White farmer is held for 'killing Mugabe invader'
Peta Thornycroft in Harare
A white farmer has
allegedly shot dead one of President Robert Mugabe's
supporters during an
attack on his property.
Spiro Landos, 48, a farmer of Greek descent who
grew vegetables for British
supermarkets, was seriously wounded before being
detained by police in
hospital in Mutare, 160 miles south east of
During the attack he was pinned down by a 30-strong mob. He
a gun and fired a warning shot in the air. But one man was
hit and died.
Mr Landos is recovering from surgery and is unable to
His relatives fear he will be charged with murdering one of Mr
veterans" who fought for independence from Britain in
They said they were anxious about his prospects for a fair trial in
highly-charged racial and political environment following Mr
anti-white rhetoric during an interview with Sky News this week.
said Mr Landos had been asking police to disperse a mob of ruling
supporters from his land for a week before the attack on the
Riverside, in the Odzi district. When he failed to return to his
after dark on Monday a friend found him near the farm gate,
and bleeding from head wounds.
The incident was the
first in which any farmer has fired a weapon since Mr
Mugabe ordered the land
grab of more than 20 million acres in 2000.
Up to 3,000 farmers have been
attacked or hounded from their homes. It has
been a violent few days for many
of the country's remaining white farmers.
John Worsley-Worswick, a
spokesman for the pressure group Justice for
Agriculture, said: "The latest
onslaught has been sudden after a relatively
quiet couple of months. In all
cases the attackers have had a common message
that whites must leave and go
A white manager of a wildlife sanctuary, Anthony Bodington,
35, was abducted
and tortured in southern Zimbabwe and is recovering in a
The Formation of a Democratic Alliance to ensure Free and Fair Elections in
In April 2004, the International Crisis Group (ICG) prepared a report
entitled Zimbabwe: in Search of a New Strategy. As the hope of a negotiated
solution between ZANU(PF) and MDC fades, it recommended that international and
local efforts should centre on ensuring Zimbabwe's compliance with the SADC
Norms and Standards for Free and Fair Elections. In particular, it should focus
on crafting specific benchmarks and timelines for a free and fair electoral
process; and, equally important, build an international consensus on the
consequences if these benchmarks are systematically violated. If these
pre-conditions are not met early on, the international community would reject
the electoral process even before polling day.
The ICG recommended that the U.S. and multilateral international
organisations should consult key stakeholders in SADC and Zimbabwe to craft
these benchmarks and accompanying timelines. This paper summarises the ICG
report and calls for the formation of a democratic alliance between the MDC and
civic society to coordinate responses to the international community's
initiative. The alliance should also make a strong regional diplomatic offensive
and formulate smart strategies for non-violent protests that will bring pressure
to bear on ZANU(PF) to ensure conditions for free and fair elections in 2005.
ZANU(PF) intends to win the March 2005 elections at any cost. It has already
closed the Daily News, banned civic meetings under POSA, retired impartial
judges, militarised civilian political structures, and systematically arrested
and beaten activists. ZANU(PF) not only wants to win, but it wants a two-thirds
majority to make constitutional amendments that entrench its rule under Mugabe.
It has no intention of conducting free and fair elections, but will endeavour to
garner as much legitimacy as possible in the process, especially in the eyes of
its SADC allies. ZANU(PF) therefore needs a compliant MDC that participates at
all levels in order to maintain a pretence of multi-party democracy.
ZANU-PF's election campaign has kicked off by targeting symptoms of economic
mismanagement, especially corruption and inflation. In the rural areas it
launched Operation Nyararai ("Shut Up") in January 2004, to seal off the
countryside. Residents of every village are required to register with the
headman, to whom visitors, including children visiting parents, must justify
themselves. This will effectively close off rural Zimbabwe to opposition
campaigners. ZANU-PF also controls the process for delimiting constituencies and
registering voters. By gerrymandering to reduce urban constituencies it could
increase its share of parliament relatively easily. Merely by focusing on
reclaiming a few MDC seats in "swing" areas such as the Midlands, Masvingo and
Manicaland, it could probably be certain of a two-thirds majority. Such a
relatively modest objective might consolidate its power but without forcing the
kind of sweeping victory that would cause domestic and international observers
alike to cry foul. ZANU(PF) might even open space for campaigning close to the
elections so that international observers would be tempted to certify that
voting was free and fair.
