Torture survivor tells of horrors
Zimbabwean torture survivor Holly Moyo
speaks to SW Radio Africa Presenter Mandisa Mundawarara on the programme Call
Mandisa: Tell us the circumstances under which
you had to leave Zimbabwe.
Holly: Well, I was practically forced to
resign because I was considered unsuitable. Our Officer had said they were
weeding out people who were not supportive of the government. They said I was a
spy, that I was spreading propaganda to make the ruling party look bad and that
I was reading opposition papers and passing them on to other members of the
force…let me tell you something, a large number of police officers, they are
aware of what is happening in the country. They don't like it. But, they are
scared. They are scared of losing their jobs. They are scared of being harassed.
They are scared of many things and in Zimbabwe all policemen of senior ranks are
ex war veterans, those from the 1970's liberation war and those are the ones
that are Zanu (PF) diehard supporters.
Mandisa: What led to you being
taken in and tortured?
Holly: I came back late at night, around 11 or 12.
I saw a Land Rover Defender parked some metres away from my gate. But I was used
to seeing that vehicle and I knew who it was, so I didn't mind. Just as I w as
nearing my gate, six men jumped out, two of them held me by the arms and the
others started beating me about the head and all over the body with baton sticks
and I fell down and blood was starting to pour from my head. And after they
pulled off my trousers and they skinned my private parts. You see, they said I
wasn't fit even to go to jail and that I was going to die on the streets. They
said even Morgan Tsvangirai could not help me, because he had been in jail
himself and he was powerless even to help himself. They said even Bush or Blair
could not come to my assistance; they were taunting me. And I lost consciousness
after that … once in hospital my injuries became - in fact, I was stinking, and
the skin fell off. And I was discharged eight days later. Given painkillers and
told to go home and bath with salt. And in fact when my wife tried to go and
report that matter, she was thrown into prison for eight days. They said to her
'your husband is an agitator; he's a trouble maker'.
Holly: After I was released in hospital the state agents
came to see me and they would finish me off this time, because by that time I
couldn't walk, I couldn't even sit. I spent nearly about two months lying on my
back. The pain was unbelievable. I used to take more than 15 painkillers, or 12,
but they didn't work.
Mandisa: When did you decide that, for your own
safety, you had to leave the country?
Holly: In December, 2004, we sent
our kids to their grandmother and on December 29 my wife left for Beitbridge,
and then on the 30th I also left. I got out through the bedroom window. My
friends lifted me out through the bedroom window at around 3 o'clock in the
morning, so that those people who were watching my house couldn't see me
escaping. When we arrived at Gwanda, I bought some spirits - Smirnoff - I drank
the whole bottle, about 750 ml up to Beitbridge, to deaden the pain, just to
deaden the pain. And then, when we got to the border the other guys went in to
get their passports stamped. I didn't have a passport, I just walked right on
top of the Limpopo Bridge to the other side and into South Africa, and I met my
wife at Messina.
Manidsa: So what happened when you arrived in South
Holly: Ya, when we arrived at Messina I met my wife and then that
pick up picked us at Messina and drove us to Johannesburg and we stayed for
about four days at Park Station at Johannesburg, because we had no shelter you
see, and I didn't know anyone as yet from there. The pain was unbelievable. We
used those toilets at Park Station. And on the fourth day we met a Zimbabwean,
who had a shack at a place I will not mention because we are still staying
there, and that shack needed looking after so he could let us stay there for
free … we went to a Roman Catholic Church, run by a certain Irish Father. He
referred us to the Centre for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation. He gave
us the bus fare and he phoned those people. They really helped us.
One-time friendship turns nasty
BY KAMU YANANAI
Mugabe and Obasanjo in happier
Close allies for years, the presidents of
Nigeria and Zimbabwe now clash furiously whenever they meet.
HARARE - The relationship between Olusegun
Obasanjo and Robert Mugabe remains awash in bad blood following the Zimbabwean
president’s resounding rejection of a proposal from his Nigerian counterpart to
help solve the country’s political crisis.
Obasanjo, chairman of the
Africa Union, recently appointed former Mozambican president Joachim Chissano to
mediate between Mugabe and the Movement for Democratic Change leader Morgan
But Mugabe refused to talk, angrily denouncing Obasanjo, and
late last month Chissano gave up, perhaps reluctant to get between the onetime
allies who now clash furiously whenever they meet. Observers say Mugabe now
considers Obasanjo a deadlier enemy that British prime minister Tony Blair.
It wasn’t always so.
The two were once linked closely at both
political and personal levels and Obasanjo owes his life to Mugabe and President
Yoweri Museveni of Uganda whose intervention after the Common Market of Eastern
and Southern Africa summit of 1994 saved him from the hangman’s noose during the
murderous military dictatorship of the late Sani Abacha. Others like Nigerian
author Ken Saro Wiwa were less fortunate, and Abacha sent them to the
When the international community accused Mugabe of rigging the
2000 and 2002 parliamentary and presidential elections, Obasanjo returned the
favour, defending Mugabe against scathing criticism from the West. He was among
the first leaders to endorse the authenticity of the controversial election
Mugabe responded by openly supported Obasanjo’s own dubious
win in 2003, which was also mired in controversy amid accusations of vote
rigging, political violence and intimidation.
The two leaders teamed up
to condemn the West and their election observers, particularly those from the
European Union. Both played the Pan Africanist card and accused the EU and its
allies of racism steeped in eurocentrism in their outlook towards
Mugabe attended Obasanjo’s inauguration in May 2003, playing to
the international media gallery in an apparent show of solidarity and
But then came the falling out, when Obasanjo committed what
Mugabe perceived as the greatest possible sin - calling for his resignation.
Worse still, the comments were made in a powerful international newspaper,
London’s Sunday Times.
“If I say I am thinking about my succession,
that’s an indication that I think he [Mugabe] should think of his. In my part of
the world there are many ways you can tell a man to go to hell,” he is reported
to have said.
To Mugabe, who is well known for viewing anyone who
suggests he step down as an eternal enemy, this was unforgivable. Tried and
tested lieutenants, including the late Eddison Zvobgo, Edgar Tekere and Margaret
Dongo, who’ve made similar demands have all sunk into political
Also unforgivable was Obasanjo’s support for the white farmers
of Zimbabwe, who he described as true Africans and invited to begin commercial
farming in Nigeria along the banks of the Niger River.
