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MDC-T to launch independent inquiry into violence

By Lance Guma
06 May 2011

The MDC led by Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai will launch an independent
inquiry into intra-party violence that marred its build up to the congress
held in Bulawayo last weekend.
Responding to questions sent in by SW Radio Africa listeners on Question
Time, new National Organising Secretary, Nelson Chamisa, said both the
National Council and Congress resolved that “all those people who were
directly or indirectly involved in disturbances are going to be dealt with
in very swift circumstances.”

The run up to the congress was dominated by allegations that certain
candidates were sponsoring mobs to beat up rival candidates and supporters.
Several provincial elections were disrupted in a number of provinces as
rival supporters clashed or argued over who was eligible to vote.

Chamisa conceded that violence “particularly in Bulawayo, in some cases in
Manicaland and partly in Harare” had been a cause of concern. He however
said there had been an ‘over-dramatization’ of the disturbances which he
said were in ‘isolated areas.’ He blamed ‘internal’ and ‘external’ factors
for fuelling the violence in the party.

Of the internal violence he said; “There is an almost certain belief the
party will win the next election and this is why people were so energetic in
their campaigns and everybody is seeing that we have a train that is about
to get to the destination, so they would want to be either part of the
drivers or the passengers. And those who failed to do so would use even
uncouth mechanisms so that they cling onto this moving train.”

In the pressure of the campaigns, Chamisa said ZANU PF found room “to
disrupt our structures, even from the branch level.” He added that as a
result there were MDC-T members who became willing tools of “ZANU PF
shenanigans. Those people we are going to flush out,” he vowed. But he said
that overall ZANU PF had failed to “contaminate our basket of good apples.”

“We want to make sure that this demon of ZANU PF is exorcised from the
structures of the party and the people of the party. The culture of our
movement should be such that we don’t have people who use violence or
anarchy or chaos as a way of organising or transacting political business.
It’s a culture alien to the MDC, it’s a culture that has been imported from
ZANU PF by certain elements.”

Last month journalist Pedzisai Ruhanya wrote an article suggesting that,
“apart from the Mashonaland West provincial congress where the leadership
there was elected in a decent manner, the majority of the MDC electoral
processes and gatherings were marked by acts of violence, alleged vote
rigging and vote buying.”

Much more seriously he alleged the MDC-T disciplinary committee had failed
to bring to book Prosper Mutseyami, the provincial organising secretary of
Manicaland, and former Minister of Home Affairs Giles Mutsekwa, on
allegations of violence against party supporters, including the assault in
2010 of Thamsanga Mahlangu, the party’s national youth chairperson.

“What stinks about the Mutseyami controversy is the persistent allegation
that he is linked to a vigilante group made up of party youths called
“Hunters”. This group commits acts of violence against its opponents. It is
alleged that the Hunters do so at the behest of Mutseyami and his handlers
in the standing committee of the party who avoid being disciplined by the
party,” Ruhanya wrote.

But on Friday SW Radio Africa spoke to a senior party official in Manicaland
who denied the existence of the so-called ‘Hunters’ vigilante group. The
official said Mutseyami and Mutsekwa faced a disciplinary hearing which
absolved them of any blame in acts of violence. This committee we were told
was chaired by Harare lawyer Chris Mhike and had legislators Jessie Majome,
Dr Tichaona Mudzingwa and Tongai Matutu, among others.

“Mutseyami could not have been part of the pre-congress violence or
disruptions as he was on suspension pending this case” the official said.
Mutseyami’s suspension was only lifted a week before the congress he added.
He said accusations against Mutseyami were meant to tarnish his name, as it
was initially thought he would challenge Elias Mudzuri for the National
Organising Secretary’s position.

In the end it was Nelson Chamisa who ran against Mudzuri and won. Meanwhile
Chamisa told our Question Time program that he will try to unite all the
structures and roll out educational programmes to encourage tolerance and a
new ‘genre of politics where we have happy differences.”

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Mahoso to co-chair new constitution media committee

By Tichaona Sibanda
6 May 2011

The country’s reviled ‘media hangman,’ Tafataona Mahoso, has been appointed
co-chair of the thematic committee dealing with the media for a new
constitution in Zimbabwe.

ZANU PF nominated him for the position and he was brought in as the former
ruling party’s specialist technical advisor. To try to counter his
influence, the MDC formations brought in their own ‘top dogs’ to co-chair
this committee.

The MDC-T appointed their combative spokesman for Manicaland, Pishai
Muchauraya, while the MDC-N has the fearless Nhlanhla Dube, the new party
spokesman, as their man on the committee.

But Mahoso’s appointment to the media thematic committee will be a major
disappointment for the journalist fraternity in the country, and for anyone
who believes in media freedom.

The controversial and vitriolic former chairman of the Media and Information
Commission (MIC) will have a major say on what is to be contained in the new
constitution, as far as media issues are concerned.

Despite his repeated denials that he’s a professional who is not directly
involved with ZANU PF politics or structures, this latest appointment once
again exposes him as a card carrying member of Robert Mugabe’s party.

Journalists who spoke to us said Mahoso should also relinquish his position
as chief executive officer of the secretariat of the Zimbabwe Media
Commission. The ZMC secretariat is in charge of receiving and processing
applications from journalists and media houses seeking registration with the

After his appointment to head the ZMC secretariat Foster Dongozi, the
secretary-general of the Zimbabwe Union of Journalists, said they were very
uncomfortable with Mahoso’s appointment.

‘He’s the reason why so many journalists in Zimbabwe are out of employment.
To bring him back is like rubbing salt into a wound because the mayhem he
caused to scribes is still fresh in many people’s minds,’ Dongozi said.

‘To be honest, I don’t have a problem with Mahoso as a person, but he should
not take us for fools when he tries to distance himself from ZANU PF
structures. All thematic areas have co-chairpersons or specialist technical
advisors, and each committee has three nominated by each political party. So
if Mahoso is on that committee on a ZANU PF ticket, then he is a ZANU PF
cadre,’ a journalist in Harare said.

Others have condemned his involvement with the drafting of a new
constitution, especially on media, because of his legacy as a proponent of a
shackled media industry.

During his tenure as chairman of the MIC, Mahoso presided over the closure
of at least four newspapers, the deportation of several foreign
correspondents and the arbitrary arrest, detention and malicious prosecution
of dozens of local journalists, editors and publishers.

In 2009 he was controversially appointed to chair the Broadcasting Authority
of Zimbabwe (BAZ) but Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai declared the
appointment null and avoid.

