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

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14 November 2002 20:55
MDC's response to the 2003 budget

As expected, the budget statement issued today by the Minister of Finance, Dr Herbert Murewa, did little or nothing to resolve the economic crisis that has gripped Zimbabwe in the past three years. There is no attempt in the 2003 budget to correct the macro economic fundamentals that continue to determine the downwards spiral in all sectors of the economy.

In the current year, Zimbabwe will have the distinction of the most rapidly shrinking economy in the world. We have predicted for some time that the GDP would decline this year by at least 12 per cent, inflation would exceed 200 per cent per annum by year-end and exports shrink to less than a third of the level that prevailed in 1997. As a consequence of this rapid fall in economic activity, employment has shrunk by a third and continues to fall rapidly. Even though prices are rising faster than expected and tax rates have risen dramatically as a result, the income of government was unable to meet expenditure and the budget deficit which has been increased in this budget to 11.5% of GDP ( or $230.2 billion) is unacceptably high.

What makes this deficit even more unacceptable is that it has incurred despite the fact that the state continues to fall behind in its servicing of foreign debt and also holds interest rates at unacceptably low levels. It must be restated that low interest rates in a hyper inflationary environment, in effect impose a massive tax on all who hold savings. This is not reflected in the budget and is one of the reasons why the wealth of the nation, accumulated over the past century, is being wiped out.

The decision to raise the retention by government of foreign exchange earnings by the private sector, to 50 per cent from 40% e a level  that has prevailed in the past two years, is a decisive  death thrust  on  the side of the productive sector and particularly the export sector.  The budget makes no serious attempt to encourage exports, on the contrary raises a hammer on exports through an increase and enhanced clamp-down on corporate foreign currency accounts. The further surrender of the remaining 50% of exporters' funds to the RBZ, with whatever conditions to be worked out is yet another clear signal to existing and future exporters  that in Zimbabwe this is an uncertain and thorny field. The 2003 budget is he last straw to break the export sector

In effect this means that exporters and the tourism industry, already struggling with viability problems and critical shortages of foreign exchange to finance their own activities, will have to sell still more of their foreign exchange at the ridiculously low official exchange rates, after sourcing it on the parallel market at a premium

Despite all requests the State has yet to give an explanation to the nation on just what it does with the more tan US$1 billion a year that it is currently buying from exporters at official rates.  Theoretically this amount of foreign exchange should be more than adequate to meet all essential import requirements. The long queues outside filling stations and the shortage of drugs at hospitals are all testimony to the fact that the government is not using existing foreign exchange earnings properly. To increase retentions to 50 per cent is just a further attempt to extend this theft of public resources to the detriment of every Zimbabwean.

The adjustment of the threshold below which tax will not be levied is welcome but it must be noted that any benefit will be short lived in the current inflationary environment. It is now expected that inflation will exceed 500 per cent in 2003 and under these circumstances the MDC feels that it is time to consider the indexation of economic fundamentals such as salaries and tax thresholds. Although this would entrench inflation at very high levels, it would serve to protect the welfare of wage earners and especially civil servants who find themselves being left behind by the slow response of the State to their plight.

The MDC must restate its own view that no economic stabilisation and recovery can begin until the political preconditions are met in full. These are: -

1. A return to the rule of law.
2. The adoption of a land reform package that is legal, just and transparent.
3. The resumption of normal relations with the international community.
4. The restoration of the legitimacy of the government in the eyes of  both Zimbabwean and the global community.

Once these conditions are met in full, then attention can be given to restoring stability and growth to the Zimbabwe economy. Until then, the downwards spiral in economic activity, employment and incomes must be expected to continue. This regime simply does not have the capacity to tackle these issues any longer and the MDC calls for urgent talks to get the country and its failing economy, back on its feet.

It must be noted that Zanu PF has now been in power for 22 years. During this time the life expectancy of every Zimbabwean has declined by 22 years, incomes have fallen to levels below those that prevailed in 1965. Industrial production has fallen to levels last seen in 1970 and the mining industry has shrunk by almost half. Tourist arrivals, once predicted to reach 2 million visitors a year by 2003, remain stuck at 20 per cent of pre 1997 levels. Agriculture, once the mainstay of the economy, is in a shambles and food shortages are predicted well into 2004.

Zimbabwe was once the pride of central and southern Africa as a democratic State doing its best to improve and upgrade the lives of its people. Today we are the laughing stock of the region with a failed economy, our currency is collapsing and our people wallowing in poverty and hunger. The budget is just another symbol of the failure of Zanu PF to neither appreciate nor understand the nature of the crisis they have created. Unfortunately the majority of   the vociferous ZANU PF supporters and leaders in the gravy train do not suffer the consequences of their actions. The obvious wealth of the new elite with their conspicuous life styles is testimony to this and a shadow over all of Africa.

It is disgusting to note that Defence has been allocated $76billion despite the fact that Zimbabean troops have been withdrawn from the Congo. There is no justification whatsoever especially when a large chunk of this money is not going towards the welfare of  the soldiers.

The budget is predicated upon weak macro-economic fundamentals and is silent on key issues such as exchange rate re-alignmet, the food crisis, export incentives and others. It is also silent on measures to eradicate poverty and the creation of jobs.

All in all Murerwa's budget is a non-event and hopeless. No wonder why "Bishop" Murerwa had to seek divine intervention from the bible in face of an insurmountable task. The current economic crisis cannot be resolved without addressing the problem of governance and market confidence. And because the nation has been short-changed in the ZANU P.F budget, the MDC may have to reconsider the crafting of its shadow budget as an alternative in order to show the difference.

14 November 2003
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Daily News

      Police evict invaders from Masvingo farms

      11/14/02 12:24:14 AM (GMT +2)

      From Our Correspondent in Masvingo

      POLICE in riot gear on Tuesday evicted 34 families from Chevden Farm
in Masvingo East commercial farming area in an ongoing exercise in which
scores of invaders have been evicted from properties they occupied since

      Hundreds of villagers who occupied black-owned farms, undesignated
farms, farms protected under country-to-country agreements, and those owned
by church organisations will be affected.

      The exercise follows eviction notices issued by the provincial land
task force three months ago. The task force gave the invaders notice to
vacate the properties or risk forced removal.

      Police in riot gear raided the property owned by a farmer identified
only as R Chigumeke in the eastern part of the province and ejected the

      It could not be established by yesterday afternoon how many people had
been removed.

      The operation began in Masvingo East commercial farming area where
politicians such as defence forces commander, General Vitalis Zvinavashe,
and the Speaker of Parliament Emmerson Mnangagwa, are believed to own

      The Masvingo police confirmed the evictions were underway but refused
to give details .

      Some of the delisted farms illegally occupied by invaders include
Nuanetsi, Ruware and Eaglemoth ranches and Wasara-Wasara Farm
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Daily News

      Police officer withdraws kidnap charges against 10 war veterans

      11/14/02 12:23:08 AM (GMT +2)

      From Chris Gande in Bulawayo

      IN a strange twist of events, a policeman has withdrawn charges
against 10 war veterans who allegedly kidnapped him at Fort Rixon and drove
him to Bulawayo where they held him hostage.

      Constable Robert Sigauke was rescued by other police officers after he
had been held for more than five hours in May.

      The war veterans pleaded not guilty to charges of kidnapping when they
appeared before acting Bulawayo regional magistrate, Godwin Sengweni.

      They were acquitted on the basis of an affidavit written by Sigauke.
The 10 are all members of the Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans'

      They are alleged to have handcuffed Sigauke at the Fort Rixon charge
office. He was then bundled into a waiting government truck and driven to

      Sigauke was sent to one of the accused's house in Makokoba where the
group told him that he would spend the night.

      He was rescued during the night by the Police Support Unit reaction
group. In his affidavit, Sigauke admitted that he decided to withdraw
charges after a meeting with senior police officers, government and Zanu PF
officials at the office of Matabeleland North Governor Obert Mpofu. The war
veterans had accused Sigauke and Phillip Rogers of Heany Junction Farm of
torturing a suspected stock thief.

      In the affidavit, Sigauke alleged that he was not coerced or pressured
to withdraw the charges. He said he was withdrawing the charges against the
accused because they had been misled and they had later apologised.

      "The accused persons and myself are all members of the war veterans'
association, and fighting among ourselves may discredit the ruling party,"
said Sigauke.

      The 10 are June Masango, 61, Moses Siphuma, 49, Wilson Tshuma, 46,
Moses Moyo, 43, Zwelitsha Stanford Masuku, 36, Dean Maphosa, 40, Priscilla
Janet Chiwara, 43, Douglas Mpala, 42, Khumbula Ndlovu, 40, and Mbonwa
Ndlovu, 58.
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Daily News

      US ambassador donates $6m to community projects

      11/14/02 12:22:36 AM (GMT +2)

      Staff Reporter

      Joseph Sullivan, the United States Ambassador to Zimbabwe, on Tuesday
disbursed over US$110 000 (more than Z$6 million at the official exchange
rate) to 19 community-based projects drawn from Zimbabwe's eight provinces.

      The ceremony was held at Zambuko Primary School in Hatcliffe
Extension, Harare.

      Zambuko Primary School received US$7 500 (more than Z$400 000) for a
solar-powered borehole.

      The water to be drawn from the borehole will be used for drinking and
cooking, irrigating the school's garden plot, and for ablution facilities.
      The primary school has an enrolment of 750 pupils.

