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From Black Britain

Mugabe Hits New Low

23/11/2001  Black Britain

The National Constitutional Assembly (NCA) accuses President Robert Mugabe's
government of trying to take away democratic rights by introducing new
arrangements for next year's presidential election.

"We know that they are going to try everything, including assassinating our
leadership, but our belief is that the people of Zimbabwe are not going to
allow them to succeed in any devious programme "
Movement for Democratic Change
President Robert Mugabe of Zimbawe has described the British Government,
White farmers, and his political opponents as terrorists.
As a result Robert Mugabe is to introduce new security laws that provide the
death penalty for "terrorism".

According to Mr. Mugabe, the justification is that it is part of their
international campaign against terror.
However the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) says the
legislation will be used to suppress theirs and others’ challenges to Mr
Mugabe in next year's presidential election.

A new Public Order and Security Bill will be enacted to replace current
already oppressive security laws that have been widely used against Mr
Mugabe's opponents.
The new law will make it an offence to "undermine the authority of the
president" or "engender hostility" towards him.
Therewill also be a mandatory sentence of life imprisonment or execution for
"insurgency, banditry, sabotage and terrorism".
The new law is planned to be in effect by April 2002 ahead of the election.

The Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), has also alleged that Mr. Mugabe’s
ZANU PF Party is examining as part of its election strategy the possibility
of killing Morgan Tsvangari, the MDC Leader, and the MDC’s General-Secretary
Welshman Ncube.

November 2001 has seen political violence and tensions in Zimbabwe.

In the week commencing 12 November 2001, Mr. Mugabe issued a decree with the
effect of ordering over 1,000 White farmers out of their homes in three

On November 20 2001, treason charges against the MDC opposition leader, Mr.
Morgan Tsvangari was quashed by Zimbabwe’s Supreme Court.

On November 21 2001, 200 riot police, armed with live ammunition, shotguns,
tear gas and truncheons broke up a small protest outside the Zimbabwean
Parliament against the new electoral rules which Mr Mugabe's opponents say
will strip many people of their voting rights.
The Zimbabwean police also arrested and detained 35 people trying to
demonstrate against changes to electoral laws.

The MDC claims that the ruling party is training and arming a militia, to
terrorise President Mugabe opponents before the election, and provide a
cover for election rigging.

Presidential elections are due next year and it is expected that President
Robert Mugabe would face his stiffest challenge yet from the opposition
candidate Morgan Tsvangirai.

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Farm evictions could shut 3 000 firms

By Nqobile Nyathi News Editor
11/22/01 1:07:51 AM (GMT +2)

AT least 3 000 Zimbabwean companies could close and revenue worth $7.2
billion every month lost if the government goes ahead with its latest policy
of evicting hundreds of commercial farmers from their properties, economic
analysts said this week.

Under a presidential decree gazetted two weeks ago which amends the Land
Acquisition Act, the government can give occupiers of agricultural and
non-agricultural land three months notice to stop utilising their land.

According to the Commercial Farmers’ Union, the order immediately applies to
800 farms on the government’s list of properties earmarked for acquisition
but analysts said it could be applied to all other commercial farms that
could be targeted for resettlement.

The government plans to take over 90 percent of about 12 million hectares of
land owned by white farmers.

Business executives and analysts this week said the order would have a
devastating impact and a domino effect on the Zimbabwean economy, affecting
at least 3 000 firms that directly rely on the agricultural sector and
thousands of others whose viability is indirectly linked to farming.

The agricultural sector, under siege since ruling ZANU PF party supporters
began occupying commercial farms in February last year, is the backbone of
Zimbabwe’s economy.

"If we look at the whole issue of decrees, they sometimes overlook a lot of
factors," said Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce senior economist James
Jowa. "What it means is that in a stroke, an investor can lose all that he
has invested.

"These farms are business units, they (farmers) are in business and just to
issue a decree saying they are losing everything is sending the wrong signal
to the international community and to investors. What it means is that there
is going to be disinvestment in that sector because it’s seen as not safe."

The analysts said this would have wide-ranging implications for the country
because the peasants replacing commercial farmers on previously commercially
productive land will need years to produce enough of a surplus to support
sectors dependent on agriculture.

As a result, companies which supply inputs to the agricultural sector would
be affected by a massive slowdown in commercial agricultural activity, as
would those whose raw materials come from farms and those which rely on
farmers and their workers for markets for their products.

"Companies are holding emergency meetings all over town about that (order),"
said Eddie Cross, economic affairs secretary of the opposition Movement for
Democratic Change. "It will affect at least 3 000 companies that are
directly linked to agriculture."

An economist at a Harare commercial bank said: "The key phrase here is ‘at
3 000’ because a lot more companies than that depend on agriculture. We’re
not just talking about agro-processors and those that supply things like
seeds, fertiliser and chemicals, but the service industry as well which in
one way or another also relies on farmers."

Firms that will be directly hit when commercial farmers are forced to stop
operating include manufacturers of agricultural inputs and machinery,
companies that process farm products for local consumption and export and
suppliers of spare parts.

Transport companies that provide services to manufacturers of inputs,
farmers and agro-processors will also be affected, as will retailers that
stock farm produce, processed agricultural products and consumer goods
manufactured using raw materials secured from farmers.

Retailers which rely for their revenue on the purchasing power of farmers
and farm workers will also witness a decline in business.

Once companies directly dependent on agriculture begin to feel the impact of
disinvestment in the sector, a domino effect will become apparent as those
firms that rely on them also begin to feel the pinch.

These include commercial businesses, especially banking and insurance, and
retailers of consumer goods which will suffer as the public begins to feel
the effects of a further slowdown in the economy.

"Cotton is the only agricultural industry that will survive these changes
because a high proportion of it comes from communal farmers, but if the
service sector starts failing to deliver services, it will also be
affected," economic consultant John Robertson said.

"The agricultural sector is estimated to produce $50 billion in total output
every year and in order to have that output it needs $30 billion to $35
billion a year in inputs and spends about $1 billion in wages. That makes
about $36 billion a year or $3 billion a month that suppliers of inputs and
retailers will no longer have."

The analysts said Zimbabwean companies, about 600 of which have closed since
January 2000 and shed
100 000 jobs, would be forced to downsize operations or completely shut down
because of a decline in raw materials and customers.

This would cost hundreds of thousands more workers their jobs and contribute
to rising poverty in the country.

"There is a very strong bond between farming and manufacturing and
commercial companies, which already have contracts with farmers that will be
lost," Jowa said.

"These companies will lose a very big market and they might scale down or
close, which is devastating.

"Farm workers will lose their jobs because the people resettled on those
farms will not be able to pay wages and there will also be job losses in
companies. About 76 percent of the Zimbabwean population lives in poverty
and this will just add to it. A hungry man is an angry man and when people
lose their jobs we are likely to see civil unrest."

Robertson added: "The knock-on effects will impact on industry and commerce
and this is going to spill over into the kind of social unrest that has
never been seen in Zimbabwe.

"The people who haven’t eaten for a week and haven’t fed their children in a
week are the ones you will see marching down First Street in their thousands
to Government House. That’s when you’ll see a level of dissatisfaction and
disruption that hasn’t been witnessed in Zimbabwe."
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Farm decree scuttles land reform funds

Staff Reporter
11/22/01 12:47:38 AM (GMT +2)

THE United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) team holding talks with the
Zimbabwe government over its controversial land reforms will not be
recommending the release of donor funding for the reforms, sources close to
the talks said yesterday.

The UNDP team is in Zimbabwe to follow up on the implementation of a
Nigerian-brokered agreement under which President Robert Mugabe pledged to
halt his drive to seize land from white farmers in exchange for British
funding for a rational and transparent land reform plan.

The UNDP team, led by Abdoulai Janneh, a United Nations assistant
secretary-general and regional director of the UNDP’s Africa region, is to
assess the government’s on-going land reforms and recommend an alternative
plan that is funded by Zimbabwe’s former colonial power Britain and other
international donors.

But highly placed sources yesterday said the UNDP mission, piqued by Mugabe’
s stepping up of farm seizures last week just as the team flew into Harare,
would certainly not recommend that donors bankroll the reforms.

"Nobody should be under the illusion that the UNDP team will come up with a
plan that recommends the immediate release of donor funds," one source said.

UNDP resident representative in Harare Victor Angelo could not be reached
for comment. He was reportedly out of his office coordinating meetings
between Janneh’s team and various stakeholders in the country.

Foreign Minister Stan Mudenge was also said to be out attending meetings

The sources said Mugabe’s decree last week ordering white farmers off their
land within three months of their designation for seizure by the government
had killed whatever little chance there was of the UNDP coming up with a
report recommending immediate donor funding for land reforms.

The UNDP was also expecting the government to have now taken more steps to
calm down the land dispute by ensuring a strict adherence to the law,
removing its supporters from all land not gazetted by the state as well as
de-listing farms that did not meet the set criteria for acquisition.

"We were expecting the government to freeze things and allow the whole
situation to calm down, but what have we found on the ground is
unacceptable: more listings and in some cases new farm invasions since the
Abuja agreement was signed," another source said.

Under the Abuja agreement signed in September, the government must enforce
the rule of law by ending the illegal occupation of farms and general
lawlessness on commercial farms and across the country.