He widely praised
the governor of Kwara State, Bukola Saraki, for inviting them into the country,
saying they have specialist farming skills and should not be allowed to go to
places like Australia.
Then in late August, Obasanjo said he wanted every
Nigerian state to give new homes and land to farmers expelled from their
properties by Mugabe.
Some fifteen Zimbabwean farmers eventually took
Obasanjo up on his offer.
Following his controversial land grab, Mugabe
has become incandescent with rage at anyone who expresses sympathy with the
displaced farmers who he views as white imperialists and accused his onetime
friend of selling out.
Then came the Commonwealth saga.
Mugabe’s controversial election victory in 2002, a troika of Commonwealth heads
of state – Obasanjo, Australia’s John Howard and South Africa’s Thabo Mbeki -
was set up to recommend whether Zimbabwe should be suspended.
confident that with the help of African solidarity and by playing the race card
he would convince Mbeki and Obasanjo to overrule Howard. When the trio
recommended Zimbabwe’s suspension, the rift between Mugabe and Obasanjo opened
In 2003, Obasanjo faced a tricky dilemma when he had to
decide whether or not to invite Mugabe to the Commonwealth Summit in Abuja, the
Nigerian capital. Mugabe’s destructive and racist policies threatened to plunge
Commonwealth nations into a quasi-racial divide, with African countries on one
side and the white community (Britain, Australia and New Zealand) on the
Obasanjo was faced with a dilemma because Britain’s Tony Blair,
Mugabe’s sworn enemy, threatened not to attend if Mugabe was invited. Obasanjo
had earlier on baffled Mugabe by trashing an attempt by African, Caribbean and
Pacific countries to lift the Commonwealth suspension against
In the end, Obasanjo did not invite Mugabe to attend, prompting
a furious Mugabe to withdraw Zimbabwe from the Commonwealth. Mugabe felt deeply
betrayed because he had assumed that Obasanjo was on his side.
years later, Mugabe’s government accused Obasanjo’s government of teaming up
with Blair to fund the opposition MDC’s 2005 election campaign. Mugabe argued
that the MDC was offered 200 million US dollars through Nigeria for its campaign
activities. Mugabe has always alleged that the MDC is a front for Britain’s
desire for regime change and Obasanjo therefore, in Mugabe’s view, was
committing yet another unforgivable sin.
- Kamu Yananai is the pseudonym
of a Zimbabwean journalist.
Letter from America
BY STANFORD MUKASA
NEW YORK - The United States is putting
finishing touches to a tougher law against Mugabe and his officials. According
to the new secretary of state for African Affairs, Jendayi Frazer, relatives of
Mugabe and his top officials will be included in the travel ban.
Frazer has taken a tough line against Mugabe
beginning from the time she was US ambassador to South Africa. At that time she
openly criticized Thabo Mbeki’s policy of quiet diplomacy, saying it had not
achieved any tangible results. Her strategy at the time was to put together a
coalition of the willing to work out practical strategies to deal with Mugabe.
There is reason to believe that with Frazer as assistant secretary of
state for Africa the United States will continue to play a leading role in
shaping targeted sanctions against Mugabe and his Zanu (PF) cronies.
Meanwhile, Mugabe has been telling the international press that
Zimbabweans are “very, very happy.” He also said they were going hungry because
they only want to eat sadza, which is in short supply, and not potatoes and
rice, which he said were available in large quantities (but at prohibitive
However, the reality of the Zimbabwean situation was brought to
the doorstep of the United Nations by a group of over 50 Zimbabweans and their
friends who staged an anti-Mugabe demonstration at its Headquarters in New York
last Saturday to coincide with his visit to the general assembly.
demonstration was organized by the North American Coalition for a Free Zimbabwe
(NACFREEZ), who had earlier sent a fax appealing to former president Bill
Clinton, who was hosting the world leaders summit,to use his international
influence to bring pressure to bear on Mugabe.
Sadly the protesters never
got to confront the tyrant because he was whisked away an hour before they
The protesters, chanting ‘Mugabe must go’, held posters and
banners which read: ‘Hurricane Katrina did to New Orleans what Hurricane Mugabe
did to Zimbabwe’; ‘Hurricane Katrina killed 500 people. Hurricane Mugabe killed
over 30,000’; ‘Robert Mugabe must be brought before the International Criminal
Court for crimes against humanity in Zimbabwe’.
I had an interesting
conversation with Sunday Mail reporter Munyaradzi Huni, who was in New York to
cover Mugabe’s visit, in which he demonstrated how he and his fellow
journalistic disciples of Mugabe in the state-controlled media had now swallowed
hook, line and sinker the propaganda that whatever problem exists in Zimbabwe it
must be blamed on anyone but Mugabe.
There appears to be a feeling among
these propaganda journalists that if they publish anything about human rights
violations, the killing of opposition supporters by Mugabe’s thugs and
destruction of people’s property they will be labelled supporters of the MDC.
But it was not only Mugabe’s journalistic disciple who visited the
protesters at the UN. Another man, who claimed to work for the local press, came
to take pictures. We later learned from our sources that he was in fact a member
of Mugabe’s dreaded CIO. Indeed we saw him engaged in a conversation in Shona
The collaborative link between Mugabe’s CIO and his disciples
in the journalistic community is real and active. That link includes the police,
army and the militia thugs.
Mugabe must have heard from his sources that
there would be an anti- Mugabe demonstration at the UN. He did not show up.
Without the protection of his militia thugs he is timid, helpless and a coward.
Munyaradzi Huni and his CIO compatriot who came to take pictures and
notes about the demonstration must have seen how the rule of law is respected.
New York police were at the demonstration to maintain order and protect the
Had that protest been held in Harare the protest would
have lasted a few minutes before being broken up by Mugabe’s police and militia
The anti-Mugabe protest movement in the United States is gaining
momentum. With a new no-nonsense assistant secretary of state for Africa, Mugabe
is in for a rough time.
Asylum seekers face deportation
LONDON – Three more failed Zimbabwean
asylum-seekers are in detention this week awaiting deportation to countries
neighbouring Zimbabwe. This is despite the moratorium in place until the final
judgement by Judge Collins scheduled for October 4.
