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Tsvangirai Expects Elections Within 12 Months

5 May 2011

Cape Town — Zimbabwe's Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai exuded confidence to
Africa's business leaders this week, upbeat after securing his position at a
party congress last weekend and clearly believing he has southern Africa's
leaders on his side on the calling of elections.

Tsvangirai also made it clear that his Movement for Democratic Change
(MDC-T) supports in principle the policy of giving Zimbabweans a bigger
stake in businesses and mines, saying the party differs with President
Robert Mugabe's Zanu-PF only over how it is implemented.

Speaking to journalists at the World Economic Forum on Africa in Cape Town,
Tsvangirai said elections will "probably" be held within 12 months, provided
that a new constitution is agreed upon and supported in a referendum, and
that there is consensus on an election date.

But, he said, there will be no elections this year - which was what Zanu-PF
was pushing for until a recent meeting of the security arm of the Southern
African Development Community (SADC) in Lusaka.

Referring to the Lusaka meeting, Tsvangirai said his party had argued to
SADC leaders that Zanu-PF had been trying to subvert the unity government in
which both parties serve, "by collapsing it so they can have an election
under their own conditions."

SADC and its facilitator, President Jacob Zuma of South Africa, had insisted
that there had to be "a clear road map" to elections. "So I am sure that [an
election this year] is dead in the water," Tsvangirai said.

On the policy of "indiginising" business, Tsvangirai said that "across the
political divide we both agree on the principle of citizenship empowerment -
empowering the majority so that they can be active members of the economy.
There's nothing wrong with that, he said.

"What is wrong," he added, "is the implementation, and we are trying to
mould an implementation matrix that will satisfy both the investor and our
desire to see more people participate... There is no policy framework for
nationalisation and for expropriation, which is the biggest fear a lot of
people were raising."

In operating mines, the government could rightfully claim that the nation
had a stake in the process.

"We are contributing that mineral resource, and the one who wants to come
and exploit, we  exploit it for a win-win situation. You bring money, we...
bring the resource, and we exploit that resource to the benefit of both of

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Zimbabwe's MDC: Ready to Govern Alone

Peta Thornycroft | Bulawayo, Zimbabwe  May 04, 2011

Zimbabwe's Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) has elected a new team to
take the party into the next elections.  Thousands of exuberant delegates
voted for a new executive and made resolutions to underpin MDC policy should
it become the next government of Zimbabwe.

The MDC says that before it holds its next congress in five years, it will
be Zimbabwe’s ruling party.  MDC Secretary General Tendai Biti, who is also
Zimbabwe's finance minister, said the newly-elected leadership has to lay
the groundwork for the party’s role as the next government.

"This is the last congress we are going to have as a party that is not in
government on its own. So we need to give a vision on the rule of law and
governance issues, constitution and constitutionalism, on the economy. What
are the drivers of the economy, what is the size of the economy we see in
the next five years and the next 20 years and so forth," Biti said.

The MDC is in a difficult coalition with President Robert Mugabe’s ZANU-PF
party, which ruled Zimbabwe from 1980 until 2009, when an inclusive
government was negotiated after both ZANU-PF and Mr. Mugabe lost elections
to the MDC.

Congress delegates voted for the MDC’s new executive via a secret ballot in
an election run by civil rights groups.  All provinces unanimously agreed
they wanted to retain Morgan Tsvangirai, who is prime minister in the
inclusive government, as party president for the next five years,

They also decided to retain Roy Bennett, the party's treasurer-general, who
fled into exile last year after repeated attempts to jail him.

Happy at the outcome of the congress was Felix Zifunzi, an MDC executive
from an area in Zimbabwe’s midlands where many party members are constantly
harassed because of their membership in the 11-year-old MDC.

"I think this is the most organized congress since 2000, people were voted
in and voted out without violence. Those who were defeated accepted defeat.
Even the president of the party condemned violence, said no to corruption,
said no to vote buying, no to use of money, because this party this is the
party of the poor," Zifunzi said.

Another MDC delegate from central Zimbabwe, who lives and works on a mine,
said MDC members in his area are subjected to intimidation.

"They will tell our direct bosses that if you entertain this character we
will take over this company, we will do A,B,C,D - they are saying that as
long as you employ an MDC activist we will take over, it’s on a farm, it’s
on a mine, it’s anything," said Thomson Richard.

He said he was one of the few who worked on a mine for a ZANU-PF boss, who
was also a legislator, and who treated him fairly.

Givoemore Chinophumbuka, a provincial leader from a ZANU-PF stronghold in
Zimbabwe’s northeast, said organizing for the MDC is hazardous.

"Anyone who is associated with MDC is threatened with eviction from the
areas, from their homes, and some are actually kidnapped, beaten up, there
is actually no control at all, so even if our people go to the police,
police do nothing," Chinophumbuka said.

He said violence continued even after the 2008 elections because
perpetrators had a sense of impunity.

"The perpetrators of violence they are the same people who killed in 2008,
and they tell our guys, we are still free, we are above the law?,"
Chinophumbuka said.

But Chinophumbuka says violence has eased since March, when the regional
backer of the inclusive government, the Southern African Development
Community, held a meeting in Livingstone, Zambia, to discuss the lack of
progress in Zimbabwe.  The SADC Troika on Politics, Defense and Security
criticized ZANU-PF for the ongoing political violence.

"Because the atmosphere during these few months after this Livingstone
meeting is a bit changed. Because there is a realization among ZANU-PF
people, that there are lies in what they are being told and so they will not
have the punch they used to have. As long as no instructions has come from
the top leadership to start again committing atrocities, they will not do
that, they will wait for the instruction," Chinophumbuka said.

Biti agreed that the SADC Livingstone meeting was a breakthrough and said he
hoped pressure on ZANU-PF would continue so the coalition government could
implement all major reforms necessary for free and fair elections, perhaps
next year.

"Livingstone was defining, I hope that it wasn’t a flash in the pan, more
important was the substance of the meeting - we are drawing the line, we
will not tolerate the shenanigans under ZANU-PF all the games played by
ZANU-PF. It was very refreshing. It is what happens after Livingstone which
is critical, but my own feeling is that I saw a new SADC," Biti said.

SADC is holding an extraordinary summit in Namibia on May 20 to discuss the
failure of Zimbabwe’s inclusive government to implement reforms ahead of
fresh elections.

The resolutions passed at the MDC congress committed the party to broad
democratic principles should it win the next elections and become the next
government of Zimbabwe.

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Zuma Meets Zimbabwe GPA Negotiators

05/05/2011 11:19:00

Harare, May 05, 2011 - Zimbabwe political parties’ negotiators to the Global
Political Agreement (GPA) left the country on Wednesday for a two day
meeting in South Africa, Cape Town with President Jacob Zuma's facilitation

The negotiators recently completed an election roadmap to free and fair
election which they handed to their Principals and to the South African
facilitation team led by Charles Nqakula, Zuma's adviser.

