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

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Zim Standard

MDC takes on Zanu PF
By our own Staff

THE Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) has intensified its campaign in the
country's rural constituencies, hitherto Zanu PF's political stronghold, in
a bid to unseat the ruling party in next year's crucial parliamentary

In a wide-ranging interview with The Standard at his house in Harare on
Thursday MDC leader, Morgan Tsvangirai, said his party had launched
"vigorous political campaigns in rural areas".

Already, said Tsvangirai, the MDC has visited Seke, Goromonzi, Buhera,
Chipinge, Mvurwi, Chimanimani and Uzumba Maramba-Pfungwe to commission
campaign structures.

"The structures which go down up to village level have been on a membership
drive for a while and have been campaigning for the MDC as we approach the
elections," he said.

Tsvangirai, the only opposition leader to mount a credible challenge against
President Robert Mugabe since 1980, said he would soon commission other
structures countrywide, including Mashonaland Central, Zanu PF's volatile
political stronghold.

"Unlike in the 2002 presidential elections, never again shall any place in
Zimbabwe be declared a no go area for the MDC," he said.

However, there have been several attempts by Zanu PF militia and the police
to block the opposition party's meetings in some provinces after realising
that MDC was "covering a lot of ground" in the rural constituencies.

He said: "In Bikita West and East, we applied for permission to hold our
meetings but we were told that there was no police officer to authorise any
of the meetings.

"In Hwedza, where we wanted to hold the meeting at a shopping centre, we
were told that Zanu PF had booked the entire shopping centre to prevent us
from holding our meeting."

The MDC leader said the cancellation of its meetings was clear testimony
that the 2005 elections would not be free and fair.

He said the MDC would go into the 2005 poll much more prepared than in 2 000
when the party was just nine months old. Then, the opposition did not have
substantive political structures in place.

He dismissed the perception that MDC was an urban based political party
saying the party had a huge following in rural areas. He said people in
rural areas were tired of Zanu PF's misrule which has led to the
deterioration of the standard of living of the majority with hunger,
shortages of most goods and services - including transport, health and
employment - becoming the order of the day.

In 2000, the MDC won some rural constituencies in Matabeleland, Manicaland,
Masvingo and the Midlands while in some provinces like Mashonaland West,
Central and East, the opposition party lost by just a few votes.

Tsvangirai warned Zimbabweans against being used by Zanu PF into committing
acts of violence and murder against their fellow countrymen.

"We are one people. We are one family of Zimbabweans. We should not beat or
kill people because they hold different views from our own.

"Zanu PF is abusing the youth of Zimbabwe by turning them into murderers in
order to divert them from real issues like unemployment, poor standards of
living, poor health delivery among a host of failed promises," said the MDC

.MEANWHILE, police raided Tsvangirai's Strathaven home in Harare yesterday
evening. According to his spokesman William Bango, police officers from the
Law and Order Section, invaded the MDC leader's home saying they were
searching for arms of war. The officers accused Tsvangirai of hiding guns
that might allegedly have been used during recent clashes between MDC and
Zanu PF supporters.
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Zim Standard

Ministry mulls exposing multiple farm owners
By Valentine Maponga

THE Ministry of Lands, Land Reform and Resettlement is contemplating
publishing the official list of multiple farm owners but is awaiting
Presidential approval, The Standard has learnt.

Sources in the ministry said the list was ready but could only be published
after President Robert Mugabe had given the greenlight.

"Some of the findings of the Flora Bhuka and Charles Utete led commissions
were forwarded to the President," said a source.

Mugabe has in the past repeatedly condemned multiple farm owners and urged
them to surrender excess land but this has fallen on deaf ears.

"The list is ready for publication and whatever we do in this office is
sanctioned by the President and that is the reason why it has not been made
public," added the source.

The source, however, could not reveal how the list was going to be made
public but admitted there were serious problems as some top government
ministers clinging to multiple farms were now trying to get rid of ministry
officials pursuing the matter.

The ministry, headed by Zanu PF chairman, John Nkomo, has been under serious
and intense attack from politicians who do not want to surrender extra

An senior official said Information Minister Jonathan Moyo was among
ministers who had received withdrawal letters. The official, who preferred
anonymity for professional reasons, said Moyo was being vindictive and was
using the State media to vilify the ministry.

"He (Moyo) is on the list of those who received withdrawal letters, yes he
got the letter," said the official.

Nkomo could not be reached for a comment as he was said to be locked in a
meeting for the greater part of yesterday.
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Zim Standard

Galz gets nod to exhibit at ZIBF 2004
By our own Staff

GAYS and Lesbians of Zimbabwe (GALZ) has been granted the greenlight to
exhibit at the Zimbabwe International Book Fair (ZIBF) which starts today
and ends on Saturday, The Standard has established.

The move is likely to anger President Robert Mugabe who has described
homosexuals "as worse than dogs and pigs". His hatred for gays and lesbians
which is well documented, worsened after he was hunted by British gay rights
activist, Peter Tatchell who tried to effect a citizen's arrest on him for
alleged human rights abuses.

ZIBF executive director, Samuel Matsangaise, said his organisation found
nothing wrong with Galz's participation. "If they were an illegal entity the
police would have arrested them by now," Matsangaise said.

Galz director, Keith Goddard, said his organisation had a right like any
other to exhibit at ZIBF.
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Zim Standard

Concern over Zanu PF plan to extend city boundaries
By Caiphas Chimhete

ZANU PF government should leave matters relating to change of constituency
boundaries for next year's parliamentary elections to the proposed new
Independent Electoral Commission (IEC), civil bodies have said.

