Makoni for finance post?
6:46:17 AM (GMT +2)
Impeccable ZANU PF sources this week said that
the former executive
secretary of the Southern African Development Community
would be appointed
to the key post following the arrest of the incumbent,
Chris Kuruneri, on
allegations of contravening the country's exchange control
The Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education, Herbert
has had previous spells at the sensitive portfolio which has a
tenure, replaced Kuruneri in an acting capacity.
sources said with President Robert Mugabe no longer spoilt for
Makoni, the comeback-kid of Zimbabwean politics, was the most
whose vision would dovetail with the government's thrust to
put a fresh heart
into the stricken economy.
Retired Army General Solomon Mujuru,
widely seen as the ZANU PF
kingmaker and whose opinion is reportedly
considered "very" valuable in the
ruling party, refused to comment on what
the sources said was Makoni's
since Makoni is not a Member of Parliament, his appointment
could meet with
some legal bottlenecks because President Mugabe has already
requisite non-constituency MPs.
The sources, who claimed President
Mugabe "was keen on recalling
Makoni", said that there were possible
scenarios through which Makoni, a
compelling public speaker, could be brought
back to the Cabinet.
President Mugabe was likely to drop the
beleaguered Kuruneri as
minister. He would then be replaced as MP by one of
non-constituency members of Par liament who would contest the
seat. This would pave the way for Makoni.
Mugabe has the prerogative to appoint 10 chiefs, eight
governors and 12
If appointed as minister, Makoni can only sit
in the House for 90
days, after which he is supposed to be appointed a
Before he is appointed a non-constituency MP, he can
only speak but would
have no vote in the House. But if Parliament was
dissolved before Makoni's
three months expire, the sources said, he would
remain minister until a new
Parliament is elected. Parliament, the sources
said, was likely to be
dissolved between November and December ahead of the
crucial 2005 election.
Makoni, an academic who is understood to
enjoy the confidence of
President Mugabe, was axed from the government in
September 2002 amid
speculation that a powerful clique from Mashonaland West
province was baying
for his blood because of differences over key fiscal and
issues. Makoni believed that he should bring about key policy
than just a change in emphasis, a strategy vehemently opposed
members of the ruling party's politburo.
This clique of
ZANU PF political vultures that had been circling
finally pounced and
instigated his ouster after Makoni became a scapegoat
for the exchange rate
mayhem and devaluation-induced sensitive price
increases. This abruptly
brought to an end one of the most remarkable
careers in the country's civil
Although he faced a crisis of confidence from a section of
party members, ZANU PF views on Makoni however remained starkly
sources said. They said even the "Presidency was convinced that
should stay because of his pragmatic approach".
at the end of the day it was those who did not agree with
prevailed. But the President only allowed Makoni to go because
he has a duty
to uphold the constitution of the party which requires him not
to dictate to
his politburo colleagues. As you know, most of the Cabinet is
made up of members of the politburo," said a ZANU PF member who
did not want
to be named.
President Mugabe had previously voiced his opposition
devaluation of the dollar saying: "Devaluation is sinister and can
advocated by our saboteurs and enemies of this government. Support
productive sector, especially in agriculture, mining and tourism,
with effective management and control of our financial resources,
the priority of my government. Devaluation is thus
Circumstances have taken a radical turn since Makoni's exit,
central bank governor Gideon Gono effectively devaluing the currency
the introduction of managed foreign currency auctions.
The dollar, which was pegged by the government at $824 to the United
dollar in February 2003 is now trading at about $5 200 against
the auction rates.
The current auction rate also being used as the
benchmark for other
transactions, such as the calculation of customs rates
and remittances by
The RBZ has also
liberalised foreign currency transactions at banks, a
practice that was
virtually criminalised under the stringent foreign
"We saw it coming when he (Makoni) was appointed to probe
companies," a party source said. "One is not appointed to such a task
is not trusted. Maybe there has been a change of heart on the part of
detractors or they are running scared that he may expose them, hence
are pushing for his reinstatement. He has worked well, before, but
reason some party individuals were against him is that they were
from the collapse of the economy."
ZANU PF's supreme
decision making body, the Politburo, as part of its
anti corruption crusade,
appointed a five member high-powered team to probe
financial operations of
all its companies.
The team led by Mashonaland East Governor and
Resident Minister David
Karimanzira also includes Obert Mpofu, Bulawayo
Governor and Resident
Minister, Solomon Mujuru, ZANU PF's kingmaker and
former army commander,
Thoko Mathuthu, the deputy secretary for transport and
welfare and Makoni.
Another party source said: "The Gono and Makoni
combination would be
explosive and the right way forward if we had to rid our
economy of corrupt
elements. I also heard about the idea about two weeks ago,
but brushed it
aside. But now it seems to have taken root and believe you me
smoke without fire. It was inevitable that one day Makoni would
bounce back or be considered to bounce back. He has held our economy
esteem in the past. He is the right man for the job."
Rebels named in Zimbabwe squad
May 20, 2004 -
Five of Zimbabwe's white rebel cricketers have been named in
an 18-man squad
to play Australia in the proposed first Test, scheduled to
However, whether the match is actually played remains
in doubt as cricket's
powerbrokers will vote on the issue during a
specially-convened meeting on
Zimbabwe's 15 rebels made
themselves available for selection, but spokesman
Grant Flower said the group
had given up hope of playing in the Test matches
as they were not physically
and mentally prepared.
Flower said the group had made themselves
available for the proposed one-day
matches, scheduled to start in
But it is understood Zimbabwe's selectors named five rebels in the
the first Test despite their limited preparation.
understood the five are deposed captain Heath Streak, fellow
Blignaut, batsmen Stuart Carlisle and Trevor Gripper and
The Zimbabwe Cricket Union (ZCU) is yet to release the 18-man
The long stand-off between the rebels and the ZCU - based on the
concerns with the union's selection policies - meant Zimbabwe
second-string side in the two Tests against Sri Lanka recently, and
both matches by an innings.
Those lopsided results prompted the
International Cricket Council's to
organise a telephone hook-up of the
presidents of the boards of the 10
presidents will vote on Friday whether the two Australia-Zimbabwe
should be played, and whether they have Test status.