      The funding for the projects was provided through the Ambassador's
Special Self-Help Programme, as a gift from the people of the US to the
people of Zimbabwe.

      Sullivan said: "The Self-Help Programme is a clear expression of the
willingness of the people of the United States to support the initiatives of
the people of Zimbabwe."

      Projects receiving funding included food production and processing
initiatives, income-generating projects to support children orphaned by the
HIV/Aids pandemic, clean water supply and irrigation programmes for schools
and youth training projects.

      The projects received an average of US$5 000 (more than Z$275 000)
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Amani Trust Illegal

The Herald (Harare) - govt mouthpiece

November 14, 2002
Posted to the web November 14, 2002


The British-funded Amani Trust is operating illegally in Zimbabwe since it
is not registered under the Private Voluntary Organisations Act.

The Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare, Cde July Moyo,
told Parliament yesterday that the organisation had only registered its
constitution with the Deeds Registry Office.

"Amani Trust is one of the NGOs to which my ministry gave notice in the
Press on 13 September 2002 to stop their operations until they have
regularised their registrations," said Cde Moyo.

"I would like to end by reminding these organisations that failure to adhere
to the law will result in arrests being made."

Cde Moyo was responding to a question by Makoni West MP, Cde Gibson Munyoro
(Zanu-PF) on why Amani Trust continued to operate when it was obvious that
it was more political than developmental.

Cde Moyo said the Government would deal strongly with NGOs that took
advantage of registering with the Deeds Registry Office to further political

Last month President Mugabe announced that the Government would scrutinise
NGOs and review the policy and laws governing them.

The Government has accused the British government of working with NGOs such
as Amani Trust in clandestine operations to unseat it and President Mugabe.

Amani Trust was originally established to provide community-based care for
the survivors of torture and violence.

In the run-up to the March presidential poll, the organisation funded safe
houses set up by the opposition MDC as hideouts for its members on the
police wanted list for political violence.

The trust established the safe houses under the guise of providing shelter
to victims of political violence.

But investigations revealed that the occupants were being used to carry out
special assignments for the MDC and the National Constitutional Assembly
such as participating in anti-Government demonstrations and opposition
rallies and meetings.

The occupants were also being used to catalogue cases of political violence
as part of a dossier that was being compiled by the MDC to justify the
intervention of Britain, the United States and the European Union in
Zimbabwe's politics.

Amani Trust and other anti-Government NGOs have also been on a crusade to
demonise Zimbabwe at major summits by presenting false reports on political

In August its director, Dr Frances Lovemore, was arrested for releasing a
false report alleging that national youth service graduates, war veterans
and some policemen were wantonly gang-raping young girls.

Last month, the British High Commission gave about $3,6 million to the

Dr Lovemore confirmed to a group of New York City councillors on a
fact-finding mission to Zimbabwe that her organisation was indeed being
funded by Britain.

She also confirmed that her organisation received a cheque of $3,6 million
from the British High Commission.

In a related issue, Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Minister, Cde
Patrick Chinamasa, yesterday released a list of NGOs threatening peace and
security in Zimbabwe.

Cde Chinamasa was responding to Mutare North MP, Mr Giles Mutsekwa (MDC) who
wanted to know the organisations involved in such activities.

Cde Chinamasa made the response on behalf of the Minister of State for
National Security, Cde Nicholas Goche.

The organisations named were Westminister Foundation for Democracy of
Britain, the Zimbabwe Liberators' Platform, Amani Trust, Help, the Zimbabwe
Democracy Trust and the Southern African Media Development Fund.

"These NGOs come under the guise of strengthening civil society," said Cde

"We have a plethora of both foreign and local NGOs that disguise their
activities in semantics such as human rights, democracy and promoting civil

Cde Chinamasa said most of these organisations were foreign-funded and their
aim was to destabilise the nation.

He said the Westminister Foundation had received about $6 million from the
British Government, while representatives from the three major political
parties in Britain sat on its board.

"It has been involved in over 80 projects for the MDC and helped plan its
election strategy," said Cde Chinamasa.

"Against this background, it will be naïve to believe that these
organisations are impartial. But not all NGOs are involved in subversive
actions. We would like to see all NGOs keeping out of politics."

Cde Chinamasa dismissed a recent report by the United Nations linking some
Zimbabwean officials to the plunder of wealth in the Democratic Republic of

He said the contents of the report were not factual since enemies of
Zimbabwe seeking to demonise the country drafted it.

"The so-called UN report is a lot of rubbish and is propaganda directed at
Zimbabwe," said Cde Chinamasa.

"Our conduct in the DRC was above board and right-thinking people are happy
that we prevented genocide."

"We have no time to waste clearing malicious reports. The allegations are
unfounded and we know the source. It is the British and the United States
who were trying to chase us from the DRC so that they can continue to
plunder the country as they did under the rule of Mobutu."

Cde Chinamasa was responding to a question by Mr Mutsekwa on the response of
the Government to the report
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Thursday, 14 November, 2002, 15:40 GMT
Zimbabwe pledges black market curbs

What is the Zimbabwe dollar worth?

Zimbabwe is planning a crackdown on the black-market currency business by closing every bureau de change in the country.
The plan, which will go into force by the end of November, is intended to rein in a parallel market in which a single US dollar is worth as many as 1,500 Zimbabwe dollars.

The official rate - at which all export earnings must be exchanged - is just Zim$55 to the US dollar.

The announcement formed part of the 2003 Budget statement, during which Finance Minister Herbert Murerwa admitted that the country's economy would contract by 11.9% this year, after shrinking by 7.3% in 2001.

Mr Murerwa's announcement undercut even economists' most doleful predictions of a 10% contraction.

The problem, he told parliament in Harare, was the drought afflicting most of southern Africa - coupled with "the necessary uncertainties associated with the land reform programme".

In trouble

Zimbabwe's crisis has seen unemployment rise to close to 70%, and the inflation rate soar above 100%.

More than half the country's 12 million population are thought to be at risk of famine.

Mr Murerwa promised inflation would drop into double figures by the end of 2003.

The problems are exacerbated by the probable loss of a deal with Libya to supply scarce fuel in exchange for stakes in state-owned companies and tracts of prime land confiscated supposedly for resettlement by black farmers.

Parallel rates

Above all, the exchange rate imbalance makes economic management impossible, economists say.

Businesses are paid for their exports at the official rate, but must buy inputs from abroad at the parallel rate.

Former Finance Minister Simba Makoni was sacked earlier this year after publicly backing the idea of a devaluation - anathema to Mr Mugabe's ruling clique, from which Mr Murerwa is drawn.

And despite the supposed crackdown, many Zimbabweans believe that the massive mismatch persists at least in part because the elites of Zimbabwean society and politics are making money from the difference.

United Nations reports have shown that spoils from the war in the Democratic Republic of Congo end up in the coffers of the ruling party, Zanu-PF, and the pockets of senior government and military figures.


The budget also included measures to give more support to black farmers resettled on land stripped from commercial farmers since 2000.

But neither the spending plans nor the exchange rate crackdown - should it actually come to pass - are expected to do much to address the country's problems.

Corruption, mismanagement and the near-complete disruption of commercial farming by the fast-track land grab - as well as the drought - are the factors many independent economists blame for Zimbabwe's problems.
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Press Gazette

Media urged to wake up to Zimbabwe crisis
By Paul Donovan
Posted 14 November 2002 00:00 GMT

A BBC journalist who went undercover to report from Zimbabwe has called on
the British media to wake up to the unfolding crisis in that country.
"We're talking about 6.5 million people here who could starve by Christmas
and the international community has not woken up to it," said Christian
Fraser, the Breakfast reporter on Five Live. "It seems that it is only when
you start to see children with stick bones and swollen bellies that the
tabloids get turned on."
Fraser managed to get into Zimbabwe, from where the BBC has been banned, via
South Africa. He then went to Harare and moved out to cover a by-election
where Robert Mugabe's ruling Zanu-PF party was manipulating the food supply
in order to secure an electoral win.
Fraser's reports on Zimbabwe have gone out on Five Live, Radio One and News
Fraser also believes that when the British media do focus on Zimbabwe, there
is too much attention paid to white farmers.
"There are 1.5 million people working for the white farmers and they say
there is too much focus on them. The farmers will admit that they can move
and farm elsewhere - that is not an option for many who work for them," he
Fraser recalled one case in which a farmer went away and returned to
discover the whole workforce of 500 black farm workers had been removed and
dumped elsewhere.
Fraser is keen that the UK media start to give the crisis in Zimbabwe proper
coverage. "The reaction when you tell people that more than six million
people could starve by Christmas is, 'It's Africa, isn't it?' It's a sad
indictment that we don't care or the people who sell newspapers don't care."
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Daily News - Leader Page

      Sacrifices will oil true liberty for Zimbabweans

      11/14/02 12:21:23 AM (GMT +2)

      THIS is a tribute to the modicum of democracy which still remains in
our country, Zimbabwe.

      However, a challenge has to be proffered to civil society for it to
re-group and re-emerge with vigour and vitality, if we are to tackle the
so-called Zimbabwean crisis.

      The satanic regime, characterised by its serious economic deprivation
of the people, has downplayed the nature of African associational life.
      The Mugabe government has adopted an evidently dictatorial stance so
as to entrench its authority and stay in power.

