Former Zim chief drops race bombshell Posted Mon, 04 Oct
Vincent Hogg, former chief executive of the Zimbabwe Cricket Union,
is to drop a bombshell into the International Cricket Council's
investigation of racism within the sport.
Hogg will inform the ICC's
investigators, Indian solicitor-general Goolam Vahanvati and Justice Steven
Majiedt, this week about several incidents involving black ZCU
These were the main reasons he left the job two months ago
after two and a half years, he told AFP.
"I am going to write to the
adjudicators describing some of the things that were done and said to me
during the dispute with the players," he said.
"For instance one director
told me that whites have no right to be in the country at all - and that was
during a formal meeting.
"Some of the directors were totally out of order
in this regard and it was extremely upsetting to have to listen to that sort
of racist language."
He added: "I was hoping to give this evidence orally
to the two adjudicators when they were here last week, but I did not get the
The hearing had to be terminated by Goolam and Majiedt following
a day of legal wrangling, when the players would not give evidence in front
of three black ZCU directors and the directors said they would refuse to
take part in proceedings unless they were allowed to be present.
ZCU board is made up of four blacks, four whites and four Asians.
said he would have given evidence if he had had the opportunity.
wouldn't have bothered me who was listening."
Goolam and Majiedt said
after terminating the hearings they were now forced to base their
conclusions on written evidence only. Their findings will be presented to
the ICC at a board meeting in Pakistan on October 16-17.
At one stage
during the height of the player dispute, Hogg was angrily accused by a black
director of colluding with groundsman Robin Brown to sabotage the pitch on
which the replacement Zimbabwe team were playing Sri Lanka.
bowled out for a world record low score of 35.
He was also penned into
his office on one occasion by black ZCU personnel demanding that more black
players be included in a forthcoming match, even though the selection of
teams had nothing to do with him.
"Some of the things said to me at that
time were just terrible."
However, Hogg said he had no quarrel with the
way the national selectors went about their job, nor their choice of
"In my view they did a good job," he said.
therefore at odds over that particular issue with former captain Heath
Streak and the other sacked white players who objected to the selectors'
choices, claiming some black players were being unfairly picked ahead of
"Disloyal opposition" denied access to public media
[ This report does
not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations]
Oct 2004 (IRIN) - A senior Zimbabwean official declared at the weekend that
the main opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) would not be
allowed access to the state media in the lead-up to general elections next
The statement was made despite the fact that Zimbabwe is a recent
signatory to the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Protocol on
principles and guidelines governing democratic elections.
Mashonaland West province at the weekend, Jonathan Moyo, Minister of State
for Information, said the MDC was disloyal to the country and showed
allegiance to the United States and Britain.
"Britain and the USA do not
give disloyal opposition political parties access to their public media and
we also will not do it here. Unless and until we have a loyal opposition, it
will not be possible for them to access the public media," said
He added that the opposition should stop using foreign radio
stations like the Voice of America if it hoped to access the official
Brian Kagoro, chief executive of the Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition,
a group of pro-democracy NGOs, told IRIN there was nothing surprising about
"The SADC Protocol is just a collection of basic
guidelines. The guidelines are just that - guidelines - and because they are
not part of the country's enforceable laws, the ZANU-PF government can
choose to ignore all the guidelines or implement a few of them for cosmetic
purposes to avoid international isolation," Kagoro said.
to Moyo's statements, MDC secretary for constitutional and legal affairs,
David Coltart, said: "Since the protocol was signed [in Mauritius], there is
nothing yet to show that the government of Robert Mugabe is committed to the
SADC Protocol ... On the contrary, the government is ensuring every day that
the election next year would not be free and fair."
The MDC has pulled
out of all polls until the government fully implements the SADC Protocol.
General elections are due in March 2005.
Mbeki remains confident that an amicable solution to Zimbabwe's political
and economic problems will be found, the presidency says in its annual
report for the year ending March 2004.
The report, tabled in Parliament
on Monday, says Mbeki supports dialogue between Zanu-PF, Zimbabwe's ruling
party, and the opposition Movement for Democratic Change as the only means
of ensuring a peaceful and lasting solution to that country's
"The president, while concerned about the pace of progress in
this regard, remains confident that the people of Zimbabwe will find an
amicable, peaceful, and inclusive solution to the various challenges that
they face," the report says.
