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

Broke Zimbabwe asks world for 'stimulus package'

Wed Jun 24, 2009 5:04pm BST

UNITED NATIONS, June 24 (Reuters) - Zimbabwe appealed to the world on
Wednesday for a "financial stimulus package" for its devastated economy,
saying lack of foreign support imperiled a recovery plan drawn up by the
unity government.

Addressing a U.N. conference on the global financial crisis, Vice President
Joice Mujuru said no conditions should be attached to such a package.

The southern African country says it needs $10 billion to rebuild
dilapidated infrastructure and ease 90 percent unemployment.

But a three-week tour of the United States and Europe by Prime Minister
Morgan Tsvangirai, who shares power with President Robert Mugabe, has
yielded mainly promises of aid only when Zimbabwe creates a democracy and
improves human rights after what critics say was Mugabe's repressive rule.

Since the new unity government took office in February, inflation has fallen
rapidly from its once astronomical 200 million percent after an effective
dollarization of the economy.

Mujuru said lack of access to financial resources had hit the country's
agriculture and social services, threatening attainment of U.N. anti-poverty
Millennium Development Goals.

Fluctuating commodity prices has slowed down mining and lack of investment
has hurt businesses, decreasing tax collection, Mujuru said.

"This situation is now seriously undermining progress by our inclusive
government ... to turn around our economy," she said. "The lack of external
support now threatens the success of our short-term economic recovery

"I therefore take this opportunity to urge the international community to
support Zimbabwe, by providing the country with a financial stimulus package
to enable us to mitigate and offset the economic and financial crisis," she
told delegates from more than 100 countries.

Such packages should be designed to fit the priorities of recipient
countries, Mujuru said, adding: "As an honest broker, the U.N. system should
be the first to take a stand against conditional aid." (Reporting by Patrick
Worsnip; editing by Mohammad Zargham)

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

ANALYSIS-Tsvangirai drive gets no cash but pressure for reform

Wed Jun 24, 2009 1:43pm GMT

* Tsvangirai secures promises, but not enough funding

* Under pressure to make Mugabe more flexible

* Could take the blame for economic troubles

By Cris Chinaka

HARARE, June 24 (Reuters) - Zimbabwean Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai's
tour of Western powers has yielded scant funds and put him under mounting
pressure to persuade unity government partner Robert Mugabe to agree to
reforms to secure foreign aid.

Tsvangirai winds up a three-week trip to the United States and Europe on
Thursday with a bag full of promises that they will only come to Zimbabwe's
economic rescue when it creates a democracy and improves human rights after
decades of what critics say was Mugabe's repressive one-party rule.

Some analysts say Tsvangirai can capitalise on their demands to push Mugabe
to become more cooperative in the new unity government which faces the
increasingly urgent task of salvaging the African nation's ruined economy.

Others say he could be the scapegoat if Zimbabwe does not get the cash it
needs and the economy collapses further.

Although still rivals, both Mugabe and Tsvangirai have to work together and
are running out of time after promising millions of Zimbabweans a new era of
political cooperation would ease their hardships.

Their credibility hinges on whether they can secure the $10 billion needed
to rebuild pot-holed roads, bare hospitals, dilapidated schools and ease 90
percent unemployment.

"It's true that the prime minister did not get the money the government
badly needs or even what he may have expected," said Eldred Masunungure, a
professor of political science at the University of Zimbabwe.

"It's true that he got more words and promisory notes than cash. But
Tsvangirai can use the demands for political reforms that he got all round
on this trip to press President Mugabe and (his party) ZANU-PF to concede on
outstanding reforms."

At the start of his trip, officials in Tsvangirai's party suggested he could
raise between $700 million and $1 billion from Western donors, but he has so
far managed just over $200 million -- most of which is going to NGOs -- not
the government, a sign of lingering mistrust.

Zimbabwe, once a regional breadbasket, has secured about $1 billion of
credit lines from Africa.


Efforts to persuade foreign countries their money will be safe in Zimbabwe
have become a politicised and strategic issue.

Tsvangirai's critics in Mugabe's camp have been waving his failure to win
over Western leaders to pour money as a sign that he is an ineffective

"What does he have to show us after previously boasting that the MDC has
wealthy friends and that he has the key to their cash vaults?" wrote one
columnist in a government newspaper.

Some of Mugabe's supporters have even suggested that Tsvangirai had used the
government-sponsored trip to privately raise funds for his Movement for
Democratic Change (MDC).

Such accusations, rejected by Tsvangirai, can only raise tensions in the
fragile new government formed in February after months of post-election

Analysts say while it was unclear how Mugabe would respond to the mounting
foreign pressure to free the media, reform the judiciary and the military,
Tsvangirai could now be blamed if the economy completely collapses for lack
of aid.

During decades of animosity most critical eyes focused on Mugabe. Tsvangirai
was generally free of scrutiny. Now he has to deliver to Zimbabweans who
want relief -- urgently.

"There is a limit to which he can now continue blaming things on the past.
If he fails on his own promises, he will be called to account on that," said
Lovemore Madhuku, chairman of political lobby group National Constitutional

"I am sure we are going to see a lot of that because people are struggling,
and things are not moving fast enough for many people."

Tsvangirai has no choice but to work with old foe Mugabe.

In a desperate bid for aid, Tsvangirai told his Western hosts there was no
longer any systematic political violence in Zimbabwe, despite repeated
warnings that ZANU-PF arrests of MDC activists could undermine the

Tsvangirai learned he would also be held accountable after leading rights
watchdog Amnesty International said serious human rights violations

Besides the United States, Tsvangirai also visited Denmark, Germany, Norway,
the Netherlands, Britain, France, Sweden and Brussels, seat of the European
Union. He is expected to end his tour in France on Thursday.

Many Western countries imposed sanctions on Mugabe's ZANU-PF government over
charges of human rights abuses, vote-rigging and its seizures of white-owned
commercial farms for redistribution to blacks without paying compensation.

Mugabe, 85, and in power since independence from Britain in 1980, says
Zimbabwe's once-prosperous economy has been wrecked by sanctions and his
land policy is aimed at correcting colonial injustices.

John Makumbe, a veteran political commentator and Mugabe critic, said the
president would have to eventually back down.

"In my view, Mugabe and his people may delay the reform process here and
there. But at the end of the day they have no choice because they need
foreign aid to get the economy going and Tsvangirai can capitalise on their
lack of co-operation," Makumbe said.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

In defence of Morgan Tsvangirai

June 24, 2009

By Farayi Maruzani, MDC Secretary for International Affairs, UK and Ireland

I WAS baffled at the Southwark Cathedral last Saturday.

Thousands of people booed their leader in an unprecedented move of defiance
and intolerance. The people in there stopped Prime Minister Morgan
Tsvangirai midway through his speech and started chanting that 'Mugabe must

I went out of the hall at that time to answer the call of nature but some
MDC supporters followed me up the corridors and pulled my jacket. They
demanded to know why the MDC UK leadership had 'failed to advise Tsvangirayi

As I started to respond a group of other youths wearing 'vigil' attire
started singing around me: 'Tsvangirai usaite fun fun nevanhu' (Tsvangirai,
don't play games with the people.)

I left the cathedral grounds and I made an early trek to the venue of the
dinner that evening. At the hotel I had a one-to-one discussion with Prime
Minister about what he had said at the cathedral and his views about Mugabe.
He explained that Mugabe is committed to the deal but does not trust him. He
said the sporadic attacks on people and farm invasions were the brainchild
of remnant forces who want to see the failure of the inclusive government
because they know that the success of the transitional government means
their death.

He said these people were in the minority and they will shortly fizzle out.
The acts of banditry were not sanctioned by government but by some criminal
gangs sponsored by hard-line remnants in Zanu-PF.

The same happened in 1980 when remnants of the Rhodesian security forces and
Selous Scouts and Pfumo Revanhu continued to brutalise people until 1982
when Smiths' hard-line remnants stole aeroplanes from Thornhill Air Base to
Apartheid ruled South Africa. They did not want the will of the people to
prevail but they fizzled out. They also planned to assassinate Mugabe in an
operation code named 'Operation Quartz'. They were against Mugabe becoming
the new Prime Minister of Zimbabwe.

So what was behind the cathedral defiance to Tsvangirayi by his supporters?

The area of contention was the way Tsvangirayi says things about Zimbabwe
dictator Mugabe and how he seems to have downplayed human rights abuses in
Zimbabwe, giving information which if picked by the home office would
devastate asylum applications and put at risk the ability of those who fail
to regularise their stay to claim benefits, housing, get jobs and live
normally in Britain.

Some people want to bring their families to the UK which is only possible if
they get asylum something they feel is being threatened by Tsvangirai's
statements. Many Zimbabweans expected Tsvangirai to actually come and assist
them to get asylum by demonising Mugabe and painting a bleak future for the
inclusive government.

That's where the fire is mostly coming from.

I understand the problems faced by asylum seekers in the UK. They live as
second class citizens. I understand and their grievances against the party
but I must also say that it is undemocratic to silence anybody from airing
their views and this includes everyone, king or pauper, rich or poor, prime
minister or asylum seeker. It is, therefore, very unfortunate that people at
the cathedral Saturday afternoon decided to silence someone from airing his

Tsvangirayi was supposed to be allowed to finish and answer questions about
all our grievances and his relationship with Mugabe and we decided to deny
him his democratic right to do so.

