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

Back to Index

Back to the Top
Back to Index


The Land Reform Programme is NOT Over

In the light of the recent statement by Stan Mudenge, the Minister of
Foreign affairs, that "the land reform programme is over" and that it is
now incumbent upon the British to pay compensation to those farmers who
have been evicted, it is essential that we make some response. There is a
danger of international perception accepting this proposition of a fait
accompli, and attempting to make the best of a bad situation, rather than
addressing the situation that still exists on the ground.

Despite Mudenge's statement, new section 5 and section 8 orders are being
issued - some 54 new listings were published on the 1st of November, and
57 on the 8th of November. Interestingly, a large proportion of these
listings were for the Insiza district, following last month's by-election
held in the area. Furthermore, in the same week as Mudenge made his
statement, at least five more farmers were evicted from their farms, in
some cases regardless of their status with respect to the land acquisition
act. Clearly there is no fait accompli as Mudenge would have us believe,
but rather a continuation of the chaotic and unconstitutional "programme"
that the government has been pursuing to date.

Furthermore, whilst many farmers have been forced to abandon their farming
operations, some are still either on their farms or farming by remote
control. Latest figures estimate less than 400 commercial farmers are
fully engaged in farming operations, but although this number is still
decreasing, the vast majority of displaced farmers are still desirous of
returning. The repercussions of the farm evictions are being felt
throughout the fabric of Zimbabwean society, as tens of thousands of
displaced farm workers are forced to migrate to both cities and marginal
areas in a desperate bid to feed themselves.

Furthermore, none of the settlers actually have been granted title to
their farms - the government has been highly reticent in providing such
for the recipients of the land. This is a critical point, because without
title, there is no legal basis for anyone's claim to own land. There have
already been cases where war veterans who have been allocated land have
been kicked off in favour of some party bigwig, and there is nothing
preventing this happening repeatedly whilst the ownership of the land is
in doubt. Zanu PF has engineered a situation where anyone can lay claim to
the land by direct action or through the land committee, regardless of the
fact that the actual title is often still held by the original farmers.
This "might makes right" situation is anathema to the very concept of
effective agriculture. Commercial farming is predicated on the ownership
of the land, since it is used as surety for loans and development that is
vital for the farming process and progress. Until the issue of title is
addressed by the government, the land reform process is far from over, and
any claims that "what's done is done" are mere bluster, and are highly

Mudenge's call has been taken up by South Africa's foreign minister,
Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, requiring that Britain honour its obligation to
pay compensation to the farmers. Whilst Britain did make a commitment to
underwrite the land redistribution process within Zimbabwe in the terms of
the Lancaster House agreement, the funding was allocated for a
constitutional and structured process, and the British are not prepared to
release the funds for Mugabe's "unfair and corrupt land reform programme". 
Dhlamini-Zuma has urged that the British overlook Mugabe's "mistakes", and
go ahead and pay compensation to the farmers. Whilst compensation is an
essential issue, we would urge rather that the issue of title as enshrined
in the Zimbabwean constitution is clarified and upheld. Until this occurs,
there is no chance that agriculture can recover in this country, and
furthermore, compensation alone will not go very far towards preventing
that bitterness in the farming communities to which Dhlamini-Zuma refers.
As in the case of apartheid, there must be some realization and open
admission that transgressions have been made against the rights of the
individual, and some manner of restitution must be made available to the
tens of thousands of families who have had their lives turned upside down
by the unconstitutional and corrupt land reform programme. As
Dhlamini-Zuma herself says: "No one can change yesterday, no one can
change today, but we can change the future."

Justice for Agriculture mailing list
To subscribe/unsubscribe: Please write to
Back to the Top
Back to Index

Mail and Guardian

More bad news for Zimbabwe


      20 November 2002 17:21

The steady decline of Zimbabwe's economy that began four years ago is to
continue with real gross domestic product set to fall by up to 12% this year
and seven percent in 2003, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe said on Wednesday.

A foreign currency shortage that has drastically reduced the production of
goods and services for local consumption and export "has made it difficult
to meet external obligations", said bank governor Leonard Tsimba in a
monetary policy statement.

Current food shortages -- brought about by the drought affecting six
southern African countries and also blamed on Zimbabwe's chaotic land
reform -- will necessitate the diversion of scarce foreign exchange to
import food, he said.

As of mid-November, external payment arrears stand at $1 319-million and are
expected to peak at $1 395-million by year end, he added.

Tsimba said inflation, which stood at 144,2% in October this year "is
projected to remain high for the remainder of 2002 and beyond".

The balance of payment deficit is supposed to hit an all-time high of
$847-million in 2003, the governor said.

The Zimbabwean economy, second to that of South Africa in the southern
African region, is not expected to recover until the Bretton Woods bodies
resume lending and providing balance of payment support, both of which are
suspended at the moment. - Sapa-AFP
Back to the Top
Back to Index

Government urged to end "graft" in attorney-general's office (New

BBC Monitoring Service 19 Nov 2002

Zimbabweans have called on the government to institute an inquiry into
the conduct and operations of the Attorney-General [AG]'s office, in
order to stamp out alleged high-level corruption and incompetence in
the state's prosecution department.

The call comes in the wake of the refusal by Magistrate Caroline Anne
Chikombira [name as heard] to place MDC [opposition Movement for
Democratic Change] parliamentarians Job Sikala and Tafadzwa Musekiwa,
who are facing fraud charges, on remand.

In a survey conducted by Newsnet yesterday, many Zimbabweans expressed
their disappointment at the handling of cases by the
attorney-general's office. Most people said the goings-on at the AG's
office suggest that high-level corruption is taking place, adding that
there is need for a thorough investigation to be instituted.

Others pointed out that the commitment and ability of the officers at
the AG's office is questionable, and need to be look into...

Source: ZBC Radio 3FM audio web site, Harare, in English 0400 gmt 19
Nov 02

© BBC Monitoring
Back to the Top
Back to Index

ZIMBABWE: Focus on the struggle to make ends meet

[ This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations]

      ©  IRIN

      Harare consumers face rising prices

HARARE, 20 Nov 2002 (IRIN) - Like many Zimbabweans, the main concern of
Simon Marume is how he can stretch his salary to feed his family.

Marume, 49, works for a milling company in the capital, Harare. His wife is
unemployed and he has five children to support. He also has financial
obligations to his extended family in his rural home area of Masvingo, in
southwestern Zimbabwe.

Zimbabweans have seen their standard of living collapse as a consequence,
say analysts, of failed economic policies and the withdrawal of support by
donors and investors. The government's controversial land reform programme
has further hurt an agriculture-dependent economy which, on top of drought,
has left 6.7 million Zimbabweans in need of food aid.

In October, inflation hit a record 144 percent with every indication of an
even more dramatic increase in 2003.

But Marume is one of the lucky ones, he has a job in a country where formal
sector employment can only absorb a fraction of the number of school-leavers
who enter the job market each year. But his employer has indicated the
company would lay-off most of its full-time employees during the Christmas
break, due to an acute shortage of foreign currency and raw materials.

"I earn only Zim $19,000 [US $345 at the official rate] a month because my
company cut down our working hours in order to maintain a manageable wage
bill," Marume told IRIN. "How on earth can I sufficiently fend for my big

For the past two years he had not been able to travel to his rural home to
visit his aged mother because of rising transport costs. Now, he only sends
her on average a token Zim $500 [US $9] a month, hardly enough to buy a 2-kg
packet of sugar.

According to a survey released by the Consumer Council of Zimbabwe (CCZ), a
family of four needs Zim $35,000 [US $636] for basic commodities each month,
a more than four-fold increase on the CCZ's January estimate.

The reality for many people earning far less, and the 70 percent of
Zimbabweans who are unemployed, is that they have been forced to cut back on
the number of meals they eat a day. That has raised fears of malnutrition in
urban areas, especially among children.

The government has responded to the crisis with a six-month price freeze on
a range of products to cushion consumers. The move extended the items on a
list first introduced last year and includes fuel, all meat products, salt,
vegetable oils and sugar. It also covers alcoholic beverages and household
items like soap, candles and toilet paper.

But economists have warned that, as with last year, the new measures would
merely push more goods on to the black market and worsen existing shortages.
Currently, basic commodities such as bread, maize meal, cooking oil, soap
and sugar are in short supply on the shelves of established supermarkets.

They are, however, readily available on the black market where they are sold
at exorbitant prices, which the CCZ figures do not take account of.

