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

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(Business leaders welcome)


Cordially invites you to a breakfast meeting

On Friday 6th September 2002
Time 7:15 for 7:30 am to 9am
At THE GRACE in Rose bank, Johannesburg (53 Bath Avenue. Jan Smuts Avenue
towards town, left into Tywhrit Avenue. To 3rd traffic light and right into
Bath Avenue. Go past the entrance to the Hotel to park in the basement
parking area)

(A finger breakfast will be served)

1. Presentation Justice for Agriculture
2. Visuals "Wet Drought" and its impact on Commercial Agriculture
3. The Special Beneficiaries of 'People First'
4. Land Reform or Land Piracy - compromising TRADE whilst embracing AID!

Background information:
1. Zimbabwe is 39 079 000 hectares in extent. Large Scale Commercial Sector
(6 000 farms) on 11 020 000 hectares which is 28.2 percent. Commercial
Farmers' Union Members owned 8 595 000 hectares.

STATE LAND is 27 604 000 hectares, 70.6 percent; PRIVATE LAND is 11 275 000
hectares, 28.9 percent and URBAN LAND is 200 000 hectares, 0.5 percent.

As at 19 July 2002, there were 6148 farms measuring 10780963 hectares of
land listed for acquisition. On this date there were 465 farms measuring 864
579 hectares delisted from acquisition. There were 339 farms, 770 759
hectares that had previously been delisted, relisted for acquisition. This
brought the nett figure to 6 022 farms on 106 8714 hectares of land. To
translates to 97 percent of the land acquired.

News release
(On behalf of Justice for Agriculture - JAG)

Land Acquisition 'by Grace and favour'

COMMERCIAL farmers are receiving positive judgments from the Zimbabwean
judiciary even though an insidious campaign of intimidation against the
legal profession unfolds. These attacks, reported in the press in the last
few weeks, are not isolated incidents. They are part of a pattern of
intimidation meant to enforce judicial and legal support for the government'
s policies or failing this to declare it irrelevant. With these developments
yet another barrier has been placed in the road to a return to the rule of

President Mugabe continues to usurp any and all speaking opportunities to
'pretend' that no single-owned farms are being acquired and that his
Government is abiding by its criteria.

As this release is written the Andy and Sharon Kockott who won their legal
battle to retain their farm, stand by and watch as their Coffee plantation
is uprooted to make way for illegal settlers huts. The Carter family on
unlisted Wye Farm were last allowed in their Raffingora home in January
2002. They grew Virginia Tobacco, Paprika and Maize. Smith Mereki, a war
veteran evicted them scoffing at their High Court order granting them the
right to continue farming. These are a few of the 1024 single owned farms
listed for acquisition and in most cases illegally evicted by war veterans.
Many will win their cases and be permitted to return to their farms but the
battle to win their right to a livelihood continues.

Justice for Agriculture call on our President to explain why there is such a
chasm between his 'words' and the 'deeds' of the settlers on the ground. We
call on him to accept that he has compromised agricultural TRADE for
shameful AID and reduced proud Zimbabweans to piteous beggars in just two
years. More and more land that was once productive lies fallow, this as the
dams are 75% full.

As to the land reform programme, we demand an explanation as to why he is
not accountable to his constitution and to the legal instruments ignored in
implementing the land reform programme. The programme communicated in the
'People First' policy document is also being ignored despite the fact that
it was recognised by the Supreme Court as a 'sound' programme.

Land is being handed out willy nilly to the politically correct with scant
regard to sustainable development or even to legalizing the position of
settlers on the land so that they can speedily grow crops to feed Zimbabwe.

JAG has before the courts, test cases challenging the amendments to the Land
Acquisition Act. These amendments, which came in through the back door of
parliament by ignoring standing orders, are odds with the Zimbabwean
Constitution. JAG will continue to advocate for agricultural stakeholders to
continue to test the judiciary in the hopes that this will unlock the way
forward for a return to the rule of law and true peace and productivity in

Meanwhile Ministers Made (Lands and Agriculture), Chombo (Local Government
and National Housing Affairs) and Chinamasa (Justice, Legal and
Parliamentary Affairs) continue to insist settlers from both the A1
(villagised) and A2 (commercial) take up land allocated to them by the Lands
and Agriculture Ministry. In so doing they are forcing the shutting down and
eviction of farm operators and their staff. The Ministers are also silent on
the provision of any legal rights on the land allocated.

Under current legislation no government minister can give out legal rights
in State property, including any land acquired by the State, except in terms
of a power given to him by a statute.

The statute in question, the Agricultural Land Settlement Act Ch 20:01
requires the Agricultural Land Settlement Board consider every application
for a lease and make its recommendations and report before the Minister
makes a decision to allocate land.

