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Banks tighten lending conditions

Zim Observer

by STAFF EDITORS (9/26/2005)

 Zimbabwe banks are implementing a cautious approach on lending facilities to avoid high default risks on the back of the continued rise in interest rates. The rise in the lending rates due to inflationary pressures has resulted in most financial institutions charging minimum lending rates in the range of 280 percent in the past three weeks.
Banks are hiking lending rates in line with the inflation trend and the adjustment of overnight accommodation rates by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe. Information made available to reporters by the Bankers Association of Zimbabwe revealed that the tight lending schemes were aimed at conso-lidating income reserves in line with the newly prescribed minimum capital requirements of the financial sector by September 2006.
"The stringent lending facilities are primarily aimed at conso-lidating income reserves as well as avoiding higher levels of defaulters due to the ever rising minimum lending rates," said the BAZ. The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe increased the mini-mum capital requirements for commercial banks from $10 billion to 100 billion, while those for merchant banks, building societies and finance houses were revised from $7,5 billion to $75 billion.
Discount houses would be required to increase their minimum capital requirements to $50 billion from $5 billion while asset management houses will also be required to increase theirs to $10 billion from $500 million. The BAZ said that banks were being selective in terms of lending schemes in line with profit targets.
Investigations last week revealed that many financial institutions required a minimum net salary of about $10 million to provide clients with an overdraft or loan scheme. "It is mainly as a result of the soaring macro-economic climate that is neccessating the tough conditions in terms of requirements for loan schemes," said a money market dealer for a Bulawayo based commercial bank. Some banks have already shelved the loan and overdraft facilities citing the uncertainty impacting the interest rate regime.
Money market dealers said the unstable economic climate would present challenges in terms of the viability of the financial sector. "There is no turning back in as far as adjusting lending rates is concerned because if the economy continues to decline then it will be difficult for banks to relax the lending conditions," he said.
"High default rates will be experienced because most of the borrowers salaries or income will continue to be eroded by macro-economic pressures in a development that will not be favourable for the financial sector," said the money market dealer.
The financial sector has been facing reforms aimed at ensuring that it restored prudent banking practices, proper risk management systems and corporate governance systems. More than five banks were last year forced to close by the RBZ due to liquidity constraints caused by speculative business activities, relaxed operating methods and non-core financial sector operations
Source: The Chronicle

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Unions close ranks against ‘colonial’ China

Business Day
Vukani Mde and Karima Brown

SOUTHERN African trade unions in the textiles, clothing and footwear sector have joined forces against cheap Chinese imports in what is seen as a show of unity amid attempts by SA to negotiate a bilateral trade agreement with China.
The flood of Chinese textiles into southern Africa has had a devastating effect on the region’s global competitiveness, and has led to mass job losses in SA, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Lesotho, Swaziland and Zambia.
In a joint statement yesterday, unions from these countries said: “We have identified the challenge of Chinese imports flooding into global and local markets as a fundamental challenge for the industry, its workers and their jobs.”
The statement was issued following a meeting of the International Textile, Garment and Leather Workers Federation’s Africa region, which represents 412000 workers on the continent, most of them in southern Africa.
It signalled the first joint action by the region’s unions against the challenge posed by China.
“The challenge is to reposition the industry by modernising supply chains, improving quality and adding design value to ensure long-term sustainability,” said Ebrahim Patel of the South African Clothing and Textile Workers Union.
While SA had lost 55000 jobs in the industry since early 2003 and was losing 2000 jobs every month, losses in other countries in the region were as devastating.
The international federation said Lesotho and Swaziland had lost 25000 jobs due to Chinese dominance of the large US export market.
Zimbabwe, Zambia and Swaziland had also seen rising levels of casualisation and wage freezes.
The unions said the region could not compete with Chinese exports because of government subsidies, an artificially weak currency, and the absence of independent trade unions in China, which depressed working conditions and kept costs down.
“Increasingly, the trade pattern between African continent and China is becoming colonial in character with African countries exporting raw materials to China and importing finished products.”
They called on governments in the region to act together to “save the industry” from more job losses.
This came amid attempts by SA to negotiate an agreement with China that would avoid invoking World Trade Organisation (WTO) protections against the flood of imports.
Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister Aziz Pahad last week led a delegation to China that included trade and industry negotiators.
Trade and industry officials want to conclude a bilateral agreement to allow for the implementation of a rescue plan hatched by the tripartite alliance earlier this year.
While SA wanted to avoid using WTO protections against China for fear of retaliatory sanctions, the unions’ statement pointed to industrialised countries, also faced with surging Chinese imports, having used these protections.
Unionists in the region wanted governments to retain the option should bilateral talks fail.
They also called on developed countries to help the region by penalising artificially cheap Chinese goods.
“We call on retailers in developed economies to source a greater quantity of goods from southern African countries and from workplaces that respect labour rights.”

