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

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The Times-Picayune
Self-delusion in Zimbabwe
Saturday, May 29, 2004
When a dictator like Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe surrounds himself with
sycophants, intimidates his opponents, steals elections and stifles
independent news coverage, he never has to face the unpleasant truth: that
his subjects dislike him intensely and just want him to go away.

Mr. Mugabe said in an interview broadcast on British TV Monday that he does
not plan to seek re-election when his term ends in 2008. But he also said he
will remain in office as long as the people of Zimbabwe want him to.

But all evidence suggests that they don't want him now.

Mr. Mugabe, who took office in 1980, is the only leader Zimbabwe has ever
had. Despite early hopes that he would bring democracy to his country, his
rule has grown more erratic and repressive with every passing year. In 2002,
he was re-elected only through repression and vote fraud. Last year, he
alienated former allies for no reason when he accused the presidents of
South Africa, Nigeria and Malawi of acting as "British agents."

Under his leadership the country, once an exporter of food, has fallen into
economic chaos and come to rely on international food relief. And while Mr.
Mugabe insisted in Monday's interview that the latest harvest will be
plentiful, the United Nations has predicted otherwise.

Ironically, Mr. Mugabe seems to gain more leverage over his citizens the
worse Zimbabwe's economy performs. According to the Associated Press,
opposition figures and human-rights groups say Mr. Mugabe plans to use his
control over the distribution of food to further his own political ends in
elections next year.

Unfortunately, Zimbabwe is cursed with a leader who, despite his obvious
failures as a statesman and economic manager, somehow clings to power. If he
were truly interested in everyday citizens' wishes, he would have quit years
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Zimbabwe testimony exposes Congo horrors
Saturday, May 29, 2004 Posted: 0123 GMT (0923 HKT)

HARARE, Zimbabwe (AP) -- Summary executions, torture and mortar bombs
exploded in the mouths of captured fighters were among the horrors described
to a Zimbabwe court that officially declared dead 47 soldiers who
disappeared in Congo's savage five-year war.

The hearing Thursday in the Harare Magistrate's Court, a necessary step
before the victims' families can claim state benefits, gave a rare and
graphic insight into the fighting that claimed an estimated 3 million
lives -- most through war-induced hunger and disease. The court transcripts
were obtained Friday by the Associated Press.

Zimbabwe has long been criticized for sending 11,000 troops to fight
alongside Congolese government forces against rebels backed by Rwanda and
Uganda when the war started in 1998.

President Robert Mugabe likened the operation to helping a neighbor whose
house was on fire.

His opponents claimed senior military and ruling party officials were more
interested in exploiting Congo's vast mineral riches. They said the costly
deployment in distant central Africa contributed to Zimbabwe's spiraling
economic decline.

Congolese rebels claimed to have killed hundreds of Zimbabwean troops before
the country withdrew its forces in 2002. But the Zimbabwe Defense Ministry
has repeatedly refused to reveal details of its casualties.

Court records of the hearing convened under Zimbabwe's missing persons law
identified 47 soldiers whose remains were never returned home. Many more are
still unaccounted for.

Only fragments remained of some of those identified Thursday. Others could
not be retrieved because of heavy fighting, military commanders testified.

Fellow soldiers saw some of them beaten, tortured and executed, as they
retreated. Two were killed by having mortar bombs rammed down their throats
and exploded, according to testimony. Another was found decapitated,
dismembered, his genitals severed and his torso torched.

Others were abandoned in the thick of battle. An evacuation helicopter was
forced to leave five of them behind when it came under rebel fire, or risk
being shot down, court records showed.

The missing also included two men who were recently revealed to be suicides.
Military officers reported "trauma" among some of their troops, saying
"sometimes men get deranged" after close-quarter combat and seeing high
numbers of casualties, the records said.

Officials at the Defense Ministry were not available to comment Friday on
the testimony.

In the past, they have acknowledged that without morgue facilities, officers
were obliged to bury some casualties in the bush in remote parts of the vast
central African country.

The government has promised to try to bring their remains home for
traditional burials as stipulated by customary beliefs.

Under a colonial-era law, families of the missing cannot claim pensions and
other state benefits until a court formally declares their relatives dead.

