The ZIMBABWE Situation Our thoughts and prayers are with Zimbabwe
- may peace, truth and justice prevail.

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70 Percent of Forex Dealings Now On Black Market

The Insider (Harare)

September 28, 2001
Posted to the web September 27, 2001

Staff Writer

About 70 percent of foreign currency transactions in Zimbabwe are now taking
place in the parallel market where premiums are in excess of 300 percent of
the official rate of $55 to the US$1, Intermarket Discount House says in its
results for the six-months to June.

This has fuelled price increases on goods and services placing undue
pressure on disposable incomes. Critical energy constraints and foreign
currency problems have also compromised the recovery of the productive
sector, casting doubt on prospects for economic recovery in the short to
medium term.

With money supply growth at 73 percent in May, the discount house says
economic stabilisation remains a challenge for Zimbabwe if sustainable
recovery is to be achieved. According to its results, discount receivable
increased marginally from $779.8 million to $811.3 million while interest
income dropped from $49.7 million to $30.6 million.

Interest expense however dropped from $680.9 million to $153.6 million
leaving net interest income at $688.4 million compared to $148.6 million the
previous year. While last year's income was affected by losses in trading
and dealing income of $29.4 million and fees and commissions totalling $237
000, this year's income was further boosted by trading and dealing profits
of $115.4 million, fees and commissions of $11.8 million and other income of
$18.7 million.

Operating income therefore increased from $119.4 million to $834.2 million,
while net profit shot up from $57.3 million to $516.6 million.
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Output Drops By 50 Percent Due to Aids

The Insider (Harare)

September 28, 2001
Posted to the web September 27, 2001

Staff Writer

Agricultural output from small-scale farmers in Zimbabwe may have fallen by
as much as 50 percent over the past five years mainly as a result of the
killer disease, AIDS, the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organisation
(FAO) says in its latest report.

It says 7 million agricultural workers have died from AIDS since 1985 in the
25 worst affected African countries. Another 16 million could die within the
next 20 years. Namibia seems to be the worst hit losing 26 percent of its
agricultural labour force in the 15 years.

Neighbouring Botswana and Zimbabwe are tied in second spot with a loss of 23
percent, while Mozambique and South Africa are also tied with a 20 percent
loss. The report says although Africa accounts for only one-tenth of the
world's population, it accounts for nine out of 10 new cases of HIV

Eighty-three percent of all AIDS deaths are in Africa. The report says while
the impact of AIDS on farming communities differs from country to country,
the epidemic is undermining the progress made in agriculture and rural
development over the past 40 years. "The disease is no longer simply a
health problem, it has become a major development issue," FAO says.

The report says in 1999, overall agricultural production failed to keep up
with population growth for the third consecutive year. It rose by only 2.1
percent while population growth was 2.5 percent Preliminary estimates for
2000 were that agricultural production would only increase by 0.5 percent.

FAO says labour shortages are particularly serious for agriculture because
production was seasonal. Timing was therefore crucial. The shortfall in
household labour meant that land remained fallow and the household's output

The shortage of labour could lead to less time being dedicated to weeding,
mulching, pruning and clearing of land. Farmers could also switch to less
labour-intensive crops. The epidemic also had a grave impact on agricultural
estates and could lead to a drop in profitability through absenteeism owing
to sickness, substantially reduced productivity and higher overtime costs as
other workers replaced their sick colleagues.

It says at one estate in Kenya spending on funerals rose five-fold while
health costs shot up ten-fold over an eight-year period. HIV/AIDS could also
have a serious impact on the livestock sector as the livestock was sold to
support the sick and to pay for funerals. Selling livestock ate into a
household's savings, making families more vulnerable to new shocks.

Medical and funeral expenses forced many of the poorer families into debt.
It also affected extension work as workers got affected. FAO says in Uganda,
considered the most successful country in Africa to combat the disease,
between 20 and 50 percent of all person-hours among extension staff was lost
as a result of the disease.

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CHOGM Protests
To coincide with the start of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting
in Brisbane, Australia on Saturday 6 October, there will be two large,
colourful, and peaceful demonstrations - one in London, and one in Pretoria.
It is very important that a strong protest is registered, to make sure that
the delegates to CHOGM fully appreciate the importance of holding the
government of Zimbabwe to the public promises it recently made in Abuja and
Harare. Please make a HUGE effort for this one. We cannot emphasise this
strongly enough.
London : Starts at noon on Saturday 6 October outside the Zimbabwe High
Commission in the Strand, followed by a march to Trafalgar Square. Tel 01765
607 900 for details.
Pretoria : Starts at noon at the Union Buildings (corner Vermuelen and Leyds
Streets), followed by a march to the Zimbabwe High Commission at 798 Merton
Street, Arcadia. Tel 082 885 0771 for details.
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Press Release
September 26th 2001

Relations with the International Monetary Fund.

Yesterdays statement from the IMF Board in Washington DC is yet another clear signal that the isolation of Zimbabwe in political and economic terms is being tightened by the international community. However, the statement is less than honest in that it attributes this further suspension of Zimbabwe from the activities of the fund as being solely due to the fact that we are in arrears to the Fund.

In fact we are in arrears to our foreign creditors on a massive scale and the MDC expects that by the end of March 2002, when the term of office of this present government comes to an end, total arrears will exceed US$1 000 million. This is the equivalent of half of Zimbabwe's annual income in foreign exchange.

In fact, if the Minister of Finance chooses to settle his arrears with the IMF (and he has the resources to do so) he knows full well that it would not make any difference to the standing of Zimbabwe in the international financial community. It would also not bring the IMF to the rescue of the Zimbabwe economy. The reason for this is the fact that all of the economic fundamentals in the Zimbabwe economy and in respect to its current budget are so far outside the parameters set by the global economic system, that the IMF could not under any circumstances justify assistance to Zimbabwe. They and the world community know they would waste good resources in a hopeless situation.

Even if Mr Makoni was able to get the fiscal and monetary situation under some semblance of order and within reasonable parameters, it is still certain that no assistance would be forthcoming for the beleaguered economy, as the political environment is totally negative. The IMF knows full well that it cannot consider any forms of assistance to a country that does not respect the rule of law, uses violence and intimidation as political weapons and totally disregards the fundamental rights of its citizens. Zimbabwe is guilty on all counts and in addition is treating the fundamental rights of investors in such a way as to undermine all investor confidence in the country.

It is a sad indictment on the IMF that the wider aspects of their position were not made more fully understood for the benefit of those who suffer under the Zanu PF regime in Zimbabwe.

E G Cross
Secretary for Economic Affairs, MDC.
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MDC Econcomic Policies

Spread this far and wide:

Below are two different documents prepared by the MDC Economics Department.  The first is on price increases and the second on unemployment and job creation.  They describe the current situation in Zimbabwe and the MDC's policy to address these issues.  They are in straightforward english and when printed are each about a page long.  Print them out seperately, distribute them to your friends, colleagues, workers, or acquaintances. 