Mugabe and his government were to also uphold democracy by ending political
violence, which has ironically widened and, in some cases, escalated through
the invasion of new farms since Abuja.

A Commonwealth mission which visited Harare last month to check on the
government’s progress in upholding Abuja said Mugabe had done little to
honour the agreement, although the panel felt the process was still on

Britain, which is expected to provide the bulk of financial support for the
land reforms in Zimbabwe, says it will only do so on the recommendations of
the UNDP.
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Zim farms for Libyans

Staff Reporter
11/22/01 12:46:02 AM (GMT +2)

THE government will allocate about a dozen large-scale farms or the
equivalent of 10 000 hectares of land to Libyan entrepreneurs as part of an
economic cooperation package between Zimbabwe and its north African ally, it
has been established.

The farms, to be allocated to the Libyans under the Model A2 scheme of
large-scale farming, are still being identified but the north Africans have
already identified and toured some of the Zimbabwean properties.

Government sources this week said the deals were in exchange for several
Libyan favours to Zimbabwe that include a US$1 million donation to President
Robert Mugabe’s campaign for a presidential ballot due early next year.

Other sources said Libya’s controversial leader Muammar Gaddafi might be
interested in acquiring land in southern Africa for military purposes.

There is widespread speculation that Gaddafi wants the land in Zimbabwe for
military training activities, far away from the microscopic eye of his
enemy, the US government and its Central Intelligence Agency.

Ministry of Agriculture sources have dismissed the allegations, saying the
Libyans want the land to farm.

The Financial Gazette however has it on good authority that Gaddafi is
scouting for land away from Libya as part of his intelligence and military

Some sources say the reason he chose to drive across Zambia and Zimbabwe
into Harare during his last visit here in June was to get a first-hand feel
of the two countries’ farms.

Gaddafi toured some commercial farms in Zimbabwe’s Mashonaland West and
addressed groups of ruling party supporters on his way to Harare.

Teams of Libyan entrepreneurs have since then visited Zimbabwe to follow up
potential deals agreed between Gaddafi and Mugabe during the June visit.

"All we know is that land is being considered for the Libyans for
agricultural purposes as part of Zimbabwe’s new emphasis on cooperation with
the Third World," a source said.

"Mugabe believes that investment from the developing world is far much
better than investment by people from the developed countries who impose a
lot of conditions," added the top Ministry of Lands and Agriculture official
who preferred not to be named.

The official said the Libyans wanted to use land acquired in Zimbabwe to
produce cash crops and fruits which will be destined solely for their own
domestic market.

The last group of eight Libyan businessmen to visit Zimbabwe was here two
weeks ago. It toured farms around the Mazowe Valley area and also met Mugabe
at State House.

Although officials said the visiting Libyans were introduced as
entrepreneurs, they were also key members of Gaddafi’s inner circle,
including intelligence officers.

The Libyans also want to buy a significant stake in a commercial bank in
which the government has interests. The bank, said the sources, would then
be used as a conduit to channel funds in and out of Libya’s investments in

The Libyans are also interested in conducting exploration work for gas along
the Zambezi River, which is believed to hold huge quantities of untapped
fuel reserves.

Apart from the US$1 million donation that will be disbursed to ZANU PF next
month, Libya is providing Zimbabwe with continuous supplies of fuel until
June next year.

During that period, Tamoil - a Libyan-owned company - will supply Zimbabwe
with US$360 million worth of fuel.

It emerged again this week that Libya is also supplying Zimbabwe with
weapons to replenish its stocks depleted by the war in the Democratic
Republic of the Congo.

Gaddafi has pledged to do everything in his power to get Mugabe re-elected
after being told by Mugabe that the opposition Movement for Democratic
Change is an agent of "British imperialism", the sources said.

Mugabe’s continued stay in power is central to safeguarding Libya’s
investments in Zimbabwe. Efforts to get official comment on these issues
from both the Libyan embassy and Agriculture Minister Joseph Made have
failed in the past two weeks.

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The Times

Mugabe's laws against rival

By Jan Raath, Harare
November 23, 2001

ZIMBABWEAN President Robert Mugabe yesterday intensified his almost
totalitarian crackdown on the opposition Movement for Democratic Change
party, under the guise of draft ant-terrorism laws.

Three days after Mr Mugabe said he would crush the increasingly effective
MDC, the state-controlled Daily Herald said the Public Order and Safety Bill
would deal with insurgency, banditry, sabotage, terrorism, treason and
subversion. It would be discussed in parliament soon.

The drafting of the bill came after "terrorist activities by some MDC
activists and officials, and widespread calls by people for the Government
to (act)", the Herald said.

It said the proposed laws were in line with moves by Britain and the US to
improve security laws after the recent terrorist attacks.

The measures contradict Mr Mugabe's pledge at September 6 talks, hosted by
Nigeria in Abuja, to restore the rule of law, respect human rights and allow
freedom of the press. The bill is meant to replace the 40-year-old security
legislation of the former white minority Rhodesian government that Mr Mugabe
has used for the past 21 years.

But there is little doubt the proposed laws, coming just ahead of
presidential elections due by the end of March, will be even more

The past few weeks have seen a sudden intensification of Mr Mugabe's
crackdown against the MDC, civic society and the independent press.

It has been complemented by conspiracy theories that lump them, and much of
the Western world, in a British-led terrorist plot to turn black
Zimbabweans, Mr Mugabe said at the weekend, into "hewers of wood and drawers
of water".

Mr Mugabe appears undeterred by the embarrassing record of the attempts to
portray the opposition as a subversive organisation.

MDC officials point out that authorities have not managed to secure a single
conviction in the hundreds of arrests in the past year, other than for minor

In central Harare, 100 riot police yesterday baton-charged a group of about
30 demonstrators protesting moves by the Government to take near total
control of the voting process in next year's elections.

Demonstrators say police arrested 35 of their number, although police say
they have no record of the arrests.

The MDC confirmed that one of its officials, Kufa Rukara, 55, from the
remote Gokwe area in northwest Zimbabwe, died in hospital on Tuesday after
being assaulted by ruling party militias.

In the western city of Bulawayo, there was growing anxiety over MDC MP
Fletcher Ncube, arrested two weeks ago on charges of murder.

He suffers from high blood pressure and diabetes, but police at the weekend
refused to allow his wife to deliver special food to him.

A magistrate on Monday refused "for security reasons" to order police to
allow him to receive his diet. Lawyers yesterday filed a bail application to
the high court.

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Daily News

Deputy Attorney-General in drunken brawl

11/22/01 8:31:14 AM (GMT +2)

By Lloyd Mudiwa

BHARAT Patel, the Deputy Attorney-General, was allegedly involved in a
drunken altercation with a Harare businessman during a recent family
function at a sports club in Ridgeview, Harare.

He is accused of abusing his power in an attempt to punish Jiyant Bhagat,
the chairman of Sunrise Sports Club, and Jagu Hindochi.

Patel laid charges of common assault against Bhagat, arising from the
dispute at the club on Sunday last week.

He claimed that the businessman manhandled him.

He later changed the charge to one of crimen injuria against Bhagat and

Patel alleged that the two uttered obscene and abusive words at him at the
Originals Club in Borrowdale on Friday last week, causing a serious dent to
his dignity.

This was revealed in a police record, Milton Park CR 82/11/2001, kept at
Harare Central police station.

The Public Prosecutor's Office at the Harare Magistrates' Courts, however,
threw out the crimen injuria charge on Monday even before it got into the

The prosecutor declined to remand Bhagat and Hindochi, saying the police
could, however, summon the two to court once they completed investigations.

Although Bhagat made a statement at Harare Central police station on the
common assault charge on Thursday last week, four armed policemen picked him
up at his home in Belvedere on Sunday evening.

The policemen allegedly claimed he was on the run and that they had not
recorded a statement from him on the charge. They reportedly wanted to
detain Bhagat at Harare Central police station overnight to Monday when they
would take him to court.

They later agreed to let Bhagat go, after the intervention of his lawyer,
Addington Chinake of Kantor and Immerman, but on condition he reported at
the station the following morning.

The following morning, the police altered the common assault charge to
crimen injuria.

Bhagat's statement on the common assault charge was recorded by Detective
Assistant Inspector Robin Hwati of the Criminal Investigation Department.

According to the statement, Patel entered into an argument with a committee
member at the reception area. "The cause of the incident or argument was the
fact that Bharat Patel was drunk," Bhagat said.

He said he saw Patel trying to enter the club with a bottle of whisky in his

This was against the club rules because members were not allowed to bring
their alcohol as there was alcohol on sale in the club, he said.

Bhagat said he spoke to Patel, who was "intoxicated to a great extent" and
acting in an aggressive and abusive manner towards everyone present.

Patel allegedly insisted that he wanted to take his bottle into the club as
there was no Famous Grouse whisky available in the bar.

Bhagat said he told Patel that there was a variety of whiskies, including
Famous Grouse in the bar.

He said: "Patel was further abusive and demanded to enter nonetheless with
his whisky and when I took the bottle from Patel and placed it on a table so
that he could enter the function, the Deputy Attorney General became even
more abusive, using foul language including the 'F' word against all people

Patel allegedly grabbed the bottle from the table and went outside, but
returned 15 minutes later and tried to enter the function this time with a
glass of Scotch whisky in hand.

