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Zimbabwe Teachers Divided Over Strike as New School Term Begins

By Jonga Kandemiiri
02 September 2009

Many teachers heeded the call by the Zimbabwe Teachers' Association to go
out on strike Wednesday as schools reopened for a new term.

But instructors from the Progressive Teachers of Union showed up at their
schools though some sources said there was not a lot of teaching taking
place in classrooms.

Education Minister David Coltart tried to engage officials of the Teachers
Association in talks late Tuesday, but officials of the organization did not

Association Secretary General Richard Gundani told reporter Jonga Kandemiiri
of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe that the strike was successful, but he could
not provide figures on how many schools were affected by the labor action.

ZIMTA is demanding an increase in teacher salaries of up to US$700 a month
compared with the current entry level wage of US$170. The government says it
cannot afford this.

Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe General Secretary Raymond Majongwe
said about 60% to 70% of teachers reported for duty around the country on

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Unicef concerned with schooling in Zimbabwe

September 02 2009 , 4:36:00

Thulasizwe Simelane, Harare

Unicef says it is concerned that the continuous disruption of
schooling in Zimbabwe could compromise education in that country. Coinciding
with the opening of schools, teachers downed chalk demanding pay increases.
It is the latest in a wave of industrial action by civil servants as
pressure mounts on the fragile unity government.

Last year saw a combination of teacher strikes, political instability
and cholera negatively impacting on education. "We're really concerned that
this generation will lose out in terms of academic achievement. As it is, we
estimate that around 50% of children who complete primary school are not
going on to secondary school, something that will seriously disadvantage
them," says Unicef country representative in Zimbabwe Peter Salama. Teachers
accuse the fledgling administration of failing to meet its promises.

"We had had discussions with the ministry of education and the prime
minister's office, who had assured us that teachers' grievances would be
looked into as a matter of urgency. Now seven months down the line, these
issues have not been addressed," President of the Zimbabwe Teachers
Association Tendai Chikwore says.

The $150 a month salary announced by government in July has only
served to fuel their anger. It is increasingly unlikely that the country's
cash-strapped government can accede to their demands.

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Strike reveals rivalry among teachers

September 3, 2009

By Our Correspondent

HARARE - Zimbabwe's teachers launched a countrywide strike which coincided
with the opening of schools for the third term on Wednesday.

But the uncoordinated strike action has exposed divisions between the two
major teachers' unions along what observers say are political lines.

Zimbabwe Teachers Association (ZIMTA) president, Tendai Chikowore, which
called for the strike, said her association's members heeded the call which
saw teachers affiliated to other trade union groups going to work as normal.

The teachers are demanding a review of their salaries and allowances which
they want to be adjusted progressively towards the poverty datum line - last
month quoted at US$502 - by December 2009.

Currently teachers now earn US$155, itself an increase on last month's flat
allowance of US$100 paid to all civil servants since the formation of the
unity government last February.

ZIMTA has also asked government to relax requirements for teachers returning
to the service.

The teachers had left the profession to seek alternative sources of income
in the informal sector and outside the country following Zimbabwe's
10-year-old political and economic crisis.

ZIMTA also wants all outstanding applications for affected teachers
immediately processed and their salaries paid within 30 days of their

Education Minister David Coltart says the demands by the teachers are
unreasonable, given the current state of the economy in which government is
spending nearly 70 percent of its monthly gross revenue towards the payment
of civil servants' salaries.

"The demands by the teachers are unreasonable," Coltart said.

"We do not dispute that a salary of US$155 is not enough. But they have to
consider it is in fact the same salary being given to all civic servants.
These are part of the consequences we have lived through in the past 10

"They should look at the plight of the children who have suffered most. They
cannot be allowed to continue losing the most important thing in their lives
which is education."

Coltart, who was appointed minister from the Arthur Mutambara-led Movement
for Democratic Change (MDC) party and is regarded by many as one of the
hardest ministers in the government of national unity, said his ministry
would continue to persuade the teachers to return to work.

But it is the simmering divisions among teachers' unions that have revealed
the continued polarisation among Zimbabweans of different political beliefs.

Coltart told The Zimbabwe Times Wednesday the strike was heeded by ZIMTA
members while other teachers unions such as the Progressive Teachers Union
of Zimbabwe (PTUZ) reported for work.

ZIMTA, which commands a countrywide membership of 60 000, is believed to be
aligned to President Robert Mugabe's Zanu-PF while PTUZ is sympathetic to
Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai's MDC.

A total of 16 000 teachers are affiliated to PTUZ.

Since the formation of the inclusive government, which has seen the MDC
taking centre stage in redressing the country's battered economy, the PTUZ
has softened its hard-line stance towards government's failure to remunerate
its members accordingly.

On the other hand, ZIMTA has instead hardened its stance towards the same
government amid allegations that Zanu-PF officials have urged the
organisation to adopt a hard-line stance in order to undermine the MDC.

Didymus Mutasa, the Minister of State in the President's Office and a top
ally to President Mugabe last week accused the MDC of lying to Zimbabweans
that the relative stability in the country's economy was a result of its
efforts. Mutasa is among Zanu-PF officials previously alleged to have
incited teachers to go on strike.

Meanwhile, Chikowore said Tuesday her association would not approach other
teachers' groups to harmonise their approach towards government.

"It is ZIMTA which is in a crisis because there is a strike," she said, "It
is us who came up with the demands. It is wise for us to engage the Ministry
(Education) independently and resolve the issues which affect us."

ZIMTA is said to have boycotted a crisis meeting which was called by Coltart
Tuesday. Representatives from the other teachers' groups attended.

Chikowore denied the teachers' unions were rivals.

She however said, "It would not have made sense for us to attend the meeting
and start fighting in the meeting because we are divided in terms of our

PTUZ secretary general Raymond Majongwe said his organisation would not go
on strike because they understood the current status of the economy in the

"A strike is something that is intended to achieve something at the end of
the day," said Majongwe.

"Currently it would be futile to go on strike as this will not change
anything. The fact of the matter is that the government is broke."

Members from his union have however been boycotting classes on Fridays since
July also in protest against poor working conditions.

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SADC Tribunal refers Zim case to leaders' summit

by simplicious Chirinda Thursday 03 September 2009

HARRAE - The Southern African Development Community (SADC) Tribunal will
refer Zimbabwe's land dispute to a summit of regional leaders scheduled for
next week after Harare said it no longer recognised the court's authority to
hear the matter.

"We can not disclose anything at the moment but I can confirm that we
received the letter from the Zimbabwean government (withdrawing recognition
of Tribunal authority) and has referred the matter to the SADC summit for
deliberation," said Dennis Shivavangula, the Tribunal clerk.

"We can not say what will happen to all the proceedings involving the
Zimbabwe government until the matter is discussed by the SADC summit."

The Tribunal last November dealt a heavy body blow to President Robert
Mugabe's controversial programme to seize white-owned farmland for
redistribution to landless when it ruled that the chaotic and often violent
programme was discriminatory, racist and illegal under the SADC Treaty.

The regional court ordered Harare not to evict the 78 farmers and that it
pays full compensation to those it had already forced off farms.

Mugabe publicly dismissed the ruling by the Namibia-based Tribunal while his
followers in the military and in his ZANU PF party defied the court order by
continuing to seize more land from the few white farmers remaining in

And the official Herald newspaper reported on Wednesday that top Mugabe
loyalist and Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa had written to the Tribunal
to inform it that Zimbabwe had withdrawn from any proceedings involving the
regional court.

