The ZIMBABWE Situation
An extensive and up-to-date website containing news, views and links related to ZIMBABWE - a country in crisis
Return to INDEX page
Please note: You need to have 'Active content' enabled in your IE browser in order to see the index of articles on this webpage

Zimbabwe opposition leader says time may be running out for free elections next year

International Herald Tribune

The Associated PressPublished: June 20, 2007

BRUSSELS, Belgium 0: Zimbabwe's opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai said
Wednesday time may be running out to organize free and fair elections next

The Zimbabwe government and Tsvangirai's Movement for Democratic Change are
holding talks in South Africa seeking to solve the political crisis that
reached new heights earlier this year with the arrest and beating of
pro-democracy leaders.

Tsvangirai wants the talks to lay the groundwork for next year's elections.

"The focus of these negotiations is on the forthcoming elections in March,"
he told Associated Press Television News.

"So we are bit anxious what needs to be done to create the conditions for
free and fair elections," said Tsvangirai, who is on a tour of European
capitals. "We may actually be running out (of time) for it."

Zimbabwe has presidential elections scheduled for next year and there are
moves to advance the parliamentary elections by two years from 2010 so they
President Robert Mugabe is still the official candidate though there are
repeated rumors he is under pressure to stand down.

The opposition maintains intimidation of voters and ballot rigging have
robbed it of victory in parliamentary and presidential elections in the
past - warning that polls scheduled for next year will be no different.

It also wants the repeal of sweeping media and security laws, electoral
reforms and an end to state-orchestrated political violence.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Mbeki to brief SADC on Zimbabwe talks

Business Day

20 June 2007

Dumisani Muleya


Harare Correspondent

ZIMBABWE's ruling Zanu (PF) and opposition Movement for Democratic Change
(MDC) returned home yesterday after initial talks in Pretoria on the country's
political and economic crisis.

The two rival parties, convening under the mediation of President Thabo
Mbeki, will resume dialogue early next month after Mbeki has reported back
to his Southern African Development Community (SADC) colleagues on the talks
so far.

Mbeki is expected to brief SADC leaders, who authorised him in March to deal
with the issue , by the end of this month. Mbeki will also report to the
African Union (AU) next month.

AU president John Kufuor of Ghana has given Mbeki's mediation his full

Sources said the negotiations , under the chairmanship of SA's Provincial
and Local Government Minister Sydney Mufamadi, went "very well" at a
personal level between delegates despite the two parties' initial positions
being like the "north and south poles".

Zanu (PF) is represented by Zimbabwean Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa
and Labour Minister Nicholas Goche, while the MDC negotiators include
lawyers Welshman Ncube and Tendai Biti.

"The meetings were very friendly and conducted in good spirits but the two
parties held widely divergent views," a source close to the talks said.

After preliminary meetings on Sunday and Monday, the parties agreed to
discuss all the issues they had tabled. It is understood the parties
eventually agreed on a common consolidated agenda.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Zimbabwe business pessimistic about recovery-survey


Wed 20 Jun 2007, 11:46 GMT

HARARE, June 20 (Reuters) - Fewer than 5 percent of Zimbabwe's
industrialists believe the country will recover from its deepening economic
crisis in the next three years, a survey showed on Wednesday.

The southern African country is in its eighth successive year of recession,
marked by the world's highest inflation rate at above 3,700 percent and
which has left four in five people without jobs and people struggling to
feed their families.

The manufacturing sector contributes 15.5 percent to Zimbabwe's gross
domestic product, compared with 24 percent a decade ago.

It has been hit by shortages of electricity and foreign currency as well a
skewed exchange rate and government price controls.

"We are in a crisis ... we no longer have an industry to talk about. We have
de-industrialised ourselves," Callisto Jokonya, head of the Confederation of
Zimbabwe Industries (CZI) said at the launch of a survey on the state of the
manufacturing sector.

The survey, which covered the period from 2008 to 2010, showed that among
business executives in the manufacturing sector, "the percentage of
optimists (on the recovery of the economy) has now dropped to 4.8 percent in
2006, halving from 9 percent in 2005."

Zimbabwe's manufacturing sector was once hailed as one of the most
diversified in sub-Saharan Africa outside South Africa and contributes a
third of the country's export earnings.

Output contracted by 7 percent in 2006 compared to a 3.2 growth in 2005, and
is expected to register a 2 percent decline this year.

Industry Minister Obert Mpofu said the government hoped to arrest the slide
by giving cheap loans to distressed companies, while the broader economic
problems were being addressed through local and regional initiatives.

President Robert Mugabe denies charges that he has mismanaged the economy
during his 27-year rule and accuses Western countries of sabotage to punish
his government for seizing white-owned farms for blacks.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Demands from Mugabe as Zim talks begin


    June 20 2007 at 06:37PM

As the SA government confirmed for the first time on Tuesday that
Zimbabwe peace talks had started in Pretoria, it emerged that Zimbabwe
President Robert Mugabe had set tough conditions for engaging in any
sustained dialogue.

Participants at the first official talks between Mugabe's ruling
Zanu-PF party and the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) are
keeping a tight lid on their deliberations.

"All we can confirm at this stage is that there are talks," said
George Sibotshiwe, MDC spokesperson.

But sources close to the talks say Mugabe demanded in a letter to
President Thabo Mbeki just before the talks that the opposition recognise
him as the legitimate leader of Zimbabwe.

He also demanded that the opposition denounce Western-targeted
sanctions and call for lifting them, among other things.

Since elections in 2000, the opposition has steadfastly stuck to its
position that Mugabe is an illegitimate ruler, spurning the call for lifting
of sanctions saying it is not responsible for sanctions imposed on Mugabe
and his cronies by the West.

Although it was unclear how Mugabe's demands had been addressed,
officials close to the talks said the gap between the two sides remains very
wide. - Independent Foreign Service

This article was originally published on page 3 of Daily News on June
20, 2007

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Crackdown on student leaders intensifies as unrest grows

By Lance Guma
20 June 2007

A state sponsored crackdown directed at student leaders and their relatives
intensified with reports that police have mounted an aggressive manhunt for
Zimbabwe National Student Union president Promise Mkwananzi. His relatives
in Waterfalls and Glen Norah were beaten up with clenched fists and baton
sticks after they told police Mkwananzi did not live with them anymore.

In an interview with Newsreel from South Africa Mkwananzi said police broke
down doors at the Waterfalls property in Harare, accusing his relatives of
hiding him in a particular room. No one was arrested in the incident. He
says he finds it strange the state is trying to resuscitate a manhunt he
thought they had dropped. The raid on the two homes comes in the wake of a
similar raid on the home of Lawrence Mashungu, Vice-Chairperson the Students
Christian Movement of Zimbabwe. Police assaulted Mashungu's brother.

Drawing comparisons with the seizure of Arthur Mutambara's passport,
Mkwananzi suspects the regime was trying to block his participation in a
Save Zimbabwe Campaign trip to Europe. The ZINASU leader, who is a third
year law student, has been deregistered from his faculty at the University
of Zimbabwe. Authorities at the campus have so far refused to disclose the
reasons for the de-registration. Mkwananzi says he got a High Court order
overturning the decision but Vice Chancellor Levi Nyagura told, 'to go and
learn at the judges house.'

Students countrywide are said to be restless over a variety of issues. Top
up fees are high on the agenda, power cuts and what the students describe as
deteriorating food standards have set up a cocktail of unsuitable learning
conditions. The state is aware of the simmering tensions and has responded
by deploying soldiers and other security guards, disguised as campus
security guards. It's these security agents who are carrying out most of the
assaults on the students before they hand them over to the police.

Another student leader, Witlaw Mugwiji, is said to have been admitted at
Masvingo Central Hospital after Masvingo University security officers
attacked him in the examination room. Mugwiji, the President of the Students
Representative Council (SRC), and Edison Hlatshwayo the Secretary General
were both barred from writing their examinations.

ZINASU say Mugwiji has so far been denied a fair trial before a disciplinary
hearing. Meanwhile the Secretary General of the UZ SRC, Kudakwashe Mapundu
and Caesar Sitiya were released Monday evening after being arrested and
detained over charges of malicious injury to property last week Friday. The
police allege the two student leaders smashed windows on a bus at the
university campus on 10th May.

