A dead parrot – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary: 3rd December 2016

The dead parrot sketch from Monty Python’s Flying Circus says everything we need to know about the new bond notes. (see: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4vuW6tQ0218). For those who are not familiar with this old BBC television comedy, the sketch is about a customer who goes into a pet shop complaining that he had been sold a dead parrot. The shopkeeper says the parrot is not dead, just resting after a long squawk.

Source: A dead parrot – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary: 3rd December 2016


The Zimbabwean economy seems to the Vigil to be a dead parrot. With police rushing to crush any sign of dissent over the introduction of bond notes, it was left to the diaspora in London to show the contempt with which Zimbabweans regard the latest Zanu PF rip-off.

The Vigil was particularly angered by the abduction and torture of Ishmael Kauzani after the abortive bond note protest in Harare on Wednesday. He is a member of our sister organisation Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe and is in hospital in a critical condition.

‘Mugabe uses bond notes to buy wheelchair’ read one of the posters in our demonstration outside the Embassy today during which Fungayi Mabhunu in our Mugabe mask was pushed around the Vigil in a wheelchair. He was urged to shoot himself rather than carry out his threat to rule until he is 100.

A central message was a display of one hundred trillion Zimbabwean dollar notes. Bond notes were shown as the successor to the dead, deceased, defunct Zimbabwean currency in the form of Mickey Mouse monopoly money.

Our demonstration was dedicated to the bravery of people like Ishmael, a Tajamuka activist and chair of the Unemployed Youth Organisation. Nqobizitha Dumakude Khumalo of the People’s Democratic Party went to visit him. He reports: ‘Kauzani was probably spotted in town and tailed. He boarded a kombi on the way home, A twin cab  without number plates followed the kombi. As they were entering Kuwadzana the car overtook the kombi and ordered it to stop. Two men then got into the kombi and instructed Kauzani to disembark. He refused and the other passengers supported him after which the men took out pistols and threatened to shoot. Kauzani had no option but to obey.

They first assaulted him and then threw him into their car. They drove along Bulawayo Road then veered off into some bushes where there were at least three other cars of identical make. The occupants are said to have celebrated his capture. It is then that they started to interrogate him about Tajamuka, its source of funding and the other members of the group.

He was also asked about the number of trained people in Tajamuka and the manner of the training they had. All this time they were mercilessly pounding him with clenched fists and booted feet. They stripped him naked and stole his cellphone and the little cash he had. They expressed their strong desire to kill for Mugabe and said that they didn’t care what human rights organisations and the international community thought. As they assaulted him they challenged him to call Trump for help.

They kicked him on the chest and face and stepped on his face and crushed his feet with heavy sticks. Before they left one of them warned him to run away or they would finish him off if they found him still on the spot. Poor Kauzani could not walk, the best he could do was crawl slowly and painfully. They returned a second time and found him still groaning and moaning as he tried to drag himself away.

They started assaulting him again lifting him high in the air and letting him fall. Many times he blacked out. Finally they said they were going to do something to ensure he did not commit mischief again. They ran him over with their car. Had he not twisted away they might have crushed him. However they ran over his two legs breaking one and severely bruising the other. They then threw him into their car and drove back into town, dumping him at Pamuzinda in front of shocked revellers who thought a corpse was being dumped on them. He was stark naked. People crowded around him and he gave the cell number of his wife. A car was found and he was carried to hospital where he is till now.’ (http://www.zimeye.net/graphic-violence-how-cio-goons-tried-to-kill-kauzani/).

We are reminded of another ROHR activist Tichanzii Gandanga who was abducted on 22nd April 2008. His legs were run over 6 times by a 4×4 truck leaving him severely injured. It looks like its back to the future again in the run up to the 2018 elections.

Other points

  • We took a collection for Ishmael. If anyone else wants to contribute please contact co-ordinator@zimvigil.co.uk for bank details.
  • Thanks to those who arrived early to help set up: Mercy Bayipayi, Rashiwe Bayisayi, Patrick Chatukuta, Benjamin Chigamba, Flemming Diza, Kevin Gondo, Isabell Gwatidzo, Deborah Harry, Sibongile Kadzima, Etines Kapiya, Jean Kawara, Fungayi Mabhunu, Phillip Mahlahla, Darlington Mlambo, Sharon Moyo, Eletha Mpofu, Lloyd Mudzengerere, Roseline Mukucha, Alfredy Mukuvare, Fungisai Mupandira, Simbarashe Mutero, Mduduzi Ndlovu, Jennipher Sabe, Maxmus Savanhu, Douglas Tavengwa, Maureen Tavengwa and Oliviah Tichana. Thanks to Roseline, Sharon, Maureen and Cathrine Musa for looking after the front table, to Simbarashe for selling ‘Mugabe must go / has gone’ wristbands, to Flemming, Tawanda Chitate, Heather Makawa and Alice Shimika for handing out flyers and to Phillip, Benjamin, Alfredy, Isabell, Mduduzi, Patrick, Honest Madondo, Kevin and Douglas for putting up the banners.
  • Thanks to the members of ROHR Central London branch who brought drinks and refreshments to fundraise for ROHR: Deborah Harry, Mercy Bayipayi, Heather Makawa, Chido Makawa, Tawanda Chitate, Maxmus Savanhu, Fungisai Mupandira, Fungayi Mabhunu and Cephas Maswoswa. Thanks to Cephas for bringing the wheelchair for a decrepit Mugabe.

For latest Vigil pictures check: http://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/. Please note: Vigil photos can only be downloaded from our Flickr website. The facebook page for our sister organisation Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe (ROHR) (https://www.facebook.com/ROHR-Zimbabwe-Restoration-of-Human-Rights-301811392835) has been hijacked by destructive elements from a group calling itself ZHRO Zimbabwean HR Charity. Please be advised that any postings on this page are not posted by ROHR.

FOR THE RECORD: 53 signed the register.


  • Monthly Itai Dzamara protest Saturday 10th December. From 2 – 6 pm outside the Zimbabwe Embassy. The protest is to mark twenty-one months since Itai’s abduction by intelligence agents.
  • Swaziland Vigil. Saturday 10th December from 10 am to 1 pm outside the Swaziland High Commission, 20 Buckingham Gate, London SW1E 6LB.
  • ROHR Southampton branch meeting. Saturday 10th December from 12 noon – 1 pm for committee meeting and from 1 – 3 pm for general members meeting. This is ROHR Southampton’s first meeting under its new committee. Venue: Swaythling Working Men’s Club, 1-14 High Road, Swaythling, Southampton SO16 2JH. Contact: Ben Semwayo (Chair) 07401611932, Grace Rukure (secretary) 07462103397 and Reuben Waretza (Publicity Officer) 07946607617.
  • The Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe (ROHR) is the Vigil’s partner organisation based in Zimbabwe. ROHR grew out of the need for the Vigil to have an organisation 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.
  • Monthly Prayer Vigil. Saturday 31st December from 2 – 6 pm outside the Zimbabwe Embassy. Contact Beverley Mutandiro (07412053415) with names of Zimbabwean pastors and prayer groups who might want to participate.
  • Zimbabwe Action Forum (ZAF) meets regularly after the Vigil to discuss ways to help those back in Zimbabwe to fight oppression and achieve true democracy.
  • Zimbabwe Yes We Can Movement holds meetings in London as the political face of ROHR and the Vigil.
  • Zimbabwe Vigil Highlights 2015 can be viewed on this link: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/vigil-news/campaign-news/746-zimbabwe-vigil-highlights-2015. Links to previous years’ highlights are listed on 2015 Highlights page.
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