Test status, and whether it should be suspended while cricket in
is in disarray, was also likely to be discussed.
If the presidents vote
in favour of stripping the matches of their Test
status, it is likely the
Australian team will leave the country.
Seven of the 10 presidents need
to agree for a motion to be carried.
The Australian and Zimbabwe squads
will train on Friday despite the
uncertainty over the scheduled matches.
Zimbabwe 'rebels' refuse to move
It was payback time for the
Zimbabwe Cricket Union yesterday. Faced with a
hardening stance from the
international cricket community, Zimbabwean
officials begged their 14 'rebel'
white players to make themselves available
for Saturday's first Test against
Australia. But the players refused.
In the long run, international
sources believe the rebels' latest action is
likely to cost Zimbabwe their
Test status. Although this is a high price for
the ZCU to pay, many observers
feel it is also a fair price, given the way
board members have treated the
white players over the eight weeks since
Heath Streak first questioned the
ZCU's running of the game.
Tomorrow at 12.30pm, the directors of the
International Cricket Council will
meet to vote by Teleconference on a motion
to strip Zimbabwe's two-match
series against Australia of its Test status. If
the vote is approved, as ICC
officials are quietly confident it will be, the
Australian Test squad will
leave the country without further
ICC members are due to convene in June for their regular board
no solution to the dispute has arisen by then, Zimbabwe's Test
sure to be reviewed.
Zimbabwe's intransigence over the past
few days has alienated many of their
president of the Board of Cricket Control for India, has
been a staunch
supporter of the ZCU and their chairman Peter Chingoka for a
number of years.
However, even he has grown weary of the way ICC initiatives
The most visible example of this came on Tuesday when the
ZCU board refused
to meet Malcolm Speed, the ICC's chief executive, despite
the fact that
Chingoka had invited Speed to Harare for exactly that
There has been further frustration at the way ZCU officials have
calls for them to step back and voluntarily postpone further Test
until they have put their house in order. These concerns came to a
week when Sri Lanka's serene progress to a score of 713 for three
Bulawayo was widely felt to have cast doubt on what ICC sources call
integrity of Test cricket".
The rebels have not totally ruled out
a return to work; indeed, they have
made themselves available for the one-day
internationals against Australia,
which start on June 6. However, they say
they have been emotionally
exhausted by the dispute, which has also prevented
them from practising, and
cannot be expected to turn out on Saturday against
the best team in the
Last night the players were still waiting
for the ZCU to respond to their
offer, but their expectations were not
Those at the England and Wales Cricket Board may be hoping that the
schemozzle could help them out of their own dilemma over whether to
Zimbabwe in October, but they are unlikely to get off scot-free.
reciprocal tours arrangement means that, because Zimbabwe played
internationals in England last summer, England are obliged to visit
turn, even if it is not to play Tests.
proceedings began in Nairobi yesterday against former Kenyan
Odumbe. Acting on allegations made by Odumbe's recently
wife, Catherine, the ICC charged him with "inappropriate
contact with a
bookmaker" and bringing the game into disrepute.
Time for ICC to shed 'toothless tiger' tag
The Zimbabwe crisis has pushed the Muttiah Muralitharan issue
down the ladder
The refusal of the Zimbabwe Cricket Union's
board of directors
to meet ICC chief executive Malcolm Speed, who flew down
to Harare in the
hope of facilitating some problem-solving, has opened up a
that the Australia vs Zimbabwe Tests will be stripped of
Cynics will suggest that this spurt of interest
from the ICC
cadre stems from the fact that Speed is an
Be that as it may, the bosses of the sport cannot
cricket to plumb the ridiculous depths like it did when Sri Lanka
club class Zimbabwe team in Tests and
For long, the International Cricket Council (ICC)
called a toothless tiger.
The recent flexing of
muscles gives us some reason to believe
that the game's governing body wants
to get rid of that tag for good.
In the opinion of several
pundits, there has been much dithering
in the handling of chuckers ever since
Muttiah Muralitharan was "called" by
Darrell Hair in Melbourne 1995-96. Four
seasons later, the ICC agreed to get
Shoaib Akhtar back despite being under a
This led to the resignation of Bob Simpson, an
integral part of
the illegal actions committee.
has been scathing in his criticism on chucker tolerance.
While talking about
the stigma a chucker has to live with, the Aussie said:
"People said, 'if we no-ball him for throwing we'll destroy his
Well, if he doesn't obey the laws of the game he shouldn't have
Muralitharan has said he will continue to bowl
flying in the face of ICC recommendations.
The ZCU brazenly act like autocratic czars despite the ICC's
mediation and compromise.
Strong action by the ICC in both
cases will ensure the
'toothless tiger' tag is shed once and for
Bush Names Christopher Dell Ambassador to Zimbabwe
House (Washington, DC)
May 19, 2004
Posted to the web May 19,
Dell is career member of the Senior Foreign
The White House announced May 17 that President Bush has named
William Dell of New Jersey to be the next U.S. ambassador to the
The nomination has been sent to the Senate for
Dell is a career member of the Senior Foreign Service and
serving as chief of mission in Luanda, Angola. He previously
served as the
designated chief of mission to the U.S. mission in Pristina,
in his career, Dell served as deputy chief of mission in
Bulgaria and in
Dell has earned degrees from Columbia
University and from Oxford University.
Zanu PF loyalists threaten to kill
Has been banned from his constituency and told he will die if he returns
By Staff Reporters
Last updated: 05/20/2004 13:27:26
ZANU PF officials on Wednesday declared
war on opposition Movement for Democratic Change legislator Roy Bennett as our
readers hailed his bravery, a day after he decked two ministers in Parliament
following racial slurs.
Bennett, the MP for Chimanimani has been threatened
with his life if he sets foot in Chimanimani where his disputed farm is
Mike Madiro, Zanu PF’s Manicaland provincial chairman
told thousands of ruling Zanu PF party loyalists in Mutare that Bennett should
"never dare risk his life by coming here.