All recent Zimbabwean elections have been typified by high levels of violence
and intimidation during the run-up period, but relatively peaceful conditions
when observers were present and ballots actually cast. Similarly, ZANU(PF) might
increase civic freedoms such as access to the media and the right to assemble
shortly before election day, by which time, however, the damage would already
have been done. If it can control the framework for elections as in the past,
and observers come only at the end of the electoral process, it would be almost
certain to win the seats it wants.
To boycott or not?
The MDC has participated in by-elections and has begun preparing for the
March 2005 parliamentary elections. It has, however, threatened to boycott the
elections if certain conditions are not met. But if some conditions are not met,
and the electoral process is compromised, the MDC will face a fundamental
strategic dilemma. If it contests the elections it will legitimise a patently
flawed electoral process, managed and controlled entirely by the ruling party.
When it loses the election, as it clearly must, its plaintive cry that the
election was neither free nor fair will be ignored by invited observers. If, on
the other hand, it boycotts the election, it would lose all its seats without a
fight, and leave every government institution in the hands of the ruling party.
It should also be remember that if, against all odds, the MDC won the election,
the President and his executive would still hold the reins of power. This power
could be exercised to severely curtail the effectiveness of an MDC dominated
To avoid this dilemma, it is imperative that an international consensus is
found on the dividing line between a relatively free and fair election process
and one that is so flawed that it should be declared null and void. There must
be, in other words, an agreed procedure for determining quickly whether the
process - not the voting day itself - is conducted properly, and to the greatest
extent possible agreement on the specific consequences that would flow from
significant violations. The ICG sees the EU and U.S. initiating the urgent task
of building consensus around this plan of action by appointing envoys to consult
throughout the region. They would begin by coming to agreement with the bulk of
SADC countries, including South Africa, followed closely by Nigeria and other
key AU member states. The assumption of power through elections by former
opposition movements in Kenya, Nigeria, and Ghana, combined with the presence of
stable democracies such as Botswana and Mauritius, could tip the scales in
favour of a democrat ic solution in Zimbabwe.
So, too, could the NEPAD initiative, which sets credible elections as a
priority - and because Western responsiveness to NEPAD is influenced by how
African countries handle Zimbabwe. A special effort should be made to draw in
those African leaders who are strong NEPAD supporters, including Presidents
Obasanjo of Nigeria, Wade of Senegal and Bouteflika of Algeria. To provide added
impetus to the entire diplomatic exercise, donors should stress that significant
progress can be expected on the NEPAD initiative if African countries can
deliver a free and free electoral process that legitimises the government in
Zimbabwe in the eyes of the international community. At the same time the
international community should, with local stakeholders, draft a recovery
assistance plan that outlines the significant assistance for debt relief,
economic development and land reform that would be made available to Zimbabwe if
it passes the electoral test.
Like South Africa, many governments in the region share a history of
solidarity with ZANU(PF). Each is reluctant to become a lone voice speaking
against Mugabe and be denounced as a "colonial puppet".
Bishops, the MDC and Zimbabwean civil society have sent representatives to
Malawi, Mozambique, Tanzania, Mauritius, Seychelles and Botswana, where they
have stressed the need for a return to democracy. Engendering this collective
interest in deepening engagement could be critical to calculations in both
Pretoria and Harare.
There has been a slow but steady change: largely the result of concerted
lobbying by the Zimbabwean opposition and civil society, and because of the
sheer magnitude of Zimbabwe's economic collapse. In the last half of 2003, MDC
delegations were well received, particularly in Kenya, Ghana, Senegal,
Mozambique, Mauritius, Tanzania and Malawi. Civil society organisations in the
Crisis Coalition also lobbied the region. ZCTU's work with COSATU and others in
the Southern Africa Trade Union Coordinating Council (SATUCC) has led to several
specific achievements. President Olusegun Obasanjo, has been active in pressing
Zimbabwe for dialogue. Until more African states take such a stand, however,
South Africa's contrary voice will continue to speak loudest. There needs to be
an even more concerted diplomatic effort to persuade SADC states, especially
South Africa, that the interests of Zimbabwe, SADC and African as a whole, will
be best served by a democratically elected government under the SADC electoral
Carefully targeted and well-organised non-violent mass action and civil
disobedience can be important catalysts for policy change and sometimes even
promote transition. But, because efforts by the opposition and civil society
have been disorganised, the Mugabe regime has not been under sufficiently strong
pressure to accept negotiations. While recognising the singular acts of bravery,
sporadic and ineffectual demonstrations not only lack strategic impetus, they
sap the morale of the people.