Congo's war drew in the armies of half a dozen African nations. A 2002 peace
deal brokered in South Africa paved the way for a transitional government,
which took office in July 2003, bringing former rebel leaders to the capital
to take up posts in a power-sharing government.
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The Herald

Demand for cremation on the increase

By Fortious Nhambura
DEMAND for cremation among Zimbabweans is on a steady rise as people turn
away from cultural values and appreciate that the country is running out of
burial space, statistics indicate.

With prices of burying a loved one shooting through the roof, cremation has
also emerged a quicker and cheaper option to dispose of the dead.

The cheapest coffin is going for around $150 000, while transport costs on
average cost about $300 000 to ferry a body to a rural area, depending on
the distance.

Faced with such figures, more people now find it cheaper to have their
relatives cremated.

According to statistics gathered from the Harare's leading funeral parlours,
the city crematorium handles two corpses everyday translating to around 60
bodies a month.

Before 2000, it was generally regarded as taboo for someone to opt for
cremation as a way of burial. Attitudes are however changing fast and people
can now discuss the option without fear of being considered social outcasts
in the society.

This practice is, however, not alien to whites as close to 90 percent of
them are cremated. Fifty years ago, the figure was one percent of the total

Records show that only one black body was cremated in 2001 but the trend has
continued to grow over the past years.

Homage Funeral Home recorded three cremations in 2002 alone, five in 2003
and have so far this year cremated seven. Though Moonlight Funeral Services
could not give a breakdown of their figures, they were in agreement with
other parlours offering internment services.

Most Africans believe that when one dies he or she has to be buried at their
rural home. This however is fast changing.

Doves' public relations manager Ms Charity Chanetsa concurred that the
number of people seeking cremation had gone up.

Ms Chanetsa said Doves had processed 10 bodies of black people for cremation
this year alone.

"Most of the cremations that we have handled as a parlour are mainly blacks
who have been working abroad in Europe and America who have been exposed to
such practices," Chanetsa said.

"The composition of the people who have sought the services includes some
black Zimbabweans and we are glad that people are being exposed to different
forms of disposing of the dead.

"Apart from it being a quicker method of disposing of the dead, cremation is
also environmentally friendly," Ms Chanetsa said.

Mr Isaiah Muchuchu, the general manager of Homage Funeral Services, said
most people have discarded the traditional method of burial and now want to
be cremated.

"People no longer care what type a funeral one is accorded as long as one is
given a dignified burial.

However Chief Fortune Charumbira expressed disgust at Zimbabweans who are
adopting other people's cultures at the expense of their own.

"Most people, when they get educated, do not want to uphold their own
traditional rituals, but are are happy to embrace foreign cultures," Chief
Charumbira said.

The Zimbabwe National Traditional Healers Association (ZINATHA) president,
Professor Gordon Chavhunduka has said cremation would destroy the spirit

Contacted for comment, the Harare City Council Spokesperson Mr Leslie Gwindi
confirmed the increase but could not give figures.

Mr Mike Galiao an undertaker with Moonlight Funeral Services said there is a
big difference between expenses incurred in cremation for those resident in
Zimbabwe who have to pay around a million dollars which is more or less the
same for a conventional burial.

"I think it is more a matter of choice than a cost effective measure since
it even costs more than a burial that is going for less than half a million
dollars ", Galiao said.

Those who were in support of cremation argued that cremation should now be
an option because land is fast becoming scarce and dear.

The Harare City Council last year approached its parent ministry seeking
money to buy gas that is used in cremation of the bodies.
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The Herald

University gets lifeline

Masvingo Bureau
Great Zimbabwe University, embroiled in a row with law students over the
quality of its law degree, was recently thrown a lifeline after a Masvingo
magistrate overturned a provisional order issued by the same court earlier
to freeze the institution's tuition account with the Jewel Bank.

Magistrate Crispen Mberewere lifted the order after the institution's acting
vice chancellor Dr Hilda Matarira filed an opposing affidavit saying the
complainant was not legally constituted to file a litigation against the

About three weeks ago, the GZU account with the Jewel Bank was frozen after
some students, through the Students Representative Council vice president Mr
Simon Chaduka successfully filed litigation at the Masvingo civil court.

