
programmes and the ongoing indigenisation and empowerment programmes here in
Zimbabwe, we are targets for regime change.

‘In this context, it is important to remember that this Harare meeting takes
place after the recent ruling by one Boer Judge Hans Fabricius in the North
Gauteng High Court in South Africa calling on authorities in that country to
probe alleged atrocities in Zimbabwe, arrest and prosecute alleged offenders
under the International Criminal Court of which South Africa is a party and
Zimbabwe is not,’ Mugabe is quoted as saying.

Meanwhile the South African Mail and Guardian newspaper is still to receive
a copy of a report commissioned by former president Thabo Mbeki on Zimbabwe’s
2002 elections, two years after winning a court case to obtain the

The Mail & Guardian twice won a High Court bid to obtain a confidential
report on the 2002 presidential election that was controversially won by
Mugabe against the MDC-T’s Morgan Tsvangirai.

Former President Thabo Mbeki commissioned the report ahead of the 2002 poll.
Mbeki asked Judges Sisi Khampepe and Dikgang Moseneke to assess the country’s
constitutional and legal situation following reports of violence and
intimidation by the military and ZANU PF supporters.

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Mugabe’s call on court ruling draws criticism

Zimbabwean opposition parties have criticised President Robert Mugabe’s call
to the African National Congress
Published: 2012/06/11 08:55:18 AM

ZIMBABWEAN opposition parties have criticised President Robert Mugabe’s call
to the African National Congress (ANC) at the weekend to "apply every means
at their disposal" to overrule a North Gauteng High Court decision that
Zimbabweans accused of human rights abuses are eligible for prosecution in

The Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), led by Prime Minister Morgan
Tsvangirai, said Mr Mugabe was making a desperate attempt to use liberation
ties to circumvent judicial processes.

Nhlanhla Dube, spokesman of the splinter MDC party led by Welshman Ncube,
said: "Mr Mugabe’s rule is littered with human rights abuses and his
rejection of the ruling is not surprising, as agreeing to it would be
tantamount to handing himself over for prosecution."

Two groups — the Southern Africa Litigation Centre and the Zimbabwe Exiles
Forum — want SA to arrest and prosecute 17 Zimbabweans accused of torture in
2007 if they enter the country. The groups have cited SA’s obligations to
the International Criminal Court (ICC).

Political observers said Mr Mugabe could be "feeling the heat" from a cabal
of army generals alarmed by the ruling and the possibility of standing trial
for crimes against humanity, after former Liberian president Charles Taylor
was sentenced to 50 year’s imprisonment by the ICC last month.

At a meeting of secretary generals in Harare, Mr Mugabe rejected the high
court ruling made last month by Judge Hans Fabricius — whom he called a
"boer" — and dismissed it as violation of the country’s sovereignty.

"That judgment, like those outrageous ones of the Southern African
Development Community Tribunal which has now been dissolved, constitutes a
direct assault on our sovereignty by shameless forces afflicted by racist
nostalgia," he said. "I wish to urge our colleagues in the ANC to see this
for what it is and apply every means … at their disposal to ensure that such
machinations are not, in the end, allowed to negatively affect our cordial

He said whites in southern Africa, including Judge Fabricius, were trying to
makes excuses for their defeat by the forces of African liberation.

ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe put a damper on Mr Mugabe’s call,
saying: "The ANC does not ignore the rule of law, so we respect the ruling."

Those who brought the case say they have documented abuses by Zimbabweans
and envision a trial in SA. The case is likely to be tied up in appeals for
some time before any probe starts.

With Sapa-AFP

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Mugabe fears ICC prosecution

Written by Wendy Muperi, Staff Writer
Monday, 11 June 2012 12:00

HARARE - President Robert Mugabe’s unrestrained attack on South Africa’s
High Court judge Hans Fabricius for handing down a landmark ruling on
Zimbabwe’s rights abuses reflects his fear of international law, analysts
and legal experts said yesterday.

The unprecedented attack somehow exposes the octogenarian leader’s fear of
arrest under the International Criminal Court (ICC) statutes.

US diplomatic cables leaked by secrets-spilling website, WikiLeaks in which
former Information minister, Jonathan Moyo, told former United States
ambassador to Zimbabwe, Christopher Dell, the 88-year old Mugabe genuinely
fears hanging if he leaves office.

Describing judge Fabricius in derogatory terms as a “Boer”, Mugabe told a
convention of southern African liberation movements in Harare on Friday that
the ruling ordering an investigation in South Africa into alleged violence
and atrocities by loyalists of his party was like a second “apartheid”.

Mugabe urged South Africa’s ruling ANC to “apply every means at their
disposal” to stop the probe to avert the souring relations between the two
erstwhile liberation movements that took up arms to depose white rule.

The Zanu PF leader told representatives of the liberation groups of the ANC,
Angola, Mozambique, Namibia, Tanzania and Zimbabwe that the ruling was
actuated by those “still in our midst yearning for the old flags” of
Rhodesia who were keen on replacing revolutionary movements with “malleable

Deputy minister for Justice and Legal Affairs, Obert Gutu and Harare
spokesman for Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s MDC said Mugabe’s comments
belied his fear of prosecution, but there was nothing he could do now to
stop the wheels of justice, saying the ruling was binding.

“It’s only criminals who are afraid of the recent ruling by Justice
Fabricius,” Gutu said.

“The ruling by South Africa’s High Court sends a clarion call to all people
that the days of impunity are over. The chickens will soon be coming home to

“As an advocate of the rule of law opposed to rule by law, I do not find
anything wrong with the ruling of Justice Fabricius. What everyone should
know and appreciate is the fact that international criminal jurisprudence
has tremendously developed over the past two to three decades and as such,
perpetrators of human right violations have nowhere to hide,” he said.