SW Radio Africa Zimbabwe news

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Government accused of lying about German visa refusals

By Violet Gonda
20 August

A German Member of the European Parliament has denied reports claiming
Zimbabwean legislators had been denied visas to attend the ACP-EU Joint
Parliamentary Assembly due to meet in Wiesbaden, Germany next week.
Austin Zvoma, the clerk of parliament, said Zimbabwe would not take part in
the meeting claiming two ruling party legislators, Forbes Magadu and Godfrey
Chipare, had been denied visas. Zvoma however said two legislators,
including opposition MP Nelson Chamisa, had been granted visas.

But a statement by MEP Michael Gahler categorically denies refusing the
Zimbabwean delegation visas and said no formal visa applications have ever
been submitted by the Zimbabwean parliament.

All passports for the delegation, including those of the opposition, were
supposed to have been sent by parliament for visas, but MDC MP Nelson
Chamisa confirmed there was no evidence in his passport that it had been
sent for a visa application. He said this was a deliberate and strategic
ploy by the ruling party in an attempt to block a resolution on Zimbabwe.

Zvoma said: "The parliament of Zimbabwe categorically rejects attempts by
the German authorities to dictate surreptitiously the composition of our
delegation to the meetings. Consequently, all delegates are hereby advised
that the parliament of Zimbabwe has decided not to send a delegation to
these meetings."
Gahler said this is obviously another attempt at manipulation by the
Zimbabwean regime. But reiterated that there are no obstacles for the
participation of a Zimbabwean delegation, as long as they are not on the
sanctions list.

Chamisa said he was surprised to hear that his passport had not even been
taken to the German Embassy for the visa application. "When I checked with
the Germany Embassy they said they had no problems with my visa. So clearly
it shows that somebody is associating with mischief within the corridors of
parliament and that is quite disturbing because we are prejudicing the
nation of the opportunity to represent our own national interests at the
international platform."
The Kuwadzana MP believes this was a strategy to stop people like himself
from going to Germany from telling the other delegates, particularly from
the African, Caribbean and Pacific block, the truth about what's happening
in Zimbabwe.

Chamisa said the Zimbabwean government is working on a strategy: "Once the
delegation has been cancelled you cannot represent the country and once the
country cannot be represented it cannot be discussed or debated in absentia.
So perhaps this is the strategy they are trying to play."
The week-long ACP/EU joint parliamentary assembly will start on Monday.
For the last seven years the Zimbabwe situation has threatened to derail
this international programme. Scores of ruling party officials are on an EU
travel sanctions.

SW Radio Africa Zimbabwe news

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Zim firms run at third of capacity

Wed, 20 Jun 2007
Zimbabwean companies are operating at a third of their capacity as a foreign
currency crunch hampers imports of spares and raw materials, an industry
survey released on Wednesday said.

"The average capacity utilisation for sampled firms was 33.8 percent (down
from 35.8 percent in the previous survey in 2005)," said the Confederation
of Zimbabwe Industries survey.

"We have de-industrialised ourselves," CZI President Callisto Jokonya told
guests at the launch of the report.

"There is a crisis. We no longer have an industry to talk about."

Fuel shortages

He said controls imposed by veteran President Robert Mugabe's government to
rein in galloping prices were not working.

The CZI report said 49 percent of the sampled firms operated below 50
percent capacity with only 9.7 percent operating at above 74 percent.

The industry body said the decline was exacerbated by chronic shortages of
fuel and frequent power cuts.

"In fact, 84 percent and 89 percent of the sampled firms stated that power
cuts and fuel shortages had serious negative effects on their operations."

CZI added that business confidence had dipped to five percent as investors
grew increasingly pessimistic about the state of an economy ravaged by
inflation now believed to have breached 4500 percent.

Soaring inflation

Zimbabwe is in the eighth year of a recession, characterised by the world's
highest rate of inflation, 80 percent unemployment, chronic shortages of
foreign currency and of basic goods such as fuel and the staple cornmeal.

Many factories have pulled down the shutters and relocated to neighbouring
countries while others have scaled down their operations, often running
fewer days a week or with a skeleton workforce.

Financial analysts say an influx of cheap-quality imports mainly from China
has also hit the local industry.


Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Court orders release of 6 MDC detainees

By Lance Guma
20 June 2007

The High Court on Tuesday ordered the release of 6 out of 21 MDC activists
still locked up in remand prison for over 2 months. Justice Lawrence Kamocha
ordered the release of Piniel Denga, Philip Mabika, Peter Chikwati, Jacob
Muvavi, Raymond Bake and Arthur Mhizha while granting them Z$10 million bail
each. The police however refused to release 3 out of the 6, arguing that
Mhizha, Chikwati and Mabika still faced separate charges.

Those released were ordered to report three times a week to the CID law and
order section. Glen View MP Paul Madzore and 17 others, including Morgan
Komichi who is critically ill, remain in custody. The Mugabe regime had
ordered the arrest of several MDC activists on what commentators described
as flimsy charges of engaging in terrorist activities. A series of
suspicious petrol bomb attacks were unleashed on police stations and other
government targets, in what is thought to have been a well worked out excuse
to justify the crackdown on the opposition.

Over 600 activists are said to have been either abducted, beaten, tortured
or hospitalized in 4 months of unrelenting brutality. An aborted prayer
rally by the Save Zimbabwe Campaign in Highfields set the mayhem off after
police used brute force to crush it. Activist Gift Tandare and cameraman
Edward Chikomba were murdered while the body of a third activist was
discovered weeks after the rally.

SW Radio Africa Zimbabwe news

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Reserve Bank of Australia - Media Release

No: 2007-10
Date: 20 June 2007
Embargo: For Immediate Release

The Reserve Bank of Australia, following a directive from the Australian
Government under the Banking (Foreign Exchange) Regulations 1959, currently
administers financial sanctions against certain individuals associated with
the Government of Zimbabwe. The list of individuals subject to sanctions
includes ministers and senior officials of the Government of Zimbabwe, as
well as senior management of state-owned enterprises of Zimbabwe.

The Australian Government has reviewed the list of individuals subject to
financial sanctions and has directed the Reserve Bank to remove 3
individuals and add 27 new individuals to the Annex of names. Amendments
have also been made to 64 entries on the previous list. The updated Annex
(see below) now contains 183 names.

Any transactions involving the transfer of funds or payments to, by the
order of, or on behalf of any person listed in the Annex are prohibited
without prior approval from the Reserve Bank.

Manager, Media Office
Information Department
Reserve Bank of Australia

Phone: +61 2 9551 9720
Fax:     +61 2 9221 5528


List of names:

Updated: 20 June 2007

BIMHA, Michael Chakanaka, Chairman, Air Zimbabwe

BONYONGWE, Happyton, Director-General, Central Intelligence Organisation -
DOB 06/11/1960

BUKA, Flora, Minister of State for Special Affairs in the President's Office
responsible for Land and Resettlement Programmes - DOB 25/02/1968

BVUDZIJENA, Wayne, Assistant Police Commissioner

CHAPFIKA, David, Deputy Minister of Agriculture - DOB 07/04/1957

CHARAMBA, George, Permanent Secretary, Department for Information and
Publicity - DOB 04/04/1963

CHARUMBIRA, Fortune Zefanaya, President of the Council of Chiefs and former
Deputy Minister for Local Government, Member of Parliament & Zanu-PF Central
Committee Member - DOB 10/06/1962

CHAWOTA, David, Acting CEO, Civil Aviation Authority, Zimbabwe - DOB

CHIDHAKWA, Walter, Chairman, Tel-One

CHIDYAUSIKU, Godfrey, Chief Justice, Supreme Court

CHIGARU, Daniel John, Chairman, ZimTrade

CHIGUDU, Tinaye Elisha, Provincial Governor, Manicaland - DOB 13/08/1942

CHIGWEDERE, Aeneas Soko, Minister of Education, Sports and Culture - DOB

CHIHOTA, Phineas, Deputy Minister of Industry and International Trade - DOB

CHIHURI, Augustine, Police Commissioner - DOB 10/03/1953

CHIKAURA, Charles, CEO Zimbabwe Development Bank - DOB 08/08/1955

CHIMBUDZI, Alice, Zanu-PF Politburo Committee Member

CHIMUTENGWENDE, Chenhamo Chakezha, Minister of State for Public and
Interactive Affairs - DOB 28/08/1943

CHINAMASA, Patrick Anthony, Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary
Affairs - DOB 25/01/1947