“Bennett has openly declared war against the province
under which his constituency falls. As such we are going to retaliate by all
possible means as a province. We no longer want him in the province," the Daily
Mirror quoted Madiro as saying.
Bennett wrestled Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa
to the ground after he said the white MP was an "inheritor of looted wealth" and
described his ancestors as "murderers". Bennett also appeared to fell Corruption
minister Didymus Mutasa, but the 69 year old minister said: "On the camera, it
appears as though I was beaten but in fact I fell down trying to avoid the blow.
I gave him a severe kick on his chest."
Bennett refused to apologise on Wednesday. However,
he said the scuffle in Parliament which is now being investigated by a committee
was "nothing to be proud of". The committee to look at the incident comprises
Labour Minister Paul Mangwana, Water Resources Minister Joyce Mujuru, Chief
Jonathan Mangwende, Harare East MP Tendai Biti (MDC) and Bulawayo North MP
Professor Welshman Ncube (MDC).
The MDC has refused to condemn Bennett alone,
suggesting that he came under serious provocation from Chinamasa to act in the
manner he did. The party’s spokesperson, Paul Themba Nyathi said “whilst the
actions of Bennett are not to be condoned neither should the abusive, demeaning,
hurtful, wicked, barbaric and provocative racial and personal slurs and insults
hurled at Bennett by the Minister."
Our readers have also rallied to Bennett's defence.
Our reader, Sandy Winters said: "Although we cannot condone Bennett's conduct,
we can only begin to understand the fury and frustration that he was going
through. How many thousands of Zimbabweans feel this anger towards the
government, and and would love to lash out at someone in just this
Brighton Musonza, writing from the UK said: "Infact
Roy Bennet has just thumped the Emperor himself because Chinamasa has no
constituency, he is President Mugabe's appointee. I wish all Zimbabwean men were
like this Roy Bennet."
5/20/2004 6:48:26 AM (GMT +2)
POLICE yesterday arrested the editor
of The Standard newspaper,
Bornwell Chakaodza, and reporter Valentine Maponga
over an article published
in last week's edition headlined "Family of slain
mine boss blames
The story claimed that
the family of slain Bindura Nickel Corporation
boss Leonard Chimimba, shot
dead at his Borrowdale home 10 days ago, blamed
unnamed government officials
for the tragedy.
The Standard's assistant editor, David Masunda,
confirmed the pair had
been arrested, but charges were yet to be preferred
Lupane win edges ZANU PF towards two-thirds
5/20/2004 6:53:05 AM (GMT
BULAWAYO - As the ruling ZANU PF inches closer to a
majority in Parliament after its weekend victory in a by-election
analysts say the main opposition Movement for Democratic Change
may be destined for political oblivion unless a miracle happens
in next year
's general election.
Its performance has raised
questions on whether the MDC, which has
lost more seats than it has won in
by-elections held in its strongholds
since 2002, is "ready for burial" as
predicted by President Robert Mugabe at
a recent ZANU PF
Or are the political misfortunes being suffered by the
party a bad
patch set to pass as Zimbabwe gears for the March 2005
These and other questions emerged this week as
Martin Khumalo, the
ZANU PF candidate in Lupane, shrugged off a fierce
challenge from Njabuliso
Mguni of the MDC to boost the fortunes of the ruling
party ahead of next
year's crucial plebiscite.
political commentators who spoke to The Financial Gazette
were unanimous the
ruling party deserved victory in Lupane largely because
of its past
performances in by-elections held since 2002, many of which the
overwhelmingly won against the opposition.
They said voters in
Lupane had been guided by voting trends witnessed
in other by-elections held
since the watershed June 2000 parliamentary poll.
They also warned
that the MDC's losses since 2002 and the alleged
discord in its ranks did not
augur well for a party challenging a predatory
regime such as that of ZANU
"The opposition is dead and buried," ZANU PF deputy
commissar Sikhanyiso Ndlovu told The Financial
"There is now no opposition to talk about in Matabeleland.
voted for development. They have seen that ZANU PF is the light
upliftment, not the MDC. We are on track to reverse the gains of
the MDC in
the whole country, " said a visibly ecstatic Ndlovu.
The win, in which Khumalo garnered 10 069 votes against Mguni's
handed ZANU PF its third parliamentary seat out of 22
Matabeleland since the historic 2000 parliamentary vote
when the MDC routed
the governing party in the region, condemning several
top ruling party
officials to the political wilderness.
In that poll, which nearly
ended ZANU PF's monopoly on power since
independence from Britain in1980,
President Mugabe's party only managed to
retain Beitbridge, won by current
Home Affairs Minister Kembo Mohadi.
ZANU PF's Andrew Langa, now
Deputy Minister of Transport and
Communications, later won Insiza
constituency after the death of Joe Ndlovu
of the MDC following a car crash
The Lupane seat, now number three for ZANU PF in the
Matabeleland region, fell vacant in February this year following the
of MDC's David Mpala.
MDC officials say the ruling party
is using unorthodox methods to win
by-elections in its desperate bid to
capture the two-thirds majority in
Parliament that will allow it to change
the constitution to suit its needs.
"We have done our homework. But
as we celebrate, there is so much work
to be done in the area if you really
scrutinise the voting figures, " said
About 40 percent
of the 48 134 registered voters cast their votes in
the by-election, held on
Saturday and Sunday. There were 389 spoiled papers.
"It was a close
victory. Many people did not vote. There are certain
issues that were raised
during our campaign as ZANU PF and we have to
address these if we are to
overwhelmingly perform in the area," added
spokesperson Paul Themba Nyathi alleged the election had not been
fair, pointing at the violence and alleged harassment of his party'
before the poll.
Nyathi dismissed suggestions by ZANU PF officials
and other analysts
that the labour-backed opposition movement was destined
for the political
dustbin come March 2005.
"It is rubbish to
wish the MDC away. It is nonsensical," said Nyathi.
"Look at the
numbers . . . do not mind the fraud which surely took
place. How do you bury
9 000 people that voted in Lupane? If they (the
government) were to agree to
the 15 electoral demands, the situation will be
different in March 2005," he
said, referring to demands the MDC has made for
a free and fair election in
Zimbabwe next year.
