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

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International Herald Tribune

      Zimbabwe's despot watches his people starve
         By Aryeh Neier IHT  Monday, August 16, 2004

Mugabe's cruelty

NEW YORK Slowly - much too slowly - international opinion is being mobilized
to bring the pressure on the Sudanese government needed to halt the militia
attacks in Darfur that have killed thousands of people and displaced more
than a million. Unfortunately, nothing is being done to stop another African
government that for years has inflicted hardship on its citizens and has now
escalated the cruelty to an unprecedented level.
Large numbers of Zimbabweans, many of them weakened by AIDS, are starving to
death because President Robert Mugabe, an elderly despot, is blocking food
relief for his people. Mugabe is getting away with murder - literally -
because fellow African leaders, notably his South African neighbor President
Thabo Mbeki, are defending him or ignoring evidence against him.
Why would Mugabe block the United Nations World Food Program from delivering
food to hungry Zimbabweans? Last year, about half the country's 12 million
people were getting such assistance. No longer. Mugabe says the country is
having a bumper harvest and relief is no longer needed, but it is hard to
determine whether this is true. Mugabe has shut down the country's main
independent newspaper, The Daily News. The World Food Program has been
denied permission to assess crops. Other sources of independent information
have also been muzzled.
A few brave individuals, such as Archbishop Pius Ncube of Zimbabwe's second
city, Bulawayo, are still speaking out. They report that all around them,
large numbers are dying quietly of hunger and disease. Only Mugabe and his
coterie claim otherwise. They say the farms are yielding a bountiful
harvest. The farms were violently seized under the guise of land reform from
white farmers and their black farm workers by Mugabe's cronies and groups of
armed men who say they fought in the 1970s liberation struggle.
The world has been down this path before. The worst famine since World War
II took place in China in the late 1950s and the early 1960s. Mao Zedong had
initiated his "great leap forward," which included radical changes in
agricultural policies. For a period, it appears, officials in Beijing were
themselves deceived about the consequences. Loyal Communist Party cadres
from around the country sent in glowing reports about record harvests.
When Beijing began to realize that a disaster was unfolding, officials could
not acknowledge this. To do so would be to admit that Mao was responsible
for a catastrophe. No international assistance was sought, and none was
obtained. We now know that at least 14 million people, and perhaps as many
as 30 million, starved to death because a dictatorship could not admit that
the dictator had erred. There were no independent sources of information.
The economist and philosopher Amartya Sen, a Nobel laureate, has long
pointed out that, in our era, famines only take place when governments lack
democratic accountability and suppress the dissemination of critical
information. This makes it impossible for them to correct mistaken policies
in a timely fashion.
When I first visited Zimbabwe, more than 20 years ago, the country was known
as the breadbasket of southern Africa. Its agricultural exports were a main
source of revenue and seemed to form the basis for enduring economic
prosperity. It still had that reputation just a few years ago. The reversal
is due to the land seizures, the repressive policies enforced to facilitate
the seizures and also to the AID one of the hardest-hit countries in
Africa. As elsewhere, the disease is particularly prevalent among those in
their most productive years.
One reason the AIDS epidemic has ravaged the country so severely is that
Mugabe long refused to acknowledge its presence in Zimbabwe. In the era when
the disease was associated with homosexuals, it was impossible to deal with
because Mugabe was so blatantly homophobic. The stigma that still attaches
to those suffering from the disease, despite the sharp demographic shift in
those affected, continues to impede efforts to control its spread.
Mugabe is an effective demagogue. Unfortunately, his victims are his own
black citizens whom he has oppressed and impoverished and who are now dying
in unprecedented numbers.
Aryeh Neier is president of the Open Society Institute in New York.

S epidemic. With an adult infection rate of
more than 30 percent, Zimbabwe is
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American Daily

      Where Have All The Protestors Gone?
      By Murray Soupcoff (03/03/03)

      Isn't it strange how back when Zimbabwe was called Rhodesia and ruled
by a repressive white oligarchy, there were protestors aplenty outside of
that colony's consular offices around the world. However, now that Zimbabwe
is ruled by a just-as-repressive (and perhaps more tyrannical) black despot,
Robert Mugabe, the vocal mobs of idealists protesting against systemic
tyranny seem to have gone AWOL.

      Not that life for black Rhodesians was exactly a picnic under the
white-supremacy regime of Ian Smith, but at least there was still something
to eat occasionally; and the nation's most lucrative employment opportunity
hadn't yet become government-employed bully-boy or torturer.

      Just how bad is life in Zimbabwe these days? Long-time liberal rights
activist Nat Hentoff painted a pretty depressing picture in a recent
syndicated column entitled, "A True Police State". Here's how Mr. Hentoff
describes life under the savage and incompetent Mugabe regime:

      If there were a contest naming which nation's government is the most
vicious at crushing human rights and the human spirit, many countries would
be leading contenders. I would vote for Zimbabwe, ruled by Robert Mugabe --
once its liberator, now its tyrant.

      The United Nations' World Food program reported on Nov. 30 that food
shortages in Zimbabwe are so severe that half the population -- more than 6
million people -- will be in acute need of food by March. But Andrew
Natsios, the administrator for the United States Agency for International
Development, testified before Congress in August:

      "We now have confirmed reports in a number of areas in the most
severely affected region of the country, which is the south, that food is
being distributed to people who are members of Mugabe's political party and
is not being distributed based on need. The children of opposition party
members have been driven away from school supplementary feeding programs in
rural areas."

      In September, Adotei Akwei, Africa Advocacy director of Amnesty
International U.S.A., told The New York Times that "people have been
detained and tortured. In (Zimbabwe) now, literally, no one's safety and
security is guaranteed if there is even the slightest doubt of support for
President Mugabe."

