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

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Wednesday, 13 March, 2002, 08:26 GMT
Mugabe wins Zimbabwe poll
Election count at Vainona High School in Harare
Most of the counting is now over
Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe has defeated rival Morgan Tsvangirai to win a fifth term in office, the country's authorities have announced.

It comes after an election in which accusations of ballot-rigging and intimidation of voters have predominated.

Results announced by Registrar-General Tobaiwa Mudede showed Mr Mugabe with 1,634,382 votes - substantially more than the 50% he needed for victory.

Mr Tsvangirai received 1,170,590 votes.

Mr Mudede said 3.1 million people had voted in the southern African country's three-day election that ended on Monday.

The vote was condemned by local and foreign observers and western countries, who said it was scarred by violence, deeply flawed and unfair.

Mr Tsvangirai says Mr Mugabe stole the vote through systematic cheating and there are fears of a violent backlash by opposition supporters.

Security forces have been put on high alert and police have set up roadblocks on the main approach roads to the capital, Harare.

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Sky News

New Zealand Censures Zimbabwe

New Zealand is ready to impose sanctions against Zimbabwe if the
Commonwealth chooses not to suspend the African country after an election it
said had been undermined by intimidation.

Foreign Minister Phil Goff said election observers had sent a clear message
that the election had been so manipulated that it was unlikely to reflect
the majority of the Zimbabwean people.

Observers had reported intimidation before and during the election campaign,
and also witnessed examples of torture of people, Goff said.

Goff told Parliament the New Zealand government would be working with
Commonwealth states to seek a "satisfactory result" on Zimbabwe, which
President Robert Mugabe seems to have won.


"If...we are unable to get a satisfactory result from the Commonwealth, we
will not hesitate to act independently and bring in the sort of measures
that the European Union and the United States have already taken against
Zimbabwe," Goff said.

New Zealand has been pushing for Zimbabwe to be suspended from the 54-nation
grouping of mainly former British colonies, however a split Commonwealth
withheld its decision until after the end of the elections.

Leaders appointed a three-nation taskforce to take actions ranging from
"collective disapproval to suspension" if Zimbabwe's election was not free
and fair. Goff told Reuters that New Zealand was ready to "differentiate its
position" from the Commonwealth if it came up with a weak response to a
re-elected "illegitimate" Mugabe regime.

Sanctions would include bans on travel and trade in military goods or items
used as instruments of repression.


"In practical terms I doubt that we provide anything of that nature
anyway...(but) we would do it as a matter of solidarity with those countries
in the world that have looked at the situation there and have been appalled
by it," Goff said. Australia said on Wednesday it feared an outbreak of
violence in Zimbabwe if voters believe the ballot was unfair.

"We do remain very concerned about the possibility of violence in the wake
of the election," Foreign Minister Alexander Downer told reporters.

"If the people of Zimbabwe have a sense that they have been cheated through
the election process, it is possible that some could resort to violence."

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The Daily Star

Irregularities set stage for violence in Zimbabwe

AFP, Harare

Widespread irregularities in Zimbabwe's landmark presidential election have
set the stage for "major violence" if results are seen as rigged in favour
of longtime ruler Robert Mugabe, the International Crisis Group (ICG) warned
"The risk of major violence erupting is exceedingly high," the ICG's
co-director for Africa, John Prendergast, said in a statement.

"Deep resentment combined with economic desperation has created a pressure
cooker in parts of Zimbabwe."

The ICG said "all indications are that the victor should be (Mugabe's
challenger) Morgan Tsvangirai... notwithstanding extensive and
well-documented intimidation of opposition supporters."

Prendergast said: "There is every chance of an explosion if the results are
seen to be fixed. And Mugabe's massive deployment of loosely controlled
youth militias and warlord war veterans makes it likely that there will be a
bloody reaction to any mass protest or rioting."

The ICG, a leading European think-tank based in Brussels, cited evidence
that Mugabe has taken "desperate" measures to ensure his re-election.

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Wednesday, 13 March, 2002, 06:40 GMT
Papers condemn Zimbabwe poll
Zimbabwe's troubled elections dominates the papers, but the words "free" and "fair" are nowhere to be seen.

Words like "rigged", "fixed", "poisoned" or "flawed" are more the order of the day.

A cartoon by 'Tim', on the front page of The Independent, sets the tone.

Two containers stand side by side in a polling station.

One is a ballot box, bearing the words "Mugabe votes."

The other is marked "Opposition votes", but it is a rubbish bin.

The Independent's reporter in Harare, Karen MacGregor, says Zimbabweans seem resigned to a Mugabe victory, and fear civil unrest and a government clampdown on the opposition.

The mood is the same in Zimbabwe's second city, Bulawayo, according to the Daily Telegraph.

There, some youths are apparently "itching to take up arms" against Mr Mugabe.

Saddam 'mocks' US

Top story for The Mirror is the growing momentum for US-led military action against Baghdad.

It says Saddam Hussein mocked President Bush and Tony Blair on Tuesday, dismissing the prospect of military action against him as a "futile threat".

In an editorial, the paper urges caution on Washington and London.

It says Saddam Hussein is an evil despot who crushes his own people and threatens the world, but that does not mean an all-out military assault is right.

'Matt', the Telegraph cartoonist, picks up on the sense of impending conflict.

A soldier tells his commanding officer that he thinks he's coming down with Pre-Gulf War syndrome.

Labour's 'Third Phase'

The prime minister's attempt to refocus attention on New Labour's aims, after a bruising few weeks for the government, attract a lot of coverage.

His speech at the London School Of Economics, in which he announced that the government's mission was now entering its "Third Phase", is ruthlessly picked over in the Daily Mail.

It says: "Surely this was a first draft, prime minister, not the real speech, not your crucial post-Byers, post Mittal relaunch."

The Financial Times is equally unimpressed and calls him "Blah Blah Blair".

It says there are few spectacles quite so sad in politics as that of Tony Blair trying to explain what New Labour stands for.

The Mirror recalls how Labour won the 1997 election with the song "Things Can Only Get Better."

But the result might have been different, it thinks, if the tune had been "Things Will Get Better In Phase Three."

Petrol prices

Tuesday's petrol price rises irritate the Mail, which says oil giants are never in a hurry to lower petrol prices when the market falls but have once again demonstrated their determination to profit as soon as energy bills rise.

The Telegraph has wider concerns. It says the increases could be the start of an upward trend that could choke off the delicate economic recovery now underway on both sides of the Atlantic.

Between the lines

The Mirror reports on a new worry for motorists - triple yellow lines.

They have appeared in a street in Swindon, but no-one knows what they mean because they do not feature in the Highway Code.

The local council tells the paper it is trying to find out who put them there.

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Time for African Sanctions Against Mugabe

The Nation (Nairobi)

March 13, 2002
Posted to the web March 12, 2002

George B. N. Ayittey

In 1996, Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe supported President Nelson
Mandela, when the South African President led an effort to expel Nigeria
from the Commonwealth.

Nigeria was condemned for General Sani Abacha's brutal hanging of Ogoni
human rights activist Ken Saro-Wiwa and eight others on November 10,1995,
defying international pleas for clemency.

For an excerpt from the Africa 2002 guidebook, click here.
(Adobe Acrobat).

To buy the book, click here.

During that Auckland summit, Dr Mugabe said: "Nigeria is a disgrace". And he
and called for punitive sanctions against the country.

Today, only six years later, Dr Mugabe is equally impervious to reason and
common sense and is resorting to Abacha-like tactics in a bid to cling to
power as the economy collapses around him.

After a successful guerrilla campaign against British colonialists and a
white-minority regime in the 1970s, Mugabe was hailed as a hero and swept
into office as the first president in 1980.

He vowed to make Zimbabwe a one-party state and vowed that his Zimbabwe
African National Union-Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) would "ensure the charting
of an irreversible social course and create a socialist ideology."

Darker, sinister side to Mugabe

In the beginning, his expansion of education, reconciliation with white
minority and willingness to resolve inequitable distribution of land between
whites and blacks through peaceful negotiations won him plaudits.

But there was a darker political side: his lust for power. In what opponents
deride as "coconut elections", he was re-elected in 1985, 1990 and 1996.

Essentially, they are farcical elections. The incumbent writes the rules and
then serves as a player, the referee and the goalkeeper. The deck is stacked
against the opposition candidates. They are starved of funds, denied access
to state media and brutalised by thugs as the police watch.

In contrast, the incumbent enjoys access to enormous state resources: state
media, vehicles, the police, the military and civil servants - all are
commandeered to ensure his re-election.

Further, the entire electoral process itself is rigged. Voter rolls are
padded with ruling party supporters and phantom voters, while opposition
supporters are purged. The Electoral Commission is in the ruling party's, as
are the judges who might settle any election disputes.

In the July 1985 elections, for example, thugs from Mugabe's Youth Brigade
rampaged through the suburbs of Harare, brutalising opposition supporters.
Homes were raided, and furniture and household possessions thrown out into
the streets.

Dr Mugabe has been running scared - afraid of his own record of broken
promises, brutal repression, economic mismanagement and venal cronyism.

Contracts for public works went to cronies. The state bureaucracy swelled as
the system of patronage spiralled out of control. Ministers amassed great
wealth and even the military became tainted with corruption.

By the late 1990s, the economy was on the verge of collapse and the country
rocked by a wave of strikes by workers, nurses and teachers, to protest
rising food and fuel prices. In 1998, even doctors went on strike to protest
shortages of such basic supplies as soap and pain-killers.

Fleet of new Mercedes vehicles

And while the urban poor were rioting about food prices, the Mugabe
government ordered a fleet of new Mercedes cars for the 50-odd cabinet
ministers while 77-year old Mugabe himself and his 36-year-old wife, Grace
Marufu, attended lavish parties and conferences abroad.

In 1999, President Mugabe further angered voters by tripling and quadrupling
the salaries of his ministers. Rampant shortages of basic commodities - such
as mealie meal, the national staple diet, bread, rice, potatoes, cooking oil
and even soap - now keep inflation raging at more than 110 per cent.

With the flight of investors and closure of businesses due to attacks by
militants - more than 30 businesses were attacked in May, 2001, alone - jobs
are scarce, pushing Zimbabwe's unemployment to nearly 60 per cent.

A quarter of the population is infected with the Aids virus. The United
Nations says more than half a million of Zimbabwe's 12.5 million people need
emergency food aid. The state treasury is empty, pillaged by kamikaze
kleptocrats and drained at the rate of $3 million a month by a mercenary
involvement in Congo's war.

Cabinet ministers, army generals, relatives of President Mugabe, prominent
figures in the ruling party and a score of the well-connected have launched
lucrative business ventures to plunder Congo's rich resources - diamonds,
cobalt and gold.