To address this weakness, the MDC called for a broad alliance to apply
pressure on the government at its annual conference in December 2003. In January
2004, it opened consultations with civil society representatives to launch a
variety of rolling mass actions. However, personal rivalries have undermined the
pledge of MDC, union and other civic leaders to cooperate and coordinate better.
This has to change, and change as soon as possible.
Zimbabwean are looking to their pro-democracy political and civic leaders to
demonstrate the statesmanshlp that looks beyond personal rivaliries: to speak
with one voice, to build strength through unity, to coordinate for effective
action. With the threat of the elections being brought forward, there is an
added urgency to form a broad pro-democracy alliance that is united by clear
strategic objectives and action plans, and that can respond strategically,
coherently and effectively to the international diplomatic initiative that
focuses on the SADC norms and standards for free and fair elections. Every
effort must be made to reach agreement on what steps would be taken if the
electoral process does not meet the benchmarks.
The alliance has to spell out precisely what they want from their government;
what specific conditions must be met, and the action it will take if the
conditions are not met. One of the most effective levers of influence at the
disposal of Zimbabweans could be to escalate non-violent mass action in protest
if ZANU-PF fails to meet the benchmarks for free and fair elections in 2005.
To have any relevant, however, leaders must be willing to participate in the
Stubborn Zimbabwean leader set to face civil
May 26, 2004
By Basildon Peta
Zimbabwe's main opposition party and civic groups have begun
launch a major civil disobedience campaign.
The decision was taken
after President Robert Mugabe slammed the door
on negotiations to end the
crisis in Zimbabwe.
Yesterday, Lovemore Madhuku, chairperson of the
Constitutional Assembly, Zimbabwe's largest civic group, said there
alternative to a civil disobedience campaign, based on a set of
open the way to democracy in Zimbabwe.
"We are in
serious consultations and we will announce a comprehensive
outcome in three
to four weeks' time," said Madhuku.
The opposition Movement for
Democratic Change (MDC) and civic groups
had hoped they could engage Mugabe
in dialogue to draw up a new constitution
and create a democratic
environment, which has been dissipated by draconian
security and media laws.
They had hoped that, through dialogue, they could
achieve an electoral
framework to guarantee free and fair elections next
after Mugabe's decision to slam the door on any talks - and after
Africa this week reiterated its softly-softly policies on Zimbabwe -
civic leaders said they had no option but to mobilise for a major
"It seems that the only realistic
way of forcing Mugabe to negotiate
is by making the country ungovernable. We
have mobilised for successful
protests before, and this can be done. There is
no other way," said a civic
leader who preferred not to be
"We cannot look forward to South Africans or other
Africans for help.
Our salvation can come only from within ourselves, and it
is high time we
made the sacrifices."
Welshman Ncube said the only option left for his
party was to concentrate on
"building a coalition of forces to mobilise
strongly for the fulfilment of
conditions that will guarantee free and fair
to mount intensive internal pressure to ensure our rights
being appropriated by the Mugabe regime."
Ncube emphasised that
everything would be done in terms of the
constitutional rights of citizens to
He reiterated his party's threat to boycott the
next elections unless
Mugabe agreed to hold them in terms of the Southern
Community norms and standards for free and fair
The MDC has drawn up a list of 15 demands to democratise the
process. These include giving the opposition access to the state
setting up an independent electoral commission, allowing United
supervision of elections, and restoring the rule of law.
South Africa fears 'Zimbabwe approach'
By Robin Gedye,
Foreign Affairs Writer
South Africa yesterday
increased fears among white farmers of a
Thoko Didiza, the land affairs minister, said high prices being
white farmers were hampering the redistribution programme. Under
proposal, 30 per cent of white-owned farmland is to be owned by blacks
"The first option is to negotiate because we believe some of
are inflated," she said. But then she warned that, as a last
government could use legislation allowing land expropriation,
approved by President Thabo Mbeki.