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British Government Asked to Reconsider Its Position on Zimbabwean Asylum Seekers

Ambrose Musiyiwa
Leicester, England
September 16, 2005

A mother and her child walk through what once was her bedroom and is now burning after her house was set on fire by Zimbabwe police

A mother and her child walk through what once was her bedroom and is now burning after her house was set on fire by Zimbabwe police at Porta farm in Harare on June 30. (Photo: STR / AFP-Getty Images)

Asylum seekers, British lawmakers, Zimbabwean human rights activists and opposition party leaders, British and international non-governmental organizations, as well as British and international religious leaders have called upon the British government to reconsider its policy of deporting failed Zimbabwean asylum seekers.

The failed asylum seekers feel the Home Office is throwing them right back into the lion’s den from which they thought they had fled when they came to Britain. They dread falling back into the hands of President Robert Mugabe’s secret police and its Gestapo interrogation and torture tactics. For those who will survive these with their lives and sanity still intact, there is the added despair of state-imposed homelessness to deal with.

Over the past four months alone, the Zimbabwe government has killed three children; made between 200,000 and 1.5 million people homeless when it razed their homes to the ground; destroyed over 100,000 businesses and has arbitrarily arrested over 30,000 innocent people.

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Zimbabwean envoy meet Haddad-Adel


07:34:04 Þ.Ù
Tehran, Sept 27 - Majlis Speaker Gholam-Ali Haddad-Adel in a meeting with Zimbabwean Ambassador to Tehran Stephen Chiketa Monday said expansion of ties with African countries has been one of Iran's foreign policy priorities after the victory of the Islamic Revolution.

According to Majlis media department's report, the Speaker said Iran has always had the best relations with Zimbabwe among other African countries.

One of the reasons for this is simultaneity of victory of the Islamic Revolution in Iran and independence of Zimbabwe and existing commonalities between the two nations in anti-colonialism efforts.

Signing 10 agreements in different fields of economics and establishing four joint economic commissions indicate the intention of senior officials of both countries to expand and deepen ties and cooperation in the fields of economics, politics and cultur e.

Majlis Speaker said parliamentary cooperation can be an important factor towards developing and consolidating bilateral ties.

Haddad-Adel said, "I am confident that the future of mutual relations is so clear and we hope that by establishing parliamentary friendship group, we would take another step toward making the two nations closer."

Zimbabwean Ambassador, for his part, presented a report concerning the latest developments in his country and called the Islamic Republic of Iran as the best friend for Zimbabwe.

Chiketa submitted an invitation letter from his country's President to Haddad-Adel to visit Zimbabwe and Majlis Speaker expressed hope that he will visit Zimbabwe at an appropriate time.

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Zimbabwe Opposition Debates Senate Poll Participation

26 September 2005
Interview with Morgan Tsvangirai
Listen to Interview with Morgan Tsvangirai
Interview with Morgan Tsvangirai
Listen to Interview with Morgan Tsvangirai

Discussions within Zimbabwe’s opposition Movement for Democratic Change to date show a leaning among supporters against taking part in elections for the senate which is being reinstituted under a constitutional amendment rammed through parliament by the ruling ZANU-PF party, MDC President Morgan Tsvangirai said Monday.

Members of the MDC’s youth wing agreed in a weekend meeting that the party should not field candidates in the senate which a senior government official has said are to be held in December, opposition youth affairs chairman Nelson Chamisa told VOA.

MDC youth and others opposed to seeking senate seats say that participation would in effect endorse the ruling ZANU-PF party’s patchwork constitutional changes. Such opposition members also argue that taking part would legitimize what they allege to have been systematic election rigging on the part of the party in government.

But MDC Secretary General Welshman Ncube told the Standard newspaper that the party should enter the ballot because its National Council made a commitment in the runup to the March 31 general election, to participate in future elections.

Mr. Ncube and others of his opinion add that boycotting the senate elections will mean surrendering the democratic space to President Robert Mugabe's ruling party.

Reporter Carole Gombakomba of VOA’s Studio 7 for Zimbabwe asked Mr. Tsvangirai about the ongoing debate inside the country’s main opposition party.

