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

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Dispatch online

CO's wife threatened me ­farmer

HARARE --The wife of Zimbabwe's army commander threatened to kill a white
farmer, telling him as she occupied his farm that she had "not tasted white
blood" for 22 years, according to court documents obtained here yesterday.

Jocelyn Chiwenga, a senior figure in President Robert Mugabe's ruling
Zanu(PF) party and her husband, Lieutenant-General Constantine Chiwenga, the
commander of the army, were ordered by high court judge Anele Matika to stop
selling the export produce of the farm she and her husband illegally
occupied in April this year.

Roger Staunton, owner of the 1 275ha farm, Shepherd Hall, about 30km east of
here, said on May 23 Mrs Chiwenga came to his homestead "breathing fire",
according to affidavits accepted by the judge.

With her were several men carrying AK-47 automatic rifles, said Constantine
Mkiya, Staunton's lawyer.

"They were not in uniform, but because of her husband's position in the army
we are confident they were soldiers," he said.

When Staunton offered a handshake, "she told me she had no intention of
shaking hands with a white pig", the farmer said.

"She stated that she had not tasted white blood since 1980 (independence)
and missed the experience, and that she needed just the slightest excuse to
kill somebody," Staunton said.

"She ordered one of her guards to 'kill the white bastards'," he said.

The gunman cocked his weapon, but did not open fire.

General Chiwenga is reported to have been allocated another highly
sophisticated farm in the Marondera district, in an area where one of his
neighbours is Air Marshal Perence Shiri, the commander of the air force who
has forced about 300 previously resettled peasants to get off the farm he
has seized.

During the occupation, Mrs Chiwenga declared herself to be "the new Mbuya
Nehanda", a woman spirit medium venerated in Zimbabwe as the leader of an
uprising against white occupation in 1896.

Staunton said she also boasted she was "filthy rich".

He said the Chiwengas gave him five days to leave the farm, and took over
the entire property and all its assets -- including buildings, trucks,
irrigation equipment, and a major rose and greenhouse project -- worth
Zim$1billion (about R320 million).

She also illegally sold his greenhouse vegetables and roses to export
companies for about Zim$85 million (R15m), said Staunton.

Staunton said the Chiwengas had promised him they would compensate him fully
for the property, and pressured him into agreeing not to take them to court
or to publicise the incident in the press.

However, he said, since then the Chiwengas "have come out into the open and
told me in no uncertain terms that they were not going to compensate me as I
had made enough profits over the years, using the land stolen from them".

Staunton said he had reported the seizure to Vice-President Joseph Msika,
who is in charge of the regime's "land acquisition programme".

Staunton is undergoing treatment in South Africa for a heart ailment caused
by the stress of the Chiwengas' occupation.

Judge Matika ordered Hortico, an agent which sells Zimbabwean produce to
Europe, to stop buying from the Chiwengas.

Staunton is also applying for an order for the Chiwengas to leave the farm
and to allow him to return and continue farming. -- Sapa

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Washingtom Times

Forced transfers of farms threatened
By Nicole Itano

     JOHANNESBURG - South Africa, while pledging to avoid the violence and
lawlessness over land reform in neighboring Zimbabwe, nevertheless is
threatening to forcibly transfer white-owned farms to landless blacks.
     The government says land reform must move more quickly if it is to meet
its target of redistributing 30 percent of the country's commercial
farmland - most of which is owned by the country's white minority - to
blacks by 2015.
     The land ministry, however, has reiterated promises that reform will
take place within the law, unlike in Zimbabwe, where vigilante groups and
government forces have seized nearly 3,000 white-owned farms without
     "If the process of negotiations fails irrevocably, then we have the
option of invoking the right of the state to expropriate land in the public
interest," Gilingwe Mayende, director-general for land affairs, has told the
South African Business Report.
     "Property rights are protected by our constitution, but the
constitution says these property rights must be balanced against the public
interest and the nation's commitment to land reform."
     In Zimbabwe, thousands of white farmers have been driven from their
land, and millions of people face starvation as a drop in commercial
agricultural production is compounded by a severe drought.
     As in Zimbabwe, the vast majority of South Africa's most productive
farmland is white-owned.
     According to government estimates, 87 percent of commercial land is
owned by whites and 13 percent by blacks. The country's largest farming
union disputes those figures, saying about 60 percent of the country's
farmland is commercial property owned by whites.
     An estimated 3.5 million black South Africans were driven from their
homes during the 46 years of apartheid, or racial separation.
     Voluntary attempts to redistribute land since the end of apartheid have
yielded poor results.
     Little of the 4 percent to 6 percent of agricultural land placed on the
market each year has been purchased by blacks. Also, fewer than half the
claims for restitution have been settled, most of those in cash rather than
a transfer of landownership.
     The nation's largest farming union, Agri South Africa, which represents
about 40,000 mainly white commercial farmers and about 30,000 smaller-scale
black farmers, says the biggest problem is the scarcity of blacks willing to
become commercial farmers.
     "The whole feeder process of finding and training the right candidates
is going to take time," said Jack Raath, chairman of Agri South Africa.
     "If you just want to transfer land and not have any development, that's
easy. But experience has shown that you have to have the right beneficiaries
if you want to maintain competitiveness and profitability."
     But critics of the South African program say the government must be
more proactive about acquiring land. Without faster movement on land issues,
they warn, farm invasions could begin.
     "We think we need to revisit the fundamentals of land reform in this
country, especially the willing-seller, willing-buyer ideology," said Zakes
Hlatshweyo, chairman of the National Land Committee, a South African land
lobby group.
     "After eight years of democratic rule and social transformation, very
little has happened insofar as the transfer of land is concerned," Mr.
Hlatshweyo said.
     Mr. Hlatshweyo's organization says that at the current pace of
purchasing land for redistribution, it would take at least 215 years to meet
the government's stated target of 30 percent black ownership.
     Along with other groups operating under the banner of the Landless
People's Movement, the lobbyists have threatened to begin invading unused
public and private land if reform continues to drag.
     To date, however, law-enforcement officials have dealt swiftly with
illegal attempts to occupy land in South Africa.
     Only once in the country's post-apartheid history has the government
tried to force the sale of farmland. In that case, a farmer refused a
government offer to purchase his property after a special commission ruled
that the land had been taken illegally from black owners during apartheid.


SA chasing R50bn
to pay for land reform

Jan de Lange

Johannesburg - The Industrial Development Corporation is negotiating with
the World Bank for huge amounts of money to finance land reform "to prevent
South Africa from becoming a second Zimbabwe".

The negotiations are still at an early and sensitive stage, but amounts of
R50bn to R70bn, which will be made available for this financing over several
years, already have been mentioned.

IDC chief executive Khaya Ngqula and financial head Gert Gouws left for the
annual meeting of the International Monetary Fund in Washington on Wednesday
to continue negotiations.

They and Trade and Industry Minister Alec Erwin met World Bank
representatives last week, who mentioned these amounts as money that would
be made available for financing land reform over a period of several years.

Ngqula said on Wednesday with the announcement of the IDC's annual report:
"The World Bank is willing to make money available for this goal to prevent
a situation developing in South Africa similar to that in Zimbabwe."

Gouws pointed out that negotiations were still at an early stage and it was
not yet possible to release details. He said the money most probably would
be made available in phases for land reform.

Mbeki's goal seems unlikely

The government regards land reform as one of the biggest challenges with
which it has been faced.

So far, 29 877 land claims out of a total of about 68 000 have been

President Thabo Mbeki set a goal for concluding all land claims by 2005, but
experts doubt whether this will be possible.

The effect of such a huge amount of capital being made available to finance
land reform will see the process expand considerably further than these 68
000 land claims, as it would make land acquisition possible for thousands of

IDC regarded in a good light overseas

This will definitely place downward pressure on interest rates as far as
land transactions are concerned. It will not necessarily mean that interest
rates for these transactions will decrease, but will mean, at least, that
interest rates will be much more stable than in other sectors.

At best, it could lead to interest rates for land transactions decreasing
considerably, and that interest rates of 6.5% or even less could be levied
on such transactions, as was the case in the sixties.

Ngqula pointed out that foreign investors increasingly regarded IDC as an
agent for investments in the country.

