Mail and Guardian
04 November 2005 03:55
Zimbabwe's main opposition party teetered on Friday on the
brink of a devastating split after malcontents announced they will boycott
reconciliation talks and accused the party leader of being a
In a statement describing Movement for Democratic Change
(MDC) leader Morgan Tsvangirai as a "dictator-in-the-making", the party's
deputy secretary general, Gift Chimanikire, said Saturday's reconciliation
meeting has been convoked illegally.
"In yet another move to usurp and violate the constitution
of the party, Tsvangirai has called a meeting of the national council for
this Saturday," said Chimanikire, who belongs to a faction that wants the
party to contest controversial Senate elections in late November.
"He does not have the powers to unilaterally convene such
a meeting," Chimanikire said, urging "all members of the national council,
who seek to uphold and defend the MDC's constitution, not to attend this
Cracks in the opposition widened last month after 26 MDC
members defied Tsvangirai's call to boycott the elections to a new Upper
House of Parliament that critics say is aimed at beefing up the ruling
party's stranglehold on the legislature.
Chimanikire, who until now apparently did not command with
the party as much support as Tsvangirai, warned that if the MDC meeting
takes place on Saturday, any resolutions from it will be null and void.
He alleged that Tsvangirai, a former trade unionist, has
spent the past three weeks trying to bribe and coerce members of the party's
national council to reverse its decision on participating in the senate
"Not only is Tsvangirai in flagrant breach of a
constitution that he helped to formulate, he also stands accused of helping
to construct a renewed web of violence and intimidation against party
members, which is scarring our image as a party that protects and promotes
human rights," said Chimanikire.
"These are not the actions of a democrat; they are the
actions of a dictator-in-the making," said Chimanikire.
Simmering divisions in the MDC became apparent two weeks
ago when party leaders issued contradictory statements over the party's
participation in the Senate elections.
Tsvangirai, who has led the party since its formation in
1999, announced a boycott, but hours later party spokesperson Paul Themba
Nyathi said the MDC's supreme decision-making organ had voted to take part
in the elections.
William Bango, Tsvangirai's spokesperson, said it is
"surprising" that Chimanikire "had changed his mind" on attending the
weekend meeting of the council.
"If there is a deadlock, an impasse, or a problem ... it
is his [Tsvangirai's] duty not to let the party waste away and he can call
the council to explain the difficulties," said Bango.
Mugabe's Zanu-PF holds 109 of the 150 parliamentary seats.
The MDC, which won nearly half of the contested
parliamentary seats in the 2000 elections, decided to contest parliamentary
elections earlier this year despite concerns they would not be fair. --
Mail and Guardian
04 November 2005 02:30
Police officers in Zimbabwe will be given houses under the
government's ambitious housing-construction programme, the state-controlled
Herald newspaper reported on Friday.
Deputy Police Commissioner Barbara Mandizha said in a
speech to police officers in Harare that the provision of accommodation to
members of the force headquartered at the main Morris depot "remains a
daunting task", the report said.
"The organisation will, however, make efforts to ensure
that its members benefit from the government housing schemes like Operation
Garikai [Settle and Prosper]," Mandizha was quoted as saying.
President Robert Mugabe's government launched Operation
Garikai at the end of June following a wave of shack demolitions that left
at least 700 000 Zimbabweans homeless and jobless, according to United
It is not clear how many police officers lost their homes
during the demolitions, which sparked international condemnation.
Government ministers have promised that hundreds of
thousands of homes will be built in the next four years, but critics say the
authorities do not have the money to fund construction on such a massive
There are also concerns that civil servants and members of
the armed forces will be given priority over other home seekers. -- Sapa-DPA
Last Update: Friday, November 4, 2005. 10:30pm (AEDT)
The crisis in the Zimbabwe Opposition has worsened with its leader Morgan
Tsvangirai publicly accused by his own party of violence and intimidation.
The Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) is accusing Mr Tsvangirai of
conscripting youths to commit violence, attempting to bribe party members
and ignoring his party's own constitution.
The statement, released under the name of the MDC's deputy secretary
general, urges all party members to boycott a national council meeting due
to be addressed by Mr Tsvangirai tomorrow.
The allegations come as Mr Tsvangirai refuses to accept his party's vote in
favour of participating in Zimbabwe's senate elections later this month.
4 November 2005
The MDC is gravely concerned about the deteriorating services in Chitungwiza caused by constant government interference in the running of the city.
The situation once again demonstrates Zanu PF’s refusal to accept democracy and the popular will of the people to place the administration of the city in the hands of their preferred, democratically elected representatives.
