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Thousands illegally recruited into army

By Tererai Karimakwenda
14 June 2011

There was a dramatic turn this week in the ongoing row between Defence
Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa and Finance Minister Tendai Biti, who revealed
on Wednesday that the Public Service Commission had illegally recruited
10,000 new staff members and among them were 4,600 soldiers.

The revelation was surprising because the defence ministry had recently
demanded $2.5 million from the treasury, insisting the funds were needed to
feed soldiers who are going hungry in the barracks and to pay for an
additional 5,000 new recruits. Mnangagwa went as far as threatening
violence, vowing to send army generals to Biti’s offices.

As it turns out the soldiers had already been recruited without going
through proper procedures. Biti said the illegal recruitments were made
between January and May this year, adding approximately $190 million to the
civil servants’ salary bill. The Finance Minister added that the treasury is
receiving only $230 million and money promised from the sale of Chiadzwa’s
diamonds had not yet been received.

The issue of unaccounted diamond revenue has been at the centre of a row
between the coalition government partners, with the MDC-T insisting that the
military is controlling diamond mining and most of the funds do not make it
into national coffers.

Harare based journalist Angus Shaw told SW Radio Africa that although it
remains to be seen why the army would need so many new recruits, the talk on
the ground is that they are part of ZANU PF’s strategy of using patronage to
gain support. They want to appear to be giving jobs to these young
Zimbabweans as part of their empowerment policy.

“Defence Minister Mnangagwa has admitted they were under qualified and it
appears they may have gone through training at the ZANU PF youth militia
camps. It is very much to bolster the numbers of the army and use patronage
by giving these young men jobs,” Shaw explained.

Regarding diamond revenue, Shaw said it is no secret that diamond mining is
being controlled by former military chefs and ZANU PF politicians who are
living openly lavish lifestyles. “We know diamond revenue is being stashed
away in private accounts in Dubai, Mauritius and the British Virgin Islands
and so on,” he added.

Asked whether ZANU PF made a mistake by letting an MDC-T minister control
the treasury, Shaw said the voices are being heard but there is no equal
power sharing, so the MDC-T is unable to do anything to change the

He added: “It seems that every government institution controlled by ZANU PF
is doing pretty much what they want, functioning unilaterally. Biti has long
suggested a system be put in place for collecting diamond revenue but this
has been fought by ZANU PF.”

Political analyst Bekithemba Mhlanga said he did not think the government
would actually let soldiers starve in the barracks, but believes something
else may be happening that the defence Minister is not able to publicise.

“I believe threats by Mnangagwa to send army generals to attack Biti are
just grandstanding because they would not need instructions from him if they
were really hungry. They would have gone to demand the money already,”
Mhlanga said.

Mhlanga pointed to the fact that Biti was made the villain when civil
servants demanded salary increases last year, and any segment of society
demanding money is going to blame Biti if they do not get it.

“This is a strategy to create hatred against the Finance Minister and
therefore his MDC-T party as well,” Mhlanga added.

Biti has been strong in arguing that until diamond funds are remitted into
the treasury, the government cannot afford any increase in the public
service salary bill or recruitment of new army cadets.

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Lift sanctions on Zimbabwe, says South Africa

Reuters | 14 June, 2012 15:47

South Africa wants Western nations to lift economic sanctions imposed on
Zimbabwe and is pressing Harare's power-sharing government to speed up
reforms needed to bring about elections in the troubled country.

Zimbabwe has been plunged into poverty due to what analysts have said is
economic mismanagement by entrenched President Robert Mugabe and his ZANU-PF
party, hit with sanctions for suspected human rights abuses and vote

"It's not just Zimbabwe that's saying the sanctions are not working. The
entire continent is saying that," Lindiwe Zulu, South African President
Jacob Zuma's top foreign policy advisor told Reuters on Thursday.

Analysts say the sanctions have been exploited by Mugabe for his political
purposes, blaming them for his party's economic blunders that have caused
what once was one of Africa's richest nations to now be among its poorest.

Zulu is part of a Southern African Development Community initiative led by
Zuma aimed at ending the political turmoil in Zimbabwe and holding free and
fair elections by next year.

Mugabe, 88, has ruled the country since its independence from Britain in
1980. He was forced into a power-sharing deal with rival and now Prime
Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, leader of the Movement for Democratic Change,
after a disputed 2008 poll marred by ZANU-PF violence and intimidation.

"Now the challenge for us is to speed up the process and have a result that
is lasting, or to make sure whatever decisions are implemented, are things
that the Zimbabweans themselves must honour," said Zulu.

South Africa is the country most affected by turmoil in Zimbabwe. Millions
flooded across their border due to Zimbabwean election violence in 2008,
straining South Africa's schools, housing and health services.

Pretoria has been criticised for not pushing Mugabe hard enough but Zulu
said forcing change would not solve its neighbour's underlying problems or
bring a stable democracy.

No date has been set for polls but the time frame for the power sharing deal
known as the "global political agreement" has key provisions expiring in
June 2013 with one stating national elections should take place before the
end of the process.

"The fact that the global political agreement does not have an endless life
span is pushing them to realise that they don't have the luxury of time
anymore," said Zulu.

Global aid agencies and international businesses are expected to inject
billions of dollars once Zimbabwe, which has the world's second-largest
platinum reserves, has a stable government.

"We do not want to see a repetition of the 2008 scenario. We know what it
looked like. It is a lesson for Zimbabweans themselves to ensure it does not
repeat," Zulu said.

"We are very confident that we still have it in our power, just like the
Zimbabweans still have it in their power, to turn the tide and do things
better," Zulu said.

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Youth Funds Illegal: Comptroller and Auditor General

Harare – June 14, 2012 - The Comptroller and Auditor General (C&AG) Mildred
Chiri has said Youth Development, Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment
Minister savior Kasukuwere is making illegal disbursements under the
government’s youth fund as the management of the public monies is unlawful.

In her latest report, Chiri said the operation and management of the Youth
Development Fund, which was allocated US$5million in the 2012 budget, is
invalid at law, making the disbursement of the public funds illegal.

“Contrary to the provisions of section 30 (6) of the Audit and Exchequer Act
(Cap 22: 03) (section 18(6) of the Public finance Management Act (cap 22:19)
the ministry established this fund in which an initial capital amount of
US$150 000 was invested on 21st July 2009. The previous fund by the same
title was dissolved on July 31 1996 in accordance with treasury authority
granted on March 4 1996 referenced B/50/86. At the time of signing this
report, the status of this fund had not been regularised by legal process.
Accordingly, the operation and management of the Youth Development Fund
remains invalid,” read part of the report.

