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Zanu PF factions unite to remove Mugabe

By Chengetai Zvauya, Senior Reporter
Sunday, 16 October 2011 15:38

HARARE - Feuding Zanu PF factions are said to be closing ranks to oust
President Robert Mugabe from power — ahead of the elections scheduled to be
held either next year or in 2013.

Sources told the Daily News on Sunday yesterday that the two main factions,
believed to be led by Defence Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa and Vice President
Joice  Mujuru, are reaching out to each other in a bid to dethrone the
long-ruling octogenarian.

“Reality is beginning to sink in that unless people work together, the old
man won’t go. As a result, there is a plan to put our heads together so that
we can ask him (Mugabe) to step down before elections are held,” one of the
sources said.

The source would not say how the audacious, but unlikely plan would be
practically orchestrated and implemented.

A long-standing party veteran, who had heard about the plan, said that he
doubted that the plan would go ahead.

“I honestly can’t see anyone at the moment gathering enough courage to tell
President Mugabe to leave. Why have these people failed to do so for the
past decade?” he asked.

Former Finance Minister Simba Makoni tried to challenge Mugabe and was
booted out of the party, leading to the formation of Mavambo/Kusile/Dawn
(MKD) — which has failed to change the country’s political landscape.

Makoni was alleged to have had the backing of the late Solomon Mujuru and
former Zipra intelligence supremo Dumiso Dabengwa, who resigned from Zanu PF
at the inception of the MKD party.

Dabengwa now leads the revived Zapu.

The likes of serial political flip-flopper, Jonathan Moyo, were also thrown
out of the party in 2004 when they unsuccessfully tried to oust Mugabe from
power in what later became known as the Tsholotsho Declaration.

Mugabe has said that the party’s December conference, to be held early that
month in Bulawayo, will also serve as an elective congress, thereby making
leadership changes possible.

But many inside the party think that Mugabe wants to use the congress to
purge internal rivals, as well as Wiki-Gate “sell-outs” — hence the talked
about attempt to unite factional forces to get rid of the 87-year-old.

“A lot of people are going to be surprised,” one of the central committee
players behind the plot said yesterday.

He likened the plan to the one that was orchestrated by the Mujuru faction
in 2006, but which died a natural death, ahead of the party’s conference in

Then, Mugabe successfully blocked the move after rallying support from the
Mnangagwa camp.

“Both factions learnt a bitter lesson from that episode and have now come to
realise that Mugabe is past his sell-by-date as the party’s team leader.

“Another issue is that age is not on his (Mugabe’s) side. He will be
contesting against a young and energetic Tsvangirai who will be 60 years and
it is on that premise too that the factions are closing ranks,” said the

However, the two camps are said to be having problems in agreeing on the
candidate who will contest against Tsvangirai once Mugabe has been deposed.

Zanu PF spokesperson Rugare Gumbo said he was unaware of the manoeuvres to
remove Mugabe at the conference.

“President Mugabe is our leader. I know that there is always a lot of
speculation on change of leadership in our party before any congress.

“It is the work of our enemies who always want to spread disharmony in our
party,” he said.

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Mugabe caves in to demand for congress

JAMA MAJOLA | 16 October, 2011 02:45

President Robert Mugabe has caved in to intense pressure from senior Zanu-PF
officials who want the conference in December to take the form of a congress
so that a new party leader and presidential candidate can be picked.

Mugabe's availability as a candidate is uncertain as Zanu-PF is deeply
divided over the issue. An overwhelming majority of the party members want a
fresh candidate to try to stopMDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai's relentless
rise to power.

Tsvangirai defeated Mugabe in the first round of the 2008 polls before
dropping out of the race due to violence and intimidation. The situation is
likely to be the same in the next elections, particularly if the polls are
free and fair.

As a result of this and Zanu-PF infighting, Mugabe has been under pressure
to call for an extraordinary congress to elect a new party leader and
candidate for the elections.

In a sign he was giving in to pressure, he said this week the conference in
Bulawayo would be "just as good as a congress".

"Yes, we are organising for the conference. It is a very important
conference as we organise towards national elections. After that conference
we will not have another conference before elections so it is an important
conference - just as good as a congress," Mugabe said on Monday.

This has now spurred senior party officials to demand a full extraordinary

Zanu-PF holds annual confe-rences to take stock and wrap up the year. One of
the main functions of conferences is to endorse the party leader as the
presidential election candidate. Mugabe was endorsed as candidate last
December in Mutare when elections were expected to be held this year.

Although Mugabe is likely to cling onto power in Bulawayo, pressure is
mounting on him to quit. In a bid to contain the demands for him to go,
Mugabe has now accepted that the conference should be like a congress,
although he has not yet gone all the way to embrace the proposal.

Senior Zanu-PF officials who spoke to the Sunday Times this week said Mugabe
was in a quandary over the issue because although he realises he is now too
old and ailing, he is unwilling to step down. Insiders say Mugabe's real
game plan is to die in office.

"Like we told you a few weeks ago that the Bulawayo confe-rence would be
very critical, the president has now publicly confirmed that. The
conference, which will be a mini-congress if you like, although we want
actually a full extraordinary congress, will be a defining moment," a senior
politburo member said. "It will be a decisive moment because we have to
address the issue of leadership renewal and the candidate. Most people think
for us to move forward we need a relatively younger leader, but there are
others who say that while that is true, the timing is wrong."

Senior Zanu-PF politburo member Patrick Chinamasa told a local weekly that
his party would not remove Mugabe at such a critical juncture because "we
can't change the captain in the midst of a storm". He said the Zanu-PF ship
was under threat of being shipwrecked.

Another Zanu-PF official said: "The issue is we need to resolve this
leadership question and we can't do that through a conference, hence the
demands for a congress."

Insiders said although Mugabe was prepared to accept an extraordinary
congress, he was not ready to step down. Instead, they said, he would want
to seek a stronger mandate from congress.

In December 2007, Mugabe was forced by the late General Solomon Mujuru's
faction to call for an extraordinary congress instead of holding a

The plan was to replace Mugabe with either Dumiso Dabengwa or Simba Makoni.
After the plan failed, the two quit and challenged Mugabe during the 2008
elections under a makeshift party, Mavambo/Kusile, costing Tsvangirai
outright victory.

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Zimbabwe diarrhoea outbreak - 7 dead

2011-10-16 17:01

Harare - At least seven children have died from a suspected diarrhoea
outbreak which has affected over 6 000 children in two towns in Zimbabwe
over the past week, a state newspaper said on Sunday.

"Seven children died in Masvingo and Kadoma last week following a diarrhoea
outbreak which has seen a total of 6 472 cases being recorded in the two
towns," The Sunday Mail reported.

"The main problem has always been unclean water and poor sanitation," the
newspaper quoted Portia Manangazira, director for disease control in the
health ministry, as saying.

"Our main concern is that in most instances 60% of these cases are children
under the age of five years."

She called on municipalities to ensure constant supplies of clean water and
proper disposal of garbage.

Diarrhoea thrives in areas that do not have proper sanitation. Proper sewage
systems and clean water can prevent its outbreak.

