By Paula Wolfson
23 November 2005
President Bush is expanding U.S. sanctions on Zimbabwe. The move is
designed to send a message to those standing in the way of democratic
In March 2003, President Bush froze the assets of 77 people responsible for
hindering democratic reforms in Zimbabwe, including President Robert Mugabe.
Now, he has added another 138 names to the list, along with 33 entities.
Mr. Bush put the expanded sanctions in place by an executive order, which he
signed during a visit to his Texas ranch. In a letter to congressional
leaders, he says the expanded sanctions will affect key government and party
officials in Zimbabwe and members of their families.
The letter says that since the first sanctions were imposed, the situation
in Zimbabwe has only gotten worse. President Bush says the government
continues to suppress opposition groups and civil society, undermine the
independent media, ignore decisions by its courts, and refuse to enter into
meaningful political negotiations. He says parliamentary elections earlier
this year were neither free nor fair, and adds the recent demolitions of low
income housing and informal markets shows the need for additional sanctions.
As part of his executive order, President Bush is also directing the
secretary of the treasury to keep a close watch on the situation and add
more names, as warranted, to those already targeted by sanctions.
In a written statement, Deputy White House Press Secretary Dana Perino
stresses these sanctions are not aimed at the people of Zimbabwe, but rather
those responsible for their plight. She says the policies of the Mugabe
government have devastated Zimbabwe, and warns the only way to prevent
further sanctions is for all political factions to embrace democratic
reforms and engage in a meaningful political dialogue to end the impasse
caused by a series of flawed elections.
The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
November 23, 2005
By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the
laws of the United States of America, including the International Emergency
Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.) (IEEPA), the National
Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.), and section 301 of title 3, United
States Code, and in order to take additional steps with respect to the
continued actions and policies of certain persons who undermine Zimbabwe's
democratic processes and with respect to the national emergency described
and declared in Executive Order 13288 of March 6, 2003,
I, GEORGE W. BUSH, President of the United States of America, hereby
Section 1. The Annex to Executive Order 13288 of March 6, 2003, is replaced
and superseded in its entirety by the Annex to this order.
Sec. 2. Section 6 of Executive Order 13288 is renumbered as section 8.
Sections 1 through 5 of Executive Order 13288 are replaced with new sections
1 through 7 as follows:
Section 1. (a) Except to the extent provided in section 203(b)(1), (3),
and (4) of IEEPA (50 U.S.C. 1702(b)(1), (3), and (4)), and in regulations,
orders, directives, or licenses that may be issued pursuant to this order,
and notwithstanding any contract entered into or any license or permit
granted prior to the effective date of this order, all property and
interests in property of the following persons, that are in the United
States, that hereafter come within the United States, or that are or
hereafter come within the possession or control of United States persons,
including their overseas branches, are blocked and may not be transferred,
paid, exported, withdrawn, or otherwise dealt in:
1.. the persons listed in the Annex to this order; and
2.. any person determined by the Secretary of the Treasury, in
consultation with the Secretary of State:
1.. to have engaged in actions or policies to undermine Zimbabwe's
democratic processes or institutions;
2.. to have materially assisted, sponsored, or provided financial,
material, or technological support for, or goods or services in support of,
such actions or policies or any person whose property and interests in
property are blocked pursuant to this order;
3.. to be or have been an immediate family member of any person whose
property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to this order; or
4.. to be owned or controlled by, or acting or purporting to act for or
on behalf of, directly or indirectly, any person whose property and
interests in property are blocked pursuant to this order.
(b) I hereby determine that the making of donations of the type of
articles specified in section 203(b)(2) of IEEPA (50 U.S.C. 1702(b)(2)) by,
to, or for the benefit of any person whose property and interests in
property are blocked pursuant to paragraph (a) of this section would
seriously impair my ability to deal with the national emergency declared in
this order, and I hereby prohibit such donations as provided by paragraph
(a) of this section.