He has been at the forefront of ZANU PF’s stringent laws to police the media
industry, forcing several newspapers, including the popular Daily News, to
close in 2003.

Controls over radio and television have been even stricter.

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US Ambassador dismisses ZPF anti-sanctions petition

By Tererai Karimakwenda
06 May, 2011

The Mugabe regime’s attempt to “petition” their way out of targeted
sanctions imposed by the E.U. and other Western powers received another blow
this week. Charles Ray, the United States Ambassador to Zimbabwe, dismissed
a petition being circulated by ZANU PF calling for the removal of the
restrictive measures and said the Zim authorities must show good faith
through their actions first before the restrictions are removed.

Under increasing pressure to end violence and intimidation of innocent
civilians and activists, ZANU PF has instead been forcing people to sign the
petition with the hope of collecting two million-signatures. Their plan is
to use the petition to influence foreign officials who imposed the

But Ambassador Ray this week put a damper on ZANU PF’s ambitions. Speaking
at a belated World Press Freedom Day celebration in Gweru, the Ambassador
reportedly said the petition would achieve nothing.

Ray is quoted as saying: “You have to consider why the targeted sanctions
were put in place first then look at what has been done to address the
causes. There has to be action taken by the government to show good faith
before people can start to talk about lifting the targeted sanctions”.

Ambassador Ray also defended independent radio stations broadcasting to
Zimbabwe from abroad, which ZANU PF officials have labeled as illegal,
“pirate” stations, calling for their closure. The Ambassador said there was
nothing illegal about them and the U.S. supports freedom of information and
freedom of the media.

Reports quoted him as saying: “Just because you don’t like the message
coming from a radio station doesn’t make it a pirate radio station.”

Ray’s comments came in the same week that a SADC delegation joined ZANU PF
in its efforts to get the restrictive measures lifted. Lindiwe Zulu, the
international relations advisor for South African President Jacob Zuma,
travelled with the delegation to key Western cities, campaigning for the
sanctions removal.

The SADC delegation is also selling ZANU PF’s claim that the restrictions
are blocking Zimbabwe’s economic development.

Civic groups and rights activists in Zimbabwe and South Africa have strongly
criticized SADC for taking on this role, instead of focusing on the key
reforms that are so urgently needed.


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Zim Major General Rugeje Disrupts University Lessons

06/05/2011 16:57:00

Masvingo, May 06, 2011 - Zimbabwe’s army officer, Major General, Engelbert
Rugeje, has been accused of disrupting lessons at Masvingo’s Great Zimbabwe
University (GZU) by forcing students and lecturers to skip lessons and
attend his anti-sanctions seminars.

Rugeje, who is the Chief of Staff of the Zimbabwe national Army (ZNA),
stands accused of employing a ‘mafia-style’ programme to force students to
participate in the anti-sanctions programme that was launched by President
Robert Mugabe.

Allegations against Rugeje are contained in a report released by the
Community Tolerance for Reconciliation and Development (COTRAD), a local
research institute advocating for the establishment of a Truth Telling
Commission in Zimbabwe.

“The custodians of the violence culture have employed a mafia style
demonstration in a bid to force even students who posses national identity
cards to sign the petition.

“At Great Zimbabwe University brigadier Rugeje had a series of seminars with
the students forcing them to sign the petition which is clear violation of
the co curricular of the students,” reads in part the COTRAD report.

Maj-Gen Rugeje could not be reached for comment on allegations leveled
against him.

Rugeje is one of the top army commanders who have been reportedly deployed
countrywide to direct campaign for Zanu-PF.

The COTRAD report adds that Zanu (PF) youths were being coerced by senior
army officers and party officials to threaten Masvingo villagers to
participate in the anti-sanctions campaign.

“This is disturbing news youths are being manipulated to spread violence and
threaten villagers on impending catastrophes if they shun and snub these

“In Jerera four villagers namely Brighton Machivana (22), Titos Muhunde
(26), David Madzimure (29) and Prosper Nyamudya were beaten and threatened
with death penalty after refusing to sign the anti sanctions petition,” the
COTRAD report added.

President Robert Mugabe who launched the anti-sanctions campaign in Harare
recently has said over 2 million signatures are required from Zimbabweans to
push for the lifting of the embargoes from the West and the European Union.

Mugabe has said the anti-sanctions campaign is a war against the West and
the European Union.

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Zesa fails to import power

By Oscar Nkala
Friday, 06 May 2011 11:49

BULAWAYO - Zimbabwean businesses will continue to suffer from power
shortages in the short–term as the country is unable to import power from
the region as the entire southern Africa faces severe shortages, a top
Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority (Zesa) official has said.

John Chifamba, the newly appointed Zesa chief executive, told a Zimbabwe
International Trade Fair (ZITF) business conference this week that internal
power generating capacity also remained hamstrung by lack of funds to revive
and maintain existing plants as well as equipment, since Zimbabwe began
experiencing a steady decline in 1992.

“Our own local power supply and generation capacity has actually slumped
over the years. This is a sign that there has not been much investment
taking place in terms of building new power generation capacity. We have
actually lost capacity because we do not have enough funds to maintain the
existing generation plants and equipment,” he said.

Industry executives had earlier attacked Zesa for sabotaging the stuttering
economic revival programme by failing to supply enough power, despite a new
regime of power tariffs.

Sectors that have been mainly affected, include agricultural, manufacturing,
mining and other sub – economic sectors.

Chifamba said local power demand is suppressed at the moment because Zesa
does not have the supply to meet it.

He said while the power utility was able to cover up the supply gap by
importing from its neighbours in the past that was no longer possible as all
countries in the region face power shortages.

“We used to import our way out of the problems by sourcing power from our
neighbours, but that is no longer possible. There is not a single country
with enough power in the region except perhaps, Mozambique, which still has
power supplies contracted to South Africa. We do get opportunistic purchases
now and again but the power is supplied on a non-firm basis, which means
there is no guarantee. We get it as and when it is available and that is not
good for industry,” the Zesa boss said.

He said the power supply fluctuation also gives an idea of how much the
economy has shrunk, drawing a comparison between 1997 when Zesa sold 11
billion units of power to industry and 2011 when it is selling only 8,5
billion units.

“This give you an idea of how much the economy has shrunk. After
dollarisation, our figures show that the manufacturing sector has shrunk
while there has been activity in the commercial sector. That is because the
supply situation remains our major constraint,” said Chifamba.