Municipalities in Zimbabwe are battling to supply residents with water with
some suburbs going for weeks without running water.

Over 85 000 cases of cholera were diagnosed in West and central Africa this
year, leading to 2 466 deaths, as the region faces the worst cholera
epidemics in its history, Unicef said this week.

Three years ago over 4 000 people died of cholera in Zimbabwe in an outbreak
which affected nearly 100 000 people.

According to Uniceff, diarrhoea is responsible for 7.7% of deaths in Africa.


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Election preps in mess

By Thelma Chikwanha and Farai Mutsaka
Sunday, 16 October 2011 12:32

HARARE - A standoff between the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission and Justice
Minister Patrick Chinamasa, as well as growing disaffection within the
inclusive government, is threatening Zimbabwe’s much-anticipated elections
scheduled for either next year or 2013.

The roadmap for the high-stakes election is viewed by many, including Sadc
and the entire international community, as vitally important – particularly
if the twin targets of political stability and sustainable economic growth
are to be realised in the country.

President Robert Mugabe, who is plagued by ill-health and advanced age, is
determined to have the critical ballots held next year.

But avoidable tussling between ZEC and the justice ministry on one hand, as
well as disagreements between the country’s coalition partners on how best
to amend electoral laws to guarantee an even playing ground have left
stakeholders worried that the country could be sliding back towards the
anarchy of 2007 and 2008.

Most Zimbabweans view the forthcoming poll as the country’s best chance to
end the political stalemate that has so negatively affected the development
of this nation for more than a decade now.

Highly-placed sources told the Daily News on Sunday this week that ZEC,
formed as an independent body to oversee the elections following successive
disputed polls, is struggling to assert its autonomy.

As a result, daggers are now drawn between ZEC and the justice ministry -
headed by one of Mugabe’s staunchest supporters, Chinamasa, over the control
of funds, as well as the strategic and operational
direction of the commission.

Another bone of contention, the sources said, was the resistance by
Chinamasa’s ministry and Zanu PF to allow ZEC chairman, retired Justice
Simpson Mutambanengwe, to carry out a human resources audit that would most
likely result in the necessary flushing out of intelligence agents who are
known to have been planted inside the
commission secretariat by Zanu PF when it enjoyed unfettered control of the
levers of power.

“Mutambanengwe’s decisions are on the basis that the commission will be more
effective once a skills audit is conducted and the right persons are
allocated to the right positions. He also wants to take advantage of that
audit to rebuild the image of the commission so that people will be
confident with ZEC,” said one source.

Another source said with regard to the body’s fights over funding,
Mutambanengwe was unhappy that the justice ministry did not just want to get
involved in ZEC’s operational activities, but also wanted to have the final
word on everything.

“Zanu PF is also jittery about ZEC receiving funding from Western countries
for capacity building, fearing that the elections body will somehow be
influenced to the former ruling party’s detriment,” one of
the sources said.

“Chinamasa is doing a hatchet job for his party, as it is desperate to win
elections at all costs. It (Zanu PF) is afraid to relinquish control and let
ZEC become the independent body it was created to be,” another source said.

While Mutambanengwe was unavailable for comment, he has previously stated
his desire to be weaned off Chinamasa’s ministry.

Chinamasa said he could not comment as he was out of the country when
contacted by the Daily News on Sunday.

But his deputy, Obert Gutu, confirmed that election preparations were in
turmoil and that ZEC was battling to get its “independence” from his

Gutu said problems besetting the electoral commission would be solved once
“it is adequately resourced to secure its own premises, commissioners and
when support staff are adequately resourced in terms of equipment and office
furniture so that they are be able to conduct and run a credible election”.

Meanwhile,  Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s MDC party has said it will
not participate in an election held before the ZEC concerns are fully

These concerns included a comprehensive human resources audit and the
attainment of financial independence by the commission.

The party’s national executive decided at its meeting last week that it
would also not support the Electoral Amendment Bill, citing failure to
recognise the Diaspora vote as one of the reasons – a position that
puts the former opposition party at war with Zanu PF.

The MDC also demanded the following conditions:

- The completion of the Constitution making process and the referendum;

- Completion of the drafting of a new voters roll;
- Completion of full media reforms;
- Completion of all required legislative reforms; and
- Mechanisms to ensure that violence will not be a factor in the planned

“The party notes that any election which does not meet the above conditions
will be a sham election and the party will not have anything to do with a
sham election,” reads part of resolutions to the MDC national executive

Zanu PF stands diametrically opposite to the MDC position on many of these

Chinamasa told the international community during a UN Human Rights
Universal Periodic Review in Geneva last week that his party would not agree
to reforms such as repealing harsh media laws, casting a dark cloud over the
credibility of the forthcoming elections.

Parliament’s Portfolio Committee on Justice, Legal Affairs, Constitutional
and Parliamentary Affairs will this week begin countrywide public hearings
on the proposed amendments.

Civil society groups such as the Zimbabwe Elections Support Network have
also demanded that ZEC, as a statutory body formed through an Act of
Parliament, should report to parliament rather than to Chinamasa.

“As Zesn we believe that Zec should be independent and their funding must
come from the Consolidated Revenue Fund,” Zesn director Rindai
Chipfunde-Vava said.

“We also recommend that Zec report to Parliament instead of the Ministry of
Justice. Reporting to the minister gives room to executive interference in
the election process.

“The minister is also a political player and a contestant, it therefore
gives his party a skewed advantage,” said Chipfunde-Vava, whose organisation
is the country’s biggest elections watchdog

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ZAPU Gears For By-elections

Bulawayo, October 16, 2011- ZAPU is ready and itching to participate in
by-elections and any other by-elections that may be called following the
order by the High Court of Zimbabwe that compelled President Robert Mugabe
to gazette dates for by-elections in Nkayi South, Lupane East and Bulilima

Speaking to Radio VOP, Zapu director of Communications, Marketing and
Publicity, Methuseli Moyo, disclosed that his party prays that none of the
respondents appeal to the Supreme Court, thereby delaying or preventing the

“We believe a by-election in the three particular constituencies would be a
perfect early Christmas present for our party. The people of Nkayi South,
Lupane East and Bulilima East need permanent political home and solid
leadership to overcome the problems of underdevelopment in their areas,”
said Moyo.

He added that Zapu is ready to rescue the three constituencies from
opportunists and political wonderers.

On Thursday, Bulawayo High Court Judge Nicholas Ndou ordered President
Robert Mugabe and the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) to announce within
14 days dates for the election in three vacant constituencies in
Matabeleland. The three constituencies fell vacant after three members of
Parliament were expelled from the house of assembly in 2009 by MDC led by
Welshman Ncube for aligning themselves to MDC –T.

Abednico Bhebhe of Nkayi South, Njabulo Mguni of Lupane East and Norman
Mpofu of Bulilima East made a High Court application last year seeking ZEC
and Mugabe to call for a by-election in their former constituencies as soon
as possible.

No by-elections have been held in Zimbabwe under GPA and there are 18 vacant
seats in Parliament.