      African associational life is generally viewed as having dynamic
qualities involving the (re)emergence of a wide variety of populist,
professional, and political movements that give expression to the people's
long-suppressed democratic aspirations.

      These groups usually demand not only a return to democratic-pluralism
but also social justice and guarantees of human and civil rights.

      In Zimbabwe the solution to the crisis will not come from heaven;
providence alone is not the answer. In fact, appealing for divine assistance
is the last act of betrayal a people can ever commit.

      There are indeed possible solutions and alternatives to the political
and cultural problems the country is facing. The solution will not come from
outside but from within. The impeding factor, for now, is that this nation
is full of cowards, people who believe that one day things will be fine
without striking the first blow.

      If you want to be free you must initiate the attack on oppression
first; if freedom is to be achieved, it must be done at your own initiative.

      The form of economic desperation we have been subjected to is probably
the most powerful factor. It inhibits the possibility of national awareness
of political oppression.

      When people are scurrying about to make ends meet, striving to
survive, they cease to see the connection between political opportunities
and economic justice - they are brutalised.

      They regard political rights as a concern of the elite, when they
should be everyone's. Economic deprivation goes hand-in-glove with lack of
      education and lack of time and other resources to confront political

      This is evident in Zimbabwe where the population has reverted into
hunters and gatherers, especially in the rural areas. People are now
dependent on wild fruit, which they then grind in order to make sour

      Recently I visited part of Lupane, a village called Tshongogwe. In
that small village there was a report of four children who had recently died
of starvation.

      This is an obvious indicator of impoverishment, yet the Zanu PF
leadership continues to flight adverts in the electronic media declaring
"Upfumi hwawanda" (there's now wealth in abundance) - which is clearly

      It is high time people realised that poverty is an affront to human

      It also remains imperative to understand Mahatma Gandhi's teaching on
poverty, particularly the fact that poverty is the greatest form of

      People along the national highways compete with birds and monkeys to
scavenge for grain dropped by delivery trucks. The masses are starved
because, for a bag of maize, they have to profess allegiance to and support
for Zanu PF, now rightfully referred to as the "ruining party".

      This suppression, when the leaders' stomachs are full, exacerbates
poverty, thus rendering the country's political leadership the lords of
      Mugabe continues to project himself on the international scene as a
champion of Zimbabwe's sovereignty.

      The question is, what sovereignty, when people are perpetually
starved? Zanu PF has become openly ruthless. If people complain about
starvation, they are silenced. Who then will fight for us?

      No one seems prepared to make the first move. If the situation
continues the way it is, then future generations will have nothing to
inherit. This is the mark of an irresponsible leadership.

      People are openly killed in Zimbabwe for challenging the status quo.
Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo in his letter dated 7 June 1983, directed to Mugabe,
then Prime Minister, says it is not ideal for the government to force the
people into trusting it. Instead, people feel obliged if they see it fit and
they tend to fight for the government.

      Nkomo said fear was a state of despair instilled in the people by a
government that fears its own people.

      The government is trying to create a record of having the first-ever
nation of cowards. People are afraid of making sacrifices for the cause of
liberty, lest they go the Lookout Masuku and Learnmore Jongwe way.

      A word of advice to the leadership: this yearning for democracy cannot
really ever be silenced.

      The solution will come from Zimbabweans themselves, not anyone else
from outside.

      This will happen one day after the Zanu PF terror campaign fizzles
out, when cowardice is overcome and there is open defiance of the regime's

      The main point to underscore is that democracy is universally valued;
it needs to be considered in the context of African realities and it must
make effective use of indigenous values, institutions and social mores.

      Finally, special tribute is paid to all those who have died at the
hands of these men that would be our leaders. Their hopes and aspirations
are about to be realised.
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Daily News

      MP accused of using political muscle to grab farm

      11/14/02 12:13:47 AM (GMT +2)

      By Takaitei Bote Farming Editor

      FORMER Zanu PF Member of Parliament for Mhondoro, Mavis Chidzonga, is
being accused of using her political muscle to lead a group of new farmers
to take over a farm in Norton belonging to the Henderson family, now
resident in the capital.

      Chidzonga has denied she chased away Linda Henderson, the co-owner of
Idaho Farm, saying part of the property had been allocated to her family
through an application she made to the Ministry of Lands, Agriculture and
Rural Resettlement.

      The 1 243-hectare Idaho Farm is currently occupied by Chidzonga and
her family; Andrew Mushita, a scientist; King Chanetsa, a pilot; Tendai
Mahachi, Lever Brothers' supply chain director and Elvis Chibamu, a Mhondoro

      The hectarage occupied by the new farmers ranges from 100 to about 246

      Henderson said Chidzonga visited the farm regularly from April 2002
before she received a Section 8 notice demanding that she move out so that
new settlers could start farming.

      Henderson said: "Armed police came to the farm to arrest me on 7
August 2002. Chidzonga, driving a Nissan Hardbody vehicle, came with the
police. Although I was released later, they claimed they had arrested me for
vandalising the electricity supply as I prepared to leave the farm, which
was not true, of course."

      Henderson alleged Chidzonga herself delivered the Section 8 notice to
her. She moved out of the property on 24 August after reservoirs on the farm
had allegedly been emptied by "Chidzonga's workers" who had moved onto the
farm prior to Henderson's departure.

      Contacted for comment, Chidzonga, who now owns more than 200 hectares
of the farm, said: "I have not grabbed the farm. I applied to be resettled
as an A2 commercial farmer and was allocated Plot 2 on Idaho Farm. I did not
know her before the plot was allocated to me.

      "There are five tenants on Idaho and we have been given 99-year
leases. There are supposed to be six of us, including Henderson, who was
given 350ha but she has refused to co-exist with us."

      But Henderson said the whole farm had been acquired by the government
and that nothing was allocated to her.

      Chidzonga said: "We had meetings with her, where we told her that we
have been allocated land on the farm and that we were professionals and did
not want to be confrontational. We told her that the land reform programme
was a reality and it was there to stay, but she decided to pack her bags."

      Chidzonga, in her capacity as the co-ordinator of the Group of New
Farmers on Idaho Farm, wrote to Henderson on 17 July 2002, enquiring about
the fate of Henderson's workers and her cattle which were still on the farm
as the new owners moved in.

      Chidzonga ordered Henderson to remove her cattle from the plots
earmarked for occupation by the new farmers. She said the new settlers
      on Idaho Farm had not occupied the whole property.

      But Henderson denied she owned the five residential properties on the
farm. She said: "The government has not allocated a portion of land to me on
Idaho. The five residential properties do not belong to me. They are private

      "When I was given an eviction notice, Chidzonga told me her idea of
co-existing was sharing the workshop inside my homestead. The whole thing
has not been a friendly arrangement and I am challenging it in the courts."

      Contacted for comment, a representative of the five residential
properties, who declined to be named for fear of victimisation, said: "Our
private homes have nothing to do with Idaho Farm or Henderson. They are not
agricultural properties and have been our private homes for more than 25
years. The properties are perceived to be part of Idaho Farm because some of
them are situated along Idaho Road."

      These properties were not acquired by the government.

      The five new settlers are now sharing three houses on the Idaho Farm
homestead, with Chidzonga occupying the main house. Chidzonga said the
arrangement was temporary as they would build their houses soon. Chidzonga
denied she had delivered the eviction notice to Henderson and that her
workers had cut water supplies to the farm.

      "I brought the police to the farm to interview her after we saw that
she had vandalised electric cables on the homestead and in the barns. She
also removed some parts of the irrigation equipment.

      "She is not allowed by law to remove immovable property from the farm.
The police did not use my vehicle when they arrested her. I also did not
deliver the Section 8 to her. It is just that, when she received it, I was
there, checking if she had received it, as we wanted to start planting."

      Chidzonga has this season planted 15ha of irrigated tobacco and 10ha
of dryland tobacco, as well as 10 ha of maize. She has moved her 40 head of
cattle onto the farm.

      Henderson used to produce 40ha of tobacco, 200ha of maize and had 200
head of cattle until 2000, when the farm invasions started.
      Henderson is now living in Harare.

      Chidzonga said she was infuriated by some local and international
media which reported negatively on the land issue "without questioning the
historical land injustices".

      "Of course, I admit the government has been cruel to some farmers, but
the media should also capture where the government has done good things for
the people," she said.

      Mushita, one of the new farmers, said he was allocated a plot on Idaho
Farm by the Ministry of Lands, Agriculture and Rural Resettlement after
applying for land under the commercial farming resettlement scheme.

      Mushita said: "I applied in Chinhoyi last year and I received letters
that I had been allocated Plot 6 on Idaho Farm. I have never spoken to
Henderson. I do not know whether or not Henderson has been allocated land on
Idaho or elsewhere. If she claims that the six residential properties do not
belong to her, then she might have a case."

      The three other new farmers, Mahachi, Chibamu and Chanetsa, were not
available for comment at the time of going to press.
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Daily News

      Only we can resolve our internal problems

      11/14/02 12:28:30 AM (GMT +2)

      A GREAT deal of criticism has been levelled against several foreign
governments by some Zimbabweans for their reluctance to assist in bringing
about democratic governance in Zimbabwe.

      Among those governments is that of South Africa whose president, Thabo
Mbeki, has been the main target of such criticism.