The newspaper, which quoted passages from Chinamasa's letter, said he told
the Tribunal that Harare would recognise its authority only after a protocol
establishing the court was ratified by at least two-thirds of the 14-nation
bloc's members as is required under rules and procedures governing the
regional grouping.??

Chinamasa's letter appeared calculated to pre-empt any attempts to bring the
issue of Harare's refusal to abide by Tribunal rulings for discussion at the
SADC summit taking place in the Democratic Republic of the Congo from
September 7 to 8.

Government farm seizures which started in 2000 have resulted in the majority
of the about 4 000 white commercial farmers being forcibly ejected from
their properties without being paid compensation for the land, which Mugabe
has refused to pay for saying it was stolen from blacks in the first place.

The Harare government has compensated some farmers for developments on the
land such as dams, roads and buildings and says it is committed to
compensating all farmers for such improvements.

Land redistribution, that Mugabe says was necessary to correct a "unjust and
immoral" colonial land ownership system that reserved the best land for
whites and banished blacks to poor soils, is blamed for plunging Zimbabwe
into food shortages after Harare failed to support black villagers resettled
on former white farms with inputs to maintain production.

Critics say Mugabe's powerful cronies - and not ordinary peasants -
benefited the most from farm seizures with some of them ending up with as
many as six farms each against the government's stated one-man-one-farm

Poor performance in the mainstay agricultural sector has also had far
reaching consequences as hundreds of thousands of workers have lost jobs
while the manufacturing sector, starved of inputs from the sector, is
operating below 20 percent of capacity. - ZimOnline

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Sadc Tribunal Withdrawal A Blow To Zimbabwe's White Commercial Farmers

HARARE, September 02, 2009  - Zimbabwe's embattled commercial farmers
have been thrown into further quandary after Zimbabwe's government has
formally withdrawn from the jurisdiction of the SADC tribunal.

The Windhoek based court has passed judgements barring the continued
seizure of their farms under government's land reform programme.

But Zimbabwe, which remains a member of SADC, says it will no longer
be bound by any of the court's judgements - past and future.

Since 2000, Zimbabwe has embarked on a controversial land reform
programme that has almost decimated agriculture, the country's prime source
of foreign currency.

The Herald reports that Justice and Legal Affairs Minister, Patrick
Chinamasa has written to the Tribunal declaring Zimbabwe was not going to
appear before it anymore.

Chinamasa, one of Zimbabwe's most avid defenders of President Robert
Mugabe's controversial rule, says the court was not sanctioned by two thirds
of the block's member States as is prescribed in the rules and procedures
governing the regional grouping.

This followed a meeting of Sadc Justice Ministers and
Attorneys-General in South Africa from July 27 to August 3 this year that
proved the Protocol on the Tribunal and rules of providing for the
composition and powers governing the court had not yet been ratified by
two-thirds of Sadc members.

"The purported application of the provisions of the Protocol on
Zimbabwe is a serious violation of international law," Chinamasa wrote in a
letter dated August 7, 2009, and delivered to the registrar of the Tribunal
on August 10.

"There was never any basis upon which the Tribunal could seek or
purport to found jurisdiction on Zimbabwe based on the Protocol which has
not yet been ratified by two-thirds of the total membership of Sadc.

"As we are unaware of any other basis upon which the Tribunal can
exercise jurisdiction over Zimbabwe, we hereby advise that, henceforth, we
will not appear before the Tribunal and neither will we respond to any
action or suit instituted or be pending against the Republic of Zimbabwe
before the Tribunal.

"For the same reasons, any decisions that the Tribunal may have or may
make in future against the Republic of Zimbabwe are null and void.

"We note that the meeting of the Ministers of
Justice/Attorneys-General recommended that the (2009 DRC Sadc) Summit should
urge member-states to ratify those protocols which are not yet in force. We
look forward to this exercise which will no doubt create an opportunity for
Sadc to regularise the composition of the Tribunal."

It has emerged that out of the 14 member states that form SADC, nine
are yet to ratify both the Protocol creating the Tribunal and a subsequent
amendment to the document.

The largely white commercial farmers, who had failed to obtain any
favourable judgement from local courts due to intense political interference
by President Mugabe's government, approached the Tribunal in 2007 for an
interim relief barring the acquisations.

Hopes to stop the compulsory acquisition of their land by government
were rekindled after the Tribunal in November last year finally passed a
ruling barring the Zimbabwean government from further acquiring their land.

In its ruling, the Tribunal odered the Zimbabwean government to
compensate farmers who have lost their land since the beginning of the land
reform programme in 2000.

Government refused to abide by the ruling saying the ruling interfered
with its domestic laws which call for the compulsory take over of the farms
under the land reform programme.

The farmers went back to the Tribunal early this year to obtain a
final relief order barring the acquisitions.

Land reform, which government says is successful, has seen nearly 80
percent of the country's prime land, formerly occupied by white Zimbabweans,
being transferred into the hands of black Zimbabweans, the majority
supporters of Zanu PF.

But the takeover of farms continues to date with influential
government officials and  powerful army chiefs leading a fresh wave of farm
disruptions which threatens the remaining 400 commercial farmers who have
braved continued abuses by government.

The continued farm disruptions have become a source of discord in the
current inclusive government which brought

together former archrivals.

Zanu PF and the Movement for Democratic Change parties led by Prime
Minister Morgan Tsvangirai and Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara.

The decision to withdraw from the Tribunal by Zimbabwe could be
calculated to dodge censure from SADC countries by government for failure to
abide by the judgements of a court which it helped form.

The leaders are meeting for their summit in Kinshasa next week.

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'MDC activist killed by ZANU PF youths'

by Own Correspondent Thursday 03 September 2009

JOHANNESBURG - An activist of Zimbabwean Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai's
MDC party was at the weekend murdered by youths belonging to President
Robert Mugabe's ZANU PF party, the MDC information department reported on

Edwin Chingami who had fled the country for fear of retributive violence
that gripped Zimbabwe after last year's March 29 elections was murdered
after he returned to attend a family funeral last weekend.

The MDC said party legislator for Bikita West Heya Shoko and police
spokesman confirmed the death although the police denied that it was
politically motivated.

"An MDC activist, Edwin Chingami who had gone into exile in the run-up to
last year's bloody June 27 run-off elections was murdered upon his return
home at the weekend, the police and Bikita West MP, Hon. Heya Shoko have
confirmed," the MDC said.

"Hon. Shoko said Chingami, 32, an ardent MDC supporter who was an election
observer for the party in the March 29 2008 harmonised elections, was
murdered at a funeral in Ward 8, Chirove village under Chief Nhema at the

According to the former opposition party Chingami had come for "the funeral
wake of his niece when some known ZANU PF youths started accusing him of
being a sell-out who had fled the country" and beat him up. He was allegedly
hit by a stone on the head when he attempted to flee from his attackers.

Confirming the incident provincial police spokesperson Inspector Phibion
Nyambo told the MDC: "We received a report of murder at a funeral. The
suspects were drunk as there was beer at the funeral wake. I have not heard
that the victim was killed because of his political affiliation."