Similar moves were taken against the work of the councils in Harare, Chegutu and Mutare. Ignatius Chombo, the Minister responsible for local government, interferes with our efforts to work in local government every day. Harare is in a mess because of that. The same picture is developing in Bulawayo, Masvingo and other local authorities.
Zanu PF is not interested in co-existence. Zanu PF is intolerant. Zanu PF does not accept our presence. The chaos in local government reflects a general national decay which can only be attended to through a speedy political resolution of the national crisis.
In Chitungwiza, the council inherited a mess characterised by huge historical service backlogs, a collapsing sewage system and a shrinking revenue base. Attempts by the MDC council to rectify these anomalies were sabotaged almost on a daily basis by a regime which has declared war on its own people.
Take the case of garbage collection, for instance. The city paid Noczim, a state fuel procurer and distributor, two months ago for diesel. Nothing has come the city’s way, so is the Mayor expected to clear the rubbish?
The money allocated for upgrading the sewer system was diverted by a council official to support Zanu PF’s election campaign. The campaign failed to bear fruit as its candidates in the March Parliamentary election were rejected by the people. The council then suspended its official for misusing the money. Chombo insists that the official be reinstated, lest he fires the council.
We urge the people of Chitungwiza to organise themselves and confront this form of unproductive interference. We are against violence in Chitungwiza. We are against violence against the people. Our party structures must rally the people and support the Mayor and the council in this struggle.
By Tererai Karimakwenda
04 November 2005
A radio documentary about the plight of Zimbabwean women, written and
produced by our own Violet Gonda, won an award as the best in the radio
category at an international conference in America. The International
Association of Women in Radio and Television chose her piece, which is a
compilation of interviews with women who were victimised by the Mugabe
regime over the last 4 years, from a selection of 17 others relating the
experiences of women in different countries. The jury felt the programme has
international appeal and should be heard by the United Nations.
The organisation has members from at least 55 countries worldwide, and
Violet said she never thought she could win. She simply wanted the voices of
these brave women to be heard and for the world to know what is happening to
them. Violet said she is thrilled to be learning about other conflict areas
and has realised women are being victimised in many other places around the
Entitled "Arise: Women of Zimbabwe speak out", Violet's documentary
combined interviews with music in a very innovative way that exposed the
suffering endured by women under ZANU-PF. From the brave Margaret Kulinji
whose family was victimised and her mother sexually assaulted with a rifle
by soldiers, to the lawyer Gugulethu Moyo who was attacked at a police
station, and the brave Women of Zimbabwe Arise (WOZA) who have been arrested
on several occasions and keep coming back to the streets, the piece tells
their stories. Violet stressed that these women are the true winners of this
award because without them, the story could not have been told.
The top television award went to a compelling documentary dealing with
immigration, music, and the life of a Kurdish woman in Sweden who uses her
music to preserve the native culture. Numerous programmes covered the issue
SW Radio Africa Zimbabwe news
By Lance Guma
04 November 2005
High Court Judge Ben Hlatshwayo on Friday quashed the suspension of
student leaders from the University of Zimbabwe. Collen Chibango, Mfundo
Mlilo, Wellington Mahohoma and Garikai Kajau were suspended by the Vice
Chancellor Levi Nyagura for allegedly inciting a student rebellion over
attempts to have them pay Z$150,000 towards hostel refurbishments.
Justice Hlatshwayo dismissed the suspension as unprocedural and
ordered the University to meet the costs of the application. In an interview
with Newsreel, the President of the Zimbabwe National Association of
Students Unions (ZINASU) Washington Katema praised the judgement and said it
was an indictment of the Vice Chancellor's attempts to run the University
like a 16th century dictator.
The judge, a former lecturer at the University of Zimbabwe himself
surprised all and sundry by making a judgement against the establishment.
Such judgments are rare in the country's current judicial system. Last week,
the ZINASU student leadership complained that the level of victimization
they were facing countrywide had reached alarming levels. Disturbances broke
out at the University of Zimbabwe two weeks ago over the controversial
refurbishments, resulting in riot police besieging the campus and randomly
beating up students.
At Bindura University, student leader Givemore Chari was suspended for
allegedly invoking "feelings of hate and dislike" in the student body
against the authorities. He was ordered to leave the university by Vice
Chancellor, Professor Sam Tswana, and told he could not hold the position of
SRC President. In Masvingo, students are being forced to join governments
housing PR stunt, 'Operation Garikai' as part of their attachment.