Their reaction comes in the wake of intentions by government to incorporate
illegal peri-urban settlements into Harare and Chitungwiza, a move largely
seen as aimed at diluting the influence of the Movement for Democratic
Change (MDC ahead of next March's poll.

The settlements were created during the 2000 Zanu PF-sponsored land
invasions, spearheaded by war veterans and they are occupied mainly by Zanu
PF loyalists.

Using the Urban Councils and Rural District Councils Acts, Zanu PF wants 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.

Under the proposed changes, announced in a notice published recently,
Harare, which is the bastion of opposition politics, stands to be carved up.

Areas that are to be annexed into Harare include WhiteCliff and Marwede
Township, largely populated by Zanu PF supporters and war veterans. They are
presently under Zvimba Rural District Council.

Estates such as Galway Estate Boulders and 1, 2 & 3-of Galway Estate,
presently under Goromonzi RDC, would be incorporated into the Ruwa-Epworth
District under Ward 7.

Chitungwiza will incorporate properties such as Cawdor, Tantallon and
Edinburg, presently under Manyame RDC into Ward 18, Seke District.

The chairman of the Zimbabwe Election Support Network (Zesn), Reginald
Matchava-Hove, said anything that relates to voter registration and change
of constituency boundaries for the next year's elections must be left to
incoming Independent Electoral Commission (IEC).

The government recently agreed to an IEC, the use of translucent ballot
boxes as well as that voting be conducted in one day. It also accepted that
counting of votes be undertaken at the polling stations.

"Any measures that can easily be viewed as gerrymandering must be stopped
forthwith. If boundaries are to be changed there should be wide
consultation," said Matchaba-Hove, whose organisation advocates for fair
electoral laws.

The Combined Harare Residents Association (CHRA) said Zanu PF's change of
boundaries was "election thuggery" that could not go unchallenged.
Presently, the organisation is collecting residents' signatures in a bid to
lodge a strong objection to the proposed boundary changes.

The Urban Councils Act allows oganisations or individuals opposed to the
incorporation of the areas to lodge their objectives with the Ministry of
Local Government within 30 days of the notice.

MDC secretary-general, Welshman Ncube, said the annexation of the illegal
settlements in greater Harare and Chitungwiza was a political machination by
Zanu PF to deceitfully win next year's election.

He said the incorporation of the shanty peri-urban settlements was part of a
grand plan to dislodge the MDC from urban areas, which started with the
imposition of Governors in Harare and Bulawayo. "We are well aware that it's
political conspiracy by Zanu PF," he said.
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Zim Standard

Too prickly, analysts criticise RBZ's Gono
By Kumbirai Mafunda

ECONOMIC analysts last week hit back at central bank Governor Gedion Gono,
accusing him of being subjective and "bombastic" during his mid-term review
of the monetary policy statement.

They said by attacking and christening his critics "false prophets of doom"
Gono - President Robert Mugabe's self-appointed economic tsar - had become
the same as his mentor whose reaction to critics of his policies is acidic.

During his Wednesday address broadcast on national television Gono took a
swipe at his critics whom he accused of throwing spanners into the economic
recovery programme.

In a veiled attack largely seen as aimed at free market reformists, the
private media and the opposition who have constructively criticised his
policies, Gono accused his critics of spreading lies.

"Greatly appalling, however is an increasing number of self-proclaimed
'experts' in some segments of our society, who are bent on derailing the
momentum of the economic recovery programme, through proliferation of
thump-sucked, and overtly pessimistic trajectories on the country's economic
performance in the future," said Gono.

"They are happy to feed our external partners with falsehoods which see no
good at all," roared Gono.

John Robertson, an independent economic commentator, said by engaging in a
blame game Gono is looking for scapegoats to sacrifice for his shortcomings
when his set targets would be under the spotlight.

"He is not confident in making his forecast and is looking for someone to
blame," said Robertson. "If he is confident he wouldn't have that fear."

Despite making the reduction of inflation his main targets, figures show
that inflation is in fact beginning to increase. This is evident from the
month-on-month inflation rate which in spite of falling to 4,9% in April
rose to 6% in May before climbing up to 9,2% in June.

The opposition MDC has also dismissed Gono's monetary statement as "more
smoke and mirrors" saying he only painted a high profile performance.

"Gono's function is to sanitise this regime and part of the sanitising
programme is to create an impression that the economy is doing well," said a
spokesperson for the party's economic affairs department.

"Zanu PF has made the art of insulting and profanity from Jonathan Moyo to
Gedion Gono," he added.

Turning to the monetary statement, Robertson said it was devoid of any
strategy to address the fundamental pre-conditions for economic recovery,
which include the central question of good governance, the restoration of
the rule of law and property rights.

"It is a lot of words without substance. I am not impressed with the depth
of the proposals but by the manner he delivered the speech," said Robertson.
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Zim Standard

Mbedzi to challenge Mohadi for Beitbridge
By Savious Kwinika

BEITBRIDGE - Former Beitbridge district administrator Edison Mbedzi, who is
out on $500 000 bail, says he is ready to face Home Affairs minister, Kembo
Mohadi, in the Zanu PF primaries, The Standard can reveal.

Mbedzi, who got into the spotlight a few weeks ago after he was arrested on
allegations of stock-theft and clandestinely allocating himself a farm under
the controversial land reform programme, says he will definitely seek the
Zanu PF ticket to contest the 2005 general elections.