But he managed to do that at the dinner in the evening. Most people who
attended the dinner now back what he is doing unconditionally. This is so
because we allowed him to speak and we asked him all the questions we had
and as usual he did not disappoint.

A young lady asked Tsvangirayi what he will give her if she takes his advice
and go to Zimbabwe. She said she is looking after five people. Tsvangirai
said that he was inviting people to Zimbabwe not to give them things but for
them to give something to Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe is a "non-runner" state and
nothing can be taken from it.

The problem is that we want someone to do the work but not ourselves. We
want to go there when Zimbabwe roads are all tarred by someone, when clinics
are working and when schools and universities are flourishing. We want God
in heaven to offer Tsvangirayi the personnel to sort the country for us then
we fly back just to enjoy. We have been wired to look up to donors and
foreign leaders like Mbeki and Bush to sort our problems for us.

I was born in Buhera South at Muzokomba Clinic. The clinic was built by
donors. My father and mother survived on food donated by foreign donors. I
grew up doubling breast feeding and donated powdered milk which was donated
to the Ministry of health by the European Economic Community in Brussels,
Belgium. When I was one year old I started feeding on donated cereals from
the department of Social Welfare at Murambinda Growth Point.

I received free medical immunisation and I do not even know where all those
vaccines came from. My mother does not know who donated the vaccinations
that saved my life either. From the age of two to seven I had food at
feeding points and we ate very highly nutritious porridge donated by Kellogg
Foundation based in London. At the age of seven I went to Primary School.
Here again there was popular mahewu donated by the Red Cross Society whose
Headquarters are in Geneva, Switzerland. That was my main diet. The water
that all the school children drank was wholly pumped and piped to school by
donors who provided the funds to DDF.

I had this donated mahewu for seven years at Primary School. I then went out
to secondary school. The secondary school was started by missionaries but
all the important building like the laboratory, the administration block and
dormitories were built by funding donated by the Japanese government. The
equipment and chemicals in the laboratory were also donated by the Japanese
Embassy in Harare using funds from Tokyo.

After this I went to the University of Zimbabwe. The donors paid my fees and
payout. There were many other students whose fees were paid by donors, both
local and international ones. We preferred foreign donors to local ones
although The Harare City Council was actually a better donor than some
foreign sponsors at UZ.

After graduation I went to work but there again my office and all the safes,
vehicles, tents, were donated by UNICEF. All the fuel I used was donated. My
salary and the salaries of my eight subordinates came from donors. Even my
boss's salary was paid by donors.

Then Mugabe became a problem in Zimbabwe.

We started looking up to George Bush, Tony Blair, Kofi Annan and Thabo Mbeki
to sort Mugabe out. Instead of joining mass action and final pushes we hid
in our houses and looked out through the windows to see if someone was on
the streets when demonstrations were called. We decided to run away from the
country and plan to go back when Mbeki, Obama, Bush and Blair have sorted
Mugabe and the country. I am not the only one like this.

There are many like me.

Many, as evidenced by some of our comments at the Cathedral. We have a
warped thinking that someone must do the work and I must go there to enjoy.
Someone must sort the sewerage pipes in Chitungwiza before I set foot there.
Many are like this.

The Prime Minister is saying; let us build our country together. Let us
together fight for our freedom. Let us not be selfish. People inside
Zimbabwe want their clinics to function and he wants to deliver. The quality
of lives of people must improve. But all the skilled workers are gone.
Unless sacrifices are made then clinics wont open and services won't be
delivered and cholera will worsen. He is doing the correct thing and he is
not selling out.

The Prime Minister said that groundwork is being prepared for free and fair
elections with international supervision in the next 18 months. The choice
is yours. If you want to assist rebuild you country this is the time. We
need to make a clean break from depending on donations to doing our own

Those who are out of step are being left behind as we continue to journey
towards or freedom.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Zimbabwe starts hearings on new constitution

Wed Jun 24, 2009 1:00pm GMT

HARARE, June 24 (Reuters) - Zimbabwe began hearings on Wednesday on a new
constitution to comply with a power-sharing deal and usher in elections.

President Robert Mugabe formed a unity government in February with arch-foe
Morgan Tsvangirai, now prime minister, after disputed elections last year
and agreed to write a new constitution within 18 months.

Zimbabweans hope a new charter, replacing one inked in 1979, before
independence from Britain, will strengthen the role of parliament and
whittle down the president's powers, and guarantee civil liberties and
political and media freedoms.

If the any constitution is adopted after a referendum, elections could
follow but Mugabe's ZANU-PF party and Tsvangirai's Movement for Democratic
Change (MDC) may agree to defer the vote to a later date.

The constitutional process had appeared to be derailing after ZANU-PF
legislators sought to delay hearings because they said they were not

But on Wednesday members of parliament held separate meetings with civic
society groups, churches and political parties in the country's 10 provinces
to identify delegates to would attend a major conference next month.

"The constitution-making train is leaving station and I want you to be on
board," Douglas Mwonzora, who co-chairs a parliamentary select committee
coordinating the process, told hundreds of delegates attending a hearing in

Up to 5,000 delegates will attend a national stakeholders' conference in the
capital in July choose members for various committees that will travel
around the country soliciting people's views on the constitution.

Civic groups want to ensure politicians do not have an undue influence on
the process to push their own agenda at the expense of the people.

Mwonzora said all draft documents, including those produced by churches, the
MDC and lobby group National Constitutional Assembly would all be

ZANU-PF has requested that a draft agreed between it and MDC in 2007 be used
as the discussion document.

The draft was never used because ZANU-PF and MDC were bitterly divided on
the timing of its adoption. Mugabe had sought to have it adopted after last
year's elections while the MDC had wanted it used before those elections.

The official Herald said in an editorial that using the 2007 draft would
save money.

Zimbabwe's new administration has struggled to get aid from sceptical
Western donors who are pressing for more political and economic reforms.
Harare says it needs up to $10 billion to fix an economy shattered by a
decade of recession.

"The constitution making process is taking place in an environment of acute
resource constraints," Lovemore Moyo, speaker of parliament, told foreign

"We call upon you ... to lend your support to this process." (reporting by
MacDonald Dzirutwe)

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

ZANU PF & MDC headed for clash on new constitution

By Lance Guma
24 June 2009

The MDC and ZANU PF parties, who entered into a coalition government 4
months ago, are heading for a potential clash over the framework for a new
constitution. Robert Mugabe has told his ZANU PF Central Committee this week
that the inclusive government will come up with a new constitution, in line
with the widely criticized Kariba Draft document. On Tuesday the MDC however
issued a statement saying they will reject any attempts to have this draft
adopted as a roadmap. 'The MDC believes in a truly people-driven
constitution-making process where the unfettered will of the people must be
reflected,' their statement read.

Our correspondent Simon Muchemwa reports that a provincial all-stakeholders
conference was held in Harare on Wednesday at the Rainbow Towers hotel in
the morning. Present was Masvingo MP Tongai Matutu the Chairman of the House
Legal and Procedural Committee in Parliament and Nyanga North MP and lawyer
Douglas Mwonzora, among others. Representatives from civil society,
students, churches and labour unions were also there. But Muchemwa says top
officials from the National Constitutional Assembly (NCA) boycotted the
meeting, although they sent representatives to observe proceedings.

Under the process, a series of provincial hearings will lead up to a
National All-stakeholders Conference in July this year. After that 70 teams
from each province will hold 3 meetings per ward and come up with reports
that are forwarded to what is called a 'provincial thematic committee'. This
committee will then forward its recommendations to the parliamentary team. A
draft constitution is expected in February 2010 and a further month will
pass while it is debated. A referendum is expected to be conducted 3 months
after the debate is over, meaning a new constitution is only likely some
time in July 2010.

Groups like the NCA and the recently launched Democratic United Front (DUF)
are opposing this parliament controlled process. DUF for example was
distributing pamphlets in Harare during the stakeholder's conference,
accusing MP's of abusing the Global Political Agreement and its provisions,
to marginalize ordinary people. Mike Sambo, the national coordinator, told
Newsreel there are many parties and interest groups who are not in
parliament and their views will not find a voice under the current process.
He said they want the new constitution to address social and economic rights
including what he called 'attacks on the working class.' The group says it
will participate in the process but 'under protest'.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Zimbabwe to get $100m support from Britain

By Violet Gonda
24 June 2009

The United Kingdom government announced on Wednesday that it will be giving
a total of $100million (£60m) to Zimbabwe, in humanitarian support in 2009
and 2010. The announcement was made by British Prime Minister Gordon Brown
when he pledged an additional $8 million (£5m) for food security and
educational textbooks, during a meeting with Prime Minister Morgan
Tsvangirai on Monday.

The UK's International Development Secretary, Douglas Alexander, said: "Our
£60 million package will provide support directly to Zimbabwe's poorest
people. Our assistance has already helped one million people in Zimbabwe get
access to clean water and has enabled two million to grow more food, as well
as helping get the worst cholera outbreak in the country's history under

 "The new inclusive Zimbabwean Government presents a real opportunity to
help the Zimbabwean people and to support economic, political and social
reform. We stand ready to provide more support should we see further
progress towards reform."  The UK said the funds will be channelled through
non-governmental organisations and the United Nations.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Tsvangirai winds up his three week long
re-engagement and fundraising tour in western countries this week, with a
final visit to France. The Prime Minister has reportedly raised $150million,
mostly in humanitarian aid, but this is much less that the more than $8
billion the coalition needs to rebuild the country, over a five year period.