(c) The prohibitions in paragraph (a) of this section include but are
not limited to (i) the making of any contribution or provision of funds,
goods, or services by, to, or for the benefit of any person whose property
and interests in property are blocked pursuant to this order, and (ii) the
receipt of any contribution or provision of funds, goods, or services from
any such person.
Sec. 2. (a) Any transaction by a United States person or within the United
States that evades or avoids, has the purpose of evading or avoiding, or
attempts to violate any of the prohibitions set forth in this order is
(b) Any conspiracy formed to violate any of the prohibitions set forth in
this order is prohibited.
Sec. 3. For the purposes of this order:
1.. the term "person" means an individual or entity;
2.. the term "entity" means a partnership, association, trust, joint
venture, corporation, group, subgroup, or other organization; and
3.. the term "United States person" means any United States citizen,
permanent resident alien, entity organized under the laws of the United
States or any jurisdiction within the United States (including foreign
branches), or any person in the United States.
Sec. 4. For those persons whose property and interests in property are
blocked pursuant to this order who might have a constitutional presence in
the United States, I find that, because of the ability to transfer funds or
other assets instantaneously, prior notice to such persons of measures to be
taken pursuant to this order would render these measures ineffectual. I
therefore determine that, for these measures to be effective in addressing
the national emergency declared in this order, there need be no prior notice
of a listing or determination made pursuant to section 1(a) of this order.
Sec. 5. The Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with the Secretary
of State, is hereby authorized to take such actions, including the
promulgation of rules and regulations, and to employ all powers granted to
the President by IEEPA, as may be necessary to carry out the purposes of
this order. The Secretary of the Treasury may redelegate any of these
functions to other officers and agencies of the United States Government,
consistent with applicable law. All agencies of the United States Government
are hereby directed to take all appropriate measures within their authority
to carry out the provisions of this order and, where appropriate, to advise
the Secretary of the Treasury in a timely manner of the measures taken.
Sec. 6. The Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with the Secretary
of State, is hereby authorized to determine, subsequent to the issuance of
this order, that circumstances no longer warrant the inclusion of a person
in the Annex to this order and that the property and interests in property
of that person are therefore no longer blocked pursuant to section 1(a) of
Sec. 7. This order is not intended to create, nor does it create, any
right, benefit, or privilege, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law
or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments,
agencies, instrumentalities, or entities, its officers or employees, or any
Sec. 3. This order is not intended to create, nor does it create, any right,
benefit, or privilege, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in
equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies,
instrumentalities, or entities, its officers or employees, or any other
Sec. 4. This order shall take effect at 12:01 a.m. eastern standard time,
November 23, 2005.
Sec. 5. This order shall be transmitted to the Congress and published in the
GEORGE W. BUSH
THE WHITE HOUSE,
November 22, 2005.
Times of Zambia
By Business Reporter
A ZAMBIAN business delegation, currently on a tour of South Africa, has
challenged farmers in that country to consider investing in Zambia.
In a presentation to the farmers during a seminar dubbed "Business
opportunities in Zambia" held at Park Hyatts Hotel in Johannesburg, the
delegation implored their counterparts to learn from their Zimbabwean
colleagues that had trekked to Zambia.
According to a statement from the Zambian embassy in Pretoria, South Africa,
the farmers who attended the workshop, sponsored by the French government
and the South African Chamber of Commerce, were challenged to take advantage
of Zambia's good fertile land and abundant water.
First secretary at the Zambian embassy, Samuel Ngoma, said the delegation
told South African farmers that Zambia held the region's largest volume of
fresh water and that it had about 60 million hectares of land available for
Zambia also had the cheapest electricity in the Southern African Development
Community (SADC) with a comprehensive power distribution network. The
country was in an excellent position to serve its neighbours.
The team also noted that the country was doing well in terms of copper
production, with new mines in North-Western Province and that the area was
becoming another Copperbelt.
Added to these opportunities were projects such as the construction of a new
cement plant in Chilanga and many other investments in the tourism sector.