Angry rejection of criticism

Accordingly, the commander of the defence forces, Gen Vitalis Zvinavashe,
warned recently that the country's military, police and intelligence chiefs
would not accept a "Morgan Tsvangirai" as a national leader if he wins the
election since he was not a veteran of Zimbabwe's independence struggle.

Dr Mugabe angrily rejects criticism of his government for the economic
crisis. He blames British colonialists, greedy Western powers, the racist
white minority and the IMF, which he denounced as that "monstrous creature."

But Zimbabwean voters know better. When Dr Mugabe asked them in a February
15, 2000 referendum for draconian emergency powers to seize white farms for
distribution to landless peasants, they resoundingly rejected the
constitutional revisions by 55 per cent to 45 per cent. Paranoid and
desperate, Mugabe played his trump card. He sent his "war veterans" to seize
white commercial farmland anyway.

To be sure, there is basic inequity in the distribution of land in Zimbabwe.
Whites account for only about one per cent of Zimbabwe's population of 12.5
million, yet 4,500 white farmers continue to own nearly a third of the
country's most fertile farmland. But the land issue has become a political
tool, ruthlessly exploited by Mugabe at election time to fan racial hatred,
solidify his vote among landless rural voters, to maintain his grip on
power, and to divert attention from his disastrous Marxist-Leninist policies
and ill-fated misadventures in the Congo.

Mr Ayittey, a native of Ghana, is a distinguished economist at American
University. He is the author of a forthcoming book, 'The African

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New Zealand Herald

More than one million Zimbabweans lost right to vote, says Goff

5.00 pm
Over one million Zimbabweans lost their right to vote in their country's
controversial elections, Foreign Minister Phil Goff said today.

Mr Goff told Parliament that his discussions with observers and others
showed the "election process had been so manipulated as to be unlikely to
reflect the majority will of the people".

A verdict was expected on Wednesday, with early results showing President
Robert Mugabe ahead of his main challenger Morgan Tsvangirai.

Shortly after noon today, results from 32 of the 120 constituencies in the
southern African country showed Mugabe with 415,206 votes against 340,217
for Tsvangirai. This represented nearly a quarter of the 3.1 million ballots
cast. Voter turnout was put at 55.4 per cent.

Mr Goff said he had been informed of intimidation including torture before
and during the campaign, the opposition being denied access to the media and
campaign, people not being allowed to vote and restrictions on observers.

Observers at the election believed "up to 1.2 million people had been
disenfranchised by being ruled ineligible to vote or who were denied access
to the polls to cast the vote".

Mr Goff confirmed the Government would wait for the formal report from
observers at the election and response from the Commonwealth before deciding
what action to take against Zimbabwe.

Mr Goff and Prime Minister Helen Clark have indicated they wish to impose
sanctions in line with the European Union's stance.

Mr Goff said the Government "wouldn't hesitate" to act independently of the

The final count will determine if Mr Mugabe can extend his rule for another
six-year term or be replaced by former trade unionist Mr Tsvangirai, who
accuses the 78-year-old president of rigging the election.

Tsvangirai, who heads the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), has emerged
as the toughest challenge yet to Mugabe's 22-year grip on power.


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The Scotsman
Military might of president’s backers a key factor


ZIMBABWE’S two most senior military officers, both with a reputation for
brutality and corruption, will play key roles in the next few days when the
results of the presidential election are announced.

General Vitalis Zvinavashe, commander of the armed forces, and Air Marshal
Perence Shiri, Gen Zvinavashe’s second-in-command, will be crucial
supporters of Robert Mugabe if he is narrowly re-elected in the face of
international outcries against a poll that was patently unfair and unfree.

On the other hand, Gen Zvinavashe and Air Marshal Shiri have threatened not
to accept the outcome if Morgan Tsvangirai wins.

Their possible intent was articulated most bluntly a few weeks ago when Gen
Zvinavashe, speaking after Mr Mugabe had raised the armed forces’ pay by 100
per cent, said Mr Tsvangirai was unacceptable to the country’s military and
security chiefs.

Addressing journalists at defence headquarters in Harare, Gen Zvinavashe -
who has, with Air Marshal Shiri, become a multi-millionaire through business
deals on the back of the Zimbabwe army’s involvement in the Congo civil
war - said the military would only support leaders who fought more than 20
years ago in the black liberation struggle against white minority rule.

This would exclude 48-year-old Mr Tsvangirai, who at the time of Zimbabwe’s
independence in 1980 was the young leader of a textile workers’ trade union.
He had not fled the country to join the guerrillas.

Gen Zvinavashe said the military would "not accept, let alone support or
salute anyone who does not possess liberation struggle credentials" - and,
he said, Mr Tsvangirai had no such credentials.

All Zimbabwe’s military and security forces are headed by veterans of the
1970s bush war against white-run Rhodesia. Mr Tsvangirai has condemned the
military chief’s threat as a "mischievous, irresponsible and treacherous de
facto coup".

The serious implication of Gen Zvinavashe’s threat was underlined by the
presence at his shoulder of Air Marshal Shiri. Back in the early 1980s he
was the colonel in command of the notorious North Korean-trained 5th Brigade
which, on Mr Mugabe’s orders, massacred some 30,000 peasants in Matabeleland
in western Zimbabwe.

Known as "Black Jesus", Air Marshal Shiri christened his 5th Brigade
soldiers Gukurahundi - a Shona language expression that translates as "the
rain that washes away the chaff before the spring rains".

Air Marshal Shiri, who at the time was a colonel, banned journalists from
leaving the Matabeleland provincial capital, Bulawayo, before the 5th
Brigade began a year-long campaign in 1983-84 of mass murder and beatings of
alleged anti-Mugabe dissidents and the burning of their properties.

"Most of the dead were killed in public executions involving between one and
12 people at a time," said a report, based on a five-year-long
investigation, by Zimbabwe’s Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace.

Air Marshal Shiri also co-ordinated last year’s forcible occupations of
white-owned farms by so-called war veterans, whose ranks are believed to
have been reinforced by 5th Brigade soldiers.

"Black Jesus" Shiri has good reason to fear a Tsvangirai victory. Human
rights groups have demanded that the air marshal, who is from Mr Mugabe’s
home village, be tried for crimes against humanity.

He would also be deprived of Ruia Falls Farm, a big holding confiscated from
a white farmer and handed to him by Mr Mugabe rather than to one of the
350,000 poor black labourers removed from their farm houses under the
Commercial Farm Resettlement Scheme.

Gen Zvinavashe stands to lose a similar farm, as well as a fortune estimated
at £50 million, if Mr Tsvangirai comes to power. He, along with Air Marshal
Shiri, is a director of Osleg, a Zimbabwean company founded to exploit the
rich diamond mines around the central Congolese town of Mbuji-Mayi in return
for Zimbabwean army support of the Kinshasa government against
Rwandan-backed rebels.

Gen Zvinavashe also owns a civilian trucking company contracted to supply
the 13,000 Zimbabwean troops in the Congo.

The Geneva-based Convention on International Trade in Rare Species (CITES)
has further accused Gen Zvinavashe of breaking international law by
smuggling rare grey parrots out of the Congo on Zimbabwean military planes
to Libya.

A consignment of 100 grey parrots can sell for more than £70,000 on
international markets.

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Farm Invasions And Security Report
Friday 8 March 2002

This report does not purport to cover all the incidents that are taking place in the commercial farming areas.  Communication problems and the fear of reprisals prevent farmers from reporting all that happens.  Farmers names, and in some cases farm names, are omitted to minimise the risk of reprisals.


 ·        Breaking news from Chinhoyi - At Chisaki Farm today, 12.03.02, 20-30 youths were seen converging on the farm at 0900.  Looting at the house is in progress and urgent police reaction is sought.  The youths are moving off at 1000 to Muni Farm.  It appears to be a structured plan, following on from the looting yesterday of Lions Den Butchery home and Hillpass Farm.

·        Settlers seem to have gone from Charleswood Estate, Chimanimani.  Whilst at the Chipinge Club having lunch, the owner was confronted by 38 policeman and 17 army personnel, who accused him of having 12 bars of soap, which they claim he could use to wash the dye off people’s hands so they could vote again.  They confiscated the soap and searched the club.

·        Following the setting up of a polling station at Chakadenga, Marondera West, ZANU (PF) supporters trashed the polling station and farm village and a truck belonging to the owner of the farm was stolen. The assailants attacked farm labour, who were either dispersed into the bush or forced to go to the nearby "war vet" base camp at Chop Chop Store. The attackers abducted the security guard from the homestead, saying they were taking him to their torture chamber. Police were contacted but no definite response was given.

·        On Arcadia, Marondera East Constituency, two ZANU (PF) settler leaders from neighbouring Wenimbe Farm, forced labour to go en masse under their supervision to vote at Wenimbi School.

·        Lifton, Hwedza Constituency, reported the same assailants responsible for the attack at Chakadenga in Marondera West Constituency, entered the farm village and beat up workers, some so severely they were unable to walk.

·        On Bristol/ Fels, Hwedza Constituency, all labour from both farms were rounded up by Zanu (PF) youths and told to vote at Numwa polling station, where severe intimidation was taking place. Many of the labourers had previously been beaten and were not able to walk that far.

·        In Chinhoyi, Hillpass Farm was visited a second time last night, 11.03.02, and the owner fired shots in the air to disperse the intruders.

·        On Sherwood, Norton, it transpired "voter training" took place in the Mhondoro communal area where labourers had to put their ballot papers in a ballot box and were given ZW$ 1000.00 to vote for ZANU (PF).

·        Chakari - Occupying "war vets" from seven farms amassed labour early on the morning of 09.03.02, and frog marched them to the polling station.  Most of them were taken to Tawstock where the local M.P. Mr Ziyambi has taken up residence in the owner’s guest cottage. 




Nyanga - The five Wattle Company employees arrested and one lady plotholder (were transferred to Mutare Central Prison last night, 11.03.02.  The other woman plot holder was released into the custody of her lawyer last night for medical reasons.  They are being charged under the Post and Telecommunications Act for having illegal 'transmitters' (radios).  All of their radios are licenced.

Chimanimani – The owner of Mawenje Lodge was following the ballot box when the vehicle in front of him stopped, the policeman got out and told him to follow his vehicle to the police station.  He was placed under arrest.  At this time the charges are unknown but he is appearing in court in Chipinge this morning, 12.03.02.  Settlers seem to have gone from Charleswood Estate .  Whilst at the Chipinge Club having lunch, the owner was confronted by 38 policeman and 17 army personnel, who accused him of having 12 bars of soap, which they claim he could use to wash the dye off people’s hands so they could vote again.  They confiscated the soap and searched the club. The CIO noted all the registration numbers of the vehicles in the club parking area.  The estate manager’s son, is due to appear in Chipinge Court this morning, after being arrested on 10.03.02.