Mbeki and the South African government
will continue to support Zimbabweans and seek to promote mutual trust and
understanding between the two political parties, particularly as the 2005
parliamentary election approaches.
Zimbabwe's turmoil started just before
the 2000 parliamentary elections. - Sapa
A police blitz, which put out of
operation nearly 1 400 commuter buses, has left residents of Harare and
Chitungwiza stranded for transport. Commuter buses found with inadequate
papers or being unroadworthy were taken off the road and sent to the Vehicle
Inspection Depot for inspection.
While the police say they have arrested
1 382 operators and raised more than $37 million through fines, the cost to
commuters is considerable. They are never at work on time or reach home late
Margaret Mawere of Chitungwiza wakes up at 4.00AM everyday to
prepare breakfast for herself and her two primary school children before
leaving for work.
Mawere, a secretary at a consultancy firm in Mount
Pleasant, says going to work every morning has become a frustrating struggle
"By 6.00AM I have to be at the bus station to catch a commuter omnibus
to Harare. If I am lucky, by 7.30 am I could be in Harare where I then must
find transport to Mount Pleasant."
After knocking off at 4.30PM, she
begins another "struggle" to get back home. "Due to transport shortages, I
usually get to the city centre at 6 PM before battling to get to
Chitungwiza. I get home late at night usually at around 10 PM and this means
I rarely see my children in the evenings because every time I get home they
After going to bed at 11PM, she only has five hours to sleep
before repeating the daily grind of going to work and returning home to her
For Mawere and thousands other commuters getting transport
to work has become a daily nightmare because most commuter omnibuses are
grounded due to shortages of spare parts or the police have not impounded
the vehicles because they are not roadworthy.
The problem is more
evident during peak hours when available commuter omnibus drivers opt for
shorter routes, leaving commuters bound for Chitungwiza, Mabvuku and
Gregory Mlambo also of Chitungwiza, narrated his
daily ordeal to find transport to and from work.
"When I get home, I
just eat and sleep because I will be very tired from standing in the long
queues for transport. The problem continues because we have to wait for
transport again every morning. You will be very lucky to get to work on
time," he said.
Every evening, thousands of people line up along major
roads flagging down the few commuter buses still on the road and private
Many risk being run over by vehicles as they jostle to be first on
any bus or vehicle which stops. And when it gets very dark, they risk
falling prey to thieves, who prowl bus stops.
Tambudzai Makwara of
Kuwadzana says she has become a stranger to her family. "I have been here
since half past five. It is almost two hours since I joined this queue and
its getting dark. This is a real disappointment because there are no buses,"
said Makwara who now arrives home each day to find her two children
A number of workers, who stay in surrounding suburbs such as
Mbare, Warren Park, Arcadia, Belvedere and Eastlea, now resort to walking to
and from their workplaces.
Lovemore Zimuto, a welder at an electrical
company in Harare's Workington industrial area, said he walks because he
cannot afford to be late for work. "I feel I should be able to get a bus
home and rest because I work very hard, but I've got no choice. I walk,
because I want to keep my job," said Zimuto, who stays in Warren Park.
Fuel supplies to Zimbabwe could return to normal after almost a
month of shortages that have seen motorists queuing for petrol and diesel
outside filling stations. The reasons for the shortages remain unclear, with
no official statement being issued by fuel companies or state
Masimba Kambarami, the chairperson of the Petroleum Marketers'
Association of Zimbabwe, said he expected distribution to improve as there
were adequate supplies. He said: "It is already improving.
adequate supplies in the country and as far as we're concerned there are no
Last week July Moyo, the energy minister of Zimbabwe, said
that as many as 24 fuel importers could be closed down for abusing foreign
currency allocations from the central bank. Moyo told fuel companies they
would have to prove they used their allocations to buy
"We've given them a deadline and if they fail to give us the
proof we need, we will de-register them and the police will take up the
investigations," said Moyo.
A filling station owner whose city centre
outlet had no fuel, said: "We've had nothing since last week and I don't
know when we'll get our next delivery. Things are confused and no one is
admitting the reason for the shortage. We just get different
Fuel queues stretching for several city blocks were a common
sight in the country, though the current shortage is the first since fuel
imports were opened to oil companies last year. - Sapa
ZIMBABWE: Questions over compensation for former liberation
IRINnews Africa, Mon 4 Oct 2004
[ This report does not
necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations]
expected to reward ex-political prisoners
HARARE, - Zimbabweans have had
a mixed response to an Ex-Political Prisoners, Detainees and Restrictees
Bill, which will compensate those disadvantaged during the 1970s liberation
While some observers say the proposed law, gazetted last Friday, may
put a further strain on an already weak economy, others argue that such
people deserve to be financially rewarded.