He said Zesa, which has not commissioned any new power stations since Hwange
in 1998, was working on plans to boost production at Hwange and Kariba power
station, while reviving Bulawayo, Munyati and Harare thermal power stations
to augment supplies.

He added that they are also coming up with various demand-side management
project, which would see the nationwide replacement of incandescent light
bulbs with flourescent lights which save power.

He said 6 million bulbs will be given out freely to consumers, starting in
the main cities of Harare and Bulawayo.

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Many Suburbs of Harare Without Water Due to Electric Power Cuts

Combined Harare Residents Association Chairman Simbarashe Moyo told VOA
Studio 7 reporter Sithandekile Mhlanga that most Harare suburbs have been
without water for two to seven days

Sithandekile Mhlanga | Washington  05 May 2011

Many suburbs of the Zimbabwean capital of Harare were without water Thursday
due to an expansion of power cuts by the Zimbabwe Electricity Supply
Authority which is performing maintenance on its Kariba Dam Power Station,
Harare City Council officials said.

ZESA has confirmed that water supplies were disrupted due to power cuts, but
said it is not solely to blame for the latest crisis as many pipes in the
capital have serious leaks.

Combined Harare Residents Association Chairman Simbarashe Moyo told VOA
Studio 7 reporter Sithandekile Mhlanga that most Harare suburbs have been
without water for two to seven days and that angry residents are threatening
to stage demonstrations.

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ZITF hit by low turnout

Impressive ... Industry Minister Welshman Ncube admires one of the products
on display
06/05/2011 00:00:00
    by Lunga Sibanda

THE Zimbabwe International Trade Fair underway in Bulawayo has been by low
turnout with members of the public expressing concern over the high fees
being charged for entry into the exhibition park.

The Fair, an annual event, was opened to the public on Thursday but turn-out
was remarkably low although an improvement was expected on Friday for the
event’s official opening by Africa Import and Export Ban president

A survey carried out at the Fair revealed that most of the people who
visited Fair grounds were impressed by the quality of products on display.

James Gabaza from Mzilikazi suburb said he noticed an improvement in the
number of exhibitors at this year's event.

"I have seen a significant improvement this year. Last year there were huge
gaps in hall three and four as some of the cubicles were not occupied,
however this year the gaps have been filled by exhibitors.

"Today (Thursday) is bit quiet because there are fewer people but we are
sure that Friday will be much better as people might want attend the
official opening," Gabaza said.

He added that the admission fees for the fair might have discouraged some
people from coming as it was unaffordable.

"The problem some people might have incurred is that the opening of the fair
was close to the opening of schools and some people have opted to save their
money for the school fees instead," he said.

Children who visited the fair were also impressed by the displays with most
visiting the police and Zimbabwe Defence Forces (ZDF) stands.

"The police displays were very educative, we were fascinated by their skills
they use in controlling animals. The cow exhibits are also interesting, the
whole fair brings various elements together in one place and we can receive
the education from one place," said Ndumiso Sinyoro from Southwold.

Meanwhile exhibitors also said they had been encouraged by the number of
inquiries they were getting inquiries from potential clients.

"We have been receiving many inquiries from potential clients since the Fair
started and now that the fair open to the public we are optimistic of good
business," said Clarion insurance company underwriter, Mkhululi Nkomo.

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Monday deadline for Zim miners

by Tobias Manyuchi     Friday 06 May 2011

HARARE -- Foreign owned mines have until Monday to submit indigenisation
proposals to government, as trading on the local bourse has taken a
battering over the past month on the back of the controversial plan to force
the mining firms to sell controlling stake to indigenous Zimbabweans.

Most mines have adopted a wait and see attitude putting expansion as well as
retooling plans on hold until there is clarity on how the empowerment plan
will be executed.

In March, government gave all foreign owned mines a six-month deadline -- 
which expires in September  -- to sale their majority stake to locals.

Firms that fail to disclose their share-transfer plans within the stipulated
period face prosecution, according to the empowerment regulations that have
thrown the lucrative mining sector into turmoil and split the unity
government of President Robert Mugabe and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai.

Zimplats, the country's largest platinum miner and foreign investor, said it
was currently reviewing the regulations.

"The government gazetted new indigenisation and economic empowerment
regulations which compels all non-indigenous mining businesses to submit
their plans to the Minister by 9th May 2011," Zimplats said in a circular to
shareholders in its quarterly report.

"The operating subsidiary is currently reviewing the regulations," said the
miner that also reported a drop in production and sales volumes in the first
quarter that accounted for a 12 percent fall in operating profit.

Executives at several other foreign-owned mining groups interviewed by
ZimOnline also expressed worry about the future of the mining sector
especially if the government proceeds with legal action against firms that
do not submit empowerment plans by next Monday.

"For now, we are just waiting to see what would happen. We have even stopped
buying some of the heavy equipment which had made indications that we want
to buy," said one executive, who did not want to be named. "We do not know
what would happen, it may be politicking but we can’t risk investors funds."

The Chamber of Mines has proposed trimming the indigenisation quota to a
minimum of 26 percent with the balance of 25 percent made up of credits
arising from corporate social investments such as roads, schools, dams and
hospitals that most major mining firms have over the years built for local

The Chamber says it backs indigenisation of the mining sector but says any
empowerment plan must seek to achieve the twin objectives of growth and
development of the industry plus broad-based economic empowerment

The government has not responded to the Chamber’s recommendations made more
than three weeks ago.

Meanwhile, according to the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange figures, value of shares
that exchanged hands fell to US$35 497 749.67 last month from US$36 374
501.59 recorded in March as the bourse took a knock on the back of the
government empowerment laws.

The empowerment plans are being pushed by Mugabe’s wing of the coalition
government and opposed by Tsvangirai’s MDC party that favours a gradual
approach, fearing that wholesale indigenisation could wreck a fragile

The International Monetary Fund has warned that the empowerment programme
could damage Zimbabwe’s impressive but still fragile economic recovery after
a decade of acute recession. -- ZimOnline

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Chiadzwa families demand thousands for forced relocation

By Alex Bell
06 May 2011

The remaining 40 families still living at the Chiadzwa diamond fields are
demanding US$50,000 as compensation before they are forced to relocate, to
make way for more mining endeavors.