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Pending By-Elections


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High Court Braces For MDC’s Charges Against Mutambara

Harare, October 16, 2011 --- The High Court will on November 16 hear the
contempt of court charges against Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara
filed by the Welshman Ncube led MDC.

Bulawayo High Court judge Nicholas Ndou in February issued an interdict
against Mutambara barring him from “exercising any function vested in the
president of the MDC.”

Mutambara had refused to give way to Ncube after he was beaten to the post
of MDC president at the party’s congress last year.

The robotics professor after initially conceding defeat at the January
congress  changed tact and joined about 12 MDC officials who were contesting
the Industry and Commerce’s Minister elevation to the party’s top post.

MDC is the first applicant and its secretary general Priscilla Misihairabwi
was the second applicant in the case to stop Mutambara from “masquerading as
the leader of the party.”

“The respondent (DPM Mutambara) is interdicted from purporting to be the
President of the Movement for Democratic Change.

“(He) is interdicted from exercising any function vested in the president of
the Movement for Democratic Change,” the order reads in part.

“The respondent is interdicted from, in any way, interfering with structures
and organs of the party."

The MDC says Mutambara has violated the order by his continued stay as DPM,
a position which according to the Global Political Agremeent is reserved for
Ncube’s faction.

President Robert Mugabe and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai have refused to
put pressure on Mutambara to resign saying the courts must be allowed to
deal with the matter without any interference.

Mutambara claims that the MDC congress where he was one of the main speakers
was unconstitutional and has put his weight against former chairman Joubert
Mudzumwe and others who have launched a High Court challenge against Ncube.

Deputy Speaker of Parliament Nomalanga Khumalo is the only MP from MDC who
has publicly pledged her loyalty to Mutambara while the rest of the
legislators say they support Ncube.

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Zanu man defends farmer

VLADIMIR MZACA | 16 October, 2011 02:45

Midlands Province governor Jason Machaya has warned land invaders against
targeting the farm of Derek Shaw, one of Zimbabwe's few remaining dairy

The governor also slammed the latest wave of farm invasions, saying: "The
time for invasions is over".

This past week more than 200 illegal settlers and their families had moved
onto Shaw's diary farm, Wildebeest, occupying his last 200 hectares of land.
The other part of his farm was given to local settlers between 2002 and

Machaya's warning comes at a time when Zimbabwe is battling to improve
output volumes of milk. Industry experts blame the low level of milk
production on the chaotic land reform at the turn of the century, as well as
the government's failure to honour property rights, resulting in low
investor confidence.

Most of the milk in Zimbabwe is imported from South Africa. Even Nestlé
Zimbabwe, one of the biggest milk buyers, is importing milk from South
Africa because local producers are failing to meet its demands.

Machaya said Shaw was one of the "strategic farmers" who had entered into an
agreement with the government. It was decided that Shaw should keep his
remaining land.

"Mr Shaw should not be disturbed. This is a government position. White
commercial farmers like him are part of the country's move towards improving
dairy farming," he said.

The governor spoke against the latest wave of invasions, saying "things
should be done through the proper channels" to follow the laws of the

"Anyone who occupies land in Zimbabwe has to do this by following the laws
of the country," he said.

The Midlands Province has seen a number of farm invasions in the past
decade, including the farm of Colin Cloete, a one-time president of the
Commercial Farmers Union of Zimbabwe from Chegutu, whose tobacco farm was
earmarked. He lost a final supreme court appeal to keep his only remaining
property this year.

One of the country's most honoured cattle breeders, Philip Hapelt, lost his
farm to Zanu-PF politician Jabulani Mangena. Hapelt, his family and his
employees were subjected to violence before the courts declared him a
persona non grata.

And Ben Freeth's farm was taken by Zanu-PF stalwart Nathan Shamuyarira.
Freeth's father-in-law, Mike Campbell, took the matter to the SADC Tribunal
and won his case. However, the government declared the ruling invalid,
saying the tribunal did not have jurisdiction in Zimbabwe.

According to a WikiLeaks cable in 2003 about 300 commercial farmers were
engaged in legal battles with the government to keep their land, while 4000
to 4500 white farmers had already been evicted.

To date the government has ignored a legally binding ruling by the SADC
tribunal in 2008, following a petition by 77 commercial farmers who argued
that the land reform programme was conducted along racial lines.

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Move to defuse land-grab row

SUNDAY TIMES CORRESPONDENT | 16 October, 2011 02:45

Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai is this week due to confront President
Robert Mugabe to try to defuse a potentially major diplomatic row after the
South African ambassador to Zimbabwe, Vusi Mavimbela, attacked Harare
viciously over lawlessness.

Speaking after meeting Tsvangirai last week, Mavimbela blasted the Zimbabwe
government and police for failing to rein in rogue Zanu-PF militants who
have been wantonly invading farms owned by South Africans in violation of
the Bilateral Investment and Protection Agreement (Bippa) signed between
Pretoria and Harare in 2009.

Diplomats say Mavimbela's condemnation could only have been sanctioned by
South African President Jacob Zuma.

In the past few months, militants loyal to Mugabe have been invading the few
remaining white-owned farms, including those owned by South Africans,
although they are supposed to be protected under Bippa.

Mugabe and the police have failed to take action and prevent the lawless
invasion of the farms, leading to the angry words from Pretoria directed at

Mavimbela did not mince his words in appealing to Tsvangirai for
intervention and also asked the SA government to assist as they had failed
at diplomatic level.

Recently South African farmers Koos Smith of De Rust farm and Tiennie van
Rensburg of Rueben Farm in Nyazura were evicted by a mob loyal to Mugabe and
Zanu-PF, leaving them destitute.

Tsvangirai, through his spokesman Luke Tamborinyoka, told the Sunday Times
that he would take up the issue with Mugabe.

"The prime minister will personally table the issue of lawlessness raised by
the South African ambassador as this is a serious issue that needs urgent
attention. He is taking the issue seriously, as this is what has poisoned
the political environment in Zimbabwe. This is the culture of impunity that
has to be stopped," said Tamborinyoka.

The meeting is expected to be held this week.

Mavimbela fired the salvo two weeks after Zuma said his country would not
grab land in the violent and bloody manner witnessed in Zimbabwe at the
start of the last decade.

Mavimbela said the militants appeared to be protected by police and said the
lawlessness in Zimbabwe had resulted in most South African companies failing
to invest in the country for fear of losing their money.

"One of the issues we raised with the prime minister was our concern about
the manner in which farm invasions still take place in this country. We have
a number of South African farmers who were evicted from their farms
recently. We believe that the process that was followed is not anything that
we can be proud of," said Mavimbela.

"Some of the things seem to be happening not only to the South African
companies, but also to the farmers, and this has the possibility of
violating the agreement. We raised that concern," Mavimbela said.

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Chiwenga rules out WikiLeaks probe

16/10/2011 00:00:00
    by Staff Reporter

ARMY chief, General Constantine Chiwenga has said two senior officers who
blasted his leadership and lack of military experience during secret
meetings with US Ambassador, Charles Ray will not be punished.