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Zimbabwean competes for top job in US music industry

 EDITORS (9/27/2005)


photograph by 23-year old Zimbabwean currently living in Indianapolis, Indiana USA . Makho, as she is affectionately known has been presented with the opportunity of a lifetime; to run her very own music label under Warner Music Group. AOL,  hosted a competition, which began with 9000 contestants and has now been narrowed down to 14, of which Makho is among the last 14 finalists

AMERICA ONLINE'S NEW ONLINE REALITY show, "The Biz," in which contestants compete for the chance to run a record label, plays on the site Automobile manufacturer Chevy will be a major sponsor of the show.

Miss Ndlovu plans on becoming the female version of Russell Simmons, the music mogul.  She has interned for Roc-A-Fella Records and is determined to make it in the music business. Makho was one of the top five finalists in the recently  held Miss ZimUSA pageant at held in Washington DC.. 

AOL created original Web-based reality programming in the past, but such programs were not as ambitious as "The Biz" in their "level of complexity, excitement, general size, and scope," said Producer Jordan Kurzweil.

At launch, the site revealed the initial 50 contestants, chosen by AOL from a pool of more than 9,000 entrants to date. The site contains Web pages for each contestant, as well as video segments; all players also have their own blogs.

Judges  whittled down the contestants to 20 on Sept. 15, then eight on Sept. 22. After that, they will gather in New York, where they will compete against each other in various record-management related tasks. 

Visit and vote Makho in to the top ten.  You may vote as much as five times.  All voting must be completed by 30/9/05Friday, September 30, 2005

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They came, they played, they scarpered

The Guardian

Aida Edemariam
Tuesday September 27, 2005
The Guardian

It has happened again (though in fact it doesn't seem to happen quite as often as the more rabid critics of immigration policy might assume): athletes have used the excuse of an international engagement to melt away into the host populace. This time it's Zimbabwean footballers. After an exhibition game at the Bradford Bulls' Odsal Stadium last Saturday, about eight of them failed to board a plane to Harare, joining a list of absconders that has included, in the past five years, six Algerian marathon runners, five Indian lady cricketers, and 53 Nigerian and Ghanaian golfers. The scope for disappearance at the 2002 Commonwealth Games in Manchester was such that immigration authorities were put on alert - but three Bangladeshi sprinters, a Bangladeshi hurdler, a Pakistani swimmer, and two-thirds of the Sierra Leonean team slipped through the net anyway.

Outrage is shrill down the line from Zimbabwe, which has given its errant footballers until today to reappear, or face sanctions and deportation proceedings. "They asked for permission to visit friends in London and Bradford," says Jonathan Mashingaidze, secretary-general of the Zimbabwe Football Association (Zifa), who remembers that the last time such a thing happened it was the director-general of Zimbabwe's Sports Commission himself, Wilfred Pawadyira, who decided not to come home. Permission to remain was given, and "abused!".
Mashingaidze seems as embarrassed for football - "One should never ride on football. Do it on your own!" - as he is for Zimbabwe. "They're making out that we're destitute!" And "that they're being persecuted, and that's not fair".
Of course, destitution and persecution are cases that can often be made, though they must be made with caution: when the 20 Sierra Leoneans defected in Manchester, their country was officially the worst place in the world to live. As was subsequently discovered, however, their absconding was a case of team mutiny - more office politics than geopolitics.
It's true that geopolitics, and the cold war particularly, have romanticised the gesture somewhat: Baryshnikov and Nureyev were making a break for freedom; their cause was noble, even tragic, a victory for art. But basically it's just another expression of the truism that being good at sport these days confers social mobility - just played out across international borders. And instead of fame and riches, or Beckingham Palace, many will be headed, says Mashingaidze, for "menial jobs".
So it is unlikely that England will be gaining more internationals any time soon. The FA - after noting, crossly, that the Zimbabwean clubs did not ask for permission before playing their exhibition match - is unimpressed by the suggestion. "They'd have to have a British passport," says Mark Hooper, an FA spokesman, even if they were good enough. And Zimbabwe "is not a particularly strong national team". They are currently ranked 49th in the world, just above Australia (American Samoa is last, since you ask). The Home Office says it will be taking "necessary action to identify, locate and remove them"; ZIFA intends to help. "We will," says Mashingaidze, "flush them out"

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Chiefs Back Stance On Polygamy

All Africa

The Herald (Harare)
September 25, 2005
Posted to the web September 26, 2005
Sarah Tikiwa And Millcent Tanhira
THE country's chiefs have backed the landmark ban on polygamy by Apostolic and Zionist churches, saying this is a positive move in the fight against HIV and Aids.
The president of the Zimbabwe Council of Chiefs, Chief Fortune Charumbira, told The Sunday Mail that the ban on polygamy will certainly see a reduction in the country's HIV prevalence rate.