About 20 families have already been relocated to Arda Transau in the Odzi
area, with mining activities at Chiadzwa rapidly growing. But the remaining
families have now said they will not be forced to move until they are paid

The Chiadzwa Community Development Trust (CCDT), which was formed to protect
the rights of the Chiadzwa families, has said that it has been discussing
the issue with the government and the mining companies that have taken over
the area. The CCDT’s chairman, Malvern Mudiwa, is quoted as saying the group
has arranged for the demanded money to be used buy shares in the mining
companies, saying some people might “abuse” the money they would have

Centre for Research and Development director Farai Maguwu told SW Radio
Africa on Friday that the demands by the villagers are justified, saying
“they should be asking for more.”

“It’s very much justified and it’s also in line with the minimum standards
for relocation set out by the United Nations. First there must be prior
consent for the people to be moved, secondly, there must be adequate
preparation in the relocation site before people are moved and thirdly there
must be compensation because normal life is disrupted when people are being
moved and cultural values are being violated,” said Maguwu.

He added: “There is nothing wrong with the families getting $50,000 as
compared to the billions of dollars that the companies will be making.”

Maguwu continued that promises made by the government should be taken
lightly, explaining that “the implementation of plans by the government
usually fall through and people lose out.” He said that “the government
appears to be more interested in respecting the interests of its investors
over the interests of its people.”
Civic society has been calling for legislation to be passed through
Parliament, to ensure that profits from Chiadzwa’s diamonds will directly
benefit the local people. But Maguwu said such legislation “is unlikely to

“Even if there were beneficiaries it would all be based on party
 allegiance,” Maguwu said. “What is needed is political will to ensure that
the residents benefit, but political will is the main thing lacking in the
diamond industry.”

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Zimbabwe Gov't Sets Panel to Investigate Alleged De Beers Diamond Fraud

Mines Minister Obert Mpofu and Deputy Mines Minister Gift Chimanikire say
the South African-based diamond giant took rough stones from Marange but
never declared their value to the state when it held a concession there

Sandra Nyaira | Washington  05 May 2011

In a move some observers are calling an attempt to divert attention from
alleged looting of diamonds from Zimbabwe's controversial Marange field, the
Harare government has set up an expert panel to investigate alleged fraud by
De Beers in years past.

Mines Minister Obert Mpofu and Deputy Mines Minister Gift Chimanikire say
the South African-based diamond giant took rough stones from Marange but
never declared their value to the state when it held prospecting rights for
the alluvial field for 10 years.

No De Beers representative could be reached for comment, but the company has
said in the past that it found no diamonds in Marange, in eastern Manicaland

Authorities in Harare say De Beers told them it was looking for Kimberlite
pipe diamonds which require deeper digging than alluvial diamonds, raising
questions as to how the giant could have missed stones that local panners
extract with hoes and hands.

Mpofu maintained that it is common knowledge in the diamond market that
rough stones from Marange were being sold even before the government revoked
a concession held by African Consolidated Resources of London in 2006 and
took over the field.

ACR took up the mining claims for Marange soon after De Beers told Harare it
did not intend to renew its concession. ACR has sued Harare and the case
remains in court.

Chimanikire said Harare will take De Beers to court if the report by its new
expert panel confirms Harare’s suspicions based on another earlier report.

Political analyst Charles Mangongera said the government’s launch of a probe
into the De Beers role in Marange may be intended to distract attention from
present operations in Marange by shadowy firms working in joint partnerships
with Harare.

Human rights organizations have alleged serious abuses by Zimbabwean
military units in control of Marange, and others say millions in diamonds
are being smuggled out to the enrichment of a clique with close ties to
President Robert Mugabe's ZANU-PF party.

The Kimberley Process Certification Scheme has attempted to establish
monitoring of the development activity in Marange including the treatment of
local residents, but the watchdog group is deeply divided over the
appropriate supervisory role.

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External radio stations not illegal: Charles Ray

By Staff Writer
Friday, 06 May 2011 15:36

HARARE - US ambassador Charles Ray has defended the external radio stations
broadcasting into Zimbabwe which President Robert Mugabe and his allies say
are funded by the West to topple him.

Ray said the dislike of broadcast messages from the so-called pirate radio
stations by some sections of government, an inference to Zanu PF, does not
make them illegal because they are not operating from Zimbabwean soil.

“Just because some people in government do not like messages that are
broadcast by the so-called pirate radio stations does not make them illegal.

“Pirate implies illegal and these stations are located elsewhere outside
Zimbabwe and their legality is governed by broadcasting laws in those

“Botswana hosts facilities used by Voice of America’s Studio 7 and if the
radio was pirate, that country would not allow it operate on their soil,”
Ray told journalists at Gweru Press Club during Press Freedom Day
commemorations on Wednesday.

Studio 7 broadcasts into Zimbabwe from Washington daily and is manned by
local journalists who were either hounded out of the country or fled the
political persecution. It is one of three external radio stations
broadcasting into the country.

The other two are Radio Voice of the People (VOP) and Short Wave RadioAfrica
(SW Radio) which broadcasts from London.

Zanu PF negotiators in the inclusive government insist Studio 7, SW Radio
and Radio VOP are illegal and should be closed.

Mugabe wants the broadcasts stopped before he can commit to reforms in the
broadcasting services sector where the ZBC enjoys a monopoly.

Ironically, most Zanu PF officials willingly grant interviews to Studio 7
ahead of the local independent Press.

Earlier on, Ray officially opened an American Resource centre at the Gweru
Memorial library, the first if its kind in the city.

He urged the Gweru community to interact with American culture and history
through the centre as well as utilising the internet facilities to connect
with the global village.

The American Embassador also presented five Gweru students scholarships to
study at American colleges and universities

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NewsDay journalists searched as media intimidation continues

By Alex Bell
06 May 2011

A group of journalists from the NewsDay independent newspaper were subjected
to a search by state security agents on Thursday, which the paper said was

Calling it a “suspicious” search, NewsDay explained that the journalists
were stopped on their way from lunch at St Lucia Park in Harare on Thursday.

Among the searched journalists were NewsDay Editor Brian Mangwende and the
paper’s political editor Kelvin Jakachira, along with former Zimbabwe
Broadcasting Corporation news editor Patrice Makova. The team had been
invited to lunch by officials from the Centre for Public Accountability,
where the NGO was holding a workshop for journalists.

The newspaper said a group of six known State agents “made an abrupt move
and stopped Mangwende and Makova’s vehicles for over 30 minutes, but would
not say why.” The State agents proceeded to thoroughly search the vehicles,
claiming it was a routine exercise.

“We are only doing our job,” one of the State security agents said.

NewsDay’s Mangwende meanwhile said that “such acts do not augur well for
their organisation.”

