TEXT only 22 August 2013


Zuma too embarrassed to attend Mugabe inauguration by ZimSitRep – 08-21-2013
via Zuma too embarrassed to attend Mugabe inauguration — Nehanda Radio  The under-fire South African President Jacob Zuma has decided not to attend the inauguration of Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, amid reports he is too embarrassed over the disputed election and the way he handled it. Tension speaks louder than words: President Jacob Zuma walking with the Mozambique President Armando Emílio Guebuza and Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe on their way to the official opening of SADC Summit to be held in Maputo, Mozambique. The inauguration follows the ruling by the discredited Constitutional Court ruling ofZimbabwe on 20 August 2013 that Mugabe is the duly elected president of Zimbabwe. South African Deputy President, Kgalema Motlanthe, accompanied by the Minister of International Relations and Co-operation, Ms Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, will represent the South African Government at the inauguration ceremony. The inauguration is scheduled for 22 August 2013. Zuma was among the first Heads of State and Government to congratulate Mugabe on 03 August 2013 following the announcement of the results by the Zimbabwean Electoral Commission. In his statement, Zuma reiterated South Africa’s readiness to continue to partner with Zimbabwein pursuit of mutually beneficial cooperation. The Southern African Development Community (SADC) summit has praised Zuma for his mediation in the Zimbabwean political impasse but majority of Zimbabweans feel aggrieved that the elections were fraudulent. Since taking over from former President Thabo Mbeki, questions have been raging over South African President Jacob Zuma’s mediation efforts and he appeared to be attendive to the opposition grievances, but this has been proved wrong lately as he appears to have been grotesquely working to aid Robert Mugabe and Zanu PF. Analysts believe South Africa and Nigeria, represented by the African Union election observer mission head Olusegun Obasanjo lend weight to President Mugabe in order to facilitate in their respective counries extended clandestine foreign policy interests as the battle for permanent seats on a reformed United Nations Security Council heats up. Zuma has been credited with being harder on President Robert Mugabe than his predecessor, Thabo Mbeki, but the jury is now out that he has been double-faced on his mediation process. Zimbabwean opposition, especially the out-going Prime Minister Morgan feels betrayed by Zuma. At some point, Zanu PF felt aggrieved at Zuma’s mediation team and process, the South African president was accused of not being hands-on as compared to Mbeki’s mediation team, which yielded the GPA. ‘Mugabe, Zuma are revolutionaries’ In the run-up to ANC leadership contest, analysts felt Mugabe wanted to see the back of Zuma, as he felt the negotiation process was skewed against him, triggering rumours of a tiff between the two leaders. However, Zuma dispelled reports about bad blood between him and the Zimbabwean president, saying the two were revolutionaries, with mutual respect for each other. This has come to fore in the way he has allowed Mugabe to steal an election seemingly with the conniving and approval of the South African President who himself is also facing a tricky election for his party in December this year. Zimbabwe Mail

Media Notice from the Zimbabwe Vigil – 21st August 2013 by ZimSitRep – 08-21-2013
via email Look East for Aid  Zimbabwean exiles in the UK are calling on the European Union to follow the lead of the United States and continue sanctions against the illegal Mugabe regime. They also want all government aid to the 15 member countries of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) to be suspended. The call comes from the Zimbabwe Vigil which has been demonstrating outside the Zimbabwe Embassy in London every Saturday for the past eleven years in support of free and fair elections. The Vigil is to launch a new petition on Saturday addressed to European Union governments. It reads: Following the rigged elections in Zimbabwe, we urge the European Union to reimpose the targeted sanctions on Mugabe and his cronies. We further call on the EU to suspend government aid to all Southern African Development Community countries until they abide by their commitment to uphold human rights in Zimbabwe.’ Vigil leader Ephraim Tapa said ‘Zimbabwe has been betrayed by SADC which has turned a blind eye to blatantly rigged elections. The choice of Mugabe to be their next Chair at the age of 90 underlines that SADC stands for the Southern African Dictators’ Club.’ Tapa went on ‘SADC has swallowed Mugabe’s propaganda that Zimbabwe’s economic woes are caused by sanctions and has demanded that they be lifted. We question why they are siding with Mugabe against the suffering people of Zimbabwe and the sanctions he has imposed on them: poverty, disease and violence. Why should the tax payers of Europe pay for these Mugabe puppets in SADC?’ ‘The UK gives Zimbabwe alone about $100 million a year in government aid despite constant insults from Mugabe, as well as giving hundreds of millions more to the other members of SADC. Altogether the EU gives billions of dollars each year to pay for the misgovernment and corruption of Southern Africa. Why? Let them look East for aid.’ The launch of the petition is part of the global diaspora protest which has seen demonstrations outside Zimbabwe embassies around the 21st of the month since the beginning of last year. Contacts: Ephraim Tapa 07940 793 090, Fungayi Mabhunu 07746 552 597, Rose Benton 07970 996 007 and 07932 193 467. Zimbabwe Vigil Co-ordinators The Vigil, outside the Zimbabwe Embassy, 429 Strand, London, takes place every Saturday from 14.00 to 18.00 to protest against gross violations of human rights in Zimbabwe. The Vigil which started in October 2002 will continue until internationally-monitored, free and fair elections are held in Zimbabwe. http://www.zimvigil.co.uk.

Concern for animals relocated ahead of UN tourism meeting by ZimSitRep – 08-21-2013
via Concern for animals relocated ahead of UN tourism meeting | SW Radio Africa  By Alex Bell Concern is high about the wellbeing of hundreds of animals that have been removed from the Save Valley Conservancy and relocated within the Zambezi National Park, ahead of a UN tourism meeting in Victoria Falls. The UN World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) General Assembly opens this weekend, and over 1,000 delegates from around the world are expected to descend on Victoria Falls for the meeting. This includes diplomats, dignitaries and leading tourism industry officials from 186 different countries. The preparations for the high level meeting have included the translocation of hundreds of animals to boost the presence of game for the influx of international tourists. National Parks was mandated to transport 151 wildebeests, 25 elands, 60 zebras, 100 impalas and 10 giraffes from Save to the Zambezi park. Outgoing Wildlife and Natural Resources Minister Francis Nhema last week said that the presence of game in the Zambezi Park had dwindled for many reasons, including poaching. “The animal population had decreased, in short, due to poaching and other factors and we are now correcting our past mistakes,” Nhema said, while overseeing the first shipment of animals to the park last week. Johnny Rodrigues, the chairman of the Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force (ZCTF) said Wednesday that he is “appalled” by the decision to relocate the animals. Rodrigues said that the process is “sickening” and a “marketing gimmick.” “To relocate these animals just before the UN meeting is a gimmick to try and show the world there is an abundance of game, and act like they are good curators of the country’s wildlife, all to get international acclaim,” Rodrigues said. Rodrigues earlier this year called on the UN to move the meeting somewhere else, because Zimbabwe is not meeting the international regulations governing the trade in wildlife. A petition was started after the death of a baby elephant, which was shipped from Zimbabwe to a Chinese zoo in January. “Zimbabwe is not keeping to the agreements and regulations that govern wildlife protection and conservation. So we agree that the meeting should be boycotted,” Rodrigues said. The UN meeting is already a source of widespread criticism and condemnation, and in the past two weeks there have been calls for UNWTO member states to boycott the event. The UN has been accused of ‘legitimising’ the Robert Mugabe regime by allowing the meeting to go ahead.

MDC-T mulls withdrawing parliamentary poll challenges by ZimSitRep – 08-21-2013
via MDC-T mulls withdrawing parliamentary poll challenges | The Zimbabwean by Adrian Mutigwe Outgoing Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s MDC-T party is considering withdrawing all the 95 petitions it had lodged with the Electoral Court because of financial constraints. Party spokesperson Douglas Mwonzora told The Zimbabwean yesterday that justice had been placed beyond the reach of Zimbabweans. “Now that justice in our own country has been made so expensive we are reviewing our position as regards the elections petitions we had lodged with the electoral court,” Mwonzora said. Media reports this week indicated that Zimbabwe’s Electoral Court is yet to set dates for the hearing of the 95 petitions filed by MDC-T National Assembly losing candidates because the petitioners had not tendered the requisite security of costs fee to the tune of $10, 000 per individual case to the Electoral Court registry. Mwonzora said the other reason was to do with the Constitutional Court judgement that declared President Robert Mugabe had won the contentious July 31 harmonised poll that have been described by Tsvangirai as a “farce and monumental fraud”. “The other reason we are reviewing our position is because the ConCourt has already declared the elections free and fair. So we do not see how any other court, a lower one at that passing a judgement centrally to this one. “The fee being charged by the Electoral Court is designed to deny us not only access to justice but also prevent us from exposing this fraud,’ said Mwonzora. Tsvangirai two weeks ago filed a petition with the ConCourt disputing the results of the hotly contested polls won by Mugabe by 61 percent to the outgoing premier’s 34 percent. Mugabe’s Zanu (PF) also went on to win more two thirds majority of the parliamentary seats on offer. The MDC-T president however went on to withdraw the petition on the grounds that the High Court had sat on an application in which the veteran trade unionist had sought to have the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission forced to grant him access to election material. In Harare, 89 petitions were filed last Friday while six were filed in Bulawayo leaving the total number of petitions at 95. Section 168 of the Electoral Act makes it a requirement for petitioners to tender security of costs as stipulated by the Electoral Court not later than seven days after the presentation of the election petition.