All three detainees arrived in the UK on Malawian
or South African passports, although they have proof that they were born and
raised in Zimbabwe. The Home Office position is that, having arrived in the
country on passports other than Zimbabwean, they can safely be returned to those
countries. But the detainees fear arrest and possible deportation home to
Zimbabwe as soon as they arrive in South Africa or Malawi.
several documents proving my Zimbabwean nationality. My brother is currently in
hospital in Bulawayo after being severely beaten by politically-motivated
thugs,” one of the detainees told The Zimbabwean in a telephone interview from
Yarlswood Detention Centre this week.
She was scheduled to be deported on
Tuesday night but her lawyer managed to have the order stayed at the last
One of the other detainees refused to board the Ethiopian
Airways plane to Malawi on Saturday and was returned to Tinsley House where he
remains, as lawyers and human rights activists battle to have his deportation
Let them eat potatoes and rice
Listening to Mugabe speak it becomes quite
clear that the ostrich syndrome is more serious than we had originally thought.
When it was plain for everyone to see that the majority of Zimbabweans faced
with widespread hunger at the beginning of this year he continued to insist that
the nation was expecting a bumper crop and did not need food aid.
Right now, with more than four million people in
desperate need of food aid, he is still refusing to accept international
assistance – saying they might indeed be short of maize, but Zimbabweans can eat
potatoes and rice. Where in Zimbabwe can one find potatoes and rice? These are
grown only in limited quantities and have always been the preserve of the
wealthy. We used to have rice as a treat at Christmas time, or at weddings.
Three weeks ago, his officials themselves admitted that the country had
only three weeks’ supply of maize left. Yet Mugabe insisted at the UN this week
that he would not allow NGO’s to assist with famine relief efforts because “they
tended to politicise humanitarian assistance”. With these proud words he
condemns millions of his people to suffer the agonies of starvation.
this public abrogation of his government’s responsibility, in no less a place
than the hallowed halls of the United Nations headquarters in New York, Mugabe
has once and for all forfeited the right to rule Zimbabwe.
It surely must
be evident to all, beyond any shadow of doubt, that the man is a tyrant, ruling
only by terror and that he must be stopped. Now. We call upon the international
community to act – before it is too late. In many ways, for many people, it is
already too late.
Elsewhere in this newspaper we report the leader of the
opposition MDC, Morgan Tsvangirai’s call to the people of Zimbabwe to be
prepared to die for their rights. “We want you to be brave, to be ready to die
fighting this regime,” he says. It should never have come to this.
has the world been so fooled by the clever manipulations of one man – whose
subtle use of colonial guilt and hatred, together with eloquent anti-imperialist
rhetoric, has woven a blanket of deceit – under cover of which millions have
suffered unspeakable horrors?
Because these millions have not actually
died – they have just had their lives ruined by rape, torture, displacement,
terror, destruction, hunger, disease, and impoverishment – the world has failed
to act. It seems a body count is needed before anything can happen.
Shame on the international community. Shame on the African Union. Shame
on the United Nations. This is 2005 – not 1789. Marie Antoinette was the
feather-headed queen of a French monarch who ruled by divine right. And the
non-cake-eating French citizens soon chopped off her head. Mugabe stands before
the nations of the world, masquerading as the democratically-elected leader of
the Republic of Zimbabwe. But modern human rights sensitivities prevent his
public execution by non-potato-eating Zimbabweans. What a crazy world.
Senate debate diverts attention
HARARE - The issue of the senate has come at
a time when the country is facing major challenges as far as the economy is
concerned. In order to divert the attention of the people from the real issues,
the country is facing another decisive election before December and this has
become a crucial debate everywhere one goes.
By further diverting people’s attention Mugabe
has ensured that he maintains a grip on the country, as there will be no chance
of discussing the real issues as people would be preoccupied with political
issues of the day.
Analysts have noted that the shifting of attention and
the blame game that Mugabe uses ensures that he survives on the political scene
and escapes unscathed from his disastrous escapades.
“The use of
propaganda by the public media, that is both the Print and electronic media,
Mugabe ensures that he gets away with murder and genocide of the economy,” said
a political science lecturer at the University of Zimbabwe. – Tinotenda
Operation Garikai a scam
HARARE - A major humanitarian crisis is
looming in Harare as thousands of victims of Operation Murambatsvina are still
living rough, five months after the controversial clean up exercise ended. Mike
Davies, chairman of the Combined Harare Residents’ Association, said areas that
were fine before the operation now resemble typical squatter slums with plastic
The rainy season starts in October and tens of
thousands of people will not have accommodation, raising more doubts about the
government’s housing programme. Davies said, “Operation Garikai is a scam as
very few houses have been built and large numbers of people are living in the
ruins of their former houses, only protected by plastic.”
officers have been unable to drive prisoners to court and thousands of buses lie
idle. A serious health hazard is looming as very few areas have had refuse
collection, water or electricity. Meanwhile, Davies alleged that the chairman of
the Harare Commission, Sekesai Makwavarara, is awaiting a US$27,000 allocation
from the Reserve Bank for an official visit to Russia. - Violet Gonda, SW Radio
Police probe Murerwa, Pasi
HARARE – Zimbabwe police are probing the
country’s Finance Minister Herbert Murerwa and Commissioner of Taxes Gershom
Pasi over allegations the two may have swindled the state of millions of dollars
in hard cash.
Sources at police headquarters in Harare said the
law enforcement agency’s special investigations desk had opened the probe after
Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (ZIMRA) workers, arrested in an anti-corruption
crackdown at the revenue body, alleged their two bosses had swindled the state
of huge amounts of foreign currency.
Pasi heads ZIMRA which falls under
Murerwa, one of the few Cabinet ministers until now
untainted by accusations of corruption, refused to discuss the matter telling
ZimOnline to “go to whoever gave you that rubbish,” before switching off his
According to our sources, information voluntarily supplied to the
police by ZIMRA officials indicated that there was a syndicate linked to Murerwa
and Pasi that was involved in diverting foreign currency paid as carbon tax by
foreign motorists entering Zimbabwe through Beitbridge border post on the
country’s border with South Africa.
This is not the first time police
have investigated senior members of President Robert Mugabe’s government. Among
other prominent government officials the police have probed are State Security
Minister Didymus Mutasa for allegedly looting billions of dollars worth of
equipment from former white farms.