Help us spread the message of the MDC.

Together we will complete the change for a better life for all Zimbabweans!  The power is in our hands.

Price Increases in Zimbabwe

In the past two years the prices of most products used by Zimbabweans have more than doubled. Incomes have not kept pace with these price changes and as a result, the great majority of Zimbabweans are poorer than they were more than 20 years ago. In fact, recent price changes have created near crisis conditions in many homes with children going to school without breakfast and whole families only eating one meal a day. To save on transport costs, many workers are sleeping at their places of work or walking for hours to and from their workplaces.

There are three main reasons for this state of affairs: -

1. Corruption is now on such a scale that prices of certain basic products such as liquid fuels are being increased to well above regional averages.
2. Shortages of basic foodstuffs such as wheat, maize and cooking oils has meant that we have to import these products at much higher cost than if these were produced by our own farmers.
3. The government continues to operate beyond it means and must print money to finance its activities. This is causing inflation in the economy and is also raising the price of basic goods.

Average inflation in the cost of a basket of groceries has been 122 per cent since September 2000.  The worst affected have been bread - 213 per cent, cooking oil - 141 per cent, soap - 260 to 300 per cent, paraffin - 292 per cent, margerine - 143 per cent. The very rapid rise in bread prices is due in the main to the need to import wheat using foreign exchange purchased on the parallel market. Fats and oils are also affected by this situation as is soap. In the past, all of these products have been produced from raw material produced by our farmers. In the past year all products have declined in output and the situation is getting worse.

Studies of the fuel price indicate that as much as 50 per cent of the current prices at the pump are due to corruption or inefficiencies in the procurement and delivery system. As a consequence we pay fuel prices which are three times the level of fuel costs in South Africa. This impacts on virtually everything we use and consume. It has made paraffin costs prohibitive with the result that people are being forced to use wood or any other fuels they can afford.

Price controls are not the answer to these fundamental problems - they must be dealt with at source - an MDC government has pledged itself to tackle these issues and to root out corruption and thereby curb the rise of prices. At the same time, an MDC government will quickly restore stability and growth to the economy creating jobs and raising incomes. Only when this happens will the decline in living standards be halted and reversed. MDC wage policies call for minimum wage strategies that will link wages to price inflation to protect living standards while inflation persists.

No matter what the people in power will say, the only conditions under which such a situation can be achieved is one where the rule of law is re-established, our relations with the international and regional community are restored and stability comes back to the farming districts. Until these basic issues are addressed there can be no reduction in the cost of living or any improvement in incomes and job losses will continue throughout the economy.


The Job Crisis.

In the past two years some 300 000 Zimbabwean workers have lost their jobs - over a quarter of all the people in formal employment. On top of this, hundreds of thousands of people who rely on the informal sector for their income have suffered either a total collapse of the income generating activities or a serious reduction in their incomes from such activities.

When a man or a woman looses their job, they have nothing to fall back on and in most cases the entire family is left without income. Such events as those outlined above represent real hardship for millions of people throughout the country. This plus the rise in prices and falling incomes, even for those in paid employment, means that people in the cities do not have the surplus income to support their extended families and cannot afford to send money home for essential things such as school fees and food. Instead, the majority of people in the cities now depend on food from their rural homes to sustain themselves and their families.

The loss of jobs and income from informal sector activity is due to the deterioration in the economy as a whole. This is especially true in sectors such as tourism and agriculture but it also applies to the mining industry, industry in the cities and in the service sector. No part of the economy is spared the impact of the present crisis.

The MDC has pledged to reverse this situation in the shortest time possible by restoring the rule of law, stabilise our relations with the international and regional community and correcting the way the economy is being managed. These actions will enable the MDC to re-establish all lost jobs in the formal sector and at the same time create new opportunities by fostering the growth of key industries and assisting those in self-employment to expand their activities.

The MDC stabilisation and recovery programme, part of the BRIDGE strategy adopted by the MDC, will create 500 000 jobs in the first three years - 300 000 of the jobs lost in the past two years under Zanu PF will be restored and an additional 200 000 jobs will be created by new investment in the following sectors: -

Mining - it is expected that major new investments will take place in platinum, gold and chrome industries.
Tourism - it is expected that tourism will recover rapidly once law and order is re-established and that Zimbabwe will receive 2 million visitors a year by 2004. To handle this number of visitors we will have to create 200 000 new jobs in this sector alone;
Agriculture - under the MDC agrarian reform programme we expect to establish up to 50 000 small scale tobacco growers in the tobacco industry, 30 000 new coffee and tea producers, 7 000 sugar producers and up to 1 million small scale farmers will receive title to their land and support for new forms of production.
Industry - this is expected to recover and then to start growing rapidly as access to new markets such as those opened up in the USA, Europe and the SADC become available to our manufacturers and confidence is re-established.

You cannot create jobs while you destroy the jobs in existing industries, you cannot create jobs in an atmosphere of violence and intimidation, and you cannot create jobs without confidence and peace. Only the MDC offers the conditions under which job creation can become a reality.
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From ninemsn Australia

CHOGM to be pressed for Zimbabwe election monitors

Australia needed to press the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting
(CHOGM) to push for monitors in Zimbabwe to ensure a free and fair election
there, MPs were told.

A delegation from Zimbabwe, including farmer Vernon Nicolle, journalist
Benhilda Chanetsa and economist John Robertson, said sanctions against
Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe may be needed if next year's election was

Members of the group met government and opposition MPs to highlight the
situation in Zimbabwe, where Mr Mugabe has seized white-owned farms and
returned them to so-called veterans of the independence war of the late

That process and the accompanying breakdown of law and order has been
condemned by Zimbabwe's opposition parties and independent press and by
African and western nations.

Mr Mugabe says he will attend CHOGM in Brisbane from October 6-9 but it
remains unclear whether he will actually turn up to confront the expected
avalanche of criticism.

Ms Chanetsa, a reporter with the independent weekly The Standard, said she
and her colleagues faced routine intimidation, threats and violence for
reporting the government's activities.

"It should be stressed we need a free and fair election so election monitors
are important," she said.

"If we don't have a free and fair election, some kind of sanctions are going
to have to be imposed on Zimbabwe."

She said one type of sanction which would not harm the already suffering
Zimbabwean people would be restrictions on travel to foreign countries by Mr
Mugabe and members of his government.

Presidential elections are due to be held in Zimbabwe early next year.

Mr Nicolle said Mr Mugabe had become a dictator and he would almost
certainly lose office in a free and fair election.

"We feel that the only way to bring these people to book is by freezing
their bank accounts. They have got millions," he said.

"It goes beyond him. His henchmen are there as well."