Up to the end of June, the IDC had increased its assets from R27bn to
R36.7bn, which made it the country's largest financial institution by far.
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Washington Times

Something to ponder over your sandwich and CD
By Tom Knott

     The anti-capitalist fruitcakes are in town again, looking to make
another political statement around the meetings of the International
Monetary Fund and World Bank, hoping against hope to have a thorough airing
of their important message, which is: Block traffic, destroy property, go to
     You know what these dedicated anarchists say. A brick through the
window of a McDonald's keeps the artery-clogged consumer away.
     So "bring a sandwich and a good CD" and hide the downtown Party
     The fun is expected to begin in earnest tomorrow, when the various
protest groups will attempt to inconvenience the city.
     You think you could have problems getting around the city? Try to
imagine the burdensome problem before the protesters. They go through life
feeling the pain of the 6 billion inhabitants on Earth, just not your pain
if you happen to come up against them. There is so much bad stuff out there.
There is the starving child in North Korea. There is this or that conspiracy
theory to ponder. There is the war on terror, which is not really a war,
only a tediously contrived justification to try out new weaponry.
     That is a lot of mental baggage to lug around. You wonder how these
poor souls have the strength to rise out of bed each morning. They are
brave, so darn brave, and they have come to Washington with the weight of
the world on their shoulders.
     They need to be heard, and you need to understand. If some of your
property happens to be damaged in the process, consider it your donation to
a higher cause. If these groups can save the life of one person, either a
starving child, mother or father, then all the damage will have been worth
     Just one punctured tire from a cop car will feed a family of eight in
     From one of the protest Web sites comes a reminder to all activists to
bring "bikes and bike parts, automobiles, vans and trucks and a brain and
conscience for the media who refuse to cover our issues." The latter sounds
almost similar to the mission from "The Wizard of Oz," except the activists
are off to see Metropolitan Police Chief Charles H. Ramsey instead of the
man behind the curtain. They want an audience. The police chief and his
subordinates are there to listen. They want global justice? That's not a
problem. Chief Ramsey is all about justice.
     Here's another appeal from the anti-capitalists: "Nothing ever burns
down by itself. Every fire needs a little bit of help." These ninnies just
had to go there, to the city service once led by Ronnie Few, the who's who
of ex-fire chiefs, with the who being highly subjective, of course. Next
thing you know, the visitors will be touting the signed support of Dudley
Moore. Go ahead, shove a piece of paper in the hands of the funnyman. He'll
sign anything. Need a co-signer on a bank loan? You know where to go.
     Seriously, it is just too bad that two anarchists don't make a right.
The anarchists have their targets of interest. It would seem only fair if
their property somehow became targets of interest among those who have
neither the time nor patience to be interrupted from making a living.
     It is hard to say how the anarchists feel about their property. Given
the quality of their rants, you assume no self-respecting anarchist would
object if someone grabbed a tire iron and performed major body work on his
vehicle. If anything, the anarchist would have to cheer the procedure. The
anarchist would have to grasp the enlightening aspect of it. But maybe not.
You never know.
     The self-righteous are funny that way. They can pretend to have all the
economic answers. Who is ever going to know otherwise? They can put a city
on notice and threaten to do this and that because of the power of their
ideas. They even can disrupt the quality of your life, because it is good
for you, whether you know it or not.
     Here you are, with a job, bills, responsibilities and worries. You have
any number of concerns, and right now, where the next Starbucks franchise
opens up is not really very high on your priority list. That's too bad. Sit
down, shut up and listen to the heartfelt sentiments of the demonstrators.
     All some of them are saying is give anarchy a chance.
     Not feeling it? Then, as Chief Ramsey has suggested, have a sandwich
and pop in a CD.
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      Tolerance brings death to many doorsteps

      Marko Phiri
      9/26/02 6:51:40 AM (GMT +2)

      FOR any community, tolerance to moral turpitude is a sure sign that
life itself is no longer guided by those ideals that separate man from other
primates, like, for instance, the pursuit of happiness and avoidance of
everything else that would bring unnecessary pain.

      And this covers the whole range from criminal inclinations to a
people's chosen way of life, mannerisms and all.

      Yet as Zimbabweans grapple with economic hardships on the one hand and
the exponential rise of AIDS infections on the other, that tolerance for all
things that have led to those huge numbers of AIDS statistics has sought to
stretch that "virtue" called tolerance. And it is somewhat morbidly comical
that what has been tolerated is perverse, when that same kind of tolerance
could well find more relevance in our contemporary politics!

      The most unfortunate development is that while not much could be done
by the ordinary man as far as changing the course of the economy at any
given time, what man has all the same been endowed with is the
      ability to direct the course of his life, how he chooses to live it.

      It is interesting however that there has been a causal link attached
to the economic woes, both here and elsewhere, and the proliferation of
behaviours that become an ideal breeding ground for HIV/AIDS infections.

      It then becomes a not- so-far-fetched conclusion that if governments
better the lives of the ordinary citizen, that in itself would expedite all
attempts to make extinct these and other infections that have seemingly
become a permanent feature in all poor Third World countries.

      Is it not tragic anyway that for many African countries, many people
are dying of diseases known not be fatal because they lack access to
medicines and health facilities? And despite all this, ruling parties go on
to claim they are the best thing that ever happened to the people so ruled!

      There is no better way than that to assure us of a
      better existence, because while the government seems lost for
solutions on how to get the economy back on its feet, that failure has given
rise to other
      problems that would never been had the government made attempts to
make life better for all here.

      And that is a fact that finds relevance just about
      everywhere else where there have been cries against poor governance
and poor economic planning. Because of the turn that the captains of the
Zimbabwean ship took, tolerance to ways of life which have neighbours
holding their breath as to when they will be making another visit to the
cemetery within a fortnight have been greeted with astounding tolerance. And
this way of life has all the same suddenly attracted eager neophytes, and
who meanwhile bat no eyelid about the prospects of reducing their life
expectancy to absurd levels as intimated to us by AIDS watchers.

      The initiation rites into this realm that was previously agreed to be
the preserve of married folk has reached alarming levels, but obviously the
popular sentiment is that it is the new age Neanderthal who raises eyebrows
when confronted with that "reality." What is it about humans that makes them
suckers for punishment such they are morbidly attracted to activities
already known to be harmful?

      But for us here the sad reality is that this is not the kind of
language that particularly invites rapt listeners, be they old geezers or
young chaps still in their
      secondary school khakis. It could just as well be asked if the sexual
impulses are that powerful to render all calls for commonsense void.

      Now there are "True Love Waits" certificates being signed by youths
vowing they will wait till they exchange life-time binding vows. While this
is commendable, such initiatives have a tendency to breed hypocrisy as
people say one thing in front of colleagues and do the other once the owls
start hooting.

      Any youngster committed to themselves, not
      anybody, will not need to sign anything about the life they intend to
live. The problem with such pronouncements is that they can be equated to
the Swazi king's edict criminalising premarital coitus! Imagine a prison
cell packed with teenagers charged with fornicating against the consent of
the king!

      That is never a solution to deal with issues like these. Solutions lie
in the awareness of self and the ideals that one embraces thereof. But the
challenge then is that outside anything else to look forward to as far as
job prospects are concerned, it is very likely that pastimes are reduced to
chasing skirts and just about anything that will catalyse one's crossover to
the afterlife.

      The religious purists will not call it that considering the
circumstances. They would call it eternal damnation.

      I have been surreptitiously amused innumerable times by the idea of
telling the young sexually active lads to use those prophylactis if they are
to engage in premarital coitus. I am fascinated if at all they are
"competent" enough to "roll it on!" Do they know in the first place how to
put on that rubber? And my cynicism stems from the exponential rise of both
HIV/AIDS infections and pregnancies out of wedlock among the sexually active

      If there ever was any proof needed for the failure of the "real,"
"wise" campaign, it must surely lie in the statistics of infections among
the young people who are seemingly the target audiences for that "anti-AIDS"

      Yet the unfortunate part for the young folks who decide to take their
relationships to another level is that long gone are the days when the only
risk one exposed themselves to was contracting syphilis, gonorrhoea and
other "mild" forms of sexually transmitted infections. But still that little
piece of "carnal history" seems always to elude the supposedly enlightened
contemporary young man and woman whose pursuits seem to exclude the
aesthetic and the "cerebral" in favour of the sensual!

      The weird bit out of all this not so amusing circus is that some chaps
still dread getting their sweethearts pregnant more than dragging into their
system that killer bug! So much for informed choices! These young
      people who seem to think the best they can get from a relationship is
to one day look back into their
      immediate past and list conquests, need also to be
      reminded that the fool is one who believes all women are potential
receptacles for their lust. But then there are women who sadly view
themselves as such, and point and laugh at those poor lads who asked them
      but decided to keep their hands to themselves!

      One of the most complex attributes of human beings has to be what
appears that esoteric pining for all things physically and psychologically
harmful. Is it not tragic that at a time that we are all supposed to be
aware by now what those untrammelled sexual impulses bring to one's
doorstep, the age of initiation into sexual activity has actually gone down
to as low as 11 years?

      But what we also know is that despite all the
      evidence, despite all the writing, despite all the
      pontificating, what has guided thought is what men and women have
between their legs, not the grey matter they have between their ears! I am
curious though if this will ever come to pass, and still before the cure for
AIDS is discovered. But then what will save mankind is not the
intensification of efforts to find the cure, but rather awareness that
salvation lies within every man and woman who is sexually active. Outside
that there can be no way out of this.