The police have also probed former
parliamentary speaker and now Rural Housing Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa for
illegally dealing in gold. But in all these cases, investigations have been
abandoned midstream reportedly after Mugabe intervened. - ZimOnline
Getting Zimbabwe back to work
There is a great deal of nonsense being
talked about the issue of economic recovery in Zimbabwe. We are now into our 7th
consecutive year of decline in our GDP. At the start of this collapse our GDP
was about US$8,4 billion – it is now down to just over US$4 billion. Exports
were about US$3,4 billion and are now down to US$1 billion. Formal sector
employment was 1,4 million in 1997 and now stands at about 800 000. Life
expectancy has collapsed from nearly 60 years in 1990 to less than 34 years
today. All social and human welfare indices are negative.
At the end of 2004, the Minister of Finance and
the Governor of the Reserve Bank in Zimbabwe both claimed that the decline in
our economic fortunes had been halted and that there would be some recovery of
lost ground in 2005. They both predicted lower inflation and 5 per cent growth
in real terms. The reality has been somewhat different, GDP will decline by 7 to
10 per cent this year and inflation is set to rise to record levels. Far from
the predicted 28 per cent growth in agricultural output, it is now clear that
the past season was a disaster from every perspective.
So how do we turn
this economy around and start to see some recovery of the ground we have lost in
the past seven years?
It is clear that the State is unable to discipline
itself to set exchange rates at a level that would balance both exporters and
importers interests. Exchange rates are one of the most important prices in any
economy and in a country like Zimbabwe where the economy is export driven, they
are critical. Although we have a so-called “auction” system in the Reserve Bank,
the reality is that the Bank actually sets the exchange rates and that there is
no transparency or accountability in the system. You cannot tax exporters, as we
do, to the extent of over half their gross income and expect the export sector
to grow. It is therefore vital that exchange rates be unified within one market
driven system and that these reflect in full, the supply and demand situation
for foreign exchange in the country.
Floating the dollar would therefore
be one of the most important initial steps required to kick start recovery. At
the same time exchange control, which puts too much power in the hands of the
staff of the Reserve Bank and which is impossible to administer in any economy
so that it can address all needs, should be relaxed. Perhaps exchange control on
the capital account should be retained, but even this should go as soon as
stability returns. Such radical steps have been taken by all our neighbors
except South Africa, which continues to delude itself that it can manage the
South African system in the old way. Zambia, Mozambique and Botswana all now run
economies where exchange controls and managed exchange rates are a thing of the
The next step would be to unify the interest rate regime being
administered by the Reserve Bank. It would be impossible to raise rates to the
level that is required to give investors a positive return on their investments
and savings, but rates should be raised and the current policy of multiple and
sub economic rates should be abandoned.
This will have an immediate and
serious impact on the banking sector and those firms who have been surviving on
the patronage of the State and abusing the interest rates that the Reserve Bank
has made available to the private and the public sector, will find themselves in
great difficulty. But it is vital that all those responsible for economic
activity recognise that borrowing has a cost and that returns to the investor
and to those who save, must be protected.
To bring inflation back under
control, interest rate policy must move in tandem with fiscal discipline and
tight budgetary controls. Zimbabwe simply cannot go on printing money and
ignoring the consequences. All budgets should be reviewed against current and
projected income and adjusted where required. Strict limits should be imposed on
the budget deficit and all parties to the process must observe
Such a review will throw up the need to undertake a massive
reduction in State expenditure in many areas and these must be carefully
targeted and implemented. Priorities in terms of State activity should be
debated and established and firm agreed guidelines for revenue allocations set.
For example, 20 per cent of total government revenues for education and 8 to 10
per cent for health services and so on.
It is clear that because the
economy has shrunk by over 50 per cent that these budget cuts will make many
government activities impossible to maintain. Foreign aid will be required to
meet essential social service targets in health and education. It might also be
necessary to seek assistance with the cost of down sizing other government
Finally it would be essential to start to get to grips with
the national debt. This now stands at over US$7 billion or nearly two years GDP
and seven years of gross export receipts. During the early recovery phase this
problem will have to be encapsulated and dealt with on the basis of what
resources the State has to service the debt. We might, for example, say that we
are prepared to assign 18 per cent of national government income to debt
servicing – no more.
This would then be worked back into a debt service
ratio and creditors informed that for the time being this is all we can afford.
At a later stage the issue of odious debt and debt relief will be taken up and
hopefully this would reduce the debt burden to manageable proportions.
Eddie Cross is an economist and Member of the National Executive of the
The Sunday Mail
Eight Zimbabwean players 'missing'
From correspondents in
EIGHT Zimbabwean football players and two officials have
failed to return to Zimbabwe after a trip to Britain, the state-run Herald
newspaper reported today.
Football insiders believe the men may have
stayed behind to flee economical and political hardships in their own country.
Six players from the Harare-based CAPS United club and two from Highlanders,
based in Bulawayo, failed to catch a flight from London's Heathrow airport while
two officials also remained behind.
"Zimbabwean football is counting the
cost after eight players deserted ... and remained behind in England in one of
the biggest crises to hit the country's battered national sporting discipline,"
the paper said.
The Herald named the missing CAPS United players as
vice-captain Artwell Mabhiza, Silent Katumba, David Sengu, Raymond Undi, Elton
Chimedza and Tichaona Nyenda.
Highlander players, reserve goalkeeper
Luckson Mutanga and defender Dalisizwe Dhlamini have also disappeared, the paper
said, adding that CAPS official Valentine Gwaze "is believed to have deserted
"Gwaze did not even turn up at Heathrow Airport for the team's
flight back home on Thursday night while a second official, CAPS United general
manager Joe Makuvire joined the queue but then disappeared into the massive
airport complex," it said.
The two Highlander players, Mutanga and Dhlamini,
"only checked in their luggage but disappeared into the crowd," the Herald said.
CBZ to Build Plush New Home
Financial Gazette (Harare)
Posted to the web September 23, 2005
CBZ Holdings Limited is planning to construct a new headquarters in the leafy
Borrowdale area at an estimated cost of $70 billion, The Property Gazette can
The retail bank, now rated number two in terms of share of deposits
and balance sheet size, requires a new home to accommodate its fast-expanding
portfolio that now includes the country's second largest asset management
business - Datvest, acquired this year.