“I wonder whether their superiors are aware of what their operatives are
really up to. What did they achieve by searching my vehicle on my way from
lunch for goodness sake?” Mangwende is quoted as saying by his paper.

The state agents ordered everyone to write down their names, registration
numbers of their vehicles, their company’s physical addresses, the motive
for their visit to the park and the time they arrived.

Meanwhile, NewsDay reported that the action by the operatives “reawakened
fears” at the newspaper, because it followed the recent raid at its offices.
Mangwende’s laptop was stolen together with the computer hard drives of
senior editorial staff, and it is widely believed that the raid was planned
as part of a worsening crackdown against the independent media.

NewsDay said: “Fear abounds that the agents were keeping a close eye on
journalists and their movements.”

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White Farmers Refuse To Buy Cattle Owned By Zanu (PF) Official

06/05/2011 16:56:00

Gwanda, May 06, 2011 – Cattle buyers mainly white commercial farmers from
Gwanda and Bulawayo refused to buy cattle belonging to former Matabeleland
South Zanu (PF) chairman Rido Mpofu at a Cattle Sale here on Thursday.

Mpofu is allegedly desperate for cash as workers at his Sunrise Restaurant
have gone for two months without pay.

“He desperately needs cash to pay his workers who are threatening to take
him to court because they have gone without pay for two months”, said a

Mpofu had to transport back eight herds of cattle to his farm after
commercial farmers and butcher men showed no interest in his beasts despite
them being of a high quality.

They accused the former Gwanda Mayor of wanting to reap were he did not sow.

“These are stolen cattle how can he demand such a high price for animals he
grabbed?”, said one white farmer.

Zanu (PF) officials including Mpofu stand accused of grabbing properties
belonging to white farmers at the height of Zimbabwe’s chaotic land
resettlement over a decade ago.

Many of them have since amassed unparalleled wealth since the seizure of
farms in 2000.

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Chiyangwa splits Zanu PF

By Reagan Mashavave, Staff Writer
Friday, 06 May 2011 14:39

HARARE - Faction-riddled Zanu PF and its beleaguered presidium face further
fracturing over the inexplicable push by some party heavyweights to have
controversial businessman Phillip Chiyangwa bounce back as provincial
chairman for the troubled Mashonaland West province.

At the same time that Chiyangwa’s supporters are fighting to have him
re-admitted to the commanding heights of the party, it has emerged that
seven other people from different factions of the party are interested in
the post.

Already, the two main factions in Zanu PF — one allegedly led by vice
president Joice Mujuru and her husband Solomon, and the other by Defence
Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa — are reported to be sponsoring their own
candidates for the position.

The Daily News was told yesterday how top Zanu PF officials were now engaged
in “a bruising fight” over the issue, amid reports that there has been a
flurry of letters and representations to party leader President Robert
Mugabe, with many heavyweights trying to block Chiyangwa’s re-ascendancy to
the powerful position.

Chiyangwa’s interest in the provincial chairman comes seven years after he
was fired from the same position following sensational allegations that he
had spied for the South African government.

Chiyangwa, a former police officer during the Rhodesian era, was
subsequently arrested, although he was never convicted for the alleged
crime. His co-accused were given lengthy jail sentences.

As a precursor to Chiyangwa being re-appointed to the position, the maverick
businessman has also since been readmitted to the membership of the divided
party, after Mashonaland West province wrote a letter to the party’s head
office seeking his readmission.

Chiyangwa and Zanu PF secretary for administration Didymus Mutasa confirmed
this fact yesterday.

Mugabe is said to be in a dilemma over the Chiyangwa riddle, as the
octogenarian reportedly no longer trusts him since the spy scandal was

However, Mugabe is apparently not sure who to support, given that both the
Mnangagwa and the Mujuru camps have taken a keen interest in the post.

Chiyangwa is seen as being more inclined towards the more radical Mnangagwa
camp, which is said to enjoy the support of securocrats.

“The fight for control of Mashonaland West has escalated to national level
as it has been turned into a power scramble between the factions in Zanu PF.
What is even more intriguing is that there are several politburo members who
are supporting their people and want to impose them on the people of the

“The fight to replace President Mugabe is clearly evident in this battle for
control of Mashonaland West. The game is becoming dirty everyday, with
people approaching President Mugabe while others have even gone to the
extent of soliciting for support from service chiefs."

“In many senses, the coming in of Chiyangwa has worsened an already volatile
situation because he is said to be unpopular. People in the province are
saying they don’t want someone who was arrested for spying and who was a
police officer in Rhodesia to lead them. The game will become dirtier and
President Mugabe will have to come in and save the situation,” said a top
Zanu PF source.

Besides Chiyangwa, several other candidates in the province have showed
interest in the post, which was left vacant following the death of acting
chairman Robert Sikanyika two weeks ago.

The others who are said to be interested in the position are Reuben
Marumahoko, Walter Chidhakwa, Faber Chidarikire, Christopher Shumba, Bright
Matonga, Themba Mliswa and John Mafa who was deposed from the same position

Mafa has been appealing to Zanu PF’s national disciplinary committee to
reverse his dismissal from the chairperson’s position.

Zanu PF’s political commissar Webster Shamu is reportedly pushing for
Marumahoko to lead the province, while politburo member Ignatius Chombo is
said to be supporting Chidhakwa. This could not be verified last night.

However, Mutasa rubbished reports that there were attempts to impose
Chiyangwa on the people saying everyone interested in the post would be
allowed to contest.

“Mashonaland West province lobbied for Phillip Chiyangwa to be retained in
the party,” Mutasa said. “The normal thing is that people nominate the
candidate through an election. Everyone from the party in the province will
vote. No-one will impose candidates. Card carrying people will vote like in
any other province. Why should it be different for Mashonaland West
province?” he said.

When contacted for comment, Chiyangwa said he could neither deny nor confirm
his interest in the post.

“I just got my letter of being rehabilitated into the party today (Thursday)
and I haven’t set foot in Mashonaland West. I am just reading from the
newspapers about my candidature and of course I am excited and enthused that
people are still interested in me seven years down the line,” Chiyangwa

Chiyangwa could not take questions on claims that some party stalwarts in
the province still regard him as a ‘sell-out’ and that his candidature has
divided Zanu PF.  He said he did not want to talk about the past.

He also denied claims doing the rounds that he was splashing money to ensure
that he wins the post “at all costs.”

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Councillor hauls Chombo to court

By Xolisani Ncube, Staff Writer
Friday, 06 May 2011 15:32

HARARE - Dismissed MDC councillor Warship Dumba has dragged Local Government
Minister Ignatius Chombo to court challenging his controversial dismissal by
the minister.