The delegation included French ambassador to Zambia, Francis Saudubray, Bank
of Zambia (BoZ) governor, Caleb Fundanga, Equinox Lumwana Mine chief
executive, Harry Michael and Stanbic Bank Zambia managing director, Larry
Others are Chilanga Cement managing director, Ian Coulter, Total Zambia
managing director, Martin MacCathy, Chamber of Mines president, Emmanuel
Mutati and former Agriculture deputy minister, Chance Kabaghe.
FROM THE ZIMBABWE VIGIL
Zimbabwean exiles are to stage an overnight vigil outside the Zimbabwe Embassy in London in protest at the elections taking place on Saturday, 26th November, for the newly created Senate in Zimbabwe.
The demonstration will begin at 7 pm on Friday (25th November) when a giant ballot box will be displayed outside the Embassy. The box’s opening will be sealed to symbolise support for the Broad Alliance of civil society groups in Zimbabwe, including trade unions, who oppose the Senate plan and instead want constitutional reform and an end to the routine rigging of elections.
The Broad Alliance believes the purpose behind the creation of the Senate is to add more cronies to the gravy train and further entrench Mugabe’s vicious regime.
The demonstration is mounted by the Zimbabwe Vigil, which has staged weekly protests outside the Embassy for the past three years to draw public attention to human rights abuses and lack of democracy in Zimbabwe.
A spokesperson for the Vigil said, “We believe the Senate is a waste of public money at a time when half the population is starving. We appeal to the UN Security Council to investigate violations of human rights in Zimbabwe, where genocide is quietly taking place.”
Protest from 7 pm on Friday, 25th November outside the Zimbabwe Embassy, 429 Strand, London WC2. The overnight Vigil will be followed by the regular Vigil from 2 pm to 6 pm on Saturday, 26th November.
Photo Opportunities: Drumming, singing, dancing.
Interview Opportunities with refugees, including torture victims.
Contacts: Julius Mutyambizi-Dewa 07984 254 830
Wiz Bishop 07963 521 160
Ephraim Tapa 07940 079 090
By Staff Reporters
Last updated: 11/24/2005 10:12:34
PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe this week sidestepped Vice President, Joice Mujuru,
by okaying the suspension of two Air Zimbabwe bosses, one of them a relative
to his deputy.
A furious Mugabe cleared the Air Zimbabwe board to "take appropriate action"
to normalise things after Zimbabwe's national airliner grounded its entire
fleet in 25 years due to a fuel crisis.
Sources in the airline's board said Wednesday that Mujuru, a relative to
Tendai Mujuru, Air Zimbabwe's corporate secretary who was suspended together
with Chief Executive Tendai Mahachi, had repeatedly used her powers of
overseeing parastatals to veto attempts by the board to fire the two.
Mujuru and Mahachi were suspended this week "pending investigations into
serious disruptions of the airline's operations and services" which saw its
fleet being grounded after running out of fuel.
The sources said recommendations had been made to Mujuru, and Transport
Minister, Chris Mushowe, for changes to the Air Zimbabwe management but
Mujuru was unwilling to authorise the changes.
Mushowe, who is believed to be in Emerson Mnangagwa's camp in the Zanu PF
succession politics, is also said to have clashed with the ministry's former
permanent secretary, Karikoga Kaseke, over the two officials. Kaseke, a
Mujuru ally, resisted action against Mahachi and Mujuru.
Air Zimbabwe sources told New Zimbabwe.com that it had been clear "for a
long time" that for the airline to improve its fortunes, the two who face
accusations of corruption and poor planning had to be relieved of their
The sources said the Mujuru family "controlled everything at the airport and
in the military". Their areas of control include airport duty free shops,
general supplies and relatives seconded to top jobs.
Said an Air Zimbabwe board member: "As a board we couldn't fire Mujuru
without getting approval from the top. The VP (Joice Mujuru) always said
'give them more time', but when we met the President recently, he said we
should take any appropriate action without consulting anyone.