At the Harare Polytechnic a dean of students was recently suspended
for trying to poison a group of student leaders by pouring acid onto their
sheets and food in the hostels. A separate incident also saw the President
of the University of Zimbabwe Students Council expelled for allegedly
cheating in his exams. At the Midlands State University, Ornwell Marasha,
another student leader was expelled 3 weeks before he could complete his
3-year degree programme. He was accused of leading the production of a
politically motivated video on campus, which allegedly brought the
University into 'disrepute'.
SW Radio Africa Zimbabwe news
By Tererai Karimakwenda
04 November 2005
The National Constitutional Assembly announced Friday that they will
be staging countrywide demonstrations to push for a people-driven,
democratic constitution and to show their condemnation of senatorial
elections set for later this month. The demonstrations will be on Saturday,
November 5th, and no venue has been disclosed because they fear the police
will violently disrupt the event before it starts.
The National Chairperson Dr Lovemore Madhuku told us that the general
public is welcome to participate in these demonstrations against bad
governance which has brought untold suffering to the people of Zimbabwe.
Members of the public are advised to join the core groups that will be
clearly wearing NCA t-shirts in the main centres of Harare, Bulawayo, Gweru,
Mutare and Masvingo.
The group has not alerted the police of their intentions since this
usually causes fear in the public who may want to attend. Dr Madhuku said
the government is not interested in free expression by the people and every
demo is violently dispersed. For this reason, no information has been
forwarded to the police.
As for the senate elections, the NCA believes this is a waste of
Zimbabwean resources at a time when so much more is needed to make the lives
of ordinary people more bearable. Without food and fuel and other resources,
Dr. Madhuku said the government is indulging in a very selfish exercise by
creating another house of parliament. He said this will never solve the
people's problems. The civic group is only interested in good governance.
The demonstrations will begin around 11:00 A.M. at the centres and the
crowds will march until dispersed.
SW Radio Africa Zimbabwe news
The Herald (Harare)
November 4, 2005
Posted to the web November 4, 2005
THE capital city of Russia, Moscow, has offered to assist Harare City
Council with the provision of housing, refuse collection, sewage treatment
and establishing a joint company to engage in granite and marble stone
Moscow also emphasised the need to introduce a direct air link between the
two countries as a way of encouraging growth of tourism and movement of
The agreement was reached on Wednesday during a meeting between officials
from Harare, headed by the city's commission chairperson Ms Sekesai
Makwavarara, and Moscow mayor Mr Yuri Lovzhkov.
"We are ready to take part in housing provision, water reticulation, energy
and sewage disposal," said Mr Lovzhkov.
He said there was room for more co-operation between Harare and Moscow,
adding that experts from the various fields agreed upon would soon visit
Zimbabwe to assess the situation on the ground.
"I do believe we need to establish more ties. We will consider all your
proposals and we hope they are all serious proposals," he said.
The mayor said the average person in Moscow earns enough money to allow them
to travel across the world, hence his appeal for the establishment of a link
between Harare and Moscow.
Ms Makwavarara hailed the understanding between Harare and Moscow, saying
the two cities should explore areas of mutual benefit. She invited the city
of Moscow to invest in the provision of housing in Harare.
Moscow has at least 40 000 blocks of flats with more under construction. The
city builds accommodation for the people and allocates apartments to those
on the housing waiting list.
"This is an area of great importance to our local authority and central
government. Our two cities can form a partnership aimed at providing
building materials," Ms Makwavarara said.
She also urged the two cities to explore ways of establishing a joint
venture in the polishing of granite and marble in Harare.
She said the project would help create employment and earn Zimbabwe foreign
currency through the exportation of finished products. She said Moscow could
also assist Harare in the provision of streetlights.
Proposals were also made for the exchange of personnel.
Harare town clerk Mr Nomutsa Chideya appealed to the Moscow authorities to
come to the assistance of Harare, saying refuse collection in the city had
suffered due to a shortage of refuse trucks and the absence of new
technologies such as refuse recycling.
"We also need new technologies such as incineration and energy renewal
processes so that we do not need a lot of space to dump waste.
"Recycling technologies would also improve waste storage and utilising waste
to produce by-products such as fertilizers and bricks," he said.
He said the city would ensure that Moscow companies intending to invest in
Harare have their papers processed expeditiously.
Zimbabwe's Ambassador to Russia Cde Agrippah Mutambara described the visit
to Moscow as a landmark event that would cement the relationship between the
He said early next year, an exhibition of Shona stone sculpture would be
held in Moscow.