Nyathi said the ZANU PF victory marked yet
another cruel nail for
democracy in Zimbabwe.
"We salute the 9
000 people that braved all manner of harassment to
come and vote in Lupane.
There are a lot of people with every reason not to
vote for ZANU PF in Lupane
but were enticed with food, in addition to a dose
of harassment and
violence," Nyathi added.
Heneri Dzinotiweyi, a political
commentator who teaches mathematics at
the University of Zimbabwe, said the
apathy displayed in Lupane was a great
cause for concern for the opposition.
He said the MDC should immediately put
its house in order and map out
strategies on how it can coax voters to turn
out in large numbers for future
"There are many in Lupane that are opposed to ZANU PF rule
are the same people that did not come out to vote," said
that the opposition had a mammoth task on its hands to
mobilise voters and
rekindle its glory of 2000.
seems to be detached from these people that are not
even bothering to come to
vote. This is a big blow. The opposition needs
highly motivating factors to
get these reluctant people to come out and vote
for it," he
Paul Siwela, president of the fringe opposition ZAPU,
PF's victory as "hollow" and disappointing for opposition
"We would have expected the MDC to win. We
are very disappointed, but
this is a shallow victory.
is going to spin the Lupane victory to mislead the
that it is popular yet the truth of the matter is
that the party is very
unpopular but is using all sorts of state machinery
and a propaganda blitz to
deny the people (the chance) to freely choose
their own leaders," he
Siwela, who participated in the disputed 2002 presidential
fared very badly, said the electorate now appeared to be afraid to
opposition candidates because of heightening political
Nyathi of the MDC added: "It is a severe attack on
happened in Lupane . . . where MDC supporters were denied
food, the right to
attend meetings of their choice, the right to choose a
candidate of their
choice. You cannot develop a country with the fear such as
we witnessed in
ZANU PF officials in Matabeleland
vehemently deny that their party
used unorthodox means, among them the
manipulation of the voters' roll, to
cruise to victory.
(MDC) are already trying to find an excuse for their poor
showing. We won
cleanly and fairly. We are going to do the same in 2005,"
said Obert Mpofu,
the governor for Matabeleland North, who has publicly
declared his interest
to wrest Bubi-Umguza constituency from Jacob Thabane
of the MDC.
Max Mkandla, a war veteran and president of the War Liberators Forum
Initiative, warned ZANU PF against underrating the MDC in 2005.
would be political suicide. We are aware of a number of
took place in Lupane but ZANU PF will ignore the MDC at
its own peril," said
Mkandla, who monitored the weekend poll.
Mugabe defends Paradza trial
5/20/2004 6:50:55 AM (GMT +2)
Mugabe has said he acted constitutionally when he
appointed a three-member
tribunal to investigate suspended High Court judge
Justice Benjamin Paradza,
who is facing allegations of misconduct.
Last month, the Zimbabwean
leader appointed Justices Dennis Konani
Chirwa of Zambia, John Mroso of
Tanzania and Isaac Mtambo of Malawi to probe
charges levelled against Justice
Paradza that he attempted to defeat the
course of justice when he telephoned
a colleague in Bulawayo to release the
passport of Russell
Labuschagne was in remand prison at the time on a
murder charge after
he allegedly killed a fisherman he found poaching fish at
his Binga camp.
He has since been convicted and sentenced to 15
years in prison.
Justice Paradza has challenged the selection of
the tribunal by
President Mugabe, saying under the Constitution of Zimbabwe,
such a panel
did not have extra-territorial jurisdiction.
Responding to an appeal filed in the Supreme Court by Justice
lawyer Jonathan Samkange, President Mugabe said he had powers in
Section 87 of the Constitution to appoint members of the tribunal
selected from three categories in sub-section (4).
appointed the tribunal inquiring into the applicant's
80-year-old leader, at the helm of the country since 1980,
"In terms of Section 31H of the Constitution, I can act through my
my vice presidents, my ministers and deputy ministers in carrying
functions conferred upon me by the Constitution
. . . I do understand
what applicant is trying to impute when he says
they are not answerable and
that they do not have extra-territorial
jurisdiction in terms of the
The President added: "The word select as used in
Section 87(4) only
confers upon myself the right to choose from categories
listed under Section
87(4). I have the discretion to choose from any of the
said categories . . .
I decided to select from outside Zimbabwe. I, choosing
from outside the
country, cannot be expected to globe-trot and just appoint.
The process done
here cannot be faulted."
He said he acted
accordingly and that Paradza was "trying to choose
his own members of the
tribunal, which is contrary to the laws of this
appeal by Paradza, Patrick Chinamasa, the Minister of Justice,
Parliamentary Affairs, was cited as the fourth respondent while
Mugabe was the fifth.
Chombo appeals to Supreme Court
5/20/2004 6:49:22 AM (GMT +2)
Public Works and National Housing Minister Ignatius
Chombo has appealed to
the Supreme Court against a High Court judgment
compelling him to release a
report by a government-appointed team led by
Chombo appointed Kurasha's team solely to probe Mudzuri's style
management, but after a court challenge by the former mayor's lawyers,
High Court ordered that the panel had no jurisdiction to probe him
but the council as a whole.
Kurasha completed his probe
and handed over the findings to Chombo,
who then appointed another team, this
time led by Harare lawyer Johannes
Tomana, to conduct an inquiry into charges
levelled against Mudzuri by the
Both the Kurasha
and Tomana reports were kept under wraps by the
government until a recent
High Court ruling compelling Chombo to release the
documents, which Mudzuri
wants to use in his fight for reinstatement.