Mugabe told the liberation movements’ convention that Zimbabwe was not a
signatory to the ICC hence local human rights violators could not be
prosecuted by SA courts under ICC statutes.

Gutu dismissed Mugabe’s remarks stating that South African courts can still
prosecute Zimbabwean officials under ICC statutes.

“The fact that Zimbabwe has not ratified the Rome statute that established
the International Criminal Court does not give any impunity to Zimbabweans
who engage themselves in gross human rights abuses be it in Zimbabwe or
outside,” he said.

Responding to Mugabe’s speech, ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe said his
party had an obligation to respect the rule of law, ruling out the president’s
plea to disregard the judgement.

“The ANC does not ignore the rule of law, so we respect the ruling made in
the High Court,” said Mantashe.

Top Zimbabwean human rights lawyer Alec Muchadehama dismissed Mugabe’s

“That was mere politicking because what he (Mugabe) was saying does not
reflect the true sense of the judgement,” Muchadehama told the Daily News.

“I doubt that he had actually read the judgement because his accusations
lack substance at law.”

Muchadehama said the ruling was correct and its legal base could be not be

“I took time to study the judgement and saw that Hans’ (Fabricius) ruling is
perfectly correct, legally it cannot be attacked but maybe as a politician
he can say what he said.”

South African National Prosecuting Authority was recently mandated by the
judge to probe accusations contained in a dossier of complaints compiled by
South African Litigation Centre and Zimbabwe Exiles Forum which claimed
gross human rights abuse by Zanu PF officials.

Political analyst Ibbo Mandaza said Mugabe’s comment confirmed the intensity
of the judgement.

“Basically, the President’s comments confirm the seriousness of the
judgement and as long as it stands, it means all those alleged of the
(prescribed) offences are taken to court,” said Mandaza.

However, University of Zimbabwe political scientist Charity Manyeruke said
Fabricius’ ruling was an insult to local courts.

“Fabricius’ involvement in judicial jurisdiction in another country is
problematic and an insult to local courts,” she said.

“That should only happen when there is a call from organisations like Sadc
or UN, of course only after local laws have been exhausted, before redress.”

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Mnangagwa threatens Biti over demands for more military funds

By Tererai Karimakwenda
11 June, 2011

Defence Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa is reported to have threatened Finance
Minister Tendai Biti in a heated argument last Thursday, after Biti flatly
turned down demands for an additional $2,5million from the national coffers,
which the ZANU PF minister claimed was needed for salaries for 5,000 new
army recruits.

According to The Daily News on Sunday two “impeccable sources” said the
drama unfolded during a meeting of the Council of Ministers, a body
consisting of the country’s government ministers and chaired by Prime
Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, who allegedly witnessed the passionate exchange
and threats by Mnangagwa.

The Daily News said Mnangagwa threatened to send army generals, who he had
so far restrained, to confront Biti at his office, saying soldiers were
going dangerously hungry around the country and commanders were at risk as a

The report said Biti “stuck to his guns”, allegedly telling the Defense
Minister that the treasury would not fund the “unqualified recruits the army
has been paying until the government received more cash from the sale of

Mnangagwa reportedly countered the arguments, explaining that most of the
qualified recruits had left the country. He also allegedly claimed there was
a risk of mutiny by soldiers and Biti was “compromising State security”.

Zimbabwe is not at war and Mnangagwa did not explain why the army needed
more recruits. But there is a general consensus among analysts and political
circles that the money is to help fund ZANU PF’s election campaign, which
has been compared to war given the level of violence and intimidation
experienced during past elections.

Retired Army Colonel Bernard Matongo told SW Radio Africa that ZANU PF is in
a “very desperate situation” because the regional leaders and the world are
expecting a free and fair election and the usual blatant violence they use
would not be acceptable.

“Historically ZANU PF is known to recruit ahead of elections. It’s all about
violence. But this time elections are under the administration of SADC. I
don’t think anyone in ZANU PF was expecting what happened last week in
Angola. They thought SADC leaders would listen as usual,” Matopngo
explained, referring to the communique issued by SADC after their
extra-ordinary summit in Luanda.

SADC urged Zimbabwe’s political parties to implement all the reforms agreed
to in the Global Political Agreement, so as to hold free and fair elections
under SADC standards.

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VP Nkomo calls for code of conduct to stem violence

Written by Xolisani Ncube, Staff Writer
Monday, 11 June 2012 11:57

HARARE - Vice President John Nkomo is pushing for holding of joint rallies
by political leaders in the inclusive government in a bid to curb resurgent
politically-motivated violence.

Nkomo — who is also a member of the Organ on National Healing,
Reconciliation and Integration which is tasked with advocating peace and
reconciliation amongst political players — said the violence should be
stopped forthwith.

He spoke amid allegations two legislators from his Zanu PF party Newten
Kachepa and Aqualinah Katsande had orchestrated the murder of an MDC
official Cephas Magura in Mudzi.

“Notably, political parties under the GPA framework have already agreed that
there should be free political activity throughout Zimbabwe,” Nkomo said.

Nkomo together with his colleagues in the tripartite organ who include Sekai
Holland from the mainstream MDC and Moses Mzila-Ndlovu from the smaller MDC,
hope that the adoption of a code of conduct would stem political violence.

“It is anticipated that the signing of the code of conduct will enable
political parties to effectively use provisions of this instrument in
advocating inter and intra political party engagements in order to curb
political violence,” said Nkomo.

However, political observers say it will take more than a code of conduct to
stop the political violence.