If passed by parliament
next month, up to 20,000 former political prisoners and detainees will
reportedly receive a one-off payment and a monthly pension of not less than
the minimum salary of a civil servant. The children and dependents of former
liberation activists will also be entitled to free education and state
The authorities have yet to indicate the amount each
beneficiary would receive, but the compensation package is expected to cost
the government billions of Zimbabwe dollars.
activists who were imprisoned, detained or had their movements restricted by
the white minority government between 1959 and independence in 1980, have
lobbied for the payments for several years, amid ongoing complaints that
they were being disregarded by the authorities.
There are concerns,
however, that doling out unbudgeted funds to claimants could worsen the
country's current financial woes. Zimbabwe's economy is facing its worst
downturn since independence in 1980, with high annual inflation rates,
rising unemployment and poverty.
"It will definitely worsen the internal
borrowing because the government is getting money from the same financial
institutions that the productive sectors are also borrowing [from]. It will
negatively affect the government's deficit," Zimbabwe Congress of Trade
Unions (ZCTU) secretary general, Wellington Chibhebhe, told IRIN.
said compensating the former activists would further increase
hyperinflation, now at 314.4 percent, and warned of a re-run of a decision
in 1997 to pay hefty sums to war veterans - a move that was blamed for
putting the skids under the country's economy.
for Democratic Change (MDC) secretary for economic affairs, Tendai Biti,
pointed out that the country could not afford to hand out huge sums of money
when the manufacturing sector was fast shrinking.
But the chairman of the
Zimbabwe War Veterans Association, Jabulani Sibanda, welcomed the gesture,
saying it recognised the role played by former political prisoners and
detainees during the liberation struggle.
"Most of the former detainees
were the founder members of the liberation struggle, way back in 1960s, and
it is only fitting that they be compensated handsomely," said Sibanda,
himself a beneficiary of the War Veterans Compensation Fund.
political analyst Prince Moyo, however, noted that struggle for independence
had been fought on many fronts.
"Some people provided clothes and food,
and if we continue awarding people, then a large section of the Zimbabwean
community will [have to] be compensated," he told IRIN.
Old foes Mugabe, Museveni bury the hatchet October 04
2004 at 03:22PM
Harare - Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni arrived
in Zimbabwe on Monday on a three-day state visit, the first since the end of
the war in Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) in which Kampala and Harare
backed opposing sides.
Museveni was welcomed by President
Robert Mugabe, a guard of honour and thousands of Zimbabwe ruling party
supporters when he arrived at Harare airport.
The east African
leader, who is leading a high-powered team which includes government
ministers and top businessmen, immediately went into talks with Mugabe at
his official Harare residence.
This is Museveni's first visit to
Zimbabwe since 1989 and also his first since the end of the war in DRC,
which began in August 1998 and formally ended last year.
sided with Rwanda in backing rebels fighting to topple the government of the
late DRC president Laurent Kabila.
Zimbabwe deployed up to 12 000
troops to prop up Kabila's government.
Museveni is expected to tour
a local pharmaceutical factory manufacturing AIDS drugs later Monday, and on
Tuesday he will visit a farm outside Harare.
He is expected to
leave Zimbabwe early on Wednesday.
Museveni is the current chairman
of the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), a regional
grouping that aims to promote trade and investment between
The Zimbabwe Cricket Union has changed its PR tack in the
face of adverse publicity which dogged some of its senior officials during
the aborted ICC hearing in Harare. Whereas before it relied on bluster and
the pro-government Daily Herald to get its message across, now it appears to
be undertaking what almost amounts to a charm offensive.
The ZCU has
been without a website for more than a year, and local journalists have
hardly been wooed in the way that most other national boards try to get them
"on message". But in the last few days the ZCU has announced that it will
have a weekly column in a local paper and the Independent has carried an
interview with Ozias Bvute in which he looked to get across the point that
he was not the pariah many have made him out to be.