The president said South
Africa would not allow the disruptive land seizures
of Zimbabwe. However, Ms
Didiza's comments raised white farmers' fears as
she pointed out that a boom
in property prices was making it difficult to
meet the land reform
Only a tiny proportion of the government's redistribution target
has so far
been met under its "willing buyer, willing seller" scheme.
Household access to food a major problem
JOHANNESBURG, 26 May 2004 (IRIN) -
Access to food will be a major challenge
for ordinary Zimbabweans in the
2004/05 consumption year, the Famine Early
Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET)
"Zimbabwe continues to face a severe food security crisis,
high levels of unemployment and inflation, poor agricultural
the last four years, drought, and poor government policies,
crippling levels of HIV/AIDS," FEWS NET said in its latest
Over the last year more than
two-thirds of the population has been food
insecure, the report noted.
Although some food security indicators had
improved in recent months, "many
Zimbabweans continue to face conditions of
"The most significant food security problem in Zimbabwe is
adequate food. The purchasing power of both rural and urban
drastically declined over the past few years, as the
availability and value
of income options has declined, inflation has risen
and unemployment has
remained high. Even if food is available on the market,
urban and rural
households will not be able to purchase it if they do not
have the money or
other means needed to do so," FEWS NET
Zimbabwe's inflation rate has hovered around 600 percent and,
poor harvests in recent years, this has led to a significant
household purchasing power.
"Over the past few years,
cereal availability has been a major concern,
given poor cereal production
and concerns regarding the capacity of the
country to import sufficient food
to meet needs. Following a poor start, the
[current] agricultural season has
progressed better than expected, with
favourable rainfall in the second half
of the season, combined with greater
availability of seeds and inputs than
expected," the report commented.
With the cancellation of the United
Nations-led crop and food supply
assessment mission, "there is currently not
a consensus on likely 2003/04
maize production", but FEWS NET's preliminary
assessment is that production
will be close to the last five-year average of
about 1.4 million mt.
"This is an improvement over last year's very poor
season, but lower than
the 1990s average, leaving a sizable import
requirement. Based on the
country's import record over the past three years,
and provided the foreign
currency earnings situation remains at least the
same as it was in 2001/02,
the country could still manage to import, from
within the region, the
minimum of 500,000 mt needed to close the gap.
However, this import
performance will need to be periodically reassessed in
view of the
continuing economic decline and poor export performance," FEWS
Ensuring household level access to food would therefore
be "a major national
challenge" in the 2004/05 marketing year.
state Grain Marketing Board (GMB) would have to improve its capacity
"purchase grain surplus from the market and redistribute to the right
at the right time in the right quantities".
"With food access
of great continuing concern, targeted food aid should
continue throughout the
country for poor socioeconomic groups. Improved
maize availability will not
address the famine threat that could occur in
some parts of the country this
year. Special attention is required for the
most vulnerable districts of
Manicaland and Matebeleland South provinces,"
the report concluded.