In his court papers, Dumba, a fiery elected councillor for Mount Pleasant,
wants the High Court to reverse Chombo’s decision to fire him saying the
committee that investigated him was improperly constituted.

He alleges that the committee was biased because it was appointed by Chombo
whom he and other councillors investigated and implicated in the illegal
acquisition of vast tracts of prime land in Harare.

Dumba cited Chombo as the first respondent while the City of Harare is cited
as a second respondent.

“The first respondent failed to observe the principles of natural justice
which require that any determination against me must be undertaken by an
impartial authority able to undertake and make a fair inquiry and
determination,” read the court papers.

The fight between the two started soon after the Harare city council started
investigating land deals that were executed soon after the 2008 elections.

Dumba chaired the committee which implicated Chombo along with Zanu PF
politician Phillip Chiyangwa and a police report was made but up to this day
no arrests have been made.

Last week, councillors petitioned the attorney general Johannes Tomana to
institute investigations against Chombo but the AG said he had not seen the

He said the charges levelled against Chombo were serious and did not require
to be dealt with politically or in the media.

“Generally, I can’t confirm to you whether we are investigating any person
or not because if I say we are investigating him and he flees we would have
not helped anyone, we are not politicians and we act professionally. In any
case I have not seen the petition you are talking about,” said Tomana.

Chombo is alleged to have bought several residential stands in Harare
without going to tender and he is also alleged to have abused his office get
some land from council.

Recently, he was alleged to be in the process of transferring one of the
disputed properties from one of his company Harvest –Net to the state citing
security reasons.

Dumba was suspended from council in November 2010 after he made a report to
the police against Chombo alleging that he had deprived council of property
worth millions of dollars.

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MDC-T Pushes For Diaspora Vote

06/05/2011 11:40:00

Harare, May 06, 2011 – Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s faction of the
Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) is pushing South African President
Jacob Zuma, the Southern African Development Community (SADC) facilitator in
the Zimbabwe crisis, to allow the Diaspora to vote in the next elections now
thought to be held in 2013.

About three million Zimbabweans are estimated to be in the Diaspora after
they fled an economic and political meltdown between 2000 and 2010. Over 250
000 have been given work permits in South Africa this year after the country
formally started registering illegal Zimbabweans.

Zanu (PF)'s legal guru, Emmerson Mnangagwa, who is thought to be vying to
succeed President Robert Mugabe and is reportedly, working behind the scene
to maintain his status as the heir apparent has told the state media that
his party would not allow the Diaspora to vote.

He said restrictive measures imposed by the European Union (EU) and other
Western powers on Mugabe and his inner circle should be unconditionally
removed before people in the Diaspora were allowed to vote. Mnangagwa added
that due to the targeted sanctions the Zanu (PF) leadership was unable to
travel to Europe and the United States to canvas for support from the
Diaspora yet Prime Minister Tsvangirai and his leadership could crisis-cross
the globe to campaign.

But in a hard-hitting statement to the media on Friday, Prime Tsvangirai’s
party charged 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.

Tsvangirai said this as Zanu (PF) and MDC negotiators exchanged notes with
the SADC facilitation team in Cape Town.

The MDC-T said Zanu (PF) Mnangagwa should know that the issue of restrictive
measures and the Diaspora vote were not linked in anyway and therefore could
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
right to a vote can never be treated as a privilege, and cannot be bargained
for,” read part of the MDC-T statement to the media.

“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,” said the MDC-T.

“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.”

“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,” it added.

Meanwhile, the National Constitutional Assembly (NCA) has said that
Zimbabweans must only go for elections once a new constitution has been
passed in the country. NCA chairperson was speaking to villager in Kanyemba
district in their 'take charge' campaign that is meant to teach people about
constitutional matters.

‘’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,’’ Madhuku said.

NCA spokesperson, Madock Chivasa said people should "after the draft is out
it is 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.’’

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Zim's trade balance likely to fall

By Roadwin Chirara, Staff Writer
Friday, 06 May 2011 16:00

HARARE - Zimbabwe's the trade balance is likely to deteriorate by more than
three percent of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2011, the International
Monetary Fund (IMF) has said.

According to the Bretton Woods institution’s regional economic outlook
sub-Saharan Africa, global commodity price movements will have a negative
effect on the country’s trade account.

“In terms of the impact on external accounts, work done for the World
Economic Outlook suggests that commodity price movements observed through
December 2010 are likely to affect adversely the trade accounts of a number
of countries in the region fairly significantly,” the report said.

However, the global financier said increased capital inflows in the country
were being driven by the country’s vast platinum reserves and where most of
the funds were being channelled.

“FDI is mainly driven by one large investment in platinum production,” the
report said.

“Higher commodity prices — copper in Zambia and gold and platinum in
Zimbabwe — were expected to boost economic conditions and may have
contributed to higher inflows to these countries,” it added.

The report said the introduction of stabilising measures such as the
government of national unity and a multi-currency system had encouraged a
surge in funds targeting the stock exchange.

“As a result, portfolio flows have resumed, and market capitalisation
rapidly increased from US$1,5 billion in February 2009 to US$5 billion in
October 2010,” the IMF said.

“All categories of capital inflows have surged, and have exceeded pre-crisis

“Following the implementation of an economic stabilisation programme in
2009, Zimbabwe has recorded a sharp increase in portfolio equity investment
and foreign currency deposit inflows,” according to the report.

The report also said despite several countries still struggling in the
aftermath of the global economic downturn, Zimbabwe had put in place sound
macroeconomic policies in place.
“Macroeconomic policies have improved in a number of countries, most notably
Zimbabwe,” according to the IMF fundings.
External borrowings by countries, according to the IMF, partly reflect the
need to finance current account deficits.
“For instance, Zimbabwe relies on capital flows to finance current account
deficits of about 20 percent of GDP and support liquidity in the fully
dollarised banking system,” the report said.
The report said banking systems in several countries were strained by the
global slowdown or by domestic factors which were compounded further
tightening of banking regulations in the case of Zimbabwe.
“In some countries, such as Zimbabwe, a tightening of banking regulations
for prudential reasons correspondingly may constrain net capital inflows,”
according to the IMF.
The Fund reiterated its forecast of 5,5 percent GDP growth for the region in
2011 and 5,9 percent in 2012, with low-income countries making up the bulk
of the continent’s fastest recovering regions.
With an average oil price of U$107 per barrel this year compared to US$80
per barrel in 2010, an increase of more than a third which would result in
higher import bills for most countries in the region, it said.