Old Mutare –on 08.03.02, over 60 Election Support Network members were arrested in Honde Valley on Friday and taken to Ruda Police Station.  The army visited the police station and some of them were beaten up.  Included in this group were three management members running the Working Dogs International Organisation on Chikonga Farm, who face charges today, 12.03.02.  The woman was in possession of a mace gun and a knife was found in their vehicle.  The other woman arrested with them was released as she is not part of the WDIO, although she is to appear in court this morning.  The owner of Gubinchen Farm (Karl Wolf) who was arrested at Ruda Police Station, is supposed be in Mutare this morning for a court appeareance.

Chimanimani  - people in jail from the weekend = 7

Mutare - people in jail from the weekend = 66

Nyanga - people in jail from the weekend = 7

Rusape - people in jail from the weekend = 1




No reports concerning agricultural activities.  The weekend incidents comprised reports on voting.


Wednesday 6th, Thursday 7th, Friday 8th March

Murehwa South Constituency - A meeting was held on 6.03.02 at Virginia Store, to which all farm labourers were summoned by "war vets". They were told to vote where the "war vets" indicated; they had to vote in order of farms, with farm workers grouped under their farm name. The foreman was to be at the head of each farm group and that, in this way, the "war vets" would know how each farm voted, because they would be able to open the ballot boxes.  They threatened severe beatings for any farm not voting for ZANU (PF). All labour was instructed to vote on Saturday only.

Marondera West Constituency/Hwedza Constituency – Following the setting up of a polling station that afternoon at Chakadenga ZANU (PF) supporters trashed the polling station and farm village and a truck belonging to the owner of the farm was stolen. The assailants attacked farm labour, who were either dispersed into the bush or forced to go to the nearby "war vet" base camp at Chop Chop Store. The attackers abducted the security guard from the homestead, saying they were taking him to their torture chamber. Police were contacted but no definite response was given.  Two members of the community went to the police station in person. Support Unit were observed to have left the police station at 1945 hr, but had still not arrived by 2115 hr or by the following morning.   In the Dangarendove Resettlement Area, adjacent to the Beatrice commercial farming area, 30 to 40 ZANU (PF) youths surrounded the vehicle transporting polling agents, who retreated because of the aggressive mood of the mob.   In the Muda Resettlement Area, a vehicle transporting polling agents was stoned.

Seke Constituency - New Retreat farm labour was beaten up by ZANU (PF) supporters from Beatrice Village.  At Canterbury two huts were burnt down, a result of arson believed to be politically motivated.  At Gilston labour was beaten up.

Saturday 9th March

Marondera East Constituency – on Arcadia two ZANU (PF) settler leaders from neighbouring Wenimbe Farm, forced labour to go en masse under their supervision to vote at Wenimbi School. At Eirene "war vets" conned workers to hand over letters certifying their place of residence. On Meandu ZANU (PF) supporters accused the owner of meddling with the election process, as he gave his labour letters verifying they were residents of the farm. These letters were confiscated. 

Marondera Urban – insufficient polling stations caused very long queues, exacerbated by slow progress and.voters queuing for 5 hours and more. Large turnout. 

Marondera West Constituency - The following happened on the Wedza/Marondera side of the constituency: At Chakadenga the police had still not reacted to the attack the previous evening. Those who stole the owner’s vehicle gathered outside the polling station trashed the night before, abusing and intimidating people inside. Observers arrived and witnessed intimidation and violence. The abducted guard was still missing (RRB No. 054245), and police were again contacted. At approximately 8.00 am the "war vets" moved the polling station across the road to their base camp at Chop Chop Store. The election observers in the area were aware of this.  At Four Ways Butchery, situated at the junction of the Seke/Wedza/Marondera roads, a large group of youths were observed gathered outside the butchery.  Dudley reported that at 0800 hr there was a 300m queue, which unlikely to finish by noon when the mobile station was due to close.  On the Beatrice side of the constituency: early on 11.03.02, a mob of ZANU (PF) gathered at the Brakveld homestead.  They were noisy and intimidating.  On Karreeboom women, known to be active ZANU (PF) youth organizers, were observed at the polling station as Police Special Constables on duty.  Alicedale West labour was told by Zanu (PF) youth that if ZANU (PF) lost in Marondera West constituency, the voters would be killed. Adlam’s Rest farm labour was instructed by "war vets" to vote at Wheelerdale Resettlement Area, and not at nearby Karreeboom, and threatened with retribution if they did not comply. At Chirenje Primary School, a "war vet" active in the area, Samuriwo, was reported to have ejected the MDC polling agent from the polling station.

Hwedza Constituency - Lifton reported the same assailants responsible for the attack at Chakadenga in Marondera West Constituency, entered the farm village and beat up workers, some so severely they were unable to walk. On Iamba a decision was taken that no transport was to be used by farmers to take labour to the polling stations by the Zanu (PF) youth. On Bristol/ Fels at 0800 hr, all labour from both farms were rounded up by Zanu (PF) youths and told to vote at Numwa polling station, where severe intimidation was taking place. Many of the labourers had previously been beaten and were not able to walk that far.  At Leeds Farm Polling Station, voters going in and out the polling station were made to shout ZANU (PF) slogans. Police were informed but refused to attend to the problem At 1300 hr a citizen observer reported a hostile roadblock in the vicinity, where he was stopped and searched by "war vets".  This was a police roadblock, who ran off into the bush when the "war vets" took over.  Murehwa South Constituency - The day’s voting in the Macheke-Virginia commercial farming area proceeded fairly smoothly. Seke Constituency – By 1000 hr, a big turnout was apparent at the polling stations. In the preceding two days there had been widespread intimidation of key farm staff by ZANU (PF) supporters. Romany Flowers (opposite Ruwa Club) labour was instructed to report to the ZANU (PF) offices near the Goromonzi turnoff early in the morning. They were taken to St Vincent Polling Station, ignoring the Thornycroft School Polling Station, a mere one kilometre away. A roll call was taken and those workers missing were noted. The labour was told to report back to the party office after voting. At Madamombe Primary School, Mr. Matsangura of the district ZANU (PF) committee, accompanied by ZANU (PF) MP for Seke, Phineas Chihota, would not permit the accreditation of MDC polling agents. A similar incident involving the same people occurred at the polling station at Dema Council Offices. In the former incident Matsangura threatened a white farmer in the vicinity of the polling station as a citizen observer. The vehicle used by them was marked Wallace Laboratories, in which the MP is reported to have interests. Such vehicles were observed moving around other parts of the district. Another incident involving a Wallace Laboratories vehicle  when a farmer drove past Harridge Police Base and had rocks thrown at his vehicle. Mobile 6 polling station was set up at Charter Grading Shed where a Zanu (PF) youth base camp is also situated. The presiding officer intended to move the ballot boxes overnight out of the constituency to Beatrice village but after protests these were kept at nearby Brechin farm. On the approach to the polling station at Kerry, "war vets" set up a roadblock and stopped and harassed voters: demanding identification details, recording vehicle registration numbers, etc.  On New Retreat as a result of beatings meted out to labour the night before, very few turned up to vote. Goromonzi Constituency - Reported that voting on the first day in the Enterprise area went fairly smoothly.

Chikomba Constituency - Reported quiet, with very little movement of voters on the roads by mid-morning in Featherstone commercial farming area.

Sunday 10th March

Marondera East Constituency - Ballot boxes from Stations 4, 6 and 7 (Dhirihori Primary School, Mapazviriho Primary School and St Martin’s Primary School) were reported to be unsealed. During the night two citizen observers were waylaid by ZANU (PF) supporters and detained. They were assaulted and their hand-held radio was taken.

Marondera West Constituency - Stations 30 and 35 were unable to open at 0700 hr, as equipment and boxes had not arrived.

Seke Constituency - Pamusasa Mayambara – 56 would-be voters were turned away at this mobile polling station, as they could produce no National IDs, as these had previously been taken from them at a ZANU (PF) political meeting. The instigator of this was a Chaitizivi.  At  Madamombe, a citizen observer’s vehicle was stoned near the polling station. The Gilston "war vet" Felix Njerena joined agents in the polling station. It is believed he had not been accredited as he was not wearing an identification tag. When questioned about this, the presiding officer declined to clarify

Monday 11 March

No reports received of disturbances. Many shops did not open their doors for business. A number of written death threats have been issued against whites in Marondera town, and an intention to eliminate two commercial farmers in Marondera South has come to light.



Tengwe – one farmer was stoned on his way home.  A few roadblocks reported.  There was reluctance by farm labour to go and vote.  Only 3500 of 40 000 potential voters went to the polls.

Karoi – ballot boxes travelling in to town 11.03.02.  The OIC is unhappy people are following the ballot boxes to ensure there is no tampering.  Three people were abducted at Tavoy Farm on 09.03.02, with one man very severely beaten.  There was a very low poll in Hurungwe East and West due to intimidation of voters.

Doma – mostly quiet over the weekend.  A low poll reported.  Boxes are now moving to the Rural Council.  It was felt there were too many polling stations.

Umboe – nothing untoward at present.

Chinhoyi – illegal roadblock was set up between Lions Den and Karoi, with the Zanu (PF) youths confiscating “weapons” from vehicles, including a penknife and fishing tackle.  They are also throwing stones at passing vehicles. Hillpass Farm was visited a second time last night, 11.03.02, and the owner fired shots in the air to disperse the intruders.

Breaking news

At Chisaki Farm today, 12.03.02,  20-30 youths were seen converging on the farm at 0900.  Looting at the house is in progress and urgent police reaction is sought.  The youths are moving off at 1000 to Muni Farm It appears to be a structured plan, following on from the looting yesterday of Lions Den Butchery home and Hillpass Farm.

Banket – a manager was taken into custody on 11.03.02, as he was trying to keep the police out of his premises the police smashed their way in and arrested 40 youths, suspected to be MDC supporters, as well as a farmer who was videoing the incident.  The farmer and manager were released late in the day while the whereabouts of the 40 youths is unknown.

Raffingora – this area was mostly evacuated and, at time of writing, about 56 people are in gaol!

Trelawney/Darwendale – very little voting on 10.03.02 took place.  Most people voted some distance from their home farm and certain stations were flooded with voters.  Not many people were turned away.  The area was generally quiet.  The owner of Chimbada Ranch was very seriously threatened on 11.03.02 and has since left the farm.

Nyabira – a police roadblock was conducting very thorough searches on the Harare-Chirundu road.  Apparently they will be in place until the count is finished.  In the case of the Regional Executive for Mashonaland West (North) they asked to scrutinise documents in his vehicle.