Mbedzi, who is the acting Bulawayo PA, told The Standard he would not bow
down to threats meant to stop him front contesting the primaries.

"Definitely I am standing. I don't care whether one is a minister or not but
the truth on the ground is that the people favour me most. I am just waiting
for the primaries and the people shall speak," said Mbedzi, who became the
first official in the Zanu PF government to be arrested for allegedly
grabbing land.

Mbedzi's lawyer Sindiso Mazivisa of Cheda and Partners Legal Practitioners
said he was aware of machinations meant to block the acting PA from
challenging Mohadi.

"We know that his political detractors are after his downfall hence the
attempt to block him from standing in the election, but I would like to warn
that those dirty tactics will fail dismally," he said.

The Standard is informed that Zanu PF Matabeleland South provincial
leadership and war veterans national executive have thrown their weight
behind Mbedzi, ahead of Mohadi as jockeying for positions intensifies for
the 2005 parliamentary election.

Last Sunday, at a meeting held at Beitbridge Country Club, both the war
veterans and Zanu PF Matabeleland South provincial leadership supported
Mbedzi's candidature, a development that angered Mohadi.

In an interview on Thursday, Beitbridge War Veterans chairman, Adziliki
Mbedzi, said no one was supposed to be barred from challenging Mohadi in

Zanu PF Matabeleland South provincial chairman, Lloyd Shyoka, said: "Whether
there are 10 people vying for Beitbridge seat, let them go into the contest.
It is allowed and we call it democracy."
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Zim Standard

Burst sewer irks suburb residents
By Bertha Shoko

IMAGINE the revolting nightmare of having a "small stream" of raw sewage
running across on your doorstep or worse still, at the outdoor sink where
you have to wash your pots and plates everyday.

While many out there would cringe at the thought of such a scenario, to
three families living in Warren Park I, this has become their daily

Three weeks ago, a sewer pipe at the back of their house burst, and started
disgorging raw sewage onto their yard. Initially they expected city council
workers to quickly rectify the problem but this was not to be.

Day in day out, the unsightly waste came out thick and fast and ended
forming a small stream that now runs about two hundred metres away from
their house.

A visit by The Standard to Fifth Avenue in Warren Park 1 revealed what
locals say is living testimony of how the city fathers are running down what
was once a beautiful suburb.

"This sewage discharge has been flowing past my doorstep for almost three
weeks now," says an affected Warren Park woman pointing irritably to the raw

"I have been trying to get the city council to repair it but they have said
say they have no service vehicles to come here. I just don't know what to

Oblivious of the danger, young boys play street soccer next to the toxic

As the ball game progresses, one boy accidentally kicks the ball into the
raw sewage, disrupting the game for a while as the team gets into an
argument about who should fish the plastic ball out.

After a heated argument the 'soccer team' finally agrees to make another
plastic ball on the basis that they can no longer kick around the sewage
drenched ball with their bare feet.

They also agree to play carefully this time around to avoid losing another
ball. There are now five plastic balls that have been lost in the same way,
one of the boys says pointing to the half submerged plastic crude

"We have to be careful now. We have no plastic material to make another
ball. Whoever kicks it to the sewage this time will have fish it out and
wash it," says Tanaka Gwanzura, who appears to be the leader of the 'team'.

This is certainly the lighter side of the Fifth Street residents'
predicament. However to the older and more informed adults, the situation in
no laughing matter.

"They (council officials) have told us that they have no service vehicles to
come and repair the sewer pipes," complained Chipo Tendayi-Moyo, with a baby
strapped on her back. When she gets in and out of the house every day, she
has a difficult time trying navigate her way through the puddlesof human

"Last week we gave them an option of sourcing our own vehicle and on the day
we hired the car to collect the engineers, we were told they had left for
Warren Park to repair the system.

"We then rushed back home but when we arrived we were told no one from the
city council had come to repair the burst pipe. They continue to play games
with our minds and it's really not fair."said Tendayi-Moyo.

The Warren Park case, is just a tip of the iceberg.

Unattended burst sewer pipes, among other problems, remain a daily nightmare
for an increasing number of ratepayers in Harare.

The slow reaction by the city council to emergencies such as burst sewage
pipes and water leakages has become a major problem for most people, posing
a serious health hazard for residents.

According to residents, the city council has even failed to make the
traditional visit to disinfect and kill the stench that is fouling up the

Investigations by The Standard revealed that old suburbs such as Mabvuku,
Highfield and Tafara whose ablution systems are aging, are the major victims
of city council neglect. The council is also failing to collect waste
forcing desperate residents to dump their rubbish in open areas in their
residential suburbs.

The residents' woes come at a time when the city council has hiked rates.

In his 2003 annual report, the director of health services in the city
council Dr Lovemore Mbengeranwa, admitted that the 'non collection of
refuse, non attendance to sewer blockages and burst water pipes' were major
problems facing council.

Mbengeranwa cites shortages of manpower and erratic fuel supplies in 2003,
as the major causes of the problems.

Since the beginning of 2004,however, the fuel supply in the country has
greatly improved and residents have not seen an improvement.
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Zim Standard


Gono gives us cause for optimism

IT WAS Albert Einstein who once said: "The problems we face cannot be solved
by the same level of thinking that created them". How right he was.

We strongly believe that this is the context within which the Reserve Bank
Governor Gideon Gono presented his Second Quarterly Monetary Policy
Statement last Tuesday. In times of crisis, a dose of optimism is all that
we may have to hold on to.