      So much for the progressive post-colonial good life in Zimbabwe. Like
in so much of "independent" black Africa, the people's leftist liberators
have become their jailers. And life has gotten worse not better.

      Yet, despite the pages on pages of retributive post-colonial "critical
thought" still been churned out by left-wing academics about the repression,
exploitation and injustices of Western colonialism, rarely do we hear a howl
of protest from these same sources about the repression, exploitation and
injustices occurring in Zimbabwe and other African dictatorships today.

      One has to wonder what happened to all those impassioned defenders of
the interests and well-being of ordinary black Africans? Where have the
career opponents (on paper anyways) of tyranny and injustice disappeared on
the left? And to paraphrase a much-loved 60's peacenik ditty, where have all
the protesters gone?

      Here's how Nat Hentoff paints the depressing picture of world-wide
leftist acquiescence in the current Zimbabwe tragedy:

      Yet, in November, The New York Times reported that "the South African
foreign minister, Dr. Nkosazana Zuma, said it was time for Western nations
to consider ending penalties they imposed on Zimbabwe. South Africa hailed
Zimbabwe's presidential election in March as legitimate, even though
officials eliminated polling stations in opposition strongholds, and the
police fired tear gas to disperse hundreds of people who were waiting to

      Where is Nelson Mandela, who fought so long and courageously for
democracy in South Africa? Where, in this country, are women's groups; the
black and white clergy that organized against slavery and gang rapes by
government militia in Sudan; editorial writers; and the clamorous
commentators on cable television? Where is Jesse Jackson?

      Well, actually we all know where Jesse Jackson probably is -- in a
luxury hotel room somewhere getting it on with his latest female protege, or
busy shaking down some guilt-ridden white corporation or other. But that
still leaves hundreds of thousands of other professional voices of
conscience in the West who don't seem to have a word to say in defense of
the starving masses of Zimbabwe or anti-Mugabe political opponents rotting
in Mr. Mugabe's many prisons.

      Perhaps it's time for folksinger Pete Seger to revise the lyrics to
his classic folksong as follows:

      Where have all the protestors gone?
      Long time passing
      Where have all the protestors gone?
      Long time ago
      Where have all the protestors gone?
      Emoting on NPR call-in shows every one
      When will they ever learn?
      When will they ever learn?

      Where have all the young idealists gone?
      Long time passing
      Where have all the young idealists gone?
      Long time ago
      Where have all the young idealists gone?
      Taken tenured professorships every one
      When will they ever learn?
      When will they ever learn?

      Where have all the young activists gone?
      Long time passing
      Where have all the young activists gone?
      Long time ago
      Where have all the young activists gone?
      Taken Times editorial jobs every one
      When will they ever learn?
      When will they ever learn?

      Where have all the social utopias gone?
      Long time passing
      Where have all the social utopias gone?
      Long time ago
      Where have all the social utopias gone?
      Filled with starving souls every one
      When will the left ever learn?
      When will the left ever learn?

      Or maybe we all should get back to protesting against President George
W. Bush's recent judicial appointees - regardless of their sterling
qualifications. It makes one feel so much better to make such a hypocritical
and libelous big fuss; and it's a lot easier to do too, isn't it?

      Murray Soupcoff is the author of 'Canada 1984' and a former radio and
television producer with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. He also was
a Senior Partner with Ian Sone & Associates Ltd., Canada's pioneering
social-research consulting firm for many years. And he's now the Managing
Editor of the popular conservative Web site, The Iconoclast
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African Business Magazine

The best of times, the worst of times
by Milan Vesely
The contrasting tourism fortunes of Zambia and Zimbabwe, on either side of
the spectacular Victoria Falls, could not be starker. Zimbabwe's loss has
become Zambia's boon.

The tourist trade, a major source of foreign exchange in some African
countries is now becoming nothing but a distant memory in others. Nowhere is
this more obvious than in Zambia and Zimbabwe - two nations on opposite
sides of one of the 'Seven Wonders of the World', the majestic Victoria

But while Livingston town on the Zambian side is bursting with
dollar-spending foreign visitors crammed into newly-built four-star hotels
and river-edge lodges, Zimbabwe's Victoria Falls town on the other side is
almost a ghost town. The erratic policies of President Robert Mugabe are
driving away all but the hardiest of foreign visitors.

This situation is an exact role reversal between the two countries. Until
three years ago, the town of Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe was the in-place to
be. It was full of hordes of young backpackers and also older, and often
richer, jet-setters from around the world.

From bungee jumpers to high handicap golfers, Vic Falls - as the town was
fondly called - was the place where it was all happening. Its lively and
bustling hotels were perpetually fully booked, on-season and off.
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Zim Online

Tue 17 August 2004

            JOHANNESBURG - The Zimbabwe National Army will send several
hundred of its men on leave to allow them time to campaign for the ruling
ZANU PF party ahead of next year's general election, ZimOnline was told.

            Army sources said some soldiers had already been granted leave
with more set to be released by December.  The soldiers, together with war
veterans and militias from the government's controversial national youth
service training programme, are expected to form the core of ZANU PF¹s
campaign for the March 2005 poll.

            Defence Minister Sydney Sekeramayi vehemently denied that
soldiers were being drafted into the ruling party¹s election campaign: "That
is a lie against the army and the government of Zimbabwe. Soldiers are not
allowed to actively participate in politics. We have a highly professional
army and I am not aware of any moves to use the army to campaign for any

            But sources at the Mutare headquarters of the army's 3 Brigade
told ZimOnline that an initial 50 soldiers had already been granted vacation
under the plan.