Until now the
board has continued to maintain that there is a conspiracy against Zimbabwe
cricket and has cut off any media source it sees as being against it or its
senior officials. That's the way things are done in Zimbabwe, and the BBC
has been banned in its entirety for daring to criticise the Mugabe
Wisden Cricinfo, which used to run the official ZCU website,
has received the ZCU cold shoulder, and Peter Chingoka has told reporters
that the ZCU will not longer have any contact with us. So questions go
unanswered, and even offers to allow Chingoka to have his unedited say are
The Independent at the weekend cited examples of how it had
recently posed questions to Chingoka about an incident of alleged
intimidation only for him to go straight to the Herald - where a
unchallenging reception was guaranteed - with his side of the story. But no
The interview with Bvute was revealing for what he didn't say
more than what he did. He was at pains to explain his side of recent events
and the circumstances surrounding the breakdown of the relationship between
the rebels and the board.
But in a separate article explaining how
the board sought to get across itsw side of the dispute with the rebels, the
Independent's Itai Dzamara couldn't help but suspect that all was not as it
seemed. "We were frank on this one," he wrote. "It didn't sound right.
Period! Both parties must have had skeletons in their cupboards. I mean the
ZCU board and the white players. But certainly, in the chronology of events
as related by the union, we smelt a rat!"
There were enough questions
raised during last week's truncated hearing in Harare for even the board to
realise that loudly and repeatedly maintaining that all was well in the face
of mounting evidence to the contrary would no longer suffice. However, it
has not yet grasped that merely smiling and giving newspapers your side of
the story is not enough. But it's a start.
Suspected war veterans have
invaded a dairy farm, Red Den, in the Beatrice commercial farming area south
of Harare at a time when many people thought farm invasions had ended. The
farm, situated along Marirangwe Road, is a partnership of four people - two
whites and two blacks- and manufactures ice cream, cheese and butter. They
bought the farm before 2000 when the land reform exercise kicked off.
Yesterday, the four owners refused to give details of the incident, arguing
that it might scuttle on-going negotiations to have them remain on the farm.
The farm owners also pleaded against having the story published, saying they
were afraid of reprisals. Charles Machinga, one of the owners said:
"Government has said that there should be no more invasions of farms, but
some people have been trying their luck to take away the farm. We are
working with governor (David) Karimanzira, the DA, as well as the local
leadership on our problems. They all know what is happening." Machinga went
on to say,"We are not politicians. We are businessmen, so you better talk to
Karimanzira because he has been of assistance. You are lucky to talk to me,
The Herald has been following the same story, maybe to give it another
angle, but we are not talking to the press."
partner, who refused to be named, said: "There is no need for you to publish
our problems. It will complicate everything. I still want to stay in this
country, so if you have the interests of this country, please don't write
this story, it is a sensitive subject." The other two owners switched off
their mobile phones when they were contacted. David Karimanzira, the
Governor and Resident Minister for Mashonaland East, expressed ignorance on
the issue. "I do not remember the name of the farm or the name of those
farmers. We have hundreds of dairy farms around," Karimanzira said.
According to a worker at the farm, Red Den produces 15 000 litres of milk
"every other day", apart from deliveries from other farms in the province
for its processing plant. The worker claimed that there were powerful
individuals who were behind manoeuvres to take over the farm, but there were
divisions over the matter as there were leading politicians opposed to the
move. The worker said that people behind the invasions were taking advantage
of the mixture of races in the ownership, by claiming that the other two
blacks were being used as fronts by the whites. Police spokesperson, Wayne
Bvudzijena, refused to comment, saying: " Phone the lands ministry." John
Nkomo, the Minister of State responsible for Land, Land Reform and
Resettlement in the Office of the President and Cabinet, referred all
questions to Karimanzira. " Phone Karimanzira, the governor of that area,"
Nkomo said. Efforts to get comment from the war veterans leadership proved
fruitless by the time of going to press.
PRETORIA - The ruling Zanu PF party yesterday
snubbed a meeting organised by South African churches and Non-Governmental
Organisations on the minimum standards for free and fair elections in
Organisers said they were not sure why Zanu PF had not
turned up for the Pretoria meeting which was attended by political parties
such as the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) and South
Africa's ruling African National Congress.