This Board has to take into account various matters specified in the Act,
and keep a record of its proceedings. No Members of Parliament can be
involved, and any Board member who has any interests himself or through
family or business interests has to declare this interest and can take no
further part in the process.

Despite this, when the Chairman and Secretary of the Board were subpoenaed
to attend a court in Harare last week, the Ministry of Lands advised that it
had not been working and had not considered any applications, and that the
identities of the Chairman and Secretary were not even known there - finally
confirming mounting suspicions that the law on allocations was being totally

All the allocations are instead being made by Land Task Force Committees
chaired by the Provincial Governors who fall under the Ministry of Local
Government and Housing whose Minister is Ignatius Chombo, himself an illegal
invader of a farm in Mashonaland West.

It appears that all new settlers are being asked to begin cropping on land
that they have no legal rights on. Legal opinion is that the 'Allocation
Letters', which are signed by Minister Made and made available to
beneficiaries, have been prepared and are issued without any consideration
or recommendation from the Board, first, are of no legal effect, "quite

This adds another legal problem for settlers, particularly those trying to
raise funds from financial institutions. Already if the Minister fails to
prove a case against the owner in the Administrative Court (where cases
concerning about 2,500 pieces of land are pending), the Land Acquisition Act
obliges the court to order its return to the owner. The Act makes no
provision for any payment to be made for standing crops by either the owner
or government, and it is thought to be very unlikely that the law could help
them at all in terms of restitution of losses.

Government has also been urging settlers to quit their jobs before they move
onto the land. The Act requires that new settlers use the land themselves -
precluding them from handing over possession to another.

As Government Ministers, we presume that the above Ministers are well aware
of the Act. It is referred to in the official land reform programme, and in
various forms being handed out, and their motives for ignoring it in
practice and creating a situation where settlers are using land only 'by
grace and favour' are unknown.

The decisions on what land to take and who will get it are incorrectly being
made by the unauthorised people, instead of the Court first deciding what
should be taken and the Board considering who will be able to use it.

No effort is being made to calculate the cost or stay within the budget for
acquisitions. The result is that, contrary to the official program aimed at
under-utilised land, the best developed land is usually being targeted,
existing farm businesses are being shut down, and farmers are seen being
chased from their homes - while the country is believed to be racking up
debts for compensation which will burden it for years to come.

JAG is also in the process of putting together a group action to sue for
losses in terms of stolen assets and loss in earnings for both owners and
employees. Estimates available indicate that the amount in question could
far exceed Z$ 20 Billion.

4th September 2002
Contact Jenni Williams on roaming mobile (+263) 11213 885 or on email

Client information - For privileged use by the addressee only.
Contact Jenni Williams on Mobile (+263) 91 300456 or 11213 885 Or on email
or Fax (+2639) 63978 or (+2634) 703829
Office email
A member of the International Association of Business Communicators. Visit
the IABC website

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Daily News

      Bennet vows not to leave farm, claims CIO boss after property

      9/4/02 1:07:56 PM (GMT +2)

      From Brian Mangwende in Mutare

      Roy Bennet, the MP for Chimanimani, has vowed not to leave his
Charleswood estate, accusing President Mugabe of hypocrisy on the land
acquisition programme.

      Speaking in Mutare, Bennet said, in any case, his farm did not meet
the criteria for acquisition. Although the MDC MP was served with an
eviction order in May, he described it as null and void, as he claimed the
farm fell under the Export Processing Zone (EPZ). A defiant Bennet said
farms in EPZs were not for compulsory acquisition. His farm was subdivided
under the A1 and A2 schemes of the controversial land reform programme.
"Mugabe is being hypocritical," Bennet said. "On the one hand he says one
man, one farm; on the other, he grabs land from those with only one farm. I
have only one farm and I am definitely not moving from there any time soon.
I am a coffee grower and employ over a thousand people. What is going to
happen to them? Besides, my farm is under an EPZ."

      Bennet said at first the government had said they would leave him a
portion of land on which to grow coffee. "Now they have changed their mind
and say I should move off the property . . . I am not going anywhere," he
said. The legislator said he had impeccable evidence his farm had been
allocated to Elisha Muzonzini, the director-general of the Central
Intelligence Organisation (CIO). Challenged to produce the evidence, Bennet
said he was still compiling it.
      He said: "I have it on good authority that Muzonzini has been
allocated my farm, but to me that's neither here nor there. I will not leave
my farm." He said he had received reports that people in Chimanimani were
refusing to occupy the farm. In retaliation, Zanu PF supporters threatened
them with unspecified action if they refused to move to the farm.