MDC provincial chairman Wilstaff Sitemere said Chingami was murdered for
campaigning for the MDC as well as standing as the party's elections

"He was the target by ZANU PF youths aligned to former legislator Claudius
Makova for vigorously campaigning for the MDC. They had told him that he
will die whenever he returns, that's why it took him so long to come back.
But this time around, his relative had died and he had no option but come
back. We sadly mourn his death, he is a martyr," he said.

Erstwhile enemies Mugabe, Tsvangirai agreed to form a power-sharing
government to end a political stalemate after inconclusive elections last
March and violence marred a presidential run-off election last June. -

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U.S. optimistic about rejuvenation of Zim's health delivery system

U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator concludes Zim tour

Harare, September 2nd 2009: The United States Government is optimistic about the rejuvenation of Zimbabwe’s health sector and has goals of supporting efforts to increase service delivery capacity and create sustainable health care systems. 

Ambassador Eric Goosby, the Global AIDS Coordinator for the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) said on Wednesday, “I’m optimistic that we will be able to use the talent and experience of our in-country PEPFAR team and their knowledge of the situation on the ground to develop a response that fits the existing health infrastructure, supports it, and reinforces it in a way that creates a durable and lasting response.”

“I have seen fatigue in health care delivery in the country.  A fatigue that that has come out of sustaining the response (to HIV and AIDS) with diminishing resources, but at the same time a feeling of hope and anticipation that they have hit bottom and are now on the return,” said Ambassador Eric Goosby.

Goosby oversees the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief and the U.S. Government’s engagement with the Global Fund for AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.  He, together with top U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)- Robert Clay- and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)- R.J. Simonds- officials, has been in Zimbabwe since Monday.

“We are happy to have an open dialogue with government and civil society that allows us to strengthen and refocus our efforts to identify and retain patients in care…and decrease high risk behavior that has burdened this country for the past 25 years,” said Ambassador Goosby.

Goosby also toured several PEPFAR-supported initiatives. These include the Opportunistic Infections Clinic at Parirenyatwa Hospital, which initiates treatment and follow up on HIV positive clients on Anti Retroviral Therapy (ART) program.  PEPFAR supports antiretroviral drugs for 40,000 out of 155,000 of these patients nationally, and supports the delivery system that supplies 100% of those on Anti Retroviral Therapy (ART).

Goosby also visited the male circumcision site at the Zimbabwe National Family Planning Council offices at Harare Hospital which also receives funding from PEPFAR and technical support from USAID partner Population Services International (PSI).

Commending the commitment of the health workers and care-givers, Goosby said he saw in everyone “a willingness to maintain their engagement and to increase their focus and work on trying to alleviate the suffering and to respond to the needs that are in front of them.”

Since assuming his role as U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator in June this year, Ambassador Goosby visited Angola and South Africa.  Goosby says that the fight against global AIDS remains a central theme in President Obama’s foreign policy and global health agenda.

He said Zimbabwe was in a better position to rejuvenate its health delivery systems because it is coming “out of a legacy of an extraordinary, proud and effective, world class medical delivery system and are ahead of many other countries in Africa.”

“The memory is fresh, the individuals that were part of that excellent system of care are still here and I think that is a big advantage in rejuvenating a medical delivery system that right now is a shadow of what it was. You also have the skilled human resources,” said Goosby.  He noted that this required those that had left the country to come back and play a positive role.

Through PEPFAR, the United States Government is the leading provider of bilateral HIV and AIDS assistance to Zimbabwe. Between 2004 and 2008, the U.S. Government provided nearly $109 million to Zimbabwe to support comprehensive HIV/AIDS prevention, treatment and care programs.


The U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) was launched in 2003 to combat global HIV/AIDS, and is the largest commitment by any nation to combat a single disease in history.  Working in partnership with host nations, over ten years PEPFAR plans to support treatment for at least 3 million people, prevention of 12 million new infections, and care for 12 million people, including 5 million orphans and vulnerable children.  For more information, please visit

# # #

This report was produced and distributed by the U.S. Embassy Public Affairs Section. Queries and comments should be directed to Tim Gerhardson, Public Affairs Officer,, Tel. +263 4 75800-1, Fax: +263 4 758802 Website:

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Clash looms between Mugabe, congressmen

September 3, 2009

By Our Correspondent

HARARE – A potential war of words looms between the Head of State and Government and Commander-in-Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, His Excellency President Robert Mugabe and the United States government following a visit to Zimbabwe by a five-member delegation from the US House of Representatives.

Gregory Meeks

Congressman Gregory Meeks

(The paragraph above is a once-off illustration to familiarize readers in the Diaspora with how President Mugabe is now addressed in the government-owned media in Zimbabwe.)

US President Barack Obama this week dispatched the delegation, led by Gregory Meeks, a Democrat from New York and senior member of the House Financial Services Committee.

The visit follows a visit to Washington by Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai in June this year.

Tsvangirai, who was four months into his term as Premier, had set out on a three-week tour of the United States and Europe in a bid to normalise relations between Zimbabwe and Western governments.

The Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) leader has since met with the visiting US delegation which will now meet President Mugabe this Wednesday before returning to Washington the same day.

Although details of Tsvangirai’s meeting with the US delegation were not revealed to the press, he is certain to have told the visitors he was not happy with President Mugabe’s failure to commit himself to the full implementation of the Global Political Agreement he signed with Tsvangirai on September 15 last year.

Wednesday’s talks with the Zimbabwean leader could turn out to be unfriendly if the US representatives continue with their government’s open criticism of Mugabe.

The Zimbabwean leader is being accused of deliberately blocking crucial reforms in the media and other institutions key to the restoration of democracy in Zimbabwe.

Mugabe, who had a stormy relationship with former US ambassador James McGee, has also accused the US government of interfering in the internal affairs of his country.

McGee left Harare in July this year at the end of his mission.

His successor, Ambassador-Designate Charles Ray is expected in Zimbabwe some time next month.

Mugabe (85) further accuses the US and its powerful allies of manipulating the UN and other multilateral institutions to fight wars with its enemies.

Some US officials have, since the diplomatic fallout between Washington and Harare nearly eight years ago, been targeted for some of the most vitriolic remarks by the Zimbabwean leader.

An incensed Mugabe in July this year lashed out at US assistant secretary of state for African affairs Johnnie Carson calling him “an idiot”.

Mugabe, who met the US diplomat on the sidelines of an African Union meeting in Libya, had apparently been angered by Carson’s “condescending attitude” towards him.

From Mugabe’s comments, Carson had been frank with the Zimbabwean leader who is being accused of frustrating efforts to restore the enjoyment of basic freedoms among his people.

Carson was “a little fellow” who “thinks he could dictate to us what to do and what not to do,” Mugabe was quoted as saying.

“I hope he wasn’t speaking for (President Barack) Obama,” Mugabe went on.

“You wouldn’t speak to an idiot (referring to Carson) of that nature. I was very angry with him,” he added.

He said he had told Carson that he was “a great shame, being an African-American”.

A week before, Mugabe had said Irene Khan, the Amnesty International secretary-general, was “bewitched”.

Khan who visited Zimbabwe, had produced a damning report on the Zimbabwean government’s continued abuse of human rights.

Mugabe also called Jendayi Frazer, Carson’s predecessor during the George Bush’s administration, “that little American girl trotting around the globe like a prostitute”.

