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

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Taipei Times

Laying waste a continent

Recorded HIV/AIDS cases are growing at an astonishing rate in southern Africa and the deadly virus is threatening the manpower of the world's poorest countries.What can the UNAIDS program do to battle the spreading consequences of this global problem?
By Peter Piot

It is no coincidence that the six southern African nations that now face the prospect of mass famine -- Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Swaziland, Zambia, and Zimbabwe -- also have substantial and still growing HIV epidemics, with between one sixth and one third of their populations infected. In southern Africa, famine and AIDS are, in fact, directly related. Addressing the links between hunger, disease, lack of education and war is vital to long-term solutions to humanitarian emergencies. The world's most serious health problems, including HIV/AIDS, are deeply connected to the violence and poverty that shackle hundreds of millions of people around the world.

In observance of this week's commemoration of World AIDS Day, UNAIDS (the joint UN program on HIV/AIDS) has released new data showing that 3.1 million people died of AIDS this year. Five million were infected with HIV over the course of the year and 42 million men, women and children are now living with the virus.

AIDS will have killed 3.1 million people in 2002, five million more were newly infected with the deadly virus and for the first time since the start of the epidemic, half of the 42 million people living with HIV/AIDS are women.
The following are some key events in the development of the epidemic:
1981 Outbreaks of two rare illnesses are reported among young homosexual men in the US. The disorders, a respiratory infection called pneumocystis carinii pneumonia and a cancer, Kaposi's sarcoma, usually infect older men.
1981-1983 Scientists and researchers start to recognize the emergence of a new disease that destroys the body's immune system, preventing sufferers from fighting simple infections. The illness is also found to affect intravenous drug users and blood transfusion recipients.
1984 The Human Immunodeficiency Virus, HIV, is identified as the cause of the disease.
Scientific papers suggesting that AIDS is spread through blood are published in The Lancet and the New England Journal of Medicine.
1985 Scientists develop diagnostic test for the virus.
First World AIDS Conference in Atlanta, Georgia.
1987 Zidovudine (AZT), the first treatment for HIV, is launched.
1988 Dec. 1st is designated World AIDS Day.
1991 Videx (ddl), like AZT a member of a class of drugs called reverse transcriptase inhibitors (RTIs), is launched.
1994-1995 Zerit (d4T) and Epivir (3TC), other RTIs, are launched, increasing the choice of treatments.
1996 Triple drug cocktails including protease inhibitors that block the replication of HIV in the body are revealed at the 11th World AIDS Conference in Vancouver, Canada.
1998 Scientists image the crystalline structure of the gp120 protein the HIV virus uses to break into the human immune system cells it attacks.
1999 A chimpanzee named Marilyn helps confirm that the AIDS virus first passed into people from chimps; genetic tests show HIV is closely related to a simian immunodeficiency virus or SIV that infects chimps but does not make them sick.
2000 Five top drug companies agree to slash the price of HIV and AIDS treatments for developing countries, in a breakthrough U.N. deal.
2002 The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria is set up to fund the fight against the three top infectious diseases.
In a report showing the epidemic is still in its early stages, the U.N says that AIDS will kill 70 million people over the next 20 years, mostly in Africa, unless rich nations step up their efforts to curb the disease.
Source: Reuters
But what do these numbers mean? What happens when 42 million people in the prime of their lives become ill, the great majority of them unable to access any kind of treatment?

AIDS is combining with other factors -- including droughts, floods and in some cases shortsighted national and international policies -- to cause a steady fall in agricultural production in Africa. An AIDS-related death in a farm household causes crop output to plummet - often by up to 60 percent. Household incomes also shrink, leaving people with less money to buy food. Multiply that by millions and famine is not far behind. According to the UN Food and Agricultural Organization, 7 million agricultural workers in 25 severely affected African countries have died from AIDS since 1985. A 2002 study in central Malawi has shown that about 70 percent of surveyed households had suffered labour losses due to sickness.

`Scaling up global spending on 12 proven prevention strategies to US$4.8 billion per year by 2005 would save 29 million people from HIV infection by the decade's end.'

Women in agricultural societies, who perform the bulk of duties related to household food production and care, have been particularly hard hit. When caring for a sick husband, the amount of time a wife has available for tasks such as planting, harvesting and marketing drops up to 60 percent. When the male head of household dies, she may find herself denied access to necessities such as credit, distribution networks or land rights. When she becomes ill or dies, the household often collapses completely -- leaving orphans to fend for themselves without schooling or the skills to carry on food production. More than 11 million African children have now lost one or both parents to AIDS.

UN agencies are mobilizing to address the famine in southern Africa, and have launched a joint appeal for more than US$600 million in assistance, including more than US$500 million in food aid. This critically needed assistance may alleviate the symptoms. But as UN Special Envoy James Morris notes, the "dramatic impact of HIV/AIDS on the humanitarian situation in southern Africa is not fully appreciated." The scale and severity of the impact of AIDS makes swift recovery unlikely. And because the food crisis intensifies and prolongs the epidemic -- as insecurity heightens risk, and poor nutrition hastens illness -- HIV/AIDS responses must also be significantly stepped up.

This epidemic is not only about Africa, or famine. On every continent, AIDS is travelling along social fault lines and exploiting weakness, hurting both lives and economies. HIV infections increased by 25 percent in Eastern Europe and Central Asia this year. Infections in Asia jumped by 10 percent. Together in India and China, well over 5 million people are now living with HIV, and nearly 2 million are infected in the Caribbean and Latin America. In Indonesia, where there was virtually no injecting drug use 10 years ago, about a quarter of the country's estimated 200,000 needle drug users are now infected with HIV.

One of the best things we can do now to safeguard economic and human development in the future is to invest heavily in alleviating the impact of the epidemic, extending access to care and scaling up proven HIV prevention efforts. We know that when prevention programs are mounted seriously, they work. Along with sustained drops in HIV rates in Uganda, prevention efforts are beginning to bear fruit among young people in Ethiopia, South Africa and Zambia. Prevalence is leveling off in Cambodia and the Dominican Republic. Countries as different as Senegal and Poland have demonstrated that the combination of leadership and community involvement can keep the epidemic at bay.

Scaling up global spending on 12 proven prevention strategies to US$4.8 billion per year by 2005 would save 29 million people from HIV infection by the decade's end. When the immediate needs for HIV-related care and treatment are added, the required annual spending directly on AIDS in low and middle income countries is US$10.5 billion. This year, spending will be less than US$3 billion. And the more we delay making a proper investment in the AIDS fight, the more the eventual costs will escalate.

Perhaps for the first time, southern Africa's famine brings the world face-to-face with the true scale of the consequences of AIDS. With 5 million new HIV infections globally this year alone, if we do not dramatically increase action against AIDS, we will be sowing the seeds of future humanitarian disasters -- and not only in southern Africa.

Peter Piot is the executive director of UNAIDS.

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Apologies to all who had problems (and costs) downloading the weather report. We shall in future send only the expected rainfall outlook.

I write to inform members of the outcome of November’s Council meeting, in which we were set to elect a new President. I must point out that for many months our Council has not been unified which has had a serious impact on our members and staff alike. However, I am very happy to say that after a lot of debate consensus was reached and what I believe to be a good and acceptable solution was adopted.

It is my belief that we have made an absolute commitment to work hard at unifying Council. I hope this stabilizes the membership and gives confidence.

The Director has agreed to remain as Acting Director until Vice President Matt Crawford returns from leave when he, Vice President Doug Taylor Freeme and I will conduct interviews for his replacement. I wish to appeal to members for continued support for the Union, and  with the assistance of my two Vice President we will be able unify the Union and its membership and with the new ABC plan that has recognized all members needs, address these and move forward.

We were sorry to see the loss of so many staff at the end of this month but it was essential due to financial constraints. I do wish however, to assure members that we still remain with a professional compliment of staff that will still be able to service the Union and its members.   

Colin Cloete

President CFU

Maize and Wheat Market in South Africa

The SA Crop Estimate committee forecast intentions to plant an area of over 3 million hectares of maize, of which only an estimated of 30% has been planted so far due to the dry conditions.  The planting intentions will decrease dramatically if rain does not come before 15th December 2002. The dry weather in South Africa will send the maize market on a bullish ride.

The dry conditions in South Africa is being influenced by the development of El Nino which since the second part of October 2002, exceeded the initial forecast and showed a rapid development. In comparison to the 1982/83 and 1991/92 El Nino event, it is reported to be relatively weak.  The timing of development was too late for the traditional good spring rain over the interior of South Africa, usually associated with El Nino. The medium term forecast still indicates a weakening of El Nina for the months to come but a strong redevelopment is expected from about May 2003.

The wheat market has taken a huge hit in South Africa having dropped in the region of R300 per tonne in the last month, from R2000 to R1741, the movement is no big surprise but the scale of the movement has been a shock.  This has been exacerbated by declining international prices and the strengthening of the rand.  The market has reached a strange position where white maize is now trading at a R120 per tonne premium over wheat.

Internationally, wheat price movements have predominantly been influenced by an adjustment made to the Chinese wheat stocks.  Chinese stock figures were increased by a huge amount that saw world wheat stocks increasing by 50 million tonnes.  To put that in perspective, the total US wheat production is only 43 million tonnes.  This is obviously a major swing in the supply and demand equation.


SAFEX Future Prices 26/11/02

Dec 2002


Mar 2003


May 2003


June 2003


White Maize





Yellow Maize















 Wanted : Hybrid seed maize producers. Contact E. Rupende or J. Young on telephone 308881-7 or 091 231 841-6 or E-Mail :


If you require any further information on any of the above issues please contact CFU Tel 04 -309800 ext. 279 or e–mail and we will endeavour to supply prompt answers.


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Please send any material for publication in the Open Letter Forum to:
Open Letter Forum <>

Open Letter Forum

Letter 1: From J.L. Robinson

In the August 2002 edition of Prospect, Andro Linklater has put down some
very interesting and thought provoking facts about LAND and TITLE.  As we
are going through a very contentious period in our history regarding land,
I believe that what he has written is of considerable interest for those
people who want to see this country prosper in the future, and remain here
to see it to fruition.  To make it easy reading I have kept it in point
form, but it is taken from his text.

1. In 1785 Thomas Hutchins's team of surveyors first unrolled a 22 yard
chain and began to measure out the wilderness.  This started on the
outskirts of East Liverpool, Ohio and eventually covered over three million
square miles, over the next two centuries.
2. The sheer physical achievement of the survey is breathtaking; but it is
dwarfed by the economic and social consequences.  It made possible the
transfer of over a billion acres from public to private ownership.
3. Jefferson believed that land should be distributed as widely as
possible. His ideal was a romantic notion of the Saxon yeoman-farmer, able
to live off his land, unafraid to speak his mind, independent of government
but with a vested interest in law-abiding behaviour.
4. A generation after Hutchins first stepped into the woods, the state of
Ohio possessed 33 printing offices, 27 banks, six furnaces, five glass
works, eight wool mills, 12 cotton mills, three paper mills, three nail
factories, three colleges, nine academies, eight public libraries, and an
almost infinite number of stores, grist merchants and sawmills.  Whether
they willed it or not, Jefferson's yeoman farmers became part of the
capitalist world.
5. The theme has a modern echo in the theories of Peruvian economist,
Hernando de Soto.  In his book The Mystery of Capital, he argues that the
most important step towards rescuing the Third World from poverty would be
the creations of a property framework giving the occupants of shanty towns
title to the land they live on.  By his estimate, the total value of that
land is $9,3 trillion, but "because they do not have access to a
comprehensive system of property law, they cannot use it to produce
additional wealth."
6. In the US the common law and a widespread interpretation of the Fifth
Amendment is - "nor shall private property be taken for public use, without
just compensation."
7. Looking back on the 217 years of the public land survey..the
individualism, enterprise and respect for law that owning land stimulated
was essential to the creation of today's gigantic capitalist democracy, and
those of us living in the west are all to some extent its beneficiaries.