Mbare is one of Harare's poorest and oldest high-density suburbs. Its
bustling Musika market is where commodities absent from price-controlled
shops are found, albiet at a price. A bucket of maize should sell for Zim
$500 [US $9], but costs a whopping Zim $3,000 [US $54] in Mbare.

Last year the government established a team to monitor price controls, but
prices continued to soar and the black market boomed. Manufacturers
re-branded some of their products, and as the new brands were not covered
under the gazetted price controls, they were free to sell them at any price.

Police at the nearby Mbare and Matapi police stations sometimes raid the
illegal vendors, although their eagerness has allededly waned with each
passing day. There have been accusations that some police officers are
benefiting from the racket, a charge that has been swiftly dismissed by
senior officers.

Victor Chisi, a CCZ official, blamed the proliferation of the black market
on managers of retail supermarkets and wholesalers. "While we acknowledge
that there are shortages in the country, some managers are abusing their
positions by creating an artificial shortage for selfish purposes," he told

According to economist John Robertson, price controls were a populist move
that would eventually bring more misery. He argued that price fixing would
threaten manufacturing companies already struggling to cope with increasing
input costs and falling demand.

"The government has announced an extended price freeze while at the same
time advocating better wages and salaries. This will threaten the viability
of companies, drive away investors and depress the economy even further. As
a result, there will be more job losses and the unemployment rate will
soar," he told IRIN.

Although the government had announced an 80 percent salary increase for
civil servants from January next year, the raise is seen as insufficient.

Macdonald Mangauzani, treasurer of the Progressive Teachers' Union of
Zimbabwe (PTUZ), said given the rate of inflation, the increment would be
worthless by the time it was implemented.

"The budget salary announcement is a pathetic response to our calls.
Considering that teachers and most civil servants are poorly paid at the
moment, the increment is just a drop in the ocean," Mangauzani said.

The PTUZ recently organised a national strike to press for better salaries
and working conditions, but its leaders were arrested and charged under the
Public Order and Security Act.

Back to the Top
Back to Index



With so many additional farmers having been forced off their farms in the past six months, the matter of seeking compensation for their land and assets has become a matter of high priority. A sub-committee of the President's Council has been set-up under the chairmanship of Alan Stockil, himself a dispossessed farmer from the Masvingo Region.

The committee has established communications with some of the important potential partners, and established their attitudes towards the payment of compensation to farmers and the conditions under which they may do so. These conditions require the government to make some fundamental changes in the implementation of the resettlement programme and the restoration of constitutional governance.

These changes will have to be made before any meaningful economic recovery programme can begin. That process, brought about by further economic decay, will create an opportunity for negotiations to begin about establishing a multi-lateral compensation scheme.

In anticipation of such a syndrome, all farmers are encouraged to have their property valued, irrespective of its legal status. Those who were evicted before a private sector valuation could be done, should submit an inventory of what was on the farm at the time of evacuation and this can be processed to form the basis of a compensation claim in due course.

Members of the Valuation Consortium are offering these services for a discounted fee in the first instance, subject to an agreement that will allow them to collect the balance in the form of a commission when the compensation is eventually paid out.

The option to relocate to a neighbouring country is also being examined by a number of members, and some have already done so. There are a number of agencies offering advice in this regard, which may or may not include financial assistance. Some of these proposals seek to link the start-up finance to be made available in the neighbouring country to the compensation due in Zimbabwe. Members need to be wary of any such proposals particularly if they require the passing of title deeds to any development agency so as to secure a loan. In terms of the local law, no title to land can be transferred or pledged after the serving of a Section 5 Notice on the owner.

The Compensation Committee is examining what relocation opportunities exist in the SADC Region by official contact with the governments of neighbouring countries. When a range of options are known and fully documented, proposals will be made to likely development agencies for fully funded settlement schemes to be established in the context of each country's national development plans. Such schemes, we believe, will give the relocated farmers security of investment and tenure derived from government and donor recognition and support.

Gerry Davidson

Parliamentary Portfolio Committee

I attended the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Lands, Agriculture, Water Development, Rural Reserves and Resettlement to discuss appropriations for Agriculture, Rural Reserves and Water Development for 2003.

The meeting was attended by Ministry staff, MP's and chaired by Daniel Ncube MP. On behalf of the CFU I made the following comments.

  a.. In 2002 a majority of departmental votes were under spent indicating lack of capacity.
  a.. Z$40.5 billion allocated to LARR in a national budget expenditure of Z$770 billion was very little compared to agriculture's role in the economy.
  a.. Despite provision for animal disease control being allocated an increase of 374% to Z$1.67 billion, there was inadequate provision for the viability of vets and staff to exercise control on the ground and inadequate forex for medicines, dips and vaccines - we are still indebt to Botswana for FMD vaccine.
  a.. Z$10 billion was sought by ministry for compensation for farmers, but Z$4.5 billion was allocated to the vote, but in reality little capacity or will to value and disperse money.
David Hasluck

Soyabean rust control

Soyabean farmers are reminded that they will have to control rust in their crops. Rust infection is linked to the age of the plants, and the initial attack will take place when the first flowers appear, at/about 50 dap in Zimbabwe. The disease proliferates very rapidly thereafter, and will cause severe damage if left untreated.

If efficient control is to be achieved, a farmer should plan well in advance. Adequate stock of fungicide should be ON THE FARM well before the crop flowers and the means to apply it be available (- or the aircraft booked, for aerial application). Accurate, timeous spraying is essential.

Three sprays, one applied at 50, at 70, and at 90 days after planting (dap), will be necessary to control rust in areas of previous high severity. Only two sprays, one at 50, and at 70 dap, will be required in areas of lower severity.

Earlier spraying is far more effective than delayed spraying - two, later-sprays will not be sufficient to control a severe attack, and yield losses will result. Early infection is very difficult to diagnose, but colonisation and damage is already being done at the cellular level. Therefore, the first spray will probably go on before any symptoms are
seen - and may be viewed as a "preventative" spray.

Chemical control, as advised above, is very cost-effective in controlling soyabean rust.

NOTE: For a 1 November planting, 50 dap will be on 21 December; 70 dap on 10 January; and 90 dap on 30 January. For a 15 November planting, these dates shift to 04 January, 24 January, and 13 February, respectively. etc. etc. With all the Christmas and New Year festivities, the first spraying is frequently delayed.. with negative consequences!

RUST TRAPS: due to the great disturbances on farms, a formal "rust trap" network will not be in place this season, but we will endeavour to monitor early-planted crops so as to warn farmers when outbreaks occur.

Clive Levy

If you require any further information on any of the above issues please contact Tel 04 -309800 ext. 279 or e-mail and we will endeavour to supply prompt answers.
Back to the Top
Back to Index


Mugabe tightens grip on Zimbabwe food supplies-report

By Andrew Quinn

JOHANNESBURG, Nov. 20 - Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe has tightened
control over food supplies in his beleaguered country, starving opponents
and manipulating relief aid to enforce his hold on power, a Danish human
rights group said on Wednesday.

       ''If it is not possible to increase non-partisan food supplies into
the country, it is our opinion that starvation and eventually death will
occur along party political lines in Zimbabwe,'' Christian Tramsen of
Physicians for Human Rights-Denmark told a news conference in Johannesburg.
       The Danish report, based on extensive interviews within Zimbabwe over
the last three months, is the latest to allege that Mugabe has cut off food
to opponents who have challenged the power of his ruling ZANU-PF party.
       Earlier this month the European Union accused Mugabe of using foreign
food aid as a political weapon, while the United States has said it might
consider measures to guarantee that food aid deliveries are free from
political interference.
       Half of Zimbabwe's 14 million people are at risk of starvation,
according to the U.N.'s World Food Programme (WFP).
       ZANU-PF, which blames the country's food crisis on drought, denies it
has politicised food distribution and has accused some aid agencies of
sending more relief to opposition strongholds.
       The Danish report alleged that the government began tightening
control over food supplies ahead of the March 2002 election which saw Mugabe
elected to his fifth term in office.