Meanwhile, Meek says his visit to Zimbabwe was motivated by new political developments in Zimbabwe following the signing of the unity agreement by the three parties in government.

“We are here because there is hope,” Meek told journalists soon after meeting Tsvangirai on Tuesday.

“The Prime Minister has told us that there are so many good things in as far as the unity agreement is concerned and that the differences they may have can be worked out.

“We are looking forward to those things happening with government itself involved to resolve them and with the help of SADC and the AU just as the Global Political Agreement has stated.

“We are here to try to make sure that there is a new chapter. We have a new President in the United States by the name of Barack Obama. He said change is on the way and is looking out to work with different people.

“He met with Prime Minister Tsvangirai. They talked about looking for a better day and I think that is what we are here to make sure that there is an opportunity for a better day.”

Meek is being accompanied by Jack Kingston a Republican from Georgia; Sheila-Jackson Lee, (Democrat, Texas); Melvin Watt, (Democratic, North Carolina)  and Marcia Fudge, a Democrat from Ohio.

US Embassy Public Affairs Officer Timothy Gerhardson, said Meek’s delegation was the second high level delegation since the diplomatic stand-off between the two countries eight years ago.

His delegation follows that of US congressman, Donald Payne, in July this year.

Payne is the chairman of the US Congress’ House Committee on Foreign Affairs, Sub-Committee on Africa and Global Health.

Payne is said to have been involved in the crafting of the controversial Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic Recovery Act (ZIDERA) in 2001-2002.

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State weapons deals 'a secret'

03 September 2009
Anna Majavu

WHETHER the South African government has sold two million rounds of
ammunition to Zimbabwe or not is still a closely guarded secret.

The Ministers of Justice, State Security and Police yesterday refused to
answers questions in Parliament's defence committee about whether the
National Conventional Arms Control Committee (NCACC) had approved the deal
or not.

They released a document showing that South Africa had done arms trade with
Sudan (R64million), China (R82million), Saudi Arabia (R36million), and the
United Arab Emirates (R185million), among others.

But Justice Minister Jeff Radebe would not say exactly what was traded,
claiming it would "not be appropriate to go through each and every
transaction we authorise".

The committee meeting was held after allegations by DA MP David Maynier that
South Africa was involved in "dodgy" arms deals with Zimbabwe, Syria, Iran,
Libya and others.

These countries have been accused of serious human rights abuses by
international human rights watchdogs.

State Security Minister Siyabonga Cwele said MPs should be careful not to
give the impression that the NCACC must consult MPs about each arms

Radebe promised to answer detailed questions if a meeting were set up for
that purpose.

Maynier accused the ministers of stonewalling him, saying they were
"covering up the truth about the dodgy arms deals".

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Ministers and Senior Government Officers Involved In Rhino Poaching

KARIBA- The Zimbabwe Conservation Task force is appealing for funds to
curb rampant poaching that is reportedly said to be involving ministers and
senior government officials in Mashonaland West.

According to a document obtained by Radio Voice of the People, some
villagers are involved in well planned poaching syndicates using snares and
AK47 guns where some top government ministers and army officials are
''There are currently an elephant, 2 buffalo, and 4 zebras walking
around with snares embedded in their flesh and a report has been made to
National Parks officials who have recently retrieved over 100 wire snares
from the bush in the Charara area and the same number from the Mopani Bay
The report however reveals that poaching is now a challenge for the
'' It is common knowledge that the rhino poaching is critical in the
country where there were over 50 black rhinos in the Midlands Conservancy
and we were shocked to hear that, about 2 or 3 years ago that there were
only 21 left. Now, the latest report is even more disturbing as it is
alleged that there are now only 5 rhinos left there''
The document states that it is believed that organised poaching
syndicates, involving top government officials, police and defence forces
are responsible for the deaths of the rhino in Midlands province.
Zimbabwe conservation is now appealing to the outside world so that
they can buy M99, the tranquilizer required in snare removals.

Chairman for Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force Johnny Rodrigues could
not independently comment on the document as he was said to be out of office
at the time of writing.

There was no comment from Environment management minister Francis
Nhema as well as defence ministry if it is true that army officials are
implicated in poaching of animals and what action is being taken to curb

A suspected poaching ring-leader who has a bullet in his chest and was
nursing gun wounds at Karoi hospital, escaped under police guard last week
and is believed to have been whisked away in a gate-away car in a well
planned and calculated move.

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Zimbabwe Power-Sharing Partners Position Ahead of Regional Summit

By Blessing Zulu
02 September 2009

The two main parties in Zimbabwe's fractious national unity government
continued to trade barbs on Wednesday ahead of a summit next week at which
leaders of the Southern African Development Community are to take up a range
of issues that continue to trouble the so-called inclusive government in
place in Harare since February.

The Movement for Democratic Change formation of Prime Minister Morgan
Tsvangirai, which asked SADC to review compliance with the 2008 Global
Political Agreement underpinning the power-sharing arrangement, and
President Robert Mugabe's ZANU-PF, are lobbying SADC members who will gather
Monday in Kinshasa, the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Mr. Mugabe has made the rounds of summits and other state gatherings
recently telling his peers that all is well in the inclusive government with
the only problem the Western targeted sanctions that remain in place. Mr.
Tsvangirai's MDC has responded by sending Deputy Information Minister
Jameson Timba to such assemblies to make its case.

SADC Executive Secretary Tomaz Salamao said he received Mr Tsvangirai's
envoy on Tuesday and spoke with Mr. Tsvangirai by phone about plans for the

Prime Minister Tsvangirai in a news conference on Tuesday accused ZANU-PF of
acting in bad faith and failing to respect the terms of the Global Political

ZANU-PF Information Minister Nathan Shamuyarira accused Mr. Tsvangirai of
attacking Mr. Mugabe as well as the African Union and SADC, which guaranteed
the GPA. He said it was improper to raise such issues with the press instead
of directly with Mr. Mugabe.

ZANU-PF Information Committee Member Chris Mutsvangwa, a former Zimbabwean
ambassador to China, told reporter Blessing Zulu of VOA's Studio 7 for
Zimbabwe that Mr. Tsvangirai is simply posturing ahead of the regional

Tsvangirai MDC spokesman Nelson Chamisa dismissed ZANU-PF's claims as
childish, saying the MDC is taking its power-sharing issues to the GPA
guarantors as is its right.

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Activists Mike Campbell and Ben Freeth's farms 'set alight by henchmen'

September 3, 2009

Jan Raath in Harare
President Mugabe's henchmen were accused yesterday of setting ablaze the
homes of their opponents after fires consumed the farmsteads of two
prominent white activists.

Mount Carmel Farm, owned by Mike Campbell, who led a campaign against Mr
Mugabe's land seizures, was burnt to the ground yesterday. It had been
occupied by a mob claiming to be war veterans since Mr Campbell, 78, and his
wife, Angela, 67, were forced out in April by the 80-year-old Nathan
Shamuyarira, a member of Mr Mugabe's politburo. On Sunday the nearby home of
Ben Freeth and his wife, Laura, the Campbells' daughter, also burnt down.

Mrs Freeth said yesterday that she was certain it was arson that destroyed
her parents' farm, 100km (60 miles) from the capital, Harare. "Obviously
[the war veterans] torched the place," she said.