The people speak to “The Zimbabwean” by ZimSitRep – 08-21-2013

Is Mugabe too old to rule for 5 more years?

via http://www.thezimbabwean.co/news/zimbabwe/67885/the-people-speak.html

Last week “The Zimbabwean” asked whether Zimbabweans thought President Robert Mugabe was too old to rule for another five years. Here are some of your responses:“VaMugabe chete chete!!! Pamberi navo, long live Baba my hero. – Theona Chinyanga He is too old to decide. – Charles Matorera And she supports Mugabe but does not live in the same country as “baba”? – Hannes Teessen Old ones must retire and give chance 2 young energetic guys. – David Tandi What are we doing about, you are part of the only few that benefited so l,m not surprised at all.Cronynism, nepotism, is what Zanu (PF) is all about. – Thabani Bhebhe Achembera Mugabe. Taneta nekutongwa nechembere. Thats why our country is burning. – Regis Kaledza He is too Old and he is coming too clever. – Norman Chimuchiti Chimz Indeed old. – Kelvin Kwakukai Zvamuri kutaura, mava kuda kugadzwa mutirongo zvichinzi ndorusununguko. – Ndlovu Chikafu Gift Regai azorore is old tarisai muone akutengesa nyika kumachaina haachisiri Mugabe wataiziwa wekuma 1991. – Bazil Kirton Kirton “Get away satan of Europe” – Patrick Mugoto Food for thought – One being a company owner would u recruit an 89yr old CEO to steer yo organisation thru its strategic objectives.??? If yes, would u do the same for a nation? Personally, l wdnt recruit a CEO who dozes off in board meetings. – Allan Ba Anashe Mutumhe It is a well known fact that Mugabe and Zanu (PF) authored our misery and object poverty, our former liberator turned tyrany, dictator, murderer and achitect of a pariah state. Beside Mugabe and Zanu (PF) have no exclusive right to claim liberation of Zimbabwe because the people of Zimbabwe, the bulk of whom are now MDC suppoters liberated Zimbabwe from colonialism. – Trust Ndlovu He should be prosecuted for Gukurahundi. Why should a mass murderer be lauded as a hero? – Regis Kaledza Of cause yes! Bring back the Zim dollar to those who so love Zanu (PF) that they allowed it to Rig back into power! – Mike Matizanadzo Chembere inotaura mo than 2 hours imi mutikwanire. – Freedom SaMandlo Mukutulu Chembere inotaura mo than 2 hours imi mutikwanire. – Freedom SaMandlo Mukutulu A hero to a handfull but a digrace to the multitudes. – Mthokozisi Nxumalo He always is our leader regardless of the stupid Zanu stealing our democracy. – Ernest Maseya Zimbabwe is burning!!lsnt that answer enough? Mugabe should have retired like in 2005. Whats your 90yr old doing nw? – Regis Kaledza He must be prosecuted for the crimes he commited since 1980.Gukurahundi was declaired as genocide, so how can someone in his right mind regard such a monster as a hero? – Mehleli Ndlovu Mugabe has failed us for 33yrs. He has been fraudently clinging to power since 2000. He has never won an election since MDC was formed. He should accept d verdict of Zimbabweans, just quitting n resting. – Tapiwanashe Mukorovi The thing is his policies ARE not sound,they are against growth and investment and now that there is no opposition to talk of in parliament GOD HELP US ALL!! – Regis Kaledza “Mugabe is not fit to be in the office at that age unless if they put him just to sleep and we are nowhere as a country pliz the age is too much for any normal business of the country Mwari ndatiitirewo nyasha isu vana veZimbabwe tatambura ndatenda” – via SMS Mugabe is the right person to rule for another 5yrs. Lets give him a chance. To MISRULE us yes, bob is the right man. – via SMS Not only old but long overdue. If l wld put a safety lable on him i wld write, ‘keep out of reach of children!’ – from shurugwi, via SMS “Mugabe must rule us for another 5 yrs he is not too old as he is capable and expirienced. He faught for our country” – via SMS “I know he can see us 2 next level where we must be. We must glin some wisdom & resoluteness from the old man to accomplish our purpose as a nation. eutropia.” – via SMS Not to me how can people call a person who has destroyed our country a hero ,please change the title hero on Mugabe and give it to someone who deserves it we are suffering because of that man in so many ways nobody could imagine and l wonder what my parents were fighting for in the war because l dont know what freedom is when l leave in a country that has no water or electricity and no rights for the people this is insane ,hero my foot l consider my parents the heroes here not Bob. – Patience Nyamukondiwa All truth be said Zimbabwe as a nation is on a sick bed. the silence after the voting results should ring warning bells to the powers that be. if not then i would like to think myopia or self imposed myopia is highly detriment. if we seriously ,consider a future for our young, then the status quo has proven over and over that its not the platform for that “future” – Exaverio Dafa “ No mugabe 2 old 2 b even a father of his so called family. He cant rule 5min. 90yrs! ancestors must rest!” – via SMS “Yes, Mugabe will no longer go anywhere but it does mean that we must wait for period.” – via SMS “Pliz Mugabe was too old auraya Zimbabwe nyika ngaitongwe ne MDC – T ine bag rese sama epworth” – via SMS “Its a no-brainer. On 16 april 1980 is a common terrorist…17 april a pseudo “liberator””.. 18 April a bogus armchair politician… 19 April 1980 Mugabe elevated to master criminal. 99.99 percent of mugabelanders laughable COWARDS. Thats all the simple truth n hard facts. ps. I am black” – via SMS “I don’t think age have got problem as long as he still have good policies, plus from my point of view opposition parties are therefore balances and checks” – via SMS People always cannot differentiate between a talent and a curse. A gift/talent converted to be used for worldly benefit and for the glory of the devil becomes a curse. The so called hit song took many to hell, without controvesy the song supported and encouraged fornication. The only help to the life struggling artist: may he repent and be right with God. Satan supported him and used him while the guy was in his good health but now he wants him to hell which is the end of the all unGodly. – Prudence Mudeure He is too old. – via SMS YES. It should even be a debate. Can you trust a 90 year old to make decisions for a nation? – @MsRumby, Twitter Manyepo ese aya murikumbobhadharwa mariiko nhai vanhu imi shame on you. – Robin Justin Lets wait for his first act as President after the Inauguration then we can judge his capabilities. – @MaZimbaTisu, Twitter The elections were not free and fair how can the whole world sit there and watch and do nothing who would vote for a president that is failing to provide water of all things to his people ,Please this is too much how long shall we watch our loved once dying of hunger ,our children not going to school and staying in the dark because the government cannot fix the electricity cables we are suffering because maybe its a crime to be born in Zimbabwe. – Patience Nyamukondiwa

Mugabe ally, Zanu co-founder Enos Nkala dies by ZimSitRep – 08-21-2013
via Mugabe ally, Zanu co-founder Enos Nkala dies – Times LIVE Zimbabwean politician Enos Nkala, who co-founded Robert Mugabe’s Zanu party and was defence minister during a massacre of ethnic Ndebele that killed 20 000 people, has reportedly died. “Nkala died at the Avenues Clinic, Harare, this morning after his admission at the hospital on August 7,” the News Day newspaper reported. He was 81 years old. The cause of death is still unclear. Nkala co-founded the Zimbabwe African National Union (Zanu) party in 1963 to fight against British colonial rule. Zanu came to power after independence in 1980 and later joined the Zimbabwe African People’s Union (ZAPU) to form Zanu-PF, which remains in power. Nkala served various posts in Mugabe governments, including as finance minister. As defence minister he oversaw a state-ordered crackdown by North Korea-trained forces on dissidents in the Matabeleland and Midlands provinces between 1984 and 1987. Around 20 000 people, including women and children, were killed during the massacre named “Gukurahundi”, which means “the wind that sweeps away the chaff before the spring rains” in the local Shona language. Nkala sought to exonerate himself, saying Mugabe directed the deployment of the troops. In the late 1990s Mugabe described the killings as “a moment of madness” but stopped short of apologising for them. Nkala left government following a corruption scandal in which cabinet ministers and officials bought cars for resale using special privileges. He later became a staunch critic of Mugabe’s rule, but last year patched up his relationship with the 89-year-old ruler. Mugabe is set to be inaugurated for a new five-year term Thursday after winning a disputed election last month to extend his more than three-decade rule.

40 heads of state to attend Mugabe inauguration by ZimSitRep – 08-21-2013
via 40 heads of state to attend Mugabe inauguration NewsDay Zimbabwe AT least 40 heads of state are scheduled to attend President Robert Mugabe’s inauguration at the National Sports stadium in Harare tomorrow In an interview yesterday, the acting governor of Harare metropolitan province Alfred Tome said preparations were at an advanced stage. “It’s a huge event which we expect to be graced by at least 40 heads of state or their representatives,” said Tome. “Harare will be provided with 30 buses while all the other provinces will have 10 buses each for those who want to attend the inauguration.” He said people were expected to start arriving at the stadium by 6am and be seated by 9.30 am. The event is billed to be as big as Mugabe’s inauguration as Prime Minister in 1980. He said a number of local musicians, including Alick Macheso and Cde Chinx, complemented by foreign stars, including South African group Mafikizolo. Zambian outfit Amayenge would also perform at the event. Last night government declared tomorrow a public holiday.

Mugabe inauguration: Tsvangirai can’t attend a robber’s party by ZimSitRep – 08-21-2013
via Mugabe inauguration: Tsvangirai ‘can’t attend a robber’s party’ | News | Africa | Mail & Guardian Morgan Tsvangirai will not attend Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe’s inauguration, say the MDC leader’s aides. “Expecting Tsvangirai to attend the inauguration is like expecting a victim of robbery to attend a party hosted by the robber,” said Tsvangirai’s spokesperson Luke Tamborinyoka. “He can’t attend a robber’s party.” Thursday has been declared a public holiday to allow people to attend Mugabe’s swearing-in, which will be held in a 60 000-seat sports stadium on the outskirts of the capital, Harare. It promises to be more high-profile than in previous years, a show of power designed to confer legitimacy amid persistent allegations of electoral fraud. The ceremony had been delayed after Tsvangirai challenged the election results in a petition to the Constitutional Court. On Tuesday, the Constitutional Court cleared the way for the inauguration after ruling that the elections last month were “free, fair and credible”. The ceremony’s organisers said around 40 heads of state have been invited to the event. ‘A massive fraud’ Thousands of Mugabe’s supporters are expected to troop in from across the country. Zimbabwe’s electoral commission declared Mugabe the winner with 61% of the ballot, against his main rival Tsvangirai’s 34%. The elections ended a shaky power-sharing government formed by Mugabe and Tsvangirai four years ago to avoid a tip into conflict following a bloody presidential run-off election. Tsvangirai condemned the election as “a farce” and “a massive fraud, demanding a forensic audit of the election results. Among other complaints, Tsvangirai queried the unusually high number of voters who were turned away from urban areas which are considered strongholds of his party. He also complained that rural supporters of his party were ordered by Mugabe party youth to feign illiteracy and vote in the presence of police and electoral officers. – AFP