It is interesting to note that Linklater has followed the creation of
wealth in America down to a few fundamentals.  To simplify it further:-
"Respect for the law that owning land stimulated."  This indicates that
land ownership stimulates respect for the law, and we seem to have had the
opportunity of seeing this in reverse in Zimbabwe, and it certainly does
work backwards.
"Jefferson's ideal was to have farmers that were independent of government
and unafraid to speak their mind, but with a vested interest in law
abiding behaviour."  Do we have enough of these?

It seems somewhat obvious that the problems we face today cannot be
divorced from fundamental issues that faced a Frontier Nation two hundred
years ago, and yet we seem to have managed to get confused as to how we
attempt to solve the present problem and think that we might be smarter
than they were - and believe that to do away with Law, and Title, will be a
quick fix and road to wealth creation for everybody.

At a launch of the ABC plan this month, economist John Robertson covered
this very topic and how it is affecting Zimbabwe.  He put it this way -
"When colonizers came to this country, they brought with them many ideas
that were eagerly adopted by the indigenous population.  Today there is no
question of discarding telephones, road-building techniques, anti-malaria
drugs or distilleries.  And nobody wants to turn back to having no schools
or hospitals, no newspaper or postal services, no motor cars and no
insurance salesmen.  Today's politicians might claim to resent colonialism,
but they have no intention of giving up the innovations that came with it.

Except for one.  Very curiously, the one colonial import they are rejecting
is the one that has a more profound effect on wealth-generating abilities
of colonized countries than any other.  I am talking about the individual
title to land.

It is the bridge between the land and the banking system, the present and
the future, and between the farmer and the best farming ideas the world's
scientists can generate."
Mr Robertson went on to say that "you could fill libraries with the
accounts of land reforms that took away individual ownership and ended in
failure. Without doubt, the programme will fail."

The positive side to the launch of the ABC Plan earlier this month, was
that amongst the two hundred people present were quite a few members of the
CFU Council, who also heard the simple words and message from the respected
economist.  The direction and policy of the Union is now in their capable
hands, and we trust that they will take note of the words of the likes of
Linklater, de Soto and Robertson.  We also hope that they will have wisdom
to decide where agriculture is placed right now, and what action needs to
be taken, by the Union to prevent a questionable government policy combined
with a drought, from becoming a famine.
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number10, UK

New measure to tackle asylum abuse

The number of people applying for asylum in the UK rose in the period from
July to September, according to figures from the Home Office.

The process for dealing with claims is improving, though. More decisions are
being made within the two month target and there has been a record number of
removals of people whose asylum requests have been refused.

The figures for the third quarter of 2002 show that:

  a.. applications rose by 11 per cent to 22, 560;
  b.. the largest increases came from Iraqis (up 26 per cent), Zimbabweans
(up 56 per cent) and Somalians (up 44 per cent). The figures pre-date the
recent decision to require people from Zimbabwe to have a visa to enter the
UK, and the measures introduced with France;
  c.. initial decisions were four per cent higher than in the previous
quarter, but the backlog has risen due to more applications being made;
  d.. initial decisions were made within two months on 77 per cent of new
cases, beating the annual target of 65 per cent; and
  e.. a record number of 3,565 failed asylum seekers were removed.
Home Office Minister Beverley Hughes also announced a new measure to tackle
abuse of the system. The policy of exceptional leave to remain (ELR) will
end. It was originally meant to help those with protection needs who don't
qualify as refugees or who have other humanitarian needs, but its use has

The Minister said it has encouraged economic migrants to apply for asylum in
the belief they will get ELR when their claim is rejected. She said the
protection should only be granted to those who really need it. The policy
will be replaced by a new status of humanitarian protection for those who
are not covered by the 1951 Refugee Convention.

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            UN runs out of food for Zimbabwe
            November 29, 2002, 12:00

            The United Nations' famine relief agency warned today that it
did not have the food to feed nearly seven million famine-stricken
Zimbabweans, and "millions" were in imminent risk of starving.

            By early next year the number the UN has planned to feed is
expected to reach 5,8 million. However, the agency is short of 200 000 tons
of food, and the imports of food by both the World Food Programme (WFP) and
President Robert Mugabe's government were "falling far short" of what was
needed. The UN agency was "struggling to access sufficient resources for the
critical months ahead", the WFP said.

            The warning is the latest of what is expected to be the worst
famine in the country's history. Last week, a local food security monitoring
organisation warned that half of all Zimbabwean households had run out of
all food stocks, while the rest had less than one month's supply left.

            At the same time, the Zimbabwe Food Security Network, a
coalition of 24 non-governmental organisations, said last week, political
interference with food supplies by the government was increasing. A report
by a Danish human rights organisation said last week there was ample
evidence that Mugabe was deliberately withholding food from opposition
supporters, and using food as "a political weapon".

            The government claims that the shortages of food are the result
of a drought last year, but the UN and other famine relief organisations say
food supplies have collapsed because of Mugabe's expulsion of thousands of
highly productive farmers from their land and disastrous economic policies,
including comprehensive price controls. The government has also ignored UN
appeals to increase the flow of grain into the country by allowing private
companies to import it.

            The WFP has received only 59% of its appeal for finance to buy
food aid. Western donor governments cite reluctance to provide food to a
country where they fear it will be abused by the government. - Sapa
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From Africa Confidential (UK), 22 November

The new veterans march home

Corrupt and politicised, President Mugabe's army may be more dangerous at
home than it was in the Congo

Trouble looms as the final contingent of Zimbabwean troops in Congo-Kinshasa
returns home to a divided and nearly bankrupt country. Despite the veneer of
multi-party elections, Zimbabwe is now under militarised rule, where a
handful of the political elite makes policy alongside senior military and
security officers. Economic decline, not military aggression, is the biggest
threat facing the Zimbabwe Defence Forces. There are serious shortages of
funds for the military payroll, let alone for equipment. The ZDF comes a
poor third in southern Africa - in terms of size and equipment - to South
Africa's and Angola's forces. Zimbabwe is outclassed and outspent. In
Zimbabwe, defence spending of Z$76.4 billion (US$38.2 million. at the market
rate) budgeted for 2003 is a little more than a tenth of budgeted defence
spending of Z$16.2 bn. (circa US$300 mn.) in 2001; in 1998, official defence
spending was about US$330 mn., much of it on new capital equipment. Of the
Z$76.4 bn. for defence in 2003, wages for the Zimbabwe National Army take up
Z$31 bn. and for the Air Force of Zimbabwe, Z$5 bn. - almost half the total
allocation. Most economists believe that salary bill will be doubled by the
end of 2003 but few can see where the money will come from.

The ZDF (overall commander, General Vitalis Zvinavashe) has an official
authorised strength of 45,000 but there are estimated to be no more than
36,000 troops currently serving: about 32,000 in the ZNA, commanded by
Lieutenant Gen. Constantine Chiwenga, and 4,000 in the AFZ, under Air
Marshal Perence Shiri. All three commanding officers have been deeply
enmeshed in Congo, with Zvinavashe and Shiri openly involved in business
operations. Although senior officers overwhelmingly support the ruling Zanu
PF, many middle-ranking and junior officers prefer the opposition Movement
for Democratic Change. The coming military reorganisation and job losses
will not increase the government's popularity lower down the ranks. The
reorganisation, originally scheduled for the late 1990s, was delayed because
of the Congo operation.

The Congo factor

All the foreign armies sent to the Congo-Kinshasa war - Rwanda's, Uganda's
and Zimbabwe's - have deteriorated as a result. The Zimbabwe Defence Forces'
mission in Congo has been a turning point for Zimbabwe's military and their
return home could worsen relations with their political masters. Some ZDF
special forces will remain on security duties in Kinshasa, Mbuji Mayi and
Lubumbashi as the ground is prepared for the deployment of specially trained
guards by a private military company owned by senior ZDF officers. It was
meant to work alongside a private Congolese firm, Cogas, but disputes have
arisen about how the two can combine operations and levels of remuneration.
A much bigger question is how Zimbabwe can secure repayment of the war debts
that it claims Congo owes it for military assistance since August 1998. Now
that most ZDF troops have left, the need to keep Harare sweet may not seem
as pressing to Kinshasa. Both governments are considering restructuring
their Zimbabwe-backed joint venture diamond and cobalt mining operations.
The overwhelming need for the Zimbabwe government is short-term revenue to
meet its worsening foreign exchange crisis. As an institution, the
Zimbabwean military has been badly damaged by the Congo intervention, though
many senior officers have personally profited.
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From Private Eye (UK), 29 November

Letter from Lubumbashi

From our own correspondent

We learned of what amounted to a coup d'etat from a notorious gossip in the
Park Hotel. The most powerful 'tontons' in the Democratic Republic of Congo
had been suspended by our boy wonder president, Joseph Kabila. Out went
security minister Mwenze Kongolo, presidency minister Katumba Mwanke,
planning minister General Kalume Numbi and spy chief Kazadi Nyembwe. And in
comes.Well, no one is exactly sure. The best clue is the arrival in town of
several well-guarded Angolan and South African business types following the
hasty departure of our Zimbabwean military brothers bearing large parcels of
gem diamonds. The suspension of the four worst 'pilleurs' of the old regime
and the departure of some of their collaborators occasioned much rejoicing
here. 'Lubum' is a mining city and Mwenze and Katumba had been sharing out
concessions too freely with their Zimbabwean and Belgian pals. We were too
polite to complain until a UN investigation revealed that some $5bn of our
mineral assets have been discreetly relocated from our beleaguered state
mining companies to a group of private companies whose shares are held by
Ministers Mwenze, Katumba and Kalume and associates. The latest theory here
is that all those assets will be yanked back from the departing ministers
and their allies to be auctioned again to the thronging Angolans and South
Africans. After four years of what anyone with a US visa calls 'Africa's
world war', we tell ourselves the only way is up. But then we said that when
Joseph's father, corpulent rebel leader Laurent-Desire Kabila, toppled
Mobuto Sese Seko in 1997. After three unhappy years at the helm,
Laurent-Desire was shot in the ear by a bodyguard and spirited off to
Zimbabwe to expire. At his funeral in Kinshasa a week later, three Zimbabwe
Air Force Chinese F7 fighter jets crashed into each other and 30-year-old
Joseph emerged as leader of Africa's newest dynasty. Smiling sweetly and
speaking wisely, Joseph was nevertheless held prisoner by the tontons.
Unable to drive the Rwandan and Ugandan "pilleurs" from the east, and
unwilling to stop our Zimbabwean allies from pillaging the south, we
wondered what was the point of Joseph.