Of course, we would not go to the ridiculous extent of claiming that the
economy has turned the bend and is now on a path of recovery -NO. To claim
thus would be a gross perversion of the truth. In short, that would be
putting optimism ahead of the reality.

But we cannot fault the Governor's forceful point that "challenges can be
turned into opportunities, internal discourse into cohesion, despair into
hope and dreams into reality".

Are the war veterans listening? Are the Moyo-Manherus, Chigwederes, Mades,
Chinamasas and Chombos of this world listening? This is the billion dollar
question we must ask. For there is no denying that these political upstarts
have done much to destroy what was once a beautiful and lovely country - all
in the name of the President.

Gono is doing things in the name of the President - but in a constructive
and patriotic way. This is what distinguishes men from boys; men of steel
from political mongrels.

Human destiny is a choice. You can either mourn perpetually or make any
environment what you want it to be. You can either work with the environment
or against it. It is one's choice. It is not a question of right or wrong.
But what one thinks will bring about results in the short or long term.

Gideon Gono has decided to work with the existing environment in an effort
to make a difference. His driving passion to try to change things for the
better cannot be faulted. His is not an easy job particularly when everybody
is agreed that in the final analysis it is a political problem requiring a
political solution.

It is a difficult situation for anyone when people want you to remain
asbestos in a melting pot. The man is clearly impaled on the horns of a

The key question that needs to be asked is this: do we fold our arms in the
hope that things will change or do we try to assist the process of change -
each in our own way. Yes, in the final analysis the answer lies in the hands
of political leaders but what do we do in the meantime? This is the crux of
the matter.

Perhaps we need to look beyond President Mugabe - in any event, he is in the
sunset of his life and will bow to the passage of time sooner rather than

Unlike people like Aeneas Chigwedere, Jonathan Moyo, Joseph Made and
Ignatius Chombo who have invested so much personal and ministerial energy
into subverting the will of the people of this country - not to mention the
so-called war veterans - the Reserve Bank Governor has taken the stance of
being a life-enhancer to nibble at what is to all intents and purposes a
very difficult economic and political environment.

We might disagree with his stance and that is perfectly alright but within
his prescribled mandate he has tried to identify issues really at stake in
our present situation. "When we take over a farm and destroy greenhouses we
are destroying our source of foreign currency" Gono said.

Who really in his right mind can disagree with this? We must boldly accept
and recognise that the political authorities have only themselves to blame
for the economic ills of the country for allowing the so called war veterans
to run riot and loot left, right and centre. The national trauma that this
country has suffered over the past four years will take many years to heal.

The process of healing has to start both at the political and economic
level. Gideon Gono is trying in a small way to tackle the latter level i.e.
the economic level. Indeed, we have to put our own house in order. Others
may help but the world does not owe us a living.

It is inconceivable that a country like Zimbabwe with such an educated and
highly skilled population can be allowed to die because of an obsession with
power and mafikizolos serving their own egos.

The challenge we face, therefore, is to continue fighting the misgovernance
of this government from many fronts. As long as we are living and not dead,
we must continue to be soldiers for justice, fair play and reconciliation.

It is very easy in our present situation to sit in some kind of an ivory
tower philosophising and decrying our fate. We must do something about it.
There is a sense of hopelessness, discontent and dejection all round but
this will not get us anywhere. Pessimism does not have a positive value.
When things get tough, it is no good cutting and running. We must fight.

All the signs indicate that the days of mafikizolos are numbered. We know we
have been saying this for quite sometime now. But read our lips: they are
truly numbered. So are President Mugabe's days as well. After all, he is a
mere mortal and he is 80.

Yes, Zanu PF's rule, particularly the last four years, has been a wasteful
and costly ambition. But the political turnaround is not that far off. Mark
our words.

Essentially, we are dealing with a political problem. But until that
politics is put right, Gono needs to be encouraged and supported if nothing
else at least in his abiding optimism and enthusiasm - particularly at this
time in our country when almost everyone black or white is very pessimistic
about the current situation as well as the future of the country.

Progress will require determination, staying power and statecraft of a high
order. Without hand wringing on our part, we feel that Gono is showing the
way - at least within the narrow parameters that he has been allowed to
operate and manoeuvre.
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Zim Standard

Cops, robbers and elections
overthetop By Brian Latham

ZANY police will soon be deployed throughout a troubled central African
nation in an effort to prevent a forthcoming election from being stolen,
said sources within the Zany Party.

"It is an established fact that the Zany Party is the vanguard of the
troubled central African police State," said a Zany spokesman. "For this
reason it is imperative that no one steals the election from us."

The move is expected to send shivers up the spines of millions of members of
the opposition More Drink Coming Party who say the last election was stolen
from them.

"It is an established fact that elections in 2000 and 2002 were stolen from
the More Drink Coming Party," said a party spokesman. "The Zany Party and
its strange police force robbed us," he added.

Still, the standoff leaves the More Drink Coming Party at a distinct
disadvantage, analysts claim. Speaking on condition of anonymity, one
analyst told Over The Top that the More Drink Coming Party had less chance
of winning an election than it did of organising a national strike.

"The Zany Party controls the police and the military, the election officials
and the counting process," said the political analyst. "The More Drink
Coming Party controls. well, actually it doesn't control anything."

Another analyst told OTT, "While I'm not suggesting that the deployment of
heavily armed Zany cops and soldiers has any effect on the way people may
vote, people tend not to put their "x" in a box that might get them shot."