Where Elections Have Ended the Questions Have Not by ZimSitRep – 08-21-2013
by Dominic Mhiripiri  via Contemporary African Issues

Recently I found myself hunched on a library cubicle, tucked beside a giant window on the 4th floor of the building, alone, writing, the gentle thrum of summer rain asserting on the massive panes of glass. With my pen and a notebook, I was trying to take on Zimbabwe: the country in southern Africa I call home and maintain a fierce love-hate relationship with. Indeed, there was a feeling that day of writing to an aloof and self-satisfied lover, whose transgressions one has been cataloguing in silence, waiting for an opening to iron things out. But instead of finding new things to rant about, novel problems to propose solutions to, I found myself confronted by the sameness and repetitiveness that characterizes Zimbabwe’s politics. Something else, after all the thinking, crystallized to me: I just didn’t really care anymore. But before I talk about disillusion, here is what happened in Zimbabwe that had me taking to pen and note in the first place: on July 31, President Robert Mugabe and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai contested in presidential poll, the third such duel between the two since 1999. Mugabe, 89, in power since the final days of Jimmy Carter in the White House, he who controls the army and police and the electoral commission and state media and the thoughts his countrymen are allowed to have and the sort of opinions and stances fellow African leaders and their election-monitoring delegations can officially take, won — no, eviscerated Tsvangirai, getting 61% of the presidential vote and sweeping into a parliamentary majority. But it’s never a Zimbabwean election when you don’t see things like this, among a myriad other flaws: almost a million voters prevented from voting in opposition strongholds; a reported 1 million dead voters on the roll; an incumbent and supposed sharer of power who nonetheless reserves a) the right to call a snap election as whim dictates b) the right, should he choose (he never fails to, when cornered,) to unleash state security forces and the army to break a few limbs, gas a few demos, orphan a few hundred young children — or, if you choose to look at it another way, boost demand in the coffin-making industry (we’re looking at several hundred new orders per election cycle. The number peaked, during the 1980s and comprising almost entirely of poor villagers who dared hold “wrong” political allegiances, at around 20,000.) In 2002, in 2008, and now, in 2013, Mugabe has coolly stolen the poll and left Tsvangirai sulking and ordinary Zimbabweans wallowing in a collective, funeral-like reverie of gloom and despair. Zimbabwean elections are thus boringly cliché: predictable and formulaic, especially the part where Robert Mugabe behaves in the exact sort of way one expects Robert Mugabe to behave. The wonder, then, when Tsvangirai walks into the trap. The leader of the MDC-T party (the “-T,” if you can handle the bizzare shock of it, is some kind of surname, standing for “Tsvangirai.”) is an expert reactionary, quick to call press conferences lamenting the punches he got from a bully who has been thumping him at the same spot on the schoolyard, at the same time of the day, having used the same un-clever trap to woo his victim every single time. The maddening lack of vigilance by Tsvangirai is astounding. Taking on Mugabe in an election requires not less than three years of laying the groundwork with unblinking concentration: an election run by an international and diversely comprised body; a new, electronic, public voters’ roll; a diaspora vote for Zimbabwe’s 4 million-plus expatriates; at least a year of nation-wide campaigning, including the use of social media and technology the way they’re used in the 21st century; iron-cast guarantees from the regional bloc (SADC) South Africa, and the African Union that they will not accept anything less than these stringent and open-vote conditions. But if these things seem elementary, they do are entirely lost on the contradictory and indecisive Mr. Tsvangirai, who complains about glaring cheating mechanisms on display a few days before the poll, but goes right ahead anyway and contests, as if hoping from some magical turn of fortunes that somehow wins the poll for him against the reality of time-tested rigging machine. That Tsvangirai lives in this illusory world of magical thinking; that he has the maddening lack of vigilance in pinning down a man who’s been channeling his inner Hitler since the 70’s; that his party’s intellectually hollow but deceptively quasi-religious rhetoric (“a New Zimbabwe is coming”) raises hopes of downtrodden millions – hopes it can’t fulfil; that nowhere in his career has he endorsed Zimbabwe’s right as an independent country that shuns Western paternalism and neo-imperialism (a gap that Mugabe — despite hawking Zimbabwe’s mineral wealth and other economic goodies to China — exploits with devilish glee); that Tsvangirai has clung to the helm of his party since the previous century, aging in the process, with next-to-nothing to show; that he’s a flip-flopper on key issues and deaf to any advice that doesn’t caress his well-fed ego (at MDC-T rallies, one has to brave a litany of unmelodious jingles that praise the name of Morgan Tsvangirai, the bravery of Morgan Tsvangirai, the cultural totem of Morgan Tsvangirai, the goodness of Morgan Tsvangirai, the fatherliness of Providence of Morgan Tsvangirai, the wife of Morgan Tsvangirai, the stylish pants and classy shoes of Morgan Tsvangirai — before all of these virtues are repeated, for good measure, in a speech by none other than — you guessed it — Morgan Tsvangirai) and shallow vision (he caused his party’s split, in 2006) — all of this, and more, could be excused had Tsvangirai not been the sole hope of the people against Mugabe. Zimbabweans—that demographic  of ordinary, impoverished, bullied, exiled, terrorized human beings—usually ignore Tsvangirai’s flaws (or do not grasp their enormity,) and rally behind him. To attend a Tsvangirai rally is to encounter a tempestuous and loud-ringing sea of red (the party colors) and to see, if you can imagine it, hope and belief written on beaming, brown faces that are usually ashy and smeared with the sweat of south-of-the-poverty-line daily toil. To lead on suffering people and then foolishly disappoint them, on the scale (and frequency) that Tsvangirai has, is simply, unacceptable. To be Zimbabwean at home right now is to know that your ordeal will make great fodder foreign newspapers, but soon, even that will quiet down, forgotten, and the reality and dreariness and hopelessness of knowing you exist under Robert Mugabe’s rule will continue. To know, without any illusions, that yours is the land where evil triumphs over good (complete with the evil grin and a fat cigar smugly clenched between gleaming teeth.) To be away from home — say, to be away at your Ivy League university, is to realize, slowly, that you’re becoming the person that, in the days of youthful idealism, you feared you might become: the indifferent and resentful citizen who cares and stresses about the choice between hazelnut and java chip frappuccino, at Starbucks, more than the choice between mute acquiescence or an aggrieved uprising on the grim streets of Harare. As I tried to write down thoughts in the library, I noticed that all things considered, I no longer cared. In the full-blown meaning of the word care. To care, after all, is to maintain one’s capacity for outrage in times of stupidity and injustice from demagogic dictatorships. MLK has some sort of saying about becoming silent about the things that matter. But the truth here, in the maddening déjà vu of yet another a stolen Zimbabwean election, is that caring subjects one’s feelings, one’s inner core, to the unflinching battery that comes from investing hope in unchanging tyrants or their challengers who arrogantly choose to dwell in the bubble of unassuming, unsophisticated, unvigilant, un-combative, uncreative, and outdated approaches to modern politics. One, after all, still has his own life and professional goals to chase, and the choice to raise the middle finger to events one’s own native land, despite the selfishness of it (and the occasional anguish that lurks underneath,) is a rational, perfectly acceptable, if self-seeking one. In thinking of home, after my library blackout, I found myself caring, deeply, about something else. A few days before the poll,  Chiwoniso Maraire, ambira music genius of world renown, at the age of 37 inside a hospital a few hundred meters outside of my old high school, in my hometown, died. She died of a pneumonic illness, and I imagined bereft medical resources as a possible, if not decisive factor, in her demise. Even though I had idolized her, I had never met Chiwoniso. Yet I felt grief in its unalloyed, first person form: deep, pricking, and on many levels. It seemed hers had foreshadowed the death, a few days later, of a much broader thing in Zimbabwe, and its African neighbors: hope. And democracy. And courage, given African leaders’ spineless reaction to Mugabe’s charade. The stark contrast of Chiwoniso’s age to Mugabe’s — 37 versus 89 — rubbed salt onto a fresh wound. The young and gifted abassador of a culture, a people, seemed sacrificed at the altar of some callous Fate, all as a prelude to the chest-thumping, uncontested victory of an ancient Tormentor, fork in hand, over ordinary people. So in the wake of it all, the Zimbabwe I actively think about is not the one of Robert Mugabe and Morgan Tsvangirai and their skirmishes that only trample underfoot the same ordinary people they each purport to represent — my friends, relatives, old schoolmates, fellow citizens. What I dwell on these days is the Zimbabwe, imagined and celebrated and chronicled and evoked, in yearning voice and proverb and libation and turns of phrase in Shona — and the high-sounding twang of a mbira instrument held, stroked, by the peerless and immortal hands of Chiwoniso Maraire.

– See more at: http://globalconversation.org/2013/08/07/zimbabwe-where-elections-have-ended-questions-have-not

BILL WATCH 40/2013 by ZimSitRep – 08-21-2013

BILL WATCH 40/2013

[20th August 2013]

Constitutional Court Dismisses Tsvangirai Election Petition

Declares President Mugabe Duly Elected

At 2.30 pm this afternoon, 20th August, Chief Justice Godfrey Chidyausiku handed down the unanimous decision of the Constitutional Court dismissing Mr Tsvangirai’s election petition. The short document setting out the court’s decision starts with a brief statement of the court’s conclusion that an election petition challenging a Presidential election “is unique, in that it cannot be terminated by a withdrawal.  In terms of section 93 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe, once such an application or petition is launched it can only be finalised by a determination of the Constitutional Court by either declaring the election valid, in which case the President is inaugurated within 48 hours of such determination, or alternatively by declaring the election invalid, in which case a fresh election must be held”.  It followed that Mr Tsvangirai’s purported withdrawal of his petition before the court determined the matter was “of no legal force or effect, save to indicate to this Court that the applicant had abandoned or does not persist with his allegations”.  In addition to dismissing the petition the court made the following determination and declaration in terms of section 93(3) and (4) of the new Constitution: “1.     THAT the Zimbabwe Presidential election held on 31 July 2013 was in accordance with the laws of Zimbabwe and in particular with the Constitution of Zimbabwe and the Electoral Act [Chapter 2:13]; 2.      THAT the said election was free, fair and credible.  Consequently, the result of that election is a true reflection of the free will of the people of Zimbabwe who voted; and 3.      THAT Robert Gabriel Mugabe was duly elected President of the Republic of Zimbabwe and is hereby declared the winner of the said election.” The petition was dismissed with costs on the ordinary scale.  The court said full reasons for judgment will be released in “due course”. [Full text of the decision available on Veritas website www.veritaszim.net or, for those without Internet, from veritas@mango.zw]

Way Now Clear for Inauguration on Thursday 22nd August

Mr Mugabe must be sworn in within 48 hours of the Constitutional Court’s declaration that he was duly elected President – that is, by no later than 2.30 pm on Thursday 22nd August [Constitution, section 94(1)(b)].. On his return from the SADC Summit on Sunday afternoon, Mr Mugabe anticipated the court’s decision by announcing, that his inauguration would be on Thursday.