       With the country facing its worst economic crisis in 22 years of
independence, the state Grain Marketing Board has used its power to permit
sales to supporters of ZANU-PF while turning away members of the opposition
Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), the report said.
       ''ZANU-PF appears to be maintaining a situation where there is too
little food in the country, by controlling all sales and imports,'' the
report said.
       Foreign food aid has been seized by ZANU-PF to reward supporters and
even sold on the black market to boost income for party officials, the
report alleged.
       ''We suggest that all donors should be aware of this fact, and they
should try to determine that all people who are at high risk -- all people
who are starving for food -- should get it,'' Tramsen said.
       WFP, a major donor to Zimbabwe, has rejected suggestions that its aid
has been politically hijacked. The agency suspended food deliveries to one
district last month after ZANU-PF supporters grabbed consignments, but WFP
officials say they so far have no evidence of systematic abuses of donated
       ''If there is any politicisation at all then we immediately suspend
operations,'' said WFP spokesperson Jennifer Abrahamson.
       ''We are making an extremely strong, concerted effort that that does
not happen to our food aid,'' she said.
Back to the Top
Back to Index

Lack of a clear monetary policy causes panic in Zimbabwean stock


      Xinhuanet 2002-11-20 16:26:48

      HARARE, Nov. 20 (Xinhuanet) -- The lack of a clear monetary
policyand the requirement that exporters remit 50 percent of their proceeds
to the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) have adversely affected the
performance of the stock market.

      Following the announcement of the budget last Thursday by Finance
and Economic Development Minister Herbert Murerwa, the industrial index
tumbled 6,238.08 points or 4.84 percent last Friday to 122,698.38 points as
major counters weakened.

      On Monday, the index fell a further 11,719.84 points or 9.55 percent
to close at 110,978.54.

      The market continued to weaken on Tuesday and the benchmark
industrial index dipped 3,375.42 points or 3.04 percent to close at
107,603.12 points.

      The big question is what aspect in the budget caused panic among
investors who have been quite happy to participate on the market for almost
two years.

      The investors are uncertain about the measures introduced in the
budget, which need to be clarified by the RBZ.

      They blamed Murerwa for presenting a budget that was hazy on issues
of critical importance.

      The issues of interest rates and foreign currency accounts had been
suspended for the past year and investors had expected clear direction from
the budget, which, however failed to deliver, leading to speculation and
panic on the market.

      Most investors are now adopting a wait-and-see attitude until the
position is made clearer, resulting in a slow-down on the stock market,
which since last year has been performing beyond expectation in the face of
skewed macro-economic fundamentals.

      The hardest hit counters have been those in the export sector like
Bindura, Trans Zambezi Industries and Interfresh which have taken the brunt
of the decline.

      The Intermarket Stockbrokers said that a lot of
export-orientedstocks have been behind most of the decline in the market.
This could be a reaction to the announcement pertaining to the rules guiding
the remittances of foreign exchange to the RBZ.

      They added that investors were wondering how that was going to work.
"Maybe we will see a change when the monetary statement comes out as we are
sure the RBZ is working on something to explain how the measures are going
to work."

      Murerwa announced in the budget that the percentage of foreign
exchange received from the export of goods and services and surrendered to
the RBZ had been raised from 40 to 50 percent with immediate effect to meet
critical imports.

      This, he said, meant that authorized dealers were now required to
buy 50 percent of all export service receipts up-front, for theaccount of
the RBZ.

      The remaining 50 percent would also be surrendered to the RBZ and
held to the order of the exporter, he said.

      Murerwa said that usage would be related to a priority list to be
specified by the RBZ, adding that the priority list and operational details
would be announced by the RBZ governor shortly.

      Investors were interested in clarification of these measures and
whether the remaining 50 percent would be changed at the official rate of 55
Zimbabwean dollars to one US dollar or some other rate.

      Investors were speculating and those who were unwilling to take
risks were getting out.

      Kingdom Financial Holdings investment analyst Patrick Saziwa said if
interest rates went up, there would be positive returns for money market
traders and the market was not as risky as the stock market.

      "We need to have a monetary policy first for the situation on the
stock market to improve. Personally, I do not think that the rates will go
up to an extent that will affect the market very much," he said.

      "For positive returns, interest rates should be above the inflation
rate. It's only panic that is causing the market to fall.The market should
pick up maybe in January next year. The situation has been compounded by the
fact that the performance of the market is traditionally low around
Christmas," said Saziwa.

      He, however, said the market had performed extremely well this Year.

      The index was at around 9,000 points in January 2001, jumped to2,000
in January 2002 and had gone up to more than 128,000 points before the
budget announcement.

      Zimbabwe's stock market was judged one of the best emerging markets
in the year 2000.

      "It is still one of the top emerging markets although it has been
mainly inflation driven," said Saziwa.

      Sagit stockbroker analyst Oliver Lutz concurred with the other
analysts that the 50-50 split of export proceeds and the price freeze had
impacted on the market.

      He said many stocks had been re-rated downwards and would remain so
until they released their results and a clear monetary policy was announced.

      Investors were nervous and were taking a more cautious approach so
as to reduce exposure to equities.

      Sagit said that the mention of interest rates always hampered any
stock market.

      "Historically, December has been a slow month on the market because
of the build up to Christmas. On that basis, I don't thinkwe will sustain
the current rate of collapse," he said.

      Local analysts are considering that the market would remain weak
until next year or might correct sooner depending on when the monetary
policy was announced.

      The stock market has been a shining beacon in a gloomy economy
characterized by high inflation of 144.2 percent, foreign exchange shortage,
company closures and high unemployment. Enditem

      by Gao Shixing

Back to the Top
Back to Index

Daily News - Leader Page

      God does help those who help themselves

      11/20/02 8:11:09 AM (GMT +2)

      DID you ever stop to read the inscription on the war memorial in the
Harare Gardens?

      In case you missed it, it reads: "We fought and died for our King."
That seems a terrible burden to put on the poor king's head. For a start,
did the dead for whom the inscription was written in Shona and Ndebele
consider him their king? But the bigger question in my mind is about how the
king was used.

      King George (both of them: the plaque refers to two wars, and two
kings who happened to both be called George) was a constitutional monarch.
That means he couldn't declare war whenever he liked. In fact, he seems to
have been a peaceable sort of man who didn't like declaring war, but when
his prime minister handed him a declaration to read over the radio, he did
what he was told, or he'd have been in trouble.

      So he became a symbol that was used to persuade a lot of young men to
go out and sacrifice their lives. For some of them, he must have been a very
powerful icon, because they charged out, inadequately armed, into a rain of
machine-gun fire and perished in their thousands.

      King George the man didn't want that, but his regal influence was
being used by politicians, so that they could use him as their scapegoat.

      We probably all behave like those politicians sometimes, using someone
or some slogan as a scapegoat to which to apportion blame.

      This struck me at a nyaradzo (memorial service) for a young man who
died in rather tragic circumstances. Now, I don't want to stir up things
that should have been, and probably were, laid to rest there, but I felt
uneasy when people said: "It is all very sad, but kuda kwaMwari (It's God's

      That sounded a bit like putting the blame on God. I know it is
dangerous to try to read God's mind, but, even if a death is God's will,
there were circumstances about this one that belie such an explanation.
There are worse things about a lot of other deaths we have seen in the past
couple of years that I can't call the will of God.

      If God is in control, then I suppose that what is not God's will is
still accounted for in God's plan. Saying, "It is God's will" can be a
cop-out: it allows us to sit on our hands and do nothing, because we can't
go against God's will.

      But if it is God's plan, we are saying it is not what God wanted, but
He let it happen so that we could do something about it. If what we do is
not God's will, there is probably still a plan for that, but we mustn't
dodge our responsibility.

      * Was it God's will, or just part of His plan, that the parliamentary
election two years ago should be conducted in such a prejudiced manner?
      * Was it God's will that the presidential election should be run the
way it was?
      * Is it God's will that the courts still don't answer the questions
which remain about the conduct of elections?
      *Was the way the local council "elections" were administered God's
      * Was the bombing of the printing press and local radio station God's
      * Is murder, arson, torture and rape God's will?
      * Is it God's will that so many helpless farm workers should be
deprived of their livelihood?
      * Is it God's will that people should be starving in our fertile
country today?

      (Why don't the people who claim to speak for God - except Archbishop
Pius Ncube - ask these questions?) It would be easy at this point for me to
start poking fun at government ministers who try to shift their
responsibility onto God, but that wouldn't be a solution to our predicament.

      Instead, let's keep focused on what we can do ourselves.We shouldn't
just sit quietly, lie low and hope that God will sort out our mess for us.
      Have we forgotten that God helps those who help themselves?