The circumstances surrounding the destruction of her own farmstead are
unclear. The Freeths returned home from church to find a raging
bushfireabout to envelop the building. "It was so fast," Mrs Freeth said.
"We got out with the clothes on our backs." The blaze also destroyed the
homes of their 60 workers and Mrs Freeth's small linen factory.

Related Links
  a.. Farm owned by Mugabe critic destroyed in fire
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In November Mr Campbell won a long court battle when a Southern African
regional tribunal condemned Mr Mugabe's seizures of white land as "racist"
and theft on a grand scale. Mr Freeth, 40, has written movingly for The
Times on the two families' ordeals at the hands of the "war veterans".

Mr Mugabe has signed up to the treaty establishing the tribunal of the
Southern African Development Community, the regional political bloc, and has
agreed to abide by its rulings.

However, he dismissed as "nonsense" its instructions to ensure that Mr
Campbell and 74 other white farmers who joined him in the litigation were
protected by the law and that they be allowed to continue farming.

Mr and Mrs Campbell and Mr Freeth were abducted in June last year by war
veterans and soldiers and tortured for nine hours to force them to drop the
litigation. They were left severely injured but the Campbells continued with
the case.

"War veterans" also tried to force the Freeths out, breaking into their
house and threatening their young children. The family was rescued when
police made a rare appearance.

"We are going to start again," Mrs Freeth said. "We will begin with a small
cottage and then we'll build the big house."

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Gono backtracks on SMM advice to Mugabe

by Hendricks Chizhanje Thursday 03 September 2009

HARARE - Zimbabwe central bank governor Gideon Gono has withdrawn
recommendations to President Robert Mugabe that the veteran leader reverses
the seizure of private firm, SMM Holdings, by the government.

SMM Holdings, owned by Zimbabwean-born South African businessman Mutumwa
Mawere, was taken over by the government in 2004 after allegedly failing to
pay back money owed to the state, while Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa
ordered Mawere specified.

But Gono in July wrote to Mugabe advising the President that the seizure of
SMM was unjust and illegal and that the conglomerate, which operates one of
the biggest asbestos manufacturing plants in Africa and has interests in
various sectors of Zimbabwe's economy, should be returned to its owner.

However in a fresh twist to the long-running SMM saga, Gono last month wrote
to Chinamasa apologising for his advice to Mugabe which he said was
defective because he had acted without full information or details
pertaining to the case.

Gono accuses Mawere of giving him half-backed information and claims he was
deeply "embarrassed" on getting to learn the full details of the SMM saga
when he later met Mugabe, Chinamasa and the troubled firm's state appointed
administrator, Arafas Gwaradzimba.

"I confirm that independent of informed input from the administrator of SMM
or the Minister of Justice .. I prepared (an advisory) to the Head of
 State," Gono wrote in the letter to Chinamasa on August 21.

"Following these vital consultations, I confirmed, as I do now, that my
advisory briefs to His Excellency has been answered by the administrator and
Minister (Chinamasa) in front of the Head of State and that I had no other
role to play in the case," Gono wrote in the letter to Chinamasa on August

He added: "This thus brought to an end my advisory role and withdrawal of my
advisory notes which were then returned to the bank because all the matters
that had been raised, have been explained or were to be attended to or would
have been raised out of ignorance emanating."

Both Gono and Chinamasa were not immediately available for comment on the
mater and so was Mawere.

But speculation was rife in Harare that Gono acted under pressure from
Chinamasa who it is alleged is working with powerful Defence Minister
Emmerson Mnangagwa to ensure Mawere loses his properties.

Mnangagwa and Mawere were once viewed within Zimbabwe's political and
business circles as very close associates and it is widely speculated that
the SMM owner's troubles began with his fallout with the powerful defence

Mawere -- acknowledged even by his enemies as one of the sharpest business
brains to emerge out of Zimbabwe -- lives in South Africa where he has built
another business empire. - ZimOnline.

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Zim govt seen just 'wobbling along'

by Nokuthula Sibanda Thursday 03 September 2009

HARARE - President Robert Mugabe and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai's
six-month old power-sharing government enjoys strong support among ordinary
Zimbabweans, the head of a leading local political think-tank said

Chairman of the Harare-based Mass Public Opinion Institute (MPOI) Eldred
Masungure told business executives that two surveys carried out by his
organisation in April and May showed that the unity government enjoyed
healthy support from ordinary citizens, with 80 percent of respondents
backing the administration in April.

Masungure, who was addressing the annual general meeting of the
Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries in Harare, said it was evident that
political parties in the power-sharing administration did not want to see it

The respected Masunungure, who is also a professor of political science at
the University of Zimbabwe, suggested that the power-sharing administration
might be able to only stay the course but without necessarily being
effective on the ground. It would just "muddle forward" and "wobble along"
for as long as the coalition partners wanted it to last, he said.

"Up to 80 percent (of respondents in the April survey) said they supported
the inclusive government," said Masunugure.  "In another survey in May up to
two thirds (66 percent) agreed,  "creating a coalition government was the
best way to resolve post-election crisis" he said.

Twenty-six percent of people polled in May regarded the coalition government
as  "ineffective" and believed that "leaders should have found another way
to resolve the crisis," he said.

Zimbabwe's six month-old unity government has done well to stabilise the
economy and end inflation that was estimated at more than a trillion percent
at the height of the country's economic meltdown last year.

But analysts remain doubtful about the administration's long-term
effectiveness, citing unending squabbles between Mugabe's ZANU PF party and
Tsvangirai's MDC as well as by the coalition government's inability to
secure direct financial support from rich Western nations.

Tsvangirai earlier this week urged a summit of Southern African Development
Community (SADC) leaders that will take place next week to discuss Zimbabwe's
coalition government, adding that the MDC was getting frustrated because of
Mugabe's refusal to resolve several outstanding issues from last year's
power-sharing agreement.

But Masunungure did not see the administration collapsing yet, saying that
none of the coalition partners appeared to want "an early exit" from the
marriage of convenience. - ZimOnline.

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449 Zimbabweans volunteer for World Cup

September 3, 2009

By Ntando Ncube

JOHANNESBURG - A total of 449 Zimbabweans are among 67 999 people from 170
countries who had applied to volunteer their services during the 2010 FIFA
World Cup when applications closed on Tuesday, an official with the
organising committee said on Wednesday. "There was a strong response from
outside of South Africa, Zimbabweans made 449 applications with Nigeria
producing the highest number of applications outside of the host country
with 750 in total. The USA followed with 554 applications and Brazil was
close behind with 489 while Italy also managed an impressive total of 414."
Chief Executive Officer of the 2010 FIFA World Cup Organising Committee
South Africa (OC) Danny Jordaan said.

Jordaan said applications were received for the 2010 FIFA World Cup, Final
Draw in Cape Town in December 2009 and the Football for Hope Festival in
Alexandra which will run concurrently with the 2010 FIFA World Cup next

According to Jordaan the total applications for the 2010 FIFA World Cup
exceeds the 48 167 volunteer applications received for the 2006 FIFA World
Cup in Germany.

The 2010 FIFA soccer world cup hosted by South Africa will be the 19th FIFA
World Cup and is scheduled to take place between June 11 and July 11, 2010.

The FIFA Soccer World Cup takes place every four years and the last
tournament was held in Germany in 2006 where Italy were the winners. 2010
Soccer World Cup in South Africa will be the first time that the final
tournament will be hosted by an African nation.