            "The military is going to play a prominent role in ZANU PF's
election strategy and some of our colleagues have already been released to
prepare for the campaign," said the army officer, who spoke on condition he
was not named. "Those who have been identified for the campaign are being
asked to take indefinite leave and they will be heavily involved in ZANU

            The officer said the plan would allow the soldiers to be drafted
into ZANU PF¹s campaign teams as civilians. He said they would use their
military experience to lead the Party's youths in terrorising opposition

            The sources said the exercise was not a free for all, with
senior officers carefully vetting soldiers and only granting leave to those
known to be steadfast supporters of ZANU PF.

            The main opposition  Movement for Democratic Change's (MDC)
shadow minister of defence, Giles Mutsekwa, yesterday said he was aware of
the alleged plan..

            When contacted by ZimOnline, he said, "In fact you called me at
a time when I was preparing to raise that issue in Parliament. Soldiers are
being asked to go on leave en masse and then are deployed into ZANU PF ranks
and I want Parliament to take note of that." Mutsekwa did not say when
exactly he was going to bring the matter before the House.

            Human rights groups and the MDC  have in the past accused the
government of using state security agents including soldiers to terrorise
its political opponents. The government denies the charge.

            This would not be the first time for the government to co-opt
the army into some of its controversial programmes. At the height of farm
invasions two years ago soldiers and the Zimbabwe Republic Police, some of
them in uniform, publicly took part in the seizure of white-owned farmland.

            In the run up to the March 2002 presidential election, then
Commander of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces Vitalis Zvinavashe declared that
the armed forces would not back any candidate who had not fought in the
country's 1970s  war of liberation. This was seen by many as a veiled threat
to stage a coup if MDC leader, Morgan Tsvangirai, won. He did not fight in
the war.

            A former army intelligence officer, Sobuza Gula-Ndebele, heads
the Electoral Supervisory Commission currently responsible for ensuring
fairness in the conduct of elections.

            The commission, which is answerable to President Robert Mugabe,
has been accused of turning a blind eye to political violence by pro-Mugabe
militants. The commission insists it has been even handed in its treatment
of political contestants. ZimOnline

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Zim Online

Southern African leaders rally behind Mugabe
Tue 17 August 2004

      GRAND BAY/MAURITIUS - Southern African leaders publicly rallied behind
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe yesterday. They are meeting for the
annual summit of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) in

      President Mugabe arrived in  Mauritius last week to lobby for support
before the grand opening yesterday.

      Tanzanian President Benjamin Mkapa launched a blistering attack on
Western countries at the summit's opening: "We are tired of being lectured
on democracy by the very countries which, under colonialism, either directly
denied us the rights of free citizens, or were indifferent to our suffering
and yearnings to break free and be democratic."

      Mkapa said the region should develop electoral laws in line with its
political, social and cultural background, and not to suit expectations of
western countries.

      The summit is due to adopt common electoral rules for the SADC region
meant to promote free and fair elections.

      Mkapa said these proposals were not directed at any one country or
group of countries, indirectly refuting media reports suggesting that the
proposed reforms were designed with Zimbabwe in mind.

      "In democracy as in all other things, no one size fits all," he said.
"Multiparty democracy and its attendant elections must never be a cover for
the destabilisation of our countries."

      Mauritian Prime Minister and new SADC chairman Paul Berenger praised
Mugabe and predicted that polls next year in Zimbabwe would be free and
fair: "With free and fair elections due in Zimbabwe at the beginning of next
year, we can already start preparing for the normalisation of relations
between SADC, the European Union and the US."

      "I would wish to salute here the way our brother, President Robert
Mugabe, after his party had won a by-election in May, resisted calls for him
to bring forward the forthcoming general elections by arguing publicly in
the media that doing so would be undemocratic and unfair to the opposition."

      A Zimbabwean organisation called Zvakwana, claiming to represent "all
people of Zimbabwe", has organised a demonstration in Grand Bay for this
morning against Mugabe. To draw attention to their cause, Zvakwana activists
have distributed flyers and condoms bearing their slogan which means "Enough
is Enough".

      The Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) has urged  Southern African
leaders to use the current summit to pressure President  Mugabe to hold free
and fair elections. But observers say this is not likely to happen - at
least in public. ZimOnline
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Zim Online

Civic society: Shut us down and the region will be flooded by refugees
Tue 17 August 2004

      HARARE  - Civic society groups have warned Southern African
Development Community (SADC) leaders that thousands of Zimbabwean refugees
could soon flood the region if President Robert Mugabe shuts down non
governmental organisations in Zimbabwe.

      In a statement submitted to the SADC leaders' summit presently under
way in Mauritius, Zimbabwe's  National Association of NGOS (NANGO) said its
members are providing "safety nets  to thousands of Zimbabweans hit hard by
social, economic and political turmoil" in the country.

      The statement said, a new bill regulating NGOs, which Mugabe has
announced in July and which is to be enacted before the end of the year,
will see most of the more than 1000 NGOs operating in Zimbabwe forced to
close shop.

      In the statement NANGO said the bill criminalised, "a sector that is
providing social safety nets to a lot of communities throughout the

      "We therefore call on all concerned SADC members to take note of the
implications of this bill in terms of illegal cross boarder trading,
economic refugees, increased prostitution thereby spreading HIV and AIDS. We
fear that the regional migrations may create administrative, economic and
security challenges to our neighbours."

      NANGO, whose representatives are at the Mauritius summit lobbying SADC
leaders, said the proposed new law would undermine the world-accepted
principles of cooperation and participatory development.