CHINDORI-CHININGA, Edward, Former Minister of Mines and Mining Development -
DOB 14/03/1955

CHINOTIMBA, Joseph, Deputy Chairman, Zimbabwe National Liberation War
Veterans Assoc

CHIPANGA, Tongesai Shadreck, Former Deputy Minister of Home Affairs - DOB

CHIPATO, Charles, Chairman, National Oil Company of Zimbabwe

CHITEPO, Victoria, Zanu-PF Politburo Committee Member - DOB 27/03/1928

CHIWENGA, Constantine, Lt. Gen., Commander Zimbabwe Defence Forces - DOB

CHIWESHE, George, Chairman, Zimbabwe Electoral Commission - DOB 04/06/1953

CHIWEWE, Willard, Provincial Governor, Masvingo - DOB 19/03/1949

CHIYANGWA, Philip, Former Zanu-PF Provincial Chairman, Mashonaland West

CHOMBO, Ignatius Morgan Chiminya, Minister of Local Government, Public Works
and Urban Development, Zanu-PF Politburo Member, Secretary of the Politburo
Committee on Lands and Resettlement - DOB 01/08/1952

DABENGWA, Dumiso, Zanu-PF Politburo Committee Member - DOB 06/12/1939

DAMASANE, Abigail, Deputy Minister for Women's Affairs, Gender and Community
Development - DOB 27/05/1952

DEKETEKE, Pirirayi, Chairman of the Broadcasting Authority of Zimbabwe

DOKORA, Lazarus, Deputy Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education

DUBE, Tshinga Judge, CEO, Zimbabwe Defence Industries; Retired Colonel - DOB

FUNDIRA, Emmanuel, Former Chairperson, Zimbabwe Tourism Authority

GAMBE, Theophilus Pharoah, Zimbabwe Electoral Commissioner - DOB 20/06/1959

GATA, Sydney, Former Chairman, Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority - DOB

GEORGIAS, Aguy, Senator, Deputy Minister of Economic Development

GOCHE, Nicholas, Minister of Public Services, Labour and Social Welfare, and
Zanu-PF Politburo Secretary for National Security - DOB 01/08/1946

GONO, Gideon, Governor, Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) - DOB 29/11/1959

GULA-NDEBELE, Sobuza, Attorney-General - DOB 12/08/1954

GUMBO, Rugare Aleck Ngidi, Minister of Agriculture (former Minister of
Economic Development) and Zanu-PF Politburo Deputy Secretary for
Administration - DOB 08/03/1940

HOVE, Richard, Zanu-PF Politburo Secretary for Economic Affairs - DOB

HUNGWE, Josaya Dunira, Former Provincial Governor, Masvingo - DOB 07/11/1935

KACHINGWE, Sarah, Commissioner, Zimbabwe Electoral Commission

KADZURA, Jonathan, Vice Chairman, Air Zimbabwe - DOB 10/02/1959

KAHARI, George Payne, Commissioner, Zimbabwe Electoral Commission - DOB

KANGAI, Kumbirai, Zanu-PF Politburo Secretary for External Affairs - DOB

KARIMANZIRA, David Ishemunyoro Godi, Provincial Governor, Harare
Metropolitan; Zanu-PF Politburo Secretary For Finance - DOB 25/05/1947

KASEKE, Karikoga, Chairman of the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority

KASUKUWERE, Saviour, Deputy Minister of Youth Development and Employment
Creation; Zanu-PF Politburo Deputy-Secretary for Youth Affairs - DOB

KAUKONDE, Ray Joseph, Provincial Governor, Mashonaland East - DOB 04/03/1963

KAZEMBE, Joyce, Deputy Chair, Zimbabwe Electoral Commission

KURASHA, Prof. Jameson, Chairman, Zimbabwe Post Ltd

KURUNERI, Christopher Tichaona, Former Minister of Finance and Economic
Development - DOB 04/04/1949

LANGA, Andrew, Deputy Minister of Environment and Tourism - DOB 13/01/1965

LESABE, Thenjiwe, Zanu-PF Politburo Member - DOB 05/01/1933

MACHAYA, Jaison Max Kokerai, Former Deputy Minister of Mines and Mining
Development - DOB 13/06/1952

MADE, Joseph Mtakwese, Minister of State for Agricultural Engineering and
Mechanisation (former Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development) - DOB

MADZONGWE, Edna, President of the Senate and Zanu-PF Politburo Deputy
Secretary for Production and Labour - DOB 11/07/1943

MAFA, David John, Zanu-PF Provincial Chairman, Mashonaland West

MAHOFA, Shuvai Ben, Former Deputy Minister for Youth Development, Gender and
Employment Creation - DOB 04/04/1941

MAHOSO, Tafataona P, Chair, Media Information Commission

MAKAMURE, Wellington, Managing Director, Tel-One

MAKONI, Simbarashe, Zanu-PF Politburo Deputy Secretary General for Economic
Affairs - DOB 22/03/1950

MAKONYERE, Shepherd, Acting Chairman of Agri-Bank (Agriculture Bank of

MAKWAVARARA, Sekesai, Acting Mayor of Harare (Zanu-PF)

MALINGA, Joshua, Zanu-PF Politburo Deputy Secretary for Disabled and
Disadvantaged - DOB 28/04/1944

MALULEKE, Titus Hatlani, Deputy Minister of Education, Sport and Culture

MANDISHONA, Gibson, Chairman, Zimbabwe Revenue Authority - DOB 10/01/1956

MANDIZHA, Barbara, Deputy Police Commissioner - DOB 24/10/1959

MANGWANA, Munyaradzi Paul, Minister of State for Indigenization and
Empowerment (former Minister of State for Anti-Corruption and
Anti-Monopolies) - DOB 10/08/1961

MANIKAI, Edwin, Chairperson, National Social Security Authority

MANYIKA, Elliot Tapfumanei, Minister without Portfolio and Zanu-PF Politburo
Secretary for Commissariat - DOB 30/07/1955

MANYONDA, Kenneth Vhundukai, Former Deputy Minister of Industry and
International Trade - DOB 10/08/1934

MAPHOSA, Fidelian, Zanu-PF Politburo Committee member

MARUMAHOKO, Reuben, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs (former Deputy
Minister of Home Affairs) - DOB 04/04/1948

MASANGA, Gabriel, Former CEO, Zimbabwe Iron and Steel Company

MASAWI, Ephraim Sango, Governor, Mashonaland Central and Zanu-PF Politburo
Deputy Secretary for Information and Publicity

MASHAIRE, Florence, Acting Chairperson, Zimbabwe Investment Authority - DOB

MASUKU, Angeline, Provincial Governor, Matabeleland South and Zanu-PF
Politburo Secretary for Gender and Culture - DOB 14/10/1936

MATANGA, Godwin, Deputy Police Commissioner - DOB 05/02/1962

MATHEMA, Cain Ginyilitshe Ndabazekhaya, Provincial Governor, Bulawayo
Metropolitan - DOB 28/01/1948

MATHUTHU, Thokozile, Provincial Governor, Matabeland North and Zanu-PF
Politburo Secretary for Transport and Welfare

MATIBIRI, Innocent, Deputy Police Commissioner - DOB 09/10/1968

MATIZA, Joel Biggie, Deputy Minister for Rural Housing and Social
Amenities - DOB 17/08/1960

MATONGA, Bright, Deputy Minister for Information and Publicity - DOB circa

MATOWANYIKA, Dr Joseph, CEO, Agriculture and Rural Development Authority

MATSHALAGA, Obert, Deputy Minister of Home Affairs (former Deputy Minister
of Foreign Affairs) - DOB 21/04/1951

MATSHIYA, Melusi Mike, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Home Affairs

MAVHAIRE, Dzikamai, Zanu-PF Politburo Member, Deputy Secretary of the
Politburo Committee on Lands and Resettlement

MBIRIRI, Partson, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Local Government, Public
Works and Urban Development

MIDZI, Amos Bernard Muvenga, Minister for Mines and Mining Development - DOB

MNANGAGWA, Emmerson Dambudzo, Minister for Rural Housing and Social
Amenities and Zanu-PF Politburo Secretary for Legal Affairs - DOB 15/09/1946

MOHADI, Kembo Campbell Dugishi, Minister of Home Affairs and Zanu-PF
Politburo Deputy Secretary for Legal Affairs - DOB 15/11/1949

