The ZIMBABWE Situation
An extensive and up-to-date website containing news, views and links related to ZIMBABWE - a country in crisis
Return to INDEX page
Please note: You need to have 'Active content' enabled in your IE browser in order to see the index of articles on this webpage

COPAC in u-turn over civic participation at All Stakeholders Conference

By Tererai Karimakwenda
25 September 2012

The parliamentary select committee in charge of Zimbabwe’s constitutional
reform program (COPAC), has made a u-turn regarding participation of civic
society groups at the 2nd All Stakeholders conference, now scheduled for
October the 4th to the 6th.

COPAC’s secretariat and select committee had last week decided to reduce the
number of participants from 2,400 to 2,000, allegedly due to budgetary
constraints. Each of the three parties was to send 600 delegates, with
legislators making up the remaining 200 slots. Because of this it had been
decided to exclude any representation from civic society.

But according to a coalition of more than 10 civic society groups that met
with COPAC co-chairperson Douglas Mwonzora on Monday, COPAC has now
revisited the issue of delegates, among other critical issues regarding the
new draft charter.

Thabani Nyoni, spokesperson for the Crisis Coalition, said COPAC reviewed
its position and resolved to scale the number of delegates down to 1,100.
There would now be 246 delegates from the political parties, 284 from
Parliament and 571 from civil society.

“Civic society had threatened to boycott that Conference if we were not
recognized as independent entities and the voice of the people. Fortunately
COPAC decided to treat the civic groups as stakeholders and we came up with
a clear framework for our participation,” Nyoni explained.

Nyoni said it is also important that COPAC decided to use only their draft
at the Stakeholders Conference, without discussing amendments made by ZANU
PF. But there is still concern that some ZANU PF elements will try to
violently disrupt the event or find a way to include the amendments they

“It is worrying why ZANU PF has all of a sudden agreed to use the COPAC
draft. There is concern they might a way to mobilize enough support for
their amendments. We are aware of that and are prepared to resist any such
attempt,” Nyoni said.

He added that COPAC also decided to allow diplomats, local and international
media, the judiciary and other interested stakeholders to observe the
process. This has eased fears of a violent disruption.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Mugabe by-election call due

24/09/2012 00:00:00
by Staff Reporter

PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe has five days to order by-elections in at least
three parliamentary seats or face a contempt of court charge.

Mugabe was granted a 30-day extension to a previous August 30 deadline set
by the High Court for the by-elections to be called in three Matabeleland

The President is in New York for the United Nations General Assembly and
does not return to Harare until early October – which would be past the
extended court deadline.

In his absence, Acting President Joice Mujuru could be the one to issue a
proclamation which legal experts say should not only cover Nkayi South,
Lupane East and Bulilima East constituencies but nearly 30 other vacant
parliamentary seats and hundreds of local government positions.

Mugabe asked for the court extension after pleading poverty, insisting that
the government could not raise the US$38 million needed for the by-elections

The Nkayi South, Lupane East and Bulilima East seats fell vacant following
the expulsion from the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) of MPs Abednico
Bhebhe, Norman Mpofu and Njabuliso Mguni.

The trio, now independents, went to court seeking to force by-elections to
be held and their fight went up to the Supreme Court where the country’s top
judges dismissed the government’s financial arguments for not holding the
by-elections as the law demands.

University of Zimbabwe law lecturer and National Constituency Assembly
chairman Lovemore Madhuku said President Mugabe can still announce the dates
for the by-elections and change them anytime just to delay the process,
although that option could be unattractive as it would not be in the spirit
of the court ruling.

Zimbabwe is broke after Finance Minister Tendai Biti was forced to cut his
budget by $600 million recently as he warned that the country could soon
default on salaries for government workers.

The compelling financial case has seen Zanu PF and its main rival the MDC-T
both agreeing that holding the by-elections now with a general election due
by June next year would add unnecessary strain on the national purse.

The parties are also reluctant to hold what analysts say would be a
“mini-general” election before agreement is reached on constitutional,
media, security and electoral law reforms due under a power sharing
agreement signed in September 2008.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Bank wins US$1m case against Gono

Tuesday, 25 September 2012 00:00

Daniel Nemukuyu Senior Court Reporter

RESERVE Bank of Zimbabwe Governor Dr Gideon Gono and his company, Lunar
Chickens, have been ordered to pay Renaissance Merchant Bank US$1,2 million
in settlement of a loan extended to the firm in 2010.

Dr Gono, a director with Lunar Chickens, was cited as a co-principal debtor
and surety together with four other companies.

High Court judge Justice Chinembiri Bhunu ordered the execution of the six
immovable properties that had been tendered as surety bond.

The following properties were declared executable:

Stand 3434 Harare measuring 4 694 square metres
Lot 4 of GA Hellensvale measuring 2, 0332 hectares
Stand 6 Tara, Goromonzi measuring 6, 3314 hectares
Stand 644 Ruwa measuring 2 000 square metres.
Justice Bhunu granted the order following an unopposed chamber application
by RMB’s lawyers, Danzinger and Partners.
“Judgment is hereby entered against the defendants jointly and severally the
one paying the others to be absolved in the sum of US$1 274 167,85 together
with interest at the rate of 21 percent per annum from May 1 2012 to date of
payment in full . . . ” read part of the order.

The other four companies that were cited as defendants together with Dr Gono
and Lunar Chickens are Froglett Investments, Kimira Bonsai Nursery, Hanrob
Investments and Wykeham Investments.

Facts of the matter are that on December 8 2010, RMB extended a credit
facility of US$1 million to Lunar Chickens.
In the same deal, Dr Gono and the other four firms stood as surety and
co-principal debtors for the due fulfillment of all the obligations of Lunar
Froglett passed a surety bond of Stand Number 3434 Harare Township in favour
of RMB while Kimira Bonsai Nursery bonded the Hellensvale property.

Hanrob Investments offered Stand Number 6 Tara Township while Wykeham bonded
Stand 644 Ruwa.
In breach of the agreement, Lunar Chickens has failed to settle the loan
under the credit facility that expired on May 31, 2011.
The balance outstanding on the loan stood at US$1 274 167,85 as at April

The capital amount is US$998 996,03 and interest by April this year was
calculated at US$275 161,82. Bank charges were only US$10.

Despite demand, the six defendants have refused to settle the said amount,
prompting RMB to file summons at the High Court on June 1 this year.
The summons was duly served on the defendants on June 13 this year and the
deputy sheriff produced a return of service document that was filed at the
High Court.

Lunar Chickens, Dr Gono and the four other firms did not respond to the
claim until they were automatically barred in terms of the rules of the High
RMB then filed a chamber application seeking a default judgment in terms of
the summons issued.
Justice Bhunu granted the chamber application last Wednesday.

RMB is on record claiming that Lunar Chickens owed it US$1 million while the
central bank itself owes it US$8 million.
In another claim at the High Court, RMB indicated that if it got back the
US$9 million owed by the two entities, its financial woes would end.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Impala's Zimplats unit hit with $34 mln tax charge

HARARE, Sept 25 | Tue Sep 25, 2012 8:52am EDT

(Reuters) - Zimbabwe's revenue authority has ordered Impala Platinum's
Zimplats unit to pay $33.8 million in back-dated taxes, arguing the tax
holiday claimed by the firm had no legal basis, Zimplats said on Tuesday.

Zimplats, the country's largest mining operation, said in a statement the
Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (ZIMRA) had re-assessed its tax obligations for
the period between 2007 and 2012.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Salvation Army ‘causing humanitarian disaster’ in Zim

By Alex Bell
25 September 2012

The Salvation Army is being urged to take immediate action and reinstate a
top doctor it recently dismissed from the Howard Hospital in Zimbabwe, where
supporters have warned a humanitarian disaster is brewing.

Canadian born Dr. Paul Thistle was dismissed in August under unclear
circumstances, a decision that led to violent protests by outraged Chiweshe
residents. The Hospital meanwhile has been left to run at limited capacity,
and many patients have been either turned away or discharged without full
care, because Dr. Thistle was the chief doctor and only surgeon there.

The doctor was given 24 hours to leave the hospital and then 48 hours to
leave Zimbabwe, with no explanation from the Salvation Army other than that
the decision was apart of ‘internal processes’. He has been barred from the
hospital, but is refusing to leave the country while a criminal case hangs
over eight of his colleagues, who were arrested and charged with ‘inciting
violence’ during the protests in Chiweshe.