Always semi-detached from Congo, Lubum seemed to be heading for total
divorce. Our city and its mineral-rich hinterland of Katanga have come under
the sway of a military-business cabal. Swaggerer-in-chief is New Zealander,
turned Belgian, turned Congolese commercant George Forrest. Moustachioed
George is also France's honorary consul in Lubum and renowned for his
Bastille Day parties. Sensibly he joined the same freemason's lodge as
Belgian foreign minister and Congo aficionado Louis Michel. Formerly Mobuto'
s bag man and military supplier, Monsieur George now pledges allegiance to
the Kabila dynasty, and in Katanga has helped America's OM Group scoop up a
$2bn stockpile of germaniun, a rare metal used in communication satellites.
As you drive into Lubum from the south, you can't miss George's giant blue
oven coughing acrid smoke into the sky. Funny that after a private meeting
with George in his Lubum mansion, Belgian senate investigators concluded
that his business ethics were entirely proper - in the Congolese context.
Deputy chief swaggerer is military and tobacco salesman John Bredenkamp, who
's hoovered up a billion dollars of cobalt reserves in Katanga for a $400
000 down payment to his political pals in Kinshasa - on top of his $15m
spent so far on extraction. Thirty years ago he was busting UN sanctions to
keep Ian Smith in planes to bomb rebel positions in Rhodesia. Now he calls
himself Zimbabwean, does business with Mugabe's army, operates his
businesses out of Britain, sells British Aerospace (BAE Systems) military
kit and is Lady Thatcher's neighbour in Mayfair. It seems your prime
minister Tony Blair's indignation against Mugabe's carpetbaggers is a trifle
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ALB report

The ALB board met on the 27 November and discussed the budget for 2003 it was agreed that in view of the inflation rates etc only a six-month budget could be prepared. This was approved for the period January to June 2003. The Board was informed that the Ministry of Labour has not registered our new wage agreement and we wait with interest to see when this will happen.

Ewen Rogers consultancy contract will be renewed for a further three months and he will leave at the end of March 2003, by which time a new Executive Officer will be appointed.

A Memorandum of Understanding has been signed by ALB and GAPWUZ on interpretation of SI6 and gives farmers guidelines on various scenarios. This is available from the ALB office and regional offices, it will also appear in the next issue of Countdown.

Nigel Juul

Wheat price

Dr. J Made, Minister for Lands Agriculture and Rural Resettlement has announced a wheat price of Z$70,000/tonne for deliveries of wheat from 1 September 2002. We have asked GMB to advise us when "agerskot" payments will be made.

G Hutchinson

If you require any further information on any of the above issues please contact CFU Tel 04 -309800 ext. 279 or e–mail and we will endeavour to supply prompt answers.

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Hello Everyone
Sorry about the size of this, but it's important.
Someone's done a lot of research, and put this together, and it should be spread far and wide. South Africans, pull your heads out of the sand, and get with reality. Two years ago, any Zimbabwean would have told you that what HAS happened here, couldn't happen. And it WILL happen in SA if you aren't careful.
Bye for now XYZ


 National Liberation Movement heroes of South Africa and Zimbabwe
Photo: President Robert Mugabe meeting President Thabo Mbeki
at Harare airport, 18 March 2002 © Popperfoto/Reuters
Thabo Mbeki, 11 August, 2000: “In our situation, because of the colonialism of a special type, the victory of the national liberation struggle did not result in the departure of the foreign ruling class.”
Robert Mugabe, 12 December, 2000: “Let us bring it home to the commercial farmers of the CFU that they have declared war on the people of Zimbabwe who have every determination to win."
Comrades Mbeki and Mugabe share the same ideology. What else do they share?
Bilateral relations with Libya, Iraq and Cuba

Disregard for the Rule of Law and the Courts

Tichaona Jokonya, Zimbabwe’s permanent representative to the United Nations, 27 August, 2002: "The problem with the rule of law is that it respects property rights as opposed to the rights of the people. Countries have their national laws, which relate to the needs of the people."
Gilingwe Mayende, Director-General of Land Affairs, South Africa, 13 September 2002: "Property rights are protected by our constitution, but the constitution says these property rights must be balanced against the public interest and the nation's commitment to land reform.".
Disregard for national food security
Source: Central Statistcs Office, Harare
Source: Agri SA                                                
Disregard for national health and human development
Source: World Bank
Source: United Nations Development Program
National Liberation:  the next best thing to Stalinism?
In both America and Britain, there is currently a lively discussion after the publication of novelist Martin Amis’s book on Stalin, Koba the Dread.  In it the author laments the way in which many Westerners ignored the killing of twenty million people by Stalin.  Fortunately, Joseph Stalin is long dead.  Or is he?  A humanitarian and political catastrophe is brewing in Southern Africa manufactured by two ex-Soviet clients who have become self-styled “national liberationists” intent on the ethnic cleansing of minority groups in Zimbabwe as well as South Africa.
Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe has made rapid progress with his revolution or  Chimurenga, the Shona word for Uhuru.  He has been in power for an uninterrupted twenty years in which he has caused every social indicator to plummet (see above graphs).  Very soon inhabitants of both Zimbabwe and South Africa will have a life expectancy last seen in the nineteenth century, i.e. below 40 years.
Thabo Mbeki’s maverick views on AIDS, which did not acknowledge the existence of HIV, retarded South Africa’s response to the disease.  Having since abandoned these under international pressure, the effect on the country’s health may still be discerned in the radical decline in life expectancy (see graph above).
When asked whether they were going to implement the Pretoria Supreme Court order compelling government to provide nevirapine to HIV-positive pregnant women at state hospitals with the capacity to do so, the Ministers of  Justice and Health in South Africa made the following statements:
Penuell Maduna, Minister of Justice South Africa , 25 March 2002: "This is the decision of just one court and purely on the basis of our legal system it is not binding on the rest of the country." 
Manto Tshabalala-Msimang, Minister of Health, South Africa, 24 March 2002: "No, I think the courts and the judiciary must also listen to the authorities — regulatory authorities — both from this country and the United States."
Zimbabwe is a relatively small country, whereas South Africa represents the biggest and most vibrant economy on the continent.  Its coming demise is therefore going to spell disaster, not only for the region, but for the continent as a whole.  Currently, Mbeki supplies Mugabe with fuel and electricity on credit.  Two South African companies, oil-from-coal concern SASOL and the electricity utility ESKOM, are under pressure by the SA government to liberally supply energy to Zimbabwe with little hope of any payment in return.  SASOL, for one, has been writing off such debt, thereby shifting Mugabe’s energy bill onto its shareholders.  As SASOL intends listing on the NYSE, potential US shareholders should perhaps take note that they will be subsidising a corrupt African dictator bleeding his country dry and practising ethnic cleansing against a minority white farming community.

The Libyan connection
Another supplier of oil to Zimbabwe has been Libya. Mugabe and Mbeki invariably turn up together at international gatherings where they harangue the West for its past sins under colonialism, and keep up good relations with the world’s rogue states known for their human-rights abuses and support for terrorism, such as Cuba, Libya, and Iraq.  South Africa has also hinted at military cooperation with Libya, a country which currently finds itself under a United Nations arms embargo as a result of past support for terrorism, including the Lockerbie aeroplane bombing.  After a press statement issued by Libya to this effect, South African government spokesman quickly massaged the statement to mention “exploratory talks” between the countries on military cooperation.  In a “Joint Communiqué Between the Great Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriya and South Africa”, issued on 14 June 2002, His Excellency Thabo Mbeki and Brother Colonel Muammar Al-Qaddafi, Leader of the Great Al-Fatah Revolution in the Great Socialist People’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya congratulated each other on the excellent relations which existed between the two countries, exemplified by “the Great Socialist People’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya South Africa Joint Bilateral Commission”.
During this communiqué, they also “cautioned against equating struggles for self-determination with terrorism”, and asked for a UN-led definition of “terrorism” which will presumably exclude bombing civilians in the name of national liberation.
The Iraqi connection
An Iraqi government delegation that included the Iraqi Deputy President attended South Africa’s first Presidential inauguration in Pretoria during 1994. During October 1995 an official Iraqi delegation attended the UNCTAD Conference in South Africa. During the visit, informal discussions were held with the desk.
The first official visit to Iraq by a South African delegation took place during November1996.  The Iraqi Deputy President, Mr Taha Yassin Ramadan, Foreign Minister Mr Al-Sahaf as well as the Senior Under Secretary, Mr Nizar Hamdoun, attended the NAM Conference that was held in Durban during September 1998. During the conference, Deputy President Mbeki met with Mr Taha Yassin Ramadan. Diplomatic relations with Iraq were concluded during November 1998 when Deputy Minister Pahad led the first significant business delegation consisting of 30 South African companies to Iraq during November 1999.
SA Deputy Minister Pahad visited Iraq and the region in April 2001, and most recently Tariq Aziz reciprocated with a visit to South Africa, as reported by a Johannesburg newspaper on July 5th, 2002:

Iraq, SA to improve ties

Posted Fri, 05 Jul 2002

Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister Tariq Aziz and President Thabo Mbeki on Thursday discussed the strengthening of bilateral relations between the two countries on a political and economic level.
The meeting took place at Mbeki's Pretoria residence.
Mbeki's spokesperson, Bheki Khumalo, said: "Iraq is interested in South Africa's industrial capacity including electricity, agriculture as well as railways."
Khumalo said a cooperation agreement was signed on Thursday between Eskom and the Iraqi Electricity Committee "which we hope will be able to ensure that South African companies will bid for projects in the energy sector (in Iraq)."
He said they also discussed the possible establishment of a joint ministerial committee between the two countries as well as the situation in the Middle East with specific reference to Palestine.
Aziz, heading a six-man delegation, arrived in South Africa on Wednesday from Baghdad, via Damascus and Khartoum and was given a red-carpet welcome at Waterkloof Air Base outside the capital.
The visit, at the invitation of Deputy President Jacob Zuma, will include trips to Durban and Cape Town.
Education - the Cuban connection
The immediate post-apartheid education system was dubbed "Curriculum 2005" and was similar to the abortive Goals 2000 in the USA. The educational method was one that Prof Peter McLaren (UCLA) refers to as "domesticated OBE - sit around and talk about your feelings".

This has recently been replaced by "Transformational OBE" - an uncompromising system of mind control where "transformation" is newspeak for "revolution". The theoretical basis is directly linked to Marxist revolutionaries and educators such as Paulo Freire, Ché Guevara and Fidel Castro, and schools in the USA that lean towards this approach complain that they receive ongoing attention from the FBI.

The new system imposes a severe interfaith multiculturalism intended to dismantle all relationships of authority in society except the hegemony of the state. The family is a prime target. Fresh legislation enforces the system also in private and home schools.

The implementation of this system was initiated by the retrenchment of more than hundred thousand teachers to create a shortage that is now being filled with training personnel recruited in Cuba. Several dozen Cuban instructors are already engaged, and reports indicate that the number will increase by hundreds in the near future.