According confidential US embassy cables released by whistle-blower website,
WikiLeaks, Major-General Fidelis Satuku and Brigadier-General Herbert
Chingono made their damning assessment of Chiwenga during a secret meeting
Ambassador Charles Ray in Harare on January 5 and 6 last year.
But Chiwenga told state media the army would not take any action against the

“The ZDF is a strategic institution that cannot afford to make any
irrational decisions. Our role is to defend the nation and we cannot afford
to be distracted from this duty by the works of foreign forces,” Chiwenga
said in an interview with The Sunday Mail.

“The two generals are key components of the force; they have served us well.
We cannot afford to treat them in an irrational manner because of something
that cannot be verified.”

Satuku and Chingono reportedly told Ambassador Ray that Chiwenga lacked
military experience and had only attended one mid-level training course.

“The Commander of the Defence Forces, General Constantine Chiwenga, is a
political general who works hard but has very little military experience or
expertise,” the US embassy cables read in part.

“A political commissar before 1980, he has only attended one mid-level
training course, which he did not complete. If given a choice between a
military and political issue, he routinely defaults to the political.”

But Chiwenga warned that US officials could have been trying to destabilise
the army and force the security services sector reforms being demanded by
the West.

“The WikiLeaks statements were made by United States embassy officials; they
might have had an imperialist agenda,” Chiwenga said in an interview with
The Sunday Mail.

“To the Zimbabwe Defence Forces (ZDF), WikiLeaks is of little significance.
It would, therefore, be improper for an institution such as ours to make a
decision based on statements that were relayed by United States embassy
officials who could have been pursuing certain agendas.”

At the time of the alleged meeting with Ray, Brigadier-General Chingono – an
artillery officer -- was the army’s Inspector General. He was the last ZNA
officer to train under the America’s International Military Education and
Training (IMET) programme, graduating from NDU in 1999.

Major General Satuku – who received his training in England -- was the ZDF
Director General for Policy and Personnel.

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Mugabe praises Zambia’s Zim-educated white VP

16/10/2011 00:00:00
    by Zambia Watchdog

PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe has commended Zambians on their just-ended elections
saying peaceful power transferas opposed to the western bombardment as
witnessed in Libya was the only way to build peace in Africa.

He congratulated Dr Guy Scott on his ascension to the office of vice
president of Zambia saying there was nothing odd in the development.

The President told delegates in Malawi as he addressed the Comesa Summit
plenary Friday that at Independence in 1980, Zimbabwe had five whites in
Cabinet – four from the Rhodesian Front of Ian Smith and an independent, the
then agriculture minister Dennis Norman.

“We have had demonstrations of peaceful elections, the most recent one being
in Zambia, that is the only way you can build peace, and that is the way to
go,” the President said as he decried the Nato bombardment in Libya that has
claimed thousands of innocent lives.

“To my brother who has been sitting next to me,” referring to Dr Scott:
“Marondera where you were in school, the NDP formed in 1960, two years of
life before it was banned by Ian Smith. We want to congratulate him for
being elected, I think he will be the first white vice president,” the
President said to applause from delegates.

“When we had our independence in 1980, we had five whites, four from Ian
Smith, the other an independent. Dennis Norman, I think you know him, he was
non-political but the others were political.

“We had them in the Cabinet for a start, so it shouldn’t surprise at all,
you having been born here but of course Ian Smith and others.
“Well he is dead now and I hope God is resting him in heaven,” President
Mugabe said bringing the auditorium down in mirth.

When Dr Scott was appointed Zambia’s vice president, some sections of the
media claimed the move was likely to estrange Lusaka from Harare.

They claimed that President Mugabe and his Government were anti-white, a
perception the Western media peddled in a bid to brand land reform a racist
clampdown on white farmers.

On his part, Dr Scott told the gathering that his party’s name, the
Patriotic Front and the clenched fist symbol, were all inspired by and
derived from Zanu-PF.

“As you are aware Zambia held its tripartite elections, I can’t stop talking
about this, on the 20th, of September 2011 in which the then opposition
party, the Patriotic Front, to quote the phrase I stole from His Excellency
President Robert Mugabe, he gave me permission to use it this morning, and
it worked, the Patriotic Front emerged victorious under the leadership of Mr
Michael Chilufya Sata,” Dr Scott said expressing surprise that the Western
world seemed surprised that an African country could organise such a simple
thing as a peaceful election.

He then told delegates that he and President Mugabe had come a long way.

“Maybe I could be allowed a little insertion here. We both worked out today
that we were both members of the National Democratic Party, in his case 52
years ago, in my case 51 years ago. We were both members of the National
Democratic Party in Southern Rhodesia.

“In this case that was 51 years ago. That (the NDP) was the parent of
Zimbabwe’s nationalist movement, many, many years ago, that is how we know
each other,” Dr Scott said
Dr Scott was named vice president when new president Michael Sata announced
his 19-member cabinet last month.
Born in 1944 in Livingstone, Zambia, Dr Scott was educated in Zambia and the
then Southern Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe).

His late father, an ally of Zambia’s nationalists founded the African Mail,
which is now the Zambia Daily Mail. He studied economics at Cambridge
University and holds a PhD in cognitive science from the University of
Sussex in England.

Scott joined active politics in 1990 when he joined the Movement for
Multiparty Democracy. At its first convention, the MMD elected him
chairperson of the agriculture committee.

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Freda, employees lock horns

By Diana Chisvo, Business Writer
Sunday, 16 October 2011 15:36

HARARE - Freda Rebecca Gold Mine Limited (Freda) employees have gone for 32
months without pay owing to longstanding contractual disputes, workers say.

According to the workers, the mine has not paid their salaries since January
2009, and is attempting to illegally terminate their contracts to replace
them with new and pliable workers.

“Our old contracts had benefits such as  100 percent medical aid cover,
school fees for our children, funeral cover, our transport to work and
funeral cover, the new contract has fewer benefits.

The workers’ grades have been changed, that means salaries change as well,”
said Cleopas Njinga the employee’s representative.

Last month, an arbitrator ruled in the employees, favour instructing the
company to pay the outstanding salaries.

However, Njinga says there has not been any action from management.

According to the arbitral award, the company owes the employees a total of
$197 778 in unpaid salaries and bonuses ranging from $123 for the lowest
paid worker to $281 for the highest paid worker from July 2009 to February

Freda’s lawyers, Magwaliba and Kwirira, said the complaining employees were
no longer employed by the mine due to a number of reasons including

The lawyers, who said they could not comment further, however confirmed that
there was a case at the High Court.

“Some of these people were told to come and get their money but they
refused.As you can see here is a list of all the people that have been paid
some of them have retired and some were retrenched. These people are just
unreasonable they have their own agenda that they want to push,” they said.

Njinga said the employees took their cases to court in batches and claims
the company still owes them  for salaries and bonuses from March 2010 to

“A total of 115 employees had filed the lawsuit against the company but now
only 80 remain as the company is luring some of the employees into signing
contracts. The condition is that once you sign the new contract you get your
salaries,” he said, adding that the company was using different means to
manipulate the employees.

He said the mine was breaching the terms of the old contract and going ahead
to pay employees who agreed to sign the new contracts.