      If God's plan isn't any clearer to us at the moment than the MDC's,
that doesn't mean God doesn't have a plan. I suspect it means the plan
      involves us doing quite a lot to help ourselves. One heart attack won'
t change this government. Even the best-placed bolt of lightning won't do
it. Earthquakes are too rare in this part of the world for us to rely on one

      We've seen that drought and flood won't do it. When the economy
collapses (This week? Next week? Sometime? It's already in such a shambles,
would we notice?) we would still need to do something for ourselves. Don't
ask me for a plan. Nobody can produce one on their own. But let's recognise
that if surviving is so hard for all of us, keeping control of all the food,
of all the weapons, of what the newspapers say and of the next strike or
fuel shortage must be difficult too.

      Maybe we need to ensure for a start that we don't do anything to make
these tasks any easier. Yes, we might suffer a bit more, but we are already
suffering. I remember some schoolchildren saying that to a British
television team about sanctions against Ian Smith: where are those children
now? Are any of you reading this? As so many school mottos imply: "No sweat,
no sweet".

      Of course, people get the government they deserve.But, believe it or
not, God does help those who help themselves.
Back to the Top
Back to Index

Daily News - Feature

      Great Zimbabwe, Babylon: led by nasty men

      11/20/02 8:38:25 AM (GMT +2)

      Bill Saidi

      GREAT Zimbabwe and Babylon are worlds apart. But the countries in
which they are sited are led by two men about whom most of the world has
used the euphemism "nasty". Less charitable commentators have called them
dictators, despots, caricatures and Hitler freaks.

      Robert Mugabe and Saddam Hussein have a lot in common: they have both
been mentioned as targets for "regime change".

      Both the Great Zimbabwe and Babylon are steeped in the history of the
two countries, causing many historians to wax lyrical about their early

      What is truly amazing is that in spite of their fascinating history,
both countries have been saddled with such hugely mundane political problems
their illustrious founders must find the antics of their present leaders
somewhat nauseating.

      I imagine the people who built the Great Zimbabwe all those hundreds
of years ago throwing up at what Zanu PF has done to the country named after
their masterpiece of architecture.

      "Who are these people?" I imagine them asking each other, as they look
down distastefully upon the tragic tableau below, from wherever they are.
"Are these OUR descendants? If they are, God help us."

      Stan Mudenge, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, has written a
much-praised tome on the political history of Munhumutapa, whose cradle was
the Great Zimbabwe. But I doubt the founders would deem it appropriate to
even speak his name in whispers if they knew how fanatically he now embraces
this Neanderthal political system that puts violence on a pedestal.

      Moreover, it must be a matter of speculation if they would admire his
Rolex watch, the subject of a conversation I had with a visiting American
Congressman a few years ago, his point being: was it compatible with the
leader of a poor country?

      Is it? Are the recent salary hikes for the President, his two
chieftains and the rest of the ruling class, compatible with a poor country?
Whenever you visit the ancient cradles of civilisation your outlook of
Humankind is somewhat transformed. Nobody, having visited the Great
Zimbabwe, can come away not feeling that here were a great people. Of
course, whenever I hear our telehistorians speaking darkly of the incidence
of incest among these old people, I wonder about our future.

      Incidentally, there is very little chance that once you have ascended
from the bowels of the Pyramids outside Cairo, as I did 24 years ago, you
can still harbour the same naive attitude towards life that you did before.

      I have cherished every moment of standing among these "coffins", not
remembering most of what was said by this Egyptian guide who said we could
call him Abdul or Moses.

      But imagine my chagrin when, a few years later, President Anwar Sadat,
whom I had met, died in a hail of bullets in broad daylight during a state

      It brought me down to earth with a thud. Civilisation?

      After a conducted tour of ancient Babylon in what was once the great
empire of Mesopotamia, but is now Saddam's sanctions-battered Iraq, you come
away fascinated by how they did all that without the Internet and Bill

      Certainly, the old Babylonians must wonder if Saddam is a worthy
descendant of their civilisation. Someone described civilisation as having
the following elements:
      - A surplus of food. When people have enough food, they begin to
develop other needs.
      - Division of Labour. When people have one job, they tend to do that
job very well. They are also more likely to choose a job in a field they
      - Organised government and religion. When people have the same laws,
it is easier to trade. People living under the same government, or having
the same religious beliefs are likely to have the same values.

      That, I suppose, was Babylon. If you were to write of Zimbabwe's
chances of qualifying as a civilised state - using these guidelines - the
country would come a little short.

      There is not much food, not many jobs, and the laws are on the dark

      As for people living under the same government, that certainly is not
the case. All non-Zanu PF citizens live under a government which is almost
totally hostile to them. Only Zanu PF citizens enjoy their full fundamental
rights under this government.

      My visit to Iraq was during Saddam's war with Iran, the reason for his
invitation to a group of journalists from Africa. The visit to Babylon was
clearly intended to show off Iraq's pride of place in the history of the
world. Babylon, which features reverently in best-selling reggae albums by
Bob Marley, Jimmy Cliff and others, is less than 100km from Baghdad.

      In 580 BC Babylon was at its greatest. Under the rule of King
Nebuchadnezzar, the magnificent city was considered the mightiest and most
beautiful in the known world, its culture highly refined: scientifically and
technically Babylon was the most advanced and structurally contained some of
the most beautiful and advanced buildings in the world.

      The Iraq we were visiting was somewhat decrepit. Ideologically, it was
emphasised to us that the people against whom Saddam was waging war "are not
even Arabs". The Iranians immediately earned the sympathy of most of us in
the group. So, this Saddam was a tribalist, wasn't he? Waging war against
his more populous neighbour only because they were
      not Arabs?

      Those of us who had become aware of an element in the Gukurahundi
massacres which related to ethnicity immediately slotted Saddam into the
same political compartment as Mugabe.

      When the United States spoke of the need for a "regime change" as the
main objective of their campaign against Saddam, I heard a number of
Zimbabweans comparing the two men once more: both are so politically
stubborn and ruthless in adversity only extreme measures, it seemed, could
eliminate them.

      One remark I heard was: "Let them come. We are tired of this Mugabe
business." How many would dance in the streets if the Americans did send
what has been called our version of the Taliban regime scurrying for refuge
to Iraq, Malaysia or Namibia? Last week, Saddam capitulated in his
resistance to calls for a United Nations inspection of his alleged arsenal
of weapons of mass destruction. In Zimbabwe, the government preferred the
South African government to put its case across to the world: there had been
a mistake.

      Herbert Murerwa's Budget speech last week sounded like a plaintive
call for international assistance from a government now so desperate for
help it dares to place its fate in the hands of the Almighty. God must
remember how many of His own innocent people, including the unborn, were
killed in the name of this same government. The about-face on the New
Partnership for Africa's Development (Nepad) was amazingly candid,
considering how scathing of the Western-backed plan the government had been
in the past.

      But until people can hear it from Mugabe himself, nothing is to be
taken for granted. Oblique references to vague changes, of course, won't do.
Officially, nobody in the government has acknowledged that Mugabe may be
preparing to cut short his presidential term and let his chosen successor,
Emmerson Mnangagwa, finish it for him.

      None of them have admitted a presidential election rerun as a viable
option. Mugabe has honed the trick of playing his cards close to his chest
into a fine art, as Saddam has done. But both men seem to be running out of

      Like Saddam, Mugabe may at last be trying to live up to the
illustrious history of his country.
Back to the Top
Back to Index

Daily News

      Zanu PF's Beta, Mutezo in leadership wrangle

      11/20/02 8:39:24 AM (GMT +2)

      From Kelvin Jakachira in Mutare

      MISHECK Beta and Munacho Mutezo, Zanu PF stalwarts in Manicaland, are
steeped in a tug-of-war over political supremacy in Chimanimani district.

      The dispute, apparently, centres on who between them should the ruling
party appoint as the candidate for the next legislative elections - which
are due in 2005.

      Both men have indicated their interest in contesting the Chimanimani
parliamentary seat.Beta, the twin brother of businessman and former ruling
party provincial boss, Shadreck Beta, is a member of Zanu PF's central
committee - the party's supreme body. He also has considerable business
interests in Chimanimani.

      Mutezo, the Zanu PF's provincial secretary for administration and a
business entrepreneur, unsuccessfully contested the Chimanimani constituency
in 2000 - losing to Roy Bennet of the MDC.

      Bennet, who owns and runs Charleswood Estate in Chimanimani, has vowed
to defy efforts to evict him from the property, contending his farm has not
been designated for resettlement despite it being occupied by war veterans
and Zanu PF activists. The Zanu PF provincial leadership is reported to have
discussed the Beta-Mutezo wrangle, resolving to refer the matter to the
party's central committee for arbitration. Sources said the wrangle between
Beta and Mutezo could have jeopardised Zanu PF's operations in the district,
possibly leading to the defeat of the party's candidates in six wards in
last month's rural-district council elections.