Norton - On Sherwood it transpired "voter training" took place in the Mhondoro communal area where labourers had to put their ballot papers in a ballot box and were given ZW$ 1000.00 to vote for ZANU (PF).  On Malham the foreman was told by ZANU (PF) he must identify himself at the polling station with all the farm labour so that they knew for whom the farm in question had voted.  This has happened on a number of farms.  "War vet" Don Carlos, with ZANU (PF) youth, came to Lydiate and told the owner he must vacate the farmhouse in the same way as the manager of Shingwiri had been evicted.  On Fort Martin the owner has finally moved off his farm.  This farmer was once Tobacco Grower Of The Year, has not been productive for a year, and his farm with its entire infrastructure is a very sorry sight.  On Serui Source the resident “war vets” and youth demanded a cow for slaughtering.  The owner’s son had a bottle thrown at him and they tried to lock him in the gates.  They stopped labour from feeding and watering the pigs, but the matter was resolved the following day. 

Selous - On Carskey the store was broken into and a pump stolen from close to where the settlers reside.  These are the same settlers who severely assaulted the cattle foreman, who remains on a drip in hospital in Harare.  Police have made no investigation or arrests. 

Chegutu - On Lot 1A of The Grove the owner is still not allowed back to his farm and ZANU (PF) youth have been beating up labour from this farm as well as from De Rus on a nightly basis.  Workers are too afraid to make reports to police as no arrests are made, and there is retribution when police reports are made. 

Suri-Suri - Two roadblocks were put up on Hippovale but these were later dismantled.  Over 40 cattle were stolen from Ameva Farm .  One farmer’s vehicle was burnt by ZANU (PF) youth in the Musengezi resettlement area.  The two passengers ended up with cuts and bruises when the vehicle turned on its side at an illegal roadblock, and the driver was stoned.  All three occupants managed to get away.  The same vehicle was stopped by Stanley Majiri, who is the campaign manager for ZANU (PF) Chegutu Constituency, on 09.03.02 and chased into Chegutu about thirty kilometres away. 

Chakari - Occupying "war vets" from seven farms amassed labour early on the morning of 09.03.02, and frog marched them to the polling station.  Most of them were taken to Tawstock where the local M.P. Mr Ziyambi has taken up residence in the owner’s guest cottage. 

Kadoma - On Glenview Lieutenant Shumba from Battlefields army base and "Samora" the youth base leader from Patchway, broke into the house while the owner was absent for a few days, and slept there on 10.03.02.  The owner has had 18 break-ins/thefts since Christmas but Chief Inspector Makaza has only given him 4 RRB numbers. 


No reports concerning agricultural activities.  The weekend incidents comprised reports on voting.



No report received.

No report received.                                               Visit the CFU Website                                               Visit the CFU Website


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Rand slips as Mugabe leads poll

Related Articles
Mugabe widens the gap

Johannesburg - The rand slipped against the dollar in early trade on
Wednesday as Zimbabwe's Robert Mugabe took a commanding lead in the
presidential election results.

At 07:40, the rand was bid at 11.70 to the US dollar, about 14c weaker on
Tuesday's close.

Latest official results showed Mugabe in a commanding lead with two thirds
of the ballots counted, amid criticism of the vote by both domestic and
international observers.

Analysts said the South African government's reaction to the results will be
criticial for the rand and investor confidence in South Africa.

"Speculation is rife that these elections were rigged, but the fact remains
that if Mugabe does indeed retain power then investment sentiment towards
the entire region as well as the rand is set to come under pressures," said
S&P MMS in early commentary.

The crisis in Zimbabwe was partly blamed for the rand's 37% depreciation
against the dollar last year.
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Sir Garfield Todd fails to vote

3/12/02 8:17:04 AM (GMT +2)

From Sandra Mujokoro in Bulawayo

A polling agent at Hamilton High School in Bulawayo, whose parents’ marriage
was blessed by Sir Garfield Todd, had the unenviable task of turning away
the former Prime Minister of Southern Rhodesia from casting his vote in the
presidential election on Saturday.

The polling agent, Noyse Dube, a former student and, later, headmaster at
Dadaya Mission in Zvishavane, where Sir Garfield was also the principal,
informed the 93-year-old former missionary that he was not a registered
voter when he showed up at the polling station. Sir Garfield presided over
the marriage ceremony of Dube’s parents when the former Prime Minister of
Southern Rhodesia was a missionary with the Church of Christ at Dadaya

Last month, Sir Garfield vowed he would go to the polling station in
Bulawayo South to claim his vote. He had been informed by the Ministry of
Home Affairs’ provincial registry in Bulawayo that he had ceased to be a
citizen of Zimbabwe.

The letter from the ministry, which was dated 5 February, gave Sir Garfield
seven days in which to appeal or face being struck off the voters’ roll.
Strangely, the letter to Sir Garfield arrived on the very day ­ 12
February ­ the deadline for an appeal expired.

This surprise development came barely a week after Sir Garfield and his late
wife, Lady Grace, had three schools in Bulawayo and Matabeleland South
renamed after them, as part of the government’s drive to get rid of colonial

Sir Garfield was Prime Minister from 1953 to 1958, when he was defeated in
an election largely confined to whites, because he was seen to be too
sympathetic to the black people’s cause.

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Wednesday, 13 March, 2002, 04:08 GMT
Early results give Mugabe boost

Votes counted so far put Mugabe in a strong position
Early results in Zimbabwe's presidential elections have given President Robert Mugabe a clear though not overwhelming lead.
But with nearly 50% of votes counted, electoral observers have condemned the voting process as neither free nor fair.
"While we must wait for the final result, it is abundantly clear that this was a seriously flawed election."
Frederick Jones, US State Department spokesman
Some of the first constituencies to declare were in Matebeleland, in the west of the country, where President Mugabe does not traditionally enjoy much support.
The BBC's Elizabeth Blunt says although the vote went against him, he did not do as badly as expected.
President Mugabe did better there than his party, Zanu-PF, did in the last parliamentary election, and Morgan Tsvangirai, the leader of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) lost ground.
In Mashonaland, President Mugabe's own home territory, he has massively increased the Zanu-PF vote, adding as many as 10,000 votes in a single constituency.
Elections 'severely flawed'
Our correspondent says this may be because Zanu-PF had become complacent in the past, and it is only now that they have made a real effort to get out their vote.
Results so far 
Mugabe - 679,446
Tsvangirai - 545,016
52 of 120 districts declared 

Or it might be - as the opposition has alleged - that they have used their power locally to pack the voters roll with Zanu-PF supporters.
Kare Vollan, the head of the largest European group of observers, from Norway, said the election was severely flawed and failed to meet international standards.

Welshman Ncube said the charge against him was politically-motivated
Reginald Matchaba-Hove, chairman of the Zimbabwe Election Support Network (ZESN) - a coalition of non-governmental organisations - said:
"The election is total confusion and chaos... there is no way these elections can be described as substantially free and fair."
Registrar-General Tobaiwa Mudede said 3.1 million people had voted, about 55.4% of those registered.
The first candidate to obtain 50% of the votes cast will be the winner.
Meanwhile, a leading opposition official Welshman Ncube has been charged with treason in connection with an alleged plot to kill Mr Mugabe.
'Malicious propaganda'
Thousands of soldiers and police were deployed as counting got under way on Tuesday, following a third, unscheduled, day of voting.
Britain, which has been pushing for sanctions against Mr Mugabe's regime, said there was "pretty strong evidence" that President Mugabe had "stolen" the election.
Mr Vollan said he estimated that thousands of people in Harare had been disenfranchised.
"I and many others who got to the polling station hours before the official opening of the station at 0700 only managed to vote late in the night."  
N Musvoto, Zimbabwe  
He said the 25 Norwegian observers had documented numerous reports of harassment and assault against opposition officials, members and supporters.
In contrast, Zimbabwean Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa said that anyone criticising the election was "spreading malicious propaganda".
Threat of violence
Tension has been high since the polls closed following a 24-hour extension won by the MDC.
Mr Matchaba-Hove said that "a flawed electoral process is a potential cause of conflict", and urged the public to remain calm.
Anticipating an outbreak of trouble, the government positioned armed police and soldiers in cities, villages and at strategic sites in the Midlands province.
Residential suburbs have been sealed off and a curfew has been imposed from 1800 local time (1600 GMT) on Tuesday.
As counting began, a court in Harare charged the Secretary General of the MDC, Welshman Ncube, with treason.
He had been arrested in February, along with Mr Tsvangirai and another party official, when police accused all three of treason.
Mr Ncube, who was released on bail, said his arrest was an act of political desperation.
"We remain firmly confident [of victory] otherwise they [the government] would not be in such a state of panic," he told the Associated Press news agency.
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ABC News

Mugabe Widens Lead in Flawed Zimbabwe Vote

March 12
— By Nicholas Kotch

HARARE (Reuters) - Zimbabwe's Robert Mugabe appeared headed for a
comfortable victory in presidential elections on Wednesday, but criticism of
the vote and concern about reaction mounted as quickly as his lead.

State radio predicted an easy win for the 78-year-old president, saying:
"Comrade Mugabe is leading by a huge margin now."

Independent observers have slammed the poll as deeply flawed, raising
concerns about the potential for violent reaction in a country already
grappling with a collapsing economy and growing diplomatic isolation on the
world stage.

With almost two-thirds of the estimated 3.1 million votes counted,
Registrar-General Tobaiwa Mudede said shortly after 5.30 a.m. (10:30 p.m.
EST Tuesday) that results from 82 of the 120 constituencies showed Mugabe
leading by 248,575 votes.

He said Mugabe, seeking a fifth term as leader of the former Rhodesia, had
1,103,149 votes against 854,574 for Morgan Tsvangirai, leader of the
Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), a 29 percent lead.

Voter turnout was put at 55.4 percent of the 5.6 million registered voters.

Most independent analysts said as voting started that Tsvangirai appeared to
have the support of a clear majority, but was unlikely to win after months
of campaign manipulation and intimidation by Mugabe's supporters.

The United States, echoing a host of independent observers, said the
election was riddled with irregularities.

"While we must wait for the final result, it is abundantly clear that this
was a seriously flawed election," State Department spokesman Frederick Jones

Reporters were barred from counting stations.

Australia said as Mugabe's lead mounted that it feared violence in Zimbabwe
if voters suspected the vote was rigged.

"If the people of Zimbabwe have a sense that they have been cheated through
the election process, it is possible that some could resort to violence,"
Foreign Minister Alexander Downer told reporters in Canberra.


Australia and Britain led an unsuccessful call for Commonwealth sanctions
against Mugabe before the election.

Kare Vollan, head of a Norwegian observer mission, said on Tuesday the poll
had failed "key, broadly accepted criteria."

The Norwegians were the largest European observer group after the European
Union withdrew because Mugabe excluded some EU member states that have been
vocal critics of his rule.

The pro-Mugabe state media were quick to signal victory for the man who led
the former Rhodesia to independence in 1980.