“In the old contract we were given the option to buy the houses that we were
occupying but now we are told to pay rent for houses that we had bought from
the company. The contracts are not even permanent contracts they are
periodic and we are required to renew them when they expire of which the
company may decide not to renew,” Njinga said.

However, a Supreme Court judgement indicates that the houses were never sold
to the employees but there was a memorandum of understanding expressing an
intention by the company to dispose of the housing units to its employees.

The company argues that it decided to introduce the new contracts in 2009
when the country adopted the multi-currency system.

“As you are aware, your contract of employmnet signed on 21 March 1994
became inoperative as a result of the falling into disuse of the Zimbabwean
dollar with effect from Frebruary 29, 2009.

Thus it is not possible for the mine to pay you the Zimbabwe dollar based
salary and other benefits in terms of that contract,” the company said in a
letter of termination of employment to one of the employees.

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Government's mining claims sham exposed

JAMA MAJOLA | 15 October, 2011 14:59

While the government has been frantically trying to seize foreign-owned
mining companies under the guise of indigenisation and empowerment, it has
failed to mine rich platinum deposits given back to it by Zimbabwe Platinum
Mines (Zimplats).

Meantime, the government has even sold off some of its platinum reserves to
dubious speculators in shady deals.

This issue came to the fore this week when SA's Impala Platinum (Implats),
the majority shareholder in Zimplats, offered to help the state-owned
Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation (ZMDC), to mine platinum and provide
technical assistance to extract the huge reserves.

In recent years platinum reserves surrendered to government as part of
empowerment credits have been changing hands among speculators in dubious
deals which have not benefited the country .

Instead of getting involved in productive mining activities, government has
been sitting on massive platinum reserves and selling off claims while
campaigning to force operations such as Zimplats and Mimosa to surrender 51%
of their equity to investors linked to Zanu-PF.

Implats CEO David Brown exposed government's failure to mine in the presence
of President Robert Mugabe on Thursday during the launch of a community
ownership trust in partnership with Zimplats.

Brown offered Zimplats technical assistance to help ZMDC, which has run down
several gold mines, to develop an unused claim valued at $153-million. ZMDC
extractsalluvial diamonds at the controversial Marange fields, and most of
the revenue from there has not been accounted for.

"In 2006 Zimplats released ground with 36 million ounces worth of resources.
We note, however, that there's no production on those claims. We offer our
technical assistance to bring that resource into production," Brown said.

Zimbabwe's mineral-rich Great Dyke has four major complexes that constitute
the world's second largest platinum reserve:

    Near Zvishavane, is the Wedza Complex, where Implats and Aquarius
Platinum jointly operate the Mimosa mine;
    North of the Wedza Complex, near Shurugwi, is the Selukwe Complex, where
Anglo American and Central African Mining and Exploration Company have
claims not yet in production;
    About an hour southwest of Harare is the Hartley Complex dominated by
Zimplats; and
    The undeveloped Musengezi Complex at Snakeshead, controlled by African
Consolidated Resources.
    Earlier this year, China offered Zimbabwe $3-billion for platinum
reserves valued at $40-billion. Finance Minister Tendai Biti blocked the

The mining sector contributes a third of the country's exports.

Brown also said Implats planned a third phase of its expansion programme at
Zimplats from 2014 which would raise output to 360000 ounces per annum. At
least $1-billion will be invested in the project.

He also said Zimplats would not be able to declare a dividend until its
$500-million expansion was concluded, but agreed to fund the operations of
the community trust to the tune of $10- million over three years to improve
schools, clinics, roads and bridges.

In an apparent climb down, Mugabe said his government did not intend to
"steal or rob" foreign companies. "Mr Brown, go and tell your shareholders
that we don't intend to take over (Zimplats). We don't want to steal or rob
that which does not belong to us, but we don't want to be robbed as well."

The new Implats initiative contrasts sharply with recent efforts by
Indigenisation Minister Saviour Kasukuwere to cancel Zimplats's operating
licence. Last year he led a delegation, including ANC Youth League president
Julius Malema, which stormed Zimplats trying to intimidate its management
into agreeing to give Zanu-PF youths 51% of the multi-billion-dollar

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Who will pay RBZ’s massive debt?

The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe expects to realise $137 million from the
disposal of immovable property and investments in local companies as it
seeks to clear its $1,1 billion debt.
by Rebecca Moyo

The Governor, Gideon Gono, told a Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on
Budget and Finance investments would realise $110 million.

Analysts have questioned why Finance Minister Tendai Biti has not undertaken
a full audit of the bank, as the Reserve Bank Act allows him to do, to find
out exactly where the money went.

This they say would clear (or confirm) the suspicions of many that connected
individuals were receiving foreign currency at official rates and bank notes
in short supply and which could be changed at a premium. It would also
clarify numerous reports that farm inputs were distributed along party lines

The disposal process, according to the chairman of the assets disposal
committee Retired Justice Smith, would be completed by the end of the year.

However, Gono said the RBZ was still weighing the options regarding disposal
of Bank Chambers and Hardwick House due to their strategic positions. The
two buildings adjoin the central bank.

But chairman of the portfolio committee, Paddy Zhanda, advised the central
bank to sell the buildings to realise more funds to reduce its debt.

Although a significant portion of the debt was accrued from national
obligations carried out by the RBZ on instructions from government, Biti
says the debt must be settled by the bank itself.

He has often accused Gono of undertaking unsanctioned quasi-fiscal
operations that resulted in the huge debt.

Gono presented evidence to the committee that showed that most if not all
quasi-fiscal operations were carried out at the behest of government in line
with Section 6d and Section 8 of the repealed Old Reserve Bank Act.

The provisions mandated the RBZ with advancing economic objectives of the
country and compelling it to carry out such activities as instructed by

The quasi-fiscal operations included settling debts accrued during
procurement of fuel, medicine, paying off IMF arrears and procuring
agricultural implements.

Discussions are underway to determine what portion of the debt government
will assume, which would lessen the burden on the central bank.

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Mujuru enquiry pointless: MDC MPs

It is pointless to open a Commission of Inquiry into the events surrounding
the death of General Solomon Mujuru, because the people who ordered the hit
will never be brought to book, said some MDC Members of Parliament.
by Chief Reporter

Mujuru, 67, popularly known by his guerrilla name Rex Nhongo, was burned to
death in a bizarre fire at his home in August.

"Let me say that this kind of death did not start with Mujuru. My own
brother in Buhera was burnt by Joseph Mwale such that we need an inquiry,"
said Masvingo West MDC MP Tachiona Mharadza in his contribution to a
condolences motion moved by Zanu (PF) MP Kudakwashe Bhasikiti.

"It is useless when we talk of an inquiry. Kitsiyatota and Joseph Mwale are
still there. There is no inquiry that is needed as the facts are there. But
the issue is that Augustine Chihuri, who is at the same level as General
Mujuru, protects Mwale and you cannot get the docket."

Mharadze said Zanu (PF) was a "hyena" that was responsible for many murders
and yet Parliament had not called for any inquiries.

"Now that the hyena has taken one of your children it has become an issue,"
Mharadze said.