"In other words, he gave us the go ahead not to listen to the Vice
Despite months of corruption and mismanagement allegations against the Air
Zimbabwe bosses, sources say they have been shielded by Mujuru and the
disgraced former Transport Ministry Permanent Secretary, Karikoga Kaseke,
who was booted out in the last cabinet reshuffle.
Kaseke is a Mujuru ally in Zanu PF's succession politics. He is a former
military intelligence officer who became close to the Vice President's
retired army general husband, Solomon Mujuru, in the 1980's.
When Kaseke was embroiled in a statutory rape scandal after impregnating a
17-year-old orphan, the Vice President colluded with The Daily Mirror
newspaper, which is owned by the CIO -- to dispossess the rape victim of
documents relating to her case which had been reported to the police.
Although Air Zimbabwe is back in the air after taking delivery of new fuel
supplies, sources say it will last for only two weeks, and the airline could
once again be forced to cancel or restrict flights.
people to people
p2p news / p2pnet: Eighty developing nations want a Net-based news resource
called agreed the Nonaligned Movement News Network to be launched in the
hope it will "combat what they see as smear campaigns and distorted coverage
of their countries in the Western media," says Red Herring.
"But Human Rights Watch (HRW), an organization dedicated to upholding
political freedom and exposing human rights violations, called the network a
temporary victory for repression," it says.
Only Cuba, Iran, Syria, Myanmar, North Korea, Sudan, Zimbabwe, and Malaysia
have been named as members and for HRW, "this is not a sterling list of
countries friendly to journalists".
HRW spokesperson Minky Worden is quoted as saying, "These are all countries
that have a very tight grip on their domestic media. I presume they are
tired of pesky wire reporters. Zimbabwe, for instance, has systematically
crushed the press. Myanmar's national newspapers are a joke outside the
JOHANNESBURG, Nov 23 (IPS) - In the dingy halls of the hotel, one of the
staff is talking on the phone. "Tau has been killed," he says. "I cannot
tell you who did it, but Memo discovered the corpse."
The deceased woman was a prostitute who can be spotted in the room she used,
barely covered by a quilt, a telephone cord wound around her neck. She
appears to have been stabbed several times, as fresh blood is staining her
blouse. From what your correspondent can tell, there are signs of a
Soon five women dressed in tight, faded jeans saunter into the hotel and ask
what has happened. "Who has killed her?" enquires one, matter-of-factly. "We
want to know whether she is a member of our group or not."
When it emerges that this is not the case, the women seem relieved and speak
in Ndebele, one of the languages used in Zimbabwe: "Girls, she is not one of
us. She is not from Bulawayo." Bulawayo is Zimbabwe's second-largest city.
The episode is a reminder not only of the dangers which lurk in this area of
Johannesburg -- the high-density, somewhat infamous suburb of Hillbrow --
but also of the extent to which Zimbabweans have made neighbouring South
Africa their home, for the most part illegally.
An estimated 2.5 million have crossed the border, sometimes bringing ethnic
tensions along with their luggage.
A Zimbabwean prostitute interviewed by IPS said certain Ndebele migrants
accused their Shona counterparts of ruining Zimbabwe by perpetually voting
for President Robert Mugabe and his ruling Zimbabwe African National
A Ndebele man who lives in Hillbrow had similar observations: "I hate
Shonas. We cannot work together...Not at all!" he exclaimed.
Certain Ndebele remember all too well the "Gukurahundi". This Shona term
means "the early rain which washes away the chaff before the spring rains";
but it is also a euphemism for the actions of the president's fifth brigade
and other forces in the Ndebele provinces of Matabeleland and the Midlands
in the 1980s. During this period, the brigade engaged in the indiscriminate
killing of thousands.