Zimbabwe's political crisis has resulted in the Southern African Development
Community (SADC) troika summit calling on the unity government to fully
implement all agreed issues in the GPA. The troika said it will send a team
to be stationed at the Namibian embassy to monitor progress.

"The negotiators left (Wednesday) for the meetings in South Africa. This is
a crucial meeting as it is before the SADC extra-ordinary summit that is set
to be held in Windhoek, Namibia," a government official privy with the
discussions said.

The negotiators from the three main parties are Patrick Chinamasa and
Nicholas Goche from Zanu (PF), Tendai Biti and Elton Mangoma from the larger
Movement for Democratic Change led by Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai
(MDC-T) and Priscilla Misihairambwi-Mushonga and Moses Mzila Ndlovu from the
smaller MDC formation.

Some analysts have pointed out that the full SADC summit will likely push
President Robert Mugabe to fully implement the GPA unity pact.

"We are likely to see a different SADC saying to Mugabe in the face that
they cannot continue with these extra-ordinary summits which are not moving
anything on the ground. Diplomacy will be dead at the meeting," one analyst
told Radio VOP.

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Sadc stands firm

By Editor
Thursday, 05 May 2011 13:59

HARARE - The convoluted Global Political Agreement (GPA) negotiations resume
in Cape Town, South Africa on Friday amid indications that Zanu PF will try
to throw spanners into the works in a bid to reverse the gains made in the
last few weeks.

The first salvo towards this end was fired by Media, Information and
Publicity Minister Webster Shamu last week, who questioned the intentions of
some GPA negotiators who have agitated for sweeping changes to be made to
the management of the public media.

In the roadmap to next year’s national elections that was recently agreed by
the tripartite negotiating group, they called for changes to be made to the
boards and management teams of public media organisations.

They also agreed that steps be taken to ensure that public media provide
balanced and fair coverage to all political parties.

What this would mean effectively when it is adopted by the three GPA
principals, is that it would result in the appointment of new boards at the
Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC), the Broadcasting Authority of
Zimbabwe (BAZ) and the licensing of new broadcasters.

Commenting on this development, Shamu said the country’s communications
policy had become a victim of the GPA process.

“We must not as negotiators abuse our mandates to roll back the very
freedoms we purport to read in the GPA.

“I have already made reference to technical imperatives, which come with
opening the airwaves.  No one in the GPA seems to see this vital connection,
which is why GPA proposals and pronouncements seem to me largely statements
of political pressure and not statements of government intent,” he said, in
a perplexing statement that confused both negotiators and analysts.

In addition to Shamu’s discordant voice on the GPA negotiations, the Daily
News reported yesterday that some Zanu PF hawks were working hard to torpedo
the inclusive government, in a futile bid to hang on to power, hence the
fear that the Cape Town meeting would not be easy.

But a Daily News source said from Pretoria yesterday that South Africa had
“long factored in this kind of politicking” and was confident that more
progress would be made this weekend.

He added that this was part of the reason why Sadc had effectively taken the
responsibility of seeking the removal of targeted restrictive measures on
Zanu PF leaders - a move that was “already neutralising” Zanu PF’s biggest
scapegoat in the party’s desperate attempt to avoid the full implementation
of the GPA.

A Sadc delegation made up of members of the South African facilitation team,
representatives of the Sadc troika on politics as well as those of the Sadc
chairperson, has been travelling to western capitals to seek the removal of
the restrictions.

They have so far been to Washington, London and Brussels.

“The sanctions became a Sadc issue when the summit in Zambia took the
decision to ask for their removal. The political parties have to help our
efforts by making progress in implementation on the ground,” said Ambassador
Lindiwe Zulu, President Jacob Zuma’s international relations advisor.

Asked if the meetings have so far produced any positives, Zulu said there
had been “some mixed feelings, but they (the West) have expressed that they
are flexible on the issue”.

“The issue is that, we are saying they are sanctions and they are of the
view that they are targeted measures,” she added.

The United States, European Union (EU) and other western countries such as
Canada and Australia imposed sanctions on President Robert Mugabe and his
cronies in response to the increase in human rights abuses and assaults on
democracy in Zimbabwe.

The Daily News’ South African source also said Pretoria would want to focus
on Zimbabwe’s worsening climate of fear and violence, as well as on security
sector reform when the GPA negotiations resume in Cape Town.

“Pretoria knows that your country’s top and partisan army and security
officials are standing in the way of further progress in the GPA
negotiations by instructing Zanu PF negotiators to refuse to give in on the
issue of the transfer of power in the event that Mugabe is defeated,” he

In the meantime, the negotiators themselves were looking forward yesterday
to the Cape Town round of negotiations.

“We are going to meet with the negotiating team from South Africa and we
hope they are going to help us resolve the deadlock we are having on some of
the issues with the other parties in the GPA. We hope we will be able to
make a breakthrough as the talks have been going on for a long time,’’ said
MDC representative Priscilla Misihairambwi- Mushonga .

“There is going to be negotiations and the results will only be seen
afterwards. We have always have been confident with the Sadc process,” said
Zanu PF’s Emmerson Mnangangwa.

A senior MDC official said: “Our objective and our expectation is that an
election roadmap will be agreed upon, setting clear time-frames for free,
fair and credible legitimate elections. Other reforms we need include the
security sector reforms to ensure a secure vote and outcome.”

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ZANU-PF Party of Zimbabwe's Mugabe Said Divided Over Election Timing

Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa, chief negotiator for ZANU-PF issues
related to the Global Political Agreement underpinning the power-sharing
unity government, has said elections may have to wait until 2013

Blessing Zulu  04 May 2011

Sources said the Joint Operations Command has assigned retired Air Vice
Marshal Henry Muchena to be ZANU-PF Director of the Commissariat, with a
former top Central Intelligence Organization official as his deputy

Sources say Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe's former ruling Zimbabwe
African National Union-Patriotic Front or ZANU-PF is deeply divided over the
timing of the next elections despite having demanded in a December
conference they be held in 2011.

Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa, chief negotiator for ZANU-PF issues
related to the Global Political Agreement underpinning the power-sharing
unity government in Harare, has said reforms including drafting of a new
constitution and its approval by Parliament and the Zimbabwean people could
oblige elections to be put off to 2013.

"It is my own opinion that it is not possible to hold elections this year.
We need to start talking about elections next year or 2013, assuming that
the [constitutional] referendum is completed in September" as projected by
the parliamentary select committee in charge of the constitutional revision
process, Chinamasa told the state-run Herald newspaper.

President Mugabe is under pressure from the Southern African  Development
Community not to call elections this year as he has threatened to do, but
rather to institute reforms prescribed by the Global Political Agreement
before proceeding to a ballot.

But Chinamasa has come under fire from ZANU-PF hardliners led by the Joint
Operation Command comprising top officials in the national security
apparatus, including the police, which has taken charge of many aspects of
ZANU-PF's electoral machine.