Civil rights activist Gladys Hlatywayo said Nkomo should take the peace
message to his Zanu PF party first before organising joint rallies or any
other inter-party political activity.

“VP Nkomo should first address his politburo members and then go to the
military and tell them that they should stop making dangerous statements
that could incite violence,” Hlatywayo said.

“These are the institutions that are known for orchestrating violence.”

She said Nkomo should urge army generals to confine themselves in military
barracks and leave politics for politicians.

“Once generals are in barracks, and police officers arrest everyone
regardless of political affiliation, then we can talk about joint rallies
and inter-party activities,” Hlatywayo added.

Charity Manyeruke, a University of Zimbabwe political science lecturer said
holding of joint rallies by parties in the inclusive government could make
politics “boring” and end up creating a communist society.

“Political violence can be dealt with in many ways, which include
campaigning for peace at their respective political parties as well as using
national events which are not necessarily political rallies,” said

“Having joint rallies can make this society a communist country and we end
up losing the vibrancy associated with our politics. People must de-campaign
for violence at their political institutions as well as national
institutions to end the culture.”

The three political parties in the coalition, President Robert Mugabe, Prime
Minister Morgan Tsvangirai and Welshman Ncube, have agreed to hold joint
rallies country-wide where they are expected to make a clarion call for
peace ahead for polls likely to be held next year.

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Govt faces US$300m Green Fuel tab

11/06/2012 00:00:00
    by Staff Reporter

THE government would have to pay more than US$300 million to complete its
proposed takeover of the Green Fuel ethanol project, sources close to the
company have insisted.

Agriculture Minister Joseph Made announced Monday that the government had
taken over majority control of the US$600 million project in line with the
country’s economic empowerment laws.

But in a statement the company insisted that: “The shareholding of the three
companies (involved in a project) is currently held by Zimbabweans.”

Sources close to the company said if Made insists on pushing through the
takeover, the government would have to pay more than US$300 million for the
51 percent shareholding.

Made claimed the 20-year Build, Operate and Transfer agreement between
agricultural parastatal Arda and two private companies involved in the
project was illegal.

“Cabinet concluded that the BOT agree­ment signed between Arda and Green
Fuel and other partners was null and void as it has not been autho­rised by
Government through Cab­inet,” Made said.

But in a statement, Green Fuel said the BOT deal did not involve the ethanol
plant at Chisumbanje and only related to the Arda lands on which the
parastatal and its joint venture partners, Rating Investments and Macdom,
were growing sugar cane.

“Green Fuel is a standalone private company built on land leased directly
from the Chipinge Rural District Council in order to facilitate easy access
to the cane grown on the estates of Rating and Macdom,” the company said.

“Green Fuel’s core business is to buy sugar cane from Rating, Macdom and
other growers for processing into sugar or ethanol. Green Fuel has not, nor
has it ever, had a contractual relationship with Arda.”

The company also denied Made’s claim that its agreement with Arda was
irregular adding the Minister was kept abreast of developments from the time
the project was initiated.

“The B.O.T agreements between Arda and the two agricultural companies,
Rating and Macdom, were entered into in compliance of the Agricultural and
Rural Development Authority (ARDA) Act,” the company said.

“They were approved by the Arda Board and signed on the 19th of March 2009
by Arda’s General Manager in terms of Section 17 of the said Act.

“There is correspondence between Arda and its parent ministry of
Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development indicating that the
Minister was involved in, and kept abreast of, all the negotiations and
legal formalities leading to the finalization of the B.O.T agreements.

“Finances were raised towards the cane projects on the strength and basis of
the agreements which have been verified as legally valid and binding by
independent legal experts.”

The company has since suspended production at the Chisumbanje mill after
exhausting storage capacity. Efforts to get the government to endorse
mandatory blending of petrol and ethanol have so far been unsuccessful while
market uptake of the company’s E10 product remains limited.

An independent energy analyst warned: “This shift of policy from active
support to complete takeover could jeorpadise the whole investment vision
which presents five thousand jobs now with a potential to reach 10 000 at
full commissioning of the  project.

“While ministers haggle over the Green Fuel project, events on the ground at
Chisumbanje are increasingly disconcerting. Green Fuel has sent home some
hundreds of workers due to the slow ethanol sales.

“Oil companies are reportedly indicating they cannot stock E10 in most of
their garages because there is no additional storage, hence the product
glut, but this could also be symptomatic of cartel behavior which is typical
of the oil sector.”

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Council wields axe on illegal CBD flea markets

Written by Staff Writer
Monday, 11 June 2012 11:55

HARARE - Harare City Council has declared war on illegal flea markets in the
central business district (CBD), with stall owners who attempted to invade
city car parks and roads engaging in pitched running battles with municipal
police over the weekend.

Baton-wielding municipal police patrolled the illegal market places waiting
to pounce on vendors who dare display their wares.

Municipal police patrolled Rezende and Park Street illegal flea markets
brandishing their baton sticks.

The vendors have tried to politicise their illegal activities by reporting
to President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu PF that the MDC-led Harare City Council
was attempting to derail the party’s empowerment programme.

Zanu PF gave the vendors the green light to continue, but municipal police
would have none of that and moved to stamp out the illegal activities over
the weekend.

Harare deputy mayor Emmanuel Chiroto said undesignated flea markets now
belong to the past because council will continue with the deployment of
municipal police to stop vendors from selling their merchandise at
undesignated points.

“What we have been lacking in our approach as council on the issue of
removing those vendors from the undesignated selling points was consistency
to bring permanent results,” said the tough-talking deputy mayor.