The massacres caused some to leave Zimbabwe for South Africa. Since then,
many more have followed -- prompted by political persecution and economic
However, just 8,000 applications for political asylum have been filed by
Zimbabweans to date, according to the Department of Home Affairs -- while
only about 90 people have actually received political asylum in South
Home Affairs official Richard Sikakane told IPS that the application process
had been slowed by a 130,000-strong backlog of cases. An amendment to the
Refugees Act is said to be in the pipeline to speed up asylum applications.
Often, Zimbabweans have found their new home scarcely more hospitable than
the old. Home Affairs Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula admits that refugees
and asylum seekers are frequently mistreated by the police. In the country
as a whole, high levels of unemployment have also led to increasing
Some migrants claim they are paying bribes to officers to avoid being taken
to the Lindela Repatriation Centre. According to immigration official
Mantshele Tau, about 300,000 Zimbabweans have been deported in recent years.
And so, says Julie Ncube* as she sits cross-legged, lighting a cigarette --
one of many: "We're on the horns of a dilemma -- to go and face starvation
in Zimbabwe or face abuse by the police."
She told IPS that many of her friends staying in Johannesburg had become
"unofficial wives" for policemen here (police spokesperson Ronnie Naidoo
could not confirm the allegation).
"In the end, it's either you pay them or submit to sex or both. Life in Jozi
(a nickname for Johannesburg) is hell on earth; it is not that rosy as we
were meant to believe."
Nonetheless, says Ncube, people who remain in Zimbabwe have high
expectations of those who leave, many to support their families.
"It would help if my fellow countrymen, if people back home, appreciated the
difficulties we have to endure here," she adds. "For anyone to send home 500
rand a month, for instance, is a very big achievement."
In other instances, the South African experience has been more positive.
Jeremiah Gwaze is better off than many of his peers. Unlike those who
continue to battle for existence on the streets of Jozi, Gwaze -- a graduate
of Harare Polytechnic in Zimbabwe -- works for an electrical company in the
northern Gauteng province.
The tall, vivacious man sits in the well-decorated living room of his
Yeoville apartment, smiling has he recalls the harrowing years of starting a
new life in Johannesburg.
"I had no money when arrived here. I used to sleep on the streets and most
of the Sundays I sat outsides churches begging," he told IPS.
Zimbabwe is currently in its sixth year of a bitter economic recession that
has seen fuel, food, electricity, essential medicines and other basic
commodities become in short supply because there is little foreign currency
to pay suppliers from abroad.
Critics blame the economic meltdown on mismanagement and repressive rule by
veteran President Robert Mugabe.
However, the aging head of state ascribes Zimbabwe's woes to sabotage by
Britain and its Western allies; this, he says, was in return for his
campaign started in 2000 to seize land from whites -- allegedly for
distribution to black Zimbabweans who were deprived of land during
colonialism and its aftermath.
* Certain names have been changed to protect the privacy of those concerned.
"The chairman and board of directors of Air Zimbabwe are proud to introduce
you to the people who will be guiding your national airline into the
challenging stratosphere of the 21st century. The task involved is
formidable, demanding talent, imagination, determination, dynamism and
commitment. And plain old sweat . . .
"(As we seek) to be the airline that best meets the needs of the customer,
operate profitably and contribute to the development of Zimbabwe, using the
skills and talents of a committed workforce."
These words were part of an advertisement placed in the newspaper by Air
Zimbabwe on October 27 1994 when it announced a new management team then
headed by Mr Huttush Muringi.
Anyone reading this would have been easily convinced that the airline really
meant business and nothing would stop it from delivering a service second to
none to its customers.
Any investor seeking a stake in the aviation industry would not have thought
twice before injecting funds into such a promising business.
The Government would have been forgiven for clinging to its stake in such a
sound business that seemed to have a clear vision.
Had its shares been trading on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange, stockbrokers
would have clearly labelled it a "definite buy".
Anyone would have been excused for dreaming (at that time) that Air Zimbabwe
would become an airline of repute not just on the continent but throughout
the entire globe.