"The ban will certainly work in that the figures of new HIV infections will be reduced with time," said Chief Charumbira.
He said chiefs throughout the country had since intensified the campaign against polygamy adding that results would soon show.
"Chiefs all over the country have since embarked on a campaign to persuade communities to shun polygamy.
"This is being done at every gathering, be it a funeral, wedding or any traditional gathering. In this era of HIV and Aids we cannot let communities engage in risky behaviour," he said.
Last week, more than 70 Apostolic and Zionist churches launched an anti-HIV and Aids blueprint in the capital which called for the abolition of polygamy.
The churches launched the HIV and Aids policy under their umbrella body, the Union for the Development of Apostolic Churches in Zimbabwe-Africa (UDACIZA).
Some of churches which were part of the historic development were Johane Masowe, Johane Marange, ZCC, Zvapupu ZvaJesu, Johane Masowe weChishanu and Zviratidzo ZvaVapostori sects.
Polygamy has been found to fuel the spread of HIV and Aids and is a deep-rooted practice in the sect.
The president and founder of UDACIZA, Bishop Xavier Chitanda, told The Sunday Mail on Friday that the policy has been given the thumbs-up by church members, adding that his organisation will soon start visiting all the provinces as part of the implementation exercise.
"Right now we need resources in terms of transport and as soon as that is in order, all board members will embark on the implementation exercise by taking the policy to all provinces," he said.
Concern has been raised by people who feel that banning polygamy will result in the mushrooming of "small houses" by some die-hard members of Apostolic and Zionist churches.
Chief Charumbira said while the "de facto position" will always be there, the best way is to keep on educating and persuading the community to shun risky behaviour.
Professor Marvellous Mhloyi of the University of Zimbabwe said banning polygamous marriages will reduce the spread of HIV and Aids, especially in cases where young virgins were married to older men.
"If the banning of polygamy was by the same sects, its implementation would not be difficult. The same structures that encouraged and sanctioned polygamy will be the same structures to implement its eradication.
"Human beings do things in order to maximise welfare, hence joy. No doubt these groups of people have realised that polygamy, which made them enjoy their manhood or whatever it might have been, is now a passport to HIV infection and the consequent untimely experience of death which erodes all joy," she said.
On the issue of small houses, Professor Mhloyi said those members of Apostolic sects who may want to have small houses, should be targeted by intervention programmes along with other Zimbabwean men who are involved.
"In Zimbabwe 'small houses' are a form of unsanctioned polygamy. It is more dangerous largely because the illegal wives are often left alone in their dwelling places where they can engage in multiple sexual partnerships without anyone questioning them.
"It is possible that even men in polygamous marriages can still have small houses. In fact, 'small houses' evolve into polygamous marriages in some instances. Thus, one cannot argue that the banning of polygamy will automatically lead to small houses," said Professor Mohloyi.
Some grassroots members of the Apostolic sects welcomed the ban on polygamy saying it was long overdue.
"This idea was long overdue and we have been expecting such a move. In these days of HIV and Aids, surely we cannot afford to have one man having many wives.
"The practice of polygamy has been the major cause of infections as many of the wives ended up having extra-marital affairs," said Madzibaba Isaac Mombeshora of the Johane Masowe sect.
"Being a polygamist has many repercussions these days. It means having to cater for a huge family and also this has been the number one cause of the increase in orphans and poverty in the country," said Madzibaba Isaya Ngonzi.
A member of the Mughodhi Apostolic sect, Madzimai Miriam Kandiyero, said many people in the sect were dying, especially young girls who were being married to older men.
Madzibaba Shadreck, a young member of the sect, said the banning of polygamy came as a relief to the young men and women in the church.
"At times we are forced to abandon our partners because they would have been targeted by older men to join the queue of wives.
"We had no say because these would be elders in the church. Now we can marry our young women without fear," he said.
"Some elders, however, still maintained that banning polygamy was wrong as it was part of their culture.
"There are so many leaders in the Bible who had more than one wife. That in itself was a sign of greatness for any man.
"Even in the African tradition, men are allowed to have as many wives as they so please, so why should we be stopped? I think it is just an issue of control as long as one can control his wives then there is no problem," said Madzibaba Abraham Rugwinyo of the Johanne Marange sect.
Echoing his sentiments was Madzimai Delilah Muzani of the same sect, who said polygamy was an important custom, which should be maintained.
"The problem now is that men are going to have extra-marital affairs. This is going to increase the rate of HIV," said Madzimai Muzani.