      Bennet said he had been told that on Monday the police in Chimanimani,
led by Joseph Mwale of the CIO, stopped truck loads of coffee pickers on
their way to his farm and asked them to return. Mwale is implicated in the
murder of two MDC activists during the bloody parliamentary election
campaign in 2000.
      "Some of the pickers were school children on holiday," said Bennet.
The MP said the police accused him of using child labour and ordered the
children to return to their homes while they allowed the adults to proceed.
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Leader Page

      As millions face starvation, Mugabe scolds Tony Blair

      9/4/02 12:54:02 PM (GMT +2)

      ZIMBABWEANS will have reacted differently to President Mugabe's
emotional address to the World Summit on Sustainable Development in
Johannesburg on Monday.

      Some will praise it for its blunt warning to the British Prime
Minister, Tony Blair, to stop what Mugabe believes is his interference in
Zimbabwean politics.
      They will remember he has been even more vitriolic in the past in his
attacks on Blair. In many ways, they will rate the speech as rather

      Others will rank it as a rather unfortunate speech which did not
address the nitty-gritty issue of the summit's agenda - sustainable
development. They will regret Mugabe's preoccupation with Tony Blair to the
exclusion of the number one subject among the people today - starvation.

      That subject, unfortunately, cannot be separated from the other
controversial one: the land reform programme and the seizure of the
commercial farms, and the desperate plight of thousands of Zimbabweans
thrown off the farms.

      The method chosen by the government to implement the programme has
caused much suffering among the people because it has been spearheaded,
initially, by the so-called war veterans, whose regard for the rule of law
is dubious, to say the least.There has been much violence and disruption of
production accompanying the programme, some of it gratuitous and needless.
What some people have seen as the persecution of one race has been so
relentless, the phrase "ethnic cleansing" has been used in reference to it.

      This is unfortunate, but the total disregard for any modicum of
decency in the implementation of the programme has left many people
wondering if this is not a deliberate campaign to terrorise one particular
race into leaving the country of their birth.

      It would be a grave mistake for Mugabe to believe that all
Zimbabweans, black and white, are totally behind the method his government
has used to put the land reform into practice.

      It would also be a mistake for Mugabe to believe he can speak of "my
Zimbabwe" without causing grievous offence to many people in this country.
That phrase is as offensive to many as "my people". What would be wrong with
"our Zimbabwe" or "our people"? He may be the president of all Zimbabweans,
but to sound as if he "owned" Zimbabwe rankles many people. As to what may
seem like Mugabe's personal feud, tiff or spat with Tony Blair, many people
feel it detracts seriously from the issue at hand, which is one of good
governance, fairness, democracy and freedom - and starvation.

      Many people in this country are not entirely satisfied that Mugabe's
political party and his government have treated them with the fairness they
feel they are entitled to in a democracy. They are entitled to express their
opinions, without the accusation being made by the President and his
supporters that they are only doing so because they are in the pay of the
British, the Europeans and the Americans.

      This viewpoint assumes that nobody would oppose the policies of this
government if Tony Blair, George W Bush and all the leaders of the EU
countries had not put in place measures which display physically their
disapproval of the government's policies.

      This is just not true. For instance, there is not one Zimbabwean who
actively opposes the land reform programme. What most of them feel is wrong
about its implementation is the killing and general mayhem, including rape
and theft, which has accompanied it.

      So, while it may be possible that there are those who feel the
President's speech to the Earth Summit hit the right note, there may be
others who feel strongly that by taking his brawl with Tony Blair to such a
world forum, Mugabe did not enhance his international reputation one whit.

      Certainly, they would not feel that the speech will do much to help
the six million people threatened with starvation. They would counsel
against the confrontational stance of the government, while the country is
such dire need of food aid.
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Daily News

      Farm workers accused of kidnapping cop released

      9/4/02 1:06:37 PM (GMT +2)

      From Our Correspondent in Bulawayo

      Ten farm workers who appeared before Bulawayo magistrate Godwin
Sengweni yesterday facing charges of kidnapping a police officer were
remanded out of custody to 13 September.

      Moses Siphuma, 49, Masango, 61, Zwelitsha Stanford Masuku, 36, and
Dean Maphosa, 40, Khumbula Ndlovu, Wilson Tshuma, 46, Priscilla Janet
Chiwaru, 43, June Masango, 61, Moses Moyo, 43, Douglas Mpala, 42, and Mbonwa
Ndlovu, 58, all pleaded not guilty. Andrew Marimo, the prosecutor, said on
20 May last year, the ten, acting in consent, drove a government Nissan
truck registration number GLM 1621 from Heany Junction to Fort Rixon Police
      They demanded to see Constable Robert Sigauke but were told he was
absent. The group proceeded to St Jeannette primary school, about 400km from
the police station where they found him.