Many would have been excused for thinking that the airline would fly
Zimbabwe's flag to dizzy heights.
The words air travel could easily have been synonymous with Air Zimbabwe
going by the promises in the mission statement and the advertisement.
But alas, these were mere words that have since come to nothing.
Events unfolding at the airline over the past decade are in sharp contrast
to the promises that were enveloped in this mission statement.
As I was going through the files I kept referring to this advertisement
hoping to find any development at Air Zimbabwe that came close to the
promises enunciated in the mission statement. Sadly, I could not find any.
In fact, the story of Air Zimbabwe over the past decade has always been a
tragic one. The episode has been punctuated by a few seemingly positive
developments that have fizzled into oblivion.
But we had not expected the crisis to deteriorate to levels where the
airline would suspend most, if not all its local, regional and international
trips due to poor planning.
Such a story could easily belong to fiction but it is real. On Tuesday this
paper reported that Air Zimbabwe had grounded its entire fleet because it
had run out of fuel.
On face value one could have easily taken this to be a reflection of the
fuel shortages the country is experiencing, but no! It all boils down to
poor planning and ineffective management.
It has since emerged that the airline had been sourcing fuel from other
sources instead of the National Oil Company of Zimbabwe, which could have
given preference to the airline as has been the case with other critical
sectors of the economy.
Such an embarrassing situation could have been avoided had proper
procurement plans and procedures been observed. How can an airline with only
seven aircraft ground its entire fleet inconveniencing hundreds of
travellers in the process?
We find it inexcusable. Thanks to intervention by the Government, some
flights had resumed as of yesterday.
But, as stated by some of the irate travellers who were left stranded, it
has increasingly become difficult to plan if you are travelling with such an
Last night the airline even had the temerity to ask passengers who had
already bought tickets which effectively guarantee them space on the plane,
to phone the airline first before making their way to the airport.
This is a crisis in the true sense of the word. Something needs to be done
and done fast.
However, the crisis at Air Zimbabwe appears to be a complex one which needs
thorough research and proper handling.
The turnover of chief executives at the airline leaves many wondering if its
problems can all be attributed to just poor management.
Over the past few years more than six executives have been appointed to lead
the airline but operational problems have continued unabated.
Industrial actions by engineers, pilots, ground staff, etc, have remained
the order of the day at Air Zimbabwe.
I remember last year President Mugabe, irked by its poor performance, stated
that the airline needed a complete overhaul.
These feelings were echoed by Vice President Mujuru a few months ago when
she read the riot act to Air Zimbabwe bosses after a 205-seater Boeing 737
flew to Dubai with 49 people on board on its maiden flight and returned home
with just one passenger.
Many turnaround programmes have over the years been coined for the
parastatal but these have failed to produce results.
Flight delays and reschedulings have become an everyday experience at the
airline which has resultantly been forced to fork out large sums of money in
foreign currency to accommodate and feed passengers that have been left
stranded on some of its regional and international routes.
The list of problems at Air Zimbabwe is endless and one particularly
embarrassing incident occurred last year when it was suspended from the IATA
Clearing House for failing to pay US$1,5 million.
This happened at a time when the airline had been given the green light to
charge in foreign currency on some of its routes.
The sad part is that all this reflects badly not just on the airline but on
Zimbabwe as a country.
The tourism industry suffers a great deal because it needs a reliable air
service to attract tourists.
Businessmen who need to attend conferences and other meetings rely on Air
Zimbabwe for air transport but many have been forced to miss the meetings
while some have lost lucrative deals due to its poor service.
Airzim was also recently in the papers for charging exorbitant fares on all
its routes. Things cannot get any worse.
Sustainable solutions to all this have to be implemented expeditiously.
Air Zimbabwe is supposed to be a national pride but it has become a national
It has potential to operate viably and transform its mission statement into
Options along these lines need to be pursued.
For now we can only hope for the better.