Summary of Constitutional Court Hearing on 19th August

The Constitutional Court’s decision finally puts an end to Mr Tsvangirai’s election petition, as was probably inevitable following Mr Tsvangirai’s attempted withdrawal of the petition last Friday 16th August and the brief hearing of the matter before the full nine-judge bench of the Constitutional Court on Monday 19th August.  That hearing, which is summarised below, took place in accordance with the direction of the Chief Justice issued on Friday after the lodging of Mr Tsvangirai’s notice of withdrawal.  [See Bill Watch 39/2013 of 18th August for details of the lodging of Mr Tsvangirai’s election petition on 9th August, events leading up to the filing of a notice of withdrawal by Mr Tsvangirai’s lawyers late on Friday 16th August, and the Chief Justice’s subsequent direction that all the legal practitioners in the case should appear before the Constitutional Court on Monday 19th August at 10 am.]

Necessity for a hearing and a determination

This point was raised by the Chief Justice at the commencement of Monday’s hearing.  He questioned the legal effect of Friday’s notice of withdrawal by Mr Tsvangirai in the light of section 93 of the new Constitution, which provides that the Constitutional Court must “hear and determine a petition lodged”. Advocate Mehta, appearing for Mr Tsvangirai, informed the court that his instructions were restricted to confirmation of his client’s withdrawal of the petition and making submissions on costs. Mr Hussein, for President Mugabe and Mr Kanengoni for the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission [ZEC] and its chairperson both submitted that a hearing and determination by the court were essential.  Once a petition is lodged, they submitted, a hearing and determination are necessitated by the Constitution. Mutamangira, for the Attorney-General, who applied to participate in the case as a “friend of the court” in terms of section 167(5)(c) of the Constitution, agreed. The court then approved the participation of the Attorney-General and ruled that a hearing and determination were necessary.

The “nominal” hearing ensued

Advocate Mehta said that he had only been instructed on the withdrawal of the petition and had no instructions on which he could make submissions on the merits of the petition. The court took note that Advocate Mehta had nothing to say on the merits of the case. The court proceeded to hear submissions from the lawyers for both sides on costs.

Submissions on costs

Advocate Mehta, in accordance with his client’s instructions, confirmed Mr Tsvangirai’s tender of costs. Mr Hussein submitted that the petition contained generalisations but no evidence and that it purported to rely on evidence to be filed or led at a later date.  This meant that there was no evidence before the court supporting the petition.  He asked the court to order Mr Tsvangirai to pay President Mugabe’s legal costs on the higher scale.  Justice Malaba questioned whether such an order would be appropriate, given that Mr Tsvangirai, by withdrawing, had avoided wasting the court’s time any further. Mr Kanengoni said his clients abided by the opposing papers they had filed, and asked for their costs on the ordinary scale. Mr Mutamangira, for the Attorney-General, did not ask for costs.

Petitioner’s imputations against the Constitutional Court

The Chief Justice then raised with Mr Mehta the question whether Mr Tsvangirai’s lawyers were in agreement with statements in the petition that impinged on the integrity of the court.  In response Mr Mehta dissociated himself and his colleagues from the averments in question, saying they were the petitioner’s personal views.

Adjournment to 20th August for judgment

The court then adjourned.  The Chief Justice said its decision on the petition would be handed down at 2.30 pm on Tuesday 20th August. [See court’s decision above]

Succession, health doubts loom over new Mugabe term in Zimbabwe by ZimSitRep – 08-21-2013
via http://www.trust.org/item/20130821061028-c61a8 By Cris Chinaka

HARARE, Aug 21 (Reuters) – When Zimbabwe’s veteran president Robert Mugabe suavely hosted journalists at State House on the eve of last month’s election, there was only one question that caught him off guard. Asked if the presence of Defence Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa by his side meant that he was his chosen successor, Mugabe paused awkwardly amid laughter and then delivered an unconvincing reply that Mnangagwa just dropped by to see him. Three weeks after Mugabe’s re-election in a disputed vote called a fraud by his main rival but accepted by his African neighbours, there are no doubts Africa’s oldest leader is holding firmly on to the presidency after 33 years in power. But the question of whether, at 89, he can serve out all of his new five-year term – and who will succeed him if he steps down or dies – will hang uncomfortably over his re-installation as Zimbabwe’s head of state on Thursday. It will also be crucial for the future of the southern African nation, which is rich in platinum, gold and diamonds but still emerging from a decade-long recession brought on by political violence and government-backed land seizures. Mugabe faces few immediate threats. Longtime rival Morgan Tsvangirai has been stunned by the enormity of his defeat in an election he says was rigged from start to finish; last week he dropped a challenge to Mugabe’s re-election that his Movement for Democratic Change had filed in the Constitutional Court. The court confirmed on Tuesday that Mugabe’s win was “free, fair and credible” and had reflected the “will of the people”. Faced with a meek but broad endorsement of the result by African regional and continental bodies, Western governments must now decide whether to shun the man they have reviled as a ruthless dictator for years, or attempt a rapprochement in the interests of practical diplomacy. Mugabe’s non-committal answer on the succession is typical of a wily and inscrutable guerrilla politician who fought a liberation war leading to independence in 1980, crushed a revolt once in power and has outfoxed rivals in and outside his fractious ZANU-PF party. Mugabe comes across as feisty and sprightly for his age. He has denied reports that he has prostate cancer and told reporters he intends to serve his full new term. But his advanced years and the persistent questions about his health, compounded by successive medical check-up visits to Singapore, means that his endurance in office carries its own cloud of uncertainty for Zimbabwe’s future. “Mugabe and Tsvangirai have fought their last elections … one way or another. Whether it was stolen or not, this was a historic election that prefigures change,” Stephen Chan, Professor of International Relations at London’s School of Oriental and African Studies, told Reuters. The United States, a major critic of Mugabe, has made clear it does not believe his latest re-election was credible and that a loosening of U.S. sanctions on Zimbabwe “will occur only in the context of credible, transparent and peaceful reforms that reflect the will of the Zimbabwean people”. The European Union, which had eased some sanctions, is considering its own response after expressing concern about alleged irregularities and lack of transparency in the election. SUCCESSION SCRAMBLE? Adding to Zimbabwe’s uncertain outlook is the perception that another Mugabe term will intensify a succession battle within the ruling party. ZANU-PF has a history of feuds and splits dating back to its bush war against white minority rule in what was then Rhodesia. “Vicious faction-fighting is in the DNA of ZANU-PF,” said Stephen Ellis, a professor at the African Studies Centre in Leiden, the Netherlands. Defence Minister Mnangagwa, a 66-year-old guerrilla war veteran and Mugabe’s main security enforcer, is widely seen as a succession contender, along with Vice President Joice Mujuru and State Security Minister Sydney Sekeramayi. Mnangagwa, known as “the Crocodile”, earned a hardline reputation as security minister in the 1980s for his role in suppressing rebels in the western province of Matabeleland. Human rights groups say about 20,000 civilians were killed in the crackdown led by the army’s North Korean-trained Fifth Brigade. Mnangagwa, Mujuru and Sekeramayi have been members of Mugabe’s cabinet since 1980, and played a major role in ZANU-PF’s re-election machine. During campaigning, Mujuru addressed rallies, Mnangagwa acted as Mugabe’s presidential election agent and Sekeramayi was the ruling party’s point man for the legislative elections in which ZANU-PF was declared the overwhelming winner. On the face of it, Mujuru, 58, another liberation war veteran whose nom de guerre was Teurai Ropa (“Spill the Blood”) appears to hold an advantage in the succession stakes because as first party vice president she acts for Mugabe when he is away. But under a new constitution adopted earlier this year, ZANU-PF would choose a new president if Mugabe stepped down or were to die before the end of his term. Many fear this could lead to a scramble for power among ambitious aspirants. “For all Mugabe’s problems, he has been able to keep the peace in ZANU-PF, and has commanded the authority to keep a potentially chaotic party organised,” Zimbabwean political analyst Eldred Masunungure said. “Mugabe’s absence could lead to chaos because he has managed the party in such a manner that nobody else has his kind of unquestionable authority,” he added. MNANGAGWA VS MUJURU Some party insiders say Mugabe has skilfully played the Mujuru-Mnangagwa rivalry to strengthen his own position. Nine years ago, when Mnangagwa appeared headed for election to the ZANU-PF vice presidency with the backing of six of the country’s 10 provincial party structures, Mugabe stepped in to engineer Mujuru’s appointment to the job. There was speculation at the time that Mugabe penalised Mnangagwa for his leadership ambitions and that Mujuru’s husband, ex-army commander Solomon Mujuru, had prevailed on the president to promote his wife. This week, breaking with party tradition that individuals do not actively promote themselves for leadership, Mujuru attacked party rivals and presented herself as the moderate leader ZANU-PF needs after Mugabe, local media reported. “We know that the president will soon be 90 and God might decide to call him … I am best placed to succeed Mugabe if he departs whether by natural wastage or voluntary retirement,” she told a private weekly newspaper in surprisingly frank comments. ZANU-PF insiders say Mujuru may have been frustrated by Mugabe’s statement that he plans to serve his full term to 2018. Far from mellowing his anti-Western and nationalist rhetoric, Mugabe has told his critics since the election to “go hang” and promised to increase the pace of “indigenisation” policies forcing foreign-owned firms to sell majority stakes to black Zimbabweans. John Campbell, an Africa expert at the New York-based Council on Foreign Relations, said he saw Zimbabwe going into “a holding pattern”, with little prospect of significant economic and political change until Mugabe disappears from the scene. “I don’t think anything will be settled until he’s gone,” said Tawana Shomwe, 35, who sells recharge cards for mobile phones on the streets of Harare. (Additional reporting by MacDonald Dzirutwe in Harare and Pascal Fletcher in Johannesburg; Editing by Pascal Fletcher and David Stamp)