Furthermore, western governments have insisted that aid pledges will go
through specific NGO projects and not directly to the government. They say
full developmental aid will only be given when the Zimbabwean government
shows proper democratic reforms. Most of the promised aid will be in the
form of humanitarian assistance in areas of health and education.

Economists such as Tony Hawkins say the aid pledges provide little comfort
for the government, which faces a growing financing problem. He says
frustrated civil servants are demanding a return to "proper salaries" to
replace the existing $100 a month allowance being paid to all public
servants. "These allowances absorb almost a third of projected revenue of
$880m. In May, revenue was estimated at $60m and it is estimated that by the
end of this month the Treasury will have raised less than 35 per cent of its
revenue target for the whole year."

Hawkins says the situation is exacerbated by wage awards in the private
sector, where workers are being paid more than double their public service

Prime Minister Tsvangirai told reporters in London this week that the money
pledged so far is sufficient to support basic services like health,
education and food production. He said there have been significant changes
in Zimbabwe since the formation of the unity government in February, adding:
"As a society, we were near death, and we have come back to life."

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Tsvangirai in Paris on final leg of fundraising tour

From France 24, 24 June

Zimbabwe Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai said on Tuesday he had formed a
working relationship with Robert Mugabe and saw scope for the long-serving
president eventually to make a dignified exit from power. Tsvangirai joined
a unity government with rival Mugabe in February to end a political and
economic crisis. Mugabe has ruled the southern African country since
independence from Britain in 1980 and critics say he has ruined a once
prosperous nation. "It's too early to say I trust him wholly, but where we
differ, we differ respectfully," Tsvangirai told an audience after a speech
in London. "I'm prepared to work with him for the good of the country,"
added Tsvangirai, who said in 2007 he had been beaten at a police station
after he was arrested at an anti-Mugabe rally. Asked whether Mugabe might
make a "dignified exit", Tsvangirai said the transition process provided a
platform for him to go quietly, adding that Mugabe had the chance to restore
his legacy as a founding father of Zimbabwe.

Mugabe and Tsvangirai have agreed on an 18-month timetable for political
reforms, with a referendum on a new constitution to be held in little over a
year. Tsvangirai is on the final leg of a tour to Europe and the United
States to drum up cash from Western donors, but the trip has yielded only
small contributions towards the $10 billion Zimbabwe says it needs to
rebuild its shattered economy. Most donors are choosing to channel money
through charities or UN agencies rather than give it to a government where
Mugabe still wields influence. Tsvangirai said the money received was
sufficient to support basic services like health, education and food
production. "I think it's quite substantial," he told reporters. Tsvangirai
said Zimbabwe had made huge strides since the unity government was formed in
February. "Zimbabwe has become a totally different place, a significantly
better place, in the past four months," he said. "As a society, we were near
death, and we have come back to life."

That echoed comments from the minister for economic planning who told
Reuters on Tuesday that Zimbabwe's economy had turned around, with
employment and industrial capacity use doubling and once record-breaking
inflation under control. But back at home, Tsvangirai's Movement for
Democratic Change party said police were arresting its legislators and
senior party members, while public media had increased hostile reporting to
discredit and undermine the prime minister. Senior MDC official Tapiwa
Mashakada said Southern African leaders could meet next month to mediate in
what the party says are continued violations by Mugabe's Zanu PF of a
political pact signed last year. Zimbabwe remains subject to Western
sanctions. Britain denied Zimbabwe's mines minister a visa for a mining
investment conference in London, angering Zanu PF. Tsvangirai said he hoped
sanctions could be removed if Zimbabwe proved it was committed to political
reform. "Eventually sanctions must be removed. It would be
counter-productive to punish progress," he said.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Mugabe has a chance to leave politics with dignity: Tsvangirai

June 24
2009 , 7:11:00

Muntu Lukhozi, London

Zimbabwe's Prime Minister, Morgan Tsvangirai, says that the unity
government provides a good opportunity for President Robert Mugabe's
dignified political exit. Addressing diplomats and political experts in
London, Tsvangirai said it would be in the Mugabe's interest to grab this
opportunity with both hands.

"For now the support we have received on this tour has been sufficient
to consolidate the government in terms of it's delivering in education and
health, water, sanitation and those are the basic services."

Tsvangirai says the new government has provided the platform for
Mugabe's exit. "If there was no inclusive government, there was no way
Mugabe would have a dignified exit. This gives him two possibilities, to
restore his legacy as the founding father of Zimbabwe, and secondly to allow
for the transition to take place without allowing the country to slide back
into chaos."

Re-engagement with international community

Tsvangirai says his whirlwind visit to London is about re-engagement
with the international community, but the sanctions against Zimbabwe remain
in place. While some feel this visit didn't yield what he had hoped for -
there are calls for some understanding.

Chatham House's Thomas Cargill says: "I think it's true that the Prime
Minister has a big hill to climb, and a lot of work to do to convince people
outside Zimbabwe and certainly in the UK that this government of national
unity is meaningful and can deliver the kind of reforms that are so
desperately sought by Zimbabweans." Tsvangirai has urged Zimbabweans in
Diaspora to take their skills back home where they are much needed.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

MDC expects SADC to discuss Zimbabwe

Wednesday 24 June 2009

HARARE - Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai's MDC party said Tuesday that it
expected regional leaders to meet next month to discuss problems bedevelling
Zimbabwe's power-sharing government.

The South African Development Community (SADC) brokered last September's
power-sharing agreement between the MDC and President Robert Mugabe's ZANU
PF party that led to formation of a unity government last February.

The regional bloc is guarantor to the agreement and promised to review the
pact six months after formation of a unity government between Mugabe,
Tsvangirai and Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara, who heads a smaller
MDC faction. The government has been in office for about five months.

MDC acting secretary general Tapuwa Mashakada told ZimOnline that the party
had referred what it regards as "ZANU PF's insincerity in implementing the
power-sharing agreement and a fresh crackdown on MDC members" to the SADC,
adding that a regional summit could take place by early next month.

"We expect another meeting soon to discuss the outstanding issues. I am
informed that the meeting might be called in early July but I don't have the
actual dates," said Mashakada said, speaking moments after a meeting of the
MDC national executive in Harare to discuss problems and developments in the
unity government.

The MDC accuses Mugabe of insincerity because the veteran leader - who still
wields immense power - has refused to fire controversial Reserve Bank of
Zimbabwe governor Gideon Gono and Attorney General Johannes Tomana who he
appointed to their posts without consulting his coalition partners as
required under the power-sharing agreement.

Tsvangirai's party also says Tomana and the police have intensified a
crackdown against MDC officials and activists which has seen several of the
party's legislators arrested and charged in court.

The courts have convicted some of the MDC legislators but the party insists
they were framed as part of a drive by Mugabe to whittle down its
representation in Parliament.

Tsvangirai did not attend Tuesday's meeting of the MDC executive council as
he was yet to return from a tour of Western capitals to try to raise
financial support for the unity government.

The United States and its European Union allies visited by Tsvangirai
promised more humanitarian support for Zimbabwe but held back on direct
financial support until Harare implements more reforms and acts to uphold
human rights.

Meanwhile the MDC national executive resolved to oppose plans by ZANU PF to
have a draft constitution known as the Kariba Draft used as the working
document in writing anew constitution for Zimbabwe.

The Kariba Draft was prepared by ZANU PF and MDC representatives well before
formation of the unity government. It has remained secret, while civic
society groups have said they will mobilise Zimbabweans to reject use of the
document as the foundation of a new constitution.  ZimOnline

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

We facilitated unity govt: China envoy

by Andrew Moyo Wednesday 24 June 2009

HARARE - Last year's decision by China and Russia to block United Nations
(UN) sanctions against Zimbabwe paved way for power-sharing negotiations to
continue leading to formation of a unity government in the African country,
Beijing's top diplomat in Harare said on Tuesday.

The drive to rally the UN community against President Robert Mugabe and his
old government flopped after Beijing and Moscow, allies of the Zimbabwean
leader, vetoed a United States-sponsored draft resolution for the Security
Council to impose an arms embargo on Zimbabwe as well as visa and financial
sanctions on top government officials.

Chinese ambassador to Zimbabwe Yuan Nansheng said had the US proposals
passed power-sharing negotiations that were taking place in neighbouring
South Africa could have collapsed because the sanctions resolution would
have banned UN member countries from allowing representatives of Mugabe's
ZANU PF party into their territory.

"The veto by China and Russia has provided a good foundation for the
formation of the inclusive government," said Nansheng in his last briefing
to reporters before leaving Zimbabwe to take up a new diplomatic post in

Yuan said: "SADC and the African Union (did) not wish to see the resolution
through. China and Russia wanted to create a good environment for Zimbabwe.

He added, "China and Russia vetoed the US proposals in line with the SADC
and African Union position. I do not think the inclusive government would
have been established if Russia and China had not vetoed the US resolution."

While negotiations between ZANU PF and the then two MDC opposition
formations would have most likely continued at another venue, sanctions
would have certainly hardened Mugabe and his lieutenants and make them less
inclined to agree to have their grip on power diluted through coalition
government with their former foes.

There was also likelihood that pro-Mugabe military commanders could have
ordered a crackdown against the MDC, which they would have blamed for the
sanctions because of its perceived close ties with Western governments.