Mr Robertson said those occupying the farms would become subsistence
farmers, having no title to the land, paying no wages and salaries to former
farm workers and exporting no produce.

He said the nation's food production was falling and up to a million people
faced starvation.
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The following email has two different parts:
1) Education Policy discussion 1 October
2) MDC position on Citizenship Amendment Act

You are invited to the
Harare North - Marlborough MP's Clinic

Meet Fidelis MHASHU, Shadow Minister of Education and discuss the
MDC EDUCATION POLICY launched this month.

MONDAY 1st OCT 6 pm
Mandel Training Centre
crnr Adylinn/Marlborough Dr opposite CFU

*Meet at Mandel 1st Monday of EVERY MONTH



The MDC position on the Citizenship Amendment Act passed earlier this
year follows:

This amendment IS constitutional.  It CANNOT BE CHALLENGED in terms of the
present Constitution of Zimbabwe.  However, the MDC's position is that once
we come into power, all bad legislation will be withdrawn.  Furthermore,
the MDC intends to allow Zimbabweans to claim and fully enjoy any birthright
or other citizenship to which they are entitled, in the spirit of the United
Nations Charter on Human Rights and other international agreements.

Meanwhile, anyone who is also a citizen of another country is required to
BY 6 JANUARY 2002 if s/he wishes to remain a citizen of Zimbabwe.

If you renounced your other citizenship at the Citizenship Office here using
the form provided by the Zimbabwe government, that is no longer sufficient.
To remain a Zimbabwe citizen, you will have to go to the embassy or high
commission of the other country and renounce that citizenship by whatever
process the laws of that country require - and do this by 6 January 2002.

It is important to be aware of this, because being entitled to another
is not the same as having that citizenship.

It has come to our attention that people are being told at the Passport
Office here
that if either of their parents was born outside this country, they will
have to renounce the citizenship of that country.  THIS IS NOT TRUE, unless
they themselves hold the citizenship
in question as described above.  Our Secretary for Legal Affairs, David
Coltart, recommends that anyone in this situation who is not allowed to
renew their Zimbabwe passport seeks relief through COURT ACTION - please
contact him or me if you want further advice about this.

Please also note that in terms of the Constitution, PERMANENT RESIDENTS of
Zimbabwe who have been permanently resident since BEFORE 31 December 1985
are ENTITLED TO REGISTER TO VOTE, despite provisions in the Electoral Act
could be challenged.  People who have become permanent residents AFTER 1985
are not entitled to vote.

If you are required to take any action to remain a citizen of this country
POSSIBLE, otherwise you may not be able to meet the deadline of 6 JANUARY
2002.  Remember the Christmas holiday period starts at the beginning of
December, so you effectively have TWO MONTHS LEFT.

Trudy Stevenson
Secretary for Policy and Research, MDC
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Stay at Leopard Rock Hotel between 01 September - 30 November 2001 and you could
win a Weekend in Cape Town worth $0.5 million.  
All you have to do is stay at Leopard Rock Hotel for 3 nights to qualify for entry and every night thereafter gains another entry. Ask for our special rates

€ Flights from Harare to Cape Town with British Airways operated by Comair for 2 people .
€ Accomodation at Cape Grace Hotel, in Cape Town Waterfront for 2 people for 2 nights Bed and Breakfast.
€ Car Hire from AVIS for 3 days, plus many more prizes from Leopard Rock.

To Book Please contact
Leopard Rock Reservations
Tel: 020 60115 Fax: 020 61165
Email -

Harare Sales Office
Newlands Shopping Centre
Tel: 04 746 996 Fax: 04 776 885

Special conditions apply to the draw:
No employees or relatives of employees from LRH and associated advertising agencies may enter. The draw will take place after November 30th 2001
.  Judges decision is final.

Visit the CFU Website
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Nightmarish price hikes put houses beyond reach of most home seekers

By MacDonald Dzirutwe, Staff Reporter
9/27/01 6:35:06 PM (GMT +2)

THE prospect of owning a home for millions of Zimbabweans is fading into a
distant dream, snuffed by a nightmarish rise in the cost of houses and
apartments in the past few months.

Prices have more than doubled since January.

In Harare's upmarket suburbs of Chisipite and Borrowdale, for instance, the
surge of property prices has been between $15 million and $20 million while
in the middle-density suburb of Marlborough a four bed-roomed house will
average around $8 million.

Even in the capital city's poor high-density areas of Mabvuku and Budiriro,
prospective home seekers now need at least $1.2 million to buy a
four-bedroomed house.

For most home seekers, the problem is compounded by the fact that building
costs have soared beyond their means, leaving them with no option but to
soldier on looking for a house or an apartment.

Building costs have shot up an average of 220 percent since January.

Huge appetite

Zimbabwean estate agents this week said this had sparked a huge appetite for
residential properties in the high, middle and low-density areas, creating a
serious shortage of properties and pushing up prices.

They said very few residential property owners were now willing to put their
houses on the market because of the high value attached to them.

"There is high inflation and therefore the cost of building escalates," a
spokesman for Fox and Carney Real Estate Agents told the Financial Gazette.
"This has created a huge demand for already built property, thus pushing the
prices up sharply."

The Association of Building Societies of Zimbabwe (ABSZ) said the acute
shortage of serviced urban stands in most local authorities had prevented
developers from offering new housing units and this had pushed up demand for

But market analysts said the factor that had a far reaching impact on
residential property prices this year was the fall in money market interest
rates from over 50 percent at the end of 2000 to 10-year lows of slightly
above 10 percent in January.

Lending rates

The decline in interest rates led to the reduction of the dividend rate on
Class "C" tax free shares from 23 percent to 14 percent, which prompted most
building societies to cut mortgage lending rates, making it cheaper for some
home seekers to borrow money.

"Following the reduction in dividend rate on Class "C" tax free shares
payable by building societies from 23 percent to 14 percent, which was
gazetted by the Ministry of Finance on 29 June 2001, most societies have
reduced their mortgage lending rates," ABSZ chairman Ben Chikwanha told the
Financial Gazette.

"Each society determines its own lending rates and the reduction since
January has varied in the range of six to seven percent. For example, one of
the largest societies dropped its lending rates for owner-occupied property
in low-density areas from 26 percent in January to 19.85 percent in July.
Any reduction in lending rates clearly increases demand from those home
seekers who could not afford the previous higher rates."

Soft rates

Soft interest rates have also fuelled a huge appetite for equities on the
Zimbabwe Stock Exchange, where prices reached record highs this year, and
for foreign currency on the parallel market, also leading to rapidly
depreciating exchange rates.

Many investors making profits on the stock and parallel foreign exchange
markets have poured their money into property, where they know it will
maintain its value in an environment where inflation has reached a record
high of 76 percent and is expected to close the year at around 100 percent.