Expanded Zim Parliament to host more bodies than seats by ZimSitRep – 08-21-2013
via Expanded Zim Parliament to host more bodies than seats | SW Radio Africa  by Tererai Karimakwenda Over 100 members of Parliament will have no place to sit when the new session begins, as the chamber can only accommodate 160 legislators at a time. The new Parliament building, approved by cabinet last year, has still not been built and no information has been provided by government since. The outgoing Parliamentary chief whip for the MDC-T, Innocent Gonese, explained that the problem started when the senate was re-introduced in 2005, but the number of MPs was not reduced to compensate for the increased numbers. “Even in the last Parliament, when we had official days like the official opening day, it was really a crisis because that Parliament used to accommodate 150 MPs before the increase, and prior to that it was just 100 members of Parliament,” Gonese told SW Radio Africa Tuesday. The MDC-T chief whip said members will either have to wait outside, sit in the public gallery or stand. He added that if all the MPs were to turn up for a session, it would be overcrowded and practically impossible to fit all 270 members into the chamber. There are now 210 elected members and 60 women added via the new constitution. “The unfortunate thing is that we have continued to expand the numbers in the national assembly without a corresponding increase in the seating capacity, which is in any event impossible. An ultimate solution would be the construction of a new Parliament building,” Gonese explained. Last year the state run ZBC news reported that local government Minister Ignatius Chombo, who chaired a committee tasked with locating a site for the new Parliament, had identified Mt Hampden in Harare as a fitting location. The ZBC broadcaster said cabinet had approved the project, at a cost of $400 million. But according to Gonese the project has been on the drawing board for quite a long time and he is not sure whether any progress, including the laying of the foundation, has been made. Speaking to journalists on Monday, the Parliamentary Clerk Austin Zvoma sounded as though the problem had surprised him as well, saying: “As you may appreciate, it is now evident that the facilities here were not meant for 350 members, plus staff and the visitors because this is the only Parliament building in the country.” The controversial decision to increase the number of Parliamentarians in the country from 210 to 270 was approved by both MDC-T and ZANU PF legislators in the coalition government, as part of the new constitution. The increase makes Zimbabwe’s Parliament one of the largest in the world. Gonese said this was a “bloated” Parliament when viewed in the context of Zimbabwe’s population, which is estimated at 13 million. This embarrassing oversight symbolizes the way Zimbabwe has been run for 33 years under the Mugabe regime. There has been no concerted effort or political will to repair roads, street lights, vehicles, and sewerage and power infrastructures, leading to breakdown of basic services. Corruption and mismanagement also rule the day.

Expelled MDC-T independents form new party by ZimSitRep – 08-21-2013
via Expelled MDC-T ‘independents’ form new party | SW Radio Africa by Nomalanga Moyo Disgruntled former members of the MDC-T who were fired for standing as independents in the July 31st elections, have formed a new political party. The Zimbabwe Independents Alliance (ZIA), is seeking to capitalise on the tensions within the MDC-T in the wake of the recent election, according to outspoken former Magwegwe legislator Felix Magalela Sibanda. Sibanda, who is the new party’s spokesperson, said the MDC-T had shot itself in the foot by imposing candidates and sidelining long-serving party supporters. He said when they complained to the leadership, most of the unhappy would-be legislators were either ignored or mistreated by the MDC-T’s standing committee. “The issues that the MDC-T is moaning about concerning the recent national poll is exactly what the party did during the primary elections: The leadership distorted the electoral college in favour of their friends, bussed in people to vote,” he added. Sibanda said he and 57 others who stood as independent candidates saw this as a sign that the MDC-T had drifted away from the founding values of democracy and transparency. “And that is why the ZIA has been formed – to provide Zimbabweans who have toiled for 33 years under an undemocratic system with an alternative.” Sibanda revealed that the party has started building up its structures and designing publicity material, in preparation for a national congress later in the year. He said the party will in the meantime be headquartered in Bulawayo, and added that the bulk of the membership so far was drawn from those who went into an independents’ coalition, after being disowned by the MDC-T. Sibanda was circumspect about revealing the substantive leadership of the new party saying he feared doing so would expose them to ongoing, post-poll reprisals. However, some of those who stood under the banner of the Independent Candidates Coalition (ICC) include the Chairman Aaron Chinhara, Tedius Chimombe, the organising secretary, and Holy Dzuda , the treasurer. They contested the Redcliff, Gweru Urban, Gweru ward two council seats respectively. The MDC-T has already said that it is unfazed by the formation of the breakaway group, saying political participation and affiliation is every Zimbabwean’s democratic right.

MDC stood no chance in court by ZimSitRep – 08-21-2013
via LETTER: MDC stood no chance in court | Letters | BDlive to Business Day – South Africa You are right that the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) needs a period of deep introspection and potential change in leadership if it is to challenge Zanu (PF) in future, but you are mistaken in criticising the withdrawal of the court challenge to the election (At the end, a mere whimper by MDC, August 20). While the MDC should be commended for attempting to always play by the book and respect the law, it had no hope of success before Zimbabwe’s highest court. Indeed, the Constitutional Court (previously the Supreme Court, under the old constitution) is a symptom of exactly what is wrong with the country — every arm of the state is controlled and enmeshed by the ruling Zanu (PF). The military, police, senior civil servants and judiciary do not answer to the people of Zimbabwe; they answer to the politburo of the ruling party. It was not always this way. The pre-2001 Supreme Court, headed by Anthony Gubbay, made notable strides in advancing personal freedoms against Zanu (PF) hegemony. In the 1990s, the court ruled as unconstitutional the detention without due cause of people walking in public who failed to carry their identity documents.The court forced the government to grant to female citizens equal immigration rights for their spouses as those granted to spouses of male citizens. It ruled against the monopoly of the state-owned Post and Telecommunications Corporation, allowing Econet Wireless to set up the country’s first mobile network in 1997. Most significantly, in 2001 the court ruled that the government’s backing of land seizures was unconstitutional without due process and compensation, but this proved to be too much for Zanu (PF). Unable to remove judges through legal means, the ruling party resorted to harassing and threatening judges into early retirement, replacing them with pliant partisans such as current Chief Justice Godfrey Chidyausiku, a former Zanu (PF) MP who, as a high court judge, had astonishingly publicly blasted his superiors in the Supreme Court for overruling his judgments on land matters. The judiciary has since gone rapidly downhill. One of the first acts of the Chidyausiku Supreme Court was to uphold the land seizure process. The concept of recusal due to the fact they were beneficiaries of the process did not enter the minds of some of the justices, including Chidyausiku himself. They upheld Jonathan Moyo’s media laws that killed off the only independent daily newspaper and refused to force the government to comply with its own laws and license private radio or television stations. When the high courts of the country cancelled the election results of several Zanu (PF)-held constituencies after the 2000 parliamentary elections and ordered by-elections due to either fraud or violence, the party appealed to the Supreme Court, which failed to rule on the cases during the life of that parliament, allowing Zanu (PF) to hold the seats until the next election. Basic common sense eluded the court in 2005, when it upheld the right of Zanu (PF) parliamentarians to sentence a fellow MP (the MDC’s Roy Bennett) to jail with hard labour. No matter what the offence, there is no precedent in any democracy anywhere for party politicians to use their parliamentary majority to send their colleagues to jail. I could go on, but in short almost every case since 2001 involving the opposition versus the government has been decided in the government’s favour or in a manner beneficial to the prospects of Zanu (PF). The Constitutional Court has already shown it was not interested in a free, fair and credible election by insisting the poll be held when none of the conditions for such a poll existed. To expect it to admit as much by cancelling the election was pure dreaming by the MDC. It is far better for the MDC to return to the more realistic task of selling an alternative vision of the country to the public. By the time the next elections come around, in 2018, much of the electorate will have no memory of a functioning, stable country that was Zimbabwe before 1998.With the advance of the internet and social networking overcoming the blatant bias of state media, the battle for the minds of these voters can still be won. Suhail Suleman Newlands

CONSTITUTION WATCH 33/2013 by ZimSitRep – 08-21-2013


[20th August 2013]

Giving Immediate Effect to the New Constitution – Part I Introduction There are changes that must be made to our statute law immediately to give effect to the new Constitution.  These changes, which should have been made before the end of the last Parliament on 28th June, are:

  • ·      those needed to give effect to the provisions of the new Constitution which came into force on the day it was gazetted as an Act, i.e. 22nd May.  The provisions that came into force then were those dealing with the Declaration of Rights, citizenship, elections, the conduct of public officers, particularly members of the security services, and provincial and local government.  Even though the necessary changes were not made when they should have been, they still have to be made — indeed, they become more urgent as time goes on.  Apart from the fact that they will make the Constitution effective, they will have to be made if Zimbabwe is to become the open, tolerant multi-party democracy envisaged by section 3 of the Constitution.
  • ·      those needed to be ready for those provisions in the rest of the new Constitution which will come into effect when the President-elect is sworn in this coming Thursday 22nd August, but are not catered for in existing law, e.g. the establishment of the National Prosecuting Authority.

Of course it will also be necessary to harmonise other laws with the new Constitution on a continuing basis and this will be covered in future Constitution Watches, but we will start with pointing our changes that are urgent.