From Malaysiakini, 26 May
Mugabe's mansion - gov't to investigate
Beh Lih Yi
The government was today urged to clarify
its involvement in the
construction of a £5 million mansion for Zimbabwean
president Robert Mugabe,
near Harare. In an immediate reaction, two ministers
have said this would be
investigated. Parliamentary Opposition Leader Lim Kit
Siang said this
morning that Mugabe's statement "is shocking". "I call on the
issue a ministerial statement as we want to know whether we
and unlawfully funded the 25-bedroom mansion," he told a press
the Parliament. Mugabe, in an interview with television station
had denied that the mansion was being financed out of public
said, instead, that the Malaysian and Chinese governments were
partial funding. However he did not disclose the exact sum involved
the money had been channelled to him. In the same interview, he said
Malaysian premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad had provided the timber for
structure. Lim asked how, if at all, the Malaysian government could
provided funds since Mugabe has a reputation for dictatorial
"(There is) no moral and political reason for us to do that," he
pointing out that no audit report has been tabled in Parliament
to the alleged funding, which may involve taxpayers' money. "We
is a good friend of Mahathir... (But) there was no parliamentary
fund this rotten and corruptible regime," said Lim, who is DAP
and Ipoh Timor MP. He said it would be an "unprecedented case"
government to fund another government leader's mansion, if the claim
Speaking to malaysiakini later, Deputy Foreign
Minister Joseph Salang Gandum
said he is unaware of Mugabe's statement. "I
will check on it. But I don't
think the government would have funded the
mansion, (although) we do assist
(the Zimbabwean government) in other aspects
such as human resources. But it
is quite impossible (that we have funded) a
mansion," he said at Parliament
House. Asked whether an investigation would
be carried out, he replied: "Let
us check (on this) first." Minister in the
Prime Minister's Department
Mustapa Mohamed - who oversees national economic
planning - refused to
comment when asked about this yesterday. "We will
check, thanks for the
information," he said. Meanwhile, corruption watchdog
Kuala Lumpur Society
for Transparency and Integrity said the government owes
the public an
explanation for the revelation. "If true, the government must
explain why it
funded such a luxury for a political head reputed to be a
its deputy president Param Cumaraswamy in a statement today.
Society for Transparency and Integrity is the local chapter of
International. He said Zimbabwe was in serious political and
disorder, and that the annual inflation rate is 620 percent and
"The unemployment rate exceeds 70 percent. One in four Zimbabweans
positive; 4,000 die every week. Agriculture output has been so ravaged
Zimbabwe now has the highest number of citizens starving to death
Africa," he said. He also cited comments by a spokesperson for
International (Zimbabwe Chapter), who is reported to have said
that it has
become "absolutely essential" for Mugabe to disclose his sources
currency used to pay for all imported materials for his private
From The Times (UK), 23 May
Staring down barrel of a
Malcolm Conn in Harare
I came to write about cricket.
Instead, I had a bayonet pointed at my chest
and was told I looked like a
Shane Warne has enjoyed the golf courses in Zimbabwe,
Matthew Hayden was
taken by the fishing, and Simon Katich has raved about his
game park visit.
It's a shame about the cricket. The Australia Test players
have just spent a
week in limbo, attempting to amuse themselves as an
Orwellian maelstrom of
doublespeak swirled around them. When yet another deal
duplicitous and hopelessly compromised Zimbabwe Cricket Union
(ZCU) and the
15 striking white players collapsed, an increasingly
Australia chief executive, James Sutherland, said from
Melbourne: "We have
had repeated assurances and been repeatedly disappointed.
It's got to the
stage where we won't believe anything until we see it." The
president Robert Mugabe's regime have now reached into the ZCU,
board members, who are considered government stooges, regard
getting rid of
the white players as a victory. The sacking of captain Heath
complaining to the ZCU about racism in selection and the walkout
of 14 other
white players in support merely sped up the aim of installing a
captain and a largely black team. It was against this backdrop that
fatalistic world champions attempted to carry on as normal in the
abnormal of circumstances, preparing to play Test cricket with no idea
their opponents would be, or whether, as it turned out, there would be
South Africans laugh when asked about safety in Zimbabwe.
claim, is nowhere near as dangerous as Johannesburg, but caution
needed, and the Australian players may not be too unhappy about the
that they will soon be heading for home. I went for a leisurely
around Harare last week, and ended up looking down the barrel of a
Mugabe's heavily guarded state residence is across the road from the
Sports Club, Zimbabwe's main Test ground. The stone-walled compound,
with razor wire and security cameras, takes up an entire city block
several soldiers with semi-automatic weapons pacing the public
outside. The soldiers took no notice as I walked past to get to the
club, but the compound guards in dark-green uniforms on either side of
steel gates were far more interested. Realising there was no easy way
the compound, I doubled back, only to find a bayonet pointing at my
"What are you up to? What are you doing? You can't go there," the
through clenched teeth. "Sorry," I replied. "I'm trying to get to
cricket ground." "You are up to something, you are a terrorist," the
hissed. Wearing a T-shirt that read "Cricket - a passion not a game", a
of blue running shorts and trainers, I didn't feel like a terrorist, and
surprised to hear that I looked like one. Two army officers emerged
began an increasingly uncomfortable 15-minute interrogation. All the
the guard, his rifle levelled at me, hissed invective: "Don't let him
's a terrorist. Lock him up . . ."