He added that there was no reason to believe election officials loyal to the
ruling Zany Party would rig an election unless there was something in it for

Meanwhile, concerned members of the opposition were worried that food might
also influence the outcome of next year's poll. With millions of troubled
central Africans under the mistaken belief that much needed food was being
provided by a kind and caring Zany Party, the More Drink Coming Party was
keen to point out that the food actually came from kind and caring
capitalist imperialists in the western world.

For its part, the Zany Party says there is no shortage of food in the
troubled central African basket case, but it will happily provide food
anyway, on the off chance it will help people decide who it is best to vote

While the election is still some months off, both parties are predicting
they will win. Dual victories are not uncommon on the troubled continent, a
situation that sees more than one party claiming victory. The situation is
generally followed by a period of unrest during which large pieces of
pavement are thrown at the police who in turn respond with tear gas and

But regional governments, anxious to avoid a repeat of the embarrassment of
previous elections in the troubled central African police State, are said to
be insisting on certain conditions. One of these will be transparent ballot

These can be stuffed only after polling has taken place, rather than before,
which was the normal practice.

There is also considerable alarm about the hundreds of thousands of dead
people on the voters' roll, though a Zany Party official in the Registrar
General's office said it would be undemocratic to discriminate against the

"In our glorious socialist democracy, we even extend rights to the dead," he

Still, all troubled central Africans agreed that the run up to the elections
would be "interesting" and that they expected to see new and innovative
campaigns to emerge in the coming months.
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Zim Standard

Alleviate plight of pensioners

THE dramatic increase in value on equities on the Zimbabwe Stock market that
has taken place over the last few weeks, will have grown the value of
probably all Pension Funds in Zimbabwe substantially.

As we know, pensions in this country have been caught by the massive rate of
inflation which has eroded their purchasing power because pension increases
from pension funds have fallen way behind .

Chairmen of Trustees of Pension Funds should be holding emergency meetings
to award starving pensioners increases immediately to alleviate the
pensioners' plight as quickly as possible. That is, if they care. The real
problem is most of them don't.

DE Middlemost

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Zim Standard

Hard currency ban to promote black market
By Kumbirai Mafunda

INCONSISTENCIES and reversals - the government's main Achilles heel for
years - appears to have caught up with Reserve bank Governor Gedion Gono in
his latest monetary policy review.

Gono shocked his major source for foreign currency - Zimbabweans living and
working abroad - by banning a facility that earlier allowed relatives to
access remittances in hard currency.

Following the ban, announced on Tuesday during his quarterly monetary
review, beneficiaries can now only get remittances locally in Zimbabwean
dollars at the prevailing auction or "Diaspora" rate, which ever is more

Economic analysts have over the years blamed President Robert Mugabe's
government for crafting several high-sounding policies that were later
dumped, sometimes before implementation.

Since the inception of the government's "Homelink" facility in April,
recipients of hard currency paid by relatives and friends overseas to
foreign banks had an option to receive payouts in foreign currency or the
Zimbabwe dollar equivalent at the "Diaspora" floor price of $5 200 or the
prevailing auction price.

On Tuesday Gono outlawed the foreign currency transactions blaming the
exercise for aggravating illegal black market transactions.

Economic analysts however pointed out that the latest modification of the
payment framework could ruin the mobilisation of much needed foreign
currency from Zimbabweans living outside the country.

They said the ban would make it unattractive for Zimbabweans living abroad
to remit funds back home and could result in the emergence of an even more
powerful parallel market.

The analysts pointed out that even the 7,7% devaluation of the local
currency to $5 600 against the American greenback, also announced by Gono on
Tuesday, was unlikely to affect the thriving parallel market.

The US dollar is currently fetching $6 500 against the local tender on the
parallel market while at the twice-weekly auctions it is worth around $5 357
per US dollar.

Other experts said only the resumption of exports would curtail the illegal
foreign currency deals now rampant. "The whole reason the black market is
flourishing is that Zimbabweans in the Diaspora are not supporting the
facility. They are resorting to their traditional means," said Tendai Biti,
the opposition MDC's shadow minister of finance.
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Zim Standard

Jonathan Moyo: Mugabe's ally or heir?
sundayopinion By Geoff Nyarota

AN unlikely but resolute contender has emerged from the ranks of Zimbabwe's
ruling party to position himself as likely successor if President Robert
Mugabe retires in 2008.

Jonathan Moyo, an American-educated political scientist, was once Mugabe's
severest critic. Then he became his outspoken and controversial spokesman.
Now he has defied his many critics to secure a foothold in a race that is
shrouded in mystery and animosity.

A workaholic with a penchant for creating enemies, Moyo has deviated from
established protocol within Mugabe's ruling Zanu PF party to formulate his
own political strategy, leaving observers in no doubt as to his real
intentions. Aides say the former university don works late into the night to
churn out long and blistering articles.

A common thread runs through his eloquent discourse. It is to promote
himself, to deflect any criticism of Mugabe and to castigate perceived
rivals, especially politicians and journalists.

Such articles, hard-hitting and daring at a time when Mugabe, now 80, was
untouchable, propelled Moyo to prominence in the early 1990s. He became the
voice and the conscience of the oppressed.

'His uncanny propensity to shoot himself in the foot has become a national
problem which needs urgent containment,' Moyo wrote of Mugabe in The Mirror
a year before he incurred the wrath of the president, who brooked no
criticism. Insiders say, however, that Mugabe was an avid reader of his
venomous pieces. 'He never missed any of Moyo's articles,' says an aide
close to Mugabe at the time.