Declaration of Rights

As stated above, the Declaration of Rights is already in operation, and several statutes should have already been amended to reflect this: (a)  Right to life [section 48 of the new Constitution] The new Constitution permits the death penalty to be imposed, as under the present constitution, but only in more limited circumstances:

  • ·      It can be imposed only for “murder committed in aggravating circumstances” [whatever that means].
  • ·      A court must have a discretion whether or not to impose it.
  • ·      It can be imposed only on men between the ages of 21 and 70.

The Criminal Procedure and Evidence Act [CP&E Act] and the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act [Criminal Law Code] will have to be amended to give effect to these restrictions.  At present they do not do so:  under sec 337(a) of the CP&E Act the death sentence is mandatory for murder, whether aggravated or otherwise, unless the court finds there are extenuating circumstances; and it may be imposed on men and women between the ages of 18 and 70.  The Criminal Law Code goes further and allows people to be sentenced to death for attempts, conspiracies and incitements to commit murder. Grave injustice will be done if these amendments are not made immediately, because if they are not people may be sentenced to death unconstitutionally. [Note: there has been at least one person sentenced to death since this provision of the Constitution came into force.  Presumably the sentence will have to be set aside on appeal.] (b)  Rights of arrested, detained and accused persons [sections 50 & 70] The new Constitution gives the following new rights:

  • ·      Arrested persons must be allowed, without delay and at State expense, to contact anyone of their choice, including their relatives or legal practitioners.
  • ·      Arrested persons must be allowed, without delay though at their own expense, to consult their medical practitioners in addition to their lawyers.
  • ·      Arrested persons must be informed of these rights promptly.
  • ·      Arrested persons must be released pending charge or trial “unless there are compelling reasons justifying their continued detention”.  In other words, they are entitled to bail in the absence of compelling reasons to the contrary.
  • ·      Arrested persons must be released after 48 hours unless their further detention has been authorised by a “competent court” [not by a police officer or a justice of the peace].  Their detention cannot be extended in any other way.
  • ·      Arrested, detained and accused persons have a right to silence and must be informed of that right.
  • ·      Accused persons are entitled to legal aid “if substantial injustice would otherwise result” and must be informed of that right.
  • ·      Accused persons cannot be convicted of an act or omission that is no longer an offence [section 70(1)(l)].  Hence, once a statutory provision creating an offence is repealed, no one can be convicted of the offence.  This is contrary to the current position, enshrined in section 17 of the Interpretation Act, that persons can be prosecuted for conduct which was criminal when it was committed, even if the statute creating the crime has since been repealed.
  • ·      Detained persons must be allowed to communicate with and be visited by their relatives, their religious counsellors, their lawyers, their medical practitioners and anyone else of their choice.
  • ·      Anyone may apply for an order of habeas corpus to obtain the release of a detained person or to ascertain his or her whereabouts;  it is not necessary for the applicant to establish locus standi.
  • ·      Convicted persons have a right, “subject to reasonable restrictions”, to have their cases reviewed or to appeal to a higher court against conviction and sentence [section 70(5)].  This right probably renders unconstitutional section 44 of the High Court Act, which obliges convicted persons to obtain leave to appeal before they can appeal against judgments of the High Court.

None of these rights is provided for in our statute law, which will have to be amended urgently to provide for them.  In particular, the following provisions of theCriminal Procedure and Evidence Act [CP&E Act] will have to be amended:

  • ·      the provisions allowing arrested persons to be detained for longer than 48 hours before being brought to court will have to be repealed.
  • ·      section 121, which allows a person who has been granted bail to be kept in detention for up to seven days if the Attorney-General wishes to appeal, must be amended.  While the National Prosecuting Authority [which from now on will replace the prosecuting functions of the Attorney-General] must be able to appeal against unjustified grants of bail, but the seven-day period within which to formulate the grounds for appeal is far too long [and has in the past used as a punitive measure without any appeal being lodged]:  it should be reduced to 24 or at most 48 hours.
  • ·      the provisions allowing courts to draw adverse inferences from pre-trial silence, and requiring accused persons to outline their defences at the commencement of trials, will need to be repealed or extensively amended in order to respect accused persons’ right to silence.

(c)  Freedom of assembly and association [section 58] The Public Order and Security Act should be amended to prevent abuse.  In its present form the Act severely restricts freedom of association, and the following amendments must be made as soon as possible:

  • ·      There should be a statement in the Act reminding police officers to accord everyone, regardless of political affiliation, their fundamental rights of freedom of peaceful assembly and association.
  • ·      Section 25 of the Act, which requires notice of public gatherings to be given to the police, should be amended to make it clear that the police have no power to refuse permission for peaceful gatherings, and that failure to give notice will not render a gathering unlawful or make the convenor liable to criminal prosecution.
  • ·      Magistrates, rather than police officers, should be given power to prohibit gatherings, and then only if the gatherings are likely to lead to public disorder.
  • ·      Whenever the police use force to disperse a gathering or to quell disorder at a gathering, they should be compelled to prepare a detailed written report and to provide the convenor of the gathering with a copy of the report.

(d)  Freedom of expression and freedom of the media [section 61] The new Constitution expressly protects academic freedom and freedom of the media [which includes protection of the confidentiality of journalists’ sources of information].  It also guarantees freedom of establishment of broadcasting and other electronic media, subject only to licensing procedures that are necessary to regulate the airwaves and are independent of State, political or commercial control.  State-owned media must be impartial and allow fair presentation of divergent views and opinions. The following changes will be needed to give effect to these provisions:

  • ·      At present members of the Broadcasting Authority of Zimbabwe are appointed by the President after consultation with the Parliamentary Committee on Standing Rules and Orders and the responsible Minister [who is himself appointed by the President]. There is no provision to ensure that the President’s appointees are politically neutral or represent a reasonably wide variety of opinions.  The Broadcasting Services Act must be amended to make such a provision.
  • ·      The boards of the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Company [the successor to the statutory ZBC] and the Mass Media Trust are appointed in terms of the company’s articles and the trust’s trust deed respectively, but legislation can and should be enacted to require the boards to be politically neutral so as to ensure compliance with section 61(4)(b) of the new constitution [which obliges State-owned media to be impartial].
    • ·      The Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act should be repealed or, at the very least, amended:
    • ·      to remove the restrictions on foreign participation in the production of local newspapers and other media. The restrictions stifle investment in the media and violate freedom of expression — a right which is enjoyed by foreigners as well as Zimbabweans;
    • ·      to remove the need for journalists to be accredited under the Act before they can be employed on a full-time basis by media publishers, as this unjustifiably restricts the scope of their work.
    • ·      Section 33 of the Criminal Law Code, which makes it a crime to insult the President, should be either repealed entirely or amended so as to reduce its scope.  An executive President is a politician and should be open to the same criticism and satire, whether fair or unfair, as all other politicians.
    • ·      The University of Zimbabwe Act [and Acts establishing other universities] should also be looked at to ensure that its provisions do not infringe academic freedom [for example, by giving the Minister power to approve or disapprove the University’s statutes and ordinances].

(e)  Rights of women [section 80] The new Constitution prohibits discrimination between men and women, particularly in relation to custody and guardianship of their children. The Guardianship of Minors Act will need to be revised so that it confers equal rights on mothers and fathers — at present it assumes that fathers are the guardians of children [Section 3] and favours mothers in regard to the custody of children. The Marriages Act and the Customary Marriages Act need to be amended to ensure that marriage of girls under 18 is prohibited in both civil and customary law. The legislative changes necessitated by the new Constitution’s provisions on citizenship, elections, the conduct of public officers, particularly members of the security services, and provincial and local government, which should have been made immediately after these sections of the constitution came into force on22 May will be dealt with in Part II.

You will celebrate on Thursday by ZimSitRep – 08-20-2013
via LATEST: Thursday a public holiday | The Herald Government has declared Thursday a public holiday to afford all people an opportunity to attend President Mugabe’s inauguration at the National Sports Stadium in Harare. Deputy Chief Secretary to the President and Cabinet Dr Ray Ndlukula confirmed the declaration today.“Yes, Thursday from what I gather, will be a public holiday, which will afford everybody an opportunity to come and celebrate this big occasion,” he said. Acting Harare Metropolitan Provincial Governor Mr Alfred Tome urged Zimbabweans to come in huge numbers to witness President Mugabe’s inauguration. Speaking at a preparatory meeting in Harare today, Mr Tome said they were expecting a bumper crowd at the celebrations. “We have got a great event and the whole world will stand still on that day,” he said. “On that day the Head of State and Government will be inaugurated and I am appealing to all people to come in your large numbers. “We have been allocated 30 buses for Harare and we are appealing to private transporters to also help.” Mr Tome urged Zimbabweans across the political divide to grace the grand occasion. In Harare, Mr Tome said, people would be picked from the usual pick points dotted around the capital. “It is our day as Zimbabweans. There are no losers and winners in this thing, it is Zimbabwe that has won,” he said.