But a Zimbabwean
participant who declined to be named said: "They don't attend these kinds of
meetings. Call them to a Third Chimurenga party or bira and they will come
Zanu PF spokesman, Nathan Shamuyarira could not be
reached for comment.
At the conference, MDC spokesperson Paul
Themba-Nyathi lambasted the government for instilling fear in the electorate
thereby scaring them from choosing a party of their choice.
Nyathi said elections in Zimbabwe would never be free and fair for as long
the government and the ruling party continued to intimidate, harass and
"deal" with people perceived to support the opposition.
had come, said Nyathi, for Southern African Development Community (SADC)
leaders, to tell Mugabe in his face that what he was doing was uncivilised
He said Zimbabweans needed to restore their dignity by
voting freely and fairly.
"Zimbabweans need a new beginning
after 24 years of suffering under this regime," said Nyathi.
said there was need for the government to create a conducive electoral
environment in order to get rid of fear gripping the Zimbabwean
Nyathi dismissed the proposed electoral changes by
the government as a facade.
He said the changes do not mean
anything as the government was already failing to implement the new SADC
protocol on free and fair elections which it signed last August in
The electoral guidelines include the running of
elections by an independent electoral commission and the provision of equal
access to the public media by political parties.
rights lawyer Beatrice Mtetwa said the proposed changes were meant to
"hoodwink the world".
She said there could not be any meaningful
changes to the electoral environment in Zimbabwe if a host of such laws such
as the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act and the Public
Order and Security Act remained in place.
activists have condemned the two pieces of legislation saying they are meant
to close down democratic space in Zimbabwe.
NGOs, SADC and African Union representatives are attending the
Can't fool all the people all the time:
IF the government
believed it had fooled the people into accepting that all our economic
problems were caused by a dozen or so bankers externalising foreign
currency, then they'd better think again.
There is this joke: one
loyal Zanu PF member, seeing an opportunity to engage President Robert
Mugabe in a tete-a-tete at State House, whispered he possessed information
of a most explosive nature.
Mugabe, nodding eagerly, waited
expectantly. He could always use such dynamite to rouse the wrath of the
people against his enemies, at political rallies.
So he waited
breathlessly for the man to spill these huge beans.
Made, Mr President?" the man said with a tone of mystery.
about Made?" the president asked, puzzled.
"Well," the man said
triumphantly. "He is everywhere, isn't he? You read of him everywhere: Made
in England, Made in China, Made in Brazil, Made in Russia, Made in Finland,
where they make that popular cellphone. Made in South Africa. Made is
everywhere, Mr President, externalising foreign currency."
Insiders say the president did explode, not with rage, but with laughter.
Poor Joseph Made! As if he was not in enough trouble with the disastrous
land reform programme, he has to take the flak for what lovers of hyperbole
have called Crimes of the New Millennium.
Made is the Minister of
Lands, Agriculture and Rural Resettlement. His surname is Shona and
Governments throughout the world have
played similar con-game on their people: in a tragic way, George W Bush and
Tony Blair, played it on their people too, over Iraq and the invisible
weapons of mass destruction.
Now, poor Tony Blair had to undergo a
If anybody thinks it had nothing to do with the
Iraqi misadventure, then they need to have their head, heart, lungs, liver,
kidneys, pancreas and other vital organs examined thoroughly.
It is to be expected that Zanu PF will credit Mugabe with landing Blair in
hospital. But most people doubt that Gushungo's attacks on Blair were as
life-threatening as that heart-stopping blunder in Iraq.
Cold War, governments in the West and the East concocted elaborate
falsehoods against each other. A whole generation of Christians grew up
believing Satan was a communist.
The communists did not believe in
the existence of God and Satan. But they accepted the existence of evil in
Humankind and its proliferation among Capitalists.
But we know
now that all this was debunked as a gross falsehood by Mikhail Gorbachev,
now reckoned to be a statesman of the same stature as Bill Clinton and
At least, this is what the Libyans seem to believe,
according to recent reports from Tripoli. This shows how much Muammar
Gaddafi has swung away from the man who once spoke of the West as if it was
every Muslim's mission on earth to destroy everything they stood for: Coca
Cola, Beatles music, pizza, steak and kidney pie, schnapps and Dutch wooden
In Zimbabwe, exactly how many people genuinely believe that
all our economic problems, but particularly the crisis of the past two
years, were caused by the externalisation of foreign currency by the bankers
must depend on how much such people have imbibed of first-class weed from
Malawi - believed to be the best in southern Africa - or kachasu, an
intoxicating mix made of ingredients generally mentioned in the same breath
with hemlock, arsenic, distilled water and scorpion's bile.
all remember how Herbert Murerwa, wearing his most pious, pitiful and
pathetic face, called upon the Almighty to intervene in the deepening
At that time the Good Lord was not impressed.