'Moyo is now obviously gunning for the presidency,' says Wilson Nharingo, a
businessman who follows political developments in Harare closely. 'His bid
has the support of the President. Recently Moyo publicly clashed with Vice-
President Joseph Msika. Then he clashed with Nathan Shamuyarira and with
John Nkomo.

'Mugabe said nothing. That is tacit endorsement of Moyo's campaign.
Unfortunately for Moyo, his campaign does not seem to have the support of
anyone else within or outside Zanu PF.

Moyo, once described as Zimbabwe's most hated politician, has openly
challenged Mugabe's veteran cohorts. As secretary for Information and
Publicity, Shamuyarira is Moyo's immediate boss in Zanu PF.

Nkomo, the Lands and Land Reform and Resettlement minister, is the party's
chairman, is also the most senior politician in Zanu PF to emerge from
Moyo's home area Matabeleland. Nkomo has been named as a likely successor to

Moyo has also berated parliamentary Speaker, the feared Emmerson Mnangagwa,
long regarded as heir apparent to Mugabe.

Zanu PF normally deals ruthlessly with junior politicians who openly
criticize its geriatric leadership. Moyo has repeatedly lambasted them with

At the height of his popularity, Moyo suddenly resigned from the University
of Zimbabwe. He reappeared on the country's political radar in 2000 when he
spearheaded a campaign to sell proposed constitutional changes on behalf of
Mugabe. Harare's independent newspapers dropped a bomb-shell, meanwhile. A
series of articles linked Moyo to allegations of embezzlement of thousands
of dollars while working for the New York-based Ford Foundation in Nairobi,

Moyo threatened legal action over the damaging articles but new allegations
of impropriety surfaced, this time in South Africa where he had secured a
research fellowship at a university. It was alleged that the research had
not been completed and that Moyo had failed to account for the funds
advanced for the purpose.

New Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) party of opposition leader, Morgan
Tsvangirai, campaigned for the rejection of a draft constitution. The
proposals sought to consolidate Mugabe's grip on power, while granting him
authority to dispossess 4 000 white farmers of commercial farmland without
compensating them.

Throwing his weight behind his former nemesis, Moyo vigorously campaigned
for acceptance of the proposed constitution. Esconced in the five-star
Sheraton Hotel, the 'astute' political scientist however failed to assess
the prevailing political climate. The MDC, then only five months old, scored
its first.

Undaunted by this dismal failure, Moyo took up the cudgels to spearhead Zanu
PF's campaign ahead of parliamentary elections scheduled for June 2000. He
replaced Mugabe as the public face of Zanu PF at a time when the ruling
party's veteran politicians tactfully withdrew to the sidelines in the face
of a determined onslaught from the opposition. The MDC won 47.5 percent of
the vote against a backdrop of massive intimidation and brutal violence.

Despite this second catastrophe, Mugabe rewarded Moyo with a ministerial
appointment. He had perhaps decided it was prudent to have his fiercest
critic inside looking out than outside looking in. Having deftly switched
political allegiance, Moyo impressed Mugabe with his capacity for devotion
to any cause, once he embraced it.

In the eyes of Mugabe, Moyo's most singular achievement was his
single-handed onslaught on what Zanu PF perceived to be the backbone of the
MDC. Moyo's campaign left the small but increasingly daring independent
press in total disarray, with three newspapers, including the popular Daily
News, now fallen by the wayside.

'If there are any reporters who think they would effect a regime change
here,' Moyo warned Bulawayo journalists in May, 'they would find themselves
in jail.

We have enough prison room for them'.

Ironically, the first significant indication of Moyo's quest for the
presidency was to surface back in Nairobi, after Moyo granted Kenyan
newspaper and television journalists a rare opportunity to interview Mugabe.

Following their visit to Harare The East African Standard reported in May:
'Analysts in Zimbabwe view . Moyo as the favourite to succeed Mugabe. Of
the cabinet ministers, he is the closest to the President and the most

Jonathan Nathaniel Moyo was clearly on the campaign trail.

He has distinguished himself as a skilful political strategist. While his
rivals wait patiently for favours from Mugabe, Moyo has proactively charted
and plotted his own political destiny. He has strengthened his grip on the
State's awesome media machinery which he exploits, so his critics say, to
discredit and embarrass his rivals, while propelling himself to the
forefront of the presidential succession challenge.

'I first met Jonathan Moyo in 1984 when he was a student in Los Angeles,'
says Charlemagne Chimbangu a Zimbabwean businessman who is based in
Worcester, Massachusetts, and has closely followed Moyo's spectacular rise.
'I met him again in Johannesburg in 1995 when he visited from Nairobi. A
white man in his company said to me, 'Do you realize that this man is the
future president of Zimbabwe?' Moyo stood by and smiled.'

Like Mugabe, Moyo blames Zimbabwe's endemic problems on white Zimbabweans
and the West. While he studied at the University of Southern California and,
until his unceremonious departure, worked for the Ford Foundation, an
American organization, Moyo openly despises fellow Zimbabweans who have fled
economic quagmire and political upheaval to settle, despite their skills,
for menial jobs in the United States and the United Kingdom.

While he is a shrewd strategist, Moyo has no grassroots political support.
Neither does he have any known strategic ally within the ruling party. His
penchant for stepping on important toes could be suicidal.