"He threatened everyone and caused a terrible scene in the reception area,"
Bhagat said. "I escorted him out with the help of the security personnel, so
that he would not disrupt the event and to avoid children attending the
family function to see this embarrassing situation.

"Patel threatened the security by saying: 'Do you know who I am? I am the
Deputy Attorney General.' "

Bhagat said Patel returned and was allowed in, but not before threatening
the committee members saying: "I will make you pay for it."

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Daily News

Zanu PF accused of transporting people to cause fracas in Bulawayo

11/22/01 8:45:24 AM (GMT +2)

From Saul Gwakuba Ndlovu in Bulawayo

MANY of the Zanu PF supporters and war veterans who terrorised Bulawayo last
Friday had been brought into the city by train from Harare that morning.

This was confirmed by several residents of Bulawayo's western suburbs who
were confidentially told by some Zanu PF provincial officials that the
incident had been planned shortly after the election of seven MDC
councillors and the new executive mayor, Japhet Ndabeni-Ncube, last month.

A Magwegwe resident who spoke to The Daily News on condition of anonymity,
said: "Many of the women and men brought in from Harare that very morning
were joined by some Bulawayo Zanu PF stalwarts on that ill-fated violent
demonstration which resulted in not only the destruction of the MDC offices,
but also that of Dr Sikhanyiso
Ndlovu's Zdeco college."

The resident said it was ironic that Dr Ndlovu had actually taken part in
the riot wrongly labelled a demonstration.

"He and the former Minister of Home Affairs, Dumiso Dabengwa, addressed the
group at Stanley Square, and led them part of the distance into the city to
destroy innocent people's property and physically attack defenceless old men
and women in the name of their party, Zanu PF.

"It was silly of Dr Ndlovu to cry like a little boy when he saw his college
up in flames because he had started it all."

After burning the MDC offices while a contingent of the anti-riot police was
standing idly by, virtually protecting the rioters, the group headed for the
western suburbs to burn some targeted MDC houses in Magwegwe, Lobengula and
other high-density suburbs.

"By the time they reached Njube, residents had organised themselves and were
armed with mulberry and peach tree branches, knobkerries, batons and stones.

"When the rioters reached Njube, just opposite the Entumbane business
complex, local youths pounced on them and gave them a thorough beating. One
of the Zanu PF rioters, a woman, fell down, but was not spared by the
pro-MDC youths in spite of her screams," said an eyewitness.
"We were truly shocked that Dabengwa took part in such a riot aimed at
creating a very false image that Matabeleland is a problem region. Dabengwa
and Ndlovu seem to be prepared to sacrifice the people of Matabeleland for
their own personal political positions in Zanu PF," an Entumbane businessman

"We don't want this terror in Bulawayo or anywhere else in Matabeleland. We
don't want Zanu PF madness here. If this madness continues, the people of
Matabeleland will be justified to embrace Chief Khayisa Ndiweni's federalism
policy whereby the country would have to be divided into two."

"We can't continue like this. A few years ago, we were terrorised by the 5
Brigade, and now some of our own children are being used by the same
government of Mugabe to make life impossible for us.

"I have never belonged to any political organisation, but because of what
happened on Friday last week, I will make sure that I become an MDC member,
just to deprive these lunatics of my vote."

A fruit and vegetable vendor in Lobengula Street said: "They took and ate my
oranges and bananas. I had to borrow some money that day for bus fare to
Nkulumane where I live."

Information that some of the rioters had been brought from Harare tied up
very well with the acting officer commanding Bulawayo, Assistant
Commissioner Mashonganyika's statement published by the
government-controlled Bulawayo-based daily newspaper, The Chronicle, of 17
November, that more riot policemen would be brought from Harare to beef up
the Bulawayo team.

"What all that means is that when Zanu PF launches its next so-called
demonstration in Bulawayo, the rioters will be better protected," an elderly
Bulawayo resident, Zanele Khumalo, said.
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Daily News

Zanu PF loots DRC

11/22/01 9:46:42 AM (GMT +2)

By Lloyd Mudiwa

EMMERSON Mnangagwa, the Speaker of Parliament and former Minister of
Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, has been cited by the United
Nations as the key figure in Zimbabwe's involvement in the plundering of
resources in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

"Mnangagwa, the architect of Zanu PF's commercial activities, used his
leverage on the DRC's late president, Laurent Desire Kabila, and drew up the
first plans for Zimbabwe's commercial designs in the country," reads a UN
Security Council report compiled by a panel of experts on the illegal
exploitation of natural resources and other forms of wealth in the DRC.

The report, submitted to the UN Security Council on Monday, reads: "Viewed
as a loyal member of Zanu PF by President Mugabe, Mnangagwa first became
involved in the DRC when Mugabe sent him to the country in 1998 to
investigate the state of Zimbabwean forces there."

Mnangagwa then drew up plans for Zimbabwe's commercial activities in the DRC
and was said to be behind the conception of Operation Sovereign Legitimacy
(Osleg), the report said.

Osleg, whose directors are predominantly top Zimbabwe Defence Forces (ZDF)
military officials, represents the commercial side of ZDF in the DRC.

Zimbabwe and its allies have been implicated in the plundering of resources
in the country.

However, the revenue from these ventures is yet to have a positive impact on
Zimbabwe's ailing economy.

This was attributed to the fact that Zimbabwe's holdings in the DRC seem to
be controlled by top military and ruling Zanu PF party officials, who are
also the direct beneficiaries.

The government went to great lengths initially to promote these ventures to
citizens, at times exaggerating their profitability in order to justify the
continued presence in the DRC after the immediate threat to the Kinshasa
government had subsided.

UN investigators allege that the warring parties in the DRC are deliberately
prolonging the three-year conflict to plunder gold, diamonds, timber and
coltan, a hi-tech ore used in mobile telephones and satellites.

Zimbabwe - which is allied with the DRC - Rwanda and Uganda, who both back
rebels, were the targets of stinging criticism in the report.

Zimbabwe's commercial activities in the DRC began when Zimbabwe Defence
Industries (ZDI), a company owned by the ZDF, secured the sale of foodstuffs
and ordnance to the late Laurent Kabila's forces as they advanced towards
Kinshasa, according to the report.

The Zimbabwean army came to Kabila's rescue in 1998 when he was in danger of
being overrun by the Rwandan and Ugandan-backed Rally for Congolese
Democracy (RCD) rebels.

Mugabe received lucrative concessions in return, the report said.

Now the Zimbabwean army controls enormous diamond interests in the DRC.
According to investigators, one 25-year concession has a production
potential of "over several billion dollars".

The report says the DRC offered an attractive source of patronage as
Zimbabwe's economy plunged further into crisis, and as its ventures become
more profitable, Zimbabwe "may be tempted to retain a sizeable military

Following the outbreak of the war, Zimbabwe's new status in the DRC was
reflected in the appointment of prominent businessman Billy Rautenbach to
head a mining concern, Gecamines, and a deal secured for Congo-Duka, a joint
venture between ZDI and a Congolese company, General Strategic Reserves, to
supply foodstuffs and other consumer goods to the DRC.

Congo-Duka failed, however, because of an unsound financial policy,
discouraging the investors ZDI was hoping to attract.

Osleg was then conceived following the summit held in Windhoek in 1999, at
which Kabila's allies - Angola, Namibia and Zimbabwe - demanded compensation
for helping him.

Osleg's principal platform for business ventures has been Cosleg, a joint
venture with Comiex, a company then controlled by the late Kabila and
ranking officials of his Alliance of Democratic Forces for the Liberation of

Zimbabwe later set up other exploitation activities, with MIBA, Gecamines,
Socebo and recently Scem.

The first report by the UN panel of experts was published in April. It
detailed massive illegal exploitation of diamonds, gold and coltan.

The latest 32-page addendum confirms the original thrust.

Professor Jonathan Moyo, the Minister of State for Information and
Publicity, on Tuesday dismissed the report as "malicious and heavily

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Daily News - Leader Page

Bad timing of good intentions

11/22/01 7:44:52 AM (GMT +2)

MOST of the decisions and actions the government is making are only helping
to undermine the economy. The latest of such decisions is the reduction of
farm sizes for agro-industrial properties, plantations and conservancies.

On Monday, the government, through the Minister of Lands, Agriculture and
Rural Resettlement, Dr Joseph Made, said it had slashed the sizes of farms
to a maximum of 2 000 hectares. This decision is going to affect
agro-industrial properties, plantations and conservancies.

While it is accepted that there are people in the congested communal areas,
desperate for land and whose quest is legitimate, the effect of the latest
decision is to paralyse activities on these farms and effectively
destabilise operations.

Examples of those likely to be affected by this move are operations such as
at Mazoe Citrus, Hippo Valley and Triangle Sugar estates.

Most of those targeted may have forward export orders.

The effect, therefore, is to jeopardise jobs, while in the second instance,
the capacity of the country to generate much-needed foreign currency will be
seriously compromised. Markets are likely to be lost, with the attendant
severe consequences of increasing the acute shortages of foreign currency.

