The fantasy world of Zanu PF is summed up by the luxurious mansion in Harare built by the Chinese for Vice President Chiwenga.
Embroiled in another ugly divorce case, General Chiwenga roped in the army to evict his latest wife, Marry, from their marital home in the capital’s luxurious Borrowdale Brooke area.
He said the house was of ‘sentimental value’ to him – but apparently not enough to want to move back in there, resorting instead to the nearby Golden Villa Peacock Hotel owned jointly by the Defence Ministry and a ‘Chinese investor’.
But his lavish new ‘white house,’ as its been dubbed, is now apparently ready for its ‘president’. Truckloads of goods and groceries have been delivered. Poor unMarry has gone to live with her parents (see: https://www.thezimbabwemail.com/zimbabwe/vp-chiwenga-builds-new-luxurious-mansion/).
The hubris of Zanu PF can also be seen in the ravings of the party’s Director for Information and Publicity, Tafadzwa Mugwadi, who says Zimbabwe could soon become a one-party state which will regard any opposition as rebellion and retaliate (see: https://news.pindula.co.zw/2021/03/05/we-will-soon-make-zimbabwe-a-one-party-state-and-view-people-like-chamisa-as-rebel-leaders-zanu-pf-official/).
Every time Mugwadi opens his mouth he causes trouble. The sort of trouble that has now seen the national chair of the MDC Alliance Thabitha Khumalo attacked in her Bulawayo home by two men who broke in during the night. Khumalo was beaten with a knobkerrie and stabbed in the hand. She said she believed the attack was politically motivated (see: https://www.newzimbabwe.com/mdc-alliance-top-politician-thabitha-khumalo-attacked/).
An article in Newsday by Paidamoyo Muzulu goes to the heart of the Zanu PF problem. ‘This is the age of making our own reality’, he says (see: https://www.newsday.co.zw/2021/03/mathema-masks-education-mediocrity/).
Muzulu points to the new standards created by Zanu PF for unemployment: not bound by international norms but pretending that Zimbabwe is among the top countries for employment.
‘Our unemployment level is below 10%, according to the national statistical agency. The irony of the low unemployment rate is that the government is busy saying it wants to create jobs, secure investment, build new industries. The question is: Who are the jobs being created for? It becomes clear that Zimbabwe has masked its unemployment figures in order to hide the rot, a comatose economy amid the plunder by political elites and their hangers-on.’
He continues: ‘The government says everyone who is economically active is employed. This includes vendors, those tending their fields and everyone else who in the preceding three months had some casual employment — they are all employed. This thinking is further projected in the hare-brained idea that Zimbabwe would be an upper-middle class economy by 2030. It is an administration hell bent on ticking the boxes — having quantitative growth at the expense of the living standards of its people.’
- The new US President Joe Biden has extended for a year the sanctions against the Zanu PF elite, citing a lack of political reforms (see: https://www.zimlive.com/2021/03/03/united-states-renews-zimbabwe-sanctions-cites-growing-repression/).
- Zimbabwe has been downgraded in the world freedom ratings falling from ‘partly free’ last year to ‘not free’ this year’. A report by Freedom House said: ‘The decline is a result of government’s heavy handedness in dealing with dissent, arrest of opposing voices, journalists, total failure to address rampant corruption and its overbearing approach to the judiciary.’ (See:https://www.newzimbabwe.com/zimbabwes-freedom-ratings-fall-amid-state-crackdown-on-dissent/.)
- Human Rights Watch has condemned the forcible eviction without compensation of some 13,000 members of the Shangani minority in the Chiredzi area. The government says the land is wanted for a type of alfafa (lucerne). See: https://www.explica.co/zimbabwe-hrw-denounces-the-forced-eviction-of-a-minority-of-zimbabwe-in-the-southeast-of-the-country/.)
- Because of the coronavirus we can no longer physically meet outside the Zimbabwe Embassy in London, so we have a virtual Vigil while the restrictions continue. We ask our activists to put on Vigil / ROHR / Zimbabwe regalia and take a photo of themselves holding an appropriate poster reflecting our protest against human rights abuses in Zimbabwe. The photos are uploaded on our Flickr site.
- For Vigil pictures check: http://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/. Please note: Vigil photos can only be downloaded from our Flickr website.
- The Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe (ROHR) is the Vigil’s partner organization based in Zimbabwe. ROHR grew out of the need for the Vigil to have an organization on the ground in Zimbabwe which reflected the Vigil’s mission statement in a practical way. ROHR in the UK actively fundraises through membership subscriptions, events, sales etc to support the activities of ROHR in Zimbabwe. Please note that the official website of ROHR Zimbabwe is http://www.rohrzimbabwe.org/. Any other website claiming to be the official website of ROHR in no way represents us.
- The Vigil’s book ‘Zimbabwe Emergency’ is based on our weekly diaries. It records how events in Zimbabwe have unfolded as seen by the diaspora in the UK. It chronicles the economic disintegration, violence, growing oppression and political manoeuvring – and the tragic human cost involved. It is available at the Vigil. All proceeds go to the Vigil and our sister organisation the Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe’s work in Zimbabwe. The book is also available from Amazon.
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