      They demanded that Sigauke accompany them to the charge office where
they accused him of murdering James Mazada, a villager staying at Heany
Junction farm. They accused him of conniving with the owner of the farm,
Philip Edward Rodgers, in the murder. They said Mazada had been killed by
the policeman with an electric cord. Siphuma allegedly handcuffed Sigauke,
and with the help of other members of the group, bundled the police officer
into a car, then took him to Heany Junction farm. The prosecutor said
Siphuma is alleged to have stopped where a group of mourners were gathered
for the funeral of Mazada and addressed the mourners who jeered Sigauke.

      Siphuma is alleged to have vowed to deal with Sigauke the following
morning. He and one of his accomplices, Khumbula Ndlovu took Sigauke to
Bulawayo where he slept under the guard of Siphuma in a relative's house.
Siphuma later allowed Sigauke to use the phone. Sigauke took advantage of
this and arrested Siphuma together with his accomplices.
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Leader Page

      Zanu PF terrorism set to rise as rural elections approach

      9/4/02 12:55:33 PM (GMT +2)

      The right to vote has always meant the right to participate and to be
heard. Now that rural elections have been set for this month the dastardly
terrorist attacks on MDC supporters countrywide will intensify.

      When we hear of or witness these attacks by Zanu PF supporters aided
and abetted by the militia and equally partisan security agencies, we all
stand diminished. This is not only because of the colossal loss of innocent
human lives and property but also because they denigrate the core spirit and
essential values of democracy and the basic and inalienable constitutional
rights of assembly, choice and voting.

      These attacks also bring home the realisation that State-sponsored,
State-sanctioned and ruling party terrorism is not something that happens
elsewhere in distant lands but is an everyday reality in this country.

      Why does Zanu PF resort to terrorism each time there is an election
and afterwards? And what are the circumstances that drive people to a life
of lawlessness and political crime in the name of preserving the sovereignty
of this country and racism?

      The answer is very clear - to counter the opposition MDC support which
is increasing daily. Mugabe and Zanu PF will resort, as they usually do,
with a two-prolonged strategy. They will terrorise the white minority, who
are perceived as the financial backers of the opposition, in an effort to
exploit black resentment of white wealth. Torture camps will open in the
countryside where the opposition supporters will be battered into

      But translated to the macro-scale the analogy would apply to the
authoritarian and oppressive regime and the absence of democratic
institutions and safety valves.

      It is no secret that the Zanu PF government has failed to provide good
and honest governance, good education, adequate health care, decent housing
and jobs to its citizens.

      The people of this country most chose between two distinct
alternatives - the path of peace or the path of terror represented by the
MDC and Zanu PF, respectively.

      In the rural council elections this month the people of this country
are called upon to defend freedom against the ruthless enemies of peace. And
as the elections dates draw nearer, we expect as Zanu PF to regroup its
militia to create mayhem and try to undermine the people's efforts to built
lasting peace. Peace in the countryside will only be achieved when the
people are given the chance to elect the council representatives of their

      We are confronted with a party that is decades old which has a history
of brutally assaulting its opponents. The people of this country must send
the message on election day that those who cause terror can not be martyrs.
Zanu PF, its underlings and partisan security agencies must realise that the
long-term solution is for both the MDC and Zanu PF to live side by side

      What does it mean when youths are sent to brutalise children, fathers
and mothers in the name of politics?

      Hatred and fanatism can not be the way to a better future because the
aspirations of humanity are always stronger than its animosity. Men and
women everywhere want to live in dignity and to raise their children in
peace and security. We know Zanu PF has always sought to not only
legitimise, but to also glorify, heinous acts against the MDC, which happens
to command a large following in the country. But by and large the people of
this country have refused the misleading assertion that Zanu PF is destined
to rule forever.

      Many have seriously questioned the dividing line between a struggle
for self-determination and freedom and mindless acts of wanton political
carnage against innocent and unarmed civilians.

      Today Zanu PF terrorism recognises no race, ethnicity or political
      If Hitler was to be viewed as one of the last century's
mega-terrorists, then what spawned an aberration like him to rise and even
be adulated by a highly educated society which nurtured him and almost
unquestionably accepted him as a supreme leader? A close look at the plight
of the German people following the Treaty of Versailles and the subsequent
deterioration of Germany will provide an answer. Like Hitler, Mugabe has
used political and racial hatred as a tool to motivate and manipulate his
followers against the MDC, inflating them in the process. The rural poor and
semi-literate amongst whom Zanu PF continues to draw a constant stream of
militia and cannon fodder in the hysterical pursuit of a political agenda,
are a clear example.

      But like a pressure cooker without safety valves, such a society will
explode at some point. A country that respects the rights of its citizens
and allows all of them a say in decisions that affect their lives is also
likely to benefit from their creative energies and to provide the kind of
economic and social environment that attracts investors.

      Nothing destroys that atmosphere more corrosively than fear and
intolerance combined with injustice and discrimination.