The Tomana report was
eventually released, but Chombo has vehemently
refused to let go of the
Kurasha findings, raising fears that it could
contain highly damaging
evidence and prove wrong the minister's decision to
In his appeal, Chombo said: "The judge erred and misdirected
in directing the appellant to furnish the respondent with record
proceedings, report and recommendations of the Kurasha
"The Tomana committee had no sight of it in arriving at
verdict and recommendations," Chombo, through his lawyers Mandiza
Mudzuri wins order to get damning reports
Acting News Editor
5/20/2004 6:48:58 AM (GMT +2)
the two long-awaited reports by teams appointed to investigate
levelled against beleaguered former executive mayor of Harare Elias
has finally been released following a High Court Order compelling
Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing to
The damning 29-page report was compiled by Harare lawyer
Tomana. It formed the basis for Mudzuri's ultimate dismissal from
Mudzuri is however still fighting to get an earlier
report compiled by
another team led by Jameson Kurasha to defend
His lawyers, Kantor and Immerman, have since filed an
application in the High Court for the release of the closely
report - which observers say may be damaging against the
Ministry. The Kurasha committee was the first to investigate
Tomana's committee found Mudzuri not suitable to continue
mayor's office, arguing that the evidence it had gathered fell short
reasonable expectations of the ratepayers.
his attorney Beatrice Mtetwa refused to participate in the
after the committee said it was not privy to the Kurasha
report. The former
mayor had requested the closely-guarded Kurasha report as
a pre-condition for
him to participate in the proceedings.
However, the committee
proceeded with the hearing without Mudzuri and
called in seven witnesses
including the embattled public relations officer
Leslie Gwindi, director of
health Lovemore Mbengeranwa, town clerk Nomutsa
Chideya, stores controller
and buyer Murerwa, chief accountant Kwenda, the
chief water engineer and the
The witnesses, including 732 contract workers,
had either been
suspended or dismissed on various allegations by Mudzuri as
part of his
mop-up plan since assuming office on a Movement for Democratic
"It is alleged that the actions (by Mudzuri) were
irregular. In effect, these actions are alleged to have caused
capacity of council to deliver essential services," the Tomana
"More particular, it is said notwithstanding the
in terms of Section 313 of the Urban Councils
. . . to reverse such decisions, the Mayor refused or failed to
with such directives."
The report said failure by Mudzuri
to comply with ministerial
directives constituted gross misconduct and abuse
of authority on his part.
In his evidence against the mayor, Gwindi
said he took his dismissal
with humility "for sanity to prevail" but felt
Gwindi, who was suspended for a year before he
bounced back after
Mudzuri was fired last month, said his position was
critical to the
He said upon his return, he
found chaos in the public relations
department as staff were not
well-coordinated, resulting in bad publicity
for the council.
addition, he said, tarrifs were being hiked without explanation to
and the former mayor bulldozed the decision-making process.
According to the Tomana report, Chideya, who signed Gwindi's
letter, was very emphatic that notwithstanding the appearance of
signature, it was the mayor who had indicated that he was uncomfortable
a ZANU PF public relations officer.
Chideya, who also
bounced back to Town House after Mudzuri was
suspended, said the former mayor
undermined his office and dealt with staff
directly, bypassing the town
Mbengeranwa said he was dismissed without being afforded a
He was reinstatetd by a Supreme Court
Acting Harare mayor Sekesai Makwavarara also testified
Mbenge-ranwa's suspension, saying the council casually agreed to
"The dismissal of Mbengeranwa on trumped-up charges
was at the
specific instance of the executive mayor," the report
The report said Chideya, who was fired for alleged
October 2002 but bounced back through the Local Government
Board, had been
dismissed without legal basis, but on personal
On the termination of employment of the 732 contract
report said the action had been arbitrary, inconsiderate and
Mudzuri was accused of
manipulating tender procedures after he
insisted that existing tenders should
not be renewed but that new players
should be given a chance to
He was also blamed for the general mismanagement of council
including erratic water supplies in various parts of the capital,
"It is the committee's unanimous
recommendation in the circumstances
that the Honourable Minister should
recommend the dismissal of Engineer
Elias Mudzuri as Mayor of the City of
Harare," the Tomana report
President Robert Mugabe
then fired Mudzuri from office.
Mtetwa said she would use both the
Kurasha and Tomana reports to
challenge her client's dismissal.
Chinamasa pulling wool over world's eyes
5/20/2004 6:52:23 AM (GMT +2)
euphoria touched off by what then appeared to be prospects
for a negotiated
settlement to Zimbabwe's crisis having lapsed into
Minister Patrick Chinamasa has provoked the ire of
political observers by
claiming that the country's two main political
parties are engaged in
Chinamasa told Parliament that the ruling ZANU
PF and the opposition
Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) were engaged in
informal talks to break
the political impasse.
comes at a time when Zimbabweans, who had initially
thrown their weight
behind the stalled talks, had long given up and resigned
to the fact that the
political parties were not interested in dialogue.
They had hoped
that breaking the political impasse would, to a certain
extent, help the
country tackle the increasingly complex and lengthy
"I can confirm that internal dialogue is taking place and
when this is
concluded, parties involved will be in a position to report to
respective parties," Chinamasa told Parliament last week to the
all and sundry, who felt that this was a dead issue.
Lovemore Madhuku, a political analyst and chairman of the
Constitutional Assembly (NCA), which is pushing for a radical change
country's constitution, said: "The climate for talks is not conducive.
is a climate of intolerance from both sides, but especially from ZANU
"But if the MDC were involved in any talks, be they informal
formal, the nation would like to know what is being discussed. At
stage, the MDC must realise that ZANU PF does not respect them. ZANU PF
refused to amend the electoral laws to create a conducive
Madhuku, a known sympathiser of the
opposition MDC, added: "What
purpose will the talks serve if the playing
field is uneven? In fact, ZANU
PF has tightened the laws and it would be
stupid for the MDC to seriously
think that ZANU PF wants to talk to
"However, for Chinamasa to say that informal talks are
there must be someone in the MDC he is talking to who is out
of touch with
reality. Those in the MDC talking to Chinamasa do not have
Chinamasa's utterances come as the
June 2004 deadline set by South
African President Thabo Mbeki for the
resumption of dialogue draws near.
President Mbeki, who is viewed
as the only leader in the region with a
realistic chance to persuade his
counterpart, President Robert Mugabe, to
step aside and allow for a new
political dispensation, promised the world
that dialogue between the two
parties would have resumed by June.
The talks were scuttled about
two years ago after sticking points
emerged over the agenda. Ever since,
efforts by church leaders to bring the
two political parties back to the
negotiating table hit a snag after the
ruling party suspected the clerics of
being sympathetic towards the MDC.