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Harare arts festival attracts thousands of arts lovers

Friday, 06 May 2011


HIFA is a six-day annual event that showcases Zimbabwean, regional and
international arts and culture in a comprehensive festival programme of
theatre, dance, music, circus, street performance, spoken-word and visual

Even Zimbabwe's political and economic situation was not a hindrance to the
arts lovers across the world, including this writer, who joined the
pilgrimage to Harare Gardens for the 2011 festival themed, The Engagement

Tens of thousands of festinos (festival tourists) who descended on Harare
resembled one huge community of mixed races - black and white.  They arrived
mostly in colourful attires of red, gold green and black, bearing the
occasional Che Guevara portrait and five-leafed plant pattern as well as
berets and turbans. Flat shoes - mostly Converse - dreadlocked unshaven
rugged-looking males, and women in long African print skirts, various hats
and colourful beads.  A united nation of arts lovers ready to "engage" with
a comprehensive line-up of artists from across the globe.

Every year the organisers come up with a different theme for the event,
which serves as an "inspirational tool for the creative community, a message
to engender excitement and anticipation about the upcoming festival in the
festival-goers, a useful marketing hook for the festival's investors who via
financial injections, provision of goods and services, or a combination of
both, help to make the festival possible".  According to the festival press
release, the 2011 theme, Engagement Party, "carries a message of becoming
engaged across all sectors of society, all belief systems, viewpoints, of
coming together, setting aside differences, and engaging fully and
completely with one another".  The theme also describes the carnival
celebration of art and life that HIFA brings to Harare.

Tens of artists performed one after the other for six days of inspiring
spectacles of art. From over 15 platforms revellers were treated to a
week-long rousing display of art forms.  Art being art, it was therefore not
surprising that some of the performances were reported to have "ruffled the
feathers of the powers that be".  The Standard newspaper reported that the
opening show of the festival on Telecel Main Stage carried some powerful
political undertones that led to the "arrest and release of the HIFA
organising team without any charges".  The play titled Treasure was a tale
of political, social and economic factors that shaped interactions in
various Zimbabwean communities in the recent years. It explored in a lighter
form, the issues of looting by respected public officials, their greed as
well as police brutality.  In a country that such tales are only told in
whispers behind closed doors it was therefore, not a surprise when festival
managers were reportedly "arrested".  The HIFA founder and artistic
director, Manuel Bagorro was, however, quick to deny the "arrest" saying
their "meeting at the Harare Provincial Police Headquarters was a regular
liaison with law enforcement authorities where check-box reviewing was done
in terms of the various types of paperwork that has to be submitted by any
promoter when holding a show."

One of the headline acts, Nneka, Nigerian-German born young female artist,
performing on Day Five at Telecel Main Stage also touched a raw nerve with
her satirical VIP (Vagabounds In Power) song, which generally mocks the
corrupt officers and multinational companies.  The talented singer and
guitarist gave an inspiring oration preceding her song, on how most revered
leaders are corrupt and are failing the ordinary man.  The crowd was stunned
when she loudly stated, "even here they are corrupt" (referring to Harare).
With her beautiful Nigerian-Jamaican accent and an excellent way of playing
with words she later talked herself out of being seen as pushing any
political agenda.

The other ruffling of the feathers was at Hivos Poetry Cafe where a number
of talented poets used the word to voice their discontent with the "grease"
authorities "that drive big black executive cars on dirt potholed streets".

Hivos Poetry Cafe featured spoken word practitioners from Zimbabwe, Malawi,
Botswana (TJ Dema), South Africa, Kenya, Ghana and guest artist, Morten
Sondergaard from Denmark. At Global Quarter Craft and Design Centre artists
showcased and sold a wide range of homemade gifts, toys, home d�cor,
accessories and fashion items that provided festinos with perfect souvenirs.

Since most of the acts were performed in an outdoor area, the festival was
nearly spoiled by showers that poured over Harare on Friday and Saturday.
The lovers of art were nonetheless still undeterred by the downpour as they
patiently waited for the rain to stop and continue with their indulgence in
the arts spectacle.

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Zimbabwe's top legal mind Advocate Chikumbirike dies

Friday, 06 May 2011 07:51

The legal fraternity yesterday described prominent lawyer Mr George Charles
Chikumbirike who died on Wednesday as a legal icon who contributed immensely
to the development of law in Zimbabwe.
He was 56. Mr Chikumbirike, who died at St Annes Hospital after a short
illness, was arguably one of the best legal brains in the country.Mr
Chikumbirike was a senior partner at Chikumbirike and Associates.Harare
lawyer Mr Jonathan Samkange, who had known Mr Chikumbirike for 37 years
described him as a good lawyer and friend.

"I have known Chikumbirike for the past 37 years and he had been a good
friend. He was my personal friend and I was actually his best man.
"He was a very good lawyer who quickly rose to become one of the best
"His death is unbelievable and a blow to the whole legal fraternity," said
Mr Samkange.
Constitutional and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Advocate Eric Matinenga
said Mr Chikumbirike was a great lawyer who gave the best for his clients.
"Some may have disagreed with him, but at the end of the day, he gave the
best for his clients.
"It is a very sad loss to the profession and for some of us who associated
with him at personal and professional levels," said Adv Matinenga.
Another lawyer Mr Selby Hwacha of Dube Manikai and Hwacha law firm described
Chikumbirike as a "huge legal brain" and a source of inspiration for many
"George was a very good legal mind and he inspired most of us who were many
years behind to practice law.
"If you look at most criminal cases in this country, George produced the
most dramatic and creative results," said Mr Hwacha.
In a condolence, secretary general of the Magistrates Association of
Zimbabwe Mr Munamato Mutevedzi said Mr Chikumbirike's death was a big loss
to the fraternity.
"The legal fraternity will be poorer without the legal icon Chikumbirike. He
was a quick-witted lawyer who would never make a tired argument in court.
"He always had new ideas and was so persuasive and so eloquent in his
arguments that he could easily convince the court that he had re-invented
the wheel.
"His contribution to the development of the law in Zimbabwe remains
indelible and because of this, we should not despair.
"Instead, we should celebrate the life of a legal icon," said Mr Mutevedzi.
Mr Chikumbirike was born on October 27, 1956 in Murewa and went to Murewa
Mission for his primary and secondary education.
He enrolled at the then University of Rhodesia in 1976 to study law,
obtaining his Bachelor of Law degree in 1978 and LLB the following year.
He then joined the Justice ministry as a magisterial assistant. Mr
Chikumbirike quit the bench and had a brief stint at Coghlan, Welsh and
He left to join Chirunda and Chihambakwe law firm, where he became a partner
and the firm was to be called Chirunda, Chihambakwe and Chikumbirike. He
left to form his own law firm Chikumbirike and Associates in 1994.
Mr Chikumbirike left behind a wife and several children. He will be buried
at his rural home in Murewa tomorrow.
Mourners are gathered at Number 11 Wood Lane, Borrowdale, Harare.-Herld