An international network of doctors and supporters has since been trying to
convince the Salvation Army to reinstate Dr. Thistle because of the looming
crisis his absence has created. The Interfaith Friends of Howard Hospital
group has had several meetings with the Salvation Army, both in Dr. Thistle’s
native Canada and at the international headquarters in London.

But according to the group’s chief coordinator, Dr. Michael Silverman, the
Salvation Army has reneged on promises it made to the group to first undergo
a review of the situation at Howard Hospital, before making a final decision
about Dr. Thistle’s fate. He said they have reiterated their position that
Dr. Thistle must leave Zimbabwe by October 5th, despite a replacement only
meant to take over at Howard Hospital in December.

“It just doesn’t make any sense. They haven’t given any explanation why he
has to leave. I believe it is something internal in the Church, but they
haven’t made anything clear,” Dr. Silverman said.

He explained that the situation is likely linked to a financial grant Dr.
Thistle had secured for the Howard mission, which was then withdrawn because
the Zim leadership of the Salvation Army refused to adhere to transparent
accounting for the money. The leadership, which is believed to be heavily
influenced by Joice Mujuru as a senior Salvation Army member, said it did
not need to account for how the money would be spent.

“It isn’t clear if Dr. Thistle’s dismissal is because of this, but I believe
it was,” Dr. Silverman said.

He added that the key concern now is for the fate of the hospital, and the
hundreds of thousands of people who have come to rely on its service over
the past 16 years. He explained how Dr. Thistle was integral to the
existence of the once thriving facility, and without him, “it only spells

“The once thriving hospital is operating at 10% capacity. Seven thousand
patients in Chiweshe are receiving Anti-Retroviral Therapy, including 3,000
registered at the Howard Hospital’s Tariro HIV/AIDS/TB Clinic. These
patients are now at risk of defaulting on their treatment. Eight of the
Howard Hospital’s nurses have been arrested following unrest following the
dismissal of the Thistles, and approximately 1,500 orphans and vulnerable
children have been left without support. International funding is in
jeopardy, as donors cannot guarantee their funds will be used for their
intended purpose. The humanitarian crisis with people needlessly dying has
caused an international outcry,” Dr. Silverman said.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Mutoko teacher living in fear after army attack

A man escaped death by a whisker after being brutally attacked by some
members of the uniformed forces last week.

by Tarisai Jangara

Stanley Bururu (48), a teacher at Masvika Primary School in Mutoko, told The
Zimbabwean he was attacked by four men in army uniform.

“On my way home from Mutoko centre, I was approached by four men in army
uniform who demanded to know where l was coming from. I told them l was
coming from the shopping centre. They dragged me into a nearby bush and beat
me up with logs and fists,” he said.

The soldiers accused him of attending an MDC rally addressed by Welshman
Ncube, leader of the smaller Movement for Democratic Change. “I now live in
fear as these men promised to come back for me and my family. They said l am
an activist masquerading as a teacher,” he said.

He reported the matter at Mutoko police station. Kurauone Chihwayi, MDC-N
spokesperson, said a number of their supporters were attacked at the rally.
“We are still receiving reports that people are still being beaten up by the
army, which is disturbing,” he said.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Cops ban MDC meetings

Police in Mberengwa East have banned all MDC meetings in the area while Zanu
(PF) meetings are being held freely.

by Zwanai Sithole

The MDC-T chairman for Mberengwa East, Ketrush Mubaiwa Moyo, told The
Zimbabwean this week that police were refusing to sanction even private
meetings for the party’s local leadership in the area.

“All our structures from branch to district levels are failing to hold
meetings in the area,” said Moyo.

“Last week we wanted to hold a district meeting in preparation for our
forthcoming anniversary in Bulawayo, but the meeting was disrupted by the
police. We are convinced that this is politically motivated because Zanu
(PF) is being allowed to hold its rallies,” said Moyo.

Midlands’s provincial Police spokesperson, Inspector Emmanuel Mahoko, said
he was not aware that police had banned MDC meetings in the area.

“I am not aware that our colleagues on that side are denying others parties
an opportunity to hold their meetings. I have to verify that with the
regulatory authority in Zvishavane,” he said.

The MDC-T has also accused the police of banning MDC meetings in Mashonaland

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Zanu (PF) headman threatens MDC supporters

A Zanu-PF village head who is also a headmaster at Mbuya Nehanda secondary
school in Mberengwa, Munyaradzi Ndlovu, has threatened to evict all MDC
supporters from his village saying they are sell-outs.

by Zwanai Sithole

Ndlovu, a member of the disbanded Zanu-PF Mberengwa District Coordinating
Committee (DCC), declared last week during his installation as village head
for Moti village that all MDC supporters will be evicted soon.

Ndlovu was installed as the village head for the area to replace his father
who had passed away.

In an interview with the Zimbabwean, Wellington Shava, the MDC T district
secretary for party business, said party supporters who attended the
installation ceremony held in Muchembere ward were told that they would
never be allowed to benefit from any government programmes, for example food

"Ndlovu and a group of war veterans openly declared during his installation
as village head that all MDC supporters would soon be evicted because they
are sell-outs.

"He said the MDC supporters would also not be allowed to benefit from any
government programmes like the grain loan scheme. He said the MDC supporters
should not benefit because they have always been against the government so
they should look for help from America," said Shava.

When contacted for comment, Ndlovu said: "The people who have told you that
information are MDC supporters who want to tarnish my image and the image of

Mberengwa has been a Zanu PF stronghold since independence, the party's
militias and war veterans have been mostly terrorising opposition supporters
in the past recent years.

Zanu-PF has declared war against MDC supporters in Mberengwa district saying
their party should start setting up a refugee camp as they will be all
forced to flee.

Last year, several MDC supporters fled their homes in Murongwe area in the
same district after war veterans led by one Retired Major Shava raided their
homes for boycotting a Zanu PF rally.

Early this year a group of war veterans were arrested after disrupting a
constitutional parliamentary committee consultative meeting on the new
constitution held at Vutsanana Secondary School in the same district.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Zanu (PF) says not running parallel government

Staff Reporter 2 hours 5 minutes ago

HARARE - Mines Minister and Zanu PF Secretary for Economic Affairs, Obert
Mpofu has dismissed allegations by the MDC-T that his party is running a
parallel government using proceeds from diamond sales.
The allegations were made at a press club meeting in Bulawayo by MDC-T
provincial chairman for Bulawayo, Mr Gorden Moyo who said Dr Mpofu has
assumed the role of Prime Minister and Finance Minister.
Mpofu dismissed the allegations as a political joke, saying some of the
portfolios such as the Ministry of Finance were requested by the MDC-T at
the formation of the inclusive government.
The Zanu PF Secretary for Economic Affairs said it is in fact the MDC-T
which is running a parallel government that is sponsored by western
countries to effect regime change.
“We have tabulated all the records showing what happens in the mining sector
and most of the exports are done through the central bank and they are the
ones who issue CD 14 and the Ministry of Mines doesn’t get involved those
issues” he said.
Mpofu added that minerals are sold in a transparent manner and Zanu PF will
never run a parallel government as it is a party that serves the interests
of the people with nothing to hide.
Despite criticism by the MDC-T, the mining sector has remained the major
contributor to economic growth with 60% of export earnings.
Former Mines Minister Edward Chindori-Chininga and Zanu PF central committee
member has described current minister Obert Mpofu as a crook and a thief.
Chindori-Chininga escaped death in a mysterious car accident in which three
people were killed.
According to a diplomatic cable released by Wikileaks Chindori-Chininga told
United States ambassador to Zimbabwe Charles Ray on 21 January 2010 that
Mpofu had entered into unlawful partnerships with Mbada and Canadile to mine
diamonds in Marange.
Chindori-Chininga was chair of the Parliamentary Committee on mines at the
He said he believed Mpofu, whom he characterized as a "crook" and a"thief,"
had unlawfully entered into partnerships with Mbada and Canadile. He stated
that MDC-T deputy minister of mines Murisi Zwizwai, who he said was a friend
of his, had been seriously compromised by Mpofu.
In 2010, the Indian Surat Rough Diamond Sourcing Limited (SRDS), a company
set up to source rough diamonds for local manufacturers, requested that
Zimbabwe supply it with $100 million worth of Marange diamonds each month.
In a letter presented to Zimbabwe mines minister Obert Mpofu on Thursday,
SRDS chairman Ashit Mehta, whose private company Blue Star is a De Beers,
Diamond Trading Company (DTC) sightholder, offered to train Zimbabwe
artisans in cutting and polishing as well as provide the country with
technical assistance in exchange for the rough supply.