"Because of low rates, people realise that they should put their money into
property," said a senior property consultant with Harare-based Gainsborough
Estate Agents.

"It is not attractive anymore to put your money on the money market.
Investors believe that their investment in property holds its value and it
has proved itself very well - that is why prices of houses have doubled.

"Companies and investment houses are giving their staff loans to buy houses
so we have a situation where too many people are now chasing after too few

The lucrative rates on the parallel market, which fell from around $85
against one US dollar at the beginning of the year to about $300 now, have
also attracted investment in the residential property market from
Zimbabweans living abroad who bring in hard currency to sell on the
unofficial market.

Shortage of properties

The Gainsborough consultant said: "There are a lot of Zimbabweans living
abroad who are investing in the property market. This has also led to
shortages of properties because now there is not enough to go around."

But the estate agents said there were also some Zimbabweans who had
benefited from the civil war in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC),
where Zimbabwe has troops and where some local companies and individuals
have gone into business.

These individuals were bringing back hard cash in "bags", which they would
exchange on the parallel market, enabling them to buy properties with price
tags as high as $70 million.

"We are also seeing a certain quarter of people bringing hard currency in
bags from fortunes made from the DRC war and these have purchased a lot of
the upmarket properties," a spokesman for another Harare-based estate agent

"In a way, this has created high demand for such properties and pushed up

The Gainsborough consultant said if interest rates firmed, investor
attention would shift back to the money market and this would help stabilise
the prices of houses.

"There would be more people disposing of their properties in order to invest
on the money market where there would be higher returns," the consultant

But interest rates are not expected to firm for a while yet and estate
agents warn that the price distortions in the residential property market
will not be eliminated until the rate of inflation has also eased.

Until then, prices will just stabilise and not decline.

"But who then is going to bring inflation down and make building materials
affordable and available?" asked a spokesman for Gabriel Real Estate Agents.

The Fox and Carney spokesman added: "I think if we get inflation down, it
will help a great deal in normalising the prices of houses but at the moment
it does not seem possible."

The government has so far refused to implement economic policies that would
lead to a decline in inflation, which is blamed for much of Zimbabwe's
macroeconomic instability.

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UZ head threatens to close residence halls

Own Correspondent
9/27/01 8:52:31 PM (GMT +2)

UNIVERSITY of Zimbabwe (UZ) vice chancellor Graham Hill yesterday threatened
to shut down halls of residence at the institution of higher learning and
announced restrictions on students following destruction of university
property on Tuesday night.

Drunken students chanted their way onto the campus at 7:30 pm on Tuesday,
throwing stones and other missiles at UZ buildings and security personnel
whom they accused of brutalising them during previous demonstrations.

They besieged the central security control room and vandalised surveillance
equipment, smashed windows, ransacked staff offices and looted a dining hall
before the disturbances were stamped out by riot police, who descended on
the campus armed with rifles and teagas canisters.

Hill yesterday told students that a repeat of Tuesday night's violent
disturbances would lead to the closure of all halls of residence at the UZ,
which has been rocked by student violence in the past few years, sometimes
forcing the complete closure of the university.

"Just give me an excuse and I'll do it," he warned them.

The closure of the halls of residence would have a profound impact on
students, especially those from outside Harare, forcing them to seek
alternative and often expensive accommodation.

The UZ head also announced the suspension of the computerisation of the
university's halls of residence because of what he termed students'
irresponsibility towards UZ property.

Students have also been told that the institution's main library, which
normally only shuts down after midnight, will now be closed to them at six
in the evening.

UZ publicity and information secretary Elizabeth Karonga told the Financial
Gazette that the UZ administration had not yet established the motive for
the disturbances. She said inadequate funding, which in the past has fuelled
student violence, had been addressed earlier this year when students were
granted an extra $5 000 each to be disbursed before the end of this week.

But riotous students are reported to have been addressed on Tuesday evening
by five recently suspended members of the student executive council, at Bond
Street Bottle Store outside the UZ campus, before they went on the rampage.

They are also said to have met opposition Movement for Democratic Change
spokesman Learnmore Jongwe. Jongwe, a former student activist, however
denied the allegations, saying: "That is hogwash. I have no business
addressing students clandestinely."

Irate UZ students yesterday met university officials to map out strategies
for dealing with hooligans on campus and overwhelmingly supported the
suspension of those involved in Tuesday night's disturbances, which have
scared off some staff members.

"Because of the security risks created by the disturbances, expatriate staff
living on campus have refused to turn up for work today (Wednesday) until
the security of their families is guaranteed," Karonga said.
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Commercial banks limit use of international credit cards

Staff Reporter
9/27/01 9:03:16 PM (GMT +2)

ZIMBABWEAN commercial banks have begun cutting off external services such as
the use of international credit cards by clients as the economic crisis of
biting shortages of hard currency grips the country.

Barclays Bank, Zimba-bwe's largest commercial bank, this week announced that
it would stop the use of all international credit cards such as VISA and
Mastercard as from October 15.

The bank said the move had been necessitated by "the continued limited
availability of foreign currency". The action was also meant to direct
foreign currency to critical areas such as medical and educational
requirements, it said.

A teller at one of the Barclays branches in Harare said the bank suspended
the issuing of international credit cards to new clients in March.

Some banks, however, were this week still issuing international credit cards
but limiting the amount of money which clients could use for the whole year.

An official at the Jewel Bank, also known as the Commercial Bank of
Zimbabwe, said the group was issuing new credit cards of a maximum value of
US$1 000 annually.

Audrey Mpunzwana, the spokesman for Standard Chartered, said her bank had
not yet suspended the use of international cards but cannot rule out the
possibility of doing so in future.

Zimbabwean commercial banks have been barred by the government from trading
foreign currency on the local parallel market where rates, though declining,
have been at a premium for more than a year.

The parallel market remains awash with foreign currency because dealers, who
cannot offload at current managed rates, are playing a wait-and-see game.
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CIO on mission to throw MDC into disarray

Staff Reporter
9/27/01 8:58:51 PM (GMT +2)

SPIES from the state's Central Intelligence Organisation (CIO) and others
from the governing ZANU PF party have infiltrated the opposition Movement
for Democratic Change (MDC) heavily to try to dramatically weaken the party
before next year's crucial presidential poll, it was learnt this week.

CIO and ZANU PF machinations have thrown into disarray the MDC's
restructuring exercise that was meant to bolster its provincial offices and
boost party leader Morgan Tsvangirai's chances of snatching the poll, the
sources said, but senior opposition party officials this week insisted that
their election campaign was on target.

Recent MDC polls to inject new blood in key provinces such as Harare and
Manicaland have been torn by strife, with new camps aligned to some of the
party's leaders emerging, much to the delight of ZANU PF's war machine.