      For his part, Mbeki has repeatedly said that his government would use
what he calls quiet diplomacy to influence the course of events in Zimbabwe.
His approach has not worked up to now, but it is still being pursued by

      Some Zimbabweans are of the opinion that Mbeki should have long told
President Mugabe to show respect for the rule of law, and for his own
country's constitutional freedoms and human rights.

      Mbeki has, however, been quoted by several South African media as
saying his administration would not be pushed into a confrontation with

      It would appear that Mbeki would rather there was a government of
national unity in Zimbabwe, than either a de facto one-party state or an
unstable multi-party system.

      A glance at the regional scenario shows that Namibia's President Sam
Nujoma is in full agreement with Mugabe's approach on virtually everything,
particularly the land policy and its implementation.

      Mozambique's policy seems to be to ignore as much as possible the
tragic goings-on in Zimbabwe, while at the same time to welcoming white
commercial farmers forced out of Zimbabwe.

      Botswana's policy seems to be that Zimbabweans should resolve their
economic and political problems within their borders so that they do not
spill over into their territory.

      Zambia's policy on Zimbabwe is like Mozambique's. Lusaka is welcoming
commercial farmers and helping them to settle in and farm. Zambia's policy
is obviously based on its experience of the effects of the "Zambianisation"
of land ownership, a scheme introduced by Kenneth Kaunda's United National
Independence Party (UNIP) government in the late 1960s.

      Zambia was forced to import food from South Africa, a major
destination of most white commercial farmers whose property had been bought
by Kaunda's government and sold mostly to black Zambians as part of the
Zambianisation programme.

      It is unrealistic to expect or even ask South Africa's Mbeki to be
more forceful in his diplomatic contacts with Mugabe because of three main

      The first is that it is more than likely that Mbeki is aware that
should Zanu PF fall, the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), a trade
union-backed party, would take over the reins of power in Zimbabwe.

      A similar event occurred in Zambia when the Frederick Chiluba-led
Movement for Multi-party Democracy, also a trade union-sponsored political
organisation, kicked Kaunda's UNIP out of power.

      That process could not be ruled out in South Africa, if Zimbabwe had a
labour-backed government. It could inspire the Congress of South African
Trade Unions (COSATU) to form a party to replace the African National
Congress (ANC).

      Thus, it is most probable that the ANC would rather have Zanu PF in
power in Zimbabwe than the MDC.The second reason is that South Africa has a
worse land problem than Zimbabwe's because before Nelson Mandela's
democratic dispensation came into existence, only about 12,7 percent of that
country's land was occupied by the black majority, with the lion's share
being owned by the minority white population.

      Mbeki cannot afford to be seen to be directly or indirectly opposed to
Mugabe's pro-black land acquisition and resettlement policy. Opposition
parties, especially the Pan-Africanist Congress, a well-known old ally of
Zanu PF's, could capitalise on that and win South Africa's black rural vote,
as well as quite a large chunk of the peri-urban black constituencies.

      The third reason has its origins in the history of the liberation
struggle in southern Africa. In 1967, Joshua Nkomo's Zimbabwe African People
's Union (Zapu) formed an alliance with the ANC of South Africa, a
development that was cemented by the blood of ANC and Zapu guerrillas who
fought ferocious battles against Ian Smith's forces in the Hwange area that

      Those battles are seldom, if ever, mentioned by the pro-Zanu PF
historians whose partisan propaganda is passed off as history in Zimbabwean
school text books today.

      The commanders of that ANC-Zapu army were Chris Hani of the ANC, and
John "JD" Tshakalisa Dube of Zapu. Their alliance increased the solidarity
between the two organisations to such an extent that it is very likely even
today that the ANC leadership would not wish to harm any Zimbabwean
structure in which the former Zapu is involved.

      Since the former Zapu is a part of the present Zanu PF government led
by Mugabe, the ANC may not wish to oppose Zanu PF out of sheer respect for
its former ally, Zapu.

      It should be borne in mind that the current Zimbabwean High
Commissioner to South Africa, Simon Khaya Moyo, is a former Zapu cadre, and
he probably reminds Thabo Mbeki's Foreign Affairs officials occasionally of
the ANC-Zapu alliance.

      Apart from these considerations, I find it utterly foolish for the
people of Zimbabwe to look beyond their territorial borders for intervention
to solve their internal problems. While this attitude may be the
continuation of the tradition of externalising the country's democratisation
process, it is still neither wise nor feasible.

      The people of Zimbabwe should decide whether to deal with their
socio-economic problems head-on, or continue to let their country slide
deeper and deeper into a tragic economic morass.

      External assistance or intervention can and will come only if and when
there is a deadlock between those trying to solve the problem. Zimbabweans
should understand and accept one incontrovertible fact of life: freedom is
never free it has to be sacrificed for and comes at a high price.
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Daily News

      Steep visas, high air fares fail to stem exodus to UK

      11/14/02 12:26:59 AM (GMT +2)

      By Henry Makiwa

      THE United Kingdom is still the favourite relocation destination for
Zimbabweans seeking respite from the economic hardships at home, despite the
introduction of stringent visa restrictions and a steep rise in air fares.

      Hundreds of people, desperate to flee economic hardships and
government-sanctioned political violence at home, yesterday jostled for
positions in a long-winding queue at the British High Commission offices in
Harare to secure the much-sought-after visa.

      The British High Commission last Thursday announced new UK visa
requirements and fees costing $72 000 for a six-months visa in that country.
The visa requirement coincided with the increase of Air Zimbabwe fares to

      Harare-to-London Air Zimbabwe fares last Thursday rose from $500 000
to $1,2 million.

      Sophie Honey, the British High Commission spokesperson, yesterday said
it was still too early to comment on the impact of the stringent visa
      Honey said: "It is a bit too early to make an exact overview of how
the announcement of visa requirements has affected immigration trends.
      "However, we have noted long queues of people seeking the immigration
documents outside our offices."

      The British government last week introduced visa endorsements for
Zimbabweans visiting the UK in an effort to stem the flood of economic
refugees and asylum seekers to the UK.

      The move was also expected to bring respite to the Registrar-General's
Office, which was failing to cope with the long queues of Zimbabweans
applying for passports so they could leave the country and seek economic
refuge elsewhere.

      According to reports in the British Press, an estimated 150
Zimbabweans leave the country every week to settle or seek employment in the

      Most of the people gathered outside the British High Commission
offices yesterday said they were not deterred by the restrictive visa
requirements and steep air fares because they were prepared to pay through
the nose just to get away from the depressing economic environment in

      Nomathemba Sibanda said she was being forced to leave the country
because of unemployment.

      She said: "I am a university graduate who can't seem to get a job
anywhere besides possessing adequate qualifications for my chosen

      "I will pay anything possible as long as I get to leave the country
and settle in a better environment.

      "It is such a sad scenario, but there is no choice for most of us but
to seek greener pastures elsewhere and in my case, the United Kingdom is my
chosen destination."

      Zimbabwe's unemployment level is pegged at 70 percent.Alfred
Mapedzauswa, who was also queueing for a visa, said the introduction of the
high fees were not a deterrent at all.

      Mapedzauswa said: "Though the visas are expensive, they will also save
Zimbabweans from being harassed by British immigration officials."
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Daily News

      Tsvangirai wins ballot case

      11/14/02 12:27:46 AM (GMT +2)

      By Fanuel Jongwe Court Reporter

      TOBAIWA Mudede, the Registrar-General, must surrender all ballot
boxes, ballot papers and other relevant material used in the March
presidential election to a designated point in Harare for safekeeping, the
High Court ruled yesterday.

      Justice Yunus Omerjee confirmed a provisional order sought by the MDC
leader, Morgan Tsvangirai, to compel Mudede to direct constituency
registrars countrywide to surrender the election residue to a place to be
determined by the High Court.

      The chamber application was filed on 16 October by Tsvangirai's
lawyer, Advocate Adrian de Bourbon, instructed by Bryant Elliot of Gill,
Godlonton and Gerrans.

      Tsvangirai said in his application he had reasonable fears that Mudede
was not complying with provisions of Section 78 of the Electoral Act which
deals with the security of election residue.

      He argued that Mudede had caused "material prejudice" to his election
petition to have the results of the presidential election set aside.
      "The documents are central to the allegations of irregularities and
corrupt practices referred to in my election petition," Tsvangirai said in
his founding affidavit.

      "I, therefore, need to urgently ascertain whether the respondent has
complied with the said Section 78 of the Electoral Act and to ensure that
the documents are forthwith preserved in accordance with the law."

      Mudede said in his opposing papers, submitted by Loyce Matanda-Moyo of
the Attorney-General's Office, the election residue was safe and secure and
was being guarded "round-the-clock on a daily basis in the respective

      "The allegations are based on baseless fears and are mere
 speculation," Mudede said. He argued that bringing the material to Harare
would be "prohibitively too expensive and unnecessary" as money would be
required to cover travel and subsistence fees for constituency registrars
and staff transporting the material and travel and storage costs for the

      He said election material for past presidential, parliamentary and
by-elections has always been kept by respective constituency registrars.
      "We do no see why the election residue for the 2000 presidential
election should be treated differently," Mudede said.

      Justice Omerjee did not immediately give his reasons for confirming
the provisional order that had been sought by Tsvangirai.