“We request minister Mpofu and the government of Zimbabwe to facilitate the
supply of rough diamonds, on a regular monthly basis, to the tune of $100
million, which will be on an annual basis of $1.2 billion of run of mine
goods,” Mehta said during the minister’s visit to Surat.

The diamonds would then be distributed to the Surat industry through monthly
tenders, according to the SRDS mandate.
Mpofu, who was educated in India, stressed the strong relationship between
the two countries and dismissed attempts by “the West” to prevent Zimbabwe’s
Marange diamonds from reaching the market.
The MDC-T through the Deputy minister of Justice and Legal Affairs Obert
Gutu has questioned Obert Mpofu’s source of wealth after the Mines minister
concluded the acquisition of troubled bank, ZABG.
Mpofu recently bailed out the bank after agreeing to invest in an asset
backed transaction that involved the transfer of assets to the bank. The
assets include York House, one of the tallest buildings in Bulawayo.
Mpofu’s investment rescued the bank from closure after it had battled to
meet the US$12,5 million minimum capital requirements.
Writing on the social networking site, Gutu who is the MDC-T spokesperson
for Harare province said it was impossible for a government minister to
splash US$22 million on a bank.
How a Government Minister in a struggling economy like Zimbabwe can ''raise
'' US$22 million and buy a whole bank surely boggles the mind..... Am I
missing something here? Whither the diamonds of Marange and Chiadzwa. I will
call this a festival of looting,” Gutu wrote.
The posting drew the ire of Gutu’s followers who accused Mpofu of looting
the country’s resources.
Gutu became the second MDC-T official to question Mpofu’s wealth after the
party’s secretary general and Finance Minister Tendai Biti said last month
it was unbelievable that civil servants earning US$800 were now buying jets.
“There is no doubt that a small coterie of individuals is benefitting from
Zimbabwe diamonds. Some of us who are benefitting are not afraid to flaunt
our monies. We are buying all kinds of assets,” Biti told stakeholders
attending a diamond workshop last month.
“I am a government minister and earning US$800. How do I buy some of the
assets that we are buying?”
“People are now buying private jets because of our diamonds.” Mpofu has in
the past said his wealth is not ill-gotten and has evidence to prove that.
Minister Obert Mpofu has failed to give an adequate account for diamond
revenue emanating from Marange fields.
In June this year Mpofu came under the spotlight at a conference in Harare,
organised by Centre for Public Accountability.
“I am minister of mines not minister of revenue. If revenue has not been
collected it is not our fault. ZIMRA collects the revenue. Ask me about
Mining issues not revenue issues and i will explain.
“I do not deal with figures but mining development.
Delegates had asked him where the diamond revenue from Marange was going
following Finance Minister Tendai Biti’s recents complaints of non
remittance to the treasury revenue by mining companies.
Presenting his first quarter economic review Finance Minister Tendai Biti
said revenue collected through ZIMRA for March 2012 amounted to US$287,9
million against a target of US$320,2 million, giving rise to a US$32,4
million shortfall, arising from the underperformance of diamond proceeds.
Zimbabwe Environment Law Association National Director Mtuso Dliwayo
condemned Mpofu’s utterances saying citizens want accounatbility and
“What is wanted here is accountability over the resource extraction in order
to curb corruption and it is not a witch hunting issue.Zimbabweans want to
know who, where, and how much are we getting and from what resource and
nothing else,”he said.
But Mary Jane Ncube Transparency International Director insisted that mining
activities should be divulged to the citizens adding that by so doing
corruption is reduced.
“We are citizens of this country and we have the right to question it(mines
ministry) because it is the one which signs deals with mining companies
operating in the country, and hiding such information to us is unfair, “she
Mpofu however said the country is expecting 12, 1 million carats of diamond
by the end of the year, and revenue of US$600 is expected from the sales.
A mines ministry source has said around 1.5 million to 2 million carats are
being mined there each month. The stones have an estimated average value of
around $55 per carat.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

ZANU PF seeks political interference in SA judiciary

By Alex Bell
25 September 2012

ZANU PF is facing criticism for seeking political interference from the
ruling ANC party in South Africa, where the Supreme Court of Appeal has
dismissed the Zimbabwean government’s attempt to block a landmark ruling on
the land grab campaign.

Last week a South African court dismissed an appeal by the Zimbabwean
government against the North Gauteng High Court decision in 2010, which
upheld the 2008 ruling by the SADC Tribunal that the land grab in Zimbabwe
was unlawful.

That High Court decision was the result of a legal challenge lodged by
farmers who lost land in Zimbabwe during the land grab, and who were forced
to turn to South Africa for assistance when Zimbabwe refused to honour the
regional human rights Tribunal.

The decision last week by the Supreme Court of Appeal has now been widely
applauded for setting a precedent in the Southern African region by
upholding the rule of law. It means that Zimbabwean properties in Cape Town
face being auctioned to compensate the farmers.

But ZANU PF Minister Didymus Mutasa has now said that the government will
call on South Africa’s ruling ANC party to make a political decision and
block the auction.

“What they (farmers) are fighting is not about land, but to trouble the
government of Zimbabwe. After this judgment, which is legal, we should let
it go and we speak to the ANC and take a political decision. I hope that is
possible,” Mutasa said.

At the same time, a ZANU PF aligned advocate who was part of the Zimbabwe
legal team, Martin Dinha, has also branded the ruling ‘racist’ and against
international laws.

“South Africa’s judiciary is not yet liberated from apartheid; it has
cosmetic liberation. South Africa remains a colony of white Rhodesians and
apartheid,” said Dinha, who is also the Mashonaland Central governor.

Former Chegutu farmer Ben Freeth said such a reaction is unsurprising
because of the “dictatorship in Zimbabwe, where there is no separation of
the state from the judiciary.”

“It’s an entirely predictable reaction born out of sour grapes which shows
contempt for the South African courts,” Freeth said.

Willie Spies, one of the lawyers who represented the farmers in the case,
said that South Africa has “done its best to uphold the constitution and
uphold the division between the judiciary and the state.” He said it was
“frightening” that Zimbabwe was playing the “race card” to seek political
inference in the case, and it will be “interesting” to see what happens.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Minister Sheds Tears Over Gukurahundi

Bulawayo, September 25, 2012 – State Enterprises Minister Gorden Moyo shed
tears Monday evening at the Bulawayo Press Club as he related how his
parents’ rural home was burnt to ashes by 5th Brigade soldiers.
Moyo, the Movement for Democratic Change Bulawayo chairman, said he had
escaped together with his parents and missed death by a whisker after the
whole village in Sogwala area in Lower Gwelo was burnt down to ashes by the
soldiers who, were being led by the late Zanu (PF) politburo member, Richard

“It was very painful and traumatising to see my whole village including my
parents’ home being burnt down to ashes by Richard Hove, who was leading a
group of Zanu (PF) supporters and 5th Brigade soldiers. We actually escaped
death by a whisker and lucky to be alive. So no one can tell us today to
sweep the Gukurahundi issue under the carpet," he said.

“A Truth Reconciliation Commission should be set up like what happened in
Rwanda ,South Africa and Burundi to deal with Gukurahundi,” said Moyo in

More than 20 000 Zimbabweans were massacred by the Zanu (PF) government in
the 1980s during the Gukurahundi operation conducted by 5th Brigade army in
the Matabeleland and Midlands regions.

There were accused of being dissidents and were buried in mass graves while
some were thrown alive in disused mines.

President Robert Mugabe, who is the Zanu (PF) leader, has refused to
apologise for the killings although he has called the crackdown “a moment of

Moyo said it was a mistake to go into government with Zanu (PF).

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

PM’s men storm Karimatsenga home

24/09/2012 00:00:00
by Staff Reporter

PRIME Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s representatives on Monday scaled the
security gate at the family home of his estranged wife, Locardia
Karimatsenga, in a bid to deliver gupuro, a divorce token under traditional
customs, her lawyers have claimed.

The MDC-T leader is locked in a bitter divorce tussle with Karimatsenga who
successfully petitioned the courts to block his marriage to new flame,
Elizabeth Macheka last week.

Karimatsenga’s lawyer said Tsvangirai’s emissaries have in recent days
visited the homes of her relatives in a bid to end the relationship and, on
Monday, jumped the gate as her family home to deliver the gupuro.