Putting people on these farms is one thing, but getting them established and
transforming them into exporters of horticultural produce is another. It
would have been preferable to introduce a phased programme for those wishing
to benefit from the latest government decision.

The horticultural sector and conservancies have been among the fastest
growing sectors of the economy, now with this directive everything is in
serious doubt. This is how Zimbabwe has systematically squandered
opportunities that have cost it vast export earnings.

The government is anxious to usher indigenous farmers into these sectors of
agriculture, but it will itself require enormous resources to get these
farmers started. Phased introduction of the proposed schemes would have
enabled proper monitoring and evaluation, before rolling out the programme.
But it is hoped that among those the government seeks to resettle will be
graduates from the agricultural colleges throughout the country.

These graduates, if supported along the lines of the Farmer Development
Trust, would usher a real revolution within a short space of time. The
mistake the government could make would be to parcel out these farms to
telephone farmers or people seeking to escape the hardships of the urban

We cannot create wealth and development by schemes that will further
impoverish the people. These new farmers will need schools that are nearby
for their children.

They will need health centres, better and accessible roads, and greater
support and services from the government before they can be weaned off.

The government is trying to run before it has learnt to walk. The areas the
government has resettled villagers so far do not have infrastructure. Now,
where will the government draw resources to support such an ambitious
agenda? The government needs to develop the capacity to reflect on its
proposals before rushing to implement. A concept does not become popular
because it has been implemented.

It becomes widely accepted because it is properly marketed, widely consulted
on and judiciously implemented. If what is spurring the government into such
measures is the presidential election, then it is proper to realise that
most elections have been won on promises and not failed experiments.

There is a wealth of research in previous commissions of inquiry - from
Professor Mandivamba Rukuni to Professor Sam Moyo's - for the government to
embark on more considered long-term sustainable land reforms.

Right now Zimbabwe faces a foreign currency crisis and the latest measure
just throws the spanner in the works.

Efforts should, instead, focus on supporting and encouraging growth and
expansion of the export sector. It is time to stop acting as if we are
driven by vengeance.

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Daily News

EU team to meet Mugabe over crisis

11/22/01 8:24:19 AM (GMT +2)

By Sandra Nyaira Political Editor

A 20-member delegation from the European Union (EU) arrives in the country
tonight as Zimbabwe braces for a showdown with EU countries over Harare's
refusal to allow the EU to monitor the run-up to the presidential election.

Officials from the EU confirmed that the delegation, led by EU
parliamentarians only identified as Commissioners Chris Patten and Javier
Solana, is expected to meet President Mugabe and his ministers over the
stalemate reached between Zimbabwe and the EU.

Patten was the last British governor of Hong Kong, while Solana is a Spanish

An official at the EU office in Harare confirmed that the delegation would
be visiting.

Several journalists are also expected to fly into Zimbabwe tonight and leave
the country tomorrow evening after meeting government ministers.

The EU has been demanding dialogue with Zimbabwe over its human rights

Dr Stan Mudenge, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, has since said it is
procedural for the EU to demand such a meeting.

He said the government is ready for the meeting since, according to him, it
wants to expose EU's interference in the internal politics of Zimbabwe by
funding opposition parties.

"The delegation will be in the country until Friday evening and it is
expected that by then they would have met the President and his government
ministers," the EU official said.

Mudenge has described as "futile" and "thoughtless" demands by the EU to be
allowed to send monitors for the 2002 presidential election.

Government sources said the government was unlikely to grant the EU its wish
for pre-election and actual election monitors. This could result in a
stalemate that could lead to the 15-member bloc imposing sanctions against

Zimbabwe's chaotic land reform programme is also expected to come under the

Mugabe will stand against the MDC's Morgan Tsvangirai in the presidential
election next year.

Zimbabwe has been involved in frantic lobbying to ward off sanctions, which
could be imposed on Mugabe, his ministers and and top officials of Zanu PF
if the government does not return the country to the rule of law and put an
end to systematic repression.

Lobbying by a Zanu PF delegation to the EU recently fell flat as most
members of the African, Caribbean and Pacific states (ACP)-EU bloc did not
support the government's handling of the land issue.

Last month the EU Parliament in Strasbourg passed a resolution calling for
stern measures against Zimbabwe for its repression and lawlessness.

These included the imposition of targeted sanctions such as a ban on travel
and the freezing of overseas-based assets of Mugabe and his close allies.

The EU Council of Ministers invoked Article 96 of the Cotonou Agreement that
would eventually see the imposition of the sanctions.

According to diplomatic sources, EU and ACP parliamentarians snubbed the
government's attempts to court their support.

European Union to Meet Government Over Concerns

UN Integrated Regional Information Networks

November 22, 2001
Posted to the web November 22, 2001

A 20-member delegation from the European Union (EU) arrived in Harare late
on Thursday. The EU is considering imposing sanctions against Zimbabwe
because of mounting human rights abuses and the government's crackdown on
civil liberties.

The 15-member bloc is also concerned about President Robert Mugabe's refusal
to guarantee fair elections next year and the admission of international
observers. Zimbabwe's controversial land reform programme is also expected
to come under the spotlight.

"Although the main thrust of the visit will be talks about the DRC
(Democratic Republic of Congo) conflict and Zimbabwe's continued role in it,
Zimbabwe's internal situation will be up for discussion," Susana Roson, of
the EU's Zimbabwe desk told IRIN from Brussels.

Roson confirmed that the delegation, led by commissioners Chris Patten and
Javier Solana, is expected to meet Mugabe and his ministers over the
stalemate reached between Zimbabwe and the EU. "Time is short, but I know
Commissioner Patten has requested to meet representatives of civil society
as well as government," she said.

Stan Mudenge, minister of foreign affairs, told the state-run Herald
newspaper that the government is ready for the meeting since, according to
him, it wants to expose the EU's interference in the internal politics of
Zimbabwe by funding opposition parties.

"The EU delegation will try and get resolutions to some of the areas of
concern while in Zimbabwe," Roson said. Last month the EU Parliament in
Strasbourg passed a resolution calling for stern measures against Zimbabwe
for its repression and violations of the rule of law.

These measures could include the imposition of targeted sanctions such as a
ban on travel and the freezing of overseas-based assets of Mugabe and his
close allies. The EU Council of Ministers invoked Article 96 of the Cotonou
Agreement that could eventually see the imposition of the sanctions.

The EU team is scheduled to meet Western ambassadors on Thursday evening for
a briefing on the situation in Zimbabwe.

On Wednesday, UN Development Programme (UNDP) representatives met Mugabe to
discuss progress on the implementation of an accord, brokered in September
in Abuja, Nigeria, under which Zimbabwe pledged to restore the rule of law
in return for international funding for land reform.

"It was a useful meeting at which President Mugabe reaffirmed his commitment
to Abuja," UNDP Resident Representative and UN Resident Coordinator Jose
Victor Angelo told IRIN.

Meanwhile, the Commercial Farmers Union (CFU) reported in a news release
that a foreign-owned ostrich farm in Matabeleland North was invaded by 15
settlers on Thursday morning.

The farm is a joint venture between a Zimbabwean and an Indonesian investor
who had pumped more than US $12 million into the region. The invaders were
part of a group asked to leave the farm after it was de-listed in April
under a bilateral trade agreement with Indonesia.

"Government do not have a legal instrument to acquire land owned by foreign
investors. Bi-lateral agreements surely override local political policy as
announced by (agricultural) Minister Joseph Made," the press release said.

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Daily News

Youths flee terror

11/22/01 8:28:30 AM (GMT +2)

By Brian Mangwende

MORE than 30 MDC members last week fled Guruve North to Harare after they
were tortured by Zanu PF supporters and war veterans bent on driving the
opposition members out of the constituency ahead of the presidential
election next year.

Relating his ordeal, Mahamba Munyambari, 28, the MDC's chairman for Guruve
North Ward 9, said: "I have always been a Zanu PF target, with missiles
being thrown at my house at odd hours. About 40 Zanu PF youths attacked my
house last week, but I managed to escape leaving behind my family. The gang
held my wife and mother for hours and beat them up as they were trying to
get information on where I could have fled to. They also stole my property."

He said a police officer, whom he identified only as Musukwa, urged him not
to defy the Zanu PF youths, but to join hands with them.

"I went back home the following day and when they learnt of my return they
came back, took me to a place they called Base 12 where they tied my legs
and tortured me with sticks, whips, hot iron bars and bicycle chains," said

"There were other MDC youths who had been kidnapped. They only stopped
assaulting me after they thought I had died. The next day, they took us to
some war veterans and rubbed huriri (buffalo bean) all over our bodies,
including our private parts, ordering us to crawl.

"They said I should be killed since I was the opposition leader in the area.
However, they let me go. Other MDC members raised enough money for us to
flee to Harare," said Munyambari.

Buffalo bean causes itchiness that can last for hours. Other MDC members
tortured using similar methods are Wilson Karikoga, 25, Spider Chitumba, 24,
Vengai Kanyoka, 27, Manikidzo Kopakopa, 24, and Claude Kanyoka
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The Guardian

New laws to crush Mugabe's enemies

The regime toughens its fist before elections in Zimbabwe

Chris McGreal in Johannesburg
Thursday November 22, 2001
The Guardian

Robert Mugabe is to introduce new security laws that provide the death
penalty for "terrorism", just days after describing his political opponents,
white farmers and the British government as terrorists.
Harare is justifying the move as part of the international campaign against
terror, but the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) says the
legislation will be used to suppress its challenge to Mr Mugabe in next
year's presidential election.