Sources said the Joint Operations Command has detailed retired Air Vice
Marshal Henry Muchena to take over the position of ZANU-PF Director of the
Commissariat. Reporting to him as deputy is Sydney Nyanhongo, former
internal affairs director of the Central Intelligence Organization, which
falls under the office of the president.

Sources said hundreds of serving army members of lower ranks have been
deployed to campaign for ZANU-PF across the country..

ZANU-PF spokesman Rugare Gumbo told VOA reporter Blessing Zulu that
statements by Chinamasa on the timing of elections reflect his personal
views, not the party's.

Political analyst Charles Mangongera said the fallout is uncharacteristic of

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SADC blasted for joining ZPF anti-sanctions campaign

By Tererai Karimakwenda
05 May, 2011

Regional leaders in the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) have
been strongly criticized for taking on the campaign against targeted
measures that were imposed on the Mugabe regime by the E.U. and its Western
allies. It has been revealed that a SADC delegation, comprised of
representatives from President Jacob Zuma’s facilitation team, the current
SADC Troika and SADC chairpersons, travelled to key Western cities this week
urging foreign officials to remove the restrictive measures.

So far the delegation has met with officials in Washington, London and
Brussels. Reports said they have adopted the ZANU PF line that the
restrictive measures are blocking economic progress in Zimbabwe. They also
claim that the targeted sanctions provide an excuse for ZANU PF not to
implement the GPA.

ZANU PF has said they will make no more ‘concessions’ to the MDC while the
restrictive measures are still in place. Meanwhile party thugs have been
forcing innocent civilians and school children to sign a petition as part of
their “anti-sanctions” campaign. They are aiming for a million signatures
and plan to present the petition to the E.U.

Observers and civic groups have stressed the fact that there are no real
sanctions on Zimbabwe, just targeted restrictions on the ruling elite. They
also say that it is important to see an end to state sponsored violence,
plus key sector reforms, before the restrictions are removed.
According to the Daily News newspaper, President Zuma’s International
Affairs Advisor, Lindiwe Zulu said the decision that the “sanctions” must go
was made at the SADC Summit and African Union level last month.

Strong criticism of SADC for taking on this new role has come from human
rights activists, journalists and political analysts in Zimbabwe and South
Africa. Dewa Mavhinga, regional director for the Crisis Coalition, told SW
Radio Africa that he was “shocked and outraged” at SADC for wasting precious
resources on the wrong issue.

“These are not sanctions but shopping restrictions on the ZANU PF elite,”
Mavhinga said, referring to the travel ban imposed on Mugabe and his close
cronies. “The unnecessary foreign trips are hurting the economy and SADC
should be focusing on the GPA, security sector reforms, media reforms,
electoral changes and issues like that,” he added.

Journalist Jan Raath said the claim that the restrictions are causing
economic damage is “complete and utter nonsense”. Raath explained that the
E.U. is the biggest buyer of tobacco from Zimbabwe and there are absolutely
no businesses being affected by the targeted sanctions.
Both Raath and Mavhinga agreed that even if the targeted sanctions were
removed ZANU PF would find another excuse for not fully implementing the
GPA. They said history has shown that Mugabe and ZANU PF cannot be trusted.

The SADC delegation was due back on Thursday and is expected to brief the
SADC leaders, ahead of a special summit on Zimbabwe later this month in
After the news Tererai discusses SADC’s anti-sanctions campaign on the
program Crisis Analysis, with writer and journalist Geoff Hill and Dewa
Mavhinga from the Crisis Coalition.

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Four MDC-T activists released from police captivity

By Tichaona Sibanda
5 May 2011

Four MDC-T activists from Chikomba district who have been missing since
Sunday have been released from custody, but only after police in Mbare
forced them to drop charges against members of the Chipangano gang.

The two men and women who were set free are Kudzanai Taruvinga, the Chikomba
youth treasurer, Timothy Mugari, ward 19 chairman, Remita Motiwa, Women’s
chairperson for the district and Anna Peresu, the district women’s
Contrary to reports that they were abducted, the group said they fled to the
police station after coming under heavy attack in Mbare from members of the
Chipangano gang. They were beaten, had their clothes torn and belongings
stolen, including their identity particulars.
‘The group came under attack from the Chipangano gang and thought the only
way to save themselves was to seek protection from the police,’ Amos Reza,
the MDC Chikomba district secretary said.

Reza told SW Radio Africa on Thursday that when they got to Matapi they told
the police of their ordeal. But their relief turned soon to horror when some
members of the Chipangano stormed the station demanding their arrest for
‘disturbing peace’ in Mbare.

‘While it was clear our members were victims of a vicious political attack,
the police went ahead and arrested them. This gave the CIO an opportunity to
interrogate them on the Congress in Bulawayo and many other party issues.

‘We are further disturbed by the fact that police officers at the station
denied any knowledge of the presence of the four members, which makes it
clear they are an appendage of ZANU PF. These guys were held incommunicado
for three days and were meanwhile being interrogated by state security
agents,’ Reza added.

Reza said the latest incident also showed how the police were too scared to
arrest anyone with links to ZANU PF. He said officers at Matapi were seen
begging members of the Chipangano gang to return identity particulars of the
MDC-T members.

‘The Chipangano gang was so stupid that when they brought back the stolen
goods, it included photo-copies of their identity particulars. They brought
these particulars in full view of our activists, which should have told the
police that indeed our members were attacked and had their ID’s stolen. Why
they photo-copied the documents remains a mystery to us but we know they are
our enemies,’ Reza added.

After this episode, the police made it clear to the MDC-T activists that if
they cherished their freedom they were better off dropping charges against
the Chipangano gang. Cornered, the activists grudgingly agreed and were
released without charge on Wednesday evening, after spending three nights in
filthy police cells.

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Govt urged to pull down torture houses

By Maxwell Sibanda, Staff Writer
Thursday, 05 May 2011 16:40

HARARE - People in the Midlands province have implored the inclusive
government to swiftly dismantle torture bases and camps built by Zanu PF in
the run up to the violent June 2008 Presidential run-off.

During community dialogue meetings supported by the Centre for Community
Development in Zimbabwe (CCDZ), villagers expressed fears that torture bases
would force them to stay away from future polls.

Phillip Pasirayi, CCDZ co-ordinator said participants in Gokwe and
Chirimanzu felt that ‘political bases’ played a role in intimidating
ordinary people.

“The people accused the youth militias manning these bases of triggering
violence during the elections,” said Pasirayi. “They want the inclusive
government to dismantle the bases as part of a roadmap allowing the holding
of free and fair elections.

“The people are urging the ZRP to be professional and they want them to
bring to book all perpetrators of political violence regardless of
affiliation. They also want the military and police to play no role in the
elections except maintaining law and order. The people do not want the
deployment of the military in the communities to campaign for Zanu PF,” said

CCDZ held meetings at Vhudzi, Mangoma, Holy Cross and Muwani Business
centres in the Midlands province.