      The six wards were won by MDC candidates. The sources said Beta was
apparently angered by the ruling party's decision to appoint Mutezo as the
"shadow member of parliament" for Chimanimani.

      Beta is reported to have questioned this decision, arguing that a
party running a government could not possibly have a "shadow MP". A member
of the Zanu PF provincial executive said: "They both want to be MPs for
Chimanimani. They are really at each other's throat." But Mutezo denied
there was any rift between him and Beta.

      Mutezo said: "There is no problem between me and Beta. We work
together. I am the shadow MP and that's known by everybody." Beta was not
immediately available for comment but sources close to him said the
businessman often accuses Mutezo of "insubordination".

      Beta, the sources said, reportedly believes that he is more senior
than Mutezo in the party's Chimanimani district by virtue of him being a
member of the party's central committee. Under the Zanu PF constitution, the
central committee is the party's highest ranking body - in fact, superseding
the politburo, contrary to publicly held perceptions.

      Charles Pemhenayi, the Zanu PF provincial spokesman, declined to
comment on the dispute, although he conceded there were "a few internal
problems" in Chimanimani that could have cost the party some rural council

      Pemhenayi said: "We wish the party had won all the wards but because
of a few internal problems which the party wants to resolve soonest,
      we could not secure all the wards."
Back to the Top
Back to Index

Daily News - Leader Page

      Separation of powers must be respected

      11/20/02 8:08:13 AM (GMT +2)

      The principle of separation of powers of the three arms of
government - the Executive which comprises the President and Cabinet; the
Legislature, comprising the people's chosen representatives in Parliament;
and the Judiciary comprising all the courts - is supposed to be sacrosanct
as it is meant to guarantee checks and balances so essential for democracy
to flourish.

      It is especially meant to forestall the temptation by any of them,
particularly the Executive, to indulge in excesses in their exercise of
power. But in Zimbabwe, ever since the onset of the current official madness
characterised by the government's refusal to respect its own laws whenever
they become an obstacle to the realisation of its own unlawful interests,
that principle has long been discarded. The Executive has practically become
all three in one and the people can no longer count on either the
Legislature or the Judiciary to protect their interests and themselves
against rampant abuse at the hands of the government.

      The President, who, by the way, not so long ago made known his
government's contempt for the Judiciary when he openly said that his
government would not be bound by court judgments or rulings which are
unfavourable to it, led the way in breaching that principle.

      The first of the more serious of such breaches was when he arbitrarily
awarded former guerrillas of the war of liberation lump-sum payments and
pensions without bothering to seek Parliament's approval as is required by
the Constitution since no provision had been made in the Budget for those
payments. That unauthorised expenditure triggered the spectacular crash of
the dollar on Friday 14 November 1997 which has since been dubbed Black

      Although that action provoked a nationwide outcry and was heavily
condemned by economists and financial experts, the President did not seem to
take any notice. And he certainly did not learn his lesson from that
experience, judging by the fact that in August of the following year he sent
our troops to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to prop up the
tottering Laurent Kabila regime without consulting Parliament as the
Constitution requires of him.

      It is now general knowledge that it was that commitment of our
soldiers to the DRC, coupled with his intemperate rubbishing of the
International Monetary Fund, which marked the beginning of our foreign
currency shortage crisis.

      If the President has displayed a remarkable lack of respect for
Parliament, he has shown even less of it for the courts, disregarding each
and every single one of their judgments which did not go the government's
way in its land dispute with white commercial farmers.

      Obviously taking a cue from the President, some of his ministers, in
particular the two most vocal of his hand-picked hatchet men, have now taken
to being almost constantly in contempt of court as the Judiciary has been
rendered powerless in so far as taking any punitive action against them is

      Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Patrick Chinamasa
openly criticised the sentence passed on two Americans in the highly
sensationalised weapons case. Although he was slapped with a custodial
sentence, he never went behind bars. His colleague, Jonathan Moyo, the
Minister of State for Information and Publicity, who is even less
diplomatic, has been guilty of that same offence many times over, the most
notable being his attack of the court in the George Charamba contempt case.

      In his latest assault on those whose responsibility it is to oversee
the administration of justice, in connection with the Job Sikhala/Tafadzwa
Musekiwa alleged fraud case, Moyo has clearly overstepped his bounds. By
showing so much anger at the failure by the prosecution to secure a
conviction at any cost, even when the trial magistrate, Caroline-Ann
Chigumira, had categorically stated that the State had "no sustainable
grounds" on which to prosecute them, the junior minister only strengthened
the case for those who say the government is out to remove from Parliament
as many MDC legislators as possible.

      Chigumira's remark that "I don't want to make a political statement,
this a is legal ruling" when dismissing the charges was instructive. People
can be excused for taking that to mean the government expects a conviction
in every case where MDC officials are the accused. That would be very sad.
Back to the Top
Back to Index

Daily News

      Food distribution in Insiza still suspended

      11/20/02 8:42:46 AM (GMT +2)

      Political Editor

      THE World Food Programme (WFP) on Monday said the distribution of food
aid in the Insiza district of Matabeleland South was still suspended until
further notice.

      The WFP position puts paid to recent reports in the State media of an
agreement between the government and the United Nations agency to continue
with food distribution in Insiza.

      The programme was suspended after a rowdy group of Zanu PF supporters
seized three metric tonnes of WFP maize and distributed it to their own
supporters. The incident took place just before the parliamentary
by-election in Insiza in September, which Zanu PF won, amid allegations of
vote-buying and intimidation of opposition supporters.

      "The distribution of food aid remains suspended at this point and no
decision has been taken to re-initiate the process," Luis Clemens, the
spokesman of the WFP, said on Monday.

      The State media has published stories to the effect that the
government and the WFP have reached an agreement to resume food aid in
Back to the Top
Back to Index

Daily News

      Prime suspect arraigned for murder of Stevens

      11/20/02 8:41:02 AM (GMT +2)

      Court Reporter

      THE trial of Banda Katsamudanda, the prime suspect in the murder of
Macheke commercial farmer, David Yendal Stevens, has been set for 25
November in the High Court.

      Katsamudanda was named by two co-suspects as the man who fired the
shot that killed Stevens.

      The alleged killing occurred near Murehwa Heroes' Acre on 15 April
2000 after Stevens was abducted from his Arizona Farm by a gang of Zanu PF

      Richard Svisviro, a war veteran, said in his testimony on 31 October
Katsamudanda shot Stevens with a shotgun belonging to Charles Matanda,
another suspect in the alleged murder in the run-up to the 2000
parliamentary election.

      Another suspect, Muyengwa Munyuki, implicated Katsamudanda in his
defence outline submitted to the court by his lawyer, Innocent Musimbe. "The
first accused then shot David Stevens twice, once in the head, then once in
the chest," Munyuki said, referring to Katsamudanda. "I could only watch as
the sordid events unfolded.

      I was helpless and could do nothing. I did not think the first accused
was going to shoot Stevens, as he did. I never participated in assaulting
any of the white men, including David Stevens. I was simply being ordered by
the war veterans to drive them wherever they wanted to go."Katsamudanda was
to have appeared together with Svisviro, Matanda, Munyuki and Douglas
Chitekuteku. But he could not be located when the trial opened in the High
Court before Justice Benjamin Paradza on 23 October, prompting the court to
proceed without him. The trial was postponed indefinitely after a doctor
declared Svisviro unfit to stand trial. Svisviro fell ill as Munyuki gave

      The five suspects were part of a group of war veterans and Zanu PF
supporters who abducted Stevens from Arizona Farm and took him to Murehwa
where they shot him dead with a shotgun, the court was told. Later, the five
and their accomplices, who are still at large, threw his body into the back
of a truck and drove to Mukarakate in Murehwa where they abandoned the truck
and the body, the court heard.
Back to the Top
Back to Index

Daily News

      Two slip through EU travel ban

      11/20/02 9:17:41 AM (GMT +2)

      By Luke Tamborinyoka

      THERE is likely to be heated debate in the European Parliament after
two Zimbabwean junior ministers were granted visas to travel to the European
Union headquarters in Brussels, despite the EU travel ban slapped on them.