Although it is agreed that
President Mbeki has both diplomatic and
economic clout to influence political
developments in Zimbabwe, it is feared
that he could have put his reputation
and credibility on the line by
promising that the aborted talks would resume
This is because it is now increasingly clear that the
parties, particularly ZANU PF, are not interested in the
The observers said that given the time it had taken to bring
parties back to the negotiating table, it was clear that the politicians
had their eyes on the 2005 parliamentary elections.
against this background that Chinamasa's statement is widely
seen as a way of
salvaging President Mbeki's credibility by raising false
hopes about a
negotiated settlement that will never be.
analyst, Alois Masepe, said it was too late to talk
of talks about talks
unless the dialogue was based on exploratory
negotiations that would lay the
foundation for the post-2005 parliamentary
late in the day to talk about talks," Masepe said. "As far
as the current
situation is concerned, there is no basis for talks because
elections are just around the corner and the term of offices
of those in the
august house will soon be terminated. So what talks are they
"One should not read too much into what Chinamasa said
just another attempt to be seen as trying to break the ice and
political impasse if the MDC should participate in the polls," he
"Mugabe will still remain President of the country after
parliamentary election. He will ask (MDC leader Morgan) Tsvangirai
he recognises him as the legitimate leader and Tsvangirai will have
answer positively otherwise there is no basis for talks," he
A commentator who did not want to be named said ZANU PF was
sincere and Chinamasa was blatantly lying to the world.
"They (ZANU PF) are going to continue to create an impression that
for dialogue when in fact they are not," he said.
"I would not be
surprised if they staged a mock forum for talks to
hoodwink the international
community that they (ZANU PF) were sincere about
"Mugabe said he was going to step down in 2008 from a stolen election,
what is there to talk about? ZANU PF is just trying to keep out as much
as they can from the SADC (Southern African Development Community)
give false impressions that they are trying to bring back sanity
country," he added.
Inflation slow-down to come under strain
5/20/2004 6:49:53 AM (GMT +2)
percentage point reduction in the year-on-year rate of
inflation recorded in
April has been greeted with growing optimism which,
however, is tinged with
caution due to what economists indicate are
underlying factors likely to bid
up the rate, going forward.
Annualised inflation slowed down from
583.7 percent in March to 505
percent in April largely due to a marked
decline in aggregate demand which
has seen both the food and non-food
components of inflation subsiding,
coupled with exchange rate stability and
the attenuation of speculative
conduct in the market.
month-on-month inflation rate, which was virtually at a standstill
February and March, also shed 1.1 percentage points to 4.8 percent.
However, all this notwithstanding, fears about inflationary pressures
receding. This is mainly because developments that have taken place
latter half of April following the review of the monetary policy
Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ), as well as other developments on the
front, suggest that inflationary pressure has risen. This could slow
decline in the average increases in prices of goods and services.
The local unit has weakened considerably against all the major
following the monetary policy review, which brought with it a new
benchmark for foreign exchange. The dollar is now trading at
levels above $5
300 to the greenback, against $4 600 the week before the
This translates to a 15 percent decline in the value of the
currency, which will be taken into consideration in the computation of
The Central Statistical Office (CSO) compiles
data collected before
the 15th of each month.
Bread prices have
also gone up significantly in the period following
the compilation, as have
public transport fares.
The government has also announced new
producer prices for maize,
although millers will apparently be subsidised by
the Grain Marketing Board
Finhold group principal
economist Best Doroh said while the rate of
inflation had declined
significantly in the past three months, underlying
pressures would reduce the
rate of decline, going forward.
"It is most likely that the
exchange rate will slow down the decline.
A lot of companies import critical
components and the weakening of the
dollar will be reflected in non-food
"There is also the money supply issue arising from
finance and then the wages, although these are likely to have
an impact in
the last quarter, as wages are typically adjusted in July,"
Money market shortages, which have also contributed to
consumption, have turned into huge surpluses in recent weeks, a
followed by the reduction in the cost of funds, evidenced by
lending rates by lending institutions from previously punitive
above 400 percent to an average 300 percent.
Harare-based economist said the exchange rate would play a
critical role in
the inflation equation.
"The pressures are quite heavy, the
exchange rate is being pushed by
demand and will soon break through to $6 000
against the (United States)
"However, if it is indeed
true that we are in for a bumper harvest,
then food inflation might go lower,
but then that won't come about soon," he
accounted for 199 percentage points, while non-food items
weighed in with 306
percentage points to the annualised inflation figure of
505 percent in
The RBZ has forecast an annual inflation rate in the range
percent and 200 percent by year-end.
your neighbours, Zim urged
May 21 2004 at
Maputo - Britain's minister for Africa on Thursday urged Zimbabwe's
autocratic leader to listen to his neighbors, whom he said were suffering the
consequences of the country's spiraling decline.
President Robert Mugabe
"doesn't listen very much to what Britain has to say," Chris Mullin said on a
two-day visit to Mozambique. "I think he must listen to what other African
countries and other African leaders have to say."
often-violent seizure of thousands of white-owned farms for redistribution to
blacks has plunged the country into political and economic chaos. Mugabe's
government is also cracking down on dissent, arresting political opponents,
shutting down the only independent daily newspaper and packing the courts with
While African leaders have drawn criticism for not
being outspoken about the abuses, he said many were privately unhappy about the
harmful effects on their economies. Thousands of refugees have also spilled into
"I think people should be asking themselves why a
country which was once the bread basket of southern Africa and one of the most
prosperous and developed countries... has been reduced to ruins in such a short
period," Mullin said after a meeting with Mozambique Prime Minister Luisa
Mullin arrived in Mozambique on Thursday for meetings with
political leaders on the country's upcoming elections. He also plans to visit
development projects supported by Britain.
Mullin's four-day African trip
also included a stop in South Africa, where he met with the two deputy foreign
ministers and civil society leaders.