“We will continue to deploy our police until the vendors understand they
should not be there. We agreed with the directors that we should be
consistent and as the authorities we are very serious on this.
“If they are not there today, do not expect them tomorrow or in future.”

Chiroto said there were no exceptions when applying city by-laws and said
the Harare administration was determined to restore the sunshine status of
the city.

He dismissed remonstrations by Zanu PF that the crackdown on vendors was

“We cannot succumb to political gains when addressing this issue therefore
the city comes first followed by votes,” Chiroto said.  “Let me put it on
record that MDC is a party of people who respect the law,” he said.

Chiroto however admitted they were still battling with the Charge Office
market stall which is operated by the police.

He said in light of the outbreak of diseases such as cholera and typhoid,
the city could not allow anyone to set up market stalls anywhere without
proper sanitation or ablution facilities.

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British hunter killed by buffalo he was trying to shoot

A British man working as a professional hunter on a private game reserve in
Zimbabwe has been killed by a wounded buffalo he was trying to shoot.

By Peta Thornycroft, Aislinn Laing in Johannesburg

2:45PM BST 11 Jun 2012

Owain Lewis, 67, had been tracking the animal for three days to finish it
off after it was shot and injured by a visiting American hunter he was

Paul Smith, the owner of Chifuti Safaris in the lower Zambezi Valley, said
Mr Lewis was "very tough and experienced" but had been caught unawares when
the buffalo charged from the undergrowth and tossed him in the air.

"It turned on him and attacked him and unfortunately the apprentice hunter
with him could not shoot the animal as Owen's body was in the way," he said.

"It was a very tough fight. Owain's neck was broken but the apprentice did
manage to kill the buffalo.

"We are very shocked. This is the first time we have had an incident like

"We have had so many messages of support from people who hunted with Owen.

It is a tragedy."

One of the people who hunted with Mr Lewis, Alan Bunn, posted on a message
board that he was "a man who had probably forgotten more about Africa and
hunting than any of the younger professional hunters will ever learn".

"He was a kind soul who worked hard and always carried with him the very
best of attitudes," he wrote.

Mr Lewis is understood to have adult children, who were travelling to
Zimbabwe from their homes in the United States and New Zealand for a funeral
on Friday.

He previously ran his own ranch in the Chegutu district of central Zimbabwe
but it was seized by Zanu PF supporters in 2001.

The Cape Buffalo is one of African safaris' prized Big Five and one of the
most dangerous animals in the world, also known as "The Widow-maker". It can
grow up to 1.7 metres in height and 3.4 metres in length, and weigh as much
as 910kg.

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RBZ closes two troubled banks

11/06/2012 00:00:00
    by Business Reporter

THE central bank has closed Genesis Investment Bank and placed Interfin Bank
under curatorship for six months in a bid to prevent problems at the two
institutions triggering sector-wide contagion.

RBZ chief Gideon Gono said Monday Genesis Bank handed back its operating
licence after failing to meet the minimum capital requirements.

“Genesis Investment Bank resolved to voluntarily surrender the its banking
licence (after failing to) raise the requisite minimum capital from over 20
different potential inventors whom the bank tried to engage since 2009,”
Gono said.

“The Reserve Bank determined that the institution is not in a safe and sound
financial condition. The directors has failed to steer the institution out
of numerous deficiencies including gross undercapitalisation (-$3.20
million); persistent losses; poor asset quality; paltry deposit base; and
chronic liquidity challenges.
“As such, there is no prudential basis for the continued existence of the

The RBZ has also been forced to take action over Interfin which struggled
with capitalisation challenges, non-performing loans as well as poor
management oversight.

Said Gono: “The unsafe and unsound condition of Interfin Bank Limited is
attributable to inadequate capitalisation, concentrated shareholding and
abuse of corporate structures, high level of non-performing insider and
related party exposures, chronic liquidity and income generation challenges,
poor board and senior management oversight, as well as violation of banking
laws and regulations.

Peter Bailey of KPMG Chartered Accountants has been appointed curator and
will recommend how to resolve the bank’s problems.

“The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe has taken this action because it considers it
to be in the best interests of depositors and creditors, and of Interfin
Bank Limited itself and also of the banking sector in general,” Gono said.

Early this year the RBZ gave banks until April 1, 2012 to comply with new
minimum capital requirements and urged those struggling to consider merging
with other institutions.

“We urge those banking institutions without realistic chances of meeting the
soon to be increased minimum capital requirements to seriously consider
mergers and acquisitions or solemnize their proposed marriages,” Gono said
in February.

“As previously advised the undercapitalised banking institutions will have
up to 31 March 2012 to ensure compliance with the minimum capital

“For the avoidance of doubt no undercapitalized banking institution will
remain operational in the banking sector with effect from 1 April 2012.”

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The big topic in a Mugabe cell: why Sir Alex chews



Radio 3’s Petroc Trelawny shares the surreal experience of his arrest in Zimbabwe, where he dislocated his shoulder in a prison cell


Margarette Driscoll – published: 10 June 2012



Trelawny injured his arm in the cell but says he was not beaten up (Petroc Trelawny)


Last weekend, Petroc Trelawny watched the Queen’s jubilee river pageant from a party at his brother’s office near Lambeth Bridge. He had his arm in a sling and was approached by a woman with a similar injury. “She said, ‘I fell off a horse in France; how did you do yours?’ I said, ‘Oh, I dislocated it in a prison cell in Zimbabwe.’ Which is quite a good line.”


Trelawny, every inch the urbane Englishman with his self-deprecating humour and tweed jacket, is admirably calm for someone who has just been through what must be, by anyone’s measure, an extremely frightening experience.