Meanwhile Yuan praised Mugabe's "Look East" foreign policy for helping
strengthen relations between China and Zimbabwe but he urged the Harare
authorities to also pursue relations with other countries.

"The look East Policy ensured the strengthening on friendship between the
two countries. It does not mean when you adopt a Look East Policy you
exclude relationships with others. Zimbabwe should also promote relations
with other countries," he said.

Zimbabwe has since 2000 promoted an aggressive "Look East" policy premised
on the need to find new trading partners and markets after traditional
investors from Western nations turned against Harare in protest over Mugabe's
human rights abuses, repression against political opponents and violent
land-grab programme. - ZimOnline

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Vice Presidents threatened to quit

June 24, 2009

By Our Correspondents

HARARE - Zimbabwe's two vice Presidents, Joseph Msika and Joice Mujuru,
almost quit President Robert Mugabe's Mugabe government  in protest at his
decision to include favoured politician Oppah Muchinguri in the cabinet in

Sources in the Zanu-PF politburo revealed this week that Msika, elderly and
ailing, and Mujuru fiercely resisted plans by President Mugabe, first, to
allocate a non-constituency seat to Muchinguri and then a cabinet post in
the inclusive government.

The two are said to have threatened to quit if Mugabe went ahead with his
plans to include Muchinguri, long regarded as a Mugabe favourite, in the new
government after she lost her parliamentary seat in the March 20008

Muchinguri (51) served as Minister of Women's Affairs, Gender and Community
Development from 2005 to 2009. Previously she was governor of Manicaland

She is said to be now gunning for the position of vice-president of Zanu-PF,
challenging incumbent Mujuru. Muchinguri is said to have the backing of
Defence Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa, a rival of Mujuru's husband Solomon
Tapfumaneyi Mujuru. Solomon Mujuru, the wealthy former commander of the
Zimbabwe National Army is an influential figure in Zanu-PF.

The Zimbabwe Times sources said in challenging Mugabe's decision to appoint
Muchinguri to the cabinet, Msika and Mujuru argued that she could not play a
role in the new government since she had lost her parliamentary seat in
March 2009. President Mugabe warned his ministers before that election that
whoever lost their constituency was not guaranteed to return to cabinet.

His proposal to appoint Muchinguri despite her loss is said to have
therefore infuriated his two top lieutenants. Muchinguri lost to the MDC's
Trevor Saruwaka in Mutasa Central Constituency in Manicaland.

"Msika and Mujuru were livid and made it clear they would quit if Mugabe
went ahead with plans to appoint Muchinguri into the new government," said a
politburo member. "The President immediately retreated after realizing the
two were serious."

In fact the inclusive cabinet includes a number of Zanu-PF ministers who
lost their seats in Parliament in 2008. They include Patrick Chinamasa, the
party's chief negotiator during the talks which culminated in the signing of
the Global Political Agreement in September 2008. All ministers representing
the breakaway faction of the MDC, including party leader Deputy Prime
Minister Arthur Mutambara were also defeated at the polls.

Mugabe's special regard for Muchinguri goes back to the liberation struggle
in Mozambique in the 1970s. She was a personal assistant to Zanla commander
Josiah Tongogara, who died in a car crash on the eve of independence in

Muchinguri survived the fatal accident that killed the popular guerilla

"If anyone tries to remove President Mugabe from power we will march in the
streets and we are prepared to remove our clothes in support of his
candidature in next year's election," Muchinguri said at Zanu-PF
headquarters in 2006.

After he failed to appoint Muchinguri to cabinet, Mugabe appointed her to
the Joint Monitoring and Implementation Committee (JOMIC) which supervises
the operations of the inclusive government.

The sources say Muchinguri was so bitter with this turn of events that she
now wants to challenge Mujuru at the Zanu-PF special conference to be held
at the end of the year.

"Battle lines were drawn after Muchinguri realized Mujuru had thwarted her
appointment into Cabinet and the friendship between the two has turned
 sour," said one source.

Muchinguri was instrumental in canvassing for Mujuru's bid to become vice
president ahead of Emmerson Mnangagwa in 2004. Now she is said to be aligned
with Mnangagwa. Both Muchinguri and Mujuru (54) saw active service with
Zanla, the armed wing of ZANU in Mozambique during Zimbabwe's liberation

"During the women's league congress, Joice Mujuru is going to be denounced
for allegedly working with (Morgan) Tsvangirai's party and for furthering
the political interests of her husband instead of those of the party,"  The
Independent newspaper reported last week.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Friction Within Zimbabwe Government As Britain Bars ZANU-PF Minister

By Blessing Zulu
23 June 2009

The news that British authorities denied Zimbabwe Mining Minister Obert
Mpofu a visa to take part in a London conference on the sector has sharpened
divisions within Zimbabwe's unity government as Prime Minister Morgan
Tsvangirai nears the end of a Western tour.

Sources in the ZANU-PF party of President Robert Mugabe said party
hardliners were urging Mr. Mugabe to call Mr. Tsvangirai home, but that
support for that position was limited.

But Britain's enforcement of European Union travel sanctions on Mpofu, a
ZANU-PF member, has angered those in the longtime ruling party who say Mr.
Tsvangirai has been raising funds that will go to non-governmental
organizations not to the power-sharing government.

They also say Mr. Tsvangirai has allowed ZANU-PF ministers traveling with
him to be slighted by Western leaders including U.S. President Barack Obama,
who refused to receive ZANU-PF Tourism Minister Walter Mzembi with Mr.
Tsvangirai on June 12 in Washington.

Mpofu is especially controversial among human rights activists because he
dismissed reports of mass killings by the armed forces in the Marange
diamond fields in Manicaland province.

Rights activists say more than 200 died as troops shot suspected diamond

Britain has not uniformly applied EU sanctions, though: it waived sanctions
to grant visas to Foreign Affairs Minister Simbarashe Mumbengegwi and
Tourism Minister Mzembi.

Following the mining conference in London on Friday, Mr. Tsvangirai urged
investors in all sectors to consider ventures in Zimbabwe.

Tsvangirai spokeman James Maridadi told VOA reporter Blessing Zulu that Mr.
Tsvangirai also met with British members of parliament and other officials

Political analyst Glen Mpani said ZANU-PF must institute sweeping economic
and political reforms if it is to realistically expect sanctions to be

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Media hangman Charamba crafts new regulation laws

By Alex Bell
24 June 2009

Concern is being raised over the future of media freedom in the country, as
two new media laws, which are set to replace the controversial Access to
Information and Privacy Act (AIPPA), are said to be the brainchild of media
'hangman' George Charamba.

The draconian AIPPA, which has been used by Robert Mugabe's regime to
strangle media freedom, will fall away and instead make room for the
proposed Freedom of Information Act and the Media Practitioners Act. It's
understood that the Media Practitioners Act will outline procedures for the
regulation of journalists, while the Freedom of Information Act will
regulate access to information and privacy issues.

The proposed laws are currently being crafted by the unity government, and
will be placed before Parliament for adoption. The acts were apparently
agreed upon at the recent media conference held in Kariba last month, which
was a coming together of the country's most notorious media 'hangmen'. The
event was boycotted by the majority of independent media groups, who
therefore have had no say in the drafting of the new laws. Of most concern
however is the apparent involvement of ZANU PF's George Charamba, who is
said to be the brains behind the formation of the new acts.

The chairperson of a parliamentary portfolio Committee on Media, Information
and Communication Technologies, Gift Chimanikire, has admitted that the
introduction of the laws is a 'compromise', saying in recent interviews that
"what we are working on is not the ideal situation."

Loughty Dube, the chairman of the Zimbabwe chapter of the Media Institute of
Southern Africa (MISA), told SW Radio Africa on Wednesday that "there is no
more time for compromises." He said the unity government has a small window
of opportunity to implement real reforms, and that missing that opportunity
could be 'disastrous'. Dube expressed concern over Charamba's involvement in
the formation of the new laws, and added that media role players such as
MISA crucially need to be involved in any formation of media regulatory law.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

MDC minister denies mass killings in Chiadzwa diamond fields

By Alex Bell
24 June 2009

Deputy Mining Minister Murisi Zwizwai has denied there were any killings in
the eastern Marange diamond fields last year, telling a meeting of the
Kimberley Process in Namibia on Wednesday that claims were a result of
'unsubstantiated reports'.
There have been widespread accounts of killings in the Chiadzwa area, which
has been the centre of controversy since last October when the army was
called in to disperse thousands of illegal diamond hunters. But Zwizwai told
Wednesday's meeting of the Kimberley Process, the international scheme to
curb the sale of 'blood diamonds', that the situation in Marange had been
brought under control.
"Contrary to allegations in the media, nobody was killed by security forces
during an operation at Marange, where about 30,000 people descended onto the
alluvial mining field," Zwizwai told the 200 delegates at the conference.
"These people comprised of cunning, die-hard illegal diamond diggers,"
Zwizwai said. "This compelled government to conduct a special operation to
flush out the illegal diamond miners and to bring order and sanity to the

The government had originally, illegally, seized the Chiadzwa diamond claim
in 2007, and set off a diamond rush when it encouraged locals to help
themselves. But the arrival of the army last year resulted in violence and
murder, after the area was sealed off with military roadblocks and troops.
Accounts from survivors of the military onslaught detailed the killings,
speaking of machine-gun attacks by helicopter and armed attacks by troops on
the ground. Civilians in the region also reported that anyone attempting to
enter Chiadzwa was arrested and often tortured and killed.

Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights have said that about 5,000 people were
arrested during the army operation, with three quarters of them showing
signs of having been tortured severely. The MDC has also claimed that
hundreds of people were buried in mass graves "to hide the regime's
murderous activities," and that the soldiers sent to 'guard' the fields had
become illegal diamond dealers themselves.

Human rights groups have called for Zimbabwe's suspension from the Kimberley
Process, over claims of forced evictions and other abuses in Marange. The
World Federation of Diamond Bourses in April banned the sale of diamonds
from Marange, but Kimberley has resisted taking a tough stance.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Sibanda's days as minister numbered

June 24, 2009

By Our Correspondent

HARARE - The days of National Healing, Reconciliation and Integration
Minister Gibson Sibanda as a cabinet minister are numbered.

He has ceased to be Member of Parliament following his failure to secure a
parliamentary seat within the constitutionally stipulated three months from
his appointment as minister.  Sibanda became a cabinet minister in February
as a non-constituency Senator and was required, in terms of the
Constitution,  to secure a parliamentary seat by May 19, or he would forfeit
his cabinet post.

There had been anxiety within the breakaway faction of the MDC led by Deputy
Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara over how to resolve the predicament of its
deputy president, Sibanda, and secure a seat for him in Parliament.

The crisis has defied solution and Sibanda is now required to vacate his
ministerial office.

The root cause of the party's dilemma was the failure of its entire
leadership to win parliamentary seats in the elections held in March 2008.
They were then appointed cabinet ministers in February in terms of the
Global Political Agreement signed by the parties in September 2008. Special
non-constituency seats were set aside in the Senate and in Parliament in
order for them to be eligible for ministerial positions.

The Mutambara faction immediately exhausted its allocation of
non-constituency seats. It allocated a parliamentary seat to its president,
Mutambara, who is now Deputy Prime Minister. Then it allocated its  two
senatorial seats to Welshman Ncube and Priscilla Misihairabwi-Mushonga - the
party's secretary general and deputy, respectively.

Sibanda, who lost his parliamentary seat in Bulawayo's Nkulumane suburb to
Thamsanqa Mahlangu of Tsvangirai's mainstream MDC, was left high and dry.

Clerk of Parliament Austin Zvoma was quoted in the press on  Monday as
saying the Constitution was categorically clear on the provision relating to
the peculiar circumstances that Minister Sibanda finds himself in.

"You just need to read the Constitution; it is self explanatory," said
Zvoma. "He can no longer continue attending parliamentary sessions without
regularising that.

"He could only attend parliamentary proceedings during the three-month
period within which he was then supposed to secure a seat."

If Sibanda has no place in Parliament now, after expiry of the deadline, he
cannot legally serve as a government minister. Sources within the
Mutambara-led MDC say the party tried to circumvent the sticky problem by
seeking to appoint Mangwe Member of Parliament, Edward Mkhosi, as governor
and resident minister for Matabeleland South Province to vacate his
parliamentary seat and make way for Sibanda.

In terms of the Global Political Agreement signed between Zanu-PF, MDC-T and
MDC, when a constituency falls vacant, the party holding that seat can
nominate a successor to fill the vacancy.

Sibanda's predicament is not without precedent.

In 2002, Minister Sithembiso Nyoni of Zanu-PF failed to secure a
parliamentary seat within the stipulated period when she found herself in
similar circumstances.

She was forced to relinquish her ministerial post until she finally secured
the parliamentary seat.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

'Zimbabweans still pouring into SA'

by Own Correspondent Wednesday 24 June 2009

JOHANNESBURG - Zimbabwe's temporary political stabilisation following
formation of a unity government in February has neither stopped nor slowed
new arrivals of Zimbabweans in South Africa, a Johannesburg-based
non-governmental organisation (NGO) representing refugees and migrants has

The Consortium for Refugees and Migrants in South Africa (CORMSA) said in a
recent report that similar levels of migration should continue for the next
two to five years, and could rise if the power sharing government between
President Robert Mugabe and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai collapsed.

But CORMSA urged South African authorities not to restrict migration into
the country, adding this would hamper the country's development because most
migrants were self-sufficient bringing in skills and resources that
generated jobs.

"We will find no answers to South Africa's problems by halting migration,"
said CORMSA.

"As such, migration is not a threat to South Africans' economic or physical
security. Managed properly, it could lead to investment, job creation and a
more productive economy.

"To realise this end, we need to move beyond the deceptive goal of sealing
off the South African border."?

CORMSA has urged newly installed South African President Jacob Zuma to
prioritise the security of all people resident in the country and work
closely with civil society to avert a repeat of the suffering and deaths
experienced last year.

The NGO which brings together refugee and migrant workers service providers
in Africa's economic powerhouse said as shown by the May 2008 xenophobia,
South Africa could not protect the migrants within its borders which could
make it struggle to recruit the people it needed.

South Africa - the continent's most prosperous country - hosts millions of
immigrants from other African countries among them an estimated two million
Zimbabweans who have fled their home country because of political violence
and hunger after a decade-long economic crisis, critics blame on Mugabe's
controversial policies.

The unity government is yet to convince rich Western nations that the
southern African country is firmly on the path to genuine reform for them
give it much needed financial support to resuscitate its shattered
economy. - ZimOnline

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Morgan's dilemma

Published: June 24 2009 20:35 | Last updated: June 24 2009 20:35

Morgan Tsvangirai is putting on a brave face. In search of the financial
support Zimbabwe needs to recover from years of catastrophic misrule, he has
spent three weeks shuttling between western capitals. He has been warmly
welcomed at the highest levels. Yet he returns to Harare with little to show
for it.

He has raised $150m in humanitarian aid. But none of this will be channelled
through government. This leaves him with the impossible choice of cutting a
slender budget and facing industrial action, or raising taxes from
businesses suffering diminishing returns. Worse, Mr Tsvangirai's efforts to
persuade global opinion that President Robert Mugabe has accepted change - a
prerequisite for aid - is costing him the support he has won back home
during many tough years in opposition.

Sadly, this was inevitable. Mr Tsvangirai is courageous. He has been
battered, jailed and robbed of election victory. There is no doubt that by
agreeing to serve as prime minister under the man responsible for many of
his woes, he hoped to save his country. Yet good salesmanship alone was
never going to convince opinion of Mr Mugabe's good intentions.

Foreign donors are confronted with a difficult calculation. If they continue
to withhold financial support, Mr Tsvangirai will inevitably fail to
transform Zimbabwe's fortunes. He could emerge a much diminished figure. Yet
there is no guarantee he will succeed in marginalising Mr Mugabe, even with
a multi-billion-dollar rescue package.

To be fair, there have been improvements in the months since the coalition
government was formed. Dollarising the economy has halted hyper-inflation.
There are more provisions in the markets and a cholera epidemic has been
stalled. Businesses are finding it easier to operate.

Yet on the evidence so far, Mr Mugabe is still very much in control, using
the cover of the coalition to rehabilitate his ruling Zanu-PF. His thugs are
still hounding Mr Tsvangirai's supporters and invading farms. Even Gideon
Gono, the architect of Zimbabwe's economic collapse, is still in place as
governor of the central bank. And while Mr Tsvangirai was pleading for
Zimbabwe, state media were ridiculing him back home.

Southern African leaders, who promoted the power-sharing deal, are failing
to ensure that Mr Mugabe keeps his end of the bargain. So long as this is
so, and there is no clear endgame for his rule, the case for rescuing the
government with aid will be weak.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Zimbabwean newspaper campaign turns worthless banknotes into gold

Campaign to boost sales of the Zimbabwean using useless currency wins top award at Cannes Lions advertising festival

Ad for the Zimbabwean printed on worthless bank notesView larger picture

Ad for the Zimbabwean printed on worthless banknotes. Click bottom right to see full image. Photograph: TBWA/Hunt/Lascaris/Johannesburg

A campaign to boost sales of the Zimbabwean, a newspaper that attacked Robert Mugabe's regime by using the troubled country's almost worthless bank notes to make billboard adverts, has won the top award in the outdoor category at the Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival.

The campaign to promote sales of the newspaper, which is published in the UK and South Africa, used the Zimbabwean currency as an advertising medium on posters and billboards to raise awareness of the dire state of the country under Mugabe.

Straplines used in the poster campaign included "Thanks to Mugabe this money is wallpaper", "Z$250,000,000 cannot buy the paper to print this poster on", "It's cheaper to print this on money than on paper", and "Fight the regime that has crippled a country".

The ads, by South African agency TBWA/Hunt/Lascaris/Johannesburg, won the Cannes Lions Grand Prix award for outdoor advertising. The Zimbabwean campaign also won a gold lion in the media category.

The agency said one of the most "eloquent symbols" of the state the country is in, with rampant inflation, was to use the Zimbabwean currency.

The newspaper faces a 55% "luxury import" tax to get copies into Zimbabwe, making it unaffordable to most locals.

To get more copies of the paper into the hands of Zimbabweans it has to be subsidised, which is done by raising awareness and sales outside the country.

The Zimbabwean newspaper, which carries the slogan A Voice for the Voiceless, targets the more than one million Zimbabweans who live in the UK and two million who live in Southern Africa, mainly South Africa and Botswana.