Throughout this month, political violence and tensions have been getting
worse. Mobs of ruling Zanu-PF party supporters have been unleashed on the
opposition. The government has announced new measures to confiscate
white-owned farm land, and parliament considered election regulations that
would disenfranchise hundreds of thousands of people.

And yesterday, the state-run newspaper, the Herald, announced that the
government planned to introduce the extensive new security legislation ahead
of the election, expected by April 2001.

The public order and security bill will replace already oppressive
colonial-era security laws that have been widely used against Mr Mugabe's
opponents. It will be an offence to "undermine the authority of the
president" or "engender hostility" towards him. It will also mandate life
imprisonment or execution for "insurgency, banditry, sabotage and

Last week, Mr Mugabe referred to the MDC and white farmers as "terrorists"
two dozen times at the funeral of a war veterans' leader, Cain Nkala, whom
the government says was murdered by opposition supporters. The president
also accused the British government of backing terrorists.

The discovery of Mr Nkala's body in a shallow grave provided a pretext for a
mob of war veterans and Zanu-PF supporters to storm through the southern
city of Bulawayo, burning cars and the opposition headquarters in the city,
and beating anyone perceived to be an MDC supporter.

At Mr Nkala's funeral, the president vowed to crush his opponents. "The MDC
and their supporters should know their days are numbered. The time is now up
for the MDC terrorists," he said.

It was a chilling echo of threats he made against his opponents in the first
years after independence in 1979, immediately before the army began its
murderous sweep through Matabeleland.

The MDC claims that the ruling party is training and arming a militia,
partly drawn from war veterans, ready to terrorise Mugabe opponents before
the election and to provide a cover for vote rigging.

The party also claims to have obtained a copy of Zanu's election strategy
which raises the possibility of killling the MDC leader, Morgan Tsvangirai.
The MDC's secretary general, Welshman Ncube, said his party had no illusions
about the lengths to which President Mugabe was prepared to go.

"We know that they are going to try everything, including assassinating our
leadership, but our belief is that the people of Zimbabwe are not going to
allow them to succeed in any devious programme."

Yesterday, 200 riot police, armed with live ammunition, shotguns, tear gas
and truncheons broke up a small protest outside parliament against the new
electoral rules that Mr Mugabe's opponents say will strip many people of the
vote through complicated residence requirements. "We are not prepared to sit
back while the government abuses parliament to make laws that take away our
democratic rights," said Lovemore Madhuku, chairman of the National
Constitutional Assembly - a coalition of unions, churches and human rights
activists - which organised the protest.

Neither have the white farmers escaped the latest onslaught. Last week Mr
Mugabe issued a decree effectively ordering more than 1,000 white farmers to
stop working their land immediately and to get out of their homes within
three months. He followed up this week with an attack on the remaining
farmers by reducing the maximum permitted size of a farm to 250 hectares
(625 acres) - one-eighth of the previous limit.

Economists say the commercial farming sector is on the brink of total
collapse. Inflation reached just short of 100% last month, hard currency has
dried up and no one now doubts that serious food shortages are looming
unless foreign aid is forthcoming.

The single piece of good news for the opposition was the decision by
Zimbabwe's supreme court on Tuesday to quash treason charges against the MDC
leader over a speech in which he warned that if Mr Mugabe did not go
peacefully he would be violently overthrown.

The president recently packed the court with judges believed loyal to the
ruling party, yet they unanimously declared the charges unconstitutional.

After the charges were quashed, Mr Tsvangirai confirmed that he would
challenge Mr Mugabe for the presidency next year.
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Thursday, 22 November, 2001, 11:38 GMT
More than 30 Harare arrests
Riot police
Police were out in force in Harare
The police in Zimbabwe have arrested and detained 35 people trying to demonstrate against changes to electoral laws, say civil rights campaigners.

The National Constitutional Assembly (NCA) had planned to march on parliament on Wednesday, accusing President Robert Mugabe's government of trying to take away democratic rights by introducing new arrangements for next year's presidential election.

They say the arrests took place in Harare's city centre on Wednesday afternoon as heavily armed riot police easily dispersed a small crowd gathered for the protest action.

MDC leader, Morgan Tsvangirai
Tsvangirai is so far Presidetn Mugabe's toughest challenge

Political tension has risen sharply in Zimbabwe over the past week, with President Mugabe denouncing the opposition as terrorists.

The NCA, a coalition of trade unions, church groups and human rights organisations are also opposed to plans to stop pressure groups from taking part in voter education and election monitoring and making the government's sponsored electoral commission the sole authority instead.

NCA spokesman Douglas Mwonza said 18 of those arrested are their members.

Their lawyer said they are being held on "public violence" charges, according to the French news agency, AFP.

Police have confirmed the detention of 17 people belonging to the NCA.


Early on Wednesday police armed with shotguns, teargas, shields and batons had deployed in force ahead of the planned mass protest, but only a small group of about 50 activists turned up.

Riot police
Police took no chances

The Reuters news agency reported that the demonstrators were quickly chased away when they began to march towards parliament.

Riot squad officers had also surrounded the parliament building and began patrolling Harare's central business district and a nearby square where protestors traditionally congregate.

Presidential elections are due next year and it is expected that President Robert Mugabe would face his stiffest challenge yet from the opposition candidate Morgan Tsvangirai.

Earlier this week he confirmed that he would run after the Supreme Court ruled that terrorism charges against him, relating to a speech he made at a Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) rally last September, were unconstitutional.

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Boston Globe

Zimbabwe hardens line on opposition

Bill on subversion calls for hanging

By Michael Hartnack, Associated Press, 11/22/2001

ARARE, Zimbabwe - In its latest crackdown against the opposition, the
government will propose legislation for the hanging of those found guilty of
subversion, media reports said yesteray.

Describing opposition activity as ''terrorist,'' the government said the
bill also would prohibit bail for suspects in allegedly politically
motivated crimes, The Herald, a state-run newspaper, reported.

The report of the new legislation followed a ruling Tuesday by the Supreme
Court that dismissed subversion charges by the government against opposition
leader Morgan Tsvangirai.

The court ruled that a colonial-era law invoked to prosecute Tsvangirai on
allegations that he incited an overthrow of the government violated his
constitutional rights to a fair trial.

Tsvangirai welcomed the decision but said he doubted future cases would be
granted a fair hearing because President Robert Mugabe has recently stacked
the Supreme Court with ruling party loyalists.

''I am pleased if our courts can maintain this integrity but I fear in any
future constitutional case we will find it difficult,'' Tsvangirai said.

Tsvangirai faced a five-year jail term if found guilty, and conviction would
have barred him from running against Mugabe in presidential elections
scheduled for next year.

Mugabe faces a tight race against Tsvangirai, whose Movement for Democratic
Change is running on a platform of accountable government and has widespread
support in the cities.

Copies of the proposed legislation have not yet been made public, but
opposition officials said it appeared to be part of a government plan to
intimidate critics before elections.

The legislation would prohibit courts from granting bail to suspects in
allegedly politically motivated crimes ranging from murder to car theft, the
report said.

Rural Zimbabwe has spiraled into chaos since March 2000, when militants from
the ruling Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front began violently
occupying white-owned farms, demanding they be handed over to landless

Opposition officials accuse Mugabe of using land seizures without
compensation to the farmers as a pre-election ploy to garner support and
scare off opponents.

Also yesterday, opposition officials announced the death of party activist
Kufa Rukara, 55. Rukara died Tuesday of injuries suffered in September after
he was allegedly beaten by ruling party militants in the Gokwe district, 200
miles west of Harare.

Mugabe's government has executed 66 people since coming to power in 1980,
but has granted amnesty to 2,000 security force members and ruling party
members accused of killing suspected opponents.

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San Francisco Chronicle

Zimbabwe's president tightens grip
Opposition party, white farmers bear brunt of crackdown

Ann M. Simmons, Los Angeles Times    Thursday, November 22, 2001

Johannesburg -- Tension is boiling over in Zimbabwe after a recent wave of
attacks against the government's political opponents and the introduction of
stringent laws apparently designed to entrench the power of President Robert
Mugabe's party ahead of next year's election.

The attacks targeting the Movement for Democratic Change, or MDC, come
during a period of great instability. Past weeks have seen fresh violence
against white-owned commercial farms. Harassment of the media and members of
the judiciary is widespread. And a general breakdown of the rule of law is
terrifying average Zimbabweans, already beaten down by poverty.

More than 100 opposition supporters and 10 white farmers have been killed
within the last two years. State-sponsored killings and torture are on the
rise, according to local human rights groups.

MDC officials said Mugabe and his ruling Zimbabwe African National Union-
Patriotic Front, or ZANU-PF, party are behind the oppressive actions, citing
their anger and frustration over not being able to suppress their toughest
political challenge since coming to power in 1980.