“It came to my notice that on August 13 2010 the ministry concluded a
Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Infrastructure development bank
of Zimbabwe (IDBZ) in which the administration of the fund was ceded to the
IBDZ. I have not been provided with evidence to prove that the above
arrangements were reviewed and approved by government law officers.
Accordingly, the propriety of the cession of the administration of the fund
to the IDBZ remains questionable as at the time of signing this report.”

Since 2009, Kasukuwere’s ministry has been distributing the funds to youth
as part of the government’s empowerment programme with each beneficiaries
getting a minimum of US$1 000 up to a maximum of US$5 000 depending on the
size and type of their project.

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Mugabe gives in

Written by Bridget Mananavire and Gift Phiri
Thursday, 14 June 2012 11:47

HARARE - Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai said yesterday he has reached an
agreement with his coalition partner President Robert Mugabe to implement
resolutions of a special Sadc committee on politics, defence and security.

A full-scale extraordinary summit in Luanda — called at the instigation of
President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu PF — directed Zimbabwe’s parties to implement
all outstanding issues in the Global Political Agreement (GPA) and to
implement an election roadmap to pave way for a free and fair poll.

Zambia, Tanzania and South Africa — who make up Sadc’s troika, gave Zimbabwe’s
parties, 12 months to implement all outstanding issues.

Officials of the 15-member Sadc, rejected Mugabe’s insistence on a snap poll
this year without democratic reforms, and said Zimbabwe will only go for a
fresh poll after implementing all outstanding issues from the accord he
inked in September 2008 and a Sadc election plan agreed to a year ago.

Tsvangirai said yesterday Mugabe, who has previously refused to live up to
his end of the bargain, has now capitulated and agreed to implement the
outstanding issues.

“As principals to the Global Political Agreement (GPA), we have agreed to
fully implement the GPA, complete the constitution-making process, and to
implement the road map towards a free election to ensure lasting peace,
which is the foundation for science, technology and innovation development,”
he told the launch of the second Science, Technology and Innovation policy
at the Harare International Conference Centre.

Tsvangirai said he hopes the implementation of the outstanding issues will
create peace which is necessary for the implementation of policies,
including the second Science, Technology and Innovation Policy launched

At the event, Tsvangirai was flanked by Mugabe who neither disputed nor
confirmed what the premier had said.

But Mugabe’s spokesperson, George Charamba told State TV that elections will
be held this year.

“We have to move definitively and inexorably towards a general election,”
Charamba said.

“In the case of Zanu PF, the president has been on record to say this has to
be this side of the year.”

While Tsvangirai said Zimbabwe must complete a new Constitution, Mugabe’s
spokesman said there has been a misconception about the Sadc resolution on
the Constitution.

“There is a misconception here, when Sadc says the constitution making
process must conclude, I notice in some heads, that means we must have a new
constitution in this country,” he said.

“Sadc never, would never have said so, because to say so would be as it
were, to predict or prepossess the results of the referendum. That’s an
unknown; no one knows which direction the referendum will take. Maybe the
current draft, and hey I am asking where is it, the current draft?

I haven’t seen it. Maybe what pretends to be a draft will be embraced by
Zimbabwean people, in this case, yes we will move to the election phase
under a new constitution.

“Maybe, Zimbabweans will be unhappy about that product in which case they
will reject it. If you look back at history, you will note that we have a
history of rejecting constitutions here,” Charamba said referring to the
rejection of a new constitution in February 2000, which gave Mugabe his
first ever electoral defeat.

“If you are working against history, you can never be extravagant in your
expectations of what the Zimbabweans will do come the referendum time,” he

“So the critical thing for Sadc is, this process must conclude, whichever
result, whichever outcome it gives us. It could be a deadlock; if it’s a
deadlock, that deadlock will have to conclude the process.”
Charamba said the election timetable cannot be predicated on a new

“And as a matter of fact, the president made it very clear that you cannot
predicate the electoral process on the creation of a new constitution
because there are matters in the new constitution which remain matters of
serious differences.”

The Management Committee of Copac, the body tasked with writing the new
Constitution, met in Mutare this week to iron out contentious issues from
the draft.

Zanu PF has rejected the draft, raising major objections on parliamentary
and presidential powers, the proposed National Prosecuting Authority and
appointment of judges and security personnel.

The party, which was involved in the drafting of the document, now claims
the draft does not reflect the views of the people submitted during the
outreach process and captured in the Copac national report.

It wants substantial changes made.

Zimbabwe has not had a popular constitution since gaining independence from
Britain in 1980, following a protracted liberation struggle against the
racist Rhodesian Government of Ian Smith.

The country has been operating on the cease fire document, signed at
Lancaster House in Britain in 1979.

All the ruling parties in the coalition, Zanu PF and the two MDCs agree that
the Lancaster House constitution is heavily flawed.

Political analysts in Zimbabwe say a skewed electoral playing field has
helped Zanu PF dominate all elections held since independence in 1980.

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‘Rabble rousers’ blamed for attack on Welshman Ncube in SA

By Alex Bell
14 June 2012

The MDC led by Welshman Ncube has blamed ‘rabble rousers’ for an attack on
the party leader in South Africa over the weekend, who have also been blamed
for trying to discredit the party.

A group of party members in Soweto pelted Ncube with t-shirts, threw chairs
and over turned tables at a meeting in the South African township. The
meeting was convened to elect local leadership for the party, but it soon
turned to pandemonium when a group of members turned their anger on Ncube.

The group of disgruntled members was led by Diliza Mangoye, the
International Relations Youth Secretary, Women’s League member Sipho Moyo,
and Interim Organising Secretary Gad Mafikizolo Lunga. They accused Ncube
and the national leadership of favouritism.

Ncube was accused of filling the leadership spots in South Africa with the
friends of his son Wesley, as a thank you for participating at his wedding
when he married South Africa President Jacob Zuma’s daughter a few years

But the party has denied this, calling the incident the result of ‘rabble
rousers’ who were trying to discredit the congress. Party spokesperson
Nhlanhla Dube told SW Radio Africa on Thursday that some of the members are
former Zimbabwean police, who were expressing their anger for not being
voted into the South African executive.

Dube meanwhile explained that the party is relieved and pleased about this
week’s court verdict, which once again ruled that the MDC congress that
elected Ncube to his leadership position was held in accordance with the
party constitution.

This is not the first time Ncube’s leadership has been called into question
in court, after former party leader Arthur Mutambara was ousted in that
congress early last year. Despite court rulings supporting Ncube’s position
as the leader of the third party in Zimbabwe’s coalition government,
Mutambara has remained Deputy Prime Minister.