November 24, 2005
By Cris Chinaka
Harare - Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe was dangling offers of uranium
deposits as part of a strategy to ease western pressure on his government,
foreign diplomats and analysts said on Tuesday.
Mugabe said at the weekend that Zimbabwe had found deposits of uranium but
that it would use the mineral only for electricity generation, not to supply
nuclear weapons programmes.
Analysts said Mugabe's statement - delivered without details at a function
in his home village - was designed to draw attention to Zimbabwe's vast
mineral wealth, including uranium.
"What Mugabe was saying ... [is] that he has things the West would want and
does not want to fall into enemy hands," said a senior western diplomat in
"Mugabe is indirectly saying to the West: you guys will have to go easy on
me if we have to work out some deals for mutual benefit."
Mining experts said there were sizeable deposits in the Kanyemba district of
the Zambezi Valley, and several companies from Australia, Canada, Britain
and the US were interested.
But whether the country possesses enough of the metal in sufficient grade to
be economically viable remains unclear. A major uranium find would be a
boost for Mugabe's government. The Zimbabwean economy has all but collapsed
following the seizure of white-owned farms to give to landless black people.
World uranium demand is expected to grow, partly because of plans by China -
a close Mugabe ally - to build nuclear power plants. Spot prices for uranium
are at record highs above $30 (R200) a pound, against $20 a pound last year.
Zimbabwe mining officials said foreign firms had approached the government
for rights to exploit uranium deposits that were found two decades ago,
although it was not known if these were the same deposits that Mugabe was
Enriched uranium can be used to fuel nuclear power plants or, in a more
enriched state, to produce a nuclear weapon, although Mugabe said Zimbabwe
had no plans to provide uranium for "bomb making".
Western diplomats noted that, along with China, Mugabe's government was
drawing closer to Iran and North Korea, both of which are at loggerheads
with the international community over their nuclear programmes.
Political commentator Eldred Masunungure said Mugabe was using Zimbabwe's
economic promise to remind the West that he was not to be trifled with.
"Almost all the big mining companies here are from western countries, and if
Zimbabwe has uranium Mugabe will certainly try to use that as a bargaining
chip," said Masunungure, the chairman of the political science department at
the University of Zimbabwe.
By Kudzai Chawafambira
THE Zimbabwe Stock Exchange is battling to raise more than US$1,5 million to
buy both software and hardware needed for the installation of an electronic
trading system owing to foreign currency shortages.
ZSE chief executive Mr Emmanuel Munyukwi said it was proving difficult to
raise funds required for the purchase of the necessary software and
"We were hoping that we would be able to conform to the Sadc region's goal
of integrating real time network of national securities by next year.
"However, we have been unable to source foreign currency necessary for the
acquisition of both software and hardware applications for the electronic
trading system," said Mr Munyukwi.
He added that an efficient electronic trading system was an essential
feature in the developing markets but the ZSE was still lagging behind in
its implementation of an electronic trading system due to the foreign
currency crunch in the country.
He said the implementation of the project was the only way to go considering
the transactions, settlements and clearing would be done electronically.
The idea of an electronic trading system has been on the drawing board for
several years and its timely establishment would go a long way in aligning
Zimbabwe's capital markets with prevailing international trends.
The establishment of a central depository system is planned and, in the
absence of electronic trading, will greatly speed up processing of share
dealings, which currently can take several weeks.
A central depository system is an electronic book entry system used to
record and maintain securities and to register their transfer.
The system provides for changes in ownership without the need for physical
movements of securities or execution of transfer deeds.
Ownership will be transferred as soon as securities move from one account to
CDS is purely a settlement vehicle and does not affect the trading in any
The ZSE is currently an active member of the Committee of Sadc Stock
Exchanges (COSSE) which includes Botswana, South Africa, Mauritius, Zambia,
Lesotho and Namibia.
COSSE is considering the advantages for the sub-Saharan region of a common
telecommunications platform for the transmission of data, and donors or
sponsors are being sought to support this vision.