      The bill bars NGOs and other civic groups from engaging in governance
and political work without registration by a state commission. NGOs, almost
all of them entirely funded by outside donors,  will also be stopped from
receiving external funding or face deregistration. ZimOnline
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Zim Online

Brain drain at University of Zimbabwe
Tue 17 August 2004

      HARARE -  More than twenty lecturers have in the last two months left
the University of Zimbabwe (UZ) for better paid posts in Europe, United
States of America and neighbouring South Africa, according to the
Association of University Teachers.

      Chairman of the association's UZ branch Arnold Mashingaidze said the
country's oldest and biggest institution was already severely understaffed.
60 percent of teaching posts were vacant even before the latest departure of
lecturers. Mashingaidze said poor salaries and plummeting working conditions
were driving qualified staff away from the UZ, which at its peak a decade
      ago was one of Africa's best universities.

      "The university should have between 980 to 1 200 lecturers but we are
less than 460, making us overworked. The government has been opening these
so-called universities across the country saying they want to improve
education standards but at the same time they have neglected the UZ."

      The government has in the last 14 years opened four more universities.
With the exception of the National University of Science and Technology in
Bulawayo, they all seriously lack equipment and facilities including lecture

      UZ vice-chancellor Levy Nyagura could not be reached for comment.

      Faculties worst affected by the teacher exodus are those of
engineering, medicine and agriculture. ZimOnline
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Zim Online

Zimbabwe's council clinics lose experienced nurses
Tue 17 August 2004

      MUTASA, Manicaland Province  - With a stethoscope dangling down her
neck, Miriam Shonga (not her real name), a nurse at Gatsi clinic in Mutasa
district, more than 200 km east of Harare, threw herself down into the chair
and began narrating the hardships that council health workers here must

      "I tell you this and doing so will make me feel better, but I doubt it
will change our suffering," she says, bleakly. To make her point Shonga, who
looks in her mid-forties, explains: "It is the eleventh of August. But we
have not even received our July salaries. We have no idea when payments will
be made."

      According to Shonga she was supposed to have been paid at the end of
July but nearly two weeks later, when ZimOnline visited Mutasa, she still
had not received her salary, which she says is mere peanuts in any case.

      Nurses earn Z$ 500 000 a month on average. According to the Zimbabwe
Congress of Trade Unions the poverty bottom line currently stands at Z$ 1
069 000.

      Shonga's story is retold by several other nurses at the three clinics
run by the Mutasa rural district council. Differing in detail but
essentially still the same tale of a collapsed health delivery system manned
by poorly paid, overworked and dissatisfied staff.

      At Saint Peters' Mandeya clinic not far away from Gatsi, the first
impression one gets is of a well looked after and modern rural health
centre. The surrounding grounds are neat and clean. And the well-tended
vegetable gardens one walks past on the way to the entrance of the main
building are striking. On entering one is warmly welcomed by nurses and
other staff in freshly ironed uniforms.

      Ask about working conditions and the whole atmosphere changes as
emotions shoot up. "We are all working under protest," said Celine, who is a
nurse here. "The money we get is too little, it¹s made worse by the long
delays. Meanwhile the money that is supposed to be paid to the National
Social Security Authority is not, because we do not currently have NSSA
      (membership) numbers."

      NASSA is a national pension scheme which all workers are required by
law to join.

      Celine, who refused to give her full name for fear of victimization,
said she and her colleagues threatened to strike to press the council to
review their salaries but relented after they were promised that "something
would be done". That was last year.

      More than nine months later nothing has been done and Celine says a
consequence is that nurses here are left with no option but to desert the
sick in this poor community for better working conditions and salaries

      She said, "The tragedy is we¹ve suffered an exodus of experienced
staff, who have left for other districts offering better packages."

      Her agitated tone draws the attention of her colleague Anna-Mary. She
also would not give her full name. Joining in she said, "The few nurses
who're still around are over-burdened. Even villagers are concerned about
this situation.. They are not amused that clinics are now manned by mostly
inexperienced staff, some without proper qualifications."

      Anna Mary said erratic payments and the fact that salaries were too
low was making life a nightmare for the health workers. "Our family budgets
are always in disarray. Some of us have children attending school and they
are expelled when we fail to pay fees (on time)."

      A headman in the area, Claver Danga, concurred with the nurses saying
that poor remuneration for health workers was now beginning to negatively
affect health delivery in the area.  "The scenario is regrettable because it
affects the whole district. It is always a pity when they lose someone who
is caring."

      Contacted for comment the acting provincial administrator for
Manicaland, who only identified himself as  Mr. Mbetsa, acknowledged he was
aware of problems at council clinics in Mutasa district. He claimed an
investigation to establish the magnitude of the problems was under way. He
declined to give further details.  ZimOnline
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African leaders slam Western democracy lectures

August 16, 2004, 14:50

Southern African leaders rounded on Western powers today, backing Zimbabwe's
Robert Mugabe and saying Africans were tired of preaching from countries who
denied them democratic rights under colonial rule.

Mugabe's controversial seizure of white-owned farms for land less blacks and
his contested re-election in 2002 are a major focus of a Southern African
Development Community (SADC) summit which opened today in Mauritius.

Tanzanian President Benjamin Mkapa launched a stinging attack on Western
countries pressing SADC to ensure democracy.

"We are tired of being lectured on democracy by the very countries which,
under colonialism, either directly denied us the rights of free citizens, or
were indifferent to our suffering and yearnings to break free and be
democratic," Mkapa told fellow heads of state at the summit's opening

Mkapa said the region should develop electoral laws in line with its
political, social and cultural background.

The summit aims to adopt common electoral rules across the SADC region,
proposals Mkapa said were not directed at any one country or group of
countries in a reference to media reports that the proposed reforms were
designed to rope in Mugabe.