Another member, Madzimai Gladys, said many families were surviving through marrying their young daughters to church elders.
"To us this practice is normal because we grew up in it. Most of us are content with the idea rather than having one's husband having affairs elsewhere," said Madzimai Gladys.

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State Warns of Defective Condoms

All Africa

The Herald (Harare)
September 24, 2005
Posted to the web September 26, 2005
THERE are some defective condoms on the market, Government has warned.
Members of the public have, therefore, been warned to be sure of the condoms they use to effectively reduce the risk of being infected with sexually transmitted infections, among them the dreaded HIV.

If used correctly and consistently, latex condoms are highly effective and at some point or other the majority of Zimbabweans have used condoms.
In an interview, the Deputy Minister of Health and Child Welfare, Dr Edwin Muguti, said while the Government, through the Medicines Control Authority of Zimbabwe (MACZ), tested all condoms that came into the country to ensure that they were safe, some defective condoms found their way in.
"There are people bringing in condoms through dubious channels.
"As a precautionary measure, we have made it mandatory that all condoms that come into the country have to be tested by the MCAZ first before they are sold to the public,"
The condoms, he said, also had to be bought and used within the first 36 months of manufacture while anyone bringing into the country condoms, which have less than six months of shelf life remaining would not be accepted.
Dr Muguti said it had come to Government's attention that there were many condoms especially the colourful imported costly brands found on shop shelves, which were defective.
All condoms that Zimbabwe has are imported.
"Condoms brought in privately are difficult to monitor. It is only when officials from the MCAZ go around and take samples out of the shops and test them, that they are detected.
"If they are actually coming across defective condoms on these surveys, can you imagine what this means, it means at some point or other some people might be buying defective condoms," Dr Muguti said.
According to the Medicines and Allied Substances Control Regulations of 2005 published in a statutory instrument of September 9, no person shall sell a condom unless such condom is of a type and brand which has been approved by the MCAZ.
In approving a type and brand of condom, the Authority may fix any conditions it considers necessary or desirable.
This is with effect from October 1.
Any person who wishes to obtain the approval of the Authority for a type and brand of condom has to apply first and that no person who stores for sale any condom shall expose it to heat in excess of 28 degrees Celsius, moisture, direct sunlight or fluorescent lighting.
Every condom, according to the regulations, shall be sealed in an individual pack and each package of condoms shall state the name and address of the manufacturer of the condom.
Any person who contravenes these regulations shall, according to Government regulations, be guilty of an offence and liable to a fine or imprisonment.
Dr Muguti said the public should also be warned against keeping condoms for long periods of time before using them saying that was highly risky.
There are many men who keep condoms in their pockets or wallets for long periods of time, exposing the condoms, which are made of latex rubber to intense heat.
By the time they decide to use them, they hardly check to see if the condom has not expired or subjected to damage
Condoms should be stored in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.
"People should be very serious about this because it is a life and death issue in this day of HIV and Aids.

"To make sure the public is protected, however, we are now saying where the MCAZ is of the opinion that the withdrawal of any batch of condoms is necessary for the protection of the public, the Authority may call for their withdrawal from the market," the Deputy Minister said.
Government, through its partners like Population Services International, has over the years managed to distribute Protector Plus condoms, which are electronically tested.

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Father and son gear up for African adventure


    Tsabeng Nthite
    September 27 2005 at 02:05AM

Thousands of kilometres through dry, hot, rainy and humid weather conditions from Cairo to Cape Town are what father and son, Wessel and Johan Bosman experienced the past 18 days in their attempt to break the world endurance record.

The pair travelled on motorbikes from Egypt through seven countries, including Sudan, Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania, Zambia, Zimbabwe and now South Africa to break the world endurance record that stands at 20 days.

The two were also scouting for potential African athletes for the Winter Olympics.

On Monday the pair made a quick stop in Pretoria for breakfast before heading off to Cape Town – their final destination. 

 Wessel, a former Springbok athletics captain, and his son are determined to set a new Cairo to Cape Town endurance record of 19 days.

“This has been a unique and exciting experience. We hardly slept... two or three hours of sleep was enough to keep us going daily.

“It was hectic, yet thrilling. Travelling through Africa like that was a cultural learning curve for us as we got to see and learn about other people's lifestyles,” said Wessel.

Johan, on the other hand, could not get over the gravel roads and deserts they drove across, and was amazed at how people lived in the hot and humid weather conditions.