"It looks like Comrade Mugabe will stay in office for another term," state
radio said in a 4 a.m. broadcast.

"From the current trend, with President Mugabe holding 29 constituencies and
Tsvangirai 23, it does not look likely that Tsvangirai can close the gap,"
the radio added.

Zimbabwe's state-owned radio and television barely mentioned the MDC during
the election campaign. According to media monitors, all references to the
MDC were negative.

"There is no way these elections could be described as free and fair," said
the Zimbabwean Election Support Network (ZESN), an umbrella organization of
38 church and civic groups.

It said tens of thousands of people had been denied a vote.

Amnesty International added its voice to the growing chorus of criticism,
saying 1,400 people had been arrested in what it described as a "politically
motivated crackdown."

The final count will determine if Mugabe can extend his rule for another
six-year term or be replaced by former trade unionist Tsvangirai, who
accuses the 78-year-old president of rigging the election.

Tsvangirai, whose MDC delivered a tough challenge in parliamentary elections
in 2000, has emerged as the toughest challenge yet to Mugabe's 22-year grip
on power.


His campaign focused on rebuilding the shattered economy of a once
prosperous nation, where unemployment stands at over 60 percent and
inflation rages around 117 percent.

An acute food shortage caused by drought and the seizure of white-owned
farms for redistribution to landless blacks has left hundreds of thousands
in need of food aid in one of Africa's most fertile countries.

Mugabe campaigned under the revolutionary slogans that brought him to power
in 1980 when Zimbabwe gained independence, saying his opponent was a puppet
of former colonial power Britain and the country's tiny white minority.

Tsvangirai and Western critics say Mugabe systematically cheated to cling to
power in a country whose woes have dented investor confidence in the region
and helped knock the value of neighboring South Africa's rand lower.

Mugabe's government dismissed the criticism and Information Minister
Jonathan Moyo described the vote as "exemplary." Justice Minister Patrick
Chinamasa said Zimbabweans had voted "freely and fairly and in a peaceful

As counting started, Welshman Ncube, secretary-general of the MDC, was
charged with treason. Ncube, who was released on bail, dismissed the charges
as government propaganda.

The government accuses Ncube, Tsvangirai and another MDC figure of plotting
to assassinate Mugabe. They deny the charge.

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Yahoo News

U.S. condemns "flawed" Zimbabwe election

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States, echoing a host of independent
observers, has said that Zimbabwe's presidential election is "seriously
flawed" and riddled with irregularities.

"While we must wait for the final result, it is abundantly clear that this
was a seriously flawed election," State Department spokesman Frederick Jones
told Reuters on Tuesday.

"The government (of Zimbabwe) decision to dramatically cut the number of
polling booths in urban areas meant large numbers of voters could not cast
their ballots."

Early results showed President Robert Mugabe, who has led the Southern
African nation since 1980, running ahead of his main challenger Morgan
Tsvangirai. The final results were expected on Wednesday.

The campaign, held amid a worsening economic breakdown, was marked by
widespread violence against supporters of the opposition Movement for
Democratic Change.

"There were also many irregularities observed throughout the election
process," the State Department spokesman said. "In addition, as we have
stated on many occasions, the election was preceded by months of
government-orchestrated violence meant to intimidate voters. The opposition
was repeatedly harassed and prevented from campaigning," Jones added.

"The arrest yesterday of the secretary-general of the Movement for
Democratic Change, Welshman Ncube, is just the latest example of the
government's long-running effort to intimidate opposition leaders," the
State Department spokesman said.

Ncube, a senior Zimbabwean opposition official, was charged on Tuesday with
treason for an alleged plot to kill Mugabe.

Tsvangirai and Western critics have accused Mugabe, 78, of rigging the
election in an effort to hang on to power. Independent observers questioned
the fairness of the polling, including a mission from Norway that said
Zimbabwe's presidential election was severely flawed and failed to meet
broadly accepted international standards.

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* News Release Issued by the International Secretariat of Amnesty
International *

12 March 2002 AFR 46/017/2002

The government of Zimbabwe should immediately and unconditionally release
more than 1400 people, most of them polling agents and civil society
election observers, who were arrested nationwide, mostly on Monday 11 March,
and detained in police custody following last weekend's presidential
election, Amnesty International said today.

The organization has received information of a pattern of mass arbitrary
detention of hundreds of polling agents belonging to the opposition Movement
for Democratic Change (MDC).  Those arrested also include election observers
from civil society organizations belonging to the Zimbabwe Election Support
Network (ZESN) who were refused accreditation by the government.  A third
group comprises individuals accused of trying to vote for a second time.

Several human rights sources in Zimbabwe have reported that police and
security intelligence officers from the Central Intelligence Organization
(CIO) are targeting ZESN monitors for harassment and detention under orders
from superiors.

"We are deeply concerned for the safety of those arrested in the light of
the well-established pattern of "disappearances", cruel, inhuman and
degrading treatment by Zimbabwean security forces," Amnesty International

A lawyer with the civil society organization Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human
Rights, who visited cells at the Harare Central Police station described the
congested conditions as hazardous to the detainees' health.  Those arrested
have been denied food, and cannot lie down to sleep because of overcrowding.

In Manicaland Province, for example, police arrested 130 polling agents and
observers.  In Murambinda, also in Manicaland Province, 27 observers from
both the MDC and ZESN were detained and denied access to lawyers.  Within
the hour, 50 people were arrested in Mutoko town in Mashonaland East
Province, another in the Harare suburb of Mabvuku.

"The arrests of these Zimbabweans is politically-motivated; the government
must either charge those in detention with a recognizable criminal office
based on solid evidence or release them immediately," Amnesty International

Background The election that began on 9 March 2002 has been characterized by
intimidation of opposition supporters and denial of accreditation to the
vast majority of election monitors from civil society organizations.  In the
early morning hours of 8 March, militias across the country set up illegal
road-blocks to prevent the MDC from deploying its polling agents, in what
appeared to be an orchestrated campaign directed by the government.  Amnesty
International received several reports of attacks, often resulting in
serious injuries.

As voting got under way, pro-government militia members were reportedly
trying to intimidate potential opposition supporters from casting ballots.
Two men in Karoyi, for example were beaten for over an hour by militia
members because they had allegedly been transported to the polling station
at Tavoy Farm by a white person.  Another man, an MDC polling agent, in
Karoyi was abducted by ZANU-PF youth during a lunch break and badly beaten
all over his body and on the soles of his feet.

Although the High Court ordered that all polling stations remain open in the
country for a third day of voting on Monday 11 March, the government opened
only those in Harare and Chitungwiza, where voters were casting ballots for
a mayor and a city council as well as the president.

You may repost this message onto other sources provided the main text is not
altered in any way and both the header crediting Amnesty International and
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Results from Zimbabwe's election - 0200 GMT

HARARE, March 12 — With nearly half of the votes counted in Zimbabwe's
controversial presidential election, President Robert Mugabe took a
commanding lead over challenger Morgan Tsvangirai on Wednesday.

       Registrar-General Tobaiwa Mudede said shortly after 4 a.m. (0200 GMT)
that results from 52 of the 120 constituencies showed Mugabe leading by
134,430 votes with 679,446 votes against 545,016 for Tsvangirai, leader of
the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC).
       The results came from across all the provinces of Zimbabwe, the
central Midlands, Matabeleland, Bulawayo, Harare, Manicaland, Mashonaland,
and Masvingo areas.
       Data from the electoral commission showed that the number of votes
cast in rural districts, traditionally Mugabe strongholds, had risen
significantly in the 2002 elections compared to parliamentary elections in
2000. In Mashonaland East for instance, the number of votes cast rose by 46
       Mugabe won by huge margins in the Mashonaland region while Tsvangirai
made a strong showing in the country's urban areas.
       Meanwhile the number of votes cast in Harare, Tsvangirai's
stronghold, rose by 14 percent, while turnout in Matabeleland was
little-changed, according to the electoral commission.
       The election is won by the first candidate to take a cumulative total
of more than 50 percent of votes cast.
       Mudede said 3.1 million people had voted, representing 55.4 percent
of just over 5.6 million registered voters.

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Mugabe hauls in his foes

MDC official on treason charge

Andrew Meldrum in Harare
Wednesday March 13, 2002
The Guardian

Robert Mugabe's government seems to be paving the way to crack down on
anyone it regards as opposition after the results of the presidential
election are declared today.
The list includes independent election observers as well as opposition party
officials. Amnesty International said as many as 1,400 people had been
arrested in the past two days. The arrests have added to the tension as the
country nervously awaits the results.

Stories in the government-owned newspaper the Herald yesterday ascribed the
arrests to plots by whites to "create chaos" and "disrupt the vote

Amnesty International and local civic groups say the government may be
planning further arrests and a campaign of violence against the opposition,
whether or not Mr Mugabe wins.

The most prominent figure detained is Welshman Ncube, secretary general of
the opposition Movement for Democratic Change.

He was charged with treason, a crime punishable by death, and conspiring
with the MDC's presidential candidate, Morgan Tsvangirai, to assassinate Mr
Mugabe, and released on bail.

"They are charging Welshman now to prepare to formally charge Tsvangirai in
court, too," said Brian Raftopoulos, chairmanof the Crisis in Zimbabwe

"We believe the government is planning to go after the MDC, trade union
leaders, civic groups, the media."

Amnesty pointed to "an emerging pattern of mass arbitrary detention" of MDC
polling agents, independent election observers and activists, and to the
numerous camps of Mr Mugabe's extra-legal youth militia studding the

It was investigating reports that arms have been distributed to some members
of the militia, which has been accused of several political murders and
thousands of cases of torture and beatings since the beginning of the year.

"If they were to get arms, as some reports suggest, it's a real cause for
alarm. They are a para-military group and there doesn't seem to be much
control over them. It is a big concern," Amnesty said.

Among those arrested are 130 observers for the Zimbabwe Electoral Support
Network, which represents 38 civic organisations. The network trained 12,500
observers but the government only accredited 400 of them.

Another group picked for arrests was the Zimbabwe Citizens Support Group,
which provided transport for MDC agents so that the party could be
represented at remote rural polling stations.

Amnesty said it was concerned that many of those arrested were being held in
"congested conditions that constitute a risk to their health and the
possibility of injury". Dozens of people were held in a fenced pen outside
Harare central charge office.

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Mugabe aims to crush MDC with treason charges
By Tim Butcher in Bulawayo and Peta Thornycroft in Harare
(Filed: 13/03/2002)

PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe moved to neutralise the opposition Movement for
Democratic Change as results in the presidential election came in last

The opposition party's secretary-general, Welshman Ncube, was charged with
high treason for his part in an alleged assassination plot against
Zimbabwe's 78-year-old president.

It is expected that other senior MDC figures, including the leader, Morgan
Tsvangirai, could also face arrest on similar charges, reducing their
ability to mobilise their supporters.