      But then one would expext eveybody to know this, yet human beings seem
to be in need for bashing on their heads with the same messages. And aas
long we continue on that path, much like the one chosen by the government,
concered citizens have to constantly hit out at these self-destructive

      Anyway, assuming the cure for AIDS was discovered today and made
available to all the hardest hit Third World countries and for free, will
that availability of the medicine be able to sustain the infections? One can
foresee laissez faire attitudes reaching their zenith as people get in and
out of bed with whoever as they become guided by the fact that they could
get into any queue in any clinic and be cured!

      That is a possibility, and perhaps the numbers are meanwhile being
checked by that awareness by some that they will die without getting any
better, so meanwhile they keep their pants zipped.
      The absence of a cure meanwhile keeps others away from those zones
that would compromise their HIV status. As long as ours continues to be a
society that tolerates sexually active teenagers, then our fate has been

      After all, have we not been told that Botswana literally faces
extinction going by the rate
      of HIV/AIDS infections and casualties thereof? What is more paining is
the link that has been raised each
      time AIDS is discussed of poverty providing a
      springboard for AIDS infections.

      While we concentrate on the joblessness that has been inspired by the
ruling party, it is tragic that some of the direct woes stemming from those
flawed economic policies have somewhat tended to be attributed to the
people's own lax morals.

      The bigger picture is more gloomy. The
      ruling party has its hands full; the huge AIDS
      statistics stem from poor planning as for a long time the Zimbabwean
government was accused of not having a comprehensive AIDS policy. And this
has meant the work is more than doubled as the legendary bunglers have to
rescucitate the economy, create employment, fight poverty which has fed the
AIDS infections, and fight AIDS itself. Are critics then missing the point
when they say salvation here lies in a new political dispensation?

      Marko Phiri is a freelance writer based in Harare
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      The dialogue of the deaf

      9/26/02 6:22:18 AM (GMT +2)

      SOUTH African President Thabo Mbeki and his Nigerian counterpart
Olusegun Obasanjo have predictably decided to postpone taking the tough
decisions that had been expected from them on Zimbabwe, underlining once
more that they value the bonds of African brotherhood above all else.

      In doing so, the two leaders have inevitably placed themselves in
direct conflict with Zimbabwe's democratic forces and all who seek a
negotiated solution to a low-level conflict which increasingly threatens
southern Africa's peace and stability.

      Mbeki and Obasanjo have pointedly refused to bite the bullet, somehow
hoping against hope that Zimbabwe's leadership will heed their implied
warning and right its wrongs to lift the country out of deepening economic
and social pain.

      They have done this despite the fact that President Robert Mugabe has
spurned their previous calls for him to stage a fresh and transparent
presidential ballot or form a national unity government as a way out of the

      They have done this despite the fact that Mugabe has refused to listen
to their pleas to revamp his controversial land reforms that are partly
responsible for causing widespread hunger in Zimbabwe.

      They have done this because they, as African leaders, cannot and
should not be seen to be taking a hard line against their own.

      This is especially so if calls for such tough action appear to be led
by voices from the former imperialist West, never mind what long-suffering
Zimbabweans want and are saying.

      They have done this purely because they, as African leaders, are
worried that they too could find themselves in the judgment dock were they
to pursue similar policies.

      In other words, they are afraid of setting a precedent that could come
back to haunt them or some of their peers.

      Their message to Zimbabweans is one and simple: please sort out your
problems on your own because we have our own countries to run.

      When the present story of Zimbabwe is finally written in years to
come, Mbeki and Obasanjo will stand out as the two leaders who, at a
critical time, thwarted the people's interests by siding with those in

      We cannot think of any way in which they could redeem themselves -
even after the six-month deadline that they have given themselves to act
should Harare not budge.

      They and all others who genuinely wish Zimbabwe well should know
better by now: Harare never cares or listens to diplomacy and it will not
suddenly do so now or after the March deadline.

      These two leaders must take full responsibility for whatever happens
next in Zimbabwe's descent into chaos.

      Their determination to secure short-term political interests while
postponing the inevitable, however painful, could yet prove too costly for
them and their colleague.

      Certainly the international community and global business, which have
backed Mbeki and Obasanjo in their NEPAD project in the hope that it shows a
new Africa that is determined to break with its wretched past, will have
followed this week's events in Abuja and come out with a sad conclusion.

      And that conclusion is that some African leaders, no matter what they
pledge to do, are not ready to embrace true democracy, good economic and
political governance and the rule of law, let alone make their own member
accountable for these.

      This conclusion will sadly not be made by Africa's so-called critics
and pessimists but by realists and even optimists, who must now realise that
much work still needs to be done to free the continent from its
self-inflicted mayhem.
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      Zimbabweans commit mental suicide

      Taungana Ndoro
      9/26/02 6:09:18 AM (GMT +2)

      "MOST Zimbabwean urban voters want a peaceful rerun of the
presidential election, not mass action, because they believe the March polls
were rigged in favour of President Mugabe," says a public opinion survey
conducted in July.

      "A majority favour dialogue and not confrontation as a way of solving
this country's problems," says the Mass Public Opinion Institute's summary
of a survey in which 1 768 voters were interviewed randomly in 10 political
provinces." (Daily News September 16 2002).

      Reading this tore my heart.

      It is truly sad that Zimbabweans have left to fate what is at stake.
It shows that many of us have resigned to submission. In fact, we have
committed mental suicide and that is an irredeemable betrayal of our
descendants and children.

      In essence we have surrendered to Mugabe's policies and we no longer
anticipate any hope for deliverance.

      Shall we say the old man is invincible and let him run 'his' Zimbabwe
in any way he so wishes? Shall we say we have lost the battle for democracy
and economic emancipation? In short, shall we say we have failed?

      I hate to lose - even in a game of pool, I simply do not like losing.

      Let's say the Zimbabwean crisis is a game of pool in which Mugabe has
only the black ball to sink and his opponents, the Zimbabwean people, have
two balls to sink excluding the black ball.

      It is clear that we are at a point where he has robbed us of two shots
and so we must confront him. Either we do it or he crushes us!

      Slowly, everyone who anticipated salvation with the departure of
Mugabe in March is being disillusioned and being rudely awakened to the
chilling reality that Mugabe is here to stay. And indeed he will stay,
especially when urban dwellers continue to fool themselves with naļve
expectations of a presidential election re-run.

      In our heart of hearts we all know that that is a very distant cry
from reality particularly when the Americans themselves never anticipated
such a possibility following the Florida saga.

      It's folly to look forward to a "peaceful" presidential election
re-run particularly when one does not understand how, when and where the
initial election was rigged. People should not daydream that Mugabe will be
dignified enough to start the game all over again more so when he is just
about to sink the black ball.

      Recent history has shown that dialogue with ZANU PF is dangerously
futile and even if it were possible nothing favourable would come out of the

      All noble processes have been unsuccessful in dealing with the
country's man-made problems. What therefore, remains can only be
confrontation. With sound leadership confrontation cannot fail.

      The people should just rise like a bubble in a glass of water; slowly
it rises and as it rises it grows and as it grows it gathers speed and then
suddenly ... POP! It bursts. Then all is calm again.

      Such is the ease with which serious Zimbabweans should rise if there
is any hope of ever stabilising every tattered facet of this country.

      Even though there are reports that the army is on standby to quash any
opposition to the (mis)government of the day in a "short but bloody coup",
if the people are determined to pay a visit to State House, not even nuclear
weapons can stop them.

      For Ngugi wa Thiongo and the rest of the wretched of the Third World
countries, "the voice of the people is the voice of God." So if God is on
our side, not even Mugabe can be against us.

      We have suffered enough, we have been patient, we have been tolerant
and as a matter of fact respectful, but we have been spat upon, beaten,
raped, murdered, maimed and shot at.

      We have pleaded for Mugabe to save us by stepping down but he has
remained as adamant and unconquerable as a piece chewing gum for you may
chew and chew and chew but never totally be rid of.

      It remains to be seen whether the people will continue to chew
78-year-old bubble gum they have been chewing for 22 years.

      It is undisputable that tension has mounted amongst anti-Mugabe
supporters because the old man is just about to sink that black ball and
sinking it would mean silencing the opposition for as long as he lives.

      There is no dialogue when a game of pool is about to end. It is either
you sink or you swim - period!

      The docility of opposition Zimbabweans is that they are timid players
in the game of political survival. They passively wait to pounce on ruling
party mistakes and as in a game of pool, a natural loser will wait for
Mugabe to lose the game by default after sinking both the black ball and the
cue ball.

      The opposition must not wait for such a vain situation to occur but
rather must be seen to take the game to ZANU PF, zoom from behind and save
our souls by sinking that crucial black ball.

      What I simply mean is: one of these bad days the people should just
stage a diplomatic march to State House and march back with Mugabe's
resignation as a trophy.