Party spokesperson Dube explained that “we are not holding our breaths” for
Ncube to become the Deputy PM, saying ZANU PF and Robert
Mugabe are “happier to close Professor Ncube out of the political space.”

“This court verdict validates our argument that the congress was legitimate
and therefore Professor Ncube is our legitimate leader. But we won’t hold
our breaths expecting him to replace Mutambara in the unity government,”
Dube said.

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MDC-T Senator for Mutare charged with public violence

By Tichaona Sibanda
14 June 2012

Police in Mutare on Thursday charged the MDC-T Senator for the city,
Kerensia Chabuka and six other party activists, with public violence. They
all deny the charges and claim it’s politically motivated.

The 61 year-old Senator presented herself to the police on Thursday. Soon
after the charges were read to her she was thrown into police cells. Her
lawyer, Passmore Nyakureba, told SW Radio Africa the senator is now expected
to appear in court on Friday.

Nyakureba said he found it strange that when police alerted him that they
were looking for Chabuka, the charge they wanted to bring against her was
that of assault.

‘That charge, including that of the other six, was altered to public
violence. What the police are saying beggars belief. How can individuals
from one particular party, having a meeting at their provincial offices, be
found to be on the wrong side of the law.

‘In any case, we will have our day in court and we are going to prove
otherwise, Nyakureba said. Police accuse the senator and the six others of
assaulting the acting Mayor of Mutare George Jeryson last week Friday.

Jeryson is an MDC councillor who won his seat on a party ticket but is now
suspected of working closely with ZANU PF Local Government Minister Ignatius

Party spokesman for Manicaland, Pishai Muchauraya said their members are
facing trumped-up charges which they strongly deny. He said the group
believe it’s a political onslaught by ZANU PF functionaries to tarnish their

‘Senator Chabuka has been in and out of police custody several times on such
trumped-up charges and we feel this kind of harassment and persecution is
not necessary at a time everyone in the country is condemning the selective
application of the law,’ Muchauraya said.

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Chombo faces probe over Zupco

Written by Chengetai Zvauya, Parliamentary Editor
Thursday, 14 June 2012 13:40

HARARE - A parliamentary committee on Local Government and Urban Development
has recommended that Local Government, Rural and Urban Development minister
Ignatius Chombo be probed by the Anti-Corruption Commission.

The probe has been necessitated by mismanagement at the Zimbabwe United
Passenger Company (Zupco) which has resulted in workers being owed close to
$6,4 million in salary arrears.

Presenting a report to Parliament, chairperson MDC MP Lynette Karenyi said
the committee had questioned Chombo on the operations of Zupco board and the
parastatal’s operating status.

“What has riled your committee even then was that some Zupco employees were
not being remunerated for their services. At the end of each month they
received payslips showing amounts they were to get and the names of their
respective banking institutions. However nothing was ever paid into their
accounts," read the report.

“In evidence before your committee, minister Chombo stated that he was happy
with how the Zupco board operated. He said Zupco was performing very well
despite that Zupco employees were facing serious financial challenges," said

He added that Zupco had bought 200 new buses and a further 200 had been
ordered for the coming year.

Karenyi said the committee had interviewed Zupco workers who had expressed
their unhappiness working
under the management of Chipo Dyanda, who had been given a new mandate to
continue to lead Zupco together with the same team since 2002.

“Your committee also noted that the minister did not have first-hand
experience on what was happening at Zupco in terms of supervision and
control. The Minister was oblivious that the Zupco board chairperson had
served the board for more than three consecutive terms. Your committee is of
the notion that such length of tenure compromises the principles of good
governance,” said Karenyi.

The issue of non-payment of workers’ salaries was one of the issues
affecting Zupco. Karenyi said one of the committee’s recommendations was to
call the Anti-Corruption Commission and external auditors to probe Zupco’s
salary affairs.

Karenyi said many of the workers were dismissed unfairly at the parastatal
and were challenging their cases in court as there was a lot of corruption
and unfair labour practise at Zupco.

The report noted a lot of corrupt activities at Zupco which have brought it
down to its knees.

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Glimmer of hope for MDC governors

Written by Gift Phiri, Chief Writer
Thursday, 14 June 2012 12:58

HARARE - The High Court on July 10 will sit to hear arguments why six MDC
provincial governors cannot be sworn in by President Robert Mugabe.

Judge president George Chiweshe handed down a landmark ruling on Monday
throwing out attempts by Mugabe’s lawyers to stonewall MDC demands to have
the President show cause in court why six MDC governors must not be sworn-in
in line with the Global Political Agreement (GPA).

Mugabe’s lawyers cited Rule 18 of the High Court which shields Mugabe from
prosecution, but Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s legal team successfully
argued that the rule cannot be invoked in this instance because it was being
used to defeat or delay superior rights outlined in the Constitution.

Outside the court process, Mugabe had offered varied reasons why the MDC
governors cannot assume office, including arguments that the MDC parties
must first call for the removal of a Western travel ban and asset freeze on
the 88-year-old leader and his inner circle.

Mugabe says only then can the six MDC governors be sworn-in.

Tsvangirai has said the principals in the GNU had agreed to a formula for
the allocation of governors based on results of the 2008 election.

“It is for this reason that the MDC was awarded five governors as a
reflection of our mandate from the people,” Tsvangirai says. “To then
artificially link the allocation of governors to the issue of restrictive
measures is a blatant attempt to undermine the GPA, the inclusive government
and the will of the people.”

The five mainstream MDC nominees for the gubernatorial posts are Senator
James Makore (Harare Metropolitan province), Seiso Moyo (Bulawayo), Lucia
Matibenga (Masvingo), Tose Sansole (Matebeleland North) and Julius
Magarangoma (Manicaland). Leader of the smaller MDC Welshman Ncube is yet to
reveal his party’s choice for governor.

Zanu PF will retain four governors’ posts.

The January 29, 2009 Sadc communiqué, issued exactly two weeks before the
GNU came into being, says “the provincial governors will be sworn-in at the
soonest opportunity.” But three years on, the MDC governors are still not in

In addition, the principals decided that the six governors whose tenure is
to be terminated as a result of that agreement will be paid an agreed

But Mugabe’s Zanu PF has refused to let the MDC governors take office
ostensibly because there is no money for termination packages and that the
office of the governor is an extension of the President’s office.

Therefore, argues Zanu PF hawks, provincial governors serve at the pleasure
of the President and not the Prime Minister.