They were arguing that the university was not entitled to use their tuition
fees after the invalidation of the institution's law degree programme by the
Council for Legal Education.

The GZU, Dr Matarira and the Jewel Bank branch manager were cited as
respondents in the litigation.

In overturning the order with costs, Mr Mberewere conceded that his court
had no jurisdiction to entertain matters involving the amount of money that
was at stake.

He also ruled that Chaduka's litigation was null and void as he had not yet
registered to be a GZU student in conformity with the regulations of the
university that require students to register every semester.

The ruling by Mr Mberewere came after Dr Matarira, who was instructed by Mr
Cossam Chuma of Chuma, Gurajena and Partners, had in her opposing affidavit
argued that Mr Chabuka was not yet registered as a GZU student.

Dr Matarira also argued that in terms of the Students Representative Council
constitution, only the president of the students body was empowered to file

She also admitted that the frozen account had money paid by other students
from other faculties and that they were being disadvantaged by the freezing
of the account.
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The Herald

State committed to construction of Midlands State University: President

From Arnold Mutemi in GWERU
GOVERNMENT is committed to the construction of the new Midlands State
University campus and has allocated an additional $2 billion to funds
already allocated in the 2004 budget, President Mugabe said yesterday.

Speaking at a groundbreaking ceremony to mark the start of the first phase
of construction, the President said the construction programme was long

The groundbreaking preceded an emotional graduation ceremony where the late
Vice President Muzenda was posthumously awarded a Doctor of Letters degree
for being a cultural icon and his selfless contribution to the freedom of
the country.

The degree was received by his widow Cde Maud Muzenda after which, members
of the Muzenda family present congregated near the stage and sang a song
Tinotenda, which touched the heart of many.

"As Government, we are aware that you are embarking on a costly and
challenging endeavour. At the outset, I would like to assure you of our
unwavering commitment in ensuring the success if this project.

"The Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education Dr Herbert Murerwa and the
Vice Chancellor, Professor Ngwabi Bhebhe, are aware that as Chancellor of
the university, I will always look forward to receiving updates of progress
on the construction," he said.

Cde Mugabe said he was pleased with the progress at the new site since his
last visit in November when he expressed concern over the slow take-off of
the construction programme.

"I went to the extent of promising to rear my pigs on this piece of ground
should I have observed that no progress was being made. I have found some
progress in a sense. There are dungeons being dug, perhaps to frighten me
not to bring my pigs! I will accept that progress has started being made,"
he said.

The university was originally allocated about $3 billion for construction of
an administration block but the amount was increased after representations
by the authorities.

The President urged all stakeholders to come together to help the MSU
achieve its goals.

He said the university was an institution full of vision and remained on
course to blossoming into a great university.

President Mugabe said Zimbabwe should sustain its reputation as the leader
in education and production of highly skilled manpower in Africa.

"No-one can deny this. I urge everyone to sustain this reputation. We are
self-made men. The resources are there and should be exploited for the
development of this country," he said.

Prof Bhebhe said the university decided to confer an honorary doctorate on
Cde Muzenda because he was one of the sons of Zimbabwe who dedicated and
scarified his entire life for the freedom of the people.

He said Cde Muzenda's life was inextricably intertwined with the struggle,
starting in the 1950s when he joined Benjamin Burombo's Voice Association to
fight for the rights of the down trodden.

"Years of incarceration could not dissuade him from political activism.
Muzenda developed a firm and passionate commitment to the armed struggle. He
gave direction to thousands of cadres in Mozambique, Zambia and Tanzania,"
he said in a citation.

At Independence, he continued to support indigenisation of the economy.

Cde Muzenda's daughter, Cde Tsitsi Muzenda, in an acceptance speech on
behalf of the family, said they had been humbled by the honour.

"We accept his award with heartfelt humility and gratitude. It is most
heartening to note that our father's death has not stifled the MSU from
recognising the critical role he played in the country," she said. Prof
Bhebhe said the capping of the first class of graduands at the university
was a momentous occasion.

He also said MSU had packaged its degree programmes to prepare students to
challenges they would face in their working lives. Chairman of the
university council, Mr Canaan Dube, said the groundbreaking and graduation
ceremonies were defining moments for the institution.