Effective regional co-operation has the capacity to turn around the economy
of African countries and economic and trade co-operation plays an important
role in the development of regional economies in Africa.
The ZSE currently has 78 listed counters, four of which are suspended.
Although small by world standards, it boasts a high degree of sophistication
only surpassed by a few of its peers on the African continent, notably the
Johannesburg Stock Exchange, which has more than 400 listed counters.
The JSE has offered technical assistance and continues to disseminate
important information to the Sadc and other African stock exchanges.
It is implicit in the vision that the JSE has promoted for the region to
link the sub-Saharan markets using world-class technological systems, the
upshot of which must leave each market an independent and autonomous entity
capable of controlling itself and its destiny.
Mail and Guardian
Fanuel Jongwe | Harare, Zimbabwe
24 November 2005 08:20
As Zimbabweans go to the ballot on Saturday to elect
members to a new and controversial Upper House of Parliament, the buzz is
not about the polls but rather on chronic food shortages and the economic
Despite radio and television messages exhorting
people to vote for ruling-party candidates and news stories about the rift
in the main opposition over contesting the polls, there is little excitement
about the elections.
President Robert Mugabe's party, which won a
landslide victory in parliamentary elections in March, used its two-thirds
majority in the House to approve constitutional changes in August to
reintroduce a bicameral legislature abolished in 1990.
"The question is what benefit will I get if I go to
vote, and the answer is nothing," said Ella Tayengwa, a 46-year-old mother
of four from the populous township of Tafara in Harare.
Widowed six years ago, she ran a thriving vegetable
shop that was razed to the ground during a controversial government blitz on
illegal urban structures.
"The Senate is not for us, but rather for Zanu-PF
[the ruling party] elite, so I would rather stay at home on the polling day
as my way of protest," she said. "The majority of us have no food and some
who lost their homes are still living in the open, so nobody cares about an
election that will not make their lives any better.
"A caring government would have used the
Z$90-billion budgeted for the elections to feed its people."
International aid agencies estimate that about
4,3-million people out of Zimbabwe's population of 13-million require food
'Boycott the elections'
A pamphlet being distributed by Women of Zimbabwe
Arise, a pressure group campaigning for a poll boycott, says the "government
is spending Z$90-billion on Senate elections, but many are starving".
"Do you want senators or your basic right to live
with dignity?" the pamphlet says, adding: "Boycott the elections."
The country's major labour movement said the Senate
is a waste of scarce money as Zimbabwe is in the throes of its worst
economic crisis to date.
Zimbabwe's economy has been on a downturn over the
past six years, characterised by triple-digit inflation, more than 70%
unemployment and chronic shortages of basic goods such as sugar, cooking oil
"The Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions [ZCTU] would
rather have billions budgeted for the Senate being channelled towards the
improvement of salaries for teachers, police, soldiers and nurses in public
hospitals," the ZCTU said in a statement on Sunday.
"The president should do away with this practice of
accommodating his few cronies at the expense of the majority of
Zimbabweans," it said.
But political analyst Augustine Timbe said the
Senate is necessary "to engender public confidence in our lawmaking
"We have gone past that phase in our history when it
was necessary to rush laws through Parliament to satisfy urgent needs such
as the land reforms," Timbe said.
"Governance issues can now be handled in a cool and
calculated manner, and this will retain the confidence in our lawmaking
process that was lost when laws were quashed by the Supreme Court," Timbe
Critics of the Senate said it is a ploy by Mugabe to
appease ruling-party members who lost in the March parliamentary elections.
Others say it is aimed at further buttressing the
stranglehold Mugabe's party has on the legislature.
The Senate has caused a split in the main opposition
Movement for Democratic Change party after 26 party members defied a call by
their leader, Morgan Tsvangirai, to boycott the polls.
Tsvangirai argued that the Senate was a waste of
money, especially at a time of acute economic distress. -- Sapa-AFP