Participants accused traditional leaders of failing to stop violence in
their communities, and of manipulation and exploitation by political

At Chinyenyetu, residents felt that the chiefs had been reduced to political
party propaganda instruments for particular parties, hence forsaking their
traditional mandate of leading and guiding communities.

Pasirayi said through the community outreach meetings, CCDZ was mobilising
grassroots communities on the constitutional referendum and raising
awareness on citizen electoral rights in the Mashonaland, Midlands and
Manicaland provinces.

Throughout the meetings Zimbabweans have been urging the inclusive
government to concentrate more on improving the nation’s deteriorating
social standards and economic problems than spend time calling for

The CCDZ also met communities in Kwekwe, Chiundura, Lalapanzi, Murehwa,
Hwedza and Zhombe.

Communities felt that while elections were necessary, government had first
to address their humanitarian plight.
If the elections were to go ahead, communities should put forward their

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Western journalists threatened with renewed Zimbabwe ban

May 5, 2011, 13:57 GMT

Harare - President Robert Mugabe's press secretary has threatened to
reinstate a ban on Western journalists visiting Zimbabwe, in comments
published in the state-run Herald newspaper on Thursday.

The threat was 'retaliation' for Zimbabwean state media journalists being
refused entry to Europe, the paper reported.

'(Zimbabwean) journalists are being targeted to stop them from the lawful
gathering of news outside Zimbabwe,' George Charamba was quoted as saying.
'This is seriously an attack on the media.'

His comments came after Reuben Barwe, chief correspondent of the country's
only television network, the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC), was
refused entry to Italy to accompany Mugabe to the Vatican for the
beatification of former pope John Paul II.

A power-sharing agreement reached between Mugabe and Prime Minister Morgan
Tsvangirai in 2009 saw the relaxation of draconian media controls.

Three independent newspapers have been allowed to go to press and the ban on
foreign journalists was almost totally lifted. But journalists have
continued to be arrested on charges of undermining Mugabe's authority, while
Mugabe's Zanu-PF party has staunchly refused to sanction new radio and
television stations.

Barwe is one of six state media journalists, along with nearly 200 other
members of Mugabe's inner circle, who are the subject of sanctions which
prevent them from visiting Europe among other things.

Paris-based press watchdog Reporters Without Borders this week named Mugabe
a media 'predator,' writing that it was 'thanks to its president that
Zimbabwes privately-owned print media are constantly harassed and that the
state-owned ZBC has a monopoly of radio and TV broadcasting.'

'Mugabe has no problem with the arbitrary arrests and harassment to which
most of the countrys journalists are exposed,' the report added.

Last week unidentified intruders broke into the offices of the independent
Newsday newspaper and stole editor Brian Mangwende's computer and hard

The incident came days after the newspaper had reported that army commander
and Mugabe loyalist Lieutenant General Constantine Chiwenga had had to be
flown to China for urgent medical treatment.

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Pay for mining stakes? Not likely, says Zimbabwe

Thu May 5, 2011 4:45pm GMT

By Ed Cropley

CAPE TOWN (Reuters) - Zimbabwe's cash-strapped government will not pay any
money for stakes in mining companies forced to sell majority holdings under
new local ownership laws, the minister overseeing the drive said on

Instead, Harare will base any payment negotiations on the state's ownership
of the southern African country's untapped mineral wealth, Youth and
Indigenisation Minister Saviour Kasukuwere said. Zimbabwe is home to the
world's second-biggest platinum reserves.

"It's not just about capital. There are substantive discussions that must be
held," he told Reuters on the sidelines of a World Economic Forum event in
Cape Town.

"The state has a stake in any mining entity in the country in any case
because the resource belongs to the state. That has to be taken into

Kasukuwere's comments are the latest twist in a convoluted push to spread
Zimbabwe's mineral wealth among local blacks and are likely to alarm mining
companies who have until the end of September to transfer 51 percent stakes.

Although individuals are able to buy holdings, Kasukuwere said in March the
government was setting up a sovereign wealth fund as a takeover vehicle,
effectively turning the local-ownership drive into nationalisation.


Analysts said at the time Harare appeared to be using the threats to force
global mining groups into paying more in mineral royalties.

However, the March publication of laws demanding ownership transfer within
six months raised the stakes and hit the shares of platinum miners such as
Impala Platinum, the world's second-biggest producer of the precious metal.

London- and Johannesburg-listed Aquarius Platinum and Anglo Platinum also
have operations in the country.

"Obviously the mining companies are not going to be happy with this after
putting a lot of money into their operations," said Tony Hawkins, professor
of business studies at the University of Zimbabwe.

"But I don't think it will work. It's the same concept with the land reform
where they said they will not pay for the land but for the improvements. I
have a sense that they are making these policies up as they go. When they
meet problems they will again change the policy."

Mining companies operating in Zimbabwe face a May 9 deadline to say how they
will transfer controlling stakes to local blacks.

Kasukuwere did not know how many had already complied, but said no
exceptions would be made.

"All the companies who are affected are aware of the law and they will have
to comply," he said.

He also denied suggestions that a six-month transfer window was unrealistic.
"It will be done, nicely," he said.

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Mugabe negotiations 'frustrating' but key: Tsvangirai


– 27 mins ago

CAPE TOWN (AFP) – Zimbabwe Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai said Thursday
that negotiating his shaky unity pact with veteran President Robert Mugabe
was "the most frustrating experience" of his life but was key to halting the
country's collapse.

"It is the most frustrating experience of my life to have to negotiate with
somebody who lost an election, and then forced to negotiate an arrangement
where the loser comes through the window in order to claim the same rights
like somebody who has won," Tsvangirai said.

"But I think that you reach a stage where, given the level of collapse, you
may have to forego whether you have won or not and say what is the best
solution for the people," he told a session of the World Economic Forum on
Africa in Cape Town.

Mugabe and Tsvangirai's power-sharing government -- formed in February 2009
after a violent and disputed election -- has succeeded in halting Zimbabwe's
economic tailspin, mainly by ditching the local currency after record

But the ruling pair have repeatedly locked horns over implementing the deal.

In March, regional leaders insisted that Zimbabwe draft a new constitution
before holding new elections that will end the fragile coalition.

Tsvangirai earlier told a media briefing that there would be no polls this
year but predicted they would probably be held in the next 12 months, saying
the outcome must be credible.

"The next election must produce a legitimate government so that we don't
have the losers trying to negotiate their way back into power through some
form of an arrangement or some form of a coalition like the government of
national unity," he said.

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Swords out for Zanu PF post

By Reagan Mashavave, Staff Writer
Thursday, 05 May 2011 17:02

HARARE - Intense fighting for Zanu PF Mashonaland West chairperson position
continues, with senior members of the party’s Provincial Coordinating
Committee (PCC) threatening to resign from the party if candidates are

As infighting within Zanu PF spreads to the provinces, there are reports
that politburo members, Webster Shamu and Ignatius Chombo have clashed over
the candidate they want to take over the provincial leadership, with Shamu
said to be favouring Reuben Marumahoko while Chombo wants Walter Chidhakwa.