Wilf Mbanga, the founder, editor and publisher of the Zimbabwean, lives in Britain after being forced to leave Zimbabwe when he was branded an enemy of the people. He has written for the Guardian's Comment is Free blogging website.

UK ad agency DDB London won a bronze lion at Cannes in the outdoor category for a campaign for Harvey Nichols in Bristol.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

‘Mugabe and the White African’ wins award for World Feature at SILVERDOCS

Mugabe and the White African - film poster

From the SILVERDOCS website:

This year’s SILVERDOCS Sterling Award for a World Feature goes to MUGABE AND THE WHITE AFRICAN directed by Lucy Bailey and Andrew Thompson, which explores, through the lens of a 74-year-old white farmer, Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe’s deeply controversial land seizure program, which intended to re-distribute white-owned farmland. The director will receive $10,000 cash.

The Jury noted: “The three of us on the International Jury have very different backgrounds, sensitivities and outlooks. But all three of us were totally unanimous in our verdict. Our chosen film displays a moral conviction which grew from the vision behind it, became an integral part of the trusting relationship between the contributors and the filmmakers, and that powerfully elevates a resonant story to a global stage. We want to commend the filmmaking team for the physical risks they took in their relentless pursuit of this story, and for having the wisdom and humility to simply give their characters the freedom to intimately express anguish, doubt and resolve.” (Link to SILVERDOCS website).

Read more about this documentary on our earlier blog here: “Mugabe and the White African”

Archived blogs on Mount Carmel Farm

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Zimbabwe's Hope

JUNE 24, 2009

Tentative signs of progress in Zimbabwe could and should pave the way for
private investment.
Zimbabwe is tentatively emerging from a decade of international isolation.
Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai is currently on a tour of major capitals to
drum up support for his fragile, yet promising, four-month-old unity

During his visits to Washington, Brussels, Berlin and London, Mr. Tsvangirai
has been asking for more development assistance. The response has been
variations on a theme: "We support you in your struggle for democracy but
need to see more progress before any real money is forthcoming."
International donors are wary because Robert Mugabe -- who systematically
destroyed his country's economy to stay in power and whose lieutenants have
arrested and beaten Mr. Tsvangarai several times -- remains president.
Mugabe's thugs are also still in place, looking over Mr. Tsvangirai's

Yet despite this imperfect political deal, Zimbabwe has made significant
progress in just a few months that provides signs of hope for the future.
The worthless Zimbabwean dollar has been scrapped as of June 1, and the U.S.
dollar and South African rand are now legal tender. This helped eliminate
Zimbabwe's hyperinflation, which is now effectively zero, compared to
billions of percent between mid 2008 and January 2009. Dollarization,
combined with new rules allowing exporters to retain their foreign exchange
instead of having to convert into Zimbabwean dollars at official rates,
instantly made more businesses profitable. This also has diminished the
ruling party's patronage machine and reduced the policy-making clout of the
central bank governor, Gideon Gono, an old Mugabe comrade. An emergency
budget has allowed civil servants to start receiving their salaries again,
and has begun to restart essential services.

The man primarily responsible for these positive steps is Tendai Biti, the
new finance minister and longtime deputy to Mr. Tsvangiari. What's more,
other capable, decent people have replaced Mugabe's yes-men in most of the
critical ministries, such as energy and power development, education and
health. Although the government is short on supplies and materials, it has
reopened schools and hospitals and has put food and other commodities back
on once empty store shelves. It has also identified and prioritized
investment goals in key areas of power generation and transmission,
education, health and infrastructure.

These moves have caught the attention of international donors, and they have
opened the door a crack toward normalization. Zimbabwe will receive some
additional humanitarian aid from the World Bank, Britain, the U.S. and
others to get schools and clinics running again. But nearly all of this
money will remain outside government channels. For the donor community to
open the aid floodgates to budget support, debt relief and major
reconstruction funds will require much more political progress.

Perhaps more important for Zimbabwe's long-term economic revival, private
investors are also taking notice of a possible turnaround. Despite the
global economic crisis, there is still considerable foreign capital -- 
including in my own fund, which specializes in portfolio investment in
publicly listed companies in the developing world -- ready and willing to
invest in Zimbabwe's future. Capital is already starting to flow again into
mining of gold, platinum and diamonds, and the market capitalization of the
stock market, with 80 listed companies, is up 127% since March. Fund
managers and foreign CEOs are visiting Harare and Bulawayo, the
second-largest city, again.

But for significant private money to come, investors will need more
confidence that the reforms are irreversible and that political change is
gaining momentum. Putting an end to land seizures, clarifying land ownership
and protecting private property would be crucial steps in that direction.
Mugabe starved his country when he seized farmland from those who knew how
to farm it and redistributed the land to partisans in his Zanu-PF Party.
Aside from the immediate economic consequences, the move also sent an
alarming signal about his lack of respect for property rights.

Similarly, the restoration of the rule of law is essential. Zimbabwe's
courts will once again need to be independent, and the once-professional
police will have to be de-politicized. Lastly, the water and power
infrastructure must be rebuilt. This is a prerequisite for the country's
once-vibrant farms and factories to reopen and become sources of jobs and
economic growth.

If Prime Minister Tsvangirai and his team can accomplish these ambitious
steps, both public and private money will come. Donors and investors are
understandably cautious given the risks and inevitable setbacks ahead. Yet
the progress that has been made in just the past four months should give us
all a reason to take a serious look at Zimbabwe's opportunities.

Mr. Harmon is chairman of the Caravel Fund and served as president and chief
executive of Export-Import Bank of the United States during the Clinton

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Press Statement from ROHR ZIMBABWE



Press Statement from ROHR ZIMBABWE – 24th June 2009


Restoration of Human Rights (ROHR) Zimbabwe is deeply disturbed by a vicious, hate-fuelled and well-orchestrated campaign by some UK-based Zimbabwean online newsites aimed at discrediting ROHR Zimbabwe as an organisation and the personal integrity of Ephraim Tapa, its President. Chief among these are Nehanda Radio, Zimdaily and ZimEye. Articles on these newsites have accused ROHR Zimbabwe and its President of masterminding a spontaneous response from Zimbabweans to the Zimbabwe Prime Minister, Mr Morgan Tsvangirai’s call for Zimbabweans in the diaspora to ‘come back home’. ROHR Zimbabwe and its leadership wants to disassociate itself from these malicious accusations as they are baseless and outright falsehoods. We also want to state categorically that at no time did the organisation agree, let alone set an agenda to ridicule or disrupt the Southwark Cathedral meeting. Mr Tapa was not even at the meeting. We therefore dismiss the accusations with the contempt they deserve.


Why did the people boo the Prime Minister? Watching the online video clips, it is clear to see that the PM is loudly applauded at one point followed by a somewhat subdued reaction as he continues his speech, finally to be greeted by a spontaneous, deafening chorus of ‘Chinja!, Chinja! Mugabe must go!’ Truly this was not the work of Mr Ephraim Tapa or ROHR Zimbabwe and neither was it the work of its sister organisation, the Zimbabwe Vigil. To suggest so is to pour contempt on the conscience of the people of Zimbabwe whom we so respect. To launch this campaign on so little evidence mean that elements in the Zimbabwean UK Diaspora must feel very threatened by us as our message continues to reasonate with not only those in the Diaspora but also the wider constituency within Zimbabwe.  The issue is that Zimbabwe is still not safe to return for those who fled persecution and are in need of international protection. ROHR Zimbabwe and the Zimbabwe Vigil does not apologise to anyone for our principled stance that ‘Mugabe Must Go’, our demand for democracy and justice, respect for the rule of law and the Restoration of Human Rights. It is interesting that groups like the Vigil and ROHR who are kept busy by real activism don’t have the time or inclination to decampaign other groups.


ROHR and its President have been accused of many other crimes in a campaign that dates back to 2007, when the MDC-UK & I Executive, then led by Ephraim Tapa, was dissolved unconstitutionally. At NO time was Mr Tapa ever EXPELLED from the MDC Chairmanship and for the record, he actually declined to stand the second time he was requested to do so. Then, the call was for the Party to uphold its founding principles – constitutional democracy, transparency, accountability and justice for all. The ROHR President continues to cherish those values and, unlike some who have started glorifying Mr Mugabe with the advent of the inclusive government, continues to fight for GENUINE CHANGE. Whilst engaged in this struggle for human rights and notwithstanding his right to do so, Mr Ephraim Tapa does not for now have plans to seek any political office within any political party. And contrary to misleading theories being peddled by those who seek to detract from him, Mr Tapa harbours no rancour or vendetta against anyone within the MDC family.


The call NOW is for the inclusive government to address human rights concerns, uphold the rule of law and mete out justice to all those who perpetrated human rights abuses, including Robert Mugabe and his cronies. In its quest for these ideals, ROHR Zimbabwe has managed to create in three years a respectable national and international profile. Mindful of the suffering of Zimbabweans, ROHR Zimbabwe filed a lawsuit against Gono to remove cash withdrawal limits, mounted successful demonstrations in demand for justice and democracy, buried and cared for victims of the 2008 Mugabe terror campaign, provided basic necessities to vulnerable groups such as orphanages, the displaced, and disadvantaged school children, to name a few.  We have registered a prominent presence in defence of human rights as we continue to operate legally in Zimbabwe, South Africa and the United Kingdom. It seems ROHR Zimbabwe has become the victim of its success.