Among the issues discussed were the
establishment of a new international commission aiming to tackle Africa's woes,
including poverty, conflict and HIV/Aids. British Prime Minister Tony Blair
launched the Commission for Africa in February, and it held its first meeting in
London earlier this month. - Sapa-AP
Zim demo turns violent
May 21 2004 at 06:06AM
Supporters of Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe smashed up the entrance of the
opposition's headquarters on Thursday during a protest sparked by a scuffle
between lawmakers over the seizure of white-owned farms, witnesses
Roy Bennett of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC)
knocked Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa to the floor in parliament on Tuesday
in a dispute over the seizure of his farm as part of government policy to
redistribute land to blacks.
On Thursday riot police, some accompanied by
dogs, cordoned off the entrance to the MDC's offices, holding back about 2 000
angry supporters of the ruling Zanu-PF party who sang revolutionary songs and
waved placards denouncing Bennett.
The building's glass entrance lay
smashed, and witnesses said the crowd had earlier tried to force their way
'The MDC is based on the desire to commit violence and to get to
power through violence'
The MDC has apologised for Tuesday's incident, but
said Bennett responded to extreme provocation and racial slurs.
should be expelled from parliament and country" read one placard, while another
said "Bennett's head now".
Earlier the crowd held a protest outside
parliament, two streets away from the MDC offices, and were addressed by the
capital's provincial governor Witness Mangwende, a member of Mugabe's ruling
"The MDC is based on the desire to commit violence and to get to
power through violence," Mangwende later told journalists at the scene. "We
don't want to see Bennett in Harare in (Bennett's home city) Mutare, in Zimbabwe
for that matter."
Parliament has set up a committee to look into
Tuesday's incident and Bennett could be suspended from the house or fined if
found guilty of contempt.
Formed in 1999, the MDC came close to winning
nearly half the 120 contested seats in 2000 parliamentary polls held against the
background of an economic crisis widely blamed on government mismanagement. The
opposition says it would have won were it not for a violent ZANU-PF campaign
against its supporters.
Several Western countries agree with the
opposition's claim that Mugabe fraudulently won another six-year term as
president in 2002. But Mugabe, who dismisses the MDC as a puppet of his Western
opponents, insists he won fairly.
Daily news - Sunday Times - South Africa
White Zimbabwean told to leave the country
21, 2004 06:44 - (SA)
HARARE - Supporters of Zimbabwe's ruling party staged
a protest outside parliament demanding that a white opposition lawmaker be
thrown out of the country for attacking the justice minister.
newly appointed governor Witness Mangwende told some 3,000 protesters that Roy
Bennett, one of three white lawmakers in the 150-member parliament, was not
welcome in the capital anymore.
"If we see him walking the streets of
Harare, we will revenge," Mangwende warned.
Bennett, a member of the
opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) shoved Justice Minister Patrick
Chinamasa to the ground on Tuesday, angered by what he later described as racist
attacks during a heated debate in the house.
Bennett charged at the
justice minister in parliament after he declared: "Bennett has never forgiven
this government for seeking to redistribute the land. He forgets that his
forefathers were thieves".
The justice minister said that Bennett, who
was expropriated from his farm under Zimbabwe's controversial land reform
program, would not be allowed back to his property.
"I want to warn him
that we have taken over Charleswood and he must not set his foot on that
ground," Chinamasa said, referring to the Bennett farm.
demonstration outside parliament appeared to have been sanctioned by police,
despite the normal legal requirement of a four-day notice.
dishonourable Bennett should leave Zimbabwe. He should never set his foot in
this house," an official from the governing Zimbabwe African National
Union-Patriotic Front (Zanu-PF) party, Winston Dzawo, told the protesters.
The protesters waved placards that read "Expel Bennett from parliament
and the country" and "No room for barbarism in Zimbabwe."
Bennett to be arrested for beating up a minister," a spokesman for the
demonstrators, Peter Hlongwane, said. "If he's tired of living in Zimbabwe, he
should go to Britain."
They later staged another protest outside the
offices of the MDC where, according to a witness, they hurled rocks and
shattered the glass doors.
On Thursday a specially-convened
parliamentary disciplinary committee that was to hear Bennett's case was
postponed, according to an official.
Bennett was not present in
parliament on Thursday.
Mugabe militia riot after MPs'
Meldrum in Pretoria
Friday May 21, 2004
Youth militia of President Robert Mugabe's
Zanu-PF party went on the rampage in Harare yesterday, smashing windows and
destroying property at the offices of the opposition Movement for Democratic
The youths also blockaded an entrance to parliament and threatened to kill a
white MP who, in a fit of anger, had thrown the justice minister to the ground
earlier in the week.
Riot police who arrived took no action against the Zanu-PF youths, but
instead arrested four MDC members for unspecified reasons, according to the
The furore began on Tuesday when the justice minister, Patrick Chinamasa,
said the forefathers of an MDC MP, Roy Bennett, were "thieves and murderers".
An enraged Mr Bennett charged through the aisles of the parliament's debating
chamber, grabbed Mr Chinamasa, shook him and threw him to the floor. Other
Zanu-PF MPs jumped up and attacked Mr Bennett until order was restored. One
cabinet minister, Eliott Manyika, allegedly pulled out a gun.
Mr Mugabe's ruling party has been quick to seize on the incident and use it
to stir up sentiments against white Zimbabweans and the opposition.
In the eastern border city of Mutare, near Mr Bennett's constituency,
hundreds of Zanu-PF demonstrators forced eight white-owned businesses to close,
local residents said.
Australia in Zimbabwe 2004
All eyes turn to Zimbabwe
May 21, 2004
The fate of Zimbabwean cricket will be decided when the ICC
and its members teleconference at 12:30 BST to vote on whether the Test series
against Australia should be scrapped. Should the vote go against Zimbabwe - a
distinct possibility - it would strengthen England's case to not tour the
country, and could have a political fallout as well. Meanwhile, the ABC Sport
website has reported that the Zimbabwe Cricket Union is understood to have
proposed scrapping the Test series, a claim which could not be immediately
The teleconferenced vote could be the first step taken
towards relegating Zimbabwe from the Test level, a decision that is likely to be
made in June. But today the ICC needs seven of 10 votes to cancel the series - a
move that has found more and more supporters as the crisis has unfolded.