In another development, Zimbabwe's police force launched a crackdown on
anyone, black or white, in the north of the country who had offered support
or assistance to the MDC during the poll.

Dozens were arrested and harassed for what Mr Mugabe's supporters described
as "despicable acts of political manipulation". Many of those arrested had
simply worked as party representatives or polling agents.

In Bulawayo, the country's second city and capital of Matabeleland, an MDC
stronghold, army units were deployed into the townships of Phumula, Cowdray
Park and Nkulumane.

It was believed to be a move to deter public displays of unrest if Mr Mugabe
is declared the winner in the election some time today.

Mr Mugabe enjoys little popularity in urban areas and, if any popular unrest
takes place, it is most likely in crowded townships such as those that
surround Bulawayo's western suburbs.

The first of the country's 120 constituencies to declare a result came out
in support of Mr Tsvangirai.

The supposedly independent electoral officials, who were all appointed by
the ruling Zanu-PF party, announced shortly after 7pm Zimbabwean time that
Umzingwane constituency in Matabeland South had given 11,226 votes to Mr
Tsvangirai and 5,883 to Mr Mugabe.

But any optimism within MDC ranks dissipated moments later when a Midlands
constituency, Mberengwa, recorded an astonishingly high vote for Mr Mugabe
of 21,182 and only 4,395 for his opponent. It bore little relation to what
independent observers had expected.

Official figures on state television news said that Harare, the opposition
stronghold, had the lowest turnout of any province in Zimbabwe, at 41.6 per

In contrast, Mashonaland Central, where the ruling Zanu-PF party holds all
10 parliamentary seats, achieved the highest turnout of 68.9 per cent.

Brian Raftopolous, head of a collection of Church and civic groups known as
the Crisis in Zimbabwe Committee said the the electoral fraud had been so
bad that a Mugabe victory was inevitable.

"The election well has been poisoned to such an extent that there is
unlikely to be any other result," he said.

The Zimbabwe Election Support Network, a coalition of non-governmental
organisations, produced a list of problems related to the election,
including flawed voter rolls, intimidation and attacks on voters by police
and ruling party militants, and the deployment of voting stations in a way
that clearly favoured Mr Mugabe. Reginald Matchaba-Hove, chairman of the
network, said: "The election is total confusion and chaos . . . There is no
way these elections can be described as substantially free and fair."

Kare Vollan, the head of a 25-strong team of Norwegian monitors, said the
elections "were conducted in an environment of strong polarisation,
political violence and an election administration with severe shortcomings".

The Norwegian report also criticised the administration of the election in
Harare as wholly inadequate, and said that thousands of voters had been
deprived of their democratic right to vote.

This was denied by Zanu-PF, with Jonathan Moyo, the information minister,
claiming: "This has been an exemplary election in our view."

Patrick Chinamasa, the justice minister, angrily dismissed allegations of
election rigging and said Zimbabweans had voted "freely and fairly and in a
peaceful manner".

Meanwhile, the MDC tried to put as positive a gloss as possible on the
formal charging of Mr Ncube, claiming it indicated that Zanu-PF was
desperate and in a "state of panic". But there was no denying that it
represented a setback for the party and raised the prospect of a blanket
crackdown by Mr Mugabe's security forces and police on the entire

As the police turned the screws on white farmers and MDC election agents and
support staff, the state-controlled Herald newspaper said in an editorial
yesterday: "Whites' actions [are] despicable. White people in Zimbabwe went
for broke during the presidential election as they pushed for an unlikely
MDC victory."

Counting is expected to continue today amid numerous accusations of fraud
against the Zanu-PF authorities.

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Daily Media Update for Monday, March 11th, 2002

Daily Print Report for Monday, March 11th, 2002

The Herald played a speculative numbers game with the voter turn-out
in an effort to support the misleading and dishonest headline of its lead
story, 'Mugabe Leads in Poll'. Without a vote being counted, it claimed
"The MDC is headed for figures released so far show a
massive voter turnout in rural areas, which are traditionally a Zanu
PF stronghold." While the story provided figures of the voter turnout
around the country, it misled its readers by comparing the figures
province by province with the constituency results of the parliamentary
election without providing those voting figures. If it had, it would have
been forced to reveal that more people voted for the MDC than for the
ruling party in the parliamentary election (according to the Zimbabwe
Election Support Network report on that election).
The Daily News on the other hand, preferred to stick more closely to
factual developments, reporting the MDC allegations warning of
electoral fraud and the ongoing controversy over delays in voting in
Harare and Chitungwiza.
The paper claimed that the state media had reversed the figures the
Registrar-General's office had given in January for the number of
registered voters in urban and rural areas and quoted MDC
spokesman Learnmore Jongwe accusing the government of
"manipulating" these figures and attempting to disenfranchise voters
in the capital and its dormitory town. "We suspect that there are plans
for large-scale fraud by the Zanu PF government. The sudden twist
of figures is very suspicious," Jongwe was quoted as saying.

The Herald's lead story appeared to provide some credibility to the
MDC's allegations when it stated: "There are a total of 5,6 million
registered voters countrywide of which 3,4 million are rural and 2,2
million are urban."
According to The Herald story, a total of 2475147 people had cast their
votes countrywide by 2 pm yesterday. In Masvingo (379 472) people
had voted by 7pm, Mashonaland East (339 060) by midday, Midlands
(301 651), Manicaland (291 311), Mashonaland West (274 909),
Mashonaland Central (219 948). The paper reported that by midday
yesterday 205 143 people had voted in Harare, while 46 603 had voted
in Chitungwiza, Bulawayo (157 481), Matebeleland North (157 221) and
Matebeleland South  (153 491).
However, in separate stories, The Herald reported some conflicting-
and confusing figures. For example, its 'Masvingo Bureau' sourced
story reported "at least" 367 514 people had voted when polling
closed at the end of the second day, a disparity of nearly 12 000 with
the figure in its lead story. And its inside report on the end of polling in
Mashonaland East noted that 339 000 people had voted in the province
- a similar figure to the one given in the lead story as the number of
voters recorded by midday on the second day of voting. Another inside
story noted that 150 000 people had cast their votes on the first day of
voting in Mashonaland West and reported the chairman of the
provincial election command centre as saying "very few" people had
cast their votes by 2pm on the second day of voting. Yet the lead story
gave a figure of 274 909 votes cast (presumably at the end of polling on
day two), suggesting that nearly 125 000 people voted on the second
day - a figure that hardly fits the description of "very few" voters.
The paper also reported that on the first day of polling 14 000 people
had been turned away in Matabeleland North. The Herald also reported
that nearly 21 000 voters had been turned away in Mashonaland East
province. But there appeared to be no further statistics on this important
element of the election. The Daily News reported that 26 856 voters had
been turned away in Masvingo province, but it too, did not provide more
information on those who were not allowed to vote. Was the information
The total number of registered voters reported in The Herald (11/3)
differed marginally from that published in the same paper three days
previously. While the latest figure was given as 5 654 185 voters, the
figure published in the paper on March 8th put it at 5 607 812. But the
breakdown of the total figure into provinces revealed a huge
discrepancy in the figure of registered voters for Harare, which declined
by more than 159 000 from the March 8th figure of 882 176. Bulawayo
also lost more than 6 000 voters in the paper's latest breakdown of the
electorate, while all other provinces gained voters.

    Voter Population
Province The Herald (8/3) The Herald (11/3) Difference
Bulawayo 368028 361790 - 6 238
Harare 882176 722918 - 159258
Manicaland 658694 667419 + 8725
Mash Central 480092 485498 + 5406
Mash East 589185 596989 + 7804
Mash West 572677 581740 + 9063
Masvingo 655 122 662 599 + 7 477
Mat North 338 188 341 988 + 3 800
Mat South 343 193 345 647 + 1 654
Midlands 724 659 731 800 + 7 141
Chitungwiza - 155 797 -

The Herald failed to provide an explanation for this inconsistent
information and raises doubts about the validity of the voters' roll. And it
certainly failed to enlighten its readers about the fate of the 159258
registered voters that went missing from Harare.

The paper also failed to provide any information about the number of
people on the supplementary voters' roll apart from an announcement
by the chief elections' officer that the supplementary roll was currently
being prepared by the Registrar General's office (7/3).
Both papers reported the successful High Court petition by the MDC to
have voting extended by one day throughout the country. The Herald
story included a report that the ruling came after polling stations had
closed and were being dismantled. It did not report that the application
was made well before the end of voting.
The Daily News quoted Jongwe saying the election was taking place at
a time when more than 47 percent of the rural polling stations are not
manned by MDC polling agents "either because our agents have not
been allowed to get to their stations or in the instances where they
have been able to, they have been chased out of these stations."
The Herald, on the other hand, accused the MDC of violence and its
supposed "white supporters" of intimidating and tricking their workers
and villagers into voting for their "party".
The Daily News reported that in Shurugwi, the Minister of Environment
and Tourism, Francis Nhema allegedly "took six ballot books from the
Mobile 3 polling station at Zvishasha" in the presence of two MDC
polling agents.
It also reported that 10 war veterans had forced the closure of Shamu
polling station in Odzi on Saturday, forcing voters to walk 8 km to the
next station.  Police confirmed the incident. The Herald chose to ignore
all this.
Other stories carried by the paper revealed a number of electoral flaws,
including the abduction of MDC polling agents.
The Herald ignored these obstacles and irregularities and claimed that
voting was smooth, peaceful and free and fair, according to a number
of observers. And in its front-page story, "State warns against violence"
it accused the MDC and whites of plotting to engage in violence when
the results are announced. The paper quoted State Security Minister
Nicholas Goche saying: "There are elements who are seeking to give
an excuse to intervene saying the process was flawed and the
elections could not have been free and fair."


Voting Day 2

ZBC continued to report that there were still long queues of voters in
Harare where tripartite elections were held. ZBC quoted Justice
Minister Patrick Chinamasa saying that voting time would be extended
and that there was no legal basis for extending voting days. MMPZ's
source monitoring revealed that some polling stations defied
Chinamasa's calls to increase voting time and at one polling station in
Warren Park people were chased away at around 9pm.
In an attempt to downplay the large voter turnout in Harare Jonathan
Moyo was quoted (ZTV, 8pm) saying: "We should not think that Harare
is Zimbabwe and Zimbabwe is Harare. Suggestions that there was
massive turnout in Harare and so forth are really pictures painted by
people who have creative imaginations.those long queues do not
equal to massive turnout."
ZTV (8pm) also carried a contradictory report on the size of queues in
Chitungwiza. While the reporter stated that queues had been reduced,
footage accompanying the report showed very long queues.
All ZBC stations gave an update of voter turnout across the country.
ZBC reports generally stated that there was low voter turn out in the
rural areas. Registrar-General Tobaiwa Mudede was quoted saying
that 2475147 had voted by noon on March 10th. No cumulative provincial
totals for the two voting days were given.
There was no information on the total number of people who had been
turned away.
On ZTV (8pm) the Election Directorate Chairman Mariyawanda Nzuwa
was quoted adamantly defending Mudede's decision to reduce polling
stations in the urban areas. Nzuwa said: " I think that was right. The
objective was to minimize the walking distance of every voter to
approximately a radius of 5km. Is there anybody in Harare or
Chitungwiza, Bulawayo or Mutare who has been forced to walk
more than 5km to a polling station.In Highfeild you had polling
stations which were back to back separated by a fence meaning
there was no distance between it so painful for a person in
an urban area to stand for three to four, five hours even to be
inconvenienced? But they are close to a polling station."