The MDC MP said Zanu (PF) murderers had rushed to contaminate the crime
scene after an incredible claim that the fire was started by a candle.

"Why is it that when such things happen you run and distort evidence before
the experts come in?" Mharadza said. "We have Patson Nyangwa who was burnt
in Jerera the way Mujuru died. People were there. Mutombeni was also burnt
in Mashava. Learnmore Jongwe passed away and it was said he took poison,
where did he get it from when people are subjected to a search at the gate?
The issue we are saying is that we should not fool the people."

Police say testimony is being taken from dozens of witnesses who lived and
worked around Mujuru's farm at the time of the alleged assassination.

Masvingo Central MDC MP Jeffryson Chitando said many people passed away in
the same manner during the 2008 elections, "some of them, the way they died
has not been revealed to this date".

Kambuzuma MDC MP Willias Madzimure said that a system existed that could not
go on any longer, while Zvishavane MP Obert Matshalaga said Mujuru's funeral
at the Heroes Acre was an example of what Zimbabwe should look like.

“I think as Parliament we should also recognise and probably thank him for
bringing us together for the first time."

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Female ‘rapists’ part of wider syndicate: Police

16/10/2011 00:00:00
    by Staff Reporter

POLICE have warned men against letting down their guard insisting the three
suspected female rapists arrested in Gweru could be part of a wider
syndicate with parts of the network potentially still active across the

Rosemary Chakwizira, 24, Sophie Nhokwara, 26, and Netsai Nhokwara, 24,
appeared in court late Friday charged with seventeen counts of aggravated
indecent assault after their alleged victims picked them out at an identity
parade in Harare.

They are charged along with Thulani Ngwenya, 24, who is Sophie Nhokwara's
boyfriend. The women, all from Gweru, were arrested on Sunday after trying
to retrieve 31 used condoms at an accident scene -- three of them half full
with semen.

The arrests provided the first break in police investigations of a spate of
alleged rapes of male hitch-hikers around the country by women said to have
been driving expensive vehicles. The women are said to have collected the
semen of their victims for suspected ritual purposes.
But police believe the frequency and geographical spread of the attacks
suggests more women could be involved.

“People should not relax now that these suspects have been arrested. We
believe a syndicate is operating in various parts of the country,” Harare
police spokesman Inspector James Sabau told state media.
He said preliminary investigations suggested a ritual link to the collection
of victims’ semen.

“We are still trying to figure out why semen was collected. Information we
have gathered so far links the entire female rapist issue to rituals that
make people rich,” he said.
“It is, however, still unclear how the supposed rituals work.”

Meanwhile, the three suspects and Ngwenya were remanded in custody to
October 28 when they appeared before a Harare magistrate last Friday.
They were arrested after Ngwenya ran over and killed a pedestrian while
driving a red Chevrolet Aveo owned by Sophie Nhokwara.

Police examining the vehicle following the accident were approached by the
three women with a suspicious request to pick up some condoms.

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Zim-SA relations take turn for worst

By Xolisani Ncube, Staff Writer
Sunday, 16 October 2011 15:36

HARARE - South Africa appears to be getting frustrated and impatient about
its dealings with noisy and unstable northern neighbour, Zimbabwe.

Damning statements by South Africa’s ambassador to Zimbabwe Vusi Mavimbela
last Thursday betrayed how relations between countries once bonded by shared
history of defeating colonialism have become ice thin.

Mavimbela’s strong condemnation of Zimbabwe’s economic policies and state of
the rule of law laid bare the impatience of a country that believes all it
is getting for carrying Zimbabwe’s burden is flak.

Zimbabwe continues to grab properties belonging to South Africans in mob
fashion leaving the owners, elderly in many cases, destitute, Mavimbela

He had just met Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai to table his country’s
concern at the coalition government’s failure to stop farm invasions and end

Such acts against South African citizens had become so out of control that
the embassy had been rendered powerless hence it had recommended direct
state-to-state intervention, he said.

Then the punch line: “We believe that the process that was followed is not
anything that we can be proud of,” said Mavimbela.

“There are instances where people just walk in the farm and tell the farmer
that they are taking over the farm without producing any documentation to
show that they are entitled to the farm.

“We have raised these issues with the police but in some instances they are
there and say we can’t intervene, we have been told not to intervene. The
law is not followed properly that is why we call them invasions,” said

“We do not have a problem with the principle of indenisation.

“We are worried about the manner in which it is being implemented,” he said,
taking a dig at a project which, together with the often-violent land
reform, Mugabe views as his lasting legacy.

“This has caused a stir among South African companies here,” said Mavimbela,
whose country is a major investor in Zimbabwe.

As the biggest economy on the continent and a neighbour, South Africa has
for the past decade carried the yoke as political and economic tumult
plunged Zimbabwe into a failed state.

Migration bodies and civil society estimate that over 3 million
Zimbabweans — from criminals to low pay labourers and highly skilled people
fled to South Africa at the height of the turmoil.

On the international front, South Africa has been forced to defend Zimbabwe
at the United Nations, when other members felt Harare’s human rights-record
deserved censure.

Gabriel Shumba, a human rights-lawyer who heads the Pretoria-based Zimbabwe
Exiles Forum said South Africa’s only viable option was to use its President
Jacob Zuma’s mediatory role to ensure free and fair elections that can usher
an accountable and stable government.

“South Africa can only shake off the burden if stability returns to
Zimbabwe. This explains Zuma’s aggressiveness in getting things done in
Zimbabwe,” said Shumba.

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WikiLeaks: Tsvangirai on warpath

HARARE CORRESPONDENT | 16 October, 2011 02:45

Morgan Tsvangirai is plotting against senior party officials who doubt his
leadership, according to WikiLeaks.

MDC-T insiders told the Sunday Times that the replacement on Monday of Roy
Bennett, the deputy minister of agriculture designate, was one of the first
steps by Tsvangirai to exert his authority in the party.

They also pointed to the last week's suspension of Obert Gutu, the deputy
minister of justice and legal affairs, as another step by the MDC leader to
show who was in charge.

Bennett, in self-imposed exile in neighbouring SA, has been replaced by
Bulawayo MP Seiso Moyo. On Tuesday Bennett expressed surprise and ignorance
over his axing.

But Tsvangirai's spokesman, Luke Tamborinyoka, said it was not true that his
boss was purging his doubters, saying Bennett needed to be replaced for the
general good of the country.

Tamborinyoka said Tsvangirai was not vindictive, adding he was on record as
saying that he was bound by his party's decision and the WikiLeaks issue was
a non-event.

"It was important to note that his (Bennett's) failure to take up his post
was his absence from the country due to alleged persecution," said

Douglas Mwonzora, the MDC-T spokesman, said: "The appointment of Moyo as
deputy minister of agriculture was activated by necessity. The party was not
effectively represented in this important portfolio."

While Gutu has retained his post of Deputy Minister of Justice and Legal
Affairs, insiders said he and Bennett were the first casualties of
Tsvangirai's purge.

Bennett, party secretary general Tendai Biti and national organising
secretary Nelson Chamisa were all quoted by WikiLeaks as saying Tsvangirai
was a weak leader who needed to be held by the hand all the time. Sources
said the divisions in MDC-T over the WikiLeaks disclosures were so sharp
that senior party members nearly came to blows at the recent national
executive committee meeting. Tsvangirai had to step in to stop the melee.