      In a related development, the MDC has raised concern over the
continued delay in setting a hearing of the election petition in which the
party is challenging the results of the March presidential election.

      Welshman Ncube, the secretary-general of the MDC, said despite the
lapse of eight months since the election, won controversially by Zanu PF's
President Mugabe, no date had yet been set for the hearing of their election

      Ncube said the MDC had filed the petition in terms of the Electoral

      Jacob Manzunzu, the Registrar of the High Court, said there had been a
series of procedural developments which had to be fulfiled since the
petition was filed on 12 April which allowed, among other issues, the
respondent's right to file opposing papers.

      Manzunzu said in a statement to The Daily News: "In the meantime, the
petitioners also sought to engage the services of a senior lawyer from South

      "By letter dated 5 September 2002, the petitioners' lawyers advised
the Registrar that the South African lawyer had been granted an exemption
certificate by the Minister. Arrangements were then made for the lawyer to
be admitted towards the end of September."

      Thereafter, a pre-trial conference was held before the Judge
President, Justice Paddington Garwe.

      Garwe ordered the petitioner and the respondents to file a summary of
their evidence by 4 October and 31 October this year respectively.

      This has now been done and a pre-trial conference to discuss all
issues related to the holding of the trial will take place now.

      "Mr Ncube will be aware that before trials in the High Court take
place, certain procedures have to be followed in order to narrow the issues
and deal with any other relevant matters so that the trial proceeds
expeditiously once it starts."
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Daily News

      Government vows to arrest banned citizens if they return

      11/14/02 12:26:13 AM (GMT +2)

      By Luke Tamborinyoka Political Editor

      THE government warned yesterday that expatriate Zimbabwean citizens
working for private radio stations who were last week included on a list of
people banned from visiting the country, would be arrested once they set
foot in Zimbabwe.

      In the same vein, the government said it was closely monitoring the
activities of non-governmental organisations (NGOs), which it said were
supporting the opposition MDC and the independent Press in trying to unseat
the government.

      Speaking in Parliament yesterday, Patrick Chinamasa, the Minister of
Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, said Zimbabweans who were included
on a list would be allowed back, but they would be arrested.

      Asked what the government would do to banned Zimbabweans who held only
Zimbabwean passports, Chinamasa said: "They are free to come back, but they
will be welcome in our prisons. Those citizens with other foreign passports
are not Zimbabwean citizens because we cannot have these people demonising
the government every day on the radio.

      "Every Zimbabwean has a right to be in Zimbabwe and has a right to
come back to this country. It is a right guaranteed by the Constitution, but
we cannot allow dual citizenship - our people travelling with British and
Dutch passports but who engage in acts of broadcasting information that
denigrates the country."

      Chinamasa was responding to a question by Harare North MP, Trudy
Stevenson, on whether it was government policy to ban Zimbabwean citizens
from visiting the country.

      Last week, in a retaliatory move following the decision by the
European Union to slap travel bans on the Zanu PF elite, and another
decision by Britain to introduce visas for Zimbabweans, the government
published its own list of banned visitors.

      The list included British Prime Minister Tony Blair and his government
ministers, as well as Zimbabweans working for the independent SW Radio
Africa (SWRA), which broadcasts from London, and the Voice of the People
(VoP), which broadcasts from the Netherlands.

      The SWRA workers were named as John Matinde, Gerry Jackson, Georgina
Godwin, Simon Parkinson, Mandisa Mundawarara, Violet Gonda, Tererai
Karimakwenda and Graeme Counsel, while Lodewijk Bouwens was named as being
employed by VoP.

      In another crack-down on NGOs, July Moyo, the Minister of Public
Service, Labour and Social Welfare, told Parliament that Amani Trust was not
properly registered and its leadership risked being arrested.

      He said the organisation had only registered its constitution with the
Deeds Registry Office, but had not regularised its registration in
accordance with the Private Voluntary Organisations Act.

      In another response to a question read on his behalf, the Minister of
State Security, Nicholas Goche, said the government was monitoring the
activities of NGOs.

      He said NGOs were used by foreign powers to unseat governments in
small countries and to force a regime change.

      Goche said most NGOs were disguising their nefarious activities with
semantics such as support for democracy and human rights.

      He again cited Amani Trust and the Westminster Foundation for
Democracy (WFD) which he said was involved in supporting several projects
for the opposition MDC and helping plan its election strategy.

      Goche said in 2000, the WFD provided the MDC with money, which he said
was still flowing into the party's coffers.

      He also cited the Zimbabwe Democracy Trust and the Southern Africa
Media Development Fund (SAMDEF) .

      Goche said when The Daily News was facing financial problems, it
received US$526 000 (Z$28,93 million) from SAMDEF.
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An African Calamity in the Making

Business Day (Johannesburg)

November 14, 2002
Posted to the web November 14, 2002

Ross Herbert

WHILE African and world attention has been focused on the disaster in
Zimbabwe, a calamity of potentially greater proportions is unfolding in Côte

Unless far more forceful action is taken there is a real risk of unleashing
in West Africa's most prosperous nation a Liberian scenario complete with
unwinnable ethnic warfare, economic meltdown, and untold damage to Africa's
image and the New Partnership for Africa's Development (Nepad).

The immediate crisis in Côte d'Ivoire erupted on September 19, when units of
the army staged a coordinated uprising across the country. The rebel
soldiers the Mouvement Patriotique de Côte d'Ivoire (MPCI) seized control of
the northern 60% of the country but failed to capture Abidjan, the country's
economic capital.

Forces loyal to President Laurent Gbagbo proved unable to dislodge rebel
troops from their northern stronghold. To avert a full-scale war, about 1200
French troops deployed across the country as a thin buffer between the
government and rebel troops. The French troops will soon be replaced by an
equally small and far less well prepared African force.

Tensions remain high as government troops and youth militias allied to
Gbagbo and his Bete ethnic group murder opposition politicians and attack
Abidjan slums which are occupied by foreigners and northerners.

Gbagbo demands that the rebels surrender their arms, while the rebels demand
a rerun of presidential elections, which barred the leader of the country's
largest opposition party from participating. So far Gbagbo flatly refuses.

How did West Africa's most developed, stable nation come to this?

The situation is the predictable consequence of a leader staying in power
too long. Similar instability came to Somalia because of Siad Barre, to
Malawi today because of Banda, to Zimbabwe, Central African Republic, and
Democratic Republic of Congo.

In Côte d'Ivoire, founding president Felix Houphouet-Boigny ruled for 33
years. He oversaw far faster growth and greater stability than any of the
country's neighbours. However, the seeds of discontent began to grow as he
maintained one-party rule and resisted calls to name a successor.

His death in 1993 brought to power Henri Konan Bedie, who sought to bolster
himself by cultivating animosity to foreigners and preventing his most
popular rival, Allasane Ouattara, from running for president on the grounds
that he is not a citizen, despite having served as prime minister.

Bedie, from the mostly Christian south, began publicly inciting animosity
against foreigners. At least a quarter of the population were born outside
the country but migrated in search of jobs, mostly from Burkina Faso, Mali
and other Muslim countries. With the north of the country predominantly
Muslim and heavy with people of mixed local and foreign roots, Bedie's
xenophobic move was seen as a direct assault on half the population with
dangerous regional and religious overtones.

A pattern of serious human rights abuse has escalated ever since. Violent
protests accompanied the 1995 elections. Local independent media reported a
coup attempt in May 1996. Journalists were jailed, and opposition figures
arrested, tortured and several died in police custody.

Bedie's government was seen as corrupt and inept enough that the public
broadly cheered when he was deposed in a coup on Christmas 1999. Gen Robert
Guei took power and pledged to hold elections. However, Guei promulgated a
new constitution designed to bar Ouattara's participation in politics.
Fourteen of 19 candidates were thus banned from contesting the presidential

Laurent Gbagbo, the long-time opponent of Houphouet-Boigny, was the only
other significant candidate in the 2000 elections. When Guei halted the vote
count and declared himself the winner, public outrage and massive street
protests swept Gbagbo to power.

Gbagbo refused to acknowledge the dubious process that brought him to power.
He persisted with the antiforeign rhetoric and once more blocked Ouattara
from standing in parliamentary elections. More than 500 people were killed
during and after the elections.

As Human Rights Watch reported, "by December (2000), the relationship
between the security forces and the youth wing of Gbagbo's party had
consolidated, with the latter enjoying complete immunity, even when they
committed atrocities in the presence of gendarmes and police. Although
President Gbagbo did not initiate the descent into violence, for which Gen
Guei must bear primary responsibility, he (used) the same methods of
incitement and ethnic polarisation."

Gbagbo publicly blamed a failed coup attempt in January last year on
foreigners, which sparked a frenzy of violence. There were at least 150
extrajudicial killings by security forces last year.

Although Gbagbo did hold a series of reconciliation meetings with Guei,
Bedie and Ouattara, he made no fundamental concessions and continued to
spout ethnically divisive rhetoric. When the rebellion was launched in
September, he immediately blamed foreigners and security forces began
widespread attacks on Abidjan townships largely occupied by northerners and
foreigners. Guei and his family, including grandchildren, were murdered.

For Africa, all this poses a difficult dilemma. Gbagbo is the recognised
head of state subjected to an attempted coup. However, he and his
predecessors have launched the country on an extremely destructive path by
inciting ethnic animosity and massive human rights abuse.