“Kenya has got to be a country with the worst roads in Africa. The people were incredible – I loved every minute of the trip, but the heat and the state of the roads in most countries we went through were not pleasant at all,” said the younger Bosman.

The motorbikes, packed to capacity with sleeping bags, travel mattresses, water bottles and blankets, were flown to Cairo prior to the start of the challenge.

The Bosmans said they hoped to sponsor at least two athletes from all the countries they went through for the Winter Olympic Games through his company Afri-Ski.

“African athletes could never participate in the Winter Olympics because of the mindset that there are no facilities on the continent to train for winter sports, but they're wrong.”

Letters were delivered to embassies in the countries they travelled through, and they were hopeful that they would soon be training some of the best athletes the continent had for the Games.

The pair hope to reach Cape Town this morning – before 10am if they want to break the record.

This article was originally published on page 3 of Pretoria News on September 27, 2005

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Zimbabwe to get Siberian tigers from China

Sunday Times
Zimbabwe to get Siberian tigers from China

Tuesday September 27, 2005 06:49 - (SA) 

HARARE - Zimbabwe is to provide a home to four endangered Siberian tigers from China which will be bred in captivity as part of a wildlife exchange programme, a senior parks official says.

"We are finalising the paperwork for the importation of four Siberian tigers from China," Parks and Wildlife Authority director Morris Mutsambiwa said.

"But as it would be difficult to import the animals during the rainy season we expect the four tigers - two males and two females - to arrive some time next year," he said.

A Chinese delegation left Zimbabwe earlier this month after a five-day inspection tour of facilities at a lion and cheetah park in Harare, an antelope park in the central town of Gweru and an animal refuge in Bulawayo.

"They were impressed with our facilities except with the fencing, which they said needed to be strengthened," Mutsambiwa said.

In exchange, Zimbabwe is to provide giraffes, spotted hyenas and cheetahs to China.

Mutsambiwa said the tigers would be used for "educational purposes and would not be be left to roam wild in the bush".

Critics have questioned Zimbabwe's ability to manage wildlife given the economic upheaval in the southern African country, characterised by high unemployment, galloping inflation and foreign currency and fuel shortages.

The Siberian tiger deal comes as Zimbabwe, increasingly marginalised by the West, is seeking closer ties with the Asian giant.

It has signed several agreements in recent years with Beijing including a deal for buses to beef up the public transport sector.

Harare has also bought fighter jets, civilian transport planes and military vehicles from China.

President Robert Mugabe visited Beijing earlier this year as part of a "Look East" policy, which advocates the forging of closer ties between Harare, China, Malaysia and Singapore.


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Emergency appeal for blood donors

Sent: Tuesday, September 27, 2005 4:28 PM

Mrs Susan Friend (O-positive blood type cancer patient) has been admitted
to St Annes Hospital as an emergency patient. She needs O-positive blood
transfusions urgently. Could any currently registered O-positive type
blood donors in the Harare area, able to assist, make their way to the
Blood Transfusion Service, Mazowe Street, ASAP. Their stocks of this
common blood type are virtually non-existent. Please forward this message
via SMS to as many known current donors as possible.

Many thanks

John W Worswick
JAG Trust
Tel: 04-799410

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Tsvangirai’s walks gather momentum

From Business Day (SA), 27 September

Business Day Correspondent
Zimbabwe’s opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai has launched a campaign to draw international attention to the plight of his countrymen who are forced to walk to work every day because of rocketing transport costs. Tsvangirai, who started walking to work two weeks ago to show solidarity with millions of suffering Zimbabweans, said at the time that "nobody can afford the extortionate price" his countrymen are forced to pay for fuel. The number of protesting pedestrians joining his morning commute has swelled to about 50. They walk from his house in Strathaven, a suburb of Harare, to the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) headquarters in Nelson Mandela Avenue, in the city. Fellow MPs and shadow MPs, as well as party officials walking with him included Murisi Zwizwai, MP for Harare Central, and Trudy Stevenson, MP for Harare North. Yesterday they were joined by members of civic society.

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Heatwave hits Zimbabwe


Harare (dpa) - Searing temperatures of more than 40 degrees Celsius in some areas of drought-hit Zimbabwe have been declared a heatwave by weather experts, the state-controlled Herald newspaper reported Tuesday.

With more than a month to go before the official start of summer rains, most of the country has since last Saturday been experiencing temperatures above 30 degrees.

"The director of the Meteorological Services Department, Dr Amos Makarau, said the prevailing high temperatures were due to a heatwave which started on Saturday,'' the Herald said.