      The two are scheduled to attend the African, Caribbean and
Pacific-European Union (ACP/EU) Joint Parliamentary Assembly from 24 to 29
November. It emerged yesterday that the Belgian embassy in Harare had
granted visas to Chris Kuruneri, the Deputy Minister of Finance and Economic
Development, and Paul Mangwana, the Minister of State Enterprises and
Parastatals, despite a travel ban slapped on President Mugabe's government
by the EU.

      The Belgian ambassador to Zimbabwe, Benedicte Frankinet, could not be
reached for comment yesterday on how the ministers had obtained the visas.

      The ambassador was said to be out of the office, but officials at the
embassy confirmed the two had been granted visas.

      Reports from Brussels said two British Members of the European
Parliament, Glenys Kinnock (Labour) and Geoffrey van Orden (Conservative),
are leading a campaign to bar the Kuruneri and Mangwana from attending the

      Kinnock is reported to have taken up the matter with the President of
the EU Parliament, Pat Cox.

      "Responding to Glenys Kinnock, who raised the question of the issuing
of visas by the Belgian authorities to two members of the Zimbabwean
delegation on the EU banned list to next week's meeting of the ACP/EU Joint
Parliamentary Assembly in Brussels, President Pat Cox said this would be
considered by the conference of Presidents," reads part of a report on
Monday's deliberations in the EU parliamentary session in Strasbourg,

      "One possibility, he said, would be to bar the delegates from
Parliament's building next week."

      Reports from Belgium said the two ministers are scheduled to travel
via Germany, another EU country.

      Concerns have been raised over the weakness of the EU travel ban,
which has allowed several senior government officials to travel to European

      Some EU MPs are said to be strongly against the presence of the
Zimbabwean ministers in the European Parliament, which they argue is a
symbol of democracy, a value not associated with Zanu PF. The MDC shadow
minister for Foreign Affairs, Moses Mzila Ndlovu Bulilimamangwe North) is
scheduled to attend the same meeting.
Back to the Top
Back to Index

Daily News

      Musekiwa, Sikhala accuse Moyo of cowing judiciary over lost cases

      11/20/02 8:32:24 AM (GMT +2)

      By Luke Tamborinyoka Political Editor

      TWO MDC MPs, Tafadzwa Musekiwa (Zengeza) and Job Sikhala (St Mary's),
acquitted of fraud allegations by the magistrates' court last week, on
Monday lashed out at the Minister of State for Information and Publicity,
Jonathan Moyo, for trying to influence the courts to make political

      Moyo was quoted in the State media as criticising the Attorney-General
(AG)'s Office and the presiding magistrate, Caroline-Ann Chigumira, for
absolving the two MPs whom he alleged had a case to answer.

      Moyo was quoted as saying it was "curious" that the courts were always
acquitting MDC MPs and that the AG's Office did not seem to represent the
State well in cases involving the opposition party.

      Musekiwa said Moyo was grieved because he had lost two cases against
him and Sikhala. "We have embarrassed him because he has lost two cases
against us. "The basis of his statements over the weekend is simply that the
courts must rule in his interest and in the interest of the State.

      "He wants to use his position as the government spokesman to
intimidate the judiciary to issue judgments that are in his favour,"
Musekiwa said.
      This was unacceptable because the next time an MDC member was
arrested, the judges and magistrates would be under intense pressure to rule
in Zanu PF's and the government's favour.

      "Moyo is not a lawyer and he must refrain from being an expert in law
because rocket science is far divorced from law," said Musekiwa. "He must
concentrate on his job as a spin-doctor and refrain from urging magistrates
to rule on the basis of politics, but on the basis of law."

      Sikhala said Moyo had become such a caricature that he must never be
taken seriously.

      "He is trying to intimidate the judiciary and his venom must be traced
back to the time when he lost a case against us on allegations that we had
threatened him over the phone," he said.

      "He is ranting and raving against the courts and his agenda is very
understandable in the circumstances.

      "He wanted us to be remanded in custody and you can guess what that
means. Now that he has failed, he is frothing at the mouth." Sikhala and
Musekiwa were last week acquitted on allegations they had defrauded the
State by abusing the Parliamentary Vehicle Procurement Scheme through
importing vehicles for third parties.

      Chigumira said Musekiwa had no case to answer because he had sold his
car and paid duty. She said he had complied with the Customs and Excise Act.

      As for Sikhala, she said he had not sold his car, judging by his
production of a registration book.

      The two MPs have also been acquitted of making threatening calls to

      In the two separate cases, the State failed to prove the MPs had
contravened a section of the Posts and Telecommunications Act by allegedly
issuing death threats over the telephone in September last year.
Back to the Top
Back to Index

Daily News

      Doctors, nurses in mass exodus

      11/20/02 8:40:23 AM (GMT +2)

      By Margaret Chinowaita

      A TOTAL of 2 297 doctors and nurses left the country for greener
pastures outside the country by the end of September this year as the brain
drain continued among professionals.

      In his 2003 budget speech to Parliament last week, the Minister of
Finance and Economic Development, Herbert Murerwa, said the health sector
was the hardest hit.

      He said of the 2 297 health professionals, 77 were doctors and 1 920

      Murerwa said the exodus had been caused by low pay.

      "As inflation erodes incomes and the economy remains under pressure,
professional and skilled civil servants continue to emigrate to other
countries in search of higher income prospects, rendering Zimbabwe a
training ground for other countries.

      "This jeopardises our medium-to- long term growth prospects, since
these cadres are critical for the development process," Murerwa said.

      The health sector has been crippled by perennial strike action by
doctors and nurses, demanding better pay at a time when government hospitals
are operating without essential drugs due to an acute foreign currency

      Presently, health professionals are on strike over a demand that their
salaries be raised by the same scale used in awarding doctors their pay
rises earlier this year.

      The Ministry of Health and Child Welfare has remained tight-lipped
over the professionals' plight.

      Bright Mpofu, the ministry's spokesman, said improving conditions of
service and incentives would help arrest the brain drain.

      Mpofu said: "In fact, conditions of service should be in line with
what other countries are offering or even better, to address the problem of
brain drain."

      There are only 742 doctors and 7 133 nurses still working in
government institutions in Zimbabwe, against a desirable number of 1 200 and
12 000 respectively.

      The country, already facing an acute shortage of health personnel, has
been hit by a mass exodus of pharmacists. Pharmacists are reported to be
moving to England and the United States where there is a marked demand for
their services.
Back to the Top
Back to Index

Daily News

      Nkala murder suspects' application to be removed from remand fails

      11/20/02 8:29:57 AM (GMT +2)

      Court Reporter

      JUSTICE Sandra Mungwira of the High Court yesterday threw out an
application to have MDC MP Fletcher Dulini-Ncube and two party activists
accused of killing Cain Nkala removed from remand.

      Dulini-Ncube, the MP for Lobengula-Magwegwe, Sony Nicholas Masara,
Army Zulu, Remember Moyo, Khethani Augustine Sibanda and Sazini Mpofu will
now appear for trial at the High Court on 20 January next year.

      Advocate Pearson Nherere, representing Dulini-Ncube, Masara and Zulu,
last week said there was "nothing in the case so far put forward by the
State that would warrant putting the first three accused persons to their

      He said there was "not even a shred of evidence" implicating Zulu and
that the only evidence implicating Masara and Dulini-Ncube were statements
made by Moyo, Sibanda and Mpofu during interrogation.

      Justice Mungwira said yesterday she was bound by a judgment made by
Justice George Chiweshe on 1 August when the lawyers representing
Dulini-Ncube, Masara and Zulu sought to have their clients removed from

      The judge said there was no difference between the application made
before Justice Chiweshe and last week's application by Advocate Nherere,
while the lawyers said they were making a fresh application.

      Chiweshe said in a ruling delivered on his behalf by Justice Misheck
Cheda: "The application is designed to frustrate the course of justice and,
therefore, cannot stand."

      Prosecutor Neville Wamambo undertook to furnish the defence lawyers
with a video tape of indications made at the scene of the alleged murder and
a search warrant for a raid at the MDC offices in Bulawayo during which
various documents were seized, by Friday next week, while the defence
lawyers promised to furnish the State with all documents the State may
require to prepare for the trial by the close of business today.

      Nkala, a war veteran leader in Bulawayo, was allegedly abducted from
his Magwegwe West home in Bulawayo on 5 November last year.