Perhaps He didn't believe people so committed to an opulent lifestyle and
the oppression of their poorer citizens could be sincere in their
He banged his Almighty telephone receiver on them, probably
gnashing his teeth in holy disgust.
If Murerwa hoped that the
Good Lord would send the Angel Gabriel (because of the similarity in names
with the President) to smite the bankers with his mighty sword, then he
would not have known that they would be given shelter in such robustly
Christian countries as the United States and the United
Or did Murerwa know what the real trouble was and was
seeking the Lord's intervention in diverting attention from it?
But you don't mess with The Great One and hope to get away with it. Zanu PF
is paying the price of trying to pull the wool over The Almighty - or taking
His name in vain.
This must be punishment for daring to compare
their leader with The Son of God. They have Tony Gara to thank for that
When ordinary people concoct derisive anecdotes
to pooh-pooh government programmes, you can be sure the propaganda is not
There are similar spoofs about the land reform
programme, the untouchable status of war veterans such as Joseph Chinotimba,
Chris Mutsvangwa and Patrick Nyaruwata.
There are others,
unprintable, of the recent suggestion that Zanu PF needs a woman
vice-president and that this woman should be Joyce Mujuru.
most searing commentary is made on the much-ballyhooed theory that Zimbabwe
has finally solved its economic crisis. It has sent the allegedly thieving
bankers fleeing out of the country, their cocktail tails between their fat,
But what happened to the other theories, advanced so
eloquently by successive Ministers of Finance and Economic Development since
way back when?
What about the well-published perfidy of the
parastatals? Air Zimbabwe, Noczim, Zupco, Ziscosteel, Wankie Colliery, NRZ
What about the other scandals? Didn't anybody reap
billions from the scandal featuring Samson Paweni and the Willowgate
There are no reliable records of how much the parastatals
have cost this country over the last 24 years. There is no record of how
much of this money went into the bottomless pockets of the so-called Big
What about the Harare airport terminal building
Why ordinary people are disdainful of the official
theories on the causes of the financial crisis is simple: how could such a
small number of people do so much damage without the support or connivance
of the government or of someone high-up in the government?
strange way, this parallels the old cartoon of a matronly, platinum-haired
American housewife asking her husband, as they watch TV footage of a war in
some God forsaken foreign country in Asia or South America: "How could they
start that war without our help?"
The root of the joke about Joseph
Made is self-evident: those who claim to have triumphed over corruption are
themselves not as innocent as they would have us believe.
people know: not all of them can be fooled all the time. Once in a while
they surprise the ruling elite with their insight into how absolute power
corrupts absolutely. - Loving It Always
Increased Activity by Zimbabwe Police to Silence Critics. Is
this a prelude to March 2005? By Scott Morgan
In Recent weeks
there has been an increase in activity by the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP)
to silence those who criticize the Government. One of the areas where this
has taken place is their use against the remaining Independent Media Outlets
the Zimbabwe Independent and the Standard. Both Publications are owned by
Trevor Ncube and have in recent weeks have had journalists questioned about
items published that are critical of the current regime. The Standard has
received threats by the Media and Information Commission (MIC) after
printing a photograph of President Mugabe adjusting his
A letter coming from the Office of the Secretary of State
for Information and Publicity claimed that " the use of the photograph by
the Standard is extremely mischievous and represents a deliberate
denigration of the highest office in the Country". The letter also
criticized the paper for a "editorial disposition for anti-Zimbabwe and
anti-Mugabe orientation. The letter further claimed that the photograph
sought to "caricature, belittle and undermine the dignity of the Head of
State". The author of the letter J Neusu filed an earlier complaint about
the Standard to the MIC. That letter complained about the "reportage by the
Standard and its sister paper the Zimbabwe Independent is characterized by
outrageous lies and claims underpinning misrepresentation of facts." The
editor of the Standard said " The Complaints defy logic."