With everything in my
hotel-room safe, bar a room keycard and a frequent
flyer card used to swipe
the safe shut, the failure to produce adequate
identification made them even
less impressed. But little identification was
better than the officers
finding the compulsory press card from the Media
and Information Commission,
with which every foreign journalist must
register, paying £335 on arrival.
The foreign journalist is public enemy No
1 in Zimbabwe for having exposed
the oppression and brutality of the Mugabe
regime. Eventually I was forced to
write my name, hotel address and
Australian address on a tatty scrap of
office paper and was thoroughly
body-searched in some uncomfortable places.
When I was finally told to go
and turned to leave, the guard with the gun
shouted: "Don't come back, or I
will shoot you." The thought of a bullet in
my back did not leave my mind as
I walked back past the soldiers, who still
took no notice. It is clear that
Mugabe has turned Zimbabwe into a police
state, even at the cricket. During
the recent second Test between Zimbabwe
and Sri Lanka at the Queens ground
in Bulawayo, two Australian supporters
were arrested and fined for
displaying a harmless non-political banner that
poked fun at New Zealand. As
part of an ever greater attempt to prevent
public anger against the
government's human rights abuses, posters have been
banned from cricket
grounds after isolated protests during last year's World
Cup. The fact that
the banner displayed at the Bulawayo Test was irrelevant
to Zimbabwe was of
no consequence. And neither, it appears, is
Malcolm Conn is chief cricket writer of The Australian
Councillor Appeals for Urgent Repair of Boreholes At Clinics
May 26, 2004
Posted to the web May 26,
SEKE Rural District chairman Councillor Charles
Mubaiwa has appealed to the
District Development Fund (DDF) to urgently
repair boreholes at Marirangwe
and Makanyazingwa Clinics as nurses are
shunning the two health institutions
because there is no water.
has been no water at Makanyazingwa Clinic for almost two years now and
one nurse is working at the clinic.
"Nurses are refusing to be deployed
at the two clinics because there is no
water," he said.
said repeated efforts to get the assistance of the DDF had
fallen on deaf
ears as the fund kept on postponing attending to the
council was building another clinic at Marirangwe but the shortage
was affecting progress. He said the DDF was approached over the
issue and was
still to attend to the problem.
He said the other affected clinics were
Masasa and Zhakata.
Clr Mubaiwa said the available nursing staff were not
working as usual as
they have to go into the community to look for water and
"A good health service needs
water," said Clr Mubaiwa.
He said council was having to provide water
with bowsers but at times this
was not sufficient as council did not have
enough money to offer that kind
of service on a continous basis.
official with DDF Mr Maxwell Hongoro told ZIS that Government had availed
million for the borehole rehabilitation programme.
He said the
rehabilitation of water points was due to start at the end of
Mr Hongoro urged the communities to form committees which would
responsible for the proper use and policing of water points to avert
TGT Loses $200m
The Herald (Harare)
May 26, 2004
to the web May 26, 2004
THE Tobacco Growers Trust recently
lost more than $200 million, part of
which was meant for inputs for small
holder tobacco farmers, after two
officials allegedly converted the money to
their own use.
TGT board member and general manager Albert Jaure appeared
before a Harare
magistrate's court on initial remand for allegedly converting
meant for inputs for small-scale tobacco farmers to buy a
Jaure (44) appeared before magistrate Ms Sukai Tongogara on Monday
with theft by conversion.
He was not asked to plead and was
remanded to June 9 on $10 million bail.
Jaure was ordered to reside at
his Greendale house, surrender his passport
and not visit the Tobacco Growers
Trust offices until the matter is
Prosecutor Mr Lungile
Ndlovu said Jaure committed the offence between
January 30 and March 8 this
The State alleges that on January 4 in his capacity as general
also a board member, Jaure approached one Sean Bruss who was
house number 102 Coronation Avenue in Greendale Harare for $300
Jaure allegedly agreed with Bruss to pay him over three months
monthly instalments of $50 million.