ZBC reported the shortage of ballot papers in Gokwe and Karoi without
question. No comment was sought from the Election Directorate.
SW Radio Africa reported the story and also failed to carry comment
from relevant authorities.

ZTV reported, as breaking news after 9pm, the High Court ruling
instructing Mudede to extend voting days nationwide by one day. The
broadcaster added that the government was to appeal against the
ruling. At 11pm Chinamasa was quoted on ZTV saying that: "All staff
manning the polling centers had been withdrawn and returned to
their respective destinations, that is, the ministries for which they
work. The order therefore is administratively impossible to
implement nationwide."
This clear intention to defy the court order was not subjected to any
Chinamasa was not asked why the staff had been withdrawn when his
office knew that there was a High Court case pending before polling
No comment was sought from the MDC or the Electoral Supervisory
Commission on the latest development.
ZBC hinted at government's intention to crush any dissent after the
announcement of the election results. ZTV (after 2pm) quoted Home
Affairs Minister John Nkomo saying that the government was aware of
"dirty plans in the offing to disturb the peace and tranquility within
Zimbabwe" to create the impression that the electoral process was not
free and fair. Nkomo assured the nation that the government would
"fully apply" the law to deal with such eventuality. Nkomo did not
provide any evidence to support his claims. 3FM and Radio Zimbabwe
carried the report in their 8pm bulletins.
Police Commissioner Augustine Chihuri was quoted (ZTV, 8pm)
reiterating Nkomo's threats to deal with any disturbance.
ZBC (8pm) continued to present whites and the MDC supporters as
having violated electoral laws during the voting process. The
broadcaster reported that white people were intimidating voters in Karoi
and that five farmers and 81 MDC supporters in Honde Valley were
arrested for allegedly holding an illegal gathering and possessing
Minister Chinamasa was also quoted on ZTV (11pm) accusing the
MDC of causing problems at polling stations in Harare high-density
".Over 70 people belonging to MDC have so far been arrested
under allegations of double voting.Voting in the Harare high density
areas and Chitungwiza has been characterized by unruly MDC
elements coming to the polling stations drunk sometimes just to
disrupt the voting process and shouting MDC slogans within the
prohibited 100metre radius and also they have come to perpetrate
violence." Chinamasa said.

This report was produced by the Media Monitoring Project Zimbabwe,
15 Duthie Avenue, Alexandra Park, Harare, Tel/fax: 263 4 703702, E-
mail:, Web:
Feel free to respond to MMPZ.
We may not be able to respond to everything but we will look at each
Also, please feel free to circulate this message.

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U N I T E D  N A T I O N S
Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA)
Integrated Regional Information Network (IRIN)

ZIMBABWE: Election flawed - observers

JOHANNESBURG, 12 March (IRIN) - Zimbabwe's election cannot be called free and fair, an independent observer group told IRIN on Tuesday as ballot counting continued.

The Zimbabwe Election Support Network (ZESN) told IRIN that the presidential poll - in which incumbent Robert Mugabe faces the stiffest challenge yet to his 22-year rule from Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) leader Morgan Tsvangirai - could not be endorsed as too many people had been disenfranchised.

ZESN is an umbrella body consisting of 38 church and civic groups.

Deputy spokesman Tawanda Hondora said: "It certainly was not free and fair because the environment was not conducive to a free and fair election. The pre-election period was characterised by a high incidence of politically related violence, primarily orchestrated by state-trained militia and war veterans who are known sympathizers of (the ruling) ZANU-PF.

"At the same time there was a deliberate use of the law by the government, and in particular the contesting candidate Mugabe, to confuse the process and at the same time disenfranchise various sectors of Zimbabwe's electorate. The ruling party and government have, by using terror tactics in rural areas and simply frustrating the voting process in urban areas, ensured that the process favours Mugabe."

Hondora said he would be "shocked out of my wits if Mugabe loses this election" as Mugabe had "played all his cards and worked exceedingly hard to ensure he wins the election by any means necessary". An example of this was the late opening of polling stations in Harare on the court-ordered third day of voting on Monday. The same stations closed at 19H00 on Monday while long queues of people had still not voted.

Various sections of Zimbabwe's electorate had been disenfranchised, Hondora said.

"The reduction of polling stations in urban areas (allegedly by 50 percent) was because they (the government) have accepted the MDC has (majority) support in urban areas. It's no coincidence that government increased polling stations in rural areas, notwithstanding that we have not had any significant complaints that rural populations do not have access to polling stations."

The  Electoral Institute of Southern Africa (EISA) also expressed concern at the reduction of polling stations in urban areas, but team leader Dr Inonge Mbikusita-Lewanika told IRIN she could not comment on the freeness or fairness of the election. "EISA does not use the terms because we could not agree on definitions of free and fair," she said.

As to the electoral process itself, Mbikusita-Lewanika said: "My own summary (of the poll) is that the major problem is that many people have not voted, and obviously those who have not voted are not happy. However, the overall arrangements for the poll impressed me."

EISA is not viewed as hostile by the government because its role is to support electoral processes throughout the region and not simply to sit in judgment. Thus they have had the benefit of "friendly briefings". At one such briefing, EISA expressed concern about the reduction of polling stations in urban areas, but was told the "reduction would only be by 10 percent".

Reuters and AFP reported that Britain cited "pretty strong" evidence on Tuesday that Mugabe had "stolen" Zimbabwe's landmark vote, in a blunt assessment shared by many observers who said it was neither free nor fair.

Norwegian observers reported major flaws in the election amid growing criticism of the fairness of polls conducted in an atmosphere of violence, intimidation and legal wrangling.

Human rights group Amnesty International also condemned voter intimidation and harassment of observers, and called for the immediate release of more than 1,400 people detained by security forces.

Zimbabwe's Information Minister Jonathan Moyo, meanwhile, told reporters the election had been "exemplary".

The Southern African Development Community (SADC) observer mission reportedly said the election was not transparent.

The head of the SADC observer mission made his comments after the Zimbabwe Independent Electoral Commission (ZIEC) refused to release figures on the total number of people who voted.

SADC parliamentary forum observer mission chief Duke Lefhoko told The Namibian that he was stunned when ZIEC refused to give the total figures of people who have voted so far.

"On the first day, they were disclosing the figures, but now they are not co-operating. Why the sudden change of heart? They have been transparent, now they are not transparent," the newspaper quoted him as saying on Tuesday.

More reaction from the many observer groups in Zimbabwe is expected over the next few days as official results are collated.


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

Norwegian Observer Mission Statement :
The Norwegian Observer Mission said on Tuesday: "The observer mission concludes that the presidential elections failed to meet key, broadly accepted criteria for elections." The head of the 25-member mission, Kare Vollan, said the mission found flaws with every step of the electoral process, from voter registration, to campaigning, to voting.

Norway observers criticise Zimbabwe poll

HARARE, March 12 — Norway's observer mission said on Tuesday Zimbabwe's
presidential elections failed to meet acceptable international standards.
       The mission blamed President Robert Mugabe's ruling ZANU-PF party for
''the vast majority'' of violent incidents before the March 9-11 elections.
Vote counting began on Tuesday.

       ''The observer mission concludes that the presidential elections
failed to meet key, broadly accepted criteria for elections,'' Kare Vollan,
the head of the 25-strong Norwegian mission, told reporters in Harare.
       He said the elections ''were conducted in an environment of strong
polarisation, political violence and an election administration with severe
       The Norwegians were the largest European observer group in Zimbabwe
after the European Union withdrew its team because Mugabe had excluded some
EU member states.
       Opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai has accused Mugabe's government
of rigging the elections but has told his followers to remain calm. The
first results are expected on Wednesday.
       The Norwegian statement said the election build-up was marred by a
pattern of intimidation and violence.
       ''Even though incidents have been reported from both sides, the
evidence shows clearly that in the vast majority of cases the ruling party
has been to blame,'' Vollan said.
       He gave a catalogue of irregularities and abuses, and also criticised
the electoral authorities for barring tens of thousands of people from
voting, especially in Harare and nearby Chitungwiza, by defying a court
order to keep polling stations open on the third day of voting.
       Local monitors delivered a damning judgment on Tuesday, saying tens
of thousands of people were prevented from voting.
       ''There is no way these elections could be described as substantially
free and fair,'' the Zimbabwe Election Support Network (ZESN) said.
       Vollan said Mugabe's government had made it difficult for the
opposition to campaign freely and published vital information on the
electoral process very late. The voters' roll was still unavailable to the
public, he said.
       ''The voter registration had serious flaws in that the cut-off dates
for making amendments to the registers were changed without prior public
announcements,'' he said.
       But Vollan declined to comment when asked if his assessment so far
meant he had no faith in the validity of the result that will be announced.
       ''That is a comment that goes beyond what we are saying today. We
have not come to that yet,'' he said.

Tuesday, 12 March, 2002, 17:32 GMT
Straw condemns Zimbabwe vote
The first results are expected later on Tuesday
Counting the votes is under way in Zimbabwe
Victory for Robert Mugabe in Zimbabwe's presidential elections would have "enormous implications" for the country's relations with Britain, the UK foreign secretary has said.

Jack Straw said he was making no predictions about the outcome of the elections but condemned the ruling Zanu-PF party's violence and intimidation surrounding the polls.

This is a terrible period, not only for Zimbabwe but for those who hold the cause of democracy dear

Jack Straw
Foreign Secretary
His comments came after electoral observers in Zimbabwe criticised the voting process as neither free nor fair.

The first results are expected later on Tuesday and Mr Straw said he would make a statement to MPs, if possible, as soon as the result was known.

He told the Commons on Tuesday: "There has been every sign of Zanu PF-backed violence and intimidation right up to the close of polling, as well as many reports of irregularities."

Changing relationship

Those irregularities included a shortage of polling booths in urban areas and the harassment of opposition election agents in rural areas.

Mr Straw was pressed by some MPs to stop British recognition of Zimbabwe.