He said to augment government funding, the university would approach
organisations such as the Local Government Pension Fund to fund some
projects while the Reserve Bank would be asked to provide soft loans.
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The Herald

Gadaffi's special representative meets President

Herald Reporter
A special representative of Libyan leader Colonel Muammar Gadaffi on African
affairs, Dr Ali Treiki met President Mugabe yesterday at Zimbabwe House to
discuss ways to strengthen bilateral relations between the two countries.

Dr Treiki told journalists after the meeting that they had also discussed
the African Union, focusing on how to improve the continent's economy and
security issues.

"We have discussed how to strengthen bilateral relations between our two
countries and how to strengthen the African Union and the need for an
African army to defend the continent," he said.

"On the economic side, we discussed about wheat and maize production and as
Africa, we should have a policy on trade because we can not stand
competition from the bigger countries."

Dr Treiki paid tribute to Zimbabwe and Namibia for playing a leading role in
bringing peace in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Zimbabwe and Namibia sent troops to the DRC in August 1998 to assist the
government to repel rebels that were being supported by Rwanda and Uganda.

Commenting on the shift by Libya to reconcile with some Western countries,
Dr Treiki said this would not affect the country's foreign policy on Africa.

"I do not think that agreement with the Western countries has something to
do with Africa. We will never forget what Africa did for us and there will
be no change in the African policy," he said.

The Libyan delegation has also been to Zambia and Lesotho and it will travel
to South Africa.
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Please send any material for publication in the Open Letter Forum to with "For Open Letter Forum" in the subject line.


   "In democratic ages men rarely sacrifice themselves for another, but
they show a general compassion for all the human race. One never sees them
inflict pointless suffering, and they are glad to relieve the sorrows of
others when they can do so without much trouble to themselves. They are not
disinterested, but they are gentle."

 - Alexis De Tocqueville



Letter 1.  Subject: Open Letter Forum

I see my friend Colleen describes me as an enraged terrier! For your
interest, I sent out information on the Sentry disgrace to about 10,000
subscribers to one of my cartoon lists. I had some excellent response in
that people wrote to Sentry expressing disgust that they are swapping grain
for tobacco very, very surreptitiously so that ZanuPF can control the
distribution to their supporters. I note that grain is also being imported
into Zimbabwe from sources in South Africa and await details.

Myke Ashley-Cooper


Letter 2.  Subject: Curses

Dear Editor,

I have recently met Paul Andrianatos. Paul is the pastor who conducted the
funeral service of Martin Olds and also that of his mother Gloria when she
was murdered in Nyamandlovu.

Paul was effectively deported from Zimbabwe having worked as a Presbyterian
minister in the country for nine years. The reason for his deportation was
that as a church minister he publicly cursed the Government for their
behaviour. It would appear that Paul's words were heard - and yet he is the
most gentle man who is at peace with his words.

It is interesting to note that just as Paul was deported, so Ben Freeth was
also dismissed over a similar incident.

Is it unreasonable to assume that Zimbabweans are not ready for change
until such time as those who deported Paul, and those who dismissed Ben
acknowledge their mistakes and behave like Moral Big Boys?

Mr. Msika has indicated that he might know the difference between Moral Big
Boys and Immoral Little Boys, but who else knows? Perhaps "Still Farming
Shona" could assist us.

Moral of the Story.


Letter 3.  Subject: Letter to JAG

Re: Skynews TV coverage - Mugabe interview 24/05/04

Well. I thought our Leader gave a sterling performance in his tirade
against Labor, and Blair in particular. The sad news is that Skynews TV
only carried (selected) parts of the interview (deliberately excluding the
parts about the snivelly Labor Party reneging on the Lancaster House
promises for funding land reform made by the Conservatives in 1980). They
obviously have their own little 'Sky Moyo' diligently manipulating the flow
of information to the British public. Seems the poor guilt ridden
politically correct folk in their little red brick terrace houses out in
pudding TV land just aren't quite ready to stomach the full truth about
their colonial shambles in Zimbabwe. Not just after Eastenders and over
take-out doner kebabs anyway.