MOYO, Headman, Zanu-PF Provincial Chairman, Matabeland North

MOYO, Jonathan Nathaniel, Former Minister for Information and Publicity -
DOB 12/01/1957

MOYO, July Gabarari, Former Minister of Energy and Power Development and
former Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare - DOB

MOYO, Musa, Zanu-PF Politburo Committee member

MOYO, Onesimo, General Manager, Mineral Marketing Corporation of Zimbabwe -
DOB 10/02/1959

MOYO, Simon Khaya, Former Zanu-PF Politburo Deputy Secretary for Legal
Affairs; Zimbabwe Ambassador to South Africa - DOB 01/10/1945

MPOFU, Obert Moses, Minister for Industry and International Trade, Zanu-PF
Politburo Deputy Secretary for National Security - DOB 12/10/1951

MPOFU, Rido, Zanu-PF Provincial Chairman, Matabeland South

MSIKA, Joseph, Vice-President - DOB 06/12/1923

MSIPA, Cephas George, Provincial Governor, Midlands - DOB 07/07/1931

MUBAIWA, Richard, CEO, Zimbabwe Investment Authority - DOB 28/02/1967

MUCHENA, Olivia Nyembezi, Minister of State for Science and Technology
Development and Zanu-PF Politburo Secretary for Science and Technology - DOB

MUCHINGURI, Oppah Chamu Zvipange, Minister for Women's Affairs, Gender and
Community Development, Zanu-PF Politburo Secretary for Women's Affairs - DOB

MUDEDE, Tobaiwa Tonneth, Registrar General - DOB 22/12/1942

MUDENGE, Stan Isaak Gorerazvo, Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education and
Zanu-PF Politburo Deputy Secretary for External Affairs - DOB 17/12/1941

MUGABE, Grace, Spouse of Robert Mugabe - DOB 23/07/1965

MUGABE, Leo, Member of Parliament and nephew of Robert Mugabe - DOB

MUGABE, Robert Gabriel, President - DOB 21/02/1924

MUGABE, Sabina, Zanu-PF Politburo Senior Committee Member - DOB 14/10/1934

MUGUTI, Edwin, Deputy Minister of Health and Child Welfare - DOB 02/05/1964

MUJURU, Joyce, Vice-President - DOB 15/04/1955

MUJURU, Solomon Tapfumaneyi Ruzambo, Zanu-PF Politburo Senior Committee
Member and former Commander, Zimbabwe Defence Forces - DOB 01/05/1949

MUMBENGEGWI, Samuel Creighton, Minister of Finance (former Minister for
Indigenization and Empowerment) - DOB 23/10/1942

MUMBENGEGWI, Simbarashe Simbanenduku, Minister for Foreign Affairs - DOB

MUPFUMIRA, Prisca, Chairperson, Minerals Marketing Corporation of Zimbabwe

MURERWA, Herbert Muchemwa, Former Minister of Finance and Zanu-PF Politburo
Deputy Secretary for Education - DOB 31/07/1941

MURINGANI, Willie, Chairman, Zimbabwe National Water Authority

MUSARIRI, Munyaradzi, Assistant Police Commissioner

MUSHAYAKARARA, Elisha, CEO, Zimbabwe Financial Holding Company - DOB

MUSHOHWE, Christopher Chindoti, Minister of Transport and Communication -
DOB 06/02/1954

MUTASA, Didymus Noel Edwin, Minister of State for National Security, Lands,
Land Reform and Resettlement, and Zanu-PF Politburo Secretary for
Administration - DOB 27/07/1935

MUTASA, Mr Justin, Chairman, Zimbabwe Broadcasting Holdings; CEO, Zimbabwe
Newspapers Group

MUTEZO, Munacho Thomas Alvar, Minister for Water Resources and
Infrastructural Development - DOB 14/02/1954

MUTINHIRI, Ambrose, Retired Brigadier, Minister of Youth Development, Gender
and Employment Creation - DOB 22/02/1944

MUTINHIRI, Tracey, Deputy Minister of Indigenization and Empowerment

MUTIWEKUZIVA, Kenneth Kaparadza, Deputy Minister for Small and Medium
Enterprise Development - DOB 27/05/1948

MUTYAMBIZI, Charles, Chair, Zimbabwe National Roads Administration (ZINARA)

MUVUTI, Samuel Tendai, Acting CEO, Grain Marketing Board - DOB 06/07/1957

MUZENDA, Tsitsi, Zanu-PF Politburo Senior Committee Member

MUZONZINI, Elisha, Brigadier, Former Director-General Central Intelligence
Organisation - DOB 24/06/1957

MZEMBI, Walter, Deputy Minister of Water Resources and Infrastructural

NCUBE, Abedinico, Deputy Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social
Welfare - DOB 13/10/1954

NCUBE, Vivian, Commissioner, Zimbabwe Electoral Commission

NDLOVU, Callistus, Chairman, Net*One

NDLOVU, Naison, Zanu-PF Politburo Secretary for Production and Labour - DOB

NDLOVU, Richard, Zanu-PF Politburo Deputy Secretary for the Commissariat -
DOB 26/06/1942

NDLOVU, Sikhanyiso Duke, Minister for Information and Publicity, Zanu-PF
Politburo Secretary for Education (former Deputy Minister for Higher and
Tertiary Education) - DOB 04/05/1937

NGUNI, Sylvester Robert, Minister of Economic Development (former Deputy
Minister of Agriculture) - DOB 04/08/1955

NHEMA, Francis Dunstan Chenayimoyo, Minister of Environment and Tourism -
DOB 17/04/1959

NHERERA, Prof. Charles, Former Chairman, Zimbabwe United Passenger Company

NKALA, Herbert, Chairman, Zimbabwe Newspapers Ltd

NKOMO, John Landa, Speaker of Parliament and Chairman of Zanu-PF - DOB

NSIMBI, Zenzo, Former Zanu-PF Politburo Member, Former Provincial Governor,

NYAMBUYA, Michael Reuben, Minister of Energy and Power Development - DOB

NYANGULU, Nyepudzai, Chair, Traffic Safety Council of Zimbabwe (TSCZ)

NYANHONGO, Hubert Magadzire, Deputy Minister of Transport and Communications

NYATHI, George, Zanu-PF Politburo Deputy Secretary of Science and Technology

NYIKAYARAMBA, Brig. Gen. Douglas, Chairman, National Railways of Zimbabwe

NYONI, Sithembiso Gile Gladys, Minister of Small and Medium Enterprise
Development and Zanu-PF Politburo Deputy Secretary for Indigenization and
Empowerment - DOB 20/09/1949

PARIRENYATWA, David Pagwese, Minister of Health and Child Welfare and
Zanu-PF Politburo Deputy Secretary for Health and Child Welfare - DOB

PATEL, Khantibhal, Zanu-PF Politburo Deputy Secretary for Finance - DOB

POTE, Selina M, Zanu-PF Politburo Deputy Secretary for Gender and Culture

SAKABUYA, Morris, Deputy Minister of Local Government, Public Works and
Urban Development

SAKUPWANYA, Stanley, Zanu-PF Politburo Secretary for the Disabled and
Disadvantaged - DOB circa 1945

SAMKANGE, Nelson Tapera Crispin, Provincial Governor, Mashonaland West

SANDI, Eunice, Zanu-PF Politburo Deputy Secretary for Home Affairs

SAVANHU, Tendai, Zanu-PF Politburo Deputy Secretary of Transport and Social
Welfare - DOB 21/03/1968

SEKERAMAYI, Lovemore, Chief Election Officer, Zimbabwe Electoral Commission

SEKERAMAYI, Sydney Tigere, Minister of Defence and Zanu-PF Politburo
Secretary for Health and Child Welfare - DOB 30/03/1944

SHAMU, Webster Kotiwani, Minister of State for Policy Implementation, Member
of Zanu-PF Politburo - DOB 06/06/1945

SHAMUYARIRA, Nathan Marwirakuwa, Zanu-PF Politburo Secretary for Information
and Publicity - DOB 29/09/1928

SHIRI, Perence, Air Marshal (Air Force) - DOB 01/11/1955

SHUMBA, Isaiah Masvayamwando, Deputy Minister of Education, Sports and
Culture - DOB 03/01/1949

SIBANDA, Jabulani, Former National Chairman, Zimbabwe National Liberation
War Veterans Association - DOB 31/12/1970