Places in southern Zimbabwe, such as the Beitbridge border post with South Africa and Buffalo Range, near the sugar cane growing district of Chiredzi, have experienced temperatures of more than 40 degrees, the state-controlled Herald said.

"Most parts of the country have recorded temperatures above 30 degrees since Saturday,'' Hector Chikowore of the country's Meteorological Department told the paper.

The high temperatures come as many suburbs in the capital Harare and the second city of Bulawayo experience water cuts due to increased demand. The dilapidated state of pumping stations can no longer cope with the demands of Harare's 1.8 million residents.

Weather experts have predicted an above average rainfall season for Zimbabwe when summer rains begin in mid-November.

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Zimbabwe, SA bank fuel deal hits snag

Zim Online (SA), 27 September

Harare - Negotiations between the Zimbabwe government and South Africa’s Rand Merchant Bank (RMB) for a fuel supply credit facility have hit a snag because Harare has failed to provide security for the loan, according to sources. The exact requirements tabled by RMB could not be easily ascertained but sources said the merchant bank was keen on firm guarantees Harare will pay back money loaned to it. "RMB is keen on Zimbabwe providing surety but unfortunately what Zimbabwe offered could not satisfy the bank's requirements," an impeccable source said. "Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) officials are likely to visit South Africa soon to try to revive the deal but it's not looking bright," he said. RBZ and RMB officials have been in talks for the past month as Zimbabwe steps up efforts to raise scarce foreign currency. The facility was expected to finance the importation of petroleum products and grain. RBZ governor Gideon Gono was said to be locked up in meetings yesterday while Energy and Power Development Minister Mike Nyambuya said he was in a meeting when contacted for comment. Nyambuya had predicted that the fuel situation would have improved by Tuesday last week but Zimbabwe remains dry of diesel and petrol. RMB could not be immediately contacted for comment. The South African bank and RBZ officials confirmed earlier this month that they were in discussions over the fuel facility but did not divulge details.

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Has Britain become a Zimbabwe colony?

New Zimbabwe

• We must be soldiers of revolution
Last updated: 09/27/2005 11:18:23
THIS week I start by asking the rather simple but complicated question; ‘Has Britain become a Zimbabwean colony?’ I know on the face of it, this question may sound rather awkward and may be even silly. However, I have a point I need to discuss about and hopefully, drive home.
I ask the above odd question because it appears as if 115 years after British colonialism was officially launched in Zimbabwe, history appears to be repeating itself. The only significant difference being that it is not the British who are determined to settle in Zimbabwe but it is the Zimbabweans who are now so determined to settle in Britain at all costs.
Is it not rather tragic and ironic that barely a century after the British South Africa Company launched its colonial investments project at Kopje Hill on 12 September 1890, many Zimbabweans are scrambling to get a foothold on the rather cold island nation?
Indeed, it is almost a huge paradox of history today to learn that in spite of the fact that it was the cold island weather that forced Cecil John Rhodes to sail to Africa; most Zimbabweans are now flying up north to the island. It seems as if that the Zimbabwean temperatures have become so hot that many of the nation’s young people now prefer the cooling effect of the island’s freezing weather.
"While Mugabe continues to shout on the roof tops that Zimbabwe will never be a British colony again, many of his people are spending sleepless nights plotting how to enter Britain"
It might be an interesting fact to Rhodes as he continues to lie in his warm eternal resting place at Matobo, to learn that many Zimbabweans are deserting the country he fell so much in love with. Is it not strange that Rhodes loved the country so much that he insisted that upon his death, the best place for his eternal sleep would be found in Zimbabwe of all the places in the planet?
As I write today, it appears the immigration process of the thousands of British people who relocated to Zimbabwe has now come full circle. History teaches us that about a hundred years ago, there was strong migration trend from the island nation towards the southern nation north of the Limpopo River. A lot of islanders left the rather cold life in Britain and opted to have the hot country that Rhodesia was, as their permanent home.
Today, we now have a classic case of a reverse scenario in motion. Today, thousands of Zimbabweans are leaving no stone unturned in desperate attempts to fly up north to the island nation. Today, most of them are prepared to leave the best jobs that Zimbabwe has to offer in favor of the worst jobs the island nation can offer to them. Today, many Zimbabwean professionals would rather do any menial or blue collar job, as long as it is the island nation.
To add a sad twist to the tragic story, the senile leader of the hot southern African country cannot stop ranting and raving about the leader of the island nation. In fact, it seems every time he speaks in public, the chances are 100% that he will go off topic in pursuit of his Blair pet project.
It appears the very same leader is so obsessed with the island nation’s leader to the extent that he even presumed he was actively involved in the southern African nation’s parliamentary elections. The island nation’s leader scored a first by being the first foreign incumbent leader to contest in another sovereign nation’s elections! What makes it even more interesting is that he was forced to contest with or without his express ambitions.
It is a paradox of political history to note that while Mugabe continues to shout on the roof tops that Zimbabwe will never be a British colony again, many of his own kith and kin are spending sleepless nights plotting on how to land their feet on the cold floors of Heathrow or Gatwick airport on a one way ticket!
But nowhere has the ludicrous nature of the desperation of young Zimbabweans to relocate to the cold island been better displayed as in the recent soccer players’ fiasco.
Last week, a group of footballers from the country’s two best soccer teams deliberately remained behind on the island. It seems that they are so determined to stay in the island at any cost that they are prepared to abandon the glory and fame that comes with soccer success back in Zimbabwe.
As a result, these footballers will now join the ever growing list of Zimbabwean sportspersons who have relocated to the island nation in the past decade. Most of them have been forced to take an early retirement from their beloved sports and focus on completely different career routes.
Is it not sad that even the Mugabe family has not been spared of this reverse colonialism?
I am also reliably informed Mugabe’s own nephew; a well known fromer national soccer team player has also relocated to the cold island. It seems he is as determined as anyone else not to return to Zimbabwe ad infinitum. His children will now have the British citizenship only since the Zimbabwean Constitution cannot accommodate dual citizenship. Soon it will be normal to meet an island citizen going by the name of Mugabe and proudly proclaiming their British identity!
Daniel Molokele is a human rights lawyer based in Johannesburg. He has been elected as the Interim Chairperson of the Zimbabwe CSO Forum (South African chapter) National Committee. His column appears here every Monday