Zim in conservation dilemma by Shelley – 08-20-2013
via The Financial Gazette – Zim in Conservation Dilemma Nelson Chenga ZIMBABWE is in a dilemma: Its elephant population of over 100 000 jumbos now far exceed the country’s carrying capacity by threefold. This is at a time when the country is prohibited from trade in tusks because of a nine year moratorium on ivory trade, which expires in 2017. The moratorium was imposed by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES), fearing that it would stimulate poaching of elephants, which are threatened with extinction. But now the country no longer has enough space to store its rich harvest of ivory and hides from elephants that are dying either as a result of animal control, natural deaths, breakages and confiscation. With the US$15,6 million worth of ivory in its stores now proving to be an albatross around the necks of the Zimbabwe National Parks and Wildlife Management Authority (ZNPWMA), getting rid of the 62 374,33 tonnes of elephant ivory is as difficult as raising enough money to look after the ivory vault. The ZNPWMA cannot export the ivory because it is bound by the conditions set by CITES, which prohibits any form of trade in endangered species and products except through prescribed rules. In 2007, CITES permitted the southern African countries of Botswana, Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe to conduct one-off auctions of a combined 108 tonnes of ivory to buyers from China and Japan. After the auctions, which were conducted in 2008 and where Zimbabwe sold only five tonnes, the nine-year moratorium on ivory sales followed. With nearly 100 000 elephants, Zimbabwe has the third largest elephant population in Africa. Others are Kenya, Namibia and South Africa. The ZNPWMA says it no longer has space to store the ivory, collected monthly at an average of 1,1 tonnes. “…governments the world over fund conservation, the opposite is true for Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority. The authority is therefore saying elephant ivory in store represents animals that are already dead and why should we not use the dead to look after the living animals?” mourned Caroline Washaya-Moyo, the public relations manager for ZNPWMA. Although Zimbabwe is currently under a nine-year long CITES ivory trade moratorium, it can still make use of its elephant products by, for example, working on its tucks and hides before exporting the value added products. The country, which consumes less than a tonne of ivory annually, is also allowed to sell its tusks quarterly and has since 2007 done so only about three times. It also can sell its elephant hides locally, export live elephants to scientifically-approved destination as well as use elephant hair. The country’s huge elephant herd, which is now difficult to manage and straining the environments, has become an easy target for poachers. Without adequate funding to carry out proper anti-poaching exercises, ZNPWMA is faced with a frustrating situation. “Law enforcement requires operational equipment such as patrol kits, uniforms, radio communication kits, vehicles, boats, tracking equipment (e.g. GPS) which the Authority is in dire need of. Currently most of the existing field equipment is old and obsolete. The current scenario is that poachers are getting sophisticated. In some situations poachers are now using ‘high-tech’ gear including night-vision equipment, veterinary tranquilisers, silencers and helicopters to carry out illegal activities,” Washaya-Moyo pointed out. ZNPWMA chairper-son, Jerry Gotora explained: “Zimbabwe got five annotations that allow domestic trade in ivory internally. However, because of lack of capacity we have a limited consumption rate of the domestic ivory. We are not able to consume all the ivory we produce.” ZNPWMA manages some five million hectares of land or 13 percent of Zimbabwe’s total land area. Its mandate is to manage Zimbabwe’s entire wildlife population, whe-ther on private or communal lands. ZNPWMA is not funded by government and is mandated to find own sources of revenue to sustain its operation. Despite having a proud history of sound management that endeavours to preserve the unique flora and fauna heritage of Zimbabwe, the authority’s gains hang in the balance at the most critical time in its struggle to protect the world’s largest land mammal — the elephant.

Next step: Batoka Dam by Shelley – 08-20-2013
via VictoriaFalls24 – Next step: Batoka Dam Zimbabwe pays US$40M Kariba debt, paving way for Batoka Dam The Zimbabwe Government has paid US$40 million towards its Federation-era power debt to Zambia, paving the way for construction of the Batoka Gorge hydro power station. The payment was made through power utility ZESA, which is wholly-owned by government. The debt was for the shared cost of the Kariba Dam construction and the associated infrastructure. It also included proceeds of the sale of assets belonging to Central African Power Corporation (CAPCO), a power firm jointly owned by the two countries as members of the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland which was dissolved in 1963. CAPCO was running the Kariba power project for the two countries but was disbanded in 1987. ZESA spokesperson, Fullard Gwasira, confirmed the development last week saying the debt payment would help pave the way towards the construction of the Batoka Gorge hydro power station. He also indicated that the debt balance would be paid within the next seven months. “We have already paid US$40 million to Zambia as part settlement of the US$70,8 million debt,” Gwasira said. “The balance will be cleared on or before March 2014 as we have total commitment to our side of the bargain to ensure that we have a clean bill with our Zambian counterparts. ZESA Holdings has rendered its cooperation to its Zambian counterparts, a move that will go a long way to ensure the smooth execution of the Batoka Hydro power project to achieve security of electricity supply.” Zimbabwe and Zambia last year signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to jointly construct the Batoka hydro electric project with each country expected to get 800MW of electricity from the project, a development which would help boost power supply in the two countries. The agreement on the project, situated about 50km downstream of Victoria Falls on the Zambezi River, was however dependent on Zimbabwe’s commitment to pay off the debt it owed Zambia over CAPCO. The Batoka project, estimated to cost about US$3 billion is expected to be built and operated by a private company for a period of years before transferring ownership to the two states. Fast facts about Kariba Debt: – Zimbabwe Government paid money towards its Federation-era power debt to Zambia US$40 million – Remaining debt US$30,8 million – Looking to clear the rest of the debt by March 2014 Batoka Hydro Electric Project: 800MW of electricity Batoka Gorge Project location: 50km downstream from Victoria Falls Cost of Batoka Project: US$3 billion Recently the State Procurement Board awarded tenders to China Machinery Engineering Company and Sino Hydro Corporation to expand Hwange and Kariba power stations respectively. The expansion of Hwange will see the additional of two units with a combined generation capacity of 600MW while the expansion of Kariba Power station will add 300MW of electricity to the national grid. Zimbabwe has also embarked on the refurbishment of its power stations to boost generation capacity. From: vicfallsbitsnblogs.blogspot.com By: Pete Roberts

UNWTO 2013: Biggest event on the International Tourism Calendar by Shelley – 08-20-2013
via VictoriaFalls24 – UNWTO 2013: Biggest event on the International Tourism Calendar It started as a pipe dream, then it became reality and today, Zimbabwe and its neighbor Zambia are on the brink of hosting the biggest event ever on the international tourism calendar – the United Nations World Tourism Organisation General Assembly. In less than a week, the 20th session of the UNWTO General Assembly opens in the twin tourist resort towns of Victoria Falls and Livingstone, whose common denominator is the mighty falls on the Zambezi River shared by the two countries. How time flies? This is exactly two years after the two Southern African countries won the bid to co-host the General Assembly at the 19th session held in Guaengju, South Korea. The UNWTO General Assembly is a bi-annual mega tourism event that is held on equal rotational basis between the 186 member states, meaning Zimbabwe will not be able to host this event in the next 360 years, everything else being equal. UNWTO 2013That makes the Victoria Falls UNWTO a very special event for Zimbabwe and its neighbor, Zambia whose next four or so generations might never get the chance to witness the event on their soils. What makes it even more special is the fact that this is the first time such a mega tourism event has been held in Southern Africa and the second ever time on African soil, after Senegal hosted it in 2007. Everything is at stake, from image to business as Zimbabwe and Zambia seek endorsement of their tourism brand as safe and attractive tourist destinations from the tourism family that includes ministers and captains of the tourism and hospitality industries from the 186 member states. Also expected are international tourist wholesalers. Therefore, it is our time to make this event a success and we must leave no stone unturned to prove to the world that Zimbabwe is a safe and attractive tourist destination, especially after successfully holding elections that have been endorsed by all observer missions as free, fair and credible. Fast facts about UNWTO: Dates:  24th – 29th August 2013 Last UNWTO meeting:  2 years ago in Guaengju, South Korea Number of member states: 186 UNWTO venues: Held on equal rotational basis between the member states Next time Zimbabwe will be able to host the UNWTO: 360 Years The elections that had seen many getting worried that they might explode and plunge the hosting bid into smoke, actually shocked many because of their peaceful manner. The way the elections were held is indicative of the country’s desire to prove to the world that Zimbabwe is serious about business. The UNWTO indaba is about unlocking the tourism value of Zimbabwe and Zambia’s tourist attractions to the world for long-term benefits. For Zimbabwe, UNWTO is actually about promoting the new tourism brand — “Zimbabwe: A World of Wonders” – after the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority successfully rebranded the country from “Zimbabwe — Africa’s Paradise”, which was viewed as outdated and offensive to the non-Christian community. For Zimbabwe, the indaba brings the eyes of the world to a country that for so long has demanded a change of perceptions from the world after being tainted and soiled by the Western governments over the land reform programme and indigenisation policy. The UNWTO indaba provides the greatest opportunity to clear the bad image as the world’s tourism family will have first-hand experience on what Zimbabwe offers. With preparations having been successfully hailed by Vice President Mujuru, who chairs the organising committee, the tourism and hospitality industry in Zimbabwe is certainly ready to prove to the world that it can compete with any tourist attraction in the world in terms of both attractiveness and safety. This is our time to make a point to the world. The eyes are on us and we should use the last few days left to put final touches and make the UNWTO General Assembly a memorable African event.

Parks authority embarks on restocking programme by Shelley – 08-20-2013

via Chronicle – Parks Authority embarks on restocking programme

Victoria Falls Reporter PARKS and Wildlife Management Authority of Zimbabwe has embarked on a restocking exercise at Zambezi National Park to replenish the dwindling wildlife population at the game reserve. Addressing conservationists, tour and adventure operators during the official release of wildlife from Save Conservancy in Chiredzi to Zambezi National Park on the outskirts of Victoria Falls yesterday, the outgoing Minister of Environment and Natural Resources Management, Cde Francis Nhema said the was exercise would help boost the wildlife under- populated areas. He attributed the decline in wildlife population to rampant poaching coupled with the breakdown of artificial sources of water at the Zambezi National Park. “We have noted that poaching and migration led to the depreciation of wildlife in the Zambezi National Park. This park used to have a high volume of wildlife and today we are restocking and I wonder where we went wrong. We need conservation programmes, we need to educate our people on the need to protect our wildlife because it is our duty to protect them as they are part of our national heritage,” he said. So far 101 wildebeest, 20 eland, 17 zebra and 98 impala have been translocated to Zambezi National Park from Save Conservancy. Ten giraffes will also be translocated to the park. “This exercise is being done to increase wildlife population within the park in tandem with our bio-diversity conservation programmes and sustainable tourism within our protected areas,” said Cde Nhema. He said the population boost for the park was a remarkable step in the conservation history of Zimbabwe in the Kavango-Zambezi (KAZA) Transfrontier Conservation Area (TFCA). Cde Nhema said it was pleasing to note that the animals were coming from the Great Limpopo TFCA which was established 13 years ago. “If we create more space for wildlife we shall definitely witness more of these occasions as our TFCAs become more productive and our partnerships in conservation become even stronger,” he said. Cde Nhema said Zimbabweans should take pride in their wildlife and desist from poaching. “Now that the restocking exercise for the park is almost complete, let me warn would be poachers that any illegal entry into the park will result in them facing the full wrath of the law,” he said.