Mbeki's double game
While Mbeki is garnering Western and American support for NEPAD (New Plan for African Development) he is strengthening ties with Iraq, Libya and Cuba.  This duplicity extends to his policy in relation to his ethnic minorities, Afrikaners and the rest of the white, Asian and coloured (mixed-race) population.
The confiscation of farmland by Mugabe has received a lot of international attention, but attacks and murders on farms are actually far worse in South Africa, as can be seen from the above graphs.  More than 1300 people have been killed on farms in South Africa so far, a figure which is in excess of civilian killings in the ex-Yougoslavia under Milosevic which prompted NATO intervention.  More than 6 000 people have been injured in such attacks.  Whereas the official explanation for such attacks has been to ascribe them to “crime”, government has been skilfully cultivating anti-white and anti-farmer sentiment.  Teams from the so-called South African Human Rights Commission have been visiting farms and encouraging workers to lodge complaints against their employers.  Under the South African Constitution, “hate speech” is forbidden.  Upon receiving a complaint from Mr. Fanie van Heerden of Pretoria about the slogan “Kill a Boer, kill a farmer”, the South African Human Rights Commission declared it to be “freedom of speech” and closed its file:

Entrance 1
Wilds View
Isle of Houghton                            Private Bag 2700
Boundary Road                             Houghton
Parktown, Johannesburg               2041
21 February 2001
Mr Fanie van Heerden , PO Box 2418, ROOIHUISKRAAL , 0154
Dear Mr van Heerden
We refer to the complaint you lodged with us, and would like to apologise for the delayed response which was occasioned by a shortage of resources on our part.
Please note that the Commission has previously dealt with complaints concerning allegations of hate speech by some political activists and/or public figures. After conducting an investigation into these allegations, the Commission reached a finding that such statements as 'Kill the boer, Kill the farmer' fall within the category of the freedom of expression and do not constitute hate speech as described in section 16(2) of the Constitution.
Nonetheless the Commission believes that public figures have a responsibility to promote the spirit of the Constitution, tolerance between communities, human dignity and respect for the law. It will thus continue to monitor their conduct with the view to ensuring that their public utterances are of such that they do not unnecessarily offend sections of South African population.
Do not hesitate to contact the Commission should you have complaints of human rights violations in future.  Under the circumstances we are closing our file.
M. C. Moodliar
Head:  Legal Services

“Kill a Boer, kill a farmer”
As a National Liberation Movement, Mbeki’s party, the ANC, has long advocated violence against civilians.  On 20 May 1983 it planted the notorious Church Street bomb in a busy Pretoria thoroughfare, which killed 19 people, and injured 219.  After De Klerk’s hand-over of power to the ANC in 1994, it supposedly espoused Western-style democracy, just like Mugabe pledged to do in 1980.
However, official party ideology sees the transition to universal suffrage as the beginning of a “National Democratic Revolution” which must culminate in a crypto-communist “Social Revolution” which will remove the propertied classes from the scene.
Armed with an equally noble array of other slogans, such as “transformation”, “black empowerment”, “non-racialisation”, etc., Mbeki’s government has been putting pressure on business to hand over huge chunks of equity to so-called black-empowerment groups run by a nomenklatura closely connected to a nepotist administration. Robert Price from Oxford University notes the growing prominence of race in South African politics and is concerned about "the increased reliance on group rather than individually based notions of rights and rewards." (1997 'Race and Reconciliation in the New SA'  Politics & Society 25(2): 149 -178.)
Recently, the Minister of Mines indicated that no new mining licenses or renewal of existing licenses will be granted in future unless the applicant has a “black empowerment” shareholding of 30%, after a leaked report that suggested 50% caused a melt-down in mining stocks.  Whereas listed companies can use some of their muscle and international clout to fight off government advances, individual farmers living out in rural areas with their families and workers are easy game for intimidation, violent attacks and, of course, murder and ethnic cleansing.
The genocidal slogan “Kill a Boer, kill a farmer” has been chanted at more than one ANC meeting, especially when ANC Youth League leader, Peter Mokaba, was still alive.  At the latter’s funeral on 15 June 2002 after he had succumbed to what was presumed to be AIDS (but hotly denied by party members), a crowd of party youth chanted the words “Kill a Boer, kill a farmer” in front of Mbeki and just about his entire cabinet, an incident which was later relayed on television.  When consternation broke out among farmers and the rest of the Afrikaans-speaking community,  it took Mbeki four days to grudingly admit that Boers, Afrikaners and farmers “were Africans and welcome to stay in South Africa.”  Mugabe as it happens, has the same reassuring message to white Zimbabwean farmers after every farm attack.
This was all the more unconvincing in the light of Mbeki’s famous statement that  “in our situation, because of the colonialism of a special type, the victory of the national liberation struggle did not result in the departure of the foreign ruling class.”
In short, Mbeki considers Boers, Afrikaners and other whites who have lived in South Africa for 350 years, sometimes in areas where there was no black settlement of any kind, as “members of a foreign ruling class.”
Language discrimination
The new South African constitution, adopted in 1996, provides for an unwieldy eleven official languages.  During the time of the negotiations, the ANC was in favour of only one language, English, which would exclude South Africa’s other major language, Afrikaans.  The eleven-language policy was therefore seen as compromise.
Since taking power, the ANC has simply ignored the South African constitution, and imposed its original wish for a unilingual country.  The country has only 3 million mother-tongue speakers of English, out of a total population of 42 million.  However, even Parliament has only English signs, and apart from odd snippets in other languages printed on coins for example, one would be hard pressed to see official evidence of any other language.  As the Kenyan scholar, Ali Mazrui, has remarked, “With the end of political apartheid in South Africa, the English language has made the clearest gains.  Although South Africa has declared eleven official languages (theoretically reducing English to one-eleventh of the official status), in reality the new policy demotes Afrikaans – the historic rival to English in South Africa.”  (The Power of Babel – language and governance in the African experience, 1998, p. 205)
Wherever possible, the Mbeki government has been waging a campaign against Afrikaans.  Its zealous Minister of Education, Kader Asmal, has on more than one occasion threatened Afrikaans-language schools and universities, forcing them to adopt English as a medium of instruction in technical subjects like medicine and engineering, for example.  In a supreme act of ethnic domination and humiliation, he compelled the rural Afrikaans University of Potchefstroom to appoint the current President of the ANC Youth League, the organisation that first expounded the “Kill a Boer, kill a farmer” philosophy, onto its Board.  A bit like Eichmann being appointed to the Board of the University of Tel Aviv.
Elsewhere in the civil service, Afrikaans has been eradicated, in some instances by means of death threats to those who tried to continue employing the language in writing or in conversation at work.
The point about language discrimination is that it may function as an early-warning system against ethnic conflict.  According to the American expert on ethnicity, Ted Gurr, “the language and lifeways of a minority in a society with a dominant, culturally distinct majority are inevitably under pressure.  Of the 275 groups included in my survey [on minorities at risk], about half speak a common language different from that of the majority.  […]  For all these linguistically distinct groups, and especially those who speak a single language, its preservation is one of the keys to maintaining the collectivity’s viability as a social entity.”  Other experts have contended that in over half of all ethnic conflicts some form of language issue lies at the root of the problem.
The hostility of the Mbeki government towards Afrikaans does not portend well for the future, and South Africa is entering a rather grave period in its history.  Instead of democratising, the country is fast sinking into the quagmire of racial and linguistic polarisation, with the potential of further sliding into ethnic cleansing and even genocide.
Scenarios of what may lie beyond “National Liberation”:
Rwandan-style genocide
Over the past twenty years, the African continent has seen at least two major genocides in which more than a million people died in each instance.  In 1985 under Mengistu Haile Miriam ethnic minorities in Ethiopia were herded into camps where they were either killed or died of starvation and disease.
The so-called “food gap” monitored by United Nations officials in Harare, Zimbabwe currently stands at 70% in that country.  During the Ethiopian famine caused by Mengistu in the mid-eighties, the food gap stood at only 10% in that country.  The outlook for Zimbabwe’s population is therefore severe.  Many of the hungry will flee to South Africa, thereby adding to tensions in the latter country.  According to the SA Minister of Home Affairs, Mangosuthu Buthelezi, there are already between 2 and 4 million illegal immigrants from Zimbabwe in South Africa, which means that up to 40% of Zimbabwean citizens may already be living South of their own border.
The most recent genocide in Africa started on 6 April 1994, when Rwanda’s Interhamwe consisting of Hutu extremists went on the rampage and killed more than a million members of the Tutsi minority, using appeals on the public radio to spur their followers on.
Mbeki and his party have effective control over South Africa’s sophisticated public television and radio network and is reinforcing that control by means of new legislation.  Increasingly, the remaining  white journalists at the South African Broadcast Corporation are only allowed to translate items written by black journalists sympathetic to the régime, and may not contribute any editorial content themselves.  In terms of the ideology of “transformation”, or replacing whites with blacks, Mbeki has also taken control of the South African Defence Force command structure.  The majority of soldiers now come from previous “liberation armies” trained by the former East Germany and Soviet Union, such as Umkhonto we Sizwe and APLA (Azanian People's Liberation Army), who are known for such military exploits as spraying members of a church congregation at prayer with AK-47 machine gun fire.
Using the public radio and TV, and backed up by its liberation army, on which billions of dollars in new armaments are being spent, any leader with less than benign intent could therefore easily incite the entire black population to go out and avenge themselves on their white counterparts, driving them off their land, out of their houses, where unsuspecting members of a white minority could face a nasty end, similar to those of the Tutsis.
The phrase “Kill a Boer, kill a farmer” might be broadcast to millions of people, accompanied by suitable images of evil whites.  Hordes of “war veterans” were thus incited by Mugabe to drive white land-owners off their property and to slaughter them.
Over the past few months, Mbeki has been issuing a steady stream of presidential pardons for convicted murderers, rapists and other violent offenders who are being released from prison.  The release of over 600 such individuals in South Africa has fanned fears that these thugs might be used to play the same role as Zimbabwe’s “war veterans” to invade farms and other properties.
Ethnic cleansing of farmers
On the other hand, there may be “only”  ethnic cleansing of Afrikaner farmers which may cause the deaths of millions of people through starvation as agriculture collapses, and famine ensues as is happening in Zimbabwe right now.  In a recent statement South African Director General of Land Affairs declared that:
"We do have a target of redistributing 30% of all agricultural land in the country by the year 2015." Gilingwe Mayende, Business Report, 15 September 2002
The salient element here is that South Africa is classed as a semi-arid country in which only 8% of all land is arable, with a further 7% suitable for grazing.  Farming in South Africa is dominated by ethnic Afrikaners who over the centuries have developed ways of utilising land that in other countries would be considered worthless, such as sheep farming in the Karoo which resembles the Arizona desert.  Depending on which 30% of the land the Director General is talking about, this may result in driving all Afrikaners off the land, and stopping commercial farming altogether.
Currently, about 30 000 commercial farmers with a shrinking pool of labour as government has made it hazardous to employ farm labourers without giving them rights as tenants - sometimes in perpetuity - produce food for 46 million people in South Africa.  Ethnically cleansing those 30 000 farmers will add many millions more to the 15 million people already facing starvation in Southern Africa, mostly as a result of Mugabe’s own policy of disrupting commercial farming by whites.
The South African Constitution guarantees property rights.  However, as in Zimbabwe, this is is subject to other principles, such as “land reform”:
According to Gilingwe Mayende, Director-General of Land Affairs, South Africa, on 13 September 2002: "Property rights are protected by our constitution, but the constitution says these property rights must be balanced against the public interest and the nation's commitment to land reform."
Civil war
Mbeki is making a serious miscalculation in assuming easy domination and ultimate expulsion of minority groups, as achieved by Zimbabwe's Mugabe and Uganda's Idi Amin.  Minority groups are far more numerous in South Africa, organised as well as armed with more than two million licensed small arms in the country.  Current population numbers for the country are: 
Presumably, non-black minorities will not indefinitely adopt a friendly attitude to being driven off the land and out of South Africa, as seems to be Mbeki’s intent.  In Zimbabwe white farmers called each other on two-way radios and urged neighbours to “stay calm and not to provoke anyone”.  This remarkable display of self-control did not prevent many from suffering a dreaded end, sadly.
Since Independence in 1980, almost 300 000 whites have left Zimbabwe for other countries, mainly South Africa, and only a few thousand are left after this latest bout of ethnic cleansing.  A persecuted white in that country may still cross the border at Beit Bridge and arrive in a country with a functioning economy, fully-stocked supermarket shelves, fuel at the pump, etc.  He may also still buy a ticket on the next available flight to England or Australia.  Once ethnic cleansing starts in South Africa, and some people believe it has already started, there will be no way out as the two countries to the North, Zimbabwe and Namibia are controlled by anti-minority Presidents-for-life such as Mugabe and Nujoma who will not allow the quarry to escape through their countries.
Either South Africa's non-black minorities will accept having their assets confiscated without resistance like their Zimbabwean counterparts, or they will fight, thereby triggering a civil and racial war that may ultimately engulf the entire sub-continent as Nujoma and Mugabe may be itching to enter the fray.  Current newspaper reports of so-called “right-wing plots”, discovery of arms caches and so on in South Africa are not indicative of the presence of neo-Nazi or ultra-nationalist ideology among Afrikaners or white farmers; rather such incidents point to defensive attempts to mobilise after years of farm murders and extreme violence experienced by rural communities, to which the Mbeki government has been turning a blind eye.
The result of a civil war in South Africa will probably be a partition along racial and cultural lines, in which those of African and European or other descent may still trade with each other, but will live in separate territorial enclaves.  Again, Ted Gurr lists South Africa as one of the countries that is a "candidate for political fragmentation at the onset of the twenty-first century."  (Peoples versus States, 2000, p. 82)
Can conflict be stopped?
Mbeki’s double game is becoming less and less credible.  While courting international investors, making pro-democracy statements and propagating NEPAD, government spokesmen inside the country are clearly advocating “land reform”, a Mugabean euphemism for forcing productive commercial farmers off the land and replacing them with people whose interest in farming is, at best, academic.  A recent article in the liberal South African Sunday Times focused on how available land held through the traditional communal system in the Eastern Cape was being tilled by aged black women only, with their children and grandchildren preferring to live in squatter camps on the outskirts of towns and cities, finding farming unattractive.  Since the days of traditional subsistence farming in South Africa, the black population has grown from about 2 million to 32 million, making it impossible for everyone to “live off the land”.  The massive migration to cities underscores this quite spectacularly.
The aggressive “land reform” moves currently planned for South Africa by Mbeki, as well as the continuation or escalation of farm murders – being a farmer in South Africa is already the most dangerous profession in the world – will engulf the country in a spiral of violence that will inevitably lead to one of the three outcomes: genocide, ethnic cleansing, civil war, or a combination of two or more of these.
Clearly, Mbeki, Mugabe and other radical Africanists must be stopped from bringing further catastrophe to Southern Africa.  Fifteen million people are already facing starvation, and without South African infrastructure to channel aid to them, not only will they perish, but millions more will be placed at risk.  More effective sanctions must be imposed on Zimbabwe to force Mugabe out, and South Africa must be threatened with sanctions as well if she continues her overt and covert support for his régime.  Amnesty International’s campaign against Mugabe is therefore a worthy one to support.
Given the failure of a simple one-man-one-vote-system to address South Africa’s ethnic and racial tensions, which have steadily worsened under Mbeki, as well as his government’s disregard for property and language rights enshrined in the Constitution, the international community will have to press for a devolution of power to allay minority fears of ethnic cleansing and genocide.
Under the triumvirate of ex-communists turned National Liberationists, Mbeki, Mugabe and Nujoma, Southern Africa is already courting disaster as the Zimbabwean economy collapses, famine takes hold and ethnic tension rises.
The writing is on the wall in Southern Africa.  The world must act now to prevent another African tragedy that so many will mourn after the fact, as in Rwanda, Ethiopia and elsewhere.
Announcement from Managers of Adriana Stuijt's "journalism during apartheid "site