Officials of the two cities are expected to sign a twinning agreement during
Officials from Harare would be taken on a tour of water, sewage and refuse
The Harare delegation includes city spokesperson and acting director of
waste management Mr Leslie Gwindi, acting director of health services Dr
Prosper Chonzi, legal officer Mrs Sithesizwe Ndhlovu and public affairs and
international relations manager Mr Madenyika Magwenjere.
04/11/2005 20:18 - (SA)
Harare - Zimbabwe's state-run Herald newspaper on Friday claimed that
Britian's Prince Charles had influenced United Nations chief Kofi Annan to
lean on Zimbabwe in the wake of a controversial slum demolition drive that
left tens of thousands homeless.
The paper said the heir to the British throne had on Tuesday "appealed to
the UN to intervene in the diplomatic dispute between the United Kingdom and
Zimbabwe by taking action against the African nation under the guise of
assisting the country."
Zimbabwe had turned down a UN humanitarian aid offer to help build temporary
structures for victims of the urban clean-up campaign, carried out about
five months ago, saying it would rather have help to build permanent houses.
Humanitarian situation in Zim
Annan had voiced dismay at Harare's rejection of the aid offer, expressing
grave concern about the humanitarian situation in Zimbabwe.
The paper said Prince Charles spoke at a business meeting at the UN
headquarters, the same day that British foreign secretary Jack Straw was
quoted as saying he had discussed with Annan the humanitarian situation in
Prince Charles said: "I wonder too, what extra role the UN might be able to
play with regard to a country, for instance, like Zimbabwe, whose
independence celebrations I officiated at on behalf of the Queen more than
20 years ago and which is now undergoing traumatic experience."
London 'fuelled MDC's dispute
The paper said Zimbabwe's former colonial ruler Britain had renewed an
attack on Harare to divert attention for the infighting rocking the
opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), which it claimed, was
bankrolled by London.
The UN had extended the aid offer in light of the rains expected to start
falling within two weeks on the tens of thousand still sleeping in the open
awaiting promised government housing.
Annan's spokesperson Stephen Dujarric said: "A large number of vulnerable
groups including the recent evictees...remain in need of immediate
assistance including shelter."
A UN report on the demolitions said the campaign had left 700 000 people
homeless or without sources of income, or both, in cities and towns across
the country, while a further 2.4m were affected in varying degrees.
Last week the International Organisation for Migration launched a "Safe Journey" campaign in Zimbabwe, with help from some of the country's best-known musicians, to make would-be migrants aware of the dangers involved.
Thabani Mthembo (not his real name), 35, works as a radiographer in Suffolk, England. He applied for jobs at UK hospitals after feeling that there was no future for him in Zimbabwe.
I came to England in September 2001.
I applied for a job here in the UK after realising that no matter what I did, I didn't have a future back home.
I would not be able to own my own home or be able to guarantee a future for my children.
For people of my age it was looking like a very dead-end situation.
On my own
I had 10 years radiography experience on my side but it was a somehow different ball game in this country.
Equipment was the same as back in Zimbabwe, but there were a lot of accessories that we had not had.
There was a lot to learn in a short space of time and more so, the staff turnover was very high, meaning you had to be competent yesterday!
My early days were quite difficult.
My wife and daughter only joined me after six months. So initially I was on my own - no-one to relate to, no shoulder to lean on.
From my experiences, the English have a general mistrust of anyone who is not their own.
It is hard for foreigners to break through the system.
People do not smile, they grin. Good morning, silence replies you.
After a lonesome night in your room, in a flat with no lounge, and no windows to the kitchen, toilet and bathroom, you wish for the next flight to Harare.
It is what you have left there that keeps you in England.
If I had been aware that these were the realities, before I came, I would have chosen another destination.
Gradually you get round to knowing the local politics at work, and the routines.
You master the techniques, become assertive and begin to realise that there were instances of abuse to some extent, racially.
You forgive that, pronto, let them try it again.
My family found it difficult adjusting at first too but with time we have settled and become more confident.
It was a rude awakening finding that we were such a small minority, living out of London.
We have found friends in other Africans - black and white - we stick together naturally.
Maybe a failure on my part but I can't think of one Englishman that I relate to.
I do worry that the standard of education that my daughter receives is not as good as back home. I often ask myself why it doesn't seem as challenging as it should be.
But then I think of all the people that are here specifically to do PhD or Masters degrees and that consoles me somewhat.
Child care is also difficult. My wife is currently on maternity leave after giving birth to our son but we know that in another three or four months we'll be stressed out.
We have no other family here and so lack their support in that respect.
We are struggling coming to terms with sending our baby to a child minder as he's so young. But we both need to work and so what else can we do?