War machine

Welshman Ncube, the MDC's secretary-general, said this week his party was
aware of the CIO infiltration but was confident that ZANU PF's covert
operations would fail to derail the campaign to get Tsvangirai elected into
the State House in polls which must be held by March next year.

"We are aware that the CIO's fulltime job now is to destroy the MDC and we
have the inside information of all their machinations," Ncube told the
Financial Gazette.

He added: "Believe me, they will not succeed because the MDC is a people's
party. The party is as strong as ever and, like any other party, you will
have internal differences, which is healthy."

Government media in the past few weeks has been trumpeting the cracks within
Zimbabwe's strongest opposition party that were recently dramatised by the
chaotic and violent provincial elections in Harare.

Officials assaulted

The Harare polls were abandoned two weeks ago after some party youths
stormed the meeting and assaulted officials. The youths refused to allow the
party's interim executive to be replaced.

The Herald this week said it had a letter written by three MDC legislators
to Tsvangirai accusing its Member of Parliament for Hatfield Tapiwa
Mashakada of having formed an underground youth movement that was creating
havoc within the party.

Ncube said the state media "had made a mountain" out of the letter and he
was surprised that the letter had found itself in the newspaper's pages
before it had even reached its intended recipients.

MDC warned

Celebrated Zimbabwean writer Chenjerai Hove warned the MDC that ZANU PF had
used the same infiltration tactics to great success when serious political
parties such as Edgar Tekere's Zimbabwe Unity Movement were formed in the
late 1980s.

"The mistake that our society makes is to over-relax and be off guard and
also not to realise that an institution such as a political party is a
serious matter. Our politicians enjoy the glory and forget their duty and
commitment to the electorate," Hove observed.

Very minimal

Hove said ZANU PF had since 1980 perfected tactics to weaken serious
opposition parties and the labour movement towards crucial elections. He
urged the MDC to be extra-vigilant in its preparations for the 2002
presidential poll.

Brian Raftopoulos, a lecturer in development studies at the University of
Zimbabwe, said while it was clear that the MDC might have been infiltrated
by the CIO, the damage to its structures was still very minimal.

"The effect of the infiltration on next year's poll depends on how
effectively the MDC manages to contain it but it can get out of hand," he

He said it had always been the pattern in Zimbabwe after independence in
1980 that the governing party would infiltrate newly formed parties to
weaken them before they got established.

"When you are young and you are trying to establish structures, infiltration
is something you have to live with and learn how to deal with. The MDC has
managed to contain it and I think the government media is blowing the whole
issue out of proportion," he said.

Two camps

On the issue of polarisation between former trade union leaders and
academics within the MDC, Raftopoulos said while there was obvious tension
between the two camps, it was not that severe to undermine the coalition of
the different groups that form the party.
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Mugabe on rampage as world focuses on US

By Cris Chinaka
9/27/01 8:53:48 PM (GMT +2)

PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe has quietly tightened his grip on Zimbabwe as world
attention focuses on the United States, and political analysts say pressure
on him to honour a pledge to end land seizures has eased.

In the last two weeks, the veteran leader has stepped up an onslaught
against opponents and has barely implemented a Nigerian-brokered deal on
Zimbabwe's land crisis, they said.

Mugabe's government insists the deal is alive and dismisses sceptics as
"false prophets of doom and gloom and economic terrorists" bent on
sabotaging Zimbabwe's economy.

Harare-based diplomats say that while it is too early to write off the
agreement reached in the Nigerian capital of Abuja on September 6, the signs
are not encouraging.

"The movement on the ground does not inspire confidence. You get the
impression that the Zimbabwe government wants the relief (from international
pressure) that this agreement has brought but we are not seeing any
enthusiasm beyond interpreting what the agreement means," one African
diplomat said.

"We get the impression that without continuous pressure from the
international community, this agreement might collapse and . . . the
Zimbabwean authorities have been taking some comfort that since September
11, world attention has been on the US," he added.

Ending a two-day summit on Zimbabwe's land crisis on the same day the World
Trade Centre in New York and the Pentagon in Washington were hit by suicide
attacks, six leaders of the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC)
gave Mugabe one month to show progress on restoring the rule of law.

Mugabe endorsed the Nigerian plan to end government farm seizures in
exchange for funds from former colonial master Britain to implement a fair
land reform plan.

Information Minister Jonathan Moyo went on state television for about an
hour on Tuesday night to assert the government's commitment to the Abuja
agreement, saying there was no reason to doubt the good faith of all

"We are already implementing the agree-ment . . ." he said.

The mainly white Commercial Farmers' Union (CFU), which represents
4 500 members, says the Abuja agreement "can be made to work as it contains
the principles of justice".

Mugabe, 77, has suggested that some CFU officials are trying to sabotage
Zimbabwe's image by continuing to feed false stories about violence and

Nine white farmers have been killed and scores of black farm workers
assaulted during the invasion of hundreds of white farms in the past 19
months by militant supporters of Mugabe's ruling ZANU PF party. They are led
by self-styled veterans of the 1970s independence war against white minority
rule in the ex-Rhodesia.

But since the Abuja accord and the SADC summit, critics say Mugabe has piled
even more pressure on his opponents.

The main opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) has also welcomed
the Abuja deal. But it says dozens of its supporters have been driven out of
their homes in the countryside in a campaign of intimidation ahead of
presidential elections due by next April.

"If this was a soccer match, we could easily say that Mugabe is scoring some
irregular goals and getting away with some crippling tackles," said Brian
Raftopoulos, an associate professor at the Zimbabwe Institute of Development

White farmers say violence has continued on their properties since Abuja but
the government says any fresh trouble has been engineered by farmers to
discredit it.

Political analysts say that even if Mugabe wanted to evict thousands of his
militants from white farms, his task would not be easy. He needs their
services to help secure victory in a presidential poll likely to be fought
around the economy.

Zimbabwe is in its third year of recession and grappling with a fuel
shortage, a hard currency crisis and looming food shortages which could
spark social unrest.

The privately owned Daily News, which Harare accuses of being
pro-opposition, said Mugabe had accepted the Abuja agreement to deflect
international sanctions, but had no intention of implementing it.

In a recent report, the International Crisis Group, a think-tank in
Brussels, said Mugabe and his ZANU PF elite should face targeted personal
sanctions if he did not allow the elections to be free and fair. - Reuter
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More invaders descend on undesignated farm

9/26/01 8:01:56 AM (GMT +2)

Staff Reporter

ABOUT 40 more farm invaders, suspected to be Zanu PF supporters, on Monday
forced their way onto Treadour Farm, about 28km outside Harare, and
destroyed property worth thousands of dollars before they started erecting
their own temporary structures.

This brings to about 100 the number of invaders illegally occupying the farm
which belongs to Gordon Christie, a businessman.