Jaure being one of the
signatories of the TGT trust account at the Jewel
Bank took advantage of the
pre-signed cheques by another signatory Mr Julius
Ditoyi Ngorima and paid
Jaure allegedly made a payment of $11 million with cheque number
Incredible Technologies on Bruss' instructions.
alleged that Jaure issued another cheque number 0000274 with a
face value of
$39 million to Platinum Investments to top up his first
allegedly instructed TGT bankers the Jewel Bank to issue cheque number
with a face value of $50 million in favour of Marko.
The court heard that
the cheque was issued and it was later cashed.
As a result, TGT was
prejudiced a total of $100 million.
This money, it is alleged, was part
of the $10 billion made available by the
Government to benefit small-scale
tobacco farmers throughout the country.
The money was sourced through the
TGT from the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe.
TGT under the credit scheme input
scheme had identified suppliers of inputs
including Farmers World, Rarefield
Investments, TSA and Varitech.
The suppliers would be paid in advance to
make available inputs to the
farmers who would in turn apply to TGT to
benefit from the scheme.
Successful farmers would then supply TGT with
their requirements and would
be given buying orders to go and acquire inputs
from any of the suppliers.
The farmers would then get their inputs and
the supplier would reconcile the
order given to the farmer against the
repayment made to them by TGT.
TGT would then recover the money for the
inputs from the farmer after
selling their tobacco through the Tobacco
Industry and Marketing Board.
In a related case, Angellah Manyeruke (22)
an administration officer at TGT
also appeared before the same court facing
Manyeruke was charged for allegedly converting more than
$109 million from
the trust to her own use between January 22 and February 3
this year. She
was remanded out of custody on $10 million bail to June 9
It's not cricket in Zimbabwe, says Sri Lanka's
26 May 2004
NEW DELHI - Sri Lanka's
cricket captain Marvan Atapattu on Wednesday warned
visiting Zimbabwe to expect the worst, saying his team's
recent visit to the
troubled African nation was "fairly chaotic."
"The facilities and
organisation were probably the worst I have experienced
in my playing
career," Atapattu was quoted as saying in an interview with
leading portal "Wisden Cricinfo.'
"To be honest, the tour was fairly
chaotic. There were a whole lot of things
that kept going wrong," he
"When we arrived, the hotels did not have air conditioning, and
were problems with the water supply as well.
"We had to go
without a shower until about 10pm after one game, and there
was no water in
the toilets for an entire night.
"On the cricket side, there was no
communication. When it came to things
like net practice, no one took any
"There were no net bowlers and sometimes there weren't
even any nets ready.
Even the lunch during the last day of the Test match was
15 minutes late.
"One morning when we were batting, the fourth umpire,
who is supposed to ask
us which roller we want, used the heavy roller without
Zimbabwe is in danger of being suspended from
Test cricket after a revolt by
the country's top white players forced two
Test matches against world
champions Australia this month to be
Atapattu, whose team played two Tests against a severely
team earlier this month, wished the International Cricket
Council (ICC) had
stepped in earlier and stopped the matches as had happened
"We should have been treated in the same way as
Australia were," the Sri
Lankan captain said.
"If the ICC agreed to
consider stepping in and cancelling the Test series
against Australia, then
they should have done the same for us.
"It was difficult to motivate
ourselves, but we had to concentrate on our
performance and forget what was
happening in their camp. It was not an easy
The ICC executive
board is expected to debate Zimbabwe's future as a Test
nation at its annual
meeting in London next month.
Ricky Ponting's Australia are currently
playing three one-dayers in
Zimbabwe. England is scheduled to tour there in
Sacked Zimbabwe captain Heath Streak last week urged all
to stay away from the strife-torn African nation until a
solution is found
to the domestic civil strife that has left the country's
cricket in turmoil.
Streak's sacking as captain two months ago by the
Zimbabwe Cricket Union
(ZCU) led to a boycott by 15 white players who have
since refused to play
for their national side and have been
Lawyers for 'mercenaries' lament prison conditions
Lawyers for 70 suspected South African mercenaries being held
lamented their prison conditions but declined to go into too much
fear of retribution. "Our clients are in a very vulnerable
position and we
must be very careful with what we say about what is happening
Francois Joubert, an advocate, told the Pretoria High
He was arguing in an application by the men for a court order
South African government to uphold their constitutional rights.
stand accused of plotting to overthrow the government of Equatorial
They were arrested at the Harare International Airport more than two
ago when they allegedly landed to refuel and pick up military
Joubert referred today to the conditions under which his
clients are being
held in Harare's Chikurubi Maximum Security Prison as an
example of the
extent to which their rights were allegedly being violated.