“I can confirm that the PM’s emissaries went and jumped into the
Karimatsenga homestead in Christon Bank. It is unthinkable that the PM’s
emissaries exhibit such unlawful behaviour,” Everson Samukange told the
state-run Herald newspaper.

“There was no one at the premises, except for the gardener. The modern thing
they could have done was to knock at the gate rather than to jump. We are
actually wondering what their motive was.”

Last week Tsvangirai’s representatives are said to have visited the home of
Locardia’s aunt in Borrowdale where they left a letter in the letter box.
Another letter was also hurled over the precast wall of Locardia’s house in

Samukange said he was trying to contact Tsvangirai’s lawyers, Thabani Mpofu
and Innocent Chagonda, over the letters as well as to discuss their request
for an out of court settlement.

“I have been trying to get in touch with Advocate Mpofu and Chagonda over
the letters, but I have not been successful,” he said.

Karimatsenga insists she is still married to Tsvangirai after he paid lobola
to her family last November.
But the MDC-T leader says he only paid damages for making her pregnant and
ended their relationship after it was hijacked by political rivals and state
security agents to embarrass him.

Karimatsenga is also seeking US$15,000 in spousal maintenance from
Tsvangirai but insists she has not wish to divorce him and is comfortable
with being in a polygamous marriage since she is the first wife.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

6 dead in Harare minibus crash

24/09/2012 00:00:00
by Staff Reporter
Mangled metal ... The wreckage of the minibus crash

THIS was the horrific scene on Monday morning after this Mbare-bound commuter minibus filled with market traders burst its left rear tyre and overturned along Chitungwiza Road.

Four people were killed on the spot, and two more died on admission at hospital.

Police say 12 injured passengers were admitted at Chitungwiza Central and Parirenyatwa Hospital with two of them described as in critical condition.

Inspector Tigere Chigome said most of the dead were market traders going to work in Mbare.

What should have been a routine commute to work turned to horror shortly after 6.30AM when – according to survivors – the minibus burst its left rear tyre just after crossing the Manyame Bridge, careered off the road and overturned.

Investigators say the minibus was overloaded and believe the driver was speeding.

“Drivers must observe speed limits,” Inspector Chigome said. “This is important in case something happens one is able to control the vehicle. The drivers should also desist from overloading.”

Police withheld names of the deceased as they worked throughout Monday to inform relatives.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

MDC-T 29 mistakenly arrested: lawyer

24/09/2012 00:00:00
by Phyllis Mbanje

DETECTIVES failed to carry out alibi checks and conduct an identity parade
for the 29 MDC-T activists charged with the murder of a police officer in
Harare last May, the High Court heard Monday.

Testifying as the trial opened, detective Assistant Inspector Ben Justen,
who was part of the investigating team, said he separately arrested three of
the suspects – Zwelibanzi Dube, Simon Mapanzure and Samuel Mdimu – and
handed them over to his superiors who continued with the investigation.

He said a Mazda truck belonging to retail firm, Power Sales, where Dube was
employed, was used by the suspects to flee the crime scene. The vehicle was
later recovered from a car park close to Dube’s Glen View home and impounded
by police as evidence.

But Inspector Justen admitted under cross examination from defence attorney
Beatrice Mtetwa that no identification parade was held for the suspects and
that investigators also failed to check their alibis.

Mtetwa then charged: "How then can you be sure that these 29 people are the
ones who committed the heinous crime when no one identified them? This could
clearly be a case of mistaken identity."

She added: "One of the accused, Samuel Mdimu, is a vendor at the shops and
at the time of the fracas he was having a haircut.
“He actually ran away with half of his hair cut and had to seek services of
another barber to finish off the job but none of you officers bothered to
verify his alibi with the barber, even though he had provided his name."

The detective then drew laughter from the gallery when he appealed to
Justice Chinembiri Bhunu for protection from Mtetwa’s barrage of questions
saying: "My lord I have answered to the best of my knowledge but she
(Mtetwa) keeps on asking me more questions."

But Justice Bhunu suggested he probably needed a rest, quipping: "Are you
tired detective?"
Meanwhile, Mtetwa also registered a formal protest with the court against
chief law officer, Edmore Nyazamba, who is prosecuting, accusing him of
engaging in delaying tactics.

Justice Bhunu said he was also wondered why Nyazamba was always late for
Prosecutors say Inspector Petros Mutedza was killed by a mob of MDC-T
activists after police tried to break off an illegal gathering in Glen View.

The MDC-T activists, who have been in custody for more than a year, deny the
charges and the trial continues Tuesday with Mtetwa cross examining

Justice Bhunu is yet to rule on the 29’s fresh bail application that was
made last week.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

The MDC Today

Tuesday, 25 September 2012
Issue - 438

The Glen View murder trial in which 29 MDC members are being falsely accused
of murdering a police officer continued today at the High Court with
Assistant Inspector Ben Justen, one of the arresting officers and a State
witness finishing testifying.

A new State witness Timothy Guta, the police officer who was involved in the
arrest of Solomon Madzore was then called in. Madzore is the Youth Assembly
chairperson and was arrested at his Harare home on 04 October, 2011. Guta
said upon his arrest, Madzore was very cooperative and queried why the
police wanted to arrest all the MDC youth activists. The trial resumes
tomorrow morning at 11am.

Meanwhile, Chipinge Senator, Hon. Josiah Mukayi Rimbi who died on Monday
will be buried on Thursday at Rimbi village in Musikavanhu constituency.
Senator Rimbi passed on at Murambi Gardens Clinic in Mutare after admission
on the same day. He was suffering from diabetes.

MDC @ 13: The last mile: Towards real transformation!!!

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

‘Harare owes service providers $100m’

Tuesday, 25 September 2012 12:39
HARARE - Harare City Council currently owes various service providers $100
million, an official revealed yesterday.

City Treasure Misheck Mubvumbi said the council was failing to clear the
debt because its money was also held by consumers of its services who are
not paying bills.

“We can only clear (the debt) once government and industry pay what they owe
council,” said Mubvumbi during a pre-budget consultative meeting with
industry stakeholders in Harare.

The local authority is itself owed over $300 million by government, industry
and residents who cite economic challenges as the impediment to paying

According to Mubvumbi, government alone currently owes council $40 million
and has since 2009 paid only $9 million in rates.

The city treasurer questioned Zimbabwe National Road Administration (Zinara)
licence revenue collections, saying the agency had failed.

“If we collected $7,5 million in 2009, $6 million in 2010 how then can
Zinara explain $2,6 in 2011 and this year’s $1,2 million against a
background where vehicle numbers have gone up?” queried Mubvumbi.

The authority’s projected revenue from licences stood at around $15 million,
Mubvumbi said.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Zanu PF patronage jobs backfiring

By Fungai Kwaramba, Staff Writer
Tuesday, 25 September 2012 12:32
HARARE - Wars pitying Zanu PF militia and members of the security forces
have exposed President Robert Mugabe’s patronage system as groups such as
Chipangano mutate into dangerous groups.

Two weeks ago rank marshals better known as Mandimbandimba an offshoot of
the Zanu PF-linked Chipangano beat up two soldiers prompting a crackdown
from the army.

In a follow-up blitz police arrested more than 300 rank marshals creating an
uneasy calm at bus termini in the city centre.

However, Chipangano’s tentacles are still being felt in other easy and
lucrative avenues of accumulating wealth such as in Mbare money-spinning
markets where the group continues to rake in huge profits.

At ranks in the city centre Chipangano militia made a score of as much as
$30 000 a day.

Analysts have long warned that Zanu PF’s patronage system designed to woo
voters ahead of polls would backfire.

Apart from letting its supporters rob people at ranks and in Mbare, Zanu PF
which control key ministries such as defence and the mines has also
controversially legalised gold panning as well as recruited ghost workers
against “better advice” from Treasury.

Mugabe’s party which is in an uneasy coalition with the MDC led by Prime
Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, early this year illegally recruited soldiers and
police officers lowering the entry bar.

Presently the cash-strapped government of Zimbabwe has 10 000 ghost but
visible workers on top of the other 70 000 ghost workers.

Finance minister Tendai Biti who has put a freeze on all government
employment has failed to reign in Zanu PF ministries amid threats from his
counterparts in the troubled coalition.

“The two chief culprits are the ministry of Defence, which employed 4 600
since January, and the ministry of Home Affairs which has recruited 1 200
personnel without Treasury approval,” said Biti.