The death of acting Zanu PF Mashonaland West province chairperson, Robert
Sikanyika last month has left party heavyweights fighting among themselves
for the post, with some trying to impose their preferred candidates to lead
President Robert Mugabe’s home province.

Controversial businessman Phillip Chiyangwa, Marumahoko, Bright Matonga,
Faber Chidarikire, Chidhakwa, and Themba Mliswa, have been named as
candidates interested in the chairperson post.

Marumahoko who was reportedly fired from the provincial executive, prior to
Sikanyika’s death bounced back on Sunday to chair a PCC meeting, resulting
in commotion at Chinhoyi Training Centre.

Provincial executive committee members John Yotamu, Tapera Table and other
PCC members said Marumahoko should not chair the meeting, saying he had been
fired from their committee after he failed to attend crucial meetings.

Nathan Shamuyarira, the most senior Zanu PF and politburo member who
attended the meeting lashed out at some senior officials who had not
informed him about the Sunday meeting.

The fiasco on who should chair the meeting roped in Chombo and Webster Shamu
after quarrels and disagreements with some PCC members who wanted Marumahoko
to chair the meeting.

Others were saying Shamuyarira who is viewed as a ‘neutral’ person must
chair the meeting. Shamu supported Marumahoko to chair the meeting.
Marumahoko was however, allowed to chair the meeting, where a letter was
produced from Zanu PF secretary for administration, Didymus Mutasa
announcing that Chiyangwa must return to the party, leading to cheers from
the floor.

A senior Zanu PF Mashonaland West provincial member told the Daily News that
party supporters in the province have had enough of ‘imposition’ of

He said, if other senior officials go ahead with their plan to impose
candidates, the party will lose to the MDC.

“Things are getting out of hand here. And people are not happy with the
imminent imposition of candidates without following the constitutional
procedure,” the source in the PCC said.

“If these people continue to impose candidates, we are prepared to leave our
posts in province. The party wants people who are supported by the grass
roots. The party has been losing to the MDC in Kadoma, Chegutu, Chinhoyi and
Kariba. We need leadership that is accepted by the grassroots.”

The source said, normally, the provincial executive committee has the powers
to co-opt a candidate of their choice to take the chairperson’s post.

The imposition of candidates is not new in Zanu PF as several people have
been imposed without due process being followed.

Simon Khaya Moyo, the Zanu PF chairperson on his tour of the party’s
provincial structures after occupying the party’s top post, denounced the
‘imposition’ of candidates. He reiterated his call again at Sikanyika’s

In 2008, Manicaland chairperson, Basil Nyabadza resigned from his post
towards the party’s congress after he felt the party was imposing Khaya Moyo
to the chairperson post ahead of Mutasa.

Mugabe at that congress bemoaned divisions in Zanu PF saying the party was
“eating itself up.”

He said divisions led to Zanu PF’s defeat in the 2008 harmonised elections
left a “huge dent” on the party that brought independence in 1980.

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Cost of living too high – CCZ

Written by Yeukai Moyo
Wednesday, 04 May 2011 13:35

MUTARE – The average cost of living in Zimbabwe is much too high and not in
line with salaries earned by the workforce, says an official from the
Consumer Council of Zimbabwe (CCZ).

CCZ regional officer, Banabas Masavu, said, “Consumption patterns in
Zimbabwe show an alarming and marked downward trend. Most families have cut
their number of meals per day. The socio-economic gap has widened increasing
the number of the poor. The cost of building a house is far above the reach
of many in Zimbabwe. The majority of workers in Zimbabwe are in the low
income group.”

According to a monthly price survey presented by Masavu, the 2011 monthly
consumer basket for a family of six in January stood at $509,17, compared to
$505,81 in February and $508,29 in March.

In line with the monthly record Masavu said, “This implies that the cost of
goods and services is not in line with the salaries and wages provided,
which average $200 a month.”

He said it was impossible to understand how pensioners, who are getting a
paltry $40 per month, are surviving, and urged NSSA to review pensions.

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Zim gold giant in production surge

by Edward Jones     Thursday 05 May 2011

HARARE – Gold output surged at Freda Rebecca to 8,577 ounces during the
first quarter of the year, surpassing the mine’s target after improved mine
maintenance and power supplies, parent company Mwana Africa said yesterday.

Mwana restarted operations at Freda Rebecca in 2009 following the formation
of a unity government between bitter rivals President Robert Mugabe and
Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai and completed the first phase of the mine’s
operation which targeted output of 30,000 ounces a year in March.

Gold miners were hit by the country’s economic crisis, which saw inflation
soaring to 500 billion percent and while the price of the yellow metal was
soaring on the international market, Zimbabwe’s miners were being given 40
percent of their earnings in a worthless currency.

Freda Rebecca’s production of 8,577 ounces exceeding the Phase 1 target of
7,500 ounces and was 10.7 percent above the first quarter of 2010.

"As a result of implementing the planned maintenance programme, involving
significant upgrade work on the processing plant, plant availability has
improved and has been sustained ahead of targets," Mwana said in a

“The site has benefitted from full power with no incidents of load shedding
or power disturbance being recorded.”

Mwana Africa said it was on track to achieve its Phase II target to expand
production to 50,000 ounces a year by the end of the third quarter.

The company resumed operations at Freda Rebecca in October 2009, after the
Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe allowed firms for the first time to sell bullion
and keep all the proceeds.

Gold was last year eclipsed by platinum as the single largest foreign
currency earner and industry officials say the country has the potential to
produce 50,000kg of the mineral but would need up to $5 billion to revamp
the mining sector over a period of five years.

The mining sector has been subdued this year after the government gave
miners up to next Monday to submit proposals of how they intend to surrender
at least 51 percent of their shares to blacks by 30 September. -- ZimOnline

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Zimbabwe Sets Aside US$1 Million For Poor Students' Examination Fees

Applications for assistance must be filed by May 27 in line with the
Zimbabwe School Examinations Council’s closing date to register for November

Gibbs Dube | Washington  04 May 2011

The Zimbabwean government has set aside US$1 million to pay examinations
fees for some 15,000 primary and secondary school students under the country’s
Basic Education Assistance Module, a program intended to assist students
from poor families.

Social welfare officials said the government will pay at least US$66 for
pupils sitting for Ordinary and Advanced level examinations.

Applications for assistance must be filed by May 27 in line with the
Zimbabwe School Examinations Council’s closing date to register for November

Bulawayo Progressive Residents Association Director Roderick Fayayo said
authorities should insure that the funds are distributed equally to all

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Restore the Diaspora vote

Written by MDC Information & Publicity Department
Thursday, 05 May 2011 17:24

The MDC believes that all adult Zimbabweans, regardless of their station
either at home or in the Diaspora, must be allowed to vote in the next and
in any election if democracy has to assume its generic meaning out of
today's political transition.