After the meeting, the party's information and publicity department issued a
statement trying to downplay the claims that Tsvangirai was purging his
opponents. "With regards to the recent WikiLeaks publications, the party
restates its resolution of December 10 2010 and noted that the same were
WikiLies, unsubstantiated hearsay and would not cause commotion or division
in the party," read the resolutions of the national executive meeting in

It is understood some party officials are against Tsvangirai taking any
action against those fingered in the cables, arguing that it would be
self-destructive ahead of a crucial election.

Zanu-PF president Robert Mugabe, who is also said to be contemplating
disciplining officials of his party who stabbed him in the back, has
signalled that the country might hold polls in March next year.

Political analyst Charles Mangongera said the WikiLeaks cables would alter
relationships in Zimbabwean politics. "I think that some political
friendships have been permanently damaged and this will have far-reaching
ramifications," said Mangongera .

"It seems in both Zanu-PF and MDC-T that those perceived by the public as
being very close to the party leadership are in fact critical of that

"I think Tsvangirai and Mugabe will be asking themselves who their true
political friends are. But I think they would not countenance any immediate
purge of those that have been exposed as they both know how disastrous, such
a move would be in the face of the coming elections," he said.

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Deportations to put pressure on Mugabe? – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary: 15th October 2011

A new attempt is to be made on Thursday to deport Vigil supporter Shamiso Kofi despite the violent failure of the first attempt earlier this month. There is speculation that the UK and South Africa are making a concerted attempt to deport Zimbabweans to put pressure on the Mugabe regime.


Shamiso is one of the first Zimbabweans to be targeted for forcible return since the UK ended its moratorium on sending back failed Zimbabwean asylum seekers. It comes amid reports from South Africa that hundreds of Zimbabweans are being sent back.


Shamiso, who was returned to Yarl’s Wood detention centre, told us she went through hell during the abortive attempt to deport her and feels like dying at the thought of another attempt to forcibly remove her. She had to receive medical attention after violence on the plane at Heathrow Airport prompted the captain to order her to be taken off.


Shamiso was accompanied by no less than three UK Border Agency security guards and said she was abused when she refused to co-operate in her deportation. One of the guards, who was from the Democratic Republic of Congo, expressed support for Mugabe. (Another of the guards was a Jamaican woman.)


That attempt to deport Shamiso was on a Kenyan Airlines plane. The new attempt will be on a Virgin Atlantic Airways flight to Nairobi. The Vigil has appealed to the Virgin boss Sir Richard Branson not to co-operate with the deportation to Zimbabwe since he is on public record as being opposed to Mugabe (see: Branson plotted to oust Mugabe -


The Vigil is urging supporters to phone Virgin Atlantic Airways to protest. See: for what you can do to help.


Other points

·         On the Vigil front table we displayed a copy of a UK Times report about the Archbishop of Canterbury’s visit to Zimbabwe headlined ‘Archbishop speaks out against Mugabe’s greed and violence’. We believe that the visit, as well as encouraging Anglicans in Zimbabwe, has helped draw the attention of the wider world to the thugocracy in Harare (see: Archbishop of Cape Town Condemns "Thuggery" against Zimbabwean Church). The Vigil is glad that Dr Williams disregarded the cowardly advice of Royal African Society Director Richard Dowden that a meeting with Mugabe would be foolish. Well, Mugabe was handed a dossier detailing the abuse of Anglicans so he can’t say he knows nothing about it. A foolish meeting . . . ?

·         The Vigil is dismayed by Tsvangirai’s short-sighted betrayal of yet another principle by filling in the Deputy Agriculture Minister vacancy created by Mugabe’s illegal refusal to swear in Roy Bennett.  Tsvangirai says MDC supporters are suffering because they are not represented in the Agriculture Ministry. But what are any deputy ministers in Zanu PF-controlled ministries achieving?

·         We note that, oddly, South Africa’s Ambassador to Zimbabwe has had a meeting with the Prime Minister to protest against the seizure of South African owned farms. Perhaps Tsvangirai could ask his new Deputy Minister to intervene (see: - SA Ambassador to Zimbabwe criticises lawless farm invasions)?

·         The Vigil was pleased that South Africa didn’t give its routine support to Zimbabwe’s litany of lies at the UN’s human rights meeting in Geneva. While the usual suspects, from Iran and Cuba to Syria and Venezuela, supported Zimbabwe’s claim to be a beacon of human rights, South Africa called for an investigation into the killings during the last elections (see: – Stop human rights abuses).

·         As we embarked on our tenth year outside the Embassy, we were joined by two couples visiting London from Zimbabwe. They took part in the dancing and bought our knitted hats in Zimbabwean colours.

·         A group from the Vigil are to sing, dance and drum at an event to celebrate Black History at City and Islington College.  The Vigil is also providing a speaker – David Kadzutu, International Relations Secretary of the newly-formed ‘Zimbabwe We Can’ movement, will speak of his experiences as a human rights activist.


For latest Vigil pictures check: Please note: Vigil photos can only be downloaded from our Flickr website – they cannot be downloaded from the slideshow on the front page of the Zimvigil website.


FOR THE RECORD: 78 signed the register.



·         The Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe (ROHR) is the Vigil’s partner organisation based in Zimbabwe. ROHR grew out of the need for the Vigil to have an organisation on the ground in Zimbabwe which reflected the Vigil’s mission statement in a practical way. ROHR in the UK actively fundraises through membership subscriptions, events, sales etc to support the activities of ROHR in Zimbabwe. Please note that the official website of ROHR Zimbabwe is Any other website claiming to be the official website of ROHR in no way represents the views and opinions of ROHR.

·         ZBN News. The Vigil management team wishes to make it clear that the Zimbabwe Vigil is not responsible for Zimbabwe Broadcasting Network News (ZBN News). We are happy that they attend our activities and provide television coverage but we have no control over them. All enquiries about ZBN News should be addressed to ZBN News.

·         The Zim Vigil band (Farai Marema and Dumi Tutani) has launched its theme song ‘Vigil Yedu (our Vigil)’ to raise awareness through music. To download this single, visit: and to watch the video check: To watch other Zim Vigil band protest songs, check: and

·         ROHR Manchester Vigil. Saturday 29th October from 2 – 5 pm. Venue: Cathedral Gardens, Manchester City Centre (subject to change to Piccadilly Gardens). Contact; Delina Tafadzwa Mutyambizi 07775313637, Chamunorwa Chihota 07799446404, Panyika Karimanzira 07551062161, Artwell Pfende 07886839353. Future demonstrations: 26th November, 31st December. Same time and venue.

·         ROHR Manchester Meetings. Saturday 12th November (committee meeting from 11 am – 1 pm, general meeting from 2 – 5 pm). Venue: The Salvation Army Citadel, 71 Grosvenor Road, Manchester M13 9UB. Contact; Delina Tafadzwa Mutyambizi 07775313637, Chamunorwa Chihota 07799446404, Panyika Karimanzira 07551062161, Artwell Pfende 07886839353. Future meetings:  10th December. Same times / venue.