      Taungana Ndoro can be contacted at

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      New farmers set to own wildlife resources

      Staff Reporter
      9/26/02 6:47:20 AM (GMT +2)

      PEASANTS settled by the government on Zimbabwean game conservancies
under its controversial land reforms could end up owning the money-spinning
wildlife if a proposed wildlife policy is approved by the government, it was
established this week.

      The new farmers, severely hampered by lack of financial resources
crucial to embark on commercial agriculture, could use the wildlife
resources as surety to get loans from financial institutions, says the
government's National Parks and Wildlife Authority (NPWA) in a proposal
document of its new land reform-based wildlife policy.

      The proposed policy document, shown to the Financial Gazette this
week, was submitted to the government last month, NPWA officials said.

      Environment Minister Francis Nhema could not be reached for comment on
whether the government planned to adopt the policy's suggestions.

      If the government accepts the proposed policy, the new farmers would
use their right to wildlife to win capital to develop and expand the
lucrative wildlife sector.

      According to the NPWA's draft policy: "Security of tenure over
wildlife resources is key to wildlife-based land reform.

      "Existing legislation vests ownership in the state and ascribes use
rights to land owners. Appropriate authority provisions of the Parks and
Wildlife Act 1975 should be extended to new settlers."

      The NPWA proposes that the government engages the private sector and
donors to help raise resources required to incorporate wildlife management
in its chaotic land reform programme.

      The government would also be required to devise new and sustainable
wildlife management plans and to rigorously monitor the new farmers to
ensure that they managed the wildlife resources to world standards
prescribed by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species.

      "There will be considerable transaction costs involved in
incorporating wildlife options within the land reform programme. Suitable
mechanisms similar to the current crop and livestock schemes must be
developed to support the wildlife-based land reform options," the NPWA says.

      "The government will mobilise the private sector (and) NGOs to support
the implementation of wildlife-based land reform."

      But donors, irked by the violence and chaos that has accompanied the
land reforms, have long shunned the government's land redistribution plans.

      The European Union, the United States, New Zealand, Switzerland and
Canada have imposed travel and financial sanctions on President Robert
Mugabe and his top officials because of a presidential poll earlier this
year they say Mugabe won through fraud.

      They are also protesting against the government's drive to seize land
from white farmers without paying any compensation.

      Agriculture experts say the land reforms have largely benefited
Mugabe's lieutenants and supporters of his ruling ZANU PF party, some of
whom have grabbed wildlife conservancies from white farmers.

      Hundreds of ruling ZANU PF party supporters occupy large tracts of
wildlife conservancies and national parks against the government's own
policies which stipulate that the landless should not settle in such areas.

      Poaching has been on the increase in these areas, with wildlife
experts estimating that half of the $40 billion worth of game that was on
private farms has been lost to criminals since the farm invasions started in
February 2000.

      Wildlife production, which together with tourism had been expanding
rapidly before the invasions, is a lucrative business in Zimbabwe, which
hopes to net $10 billion this year, up from $4 billion earned last year.
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      ZANU PF officials move on firms

      By Nqobile Nyathi Assistant Editor
      9/26/02 8:58:41 AM (GMT +2)

      SECTIONS of Zimbabwe's private sector are increasingly uneasy about
farm-style invasions of white-owned companies following alleged intimidation
by ruling ZANU PF officials.

      Although there have been no organised invasion of companies since last
year, sources in the private sector say in the last few months there have
been several reports of senior ruling party officials secretly approaching
white-owned firms for takeover.
      Last Thursday, a member of Parliament and ZANU PF Politburo is said to
have arm-twisted a white shareholder in a Zimbabwe Stock Exchange
(ZSE)-listed exporter into selling 4.87 percent of the company's shares
valued at $288 million.
      The company is one of the stock exchange's best performers.
      "He basically said you have to sell these shares whether you like it
or not," a stock market source told the Financial Gazette.
      "This is the first time we've heard of anything like this happening on
the stock market. Where we are a bit worried is if they have been invading
farms, is this the beginning of an invasion of the stock market? It would be
quite a disturbing trend if they were extending hondo yeminda (the war to
gain land) into industry."
      ZSE chief executive Emmanuel Munyukwi would not comment on the matter.
      The sources said reports of intimidation had also been received from
an engineering firm in Bindura, a small chrome exporter, a baking company
and a cement manufacturer.
      They said company officials had been subjected to intimidatory visits
at work and home as well as humiliation before their workforce. Offers made
for the companies were also below market value, the sources said.
      "Companies are being made offers they can't refuse but at only a
fraction of the value of their assets," said opposition Movement for
Democratic Change secretary and Bulawayo-based industrialist Eddie Cross.
      "They are being subjected to threats, intimidation, CIO (Central
Intelligence Organisation) visits and arrests. I think what's happening at
National Foods is part of that whole strategy. I think they are trying to
force it into liquidation."
      National Foods, Zimbabwe's largest milling company, was earlier this
year accused of hoarding salt, one of the basic commodities in short supply
in the country, and threatened with nationalisation by none other than
President Robert Mugabe.
      The state-controlled GMB is subsequently said to have stopped
deliveries of maize to the Bulawayo operation.
      Cross said: "The situation at National Foods is very serious. It has
50 percent of the capacity for milling and packing food in this country and
has the largest network of depots and transport. It's been forced to close
depots and that has affected people in remote areas."
      Economic consultant John Robertson said: "I've heard of something of
the sort (company intimidation). They seem to believe that the milling
companies and the bakeries are strategic entities and they should have
control over them. They seem to be getting away with it because the people
are too scared to say anything."
      Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions information officer Mlamleli Sibanda
said the labour watchdog had also heard reports of companies being
intimidated but had not been able to substantiate them.
      "We have heard that and are still trying to investigate that
information. We have heard of especially companies in the construction
industry but we haven't heard of particular cases," he said.
      Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce economist James Jowa told the
Financial Gazette: "What we know is that there are some companies that have
been listed down by the Ministry of Industry for takeover. They are said to
be under distress and they (ministry) are looking for people to take them
      "According to internal sources, some officials are trying to identify
companies that they want to approach and go to the minister and say: 'we
want to take over these companies' so that they are added to the list."
      The government, which in the past has accused white-owned companies of
closing down in a bid to sabotage Zimbabwe's economy, last year set aside
funds supposed to be used for the takeover and revival of closed firms.
      There was no immediate comment on the matter from Ministry of
Information secretary George Charamba, who was said to be attending meetings
on Tuesday and did not return calls from this newspaper.
      However, Mugabe has in the past threatened takeovers of firms in
industry and mining similar to those in the commercial farming sector, where
at least 90 percent of white-owned properties have been earmarked for the
resettlement of landless blacks by the state.
      Company invasions by ZANU PF-aligned war veterans last year fizzled
out quickly while there has been sporadic action against mines.
      In its financial statement for the year to March 31 2002, United
Kingdom-based gold company African Gold says its main Zimbabwean asset, Inez
mine, was invaded three times and its staff intimidated, threatened and
physically abused.
      "This mine, containing a resource of over 200 000 ounces of gold, has
a modern plant capable of handling 250 tonnes of ore a day (but) is
tottering along, barely making ends meet by mining between 15 and 20 tonnes
a day," company chairman John Teeling said.
      Although most analysts said it was unlikely the government would
sanction invasions in industry since it was no longer facing a crucial
election, they however warned that such action would further dampen investor
sentiment and worsen Zimbabwe's economic crisis.
      Instability in the agricultural sector, the backbone of the country's
economy, has already triggered capital flight, slashed food production by at
least 60 percent and is threatening many companies with closure.
      "It would further dampen investor confidence, further express the
unavailability of the rule of law and respect for property rights," Jowa
      "It would also highlight that ZANU PF officials can do what they want
and that they are above the law."
      Robertson added: "When Zambia got its independence, it nationa-lised
everything and manufacturers almost all closed down. At that time, the
kwacha and our currency were worth the same. Now the kwacha is 4 700 to the
US dollar and has been there for eight-to-nine years.
      "That's exactly what would happen here. There's no choice, it's a sort
of laid-down path and we would tread it even though we can see it stretching
ahead, going downhill and taking us all with it."
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      R-G seeks to destroy March ballot papers

      By Sydney Masamvu Political Editor
      9/26/02 8:42:50 AM (GMT +2)

      REGISTRAR-GENERAL Tobaiwa Mudede yesterday filed an urgent application
in the High Court chambers seeking an order to destroy ballot papers used in
the disputed March presidential election, although there is an ongoing legal
challenge to President Robert Mugabe's controversial victory.

      Mudede, a known ruling ZANU PF supporter, is arguing that he wants to
use the ballot boxes in rural district council elections scheduled for this
weekend, whose postponement the opposition Movement for Democratic Change
(MDC) is seeking through an urgent court application also filed yesterday.

      The MDC, which failed to field candidates in over 700 wards for the
weekend ballot, is alleging that ZANU PF used violence and intimidation to
scare its candidates from participating in the poll.