Although the MPCI were wrong to launch a rebellion, Gbagbo is equally wrong.
He has made no concessions and sought to rearm and attack his opponents. In
recent days, in the midst of negotiations, his supporters have continued
attacking defenceless people and they murdered two opposition leaders.

Even if he could launch a militarily successful counterattack, it would
never convince the 40% of the population who are Muslim, or the others who
are foreign or disenfranchised, to willingly accept the unfair political
systems and state brutality that is official policy. A war at this stage
would send the nation into the kind of anarchy, collapse and brutality that
Sierra Leone, Liberia and Somalia experienced.

With so much at stake, Africa must forcefully assert itself. Gbagbo must be
told Africa will not allow this to be settled through war and if necessary
trade and arms sanctions will be imposed. Instead of a hopelessly inadequate
force of 1200, a force of 10000 to 20000 soldiers should be deployed.

They should have the might and the mandate to disarm the rebels, to stop the
human rights abuses and enforce a fair, inclusive compromise. Otherwise Côte
d'Ivoire will become a Liberia but the scale of horror and economic damage
will be 10 times worse.

Herbert is Africa Research Fellow at the SA Institute of International
Affairs and head of its Nepad research and civil society programme.
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Daily News - Leader Page

      Mugabe must correct his mistakes first

      11/14/02 12:22:01 AM (GMT +2)

      THE Foreign Minister of South Africa, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, has
appealed to the international community to help President Mugabe's
government out of its present economic mess.

      At a joint news conference in Pretoria with her Zimbabwean
counterpart, Stan Mudenge, she said: "Even if Zimbabwe made a mistake, the
point is that we need to move to the future. No one can change yesterday, no
one can change today, but we can change the future."

      On the other hand, we can all learn valuable lessons from the past.
One cardinal lesson people who have dealt with the political and economic
gymnastics of the Mugabe government have learnt is that it is not given to
admitting its transgressions.

      The whole land reform fiasco was a mistake from start to finish, but
to this day, Mugabe will not come out in the open and confess to the world
that this was as big a faux pas as the other political gaffes he has
committed in a political career studded with other errors.

      Most commentators assume that when the South African Foreign Minister
speaks of Zimbabwe's mistake, she is referring to the events preceding the
near-collapse of the economy.

      The illegal seizure of the farms in 2000 and the murder and violence
that followed it have led to the political and economic isolation of the
      In 2002, a presidential election was held during which many voters
were deliberately disenfranchised. Today, the new Minister of Finance and
Economic Development, the rather ineffective Herbert Murerwa, will present
the national budget in Parliament.

      This will be an exercise in utter futility: what kind of budget can be
worked out for a country practically without a cent to its name is a matter
of speculation.

      In Pretoria, Dlamini-Zuma, said Britain must honour its pledge at the
Lancaster House Conference in 1979 to pay compensation to the commercial
farmers whose land should be taken over for the resettlement of landless
peasants in the overcrowded communal areas, with their infertile soils.

      The British government has said in the past that as soon as these
farms were distributed, not to the genuinely landless citizens of Zimbabwe,
but to Zanu PF's legion of fat cats, it had a rethink - and rightly too.

      The mistakes that Mugabe must correct must include a return to the
rule of law. The agricultural sector of this country is in what some
      pessimists have called terminal collapse, largely because of the
chaotic land reform promoted so zealously by Mugabe and his government,
quite often illegally.

      The fat cats continue to reap the richest rewards from the programme,
while many of the landless people have yet to be empowered sufficiently to
fight against their endemic poverty.

      Land reform must take account of the economy of the country, which it
obviously did not, as it was basically a knee-jerk reaction to a crisis of
political survival faced by Zanu PF.

      Political pluralism must be given an unfettered opportunity to flower.
The media must be returned to the people, and not be imprisoned in the
clutches of the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act monster.

      Dlamini-Zuma's appeal to the international community to come to the
aid of Zimbabwe may be brimming with sincerity, but it doesn't seem to take
account of how much resentment towards South Africa her government's futile
quiet diplomacy has built up among ordinary Zimbabweans.
      By any political calculations, if South Africa had blended its quiet
diplomacy with a tough reminder to Mugabe that he was ruining his country
just to stay in power, there could have been far less chaos than there is
today.Moreover, many lives would have been saved. As it is, the chances that
Mugabe will agree to mend his ways and correct his errors must depend on how
determined South Africa and the other members of the Southern African
Development Community are to prevent the economic contagion of Mugabe's
blunders from developing into a terminal illness in the region.
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Sydney Morning Herald

The developing world needs trade, not aid, to help the poor
November 15 2002

Handouts from the rich nations too often fill the pockets of dictators
rather than the bellies of the starving, writes James Shikwati.

About a year ago, trade ministers who met at the last World Trade
Organisation meeting in Doha, Qatar, launched a new round of trade
negotiations called the Development Round. Since then very little has been
done in the way of freeing up trade to people in poor countries.

Indeed, mostly things have gone in the opposite direction, with the US
announcing a subsidy bonanza for its farmers and imposing restrictions on
steel imports. Meanwhile, to the extent that the international community has
been discussing "development" it has been in the context of increasing "aid"
to the "developing" world. This was the theme of the meeting in Monterrey,
Mexico, in March, and again at the World Summit on Sustainable Development
in Johannesburg.

But "aid" will not stimulate development. Only trade can do that. For many
years, well-meaning aid agencies have sought to help people in poor
countries. Since the 1960s, over $500 billion. has been given to the
governments of African countries in the form of grants and soft loans. Yet
the results have been less than spectacular. During the 1980s, at least 92
attempted military takeovers - some succeeding, some not - were recorded,
affecting 29 African countries. Between 1981 and 1996 aid to Africa from all
donors averaged about $US19 billion annually. During the same period, nearly
half the countries in Africa experienced significant episodes of violent
conflict between government and opposition groups. Four million people lost
their lives, including seven heads of state; 3 million people became

The question remains: how can something that seems so good have had such a
corrosive effect? The answer is that aid gives untrustworthy leaders the
resources with which to engage in violent and repressive acts. Mengistu
(Ethiopia), Pol Pot (Cambodia) and Idi Amin (Uganda) are among the more
infamous recipients of foreign aid. Even food aid has been diverted to feed
soldiers whose sole aim is to keep the population down. Recent reports
indicate Robert Mugabe is diverting food aid to his supporters rather than
allowing it to go to the starving millions in Zimbabwe.

In places where poverty is rife, aid becomes the route to riches for the
elite. Money is disbursed through contracts, with rulers receiving huge
kickbacks for their favours. By 1982 Zaire (now Democratic Republic of
Congo) had accumulated a foreign debt of $5 billion. Its president, Mobutu
Sese Seko, had accumulated a personal fortune of $4 billion.

Aid also undermines the democratic accountability of government. By offering
governments a non-tax source of revenue, it enables them to ignore the
wishes of citizens and reduces their incentive to deliver public services
efficiently and effectively. It also exacerbates cronyism. Why not award
valuable contracts to your brother-in law's more expensive (and less
efficient) building company if you know the people can't complain?

For the poor of the world, the main concern is that their governments stop
strangling and looting their economies. As the Peruvian economist Hernando
de Soto has shown, economic progress depends mainly on society's
institutions. That means formal property rights, free markets and the rule
of law. These institutions enable people to own and exchange goods without
fear of arbitrary expropriation, either by bandits or by the state. They
thereby encourage economic activity, which enables people to escape from
poverty. Some even become rich.

The rich world can help - by opening its markets to textiles, agricultural
goods, and other products from the poor world. Trade will lead to production
that will lift the standards of living in poor countries. It could also
remove its agricultural subsidies, which reduce world market prices of these
goods, reducing the amount poor-world producers can obtain for their goods.

When the developed world does give aid, it should be narrowly targeted (say,
to provide assistance to trade negotiators or technical training), or in the
form of products (such as food aid or medicines) rather than money that can
be stolen, diverted or misused.

Guilt and goodwill have blinded many to the damage that aid can do. Trade,
not aid, is the solution for the poor. At this week's informal WTO
ministerial meeting in Sydney, trade ministers should make good on their
promise at Doha to create a world trading system that benefits all
participants. That means reducing tariff and non-tariff barriers on all
goods, as well as reducing agricultural subsidies.

James Shikwati, director of the Inter-Region economic Network in Nairobi,
Kenya, is visiting Australia for the WTO meeting.
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International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) -

Cholera stalks drought-hit southern Africa
Cholera is emerging as the latest health threat to the 14 million people
facing severe food shortages across southern Africa. In recent weeks, at
least 500 cases of cholera - and 24 deaths from the disease - have been
reported in Zimbabwe's Masvingo province, which in addition has HIV/AIDS
adult infection rates of more than 40 per cent. Cases have been reported in
neighbouring countries affected by a drought that is increasingly driving
people to drinking contaminated ground water. The Zimbabwe Red Cross has
been assessing and responding to needs in Masvingo and educating the local
population on how to avoid falling ill. The International Federation has
sent cholera treatment kits for up to 5,000 people, and has more medicines
at the ready if needed. "We also need to step up our water and sanitation
activities to ensure that a very vulnerable population has improved access
to clean drinking water," says Dr. Hakan Sandbladh, the Federation's
emergency health adviser. Cholera has arrived unseasonally early, and that
is a direct consequence of the food crisis. "People are weak, have limited
access to food and are using poor water sources. We're concerned that the
situation will get worse rather than better as the season progresses,"
explains Ben Mountfield, country manager of the Red Cross food operation in
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NZ labour shortage gives rise to migrant headhunting 'club'
15 November 2002

A club with almost 200 skilled workers from overseas has been formed by an
Auckland firm trying to beat a skill shortage that has seen New Zealand
companies lose "millions in potential orders".