crucial and uniquely timed event which could be construed as another attempt
by the ruling Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) to
remain in Power by stealing an election for control of the Zimbabwean
Parliament, Four members of the Institute for Democracy in South
Africa(IDASA) were detained by the Police on Monday. The Arrests were made
in conjunction with a Interdenominational Prayer Meeting that occurred in
Gweru. The police stated that IDASA facilitated an illegal meeting. Under
the Draconian Public Order and Security Act (POSA) any meeting of more than
5 people needs the permission of the Police Department. This has been used
with great success to keep the Opposition from having any rallies or
protests. It has also been used against Trade Unions also.
will be a large meeting next week in South Africa. The South African Council
of Churches along with the South African Catholic Bishops Conference will
hold a meeting with the goal of " Minimum Standards for the Zimbabwe
Election". IDASA is providing logistical support for the Conference. In a
statement IDASA states that it is "an Independent public interest
organization committed to promoting sustainable democracy in South Africa
and elsewhere in the region by building democratic institutions, educating
citizens and advocating social justice." "It is therefore regrettable that
the Government of Zimbabwe is treating IDASA as an outlaw that is bent on
subverting the democratic process in Zimbabwe." In another situation eight
women who were marching from Bulawayo to Harare to protest the dreaded NGO
Bill were released early Saturday Morning by the Police.
There is a
reason to explain these actions however. Earlier this week the website www.zimonline.co.za reported that police
officers were ordered to take mandatory political indocrination classes. The
use of the police by the Government has been a problem since the myriad of
political crises began in 2000. The proper function of the police is to
ensure the rule of law not to silence voices of criticism. This shows that
ZANU-PF members are willing to take any steps to remain in power. This means
that the people of Zimbabwe have no means of redress for complaints. But it
is an effective reelection
Agencies Last updated: 10/05/2004 03:49:15 SOUTH Africa's President Thabo
Mbeki has vowed to press ahead with efforts to broker an end to the
political and economic crisis in neighbouring Zimbabwe.
Mbeki said on
Monday that while South Africa was concerned about the slow progress in
bringing the opposing sides together, it continued to believe negotiation
was the only way to solve that country's problems.
The South African
government policy of "quiet diplomacy" to urge President Robert Mugabe's
ruling ZANU-PF and the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) to
negotiate has met with little success.
A June deadline set by Mbeki to
solve the crisis was missed and South Africa has been criticised for not
taking strong enough action against alleged human rights abuses in
"The President, while concerned about the pace of progress in
that regard, remains confident that the people of Zimbabwe will find an
amicable, peaceful and inclusive solution to the various challenges they
face," Mbeki's office said in its 2003/04 annual report.
President and the South African government will continue to support the
people of Zimbabwe in this regard and seek to promote mutual trust and
understanding between the two political parties."
suffering serious economic turmoil widely blamed on government
mismanagement, and Mugabe was accused of rigging his re-election in
Mugabe has blamed the country's problems on a plot by former
colonial power Britain and other western powers opposed to his policy of
seizing white-owned farmland for redistribution to landless
He accuses the MDC of being a puppet of Britain - Reuters
GONO, MURERWA IN WASHINGTON TO HEAD OFF ZIM'S IMINENT EXPULSION
HARARE - Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Governor Gideon Gono and
Finance Minister Herbert Murerwa are in Washington to head off imminent
expulsion of Zimbabwe from the IMF.
Gono and Murerwa will meet IMF
officials at the Fund's winter meetings beginning in Washington this
weekend, an RBZ spokesman has confirmed. "The Governor's mission is to
convince the IMF that Zimbabwe is on the path to recovery. The IMF itself
has said we are on the right path, and the Governor's mission will simply be
to reinforce that," the spokesman said.
The IMF last month closed its
office in Harare, after having gone five years without a programme in
Zimbabwe. A deteriorating economy and widening international isolation has
seen Zimbabwe's arrears to the IMF swelling to US$295 million by April. Gono
and Murerwa have a much more difficult task than the RBZ spokesman would
have people believe.
Government has in recent weeks made claims that the
battered economy is on the mend, but critics note that the country had only
managed to slow down the rate of decline. This did not in any way translate
into any real economic recovery. The IMF has downgraded Zimbabwe's
membership over the past few years, culminating in an announced late last
year that it had begun a process leading to the possible expulsion of
Zimbabwe from the