      Stability can hardly be taken for granted in a country where the
majority of the people are denied the opportunity to enjoy their lives
peacefully. It's sad that a brutal ruling party like Zanu PF legitimises or
perpetuates its power by holding flawed elections.

      Matandirotya was the MDC's election agent in the March presidential
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      Serious health hazard looms as Chiredzi runs dry

      9/4/02 1:07:22 PM (GMT +2)

      From our Correspondent in Masvingo

      A serious health hazard looms in Chiredzi after the town ran out of
water for almost a week, prompting residents to use shallow wells and
streams. On Sunday afternoon water supplies had not been restored in the
high-density suburb of Tshovani, Chiredzi town and the surrounding areas.

      Many residents used buckets to flush toilets while others used the the
bush to relieve themselves. One resident, Michael Nyoni said: "We have been
without water for almost a week and the council has done nothing about the
problem. We risk contracting diseases like cholera. "We are relying on dirty
water from shallow wells and streams. It's a serious situation." Acting Town
Secretary, Clayton Sanjovo, on Sunday confirmed the town had run dry.
Sanjovo said: "We are trying our level best to ensure water supplies are
restored. The problem is we share water with Hippo Valley Estates. All the
water meant to service the town has been diverted to the Estate.

      "We also want to replace the old engines." Chiredzi has had water
problems for the past five years as the existing water works cannot cope
with the ever-increasing demand. The town needs over $30 million to upgrade
its water works.
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Daily News

      Chombo allegedly grabs farm

      9/4/02 1:05:56 PM (GMT +2)

      Staff Reporter

      Ignatius Chombo, the Minister of Local Government, Public Works and
National Housing, was last Friday alleged to have ordered a Raffingora
commercial farm manager to leave the farm the following day so that he could
move in.

      Justice for Agriculture (JAG), a splinter group from the Commercial
Farmers Union which is fighting for the interests of commercial farmers in
the courts, said Chombo telephoned Hannes Swan, the manager of Alan Grange
Farm in Raffingora, Mashonaland West Province, on Friday afternoon and gave
him the ultimatum to leave. Jenni Williams, the JAG spokesperson, said in
statement on Friday: "Chombo, who is rumoured to have acquired farms under
the on-going land grab, has finally confirmed his choice of a farm in a
telephone conversation with the farm manager. "Chombo insisted that the
family should move off the property as he would personally be moving in on

      But Chombo, who chairs the government's national land acquisition task
force, yesterday denied that he had any personal interest in the farm, which
he said was going to be resettled under the A2 commercial farming model.
Williams said the 3 000-hectare farm had 200ha of barley valued at $70
million and 200ha of wheat worth $40 million. Chombo said he had invited
Swan to come to Harare today to discuss the issue of the farm equipment and
how the crops are to be harvested. He said: "We have put the police on the
farm to protect the crops and the equipment. The crops are an investment and
we are talking about full-scale farming. This is serious business and those
we allocate land on the farm will have to pay for the equipment and

      "This is not the A1 model that is meant to decongest the communal
areas." He accused Swan of trying to derail the land reform programme. He
said: "Swan is the son of the owner of Chembada Farm in the area. That is
where he has always worked. In March or April he left and went to live on
Alan Grange Farm. When we asked him why, he said he also wanted to be
resettled. "We said hatitambe tichidaro (we don't play such games) and
ordered the police and the district administrator to see him off the farm by
Saturday last week but he met the deadline on his own," said Chombo

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      Violence breaks out ahead of Hurungwe polls

      9/4/02 1:05:25 PM (GMT +2)

      Staff Reporters

      MDC and Zanu PF supporters in Hurungwe West constituency have accused
each other of political violence ahead of a parliamentary by-election and
rural district council polls at the end of the month.

      Justin Dandawa, the opposition MDC candidate for Hurungwe West,
yesterday claimed that a group of Zanu PF supporters known as the "Top Six",
operating from Chinhoyi town, was beating up by known MDC supporters around
the town. But Chipere Muguti, the ruling Zanu PF political commissar for
Mashonaland West province, denied the allegations and counter-accused the
MDC of attacking his followers. Phone Madiro is standing for Zanu PF after
the death from natural causes of his brother, Marko Madiro, in May. Muguti
said: "I have not heard that our supporters have assaulted anyone. But the
MDC have burnt down two houses belonging to our officials. We are yet to
respond to these attacks.