"We have to be
guarded in what we say," he told Bernard Ngoepe. "We don't
unnecessarily compromise our clients."
The men are currently
being held with convicted high security risk prisoners
instead of other
awaiting trial inmates. When questioned by Ngoepe, Joubert
prison conditions in South Africa were also far from
his clients would welcome being held here, he added.
referred to what he termed as the deterioration of the rule of
Zimbabwe and Equatorial Guinea saying his clients were unlikely to
fair trial in either country. The men are seeking their extradition
Africa and want the government to ensure they are not tried in
Guinea - where they fear being put to death. - Sapa
Zim rights record gets worse
26/05/2004 20:06 -
Johannesburg - Zimbabwe last year stepped up attacks on critics
government, including torture and kidnappings, gagged the media and
scarce food stocks for political ends, Amnesty International said in
report published on Wednesday.
"There was an escalation in
state-sponsored attacks on critics of the
government, particularly supporters
of the opposition Movement for
Democratic Change (MDC)," the report
The London-based rights watchdog said "perpetrators of human
violations continued to enjoy impunity, and allegations against state
were not investigated.
"The majority of abuses were committed
by ruling party supporters and
police, security and army officers against
opposition supporters," it said.
"Police officers were implicated in
torture, ill-treatment and unlawful
killings, mostly of MDC supporters,"
Amnesty International said, adding that
"hundreds of people were detained for
holding political meetings or peaceful
also slammed a crackdown on the media following a draconian 2002
law used to
close down the popular independent Daily News tabloid, which was
critical of President Robert Mugabe's government.
It also evoked the
expulsion of a foreign journalist working for a British
paper and the arrest
of scores of local journalists.
"The authorities and state-sponsored
militia continued to deny people access
to food aid based on real or
perceived political affiliation, and used food
aid to buy votes during
parliamentary by-elections" it said.
"Political manipulation of food aid
by officials and supporters of the
ruling Zimbabwe African National
Union-Patriotic Front (Zanu-PF) continued.
The food situation remained
Aid agencies estimate that Zimbabwe will this year face
shortages of up to
800 000 tons of maize meal, a national staple.
of the agencies blame the country's controversial land reform
which saw the seizure of white-owned farms for redistribution to
farmers, for cutting maize production and leading to a crippling
Amnesty said Harare also reportedly "established training camps
the country for youth militia members, increasing concerns about
the use of
youth militia to carry out serious human rights violations against
government's perceived political enemies."
It said a slew of
elections held last year were anything but free and fair.
Telone Workers Strike
Zimbabwe Standard (Harare)
Posted to the web May 26, 2004
TELONE employees have gone on
strike and say they will not relent until the
company increases their
salaries so that the lowest paid worker gets about
$861 000 per month, which
is the poverty datum line.
The countrywide strike kicked-off on Monday,
with more than 85 percent of
the TelOne workforce downing tools.
Chimanikire, the secretary-general of the Zimbabwe Posts
Telecommunications Workers' Union that encompasses TelOne workers, said
employees had resorted to industrial action because they felt the
was short-changing them.
Chimanikire told the Standard
yesterday that the workers would not return to
work until the management
reviews the Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA).
"On 1 April, it was agreed
that the employees would get a rise in their
salaries, but now the management
is backtracking on their commitment,"
He said the
arbitration results were in the employees' favour so the
management was left
with no option but to award the workers a salary
unfortunate however that the management is refusing to pay us our
are actually offering something far much below what was agreed
arbitrator and theirs," he said.
He added: "There are no negotiations on
the issue of reviewing our COLA."
TelOne employees in Harare have not
been reporting for work from Monday and
the strike spread to other small
towns as the week progressed.
Collin Wilbesi, the TelOne spokesperson,
could only say the strike issue
"was sensitive". Hampton Mhlanga, the TelOne
Managing Director, asked for
written questions before he could comment.