Just over a fortnight ago the Radio 3 classical music presenter was helping to stage a children’s charity concert in Zimbabwe when he was arrested and thrown into an overcrowded, stinking prison cell. His instinct is to make light of it, saying that, as the door clanged behind him, he thought at least he’d have a good dinner-party story to tell.


“I was white, I had friends to help me and I had been arrested on a relatively minor charge. Had I been a black Zimbabwean political activist, it could have been a different story,” he says.


“One hears terrible tales of people disappearing and families entering a nightmarish, Orwellian void of uncertainty and not knowing where someone has been taken, so I think I had a relatively comfortable time of it.”


Drinking coffee in the safety of north London, though, he cannot help thinking of the poor black men with whom he shared a cell. “Some of them are probably still there and that’s quite a sobering thought,” he says.


Trelawny, 41, was on his third trip to Zimbabwe. He first went to Africa 20 years ago when he visited his aunt, an academic, while she was working in Lesotho. Two years ago they visited Malawi together, following in the footsteps of David Livingstone. On Friday they set off again, this time to Zambia, to visit the spot where Livingstone’s heart is buried.


The link to Zimbabwe came through his friend Graham Johnson, a London-based, Zimbabwean-born pianist, who was a pupil at the Academy of Music in Bulawayo in the 1960s. Two years ago he asked Trelawny to help with a concert he was staging at the academy.


“On the way back we were talking about what an amazing institution this was, to have survived the years of financial chaos and political corruption.”


They decided to set up a small charity, raising £10,000 or so a year to promote new projects. The first was the Song of the Carnivores, a community cantata about five of the endangered carnivores of Africa: the lion, the hyena, the wild dog, the leopard and the cheetah. Some 500 children from schools in and around Bulawayo were brought together to sing the piece.


It was during that, just after Trelawny had introduced the number about the lion from the Bulawayo concert hall balcony — joking that he would be safe up there as lions don’t climb to reach their prey — that he was hurrying back down the stairs to get to the stage and a member of staff said to him: “Keep your head down — the immigration police are here.”


Trelawny had entered the country on a tourist visa. He was accused of working illegally and taken to the police station. “I said I didn’t realise I needed a work permit; I’m not being paid, I haven’t got a contract, I was simply asked to read a few poems,” he says. “I assumed I was just going to be released, maybe they’d keep my passport and I’d have to pay something in the morning. Then suddenly the police officer took a pad out, which, I saw with a degree of chill, said ‘notice of detention’. I realised things had got a bit more serious.”


An assistant made to handcuff him but he was allowed to walk to his cell unshackled. He gave over his jacket and tie, and removed his shoes and socks. He was put into a holding cell 14ft by 9ft. In the dark, he could make out 16 other prisoners already crammed in there, most asleep. “The loo was a bucket in the corner. It was pretty smelly. There were no lights. It was incredibly scary, a combination of thinking, ‘Oh Christ, what have I got myself into, how is this going to end up?’ and the feeling that you’ve let everyone else down because you’re going to cause too much hassle for them.”


His cellmates began to wake up. “They were amazed at seeing a white man. They asked me so many questions — everything from the price of a car in the UK to why Sir Alex Ferguson was always chewing gum.


“They wanted to know how long would you get for a murder in Britain, how long would you get for a burglary, would you be in a cell with a lot of people in a British police station? I said at one point there were canteens in British prisons and they were amazed. They could not believe I was 41. The life expectancy in Zimbabwe [42 years] is shockingly low.”


Meanwhile, his friends and the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights organisation were working hard to free him. Next day, he was taken to be interviewed by CID and, when he was returned to the cell in the evening, joined some of the others watching a Chinese prisoner practising karate in the courtyard.

“The others were saying, ‘The mukiwa [white man] goes over there.’ They’d saved me a space by the far wall. When I turned to go back I don’t know what happened. It was just so packed and it was dark, I must have tripped on someone. I put my hand out to save myself and there was this terrible crunch and all of a sudden I was facing 180 degrees the other way to the person next to me and realised my arm was hanging down by my side.”


He denies any suggestion that he was knocked around by the Zimbabwean police: “When I got injured I think they were in a bit of a panic because they thought they would get the blame.”


Zimbabwe, under Robert Mugabe’s rule, has been hostile to the BBC: “But Bulawayo is sort of the rebel city. It’s an MDC [opposition party] stronghold. It’s very free-thinking, it has very little Zanu [Mugabe’s party] and what it has is a very liberal branch of Zanu. There’s a greater degree of warmth there towards the foreign media than there would be in Harare.”


He was taken to hospital and spent the rest of his six-day detention in a bare room, guarded by police officers. “A friend brought sheets and blankets because the hospital can’t provide them. The only pain relief was paracetamol.”


Legal efforts to free him first seemed successful when the attorney-general advised dropping the case, but immigration then returned with a new charge, of “conduct unbecoming” a tourist. Trelawny countered that he was being held illegally, and when his case was heard in court, he won.


He left Zimbabwe just over a week ago. Coincidentally, the immigration officer who arrested him was stamping passports at the airport: “We shook hands and he assured me I would be welcome to come back.”


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Interview: Siwela on Mthwakazi vision

11/06/2012 00:00:00
by Lloyd Mbiba I Daily News
Treason trial ... Siwela (left) outside High Court with his lawyer Sindiso Mazibisa

Paul Siwela is the controversial secretary general of the Matabeleland pressure group Mthwakazi Liberation Front, which is agitating for a separate state called Mthwakazi, based on pre-colonial borders.

Siwela, along with two other MLF officials John Gazi and Charles Thomas, are currently standing trial for treason. The charges relate to their campaign for secession.