SIBANDA, Levy, Deputy Police Commissioner

SIBANDA, Mishek, Chief Secretary to the President and Cabinet

SIBANDA, Phillip Valentine, Commander, Zimbabwe National Army - DOB

SIKHOSANA, Absolom, Zanu-PF Politburo Secretary for Youth Affairs

SIYACHITEMA, Jonathan, Commissioner, Zimbabwe Electoral Commission; Bishop

STAMPS, Timothy, Health Advisor in the Office of the President - DOB

TAKAWIRA, Amod, CEO, National Social Security Authority - DOB 28/02/1967

TSHAWE, Jabulani, Zanu-PF Provincial Chairman, Bulawayo

UNDENGE, Samuel, Minister of State for State Enterprises, Anti-Monopolies
and Anti-Corruption (former Deputy Minister of Economic Development)

UTETE, Charles, Chairman of the Presidential Land Review Committee;
Chairman, Industrial Development Corporation - DOB 30/10/1938

ZHUWAO, Patrick, Deputy Minister of Science and Technology - DOB 23/05/1967

ZIMONDI, Paradzai, Prisons Director - DOB 04/03/1947

ZINDI, Fred, Chair, Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of
Zimbabwe (POTRAZ)

ZVINAVASHE, Vitalis, Retired General, Member of the ZANU-PF Politburo,
Secretary of the Politburo Committee on Indigenization and Empowerment - DOB

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Zim crisis sparks smuggling rise


20/06/2007 20:54

Maputo - The economic crisis in Zimbabwe has resulted in a rise in cases of
smuggling of goods and materials into Mozambique, a weekly independent
newspaper reported on Wednesday.
The weekly Magazine newspaper said in its June 20 edition that Mozambican
customs officials recently confiscated 113 diamonds and $65 000 smuggled
into the country from neighbouring Zimbabwe by two foreign nationals.

Paulino Azizi Dala, Manica province's head of customs, told the weekly that
the diamonds and the cash were confiscated.

"The owners of the diamonds and the money failed to present any
documentation to prove that they had legally imported the products into the
country," he said.

Dala said Hassan Yahfoufi, a Belgian national and Wazneh Mohamad from Libya,
were arrested in the Munene zone of Manica with the diamonds and the money
which they were transporting in a Zimbabwean-registered bakkie.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

US$3 B economic rescue plan for Zimbabwe

The Southern African

:: Innocent Madawo - MAP Feature Service
Wednesday, 20 June 2007
A common picture in the drought prone Savannah landscape of southern
Africa is of a flock of vultures stalking a wounded or starving animal as it
struggles against all odds to stay alive and avoid providing an easy meal
for the lazy birds.

You get that feeling when you follow how the international community
is preparing itself for the imminent demise of President Robert Mugabe's
hold on power in Zimbabwe.

President Mugabe is very much the politically and economically wounded
animal and the vultures are readying themselves for sumptuous meal, that is,
a nation free for investors and humanitarians to "assist" in economic

In this regard, donor countries have apparently drawn up a list of
Zimbabwe's needs, including a US$3 billion five-year economic rescue package
to be released the moment Mugabe leaves office.

This is contained in a report championed by the International Monetary
Fund (IMF) whose package has already been broken down into;

·  $150 million in food support in the first two years, $125 million
in the first year;

·  $500 million for land agrarian reform over five years;

·  $325 million for health services and education;

·  $550 million for infrastructure;

·  $1.7 billion for various emergency aid programmes; and

·  $1.3 billion for balance of payment support and budgetary support.

Business Report in South Africa reports that a report by the Institute
for Democracy in South Africa (Idasa), released by deputy executive director
Ivor Jenkins, notes that a national economic and land reform programme would
be necessary to lift Zimbabwe out of its economic crisis.

This programme must be accompanied by the gradual lifting of sanctions
and the generous injection of international relief aid and development
assistance, says the Idasa report.

Rapid disbursements of development assistance, in the form of balance
of payments and budget support, are also necessary.

The IMF's donor community report emerged as the ruling Zanu-PF and the
opposition Movement for Democratic Change ended talks in Pretoria with an
agreement to meet again in July.

Meanwhile, the UK department for international development (DFID)
recently briefed a meeting of the British foreign and commonwealth office
and officials from governments active in donor co-ordination in Harare,
including Sweden, the European Commission, Australia, the US, the
Netherlands, Canada, Norway, New Zealand Germany.

In response to a DFID paper entitled Zimbabwe - Economic Recovery,
focusing on macroeconomic stabilization in the country, participants said it
was clear the country would need "hundreds of millions of US dollars per

This group of donor countries is reported to be "increasingly focused"
on improving its readiness to play an effective and co-ordinated part in
Zimbabwe's recovery process.

The report says the devastated farming community is likely to require
donor-funded compensation for evicted farmers, while the distribution of
agricultural inputs and produce "must be market driven and involve the
private sector" - with Business Report.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Union Dismisses Farm Workers' Wage Proposal

The Herald (Harare)  Published by the government of Zimbabwe

20 June 2007
Posted to the web 20 June 2007


THE General Agricultural and Plantation Workers' Union of Zimbabwe has
dismissed as unacceptable a $96 000 monthly wage proposal for farm workers
through the National Employment Council for Agriculture.

GAPWUZ secretary-general Ms Gertrude Hambira yesterday said the proposed
salary was unacceptable.

"We cannot accept $96 000 because it cannot support a family. When the
current wage was negotiated at $32 000, we did not accept it and we are now
proposing $2,7 million based on the social contract negotiations," she said.

The farmers have also proposed $500 000 for workers in the horticulture
sector, a figure Ms Hambira described as paltry.

She said GAPWUZ was now contemplating petitioning the Minister of
Agriculture to help in resolving the wage impasse between the farmers and
their workers.

"We are not demanding a wage that matches the poverty datum line but we are
asking for a reasonable wage, which can sustain workers and their families,"
said Ms Hambira.

Negotiations for a minimum wage with the NEC for Agriculture or with
employers have proved futile over the years with the workers contemplating
industrial action.

The debate over the unrealistic farm wages recently spilled into the Senate
with the legislators calling for the payment of a "living wage".

The senators were responding to a joint report of the portfolio committees
of Lands, Land Reform, Resettlement and Agriculture, and Public Service,
Labour and Social Welfare on the plight of farm workers.

Matobo-Umzingwane Senator Ananius Nyathi (Zanu-PF) said the low wages had
resulted in farm workers failing to meet basic needs that included buying
food, medication and paying school fees.

"Farm workers are concerned that the lives of their children were doomed
without education. They fear that this would perpetuate the cycle of poverty
among the current farm workers and future generations," said Sen Nyathi.

The committee recommended that over and above the NEC minimum wages, the
Tripartite Negotiating Forum should set a minimum wage across all sectors
indexed on the poverty datum line.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Insult to injury

From ZWNEWS, 20 June

Over a million people could have suffered human rights abuses during the
farm seizures, a new survey estimates. 1% of former farmworkers and their
families - estimated at around 10 000 people - have died prematurely since
losing their livelihood. The survey also puts the total financial losses
incurred by the agricultural sector at a staggering US$8.4 billion. The
survey, conducted by the farmers' group Justice for Agriculture. and the
Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum, was conducted in 2006 and 2007, found
strong evidence that the violence on the farms was systematic, and not
spontaneous in nature as the government claimed at the start of the farm
invasions in 2000. As a result, a plausible case can be made that the farm
violence constituted a crime against humanity, and that the perpetrators
could be held liable in international law.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Zimbabwe - Is there a Dawn?

Mens News Daily

June 20, 2007 at 7:10 am

Yesterday I was down near the Botswana border trying to locate the scene of
the killing of two MDC activists. We called in at a small store and spoke to
the people there to ask if they had heard anything. I spotted some bread and
asked what the price was. "30 000" they replied and a young man lounging
against the counter chipped in "Z$30 million"!

He was right because we have already cut three zero's off our currency (10
months ago) and in the old currency it would have been 30 million dollars..
Prices are now doubling every week and soon the regime here will have to
repeat the exercise and chop another three zero's off the currency while
issuing new notes. I am told they are ready to do so and are threatening to
make the change without notice.