Christie is the managing director of Tauya Coach Services and Freight (Pvt)
Earlier in the month, more than 40 invaders, wielding axes and brandishing
pistols, pegged the farm and gave Christie and 500 of his workers 30 days to
leave or face unspecified action.
Christie said the invaders have hired people to erect the structures at $600

Christie said: “Sixty more people who claimed to be war veterans forced
their way on to my farm on Monday. The broke down the gate and padlocks and
pulled down part of the fence before they made their way in. Although I have
not established what the cost of the damage is, I believe it runs into
several thousands of dollars.”

His farm manager went to the farm to find out if some of their animals had
not escaped.
Christie insisted his farm had not been listed for resettlement.
A housing project worth at least $64 million which was to benefit at least
160 families has been jeopardised because of the invasion, he said.
Draughtsmen had completed the planning stage of the four-roomed houses which
cost about $400 000 each, said Christie.

He said the invaders had ordered all farming activities to be stopped.
“I may have to lay off a number of my workers since they will not be
productive on the farm,” he said.
Last year, six of Christie’s coaches were extensively damaged in suspected
acts of arson because they carried MDC advertisements.
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From FinGaz

NCA applies for peace order on govt

Staff Reporter
9/27/01 8:47:24 PM (GMT +2)

THE National Constitu-tional Assembly (NCA) was last night expected to file
an urgent application with the High Court barring the government from
interfering with the public launch tomorrow of its draft constitution on

Rose Gomo of Harare law firm Atherstone and Cook was last night preparing
court papers for the application, which is likely to be heard this

The application cites the Minister of Home Affairs, John Nkomo, as the first
respondent, the Commissioner of Police, Augustine Chihuri, as the second
respondent and the police officers commanding Harare and Bulawayo districts
as third and fourth respondents respectively.

NCA chairman Lovemore Madhuku said the decision to file an application was
taken after he was summoned to Harare central police station on Tuesday,
where he was told that police had been ordered to stop the "illegal" public
meetings planned by the organisation in Harare and Bulawayo tomo-rrow.

Madhuku said he met the officer commanding Harare central, Chief
Superinte-ndent Kudzi Mandi-mutsa, who told him that police had been
instructed to disrupt the meetings.

"The public rally does not compromise public order or security and the
action by the police is unlawful," he said.

But police spokesman Wayne Bvudzijena said there were security concerns
related to plans by NCA members to march in the Harare city centre tomorrow.

"They wanted to march from Rotten Row into the city centre and that is what
we did not agree with," he told the Financial Gazette. "There are many
reasons for that (concern), including security-related ones."

The NCA has been drafting a new constitution for Zimbabwe since March and
the final draft is due to be submitted tomorrow for two months of public
debate. Copies will be distributed at public rallies that will be held
throughout the country.

Madhuku said the public meetings would go ahead despite the threat of
disruption by the police.

"The court order is not a prerequisite for the public rallies. The rallies
are going ahead whether or not we get any order. We do not need any court
order to have these rallies," he said..

"The order is merely to stop the police from behaving unlawfully and, if
they ignore the order, we can sue them for civil damages."
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From FinGaz

Free tickets scam at AirZim

Staff Reporter
9/27/01 8:46:10 PM (GMT +2)

FRESH allegations of rampant corruption and improper conduct have surfaced
at struggling state airline Air Zimbabwe where globe-trotting board members
and top executives are being accused of elbowing out confirmed passengers
and issuing free tickets to friends.

One of the accused senior executives confirmed to the Financial Gazette this
week that at least one flight to London was forced to leave behind 32 paying
and confirmed passengers to accommodate board members and senior executives.

Other sources said paying passengers had been left behind on several
occasions to make room for board members, senior managers and their spouses
and children.

The executives are also alleged to have fraudulently earned thousands of
dollars after illegally converting their hard currency allowances for
travelling outside the country on the local black market.

According to official documents shown to this newspaper, the airline's
officials are paid allowances in convertible currencies such as United
States dollars and British pounds when travelling to foreign destinations.

Board chairman Patrick Chingoka yesterday vehemently dismissed charges that
his board had allowed rampant misconduct at the airline, saying it had
actually done a lot of work to turn around the troubled airline.

"This time last year the airline was operating on an overdraft and was
running at a loss, but in the past six months we have achieved positive
results so much so that we are not operating on an overdraft. We are able to
service all our requirements in local and foreign currency," Chingoka said.

But inside sources said Chingoka himself was one of the culprits implicated
in the abuse of facilities and had travelled in the last 11 months to
Britain, South Africa, Italy and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC),
sometimes just to tour Air Zimbabwe offices.

According to documents shown to this newspaper, Chingoka was paid a total 1
574.50 British pounds as allowances when he travelled to Britain and Italy
in December last year and May this year. For the trip to the DRC last month,
he received an allowance of US$570.

Chingoka said he had travelled to Air Zimbabwe's offices abroad to get
first-hand information on how they were operating and the problems they were
facing and had filed reports on the trips to his board.

"All these visits have yielded positive results for the airline," Chingoka
said, adding: "How I am supposed to chair an airline when I do not have
first-and information of what is going on in the area under my

According to the sources, eight passengers were left behind by the airline
on its Harare to London flight of August 27, allegedly to make room for its
general manager for marketing, Denis Maravanyika, who was travelling with
seven members of his family on free tickets.

Maravanyika had also last month sanctioned free tickets from London to
Zimbabwe to five officials of a London travelling agency.

Maravanyika, who together with his wife and children is entitled to free air
tickets under his contract of employment with Air Zimbabwe, strenuously
denied that paying passengers had to be left behind to accommodate his

"I did not at all cause anyone to be left behind. When I got to the airport,
I proceeded to buy departure stamps only after checking with the manager on
duty that day," he said.

Maravanyika, who said he only learnt when he got to London that some
passengers had been left behind in Harare, said there were people out to
tarnish his image by choosing to only highlight his August trip to London
while ignoring trips by other airline officials that resulted in passengers
being left behind.

"Why are they not talking, for example, about flight UM724 when a number of
board members travelled to London and 32 passengers were left behind?" he

Maravanyika said Air Zimbabwe was participating in national efforts to
resuscitate the tourism sector and these included the issuing of tickets to
travel agents and holiday consultants, especially from important markets
such as London, for them to see for themselves the improved situation in the

Chingoka said the airline's position was that passengers came first and that
Maravanyika's case was being looked into and that if there was any
misconduct action would be taken.

According to other sources, Air Zimbabwe is losing money and its reputation
has been tainted because confirmed passengers find themselves without seats
due to the huge number of the airline's executives and workers who are
constantly travelling.

"The airline is operating virtually without its top executives as they are
always travelling to attend conferences and conventions. You would think
they are also pilots with the way they fly," one worker said.

Some workers at the airline who are entitled to free tickets or heavily
discounted ones - reduced by as much as 75 percent of the cost - were also
taking the joy rides on Air Zimbabwe flights, especially on the popular
Harare-London destination.