ROHR Zimbabwe runs offices in Zimbabwe, employs staff, runs programmes and assists on humanitarian causes, and like any other organisation, it needs money to do this. As a membership based organisation, ROHR Zimbabwe depends mainly on the support of its membership. Monthly subscriptions are decided and managed as per its constitution and members reserve the right to vary this and determine the direction of the organisation. As an international organisation, ROHR Zimbabwe operates within the legal framework of host countries.  Membership is open to the willing and those who join do so of their free will.


ROHR Zimbabwe is not a refugee or asylum organisation – it does not have the power to regularise anyone’s stay in any given country. We believe that those in need of international protection can only base their claims on their personal / activist profiles. The 1951 Geneva Convention provides that individuals can be recognised as refugees if they establish a “well-founded fear of prosecution on grounds of race, nationality, religious, ethnical, political opinion or membership of a social group who are outside the country of their nationality and are unable or, owing to that fear, unwilling to avail themselves of the protection of that country”. We are however aware that ROHR Zimbabwe members, their staff, supporters and activists have been persecuted under the Mugabe regime and still continue to face persecution, along with other human rights defenders, under the inclusive government. Therefore, whilst membership of ROHR Zimbabwe or participation at the Zimbabwe Vigil may be helpful, it is important that those who join us do so for what we do: defending and restoring human rights in Zimbabwe and not otherwise.


ROHR Zimbabwe will continue to stand by the people of Zimbabwe whatever it takes and will not allow itself to be distracted by hate-filled individuals hiding behind the facade of gutter journalism. ROHR Zimbabwe will never be silenced, especially not by merchants of hatred, jealousy and disunity.


For SW Radio Africa’s broadcasts featuring the Vigil and ROHR’s position on what happened at the meeting at Southwark Cathedral on Saturday, 20th June, please check SW Radio’s Archives: Newsreel on Monday, 22nd June and Diaspora Diaries on Tuesday, 23rd June –  (


From the information Department of Restoration of Human Rights (ROHR) Zimbabwe


Restoration of Human Rights (ROHR) Zimbabwe is founded on the following objectives:

·   To educate and encourage Zimbabweans to stand together and demand that their human rights issues be addressed

·   To encourage active participation of Zimbabweans in governance issues including their constitutional rights

·   To work closely with other organizations that share the same objectives and values nationally, regionally and internationally


Vigil co-ordinators

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


Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Guest Voice: Cry Zimbabwe: World Media Mucks It Up While Mother Africa is Murdered

Hi, Dr. E. here again tonight, introducing guest voice Mr. Ed Warner, geologist with twenty-six years in exploration geology, including subsurface geology combined with “bright spot”, AVO and 3-D seismic, Offshore Gulf Coast, Michigan Reef Trend, Sacramento Basin and western Kansas Morrow play, and Jonah Field. He is a Libertarian and deeply involved in better outcomes for Zimbabwe. As you will see at end of his article, dictators across the world use the same time-honored scam about elections to retain power, just as seeming took place in the recent ‘election’ in Iran. The similarities between Mugabe and Ahmandinijah are startling.

Disclosure: Mr. Warner is a colleague and friend of many years.

I’m a Denver scientist and Director of the Sand County Foundation. I have made a dozen trips to Zimbabwe since 1999 and, since 2000, worked in community-based conservation there.

I have been an eyewitness to the entire decline of that country.

I found articles across the newspaper world so misleading so as to confound me. One sub-headline quotes Robert Mugabe as blaming the British for his country’s economic collapse… Mugabe being quoted as saying…“I cannot sleep with a clear conscience if there is any cheating.” (In Focus: Suffering in the Wrecked Economy of Zimbabwe, by Angus Shaw, Assoc. Press.) [There was no analysis of this quote, as though blindly accepted.]

The last [many] months demonstrate that America and the Media live in a vacuum, utterly ignorant of African governance.

I’d like to speak truth to the media and governnment lies. In my work in Zimbabwe, supporting wildlife conservation and the livelihoods of indigenous people, this is what I have seen.

In 1999, Zimbabwe was a thriving, budding democracy, the fourth largest agricultural exporter in the world! A rising Black middle class combined with the best race relations I have witnessed in my world travels. The small white minority were the greatest entrepreneurs I’d met anywhere. Zanu-PF, the communist revolutionary party of Robert Mugabe almost lost the 2000 election to MDC the budding pro-democracy opposition.

In order to stay in power, Robert played his last and only-hole card: Twenty years earlier he had threatened to confiscate all ‘white’ farms, but failed to do so through benign neglect. In April, 2000, he pulled the trigger. His “War Veterans” invaded [those] farms, murdered a few whites and drove the rest out of their homes. 50,000 agricultural workers, all black, protested. The great “Land Reform” had begun.

In May, 2000, I interviewed War Vets on the 250,000 acre private wildlife conservancy, Bubiana (subsequently destroyed by land invasions). They were farmers and wanted more land to grow maize. The southeast low veldt where they lived is a semi-desert, poorly suited to farming – perfectly suited to wildlife. In time they would poach all the wildlife out of the once thriving private land conservancies, and their crops would fail 5 of the 6 years since they plowed the sand.

Zanu-PF gave the commercial farms to their political cronies, generals and higher-ups in the national police. The politicos expected to cut deals with the white farmers to skim the profits. The whites refused to play ball, so all that was left was to sell off the farm equipment for cash.

Thus, the Zimbabwean agricultural economy collapsed. W heat production dropped 90% in three years. This is “Gangster Government” (Africa Unchained, George Ayittey) at its worst.

Since then, whenever I’ve thought it could not get worse, it has. In June, 2007, while I was there, I watched Mugabe enforce “price controls” while his central bank created the worst inflations since 1922 Germany, by printing money and stealing foreign exchange as fast as they could.

The prices were rolled back by six weeks (400%) and the shelves emptied in days. The price police would close a store, reset the prices and reopen the store. Like as not, the police, army officers and politicians would be standing in line, first to buy. Businesses went broke and the economy further collapsed. Don’t believe me? I sat in a Harare shopping center in June, 2007 and watched it happen.

Robert Mugabe, Zanu-PF, the army and police have stolen everything. They have converted their soon to be worthless Zim dollars to U.S. and shipped it all offshore. I have purchased large quantities of Zim dollars on the black market to pay for conservation efforts. I know of what I speak.

The world has stood by and done nothing. Why not? Southern African governments cannot intervene. They are all Gangsters themselves, more or less. I have had Ministers in Namibia tell me Robert Mugabe is doing the right thing. “We will take back the white farms in our country someday.”

Mbecki of South Africa is a thief. All of them are. It is cultural. They do not understand the creation of wealth. They think you get rich by taking from someone else. Why haven’t we stepped in? My friends, they are Black and they have no Resources we covet.

–The opposition has been beaten and murdered.
–Over three million black Zimbabweans, the entire black middle class have left the country.
–Many college graduates are working cleaning toilets in South Africa.
–Two million Zimbabweans have died of AIDS. The average life span is 34 years.
–The population has dropped from about 14 million to maybe 10 million yet, Zanu-PF claim 5.9 million on the voter rolls in a country where the average age is less than the voting age. You do the math.

The world could have intervened in Zimbabwe and set Africa on a better course. Instead, we have sat back and watched an entire continent unravel in a matter of years: Rwanda, Zimbabwe, Sierra Leone, Congo, Sudan and Kenya.
–Religious hatred,
–tribal hatred,
–gangsters and
–irrational borders imposed by colonial powers…
– all fueled by guns donated by Russia and the West during the cold war have led to the collapse in Africa.

Robert Mugabe, for the moment is the worst of them. By sitting back and doing nothing, the West insured that he will be neither the worst nor the last.

Following Mugabe’s thugs being confounded to discover they really did lose the election,
–they violated their own constitution and ran the election runoff, not 21 days later, but 90 days.
–Enough time for them to viciously attack their own constituency the majority of whom had finally had enough and voted against Mugabe.
–Sure they attacked and murdered MDC politicians, but mostly the sacked and burned Shona villages – their own people.

We now know that Gangsters will not give up power. The election was stolen. SADC, the Southern African Development Community and the African Union, have wrung its collective hands and done nothing substantive.

Western governments decry the results and do nothing as well.

The U.N. is incompetent to act, a bloated bureaucracy that feeds at the public trough.

Only military intervention will overthrow this government and no one has the stones to do it.

In lieu of invasion, I suggest complete embargo. Let the refugees out and nothing in. Let the bastards sit in the dark with nothing to eat. Let them live like their own people. To paraphrase Alan Paton: “Cry, the Beloved Zimbabwe.”

In Liberty,
Ed Warner

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

The Re-Birth of David Scobie

AWARD-WINNING Zimbabwean singer, David Scobie, has unveiled his long-awaited website,

He made the announcement via his Facebook profile recently."The new website is finished and we hope to get some interest in the old music again," says David.The multi-media website features David's profile, discography, photos and singles released, among other great features.

Visitors to the site can preview and purchase his best selling 1981 album, "Cleaning Up!" for the first time in 28 years which features hit songs like Gypsey Girl, Taking The Easy Way Home, Maybe Life Don't Care and On The Phone. The CD is also available for download.Other albums will be available to preview and download in due course. These include: Reborn (1983), Photograph (1984) and David Scobie Special Edition (1989). These albums will be re-released on CD and downloads for 2009.