      I urge people to campaign peacefully." He said the houses were burnt
sometime last week in the Dzimaiwe area and the matter was reported to the
police at Magunje. The MDC said the the incidents of assault on their
members were reported at Magunje Police Station. An officer at Magunje
Police Station said yesterday: "The officer-in-charge said he cannot speak
to you on the telephone. He said you should come to Magunje to get that
information." Dandawa said he could not campaign because of the alleged

      "I can't hold rallies because our supporters would be attacked. It is
very dangerous to hold public meetings here, but as a party we will still
contest the seat," he said. He said last week, Weston Mabhera, an MDC
council election candidate, was abducted during the night in Mukonori area
and assaulted about five kilometres away from his homestead for standing in
the poll. George Zizi of Ward 12 in Muzilawambi said last week on Tuesday he
was pulled out of a bus at Magunje growth point and taken to the Zanu PF
office where he was allegedly assaulted for challenging Zanu PF in the

      There has been a sudden rise in political violence in some parts of
the country ahead of nationwide rural district council elections scheduled
for the end of this month. Mukorera Taruvinga, Muzarabani district chairman
for the MDC, said he was severely assaulted by Zanu PF youths on Friday
evening. Taruvinga was nominated by the MDC to stand as their candidate in
Kapembere ward. The elections are set for 28 and 29 September. Taruvinga
said: "I was coming from Mahwenda village around 7pm when a blue vehicle
stopped to pick me up.

      "I boarded the vehicle in good faith because I had heard somebody
calling my name, but later I found out that the vehicle was carrying Zanu PF
youths." Taruvinga sustained head injuries and bruises all over his face.
Elliot Manyika, the Minister of Youth Development, Gender and Employment
Creation and Zanu PF's political commissar, said he was not aware of the
incident. "This is actually news to me," Manyika said. In the Midlands
province, Anthony Chamahwinya, the deputy MDC organising secretary for
Midlands North, was admitted to a private hospital on Sunday after he was
allegedly attacked by Zanu PF supporters at Holy Cross Mission in

      Laison Mlambo, the MDC provincial chairman, yesterday said Chamahwinya
was attacked while distributing nomination papers to their prospective
candidates in the election scheduled for 28 and 29 September. Thirty-six MDC
candidates have reportedly withdrawn from elections in Mberengwa, Shurugwi,
vishavane and Chirumanzu. Meanwhile, the police in Shurugwi have denied they
have arrested Taurai Danda, the MDC candidate for Ward 13. But his lawyers
said they were looking for him.

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      Seed price row threatens to disrupt agricultural season

      9/4/02 1:02:40 PM (GMT +2)

      By Collin Chiwanza

      A price dispute between the government and major seed producers could
seriously hamper preparations for the agricultural season. Seed companies
are withholding their products, demanding an urgent price rise before they
can release the seed to farmers.

      Small-scale farmers preparing for the next planting season have no
maize seed and other essential inputs such as fertiliser. Jabulani Gwaringa,
an economist with the Zimbabwe Farmers' Union, said most seed houses were
trying by all means to limit their sales as a loss control measure. Gwaringa
said: "Seed houses have been tightly restricting their sales because the
price at which they are selling is not viable. They are making huge losses."
The dispute comes amid reports that the government wants to buy large
quantities of the seed at "unreasonably subsidised prices" under its
much-publicised $8,5 billion farm input scheme.

      Through the supplementary budget, the government announced it had set
aside $8,5 billion for agricultural inputs, including tillage, seeds and
fertilisers. But economists say the sector needs at least $70 billion for
optimum preparation of the planned area to go under crop. Seed houses report
that there are more than 50 000 metric tonnes of maize seed available and
that this quantity is enough for two seasons, but may not be on the market
yet because of the controlled prices. The seed houses buy seed from the seed
growers at $110 000 per metric tonne but are required to sell it at $75 000
to the end-users. Seed producers said the problem needed to be addressed or
only limited amounts of seed would reach the farmers in time.

      The country needs about 600 000 metric tonnes of fertilisers. About
400 000 metric tonnes is manufactured locally and is available in the form
of Compound D. A shortfall of 200 000 metric tonnes of ammonium nitrate
fertiliser is anticipated as this is manufactured from imported raw
materials, which require foreign currency, which is in direly short supply.
Traditionally, Compound D is required when the planting season starts, while
top dressing (ammonium nitrate) is applied around October-November. But some
farmers have started to use a new method, applying both compounds at the
planting stage. Certified maize seed has been out of stock at most outlets
throughout the country.

      The shortage has been attributed to the arbitrary price controls
imposed by the government a few days before the March presidential election,
won disputably by President Mugabe. Citing low market prices, the seed
houses are demanding that the government urgently reviews prices to ensure
their businesses remain viable. The maize industry wants a 140 percent
increase to cushion them from the losses they have already incurred. Some
farmers have warned that if no urgent action is taken on the pricing
problem, they might be forced to boycott the production of certain crops
which are seen to be economically unviable.
      Government officials contacted yesterday refused to comment on the
issue. An official with the Ministry of Lands, Agriculture and Rural
Resettlement said the government was currently negotiating with the seed
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Daily News

      MPs, councillors sign petition against torture

      9/4/02 1:01:51 PM (GMT +2)

      Staff Reporter

      HARARE city councillors and opposition MDC party MPs have petitioned
the government, protesting the torture and inhuman treatment of Linos
Mushonga, the councillor for Ward 23, and Sairosi Chikowero, an MDC security
officer, who are in custody on allegations of murdering Ali Khan Manjengwa,
a Zanu PF activist.