Africa was chosen as the host for the 2010 World Cup as part of a new policy
to rotate the event between football confederations. The five African
nations that placed bids to host the 2010 World Cup were South Africa,
Morocco, Egypt, Libya and Tunisia.

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US surgeons to perform free surgery

September 3, 2009

By Our Correspondent

HARARE - A group of American surgeons will visit Zimbabwe next month to
conduct free corrective surgery on children and adults with disabling mouth
conditions known as cleft lip and cleft palates.

Operation of Hope, the United States (US) all-volunteer surgical team will
be in Harare in October to offer free surgery to children and other people
afflicted with facial deformities, which include but are not limited to,
cleft-lip and cleft-palates.

The surgeons will evaluate potential cases on October 4, 2009 at St Anne's
Hospital in the capital before placing successful candidates on a surgery
schedule that commences on 05 October 2009.

Operation of Hope, which travels to many developing countries that are
resource constrained to offer free corrective surgery for cleft lip and
palate conditions said all costs associated with the surgery and the
evaluation of the facial deformities would be free and no doctor, hospital,
medication or surgical fees will be charged.

"We are very excited to return to Zimbabwe where we once again help those in
need, offering hope and relief to the families of Zimbabwe needing this
care," said Dr Joseph Clawson, the founder and director of Operation of

The October visit will be the sixth trip made by the US surgeons since
October 2006 when the first group of volunteer surgeons started performing
free surgeries to Zimbabweans. At least 450 Zimbabwean children ranging from
newly born babies to victims of landmines have benefited from the facial

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Quiet diplomacy' has just gone quieter

Thursday, September 03, 2009 12:00 AM
Alex T. Magaisa

THE new president of South Africa, Jacob Zuma was in town last week. He
arrived in Harare to the warm embrace of his northern counterpart, President

An uncanny mixture of hopes, anxieties and expectations surrounded the much
anticipated trip. But in the end, it was no more than a damp squib.

Critics of his substantive predecessor, President Mbeki, thought Zuma would
adopt a different approach towards President Mugabe and Zimbabwe. They did
not like Mbeki's policy of 'Quiet Diplomacy'. They hoped (and some expected)
Zuma to be more vocal and perhaps tougher.

For my part, I feared that too much was expected of Umshini Wami, as he is
affectionately known among his ardent followers. I wondered whether he was
any better-placed and stronger-willed than Mbeki. By the time he left, it
seems Zuma had become even quieter than Mbeki. What had Uncle Bob done or
said to cause this man to apparently withdraw into his shell so soon?

So I read President Mugabe's speech delivered at the dinner held in honour
of Zuma's visit. No doubt the speech was a crucial part of the menu. A
closer look at the menu reveals the work of a master chef who carefully
studies his guests and knows exactly how to bring them under his spell. So
here we go. I have to quote Uncle's words to place things into context, so
it's longer than usual.

"Comrade President"
After briefly referring to Zuma more formally as 'Your Excellency', it didn't
take long before President Mugabe found comfort in the old favourite,
'Comrade President'. It has a revolutionary touch, a more cordial flavour,
indeed a tone of affection. It is the language that communicates the message
that you are one of us (tiri vanhu vamwe).

In case the Comrade President had failed to pick the hint, he was quickly
reminded of the historical roots of comradeship: "You lived here when you
fought for the independence of your country." A timely reminder, too to the
Comrade President of the enduring debt he owes his hosts.

If that wasn't enough to refresh the Comrade President's memory, it soon
became abundantly clear: "Your presence among us, Comrade President, cements
the strong bonds of the historic friendship and alliance that we forged in
the trenches with the ANC when we fought the twin evils of settler
colonialism and apartheid".

And just in case the Comrade President may have suffered some kind of
amnesia, a trip along Guilty Lane would surely do the trick and how better
to do it than a reminder of the departed comrades? "As we speak, some of
your gallant compatriots, whom you fought with and who perished at the hands
of the enemy, lie buried here". Yes, in Zimbabwe, the country that the enemy
wants him to judge. Surely how can Comrade President be manipulated to do

This opening provided the perfect context in which to firmly drive home the
point that whatever is happening in Zimbabwe was part of a grand historic
mission. This gravitational pull of history is a central element of
Zimbabwean politics.

Shared History

The Comrade President was also reminded of the familial connections, "we are
always proud and happy to receive our brothers and sisters from South
Africa. We have become more than neighbours to each other". It's not lost on
President Mugabe that the Comrade President has an abiding relationship with
traditional culture. A brief lecture on the ancient Kingdom of Mapungubwe
was therefore not out of place on this occasion.

Thus Comrade President was reminded, "We are bound together by common
ancestry, geography, history, heritage and marriage. History tells us that
we all at one point belonged to the Kingdom of Mapungubwe which existed
between AD900-AD1300 and straddled modern-day South Africa, Botswana and

But just in case the Comrade President didn't get it how better to do it
than to reiterate the connection between Mapungubwe and Zimbabwe: "To us,
Mapungubwe is equally important, as we understand it is the forerunner to
the Great Zimbabwe which we have adopted as our national monument and from
which our country derives its name."

If he was in any doubt, Comrade President Zuma would have known by then that
the message is: we are one people. If US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton
had somehow managed to persuade the Comrade President that he was different,
this mini-lecture would have brought him straight back into the fold; back
to his roots. You are one of us Jacob, was the clear message, never forget
that, son of Mapungubwe like all of us.

Land and Agriculture
It was hardly a coincidence that Zuma's visit was tied in with the Harare
Agricultural Show. This gave the proper context in which to remind the
Comrade President of the most critical issue: Land. It was enough for the
Comrade President to be reminded that this is part of the historic mission
which consists of "far-reaching reforms which have transformed our
agricultural sector".

And if the Comrade President was too slow to appreciate the nature of these
"far-reaching reforms" he was soon relieved of all doubt when it was spelt
out more plainly that, ". the land reform programme, which is at the centre
of this transformation, has enabled Government to redistribute the land
which was monopolised by a small minority to the detriment of the larger
majority of people, constituting the indigenous African people".

And just in case the Comrade President intended to stand in judgment of
these "far reaching reforms" it was important to remind him that far from
being an uninterested bystander, he was in fact a key participant in this
revolution. In fact, he had to be reminded that he was already an active
participant: "I want to acknowledge with appreciation your government's
assistance with agricultural inputs worth R300 million, provided soon after
the formation of the inclusive Government."

In other words, Comrade President, you the son of Mapungubwe, like all of
us, you are one of us and you are part of these reforms. Tiri tese mundima
(We are together in the struggle), so you can't stand in judgment.

Common Challenge
In fact, to emphasise the similarity and scale of the challenges between the
two countries, it became necessary to draw commonalities between Zimbabwe's
land reform program and South Africa's Black Economic Empowerment (BEE)
program. So the Comrade President was reminded that: "Your Excellency, we
are also aware that your government has taken a number of measures to
empower the majority of the people of South Africa, who yesterday were
denied full participation in the mainstream economy of the country of their
birth. The Black Economic Empowerment is one such example.

To us, the Land Reform Programme was one such policy measure designed to
empower the majority of the people".