Confirming the latest
development, Nyasha Makuvise, the managing director and chief executive officer
of CBZ, said the bank had already started considering architectural designs for
"This has been necessitated by the lack of space in our current
headquarters. The growth of our business into a holding company and the current
location has not been convenient when one considers constraints associated with
the central business district as a prime location," he said.
not say how much the building would cost on completion, citing the regular
changes in the prices of building materials and other construction costs due to
"The cost of this project has not been determined at this stage.
The design and the prevailing market rates of construction at the time will have
major influence on the costs," said the CBZ boss.
The Property Gazette is
reliably informed, however, that the project could cost at least $70 billion at
current costs and should be completed within the next two years.
looking at a time frame of about 18 to 24 months from the completion and
approval of the design aspects," Makuvise said, adding that the banking group
would fund the project using its own cash resources.
"We plan on funding this
project mainly from internally generated reserves. This project has been in our
plans for some time and savings to this effect had been considered," said
CBZ, which has remained stable despite a sector-wide liquidity
crisis that saw the collapse of several locally owned banks, acquired leading
fund manager Datvest Asset Management earlier this year, and plans further
Daniel Mandishona, president of the Institute of Architects
of Zimbabwe, revealed that CBZ has instituted a design competition for the
"The design competition instituted by CBZH with architects is
meant to come up with the best design. The closing date for the competition is
September 28 2005 and so far 20 competitors have registered to participate,"
Many supporters had
difficulty getting to the Vigil today because of the latest ant-Iraq war demo.
Roads were closed, helicopters hovered overhead. But it turned out to be a
subdued event. As Vigil people arrived they remarked that our drumming and
singing could be heard way above the musicians from Trafalgar
Square. Among the loudest
singers was Ben
Evans whose theatrical
production “Qabuka” is being staged at the Soho Theatre in London from 6th –
8th October. It is based on the experiences of Zimbabweans in exile
described as “a postcard from the edge which tells their compelling stories with
song, dance, humour and mischief.” Among those taking part is Patson from
Leicester, who was with us today on the drums during a break from
The plight of asylum
seekers from Zimbabwe is to be taken up by the
Vigil next week – ahead of the court decision on sending back to
Zimbabwe failed asylum seekers.
The Refugee Council is supporting us in making known to the general public here
that Zimbabwe as it is presently ruled is not a safe place to send anyone back
to (except Zanu-PF supporters of course).
A meeting of Vigil
supporters was held before the Vigil to approve plans for the way forward. We
decided that, on the Vigil’s third anniversary on 12th October, we
would present to 10 Downing
Street our current petition “NO
SHAKING HANDS WITH MUGABE – The latest elections in Zimbabwe were once again stolen by
the Mugabe regime with the connivance of its neighbours. Retaliation is now
being meted out to people who supported the opposition. We urge the British
government to end Mugabe’s reign of terror and halt his drive for legitimacy:
1) Bring the matter to the UN Security Council, 2) Make it a priority during
term as President of the EU and G8 (group of leading industrial nations), 3) Put
pressure on South Africa to allow democracy in Zimbabwe, 4. Extend targeted
sanctions against Mugabe’s cronies.”
We expect the Mugabe regime
will come tumbling down immediately (hopefully) but, if not, we will just
continue with our next plan – a petition calling upon the UN Security Council to
send a representative to Zimbabwe to investigate human rights abuses. This
basically rephrases the Vigil’s first petition which now has the support of
several countries including Australia and New
Zealand, who have asked the UN
Secretary General to send in a special rapporteur to report on allegations of
human rights abuse in Zimbabwe.
We were thrilled this week
to receive a letter from the Human Rights Office of the United Nations in
response to this petition about human rights abuse in Zimbabwe. It appears that our
petition has been discussed on several occasions and we have now been invited to
present detailed evidence. We have no problem with that and some of our
supporters can give personal testimonies. It appears that Zimbabwe is moving up the United
Nations agenda. The Vigil is encouraged to
know that its efforts are reaching its targets and making a difference – an
answer to all those who ask what we think we are achieving.
FOR THE RECORD: about 50
supporters (including the Vigil dog) came today.
IMF says will verify sources of Zimbabwe payment
"The board has asked us to get back to them to verify the
source of the funds. It is something we need to talk to the authorities
Washington - The International Monetary Fund said on Friday it
plans to verify the source of a $120 million payment by Zimbabwe to the global
lender last month in a bid by the country to pay down its IMF arrears. Our
understanding right now is that this was a voluntary submission of proceeds
(from export receipts)," Siddharth Tiwari, deputy director in the IMF's Africa
Department, told a news conference. "The (IMF) board has asked us to get back to
them to verify the source of the funds. It is something we need to talk to the
authorities about," he added.
We will prevail - soon
BY THE PATRIOT
HARARE - We are all sick and tired of the
endless reams published here about the so-called economic turn around, the agric
revolution, the GDP. Ministers waffle on, papers report, commentators spill
forth, never ending views, promises and predictions. I saw a classic yesterday,
Sanyati are going to produce 45 tons of mushrooms per month, really!
But still nothing changes. Mbeki has his own
agenda, the mobsters are fighting for their very lives, the people of Zimbabwe
continue to suffer, the country has been raped, but still they won't relent. Why
won't they allow that the country is in ruins? Their policies have been rendered
useless, but still they persevere, grabbing farms, ruining, looting and
stealing. And we read about it, SABC Africa reports timidly, the Deputy in
Johannesburg urges that lessons can be learnt from Zim. Damn right! What not to
do, to produce another basket case! And so we go into the next stage, rehashing
the constitution. I, being of the land, don't know much about denying passports
or creating senates etc, but what I do know is, about the land, the
When the then CFU chairmen was forced to meet our President's
grass-hatted, bearded thug, who personally destroyed this country with his very
own hands, it was to lambaste the white farmers and to tell them that, seeing as
they had stolen all the land in the first place, Mr. Warvet wasn't stealing the
land, only reclaiming what was rightfully his. Our President not only allowed
this to happen, but orchestrated it from the beginning.
Don't let us for
one moment think that "unfortunate emotive factors" got in the way of the
jambanja, and now they want to fix it. Or that it got out of control or that new
farmers were to be made into farmers, it was about destroying perceived enemies,
political and personal survival. Now they want to nationalize the land. What
difference does this make on the ground? What difference will this make to us
that have lost everything? What difference will this make to those people
displaced and made homeless across the country, fighting for their children,
struggling for a meal?