Brogue Music CDs are also available for purchase and download on the site. Brogue is David's new music group (of two people). He teamed up with Zimbabwean singer, Brigitte Rodrigues to form the group - producing Celtic music. They have released two albums to date: Rhythm Of The Celts (2007)  (which has already gained silver disc status in UK and is very close to gold) and Girls And Strong Whisky (2008).

Visitors can register for a newsletter to keep up-to-date with tour dates, gossip and album release dates.Visitors to the site are struck by its ease of use, especially as it includes all content areas that are integral to David's brand. It has been designed to be the premiere destination for all his fans.It is fresh, interactive, and of high quality competing with all other big artist websites.David aims to reach his growing fans through the site and other multimedia outlets available now.The highly interactive site has already garnered tremendous interest and responses from David's fans.The Guestbook, especially, has already attracted a lot of attention.

Born in Dundee, Scotland, David was exposed to traditional Scottish folk music from the age of six. His parents took him to his first live concert held in Dundee where popular folk Duo "The Corries" blew David away. In 1973 the Scobie family moved to Harare Zimbabwe. From the age of ten, under the instruction of a close musical family friend, David began learning rudimentary chords on a guitar his parents had bought him. In 1980 David, aged fifteen had a hit-single in Southern Africa called "Gypsey Girl". The single was released in October 1980 and it went to No.1 in Zimbabwe that November, staying there for the next four months. It was then released in South Africa in April 1981 and it bounced up and down the Springbok charts for nineteen weeks.
The single went Gold in both countries and David became an over-night celebrity. His next single "Taking The Easy Way Home" was recorded in April 1981 and by that June it had reached the Top Ten in both territories again. He went on to release four albums.
From 1983 to 2004 he endured a fruitful career in advertising jingles, producing and engineering. Over the years David repeatedly earned Zimbabwe Advertising Awards for his efforts. In 1998, he staged two musicals and two comedy theatre productions to full houses around the country.

David has teamed up with Brigitte Rodrigues producing Celtic music and call themselves Brogue and they are now based near Edinburgh in Scotland.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

PEACE WATCH of 24th June [Jestina Mukoko's Case inSupreme Court on Thursday]


[24th June 2009]


Jestina Mukoko Torture Case in Supreme Court Thursday at 9.30

On Thursday 25th June, the Supreme Court will hear the case in which Jestina Mukoko asks the court to declare that the conduct of the State in abducting, detaining and torturing her violated the Constitution, and accordingly to stop the criminal prosecution against her permanently. This being a constitutional matter, there will be five judges [Chief Justice Chidyausiku, Deputy Chief Justice Malaba, and Judges of Appeal Sandura, Cheda and Ziyambi].  Jestina’s case will be argued by distinguished South African advocate, Jeremy Gauntlett.  In so important a case the court will probably reserve judgment after hearing argument from the lawyers for both sides.  It may even be up to two to three months before its decision is handed down.

Case of First 4 Abductees Referred to Supreme Court

In the High Court on Monday Justice Uchena granted the defence request to refer to the Supreme Court constitutional questions arising in the trial of Concillia Chinanzvavana, Fidelis Chiramba, Violet Mupfuranhewe and Collen Mutemagau.  [These are four of the MDC activists who were abducted and “disappeared” last October.  It was discovered just before Christmas that they had been held by State agents, and after spending months in prison they were eventually given bail.  All four told their lawyers that while they were held incommunicado they were tortured.  Two weeks ago they were brought to trial on charges of recruiting for training in insurgency.]  The criminal trial is indefinitely postponed pending the Supreme Court’s decision.  The constitutional questions raised are whether the abductees’ abduction and kidnapping, physical treatment during detention and denial of access to legal practitioners, violated their constitutional rights – and “whether as victims of enforced disappearances they can lawfully be prosecuted … [whether they] can be compelled to go to trial where their appearance at court was facilitated by a criminal act of kidnapping or abduction authorised or sanctioned by the State or officials of the State”.  The Supreme Court is unlikely to hear this case before they make their decision in the Jestina Mukoko case, as the circumstances in both cases are so similar.   

Other Abductee Trials Likely to be Postponed

The Supreme Court’s decision in the Mukoko case is likely to have a bearing not only on the Concillia et al case, which has already been referred to the Supreme Court, but also on the cases of the other abductees – all of whom have made similar complaints that their constitutional rights were violated by illegal abduction, disappearance, detention, mistreatment during detention, etc.  If the Supreme Court stops the prosecution of Jestina Mukoko, it is to be expected that the prosecution of the other abductees, too, will be stopped.  But an early decision in Jestina Mukoko’s case is unlikely.  Therefore, it is probable that the defence lawyers in the “Bomber Group” trial due on the 29th June and the second “Recruiter Group” trial due on 20th July, will seek postponements until the Supreme Court’s decision in the Jestina Mukoko case is out.  

Magistrate Refers Bail Blocking to Supreme Court

Section 121 of the Criminal Procedure and Evidence Act is the section allowing the Attorney-General to block a court decision granting bail for 7 days by merely indicating the State’s intention to appeal against the decision.  It has been used repeatedly in many recent so-called “political cases”,  e.g. the abductees and Roy Bennett.  In the latest example, when MDC-T Director-General Toendepi Shonhe was accused of perjury and granted bail by a magistrate, his lawyer Alec Muchadehama asked the magistrate to  refer to the Supreme Court the question whether section 121 breaches the protection of the law guarantee in the Constitution.  This is an important case, as the Attorney-General’s use of this section has been much criticised, with human rights lawyers saying it  has been abused by the AG’s office as a weapon to oppress people they perceive to be unsuitable for bail for extra-judicial reasons

WOZA demonstrations violently broken up

Peaceful Women of Zimbabwe Arise [WOZA] marches in Bulawayo and Harare last week were forcibly broken up by police.  Participants were beaten and kicked and verbally abused, and those arrested were violently thrown into trucks.  One of the marches was dispersed close to the venue of a press conference held at the conclusion of the visit to Zimbabwe by an Amnesty International team headed by the AI secretary-general Irene Khan [see below].  In Harare those arrested were denied medical treatment by police despite being in obvious pain after their beatings.  The detained marchers – 7 in Bulawayo and 4 in Harare – were eventually released on bail despite State resistance to bail being granted.  Three journalists arrested along with the Harare marchers were released without charge when it was realised that one of them was from the State-owned Herald.

Amnesty International Visit

At the end of her visit to Zimbabwe Amnesty International secretary-general Irene Khan described the human rights situation in Zimbabwe as precarious and stressed the impunity issue:  “Impunity remains unaddressed,” she said.  “The culture of impunity remains deeply entrenched at every level of the State. No major investigation or prosecution has been brought against those responsible for State-sponsored political violence.”  Amnesty was “convinced that without justice there can be no real healing in a country deeply polarized by decades of political violence.”  The Amnesty report drew special attention to the arrests of political and human rights activists, the lawyers defending them and the journalists covering their cases. [Electronic version available]

Abductees Defence Lawyer in Court

Human rights lawyer Alec Muchadehama appeared at Harare magistrates court  on the 17th June to answer a summons on a charge of defeating or obstructing the course of justice connected with his efforts to get three of the political abductees out on bail.  In what the defence described as an unprecedented move, the prosecutor said the trial would not be proceeding and walked out of the courtroom after refusing to have the magistrate called into court for the summons to be properly dismissed and for the State witnesses to be given the court’s permission to leave.

Journalists Covering Abductees Story in Court

The Zimbabwe Independent’s editor Vincent Kahiya, news editor Constantine Chimakure and Mike Curling, representing the paper’s owners, are accused of publishing a false statement in coverage of the abductees story.  Defence lawyer Innocent Chagonda presented an impressive argument in support of a request to the magistrate to refer the case to the Supreme Court for a decision on whether Criminal Law Code section 31, which defines the offence, should be struck down for inconsistency with the Constitution’s guarantee of freedom of expression [and also on the propriety of the Attorney-General's Office being both complainant and prosecutor in the case].  The case was then adjourned to the 9th July.  [Note: The magistrate is obliged by the Constitution to refer the case to the Supreme Court unless the prosecutor can persuade him that the defence request is frivolous or vexatious.]   Meanwhile, the three accused are on bail.

Net Beginning to Close in on Zimbabwean Torturers?

Police officers and State security agents responsible for torture in Zimbabwe may have escaped investigation and prosecution so far in this country, but they could nevertheless face arrest and prosecution in South Africa for crimes against humanity.  This has become a possibillity following the handing over to the South African National Prosecuting Authority of a dossier containing detailed evidence of acts of torture committed by 18 Zimbabwean officials.  In presenting the dossier the Southern African Litigation Centre has requested action against these officials under a South African Act of Parliament that gives effect to South Africa’s membership of the international treaty ["the Rome Statute"] establishing the International Criminal Court.  If the South African authorities decide that these individuals have a case to answer, warrants could be issued for them to be arrested as soon as they set foot on South African soil.  They would then face crimes against humanity charges in a South African court.  [The Act allows a South African court to exercise jurisdiction over a person accused of a crime against humanity if he or she “is present in the territory of the Republic”, even if the crime was committed elsewhere.]   Torture is one of the crimes against humanity listed in the Rome Statute, which defines it as follows:  "‘Torture’ means the intentional infliction of severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, upon a person in the custody or under the control of the accused."

Veritas makes every effort to ensure reliable information, but cannot take legal responsibility for information supplied.

Back to the Top
Back to Index