He said: "In democracy as in all other things, no one size fits
all...Multiparty democracy and its attendant elections must never be a cover
for the destabilisation of our countries."

Mkapa spoke after the chairman of SADC's key politics, defence and security
body painted a glossy picture of democracy.

"I am happy to report that democracy is not just well, but is thriving,"
saiPakalitha Mosisili, the Lesotho prime minister.

Show of support for Mugabe
Paul Berenger, the Mauritian Prime Minister and new SADC chairperson,
praised Mugabe and said polls next year would be free and fair.

Mkapa said SADC had agreed earlier this year to establish a technical
committee to advise on land reform as it was crucial for the development of
one of the world's poorest regions.

"Let SADC speak with one voice, and let the outside world understand, that
to us Africans land is much more than a factor of production, we are
spiritually anchored in the lands of our ancestors," he said.

Mkapa said reform must be fair "to help new land owners become productive in
the quickest way possible, on lands over which they have secure property

Economic and political breakdown in Zimbabwe, which Mugabe's critics blame
on his policies, are expected to be a major preoccupation at the two-day
summit, being held at a beach resort on the Indian Ocean island of

Domestic and Western opponents accuse Mugabe of destroying Zimbabwe's once
prosperous agricultural base through seizing farms and rigging his
re-election in 2002 to hang on to power.

Mugabe denies the charges, and says his country is being undermined by
enemies led by former colonial power Britain.

Analysts say fellow leaders in the 13 nation bloc are in any case unlikely
to break ranks and will maintain their traditional public approval of
Mugabe, a hero for many in the region as victor in Zimbabwe's struggle
against white rule. - Reuters
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Mugabe vows to defy sanctions

Monday 16 August 2004, 2:01 Makka Time, 23:01 GMT

Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe has vowed to defy sanctions imposed on
him and his government associates by western countries.

A belligerent Mugabe on Sunday insisted the bans imposed on him and 95 other
officials against visiting the European Union and the United States should
not derail Zimbabwe.

"We just can't mourn and bemoan because the West are imposing sanctions
against us. We must be able to find ways of surviving," Mugabe said.

"There are countries that have had worse sanctions than ourselves, like
Cuba. But there they continued going and the people are even more united,"
he said.

Discovering East

Mugabe last year announced that he would not bother trying to deal with the
United States and countries in the European Union, particularly the United
Kingdom, and would turn his attention to the East for trade, aid, investment
and even tourism.

"The West is not the only source of assistance, nor is the only area of
market," Mugabe pointed out.

"Time has now come not just for Zimbabwe but for the Third World to realize
that the sun rises in the East. Let's look to the East where the sun rises."

"That's where the majority of the people of this world are, that's where we
also get the greatest support because the East is the Third World. It sees
things the same way we see them, thinks as we do, dreams as ourselves, so
they are our greatest friends," Mugabe said.
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The Star

      Constructive negotiations the answer
      August 16, 2004

      By Pieter Mulder

      During the April 2004 election, F W de Klerk, as former leader of the
NNP, asks the electorate in radio advertisements to vote for the NNP and not
for the ANC. "Make the NNP stronger and consolidate the bargaining position
of the NNP" is the message. More than 250 000 voters like this message and
vote for the NNP.

      Less than four months later, Marthinus van Schalkwyk, as leader of the
NNP, takes the 250 000 electors' votes and hands them to the ANC, without
the permission of the voters.

      Van Schalkwyk says that he will be setting the example by joining the
ANC shortly. He, however, has no intention to resign from his NNP seat when
he becomes an ANC parliament member. It is this type of politics that causes
damage to the name of all politicians in South Africa.

      The question is: How would the 250 000 NNP electorate have voted in
the April elections, had they known that the NNP would, within four months,
be joining the ANC? They would in all likelihood have divided their vote
between the FF+ and other opposition parties.

      Not one of the founder members of the NP in 1914, or any of the
previous leaders of the party, would have been able to predict that the NNP
would end in such a tragic and dishonourable way. The end of the NNP is an
embarrassment to anybody who had ever been a member of the NP.

      If one believes in democracy, what is the best for South Africa? Is it
better to strengthen the ANC that already has 70% of the votes? Or is it
better to strengthen an opposition party such as the FF+?

      Van Schalkwyk argues that he will achieve more from within the ANC
than from outside. What he forgets is that he loses his political powerbase
the moment he joins the ANC. Why will his voice suddenly have more weight
than the 280 voices of the other ANC parliament members? Does he really
think that he is currently serving in the cabinet because he is more capable
than many ANC leaders with years of service in the ANC? It is obvious that
he confuses his inner circle with a political support basis.

      According to the DA, there are only two opposition choices. Either you
join the ANC or you criticise everything and support the DA. The negative
and arrogant opposition style of the DA has caused the party to have no
influence on the decisions of the government and parliament. That does not
help us at all. There are no talks or negotiations currently taking place
between the government and the DA. The DA recently could not even succeed in
having one of their members being elected to attend the Pan Africa
Parliament as an opposition-representative of South Africa.

      The style of the DA, to criticise without communication with the ANC,
can only work if the DA will be taking over the government at the next
election. Then the electorate can wait until the policy of the DA is
implemented. With only 12% of the voters' support and with very little
growth in the past five years, the DA will definitely not take over the
government at the next election. The ANC will still govern for a long time.
We are therefore looking for a different approach to success.

      Since Van Schalkwyk only took note of the ANC and DA options, he made
the wrong decision. There is a third route.

      The answer is to retain your credibility as opposition, by criticising
the ANC in such a way that your communication channels to the government
stay clear. Only with pressure and negotiations can the decisions of the
government be influenced. Ask the business community how they successfully
implement these methods.