The airline sometimes leaves Harare with as many as 30 members of staff on
board, including even former workers, the sources said.

Other sources however said the situation had recently normalised, with
planes to London now expected to carry a maximum of 10 workers a flight.
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From the Daily News

FEATURE  Wednesday   26  , September

Chogm must ask Mugabe about Press persecution

9/26/01 7:52:04 AM (GMT +2)

IF the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (Chogm) in Brisbane next
week fails to grill President Mugabe on his government’s persecution of the
independent Press, then we can discount the Commonwealth as an ally in the
fight against intolerance.

Some critics might say “persecution” is a rather wrong word to use in the
government’s relentless campaign to cow the independent Press. Many others,
on the other hand, feel that when an entire printing press is destroyed,
when reporters are routinely beaten up and newspaper editors almost daily
vilified as agents of either the British Empire, The Great Satan or The
Imperialist Devil, “persecution” is probably a very mild description of that
unholy campaign.
Moreover, when the threat of a defamation suit hangs over the papers like
the Sword of Damocles every time they plan to publish a story justifiably
uncomplimentary of the President, his senior and junior ministers, their
freedom to provide readers with balanced stories of genuine public interest
is circumscribed.
In any case, a government which refuses to remove from the statute books a
law as obnoxiously anti-democratic as the Law and Order (Maintenance) Act
has no business belonging to a respectable group such as the Commonwealth.
Loma, to use its notoriously sinister acronym, was originally designed to
snuff out all dissension in the country, then ruled by white supremacists
who did not believe sharing power with black people was God’s wish.
The black supremacist government now in power has an equally odious design,
using the same law to guillotine all dissent. It wants a one-party,
one-leader, one-ideology and one-newspaper country. The leader would be an
emperor or the equivalent thereof.
There is much evidence that this grand design will fail. Since 2000, the
ordinary people have gloried in their power to cock a snook at the men and
women who meet in pompous assemblage in Shake Shake building in Harare to
massage the giant-size ego of this one man, with praise songs and speeches
bubbling with the treacle of sycophancy.
The independent Press, against all odds, has continued to play its avowed
role as a disseminator of all information in the genuine public interest.
Attempts to gag the newspapers with massive lawsuits and the personal
vilification of editors have not succeeded in frightening even the most
junior reporters to ease their pressure on the accelerator pedal of a free
and unfettered dialogue with the people.
In Brisbane next week, his colleagues in the Commonwealth should ask Mugabe
why he would describe his party’s system of government as a democracy when
it is his clear desire to have the media singing praises to him and his aged
They should ask him about details of his government’s sinister Freedom of
Information Bill, about which he and his Minister of State for Information
and Publicity, Jonathan Moyo, remain darkly reticent. There are not many
journalists in Zimbabwe who know these details. Yet they are the targets, to
be generous, the stakeholders. The contempt with which Moyo regards all
journalists not working for him at Zimpapers and ZBC is incredible. He seems
to regard them as morons, ignoramuses, sell-outs and spies of the American
CIA, Britain’s MI6 and whatever spy network Tony Leon is alleged to run in
South Africa and Zimbabwe.
Moyo’s intolerance of the independent media and his publicly-expressed
contempt for them has set many wondering why he is almost on a personal
crusade to crucify the editors.
But Moyo is only a megaphone. His master’s voice is not different from his.
In fact, since independence Mugabe has made no attempt to disguise his
contempt for an independent Press. He did not hesitate to order the
dismissal of any Zimpapers editors whose performance he perceived to be
independent of his own Marxist-Leninist concept of a one-party, one-leader
and one-newspaper system of government.
Before Henry Muradzikwa was dismissed as Editor of The Sunday Mail, Mugabe
expressed in very strong language how he felt about such an editor. Some of
us were completely flummoxed when Muradzikwa turned up later as the
Editor-in-Chief of the government-owned Zimbabwe Inter-Africa News Agency
(Ziana). What had happened? Had Mugabe encountered a revelation of Damascus
proportions to change his mind so drastically?
There was equal consternation when earlier he and his politburo decided that
Willie Musarurwa, whose ouster as Editor of The Sunday Mail before
Muradzikwa, he must have applauded as heartily as any die-hard Zanu PF
zealot did (Musarurwa was PF-Zapu), be made a national hero.
His speech at the burial, to which I personally listened in open-mouthed
amazement, was unbelievably . . . sweet. There is no great mystery to the
antipathy between the government and a truly free Press in Zimbabwe. Up to
now, Zanu PF has not accepted that it is the people who must decide who will
rule them and how they will be ruled.
As far as Zanu PF is concerned, these matters are too complicated for the
people to understand and they must wait until they have been thoroughly
educated in the intricacies of governance by Zanu PF. The independent
newspapers, going their own merry way, have decided, nevertheless, to
educate the people on the dynamics of governance. During both the
constitutional referendum and the parliamentary election campaigns in 2000,
many voters depended almost entirely on the independent newspapers for their
grasp of the issues.
Other organisations, including the National Constitutional Assembly,
ZimRights and the Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace, did play
crucial roles in both campaigns. But all of them delivered their messages to
the people through the independent newspapers, which added their own
editorial voices to the
In both the referendum and the election campaign, the control freaks in Zanu
PF realised they could not control everything. For a while, in the aftermath
of their humiliation, they resorted to violence, beating up people at random
in all the urban centres they had lost.
The presidents and prime ministers at Chogm should ask Mugabe: why were
innocent, law-abiding citizens, including opposition Members of Parliament,
beaten up? How many of their assailants have been arrested and brought to
They should grill him until he is forced to admit that, violence will always
be Zanu PF’s strategy in everything, whether it is land reform, student
demonstrations, industrial action by workers or an election campaign.
If, after all that, the heads of government do not decide to suspend
Zimbabwe or, at the very least, censure Mugabe publicly, then the
independent media will know they have to include the Commonwealth among
their implacable enemies along with the Mugabe regime.
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From FinGaz

War vets seek $200m for poll

MacDonald Dzirutwe Staff Reporter
9/27/01 8:44:48 PM (GMT +2)

ZIMBABWE'S militant war veterans plan to raise about $200 million from
foreign donors to get President Robert Mugabe re-elected despite a
government ban on the use of foreign cash in local elections.

The Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans' Association (ZNLWVA) said
this week it plans to raise $200 million from foreign donors from the end of
this year to campaign for next year's landmark preside-ntial elections.

ZNLWVA secretary-general Andy Mhlanga said his association, which has 10
chapters around Zimbabwe, had already met to decide on the funds it needs
from foreign donors.

"We need $20 million for each of the 10 provinces for the presidential
campaign, which we have already started working on," Mhlanga told the
Financial Gazette.