The 49-year-old former ZAPU leader [PS] tells The Daily News’ Lloyd Mbiba [LM] about his vision of a Mthwakazi state:
LM: Is MLF a political party or a secessionist movement?
PS: We are a separatist movement. Our aim is to separate Mthwakazi State from Zimbabwe State through peaceful means.
LM: Why is it that MLF wants secession now, three decades after attaining independence?

PS: When were we supposed to do that? There was initial hope that Zimbabwe was going to integrate us into their state as full citizens with equal rights to all opportunities, and thus over the years Mthwakazians have learnt that Zimbabwe is not their home and Zimbabwe will not accommodate Mthwakazians into their community.

The time is now opportune for Mthwakazians to reclaim their country irrespective of the expected howling that would be generated by this demand.

LM: Some people say you are a radical reactionary movement made up of regionalists and tribalists who are hell-bent on causing havoc and divisions. How do you respond to that?

PS: That claim emanates from the Zimbabwean tribalists and Gukurahundists who enjoy marginalising Mthwakazi people and would like to present that argument as scarecrow. We are not worried about that and it has no effect on our people whose decision shall decide the fate of these co-joined countries.

The normal thing to happen is to separate the two and live side by side as neighbours as was the case before the white men came here.

LM: Since you have said you will not contest elections how will you push your agenda for secession?

PS: Our programme is located through peaceful means that would among others include legal warfare. Our people have endured suffering, pain and shame since November 4, 1893, up to date and need to extricate themselves from the injustices they are experiencing today from Limpopo up to Zambezi and from Plumtree up to Battlefields.

LM: Besides elections, do you partake in state programmes such as the ongoing constitution-making process?

PS: We don’t want to interfere with our neighbour’s internal affairs and we expect Zimbabwe to respect and reciprocate our gesture of good relations and stop interfering in our affairs as well.

Zimbabwe knows only too well that we are two countries joined together by the white people and through imperfect decolonisation; we became a colony of Zimbabwe without our consent. We need to complete the process of decolonisation.

LM: Sometime last year you wrote to President Robert Mugabe seeking audience with him over your agenda. Did you ever meet and what transpired?

PS: You will be aware I suppose that such sensitive matters are not usually handled in the glare of cameras and troops of journalists as they evolve, and at this stage we cannot give any comment as to what is happening. But we believe he has given us the necessary attention that we want.

LM: One of your senior members John Gazi is alleged to be a CIO operative. Is this true?

PS: He resigned from our party and we recommend that you talk to him directly on anything that involves him. We are not qualified to speak about him.

LM: How many members does MLF have?

PS: No sane Mthwakazian would want to remain in Zimbabwe given the way our people are segregated in all spheres of life. Even those who were sceptical in the beginning about the feasibility of the restoration of Mthwakazi Republic have changed their minds and have become the disciples of separatism gospel.

What is even interesting is that those who profess to be Zimbabweans and claim to be happy in Zimbabwean political parties and holding senior positions are Nicodemusly supporting our cause and even funding it.

They are found in all Zimbabwean political parties and conveniently behaving as if they are against the cause in public and we support such intelligent stance that they are using.

Every Mthwakazian supports the restoration of Mthwakazi Republic. Mthwakazians want self determination now. This is a beckoning time to solve the Gukurahundi genocide.

Delaying the independence of Mthwakazi is not the solution and Zimbabwean political leaders know this from experience when the Rhodesian colonial government delayed to give them their country. Zimbabwe should not go the Ian Smith route. We are convinced they are cleverer than that.

LM: The emotive Gukurahundi issue, how should it be dealt with?

PS: The Gukurahundi genocide will rest only if Mthwakazians are compensated by having their country back any other way of handling it is mere political posturing which would prove to be problematic to Zimbabwe in future years. Self determination is the solution.

LM: Is MLF financially sound?
PS: We have our own resources which we don’t need to make public as it does not serve our interests to do so.
LM: Being a former member of ZAPU, do you think the current ZAPU has the muscle to power into an election victory?

PS: We don’t think so given that Zimbabwean politics is tribally-driven and influenced by past and present circumstances where Zimbabweans have been taught not to vote for a Mthwakazian to lead any organisation let alone to lead the country.

It would be interesting to note how Zimbabweans would vote if the two top presidential candidates in the run-off were Robert Mugabe and Welshman Ncube. Your guess is as good as mine; Zimbabweans would not countenance voting for Ncube despite the cry of dictatorship and tyranny they have experienced under Robert Mugabe’s rule. There is so much alacrity to countenance a Mthwakazian as the leader of Zimbabwe.

If one lives in a country where your ethnicity or race precludes you from contesting the Presidency or Premiership, whatever the case may be, it means that you are not a full citizen of that country and become entitled to look elsewhere for a home therefore.

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Are Zimbabweans too patient for their own good?

Vince Musewe
11 June 2012

Vince Musewe says a participative democracy dependent on a more assertive

The challenges of creating a participative democracy in Zimbabwe: The
country's citizens are much too patient and too tolerant perhaps making them
easy prey to be subjugated by any government or political party

It was only last week while attending a debate by politicians in Harare that
I realized that Zimbabwe may be a long way from having a participative
democracy. What struck me was the speakers' haughtiness and God complex in
articulating what they think should happen in Zimbabwe. This of course is
hardly surprising given that since independence in 1980, our politics have
been prescriptive in nature and our politicians have gotten used to being
treated like little gods.

Democracy in Zimbabwe has been to date characterized by the exercise of the
popular vote after which we have handed on a platter, all the
responsibilities of running the country to the majority party. What worries
me is that in protest to ZANU(PF) we may blindly recreate the same system
while expecting different results ( the last time I looked, this is defined
as insanity).