Mandela prejudges alleged "Boer coup plotters" guilty -- can they still get a fair trial after such prejudiced publicity?
  • Mr Nelson Mandela, an international media icon, should be the one legally-trained South African who must be fully aware that anything said by this Nobel peace laureate is blindly accepted as Wisdom and Truth spoken practically by the Lord himself.
  • As a lawyer instead of an international saint, Mr Mandela clearly must also have been aware that in most countries claiming the rule of law, for instance South Africa, all people have to be treated as innocent until found guilty by a court of law.
After Mandela's pronouncements were widely published by strangely uncritical news media this week -- how can any of  these arrested Boers still get a fair, unprejudiced court hearing anywhere -- inside or outside South Africa? 
How can any judge or magistrate remain uninfluenced by this public pronouncement by the world's best known personality and international news media icon, Nobel Peace Laureate Nelson Mandela? 
  • We don't think any of these Boers can ever expect a fair trial -- anywhere. And if they hadn't been plotting anything violent before, Mandela's actions have now added a lot of fuel to the fires of Boer anger.
Human rights clearly do not apply to Afrikaners or Boers in South Africa. When members from this minority get arrested under clearly trumped-up charges, the police are not questioned by the news media when they publish "documents of proof" -- and the country's totally uncritical news media do not question the invective language use by the police and politicians in regards to these Boers.
I questioned the police official who described three empty mortar shells, saved as tourist trinkets, and an old army truck with two hunting rifles and three bottles of emergency petrol as "loaded with an arsenal of weapons including petrol bombs..."  the colleagues at the press conference laughed at me quite nervously  - as if my questioning the use of the word "arsenal" should be unusual.
Neither dids the news media question the South African police when they published photographs and press statements naming and shaming Boer community leaders in such language that it has become clear to everyone that these Boers are getting their trial through the news media -- that the police and the press have already judged them guilty of plotting what sounds like a rather silly adventure -- long before these Boers had even been arrested or questioned, long before all the police evidence examined in a law court, and the witnesses cross-examined by qualified judges and magistrates. 
Even Mandela got better treatment under the apartheid regime -- although the farm he had been arrested at, indeed did have a massive arsenal of useable weapons, in fact it was such a huge,  lethal arsenal that they could have destroyed all of Pretoria and have plenty to spare... The court documents summarising this arsenal ran to 23 pages of testimony. That's a whole different ballgame from a few rusty, empty mortar shells and a truck with a few binoculars, filled petrol cans and two hunting rifles.
Governments like to create enemies -- Pieter Mulder
South African parliamentarian Pieter Mulder, leader of the Freedom Front, told Mandela he was viewed as a traitor and a sell-out by the Boer community because he still remained in parliament. He also said "governments always like to create enemies for themselves. America has Saddam Hussein, Mugabe has the white farmers. South Africa's government must be careful not to fall into that same trap."
Only 49,000 hectares of 1,5-million ha State-land given to homeless poor since 1994...
Meanwhile, the leader of the Democratic Alliance, Tony Leon, this week also exploded the widespread myth created by the ruling ANC regime that it suffered "land hunger" and thus needed to confiscate all commercially-owned farm land in order to rehouse "landless peasants and emergent farmers".

Not true, said Deon -- the ANC had only distributed a mere 49,000 hectares of the available 1,5-million hectares of State-owned land. 

"Boer coup" allegations orchestrated to deflect media attention from the spreading anti-Mbeki campaign
This entire "right wing coup" allegation  is not only becoming a gross travesty of justice and a vast invasion of the human rights of this Boer minority  -- it is also an artifically-created "crisis"-- merely another ANC media ploy to draw attention away from the increasingly violent, countrywide disruptions being caused by the growing anti-Mbeki crowd.
The Landless Peoples' movement is mounting increasingly violent property invasions and protests actions targetting ANC-structures all over the country.
This weekend's violence already claimed the life of at least one security guard in Sebokeng. See and

Only 49,000 hectares of 1,5-million ha State-land given to homeless poor since 1994...
Meanwhile, the leader of the Democratic Alliance, Tony Leon, this week also exploded the widespread myth created by the Mbeki regime that the country suffered "land hunger" and thus needed to confiscate all commercially-owned farm land in order to rehouse "landless peasants and emergent farmers".  The Mbeki government has thus far distributed only 49,0900hectares of the available 1,5-million hectares of State-owned land.
Alienation of one-million+ hectares of commercial farm land caused drop in food production:
  • Mbeki's government has however already alienated one-million hectares of commercial farm land and is thus removing South Africa's last remaining 45,000 excess-food producers and replacing them with millions of subsistence peasants.In the former South African homelands, where traditional tenant farm families raise subsistence crops, they only manage to produce 5% excess food for sale to the rest of the population as long as the weather cooperates -- whereas South Africa's commercial farmers have been selling an average 98% of their crops to the market for the past 150 years, even under the worst weather or agricultural conditions.
SOARING FOOD PRICES -- WIDESPREAD MALNUTRITION -- The resulting rather dramatic drop in food production over the past decade now forces South Africa to not only import huge quantities of grains for the first time in its entire agriculural history -- the soaring grain prices are also causing widespread malnutrition among some 22-million poor South Africans, with the Eastern Cape''s 1.2-million people thus far hit the hardest, with at least 600,000 children reported surviving on the edge of malnutrition. 160 small children have already died in 11 hospitals in the past six months in this region:

Toeing Mbeki line is "a threat to democracy" warns Tutu
The growing anti-Mbeki sentiment in South Africa does not express itself in the violence-driven campaigns conducted by the country's millions of poverty-stricken, angry squatters wanting housing: another Nobel Peace Laureate, Desmond Tutu, even warned on September 6 at a University of Pretoria function that "anyone toeing the Mbeki government line is a threat to democracy".