Just yesterday, Mugabe's administration said it will propose legislation for
the hanging of anyone found guilty of trying to overthrow the government.
Describing opposition parties' work as "terrorist activities," the
government said the new bill would also prohibit courts from granting bail
to suspects in allegedly politically motivated crimes, the Herald, a
state-run newspaper, reported.

"These are seriously desperate measures," said Gibson Sibanda, the
opposition party's vice president. "They are just trying everything. They
are not going to stop at anything."

The most recent attack on opposition targets came Friday with the
destruction of the MDC headquarters in Bulawayo, the nation's second-largest

The building was stoned and hit with gasoline bombs by pro-government
militants who were protesting the killing of Cain Nkala, a ruling party ally
who has helped lead violent occupations of 1,700 white-owned farms. MDC
supporters avenged the destruction by burning a college owned by a former
ruling party legislator and Mugabe crony.

The government says the MDC was behind Nkala's abduction and strangulation,
a claim the party denies.

After Nkala's body was found in a shallow grave outside Bulawayo last week,
police arrested 16 opposition activists and an MDC member of parliament on
charges of murder. Two reporters for the country's only independent daily
newspaper were released Tuesday after their weekend arrests on charges of
involvement in an alleged plot to implicate the government in Nkala's

At Nkala's funeral Sunday, Mugabe called the MDC a terrorist organization
and vowed to crush it.

"The MDC and their supporters should know their days are numbered," Mugabe
told the hundreds of mourners. "The time is now up for the MDC terrorists as
the world has been awakened by the death of Nkala."

MDC officials said the president's words resounded with desperation.

"It appears that Robert Mugabe and the party are completely irrational and
are willing to use any means possible to stay in power," said David Coltart,
the MDC's shadow justice minister and a member of parliament.

MDC officials said the destruction of their headquarters would only
strengthen their resolve.

"They can do these things, but certainly that cannot break the spirit of the
people," said MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai as he toured the bombed-out
building Monday. "If at all, they will reinforce the spirit of the people."

The MDC nearly beat the ruling party in parliamentary polls last year,
despite a violent campaign by pro-government supporters in which 31 people
were killed.

In recent weeks, Mugabe has exercised his powers of decree with the intent,
local commentators say, of ensuring his victory in the presidential race,
due by April.

Independent election monitors, both foreign and local, have been banned.
Nongovernmental organizations are not allowed to disseminate voter
education. Charities may not distribute food relief.

The country's Land Acquisition Act was also amended, fueling a controversy
over the seizure of white-owned commercial farms. The government has
targeted about 5,000 of these farms -- about 95 percent of all farms owned
by whites -- for redistribution to largely landless blacks.

The amended land law removes the right of farmers to appeal a land
acquisition order and makes interfering with black resettlement a criminal

Bulawayo is at the heart of Matabeleland, home to the Ndebele ethnic group
that makes up about 20 percent of Zimbabwe's population. The region has long
been an opposition stronghold, with Ndebeles complaining of second-class
treatment and claiming that development in their homeland has been
intentionally stifled.

In the 1980s, thousands of Ndebeles were slaughtered by a special government
brigade after the people of Matabeleland took sides with the ZANU- PF, which
was an opposition party at the time.

"There's certainly no love lost here for Robert Mugabe," said Coltart, who
spoke from a secure location outside of Bulawayo. "The people are quite
aware of what he was responsible for in the 1980s. And they hold him
responsible for the economic collapse of this region."

MDC supporters in Bulawayo have suffered numerous attacks and intimidation.
Several provincial officials and supporters have recently been arrested.

Tsvangirai, who is likely to challenge Mugabe for the presidency, recently
survived an attack on his motorcade by ruling party militants.

On Tuesday, the Supreme Court threw out charges of terrorism and sabotage
against Tsvangirai. The charges were leveled last year after he told a rally
that Mugabe should quit or face violent removal.

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Zimbabwe makes ID cards compulsory
November 22, 2001 Posted: 8:06 AM EST (1306 GMT)

HARARE, Zimbabwe -- Human rights groups have criticised a proposal by
Zimbabwe's government to jail or fine people who move about without identity

In a statement published in the official Herald newspaper on Thursday, the
government said it had approved amendments to the National Registration Act
and the Criminal Procedure and Evidence Act to make it compulsory for people
to carry either a national ID card, a passport or a driver's licence.

Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa said the amendments -- which he said
would soon be tabled in parliament -- were "aimed at dealing with increasing
criminal and terrorism activities," Reuters reported.

The law would overturn a 1997 Supreme Court ruling that outlawed such
measures as an infringement of the right to free movement.

But Chinamasa said the ruling had made police work difficult in identifying
suspected criminals, identifying accident victims and in detecting illegal

Under the proposed changes, a person moving without any form of ID would
face a fine of up to $5,000 (U.S.$90) or a year in jail.

But human rights groups said the amendments violated the constitution.

"The government is creating a repressive atmosphere with all these draconian
proposals, especially at a time when the government has given an impression
that it will crush all dissent," a spokesman for the Catholic Commission for
Justice and Peace, one of Zimbabwe's leading rights groups told Reuters.

Critics say President Robert Mugabe, 77, is tightening electoral rules and
other laws in his favour ahead of next year's presidential poll.

Opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai is expected to give Mugabe the hardest
challenge of his career in the elections.

  The government has tabled proposals to ban local independent election
monitors and forbid private organisations from conducting voter education.

The changes would oblige voters to produce several documents to prove their
residence, while denying voting rights to millions of Zimbabweans abroad.

On Wednesday, state officials said the government also planned to
reintroduce a Public Order Security Bill, which critics say is intended to
suppress opposition ahead of the presidential polls.

It will punish "acts of insurgency, banditry, sabotage, terrorism, treason
and subversion" with life imprisonment or death penalty.

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Zim gets dom pass

Harare - The Zimbabwe government wants people to carry identity documents at
all times, as part of a widening campaign against crime and terrorism, the
state-run Herald said on Thursday.

The move comes despite a landmark 1997 ruling by the country's Supreme Court
that found such a requirement unconstitutional.

The proposed changes, expected to be tabled in parliament soon, aim to deal
with "increasing criminal and terrorism activities", the paper said.

Proposed penalties for not carrying identity documents will include stiff
fines or jail sentences.

Officials of the ruling Zimbabwe African National Union - Patriotic Front
(Zanu-PF), have recently accused the opposition Movement for Democratic
Change (MDC) of committing acts of terrorism.

The accusations follow the murder of a prominent Zanu-PF supporter and war
veteran leader, Cain Nkala, which Zanu-PF claims was committed by the MDC.

The opposition denies the charges.

The proposed measures follow the government's approval of a Public Order and
Security Bill, also set to be tabled in parliament soon, which advocates
stiff new measures to combat terrorism.

Under the bill, a possible death sentence is proposed for acts of insurgency
and terrorism, as well as severe penalties against journalists and others
found spreading false news about the president and the state. - Sapa/AFP

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Rainbow group expands, re-brands Victoria Falls hotel

A NEW, 42-roomed wing will be opened at the Rainbow Hotel in Victoria Falls
next month.

The Rainbow Tourism Group’s chief executive, Mr Herbert Nkala, said over
$180 million was invested in the project to date, with the new wing -
expected to increase the hotel’s capacity to 88 rooms - taking advantage of
an anticipated upsurge in tourist traffic into Victoria Falls during the
festive season.

“With reduced capacity as a result of the fire tragedy at Elephant Hills,
domestic tourism will benefit from the increased capacity provided by the
(Rainbow) hotel,” said Mr Nkala.

The Rainbow Hotel is popular with visitors to Victoria Falls because of it
is close to the falls and the town centre, its rooms are spacious and it
boasts a unique “swim ‘n’ sip” bar inside its swimming pool. As a result,
the hotel has often faced capacity problems, forcing it to turn away many of
its loyal guests during peak season.

The additional 42 rooms have been designed along the same Moorish
architecture that local and international tourists have grown to love so
much. The work undertaken fits in with a re-branding strategy adopted by the
group according to standards and specifications laid down by Groupe Accor, a
strategic partner with 35 percent equity, which was also awarded the
management contract for the Rainbow Hotels Division.

The Rainbow Hotel will be re-branded to take Accor’s Mercure Brand after
completion. The re-branding exercise should be accomplished in the first
half of next year. Already, the Hotel Mercure A’Zambezi in the resort town
has been re-branded, making it attractive to both new Francophone markets
and established contacts.

Mr Nkala said RTG continued to benefit from strategic partners including, in
addition to Groupe Accor of France, Ireland Blyth Limited of Mauritius (who
own 40 percent equity in Touch The Wild and Tourism Services Zimbabwe, with
RTG holding a majority 60 percent), as well as Starwood Hotels and Resorts
Worldwide, the owners of the Sheraton brand.

“These alliances have made RTG a unique company in Zimbabwe’s tourism
industry as it continuously taps into the numerous resources and experiences
of its world-class strategic partners. The availability of resources
continues to buttress the company during these hard times.

“In the case of Rainbow Victoria Falls Hotel, a combination of an upmarket,
internationally-positioned product, a good location, and operational support
from Groupe Accor can only result in improved standards and occupancies for
the hotel,” said Mr Nkala.