In this situation life is becoming more and more difficult although I am
always astonished how ordinary, simple people adjust. I asked a peasant
farmer trying to sell a chicken on the roadside how much and he responded
with a wave of his hand "60 or 70". He was of course saying 60 to 70
thousand dollars. Quite a realistic price at the time. Then there is the
ubiquitous parallel market for foreign exchange. In a country where such
transactions are illegal and foreign exchange is not legal tender, you can
ask anyone on the street what the price of the Rand or the US dollar are and
get an answer. In fact the rate changes every half hour or so and somehow
this is communicated across the country.

The herdsmen were finally able to get the Zanu PF into the pen in front of
the dip tank. Much mooing and kicking up of heels. But they got them into
the pen and we are now looking at them and deciding what to do next. I
understand the actual talks went well and it has been agreed just what the
next talks will be all about. Detailed positions are now being worked out
including specifics and a further round of talks is planned for the near

It appears that Mr. Mugabe opened this Pandora's box himself. He asked at
the December SADC Summit for the region to intervene in the Zimbabwe crisis
and asked them to "mediate" between Britain and Zimbabwe. Alleging at the
time that all of Zimbabwe's problems were caused by "sanctions" imposed by
the international community co-ordinated by Britain. SADC engaged and soon
discovered what all of us already knew: the crisis in Zimbabwe is home

Then as the crisis deepened the SADC leadership became increasingly
agitated. This led to the emergency Summit in March and the agreement with
Mugabe that he would participate in multiparty negotiations to bring the
crisis to a close. The SADC is now holding Zanu PF and Mr. Mugabe to that

The crucial issue is what would constitute a "free and fair" election in
Zimbabwe? If that is defined and then interpreted into the Zimbabwe
situation then Zanu will face its first challenge on a level playing field
since 1980. Clearly you cannot even imagine such an electoral process at

For a start all opposition forces are regarded as enemies of the State and
treated as such. On a daily basis opposition activists are beaten, abducted
and even killed. The majority of planned opposition activities are banned,
either officially on one pretext or another or simply stopped by brute

Then all State controlled media - the electronic media and television and
all daily newspapers are tightly controlled and directed. They pour out a
daily diet of propaganda that is designed to denigrate the leadership of the
opposition and promote the political interests of the Zanu PF. One of the
three weeklies is now owned and controlled by the CIO and the other two are
less than aggressive in their pursuit of the truth.

The whole electoral process is controlled by the State and is also directed
by the military; from the registration of voters to the issue of identity
documents. The voter's roll is manipulated and used to strengthen the Zanu
PF position in all areas where they think they might face a serious
challenge. Supporters of the opposition are regularly disenfranchised and
denied access to the voting system.

The boundaries of voting districts are manipulated in classical fashion by
state appointed delimitation Commissions and voters are transferred from one
district to another. The postal ballot is managed and controlled and the
military required to vote under supervision. The votes of those who live
abroad are simply excluded.

All essentials for life are in short supply and are tightly controlled by
the State. So basic staples and food aid are used throughout the country to
intimidate whole communities and voters in particular. Traditional leaders
are used to reinforce this situation by demanding that the people in their
districts vote for the ruling Party or face penalties of one kind or
another - even threatened with expulsion from their homes.

Then the State uses all its power and resources to foster a system of
patronage that can turn a penniless peasant into a Mercedes driving
billionaire in hours. Cars and perks are dished out like confetti and anyone
who dares to oppose the regime is denied any official support. Candidates
for the opposition are ambushed in their districts and burnt out of their
homes. They are kicked off irrigation plots and denied housing stands in
urban areas. Men in dark glasses watch their every move and they can never
rest at night in their own homes.

Free and fair elections are impossible under these circumstances. The
problem is that any relaxation of the system of oppression will open the
floodgates and Zanu knows full well they will be swept away by popular
dissent and a tidal wave of electoral activity. I do not think they will be
able to walk away from this challenge this time and I am just waiting to see
who is going to run first. If I were in their shoes I would be planning my
own exit!

Eddie Cross
Bulawayo 20th June 2007

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

SADC launches a new local democracy enhancement programme

Zambia News Agency -

Lusaka, June 20, ZANIS - Nine SADC countries in collaboration with the
Commonwealth today launched a new local democracy enhancement programme
aimed at promoting local democracy and good governance in the region. The
nine countries include Botswana, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia,
Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Commonwealth Secretary General
Carl Wright disclosed this at the closure of a two-day Commonwealth Local
Governance Forum (CLGF) meeting held in Lusaka. Mr. Wright pointed out that
the core feature of the new programme is the development and application of
local indicators to measure good governance at the local level including the
accountability of local councils and the effectiveness of the of their
delivery to key services to the community. Other central elements have been
the use of the International Peer Review (IPR) to assess local authority
performance conducted by partner cities and extensive consultation of the
civil society and local stakeholders. Mr. Wright said it was agreed during
the meeting that the next new programme should be undertaken in Zambia. He
said the Zambian cities chosen for the programme are Kitwe, Livingstone,
Lusaka, Mufulira and Ndola and that upon completion, the programme will be
rolled out through out the country. And Local Government and Housing
Minister Syvia Masebo said Zambia was committed to implementing the new
programme as it provides the key to ensuring governance and effective
service delivery by local government. Ms. Masebo said the International Peer
Review also ensures an objective assessment of performance to the existing
African Peer Review Mechanism. She hoped that the innovative methodology
developed under the programme will see widespread adoption throughout the
SADC region, Africa and the Commonwealth. In this regard, the minister
stressed that she would firmely act on weakness that will be identified in
the local government system in the country. And Dr. James David, the
minister of Local Goverment in Mauritius, said the local government
enhancement process is ideally suited to Africa as governments have taken
the initiative to undertake the African Peer Review Mechanism. He said the
Peer Review will assist local authorities in walking the extra-mile and
enhance performance with a view to attaining total quality in the long-term.
Dr. David said that now is the time to move from rhetorics to facts, from
statements to concrete realisation if the programme is to be successful. The
Local Government Enhancement Programme builds on successful work undertaken
by the workshop, organisers, the Commonwealth Local Government Forum, and
the Urban Councils Association of Zimbabwe (UCAZ) since 2003 in five cities
in Zimbabwe and their counterparts in other Commonwealth countries such as
Namibia, South Africa and Swaziland. Senior local government practitioners
including ministers, mayors and officials from the nine countries met in
Lusaka from 18 to 20 June 2007 and agreed to move forward an innovative
programme to promote local democracy and good governance in the SADC region.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

South Africa fails to make dent in huge asylum backlog

Monsters and Critics

Jun 20, 2007, 15:51 GMT

Johannesburg - South Africa is having difficulty making a dent in its huge
backlog of 100,000 asylum applications, Home Affairs Minister Nosiviwe
Mapisa-Nqakula admitted Wednesday.

Only 12 to 13 per cent of the backlog of applications had been processed a
year after the government announced a project to tackle the caseload, she
said. Some asylum-seekers were still waiting for a definitive response 11
years after filing their application in 1996.

The situation reflected a 'a failure of implementation' and not of policy,
she said. Most government departments in South Africa are reeling under a
chronic shortage of skilled staff.

At the end of 2006, South Africa hosted approximately 223,470 refugees and
asylum seekers, of which only 29,510 had been formally recognized as
refugees, according to the Human Rights Commission.

Most of the refugees hail from Zimbabwe: upwards of three million
Zimbabweans are thought to be living in South Africa, most illegally.

Others hail from other African countries such as Democratic Republic of
Congo, Nigeria, Rwanda and Mozambique.

Most of the arrivals were not refugees, the minister stressed, but 'economic
migrants who jump across porous borders' and were therefore targeted for
deportation, the minister said.

The minister said Wednesday the government might need to review its policies
on illegal immigrants, citing the high costs of accommodation, maintenance
and deportation.

© 2007 dpa - Deutsche Presse-Agentur

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Zimbabwe: Paradise Wrapped in Quagmire


Country needs an urgent solution

Masimba Biriwasha

     Published 2007-06-20 14:12 (KST)

With a crumbling economy, starving population and a stormy political
situation in the background, Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe's ruling
party Zimbabwe Africa National Union-Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) has finally
agreed to talk with the political opposition, albeit in South Africa.

South Africa's President Thabo Mbeki is playing the role of mediator between
members of the Zimbabwe's ruling party and the opposition after he agreed to
take on the task in March. Mbeki is expected to produce a progress report on
the crisis talks to the SADC Heads by June 30.