The situation back home has made family visiting us here in the UK a challenge.
The British side do not believe that they are only coming for a holiday - they think that once they are here they will not return home.
Thankfully after a long drawn out battle with the Home Office my 55-year-old mother was eventually allowed to visit us.
As we had planned she stayed for six months and then returned.
I am hoping that next time she wants to visit it will not be a problem, on the score that she did in fact return when she was meant to.
As the eldest of the children in my family it is my responsibility to ensure that my mother and my late father's brothers and their families are adequately catered for. The same goes for my in-laws.
And so I send them all as much as I can manage, whenever I can.
I want to retire in my early 50s.
When I am still strong enough to go back and reintegrate into society.
Until then we will continue to go home on holiday every two years, to keep the ties alive and so that we remain recognisable to those we left behind.
And for the meantime, to the UK system: Thank you for having me.
Release Date: Fri 4-Nov-2005
Contact: Kate O'Halloran
International leaders in the field of human rights will converge at Colby
College in Waterville, Maine, on Saturday, November 19, for a symposium
titled "Torture and Human Rights: The Challenge of Redress and
Rehabilitation." Members of the public are invited to attend any or all of
the events free of charge.
The one-day symposium, sponsored by Colby's Oak Institute for the Study of
International Human Rights, will include three panel discussions, a lunch
including a keynote address by Zimbabwean human rights attorney Beatrice
Mtetwa, and an afternoon workshop to provide practical skills for combating
human rights abuses. The panel discussions and workshop will be held in room
1 of the Olin Science Center.
Dr. Frances Lovemore, Colby's 2005 Oak Fellow and a medical doctor who
treats victims and documents torture in Zimbabwe, will be joined by
scholars, practitioners, lawyers, and torture survivors to discuss the needs
of victims and how to obtain redress against perpetrators. For the past five
years Lovemore has researched methods of empowering survivors to seek
reparations and worked to develop a database of human rights abuses, which
will be used to help establish a truth and justice commission.
The first panel discussion, "Torture Rehabilitation: Medical and
Psychological Perspectives," will begin at 9:30 a.m. and include Lovemore;
Douglas Johnson of the Center for the Victims of Torture in St. Paul, Minn.;
Bent Sorensen of the International Rehabilitation Council for Torture
Victims (IRCT) in Copenhagen; and Allen Keller, M.D., of the Bellevue/NYU
Program for the Survivors of Torture.
At 11 a.m., Colby Associate Professor of Government Ariel Armony, Salvadoran
torture survivor Carlos Mauricio, and the principal attorney in Mauricio's
case against former Salvadoran generals, Shawn Roberts, will address "Civil
Suits as a Form of Redress: Suing the Salvadoran Generals."
At the 12:30 luncheon, which is free of charge, Mtetwa will give a keynote
address titled "Human Rights and the Crisis in Zimbabwe." The luncheon will
be held on the second floor of Roberts Union.
A third panel, "Transitional Justice: Prosecution of Perpetrators,
Reparations for Victims," will feature Oak Institute Director Kenneth
Rodman; Carla Ferstman, director of Redress in London; and Nieves Molina
Clemente and Inge Genefke, M.D., both of the IRCT.
At 4:15 p.m., attendees will participate in a workshop, directed by Douglas
Johnson, titled "New Tactics in Human Rights." The New Tactics in Human
Rights Project celebrates innovations in tactics developed around the world
that can be used to resolve endemic human rights problems. The workshop will
lay out the intellectual and research framework of the project and the kinds
of skills that students and community members can learn.
The Oak Institute for the Study of International Human Rights at Colby was
established in 1998 by a generous grant from the Oak Foundation. Each year
it hosts an Oak Human Rights Fellow to teach and conduct research while in
residence at the college and organizes lectures and other events centered
around the fellow's area of expertise. The fellowship offers an opportunity
for prominent practitioners in international human rights to take a
sabbatical leave from their work and spend a period of up to a semester as a
scholar-in-residence. The Oak Institute is operated in conjunction with the
Goldfarb Center for Public Affairs and Civic Engagement.