The addition of new recruits is exacerbating the acute shortage of food at
army barracks and adding to a wage bill that Zimbabwe cannot afford to meet.

Some months ago hungry soldiers embarrassed Mugabe as they stole food at a
function in Mutare right in his presence.

Apart from illegal recruitments Mugabe’s party has also been protecting 75
000 ghost workers. The ghost workers are Zanu PF supporters who include the
feared Border Gezi graduates.

Concerted efforts to flush them from the government payroll have been
resisted by Zanu PF ministers who regard the activists as focal points ahead
of elections.

Parliament has been pushing for the release of the audit into ghost workers
but to date it has been unsuccessful.

An audit of ghost workers was embarked on three years ago but it is still to
be made public and lawmakers estimate that “ghost workers” are chewing US$75
million from the Treasury.

Minister of Mines and Mining Development Obert Mpofu, has also come up with
his empowerment carrot.

Speaking in Gwanda recently, Mpofu said gold panners were “heroes” adding it
was ridiculous that many were being arrested because legislation inherited
from the colonial era made their activities illegal.

“Since January, three tonnes of gold has been delivered to the Treasury,”
Mpofu said, adding that he would push for an amendment of the Mining Act to
legalise panning and free those in jail.

“Omakorokoza contributed one tonne of that gold, yet we arrest and chase
them. It is my wish that even those who have been arrested for panning could
be released from prison.”

Empowerment minister Saviour Kasukuwere added: “We must legalise
omakorokoza. I would like to thank minister Mpofu for making the statement.
It is a fact that many of our young people have been imprisoned because of

However, effects of Zanu PF populist policies are already being felt on the
environment with rivers filling up with sand and farmland being reduced to
gullies. — Weekend Post

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Community protests over Marange diamond

By Taurai Mangudhla, Business Writer
Tuesday, 25 September 2012 12:36
HARARE - Community members in the Marange diamond mining area have held
protests against lack of transparency and accountability in the mining
activities of firms operating in the area.

This comes after Mines minister Obert Mpofu’s June announcement that
Zimbabwe approved its Diamond Policy at the height of accountability
concerns, but the new legislation will not guarantee full disclosure as a
sanction busting mechanism.

The precious stones were this year expected to contribute 18 percent of the
country’s $4 billion cash budget, but it had to be revised downwards to $3,4
while economic growth forecast of 9,4 percent in 2012 also had to be revised
to 5,6 percent on account of poor revenues trickling from the Marange

On Friday, people living in the diamond rich area took up banners and
marched against what they said was greed and corruption in the allocation of
claims in Marange, lack of transparency and the exclusion of some
stakeholders in the recently launched Community Share-ownership Trust.

Chiadzwa Community Development Trust (CCDT), a local pressure group,
organised the protests.

“The community said there is lack of community consultation in the issues
surrounding the Marange-Zimunya Community Share-ownership Trust, air and
noise pollution for the villagers staying in the diamond fields,
politicisation of Marange diamonds, community rights violations and
unemployment,” CCDT programmes manager Melanie Chiponda said.

“The community is worried about the high levels of poverty in the area
resulting from the seizure of their fields by diamond mining companies and
the closure of businesses in the diamond fields which has deprived them of
their livelihoods,” she added.

She said the community has been reduced to beggars as they have to depend on
food hand-outs from mining companies.

Some of the diamond mining companies are said to be shunning locals.

“The mining companies refuse to give them (locals) jobs in the mines calling
them illegal miners. Unemployment in Marange is very high but there are
diamond mining companies employing thousands of people. The mining companies
prefer to employ people from other areas side-lining the Marange community,”
said Chiponda.

Because mining companies are carrying out activities when people are still
staying in the area, excessive dust is affecting residents since there are
no tarred roads in the diamond fields, resulting in an increase in lung

“The noise from blasting is unbearable and houses are cracking as a result
of the blasting,” said Chiponda.

Zimbabwe Environmental Association’s July research into the water quality
from Odzi and Save rivers showed that Marange diamond miners were polluting
water and posing a health scare to the community which depends on the

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

The mean season for gays
Photo: IRIN
Zimbabwe's gay community is becoming a target in the build-up to expected elections in 2013
HARARE, 25 September 2012 (IRIN) - For Zimbabwe’s gay community, voting season is a time of dread. As political temperatures rise ahead of expected elections next year, gays and lesbians are being targeted by police in an apparent strategy to win over voters.

On 11 August 2012, police raided a book launch at the headquarters of the Gays and Lesbians of Zimbabwe (GALZ), an NGO based in Harare that promotes the rights of sexual minorities. The police arrested 44 people, and although none were formally charged, the incident followed a familiar pattern of harassment, beatings and threats against people who openly identify as gay.

The group was released the next day, but not before being “profiled” - a term used by police to describe information gathering. Detainees’ names, addresses, places of work and even details about friends and family were recorded.

With this information, police have been pursuing these individuals as well as people close to them. “We are in for a protracted campaign of harassment; it is going to be a very rough time,” Chesterfield Samba, director of GALZ, told IRIN. “People are being tracked down in clubs and bars, at their jobs and homes, because they are suspected of being gay.”

Politically motivated

Same-sex relationships are considered a breach of the traditional family structure, in which marriage and procreation help perpetuate a system of care for elders. In Zimbabwe, regard for tradition is used to stir up populist sentiment during elections.

''Usually when anything political is happening, the vilification of the [gay] community begins''
“Usually when anything political is happening, the vilification of the [gay] community begins,” Samba said. “It is a fearful time, and it becomes difficult to go about daily life as normal.”

Two key political events appear to have triggered the latest round of harassment: the expected presidential election - in which President Robert Mugabe will likely square off against his rival in the unity government, Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai - and the referendum on a draft constitution, which, if adopted, could limit the powers of the presidency.

Tsvangirai has called for presidential and parliamentary elections to take place in March 2013. The current session of parliament ends in June 2013, and, according to the 2009 unity government agreement, the polls must be held by October 2013.

The constitution was drafted by a joint committee consisting of members of the main political parties, which formed a power-sharing government in the aftermath of the violent 2008 parliamentary and presidential elections. Mugabe’s ZANU-PF party wants to dilute
provisions of the constitution that curb presidential powers, while opposition parties see it as a tool to rein in presidential authority.

By raising the visibility of gay rights advocacy and linking it to the constitution - which makes no mention of the issue - Mugabe supporters hope to swing the referendum vote in their favour, indicating that, unless there are changes to the draft constitution, they will campaign for a no vote.

“The constitution does not mention homosexuality at all, and they are spinning its silence to mean that it embraces homosexuality,” said David Hofisi, an attorney with Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR), which has been acting on behalf of a number of those arrested at the book launch.

At a rally celebrating his birthday earlier this year, Mugabe alleged that supporters of gay rights were attempting to insert a clause protecting same-sex marriage into the draft constitution. "We won't accept that," he said, according to media reports. "You don't have the freedom for men to marry men and women to marry women. You have the freedom for men to marry women. That's God's freedom. That's what created you and me."

‘Moral panic’

Since the August arrests at GALZ headquarters, the police have continued their investigation into the 44 “suspects”.

“Police used the information to visit their homes, including the parents of people that were arrested,” Samba said. “They also went to the places of work of some of our members, so effectively ‘outing’ them. Some were kicked out of their homes. Others face disciplinary action from their bosses who are homophobic.”

Read more
Zimbabwe - crisis over?
Divisions over a new constitution
'Sexual refugees' struggle to access asylum
Museveni distances himself from 'cruel' anti-gay bill
“Usually, police conduct an operation from time to time against the gay community, then move on, but this time it’s a sustained campaign and we have no idea when it will end,” Hofisi told IRIN.

An attempt to obtain a court injunction against the police was halted earlier this month, when a group of youths stormed the courtroom in Mbara, a poor neighbourhood south of Harare, forcing lawyers and plaintiffs to flee. “We are now asking the court to transfer proceedings to a different court that is in a less volatile area,” Hofisi said.

An intolerance of gays is shared across the political spectrum, and although homosexuality is not specifically illegal, sodomy is deemed a criminal act. This has not stopped police from arresting lesbians, Hofisi said, nor from arresting people who are deemed gay, even if there is no evidence that they have engaged in homosexual acts.

“We know Mugabe always uses this subject to divert attention away from other issues like poverty, lack of jobs and corruption,” Monica Tabengwe, a lawyer and researcher for Human Rights Watch who has written several papers on the plight of Zimbabwe’s gay community, told IRIN.