In an interview with Channel 4, Malcolm Speed, the ICC's
chief executive, said that if the ZCU's deadlock with the rebel players was not
broken by Friday afternoon, he and Ehsan Mani would recommend the matches
against Australia be stripped of their Test status. Under mounting pressure, the
ZCU selected five of the rebels for the Test series, but the players pulled out
because of a lack of match fitness, and were also wary of being used as
Speed's comments came after the ZCU snubbed the ICC's efforts
to negotiate between the board and the 15 rebels, who were originally sacked for
demanding qualified selectors. The replacement team, headed by Tatenda Taibu,
were brutalised by a Sri Lankan team that itself was soundly beaten by Australia
a few months ago.
The Australians, who arrived in Zimbabwe less than a week
ago, had been quiet about the issue for a while but, in recent times, have been
more vocal about the wisdom in playing a weakened team, and have indicated that
they would prefer to leave Zimbabwe.
It's likely that they'll have their wish by the end of the
conference call, as the impasse shows no signs of being resolved. It could, of
course, all come to a happy ending with Heath Streak and the rebels being
reinstated but, for now, it remains a mirage.
© Wisden Cricinfo Ltd
Last Update: Friday, May 21, 2004. 10:47am
Call to oust Zimbabwe law-maker
Supporters of Zimbabwe's ruling party have staged a protest
outside Parliament, demanding that a white opposition law-maker be thrown out of
the country for attacking the Justice Minister.
Harare's newly appointed Governor, Witness Mangwende, told
some 3,000 protesters that Roy Bennett, one of three white law-makers in the
150-member Parliament, was not welcome in the capital anymore.
Mr Bennett, a member of the opposition Movement for
Democratic Change, shoved Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa to the ground,
angered by what he later described as racist attacks during a heated debate in
A disciplinary hearing has been postponed.
Zesa makes US$10m pay-out
THE Zimbabwe Electricity
Supply Authority has paid at least US$10 million to its regional suppliers since
January and has made an undertaking to pay off the outstanding US$56 million
before the end of this year.
The power utility’s corporate affairs
manager, Mr Obert Nyatanga, said his company was now accessing foreign currency
through the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, an arrangement which he said had helped
Zesa meet some of its obligations.
He said this when he was addressing
business people yesterday at a seminar organised jointly with the Harare branch
of the Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce to discuss the issue of tariffs and
Mozambique’s HCB is now owed US$22 million, down from
US$29,6 million, while another supplier from the same country, EDM, is yet to be
paid US$9,5 million.
Eskom of South Africa is owed US$16 million.
The Democratic Republic of Congo’s Snel and the Zambia Electricity
Supply Company are owed US$5 million and US$3,5 million respectively.
"We hope to have liquidated the whole debt by December this year," said
Zesa is currently operating a pre-payment system with its
"We are now paying in advance because of the problems we have
had in the past and this adds a lot of pressure on our resources," Mr Nyatanga
During the period between December 2003 and February 2004, Zesa
was billing exporters in US dollars and is currently owed US$4,3 million by some
of its customers.
These arrears could not be settled in Zimbabwean
dollars following the removal of the foreign currency payment system.
Other non-exporting customers owe the power utility $58,8 billion, funds
which could also be used to clear its regional debt.
On the rural
electrification project, which has drawn criticism from some stakeholders, Mr
Nyatanga said the provision of electricity in the rural areas would enable the
people, especially the resettled farmers, to undertake economic activities
which, in turn, would earn Zesa and the country valuable cash both in foreign
and local currency.
New listings on bourse slim CHANCES of possible new listings on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange
remain slim as long as widespread pessimism by investors, which has so far
characterised trading on the local bourse for the better part of the year,
The stock market ended the first quarter on a depressed note,
falling short of analysts’ predictions as the benchmark industrial index dipped
by 12 percent to close around 336 000 points as of March 31 2004.
Investment analysts had forecast a modest recovery of the equities
market with the main industrial index stabilising between 400 000 and 450 000
points after plunging to new record lows at the beginning of the year.
However, the equities market, which was characterised by uncertainty for
most of the third quarter last year over implications of the fiscal budget and
the new monetary policy, has continued to decline with the main industrial index
reaching low levels of below 320 000 points.
Market watchers this week
attributed the depression on the stock market to a number of factors, among them
the financial services sector chaos, which saw at least three financial
institutions being placed under a curator by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe.
They added that the equities has also been affected by negative investor
perception on financial counters which were largely responsible for driving the
main index to record high levels of about 728 000 points last August.
The pattern is forecast to continue drifting sideways in the short-term
with money market interest rates dictating the pace on the domestic bourse.
"Chances of new players are virtually nil at the moment. As long as
interest rates continue on a free fall, it remains cheaper for investors to seek
funds from the money market,’’ said an analyst.
Companies usually pursue
listing on the local bourse to secure additional finance from the sale of
The funds could be for expansion purposes or for the need to
acquire new technology to enhance operations.
Last year, brick moulding
concern, Willdale listed on the local bourse during the first quarter.
The decision was propelled by the need to raise additional capital while
simultaneously widening the shareholder base.
Another advantage of
listing is the fact that it comes with additional responsibility since directors
will have to be accountable to shareholders, and authorities governing the
bourse would also place the company under firm scrutiny.
largest cellular phone handsets retailer Cellular Systems also listed early last
However, so far the country’s oldest funeral company, Doves
Funeral Service, is the only company that has announced plans for possible
listing on the local bourse through a reverse listing with another insurance
Doves has already appointed Renaissance Merchant Bank as its
financial advisors on the listing process.
The identity of Doves’
possible partner has been a secret with officials maintaining that it was
premature to do so since negotiations were still going on.
the Doves partner could be any of the insurance firms listed on the local bourse
such as Southern Africa Reinsurance Company, Zimbabwe Reinsurance Holdings
Limited, Nicoz-Diamond and Fidelity Life, among others.
takeover is when a company buys out a larger company. The companies involved
could either be privately owned or publicly owned.
The number of
companies on the local bourse continues to fall and indications are that the
free fall will continue unless investor confidence is restored.