The message is plain: Comrade President, you and I are in the same boat. We
are operating on the same wavelength. Hapana chandirikuita chausirikuitawo
iwe (What I am doing is no different from what you have done and what you
must do). In fact, if anything the Comrade President could learn a thing or
two, "Our Government stands ready to share experiences with your Excellency's
government ."

The subtle message there is, Comrade President should hamusati matanga (you
haven't even started yet).

It's the West, Comrade President!
In case the Comrade President's mind has somewhat been poisoned by the many
Westerners pushing him to be less brotherly, he had to be reminded of the
primary problem in Zimbabwe. The Comrade President had to be told that the
problem lies firmly at the door of the West and its "regime change" agenda.

In fact, the Comrade President should know that they (the West) "still
maintain these illegal punitive measures in spite of the progress we have
made as an inclusive Government. One is tempted to conclude . that regime
change on the part of our detractors is still an active policy option".

The message is simple: In other words, our battle, Comrade President is to
resist regime change; an evil agenda that emanates from the West's
bitterness over our land reforms. I am not going anywhere to satisfy these
regime change engineers.

Brother Mbeki was right
Furthermore, if the Comrade President somehow thought his predecessor was
wrong in his handling of the Zimbabwe situation, it was necessary to put him
on the right path. No better way to do it than to praise the sterling
efforts of Brother Mbeki: "I take this opportunity, on behalf of the people
and Government of Zimbabwe, to express sincere appreciation over the manner
in which your government handled the stand-off between my Government and
some Western governments."

And just in case Comrade President was not sure who these Western
governments are, he was promptly reminded in no uncertain terms: "Your
government stood by us in the face of unjustified sanctions and vilification
by Western governments, led by the British and the Americans."

Just in case Comrade President had any doubts about the correctness of Mbeki's
approach, he was reminded that Mbeki was in fact supported by "other
progressive and objective governments". The implication here is that if the
Comrade President has any intentions of doing things differently, then
applying the law of opposites he risks being retrogressive, subjective and

The Comrade President was reminded that "former Presidents Thabo Mbeki and
Kgalema Montlanthe" had handled the "conflictual political situation in my
country with great vision and foresight" (sic). In other words, do not be
short-sighted Comrade President. Do just like Brother Mbeki did because
contrary to what critics say, he handled the matter with "great vision and
foresight". Not only was he "instrumental", he also showed "dedication and
resilience" -- all qualities surely, that the Comrade President ought to

Inclusive Government - "Alive & Well"

The Comrade President needed to be reassured that the Inclusive Government
was doing well. In fact, "the inclusive Government is alive and well".
However, knowing that the Comrade President has received information that
there were some problems, an acknowledgment of challenges had to be made
although merely characterising them as minor issues. Thus they were referred
to dismissively as "teething problems".

In other words, don't worry Comrade President, these are very minor problems
but they will fade away. That should be enough to set the Comrade President
at ease.

Constitution & National Healing
In the same way, a quick word on the constitution was necessary to
demonstrate 'progress'. But one line was enough: "On the political scene,
our constitution-making process is on course". What 'on course' exactly
means does not matter so long as Comrade President knows it's on course.

And national healing also receives the same 'by-the-way' treatment,
"The Organ on National Healing has been launched ." Yes, that's it. It has
been launched. What it has done, will do, why, how, etc - doesn't really
matter, Comrade President. Isn't it enough to know that it has been

SADC Support - Boys ngadzibhadhare (Please Pay Up)
There is also a message to other SADC leaders whose countries pledged to
help an ailing brother but have not done so yet. This is done by way of
paying gratitude for the Comrade President's support: "Furthermore, within
the auspices of Sadc, which you currently chair, a number of commitments
were made by member states to help us resuscitate our economy.
In this vein, Comrade President, let me take this opportunity to thank you
personally and your government for providing us with direct budget support
and lines of credit for our industry".

Note: the gratitude is to South Africa, not SADC - an indication perhaps
that some of the boys have not paid up their pledges. There is a message
here: dai matibatsirawo boys vasina kubhadhara ngavachibhadhara (please
continue to help and can you please tell others to pay up?).

Handisi Ndega - I am not alone
Finally, Comrade President had to be reminded that Zimbabwe is not the only
country with problems. So he was reminded that there other countries facing
challenges, a subtle hint that there is no need to make Zimbabwe such a
special case for attention. Hence the references to "developments in the DRC
give us hope for lasting peace and security in that country. We welcome the
co-operative spirit characterising relations among the countries around the
Great Lakes region. We are also encouraged by the recent developments in
Madagascar where the leaders have agreed to resolve their political
differences through an inclusive dialogue process".

He is saying, kune vamwewo vanotori nenhamo huru kudarika yedu saka
musandimake (there are others in the region facing problems so don't just
focus on me).In fact, Madagascar is going through a similar process to
Zimbabwe's negotiated settlement and Brother Joachim (Chissano) has been
doing as well there as Brother Mbeki did in Zimbabwe. If anything, the
Comrade President is being reminded, this (negotiated settlement) looks like
the way to go to solve problems in our region.


It is fair to say this mini-lecture must have come in handy for Comrade
President Zuma. He was left in no doubt that, whatever he might have
thought, he was no different at all and it was unwise for him to try to
change things. The message was plain: we are one people, with a common
history, a common agenda and common challenges. There is no need Comrade
President, to worry about anything - the Inclusive Government is doing just
fine. The minor problems will be resolved. There is absolutely no need to
change course - what Brother Mbeki did was the best and you, too will not go
wrong by adopting the same approach.

Result? By the time he departed for Pretoria, 'Comrade President' Zuma had
reported that he was satisfied with the progress of the Inclusive
Government. We're told he did not even give a press conference. 'Quiet
Diplomacy' had just got quieter, thanks to the special dish from the master
chef, good old Uncle Bob!

Alex Magaisa is based at Kent Law School, the University of Kent, and can be
contacted on e-mail

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JAG - farm situations communique - Dated 2nd September 2009

Email: :

JAG Hotlines: +263 (011) 610 073, +263 (04) 799410.  If you are in
trouble or need advice, please don't hesitate to contact us - we're here
to help!

To subscribe/unsubscribe to the JAG mailing list, please email: with subject line "subscribe" or





Submission by Dennis Lapham (Born 6/2/42  Rusape) Ref Devonia South

Farmed in Bindura from 1974 On Robara farm which we purchased .

Owing to the development of Cluff Gold Mine on the property we had to
make way for this development and sold to immediately buy Devonia South
in 1990 with a certificate of No interest by the government. Paid 30%
capital Gains Tax

Pannar requested a Trial site in 1994 which we agreed to, under our

Farm Invasions in 1999 disrupted the programme and in 2000 we were
evicted for 40 days but allowed to return.

6th Nov 2002  the farm acquired by Govt [Made letter ] and "given
"to Pannar who asked us to continue to run the farm for them and
produce Seed crops,  Soya, Sorghum, Sugar beans, Wheat, with Maize being
the main focus .

We then  paid  gratuity to all farm Labour with change in  the operating

With inflation two years ago we were  paid US$9.60 per Tonne for Seed
Maize, which was a major financial disaster for us. Last year our
plantings were down due to the Zesa shortage and again this year.

We were allocated 127 Ha on 27th Feb 2003 ( Case No LA 2751/02) after a
court set down which included our homesteads and sheds on the property.
We do not have own any Houses in town.    This allowed us security to

We wrote in response to the Sect 7 listing of Devonia Sept 2004 Delivered
to Minister of Lands.