I wonder how many people actually know where the
word jambanja comes from? It’s a corruption of the word jamboree. Do they think
it was all a game, a joke? A game for kids attending a jamboree? Four million
needing food aid is one hell of a joke! Do all the replicates of new farms think
it’s a jamboree, run in and grab what you can? Even now farms are still are
being closed, dairy farms in Enterprise, tobacco farms in Mash East.
Dr gave these guys one trillion dollars last year to grow tobacco, so far they
have sold 150 billion dollars worth at 25,000 to one US$! Yet they got their
trillion dollars at 6200 to one! I, being of the land, can tell you now, that
the tobacco is finished, a few more weeks maybe and that's it. So now the new
farmers bleat, "money, fertilizer, tractors, quelea birds" etc.
the irrigation infrastructure destroyed in the first place if this was real land
reform? Why not ask the new farmers where all the pumps and piping has gone. The
Dr has another 7 trillion dollars for them! Please, oh God, tell these people
it's over! Our nation is poised to burst forth into its rightful place, and the
true Zimbabweans will rise, phoenix like, to re-grow and prosper. So go ahead,
nationalize the land so you can get your 99 year lease, that's not going to feed
four million people, that's not going to buy our medicines, our fuel, pay our
teachers or run our hospitals!
I read, some months ago, that our good Dr
had started to print the new currency so that the bearer cheques can be
recalled, I only hope he's printed million dollar notes, because surly as the
sun will rise tomorrow he will need to give the new farmers 70 trillion, to do
nothing next year!
Zimbabwe, such an amazing country! So small, land
locked, has no oil (but does have platimium), so proud and resilient! There is
not a drop of fuel to be found at any garage in the whole country, yet we suffer
traffic jams. How could anyone understand us?
Not the British, not the
Americans, and most certainly not the South Africans. Westerners call for a
velvet revolution, its not going to happen here I'm afraid, things work
differently here. We will prevail in our own fashion, the ordinary Zimbabwean,
the man on the street, we will win our war our own way. The ministers are
fighting for their very own survival but they forget we are the people, the
heart of our nation, and, as Smith forgot, you can't wage war on yourself, on
your own people! You can suppress them, knock down their houses, displace them
to remote areas you can beat them and murder them but time will always catch up
with you. Tyrants and their gangsters create and nurture their own enemies, they
craft their own demise, they fall by their own swords... Soon. (Mwana Wevhu is
Desperate Zimbabweans flood SA
JOHANNESBURG – The South African media
reports that hundreds of desperate Zimbabweans are flooding into rural areas of
Limpopo province every day looking for food and work.
The growing crisis has prompted the National
Intelligence Agency (NIA) to commission an audit to establish the extent of the
problem. NIA chief, Billy Masetla, was reported as saying he hoped political
intervention “would give rise to the possibility of halting the economic
The crisis is concentrated around Musina and Thohoyandou, but
other areas of Limpopo are also affected. Police spokesman Superintendent Ailwei
Mushavhanamadi was reported as saying the uncontrolled influx was “a very
serious problem”. Illegal immigrants were deported 48 hours after being
arrested, he added.
The Department of Home Affairs said moves were under
way to scrap visa requirements with Zimbabwe.
Former farmers call for food aid
HARARE – The former white farmer Justice for
Agriculture Trust (JAG) has called on President Robert Mugabe and his government
to immediately appeal for food aid, dismissing as “fictitious and scurrilous”
government claims that Zimbabwe had enough food stocks.
JAG chairman John Worswick, said: “The government
should make an immediate formal appeal for food assistance with the United
Nations World Food Programme (WFP), and deviate from its stance of restricting
food relief, which has seen the likes of South African Council of Churches
(SACC) being frustrated by the state’s red tape.”
controversial seizure of white farms is largely blamed for food shortages in
Zimbabwe over the past five years, refuses to make a formal appeal for aid
although he last June personally assured WFP boss James Morris that his
government would accept help from the UN food organ and other relief
Intelligence minister Didymus Mutasa, who oversees food aid
procurement and distribution, was quoted by state media as saying the government
was importing about 15 000 tonnes per week from South Africa.
security experts were quick to dismiss Mutasa’s assurances saying that even
quantities the government minister claimed were coming into the country fell far
short of the more than 37 000 tonnes the country requires per week. -
Mugabe ally firms grip on Zim
Nicholas van Hoogstraten
HARARE — British-based property baron
Nicholas van Hoogstraten continues to increase his stranglehold on the tottering
Zimbabwean economy amid revelations that he now controls a large chunk of shares
in one of the country’s biggest agro-industrial firms, CFI Limited.
A close ally of President Robert Mugabe, van
Hoogstraten now owns about seven percent of the export-oriented CFI Limited
through his United Kingdom-based Messina Investments. That makes him the second
largest shareholder after SMM Holdings, which controls almost 40 percent of the
According to stockbrokers, the British businessman
controls more than 34 million shares or 6.97 percent of CFI. The shares have
been acquired during the past few months as van Hoogstraten tries to wrestle
control of key economic sectors.
“It looks like he is using his links to
the political establishment and the economic crisis in the country to establish
himself as a dominant business force here,” a stockbroker said.
Hoogstraten was in the news a few months ago after he again snapped huge chunks
of shares to become the single largest shareholder in NMB Bank Limited and
Hwange Colliery. He controls 32 percent of coal producer Hwange and about 20
percent of the up-market NMB.
A businessman who once described Mugabe as
“100 percent decent and incorruptible”, van Hoogstraten has courted controversy
in the past due to his open support for the Harare authorities.
support of the Mugabe regime, his farm has been spared from the land grab that
affected thousands of other white landowners. - ZimOnline
Tsvangirai shows worker solidarity
Morgan Tsvangirai walks to work as fuel
HARARE – Zimbabwe opposition leader Morgan
Tsvangirai now walks to work at his city centre offices, about five kilometres
from his home, in solidarity with thousands of workers forced to walk as much as
20km daily because of worsening fuel shortages in the country.
The spokesman of the former trade union
leader-turned-opposition politician, William Bango, said Tsvangirai was himself
struggling to get fuel and had resorted to walking to highlight the plight of
ordinary Zimbabweans now walking across the country to conduct their business.