Despite Zanu PF’s remonstrations, the bottom line is there is an agreement
Zanu PF must abide by. And inversely the MDC is already playing its part in
getting the sanctions removed.

The EU will next month make a key decision to get the targeted measures

While the Judge President is expected to hear the merits of this case on
July 10, even if he rules in favour of Tsvangirai, Mugabe can still appeal
to the Supreme Court, further delaying the process.

It took almost two years for the High Court to okay Tsvangirai’s suit.

The Supreme Court appeal can take longer.

And even if Mugabe decides to install the governors, they will only serve
for less than a year before Zimbabwe goes for fresh polls.

It is a classical case that reveals Mugabe’s sincerity deficit in
implementing the GPA and his blatant power-retention agenda.

So much has happened as the stand-off over governors has rumbled on. Zanu PF
Harare governor David Karimanzira passed on last year.

And in a sign of blatant impunity, Karimanzira’s death sparked a fierce race
in Zanu PF, with Harare provincial heavyweights girding their loins to snap
up the gubernatorial post, which comes with fabulous perks, including the
traditional Mercedes Benz and a governor’s mansion in The Grange.

Zanu PF officials Tendai Savanhu, Amos Midzi, Nyasha Chikwinya were all
being linked to the Harare resident ministerial post even though the post is
reserved for an MDC candidate.

Harare has no governor right now.

And nothing is being said about Makore, the rightful candidate, who is
watching in consternation as his aspirations go up in smoke.

The High Court hearing on July 10 offers the last glimmer of hope. But like
they say, justice delayed is justice denied.

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Chief forcing villagers to pay defense for Magura killers

By Tererai Karimakwenda
14 June 2012

Chief Otilia Chimukoko has allegedly been leading ZANU PF activists in the
Mudzi North area of Mashonaland East, forcing villagers to contribute money
for a legal fund to assist the ZANU PF members accused of murdering an MDC-T
official last month.

SW Radio Africa correspondent Lionel Saungweme said Otilia Chimukoko, who is
one of the few female chiefs in the country and has been a ZANU PF loyalist
since age 13, is moving around the Chimukoko area with Never Makita, Dudzai
Kamhaka and another activist identified as Nyamuromo.

They are demanding that each villager pay $1 and that each village should
collect at least $50 or there will be violent punitive actions. The
villagers are being told openly that the money is to go towards a ZANU-PF
purse, established to provide legal fees for the seven party members accused
of murdering Cephas Magura.

Magura, who was the MDC-T chairman for Ward One Mudzi North, was killed by a
ZANU PF mob of about 300 who attacked 70 MDC-T activists at a rally at
Chimukoko Business centre. The seven were arrested after the murder in May,
a murder which shocked the country.

“Chief Otilia Chimukoko is known for violence in that area and her name was
associated with attacks on the MDC members during the 2008 elections. She is
the type that is known to lead from the front,” Saungweme explained. He
added that Otilia became chief at age 13, appointed by ZANU PF.

Saungweme said ZANU PF is trying to disassociate themselves from Sekuru
Magura’s accused killers, because the incident received a lot of bad press.
“This is why they don’t seem to be paying for the legal team. It’s just a
strategy,” our correspondent explained.

He said ZANU PF activists in the Mudzi area continue to make public threats
against anyone who supports the MDC formations. According to trusted sources
Ward 2 Councillor Jivas Chiutsa and a war vet named Peter Chari were seen at
Dendera Business Centre on Tuesday, threatening to kill MDC supporters in
the same way that Magura was killed.

The Mudzi disrict of Mashonaland East has been tense since the murder three
weeks ago and people have been staying at home whenever possible. Saungweme
said the area is controlled by “die-hard” loyal ZANU PF supporters

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MPs lead the fight against HIV in Zim

By Alex Bell
14 June 2012

Members of Zimbabwe’s parliament are set to lead the way in the fight to
stop the spread of HIV in the country, with more than 60 MPs agreeing to a
public AIDS test next week.

The public action follows the launch of the Zimbabwe Parliamentarians
against HIV and AIDS (ZIPAH) campaign, launched in March, with MPs from
across the political divide pledging to end the stigma of AIDS testing.

ZIPAH Chairperson Blessing Chebundo told SW Radio Africa on Thursday that as
a starting point, legislators have volunteered for the public test, set to
take place at parliament next Friday.

“Legislators should lead an exemplary life by going for voluntary HIV
testing, urging them to disclose their status as part of a broader program
to achieve the global campaign that focuses on the three zeros, namely, zero
new infections, zero discrimination and zero deaths related to HIV and
 AIDS,” Chebundo said.

He added: “On the 22nd of this month 61 legislators will go for testing
while 28 of them will also undergo male circumcision.”

Chebundo added that this is the start of what he hopes will be a larger
campaign and that more MPs and community leaders will join their efforts. He
said it will take a national commitment towards fighting the disease to end
it’s spread.

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Late Vice President Nkomo's Son Supports Devolution

Bulawayo, June 14, 2012 - The son of the late Vice President and
nationalist, Joshua Nkomo, said devolution of power should be included in
the new constitution as this will help in dealing with Gukurahundi victims’

Currently there is a call by MDC formations and civic groups for the
compensation of Gukurahundi victims but Zanu (PF) has been rejecting it.
More than 20 000 people were killed during Gukurahundi massacres conducted
by 5th Brigade soldiers in the late 1980s in Matebeleland and Midlands

Sibangilizwe Nkomo told Radio VOP that he was fully behind the inclusion of
devolution of power in the new constitution.

“As someone from Matebeleland I fully support devolution of power in the new
constitution. Devolution of power should be a starting point to resolve the
issue of Gukurahundi  victims’ compensation. It will be used to heal these
wounds as those traumatised will be free to talk about it and get
assistance. Devolution of power actually makes a lot of sense. I don’t see
any reason why we waited for 32 years to have devolution of power.”

President Robert Mugabe has rejected “devolution of power” saying Zimbabwe
is too small for that and it will also divide Zimbabweans.

Zimbabwe Human rights organisations, civic society groups, pressure groups
and other opposition political parties have called for the urgent
implementation of devolution of power to stop the continued marginalisation
of some provinces.

They argue that devolution of power would uplift some of the country’s
provinces that had remained marginalised since Independence in 1980.

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Frost Wreak Havoc On Crops In Bulawayo

Bulawayo, June 14, 2012 - Frost damaged crops worth thousands of dollars in
commercial farming areas of Esigodini, Umguza, Matopos and Nyamandlovu,
which experienced temperatures as low as minus two degrees this week.