We then wrote to Special Affairs in Jan 2005 with this information, Hand
delivered to Mr. Mutsonziwa 13/1/05  We never got any replies

Temba Nkatazo the GM of Pannar assured us that all was in order.

Herbert Shumbamhini { HS } who I met for the first time with Bhika,
Goromonzi lands Officer and from Min of lands, Matimba, Mugabe (planner)
and Guramombe on the farm on June 2nd to say Marondera had proposed he is
given 353.5 Ha of land

HS reiterated that he did not want to touch any of our crops or will take
our House.

He wanted a good relationship.

Nkatazo said he would handle this as he wanted as much Maize Seed to be
grown as possible. We are the only growers of PAN 53 which requires a
zero plus 4 plus 4 day split in two male and the female plantings. Two
male & four female lines. Their excellent high yielding variety.

  We have had our water to the homestead severely curtailed, with only
three days water in the last six weeks. He switched off the ZESA Last
week on 20th and On Sat to date Locked the transformer.   He has moved 55
head of Cattle on to the farm. He Demands that we pump water for his Ha
of Cabbages.

He has built a house and shed . A boom is being erected at the bottom of
the road with a guard house.

 We have not been given any papers to date !

He had 5 transformers put into his name without our permission. He agreed
to put two back into our name at a meeting with Lands Committee Supt Meki
Supt Chitondwe and T Nkatozo from Pannar were present. He renaged on this

I took a letter from Gollop & Blank to Marondera and Mr P.Mashingaidze
signed receipt and agreed to reverse

Sun 30th he came & broke the locks on the main pumphouse & the Dam one
and said we now have to request water from Him !  Police attended but
wanted us to agree on sharing water only.

The farm has been fully productive at all times.


Things got worse & worse today.

A really horrid day here, as MEANIE  [Herbert Shumbamhini ] broke the
Pump house lock and took over our pump house !! and Dam one also !!
Brought 7 "helpers"

Police came after one & a Half hours and said we have to co -exist !!  He
said we now have to ask him for water after switching off the pivot !!!
Defies understanding!!.... What about the ZESA payment?  they saw Meanie
paid a $120 deposit on 2 July to get it into his name.

I said the Lawyer wrote a letter demanding the transformers be put back
in my Name   They [zesa ] agreed.

He then agreed to pump water to the pivot again So it worked till power
cut at 7pm

Will have a busy day tomorrow.

He has switched our Transformer off & Locked it on Sat Night, So, ,  , No
Water or power at our house !  We are effectively Homeless, Staying at
Hunters house.

Dennis Lapham



Attached are photos of my tobacco seedling beds which have been sprayed
with a chemical which has killed aproximately 90% of my seedlings.Kutsaga
said it was sprayed with a non-selective herbicide(Dr Susan Dimbi).

The week before - on the 20th August 2009, I had been taken to High Court
with an Urgent application to evict me from my homestead and to stop all
farming procedures. The magistrate dismissed this with costs.

Further and after the High Court application - these incidences have

24/08/09 RRB 0605919 "theft of sprinklers from tobacco seed bed site

25/08/09 RRB 0605925 " Mrs Pambukani physically assaulted my manager Mr
Charles Bizabani - assault case

26/08/09 RRB 0605928 "Mrs Pambuakani removed sprinklers and proceeded to
attack and damage tobacco seedlings at seed bed site and then stole said

29/08/09 RRB 0605938 "malicious damage to property - spraying seedlings
with herbicide - worth approximately US$400 000.00

On a daily basis, myself and my workers and especially my manager, Mr
Bizabani, are harassed and constantly being told to stop farming or work
of any nature.

Kenneth Bartholomew

Wakefield Farm,


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Comment from a correspondent

Harare, Zimbabwe, 03 September 2009

Robert Mugabe has "pardoned" more than 1500 prisoners because his government
is so broke, it can't feed them.

Significantly, the ministry of justice announced that the pardon will not be
extended to people accused of "plotting against the government.

Murderers as well are in for it, as are rapists, who also do not qualify.

Those to be released are the terminally ill, juveniles and women.

The Ministry of Justice announcement comes after that infamous documentary,
"Hell Hole", shown by South African television and shot secretly in
Zimbabwe's jails.

A couple of prison officers lost their jobs as a result, accused of having
helped the filmmakers.

I was warned this evening, however, that this move is a prelude to darker
times. A source from within Mugabe's party claims that his party and his
president have now decided that sooner rather than later, the MDC is going
to walk.

If this source is correct, you will, in the very near future, hear of a
surge in violence across the country. It will be put down to "hardcore"
criminals who were pardoned because the government had no money to feed

Later, of course, it will emerge that the violence is actually politically
motivated. Preparations for by-elections would have begun.

Whether he walks or stays on his "irreversible train", Morgan Tsvangirai
will find the corridors of power very cold indeed. He has, in the eyes of
his "principal", Robert "The Solution"Mugabe, proved to be of no use.

He can't bring in the dollars.

And without that, there is no need to tolerate his presence at Munhumutapa
any longer, unless he capitulates and does so utterly, as happened with
Joshua Nkomo.

The new strategy has taken shape in the following form:

Mugabe has been advised that his election as president and his swearing-in
were fait accomppli that the African Union and SADC accepted.. Mugabe had
just been hurriedly sworn-in when he left the country to attend the African
Union Summit in Egypt.

It was there that the African Union received him as head of state, and then
resolved to hand the matter of Zimbabwe negotiations to SADC, which threw
the hot potato back into Thabo Mbeki's lap.

Tsvangirai, SADC and Mbeki dealt with Mugabe as a Head of State, with
Patrick Chinamasa spitting out the words: "The president's position is
non-negotiable!" to journalists.

Therefore, the fall of this Inclusive Government will result only in the
country going back for parliamentary elections, organised and presided over
by Mugabe.

The hope is to claw back the majority in parliament that way. And set up a
government "with a clean conscience", as ZANU PF puts it, telling the world
that they had tried to reconcile with their internal and western enemies,
but these had proved that they did not want such reconciliation.

Campaigning, Tsvangirai will no longer be able to say that he "holds the
key" to aid from outside Zimbabwe, as he has done before. Mugabe would
simply retort that the keys had failed to work last time Tsvangirai took
them to Europe and America and they would never work until land was restored
back to white farmers (that is, after all the anchor upon which he has
campaigned in every single election since 1999.

The pardon, then, is a sideshow. The Main Attraction is yet to come.

You can already see that, increasingly impatient, Mugabe has thrown his toys
out of the cot, refused to play with Tsvangirai any more and is sulking in a
corner waiting for the SADC meeting in the DRC next week.

He will quite simply not do anything more to appease the MDC. Already, it is
clear to close observers that the dictator has made up his mind that
Tsvangirai and the MDC have failed to live up to the job he had in mind for
them: turning around the economy and getting money in from the outside world
for reconstruction.

He sees no benefit accruing to him and his party from any more concessions
he gives the MDC.

Which effectively means that, for Mugabe, the Inclusive Government is dead.
It is Tsvangirai now who is clinging to hope, quite aware, as he said at his
press conference yesterday, that "there is not other option" for him.

Mugabe, after all, can not be defeated, Tsvangirai has said before.

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