Groupe Accor continues to send technical experts to work with Rainbow hotels
in areas like information technology, human resources, marketing and sales,
technical services and finance, and gastronomy. Accor has also made
available its Tourism University in Paris for training of RTG’s managerial

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Youths demand new law before poll

From Cyril Zenda Staff Reporter
11/22/01 12:58:24 AM (GMT +2)

GWERU —The youths chanted repeatedly: "Iva gamba. Iva gamba. Iva gamba
utarise mhandu . . ." (Be a fighter and confront the enemy).

Their spirited song and dance punctuated a National Constitutional Assembly
(NCA) youth meeting here at the weekend as Zimbabwe’s youths met to prepare
for what will almost certainly be a confrontation with President Robert
Mugabe’s government over constitutional reforms which he rejects.

The more than 500 youth representatives from across Zimbabwe had also
gathered to put their final seal to the NCA draft constitution, which is set
to be finalised shortly.

Heavily flawed

The meeting at the Gweru Baptist Centre was especially concerned that the
government seems determined to go ahead to hold a crucial presidential
election under the current constitution which even Mugabe himself has
admitted in the past to be heavily flawed.

The youths fear that as Mugabe increasingly realises that he might lose the
poll which must be held by the end of March, he is likely to exploit
loopholes in the current constitution to steal the ballot from a surging

Never free

"Whatever the case might be, we are saying there should be a new
constitution before the presidential election," said opposition Movement for
Democratic Change (MDC) youth representative Sam Sithole.

"As a party, we believe that the elections can never be free and fair if
they are held under a constitution that allows one of the players to be a
referee, a linesman on the left, a linesman on the right as well as the one
who sets the rules of the game," he said.

Zimbabwe’s British-drafted constitution has been heavily amended by ZANU PF
in the past 21 years of Zimbabwe’s independence to give Mugabe total — some
say dictatorial — control of all national elections.

In the upcoming ballot, he faces the biggest challenge to his throne from
MDC head Morgan Tsvangirai.

The youth representatives, who drew participants from scores of interested
civic bodies, voted to back moves by the NCA to adopt a new national
constitution under which the presidential plebiscite must be held.

Political parties represented at the meeting included ZANU (Ndonga), the
Democratic Party (DP), the National Alliance for Good Governance and the
MDC. The ruling ZANU PF party has refused to be party to the NCA-led
constitutional reform process, saying it is preoccupied with other issues.


"How can we expect a free and fair election when there is no Independent
Election Commission? We have to make sure that a new constitution is in
place before the election is held if ever the election is to be free and
fair," said Philani Zamchiya, the DP representative.

Under the present constitution, the Electoral Supervisory Commission — a
body made up of individuals handpicked by Mugabe — is responsible for
conducting and supervising all elections and the President reserves the
right to accept or reject the results of any poll.

"The youths are now generally agreed that there should be mass action if the
government refuses to accept their wishes. They are strongly opposed to the
idea of going to the poll with the current constitution because they know
that the opposition will never win," said Maxwell Saungweme, the NCA youth

He said the youths were ready to engage in civil disobedience to force the
government to accept the new constitution.

The NCA also says that it will lend its full support to political parties
which pledge to adopt the new constitution when they campaign for the

Greater democracy

The NCA, mandated by members to re-start constitutional reforms abandoned by
the government when Zimbabweans rejected its own blueprint last year,
unveiled its draft constitution in September this year.

The draft, which includes demands for greater democracy, transparency and
accountability by the government expressed by Zimbabweans during Mugabe’s
ill-fated constitutional reform bid, was then referred to the public for

Another all-stakeholders’ conference — a follow-up to the one held in March
this year — is scheduled for December 1 when the NCA’s draft is expected to
be approved. Once this is done, it will be presented to the government for

According to the NCA programme, the final document is supposed to be
presented to the government before the end of this year, just in time for
adoption before the presidential election.

There are fears however that Mugabe will reject the constitution because his
government has already indicated that no one but itself has the mandate to
draw up Zimbabwe’s supreme law.

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Mugabe warned against another Gukurahundi

By Abel Mutsakani Assistant News Editor
11/22/01 1:04:34 AM (GMT +2)

PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe’s vow to crush the opposition Movement for
Democratic Change (MDC) could signal the start of a ruthless crackdown on
the opposition party but analysts this week cautioned that Mugabe could find
the going a self-defeating exercise.

Besides the difficulties of liquidating an opposition party which dominates
urban centres and some rural areas, the political map of southern Africa had
radically changed from the 1980s when Mugabe and his government killed
thousands of people to crush the late Joshua Nkomo’s opposition ZAPU party,
the analysts noted.

Unlike what South Africa’s former apartheid rulers did then, current
President Thabo Mbeki and other regional leaders are unlikely to stand idle
were Mugabe to unleash violence and repression against civilians in a bid to
crush the MDC, which he labels a terrorist organisation.

"Mugabe and ZANU PF might be tempted to launch another Gukurahundi against
the opposition, but that would be failing to read the writing on the
political wall," University of Zimbabwe (UZ) political scientist Masipula
Sithole said.

Gukurahundi was the codename for an army crackdown in Zimbabwe’s
Matabeleland and Midlands provinces ordered by Mugabe ostensibly to hunt
down armed dissidents from Nkomo’s ZAPU but which targeted innocent
civilians who supported Nkomo.

More than 20 000 civilians perished during the crackdown by the Zimbabwe
army’s North Korean-trained Fifth Brigade in what is regarded as Zimbabwe’s
darkest hour.

Speaking at the burial of slain war veterans’ leader Cain Nkala at the
weekend, Mugabe called the opposition party a terrorist organisation at
least 20 times and warned the MDC that its days were numbered.

Most political analysts say Mugabe, unrivalled in power for 21 years, faces
his biggest electoral challenge from MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai if a
presidential ballot due next year is free and fair.

Drawing parallels to warnings Mugabe gave Nkomo before adopting an iron fist
against him, another UZ political analyst Elphas Mukonoweshuro said the only
difference this time would be that the repression of the MDC would be
nationwide instead of being focused on southern Zimbabwe, as was the case
with ZAPU.

"It is like a clarion call for more violence," Mukonoweshuro said, noting
Mugabe’s hardline speech.

The analyst said in the worst-case scenario, Zimbabwe could in the next few
months descend into total anarchy, with vigilantes roaming the countryside
and abducting people, conducting kangaroo courts and meting out punishment
and death to foes.

Echoing Mukono-weshuro’s fears, the Zimbabwe Catholic Commission for Justice
and Peace (CCJP) called on the country’s political leaders to stop
abductions, killings and torture that are chillingly becoming routine in
Zimbabwe as the nation gears for the country’s most crucial presidential
ballot ever.

"The CCJP is deeply shocked and saddened by the abductions, killings,
torture and destruction of property . . . there is genuine fear that free
and fair elections may become almost impossible," the CCJP said.

Despite calls by the Commonwealth and the Southern Africa Development
Community (SADC) on Mugabe to end political violence and restore the rule of
law, violence is rising in Zimbabwe, according to a report issued last month
by the Zimbabwe Human Rights Forum (ZHRF).

It said gangs of war veterans, together with some state security agents, are
freely operating as torture squads in the countryside.

The ZHRF groups Zimbabwe’s leading human rights and pro-democracy bodies.

Mukonoweshuro said prospects for more violence and lawlessness were even
higher given that the doves within the ruling ZANU PF and the government had
clearly lost out to the hawks led by Mugabe himself.

He said the inability or unwillingness of those in charge of the state’s
arms of coercion to insist on carrying out their constitutional role of
ensuring law and order meant that pro-government militants could escalate
their activities unhindered.

But Sithole said dealing with the MDC as Mugabe had promised to do was in
fact to deal with an opposition phenomenon that was pervasive throughout the

He said the situation on the ground was unlike in the 1980s, when Mugabe
enjoyed more support in most parts of the country than his then rival Nkomo.

This time, Sithole said, Mugabe did not have any significant support even in
his own home region of Mashonaland.

"The legitimacy is no longer there. The circumstances have changed and the
reactions of the people to a crackdown against the popular opposition party
would be different," the analyst said.

Sithole noted that when ZANU PF militants burnt down the MDC’s provincial
offices in Bulawayo at the weekend to punish the opposition party for what
they allege is its role in the killing of a ruling party member, MDC
supporters swiftly mobilised and struck back, burning down the business of
ZANU PF stalwart Sikhanyiso Ndhovu.

"If Mugabe and his lieutenants failed to read from that simultaneous
reaction the clear message that the country is very flammable at the moment,
then they are not worth to be leaders indeed," he said.

He said the doctrine of non-interference in the affairs of a sovereign state
had also changed in the post-Cold War era and that totalitarian methods to
try to destroy the MDC could trigger more direct intervention, even by the
SADC itself.

Sithole said the increasingly unpredictable Mugabe could still ban the MDC
or impose martial law and postpone the presidential poll indefinitely but
that would also serve to trigger, sooner or later, an even angrier backlash
from a nation already on the edge.