Oak Institute for the Study of International Human Rights
From The Mail & Guardian (SA), 4 November
Harare - Zimbabwe's intelligence agents have bugged the phones of its former
spymaster, current Rural Housing Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa, and have been
conducting surveillance on his two Harare homes on the instruction of
President Robert Mugabe. A senior Central Intelligence Organisation (CIO)
operative told the Mail & Guardian that Mugabe feared his former protégé was
planning to defect from Zanu PF, taking with him disillusioned sections of
the ruling party. Intelligence Minister Didymus Mutasa has twice, in the
past fortnight, summoned Mnangagwa to the CIO headquarters, confronting him
with intelligence accounts of meetings in the Kwekwe district, 250km south
of Harare, where he allegedly plotted the formation of a new political
party. His alleged co-conspirators are his close friend and former minister,
July Moyo; Pearson Mbalekwa, who quit Zanu PF over Operation Murambatsvina;
and Mugabe's former spin doctor, independent MP Jonathan Moyo. Mnangagwa,
sources say, showed little emotion during his encounters with Mutasa and two
unidentified CIO bigwigs. He denied reports linking him to a
soon-to-be-launched United People's Movement, challenging his interrogators
to produce witnesses to support their claims.
Mutasa refuted the claims, saying they were "totally untrue". But, three
Zanu PF MPs and two officials at its headquarters corroborated the
information given to the M&G. Mnangagwa could not be reached for comment.
Ironically, Mugabe appointed Mnangagwa as intelligence minister after
independence, a post he held for seven years. The two have walked a long
road together. After Mnangagwa's release from a prison term in the
mid-1970s, three years of which were spent on death row, he became Mugabe's
personal assistant and one of his trusted comrades. But in recent times,
Mnangagwa, who holds the position as Zanu PF secretary for legal affairs,
has become increasingly isolated in the upper echelons of Zanu PF. Party
insiders say he is "bypassed" by Secretary for the Commissariat, Elliot
Manyika. "No party correspondence comes on Mnangagwa's table." His
sidelining stems from the fallout over his failed bid for the Zanu PF
vice-presidency and the suspension of six provincial chair-persons of the
party, who supported his faction. Mistrust and paranoia have become
pervasive in Zanu PF as powerful figures stake their claim to the reins of
power when Mugabe vacates office.
Solomon Mujuru, a five-star general who headed the armed forces during the
first decade of independence, and Mnangagwa are the main protagonists in the
succession battle. Both have impeccable credentials in the liberation war
and according to party insiders, have no discernible ideological
differences. Their enmity has its genesis in clashes over business deals.
Those in the know say Mnangagwa, who controlled party and state financial
interests during the 1990s, blocked Mujuru from procuring a majority share
in the lucrative Zimasco mining company in the Midlands. Mujuru pounced on
the opening created by the contest for the party vice-presidency last year
and prevailed on Mugabe to ditch Mnangagwa in favour of his wife, Joyce. The
standoff has already claimed casualties. The Midlands, Manicaland and
Masvingo provinces contend that they are being marginalised by alliances
being formed under the weight of tribalism. Insiders say Mnangagwa, a
Karanga, has become the rallying point for a determined effort to break
Mujuru and Mugabe's 25-year Zezuru dominance.
Tribalism haunts ruling party
Tribalism played a part in the death of the chairperson of Zanu's supreme
war council (Dare reChimurenga), a 1976 report initiated by the Zambian
government, the Special International Commission on the Assassination of
Herbert Wiltshire Chitepo, found. He died in exile in 1975 when a bomb
planted under the seat of his VW Beetle exploded. In a letter to his wife,
Chitepo, a Manyika, told of a list of men "the Karangas intended to
eliminate". The Shona - Karanga, Korekore, Manyika, Ndau and Zezuru - and
Ndebele are the main ethnic groups in Zimbabwe. Historian Luise White,
author of The Assassination of Herbert Chitepo, argues that once the report
on the death had been published "the idea that Zanu's power struggles were
based on ethnic factionalism took hold in many circles in and outside the
party. Indeed, by the time the letter was placed in evidence, the commission
had heard many versions of ethnic strife in Zanu." The report also cites
complaints of ethnicity as the reason behind the Nhari Rebellion, a mutiny
by Zanla cadres. In the early Eighties, 20 000 mostly Ndebele supporters of
PF Zapu were killed in Matabeleland and Midlands by the North Korean-trained
fifth brigade of an independent Zimbabwe. During the liberation war, the
bigger Karanga and Manyika dominated the war council. Perhaps more
significantly, the Zezuru had minor representation. According to historian
Terence Ranger, the term "Zezuru," first used by 18th-century Portuguese
traders, means "people who live in a high area" - not inappropriate for a
people who now occupy all the higher echelons of power in Zimbabwe.
President Robert Mugabe is Zezuru and so too is vice-president Joseph Msika.
Joyce Mujuru is Korekore but married to the Zezuru kingpin. - Percy Zvomuya.