The Hunters Club was formed in May by immigration consultancy Malcolm
Pacific, which recognised what they now describe as a "desperate cry for
skilled employees".

"Although we are an immigration business, not a recruitment agency, people
know we bring skilled workers to New Zealand," Malcolm Pacific's Albert
Bosma said yesterday.

And that reputation led to a flood of calls as New Zealand's skill shortage
got worse.

"A couple of years ago we would get monthly calls," Mr Bosma said.

"Last year it was weekly or twice a week, but now the phone is ringing every
day... Have you got diesel mechanics, sheetmetal workers, fitters and
turners, engineers? It's never-ending."

He said the Hunters Club was formed to serve three purposes.

"The migrants win because they settle well and get good jobs, the employers
win because they get skilled, experienced, English-speaking workers, and we
win because we enhance our business and attract more clients."

Mr Bosma said the club would provide short-term solutions to problems which
are costing New Zealand firms dearly.

"It's happening more and more. Skill shortages are hitting companies hard,"
he said.

"We've had calls from businesses who need 10 sheetmetal workers to fill
million dollar contracts and if they could find them, they could employ
another 20 or so semi- or unskilled workers down line.

"The problem is, they can't find them here as they don't exist, they've all
got jobs or have gone offshore," he said.

To date, the Hunters Club has a membership of almost 200 workers.

"Seventy per cent of the members are British, 20 per cent are South African
and the remaining 10 per cent come from the United States, Middle East and
Zimbabwe," Mr Bosma said.

"They include nurses, civil, marine and mechanical engineers, diesel
mechanics, carpenters, fitters and turners and a whole range of IT

Mr Bosma said that the fastest-growing group of migrants joining the Hunter
Club are from the US.

"The lifestyle in New Zealand really appeals to people from the US," he

Dan Ormond of Wellington Regional Chamber of Commerce said anything that
helps fill skill gaps is valuable.

"There are two ways of solving a skills shortage - training for the
long-term and immigration as an immediate response," Mr Ormond said.

"We believe the Hunters Club is a good way of facilitating that immediate
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Daily News

            Hitler is alive and well

            11/14/02 12:17:07 AM (GMT +2)

            I FEEL that my case is representative of that of many other
Zimbabweans who are languishing in poverty. I also feel something needs to
be done urgently about President Mugabe's destructive misrule.

            It's quite shameful that Mugabe has allowed to destroy, with
utter ruthlessness, whatever has tried to block his path to absolute

            If he did win the March presidential election fairly as he
claims, then why all this mayhem? Why can't he settle down and enjoy power?
I feel Mugabe is punishing us for rejecting him in March 2002, leaving him
with no option but to steal the election. He appears to derive pleasure from
seeing his party hooligans murder opposition officials and supporters with

            Our country has really gone to the dogs while we watch.

            We don't need a rocket scientist to tell us to rebel. When I see
people starving, being brutally assaulted and murdered, I begin to doubt
Hitler's death. I think he's still alive and well.

            Millicent Tanhira

      Thrown into the furnace

      11/14/02 12:17:37 AM (GMT +2)

      Zimbabweans should not close their eyes to the activities of this
government, which seeks to drive its population into the furnace.

      It has plunged the country into darkness. We don't really know where
we are going and what the future will be like.

      What is the government's plan to overcome the current economic
hardships and unfavourable political climate? None at all!

      It is clear that the government and its officials are clinging onto
power to enrich themselves, instead of working for the people. Because of a
small group of people, the whole country is suffering.

      Mbuto Kasukulu
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Media Monitoring Project Zimbabwe
November 4th- November 10th
Weekly Update 2002-41


1. General Comment

As this weekly update was going to press, Zimbabweans were awaiting the
announcement of the 2003 budget proposal by Finance Minister Herbert
Murerwa. The announcement comes at a time when the economy is facing the
most severe crisis in the country's history. All media agreed that the
budget was unlikely to address the fundamental causes of the country's
economic crisis. Nonetheless, the public media remained optimistic and
called on the minister to allocate more funds to government's land reform
programme, which they believe is the key to solving the country's economic
woes. Conversely, the private media observed that whatever financial chart
Murerwa would come up with was likely to be sacrificed on the altar of
political expediency.  They particularly highlighted the country's run-away
inflation as a militating factor against any solutions to the tottering
economy. While the private media concurred that high inflation was the root
cause of escalating prices of goods, the public media found themselves
latching onto familiar conspiracy theories that manufacturers were either
breaching price controls or withholding their products to push for a price
hike. In fact, price increases have become a major concern for the general
populace, who only learn of new prices when they get to the till operators.
The media, it seems, have been out-sprinted by the dramatic and continuing
increase in prices to an extent that they have totally failed to keep their
audiences up-to-date with the soaring cost of living. Notwithstanding the
difficulties the media have in keeping track of a high inflationary rate,
they still have a duty to inform their audiences. Even more disturbing is
the failure by the media to highlight clearly how the inflationary
environment has eroded the disposable income of general workers. Instead,
media reports merely bordered on generalizations as compared to specifics
and statistical evidence. It would also be instructive for the media to
examine what has happened to the prices of so-called controlled commodities
and whether government is doing anything about enforcing these, especially
as this was a platform upon which ZANU-PF fought the presidential election.

Meanwhile, this week MMPZ looks at the coverage of the US/Zimbabwe relations
with regards the warning by the US against alleged politicization of food by
ZANU PF. Also, this update examines the manner in which the media covered
the land issue in relation to the country's food security.