He may also have to act to redeem the public goodwill squandered when he
jumped political ship and rescued a president who was on the verge of
dispatch into political oblivion.

Moyo has partly stacked his political destiny on Mugabe, whose own power and
credibility have been on the decline since the political upheaval of 2000.

The Johannesburg-based Sunday Times described him as 'Mugabe's flak-catcher
and an infant in the real-politik of Harare. He will have reached his
sell-by date the moment Mugabe leaves office'.

Events during the run-up to Zimbabwe's parliamentary elections next year
will determine if the newspaper's assessment was accurate.

(Geoff Nyarota is the founding Editor-in-Chief of The Daily News, Zimbabwe's
independent daily newspaper, which was banned by the government in 2003.)
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Zim Standard

Gono's efforts are not enough
Sundaytalk with Pius Wakatama

WHEN I first visited Ghana just before Jerry Rawlings forcibly took over the
country as President, for the second time,their economy was in a critical

I went to a bank to change a US$100 bill. The teller took my bill and
started to count stacks and stacks of various denominations of faded cedi
notes. After some time, I became impatient thinking he was taking stock of
his money before serving me. I only realised that all that money was mine
when he shoved the piles of money at me. Just to be sure that he had not
made a mistake I said, 'I gave you a hundred dollars.'

'Yes,' he answered, giving me a paper bag. I filled the bag as well as all
my pockets. This is exactly what has happened to our money except we smartly
invented big denominated bearers' cheques.

As we waited for a friend at the airport, I asked my Ghanian friend, George
Kom, about the state of the economy and he painted a gloomy picture indeed.
When he noticed my concern he said, 'Ah don't worry. It will be over soon.
Do you see those Lebanese alighting from the plane. They are coming back to
invest. It is a sign that the economy is on the path to recovery. They have
confidence in Jerry's government.

I was reminded of this visit to Ghana by what I have heard and read about
our economy this last week after Governor of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe,
Dr Gideon Gono, who is also the de facto Minister of Finance, presented his
monetary review statement.

The government owned Herald's lead story headline screamed,"Economy on the
mend!' (The exclamation mark is mine).

We all know that positive thinking is good. It is good for the heart because
it lessens stress. But, that is all it does. If positive thinking is not
backed by positive action it becomes folly and will eventually be followed
by a heart attack when things really begin to fall apart. It is like putting
your head in the sand so that you don't see the reality around you, like the
proverbial ostrich.

In The Herald of July 28, 2004, the newspaper enthused,'The economy has
turned the bend and is now on a firm recovery path which will be bolstered
by measures contained in the monetary policy review statement presented by
the Governor of the Reserve Bank, Dr Gideon Gono, yesterday.

The inflation rate though unsustainably high the foreign exchange
inflows, the availability of basic commodities and other macro-economic
fundamentals have stabilised over the past six months in response to
monetary and fiscal policy measures implemented since the beginning of the

In his celebrated report, Dr Gono blasted those he called 'false prophets of
doom,'who only see and prescribe that the Zimbabwean economy can only go
down one path: that of deterioration with no capacity or prospects for

I proudly confess that I am one of the prophets of doom that he is talking
about. I am proud because I am in good company. Jeremiah was also a prophet
of doom to his people of Judah.

Jeremiah did not prophesy gloom and doom to his people of Judah because of
lack of patriotism or love of money. He told them the truth because of his
fear of God and love for his people.

Around him, society was deteriorating economically, socially, politically
and spiritually. For 40 years Jeremiah preached repentance to the people. He
was ignored, rejected and persecuted for this. To bring such gloomy messages
of impending judgment and destruction was deemed to be unpatriotic. By
Gono's standards, he was an abysmal failure.

Kind Josiah had made some efforts at reform but these did not go far enough.
The people continued in their selfishness and worship of idols. They
oppressed aliens, shed innocent blood, lied, and raped with impunity. There
was no rule of law at all.

Jeremiah lived to see many of his prophecies come true notably the fall of
Jerusalem and the captivity of Judah.

Like King Josiah of Judah, our government has embarked on more reforms. But
these don't go far enough for there to be real economic recovery and
prosperity in Zimbabwe. For this to happen, the whole system needs to be

In his report Gono says,' Sincerity, goodwill; integrity and good corporate
governance; as well as policy consistency and persistence are indispensable
pillars of successful economic turnaround programme.'

I can't say I fault this scholarly mumbo-jumbo at all. The only thing is I
don't see how it translates into real reform on the ground. Do you? On the
other hand it completely misses the real reason for our economic demise,
which is political. Gono talks of good corporate governance but evades
talking of good national governance. Of course, the good governor will say
he is not a politician.

This is why I say he has done all he can but that is not enough to
resuscitate and get our economy on the path to recovery. Half baked monetary
and fiscal engineering alone will not save us from doom. Arresting a few
errant political weaklings without getting at the real Mafia god-fathers
will not rid the nation of corruption.

Getting a few measly pounds from economic and political refugees whom we,
just yesterday, called 'British bum cleaners' will not get us anywhere,
especially without allowing them to vote.

The complicated auction system will not see foreign currency flowing into
the manufacturing sector to create jobs and earn foreign currency. Neither
can it kill the black market. This can only be done by devaluing the dollar
to black market levels.

Pleading with Zanu PF chefs to give up their illegally gotten multiple
farms, most of which now lie idle, will not put the land reform programme on
course. They must be arrested and prosecuted like the common criminals they

In order for there to be real economic recovery, Zimbabwe needs a massive
injection of foreign and local investment as well as international donor
support. Gono himself said so. Investors and international lending
institutions fled Zimbabwe to other countries mostly for political reasons.