The Herald (Harare)
November 4, 2005
Posted to the web November 4, 2005
THE Parks and Wildlife Management Authority has set aside 80 000 litres of
fuel for distribution in all major tourist resorts during the festive
In an interview yesterday, Parks public relations manager Retired Major
Edward Mbewe said the decision was reached after realising that the
authority was losing business owing to fuel shortages.
"We lost a few international tourists and a significant number of regional
tourists who, after inquiring about the fuel situation in Zimbabwe and lack
of facilities on our part to ensure the fuel aspect is dealt with, they
cancelled their bookings," Rtd Maj Mbewe said.
He said the authority could not afford to continue losing tourists in prime
areas such as Matobo Hills, Hwange National Park, Mana Pools and Nyanga
owing to erratic fuel supplies.
"We have fuel tanks in all our major parks areas and we are going to
distribute a significant quantity in each so that those booked with us to
spend their Christmas holidays will not have any hassles over shortages of
fuel," Rtd Maj Mbewe said.
He said plans were in the pipeline to ensure the facility is sustained until
fuel supplies returned to normal.
Rtd Maj Mbewe said international tourists usually started arriving for the
Christmas holidays by the end of November.
"Therefore, we are planning that by mid-November we will have already filled
all our fuel tanks. Depending on the number of visitors, we might find
ourselves replenishing the 80 000 litres, comprising diesel and petrol."
Foreign visitors would pay for the fuel in foreign currency.
"We are ordering our own fuel and sometimes we use foreign currency to make
purchases. We hope if we sell ours in foreign currency to the international
and regional tourists, it will boost our foreign currency reserves and
enable us to purchase more fuel for both our own operations and for the
tourists," he said.
Echoing Rtd Major Mbewe's sentiments, Secretary for Environment and Tourism
Mrs Margaret Sangarwe said the tourism sector should find new strategies to
get around the challenges facing the country, particularly those that
impacted negatively on the tourism sector.
"We have lots of places that people would love to see and we have our very
own traditional tourists who would not want to miss their holidays in
Zimbabwe under any circumstances.
"It is, therefore, imperative that we find new marketing skills, ways,
solutions around our challenges and ensure that the sector is not disturbed
by fuel shortages or any other challenge," she said.
Campfire director Mr Charles Jonga was, however, pleased sport hunting had
not been affected by Western-inspired sanctions or fuel shortages.
"The fuel shortages have not significantly impacted on hunting activities in
all Campfire areas but we are also considering making available a fuel
facility that would make their operations a lot easier," Mr Jonga said.
He said some safari operators in Campfire areas had made arrangements to
order fuel for their clients who wanted to hop from place to place during
their hunting expeditions.
"We would like to appeal to the National Oil Company of Zimbabwe to make
special considerations to supply sufficient fuel to those in the tourism
industry so that this coming holidays our clients will be mobile, content
and have a peaceful and enjoyable stay," he said.
Mmegi/The Reporter (Gaborone)
November 4, 2005
Posted to the web November 4, 2005
Patrick van Rensburg
Three years ago, I suggested that the drive for African unity should be
based on progress in regional unity as well as in continental initiatives. I
painted a hopeful picture of the Southern African Development Community
(SADC) regional potential based on the restructuring of SADC's executive
implementation machinery and on anticipated progress in regional trade
following the launching of the SADC Trade Protocol.
The launching of the African Union generated new hopes of accelerated
African unity, which could now be promoted more widely and more deeply, both
at the continental and regional levels. SADC's relative success pointed to
the possibility of equally effective regional bodies in North Africa and
West, Central and Eastern Africa.
Two years ago, in this column and in this context, I said that if SADC could
achieve economic and political integration in Southern Africa, it would be a
spur to economic and political integration in the rest of the continent.
SADC should have not just a regional political forum but an elected
Parliament, I suggested. A strengthened SADC could result in mergers with
other blocs and absorption of countries without regional ties. It could
promote an African Renaissance and add a wider African dimension to our
SADC is one of Africa's more realistic ventures in integration, economic and
political, I wrote, two years ago. "In area, it covers half a continent,
with 14 (now 13) member states. While giving priority to economic
integration, as a necessary condition for greater political integration, it
has created regional governing structures essential to effective economic
progress but which are also widely politically acceptable. Its 21
Coordinating units that were previously run by the member states are now run
in four clusters. One covers Trade, Industry, Finance and Investment. A
second covers Infrastructure and Services. A third covers Food, Agriculture
and Natural Resources.
The fourth covers Social and Human Development and Special Programmes. The
directorates fall under a Secretariat comprising the Executive Secretary's
office and a Department of Strategic Planning.