      He was subsequently murdered and buried in a shallow grave at Norwood
Farm near Solusi University, about 40km outside Bulawayo.
Back to the Top
Back to Index

Daily News

      Daily News staffers arrested

      11/20/02 8:28:02 AM (GMT +2)

      Staff Reporter

      Three Daily News staffers, 10 pupils from a Harare boys' school and a
girl aged 16, were yesterday arrested during a demonstration against the
alleged rape of a 13-year-old schoolgirl by her 63-year-old deputy
headmaster, Gibson Kwaramba, last week.

      The 14 were later released after being held for nearly four hours at
Marimba Park Police Station.

      No charges were laid against them, but they were ordered to report to
the police today.

      They were among 27 people arrested by the police after a peaceful
demonstration by several gender pressure groups and hundreds of Mufakose and
Marimba Park residents at Marimba Park Primary School.

      The protest was organised by the pressure group, Padare/Enkundleni, in
protest against the alleged rape of the girl by the deputy headmaster.
      Tich Garabga of Chingore and Garabga legal practitioners, representing
Padare/Enkundleni, said nine men and three women who were still being held
were likely to be charged under Section 19 of the repressive Public Order
and Security Act.

      Garabga said one of the three women had a nine-month-old baby strapped
to her back.

      Regis Mtutu, the executive director of Padare/Enkundleni, said out of
the nine men in the cells, eight were members of his organisation. The
government-controlled Herald newspaper reported last Friday that Kwaramba
appeared in court and was remanded on $5 000 bail.

      Kwaramba was back at the school on Monday. Daily News reporter Henry
Makiwa, photographer Gally Kambeu, and driver Trust Maswela were covering
the demonstration at around 11am when the police arrested them along with
the demonstrators. An officer at Marimba Park Police Station said the three
could not produce particulars to identify them as Daily News employees.

      They were held along with the others at the Marimba Park Police
Station until about 3pm when they were taken to the Law and Order Section at
Harare Central Police Station, where they were released without charge.

      In a statement released yesterday, Padare/ Enkundleni demanded the
immediate removal of Kwaramba from the school and questioned the reaction
last week, by the Ministry of Education, Sports and Culture which said
through the regional director, Warinda Ndanga, that it was not aware of the
rape allegations.

      "What sort of mother are you, Mrs Warinda Ndanga? What sort of
Regional Director of Education are you who lets this abuser (Kwaramba) to
remain at the school creating possibilities to abuse more schoolchildren?

      "What justice system is this that allows an abuser to be back at work
and be bailed on $5000 ?

      "We demand the removal of Gibson Kwaramba from children and the school
premises now," said the statement. Jonah Gokova, the spokesman for
Padare/Enkundleni said: "It is the responsibility of men to expose cases of
Back to the Top
Back to Index

Globe and Mail Canada

Pettigrew pledges support for Africa

      Special to The Globe and Mail

    Wednesday, November 20, 2002 - Page B10

      JOHANNESBURG -- The best way to integrate Africa into the world
economy is through the New Economic Partnership for African Development
(NEPAD) commitments made by Group of Eight leaders at their June meeting in
Kananaskis, Alta., Canada's international trade minister said here

      NEPAD has to work, Pierre Pettigrew said in an interview.

      "It's the best vehicle we have had for decades. The question is not
whether it is going to work, but how we make it work. This is the way we
will be able to integrate Africa into the world economy and society. We
can't leave a whole continent behind -- we have to make it work".

      Mr. Pettigrew is leading a Canadian trade mission that started here
and will continue to Nigeria and Senegal in West Africa.

      Prime Minister Jean Chrétien urged G8 leaders at Kananaskis to make
African aid a priority, but many African leaders later expressed
disappointment in the amount pledged.

      Earlier this month Mr. Chrétien sent a letter to South African
President Thabo Mbeki expressing concern about Africa's pledged commitment
to good governance that is supposed to precede large-scale economic support.

      Mr. Pettigrew stressed the Canadian government's belief that good
governance in Africa is a precondition for increased Canadian business, but
was diplomatically upbeat about NEPAD, He said democratic and economic
advances on the continent outweigh disastrous developments in some parts,
such as Zimbabwe.

      Canada, he added, was far advanced in lowering its barriers to trade
for Africa -- some are going in January -- believing that trade, not aid, is
key to Africa's development.

      Members of the delegation were pleasantly surprised by conditions
here, according to Lucie Edwards, the Canadian High Commissioner to South

      "People say 'I'd no idea it would be like this. You can drink water
from a tap. It's pleasant. I think I'll bring my wife next time,' ," she
said. The message is that Africa is manageable, and potentially profitable,
for investors, she said.

      In addition to promising improved access to advanced country markets
for African countries, the G8 committed $6-billion (U.S.) in official
development assistance each year by 2006 -- so long as African countries
base economic recover under NEPAD on democratic foundations.

      Trade with Africa is not big on Canada's agenda. The whole of
sub-Saharan Africa ranked as only the 19th largest market worldwide for
Canadian goods in 2001.

      But African economies are growing and opening up for trade.

      On the business front, Canada sees South Africa as its launch-pad to
grow business in Africa.

      This country's GDP, based on purchasing power parity, was $412-billion
in 2001, just under half of Canada's $875-billion.

      Dominic Schofield, head of the Canadian Alliance for Business in South
Africa, said that Canadian firms are looking to work here with black
empowerment companies, which have preferential access to state contracts in
post-apartheid South Africa.
Back to the Top
Back to Index


Group Gives Democracy Award to Zimbabwe Opposition Leader
Bill Rodgers
Rio de Janeiro
20 Nov 2002, 03:08 UTC

The International Association of Political Consultants has awarded its
Democracy Medal to Zimbabwe opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai. The prize
is given each year to distinguished pro-democracy activists. Mr. Tsvangirai
is banned from traveling abroad and could not accept the prize in person.

To loud applause from the gathering, the International Association of
Political Consultants presented the democracy medal to Gift Chimanikire a
top member of Mr. Tsvangirai's opposition party, the Movement for Democratic

Mr. Tsvangirai, who is accused of treason by President Robert Mugabe's
government, is not allowed to travel outside of Zimbabwe. Mr. Tsvangirai ran
against Mr. Mugabe for President in March, in elections which are widely
believed to have been stolen. Mr. Mugabe has governed the African nation
since its independence in 1980.

In accepting the democracy medal, Mr. Chimanikire read a letter from the
opposition leader in which he expressed gratitude to the Association.

"I find this singular honor specifically motivatory, not only to me
personally, but to the millions of struggling Zimbabweans who have watched
their sovereignty and democratic space forcibly seized from them by the
Robert Mugabe regime," he said.

Mr. Chimanikire, who is the deputy secretary general of the Movement for
Democratic Change, went on to describe the situation in Zimbabwe as
increasingly intolerable.

He blamed the Mugabe government's policies for creating widespread
unemployment of up to 85 percent, and for soaring inflation of 140 percent a
year. He also said up to eight million people in Zimbabwe will be without
access to food by the end of this year. Mr. Mugabe's government blames
drought for the food shortages, and last Saturday declared a price freeze on
all foodstuffs. After his speech, Mr. Chimanikire told VOA he hopes
Tuesday's award will help strengthen the opposition in Zimbabwe.

"Mugabe has been campaigning on the international scene to try and discredit
Morgan Tsvangirai. Now, the award of this medal not only reassures MDC
supporters but Africans and the world at large that Morgan Tsvangirai is not
alone in this struggle, and that his efforts are being recognized
internationally," he said.

Mr. Tsvangirai was scheduled to go on trial for treason this month, but the
trial has been postponed.

The International Association of Political Consultants, founded in 1968,
brings together political consultants, analysts and others interested in the
field of electoral politics. Previous recipients of the Association's
Democracy Medal include Lech Walesa, Mikhail Gorbachev, and Aung San Suu Kyi
of Burma.

Association President Kenneth Feltman says the group's previous awards have
occasionally caused discomfort among repressive regimes. "We have seen that
the people on the other side take notice, because they let us know there is
displeasure with our awarding of the democracy medal," he said. "That's how
we notice it most often.some of the awards have created a little bit of
consternation, and we're glad for that. That means they've gotten part of
the message."

This year's prize, he says, aims to highlight the problems in Zimbabwe.
Back to the Top
Back to Index


      British official robbed by Mugabe thugs

A British UN official was subjected to a terrifying ordeal of violence and
robbery while carrying out a food survey in Zimbabwe.

The official and three others were trapped in the Melfort district, 25 miles
east of Harare on Friday.