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‘Justice has been done’

May 6, 2011, 10:22 am

Friday May 6th 2011

‘Justice has been done’ claimed the Americans after US Special Forces killed
Osama bin Laden in Pakistan this week. That seems a strange interpretation
of justice, shooting an unarmed man - however ‘evil’ he may be – without the
benefit of a trial in open court. Some might argue that it is nothing more
than extra-judicial execution. While ordinary Americans rushed out onto the
streets in Washington to chant their triumphalist USA! USA! In the outside
world there have been not a few voices questioning the legality - and
morality - of the action. The narrative of Osama’s death has changed in
several respects from that first issued by the White House and added to that
is the fact that President Obama has decided not to make public the pictures
of Osama bin Laden’s body on the grounds that such images might provoke
revenge attacks from Al Quaida sympathisers. We are told that Osama was
buried at sea within twenty four hours. Whatever the truth, we still have no
hard evidence of how bin Laden was killed or the actual circumstances
surrounding his death. The US acknowledges that the death of Osama does not
mean the end of terrorism so what exactly was the purpose of killing him if
it was nothing more than revenge? What we do know is that the killing took
place inside Pakistan without that country being aware that American Special
Forces were present in the country or the nature of their mission. Pakistan
was not informed, the US tells us, because there was a fear that Osama would
be warned by the Pakistani authorities of the plot to kill him. Not
unnaturally, Pakistan has taken exception to that allegation, claiming their
right as a sovereign state to have control over who enters the country.

It is that expression, ‘sovereign state’ so often used by Robert Mugabe that
highlights the predicament of how the world treats dictators and how it goes
about bringing them to justice. Mugabe uses the expression to justify his
regime’s excesses with the excuse that as a ‘sovereign state’ Zimbabwe has
an absolute right to behave in any way it wishes. Many people have asked
since the killing of Osama bin Laden: ‘Why not Robert Mugabe or the North
Korean leader? What is stopping the world from removing these ageing

Much as Zimbabweans want to see Mugabe gone, I don’t believe they would
welcome outside forces entering the country to remove him from power. The
thought of British, American or South African forces entering Zimbabwe to
assassinate the dictator or attempt to overthrow his regime would, I
believe, be deeply repugnant to the average Zimbabwean. It can be argued
that Osama bin Laden as the founder and leader of Al Qaeda was a very
different case. Al Qaeda was after all, responsible for millions of deaths
of innocent civilians not only on 9/11 in New York but in London on 7/7 in
Kenya at the bombing of the US Embassy and in Pakistan itself which has felt
the full brunt of Al Qaeda terrorism.

The moral question at the heart of this debate is whether a nation is
justified in using extra-judicial measures to destroy the individual or
organization that has threatened the security of the state and, in bin Laden’s
case, killed thousands of people. Do the means ever justify the end?
Clearly, Mugabe and Zanu PF have no doubts on that score. The means they are
using to maintain their stranglehold on power include torture, kidnapping
and destruction of people’s homes. In the words of one delegate at the
recent MDC Congress, “Anyone who is associated with the MDC is threatened
with eviction and some are actually kidnapped, beaten up. There is actually
no control at all so even if our people go to the police, the police do
nothing.” And therein lies Zimbabwe’s problem: the police and army are
complicit in Zanu PF’s attempts to silence all opposition by any means. What
needs to happen I believe is that these criminals, from Robert Mugabe down
to the lowest hireling of Zanu PF, be ultimately brought to justice before
the International Criminal Court in the Hague.  No extra-judicial killings
as was the case with Osama bin Laden; for justice to be done, it must be
seen to be done by the whole world.

Yours in the (continuing) struggle PH.

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SADC-Zanu-pf  roadmap to nowhere

By Clifford Chitupa Mashiri  05/05/11

At a time when we thought SADC leaders had redeemed themselves at
Livingstone, Zambia and were now focused, instead the regional bloc is back
to its comfort zone – babysitting the dictatorship in Harare. The timing of
the SADC leaders’ mission could not have been more inappropriate.

What is c;ear, however, is the fact that on receiving premature media
reports that Zimbabwe’s GPA negotiators had reached a so-called agreement on
a roadmap, SADC probably prompted by Zanu-pf envoys immediately found it
opportune to approach Western countries with the ‘good tidings’ and to
sweeten them to lift targeted sanctions when actually that roadmap is a big

But what is still rather unusual is that President Zuma’s envoys and the
SADC delegation found it worthwhile to plead with Western countries to lift
a travel ban on Mugabe and his wife which were imposed for violence, human
rights abuses and vote rigging despite the fact that violence has increased
and everything remains as it was in 2001 except for the full supermarket
shelves where only the rich can buy due to 80 percent unemployment rate.

The regional bloc’s decision to sell its soul for Robert Mugabe and his
loyalists is baffling in the aftermath of remarks by Zanu-pf Defence
Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa that there will be no Diasposa vote as long as
he is not welcome to travel to Europe and America. He was said to have asked
those who wanted to vote to return to Zimbabwe. Obviously there is a high
risk of abduction and torture in Zimbabwe at the moment.

The negative effect of such an utterance when Zimbabwe is trying to come up
with a peaceful solution to its crisis can only be blamed on SADC which does
not deplore such inflammatory speeches.

Interestingly, in the wake of his statement, Zanu-pf violence is said to
have erupted throughout the country targeting opposition supporters like in

SADC may need to urge Minister Mnangagwa to refresh his memory of
constitutional law that the voting rights for 3-4 million Zimbabweans in the
Diaspora has nothing to do to with 200 Zanu-pf’s hardliners who are on a
self-inflicted travel ban and asset freeze for rights abuses which have
escalated. The two are unrelated.

What SADC leaders are doing shows that their roadmap for Zimbabwe is
actually a roadmap to nowhere if not a roadmap to anarchy because of their
connivance with Zanu-pf.

Clifford Chitupa Mashiri, Political Analyst, London,

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