“My two and a half hectare crop of tomato was destroyed by frost on Monday
night. The crop was almost near maturing stage and I had secured orders for
the tomatoes in Bulawayo. The entire crop is a write off and I do not know
how I am going to pay my workers,” said Edmore Pakathi, a farmer from

Another farmer from Umguza commercial farming area said he had also lost his
vegetable crop to frost.

“My situation was worsened by the fact that my plot is located on a
watershed. Frost normally favours such areas. I have cancelled my daily
morning trips to the market in Bulawayo because all the vegetables have
turned brownish, an indication that they have been affected by frost,” said
the farmer.

A survey carried by Radio VOP at the vegetable market in Bulawayo on
Wednesday revealed an acute shortage of vegetables in the city as a result
of the frost. A bucket of tomatoes, which usual cost $5 per bucket, is now
being sold at between $10 and $15.

The Meteorological Services Department has predicted that this year’s winter
season is going to be one of the coldest with temperatures expected to drop
drastically.  The loss of heat from the ground results in the occurrence of

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War vets sell firewood

War veterans who invaded the once productive Jack Hulley Farm in Mutare
South during the Zanu (PF) government’s land “reform” programme are
currently doing brisk business selling firewood from the exotic and
indigenous trees on the property.
by Clayton Masekesa

The war vets, who have failed to use the land productively, have nothing to
live on except the timber, which they are felling indiscriminately.
Truckloads of firewood are seen being transported from the farm to Mutare
city for sale on a massive scale.

“It is so painful to note that the farm that was the hub of farming
activities in Chigodora area is now in a sorry state. Those nice trees are
no longer there – just huge tracts of land being misused,”said Andrew
Masiyazi, a villager near the farm.

A well-known war veteran Caleb Mwatongera said: “This is our land and
everything on it belongs to us. We fought for this country. We are in the
business of selling firewood and I do not see what’s wrong with that. We
want to survive and feed our families - you know there was drought last

He said a fully loaded lorry was sold for $350 and a cord of firewood for

The Environmental Management Agency Provincial Environmental Officer,
Kingston Chitotombe said the agency was aware of the situation.

“We are working with other various stakeholders including the Local
Government, Police and other relevant key ministries in order to control the
situation. We held a meeting with these stakeholders together with the
farmers last month and explained to them the implications of cutting down of
trees, which speeds land degradation that would fast threaten productive
farming,” explained Chitotombe.

Protracted power outages have led to an increased demand for alternative
sources of energy. The Zimbabwe Electricity Transmission and Distribution
Company (ZETDC) last week launched an 18 hour load shedding programme

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Chihuri stuns congregants

Police Commissioner General, Augustine Chihuri, took congregants at a church
service aback when he recently turned a church sermon into a political
rally. He was addressing members of the force and recruits who are set to
pass out on June 14 and 18 at a church service held at Morris Depot in
by Talent Bhachi

Taking a leaf from Zanu (PF) politicians, now famous for turning social
gatherings into political platforms, the self-confessed party zealot
attacked perceived ‘colonial masters’ who he said were trying to colonize
Zimbabwe through ‘remote control’.

“In the first place, Zimbabwe must be for Zimbabweans and not outsiders. It
is your duty to make sure people are living in peace and not under the
remote control of former colonizers,” said Chihuri.

He also lambasted foreign prophets, saying they were visiting Zimbabwe
merely to gain popularity. “Some prophets are coming here for the wrong
purpose. They want to override our own preachers and our own way of doing
things. They must go back and shine in their own countries,” he said.

In a veiled attack on TB Joshua, the Nigerian pastor who has gained fame for
making accurate prophecies, Chihuri said: “They are saying a lot of bad
things about Zimbabwe, calling it a small country, yet in their own
countries many disasters are happening, planes are crashing and people are
dying every day.”

Chihuri said law enforcement was the core business of the police force and
urged the congregants to safeguard Zimbabwe’s sovereignty. A former war
veteran, he is one of the security chiefs who have refused to salute Prime
Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, dismissing his MDC party as a puppet of western
governments. Twenty seven squads of police recruits are scheduled to pass
out this month.

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Spoiler alert: Judge takes 'judicial peek' at Zim report

14 Jun 2012 12:27 - Niren Tolsi

Judge Joseph Raulinga has exercised his right to a "judicial peek" at the
government report compiled by two SA judges on the 2002 Zim elections.

In accordance with a Constitutional Court ruling in November last year,
North Gauteng High Court judge Joseph Raulinga exercised his right to a
“judicial peek” at a government report compiled by two South African judges
on the sociopolitical and legal circumstances around the 2002 national
elections in Zimbabwe on Thursday morning.

This, despite attempts by the government to have arguments over a
last-minute affidavit by former president Thabo Mbeki – who had commissioned
Constitutional Court judges Sisi Khampepe and Dikgang to compile the
report – be heard first.

The Mail & Guardian had, three years ago, brought an application under the
Promotion of Access to Information Act to gain access to the report which
the newspaper felt was “clearly a matter of public interest”.

It is understood that the report would point to the political, social and
legal context within which the 2002 Zimbabwe elections took place.

In Mbeki’s affidavit, he said: “I had received reports that specific
questions were being raised with regard to some of the laws that were being
enacted in Zimbabwe.

This included the manner in which the laws were being applied … By way of
example, the common voters’ role, read with the Citizenship Act, 1984, was
interpreted as resulting in the disenfranchisement of voters.”

“In the implementation of the Zimbabwe Public Order and Security Act there
was a view that this Act limited the constitutional right to freedom of
speech, association, and assembly. Some of the complaints that reached me
were that campaign meetings were being disrupted on the basis that they were
prohibited by law,” continued Mbeki in his affidavit.

It was there reports, stated Mbeki, that caused him to dispatch Khampepe and
Moseneke to Zimbabwe.

Advocate Marumo Moerane had argued for the government that Raulinga should
first consider argument around Mbeki’s affidavit, which states that he
considered the two judges to be “presidential envoys” and thus “of necessity
confidential in nature”.

Raulinga however, considered the state’s tactics as an attempt to “throw a
spanner in the works”.

“My understanding [of the Constitutional Court order] is that I get the
report, I read the report and then we proceed,” Raulinga told the court.

At lunchtime on Thursday, Raulinga had adjourned court and was reading the
report. The matter is expected to proceed on Thursday after the judge’s

The case was expected to resume at 2pm.

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RBZ warns banks exorbitant charges

14/06/2012 00:00:00
    by Roman Moyo

THE Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) has vowed to take action against banks
that fail to review exorbitant service charges which are eroding servers’
deposits and forcing people to keep their money out of the formal banking

Authorities say high bank charges are discouraging savings with individuals
and corporate organisations having to fork out up to US$40 in monthly bank

Figures obtained by show that individuals are charged
between US$1.50 and US$5 for a single withdrawal while companies pay up to
US$10, depending on the amounts involved.