A Zimbabwean working for the US Embassy was badly beaten by government

The three were given a "hostile interrogation" before being robbed of a
camera and two computer discs, the US government says.

But Zimbabwe's information minister says the group trespassed and allegedly
threw food from a moving vehicle and filmed farm workers jostling for it.

The US lodged an official protest on Monday, saying the embassy employee was
on an aid mission when attacked and that the violence was a further sign of
lawlessness in the southern African country. It called for the arrest of
those responsible.

In Washington, US State Department spokesman Philip Reeker said: "The police
did not respond, even though the American diplomat was able to place a call
on his cell phone, alerting embassy and the police to the incident."

Jonathan Moyo, the information minister, accused the four of baiting people
with food to create chaos, the Zimbabwean state-owned Herald newspaper

The US embassy says the four were conducting a survey of food needs of
labourers who had worked on white-owned commercial farms before they were
seized by the government as part of a controversial land redistribution

But Moyo said: "There are no displaced farm workers in Zimbabwe and the
embassy knows that. As to claims that there is lawlessness purely on the
basis of this incident, that is over the top and quite preposterous."

Story filed: 05:14 Wednesday 20th November 2002
Back to the Top
Back to Index


Mugabe turns a blind eye to plunder in DRC

      November 20 2002 at 06:18AM

By Basildon Peta

Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe is unlikely to follow the example of his
Congolese counterpart and fire powerful politicians implicated in the
looting of natural resources.

The Zimbabwean government said this week that it would not even bother to
waste time by paying attention to a United Nations report on mineral looting
in the Democratic Republic of Congo because it was written by the British

But analysts said the decision by DRC leader Joseph Kabila to fire three
ministers implicated in the report was a major embarrassment for Mugabe.

"The clear message from Kabila's action is that, while he considers Mugabe
an ally in terms of fighting the war, the young DRC leader does not at the
same time admire Mugabe's archaic leadership of protecting cronies," said
University of Zimbabwe law professor Lovemore Madhuku.

Mugabe himself has not bothered to comment on the report, a stance seen by
analysts as indicative of the Zimbabwean leader's contempt for the UN
investigation, even though it has dominated newspaper headlines in the

Kabila suspended his minister of security and public order Mwenze Kongolo,
planning and reconstruction minister Denis Kalume and minister of the
presidency Augustin Katumba Mwanke.

He said these ministers would be investigated by judicial authorities.

The three were among 54 people, including more than 20 in Rwanda, Uganda,
Zimbabwe and the DRC, identified as leaders of new "elite networks"
exploiting the country's minerals, timber and wildlife.

Two of Mugabe's henchmen - speaker of parliament Emmerson Mnangagwa and
Defence Minister Sydney Sekeramayi - were named as the key men co-ordinating
the plunder of the DRC by Zimbabwean officials, army officers and

Asked by opposition legislators whether the Zimbabwean government would at
least establish an inquiry to probe and clear the names of those implicated,
Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa said: "We have no time to waste to clear
malicious rumours targeted against our people."

He said the reports were unfounded and had been fabricated by the British
and United States governments. - Independent Foreign Service
Back to the Top
Back to Index

Channel 4 News

      Zimbabwe Economy in Freefall

      Published: 20 November 2002
      Reporter: Lindsey Hilsum

      It used to be the bread-basket of Africa, but now Zimbabweans scrabble
in the earth for edible wild plants.

      Claudia Shoko is ten and desperately underweight for her age.

      She's helping her mother find something, anything to eat. Last season
the harvest failed because of drought. The rains have come now, but the
family has no seeds to plant.

      Claudia and her friends walk 14 kms to school and back each day -
they're not really going for the lessons, but for the lunch the mission
school provides.

      A third of the children are malnourished.

      When Zimbabwe produced a surplus of maize and wheat and cash crops few
children went hungry even in a drought year but up to six million
Zimbabweans now face starvation and there's evidence that Robert Mugabe's
government is using food as a political weapon.

      Zimbabwe's economy is in freefall.

      a.. The government puts inflation at 140 per cent but the IMF says
it's set to reach 500 per cent next year.

      a.. The official exchange rate is 55 Zimbabwe dollars to the US
dollar - but the unofficial rate is 30 times that: around 1700.

      a.. The Confederation of Zimbabwe Industry says the country needs 2
million metric tonnes of maize per year, but this year has produced just one
quarter of that: 500,000 tons.
Back to the Top
Back to Index

Wednesday, 20 November, 2002, 17:34 GMT
Zimbabwe splits interest rate in two

Zimbabweans have been facing fuel shortages since 1999

Zimbabwe's lopsided economy not only has two exchange rates - it is to have two interest rates as well.
The Reserve Bank announced on Wednesday that its main banking rate of 57.2% was being suspended immediately.

In its place will come a two-tier system - an ultra-low rate for exporters and companies in the "productive" sector, as bank governor Leonard Tsumba put it, and a higher one for importers and local consumers.

      Prices have more than doubled in the past year, and inflation is about 140%

"This measure has become necessary so as to achieve the twin objectives of stimulating economic growth while at the same time bringing inflation under control," he said in a statement.

The move comes less than a week after the Finance Minister, Herbert Murerwa, warned in his budget speech that the economy would contract 12% in 2002.

Rampant prices

Taming inflation is certainly an urgent problem for Zimbabwe's policy-makers.

Prices have more than doubled in the past year, and inflation is about 140%.

      The government is threatening to close down all bureaux de change in the hope of killing the parallel market

Price caps on basic necessities have not helped, since companies are forced to sell products at a loss and therefore are making less. The resulting shortages have energised the black market, pushing up prices further.

By allowing exporters to borrow at 5%, while "productive" companies pay just 15%, the government hopes to stimulate output.


But according to many observers, the real problem remains the dual exchange rate.

Officially, 55 Zimbabwe dollars will buy one US dollar.

But the shortage of foreign currency is so acute that most people and businesses have to resort to the "parallel market" at rates approaching Zim$2,000 to the US dollar.

The government is now threatening to close down all bureaux de change in the hope of killing the parallel market.


It also intends to raise the 40% tax on payments in foreign currency from overseas to 50%, while the remainder must be lodged in the central bank and made available on the basis of who the bank judges to have the highest priority.

"The monetary policy statement is positive... under the difficult circumstances that we are in as a country," said Munyaradzi Kereke, economist at a commercial bank in Harare.

"But for as long as there is no sufficient foreign exchange, it will take a bit of time before producers can respond positively to the monetary incentives."

Back to the Top
Back to Index

From The Star (SA), 19 November

'Technocratic' Mbeki muddies the waters

By Peter Fabricius and John Battersby

A nine-page letter from President Thabo Mbeki trying to reassure Africa's international partners that all is well with the Nepad political peer-review process seems to have backfired. The letter was addressed to Canadian Prime Minister and G8 chairman Jean Chretien. Diplomats interviewed on Monday said the letter had mostly added to the confusion surrounding the role of the New Partnership for Africa's Development in reviewing political governance. Mbeki wrote the letter to Chretien in reply to a letter from the G8 chairman asking for clarification of earlier remarks by Mbeki. Mbeki had suggested that Nepad's peer-review mechanism would review only economic governance and not political governance. The remarks caused a huge outcry. After that statement, Nepad's heads of state implementation committee met in Abuja, Nigeria, on November 3 and announced that the Nepad peer-review mechanism would, after all, include political governance - but only while other African Union political review institutions were being set up.

Now, some diplomats of the G8 and other industrialised nations, which are Africa's main partners in Nepad, have said Mbeki's letter has thrown them back into more confusion. The letter, on the one hand, sought to reassure the G8 and other Nepad partners, whose material support Africa relies on, that nothing had changed in South Africa's and Africa's original commitment to Nepad. On the other hand, the letter goes to great lengths to spell out that the African Union is the "parent" of Nepad and therefore superior to it. This has provoked doubts among diplomats as to whether the peer review will amount to the credible and independent process that had been hoped for. Diplomats are also sceptical because they have been privately told by Nepad officials that they should be patient because South Africa has had to make compromises on Nepad's political peer review in order to maintain its leadership position in Africa. Many Nepad partner countries remain unconvinced. Some see the letter as evidence that Mbeki has lost control of the Nepad peer-review process. One G8 diplomat said: "It is one of the worst letters I have ever seen...very technocratic, and some of the explanations are absurd. We trust Nepad more than the AU because it is a home-grown African plan that is new and in which South Africa is heavily involved."

Back to the Top
Back to Index