Foreign Secretary Jack Straw
Jack Straw says he will make a statement when the result is known
But the foreign secretary emphasised it was states, rather than governments, that received recognition.

He continued: "If it becomes clear, and the evidence is already pretty strong, that President Mugabe in the event of him being declared the winner, has stolen the election, that has enormous implications for the nature of our relationship with Zimbabwe."

The UK, with the rest of the European Union, has already begun targeted sanctions against President Mugabe and his allies.

But there are still full diplomatic relations between the two countries, with a British high commissioner in Harare and his Zimbabwean counterpart based in London.

'Brutal' behaviour

The Commonwealth heads of government recently refused Tony Blair's appeal for Zimbabwe to be suspended from the Commonwealth.

But they said there could be action once the election observers report in full.

Conservative shadow foreign secretary Michael Ancram criticised the "brutal" conduct of the Zanu-PF party.

He asked Mr Straw: "If Mugabe is proclaimed the winner, why won't you make clear today that you will reject the result and act accordingly?"

The foreign secretary repeated his view that it was wise to wait until the election result was known.

The Zimbabwe government has attacked Tony Blair and the UK government for what he says is a "colonialist" attitude towards its country.

The BBC's Hilary Andersson
"So much for democracy"

Tuesday, 12 March, 2002, 12:44 GMT
Zimbabwe: An election observer's tale
Election observer sits next to ballot boxes
300 non-governmental observers were accredited
A Zimbabwean election observer in the Midlands province, who did not wish to give his name, tells BBC News Online his experience of the election weekend.

On the first day of polling, there were long queues of people waiting to vote, especially in Kwekwe Urban, Gweru Urban and Redcliff constituencies.

The queues were a result of the decision to reduce the number of polling stations in towns.


I and many others who got to the polling station hours before the official opening of the station at 0700 only managed to vote late in the night

N Musvoto, Zimbabwe
arrow Click here to tell us your experiences
But despite the long wait under cloudy skies, people were excited, patient and determined to vote.

For the first time, I noticed a heavy turnout among the large Asian community living in the Midlands.

There was also a heavy presence of the Zanu-PF militias, codenamed "Talebans".

Some of them joined the lines of voters, spacing themselves out along the queues.


In Gweru, voting ended several hours late due to the long queues.

In contrast, most rural voters were able to cast their ballots on the first day due to the increased number of polling stations.

regional reports from around Zimbabwe
Choose a link below for latest news from around the country:

  1. Harare
  2. Mashonaland
  3. Matebeleland
  4. Midlands
  5. Manicaland
  6. Masvingo

I saw "Talebans" at every rural polling station I visited. They had even set up temporary camps outside some of the schools were voting was taking place.

Both the police and the "Talebans" were very antagonistic towards local observers.

Those who had been refused official accreditation and were trying to monitor the vote from outside the polling stations were chased away and assaulted.

Some had their fluorescent green "Election observer" bibs ripped off their backs. Others were arrested.

I saw two senior Zanu-PF officials in the province move around polling stations, ordering the "Talebans" to beat up local observers and chase them away from where the voting was taking place.


I also noted a heavy presence of secret state agents from the Central Intelligence Organisation moving around the polling stations.

At one point, they started following me but not for very long.

Despite all the intimidation, voters were determined to vote for the candidate of their choice in most of the areas I visited.

The second day of voting was not nearly as busy as day one. Many rural polling were deserted from noon.

Tuesday, 12 March, 2002, 12:48 GMT
Zimbabwe election diary - Day Six
The BBC's Grant Ferrett
The BBC's Grant Ferrett is reporting on the Zimbabwe elections from Beitbridge, on the South African-Zimbabwe border - since the BBC is banned from reporting in Zimbabwe itself:

Day Six - Tuesday 12 March

Been here at the border a week now. I'm sure I should be losing weight in this heat.

Confidence about the air conditioning being secure because of generators proves misplaced.

Another power cut today, thankfully for just a few minutes. Even in that time, the portacabin did a passable impression of an oven.

It doesn't smell great either. We can't leave the rubbish outside because of the baboons which live around the car park and play on the nearby bridge across the Limpopo to Zimbabwe.

Unlike just about everything else in the election, the counting seems to be going reasonably smoothly.

A brief flurry of excitement about the appearance in court in Harare of senior opposition figure, Welshman Ncube. As usual, the opposition spokesmen answer their mobile phones quickly.

They confirm that he's been charged with treason and released on bail.

Do a live television interview a few minutes later. As I'm waiting to go on air, I listen to the studio in London interviewing Zimbabwe's Justice Minister.

He denies all knowledge of the charges and accuses the BBC of bias. I'm on next. If the minister carried on watching, I don't think he'd have been too keen on my remarks, which contradicted just about all of his.

Ballot boxes
Information Minister Moyo described the election as "exemplary"

Pity I'm not in Zimbabwe to interview him directly.

Interviews from the TV launch pad attract small crowds of bemused onlookers.

We must look completely outlandish, standing on our platform with white umbrellas, bellowing at someone in a studio thousands of miles away.

Today's quotation is another from the Information Minister, Jonathan Moyo:

"This has been an exemplary election in our view."

Oh, the power's just gone again.

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The Star

Tsvangirai shrugs off fears for life
Zimbabwe's polls close after third day of delays, intimidation, arrests by
Bill Schiller

HARARE — Opposition presidential candidate Morgan Tsvangirai told his
followers yesterday he feared for his safety, but whatever his fate — even
death — they must carry on.

Tsvangirai's statement came on the third and final day of Zimbabwe's heated
presidential elections, another day of sweeping arrests and crackdowns
against government opponents.

These included one of the senior members of Tsvangirai's Movement for
Democratic Change (MDC).

"The forces of darkness may try to block your path to victory," Tsvangirai
said, evoking tones of the late Martin Luther King Jr. "They may want to
arrest and, at worst, kill me ... if they do, you must stay strong and carry
on the work we began together."

The ZANU-PF government of President Robert Mugabe continued to escalate its
use of force against its political opponents yesterday.

The boldness and sweep of the crackdown sent a collective chill down the
opposition's spine, especially when state radio announced that police had
arrested one its most senior members, MDC Secretary-General Welshman Ncube.

Ncube was stopped at a roadblock in Matabeleland in the south of the country
and police were holding him in Bulawayo Central Prison. The government did
not disclose what charges they had brought against him, but claimed he was
trying to escape to Botswana.

The government has claimed for more than a month now that Ncube was involved
with Tsvangirai in a plot to assassinate Mugabe — a story foreign observers
and diplomats here have discredited as politically contrived.

Ncube wasn't the only one held yesterday.

Four U.S. diplomats were arrested while observing polls in Chinoyi,
northwest of Harare. Although they were later released, the U.S. embassy
here said it would deal with it "through diplomatic channels."

Close to 200 opposition supporters and election observers were arrested
across the country, according to the independent Zimbabwe Election Support
Network, as the government turned up the heat on any locals brave enough to
scrutinize the electoral process.

Police fired eight tear gas canisters and shot into the air at a polling
station in the Harare neighbourhood of Glen Norah to disperse 600 people
waiting to vote.

Foreign election observers stopped police from sending voters away from a
polling station in the Harare township of Kuwadzana 45 minutes before polls
were supposed to close. But police stopped the voting in the poor
neighbourhood at 7 p.m., even though more than 200 people remained in line
and government officials had promised that those still waiting would be
allowed to vote.

"The jails are full of MDC people," MDC legal adviser and shadow foreign
minister Tendai Biti said yesterday. "Every police centre and every
detention centre is full of our people."

Government critics said that was according to plan.

"This is just stage three of the government's three-part strategy," said
Tony Reeler, of the non-governmental organization Amani Trust.

The first, he said, was the government's well-known pre-election
intimidation and violence. The second was the its absolute control of every
element of the election process.

"And now, they want to make sure that no one is around when the counting
begins," Reeler said. "That's why all these observers and polling agents are
being rounded up."

It was another repressive day in Zimbabwe, a once-peaceful country now
wracked by state-sponsored violence that was triggered two years ago when
trade unionist Tsvangirai decided to seriously challenge to President
Mugabe's then uninterrupted 20-year rule.

Last night, as the sun set on Zimbabwe, rumours abounded that Tsvangirai was
holed up on an upper floor of the downtown Miekles hotel in Harare,
surrounded by bodyguards preparing for the worst.

That's not the way the day dawned, however. For the opposition, it was
supposed to have been a day of hope. The High Court had ruled in its favour
that long line-ups and delays in voting in Harare and nearby Chitungwiza,
had not just been unfortunate but unfair. The court ordered another day of
voting be held in both areas.

But instead of polls opening in the two cities at 7 a.m., most did not open
until 11 a.m., or in one case 1 p.m.

Yesterday was a workday and with the added confusion surrounding poll hours,
voting was difficult.

Tendai Biti and other MDC leaders said "thousands and thousands of people"
did not vote as a consequence.

"The whole thing is a sham," Biti said.

He added it did not matter whether they were MDC supporters or not. The fact
was that they were Zimbabweans, and they had a democratic and constitutional
right to vote.

He was bitter in his criticism of the government's lackadaisical response to
the court order.

"I just can't believe that in this day and age people (the government) will
resort to such crude Machiavellian characteristics to cheat an election,"
Biti said.

He also worried that Zimbabwe was about to be abandoned both by the
Commonwealth as well as by the countries of the Southern African Development
Community (SADC).

"You're going to hear your friends in the Commonwealth and your friends in
SADC saying this was a free and fair election. (But) it's a complete fudge."

Biti called it "the worst election that southern Africa has ever seen,"
since the demise of the late dictator H. Kamuzu Banda III of Malawi — a man
who brooked no opposition for four decades.

Biti said the MDC would still triumph.

"But what they've done is create opportunities and conditions for stealing
the election."

Last night on state television, Registrar-General Tobaiwa Mudede said that
at least 2.9 million of 5.6 million eligible voters cast ballots — without
the Harare and Chitungwiza polls reporting. Those figures indicate a record
turnout will be announced today.

Still, many in the opposition camp were uneasy at the government's
insistence that a far greater percentage of people turned out to vote in the
government's rural strongholds, than voters did in the opposition's urban

Mashonaland Central, for example — which is Mugabe's traditional territory —
had a 68 per cent turnout. During the parliamentary elections two years ago,
however, it only had a turnout of 56 per cent.

By contrast, the opposition stronghold of Harare had a 47 per cent turnout
up to yesterday, identical to its turnout in the 2000 parliamentary

The Zimbabwe Educational Trust, an independent research group, warned last
week that the voters' rolls were in such disarray that any turnout higher
than 2.6 million could be rigged.

Last night, it was all over but the counting.

And Police Commissioner Augustine Chihuri sternly warned the nation on state
television last night that police would deal firmly with any co-ordinated
action taken in response to the result, which is expected to be announced

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