Today, Zimbabwe -- once referred to as the Switzerland of Africa -- looks
more like a paradise wrapped in a quagmire. Much of the country's
post-independence potential is heavily overshadowed by the intractability of
the political situation. Like an alcoholic, Mugabe's ruling ZANU PF
government has pursued self destructive policies that have brought much
suffering to the majority of the population.

Ranked among 10 of the world's most unstable countries in the Failed States
Index Scores 2007, Zimbabwe needs an urgent solution.

Dialogue between the political players in Zimbabwe is therefore seen as a
latch ditch effort to bring sanity to the beleaguered country.

A report issued recently by 34 international aid agencies including the
United Nations, the International Federation of the Red Cross and Oxfam
predicted that hyper-inflation will bring the country to a standstill within
six months.

Zimbabwe's inflation rate is currently snowballing over the 4,000 percent
mark -- the highest in the world -- and there's no let-up.

"The Zimbabwean dollar is now rotten," said Dominika Mateta, a worker in
Harare, Zimbabwe's capital city, in an email interview, "I am thinking of
going to South Africa."

According to the reports issued by the international agencies within six
months, the Zimbabwean dollar will be unusable and services will grind to a
halt. As the economy shrinks many people in the country are opting for
self-imposed exile.

"The memorandum is talking about a situation where there is no functioning
government or a total breakdown, The Times Online quoted an agency official,
who refused to be named. "It is saying it is inevitable, not just a
possibility. Our head offices have to know. Not many people have experienced
this kind of crisis."

There are fears that the collapse will necessitate a state of emergency in
the country.

There have been many predictions of Zimbabwe's imminent collapse before but
these have never come to pass. But the battering which the economy of the
country has endured over the past seven years validate the hypothesis that
the bubble is about to burst.

Not many believe that the talks will yield anything. For a long time, talks
have been mooted but Mugabe has been reluctant to commit to the process. Or,
he has simply expressed interest in order to gain a political foothold.

Already, the exclusion of civil society organizations from the process makes
it appear as if the protracted political crisis is a product of the
political players in the country.

Many civil society organizations contend that the talks will exclude issues
of social justice and socio-economic issues to the detriment of ordinary
Zimbabweans. As a prerequisite to the talks, civil society organizations
want a cessation of violence, repeal of oppressive legislation and an all
stakeholders conference that includes political parties, labour, churches,
students and NGOs.

"MDC and Zanu PF have send representatives to SA for talks but everyone is
wondering what will come out of the talks and whether it would help improve
our economy in any way," said Michelle Dumare, an ordinary Zimbabwean
citizen, in an email interview.

More than that, the Zimbabwe political crisis is a function of failings of
institutional frameworks that never reformed to suit the demands of a
post-colonial dispensation.

In his 27 years as Zimbabwe's leader, Mugabe has used the non-democratic
structures of the colonial government to aggrandize his power-base.
Ironically, he has managed to whip up race-related issues to posture as a
liberator of the oppressed black peoples of the continent.

Until the institutional set is overhauled, Mugabe will continue to have an
upperhand in determining the destiny of the country. That is, unless, there's
a military or popular revolt against his rule.

Mugabe full understands this. So far his commitment to the talks is very
much in doubt, and will likely put paid Thabo Mbeki's mediation efforts.

As if sending a signal, the Mugabe's intelligence police seized the passport
of opposition leader Arthur Mutambara on the eve of the talks.

In early June, Zimbabwe's House of Assembly, which is dominated by ZANU PF,
passed the Interception of Communications Bill which seeks to empower the
government to spy on telephone and e-mail messages.

This Bill further infringes Zimbabwean citizens' fundamental right to freely
express themselves without any hindrance.

All these factors are putting a strain to an already tense atmosphere around
the talks.

"So yes, Mugabe is not negotiating in good faith and hence it undermines the
effectiveness of this process because we don't see any sincerity in the
efforts of Mugabe because of what he is doing to the opposition," Mutambara
told SW Radio Africa, an independent Zimbabwe radio station broadcasting out
of London because of repressive media laws in Zimbabwe.

And until there's fundamental change, Zimbabwe will remain a paradise
wrapped in a political quagmire whose fate no one really knows.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Protest over plight of asylum seekers

The Northern Echo, UK


CAMPAIGNERS are preparing to sleep out on the streets of a North-East city
to highlight the plight of asylum seekers who have been refused a haven by
the Home Office.

Supporters of the Still Human Still Here campaign from Amnesty
International, Church Action on Poverty, the Refugee Council and Newcastle
People's Working Committee on Zimbabwe will be sleeping rough in Newcastle
on June 28.

A spokesperson for those taking part said: "The Government refuses to
provide support to thousands of refused asylum seekers who cannot return
home to unsafe countries such as Iraq, Somalia, Zimbabwe or Sudan, leaving
them in limbo.

"Unable to return home, refused support and banned from taking work to
support themselves, they are evicted and effectively driven into

Campaigners are now calling on the Government to change its policy.

Local organiser of the campaign Sibanda Noble said: "We need a more
enlightened policy that would see refused asylum seekers who cannot be
returned home rescued from destitution and allowed to contribute to British

As well as the Newcastle demonstrations, she said: "A number of actions are
taking place across the country to show our belief that the Government must
deliver a change of policy."

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Study Highlights Historical Roots of Current Strife in Zimbabwe

University of Alberta     Released: Wed 20-Jun-2007, 15:00 ET

Newswise - In 2000, the world watched in shock as Zimbabwe's government
implemented a "Fast Track" land reform policy that encouraged the country's
black peasantry to seize land from white farmers. While the events may have
been hard for outsiders to fathom, a new study from a University of Alberta
historian suggests the events, examined in a historical context, may not be
so hard to understand, after all.

In a paper to be published in the July edition of the academic journal
African Studies, Dr. Guy Thompson does not express support for Zimbabwean
President Robert Mugabe's land reform policies, but he does presents
historical evidence to help explain them.

"The complexity of the land issue is the heart of the political chaos that
exists in Zimbabwe today, and it's the result of discontent that has been
inherited from many generations," Thompson said.

The 2000 uprising in Zimbabwe is the latest link in a chain of events that
began in 1890, when state-sponsored colonialists claimed much of Zimbabwe's
prime farming land. In 1930, the Land Apportionment Act, which was partly
modeled after the Canadian native reserve system, officially partitioned
land according to race, with the ruling whites getting the most and best
real estate.

In 1951, the colonial government tried to redress the land inequities
between races with the Native Land Husbandry Act (NLHA). The liberal
creators of the ambitious social engineering plan wanted to "modernize" the
country by offering black peasants the right to farm-but not own-designated
land plots, if they agreed to a number of imposed measures, such as farming
the land using government-approved methods.

However, the NLHA also served to further racial segregation by increasing
population capacity on the reserves, allowing the government to move
Africans off designated white land to make room for the booming European
immigration after the Second World War, Thompson said.

In his paper, Thompson outlines a number of reasons why the peasants were
reluctant to embrace the NLHA, which ended in 1962. He noted that the
failure of the NLHA "highlighted the contradiction of using the
authoritarian structures of colonial rule to try and create docile
self-disciplining modern subjects."

The NLHA left Zimbabwe with a spotted national map, with most of Zimbabwe's
black peasantry, who constitute 80 per cent of Zimbabwe's 13 million people,
living in designated "communal areas".

After Zimbabwe defeated colonial rule and achieved self-government in 1980,
the country remained relatively peaceful for almost two decades. However,
the peace could not withstand the build-up of a century of racial
discrimination and failed policies, and the ill-conceived, state-sanctioned
2000 farm invasions tore the country apart once again.

Initially, the black peasantry claimed much of the choicest land in the
invasions, but the ruling government's cabinet ministers and wealthy allies
have since seized the vast majority of it, with many of the country's black
peasants now serving on this land as labourers.

Thompson, who lived and conducted research in Zimbabwe for six years in the
1990s, is agonized that the Zimbabwean peasants continue to live in poverty
and under the oppression of Mugabe's Zimbabwe African National Union (ZANU)
government, which is infamous for committing human rights violations.
Earlier this year, state police beat and nearly killed a group of protestors
who were trying to stage a secret meeting, Thompson said.

However, Thompson added that applying political and social pressure on South
Africa, Zimbabwe's wealthy neighbor, is the key to improving conditions in
Mugabe's land-locked nation.