A severe fuel crisis, itself the result of acute foreign currency
shortages, has virtually brought crisis-sapped Zimbabwe to a halt.
example, Harare town clerk Nomutsa Chideya last Wednesday told Parliament’s
portfolio committee on local government that the fuel crisis had crippled
service delivery in the capital.
The city council was unable to respond
to emergencies such as water or sewerage pipe bursts and only one fire engine
had a quarter tank of diesel, Chideya said.
The fuel and foreign currency
shortages have combined to bring down production in Zimbabwe’s manufacturing
sector, already weakened by six years of economic recession, to about 40
President Robert Mugabe’s government last month allowed fuel
stations to sell diesel and petrol in hard cash in a desperate bid to raise
foreign currency for oil imports. But even the garages that have had constant
supplies of fuel since they began charging hard cash for the commodity have been
without petrol or diesel for the last week.
This, apparently because the
government used all the money raised by the private garages to repay outstanding
debt with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in order to avoid expulsion from
Zimbabwe in August made a surprise US$120 million payment to
the IMF, which it said was raised from “internal resources”. The IMF responded
by giving the southern African nation another six months to raise more money to
clear the remaining US$175 million debt.
Fuel industry players on
Thursday told ZimOnline the long-running fuel crisis had further deteriorated
also because major oil companies with resources to import the commodity were
holding back because they wanted pump prices increased in line with the new
US/Zimbabwe dollar exchange rate.
The local currency slipped from $24 000
to $26 000 against the greenback on Tuesday in line with movement in annual
inflation from 254.8 percent in July to 265.1 percent in August.
major fuel merchants have said that the price is not viable as they are forced
to buy foreign currency at $26 000 to the US dollar when they would have sold
the fuel at $22 300 per litre at most," said an official at the Petroleum
Marketers Association (PMZ), representing oil firms in Zimbabwe.
official, who did not want to be named, said the oil firms were planning to meet
Energy Minister Mike Nyambuya in “a few days time” to request to be allowed to
increase pump prices.
Both PMZ chief executive Muzi Bukwele and Nyambuya
could not be immediately reached for comment on the pricing issue.
from fuel, food, electricity, essential medical drugs and nearly every other
basic survival commodity is in short supply in Zimbabwe as the country grapples
its worst ever economic crisis, which critics blame on mismanagement and
repression by Mugabe. The veteran leader denies the charge. -
Catholic students meet
BULAWAYO - Oh, Lord, why are you sleeping?
(cf. Mk 8, 38) Like the disciples in the boat surrounded by threatening waves
Catholic students from all regions of the country gathered at Bulawayo
Polytechnic College for their national conference NMCS (National Movement of
Catholic Students) last month.
The various presentations and discussions
highlighted the challenges which the present situation in the country poses to
our Christian faith. It was deeply felt that we needed the powerful intervention
of God, like Jesus who calmed the storm, and a courageous witness of justice and
The conference itself was up against all kinds of odds. No salt,
no bread, no cups and a shortages of petrol, sugar and upfu (mealie meal). The
presence of fellow Jesuits in Bulawayo was our rescue. Fr Nigel Johnson SJ
provided transport and company to the chaplain, Fr Andrews Thekkekara SJ and Fr
George Croft SJ chipped in with cups from the Seminary and helped to get us
salt. 121 people attended the conference, including five from Zambia, three from
Malawi and one from South Africa.
A highlight of the meeting was the
presentation of two visitors from Zambia, Sharon and Belinda, both HIV positive.
Their witness touched all participants and strengthened in them the resolve to
live positively without AIDS. Meanwhile, the University of Zimbabwe has opened
again. The orientation week had a great impact and many new faces can now be
seen at Mass. More than 90 part-one students have registered and will hopefully
participate in activities of the Catholic Students Association. We believe that
in the storms to come the Lord is with us.
Sent: Friday, September 23, 2005 9:36 PM
Subject: JAG Open Letters Forum No.
383 dated 23 September 2005
JAG OPEN LETTER FORUM
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com
send any material for publication in the Open Letter Forum to
firstname.lastname@example.org with "For Open Letter Forum" in the
Paramedics will turn to a victim's cell phone for
clues to that person's
identity. You can make their job much easier with a
simple idea that they
are trying to get everyone to adopt: ICE. ICE stands
for In Case of
Emergency. If you add an entry in the contacts list in your
under ICE, with the name and phone no. of the person that the
services should call on your behalf, you can save them a lot of
have your loved ones contacted quickly. It only takes a few moments
time to do.
Paramedics know what ICE means and they look for
ICE your cell phone NOW!
Please pass this one
REFERENCE: ZANU PF CHEFS EXPOSED. (White farmers
''forced'' to bankroll
poll campaign. THE INDEPENDENT 29TH JULY
Having been born on Wicklow Farm, Selous, 61 years ago and being a
of the Selous farming community for 40 years as a farmer, I was
disgusted when this article appeared in the Independent on the
29th of July
2005, but I was not surprised. We have known that the remaining
the once proud Selous farming community have bankrolled Chegutu
Webster Shamu and ZANU PF for a long time. It is a pity the other 14
involved, were not also exposed but one does not have to be a
scientist to know who they are.
How these people can support a
man and the party who were responsible for
the many evictions that took place
and for basically destroying the Selous
farming area as we knew it. Or were
they perhaps in cohorts with this man
so they could hang on to their land at
our expense. These very same people
gave Mr. Shamu a dinner party at the
Selous club to congratulate him when
he was made Policy Implementation
Minister, or was this to stamp out
rampant extortion by bogus people as Mr.
I would like to challenge Mr. Kobus Joubert who when he
retired as Z.T.A.