The Emeritus-archbishop of South Africa's Anglican community has called on all South Africans to take the Mbeki regime to task on the great many issues which are causing great damage to the country:

  • Mbeki's self-destructive Aids- and antiretrovirals policy;
  • Mbeki's clear approval of his friend Mugabe's Zimbabwean land progroms;
  • The ANC's high-level frauds such as its shady multibillion-rand military arms deal.
  • Mbeki's own lavish lifestyle and graft and corruption at the highest level, apparently including Mbeki's own wife -- this from a man who is publicly advocating "honest governance" through the Nepad programme of the African Union, which this week was adopted by the United Nations as its new policy towards Africa.,4140,4-75_1259020,00.html

OUR DUTY IS TO OPPOSE MBEKI -- Tutu has made it clear that all South African citizens -- including Boers and most certainly all parliamentarians -- have a duty to oppose Mbeki's poor and increasingly suppressive governance -- which was recently described by the well-known liberal political observer Robert Kirby in the Mail and Guardian as "very dangerous and just like Mugabe's".

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Media Monitoring Project Zimbabwe
November 18th- November 24th 2002
Weekly update 2002-43



1. General comment

The Media Monitoring Project Zimbabwe (MMPZ) notes with concern the
continued harassment of The Daily News by ZANU PF supporters and state
agents. The paper (20/11) reported that its reporters were detained when
were covering a demonstration by pupils and civic organizations against a
deputy headmaster who allegedly raped a 13-year-old schoolgirl at Marimba
Park Primary school. The journalists were later released without charges
being preferred against them.
In another incident, The Daily News (22/11) reported that ZANU PF youths,
allegedly under instructions from a senior party official, destroyed copies
the paper valued at $51,000 in Masvingo. No arrests were made despite the
fact that the police reportedly witnessed the incident.
These blatant acts of intolerance ultimately violate the public's right to
information through media of their choice and grossly undermine their
constitutionally enshrined right to freedom of expression.
MMPZ calls upon government to create an enabling environment in which
journalists can practice without victimization and guarantee the unimpeded
circulation of papers throughout the country.
Meanwhile, in a week where media practitioners were supposed to have
tendered their application forms to the Media and Information Commission
appointed by government to regulate the media, The Herald (21/11) found
itself peddling falsehoods. The paper alleged that the United States embassy
had apologized to the Zimbabwean government for violating a regulation
requiring diplomats to inform government of their intention to travel beyond
40km radius of Harare. This followed an attack on US staffers at Melfort.
article relied only on an unnamed government official thereby compromising
its credibility.
The next day (22/11), The Daily News quoted a US official denying that his
embassy had apologized to government.
Such fabrication of stories is a punishable offence under the draconian
Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act (AIPPA), yet no arrest
was made.
The story is but one example of how the public media have violated the law
with impunity.
No journalist from the public media has ever been charged under a law that
has already seen 12 journalists, including a foreign correspondent, being
charged for allegedly breaching its provisions.
It is this selective application of the law that defeats the purpose of
the media and further exposes government's intention to muzzle the private
media on the specious grounds that it is upholding the rule of law.
MMPZ calls on government to treat all media alike to avoid suspicion among
media practitioners and the public at large.
In fact government should repeal this law, which has been widely condemned
as eroding constitutional guarantees.
According to The Daily News (22/11), even the Supreme Court judges queried
the constitutionality of some provisions of AIPPA during the hearing of a
challenge by the Independent Journalists Association of Zimbabwe (IJAZ)
seeking to invalidate some provisions of the law. While ZTV (21/11 8pm) used
one of the judge's criticisms of the Attorney-General's office for its
failure to
draft sections of a law in compliance with the provisions of the
constitution, it
did not actually report the queries raised by the judges. ZTV's reporter
capitalized on the criticism, accusing the Attorney-General's office of
"sabotaging the government through bungling". And The Herald's report
of the court proceedings (22/11) simply censored the judges' queries

2. International relations: Diplomats attacked

The on-going public media campaign against Britain took another dimension
during the week with the government-controlled media accusing the country of
fanning tribalism in Zimbabwe. They based their argument on a document
detailing a plot allegedly hatched by the Shona to exterminate the Ndebele.
was alleged that British intelligence, working in collaboration with the
was using the document to divide the country on tribal lines. The Herald (19
20/11) and the Chronicle (20/11 & 21/11) serialized the grossly inflammatory
contents of the document, accusing the British intelligence of writing it
Herald 20/11) and circulating it (19/11) to mobilize international pressure
against the government.
ZBC (ZTV 8pm; Radio Zimbabwe 1pm & 3FM, 6am, 21/11) also broadcast
excerpts of the document alleging that the British, through the London-based
Zimbabwe Democracy Trust (ZDT), "have already capitalized on the
contents of the document and are presenting it as evidence against
President Mugabe at international meetings".
Not a shred of evidence was produced to establish these serious allegations
against the British and the MDC, and nor were they asked to comment,
although The Herald (21/11) did publish a denial from the British High
Commission on its letters page.
ZANU PF's secretary for publicity and information Nathan Shamuyarira also
dismissed the document as "totally false and. a shameful fabrication by
former Rhodesians", adding that they were a "heap of lies drawn from the
closets of the former colonialists", The Herald (22/11).
However, The Sunday News (24/11) maintained that Britain was behind the
document saying: "It exposes British Prime Minister Tony Blair's
incurable racist arrogance and his lack of interest in the truth".
The public media were so engrossed in vilifying Britain that they risked
fanning ethnic strife.
Meanwhile, The Herald and The Daily News (19/11) broke the news of the
detention and assault of American embassy employees by war veterans in
Melfort, barely a week after police shot dead an American citizen in unclear
circumstances. Predictably, the two dailies presented the detentions
The Herald, 'War vets detain US trespassers', blamed the attack on the
victims, presenting them as having been in Melfort illegally. The paper
that the employees were "briefly detained . after they allegedly threw
food from a moving vehicle to farm workers whom they filmed as they
jostled for the food", as if that was a criminal offence.
And to lend credibility to this, the paper linked the incident to remarks
by the US Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Mark Bellamy,
his country was considering "interventionist" measures to ensure non-
politicization of food aid.
This assertion was given more ammunition by Information Minister Jonathan
Moyo, who said the incident was "rooted in intrusive and interventionist
behaviour by some US embassy personnel who have been trespassing
onto some farms."
This was despite the fact that the US embassy protested against the
which it described as "symptomatic" of lawlessness in Zimbabwe.
However, Moyo parried such accusations with observations that: "Everyone
knows that the US is the citadel of mafia conduct and racist vigilante
groups. So will America restore the rule of law by controlling the mafia
and the Ku Klux Klan?"
By contrast, The Daily News of the same day restricted itself to a statement
released by the embassy after the incident. It quoted the US embassy as
having said their staff were "going about their normal diplomatic work"
and "were conducting a survey of displaced farm workers in order to
assess the needs for humanitarian assistance in Zimbabwe" when they
were attacked.
However, The Herald (21/11) would not relent. It continued to blame the US
embassy saying its officials had defied a government order "requiring
diplomats travelling more than 40km outside Harare to notify it in
advance". An unnamed Foreign Affairs Protocol Officer was extensively
quoted claiming that the US Ambassador to Zimbabwe, Joseph Sullivan, had
"apologized to the Government over the behaviour of his officers after
he was reminded of the regulation".
No comment was sought from the embassy, leaving the job to The Daily
News (22/11). The paper quoted the embassy spokesperson, Bruce Wharton
saying they " will never apologise for doing what we are supposed to be
The paper also reported that Melfort was actually within 40km of Harare.
However, the exact location of Melfort got confusing as The Herald's story
the same day,' Government summons diplomat', maintained that it was
beyond the 40km mark.
While government, through its media, accused the US of defying its order,
SW Radio Africa (21/11) quoted a US state department spokesman as saying
Zimbabwe had breached the Vienna Convention, whose signatories should
guarantee the security of diplomats.
Meanwhile, The Daily News and The Herald (20/11) reported that two
government officials on the European Union's (EU) blacklist had been granted
visas by Belgium to attend the EU and African-Caribbean and Pacific (ACP)
countries' Joint Parliamentary Assembly (JPA).
While The Herald simply reported the move as an "opportunity to clarify the
situation in the EU parliamentarians", The Daily News rightly
predicted that their travel would spark "heated debate in the European
Parliament". The paper added that there were already reports from Brussels
that two British EU MPs, Glenys Kinnock and Geoffrey van Orden were
"leading a campaign" to bar the two ministers, Paul Mangwana and Chris
Kuruneri, from attending the meeting.
However, the rift between the private media and the public media was further
exposed in The Herald and The Daily News's (23/11) follow-up on the issue.
In its editorialised AFP story, 'ACP mulls boycott- Nations challenge EU's
of Zim officials', The Herald focused on the threatened boycott of the joint
meeting by ACP countries, while The Daily News' s Reuters' article, 'EU bars
ministers', emphasized the banning of the Zimbabwean ministers.
The Herald article was heavily dependent on comments from the ACP
parliamentarians, and Mangwana in particular, who acted as a reporter for
public media in Brussels. Mangwana predictably described the impasse as a
"diplomatic victory against the machinations of the British".
The Daily News article on the other hand, was equally biased by failing to
report the position of the ACP and confining itself to quoting van Orden
saying: "as a body that upholds the democratic ideal and the rule of law,
the European Parliament must not play host to people who use murder
and intimidation to maintain their grip on power".
ZBC (ZTV, 23/11, 8pm; Radio Zimbabwe, 24/11, 1pm) pursued the angle
taken by The Herald. It quoted Mangwana as saying the ACP
parliamentarians made it categorically clear that the EU does not "have sole
right on their own to decide who should constitute the Zimbabwe
delegation" and viewed the decision to allow an MDC delegate to attend the
meeting as a "deliberate attempt to divide Zimbabwe and recognise the
MDC as if it's a government in power".
Those who rely on the broadcast media only heard the side of the EU from
SW Radio Africa (22/11). The short wave station quoted Kinnock as saying
the EU decision was "based on the need for consistency on the part of
the EU parliament in terms of the resolutions of the EU."
However, if ZBC was guilty of heavily relying on Mangwana for comments,
then SW Radio Africa was equally guilty of only using MDC and EU sources in
its bulletins.
Just like its public media counterparts, The Sunday Mail (24/11) narrowly
interpreted the ACP stance to support Zimbabwean delegates as a "major
victory" for Zimbabwe.
The Sunday Mirror (24/11) concurred, saying "analysts" had seen this as "a
renewed sense of solidarity".
However, the impression that developing countries were staunchly behind
Zimbabwe was belied by Botswana President Festus Mogae, who told a
London magazine that "the crisis Zimbabwe was facing was difficult to
solve because it represented a drought of good governance", The
Zimbabwe Independent (22/11).
Nonetheless, no media critically explored the conflict between travel
and international law, which stipulate that blacklisted individuals can
international conventions.