“You would think that under other circumstances these would be the things that people are concerned about. But the subject of homosexuality gets people’s attention ... The moral panic this creates always works,” she said.

[This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations]

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Black Zimbabwe is torture country: Court

TUESDAY, 25 SEPTEMBER 2012 18:45

By Dan Moshenberg

Last Thursday, Zimbabwe’s Supreme Court unanimously “chastised” state
security agents for torturing Jestina Mukoko, national director of the
Zimbabwe Peace Project, four years ago.

They came at dawn, December 3, 2008. Armed men broke into the house of
Jestina Mukoko, the only surviving parent of a teenage child who watched,
helplessly. They took her, in unmarked cars, and held her incommunicado for
21 days.

During that time, they beat her feet with rubber truncheons. They dumped her
into solitary confinement. They forced her to kneel on gravel, to endure
searing pain. They questioned her about the whereabouts of her son. As
Mukoko explains, “Psychological torture was the order of the day.” Under
duress, the abductors, which is to say the State, handed Jestina Mukoko over
to … the State. Where she was again imprisoned, in the notorious Chikurubi
Maximum Detention Centre, after having spent time in police cells that had
already been deemed “unfit for human habitation.”

Mukoko told this story in May to the Oslo Freedom Forum in a panel titled
“Spotlight on Repression: A glimpse into some of the world’s least known and
most repressive regimes.” Her talk is entitled “In Mugabe’s Crosshairs.”

Where does that torture begin? As Mukoko notes, at the outset of her talk,
she was denied her freedom for 89 days in prison, but she has been denied
her freedom for far longer than that.

Where does the torture begin? At the house invasion? The abduction? The
disappearance? The beatings? The kneeling on gravel? The nights with drunken
captors taunting and threatening her? The police cell? The prison? The
mandated weekly visits to the police, while awaiting trial?

It also begins in the globally constructed status of “least known”. Four
years ago, when Jestina Mukoko was abducted, and then for the three months
of her ordeal, she was in the news. Zimbabwe was in the news. Then Mukoko
was released, and her story was relegated to the conference halls of human
rights organizations.

And so Zimbabwe, somehow magically, receded into the Brigadoon fog at the
season’s end.

Except that Zimbabwe did not go away. Jestina Mukoko was not the only person
abducted that year. Among the 20 or so abducted, at the same time, by ‘State
security agents’, there was Nigel Mutemagawu, two years old. He was taken
with his parents and held incommunicado. He was beaten and then left without
medical attention. All of those cases are still pending. That means, as
Mukoko explains, that they must drag themselves, every Friday, to the police
station to verify their whereabouts: “I know how traumatic that is.”

Jestina Mukoko and so many others are still kicking in Zimbabwe. She’s suing
the government for torture. She continues to document violations and to give
voice to those who suffer atrocity. She, and many others, continue to work
for the project that is peace. Where does the torture end? -

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Open letter to Zimbabweans in the Diaspora

Vince Musewe
25 September 2012

Vince Musewe shares his experiences on developments in the country

Greetings to all of you my fellow Zimbabweans, especially those who
continue to hope for change in Zimbabwe. I shall be writing to you regularly
to hopefully give you new perspectives on developments in your country.
Amazingly enough, your country is still standing despite years of
mismanagement and pillage of its resources.

In this letter, I want to share with you some of my experiences on
political, social and economic developments in your country so that you may
be better informed and hopefully make better decisions on how you can
participate in building a new Zimbabwe in the future.

There is now a physiological momentum towards change as we finalize the
draft constitution and move towards a referendum and elections. If I were
you, really would not be pessimistic about the future. I truly believe that
we are going to see accelerated change, especially in this last period, as
happened in many countries in Africa where it seemed almost impossible for
change to come but overnight, we saw new governments installed. Do not be
fooled, there is no turning back and its now a matter of when and not if.

I however note with sadness that, you will not be able to participate in the
forth coming elections. I expected that, given the fact hat the logistics
involved would present opportunities for rigging. In addition, Zimbabwe is
not yet sophisticated enough to implement an international exercise required
to get all Zimbabweans abroad to vote.

As you are all probably aware, our politicians continue to squabble on the
way forward as that has become their core competency of the last couple of
years. Despite this, there seems to be a self manufactured acceleration
towards extinction by ZANU (PF) as it continues to fail to articulate
exactly what it can do for the country that it has not done in the last 32
years. The MDC has high expectations to take over political power within the
next twelve months. I pray the latter becomes a reality for your country's

Zimbabwe has hardly developed over the last twenty years. It has actually
gone backwards thanks to you know who. That is not news to you I guess. I
think what is astounding is that fact that despite the country having highly
educated people in all sectors and a huge resource base, this has not bourn
any fruit in terms of development. I do not advise you to return home yet.
Your country needs new leaders in all sectors especially politics and public

It needs people such as you, who have been exposed to developed environments
so that we may implement new ideas and develop our communities. However now
is not the time. The economy remains subdued and is operating at survival
mode. Jobs are extinct and those of you who are not in business would be
advised to stay where you are for now. Coming back would only frustrate you.
You can however invest in property and at least own a piece of land as I
know that its value is surely going to rocket in the future.

For those in business, I think now is the time to look at opportunity. If
all things go well and we achieve a new dispensation, it is those who are
already here who will make the most of it. Be careful however who you get
involved with and who you share your ideas with as Zimbabwe is a copy
economy and business ethics have deteriorated somewhat.

I also advise that you do a little research before you invest in anything.
There are opportunities in virtually every sector especially in agriculture,
property, communications, transport, energy and mining. I trust that these
sectors will boom as disposable incomes rise but you will have to be patient
with your investment. My advice is that you invest in a sector that you know
and have the required skills.

If you can start you own business with your own funds do so and avoid going
into a joint venture or borrowing because you will be disappointed at some
of the business practices of those that are here despite their perceived
success. You will be successful if you are innovative and aggressive. Do not
bring all your funds however; leave some abroad because you will need to
ensure that you have access to medical care abroad as the services here
suck. Also remember that the banks here do not have money.

You must also understand that Zimbabwe's infrastructure has hardly been
developed over the last twenty years. This tends to frustrate those who are
used to live in an environment where things work. You must brace yourself
for inconsistent supply of water and energy. You cannot rely on efficient
supply of public services so you will have to make your own plan that you
have continuous water and power. Internet access is available in the cities
but over priced. If you like to read make sure you have your own constant
supply of reading materials.

Finally as you all know, there is no place like home but we need to see a
new breed of citizens who care about others and are keen to develop the
community. There is much poverty and distress while there is a significant
number of Zimbabweans who are doing well and are seemingly divorced from
positively contributing to social development. The value system we now have
is that of looking after your self at all costs , this is not the Zimbabwe
that I wish to live in. We will all be required t do what we can with what
we have to make a difference and for me that is more exciting that anything

In conclusion, do not be deceived by those who wish to maintain the status
quo, they will say anything to delay progress and their voices will get
louder as the day of reckoning dawns. Their days are numbered.

I wish you all good health and will write to you soon.


Vince Musewe

Vince Musewe is an independent economist currently in Harare and you may
contact him on

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Mugabe’s CIO: Is it a criminal enterprise, gang or a syndicate Final Part