Early this month the RBZ gave local banks a two-week ultimatum to review the
service charges and interest rates with governor Gideon Gono insisting the
problem was “an aberration he would address urgently”.

“Funds deposited into banks are supposed to appreciate rather than
depreciate. I am against the charges being levied by banks on deposits and I
am going to address the anomaly in the next 14 days. Unfavourable service
charges would be dealt with successfully,” said Gono at a symposium
organised by the Affirmative Action Group (AAG).

“I have already dealt with the collateral challenges and the issue of
interest and bank charges should not be a problem. There is need for banks
to lower interest rates,” he said.

Banks are charging up to US$6 dollars to maintain individual accounts while
corporate bodies pay as much as US$10. Inter-account transfers cost between
US$1 and US$5, depending on the bank for both individuals and corporate.

Service charges for salary processing tariffs cost between US$2 and US$4 per
entry for manual salary payments. Unclaimed salaries cost between US$4 and
US$7. Facility negotiation fees for companies cost about 5% of the value of
the overdraft or loan while between US$4 and US$8 is charged for stop

Accounts closed within six months attract a penalty of between US$18 and
US$25, while reactivation of a dormant account cost between US$20 and US$25.

AAG national president, Keith Guzah said high bank charges were forcing
people divert money from the formal banking sector. He also accused local
banks of not supporting the small and medium enterprise (SMEs) sector which
he said was critical to economic growth.

“Bank charges and interest rates should attract savings. This applies to all
banks. They (banks) should do more to support SMEs, is critical to economic
growth,” said Guzah.

“Our hope is that the banks develop flexible lending strategies and realise
the importance of supporting SMEs. We now have new banks in terms of
ownership, but the mentality is still the same when it comes to lending and
banks charges.”

The AAG boss said warned that the country’s indigenisation programme could
fail unless banks come up with programmes to support local businesses.

“As AAG we are not expecting to be advanced money that is not accounted for.
We are just pushing for the provision of programmes that we can participate
in and boost economic growth,” said Guzah.

Official statistics indicate that more than 70 percent of Zimbabweans are
employed in the informal sector. It is also estimated that more than US$2
billion is circulating in this sector.

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Mutambara was a 'mad man': Mugabe

14/06/2012 00:00:00
    by Moses Matenga I NewsDay

PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe poked fun at Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara
Wednesday saying had it not been that Zimbabwe has a good education system,
the former University of Zimbabwe (UZ) student leader would have remained “a
mad man” he was back then.

Addressing delegates at the launch of the Science Technology and Innovation
Policy in Harare yesterday, Mugabe said Mutambara used to behave like a “mad
man” during his student activism days, but had transformed into an
intellectual of note.

“Ten years ago we were here. In between lots of things happened, lots of
technology and people have become much more sophisticated,” he said.

“I don’t know what Professor Mutambara was doing then in 2002. He used to be
a mad man at University (of Zimbabwe),” Mugabe said.

“That education has its effects on persons. It gives them that essence of
dignity. It makes an individual that would have been just a lump of flesh
get to an intellectual level much more advanced than he was born with.”

In reference to Mutambara, Mugabe said: “It adapts you and you become
mature, more polished, more loveable, and more handsome. There you are, but
remember how you used to behave during your university days.”

Mugabe also said: “While we are very happy with the linkages that we have
with friendly countries around the world, we are aware that some countries
are hostile to our interests as manifested in the abrupt cutting of
collaboration linkages in the past. I remain hopeful that our continued
negotiations with the international community will result in the total
removal of illegal sanctions.”

Earlier Mutambara urged Mugabe to dump the Zanu PF party slogan “Land is the
Economy and the Economy is Land” and adopt “Science and Technology is the
Economy and the Economy is Science and Technology.”

Mutambara led several violent protests at the UZ when he was a student
leader between 1989 and the early 1990s leading to his arrest and

The launch was attended by Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, DPM Thokozani
Khupe, several ministers from all the political parties and MPs, among other

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Drought in Zimbabwe leads to increase in TB-related deaths

Thu, 14 Jun 2012 09:51 GMT

Source: member // International HIV/AIDS Alliance - UK

More people from Matabeleland are dying from tuberculosis (TB) related
illnesses than in any other area of Zimbabwe, a situation feared to be
linked to the drought currently afflicting the southern region.

According to latest statistics from the Ministry of Health and Child
Welfare, up to 18% of TB patients in Matabeleland North province, and 14% in
Matabeleland South province, die while on TB treatment.

Matabeleland region is home to the South Africa and Botswana borders and
prone to droughts. The region has received virtually no rain this year,
leaving people in rural areas vulnerable to hunger.

TB and HIV patients on medication in those provinces are the worst affected
as their medication requires that they be well fed. As they are reportedly
starving, they are being forced to take medication on empty stomachs.

Additionally, studies have shown that in the body’s attempt to fight
infection energy expenditure is increased thereby increasing energy needs in
TB patients.

Charles Sandy, the national TB programme manager, is concerned: “We need to
identify what the reasons are behind the deaths. We are speculating that
perhaps it’s cross border health issues because of the mobility of the
population in the southern region,” he said.

He further speculated that the high death rates could also be related to
multi-drug resistant TB, attributable to the fact that there was not
adequate attention to TB- HIV integration in that part of the country.

TB is among the top ten diseases of public health importance in Zimbabwe and
remains the leading cause of deaths among people living with HIV and AIDS.
The country is ranked number 17 among the 22 TB high burden countries of the

However last year, TB cases in the country dropped to 40,600 from 47,000
recorded in 2010.

The World Health Organisation reports that nearly 39 million people around
the world suffer from TB annually while around 1.4 million of them die of
the communicable disease related illnesses worldwide.

Addressing residents in Bulawayo, the Matabeleland capital, Henry Madzorera,
the Health and Child Welfare Minister, said that the government was in the
process of investigating the causes of the high death rates due to
TB-related illnesses in this part of the country. He said that more than 10%
was unacceptable.

Samkeliso Ndlovu is a Zimbabwean journalist and member of the Key
Correspondents Team, a vibrant network of some 250 citizen journalists based
in 50 countries who write about health and development issues affecting them
and their communities.

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More troubles for Arda, Green Fuel deal?