The African Condition: Are we independent or grooming tyrants, free or imprisoned? by ZimSitRep – 08-20-2013

via email By  Andrew M Manyevere
  In 1957 Malaysia like Ghana become independent. These were former British territories who had matured, so to speak, to assume self-government. To the North of Africa were Arab states, south, west and east were more African states still suffering under the York of colonialism.   Colonialism would mean, the usual which is, colonies subdued under French, Portuguese and British powers and administered from these countries’ metropolitan overseas than from their cities of Africa. We could run down colonialism from multiple angels including that of neglecting to educate the Africans on governance and the political processes of democracy, but we still have to acknowledge to our dictatorial tendencies which does not believe in multiparty democracy.   We have again and again demonstrated that we hate foreign powers to control how we should deal with others, as though alluding mainly to the way we deal with each other as fellow Africans. In the 1950s there was a realization which caught the British Empire forcing the Empire to begin decolonization as a process of handing back Africa to the Africans. All colonial master nations begun handing back colonies to trusted educated African leaders who promised to follow democratic norms on, in part, using of elections as a process to changing a government.   Studies, which we will not carry here or verify are abound on African decolonization and the challenges of leadership choices then as it highlights itself even in today Africa. Primary above all else was the fact that the leadership pledged to protect and uphold human rights in accordance with universal human rights declarations. Possibly the African leaders then and still as is now, do not want to confess that they do not understand constitutional change and that they are now more vulnerable to world vultures who want to fight for world control while under developing their countries to be the worst economic success of their citizenry. This can only be caused by avarice including the need to remain in power for ever.   African leadership has always emerged from rugged poverty background to assuming diabolically rich heights in no time and adopt a callous stance on human rights, all because of the love for power than for humanity. Many of these leaders had gone abroad to hunt for better education and become elitists hence their preference for making wealth fast that the majority of the masses who give them power were still in abject poverty. May be the mistake is in the way we have beheld these men rise and given them a ‘godly’ status authorizing them, as it were, to muzzle all electoral rights and ridicule genuine deliverables for democracy into mockery through ‘rigging’.   They rig elections in order to remain in power. Rigging has taken many forms and corrupting peers is the rigging element number one. When corruption begins in the president it goes through all systems undeterred and to the administration making the system corrupt. Opposition political parties have tried to take away people’s minds from corruption to focus on honest means of attaining victory in a transparent and visible mode to all participants. Opposition leaders have, as a result, suffered brutal attacks, murder and unwarranted arrests.   Each time real opposition comes up people notice difference between corrupt leaders and clean leaders but it does not last long. Corruption is sweet and riches is what we all want and long to get ultimately. So those in power have not found it hard to bribe upcoming opposition leadership and followers into being rich and so-called well to do people in the community. The price to get to this level of wealth accumulation has been to align with corrupt leadership in order to further individual goals at the of community welfare.   The only group vulnerable to exploitation and who are ready to take on to change are, in Africa, the agrarian peasants. From being the most agitated against colonial control and domination, African leadership has become the most uncaring and daring on exploitation of the masses. They forget people suffered for them to get to the hierarchy of power. To show they are guilty they have all built strongest armies even though there has been no wars going on, on the continent for the duration of the decolonization period. To this date, Africa has no threat from anybody than itself.   The military budgets have gone up in some countries to half of the countries’ total budgets, with hospital budgets scoring the lowest in priority. Indications are clear: Africa has understood the use of power manipulation and not the management of power distribution or wealth creation. Elections on the continent are frequented by Chinese, Israelites, Russians or other African nations ‘technologies’ all to indicate protectionism and a move to socialist colonization.   It is not money African leaders look for, it is security they obtain through mortgaging our countries to illegal bilateral arrangements. None of the common person in his/her poverty could ever stand and honestly acknowledge the benefits of tying Africa to China or Russia, except noting the rapid amassing of Africa’s subterranean wealth in a much uglier way than did the west. It appears avarice among African leaders, by default, will tie the inheritance of Africans to the Chinese and Russians for many years to come. It is lamentable and short sighted of current leadership.   The appointment of Robert Mugabe in the SADC hierarchy can only signal lacking in vision, statesmanship in current leadership. No wonder why long queues of children and mothers relocating still flows daily from one African country to another while these men and women spend time, delighting at their political decay and emptiness they have built. The organs that are supposed to make decisions on the future direction on African, has never been poorly manned as currently is the position. African leadership has lost direction completely on what to make of Africa. People need revise the charter for better direction. Too much taxes funds are being spend in promoting social gatherings while common man remained locked in prison of poverty.   Africa has lowest doctor per capita. There is rising poverty among common people and on the contrast a sharp rise in wealth sharing among the petite bourgeoisie and little spread far and thinly on middle men. In the case of Zimbabwe this middle man bribes the upcoming young grooming them on a vision of making money so fast, expanding a cascade poorly focused leadership on the continent. The misconception and wrong perception comes from the way African nationalism conveyed the context of decolonization. Race featured as the factor than system as the cause for sustaining unchanging attitudes and behaviours that are focused on selfish ownership from accumulation that denies masses basic means upon to survive.   Ordinary people have no future and cannot feel ownership of anything in many African countries. There are no jobs and people leave schools to face poverty. In the case of South Africa, Zuma would not even have the courtesy of sending one word of condolences for miners gunned down under his watch for committing no offense. It is the same Zuma who at SADC meeting (July 2013) has the audacity to dance in congratulating Mugabe on robbing elections from Zimbabwe people. How can one condemn colonialist on one hand and yet on another hero worship structures and results that go beyond colonial emulation and create insatiable love to stay in power for ever. The image for the young generation on the continent is marred signs of incomplete tasks from immature overgrown babies. Africa need to urgently revise her stand or we face numerous uprisings just as we witness in many Arab nations today.   The group of young mercenaries, inducted so by African leadership in order to protect their leadership rot, is impervious to change and loves comfort without paying any prize for it. The African leadership have sacrificed the common peoples making them fodder for their long stay in power. While the mercenary group has risen to the occasion protecting the petite bourgeoisie for fear of losing their huge gains of being slightly better than the common person.   Listening in the corridors of power, to the SDAC or AU jovial times among leaders, one hears some of the worst morass from a people who regard very little of the plight of the common person. Sometimes one is left with a unique feeling that these guys have surely forgotten common people’s plight except when they connect it to some threat directed on one of them. It is tragic that the ordinary people themselves do not have anyone who stands for them in the circumstances. Zimbabwe may have come from thirty three years back but it shall not go that far again without significant and sharp contradictions setting masses free.   Robert Mugabe, for example, highlighted the fact that he is emotionally unstable and, like a baby, has great fears of threats and would do anything until he has control. His apology to both Zuma and Lindiwe (Zuma’s advisor) during recent (17 August 2013) SADC meeting is indicative of how protective a club the African Union and all her sub regional committees are for African leaders irrespective of irregularities committed on governance or during conducting of the elections.   What then is the difference between Africa, China and Russia and the west? Political maturity to accept that others can present stronger arguments to convince the electorate and win. Failure to see others as equals but to believe in self as the best even in worst of circumstances. Leadership changes come through natural wastage or repeat of same personality than through and election. Regrettably African leadership fights her own people through pretext of blaming the west for all her political deficiencies.   Zimbabwe Diaspora has to study this African condition and work towards a Zimbabwe for all irrespective of race, tribe, religion or political party affiliation. We know home people are waiting: Since some are still on mountain tops afraid of Zanu hooligans who come at midnight to burn them in their homes. Thank you all those who stood by the oppressed masses and displaced Diasporas, and who have remained strong against rigging of elections in 2013.Thank you Botswana, out of the whole fifty-four nations, for unwaveringly standing with the dying masses in Zimbabwe.  Africa has once again let down the down trodden masses. We recall with pain how leaders like Ian Khama and people of Botswana, Julius Nyerere of Tanzania defied Africa and pushed out Ugandan dictator. We cherish these moments and we will remember them for Zimbabwe masses in the time of need.


Fewer exhibitors register for Harare Agricultural Show by Shelley – 08-20-2013
via The Zimbabwean – Fewer exhibitors register for Harare Agricultural Show “We have so far registered 745 commercial and industrial exhibitors compared to last year’s 750 over the same period of time,” said Heather Madombwe, ZAS spokesperson in an interview. “In the livestock and agric-produce sectors we have so far recorded 295 and 360 exhibitors while in home-industries where we target the less privileged members of society we have 300 entries,” she added. Madombwe said though booking of stands starts as early as February most exhibitors were opting for the last minute rash. “Though it is cheaper and convenient to book early most exhibitors were registering late. Booking rates increase as Show days come closer. “February rates for a stand would be $15 per square-meter meaning a three-by-three meter stand would cost $180 including VAT, ZTA levy and municipal rates for the nine days during show,” she said. Madombwe said ZAS was offering cheapest rests compared to other national exhibitions. “In March the rates increase to $18 per square-meter, April $21, May $25 and August $40 per square-meter respectively,” said Madombwe. Main entrance to ZAS along Samora Machel Main entrance to ZAS along Samora Machel One local exhibitor, Yusuf Kamwendo of Kadoma told The Zimbabwean that souring rates to book a stand have made it difficult for him to secure a stand in this year’s Harare Agricultural. “It’s unfortunate that I won’t be participating in this year’s Harare Show as it is now costing over $300 to book a stand for the whole nine days,” said Kamwendo. Kamwendo participated in the just ended Chinhoyi Agricultural Show in his province Mashonaland West which ran from 15-18 August 2013. “In Chinhoyi it cost$50 for the four day exhibition and it was unfortunate that it fell during the mid-month when most people had no monies to buy our products. I am into selling toys and other fun materials,” he said. “Earlier this month I also took part in the Gweru Agricultural Show in Midlands where it was costing $80 for a four-day exhibition,” he added. Madombwe said the main aim of Harare Agricultural Show was to accommodate exhibitors from all walks of life in Harare in particular and Zimbabwe at large and also engage foreign companies based locally. “This year we seven foreign exhibitors companies who would be show-casing in this year’s edition while the Italian Embassy has mobilised eight Italian companies for participate. “Other regional and international countries that would participate include Democratic Republic of Congo, Zambia, South Africa and Israel,” she said.