There is no respect for human rights including those of private property.
There is no independent judiciary and general disrespect for the rule of
law. Democratic principles are flouted through unjust laws and political
machinations. All this creates an atmosphere of instability. No one in his
right mind wants to risk his money in such an unstable environment.

The recent about-turn by government in regard to reforming the electoral
environment should be applauded.

Finally, we seem to be getting the right idea that all is not well and that
Tony Blair is not the root cause of our problems. We should all thank God
for these small mercies but at the same time remind Him that what we really
need are showers of blessings.

I am not alone in my applause. Even the militant Crisis in Zimbabwe
Coalition commended President Robert Mugabe for the electoral reforms he
made. They however, pointed out that the reforms were not enough but should
be followed by the repeal of all 'archaic and draconian laws,' which have a
negative impact on free and fair polls.

He who has ears to hear, let him hear,
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Mugabe law will curb church and charities

Andrew Meldrum in Pretoria
Monday August 2, 2004
The Guardian

The Zimbabwean government has drawn up legislation to curtail the activities
of charities, church groups and other non-governmental organisations.
Announcing the draft legislation, President Robert Mugabe said
non-governmental organisations "must work for the betterment of our country
and not against it ... We cannot allow them to be conduits or instruments of
foreign interference in our national affairs."

Civic leaders have denounced the bill, expected to be tabled in parliament
within weeks, as an attempt to strangle all independent, critical voices in
Zimbabwe in the run-up to parliamentary elections in March next year. The
bill would make it difficult for independent bodies to speak out against
state torture and other human rights abuses, the prevalence of hunger and
vote rigging, they warned.

"It's very threatening," said a community leader, Rutendo Hadebe. "Obviously
it is all about the elections. Before the last elections the government
passed legislation to restrict the press. Now civic organisations are the
next stumbling block so the government is taking measures against us."

The bill forbids local organisations from receiving foreign funding and
requires them to register with the government, which can ban them. The bill
also prevents foreign organisations from operating if they intend to work in
the areas of governance and human rights.

Amnesty International said: "The government will use this new bill to
silence critical voices and further restrict the right to freedom of
expression. It is a clear attempt to suppress dissenting views as
parliamentary elections draw closer."

Iden Wetherell, chairman of the Zimbabwe National Editors' Forum, said:
"This bill is part of a wider campaign by government to close down
democratic space in the country."
This week the Zimbabwe Election Support Network urged the government to
carry out new and transparent voter registration. It said the voters' roll
was so riddled with dead voters, multiple entries and "ghost" voters that it
could not be used in free and fair polls.

Yesterday, Zimbabwe's main opposition party accused police of harassing its
leader to hinder his political activities before the elections. Police on
Saturday searched the northern Harare home of the Movement for Democratic
Change leader, Morgan Tsvangirai, looking for weapons. None was found, said
an opposition spokesman, William Bango.
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The Herald

Gono eyes invigorating agricultural sector

Business Reporter
THE Governor of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ), Dr Gideon Gono has set
sights on invigorating the agricultural sector in efforts aimed at forming
the basis for economic recovery as well as ensuring food security for the

During the presentation of the second quarter review of the monetary policy
last week, Dr Gono clearly indicated that he firmly believed in agriculture
as one sector of the economy on which the turn around strategies for the
revival of the economy could build.

"Agriculture remains the mainstay of the Zimbabwean economy, and this
primarily derives from the land being an endowment where the country has
immense comparative advantage.

"Because of this, and the inextricable downstream linkages between
agriculture and the rest of the economy, there is need for collective
efforts, aimed at invigorating effective utilisation of land," said Dr Gono.

Dr Gono said food security was also indispensable prerequisite to the
national development, as no amount of insistence or persistence could turn a
hungry society into productive human capital.

He also said that food security was critical for containment of the country'
s 'number one enemy', inflation.

"A stable food supply is also an integral part of the preconditions of
inflation stabilisation in Zimbabwe, as the food component of the consumer
price index accounts for a significant proportion," he said.

Much attention will be given to foreign exchange generating crops such as
tobacco, cotton, paprika, soya beans and many others.

Already, Dr Gono said, $150 billion has been ring-fenced and disbursed to
enhance winter wheat production, while $85 billion was set aside for
disbursement through the ministry of agriculture to rehabilitate
infrastructure in the agricultural sector.

To optimise usage of agricultural equipment which had been lying idle,
Reserve Bank set up an agricultural equipment facility, based on the willing
buyer willing seller system.

Through this scheme, 129 tractors, 15 combine harvesters, three bulldozers,
seven rippers and 15 ploughs among other equipment where made available to
government for deployment into need farming areas by 30 June this year.

Furthermore, the central bank expressed the need for a comprehensive
marketing strategy for the country's agricultural products to achieve
sustainable productivity.

"Such marketing arrangements should be supported by necessary regulatory
structures, which effectively wade off such retrogressive practices, as has
been experienced in some contract growing schemes where flybyharvesttime
traders have cropped up, offering prices that are out of touch with
structures," said the financial overlord boss.

He said comprehensive, long-term frameworks that allows for pooled
procurement of inputs, discharge of tillage programmes and marketing
strategies should be structured and implemented to lay a firm base for
revival of agriculture.

Said Dr Gono; "As monetary authorities, we stand to work with government and
the farming community in making sure that success is registered in such
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