Clifford Chitupa Mashiri, 25th September 2012.
In our previous instalment we looked at the implications of money laundering
for the country. In this Final Part, we will look at the counter-measures,
but that will be after briefly examining global trends and basic
requirements for effective anti-money laundering measures.
Although, money laundering can be of drug money, kickbacks for big projects
or development aid [1], this paper is focusing on the suspected laundering
of money from the illicit sale of diamonds from Chiadzwa.
Zimbabweans have “a well-founded fear that diamond revenue will be used to
fund a violent election” after disclosures that the army [2], police and the
Central Intelligence Organisation own shares in Anjin diamond mining company
which is not remitting funds to Treasury.
Global Trends
Some authorities trace the history of money laundering to the 1930s during
the Second World War, when Nazi officers carted away war loots and stashed
them in secret Swiss bank accounts [3].
Two trends that have characterised money laundering in recent years are the
increasing involvement of professionals to carry out the money laundering
function on behalf of criminals resulting in the “globalisation of money
laundering” [4].
Professionals are used not only to conceal the origin of the proceeds, but
to manage the subsequent investment into assets such as real estate, stock,
bonds or legitimate businesses.
For example, the Chinese “Fic Chin” system involves depositing money in one
country in exchange for a “Chit or Chop” and remittance in another
jurisdiction on presentation of the “Chit or Chop” (Abdullahi Y. Shehu 2000,
6). In 1993, the Police in New Delhi arrested a Hawalah banker who had over
a period of 2 years handled about US $1.45 billion in payment to his clients
in Dubai [5].
Interestingly, the Central Intelligence Organisation (CIO) appears to have
received US$100m in off-budget financing from Sam Pa, a businessman based in
Hong Kong who holds leadership positions in a network of over sixty
companies known as the Queensway syndicate [6].
CIO sources also told Global Witness that Sam Pa provided 200 Nissan pick-up
trucks to the CIO. In return, Sam Pa received diamonds and accessed business
opportunities in the cotton and property development sectors. How such
activities are evading the GNU’s attention is all but a mystery.
Money launderers are known to use “front companies,” i.e. business
enterprises that appear legitimate and engage in legitimate business but
are, in fact, controlled by criminals [Paul Allan Schott 2006, 6][7]. Schott
explains that these front companies co-mingle the illicit funds with
legitimate funds in order to hide the ill-gotten proceeds.
It’s worth noting that in February 2009, Robert Mugabe reportedly bought a
US$5.7 million house in Hong Kong at the height of recession with 94 percent
unemployment and a cholera outbreak that killed 3,467 people [8].The house
was bought on Mugabe’s behalf through an unidentified company.
At times, life in the fast lane has been taken for granted. For instance,
chairman of the controversial Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation
(ZMDC), Godwills Masimirembwa, whose name was deleted from the lawyers’
register some 15 years ago over unprofessional conduct, says he is now
completely rehabilitated and fit for re-registration as a legal practitioner
He was de-registered on March 14, 1997 after being convicted of
misappropriation, dishonourable or unworthy conduct by Zimbabwe’s Legal
Practitioners Disciplinary Tribunal. He was accused of failing to keep
proper books of accounts and misappropriation of trust funds.
Basic requirements
A country’s regime to counter money laundering and the financing of
terrorism should have some primary objectives - to deter money launderers
and terrorist financiers; and to prosecute and punish those involved in such
schemes (Pierre-Laurent Chatain et al. 2009)[10].
Money laundering cases don’t get done without financial records, many of
which are in the custody of banks or other third party record-keepers [John
Madinger 2012, 305][11]. According to the World Bank, as well as bank
examiners, anti-money laundering supervisors should have powers to carry out
on-site inspections of financial institutions including a review of
customers’ files and of bank policies, procedures, and books and records
(Pierre-Laurent Chatain et al. 2009, 34 of 304).
A record of a strong political will and commitment is necessary and could
include enacting an Anti- Money Laundering Act as Tanzania did in 2006 and
Kenya in 2007 [12]. Similarly, on the criminal justice side, countries
should have effective police services with specialised skills and training
in money laundering and terrorist financing investigations, as well as a
functioning, non corrupt judicial/prosecutorial system (Schott 2006, 55).
Although Zimbabwe is a member of the Financial Action Task Force on Money
Laundering (FATF) and boasts signing and ratifying the SADC Protocol Against
Corruption, and the AU/UN Conventions on the prevention and combating of
corruption [GoZ, 2010] [13], ironically, big cats have not been nabbed [14].
Apart from that the Anti Corruption Commission appears to be just nominal.
According to ACT –Southern Africa’s regional co-ordinator, Alouis Munyaradzi
Chaumba, the Zanu-pf leader Robert Mugabe and his wife Grace are among 56
other Zimbabweans – mostly Zanu-pf bigwigs implicated in corrupt activities
fleecing the country of billions of dollars.
Ironically, the President who earns less than US$2000 per month together
with his wife built a US$13.5million state of the art processing plant dairy
on a farm in Mazowe which they seized from its rightful owner Ian Webster
but did not pay for the electricity supply to the tune of £220,000 [15].
While offshore banking is criticised for ineffective monitoring of money
laundering activities, Muller, W.H., Kalin, C.H., & Goldsworth, J.G. (2007,
263) [16] contend that the British Virgin Islands (BVI) is regulated by the
financial services commission, and its Proceeds of Criminal Conduct Act 1997
seeks to deter any and all forms of money laundering in the BVI. However,
offshore banking has raised suspicions of tax avoidance even in the UK [17].
Anti-Money Laundering Legislation
The Law Society of Singapore (2006,1) suggests that legislation impacting
professionals other than financial institutions including lawyers,
accountants, real estate agents, notaries, trust and company service
providers compelling them to implement anti-money laundering measures should
be passed.
Similarly, the Asia Development Bank (2003, 6)[18] emphasises the strict
implementation of “Know-Your Customer” rules; training of staff; mutual
legal assistance among countries, while the World Bank calls for effective
due diligence regimes [Schott 2006, 6].
Asset Recovery
The International Centre for Asset Recovery (ICSR) recommends asset
recovery – ensuring legislation allows for the ability to freeze or seize
proceeds of corruption and other criminal activity – either through
conviction or NCB forfeitures, “ to conduct and carry out special
investigative techniques such as wiretapping, among others,” [ICSR 2011,
Combating the laundering of diamonds cash
Global Witness has made sound recommendations which resonate with anti-money
laundering measures in the context of Marange diamonds. The watchdog body
says it has received receipts from the diamond mining company, Anjin
Investments (Pvt) Ltd for payments to other government bodies but not the
Zimbabwe Revenue Authority, making Finance Minister Biti’s claim that
Treasury has not received any revenues from Anjin plausible (believable).
There are concerns that significant sums of money could flow to the
Zimbabwean military. There is merit in the group’s call for the activities
of Sam Pa, Sino Zimbabwe Development (Pvt) Ltd and Anjin Investments (Pvt)
Ltd to be investigated by relevant authorities to see if their actions
undermine Zimbabwean democratic institutions or risk funding future human
rights abuses.
It is also right that SADC facilitators should secure democratic civilian
control over the budgets for the security services. Given the foot-dragging
in SADC, it remains to be seen if “for SADC to appoint an expert panel to
investigate these claims” [Global Witness 2012, 19 of 33].
The Kimberley Process should re-define conflict diamonds to encompass
governments which commit rights abuses and rebel groups; should apply to the
whole supply chain (both rough and polished diamonds) [Global Witness 2012,
20 of 33].
The KP should adopt supply chain due diligence frameworks requiring
companies to know: who their suppliers are, under what conditions diamonds
are mined and processed, and who benefits financially from their production
and sale [Global Witness, FaPG p.20 of 33].
As long as the Ministry of Mines of Zimbabwe withholds information on
diamond production and sales figures as well as the whereabouts of the
proceeds, there will always be justifiable suspicion of money laundering
given the conspicuous consumption of inexplicable purchases of anonymous
yatchs, private jets, casinos, banks and real estate by people who hardly
had a decent pair of shoes thirty-three years ago.
This is my last opinion paper for a long time to come as I take a well
deserved sabbatical leave. I would like to convey a million thanks to the
management and staff of,, our
readers and listeners at home and abroad for the honour and privilege to be
©Clifford Chitupa Mashiri, Political Analyst, London,
List of references
1. International Centre for Asset Recovery, Development Assistance Asset
Recovery and Money Laundering: Making the Connection, Basel Institute on
Governance, Basel, Switzerland,2011
2. Mavhinga, D. “Disappearing diamond revenue,” The Zimbabwean, 27/06/12.
3. Shehu, A. Y. Money Laundering: The Challenge of Global Enforcement,
Paper Presented as a seminar of the Criminology Society of Hong Kong, 9 Nov,
2000. Shehu was the Deputy Director, Financial Crimes, Office of the Special
Adviser to the President of Nigeria.
4. The Law Society of Singapore, “Money Laundering & Its Impact on
Professionals,” 10/04/
5. Shehu, A. Y. 2000.
6. Global Witness, Financing a parallel government? Zimbabwe, June 2012,
p.2 of 33
7. Schott, P.A. (2006) Reference Guide to Anti-Money Laundering and
Combating Financing of Terrorism, World Bank: Washington.
8. SAPA, “Deport Mugabe’s daughter!”, 15/02/09.
9. The Herald, “Lawyer seeks reinstatement,” 26/07/11.
10. Chatain, P-L., et al. (2009) Preventing Money Laundering and
Terrorist Financing, World Bank, Washington,DC.
11. Madinger, J. (2012) Money Laundering: A Guide for Criminal
Investigators, Taylor and Francis Group: Boca Baton, Florida p.305.
12. United Republic of Tanzania, Strategy For Anti-Money Laundering and
Combating Terrorist Financing, July 2010-June 2013,
13. Government of Zimbabwe, The National Anti-Money Laundering and
Combating Financing of Terrorism Strategic Plan: 2010-2012, March 2010, p.9
14. Mushava, E. “Zanu-pf bigwigs fingered in corruption,” Newsday,
15. Peta Thornycroft, “Robert Mugabe and wife Grace owe £220,000 to
Zimbabwe’s failing power firm,” Telegraph, 19/03/12.
16. Muller, W.H., Kalin, C.H., & Goldsworth, J.G. (2007) Anti-Money
Laundering International Law and Practice, John Wiley& Sons: Chichester.
17. Kirkup, J., Mason, R. & Rayner,G. Conservatives criticised over tax
haven loans , The Telegraph, 21/06/12.
18. Asian Development Bank, Manual on Countering Money Laundering and the
Financing of Terrorism, January 2003, p.6 of 525.
19. United Nations and IMF, Model Legislation on Money Laundering and the
Financing of Terrorism, 1 December 2005, p.1.; Kenya’s Centre for
Governance and Development, The CGD Bills Digest, July 2007.
20. Andrew Mullei, Establishment of Anti Money Laundering Regime in the
Member states of AACB-Eastern Africa Sub Region, Central Bank of Kenya, (no