      According to Mudede, who refused a donation of transparent ballot
boxes from the United States of America during the March presidential vote,
financial constraints had left his office without the capacity to purchase
new boxes and seals for the rural polls.

      An order for the manufacture of the seals, which are imported, has to
be made six months in advance, Mudede says.

      Mudede's application is being opposed by MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai,
who lost to Mugabe in an election branded as fraudulent by most of the world
except a handful of African countries.

      The case to hear Mudede's application to destroy the presidential
ballots will be heard in chambers today before Justice Anele Matika.

      Tsvangirai lost to Mugabe by over 400 000 votes in a poll that was
marred by violence and alleged rigging. Officially Mugabe polled 1 685 212
votes versus Tsvangirai's 1 258 401.

      The MDC and the international community have refused to recognise
Mugabe's re-election, deepening an already crippling political and economic
crisis that has ravaged Zimbabwe in the past three years.

      In his application, Mudede is challenging a High Court order granted
by Judge Antonia Guvava on September 12, which barred the destruction of the
ballot papers until the finalisation of the Tsvangirai's court challenge
against Mugabe's poll win.

      Part of Justice Guvava's order reads: "The respondent shall not
destroy and instead shall keep in his safe custody and not alter or amend in
any way all the documents referred to in Section 78 of the Electoral Act
(Chapter 2:01) pending the outcome of the Election Petition instituted by
the Applicant in Case No. HC3616/ 2002."

      Under the Electoral Act, ballot papers should be retained and not
destroyed for a maximum period of six months, which Mudede says has lapsed
under section 78 (4) of the Electoral Act.

      In his opposing affidavit, Tsvangirai said Mudede's wishes should not
be granted because this would be tantamount to destroying critical evidence
in the election results challenge.

      Tsvangirai says Mudede has no right to ask the High Court to reverse
an order it has already issued by consent.

      Meanwhile the High Court yesterday registered Jeremy John Gauntlett,
the top South African lawyer representing Tsvangirai in his election
petition against Mugabe.

      High Court judge Justice Edias Karwi granted an application by
Gauntlett for registration to practice under the laws of Zimbabwe. The
registration only allows Gauntlet to handle Tsvangirai's case.

      Tsvangirai had earlier been denied the right to engage a foreign
lawyer by Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa.

      The election petition has been ready for hearing since July when
Tsvangirai paid the statutory $2 million surety demanded by Mugabe's lawyer,
Terrence Hussein, who had successfully demanded that the money be increased
from $500 000 to $2 million.
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      Mugabe's Zimbabwe fast becoming Africa's Burma

      Benedict Rogers

      THIS week the Australian prime minister, John Howard, was unsuccessful
in his efforts to have Zimbabwe suspended from the Commonwealth at the
so-called Troika meeting at Abuja in Nigeria. The other two Troika leaders
present - from South Africa and Nigeria - said the panel should give Mugabe
another six months to improve human rights, promote political reconciliation
and cooperate with a UN land reform programme - before considering
suspending Zimbabwe. We have seen the results of such prevarication before.

      Robert Mugabe's Zimbabwe is rapidly becoming Africa's Burma. The
parallels are uncanny. Both regimes came unstuck after they cast aside the
old colonial names for their nations, with Burma becoming Myanmar and
Rhodesia becoming Zimbabwe. Along with their names, both jettisoned a
tradition of efficient government under an apolitical civil service in
favour of a version of bureaucratic socialism. Now both countries are run by
paranoid dictators whose madness has wrecked their economies and killed
thousands of people.

      Just as Burma was once Asia's rice bowl, Zimbabwe was the bread basket
of Africa. In 1980, the year Mugabe overthrew white rule, inflation stood at
3 per cent, while the economy was growing by 10 per cent. Now, inflation is
rapidly spiralling upwards and food prices have risen by 150 per cent in the
past year. Most economists predict a fall in gross domestic product of 12
per cent this year - the largest in Zimbabwe's history. In the last three
years, Zimbabwe has moved from being a net exporter of food to a situation
where today most of all food consumed has to be imported.

      Burma, under a similarly megalomaniac leader, Ne Win, went through a
comparable economic collapse. In 1947, when the British gave Burma its
independence, the country was the greatest exporter of rice in the world. By
1988, it was one of the ten poorest countries in the world and a net
importer of rice.

      Mugabe's violent onslaught against the white farmers is akin to the
Burmese junta's persecution of the ethnic minorities. Compare the white
farmers in Zimbabwe with, for example, the Karen in Burma. Both were
prosperous minority groups that valued education highly.

      According to Pascal Khoo Thwe, from the Kayan Padaung ethnic minority
in Burma, in his recent book From the Land of Green Ghosts, Ne Win's regime
was "marked by hostility to educated people". The same could be said of
Mugabe. Ne Win adopted an isolationist, anti-colonialist stance, and
associated the ethnic minorities with being pro-British. That is precisely
Mugabe's language against the white farmers.

      Ne Win's stated ideal was to "end the exploitation of man by man."
There are echoes of this in Mugabe's programme of forcibly removing the
white farmers and redistributing farmland to Zimbabwe's black majority. The
only problem, in both cases, is that however equitable the theory sounds, in
practice the only beneficiaries are the leaders' cronies. In Burma, Pascal
Khoo Thwe writes, the result was "a sort of voodoo socialism, composed of
little more than slogans". Senior Burmese army officers "embarked on a
campaign of national plunder", profiting from the jade mines and opium
trade. The news that Mugabe's wife has appropriated a farm and ordered its
elderly owners off is yet more confirmation that he and his thugs, too, have
embarked on a campaign of national plunder.

      Like Burma, Zimbabwe is now a country in which one is likely to go to
jail for speaking out against the regime. The former leader of Zimbabwe's
civil service union, Ephraim Tapa, now in exile in Britain, said last month:
"If I go back, I would be dead within hours." Most Burmese in exile and
Karen and Karenni refugees in camps along the Thai-Burma border know that
feeling only too well.

      Yet another parallel is the fact that even given the oppression of
minorities, the majority peoples still suffer. In Zimbabwe, more than
150,000 black farm workers have already lost their livelihoods and
possessions. Some have lost their lives. Last month, Mugabe ordered the
eviction of a further 2,900 farmers, out of 4,500 remaining - which, when
farm workers and families are taken into account, will involve up to 1.2
million people.

      There is cause for concern about the use of international aid to both
countries. In both Zimbabwe and Burma, distribution of food supplies risks
being hijacked and siphoned off to the armed forces and supporters of the

      Both Mugabe and the Burmese junta are illegitimate regimes. In Burma,
the seizure of power was unashamedly blatant. Aung San Suu Kyi and her
National League for Democracy won over 80 per cent of the parliamentary
seats in 1990, yet the military refused to recognise the result. She has
been in and out of house arrest ever since. In Zimbabwe, Mugabe stands
accused of rigging the presidential elections earlier this year. He
subjected his principal opponent, Morgan Tsvangirai, of the Movement for
Democratic Change, to constant harassment and, on occasion, arrest.

      The biggest point that Zimbabwe and Burma have in common is the
impotence of the international community. In both cases, economic sanctions
and boycotts have been piling up. But these actions are token and involve
little effort or sacrifice.

      It is time for the democratic world to take a stand and take bold,
even risky, action to end the murderers' reign of terror. Such action should
not just involve the West. The neighbours of these two tyrannies need to end
their complicity. Zimbabwe's African neighbours have been at best weak and
at worst supportive of Mugabe's thuggish behaviour. There are fears that his
land redistribution policy will be copied in Namibia. South Africa so far
has been unwilling to act, despite having considerable leverage over
Zimbabwe, because it provides most of the country's energy supplies.

      Similarly with Burma, instead of being sidelined it has been welcomed
into the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and has even been able to
bully its smaller neighbours, as in the case of its veto of newly
independent East Timor's application for observer status. Thailand, while
providing shelter for refugees from Burma, is too nervous to do anything to
upset the junta; China arms Rangoon to the teeth; Indonesia and the
Philippines stay silent.

      Opposition groups in Zimbabwe have demanded armed UN intervention to
prevent a humanitarian catastrophe. Ethnic minorities in Burma ask for the
same. Ephraim Tapa said recently that "there is not much Zimbabweans can do.
We need outside help now." So do the Karen and Karenni, and indeed the
pro-democracy movement in Burma.

      "Governments talk openly about overthrowing Saddam Hussein. Why not
Mugabe?" says Mr Tapa. And why not the Burmese junta? Do Burma and Zimbabwe
not merit inclusion in the "axis of evil"? They may not be a direct threat
to the West in the way Iran, Iraq and North Korea are, but they are no less
evil in their slaughter of their own people and may spread instability to
their neighbours. So, on the road to Baghdad, Mr Bush, don't forget about
Rangoon and Harare.

      a.. Benedict Rogers is a director of the human-rights organisation
Christian Solidarity Worldwide. A version of this article appeared in the
Wall Street Journal.
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Rights group claims teachers tortured

Jane Fields In Harare

DOZENS of teachers in Zimbabwe are being assaulted and tortured for being
supporters of the opposition party, a human rights group alleged yesterday.

The Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum claims in its latest report that war
veterans and supporters of President Robert Mugabe have unleashed a "reign
of terror" in parts of the country, targeting teachers believed to be
supporters of the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC). At least 75 teachers
have been assaulted and 34 tortured since January last year, the report

The claims will fuel allegations that 78-year-old Mr Mugabe is doing all he
can to break the back of the main opposition party, which emerged in 2000 as
the biggest challenger to his two-decade long grip on power.

The war veterans, who have led the recent invasions of white-owned farms,
have also forced black teachers out of their homes, destroyed their property
and ransacked their houses, the report says.

The violence is believed to be worse in the poor rural areas, traditional
hotbeds of support for the president which he appears determined not to
lose. Mr Mugabe is himself a former school teacher.

"The reported attacks on teachers who support or are suspected of supporting
the MDC seems to be a way of limiting their political influence on the rural
populace," the report says.

In one incident in eastern Manicaland province, a pregnant teacher married
to an opposition official was allegedly assaulted by war veterans and ruling
ZANU-PF party youths and lost her baby soon after it was born.

Few of these cases have been confirmed by police, and war veterans have
denied the charges.

War veteran official Stanislous Chikukwa told the independent Daily News
last week that allegations teachers were being attacked by the ex-fighters
were part of a "conspiracy".

"I am not saying it's true that we beat up teachers. On the contrary, war
veterans are the most disciplined group of people in the country," Mr
Chikukwa told the newspaper.

A police spokesman, Wayne Bvudzijena, told reporters yesterday that some of
the incidents were "not verified", adding that he was wary of reports made
by non-governmental organisations.

The government believes some organisations are working with the opposition
and the former colonial power Britain against Mr Mugabe. But the head of the
Progressive Teachers' Union of Zimbabwe - a small grouping of teachers -
confirmed last week that teachers were being victimised.

"Teachers must seriously consider putting this victimisation to an end by
any means necessary," Takavafira Zhou said.

The rights group says it compiled its study from 68 separate reports made by
victims, as well as from reports appearing in the press and those made by
partner organisations.

Schoolchildren are also being affected. "In some instances they are made to
witness scenes of extreme violence such as beatings and torture," the report

Pupils revising for O- and A-level examinations at a school in Mberengwa
West, central Zimbabwe, in October last year were instead forced to undergo
political "re-education".

With some salaries in the profession barely topping Z$20,000 a month (about
£250 at the official rate but only £20 on the parallel market), morale is at
an all-time low. Many teachers are leaving the profession and the country.

There have been threats that the government will take over private schools,
once exclusively white but now with many black pupils.

The government was angered by comments this year from the white headmaster
of one of Zimbabwe's most prestigious educational establishments, St George'
s College. The headmaster criticised Mr Mugabe's dubious victory in the
March presidential elections, echoing the opposition party.
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Business Day

IMF says famine Africa's obstacle

WASHINGTON - African economies are expected to pick up slightly next year
after stumbling in 2002 but the continent faces vast challenges including a
worsening famine in the south, the IMF reports.
African growth had held up surprisingly well, helped by better economic
policies, fewer conflicts and debt relief, the International Monetary Fund
said in a twice-yearly report on the global outlook.

"Serious problems exist in certain parts of the continent, however - most
importantly, a deepening famine in southern Africa," it said.

Economic growth in Africa was set to ease from 3.5% last year to 3.1% in
2002 before rising to 4.2% in 2003 as commodity prices increased.

But the IMF cautioned that, in part due to unanticipated natural disasters
and conflicts, it had consistently overestimated African growth in the past.

"Africa continues to face an enormous range of political and economic
problems," the report said.

"Civil unrest, political instability and armed conflicts still threaten
macroeconomic stability and longer-term prospects in a number of countries;
natural disasters regularly damage subsistence crops; and the HIV/AIDS
pandemic - as well as other infectious diseases - has seriously affected
prospects across the continent, particularly in southern Africa."

The IMF noted a significant lowering of life expectancy in Botswana and

These troubles were accompanied by other problems, including low levels of
investment and savings, limited investment, poor infrastructure, distortions
in the farm sector and underdeveloped laws and rules.

Many of the problems were self-reinforcing, the Fund said. For example, low
life expectancy reduced the returns from education and political instability
magnified the impact of natural disasters.

"Given the gains made in establishing macro-economic stability in a growing
number of African economies, the pressing need now is to address these
underlying problems and improve the overall environment for investment

One key economic ingredient to the solution would be strengthening the
economic infrastructure by providing legal protection of property rights,
fighting corruption and cutting red tape, it said.

Countries such as Botswana and Tanzania had made progress in taking aim at
corruption while Mozambique, Senegal and Uganda took steps to liberalise
their economies.

"Looking more specifically at the region's largest economies, economic
activity in South Africa has held up well in the face of the global downturn
and higher gold prices and external demand should stimulate stronger growth
later this year and in 2003," the IMF said.

South African economic growth was expected to accelerate from 2.2% last year
to 2.5% this year and 3.0% in 2003.

But as Nigeria lowered its oil production in line with Organisation for
Petroleum Exporting Countries agreements, its economy was expected to
contract by 2.3% this year before expanding 3.7% in 2003.

In Algeria, growth was forecast to slip from 2.8% last year to 2.1% this
year, then rising to 2.9% in 2003.

"The outlook for Algeria remains affected by civil unrest, political
violence, and very high unemployment, especially among youth," the IMF said.

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Sunday Times (SA)

Former SA spy offers haggling tips

By Donwald Pressly

A former South African superspy who played a key role in the settlement
between the apartheid regime and the new government says the secret to good
negotiations - at least at the beginning stage - lies in confidentiality.

He says that this was a key ingredient which should be remembered in dealing
with the troubles in the Middle East and other world trouble spots.

Addressing the Cape Town Press Club today, former national intelligence boss
Niel Barnard, who as a government representative was involved in 48 meetings
with the African National Congress starting during the presidency of
apartheid supremo PW Botha, said peace could also not be achieved by third

Referring to the current Iraqi crisis and a possible war being launched by
the United States, Dr Barnard - who is famous for once tying the shoelaces
of then prisoner and later President Nelson Mandela during negotiations -
said the more he watched CNN and read the New York Times and Washington
Post, the more he was convinced that the way to breach the gap between
parties in conflict was through confidentiality.

When one kicked off negotiations between two warring parties, "the two sides
are worlds apart and a lot of concessions have to be made".

The problem was that politicians can not make concessions in public. "It is
not possible," he told members of the club.

Referring to Botha, he said the former president had asked him when he
should inform his cabinet about "what was going on" (the start of talks with
the then exiled ANC ). "I told him sir, you have some ministers who find it
genetically impossible to keep the news to themselves."

While he emphasized that he was not arguing that the people should not be
informed about political processes, it was important that the kick-off phase
of negotiations should be confidential.

Although he declined to comment on the lack of firm action by the
Commonwealth on Zimbabwe - and refused to provide advice to the government
on how to deal with the political and economic crisis there - he said
protagonists in a conflict "have to see each other face to face. In the end
nobody else can make peace for you."

The other important rule was that once the process of negotiation began it
should not take too long. At the beginning of the South African process a
target for elections had been set in April 1994.

Dr Banard, who served as director general of the Western Cape government
after 1994 until recently, said if negotiations between protagonists were
not conducted quickly, the process could be hijacked by radicals "from the
far left and far right".

I-Net Bridge
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      Mbeki, Obasanjo press for fresh ZANU PF, MDC talks

      Staff Reporter
      9/26/02 9:04:22 AM (GMT +2)

      SOUTH African President Thabo Mbeki and Nigerian leader Olusegun
Obasanjo are pushing for the resumption of reconciliation talks between
Zimbabwe's ruling ZANU PF and the opposition MDC to alleviate a fast
deteriorating political and economic crisis, diplomatic sources told the
Financial Gazette this week.