Not to be outdone, the "backfoot" BBC (still banned indefinitely) also
carried a 'coincidental' "special report" on our plight all the way from a
chilly Johannesburg, the same evening. They entertained their worldwide TV
audience with lengthy footage from our Minister of Fantasy's famous
bum-jiggling "our land is our prosperity" ad. Complete with suitably
defiant anti-colonial pelvic thrusting, (you know the part, just next to
that Massey Ferguson), taped direct from ZBC-TV.

Anyhow - believe it or not, something has finally got New Labor's
attention. Is it compensation for theft of white owned farms? Is it
systemic violence, vote rigging, or rampant abuse of the general
population? Is it hell. It's: "Zimbabwe turns its back on western food aid"

We already know Labor and Blair couldn't give a rats buttock for us
embarrassing colonial white hangovers (thanks a bunch for that compensation
to us you promised Mugabe you'd provide at Lancaster House). I really
object to being called a hangover, it isn't too flattering. Our leader even
now considers that white Afrikaners are nicer than "British"! (that part
also chopped from the Sky TV interview). Hows THAT for the ultimate irony.

BUT NOW - the pesky Mugabe is refusing precious British food aid. Whoa.
There goes the plan to keep all those bleeding heart doner kebab dinner TV
watching masses quiet because at least no poor blacks are starving in
Zimbabwe. The 'gay bandits' in the Foreign Office must have dropped a wet
one and spilt their tea on hearing that! Why? Simple, because some awkward
questions could now be bandied around about exactly why the current
appalling diplomatic relations between UK and Zim are just so lousy. And
the answer to that involves going all the way back to British 'diplomacy'
at Lancaster, and their sniveling deceptions then, and since then. (Read
the full interview carefully because you won't see THAT part on Sky TV News

They say that for the truth there is no time limit. We certainly hope so!

One thing we can rely on: things are going to get a lot more "interesting"
toward the elections. The scene is set.

So, duly elected one - what's the plan now?

Has the Party been 'siphoning' donor food over the last 3 years ("we had a
drought", remember). Been hoarding some to "prove" the land reform is a
success perhaps? (surely we do not offer bribery as a vote-getter in

Or has Joyo, our very own talking head, finally managed to deceive you,
himself, Gono and the dinsosaurus Party faithful completely with ever more
joyful, happy news regarding the ongoing progress of 3rd chimurenga. (If
so, expect an interesting reality check in the near future)

Or, having carefully identified specific 'MDC areas', will the selected
districts simply be allowed to starve - being 'surplus to requirements'
(remember Didymus Mutasa's comment that "there are about 5 million people
too many in Zimbabwe anyway")

I know which one my money would be on, if I had any.

Poor old Thabo. His June deadline is nearly up, and he didn't maak 'n plan
after all. Having been well duped by 'more experienced' politicians in
Harare his posterior is now hanging out badly, and in the middle of winter
too.  He must be wondering where to hide those extra 5-7 million refugees
streaming into his Limpopo Province shortly. And lets not forget poor old
Desmond Tutu. Ja boet, he always was a bit of a wally but he did
successfully run SA's very thorny Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Now
he gets raw sewage dumped on him during the Sky TV interview, a tongue
lashing from hell from Bob as an 'evil', 'unholy' basically useless git.
His resistence to the apartheid regime was apparently not up to standard.
Ag, shame man.

Zambezi Blonde
All letters published on the open Letter Forum are the views and opinions
of the submitters, and do not represent the official viewpoint of Justice
for Agriculture.


JAG Hotlines:
(011) 612 595 If you are in trouble or need advice,
(011) 205 374
(011) 863 354 please don't hesitate to contact us -
(011) 431 068
                                we're here to help!
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From ZWNEWS, 29 May


Yesterday, The Herald carried a prominent article describing how David
Matsanga was last week refused entry to Zimbabwe. It also made allegations
against Matsanga regarding his involvement with the Ugandan Lord's
Resistance Army, and charges brought against him in Uganda. Below is a press
release received yesterday from Matsanga:

For the last one month several articles defaming and character assassinating
me have appeared in the government paper of Zimbabwe called Herald on the
instructions of the owner the paper called gay rant Jonathan Moyo. I have
widely consulted with many real men of higher offices in that country and I
have been advised not to react impulsively to the statements of gay rants. I
have restrained my self for over a month from attacking the author of this
hurdy-gurdy ranting of the Herald, which have been repeated several times
with trash. I have been a humdinger for Zimbabwe and if this is how Zimbabwe
treats African patriots then time will tell. It is said in Philosophy that
"when a real man bites a dog it is news but when a dog bites a man it is not
news" Those who have followed the story of Matsanga and Moyo will accept
that he fears other people's brains.