·         Vigil Facebook page:

·         Vigil Myspace page:

·         ‘Through the Darkness’, Judith Todd’s acclaimed account of the rise of Mugabe.  To receive a copy by post in the UK please email confirmation of your order and postal address to and send a cheque for £10 payable to “Budiriro Trust” to Emily Chadburn, 15 Burners Close, Burgess Hill, West Sussex RH15 0QA. All proceeds go to the Budiriro Trust which provides bursaries to needy A Level students in Zimbabwe.


Vigil co-ordinators

The Vigil, outside the Zimbabwe Embassy, 429 Strand, London, takes place every Saturday from 14.00 to 18.00 to protest against gross violations of human rights in Zimbabwe. The Vigil which started in October 2002 will continue until internationally-monitored, free and fair elections are held in Zimbabwe.

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Zanu-pf’s culture of intolerance regrettable

Clifford Chitupa Mashiri, 16/10/11.

Reports that Zanu-pf MPs are allegedly making frantic moves to block further
prosecutions of their party youths accused of killing political opponents in
previous elections (The Standard, 16/10/11) are regrettable but come as no

According to the weekly, having previously relied on the youths for their
election campaigns, the Zanu-pf members of parliament fear that convictions
might harm their chances of re-election in next year’s elections.

Zimbabwean scholars have already exposed Zanu-pf’s culture of intolerance.
For instance James Muzondiya, discussion on Zanu-pf’s culture of intolerance
in his contribution, ‘From Buoyancy to Crisis, 1980-1997’, in Brian
Raftopoulos, Alois Mlambo (ed) Becoming Zimbabwe: a history from the
pre-colonial period to 2008, p177).

Muzondiya says this ‘culture of intolerance’ badly affected Zanu-pf’s
practice of the democratic ideals it espoused. Although multiparty elections
were held regularly throughout the 1980’s and 1990s, their organisation
betrayed the government’s lack of tolerance of political diversity and
commitment to democratic politics.

Similarly, the late UZ lecturer Professor Masipula Sithole observed that the
commandist nature of mobilisation and politicisation under clandestine
circumstances used during the liberation struggle gave rise to the politics
of intimidation and fear.

“Opponents were viewed in warlike terms, as enemies, and therefore
illegitimate. The culture from the liberation struggle was intolerant and
violent,” according to Masipula Sithole (see Masipula Sithole, ‘Zimbabwe: In
search of stable democracy,’ in L Diamond et al Democracy in Developing
Countries: Vol 2, Africa, p245).

Scholars believe that Zanu-pf approaches elections as ‘battles’ and views
political opponents as enemies to be annihilated rather than as political

According to Sithole, the party’s electoral dominance was partly achieved
through its Gukurahundi strategy, which entailed ‘an undisguised,
intolerant, commandist and deliberately violent policy towards the
opposition’ (see M Sithole and J Makumbe, ‘Elections in Zimbabwe: The
Zanu-Pf Hegemony and its incipient decline’, Africa Journal of Political
Science, 2 (1), 1997, p133).

Violent elections were also experienced in 2000, 2002, 2005 and 2008 with
the most tragic polls being the 2008 presidential run-off when over 200 MDC
supporters were murdered by suspected Zanu-pf activists.

What is more worrying is the alleged plan by the party’s MPs to reportedly
get Robert Mugabe to use his powers to stop the trials. This vindicates our
concerns about the unfettered powers of the president under the current

It is not surprising why Zanu-pf is adamant on retaining POSA and AIPPA as
well as not giving in on the Human Rights Commission Bill. At the same time,
if the internal jostling to replace Mugabe while the constitutional
loopholes are still there is successful there will be serious consequences
for the country.

Clifford Chitupa Mashiri, Political Analyst, London,

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Bill Watch - Parliamentary Committees Series [Public Hearings on 2012 National Budget]



[14th October 2011]

Public Hearings on 2012 National Budget

The House of Assembly’s Portfolio Committee on Budget, Finance and Investment Promotion will be holding public hearings on the 2012 National Budget from 17th to 21st October.  The committee will operate in two teams.  The team programmes are as follows:

Team 1 - Harare, Mashonaland Central, Mashonaland East,
Manicaland and Masvingo provinces

Monday 17th October

Harare – Rainbow Towers, 9am to 4pm

Tuesday 18th October

1.    Bindura – Kimberley Reef Hotel, 9am to 11am

2.    Marondera – Farmers Hall, 2pm to 4 pm

Wednesday 19th October

Mutare – Queen’s Hall, 9am to 11am

Thursday 20th October:

Masvingo – Civic Centre Hall, 9am to 11am

Friday 21st October:

ChiredziChitsanga Hall, 9am to 11am

Team 2 – Mashonaland West, Midlands, Bulawayo,
Matabeleland South and Matabeleland North provinces

Monday 17th October

Chinhoyi – Cooksey Memorial Hall, 9am to 11am

Tuesday 18th October

1.    Gokwe – Cheziya Community Hall, 9am to 11am

2.    Gweru – Gweru Theatre, 2pm to 4pm

Wednesday 19th October:

1.    BulawayoSmall City Hall, 9am to 11am

2.    Gwanda – Gwanda Hotel, 2pm to 4pm

Thursday 20th October:

Lupane – Lupane Community Hall, 11am to 1pm

Friday 21st October:

Victoria FallsLeambe Conference Room, Kingdom Hotel, 9 am to 11am

The chairperson of the Portfolio Committee is Hon Paddington Zhanda, MP.  The committee clerk is Mr Chris Ratsakatika.

The portfolio committee is obliged by the Public Finance Management Act “to conduct public hearings to elicit the opinions of as many stakeholders in the national annual budget as possible”.  The 2012 Budget Strategy Paper [BSP], launched last week by the Minister of Finance, has been made available to the public to encourage “full participation by stakeholders in order to build consensus on the priorities that should guide the preparation of the 2012 Budget”.  [The BSP can be downloaded from the Ministry’s website at  It is a pdf file of approximately 1.2 MB.  If you do not have Internet access please request a copy from]

Interested groups and organisations, and all members of public, are invited to attend these hearings, at which they have the opportunity to give evidence and make oral representations.  Contributions made will be considered by the portfolio committee in compiling a report to be tabled in the House of Assembly.

If you want to make oral representations at a hearing you should signify this to the Committee Clerk so that he can notify the chairperson to call on you.  An oral submission is more effective if it is followed up in writing.  If you are making a written submission, it is advisable to take as many copies as possible for circulation at the hearing.

If you are unable to attend a hearing, written submissions and correspondence are also welcome and may be addressed to: The Clerk of Parliament, Attention: Portfolio Committee on Budget, Finance and Investment Promotion, P.O. Box CY298, Causeway, Harare.  If delivering, please use the Kwame Nkrumah Avenue entrance to Parliament, between Second and Third Streets.  

For further information please contact the committee clerk, Mr Chris Ratsakatika.  Telephone 04-700181-9, 252936, extension 2282.  Fax 04-252935.


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