      While only seven of the 55 opposition members of parliament in
Zimbabwe have not been thrown in jail, the FF+ will vehemently point it out
as a violation of human rights. Van Schalkwyk, as a new member of the ANC,
will have to condone it - and defend it. If the Minister of Health still
concentrates on garlic to keep HIV/Aids in check, the FF+ wants to publicly
criticise the minister. Van Schalkwyk will now, as ANC member, have to
defend the minister.

      Cases in point are: If the census forms are printed in one language
only or South Africans abroad are not allowed to vote, the FF+ will want to
enter into talks with the government in order to rectify it. Because the
negative style of the DA has resulted in President Mbeki not holding talks
with the DA, the DA cannot resolve these problems. The talks of the FF+ with
the ANC resulted in the census forms being made available in all languages
and that South Africans abroad could, if they qualified, vote.

      By joining the ANC, like the NNP, you destroy your power base and
bargaining power. By being negative, like the DA, one does not influence any
decisions. By criticising, but also constructively negotiating solutions,
like the FF+, one retains political credibility and makes a difference. This
is the third route and the answer.

      .. Dr Pieter Mulder is leader of the FF+

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From Business Day (SA), 16 August

Zimbabwe's judicial system is on trial

In the past few years Zimbabwe's judicial system has appeared to be close to
breakdown. Apart from a few recent incidents that showed signs of judicial
independence, such as the acquittal last week by Judge Sandra Mungwira in
the Harare High Court of six members of the opposition Movement for
Democratic Change (MDC) accused of killing a ruling party activist, the
future for an independent judiciary in Zimbabwe looks bleak. A case in point
was the recent announcement that judgment in the treason trial of opposition
leader Morgan Tsvangirai had been "indefinitely postponed". The reason
given, and reported extensively in the media, was that Judge Paddington
Garwe, who is president of the Zimbabwe High Court, had failed to consult
his two assessors on the verdict he allegedly proposed to pass. The Zimbabwe
Independent, Harare, reported that the assessors blocked the judgment until
they could review transcripts of the trial. The news website, ZimOnline,
quoted "judicial sources" as saying that Garwe had reached a guilty verdict
but that the assessors had refused to rubber-stamp his decision.

When the Judge President was criticised for seemingly not abiding by the
rules of his own court, he was quick to react and issued a statement saying
his assessors just needed more time to study the court transcripts. This
raises an interesting point about the court transcripts. During the trial,
it was reportedly discovered that 14 hours of Tsvangirai's testimony was
unrecorded because the court's audio equipment was faulty. Unlike the "good
old days" when a court stenographer recorded the proceedings and produced a
transcript at the end of each day, it took at least three days for the court
to discover that they had no record of the accused's testimony. The solution
that Garwe reportedly offered was his own hand- written notes to be used as
the transcript. Garwe's impartiality has been questioned from early in the
trial in 2003 because he was the recipient from government of perhaps the
richest commercial farm in Zimbabwe. Before it was expropriated in the land
reform programme, Mount Lothian farm in the Enterprise area was a model and
highly productive farm. It belonged to CG Tracey, one of the first white
farmers to embrace Zimbabwe's independence from Britain in 1980.

Another question mark in the trial concerns the second most important state
witness, Tara Thomas, an employee of star witness Ari BenMenashe. She was
found to be referring to handwritten notes during her testimony, giving
credence to suggestions that she could have made notes of her boss's
testimony and referred to them while giving evidence. Thomas was quickly
stopped from referring to the notes by South African advocate George Bizos,
who led the defence. But it was not clear whether her testimony was admitted
into the record. In order to convict Tsvangirai of treason, the state has to
produce two credible witnesses who were actually present at the time the
discussions took place regarding an alleged conspiracy to kill President
Robert Mugabe, or overthrow the country by means of a coup d'etat.
Ben-Menashe contradicted himself many times during the trial. When he was
testifying in 2003, he said under oath that the proposed assassination was
discussed at all three meetings he had held with Tsvangirai, two of which
were in London at the end of 2001 and the third of which he secretly filmed
at his office in Montreal, Canada. In 2003, the MDC sued BenMenashe and his
firm of lobbyists, Dickens and Madsen, for the return of close to US100000
they had paid for political lobbying to be done on the party's behalf in
North America. During the hearing, Ben-Menashe told the Canadian court that
the alleged assassination plot was never discussed at the first meeting in
London. In the Harare case, Bizos used this testimony to brand Ben-Manashe
as a liar and unreliable witness. On this basis, the defence called for the
charges to be dropped. Now the court itself is on trial.
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Time Magazine
A Revolution Betrayed
A memoir of Zimbabwe chronicles the sad descent of this troubled land, but radiates love — and even hope

EXILE: Author Meldrum being deported from Zimbabwe in May 2003 for his reporting

Monday, Aug. 16, 2004
Perhaps we should have realized something was amiss in 1980. In April of that year, Zimbabwe's newly elected Prime Minister, Robert Mugabe, was appalled at the choice of the dreadlocked Third World icon Bob Marley as the main musical act for the country's independence bash. Marley tunes like Zimbabwe had helped rally the world ("Africans a liberate Zimbabwe/ Every man got a right/ To decide his own destiny") but Mugabe would have preferred the squeaky-clean Brit Cliff Richard. For once he was overruled, and the reggae star spread a message of hope that the racial strife of Rhodesia would give way to color-blind harmony. The message was heard even in faraway America, where a young reporter named Andrew Meldrum quit his job, sold his car and bought a plane ticket to be part of this great experiment.