I will make a lengthy statement in the nearby future as my lawyers in London
Victor Evans &co who handled the case with Uganda government in 1999 are
preparing a statement. This will include the letter and publication
statement of the with draw of the so -called warrant. I did not know that
the Uganda government of Museveni to do its PR abroad had hired the
government of Zimbabwe. Ironically Zimbabwe can not even beam its ZBC to
Victoria Falls for tourists to see or the Herald to be read in Tsolotsho
where the infamous homosexual gay rant comes from. For now let me make it
clear that I was not a member of the LRA in 1997. When I was asked by the
Uganda opposition to assist the LRA, it was not proscribed as a terrorist
organisation. In actual sense if Moyo has any material left in his ugly gay
face he should know that it was proscribed as terrorist organisation in 2003
four years after my quitting. I resigned from LRA and this matter was
announced to the whole world through BBC, CNN, Sky News and all Ugandan and
other international media in 1999.

I want to reiterate to the whole World and to Zimbabweans in particular that
it is clear the turncoat and quisling junior Minister of State for
Information and Publicity whose department is bigger than President Mugabe's
shoes has distorted all facts and framed me regarding Sky News. He has used
me as a scapegoat to fight imaginary succession crusade .The Sky News matter
should be directed to Dr. Nathan Shamuyirira who is the boss of the minister
in the party. I don't know whether it is a ploy to fight an innocent man who
only helped to remove the isolation of Zimbabwe abroad. Because I respect
the President of Zimbabwe I will not react or do anything, which will harm
the country at this hour. I still have many friends in Zimbabwe who have
valued my work. I will not let them down because of a gay rant. But because
of this provocation, I have despatched my personal assistant Dr. Patricia
Gwen-Ofwon to Nairobi to research on the social behaviour and investigate
Moyo's fraud case with the Ford Foundation in 1990s. As a first precaution,
from next week we shall replay all speeches and tirades of Moyo against
Mugabe from 1996 to enable the world to judge. The world will see for
themselves how the opportunist has sapped the moral authority of a good
African President.

I hope in normal democracy the Herald should carry my reply but if it
doesn't millions in the world will receive a copy via other outlets.


Dr. David Nyekorach-Matsanga
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From Africa Confidential, 28 May

Fast buck, slow famine

US companies help President Mugabe to finance secret food imports

President Robert Mugabe is staking his people's future on false claims of a
bumper harvest. Africa Confidential can reveal that Mugabe's government has
secured financial backing from at least two United States' corporations,
Sentry Financial International and Dimon Incorporated. Dimon, the world's
second largest tobacco-leaf trader, is a public corporation quoted on the
New York Stock Exchange. Its backing for Mugabe goes well beyond the secret
tobacco-for-maize swap first reported here. We have obtained a letter
confirming Sentry International's offer of credit worth US$700 million, to
fund Zimbabwe's imports of food and other goods. This letter, dated 15
November 2003, is from Jewel Bank, addressed to the Grain Marketing Board's
Acting Director, Colonel Samuel Muhvuti. It begins: 'The Jewel Bank is
pleased to extend to you an offer of US$80 million for the importation of
grains'. It goes on to explain that Sentry International is arranging
finance, with 'security being provided by tobacco merchants' as part of the
$700 mn. credit line.
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'RBZ Managers Should Be Accountable for Past Actions'

The Herald (Harare)

May 28, 2004
Posted to the web May 28, 2004


Glen Norah MP Ms Priscilla Misihairabwi-Mushonga (MDC) has said the Reserve
Bank of Zimbabwe board and senior management that were at the helm of the
institution during the period in which corruption thrived in the financial
sector should be held accountable and resign.