President said in his farewell speech to congress that he
''his'' farmers not to get involved in African politics and also
should have sub divided their farms for redistribution. Is he not
involved in African politics by bankrolling the ZANU PF election
and to the best of my knowledge he has not give one square inch of
the shambolic land redistribution programme. He also told us at a
at the Selous club that ''some of us would go and some of us would
did he have access to the master plan. Last year some remaining
this same community came on to my farms and other farms in the
are currently occupied by A1 & A 2 settlers, paid the occupiers
up front to
cut and bale grass for resale for their own pockets. Fortunately
I had a
tip off and found out about it and was able to confront the
involved on my properties. One of them is still using one of my dip
and handling facilities and before each dip day the settlers are paid
kind for the use of my facilities. Some of them are now also employing
''green bombers'' to protect them and their properties. By these
actions all they are actually doing is condoning what has happened to
and our farms and used the window of opportunity to get involved with
regime and to support the people that have been illegally settled on
farms to their own advantage. Where have the morals of our once friends
neighbours gone? We must feel sorry for them I suppose as they have
greed to overtake their moral standards. These people will spend the
of their farming days looking over their shoulders to see who is
them and to be slaves to their masters for all time as they now
themselves locked into this corrupt system. R.D.A.
My personal credentials include serving as a Federal
Luanshya in the Copperbelt of Northern Rhodesia where I had a
practice with branches in Kitwe and Broken Hill. Upon Independence
Zambia I returned the UK with minimal capital after 11 years of
Since then I have remained intensely concerned about the sad
awful developments in Central Africa. With infrequent visits but
reception of reports and material I consider that I am adequately
about that part of Africa in the development of which I made a
I remain anxious to play some role in restoring
the Mandela like Rainbow
State, which was so successful in driving world
class development and
prosperity for all races.
I have recently noted
the reference to the introduction of leasehold
instead of freehold land
ownership, which seems to have been condemned out
of hand and I suggest that
this may be a mistake.
During my years of practice in Northern Rhodesia I
dealt regularly with
land transactions which involved a few freehold titles
by the BSA company and predominantly the 99 year leasehold
mining, industry, farming, trading and residential
The 99 year leasehold system had been introduced for example by
Victorian freeholders to develop the vast residential areas of London
recent legislation has been introduced to deal with the expiring leases
ensure their continuation or facilitate purchase of the freehold
modest compensation for the freeholders.
The Colonial Office
governing those territories where settlers had become a
of permanent development and long term involvement
adopted the leasehold
system in order to retain the freehold for the
benefit of the general
Thus the system was established in 1911in Northern Rhodesia
and about the
same time in Tanganyika, Uganda and Kenya. As legal
anticipated that in the long run at the end of the 99 year
terms the leases
there would be extensions on UK lines or otherwise on
reasonable terms to
continue the then current economic regime which would
This assessment was shared for instance by the mass
of leaseholders and the
banks and building societies that lent freely on the
security of the
leases. In valuing a particular plot the cost of improvements
continuity of enterprises and businesses predominated and the role of
land was insignificant subject to market forces.
was a need to obtain a licence from the Crown to sell the
lease this was a
formality and had it been otherwise the whole economic
regime would have been
put in jeopardy.
The leasehold system survived Independence in Zambia
thanks to its
reasonable administration by the government and no doubt
be required soon for extensions which will probably follow
The ex Zimbabwe farmers who have established
themselves in Zambia
presumably have leasehold titles.
I have followed
in great detail the decimation of the freehold system in
Zimbabwe in relation
to the commercial farms by the fanatical racist
government and I have no
illusions about such a government abusing the
administration of the current
proposals regarding the leasehold system.
The current compliant judiciary
would provide little protection against
all those misgivings I consider that the proposal merits
consideration and negotiation.
Regarding the significant terms of the
leases if might be appropriate for
minimal improvements to be required within
a limited period and more
significantly the meeting of commercial production
targets subject to
In default of such
conditions the lease would be forfeited.
If the leasehold regime were
universal such terms would eliminate many of
the party hacks that have
received farms without payment. Presumably such
persons would on receiving a
lease have to purchase the improvements either
by instalments or by raising a
loan and would be subject to the obligation
Kenya serves as a dire precedent for such an artificial and
redistribution of the settler commercial farms after £50m had been
by the UK and others to buy out such farmers on Independence. After
sales to the party faithful most of the prices were never paid and
further attempts to redistribute the original holdings they have
been reduced to 10 acre plots with no significant commercial
The commercial farmer's forebears in Zimbabwe took
considerable risks to
occupy the farmland a century ago when there were no
guarantees of survival
I am suggesting that some of the
abused and disillusioned farmers should
serve as latter-day pioneers and take
another substantial risk by
participating in the leasehold system and looking
forward to the inevitable
downfall of the current government and its
replacement with a reasonable
and democratic regime, which would administer
the leasehold system
I also understand that there must
still be hope that some compensation may
be funded eventually by the
abundantly sympathetic external governments and
institutions but surely the
failure of those sympathisers to intervene when
the dispossession process
took its illegal and bloodthirsty course must
cast some doubt on this
I suggest that it might be preferable to have something of
in hand rather than live in hope of unpredictable
compensation in the
I am assuming that the proposal
involves the exchange of the freehold title
(already converted into State
land) for a 99 year lease including all
permanent improvements including the
homestead. I cannot imagine how the
machinery and equipment would be restored
or how depreciation of all such
assets would be accounted for. Significantly
the farm labourers would be
able to return to their homes and
I suggest therefore that the leasehold proposal should not be
of hand but rather be studied both internally and by the
ineffective external governments and institutions such as the World
This could serve as a substantial opportunity for those
have been interested in the land reform and its funding to
the study and formulation of a countrywide leasehold scheme
land and all ancillary features.
Such involvement would
require consultation with the existing government
departments and the
institutions representing all types of farmers, lending
banks and other
sources of funding, the secondary industrial
representatives and all others
who would be involved in making the new
overall solution work.
that I am aware of the characteristics of the settler community
by my knowledge of a surviving commercial farmer who
advice and other essential support for neighbouring
new farmers. I believe
that despite the destructive tensions fermented over
the last few years the
former racial goodwill can be revived enabling a
landscape to be created as a backdrop to the
restoration of the former world
standard agricultural industry in Zimbabwe.
letters published on the open Letter Forum are the views and opinions
submitters, and do not represent the official viewpoint of Justice
JUSTICE FOR AGRICULTURE STEVE SEWARD UPDATE - September 23, 2005
Steve is still in Millpark Clinic, Randburg SA having been
yesterday. One round removed from his shoulder, the round in his
still there to be removed later and his hand will require plastic
at a later
JUSTICE FOR AGRICULTURE MOIRA SEWARD UPDATE - September 24, 2005
NOTICE - Saturday 24th September, 2005 : The memorial service for the
Moira Seward will be held at a date to be advised.