3. Renewed attack on the Judiciary and the AG

The decision by a Harare magistrate to acquit MDC legislators Tafadzwa
Musekiwa and Job Sikhala on November 15th of alleged fraud charges
apparently incensed ZANU PF officials such as Jonathan Moyo, who called
for an overhaul of the judicial system.
The public media's treatment of the issue exposed government's attempts to
cow the judiciary into making political judgments, as it openly admonished
courts for failing to convict MDC suspects.
For example, The Herald (16/11), MDC legislators Sikhala, Musekiwa set free,
quoted Moyo subjectively criticising the attorney general's (AG) office for
"bungling" in cases involving the MDC. Moyo also claimed that the
magistrates' courts are "seemingly ready to find an excuse, however
lame, to let MDC accused persons off the hook".
Although the article did not quote ZANU PF saying it would challenge the
outcome, its sub headline, 'Zanu-PF to contest court ruling', exposed the
party's intention to openly politicize the country's criminal justice
Taking a cue from Moyo, The Herald (18/11) comment, 'Restore confidence in
justice system', called for an inquiry into "the entire justice system and
identify where the problem lies".
It lamented what it interpreted as preferential treatment of MDC officials
members by the courts, and added: "In the absence of any convictions, the
questions of victimisation being raised by the MDC will seem valid".
ZBC followed suit. It reported (ZTV, 18/11, 8pm; Radio Zimbabwe & 3FM,
19/11, 6am) that the AG's office had been hit by "a fresh wave of criticism"
for acquitting MDC MPs and relaxing retired Justice Fergus Blackie's bail
conditions without informing the police. Blackie is facing charges of
obstructing the course of justice for allegedly improperly freeing a
ZTV stated that  "evidence at hand" suggested that the prosecutor the AG
assigned to Blackie's case had "developed cold feet and showed a lack of
commitment in dealing with the case". It also alleged that the AG's office
was sympathetic to the MDC and its sympathizers whose cases were "easily
dismissed by the courts".
Without furnishing its audience with the evidence, ZTV merely cited the
postponement of the treason trial of MDC president Morgan Tsvangirai,
Welshman Ncube and Renson Gasela and the disappearance of Tsvangirai's
But in the same bulletin, ZTV also gave the AG, Andrew Chigovera, the
opportunity to explain the legal procedures involved in criminal cases.
Similarly, The Daily Mirror (19/11) also quoted Chigovera defending his
Other private papers viewed this latest attack on the judiciary as
For example, The Daily News (20/11) quoted Sikhala and Musekiwa, saying
Moyo "was grieved" because of the cases he had lost against them, and that
he was "trying to influence the courts to make political judgments".
In its comment in the same issue, the paper observed that Moyo's criticism
the judiciary highlighted the manner in which the executive had encroached
into other arms of government, adding that Moyo had "overstepped his
bounds" and his criticism "only strengthened the case for those who say
government is out to remove from parliament as many MDC legislators
as possible".
The Financial Gazette (21/11) quoted a constitutional law expert, Lovemore
Madhuku as saying: "The AG's office is being viewed as politically
ineffective, hence efforts are being made to politicise the office and
force it to make political decisions that will lead to political
no matter how impossible".
Earlier, The Daily Mirror (20/11) quoted ZANU leader Wilson Kumbula
defending the AG and blaming government for appointing "some police
officers who are Zanu PF apologists," who "arrest members of the
opposition and just push cases to the courts without adequate
The Standard (24/11) observed that the AG's office should not yield to
political pressure to prosecute cases that had no legal merit, if it wanted
avoid criticism.

The MEDIA UPDATE was produced and circulated by the Media Monitoring
Project Zimbabwe,15 Duthie Avenue, Alexandra Park, Harare, Tel/fax: 263 4
703702, E-mail:;

Feel free to write to MMPZ. We may not able to respond to everything but we
will look at each message.
For previous MMPZ reports, and more information about the Project, please
visit our website at

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Zim Independent

ACP MPs slam Zimbabwe
Mthulisi Mathuthu
CONTRARY to official reports that the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP)
states unanimously agreed to boycott the just-aborted European Union/ACP
parliamentary assembly in protest against Zimbabwe's exclusion, it has
emerged that MPs from Botswana, Mozambique and Ghana distanced themselves
from the ACP's position and condemned Zimbabwe for scuttling investment

The Zimbabwe Independent has learnt that MPs from the three countries on
Monday afternoon strove to persuade other members of the ACP to accept the
EU's decision to bar two Zimbabwean ministers from entering the EU
parliamentary complex for the meeting. But South Africa, Cuba, Sudan and
Haiti led the move to back Zimbabwe.

Sources said while MPs from countries like Uganda, Ivory Coast and Senegal
also criticised tyranny, it was those from Botswana, Ghana and Mozambique
who were most forthright.

According to the sources, delegates from the three countries reacted angrily
to the 78-member ACP assembly co-president Adrien Houngbedji's call to have
Zimbabwe's ministers allowed into the EU parliament.

Sources in Brussels said there was drama on Monday at the EU parliament with
MPs from Ghana, Mozambique and Botswana lashing out at Minister of State for
Enterprises and Parastatals, Paul Mangwana for provoking a confrontation.

Ghana's Osei Prempeh spoke strongly against Zimbabwe and mocked its
"anti-imperialist rhetoric" imploring it to "put your house in order" amid
protests by Mangwana and MPs from South Africa and Cuba.

Prempeh strove to convince other ACP countries to endorse the EU's decision
arguing that from the inception of the Lomé Convention to the Cotonou
Agreement, ACP countries had refused to discuss human rights and democracy

Prempeh asked fellow ACP members not to "bury our heads in the sand".

Botswana's head of delegation, Mrs Segogo, upheld the EU's decision and
lashed out at President Robert Mugabe's regime for throwing spanners into
the works of co-operation with the EU.

"Botswana, Mozambique and Ghana all gave Zimbabwe a severe tongue-lashing,
arguing that they were losing opportunities in multi-lateral bodies because
of its misrule," said a diplomatic source from Brussels yesterday.

"But Segogo was the most forthright as she wondered why Africans always
waited to be reminded by Europeans of human rights."

Botswana has of late been liberal with home truths, accusing President

Mugabe's regime of playing the spoiler in the region.

Segogo blamed the deluge of Zimbabwean immigrants in her country on misrule
in Zimbabwe.

Sources yesterday said delegates were appalled by Mangwana's conduct as he
repeatedly interjected, accusing Segogo, whites and Prempeh of ganging up
against Zimbabwe.

Segogo and Prempeh's comments, however, did not go down well with the South
African delegation led by MP Rob Davies which issued a statement saying it
was "strongly opposed to the EU's attempts to exclude certain members of the
Zimbabwean delegation" because such action flew in the face of the Cotonou

However, it is understood Davies was subsequently disowned by South African
diplomats for associating South Africa too closely with countries like Haiti
and Sudan.

Prempeh this week confirmed his stance but referred the Independent to the
EU for his exact remarks.

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Zim Independent

Zim's bid to host Cricket World Cup under threat
Vincent Kahiya
CIVIC campaigners advocating a boycott of matches and a hostile stance by
the Department of Information threaten to bowl out Zimbabwe's hosting of the
Cricket World Cup scheduled to be played here early next year.

As the countdown begins for the hosting of the international event with a
huge television viewership and a money-spinner from TV rights, there is a
spirited move by civic groups here and abroad to get cricket fans to boycott

The Zimbabwe Cricket Union (ZCU) stands to realise over US$6 million from
television rights alone.

Civic campaigners say allowing the games to go ahead would be tantamount to
endorsing the misrule of President Robert Mugabe who is patron of the ZCU.

This week the Department of Information put the World Cup in further
jeopardy by barring two British sports writers from accompanying a 12-man
delegation from the International Cricket Council (ICC) which arrived in
Harare on Tuesday to inspect the match venues and assess security

Government sources yesterday said the government was wary of sports
journalists coming into the country and then wandering off to write about
human rights issues, famine and the absence of the rule of law.

A meeting between Education, Sports and Culture minister Aeneas Chigwedere
and the ICC delegation on Wednesday sought to thrash out the problem of
accreditation of journalists.

Government sources said the ministry made a commitment to allow journalists
into the country as long as they stuck to reporting on cricket. But the
Information ministry appears to be taking a tougher line. By the time of
going to press, the visiting ICC delegation had been unable to secure a
meeting with minister Jonathan Moyo.

Press reports this week said one of the men denied a visa, Owen Slot, the
chief sports reporter for the Times of London, said he had been asked to fax
a statement to the Department of Information saying that he would only write
about the ICC delegation's visit and nothing else.

He said he was specifically barred from writing about famine, the plight of
white farmers and the suppression of political opposition.

A large contingent of journalists, mainly from England, South Africa and
Australia, had been expected in the country to cover the matches which begin
in February.

The government has over the past two years developed a distaste for foreign
journalists who together with the local independent media have been accused
of tarnishing the image of Zimbabwe by painting a picture of strife.

One cricket commentator said Zimbabwe was losing ground in its quest to host
the event.

"By barring the two reporters, Zimbabwe is sending a signal that foreigners
who do not toe the line are not wanted in the country," said the

"Zimbabwe needs the media on its side and not against it. You do not get the
media behind you by displaying this kind of paranoia."

ZCU chief executive, Vincent Hall, was this week quoted by BBC Radio 5 as
saying the treatment of the media was disappointing.

"We were very disappointed with that," Hall said. "I cannot understand the
reason why the two journalists were turned down.

"We are making sure that for the World Cup the press and media are going to
be able to report on the games," he said.

British sports minister Richard Caborn said after the barring of the
journalists the ICC "should consider whether this (Zimbabwe) is a fit and
proper place in which to run international matches".

While the ICC has said the current political climate in the country is not a
deterrent to the hosting of the event, there is a real threat from civic
groups which have threatened to disrupt the event.

"We believe that our campaign will be very successful, particularly because
we're encouraging people to start engaging in collective action," a
spokesman for the civic campaigners said in a statement to the Independent.

"Organised resistance ... lots of us in different ways all over Zimbabwe.
Yes, our aim is to have all World Cup qualifiers moved from Zimbabwe. And we
have enough support to ensure that this will happen," he said.

An ICC spokesman yesterday declined to say whether they had sought a meeting
with Moyo. "The minister (of Education, Sport and Culture) was the right
person to talk to," was all he would say.

But at a press conference on Tuesday the delegation head Malcolm Speed said
they had hoped for a meeting with Moyo.
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AIDS pandemic threatens world stability: UN official

29 November 2002

 The AIDS pandemic, which now claims some 42 million victims, is one
of the greatest threats to world stability, Peter Piot, the head of
the United Nations agency devoted to the ailment said.

"There's definitely a case for increasing awareness in the developed
countries that the AIDS epidemic, even far away in Africa or in India
is affecting stability in the world," Piot told a London news
conference to launch a report on the disease by the UN and the World
Health Organisation (WHO).

"There is a responsibility of governments and therefore of the public
in countries of Western Europe to contribute to the fight against AIDS
in developing countries," he said.

Piot, who heads the UNAIDS agency, said the epidemic must be tackled
not ony because of the moral responsibility "but also because this is
becoming one of the greatest threats to stability in the world".

Five million people will have become infected with the human
immunodeficiency virus (HIV) this year alone at a rate of 14,000 a
day, according to the latest research.

The report was published in Geneva and presented in London by the
Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) and WHO ahead of
World AIDS Day next Sunday.

The pandemic will amplify the impact of a famine threatening southern
Africa and is poised to scythe through the complacent republics of the
former Soviet Union and Asia's big-population countries, it said.

This year, the disease caused by HIV, acquired immune deficiency
syndrome, will claim 3.1 million lives, the highest annual total in
the 20-year history of the disease.