"Those who were on the RBZ board, management and auditors including the
Registrar of Banks and those in the asset management department should do
the honourable and resign," she said.

The MP said this on Wednesday while moving a motion calling upon senior
management at the central bank to be accountable for their past actions.

"The very same board that messed up things in the past is the same board
that is still in existence and the Ministry of Finance and Economic
Development should give an explanation why the board did not do the right
thing," Ms Misihairabwi-Mushonga said.

The central bank, she said, should be audited by the Comptroller and Auditor
General since it was a public institution.

Ms Misihairabwi-Mushonga said it was no use having internal and external
auditors for the RBZ since they did nothing when things were going wrong in
the financial sector.

The legislator said the Registrar of Banks should be held accountable and
resign because most of the asset management companies that were operating
before the financial shake up had not been properly registered.

She said since April this year only two asset management companies had been
registered while before the RBZ monetary policy there were many such
financial institutions and this indicated that there was something wrong in
the manner in which they were registered.

"All those who were involved in this financial crisis should be arrested and
tried before the courts," she said.

Seconding the motion, Bulawayo South MP Mr David Coltart (MDC) queried why
there had not been successful prosecutions of those who have been arrested
in connection with the corruption in the financial sector. He said an
independent team should be appointed to investigate the contribution of the
RBZ to the financial crisis.
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Languishing lion: African poverty hides traces of hope