In my opinion, any political party that has the majority vote will behave in
a similar fashion regardless of climate or geographical location. Absolute
power leads to arrogance, non-accountability and the belief by those that
wield power of their invincibility.

As Zimbabweans we need to be circumspect and learn from history. Zimbabweans
have really never been activists. Our history is significantly different
from that of South Africa for example where, the country's liberation was
delivered through the uprisings of local communities who made the country
ungovernable and who to this day, continue to use the right to protest as a
means to register their dismay with delivery by the government. South Africa
is therefore more positioned to create a participative and vibrant democracy
because of the nature of the black South African compared to Zimbabwe.

In Zimbabwe the contrary is true I think. Zimbabweans are much too patient
and too tolerant perhaps making them easy prey to be subjugated by any
government or political party that has a majority vote. You only have too
witness how our politicians condut themselves in public.

The other factor is that, in the past, our government has really never been
tolerant of dissent and this has somewhat "conditioned" Zimbabweans and
remains a significant albatross towards the creation of a vibrant and
participative democracy. The reaction of most skilled Zimbabweans was
typically to leave the country when things got rough and hope that things
will change without their active participation in causing that change. To
that I am, of course, not immune but that is about to change. The reaction
of some of those intellectuals and businessmen that remained behind was to
accept the deplorable socio political conditions while complaining in

It is now necessary for us to realize that the creation of a new democracy
that is significant in Zimbabwe requires that all of us take the
responsibility not to be mere voters but to actively participate in the
political process to create a better future. It is essential that we all
become continual  activists to some extent so that we do not recreate the
past but enrich the dialogue on our future. We can no longer delegate this
responsibility to a significant few.

Besides the drive to create a new social system that is under-pinned by the
respect of human rights, freedom of speech and diverse media, it is
indispensable for Zimbabwean civil society to have a strong platform to
challenge, expose   and expect more from our future politicians and
continually remind them of their responsibilities to serve the public. We
must not think that a good and well debated constitution guarantees liberty
but rather realize that an active informed, organized and vibrant community

We have a choice to make; do we expect different results by creating the
same system that has not worked in our interests in the past, or do we take
the responsibility to create the future we all desire?

I think the choice is obvious and for me the sooner those Zimbabweans in the
Diaspora take an active part in developments at home and stop being arm
chair critics and Zimbabweans in general wake up to the fact that the vote
does not guarantee freedom and democracy, the quicker we are bound to see a
better Zimbabwe emerging.

I await the emergence of a strong opposition party in any future government
and us discontinuing the habit of delivering our votes en masse to one
political party. It has not worked to our advantage in the past and it will
not work now.

The future must surely be different from the past and only you and I can
make it so.

Vince Musewe is an independent economist currently in Harare and you may
contact him on

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Luanda was a Game Changer

During the struggle to restore democracy and respect for basic rights in
Zimbabwe over the past 12 years, we can point to many significant events
that have changed the game on the field in a significant way. I can think of
some and here are selected items: The referendum and elections in 2000 when
Zanu PF suddenly woke up to the fact that they were being challenged and had
almost lost their grip on power. That gave rise to the “total onslaught” on
the MDC and the Commercial farmers and their staff.
Then came the 2002 Presidential elections when Mr. Mugabe lost the election
and the South Africans, working with the security chiefs here, conspired to
deny Mr. Tsvangirai victory. This brought the South African presidency,
diplomatic service and others into the game, in an effort to deny MDC any
chance of gaining the upper hand.
Then it was the split in the MDC leadership in 2005, when Mr. Mbeki tried to
control the process of change in Zimbabwe and force the MDC into a unity
government. When this failed the next critical point was the declaration in
December 2006 that Zimbabwe would hold harmonised elections in June 2010;
that galvanized the South Africans to engage and this led to the
negotiations that have now been running for 5 years. The most immediate
result was the Kariba Agreement which laid the foundation for a first
attempt at a free and fair election.
The March 2008 election; where Zanu was finally beaten and again Mr. Mbeki
was forced to go to extraordinary lengths to prevent Mr. Tsvangirai taking
power. This intervention led to the runoff, the second series of
negotiations and the GPA signing ceremony in September 2008. This was
followed by the formation of the GNU in February and, as they say in
political literature, the rest is history.
In the subsequent struggle for ascendancy between the MDC and Zanu PF, Zanu
PF has had to fight a rear guard action all the way – constantly being
harassed by the other political parties and the region which has been
growing increasingly impatient with their delaying tactics. At the Troika
Summit in Livingstone in May 2011, for the first time, the region took the
gloves off and laid into Zanu PF, calling on them to fulfill their
obligations under the GPA or else.
A year has passed and now another Troika Summit, this time in Luanda, Angola
where the region confirmed their position on the GPA and reiterated that no
further delays of procrastination in the process would be accepted. In a
clear statement the SADC Summit communiqué stated three things:
1. They would not allow Zanu PF to call an election without the agreement of
the other Parties to the GPA and the Facilitator;
2. They would accept no significant deviations from the GPA;
3. They gave the President of South Africa complete support in his role as
the facilitator and enforcer.
This was a major game changer – perhaps the most significant since 1999 as
it comes against the background of the diminishing electoral support for
Zanu PF in all areas of the country and the declining health of Mr. Mugabe
who simply cannot be seriously taken as a likely candidate for an election
in late 2013.
The result is a nightmare for Zanu PF. They are now forced to confront the
issue of succession in their Party, something they have been trying to avoid
for the past 15 years or more. Mr. Mugabe has been at the very centre of
their political lives for so long that life after him seems difficult and
nasty. The competition for succession has dissolved what used to be a
coherent and united Party into several factions, some of whom appear to be
ready to even fight each other.
Furthermore, they know by how much they lost the 2002 election and the 2008
election and they know their sun is not rising. They have been told by their
advisors that they cannot win an election ever again in Zimbabwe, even if
they pulled off their plan for a political coup in the form of snap
elections without basic GPA reforms. With the full implementation of the
final GPA reforms (a new Constitution, Voters Roll, Delimitation, Electoral
Act, reformed media and other laws linked to elections and a reformed and
independent Electoral Commission supported by regional observers) they are
not just going to be defeated, I doubt they would win any seats at all.
The question is what will they pull out of the hat now? They are always very
quick to review their position after a political Tsunami like Luanda, then
to revise their strategies and set off in a new direction. It is difficult
to know just what they can do in this situation and there are ample signs in
Harare that panic and confusion reigns.
The last remaining pillar of support in Zimbabwe for Zanu is the military
and security establishment. These have had their teeth pulled by the region
which have made it clear that they would not tolerate any direct
intervention by the armed forces. They have attempted to take control of the
Zanu PF leadership and failed and are now trying to regroup around Mnangagwa
who just does not have the support in Zanu PF for a bid to take over the
Party leadership.
They have the guns and lots of money, but in a democratic election these
will not help or even assist. So what do they do next? I for one am waiting
to see just what they are going to attempt – while the hardliners and even
Mr. Mugabe himself continue to make strong statements on the issue of their
snap election strategies, it is clear to all that they are just barking dogs
on this issue. The region has closed the door on that option.
They have any option but to call for negotiations to try and get a soft
landing and a bit of space to regroup and restructure and perhaps come back
at some time in the future to fight again.