      The sources said Mbeki and Obasanjo were desperate to show the
international community that they were achieving progress in Zimbabwe by
bringing the two parties to the negotiating table.
      The two leaders this week put their own credibility and that of their
pet project, the New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD), on the
line when they blocked Commonwealth sanctions against Harare.
      The sources did not say whether the leaders of Africa's two
powerhouses had already dispatched emissaries to press President Robert
Mugabe and Morgan Tsvangirai, leader of the Movement for Democratic Change,
to embrace the peace talks.
      Mbeki's spokesman Bheki Khumalo said he was not aware of any fresh
efforts by the South African leader to bring ZANU PF and the MDC back to the
negotiating table but said Mbeki was committed to seeing the Zimbabwean
parties talking over their problems.
      "I am not aware of that," Khumalo told the Financial Gazette by
telephone from South Africa yesterday.
      "But the question of dialogue between the MDC and ZANU PF is something
that President Mbeki will continue to encourage because, after all, the
people who will have to resolve whatever problems Zimbabwe is facing are
Zimbabweans themselves."
      A month after Mugabe's controversial March presidential election
victory, Pretoria and Abuja pressured the Zimbabwean leader into talks with
his chief rival.
      But the negotiations collapsed when ZANU PF pulled out saying a court
application filed by the MDC challenging Mugabe's poll win had to be conclud
ed in the courts first.
      ZANU PF chairman and Special Affairs Minister in Mugabe's office John
Nkomo yesterday appeared to resist resumption of talks now, saying the
ruling party's position remained that the court challenge had to be heard
      "When the talks were suspended, reasons were given. That is still the
position of ZANU PF because nothing has changed on the ground," he said.
      MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai blamed ZANU PF for scuttling the talks in
the first place but said his party was not against dialogue.
      "They (Mbeki and Obasanjo) should talk to ZANU PF because they are the
ones who scuttled the talks. But as a party we are not anti-dialogue," he
      Political analysts said dialogue now stood a chance of succeeding,
especially because Mbeki and Obasanjo were in an even stronger position to
arm-twist Mugabe to make concessions at the talks after they rescued him
from tough sanctions on Monday.
      University of Zimbabwe (UZ) political scientist Masipula Sithole said:
"Mbeki and Obasanjo are better positioned now having borrowed Mugabe six
more months to act right or face the wrath of the Commonwealth."
      UZ Institute of Development Studies associate professor Brian
Raftopoulos said dialogue stood a chance because both ZANU PF and the MDC
had little viable options left.
      "It is clear even to ZANU PF that they cannot destroy the MDC nor do
they have a solution to the economic crisis, and a negotiated settlement
with the MDC is the key to unlocking international support which they
clearly need.
      "For the MDC, mass action is not on the cards while all political
space appears closed to it. The talks offer a reasonable chance."

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      Tsvangirai reshuffles national executive

      Staff Reporter
      9/26/02 9:03:34 AM (GMT +2)

      OPPOSITION Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) leader Morgan
Tsvangirai yesterday reshuffled his party's national executive and shadow
ministries in a move he said was aimed at strengthening the organisation and
prepare it to take charge as Zimbabwe's next government.

      Following the reshuffle, Gwanda North legislator Paul Themba Nyathi
moves from his post as director of elections to secretary for information,
replacing Kuwadzana legislator Learnmore Jongwe, who is awaiting trial on
charges of murdering his wife.
      "We are fine-tuning and strengthening ourselves ready to govern and
meet the challenges that lie ahead for the MDC in the future," Tsvangirai
told journalists in Harare.
      Other new appointments in the national executive, which is equivalent
to the ruling ZANU PF's Politburo, see Tendai Biti moving from the post of
foreign affairs shadow minister to secretary of economic affairs and shadow
home affairs minister.
      He replaces Eddie Cross, who is now part of an executive committee on
the economy.
      Blessing Chebundo, the Member of Parliament for Kwekwe Central,
becomes the secretary for health while Remus Makuwaza takes over as director
of elections.
      Alexio Mudzingwa, a guerrilla in Robert Mugabe's ZANLA during
Zimbabwe's 1970s independence war, replaces Job Sikhala as secretary for
defence and security.
      Nicholas Mudzengerere, a member of the national executive, was
appointed lands secretary while Getrude Mtombeni joins the international
relations portfolio with the responsibility for forging and strengthening
MDC's trade union links locally and internationally.
      MDC's secretary-general Welshman Ncube, the third highest ranking
official in the party's executive and former home affairs shadow minister,
has been tasked to supervise all shadow ministries and party affairs by
virtue of his position.
      The party's treasurer, Fletcher Dulini Ncube, has been relieved of his
duties as industry and commerce minister and been replaced by Milford Gwetu,
MP for Mpopoma..
      Gabriel Chaibva, the MP for Sunningdale, was named shadow minister of
local government, while Moses Muzila, a guerrilla fighter in Joshua Nkomo's
ZIPRA forces and Bulilimamangwe North MP, replaces Biti at foreign affairs
shadow minister.
      Edwin Mushoriwa, MP for Dzivarasekwa, becomes the shadow environment
      Tsvangirai said the MDC was in the process of forming three
think-tanks that would deal specifically with economic, foreign and domestic
      The think-tanks will comprise technocrats drawn from the private
sector, civil society and the public service and are already being

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      Political violence threatens pastoral work

      Staff Reporter
      9/26/02 9:01:39 AM (GMT +2)

      POLITICAL violence blamed on ruling ZANU PF youth militia and war
veterans has hit pastoral work in Zimbabwe, with pastors this week saying
they are unable to provide support to suspected opposition Movement for
Democratic Change (MDC) followers.

      The Zimbabwe National Pastors' Conference (ZNPC), a network of
Christian pastors, said it was disturbed by reports of the harassment and
intimidation of pastors, who are under increasing pressure from ruling party

      ZNPC coordinator Jonah Gokova said reports from the organisation's
members indicated that pastors were being pressured not to provide support
to perceived members of the MDC, including officiating at their burials.

      He said pastors were being subjected to harassment, intimidation and

      "Organised violence in this country is affecting pastoral work and,
like any vocation, we find our colleagues becoming victims and being
subjected to harassment and torture, acts of which are based on erroneous
perceptions that pastors are aligned to the opposition," he said.

      The ZNPC said Manicaland province had the highest number of pastors
who had been subjected to intimidation, with three being forced to leave the
area, including Roman Catholic Church priest Patrick Joseph Kelly who was
last month removed from his Nyanga parish by seven war veterans supported by
the Central Intelligence Organisation.

      The Zimbabwe Catholic Bishops' Conference (ZCBC), which groups the
leadership of the Catholic Church in the country, will hold a meeting at the
end of this week to discuss the impact of violence on pastoral work and
Kelly's displacement.

      "I can only comment after our meeting at the end of this week and when
the Bishop of Manicaland, Alexio Muchabayiwa, releases his findings on
Kelly's departure," said ZCBC spokesman Steve Muchemwa.

      Gokova said: "The lack of respect for the vocation of priesthood that
is becoming more and more apparent in the actions of some politicians is
diabolic and unacceptable to all those who believe in justice."

      He said his organisation is offering moral support and is in the
process of coming up with means of assisting pastors affected by violence
with alternative accommodation and food.

      Political violence in Zimbabwe is estimated to have displaced more
than 50 000 people in the past two years, many of whom have been forced to
flee their rural homes into cities where non-governmental organisations are
struggling to assist them.
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      C'wealth says head high despite Zim

      9/26/02 8:59:18 AM (GMT +2)

      LONDON - The Commonwealth's failure to agree on tougher sanctions
against Zimbabwe was a disappointment but not a major setback for the group
of mainly ex-British colonies, its Secretary-General Don McKinnon said this

      "I don't look at it as a heavy blow, it was certainly a negative," the
former New Zealand foreign minister said after flying back to Britain from
the meeting meeting in Nigeria.

      The leaders of Nigeria and South Africa blocked calls from Australian
Prime Minister John Howard for stiffer penalties over Zimbabwean President
Robert Mugabe's disputed March re-election and seizure of white-owned farms
for landless blacks.

      The Commonwealth, which groups 54 nations, had already partially
suspended Zimbabwe in March.

      Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo and South African counterpart
Thabo Mbeki - who with Howard form a Commonwealth "troika" on Zimbabwe -
said more time was needed for political reconciliation in Zimbabwe.

      Mugabe snubbed the meeting.

      "We had naturally hoped President Mugabe would be there. This was
arranged with President Obasanjo, he was very willing to come," McKinnon

      "Then suddenly he decided that he didn't like the tone of a letter
from Prime Minister Howard, so when Prime Minister Howard was half-way
across the Indian Ocean, he decided he wouldn't come."

      McKinnon said that was "more a reflection of himself (Mugabe) than the
authority of the Commonwealth".

      Nevertheless, the inconclusive outcome of the three-nation
Commonwealth meeting in Nigeria to discuss Zimbabwe prompted analysts and
member states to begin debating the relevance and very future of the group.

      But McKinnon rejected notions that the Zimbabwe issue had shown the
body to be ineffective, saying at least it was involved and trying.

      Others "walked away"

      "I would hope the commentators would make a comment on all the other
international institutions that have effectively walked away from the
Zimbabwe issue," he said. "We are about the only one left engaging, trying
to influence, trying to encourage, trying to get ahead of these problems.

      "If everyone else was there, we might see quite a different picture,
so don't taint us for being the only one trying to do something."

      Divisions within the Commonwealth over Zimbabwe down colour lines
were, McKinnon said, being "overly emphasised".

      He noted that even within Africa there were four distinct positions on
Zimbabwe, giving the lie to a black-white split.