Written by Business Writer
Thursday, 14 June 2012 16:04

HARARE - As agriculture minister Joseph Made has disowned Green Fuel’s
multi-million dollar deal with the Agricultural Rural Development Authority
(Arda), it has emerged that the parastatal could have violated its own
mandate and statutes on agricultural development.

While Authority chairperson Basil Nyabadza claims the closure of the
southeastern Zimbabwe project may jeopardise the company’s entire
operations, inquiries by businessdaily have shown that Arda could have
violated Section 18 of its Act, which govern its land leases.

“State land specified… shall not be granted, sold, leased or otherwise
disposed of to any person other than on the recommendation of the
 Authority,” the laws say.

“Where State land specified… has been granted, sold, leased or otherwise
disposed of to the Authority or to any subsidiary company referred to in
Section Twenty, such land shall not be granted, sold, leased or otherwise
disposed of to a third party by the Authority or that company, as the case
may be, without the approval of the Minister and the appropriate Minister,”
added Section 18(5) of the same Act.

On Monday, Made said Cabinet had concluded that the built-operate-transfer
(BOT) arrangements between Arda and Billy Rautenbach’s companies were “null
and void” — meaning the projects were undertaken without government’s
wholesome approval.

However, Green Fuel maintains the Bot agreements were in compliance with the
country’s laws, specifically Section 17 of the Arda Act and done with the
approval of Nyabadza’s board, and senior management at the time.

Under the contentious deals, three companies namely Green Fuel, Macdom and
Ratings Investment are in the business of processing sugarcane, and ethanol,
but President Robert Mugabe’s government is calling for a review of the

According to government’s latest demands, the state will now hold a 51
percent share in the project, while 39 percent will go to the investor and
10 percent to the local community.

While the tycoon’s companies are enjoying 20-year leases on land where the
sugarcane is being grown, there are fears or concerns that the partnerships
are heavily tilted in the private investors’ favour and since Green Fuel is
not part of the Bot arrangement, Arda is not benefitting significantly from
the deals.

“The ethanol plant is also built on… land being leased from the Chipinge
Rural District Council, so what benefit will this bring to Arda at the end
of the 20 years? Will the ethanol plant also be transferred to Arda?,” said
an analyst.

“Rating (operating at Arda Middle Sabi Estate) and Macdom (operating at Arda
Chisumbanje) are 100 percent owned by the investor, and Arda is not a
shareholder (in these entities), and neither does it have management and
board representatives. So who then monitors production income for Arda’s
information and who determines the price the cane is bought at?,” they said.

While hundreds of thousands of acres of land are under cultivation and Green
Fuel had produced over 10 million litres of ethanol by January, the company’s
push for mandatory blending are also facing serious resistance due to
concerns that this would be akin to creating a monopoly.

As things stand, Energy minister Elton Mangoma has said the company is free
to export its product.

In recent months, Rautenbach’s company and government have also clashed over
the former’s refusal to provide its cost build-up, and other regulatory

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London Group Pushes for Audit of Zimbabwe's $8 Billion Debt

13 June 2012

Gibbs Dube | Washington

A London-based non-profit organization, Jubilee Debt Campaign, has started
lobbying lawmakers in the United Kingdom and Zimbabwe to push for the
auditing of the nation’s ballooning external debt projected to hit the $8
billion mark by the end of 2012.

Jubilee policy officer Tim Jones told Studio 7 Wednesday his organization
has teamed up with the Zimbabwe Coalition on Debt and Development and other
stakeholders to press for the audit and subsequent cancellation of the debt.

Jones said they are calling for the involvement of ordinary people in making
decisions on government borrowings instead of leaving it to the state which
has over the years almost mortgaged the country to international finance

“We believe that the debt audit will ensure that government borrowings will
be questioned for the benefit of future generations,” he said.

Zimbabwe’s Finance Minister Tendai Biti has suggested that the state should
seek the cancellation of its debt through the unpopular indebted poor
countries initiative. President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu PF strongly opposes
such moves.

The inclusive government adopted the implementation of a holistic and
internally driven strategy to deal with the external debt through requesting
for debt relief, the injection of fresh financing from development partners
and the effective utilization of the country’s natural resources.

According to Biti, the full extent of Zimbabwe’s external indebtedness and
the effect of capitalization of interest due to arrears accumulation should
be quantified.

As at the end of December 2010, the country’s unvalidated external debt
position was estimated at $6.9 billion of which almost $4.8 billion was
accumulated arrears.

Multilateral institutions are owed a total of $2.5 billion of which the
World Bank is owed $1.1 billion, the International Monetary Fund $550
million, the African Development Bank $529 million, and the European
Investment Bank $221 million. Arrears to the IMF amount to $140 million.

Total bilateral debt amounts to $2.4 billion of which Paris Club creditors
account for $2 billion and Non-Paris Club $361 million.

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SOS from the 7th Day Adventist Church in Northfield Birmingham;

One of our church members was found dead her name is Feebie Zengeya we are
trying to find family or any one who may have know this lady we have her
date of birth as 23 June 1972 it is said her mothers name is Happy. please
can you ask around our Zimbabwean community before she receives a pauper's
burial. She was living in Rochdale. Anyone with information please contact
Maisie on 07957375153 or Mai Sekete on 07984652453. Pass on the text, it
might be the one that will make the difference.

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Female stone grinders

June 14th, 2012

female stone grinders

The economic decline in Zimbabwe has left many women with no choice but to find alternate, and often backbreaking, means of surviving.

Some women living in the satellite town of Chitungwiza  have resorted to crushing boulders with hammers to make stone chips for a living.  Most of the women doing this are desperate to supplement their husbands’ meagre salaries, if they are lucky enough to have husbands around.

Our government pretends to show concern, often calling upon women to bring them project proposals, but continue to turn a blind eye to these local women whose hands are cracked and backs are bent in their attempt to earn an honest living.

I recently visited one such quarry, and I almost wept.  In any normal country this work would be done by stone crushing machines.  These women told me they make around US$120 per month if they are lucky, selling one full wheel barrow for $2.   To hand crush enough stone for three wheelbarrows takes at least a full day, but then they still have to wait on buyers with hope in their hearts.

One major challenge they also face is the game of cat and mouse they play with the Environmental Management Authority, officials who argue they are destroying the environment and either demand huge fines or bribes with the threat of being hauled off to jail.

The women of Zengeza 5 are prepared to continue working as long as they can, even until the call of death beckons and as long as they can still lift the hammer.

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Revisiting the Democratic Dream - Part 2: iLIVE

Lennon Mhishi, via email | 14 June, 2012 16:15

A continuation of 'Revisiting the Democratic Dream'.

Across the Limpopo where I come from, many believe democracy has been on
hold for the past decade.