      Last week, the two accused told a Harare magistrate that they were
brutally tortured by the police, suspected Central Intelligence Organisation
(CIO) agents and soldiers, who were pressurising them to confess to the
murder of the Zanu PF activist. The Harare city councillors, who are
predominantly from the MDC, and the MPs are scheduled to hand over the
petition to the government before Friday. "We demand that Councillor
Mushonga and Mr Chikowero receive proper medical attention immediately, that
mistreatment of suspects and prisoners cease forthwith throughout the
country, that an independent Commission of Inquiry be set up by the relevant
Parliamentary Portfolio Committee to table its report within a period of
three months from now, and that adequate disciplinary action be taken
against those responsible," the petition reads in part.

      "We also register our protest against the inhuman and and
unconstitutional treatment of Honourable Fletcher Dhulini and countless
other "suspects" while in police custody. We point out that the entire
nation is living in a state of fear of the very people who are charged with
protecting us." Harare North MP, Trudy Stevenson, said they were seeking
police permission to hold a protest march against the state for the inhuman
and unconstitutional treatment of their colleagues.
      The petition is addressed to Kembo Mohadi, the Minister of Home
Affairs, Patrick Chinamasa, the Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary
Affairs, Police Commissioner Augustine Chihuri, the Chief Justice Godfrey
Chidyausiku and Ignatius Chombo, the Minister of Local Government, Public
Works and National Housing.

      Simbarashe Muzenda, the lawyer representing the accused, said the
police had not operated within the confines of the law. "It is not normal,
as happened in this particular case, that suspects are brutally attacked and
that they are taken to Chinamhora Police Station when they are alleged to
have committed a crime in Mbare, Harare," Muzenda said. "They were also
taken to Goromonzi, which is a notorious place and it is unusual that
members of the army and the CIO get involved in a criminal case."
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Mugabe blames media for image problem

      September 04 2002 at 02:27PM

By Toby Reynolds

Johannesburg - President Robert Mugabe, who has banned foreign reporters
from Zimbabwe and enacted laws to muzzle domestic media, on Wednesday blamed
the international media for his country's negative image.

Visiting an exhibition on the sidelines of the World Summit in Johannesburg,
he brushed aside questions about his war of words with British Prime
Minister Tony Blair.

"Leave Mr Blair alone. He is from England, I am from Zimbabwe," he joked to
reporters asking about Blair's comment in Britain on Tuesday that Mugabe did
not speak for Africa.

      'We must be proud that we are African'
Criticising the international media, he said they should "become part of our
environment, and not continue to be instruments to be used by our former

Mugabe's Zanu-PF, which has ruled Zimbabwe since independence in 1980,
enacted tough new legislation this year to limit media criticism.

At least 13 journalists have already been charged with publishing alleged
falsehoods under the new laws.

The government has set a deadline for all reporters to register with
authorities, saying only Zimbabweans will be allowed to work in the country.

Mugabe, who lashed out at Blair in an address to the summit on Monday, said
Africans had little to learn from their Western critics, and urged the
international community to respect the boundaries of national sovereignty.

"We must be proud that we are African... We must maintain our personality,"
he said.

The United States has branded Mugabe an illegitimate leader following the
country's disputed presidential election earlier this year and has imposed
sanctions banning him and his close associates from the country.

US Secretary of State Colin Powell told the summit on Wednesday that
mismanagement by Mugabe had fuelled a food crisis facing almost half of
Zimbabwe's 13 million people.

Former South African president Nelson Mandela declined in a radio interview
on Wednesday to comment on Mugabe's summit speech or his controversial
programme to hand over white-owned farms to landless blacks without paying

"I prefer to express my views on such sensitive matters to the multilateral
organisation SADC (Southern African Development Community)," he said.

But he acknowledged that investor concern about Zimbabwe's future was
hitting South Africa's rand currency, which plunged 37 percent against the
dollar last year, before recovering partially this year.

"People must be aware that Zimbabwe is not South Africa," he said.
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ABC News

Mugabe Tells Whites to Leave or Risk Jail over Land

      Sept. 4
      - HARARE, Zimbabwe (Reuters) - Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe
Wednesday warned white opponents of his controversial land reforms to
cooperate, leave the country or face jail.

      "Those do not deserve to be in Zimbabwe and we shall take steps to
ensure that they are not entitled to our land," Mugabe told supporters who
turned out to welcome him home from the Earth Summit in Johannesburg.