"The South African government and many privately held South African
corporations have tremendous investments in Zimbabwe, but they have been, to
this point, reluctant to push Mugabe to change."

"If there's one thing Canadians can do to help people in Zimbabwe, it's
pressure South Africa to make it clear to Mugabe government's that torture
and preventing the right of assembly is unacceptable, and business with
Zimbabwe will stop unless things change."

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Bodyform supports women in Zimbabwe

by Howard Lake
20 Jun 2007

Sanitary product company Bodyform is sponsoring Action for Southern Africa's
'Dignity! Period' campaign to raise funds to help women in Zimbabwe who, due
to the economic crisis, are unable to afford packs of sanitary towels which
cost on average more than two weeks' wages.

The Action for Southern Africa (ACTSA) campaign will be based around an
on-pack promotion on sanitary towels in the Bodyform Ultra range. Packs will
highlight Bodyform's donation of a quarter of a million packets of sanitary
towels to the women of Zimbabwe and will be on shelf during July and August
2007. The on-pack stickers will also give consumers background about the
ACTSA Dignity! Period. campaign.

The on-pack activity will be supported by a national PR campaign which will
involve a range of editorial, advertorial and promotional routes, with
support from celebrities to increase both media and consumer awareness. The website will also feature a campaign microsite.

Due to the economic crisis, just one pack of sanitary towels costs more than
50% of the average monthly wage for women in Zimbabwe. This results in many
women resorting to using dirty rags, leading to severe infections which are
often falsely attributed to sexual promiscuity, which can then result in
domestic violence.

Gavin Vandeligt of Bodyform said: "We are really excited to be sponsoring
such a worthy cause, that really will make a difference to the lives of
women in Zimbabwe and ultimately help them get on with their daily lives
without risk of infections or even abuse."


Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Mugabe deserves Windies bouncer

Trinidad and Tobago Express


Wednesday, June 20th 2007

The reluctance of the West Indies Players Association (WIPA) to have
the region's "A'' team tour Zimbabwe is understandable given WIPA's
justifiable concern "about players' safety in the continuing volatile
situation'' in that country.

It is not that professional sportsmen dare to go only to places where
there is absolutely no risk of incurring non-sporting injury or worse - if,
indeed, there is any such country in the world. It is that Zimbabwe
continues to be an increasingly explosive place where not only have a lot of
negative things happened but where even more are predicted to occur.

But there is another matter having to do with the legitimacy of the
Mugabe-led government and the correct stance democratic nations in the world
should adopt with respect to what continues to be a relentless assault on
the human rights of not only politicians opposed to Mr Mugabe but those of
his own people.

The West Indies Cricket Board has passed this particular buck to the
countries of Caricom by stating that the tour will only go on with the
blessing of the member governments. Perhaps rightly, they have assessed this
to be a political rather than a sporting decision and we wait to see whether
Caricom will seize this opportunity to make a statement.

The Mugabe administration, to put it mildly, has become something of
an embarrassment to those countries in Africa that understand that rule by
brutal force should never be countenanced, particularly in a continent that
has historically endured great suffering by totalitarian regimes except, of
course, that these happened to be run by white rather than black men.

Zimbabwe, formerly Rhodesia, has endured much in that era. It is a
tragedy that its people should now be forced to eke out a living because
their de facto president and his allies are consumed by their selfish
political interests, even to the point of destroying their own country.

None of this is to suggest that Zimbabwe, even after independence, has
not had to contend with historical inequalities, not least the ownership of
land that continued to be skewed in favour of the white minority. But what
Mr Mugabe has done is to turn what is a grave, historic grievance into a
means of giving himself licence to prevail politically by the power of the

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Chingoka avoids visa ban

Steven Price in Harare and Martin Williamson in London

June 20, 2007

Peter Chingoka, the chairman of Zimbabwe Cricket, will be in London for the
ICC executive meeting next week despite an attempt by the Foreign &
Commonwealth Office (FCO) to have him refused an entry visa to the UK.

The British Embassy in Harare recommended to the FCO in London that Chingoka
be refused admission to the UK on account of his associations with the
government of Robert Mugabe. The FCO rubber-stamped this but Cricinfo has
learned that the ban was blocked by Richard Caborn, the sports minister, as
he feared that any such move could jeopardise the bid to have David Morgan,
the ECB chairman, elected as ICC president in 2008.

The Foreign Office compromised and have only given Chingoka a visa for five
days. He cannot start his journey until Monday, June 25 and must be out of
the country by Saturday, June 30. This will enable him to attend the
directors' meeting on Wednesday and Thursday, and the ICC annual meeting
which follows, but that's all.

An ECB spokesman told Cricinfo that the board "had not discussed the issue
with the FCO" and that it "was solely a government decision" to limit the
entry visa. A spokesman for the Department of Culture, Media and Sport said
that they "did not comment on individual visa cases".

Kate Hoey, Caborn's predecessor as sports minister and the chairperson of
the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Zimbabwe, told Cricinfo that she was
"disappointed" with Caborn's intervention. "Zimbabwe's cricket officials are
at the heart of the dictatorship's web of corruption and political
oppression. It is sad that the sports ministry has used Morgan's chances -
which are really no chance at all - of becoming ICC president to ask the FCO
to go against their better judgment and grant a visa. This sort of
unprincipled manoeuvring looks very bad when we are asking other countries
to stand firm in isolating those at the heart of Mugabe's regime.

       We were meant to have an ethical foreign policy... that needs to
include an ethical sports policy too
      Former sports minister Kate Hoey

"The people of Zimbabwe, Mugabe's victims, will be bitterly disappointed
that a man who is getting very rich by sucking up to Mugabe and doing his
bidding will be allowed into the UK . We were meant to have an ethical
foreign policy... that needs to include an ethical sports policy too."

As long ago as July 2004, Lord Avebery raised a request in the House of
Lords that Chingoka and Ozias Bvute, Zimbabwe Cricket's managing director
who is expected to attend the ICC meetings next week, be barred from
entering the European Union as "close supporters and collaborators of the
[Mugabe] regime".

Chingoka, whose son and wife are believed to be in London, usually stays for
some time either side of the meeting, as do many officials from other
boards, but on this occasion he will have to leave the UK almost immediately
after the conclusion of the AGM.

Steven Price is a freelance journalist based in Harare; Martin Williamson is
executive editor of Cricinfo

© Cricinfo

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

ZIFA fires Mhlauri and dissolves national teams coaching departments

By Tichaona Sibanda
20 June 2007

The Zimbabwe Football Association on Tuesday took the unprecedented step of
firing the senior national team coach and dissolving the coaching
departments of all its national teams.

This follows a string of poor results, across the board. Zifa chairman
Wellington Nyatanga has been under tremendous pressure from fans and other
board members to get rid of Charles Mhlauri after the Warriors failed to
qualify for next year's Nations Cup.

Henrietta Rushwaya, Zifa's acting chief executive, told Newsreel on
Wednesday that they felt compelled as an association to act because of the
poor results.

'We are now casting our nets wide looking for a new coach to take over the
national team job. Zimbabwe is a soccer loving nation and with the way
things were going it was in the best interests of everyone to restructure
the coaching and technical departments,' Rushwaya said.

In firing Mhlauri, Zifa also dissolved the entire Warriors technical
department, which includes assistant coach Methembe Ndlovu, goalkeepers
coach Emmanuel Nyahuma, team manager Ernest Sibanda, assistant manager and
team liaison Sharrif Mussa, team doctor Edward Chagonda and physiotherapist
Lloyd Maungwa.

Also shown the exit door were the Mighty Warriors coach Rosemary Mugadza,
whose team was knocked out of the qualifiers for the 2008 Beijing Olympic
games. The association's acting chief executive officer Henrietta Rushwaya
confirmed Zifa had also relieved Misheck Chidzambwa as coach of the Under-23
squad. National Under-20 coach Sammy Mavhenyengwa was also a victim of the
purge and so was Rodwell Dhlakama the Under-17 mentor. The country's youth
teams have also been performing poorly.

Rushwaya said some of those relieved on Tuesday might actually bounce back,
but in different capacities. She added that their restructuring exercise
should be done by October to give time for new personnel to plan for the
2010 World Cup in South Africa.

SW Radio Africa Zimbabwe news

Back to the Top
Back to Index