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Bill Watch 44/2012 of 25th September [Finance and Older Persons Acts gazetted]

BILL WATCH 44/2012

[25th September 2012]

Both Houses stand adjourned until Tuesday 9th October

No Date Yet for Ceremonial Opening of Next Parliamentary Session

There is still no news about an opening date for the new session of Parliament. Leaving the opening so late means that Parliament will not have much time to deal with business – including the Budget, and perhaps the debate on the draft of the new constitution – before the end of the year.

Important Acts Still NOT Gazetted

The Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission Bill and the Electoral Amendment Bill have still not been gazetted as Acts. The HRC Bill was held up by the discovery of errors in the copy prepared for the President’s signature. Parliament submitted a corrected copy on 17th September. Parliament were unable to explain reason for the delay on the Electoral Amendment Bill.

Three Other Acts of 2012 Gazetted

Three Acts were gazetted in a Gazette Extraordinary late on Monday 17th September:

· Older Persons Act – No 1/2012 [not yet in force – date of commencement to be fixed by the President by statutory instrument in due course]

· Finance Act – No 4/2012 [into force 17th September 2012]

· Appropriation (2012) Amendment Act – No 5/2012 [into force 17th September 2012]

Bills Ready for Presentation when Parliament Reopens

The Status of Bills list [see below] shows that two Bills from the Minister of Finance will be ready for presentation when Parliament eventually gets down to work again once the President opens the new Session:

· Securities Amendment Bill [brief outline in Bill Watch 39/2012 of 20th August] [available from]

· Microfinance Bill [brief outline in Bill Watch 41/2012 of 3rd September].

Both Bills were gazetted several weeks ago which means they can be given their First Readings as soon Parliament meets. After that they will be referred to the Parliamentary Legal Committee for a report on their constitutionality. Meanwhile they will also have to be examined by the Portfolio Committee on Budget, Finance and Investment Promotion as soon as it reassembles, which may hold public hearings on the Bills.

Veritas will notify dates where public input will be invited by the committee. But there is no reason why interested parties should not prepare and submit inputs to the Committee Clerk now. These inputs and suggested amendments will be considered by the committee when they prepare a report on the Bill to be presented to the House of Assembly when the Bill comes up for its Second Reading, and often these reports result in changes being made to Bills. Legal opinions on the constitutionality of either Bill may be submitted for the attention of the Parliamentary Legal Committee.

New Vacancy in the Senate

MDC-T Senator Josiah Rimbi died in Mutare on 24th September. As his was a constituency seat – Chipinge - this brings up the total number of Parliamentary by-elections waiting to be held from 26 to 27 [in the Senate from 10 to 11]. It also reduces the MDC-T’s current voting strength in the Senate from 23 to 22 [made up of 3 appointed Senators and 19 elected constituency Senators]. MDC has 8 Senators and ZANU-PF 38. There are 16 Senator Chiefs.

Note: The late Senator Mudzingwa’s appointed Senate seat has been vacant since April; the MDC-T has so far not nominated a replacement for formal appointment by the President in terms of GPA Article 20.1.10.

Inclusive Government Problems

President Fails to Swear in Deputy Minister

The MDC-T post of Deputy Minister of Transport, Communications and Infrastructural Development has been vacant since the death of Senator Tichaona Mudzingwa on 10th April 2012. Under Article 20.1.10 the GPA in Schedule 8 to the Constitution the vacancy should be filled by an MDC-T nominee, formally appointed and sworn in by the President. The Prime Minister forwarded MDC-T’s nomination of Senator Morgen Komichi, MDC-T National Vice-Chairperson, to the President in June, but the President has not yet sworn in Senator Komichi.

No National Security Council Meetings since May

The Zimbabwe National Security Council Act states that the President, in consultation with the Prime Minister, must call meetings of the National Security Council at least once in each calendar month. The Council has not met since May.

Media Commission Forms Media Council

On 13th September, the Zimbabwe Media Commission [ZMC] announced the appointment of the first members of the Media Council in terms of section 42A of the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act [AIPPA]. Hitherto totally unimplemented, this provision has been on the statute book since January 2008.

Under AIPPA, the main functions of the Council, which is essentially a 13-member ZMC committee, are:

· first, to assist the ZMC to formulate a code of conduct and ethics for journalists and mass media services

· then to assist the ZMC to implement and enforce that code, by recommending penalties to be imposed by the ZMC for breaches.

It will probably take some time before the Council becomes operational in its disciplinary support role – before that happens the code of conduct and ethics must be completed and gazetted, and regulations must be gazetted by ZMC for the procedures to be followed by the Council.

The Minister of Media, Information and Publicity did little to allay fears of a future crackdown on the independent media when he said last week that he would work with the ZMC to cancel the media licences of those who denigrate the President. Independent media organisations have not participated in the setting-up of the Council; instead they have stuck to their policy of voluntary self-regulation under the aegis of the Voluntary Media Council of Zimbabwe established in 2007.

South African Court Ruling Against Zimbabwe Government

South Africa’s Supreme Court of Appeal, sitting in Bloemfontein, on 20th September dismissed an appeal brought by the Zimbabwe Government in an effort to stop the sale in execution of immovable properties belonging to it in South Africa – the object of the sale being the enforcement of an order for payment of legal costs made by the SADC Tribunal in favour of dispossessed Zimbabwean farmers. The court rejected all legal arguments raised on behalf of the Government – including Minister Patrick Chinamasa’s contention that the SADC Tribunal was never lawfully established. [Full judgment available in PDF from]

Status of Bills as at 25th September 2012

[Bills available from unless otherwise stated]

Passed Bills awaiting Presidential assent and gazetting as Acts

Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission Bill [resubmitted for assent 17th September]

Electoral Amendment Bill [submitted for assent 4th September]

The Constitution requires the President to grant or withhold his assent within 21 days of a Bill being presented to him.

Bill gazetted and awaiting presentation in Parliament

Microfinance Bill [gazetted on 31st August] [not yet available]

Securities Amendment Bill [gazetted on 10th August 2012] The Minister of Finance has given written notice of his intention to present this Bill when the House next sits.

Bills being printed


Government Gazettes of 7th to 21st September

[copies not available]


The first three Acts of 2012 were gazetted on Monday 17th September [see details at beginning of bulletin]


No Bills were gazetted

Statutory Instruments

Customs duty SIs 142 and 143/2012 provide for 3- and 5-year suspensions of duty for the benefit of a few listed mining companies.

Domestic violence SI 145/2012 replaces two forms used in domestic violence proceedings – Form DV3 [Application for Protection Order] and Form DV7 [Protection Order].

Pesticides SI 144/2012 enacts a new set of Pesticides Regulations under the Fertilisers, Farm Feeds and Remedies Act, replacing regulations of 1977 and amending regulations of 1981.

Veritas makes every effort to ensure reliable information, but cannot take legal responsibility for information supplied

Back to the Top
Back to Index