      He said some Zimbabwean whites were urging former colonial power
Britain to tighten sanctions or send troops to topple him.

      He cited in particular two white opposition leaders, Roy Bennett and
David Coltart, who are frequent targets of his anti-white rhetoric.

      "The Bennetts and the Coltarts are not part of our society. They
belong to Britain and let them go there. If they want to stay here, we will
say 'Stay here, but your place is in jail'."

      He said whites should obey orders to surrender their farms if they
wanted to stay in the country.

      Political observers said Mugabe had often named Bennett, a legislator
for the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), and Coltart, the
party's legal affairs secretary, in attacks on white critics.

      "I don't think this necessarily means he is planning specific action
against them. He could be naming them as representatives of all his
critics," one observer said.


      Mugabe lashed out at British Prime Minister Tony Blair in an address
to delegates and heads of state at the World Summit on Sustainable
Development (WSSD) Monday.

      Though Blair and some other delegates were harshly critical of Mugabe
and his seizure of white-owned farms for blacks, the 78-year-old president
and his wife, Grace, were cheered and applauded at all their public

      Mugabe said his land reforms had received wide international support
at the summit, except from Europe and the United States.

      Several Western countries have branded Mugabe's victory in March
presidential elections illegitimate and have imposed sanctions on him and
his close associates, including his wife.

      Police have charged more than 300 white farmers for defying an August
8 government deadline for 2,900 of the remaining 4,500 white commercial
farmers to quit their land without compensation.

      Mugabe, who has been in power since independence from Britain in 1980,
says his land drive is aimed at correcting colonial injustice, which left 70
percent of the country's best land in the hands of white farmers.

      Zimbabwe has been in crisis since pro-government militants led by
veterans of the 1970s liberation war began invading white-owned farms in
early 2000.

      Aid agencies say nearly half the country's 13 million people need food
aid this year, part of a wider food crisis in six drought-stricken southern
African countries.
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Powell heckled at Earth Summit
11.14AM BST, 4 Sep 2002

US Secretary of State Colin Powell was heckled and booed during his speech
at the Earth Summit in Johannesburg.

Environmentalists whistled, jeered and shouted throughout the address,
forcing Mr Powell to pause several times to wait for the noise to die down.

Security guards hustled a number of demonstrators out of the conference
hall. Two protesters held a banner reading: "Betrayed by governments".

South African Foreign Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, who was chairing the
session, called for the hecklers to stop and described the outbursts as
"totally unacceptable."

Delegates were initially angered when Mr Powell criticised President Robert
Mugabe for exacerbating the food crisis in Zimbabwe and pushing "millions of
people to the brink of starvation."

Heckling continued when he went on to condemn Zambia, which is also facing a
hunger crisis, for rejecting genetically engineered corn that Americans "eat
every day".

Campaigners also registered their dissent when Mr Powell defended his
administration's environmental record and its efforts to help the poor in
the developing world.

A wave of noise erupted when he said: "The United States is taking action to
meet environmental challenges, including global climate change."

The US has been hammered for refusing to ratify the Kyoto Protocol on
climate change, which many countries view as crucial for reversing a global

The Earth Summit is set to draw to a close later, after ten days of
wrangling over environmental safeguards and strategies to minimise poverty

Delegates have reached a compromise deal and UN officials are preparing the
agreed proposals for final adoption by the full summit.
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125 Zim farmers head to Zambia

Lusaka - About 125 white farmers who have been unable to stay on their land
in Zimbabwe have gone to neighbouring Zambia to explore the possibilities of
settling in the country, the state-run Times of Zambia said Wednesday.

The farmers are expected to visit Mbala, a agricultural town situated in
northern Zambia where they will conduct soil tests to determine which crops
would be suitable to grow, the paper said.

"I can confirm that we have received about 125 white farmers who have
indicated to government that they want to invest in agriculture," Zambian
Vice President Enoch Kavindele said, according to the paper.

"We believe that their input will add value to the development of the land,"
he added. - Sapa-AFP
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Arrest Mugabe - SA farmer

Cape Town - A Robertson farmer with property interests in Zimbabwe has
lodged a complaint with South African prosecuting authorities against
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe for alleged crimes against humanity.

Richard Barry has called for Mugabe's arrest and prosecution in terms of an
international statute which South Africa adopted as law last month and which
allows for perpetrators of crimes against humanity, war crimes and genocide
to face prosecution in South Africa under certain circumstances.

The announcement was made at a press conference in the Democratic Alliance's
offices in Parliament.

DA justice spokesperson Dr Tertius Delport said Barry's sworn affidavit
would be faxed to National Director of Public Prosecutions Bulelani Ngcuka
and the original would be lodged with the provincial director in Cape Town.

It could not be immediately established whether Mugabe, who was attending
the Earth Summit in Johannesburg, was still in the country.
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