The MDC's call comes amid claims by Zanu PF's Emmerson Mnangagwa that
restrictive measures imposed on certain senior Zanu PF officials must go
first before those in the Diaspora can vote.

Zanu PF and Mnangagwa must know that the issue of restrictive measures and
the Diaspora vote are not linked in anyway and therefore cannot be compared.

The Inclusive Government was set up to give birth to a completely new
society, a society that reflects a radical departure from our dark past. The
people's Party of Excellence, the MDC recognises the fundamental right for
total franchise for all eligible citizens of Zimbabwe. The right to a vote
can never be treated as a privilege, and cannot be bargained for.

Decades of economic and political chaos drove millions of Zimbabweans off
their home base. As if to further punish them the former regime quickly
disenfranchised them purely on allegations of supporting the party of the
future, the MDC. Now that Zimbabwe is being surveyed by an Inclusive
Government, there can never be any justification for official discrimination
of citizens in the Diaspora.

For the record, these Zimbabweans living and working abroad gave the country
a lifeline against a debilitating hyper-inflationary period through a steady
flow of remittances in cash, food and fuel. They continue to do so today as
the country teeters back to its feet. They should never be denied a voice to
determine the future of their country.

As our negotiators exchange notes with the SADC facilitation team in Cape
Town, South Africa, the MDC calls for the restoration of the Diaspora vote
as a natural right. We should end the discrimination and exclusion of such a
sizeable and invaluable part of our active population in national affairs.

Needless to point out that the liberation struggle was anchored on the need
for a one-person, one vote principle. To deny a Zimbabwean such a right
would amount to a regrettable betrayal of the ideals of that struggle.

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NCA: Elections only after a new constitution

NCA Media Alert: 5 May 2011

Elections only after a new constitution-Madhuku

By Blessing Vava

Mazowe-National Constitutional Assembly (NCA) Chairperson Professor Lovemore
Madhuku said that Zimbabwe should only go for polls only after a new people
driven constitution is in place. Professor Madhuku said this while
addressing villagers in Mazowe South’s Kanyemba district ward 13 at a Take
Charge campaign meeting held today.

‘’As the NCA we are telling the politicians of this country that elections
should only be conducted after the writing of a new genuine people driven
constitution. That new constitution should guarantee a free and fair
election,’’ he said. Further, Madhuku dismissed the COPAC process saying
that it will not come up with the desired constitution that will enable the
country to conduct free and fair elections.

Speaking at the same meeting NCA National Spokesperson Madock Chivasa told
villagers that they should only accept a good constitution that bears in
mind the aspirations of the people. Chivasa said that the people should be
able to judge for themselves after the COPAC draft is out and that should
aid whether to vote YES or NO during the referendum.

‘’After the draft is out its everyone’s duty as a Zimbabwean to scrutinise
the contents of the draft and if your views are not captured surely you
should all vote NO,’’ said Chivasa. The NCA Spokesperson said it was a
fallacy to expect a good document coming out of the COPAC process basing on
the manner in which the process was undertaken.

The NCA leaders both called for the abolishing of COPAC to pave way for an
independent commission to spearhead the constitution making exercise. A
villager who spoke during the meeting said that they were afraid of
political violence during the run-up to the referendum as some community
leaders have already started intimidating people. He also said that they
were forced to sign the anti-sanctions petitions.

The Take Charge Campaign meetings are part of the NCA’s NO vote campaign
that seeks to resist the Parliament sponsored constitution. The NCA has
lined up a number of activities countrywide.

National Constitutional Assembly
348 Hebert Chitepo Avenue

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Roy Bennett- Address To Sa Business Club- 4 May 2011- New Street Square, London ECLS 3BZ

Good Evening Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen.
On behalf of my wife Heather, my party the Movement for Democratic Change,
and of course the people of Zimbabwe, I thank the SA Business Club for the
opportunity of engaging with like-minded people—people who care about the
prospects of a democratic Southern Africa. Given the much esteemed
personalities who have addressed this forum previously, I feel truly

I hope that my address helps to shed further light on the inescapable fact
that Zimbabwe’s continuing trials and tribulations will increasingly impact
negatively on South Africa, and on the region, if there is no true
resolution of the crisis. A true resolution can only come when the theft of
Zimbabwean votes is righted—when Zimbabweans are allowed to elect leaders of
their choice.

Nearly twelve years ago, a close family friend of mine living in
Johannesburg told me of a discussion he had had with one of Johannesburg’s
celebrated business leaders. The gist of this conversation was along the
lines of ‘Well even if President Mbeki has covered up for Mugabe, and the
MDC actually did win the 2000 elections, so what?’ This whole issue will be
seen by us in, South Africa as irrelevant and it will be business as
usual—that’s ‘AFRICAN POLITICS’.

We all know now some of the more obvious results of President Mbeki’s policy
of ‘Quiet Diplomacy’. South Africa has, for example, been overwhelmed by at
least two million Zimbabwean migrants. This sad, unnecessary, traumatic
exodus will be felt for decades and decades to come. Indeed, the effects
cannot yet be fully evaluated. For the two million Zimbabweans cast into
abject poverty, it is a human tragedy of epic proportions. If ever South
Africans wanted to see the sheer scale of their misery, a visit at night to
the Central Methodist Church in Johannesburg, is all that is needed. Bishop
Paul Veryn and the Methodist Church will always be warmly remembered and
admired by Zimbabweans for his single-handed, herculean efforts to ease the
plight of homeless Zimbabweans.

The pressures exerted by desperate Zimbabweans, experienced across South
Africa, has seen highly literate Zimbabweans compete for employment
opportunities from white collar jobs to the most menial of tasks. This human
contagion has already resulted in turmoil and social discord. Yet President
Mbeki denied the very existence of xenophobia in South Africa, such was his
disconnect with reality in his own country, let alone Zimbabwe.

I have news for all South Africans. If the result of the next Zimbabwean
elections, likely to be held in early 2012, are not accepted by the MILITARY
JUNTA/ZANU PF DICTATORSHIP and the resulting will of the people is again,
for the fifth time, ignored, Zimbabweans will be left with no hope for a
peaceful democratic future. They will pour into South Africa! But this flood
of refugees will be different. The Zimbabweans, who will come to South
Africa in 2012, will be older, much older and totally destitute. They will
also be less educated, and they will most certainly not assimilate into
South African society as well as the previous flood of Zimbabweans. They
will become a DAILY, living reminder, on every street corner, of South
Africa’s dreadful complicity in the subversion of democracy in our region.
For Botswana, where Francistown groans under the weight of the Zimbabwean
influx, the story will be the same.  We are looking at an awful scenario.