ZANU PF in crisis talks

By Sydney Masamvu Political Editor
11/22/01 12:45:03 AM (GMT +2)

TOP leaders of Zimbabwe’s ruling ZANU PF are holding crisis meetings to try
to browbeat the party’s top brass to back embattled President Robert Mugabe
ahead of a crucial presidential election due early next year, it was
established this week.

Authoritative ZANU PF sources said one such meeting, dubbed the "Karanga
Indaba", was held in Harare last Monday to try to find ways of lifting
Mugabe’s crumbling support base in volatile Masvingo and among party
stalwarts there.

The secret meeting was attended by Parliamentary Speaker Emmerson Mnangagwa,
Zimbabwe Defence Forces chief General Vitalis Zvinavashe, retired Air
Marshal and non-constituency MP Josiah Tungamirai, Home Affairs Deputy
Minister Rugare Gumbo, Masvingo South MP Eddison Zvobgo, former Masvingo
provincial chairman Dzikamai Mavahaire and Labour Minister July Moyo.

The meeting was held at a private school in Tynwald, which is owned by

The sources said the meeting was meant to bring Zvobgo back into the
mainstream campaign for Mugabe, especially in Masvingo province where the
President’s support is crumbling fast.

"The purpose of the meeting was to work out strategies that would try to
bridge divisions within the party’s leadership in the province ahead of the
presidential elections and to brainstorm on the future," one source privy to
the meeting said.

Two rival camps have divided ZANU PF in Masvingo, Zimbabwe’s most populous
province, leaving the party in disarray in its former powerbase.

One camp is headed by provincial governor Josiah Hungwe, which has Vice
President Simon Muzenda as its godfather, while the other is led by Zvobgo
whose influence in ZANU PF has been whittled down by Mugabe in the past few

In the past two weeks, ZANU PF’s Masvingo provincial executive headed by
Higher Education Minister Samuel Mumbengegwi has been failing to draw crowds
at its campaign rallies in and around Masvingo meant to drum up support for

According to the sources, Mugabe is fully briefed on developments in the
southern province, hence the moves by Mnangagwa and Zvinavashe to try to
bridge the rift.

Zvobgo, sidelined within the ZANU PF after being thrown out from both the
Cabinet and Politburo, is still the most popular politician in Masvingo and
has reportedly refused to campaign for Mugabe.

Zvobgo and Mavhaire are accused by their rivals of campaigning for
opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai, a charge both deny.

An independent opinion poll published two weeks ago shows Mugabe trailing
Tsvangirai in the lead-up to the presidential ballot by at least six
percentage points.

As well as the Harare meeting, the sources said similar indabas were being
held by top ZANU PF leaders in Matabeleland over Mugabe’s future.

The sources said there was a general feeling among ZANU PF stalwarts that
Zimbabwe’s next leader should come from the southern provinces, hence the
emergence of the so-called South–South link which draws political leaders
from Matabeleland, the Midlands and Masvingo provinces.

In Matabeleland, the sources reported, discussions have also centred on how
to stem factionalism that has rocked the war veterans’ association there in
the wake of the murder two weeks ago of war veteran Cain Nkala.

Senior politicians in the province include Politburo member Dumiso Dabengwa,
John Nkomo, Joseph Msika, Sikhanyiso Ndlovu and Obert Mpofu.

According to the sources, the factions within the war veterans could also be
behind the abduction and subsequent murder of Nkala, who was buried in
Harare as a national hero at the weekend.

Several supporters of Tsvangirai’s opposition Movement for Democratic Change
(MDC) have been arrested over an allegation that they were involved in Nkala
murder, a charge denied by the MDC.

The sources say war veterans in Matabeleland have been deeply divided by
Nkala’s killing, with a clear line emerging between former guerrillas of the
late nationalist Joshua Nkomo’s ZIPRA and Mugabe’s ZANLA.

"There is a big problem within the war veterans in Matabeleland and factions
have formed among former ZIPRA and ZANLA cadres in the association," a
politician from the province told the Financial Gazette.

The sources said three factions had emerged, with one campaigning for the
re-emergence of Joshua Nkomo’s former ZAPU party, the other faction is
symphathising with the MDC and the third group backings Mugabe and ZANU PF.

The sources said the emergence of factions had scuttled ZANU PF’s efforts to
mount a meaningful presidential election campaign in Matabeleland’s
provinces, which are a strongholds of the MDC.

A meeting to discuss factionalism in Matabeleland was held in Harare on
Sunday after Nkala’s burial at the Heroes’ Acre.

The war veterans, using violence and intimidation, helped ZANU PF to
narrowly win parliamentary elections last year against the MDC.


New law threatens farmers’ contracts

Staff Reporter
11/22/01 1:20:11 AM (GMT +2)

ZIMBABWEAN commercial farmers with contracts to produce agricultural
commodities will be the most affected by new legislation which gives them
three months to wind up their operations, Commercial Farmers’ Union (CFU)
president Colin Cloete said this week.

He said commercial farmers would fail to fulfil their contracts because they
would be unable to harvest all their crops in the next three months and
would be forced to leave most of them in the ground.

"Farmers with contracts to produce commodities will be the most affected by
this piece of legislation because they will not be able to fulfil these
contracts if they are going to be removed from their properties in three
months," he told the Financial Gazette.

Affected farmers include growers of barley, paprika and soyabeans, as well
as beef producers, who are contracted by companies and auction houses to
produce crops and livestock for sale.

Farmers receive loans for inputs from these companies, which also sometimes
make forward payments to farmers to guarantee that they will supply the

Cloete said the farmers were frantically trying to arrange meetings with the
government to clarify whether they could apply for permission to see their
crops through to harvest time next year in April and May.

"The situation (of unfulfilled contracts) will be worse next year because
the small-scale farmers do not yet have the capacity to fulfil these
contracts and, especially for beef, 80 percent of beef producers are
contracted to supply the beef," he said.

"We are going to meet with the politicians to clarify whether farmers will
be allowed to apply to the government to harvest their crop because
(otherwise) there will be huge ramifications for the whole economy, not only
the commercial farming sector."

He said at least 800 farmers would be affected by the new legislation, which
last week forced the CFU to temporarily suspend the launch of the Zimbabwe
Joint Resettlement Initiative in Matabeleland province.

The initiative, a joint venture between commercial farmers and the private
sector, has seen commercial farmers pledging one million hectares of land in
support of the government’s land reform programme and a $1.3 billion
revolving fund to help resettled farmers with inputs.

The initiative was officially launched earlier this month in Mashonaland
Central province.

In a communique to its members last week, the CFU said the new legislation
was "a travesty of justice" that would derail regional and international
initiatives to correct the government’s often violent and chaotic land
reform programme.

Land reform has been seized upon by President Robert Mugabe as a
vote-catcher ahead of next year’s crucial presidential election, during
which he will face the stiffest challenge yet to his 20-year stranglehold on

Mugabe says it is immoral for only 4 500 white commercial farmers to occupy
70 percent of Zimbabwe’s best farming land and his government plans to seize
at least 8.3 million hectares of commercial farmland.

The CFU has already warned of a 40 percent drop in commercial agricultural
production next year because of the fast-track land reform programme, under
which farming activity has been severely disrupted.

A United Nations Development Programme team, already in the country to
review the government’s agrarian reforms, was scheduled to meet the CFU this

The team will also assess the cost of a new land reform programme that will
be an alternative to the government’s economically destructive one.


MDC begins rebuilding Byo office

Staff Reporter
11/22/01 12:57:35 AM (GMT +2)

BULAWAYO — The opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) this week
began rebuilding its Matabeleland regional head office here which was burnt
down by ruling ZANU PF mobs during demonstrations last Friday.

The building, which is said to be crucial for coordinating the opposition
party’s presidential campaign in Matabeleland, an MDC stronghold, was
apparently petrol-bombed in retaliation for the murder of Bulawayo war
veterans’ leader Cain Nkala.

The government blames the MDC for the killing, a charge the party rejects.

Police had by this week made no headway in apprehending suspects in the
arson, but the MDC is believed to have secured funding to bankroll the

Scores of party members and officials on Monday cleared away debris and
began reconstructing the damaged office, which was toured by MDC leader
Morgan Tsvangirai, who will square off against President Robert Mugabe in
next year’s presidential ballot.

"We are not deterred by the demolition of our regional offices. Instead we
are encouraged to continue with our thrust for change," said MDC vice
president Gibson Sibanda, shovelling debris into a wheelbarrow.

"Our goal is to rebuild this structure by the end of the week so that we
keep our presidential campaign on track. This is a very important office and
it needs to be up and operating in no time. We appeal to our supporters,
companies and other wellwishers to come forward and contribute to this
worthy cause."

MDC secretary-general Welshman Ncube said the party was overwhelmed by the
large number of people who flocked to clear debris and begin reconstructing
the office, where a Zimbabwe flag has been hoisted defiantly.

"It goes to show the support that we have despite the harassment of our
party supporters and officials," he said.

The destruction of the MDC’s office sparked protests from the party’s
supporters in Bulawayo, who in turn torched a private college owned by
Sikhanyiso Ndlovu, the ruling party’s acting national commissar.

Ndlovu said yesterday: "I am busy sorting out the mess here and you are
disturbing me. I am with engineers and estimators who are trying to assess
the damage. Instead of crying with me, you are harassing me with your

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