Eddie Cross
Harare, 10th June 2012

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Bill Watch - Parliamentary Committees Series - 11th June 2012 [Meetings Open to the Public: 11-14 June: Privileges Committee - Gwaradzimba case]



[11th June 2012]

Privileges Committee: Gwaradzimba Contempt of Parliament Case

The fourth meeting of the Privileges Committee will begin at 10.30 am on Wednesday 13th June in Committee Room No. 1.  The meeting is open to members of the public as observers.

Mr Gwaradzimba is due to continue giving evidence in his defence.  He has pleaded not guilty to the contempt of Parliament charge brought against him by the Portfolio Committee on Mines and Energy.  For the background to the case and developments so far, please see Bill Watch Parliamentary Committee Series bulletins of 23rd January and 7th and 12th of May.

Other Committee Meetings Open to the Public 11th to 14th June

NB: Members of the public who cannot attend meetings, including Zimbabweans in the Diaspora, can at any time send written submissions to committees by email addressed to to

Thematic Committee and Portfolio Committees will meet this week, in both open and closed session.  The meetings listed below will be open to the public as observers only, not as participants, i.e. members of the public can listen but not speak.  The meetings will be held at Parliament in Harare.  If attending, please use the entrance on Kwame Nkrumah Ave between 2nd and 3rd Streets and note that IDs must be produced.

This bulletin is based on the latest information from Parliament.  But, as there are sometimes last-minute changes to the schedule, persons wishing to attend a meeting should avoid disappointment by checking with the committee clerk [see below] that the meeting is still on and open to the public.  Parliament’s telephone numbers are Harare 700181 and 252936.

Monday 11th June at 9 am

Thematic Committee: Peace and Security

Oral evidence from the Minister of Energy and Power Development on ZESA load shedding, corruption in ZESA and its effects on wheat farmers

Committee Room No. 4

Chairperson: Hon Mumvuri              Clerk: Miss Zenda

Monday 11th June at 10 am

Portfolio Committee: Defence and Home Affairs

Oral evidence from the Secretary for Defence on war veterans bids from 1997-2010

Committee Room No. 2

Chairperson: Hon Madzore              Clerk: Mr Daniels

Monday 11th June at 2 pm

Portfolio Committee: Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare

Oral evidence from the National Employment Council for the Motor Industries in Zimbabwe on the operations of the National Employment Council and challenges that are faced by the employers in the sector

Committee Room No. 1

Chairperson: Hon Zinyemba           Clerk: Ms Mushunje

Portfolio Committee: Budget, Finance, Economic Planning and Investment Promotion

Oral evidence from the State Procurement Board on State procurement procedures

Committee Room No. 4

Chairperson: Hon Zhanda               Clerk: Mr Ratsakatika

Tuesday 12th June at 10 am

Thematic Committee: MDGs

Oral evidence from the Ministry of Labour and Social Services on the Older Persons Bill

Government Caucus Room

Chairperson: Hon Chief Mtshane   Clerk: Mrs Nyawo

Portfolio Committee: Health and Child Welfare

Oral evidence from the Child  Welfare Department on its programmes

Committee Room No. 1

Chairperson: Hon Parirenyatwa      Clerk: Mrs Khumalo

Portfolio Committee: Local Government, Rural and Urban Development

Clarification by the Secretary for Local Government on the Ministry’s Expenditure Return for the month ending 30 April, 2012

Committee Room No. 413

Chairperson: Hon Karenyi               Clerk: Mr Daniel

Thursday 14th June at 10 am

Portfolio Committee: Media, Information and Communication Technology

Oral evidence from  NetOne and TelOne on their operations

Committee Room No. 413

Chairperson: Hon Chikwinya           Clerk: Mr Mutyambizi


Portfolio Committee Report on State of Public Media

This report was presented to the House of Assembly last week by Hon Chikwinya, chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on Media, Information and Communication Technology.  It is likely to be debated during the course of this week.  [Copy of report available from]


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