Ladies and Gentlemen, please do not in any way simply brush this possible
development aside. What we have in Zimbabwe is a ruthless coterie of thugs,
bullies, and incompetent individuals, masquerading as a political
organisation—ZANU-PF. They are capable of anything. Their capacity for
institutionalised violence and torture is unprecedented, even in Africa.
Most recently, they dragged my friend, the MDC’s Deputy Treasurer General,
Honourable Elton Mangoma, to court in leg irons after an unpleasant and
unjustified incarceration. Honourable Mangoma is Minister of Energy in this
so called INCLUSIVE GOVERNMENT, and is a respected and influential leader in
our party.

The South African Government and the governments in the region, as
represented by SADC, MUST FINALLY and I repeat FINALLY, demand in simple
unambiguous language, that ZANU-PF adhere to EACH AND EVERY condition that
forms part of the Global Political Agreement. If they don’t, the REGION, the
WHOLE REGION of Southern Africa, will feel the effects of their feebleness.
Reluctance on behalf of SADC once again to reign in ZANU PF, will negatively
and radically affect future regional business investment. It will be a red
rag to the indigenization radicals in ZANU PF—a group that already has the
whip hand—and the international investment risk profile for the entire
region will go through the roof. It will also provide fuel for those in
South African politics who see ZANU PF as blazing a trail, showing how the
game should be played south of the Limpopo. This is not an exaggerated
scenario. Every South African, Botswanan, Zambian, and Malawian citizen
should demand from their governments that GADAFFI’S bosom buddy, ROBERT
MUGABE, respect the peaceful democratic will of the people, and transfer
power to the people’s choice, once their votes are tallied, after a peaceful
electoral process. More than anyone, it is the South African business
community that must see this scenario in full Technicolor and push its
government to finally bring this nonsense to an end. Another pseudo-solution
will be a disaster.

If any further proof is needed of ZANU PF’S failure to grasp reality,
reflect for a moment on the absurdity of their most recent INDIGENIZATION
demands. These are totally and utterly illegitimate, they are not endorsed
by my party, and if implemented they will, as sure as day follows night, lay
waste to Zimbabwe’s natural resources industry. If ever intelligent people
are inclined to wonder what investors think of ZANU-PF’S
nationalization/indigenization policies, just look what has happened to the
value of PLATINUM shares such as IMPALA and ANGLO PLATINUM on the London
Stock Exchange. It is beyond comprehension in today’s GLOBALISED competitive
market place, to expect companies to cede 51% of their equity, and to fund
the business going forward assuming their obligation and those of their NEW

We only have to look back a few years to see what indigenization Mark 1 did
to the country: we have gone down the road of ‘so called’ “Agricultural Land
Reform”. Every Zimbabwean besides half-baked ZANU PF zealots knows now that
agriculture and agri-business, hitherto Zimbabwe’s most productive sectors,
have been virtually destroyed. Indicatively, literally all our groceries and
food stuffs are imported, primarily from South Africa! Far from being
liberated, we have become a Bantustan.

These are the legacies of ZANU-PF’S ‘BREAD BASKET, TO BASKET CASE IN TEN
YEARS!’ How should business respond to these challenges? To begin, the
desperate INDIGENISATION demands made upon well-known, respected London
Listed companies must be disregarded. The majority party in Zimbabwe’s
parliament is not a signatory to this institutionalised theft by
individuals, posing as agents for the Zimbabwean people! Ladies and
Gentlemen I also find the attempts by management of these companies to
‘NEGOTIATE’ an acceptable level of ‘theft’ quite nauseating. It is
symptomatic of a worldwide malaise affecting many companies. Namely a gross
failure to understand, that a country’s resources, whether they be Libyan,
Egyptian or Zimbabwean, are not the property of illegitimate dictators,
their wives and fellow travellers. The justifiable anger of the Egyptian
people directed at the MUBARAK family should serve as a real wake up call to
ZANU-PF. Zimbabweans have had enough of Grace Mugabe’s shopping trips using
our peoples resources!

Ladies and Gentlemen, I am not an embittered ‘Rhodesian Farmer’. I am not a
product of WHITE privilege. In fact most of you will be interested to know
that many WHITE Zimbabweans complicit with the regime for monetary gain
actually loathe me—I am ‘BENNETT the TROUBLE MAKER’ etc. I have often been
asked to ‘CUT A DEAL’—‘ALL THEY WANT IS MONEY’ and so on. My constituency
and reference point in life is the wonderful, brave ethical people of
CHIMANIMANI and ZIMBABWE. A friend of mine once told me I have perhaps
become the JOE SLOVO of Zimbabwean Politics. Being a simple Zimbabwean
farmer, I didn’t know whether it was a compliment or a back handed snide
remark, given how apparently unpopular the late JOE SLOVO was with many
white South Africans! However, the steadfast bravery and support which I
enjoy from ordinary Zimbabweans, reminds us all in Southern Africa of Nelson
Mandela’s vision. This is what he had to say at his inauguration as
democratic South Africa’s first president on the 10th May 1994 and it rings
loud and clear for us tonight: ‘The time for the healing of wounds has come.
The moment to bridge the chasms that divide us has come. The time to build
is upon us... We enter into a covenant that we shall build the society in
which all South Africans, both black and white, will be able to walk tall,
without any fear in their hearts, assured of their inalienable right to
human dignity- a rainbow nation at peace with itself and the world’ This is
the part of the African National Congress that ZANU-PF can never resonate
with. Since when should I accept that I have no rights in the country of my
birth? Since when should Ndebele’s accept second class citizenship in
Zimbabwe, and so on, and so on?

Is it too much in the 21st Century for Zimbabweans to expect access to
functioning educational infrastructure, decent/effective health care,
socially acceptable housing, and meaningful employment opportunities, with
access to impartial courts of justice?

Zimbabweans demand that the fundamentals of democratic society, stolen by
ZANU-PF, be returned to us. We are NO DIFFERENT from KENYANS; FROM IVORIANS.
How are we different from the brave people of South Sudan, our African
brothers and sisters in Tunisia, Libya and Egypt? The days of tyrants and
dictators are over.

Individually, when evaluating the possibility of supporting MDC, all of us
here need to reflect on the reality that the African National Congress is
not aligned to ZANU-PF, and has little in common with it.

ZANU- PF’S history in the war of liberation was in Partnership with the PAC.
When President Jacob Zuma, and ANC MK CADRES fought alongside freedom
fighters in the then Rhodesia, President Zuma came under fire with comrades
from ZAPU and their armed wing ZIPRA alongside him. The party of Luthuli,
Mandela, Sisulu and Tambo is not, and can never be equated with ZANU-PF.
ZANU-PF is the party of TRIBAL ETHNIC CLEANSING. Mugabe’s shameful
extermination of thousands of Ndebele’s was a deliberate systematic pogrom
of murder. Only recently Operation MURAMBATSVINA (CLEAN OUT THE FILTH) is
yet another grotesque example of ZANU-PF’S ‘APARTHEID JACK BOOT’ approach to
solving dissent. The similarity displayed by ZANU-PF’S disgusting
destruction of people’s homes, mirrors the myriad actions of the Apartheid
regime’s delinquent behaviour over many years with forced relocations. The
shameful record of ZANU PF obligates every South African to speak out. ZANU
PF constantly violates EVERY tenet, of the remarkable South African
Constitution. We as MDC strive for people’s Constitution that is comparable.