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Implats rejects Zimbabwe pull-out claim

Platinum Today
s - 26th September 2005

Read more about the platinum group metals markets in Johnson Matthey's
bi-annual reviews click here.

Impala Platinum (Implats), owner of Zimbabwean platinum miner Zimplats, has
refuted suggestions that it is preparing to close its Zimbabwean operations.

Last week the Zimbabwe Independent claimed that the platinum miner was so
frustrated with a tax dispute between the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra)
and itself that it was preparing to pull out of the country altogether.

However, a spokesman for the platinum giant insisted that the company is not
considering closing down its Zimbabwean operations, and that view was
reinforced by Implats executive director, Les Paton.

Speaking to Reuters, Mr Paton stated: "We did not threaten to close the

Instead, Mr Paton revealed that Implats is looking to resolve the issue,
adding that the matter has been referred to the attorney general.

"There has been some private correspondence between Zimplats and Zimra and
we remain in touch with the authorities," he commented.

Mr Paton also maintained that there was no bad feeling between the company
and Zimra, pointing out that the tax body has suspended its actions until
the outcome of the attorney general's findings are known.

© Adfero Ltd

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Migrants stop off in Zimbabwe

The Mercury

September 27, 2005

Harare: Zimbabwe had become a transit point for refugees fleeing the restive Great Lakes region in central Africa, the state-owned Herald said yesterday, with about 200 having sneaked into the country since July. "More than 200 foreigners, mostly from the Great Lakes region, are suspected to have crossed into Zimbabwe through undesignated points since July en route to South Africa, Botswana and other SADC countries," the Herald said.

Twenty-six immigrants from Somalia were arrested in Harare last week after turning themselves over to the police. The Herald said most of the refugees had come through Zimbabwe's eastern and northern borders with Mozambique and Zambia, some hiring boats or canoes to avoid detection. 

Police spokesman Wayne Bvudzijena confirmed that there was a flow of refugees, saying they were coming from Ethiopia, Somalia, the Central African Republic and the Great Lakes region "through both legal and illegal entry points".

"Some (are) coming to stay some (are) on their way to other countries," he said.

In June, Zimbabwean police arrested 61 foreigners in a crackdown on illegal immigrants and criminals and an accompanying urban cleanup campaign.
The suspected illegal immigrants included Zambians, Burundians, Congolese, Mozambicans, Malawians and Nigerians.


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JAG Death Notice dated 26th September 2005

September 26, 2005;


The Memorial Service for the late Timothy Robert Mills, who passed away
suddenly on Friday 23rd September 2005, will be held at St Mary's Church
[Enterprise Road], Highlands, on Thursday 29th September.

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