2. International relations: Bellamy's remarks

The gulf between the public and private media was again exposed in their
coverage of a warning by US Deputy Secretary of State for African Affairs,
Mark Bellamy, against government's alleged politicization of food aid. The
public media was alarmist, interpreting the American's "interventionist"
comment about food distribution as a call to attack Zimbabwe militarily. On
the other hand the private media restricted themselves to coverage of
Bellamy's reported remarks and those of other US officials, leaving their
audiences to interpret the meaning of what was said. These differences in
reporting the issue were best captured by the way The Herald and The Daily
News of the same day (6/11) titled their stories. The Herald's headline:
Anti-Zim drive: US plans to invade Harare was exaggerated, while The Daily
News one, US threatens Zimbabwe: Warns of intervention to ensure food
reaches needy regardless of political affiliation, was more to the point. In
fact, both papers' stories emanated from the same report published in the
US-based Washington Times, which did not mention any military attack on
Zimbabwe. But strangely The Herald appeared keen on pursuing a war agenda by
narrowly and subjectively interpreting Bellamy's statements that his country
was considering "intrusive and interventionist" measures that could
challenge Zimbabwe's sovereignty as constituting "a thinly-veiled military
threat". This was despite the fact that the American embassy, which could
have clarified the issue, was just a telephone call away. Interestingly, The
Herald and Daily News both quoted US State Department spokesman Richard
Boucher, explaining this new US stance and never referred to any military
intervention. Both papers merely cited him saying "the review of food
distribution methods arose after the Zimbabwean authorities seized grain the
World Food Programme was distributing and gave it to supporters of the
government". Said Boucher: "We need to look very carefully at this situation
to make sure that we can monitor the use of the food and make sure it goes
to the neediest of people without any political consideration. So we are
looking at it now." Notwithstanding such explanations, The Herald continued
to editorialize these comments, accusing the US of "planning to invade
Zimbabwe.on the pretext of bringing relief aid to people who were allegedly
being denied food on political grounds". The paper even tried to dismiss the
seizure of the World Food Programme (WFP) food aid by ZANU PF supporters
during the run-up to the Insiza by-election as "an isolated and unverified
incident in Matebeleland South" and therefore not worthy of American
attention. This contrasted sharply with reports in the private Press of
ruling ZANU PF supporters using food as a political tool against its
opponents such as, No ZANU PF card, no maize meal in Mufakose, The Daily
News (5/11), UN urged to intervene to stop partisan food distribution, The
Daily News (8/11) or Grace lures voters with food, The Standard (10/11). In
fact, to lend credibility to its US invasion theory, the public Press
solicited comments from mainly government commentators, The Herald (6/11)
and Chronicle (7/11). For example, The Herald quoted an unnamed government
spokesman, who while accusing Bellamy and the US of being "either blank, mad
or both", tried to drag Africa into the US/Zimbabwe dispute. Said the
government spokesman: ".SADC and the African Union should take note of the
mad talk about intrusive and interventionist challenges to Zimbabwe's
sovereignty. Today it's about Zimbabwe, heaven knows who is next in SADC."
The government spokesman then tried to link the opposition MDC to the US
action by implying that the American threats stemmed from the MDC's loss in
the Insiza by-election, sentiments that were surprisingly echoed by the
Zimbabwe Defence Forces Chief, General Vitalis Zvinavashe, whose position
demands that he be apolitical. ZBC (3FM, 6/11, 1pm) picked up the story that
afternoon. And just like the public Press, stated that the US wanted to
invade Zimbabwe. That same evening, ZTV followed suit. It reported that this
was not the first time the US government had threatened Zimbabwe's
sovereignty alleging that, "Americans are well-known for imposing their will
on weaker nations by threatening military action and Zimbabwe and other
African countries have been on the receiving end". As evidence, its reporter
then chronicled allegations of US interference in Zimbabwe's sovereignty
since 1983. In the same bulletin, ZTV (8pm) quoted a US embassy official,
Bruce Wharton, who denied claims of US military intervention saying: "The
United State has absolutely no intention of invading Zimbabwe." SW Radio
Africa (6/11) also carried the US denial. However, ZTV swamped the US
response with a hotchpotch of claims, which included allegations that the US
has military bases in Botswana from where "the threatened intervention"
could be launched and that US and British troop formations were reported on
the border between South Africa and Zimbabwe. ZANU PF advocate William Nhara
added, in the same bulletin, that the alleged US threats "should be taken
seriously" and urged government to take measures that "should ensure that
our armed forces.intelligence forces.policing forces are put on alert .".
However, Foreign Affairs Minister Stan Mudenge's (ZTV & 3FM, 6/11, 8pm)
stated that government would not take Bellamy's remarks seriously as they
were made following a "misrepresentation of facts by three Zimbabwean
citizens" who are alleged to have said they had evidence that "Shonas want
Mugabe to eliminate all the Ndebeles, . and that a genocide is planned". The
following morning, The Herald (7/11), developed Mudenge's claims in its
article, UK behind invasion plot, which tried to link Britain to America's
purported military attack on Zimbabwe. The article implied that since
Bellamy made his remarks at a meeting on Famine and Political Violence in
Matebeleland, organized by the London-based Zimbabwe Democracy Trust (ZDT)
and sponsored by the Centre for International and Strategic Studies (CISS),
the British had therefore influenced the proceedings. The fact that a former
secretary at the British High Commission in Harare, David Troup, allegedly
chaired the meeting while three MDC activists were on the ZDT panel, was
used as further evidence. Again, no attempts were made to verify these
claims with either the British or the Americans. It was left to The Daily
News (8/11) to do so in its story, UK denies masterminding plot to invade
Zimbabwe. In fact, The Herald (7/11) simply dismissed the outcome of the
ZDT-organized meeting by alleging that the three MDC activists (former
magistrate Johnson Mkandla, Bulawayo Residents Association president Paul
Siwela, and Ernest Mtunzi, now resident in Britain) had spread "just a pack
of falsehoods". Similarly, ZBC (ZTV, 7/11, 8pm) managed to link the American
threat to its now traditional targets; the MDC, Amani Trust and the British
government. It reported that many people in Matabeleland had said "the
British and the MDC are trying to get political mileage through spreading
falsehoods about Zimbabwe and its people" adding that "the true principal
shareholders of the MDC" ZDT and Amani Trust "are among the organizations
behind a major misinformation campaign against Zimbabwe". In an effort to
discredit allegations that food aid was only distributed to ZANU PF
supporters, ZTV reported, in the same bulletin, that statistics on food
distribution patterns by the state controlled Grain Marketing Board (GMB)
showed that MDC strongholds get most of the grain while ZANU PF strongholds
get less. However, there was no independent assessment to confirm the
report, or even to say who, within these strongholds, received the relief.
The report (and Radio Zimbabwe, 8/11, 6am) also quoted selected chiefs from
Matabeleland South as having dismissed allegations of the politicization of
food "as mischievous and baseless attempts by the London-based Democracy
Trust that there is ethnic cleansing and that their subjects are being
denied food aid on tribal grounds". So did Chronicle (8/11) in its MDC
claims rejected. Yet even as the public media dismissed such allegations,
The Financial Gazette (7/11), for example, was reporting on ZANU PF's
continued post-election retribution against supporters of the MDC in Insiza
despite the fact that the ruling party had won in that constituency. The
paper reported that at least 50 villagers had since been displaced in the
past two weeks while others suspected of having voted for the MDC were being
denied permission to buy maize from the GMB. The alleged US threat to
Zimbabwe triggered a barrage of criticism from the public media that
climaxed with the announcement by the Zimbabwe government of retaliatory
sanctions against 119 people, who included senior officials of the British
government, ZTV (7/11, 8pm), The Herald, Chronicle and Daily News of the
same day (8/11). Notably, Zimbabwean media personalities working for SW
Radio Africa and Voice of the People, private radio stations broadcasting
from Britain and the Netherlands respectively, were included on the list.
But while the public media was content to accept the government's
explanation that the "decision to impose the sanctions was taken to
safeguard the country's sovereignty, secure its national interests, peace
and stability", The Herald (8/11), the private media was more questioning.
For example, SW Radio Africa (8/11) queried the logic behind government's
decision to blacklist its own people, observing that Simon Parkinson, who
was listed as an SW Radio Africa employee, was in fact working for a
different radio station in South Africa. The station quoted a lawyer,
Anthony Brooks, as saying it was unclear under what Zimbabwean law the
minister could declare a Zimbabwean a prohibited person adding: "If the
minister fails to explain the legal basis of his action he can be taken to
court". Likewise, The Daily News (9/11), quoted National Constitutional
Assembly (NCA) chairman Lovemore Madhuku dismissing the move as "an act of
madness". Said Madhuku: "It amounts to the unprecedented and unthinkable act
of deporting Zimbabwean citizens. It is, beyond any shadow of doubt,
unconstitutional and illegal even under our current defective constitution.
It offends every notion of freedom of justice." Madhuku, added that the ban
could be the "starting point to a grand strategy to drive all democracy
activists out of Zimbabwe". However, The Sunday Mail's attempt to provide
Information Minister Jonathan Moyo with a platform to respond to the NCA was
compromised by allowing him to twist the interview into a personal attack on
Madhuku, whom he repeatedly branded as "an ex-convict". 3FM & Radio Zimbabwe
(10/11, 1pm) carried excerpts of the same interview. Meanwhile, the
announcement of retaliatory sanctions coincided with a statement from the
British government that it was introducing visas for Zimbabweans wishing to
travel to that country because of "very significant abuse of our immigration
controls by Zimbabwean nationals". The public Press both downplayed and
welcomed the move as exemplified by The Herald (9/11) comment, Visa
requirement a blessing in disguise. Conversely, The Standard (10/11), called
for the scrapping of visas, saying President Mugabe was to blame for the
increasing number of Zimbabweans emigrating to the UK.

3. Land reform and food security

The public and private media were also divided over their perspectives on
the impact of the ongoing land reforms on the country's food security.  For
example, while the Chronicle (5/11), Farmers ready for planting season
painted an optimistic picture about the prospects of a successful 2002/3
agricultural season, the private Press was doubtful. The Daily News (6/11)
and The Zimbabwe Independent (8/11) carried an IRIN report stating that
government's land reform had missed its aim of achieving "optimal
utilization of land and natural resources and to promote equitable access to
land to all Zimbabweans". Moreover, The Zimbabwe Independent exposed how
ill-prepared both government and the newly-resettled farmers were in their
task of feeding the nation when it reported that the winter wheat crop had
been affected by late harvesting resulting in some of it rotting in the
fields. Unnamed agricultural experts were also cited contesting Indigenous
Commercial Farmers Union boss Thomas Nherera's predictions that the country
would produce 250 000 tonnes of wheat considering the hectarage under the
crop. The paper also reported that the much publicized winter maize project
in Masvingo, which was spearheaded by provincial governor Josaya Hungwe was
a "monumental failure", as it only yielded 7 500 tonnes of maize, enough to
feed the nation for a day. However, ZTV (7/11, 8pm) unquestioningly quoted
Hungwe alleging that the winter crop "can feed people for ten months . we
are talking about 10 months of feeding people." But The Business Tribune
(7/11) concurred with other private papers. It carried a report by the
Southern African Development Community (SADC) predicting Zimbabwe's "food
security position for the 2002/2003 marketing year" assuming  "famine
proportions". The report noted that cereal harvests in the country had
actually plummeted by over 60 percent for the 2001/2002 season and that
"current projections indicate a maize deficit of 1.98 million tonnes for the
2002/2003 marketing year". Despite these revelations, the public media
remained optimistic. They blamed producers of agricultural inputs for
causing shortages and viewed this as the main obstacle of the reforms. For
example, The Chronicle (7/11), Success of agrarian reforms threatened, saw
the shortage of maize seed "as part of efforts to derail land reforms".
Without according the producers the right to reply, the paper (8/11)
followed this up with a comment, Stop playing political games with seed.
This blame game gathered momentum in The Sunday Mail (10/11), which quoted
Agriculture Minister Joseph Made accusing manufacturing companies of
creating artificial shortages of fertilizer in the hope of pushing for a
price increase. Just like the public Press, ZBC (7/11 & 9/11, 8pm) merely
catalogued reports highlighting problems affecting the new farmers without
analyzing the underlying implications to food security.

The MEDIA UPDATE was produced and circulated by the Media Monitoring Project
Zimbabwe,15 Duthie Avenue, Alexandra Park, Harare, Tel/fax: 263 4 703702,

Feel free to write to MMPZ. We may not able to respond to everything but we
will look at each message.
For previous MMPZ reports, and more information about the Project, please
visit our website at
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