It didn't take Meldrum long to fall in love with Zimbabwe. Initially he idolized Mugabe as the hero of the liberation struggle, but that didn't last long. "I went into my first interview with Mugabe admiring him; I left with the suspicion that he was insincere," Meldrum told TIME. In Where We Have Hope (John Murray; 272 pages) he describes how he ultimately found Mugabe to be a strangely un-African leader, lacking in warmth and painfully formal in speech and demeanor. He concluded that Mugabe had not only taken over the dowdy office décor of Ian Smith, the Prime Minister of white-ruled Rhodesia; he also displayed the same aversion to political opposition and an independent media and judiciary. "Far from being polar opposites, I see Ian Smith and Robert Mugabe as two sides of the same coin," says Meldrum. "History is repeating itself in Zimbabwe." And he became a minor victim of that history; the last remaining foreign journalist, Meldrum was kicked out of Zimbabwe last year.

Even as Mugabe grew into the habits of a dictator, he retained the support of fellow African leaders, who see him as a champion of "the black cause." Meldrum makes it clear that it is blacks who have to bear the brunt of his tyranny. In the last four years his thugs have killed a dozen whites but more than 300 blacks. Meldrum describes one such victim in the book: "His backless hospital gown revealed two gaping craters where his buttocks should have been."

Yet to this day, South African President Thabo Mbeki plays defense lawyer to Mugabe, declaring that "President Mugabe can assist us to confront the problems we have in South Africa." Meldrum quotes the lone voice of Desmond Tutu, former Archbishop of Cape Town, on the ominous consequences of Mbeki's attitude. "If we are seemingly indifferent to human-rights violations happening in a neighboring country, what is to stop us one day being indifferent to that in our own?"

Where We Have Hope is not a political chronology but, as the subtitle suggests, A Memoir of Zimbabwe. It is the story of a country and of brave Zimbabweans like Beatrice Mtetwa, who had just been beaten up by the police when she made headline news as human-rights lawyer of the year. "Can you imagine, my one time on the front page and they show a photo of me looking my worst!" she quipped.

Meldrum's book speaks with the special devotion a convert feels for his new religion. "I am steeped in this country, it is in my pores," he writes. Yet, after 23 years in the country, he now regards himself as an exile, like an estimated 3 million others out of a population of 13 million; he currently lives in South Africa. Meldrum hopes to return to a truly democratic Zimbabwe one day. "I am absolutely sure that ... Zimbabwe will once again be a beacon for all of Africa," he writes. It is hard to see either Meldrum or democracy returning to Zimbabwe while the country is still ruled by a President so imperious and fearful of his own people that he travels with at least a dozen outriders, their sirens blazing. With a certain reggae star and his band in mind, people call his motorcade "Bob and the Wailers."
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5 held for border-ambush scam
16/08/2004 21:26  - (SA)

Riot Hlatshwayo

Musina - Undercover investigators have arrested an army captain and four
soldiers in Limpopo for apparently systematically ambushing, stripping, and
robbing illegal Zimbabwean immigrants.

The soldiers also allegedly raped a number of Zimbabwean women before making
them swim the crocodile-infested Limpopo River back to Zimbabwe.

Captain Fannie Molapo, leader of the police task team, said on Monday: "The
claims are shocking, especially because the people involved are supposed to
be protecting the public.

"We conducted a three-month undercover investigation and have arrested the
first five soldiers on theft-related charges after finding a container full
of loot allegedly stolen from Zimbabweans.

"Additional charges and arrests might follow as we collect further

The soldiers and their commanding officer were all arrested at Madimbo
military base on the Zimbabwean border on Sunday.

Didn't hand over the goods

The men cannot be named until they appear in court later this week.

Molapo said: "It appears they routinely apprehended illegal Zimbabweans
trying to return home with goods they'd bought in South Africa.

"The soldiers stripped the Zimbabweans of all their valuables, and then
handed them over to police to be deported.

"They failed, however, to hand over any of the confiscated goods."

Undercover investigators recovered some of the contraband from a storage
container in the army's Madimbo camp.

It included five new bicycles and 60 cartons of cigarettes.

"The Zimbabweans who complained to us mentioned bicycles and cigarettes.

"We are still probing claims by some Zimbabweans that they were raped by
soldiers and then made to swim across the Limpopo River," said Molapo.

Monitoring the case

The river is notorious for crocodile attacks, with bodies of suspected
'fence-jumpers' routinely being recovered from the South African side of the

"We will not hesitate to arrest anyone implicated in rapes or any other kind
of human-rights abuses in this matter," said Molapo.

Sam Mkhwanazi of the SANDF confirmed on Monday the military was aware of the
arrests and was monitoring the case closely.

"We cannot comment without prejudicing the case. The SANDF is, however,
happy for the law to follow its course."

It is unclear whether the soldiers have been taken off active duty, or
whether they will face a court martial for violating military regulations.
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From: "Trudy Stevenson"
Sent: Monday, August 16, 2004 10:32 PM
Subject: REMINDER Extension of Harare Municipal boundaries - DEADLINE FOR

Original alert message sent 28 July
NB this incorporation of peri-urban areas will probably affect CONSTITUENCY
boundaries also, and therefore can be viewed as GERRYMANDERING before the

Are the services you receive from Harare City Council adequate?  Do you
receive an uninterrupted supply of water?  Is your refuse collected
regularly and efficiently?  Are the roads well-maintained?  Do you have
street lights?  Does Council respond to your calls?

If not, you and other residents in your area may wish to challenge the
extension of Harare Muncipal boundaries to include parts of Ruwa, Goromonzi,
Zvimba and Mazowe Rural District Councils - for which Harare residents would
have to pay for services, which in cases like Whitecliff and Merwede do not
yet exist!  You may also find other changes to Ward boundaries undesirable
for various reasons.