      "It is a little bit too easy to put it into that category. The
Commonwealth is bigger than that," he said.

      The Commonwealth will next review Zimbabwe in March 2003, the 12-month
anniversary of the country's partial suspension from the grouping.

      Predictions of the group's demise were premature. "I've been reading
obituaries for the Commonwealth for a long time and they're all grossly
exaggerated," he said.

      Separately, Australian Prime Minister Howard said in London this week
the Commonwealth was still concerned about Zimbabwe even if it had not
expressed that in tougher sanctions.

      "What is at stake in relation to Zimbabwe is a settled Commonwealth
principle of respect for the democratic process," he said after meeting
British Prime Minister Tony Blair.

      "I think it will be to the Commonwealth's detriment if Zimbabwe is
allowed to indefinitely thumb its nose at Commonwealth opinion."

      Howard had argued for a tougher line against Zimbabwe because he said
Mugabe was shunning all Commonwealth efforts to resolve the issue of land
seizure and to end political violence.

      The 71-year-old Commonwealth group, moulded from the ashes of the
British Empire, joins almost one third of the world's countries with 1.7
billion people.

      Full expulsion of Zimbabwe would have cut off Commonwealth development
aid just as food shortages threaten close to an estimated seven million


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      Govt bars jurists' fact-finding team

      Staff Reporter
      9/26/02 8:57:55 AM (GMT +2)

      BULAWAYO - The International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) said this
week the government had refused to allow an ICJ fact-finding delegation into
Zimbabwe to investigate threats to the independence of the judiciary and
that of lawyers.

      In a statement to the Financial Gazette, the Geneva-based ICJ accused
Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa of obstructing its mission, pointing out
that the minister had earlier agreed to invite the team.

      Chinamasa yesterday declined comment on the issue when contacted by
the Financial Gazette, saying he had issued a statement to the
government-owned Herald newspaper. He declined to give that statement to
this newspaper.

      The ICJ said Chinamasa and the ruling ZANU PF had refused to honour an
invitation it said the minister had extended to the ICJ in April last year
during a visit to Geneva.

      "The ICJ deplores the refusal of the government of Zimbabwe to honour
its invitation for an ICJ fact-finding mission to examine threats to the
independence of judges and lawyers.

      "The ICJ can only conclude that in extending the invitation to the ICJ
and in all subsequent discussions on the modalities of the mission, the
government of Zimbabwe has been acting in bad fact," it said.

      "The government's opposition to any outside scrutiny is a serious blow
to the rule of law in Zimbabwe."

      According to the ICJ, Chinamasa visited the ICJ in Geneva and invited
the ICJ to send a mission to Zimbabwe during the summer of 2001. The
invitation was also received in writing, the organisation said.

      "Since receipt of the invitation, the ICJ has been frustrated by the
government's stalling on the date of the mission and of its imposing
unreasonable conditions, in particular as regards the composition of the ICJ

      "The ICJ has now been advised that a mission is not possible during
the autumn of 2002. No alternative date has been provided. It is a matter of
great regret that despite the ICJ's best efforts, it is clear that no
constructive purpose is served at present in continuing this now fruitless

      Since after Zimbabwe's constitutional referendum in 2000, the
country's judiciary has been under severe attack from the government and
ZANU PF supporters, with some magistrates and court officials being forced
to flee their stations.

      Two weeks ago, retired High Court Judge Ferguson Blackie was arrested
and thrown into prison for allegedly obstructing the course of justice, a
charge he denies.

      The United Nations' human rights investigator, Param Cumaraswamy, this
week accused the government of undermining the judiciary and urged the
international community to step up pressure on Harare to end the violations.

      He referred to the case of Blackie and said it was "yet another clear
systematic attack on the basic fabric of democracy".

      In his sixth public condemnation of the government on the rule on law
in as many months, he stated: "When judges can be arrested, detained and
charged on trumped-up facts for exercising their judicial functions, then
there is no hope for the rule of law in such countries."

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      Masvingo winter maize harvest to last one day

      Staff Reporter
      9/26/02 8:43:35 AM (GMT +2)

      ZIMBABWE is expected to harvest about 6 000 tonnes of maize - enough
to feed the nation for one day - from an ambitious winter cropping programme
launched by the government in April this year, farming industry officials
said this week.

      They said that just over 6 000 tonnes of winter maize were expected to
be harvested from about 1 500 hectares of land put under maize at the
ambitious Masvingo Food Initiative which the government says will alleviate
the food crisis presently faced by Zimbabwe.

      The government however says more than 1 800 hectares of land were
planted with the irrigated maize crop and are expected to produce at least
18 000 tonnes of the crop.

      But the officials said the maximum yield expected from the project was
four tonnes an hectare. Harvesting of the winter crop is expected to start
in the next few weeks.

      "The expected harvest is enough to meet the country's maize
requirements for one to one-and-a-half days only, which means the initiative
is just a scratch on the surface as far as the severity of the food crisis
is concerned," a senior official in the Ministry of Agriculture told the
Financial Gazette.

      Zimbabwe, which consumes about 6 000 tonnes of maize a day, faces a
severe food crisis blamed on a severe drought and the government's chaotic
land reform programme, which has almost decimated the country's key
agricultural sector.

      An estimated seven million people, or half the population, now face
starvation and are surviving on handouts from international aid donors and
the government.

      The Masvingo Food Initiative, which took advantage of land donated by
Triangle and Hippo Valley estates in the hot and arid southern Lowveld
region, was one of the measures adopted by the government to alleviate
unprecedented human suffering in the wake of failed attempts by former
finance minister Simba Makoni to raise funds for food imports.

      The United Nations' World Food Programme (WFP), which is currently
delivering more than 11 000 tonnes of grain a month to Zimbabweans, has also
appealed for US$507 million in food aid for six southern African countries.

      But donors have so far committed about one third of that amount and
the WFP is negotiating for another third in donations.

      Opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) shadow agriculture
minister Renson Gasela said the best that could come out of the Masvingo
maize project was 9 000 tonnes, assuming that the average yield is five
tonnes a hectare and that 1 800 hectares were indeed planted.

      "The Masvingo initiative is therefore not something that will save
this country from starvation," he said.

      Earlier this month the MDC was denied permission to import more than
100 tonnes of grain to feed starving Zimbabweans amid charges by the
government the food had been donated by Britain and was meant to endear the
opposition party to the rural electorate.

      Since then the food aid has been detained at the Beitbridge border
with South Africa.
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      ZDI to lose $160m in Sri Lanka arms deal

      9/26/02 8:44:02 AM (GMT +2)

      THE Zimbabwe Defence Industries (ZDI) could lose nearly $160 million
dollars because a middleman it engaged five years ago to run weapons to Sri
Lanka on its behalf has refused to forward monies paid for the supplies.

      The Sri Lankan army, which made a down payment of about $99 million
for the weapons, is said to have also refused to pay the outstanding debt,
the Financial Gazette established this week.

      Sources close to the deal said the ZDI in 1997 contracted a South
Korean company, Kolon International, to move thousands of rounds of mortar
bombs and other contraband to the Sri Linkan army who urgently needed the
bombs to repel an offensive by the separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil

      The ZDI entered the deal with the Singapore branch of the Korean firm.

      The Sri Lankans paid US$1.8 million (about $99 million at the current
official exchange rate) as down payment for the consignment.

      But Kolon did not transfer the money to ZDI, saying it had used the
money to pay commissions to Sri Lankan army officials who had facilitated
the arms supply deal.

      Efforts by the ZDI to recover its monies from Kolon have hit a brick
wall after a Singapore law firm Katter Hwang & Partner, hired in 1999 by the
Zimbabwean company to take the Koreans to the International Arbitration
Centre, refused last year to handle the matter almost at the eleventh hour,
according to the sources.

      It could not be established why the Singaporean lawyers turned down
the ZDI case.

      ZDI chief executive Tshinga Dube yesterday confirmed the botched-up
arms supply deal. A retired Zimbabwe army colonel, Dube said Sri Lankan army
officers had recommended Kolon to the Zimbabweans and he suspected the
Asians may have acted in collusion to rip off ZDI.

      "Clearly the people we were dealing with are not honourable guys,"
Dube said.

      Besides the money lost to Kolon, the Sri Lankan government is also
refusing to pay the outstanding debt for the bombs.

      While another lot of bombs valued at about $45 million and destined
for Colombo was reportedly intercepted at sea by the Tamil Tigers in 1997,
Dube said ZDI had successfully sent other consignments to Sri Lanka.

      But the Sri Lankans are refusing to pay even for the bombs they have
received, according to Dube.

      Investigations by Interpol on the missing bombs, which an Israeli
company known only as Bentso was shipping to Colombo on behalf of ZDI, have
not yielded anything.

      Dube said ZDI was now working on suing the Israeli firm for the lost

      - Staff Reporter
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