He said his organisation was seeking money from outside the country because
the ruling ZANU PF party could not provide all the financial resources
needed to campaign for the election, which will pit Mugabe against
opposition Move-ment for Democratic Change (MDC) leader Morgan Tsvangirai.

The ruling party is understood to have budgeted at least $150 million to
fund Mugabe's re-election campaign.

Mhlanga said the countries the war veterans would approach for funds include
the ruling party's long-time allies such as Libya as well as regional
neighbours Mozambique, Zambia, Angola and South Africa.

Libya is understood to have already pledged to give US$1 million - $55
million if using the government's present managed exchange rate or $300
million if using the parallel market rate - towards Mugabe's campa-ign.

"As you are aware, we have agreed with other countries to form a regional
association for liberation war veterans and these are some of the countries
that we would also approach for the money," the war veterans leader said.

He said because the ZNLWVA was a welfare organisation, it was not bound by
government regulations banning foreign funding for political parties, widely
believed to be aimed at cutting off funding to the MDC.

Mhlanga said when ZANU PF officially launches its campaign at the end of the
year, the party will provide vehicles and $15 million to the war veterans,
who were allocated $20 million in the run-up to the 2000 parliamentary

"ZANU PF will assist with mobility because the cost of the whole campaign is
unbearable, which is why we are looking beyond our borders for the money,"
said Mhlanga, whose group has become a crucial part of the ruling party's
election strategy.

The war veterans last year helped ZANU PF to garner a narrow victory in the
parliamentary polls by unleashing violence and terror against mostly rural
voters and opposition party members.

More than 35 people, most of them MDC members, died in the run-up to the

Political analysts yesterday said if the ZNLWVA went ahead with its plans to
raise foreign funds for ZANU PF, it would be breaching the law and should be
de-registered for going beyond its mandate as a welfare organisation.

Lovemore Madhuku, an expert in constitutional law and the chairman of the
National Constitutional Assembly, said the war veterans' initiative amounted
to indirect funding of the ruling party.

"That amounts to an indirect way of financing a political party. The ZNLWVA
should be de-registered because they would have undermined their status of
being a welfare organisation."

MDC's information chief Learnmore Jongwe said his party was aware of ZANU
PF's attempts to use the veterans to raise money on its behalf and thus
evade the penalties of 1992's Political Parties (Finance) Act, amended by
the government earlier this year to ban foreign funding of Zimbabwean
political organisations.

"They want to evade the Political Parties (Finance) Act," he said. "Because
of this fact, it would be a breach of the law to fund raise on behalf of the
ruling party.

"This section of the war veterans being used is the hooligan element within
the ZANU PF membership. The police should investigate the matter."

Brian Raftopolous, a political commentator, added: "I think it's typical
double standards by ZANU PF who are desperate to bolster their campaign
during next year's election.

"They have introduced such amendments and yet they themselves have been
sourcing money from outside the country. Such an amount of money will
definitely affect the campaign because it gives them more capacity for

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Computer expert warns companies to tighten information security

9/26/01 8:02:45 AM (GMT +2)

Raymond Mgadzah Senior Business Reporter

AN information security expert has warned that many businesses are “wide
open” to breaches of their information technology (IT) systems, and
violation of the integrity and confidentiality of information held on their
computer networks.

The expert, Dr John Sheppard said: “There are some organisations in this
country that are wide open. There is room for a lot of improvement in their
IT security. IT security is not a state that you achieve. It’s something
that you work on all the time because there are always new issues coming

In a recent IT security breach the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe’s website was
hacked into and a link which was supposed to lead to the Central African
Building Society website was replaced by one leading to a site containing

Sheppard said often even the most basic information security measures were
not being carried out effectively.
He said: “The general standard of computer passwords in this country is
pretty poor.”

Sheppard warned that electronic mail (e-mail) could be more easily tapped
than phone calls or letters and that anyone who sends information through
the Internet should be aware of the dangers.

Internet Service Provider Zimbabwe Online’s managing director, David Behr,
said: “Most people think e-mail is safe and they take huge risks with the
information they transmit. The truth is that, while e-mail is a fast,
efficient system for sharing data, you have to take some precautions. This
is especially true in business communication.”

As a first step Sheppard urged computer users to ensure the physical
security of computers.
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From the Daily news

Zanu PF supporters invade gold mines in the Midlands

9/26/01 7:58:13 AM (GMT +2)

From Zerubabel Mudzingwa in Gweru

Thousands of Zanu PF supporters from Kwekwe and Kadoma have invaded three
gold mines in the Midlands province in the last few days, allegedly stealing
gold concentrate worth millions of dollars.

The invasions are allegedly being co-ordinated from the Zanu PF offices in
Kwekwe where only party card holders are given clearance letters to pan for
gold on targeted mines.
The latest victims are Duzi Mine in Kwekwe, Globe and Phoenix Mine, owned by
Kwekwe Consolidated Mines, and Rio Tinto Mine in Kadoma.
Officials at the three mines yesterday declined to comment for fear of
reprisals, referring all questions to the police.

A retired senior army of ficer has been named as the brains behind the mine
invasions which come a few days after the Nigerian-brokered Abuja agreement
which bars lawlessness and invasions of property. The same retired army
officer led the Zanu PF election campaign team in the Midlands province last

The ruling party candidates lost heavily to the opposition MDC. It could not
be established yesterday whether it was a deliberate party policy to invade
the mines. Isaac Mugwagwa, the Zanu PF acting provincial chairman, could not
be reached for comment. MDC officials yesterday described the mine invasions
as economic sabotage by Zanu PF.
“They have realised that their support base is waning and they have
recruited thugs and gold panners to disrupt production on mines in the hope
that they will add their numbers in next year’s Presidential election,” said
Blessing Chebundo, the MDC MP for Kwekwe.

Last Friday, five senior Zanu PF officials from Kwekwe appeared in court on
charges of armed robbery following a raid at Duzi Mine by a group of about
60 Zanu PF supporters.
The group, which arrived at the mine aboard three hired trucks, assaulted
the mine workers and looted grocery goods and gold concentrate worth $145

According to the police, the group later gathered at the Zanu PF offices
after the raid.
Their leaders, David Mutimwi, 46, Fidelis Bhebhe, 29, Stella Jere, 47,
Chrispen Nhidza, 39, and Matthias Madovi, 43, were denied bail by Gweru
magistrate David Johnston-Butcher and remanded in custody to 5 October.

Two weeks ago, hundreds of suspected Zanu PF supporters stormed Kwekwe
Consolidated Gold Mines and Rio Tinto Mine in Kadoma, where they allegedly
looted several tonnes of gold alluvial, before they were dispersed by the
Over the weekend, armed police officers at Globe and Phoenix Mine allegedly
fled after more than 4 000 Zanu PF supporters besieged the mine again and
got away with millions of dollars worth of gold concentrate.
No suspects have been arrested in the latest incident
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