One knows that besides the Trade Protocol, many other protocols were adopted
covering a wide range of important functions. One hears little about the
work of the directorates and one has a sense that SADC has created a big
bureaucracy. The Executive Secretary was not a charismatic figure and one
wonders what was achieved."
Dr Henning Melber, a Namibian working with the Nordic Africa Institute,
asked in an article in the Institute's News, a while ago, whether recent
trends are changing SADC's objectives. He cites, as indicative of the
trends, the transformation of the OAU to the AU with a modified agenda on
policy and security issues.
He also cites NEPAD - the New Partnership for Africa's Development, which he
claims has an unfortunate emphasis in its implementation on socio-economic
and some security issues. He also cites the further enhancement of
multi-lateral and bi-lateral trade agreements between external agencies and
individual African States, which might have a potentially dividing impact on
regional integration issues.
Not only matters relating to the global economic exchange, but also recent
political developments and their treatment in multi-national bodies might
require new assessments of the state of regional collaboration in various
African settings. He cites Zimbabwe, adding that it is hardly an
exaggeration to say that the inability of SADC to agree on a common
denominator concerning the policy vis-à-vis Zimbabwe has an almost
He sees NEPAD increasingly as a type of mega-NGO to channel aid funds into
developmental projects, which he says at best claim, but in reality fail to
be driven by a desire towards increased regional collaboration. He quotes
NEPAD's agenda as being based on national and regional priorities and
development plans. It stresses the need for African countries to pool their
resources and enhance regional development and economic integration to
improve international competitiveness.
But the crux of the matter, he says, is that international competitiveness
comes at the expense of strengthening the local economy and the local
people. Melber quotes a NEPAD critic, Patrick Bond, as saying that
integration in Africa should as a priority, meet the socio-economic and
environmental needs of its citizenries, instead of seeking to turn even more
into an export platform.
Melber cites the EU-South Africa free trade agreement as having an even more
divisive effect on the Southern African region by entering into a
preferential trade relationship with one country and thereby enhancing
differences within the region resulting from existing conflicts of interest
among the national economies.
South Africa herself, the monetary zone, the Southern African Customs Union
and SADC are already not in the necessary harmony. The President was
recently in South Africa requesting assistance and cooperation in several
As current chairman of SADC, he needs to call a special summit to address
matters on which it has produced protocols, as well as on the Customs Union.
B10309 / Wed, 2 Nov 2005 02:06:44 /
Walking home from work last night with my bottle of mace firmly squashed
between my not-so-large breasts I noticed a group of women waiting for a
lift at the corner of Enterprise Road and Arcturus Avenue. What caught my
eye was that each of the women had a 5 litre plastic container of water by
their feet. They were probably on their way out to Mabvuku/Tafara a
high-density suburb otherwise known as a township, east of Harare. This
high-density area hasn't had water for the past week.
But hey, the national football association have recently put in a bid to
host the 2010 Africa Cup. Never mind the fact that our decrepit
infrastructure (and that includes the government) can't supply clean
drinking water to its urban residents.
And of course the negative effects of Operation Murambatsvina continue to
drive Zimbabweans to despair. So many small income-generating activities
remain brutally suppressed. Homes still lay broken. So-called "proper"
housing promised by the government is nowhere in sight. And still these
malicious politicians continue to hound poor people who are just trying to
get by but who don't happen to support the ruling party.
Big Mistake, obviously.
As journalist Christina Lamb recently wrote:
Some call them the "dust people", others the "people with no address".
President Robert Mugabe's government has a more graphic term: "Sniff out the
rats who have sneaked back in" is the name of the latest campaign by police
and soldiers against the city dwellers whose homes they demolished earlier
this year but who have refused to flee. Thousands of Zimbabweans are now
living like animals in the midst of rubble, crawling in and out of hovels
less than 3ft high, fashioned from cardboard boxes and broken asbestos. With
no means of earning a living - and with aid agencies banned by the
government from helping them - they are forced to forage in rubbish for
rotten vegetables or prostitute themselves for the equivalent of 10p to feed
Unfortunately there are no explosions here, as Damien Rice sings, in fact
there's close to nothing at all. Zimbabweans have a very faint heart beat
these days. All energy is conserved for the basics: finding transport,
trying to earn some money and all the time wondering just what it will take
to unseat this fucking useless government. At one point there was at least a
glimmer of hope because we thought we had an "opposition party". But even
the Movement for Democratic Change has become all fuse and no spark.
Yip. Things are more than gloomy here. What's a woman to do?