The one strand that I sense is the real fundamental disconnect between the
ANC and ZANU-PF, and which is at the core of the African National Congress
and its Alliance Partners, is its declared commitment to non-racialism and
the pre-eminence the ALLIANCE  gives to HUMAN RIGHTS. We in the MDC, aspire
to be a party, which shows by its decisions and policies, that we are in
step with the vision of Nelson Mandela.

My involvement in the unfolding struggle is to ensure that fundamental HUMAN
RIGHTS be entrenched in every component of our country’s new constitution.
My struggle, and that of many Zimbabweans, demonstrates to
people—irrespective of race—that those whose rights have been ignored, and
trampled upon, are also citizens deserving to have their respect and dignity

Now enough with the ‘gloom and doom’. Believe me; I am totally optimistic
about Zimbabwe and the region’s future. With one caveat though: there is, in
spite of what I have said, no room for any of you as mere spectators and arm
chair critics!  Accordingly, I urge each and every one of you, to genuinely
engage in your own way directly in the fight for Southern Africa’s
DEMOCRATIC FUTURE.  A real life drama is playing out. Everyone is part of
history in the making.

Most of you in this audience are probably sceptical about the suggestion
that Zimbabwe has all the possibilities to become Africa’s ‘Switzerland’.
But if one stops for a moment, and reflects on RWANDA’s dramatic progress
over the past few years, Zimbabwe’s transformation is entirely feasible and

My position heading up our party’s GLOBAL ADVOCACY campaign which embraces
far, far more than FUNDRAISING, has enabled me to meet one-on-one, with some
of the world’s most influential entrepreneurs, financiers and business

I find it simply incredible that LONDON and NEW YORK are more favourably
disposed to Zimbabwe than South Africa. It is not ignorance either: whether
the interest comes from Europe, Canada, or Brazil or Sweden, I have been
warmly received.

Business opportunities will flourish in Zimbabwe as our economy begins to
grow again. One of the world’s outstanding entrepreneurs confirmed to me,
after a personal, on the ground visit to Zimbabwe recently, that unlike most
African countries,  ‘Everything, infrastructure-wise was built— power,
roads, railways, schools, arms, factories, homes. It is always easier to
rebuild than to create from scratch’.  I was deeply impressed with his
observations and advice.

My colleagues in party leadership positions will fast track ethical
investment in every sector of the economy. It is South African business,
those listed construction companies in South Africa, mining houses,
exploration companies, health sector players that stand to benefit, if they
engage properly.  But perhaps significantly, it is individuals, who wish to
re-connect with Africa, that offer our best hope for the future.

With a natural resources boom underway, and likely to be in play for some
time ahead, the fundamentals of SUPPLY and CAPACITY constraints continue to
undermine landlocked Southern Congo, Zimbabwe, Zambia and Botswana’s ability
to effectively leverage the value of their mineral resources.

As long as Zimbabwe, which acts as the LOGISTICS HUB for Central Africa, is
rightfully perceived by the investment community as another SOMALIA in the
making, Botswana, Zambia and the resource-rich Southern Congo, will be
deprived of natural resources growth investment. An efficient rail network
is required in the region. Investment of this scale clearly requires a
measure of stability going forward. This is just one fundamental reality
beyond the scope and capacity of ZANU-PF to understand.

Our Party’s is a broad church.  Its bedrock is the Zimbabwean people, most
of who are recognised throughout Africa as industrious, intelligent,
educated individuals. Unlike many in Africa, we know the STATE cannot offer
sustainable economic growth, employment or career opportunities. The
institutions of the STATE are they HEALTH, EDUCATION, WATER AND SEWERAGE,
RAILWAYS or ROADS, have been ruined by ZANU-PF.

Tremendous business opportunities therefore exist in Zimbabwe for tomorrow’s
dynamic entrepreneurs. EVERYTHING, I repeat EVERYTHING, has to be RE-BUILT.
The goodwill and financial capacity to fund this is available from the world
community—if we get our politics right.

We look for inspiration to our friends in Botswana, South Africa, Zambia and
our SADC partner Mauritius. Why can’t Zimbabwe emulate the development that
is occurring in these countries?

Everyone can be sure of one thing. I speak to you tonight in all honesty,
and filled with excitement of perhaps being able to look on as an elder
figure, while the youngsters, the smart guys in our party, roll up their
shirtsleeves and create a genuinely business-friendly environment in our
beloved country. It is an honour for all Zimbabweans, and a singular reason
for us to be proud, that our MDC Minister of Finance has become respected
around the world. I acknowledge our economy’s modest size but reflect also
on his achievements against all odds.

By helping us in Zimbabwe, to rid ourselves decisively of the scourge of
ZANU-PF—folks it’s in South Africa’s selfish best interests. Here is a
simple illustration of my argument. An MDC-led Zimbabwe will embrace broad
based economic EMPOWERMENT initiatives that clearly sustain and encourage
investment, which are supported by local communities and CIVIL SOCIETY. This
carefully crafted legislation will be the genuine perfect alternative to
POPULIST rhetoric in South Africa for the nationalisation of specific
sectors. Zimbabwe has been down the nationalisation road to ruin and chaos.
The evidence of abject failure is there for all who truly have the best
interests of the region’s people at heart. We in Zimbabwe have seen the
MOVIE, been there, and DONE THAT. Believe me; South Africa does not need to
go down that road.

We yearn to show you all that Zimbabwe can, and with the hard-nosed good
will of others, in time truly become an African Switzerland. We can, as
predicted by MDC President Tsvangirai at the recent MDC party congress in
Bulawayo, transform ourselves into a US$ 100 billion economy within 30

While many among you may be sceptical, perhaps even cynical, Zimbabwe offers
so many opportunities for those who are African in their souls. Those who
wake up in Zimbabwe, and breathe that wonderful fresh, unpolluted air still
believe. ‘Yes, we Can’ overcome the pervasiveness of failure and AFRO
pessimism. Now is the time for action. Zimbabwe’s glass is most definitely
half full and the future is that of opportunity and growth.

I would like to take this opportunity to say with pride MAKOROKOTO,
AMHLOPHE, CONGRATULATIONS, to the MDC for last weekend’s successful
historical third Party Congress. A big thank you to my fellow members for
the confidence they have shown in my unopposed re-election, congratulate my
colleagues on their election and join them in a commitment towards the next

It has been a pleasure to talk to you this evening as an African talking to
my fellow brothers and sisters from South Africa. I say THANK YOU-SIYABONGA-

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