Note that the deadline for objections is 30 days after the third publication
of the notice below, so to be absolutely certain, you should lodge your
objection by WEDNESDAY 18 AUGUST.  Please send a copy to CHRA for the
record, or let the office know.

Trudy Stevenson MP
Combined Harare Residents Association
11 Armagh Avenue
P.O.Box HR7870
Cell: 011612860



Notice of intention to alter the Council and Ward boundaries for Harare City
Council, Chitungwiza Municipal Council, Epworth and Ruwa Local Boards and,
Goromonzi, Mazowe, Manyame/Seke and Zvimba Rural District Councils

NOTICE is hereby given in temis of subsection (1 ) of Section 11 of the
Urban CouncilsAct [Chapter 29:15] and subsection (2) of Section 140 of the
Rural District Councils Act [Chapter 19:13] that it is intended to recommend
to the President that he exercises the powers conferred upon him in terms of
Section 4 of the Urban Councils Act [Chapter 29:15] and Settton 139 of the
Rural District Councils Act [Chapter 19:13] to alter the District, and
Municipal boundaries of Harare City Council, Chitungwiza Municipal Council,
Epworth and Ruwa Local Boards and, Goromonzi, Mazowe, Manyame/Seke and
Zvimba Rural District Councils as described hereunder:

(a)       Properties:  Zisalisari  Lots  4,  5  and  8;  Lot  3  of
Bannockburn;  Remainder of Bannockburn, and Teviotdale, presently in Mazowe
District, be incorporated into Ward 17 of Borrowdale District, Harare.

(b)       Properties: Remaining Extent of Stuhm, Remainder of the Craig of
Crag Estate, Lot 1 of East Anglia of the Craig of Crag,  presently under
Goromonzi  RDC,  be excised there from  and  Incorporated into ward 18,
Tafara Mabvuku District, Harare,

(c)       Borrowdale Racecourse, presently In Ward 8, Borrowdale District,
Harare, be incorporated into Ward 17 In the same District.

(d)       Properties: Draycott, Chedgelow, Godavery, Water Vici, Woodford
Green, Block S of Hatfield Estate (kutsaga/Bellapaise),  Dunowen,  Harare
Airport  and Manyame Airbase and kaola Park, presently in Ward 1, Harare
Central District, be excised and incorporated into Ward 22, same District,

(e)       Gunhill Area of Harare Central, presently falling under Ward 8, be
removed and incorporated into Ward 7, same Disrtict, Harare.

(f)         Workington and Southerton Industrial Areas, presently in Ward
11, be excised and incorporated into Ward 13, same District, Harare.

(g)       Warren Park Area, presently In Ward 15, be excised and
incorporated Into Ward 5, same District, Harare.

(h)       Little Norfolk and University Areas, presently in Ward 17, be
removed and incorporated Into Ward 7, same District, Harare.

(i)         Properties:   Caledonia,  Clovadael,   Sebastopol,  Mairi Sana,
Greensyke, 'Tarisa and Wavertey Farms, presently under Goromonzi RDC, be
excised therefrom to be incorporated the Ruwa-Epworth District, under Ward
9, Ruwa Local Board.

(j)         Properties:  Cranbrook,  Setonleigh,  Ruwa  Estate  and Ruwa
Sports Club, presently under Goromonzi RDC, be annexed to the Ruwa-Epworth
District under Ward 1, Ruwa Local Board.

(k)       Properties: E of Galway Estate, Egondini, Mapumuta and Rem of F of
Galway Estate, presently under Goromonzi RDC, be excised therefrom and be
incorporated into the Ruwa-Epworth District under Ward 5, Ruwa Local Board.

(l)         Properties: B & D of Galway Estate Boulders and 1, 2 & 3-of
Galway Estate, presently under Goromonzi RDC, be annexed there from and be
incorporated into the Ruwa-Epworth District under Ward 7, Ruwa Local Board.

(m)     Properties: Heany and Rydale Ridge Park, presently In the Zvimba RDC
area, be annexed to the Highfield District, Harare, underward 34.

(n)       Property: Ingwe Farm, presently under Zvimba RDC area, be annexed
to the Highficid District, Harare, underward

(o)       Properties: White Cliff and Marwede Township, presently under
Zvimba RDC, be excised and incorporated Into Ward44, Highfield District,

(p)       Properties: Dunnota, Imbwa, Longlands, Kirncote and Braemar,
presently under Manyame RDC, be excised and incorporated into Ward 6,
Zengeza District, Chitungwiza.

(q)       Properties: Cawdor, Tantallon and Edinburg, presently under
Manyame RDC, be annexed to Ward 18, Seke District (urban), Chitungwiza.

(r)         Guzha Shopping Centre, presently under Ward 21, Seke District
(urban), Chitungwiza, be excised there from and incorporated back into Ward
1, Manyame RDC.

(s)       Property: komani Estate, presently under Mazowe RDC be
incorporated into Ward 41 of Borrowdale District, Harare

Maps and reports relating to these proposals are available for inspection
free of charge, at the offices of the Secretary for Local  Government,
Public Works and  National  Housing, Makombe Building, Leopold Takawira
Street, Harare and the offices of the Town Clerks for Harare City Council
and Chitungwiza Municipal Council, and the Secretaries for Ruwa and Epworth
Local Boards as well as the offices of the Chief Executive Officers for
Goromonzi, Mazowe, Manyame/Seke and Zvimba Rural District Councils.

Any person who wishes to make representations concerning the proposals
should lodge such representations, in writing, with The Secretary for Local
Government, Public Works and National Housing, Private Bag 7755, Causeway,
Harare, by not later than thirty (30) days after the third publication of
this notice.

D.C. Munyoro
Secretary for local Government, Public Works and National Housing

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