Anthony Fensom
Daily Yomiuri Staff Writer

The Shackled Continent:
Africa's Past, Present and Future
By Robert Guest
Macmillan, 280 pp, 27.50 dollars
Africa, blessed with a wealth of human and natural resources and geographic
proximity to European markets, would seem to have economic potential as
stunning as the famed sunsets over Botswana's Okavango delta. So why is it
that in modern times, this home to 680 million people is better known for
wars, famines and pestilence?
For it is no exaggeration to say that sub-Saharan Africa is a mess. Calling
it the Dark Continent may no longer be politically correct, but the
statistics are black indeed: half a billion people living on less than 2
dollars a day, 30 million infected with HIV, wars in two-fifths of its
countries, and rulers whose actions make the recent goings-on at the Abu
Ghraib prison in Iraq look like a tea party.
Yet while the media and modern communications have made us well aware of the
various crises, their causes and potential solutions have not been as
frequently highlighted. It is to this end that British journalist Robert
Guest has penned The Shackled Continent: Africa's Past, Present and Future,
a clear and concise introductory guide to the political and economic chains
that are holding back the continent's development.
As may be expected for a journalist for The Economist--he is currently its
Africa editor--Guest puts a great deal of weight on the economic causes of
Africa's problems, but he also explores cultural and historical factors,
burying quite a few myths along the way.
A major reason many give for Africa's ills is the legacy of its European
colonizers, who ruled the continent for more than a century before
departing, willingly or otherwise, mostly by the 1970s. While Guest
acknowledges the major social disruptions caused by slavery and the
divide-and-conquer policies of European rulers that exacerbated ethnic
tensions, he points out the need for Africans to take responsibility for
their own future rather than dwelling on past injustices.
Noting that more than 90 percent of Africans alive today were born after
independence, Guest writes: "If colonialism was what held Africa back, you
would expect the continent to have boomed when the settlers left. It
Guest gives similar short shrift to other explanations for Africa's
problems, including the tribal rivalries that supposedly make conflict
inevitable. While he describes the 1994 Rwandan genocide in which 800,000
Tutsis and moderate Hutus were murdered in six weeks--"the swiftest genocide
on record"--as an example of tribal warfare, he points out that such warfare
is rare in Tanzania, which is home to 120 ethnic groups. Guest notes that
tribal conflicts are usually stirred up by unscrupulous
politicians--something not unknown in the Balkans in recent times.
According to Guest, the biggest problem facing Africa today is its predatory
and incompetent postindependence governments, which have "replaced the old
colonial shackles with even heavier ones." Despots such as former Ugandan
dictator Idi Amin are not uncommon on a continent that has had more than its
share of military or quasi-military governments.
The general attitude of those in charge and the corruption that blights the
continent is summed up by a police officer whom the author meets in Cameroon
while traveling with a truck driver carrying a consignment of Guinness beer.
When Guest challenges the police officer's confiscation of the driver's
license on the ground of a self-made rule, the officer replies: "Do you have
a gun? No. I have a gun, so I know the rules."
Unfortunately for the continent, it is the rule of the gun and not the rule
of law that holds sway, despite Africans' theoretical freedom to remove
their political overlords from office. Guest's harshest criticism is
reserved for the regime of Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, which he
describes as "a tapeworm infestation in Zimbabwe's stomach, feeding off the
fruits of other people's labor," accusing it of stealing the last two
elections and bankrupting the country through forced land appropriation and
hyperinflation. But other African leaders also are censured, including
former Tanzanian President Julius Nyerere, whom Guest accuses of crippling
the country and wasting considerable aid through socialist policies such as
forcing two-thirds of the rural population onto collective farms.
Guest courts controversy when he argues that the positive discrimination
practiced by the current South African government reduces growth. But while
this argument does hold water--the housing crisis is unlikely to be resolved
by the government paying an extra 10 percent to black-owned firms in public
works projects--his contention that Western firms doing business in Africa
should be prepared to deal with vicious regimes is on shakier ground,
particularly since the collapse of the apartheid regime has been largely
attributed to trading partners cutting off business ties. With firms
increasingly under legal liability to honor the same ethical standards at
home as abroad, there is even less reason to deal with despots.
But it would be churlish simply to dwell on Africa's problems, and Guest
does not depress readers by doing so. Instead, he suggests a number of
economic solutions that require no big handouts from donors--something that
will be music to the ears of developed countries that have cut foreign aid
in recent years.
Guest says that lowering barriers to trade and slashing agricultural
subsidies--currently estimated at 1 billion dollars a day in developed
countries, or more than the entire gross domestic product of sub-Saharan
Africa--would enable Africa to trade its way out of poverty just as Japan
did. According to the author, aid equivalent to six Marshall Plans already
has been provided to Africa--and largely squandered. He also notes that
growth could be boosted through the exploitation of the dead capital
represented by informal urban dwellings, which has been estimated to total
three times the continent's entire GDP.
The problem for Africa may well be that industrialized nations, having
reached into their collective pockets once too often to avert yet another
crisis, may become desensitized to the continent's plight. The despair of
many in the West is probably best expressed by American satirist P.J.
O'Rourke in his saying: "Man developed in Africa. He has not continued to do
so there."
But while it may be easy to wash our hands of Africa, the fact is that in an
interconnected world, the continent's problems are our problems, and if we
neglect them much longer, we may have hordes of refugees on our doorstep.
But by raising its living standards, the continent could be made a source of
global growth rather than a leech on it. Guest does not explain how the
shackles imposed by the Big Men of Africa can be removed, but his work does
provide a good starting point on how Africa may begin the long, slow climb
out of poverty.
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      Libya's African policy remain unchanged: special envoy 2004-05-29 16:09:15

          HARARE, May 29 (Xinhuanet) -- The Libyan envoy Ali Treiki said
Friday when meeting with the Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, that
Libya's African policy remain unchanged after its shift to reconcile with
some western countries.

          "I do not think that agreement with the western countries has
something to do with Africa. We will never forget what Africa did for us and
there will be no change in the African policy," he said.

          Ali Treiki, the special representative of Libyan leader
ColonelMuammar Gadaffi on African affairs, led the Libyan delegation hereat
Zimbabwe House to discuss ways to strengthen bilateral relations between the
two countries.

          Treiki told reporters after the meeting "We have discussed how to
strengthen bilateral relations between our two countries and how to
strengthen the African Union and the need for an African army to defend the

          "On the economic side, we discussed about wheat and maize
production and as Africa, we should have a policy on trade becausewe can not
stand competition from the bigger countries," he added.

          Treiki also paid tribute to Zimbabwe and Namibia for playing a
leading role in bringing peace in the Democratic Republic of the Congo

          Zimbabwe and Namibia sent troops to the DRC in August 1998 to
assist the government to repel rebels that were being supported byRwanda and

          The Libyan delegation has visited Zambia and Lesotho and it will
travel to South Africa later.

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