The revolutionary mantra has been that a country that came on the back of
bloodshed cannot be lost through the vote. The elections, where citizens
vote, is not a good enough system for choosing their government because
their choices are manipulated by racist and colonial capital. In other
words, the average Zimbabwean is too narrow and stupid to understand the
complicated nature of international politics and ideology -- their vote
cannot count.

Some have maintained that Zimbabwe is the only truly independent country in
Africa, because we have reclaimed our land, our mines, and we are on the
path to empowering the black majority. Did I say “majority”? Well, I am not
very sure that in the past ten years the Zimbabwean majority is anywhere
near empowered. I need enlightenment. I am certainly not the majority. Of
course, I am not there right now because I did not feel empowered!

There is no doubt in my opinion that Zimbabwe will prosper and thrive, but
under what kind of democracy? Elections have been marred by violence, unlike
in South Africa where they have been 'peaceful'. “Democracy” as it is
popularly chanted has not brought Zimbabwe the respite it wants. Sanctions,
whether regarded as targeted or not, have not brought about democracy in
Zimbabwe. For some, they brought such for South Africa, a mutilated
democracy enjoyed by a few.

Today there are calls to remove sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe. There have
been efforts to write a new constitution, but is that enough? What will
bring democracy, what kind of democracy? Today, South Africa is celebrated
for having one of the most progressive constitutions, to whose benefit are
words enshrined in documents when they cannot feed hungry mouths, or shelter
bodies freezing from the winter chill?

In Shona there are two contradicting proverbs that come to my mind when I
think of democracy.

One says mwana asingacheme anofira mumbereko (a child that does not cry will
die on its mothers back) and the other one mugoti unopihwa anyerere (the
cooking spoon will be given to the silent one). There seems to be an
assumption that we can give our power to a sovereign who will cater for the
needs of the majority; that democracy means fair and equal. No. It does not.

Do we remain silent, or do we cry when our mother's back burns us? Or we are
the tenderprenuers and praise singers, who will remain silent so we get the
cooking spoon? Luxuriate in the midst of death?

I have always argued that there is an ideological vacuum in Africa today,
that is why it is easy for us to throw around democracy and good governance
as fads, without a concrete attempt at application or appreciation of
contextual realities! That is why despots will claim to be “democratic”
because they hold elections every few years! Possibly because of a past that
has mutilated our sense of being, or our ineptitude, we seem to fail to
define what will work for us, considering the lessons of the failures and
successes of the models of democracy we follow. (Mostly the failures).

Democracy will never be a free lunch! It will not cater for the majority in
the manner we are experiencing it today. Even in countries like Egypt where
there were “revolutions”, entrenched systems of power continue rearing their
ugly heads. Should we then just sit, and hope things will take their course,
when history teaches us otherwise? Do we learn at all?

If democracy is near to what South Africa is today, to what Zimbabwe has
seen in the past decade, then democracy thrives on violence and ignorance,
on the poverty, hunger and disease of the majority, on the sacrifice of the
majority on the altar of the affluence of the minority.

It is a democracy where Africa remains the world’s prostitute, where people
and nations can come and go, do as they like, and still hold you in low
esteem, where we are slaves to the world, and even to our own people, where
respect for life, for self and basic dignity are exchanged for the meagre!
If this is democracy then I do not want it!

South Africa will soon be celebrating Youth Day, and Zimbabwe Heroes day. I
sit and think, what will we be celebrating?

These are two very different countries, but they are two countries I have
been able to see parts of, and to sit and think about. A lot has been done,
but a lot has also been done wrong. We live in South Africa in what some
regard as an illusory democracy, and in Zimbabwe, in what one may regard as
an aborted democracy, and in both countries, a miscarriage of social justice
cannot be denied.

Do we truly want these kinds of democracy? Not me! Maybe as Edward Blake,
the character of the Comedian says in the film Watchmen says: “It’s a joke,
it's all a fuckin’joke”

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A commentary on Zimbabwe

Clifford Chitupa Mashiri 14th June 2012.

News that securocrats have recruited manpower without Treasury approval is
frightening ahead of what looks set to be a bloody sham election if Mugabe
gets his way.

Despite announcing last year, plans to reduce the army’s manning levels from
55 000 to 40 000 for budgetary reasons, Zanu-pf Defence Minister Emmerson
Mnangagwa was last week demanding US$2.5 million for defence amid reports
that 4 600 soldiers were recruited between January and May, without Treasury

There are fears of the return of the infamous Green Bombers to shore up
Mugabe in the next polls after Major Gen Martin Chedondo reportedly said,
the army would lower its standards to accommodate youths from all villages
into the army.

The military was not alone in recruiting without authority. The Zimbabwe
Republic Police recruited 1 200 personnel also without Treasury approval
consequently straining limited resources in training depots and military

The reason why the Zimbabwe economy is underperforming is arguably down to
the radar-less and partisan indigenisation campaign and a lack of
transparency in diamond remittances from the military-controlled Marange
diamond fields.

This comes in the wake of revelations that the government could have been
defrauded of about US$50 million after Zanu-pf allegedly irregularly
employed 5 662 suspected youth militia as youth officers.

Calculations published by the Standard based on an estimated civil service
average salary and allowances of US$150 for February 2009 to December 2011,
showed that each youth received about US$5 250 giving an aggregate figure of
US$29 725 500.

The figure could reach US$50 million after factoring in salary increases and
allowances for the militias who were in Grade B1 from US$160 to US$253 in
July 2011 and US$296 in January 2012.

The Mugabe regime appears to be working flat out on its Plan ‘B’ to plunge
the country in a constitutional crisis by dissolving Parliament and
frog-march people to sham elections regardless of what SADC leaders resolved
in Luanda.

While SADC’s secondment of its representatives to Zimbabwe’s JOMIC is a
positive development, the regional body lacks teeth to guarantee any
credible elections by June 2013.

Indications are that the seconded officials from SADC were being sidelined
by Harare’s powerful elites and could be withdrawn anytime.

If the GPA was being properly implemented, the Zanu-pf - run Joint
Operations Command (JOC) should have been disbanded a long time ago and
replaced by an inclusive National Security Council. The NSC should be
holding meetings.

That is one of the key reforms that SADC should be pressing for apart from
constitutional, electoral and media reforms, because the partisan security
sector is at the core of the Zimbabwe crisis.

There is every reason to be worried about the activities of the
anachronistic JOC, which is arguably pulling the strings from behind the
scenes in what appears like precipitating a military coup.

Clifford Chitupa Mashiri, Political Analyst, London,

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