In 2001, the number of people then living with HIV/AIDS was estimated
at 40 million, and AIDS killed three million that year.

The worst-hit region remains southern Africa, where the pandemic will
magnify the effects of a famine threatening 14.4 million in Lesotho,
Malawi, Mozambique, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe, the report said.

These countries have primarily agricultural economies, which means
that rural households struggling to cope with the loss of an
income-earner through AIDS are dealt a double blow when crops start to

In 2001 alone, AIDS killed nearly half a million people in the six
famine-threatened countries, most of whom were in their productive

Sub-Saharan Africa accounts for more than two-thirds of HIV infections
and AIDS deaths worldwide.

But the document also issues a stark warning about Eastern Europe and
the Central Asian republics, where HIV infection, propelled by shared
use of drug syringes, makes it the fastest-growing region in the
global pandemic. The HIV/AIDS numbers there rose by some 250,000 to
1.2 million.

In Asia, hopes of combatting HIV at an early stage are diminishing
rapidly as the infection rate rises in the big-population countries of
China, India and Indonesia.

An estimated 7.2 million people in Asia and the Pacific have HIV, a
million more than a year ago, and that figure could soar to more than
18 million by 2007 unless "concerted and effective action" is done,
especially in prevention.

"We know there is a point in every country's AIDS crisis where the
epidemic breaks out from especially vulnerable groups into the wider
population," WHO Director General Gro Harlem Brundtland said.

"This is a critical moment of opportunity and danger. Unless we see
national prevention initiatives championed by the highest levels of
government, the growth in infections can be unstoppable."

The picture is not entirely bleak, though.

The report, entitled AIDS Epidemic Update 2002, praises South Africa
and Ethiopia for awareness campaigns and prevention programmes that
are at last starting to brake the inroads of HIV among their young.

Piot made a fresh appeal for funds to fight the pandemic.

His organisation estimates the needs, in low- and middle-income
countries, to be at least 10.5 billion dollars (10.6 billion euros)
per year by 2005.

By 2007, the contributions would have to rise to around 15 billion
dollars, and keep at that level for at least a decade thereafter.
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Zim Independent

Resettled farmers in trouble
Vincent Kahiya/Augustine Mukaro
THE first rains which have fallen countrywide have not stirred resettled
farmers into land preparation and planting, raising fears of another serious
famine next year.

The government has been upbeat about the resettlement programme, calling it
a success of unparalleled proportions. But evidence on the ground suggests

The Zimbabwe Independent this week visited Mashonaland West, the country's
prime farming area where in normal years the early irrigated maize crop is
knee-high and the dryland crop would be at germination stage. But

there is no such evidence this year.

Weather experts have indicated that the El-Niño threat and the continuing
rainfall deficit this season are getting stronger but there does not appear
to be a plan by the government to mitigate the effects of the drought by
putting a large maize crop under irrigation. Such a crop should mature with
or without good rains.

Crop experts this week said the absence of a large irrigated crop was
telling insofar as it revealed the government's lack of planning.

"It does not make sense for the government to give farmers in dry areas bags
of seed and fertiliser when there is a real threat of a drought," said an
agronomist with a seed company.

"The government should instead have moved in around September to ensure that
a large maize crop was planted under irrigation.

"There has been talk of a large maize crop to be harvested in February and
then dried in kilns but where is the action?" he asked.

Areas which normally produce an early maize crop such as Makonde, Mazowe
Valley and Enterprise do not have any crop in the ground as this has either
been looted or removed by farmers for safe keeping.

The area between Mapinga and Chinhoyi along the Chirundu highway does not
have any meaningful maize crop as vast stretches of land are either
overgrown with weeds or have been ploughed but not planted.

Last week, Mashonaland West provincial governor Peter Chanetsa was quoted in
a local daily pleading with those allocated land to move in quickly and
begin ploughing.

Land experts say about 40% of acquired land would be put to productive
agricultural use while the rest was being held for speculative purposes.

The total area that has been planted with maize from seed acquired by the
government and donor agencies and that sold directly by seed houses to date
will provide for about 1,2 million hectares. The initial production estimate
at a yield of 0,6 to 0,8 tonnes/hectare would yield between 720 000 and 960
000 tonnes of maize.

This falls far below the national requirement of about 1,8 million tonnes,
excluding the strategic grain reserve requirements.

l Meanwhile, the United Nations World Food Programme yesterday said the
humanitarian crisis in Zimbabwe was "deteriorating at a dangerously rapid

The WFP said reports of children dropping out of school and families
resorting to ever more desperate coping mechanisms were increasing
alarmingly. At the same time, there is a growing concern that food imports
by both the government and aid agencies are falling far short of the amount
required to feed people up until March.

"We are approaching the very worst period of the crisis, when 6,7 million
Zimbabweans will need food aid and yet WFP does not even have the resources
to meet our target of three million beneficiaries in November. It is an
extremely serious situation and it is only going to get worse," said Kevin
Farrell, WFP representative in Zimbabwe.
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Zim Independent

Visa fees up as Zim dollar plummets
Loughty Dube
ZIMBABWEANS intending to travel to the United Kingdom will now have to fork
out $81 300 in visa application fees as a result of the free-fall of the
Zimbabwean dollar against the British pound, the Zimbabwe Independent has

The visa application fee to the UK was set at $72 000 when the visa
requirement was introduced at the beginning of the month.

However, two weeks ago the unrefundable application fee shot up to $81 300.

The total includes $2 300 charged by FedEx, the official courier contracted
by the British High Commission to handle visa application documents.

A FedEx official confirmed the new fee when contacted.

"The fee has gone up in the last two weeks and from the total of $81 300
that is paid by applicants, FedEx gets $2 300 in transportation fees while
the rest goes to the British High Commission," said the official who
preferred to speak on condition of anonymity.

The previous visa application fees were set at £36 at an exchange rate of $2
000:£1 and the current fee of $79 000 translates to a rate of $2 200:£1.

British High Commission spokesperson Sophie Honey, explaining the recent
increments, told the Independent that visa fees were set by the British
government in pounds sterling on a worldwide basis.

"For instance the current cost of a six- month multiple visa is £36," Honey
said, adding: "We are required by parliament to recoup this cost and our
fees are set in Zimbabwe dollars on that basis and are subject to review to
ensure that we continue to meet our parliamentary obligations."

The British introduced visas for Zimbabweans earlier this month and in a
retaliatory move, Harare introduced visas for British nationals.

The country's artificial exchange rate fluctuates up to $2 500 against the
British pound on a daily basis.

Honey said the High Commission has processed over 2 300 visa applications
since the visa programme began and is currently receiving around 200
applications a day, the majority of which are successful.
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The Age

Cry, beleaguered country
December 1 2002

South Africa is home to more than one in 10 of the world's 40 million people
living with HIV/AIDS. Yet there is still hope, reports Sarah Lowe.

Lillian rubs her hands together, then clasps them between her knees. She
looks over at her children, her voice softening. "That one," she whispers,
indicating the youngest, "I do not know if she is positive. She was born
negative, but because I had no information, I breastfed her for two years."
It has been four years since Lillian first learnt of her own HIV status. She
had gone to find her husband, who was working in Johannesburg, and
discovered he had another partner and child in the city. The child had died
of AIDS, so he made Lillian take the test, abandoning her when she told him
the result. "I couldn't take it," says Lillian. "I took all the sleeping
pills. When I woke up I was feeling so sick."

Now she sits outside her mud-walled home, high on a hill in the rolling
Thoyandou Valley, describing the struggle to care for herself and four
children. "Lillian is brave," says Mama Cecelia, the care worker who has
supported her for the past two years. "Some people, when I talk to them they
start to cry, but Lillian is very strong."

Lillian met Mama Cecelia after confiding her troubles to a woman at church
who worked for Tivoleni, a local AIDS organisation supported by development
agency Oxfam Community Aid Abroad. Lillian was very thin then, and sick with
stress. "She was thinking a lot about her children," says Mama Cecelia,
"thinking she is going to die, and who will look after them? We encourage
her not to be ashamed with other people. She has to mix with them and live
happier, instead of suffering very much."

Mama Cecelia helps Lillian fetch water, wash and cook, sometimes buying food
with her own money, or just sitting and talking. This support has changed
Lillian's life. She has told few people she is positive, fearing
discrimination against herself and her children. Yet because of Tivoleni she
no longer feels alone. "I love them," she says simply. "Sometimes I feel
like even maybe when I'm gone, my children will still have a family."

This is the story of South Africa's HIV/AIDS epidemic: of poverty and
survival, ignorance and compassion. There are now 4.7 million South Africans
living with HIV/AIDS. The epidemic is slowing in some areas, but is now 36.5
per cent and rising in the worst-hit provinces. Apartheid laid the economic
foundation for this disaster, when industrial zones were established outside
major cities. Workers from the homelands were housed in overcrowded hostels,
which remain the primary accommodation for workers today. These men cannot
have their families with them, but "still have their sexual needs", says
Mpume Zama from YMCA's HIV/AIDS Outreach Program in KwaZulu Natal, supported
by Australian Volunteers International, "so they go into neighbouring
townships looking for women".

With HIV prevalence among sex workers around 60 per cent, the men often end
up taking the virus back to their rural villages. The situation is worse in
the informal settlements that spring up around the industrial areas. If men
partner, they must leave the hostels, often to live in flimsy shacks that
afford no privacy. Sexual violence is common. Some effort is being made to
provide crisis centres and female police, but the legal system is often
unsympathetic and convictions are rare.

South Africa's role as the region's economic hub is a significant factor in
its disastrous infection rate. Commercial sex flourishes in the industrial
and mining areas, around the ports and along the highways that link them to
the rest of Africa. Along one such highway near the Zimbabwe border, young
sex workers are being recruited to help fight the epidemic. "I think sex
workers are the most powerful women in any community - the way they
negotiate," says Mashudu Madadze, of the Centre for Positive Care. The
centre insists that the workers educate by example, promoting safer sex
through community theatre at clinics and in the townships. Having stood up
against stigma and denial in their communities, these women are now seeing
real change in attitudes, including increased acceptance of condoms, even
among once-hostile churches.

Government attitudes present a challenge. Much has been made of President
Thabo Mbeki's statement that poverty, rather than HIV, causes AIDS. "It does
our work so much damage," Madadze says. Mpume Zama agrees, although she
welcomes the recognition of poverty as a major factor. Ultimately, she says,
people's socio-economic and medical needs must both be tackled. "At present
they are not doing either. For most people in South Africa, if you are
HIV-positive it equals death."

Zama is especially frustrated with Mbeki's refusal to call a public health
emergency, which would open up access to cheaper antiretroviral drugs under
a World Trade Organisation declaration hammered out at Doha in November last
year. The declaration was a victory for AIDS activists and international
non-government organisations such as Oxfam; Mbeki's reluctance to use it
raises the question, Zama says, of where his priorities lie.

There is a real sense of urgency among AIDS workers, and with good reason.
Adult infection rates now top one in three in the worst-hit areas, and
future predictions are dire. Even if the epidemic can be slowed, half of all
15-year-olds are expected to die of HIV/AIDS. Yet there are glimmers of
hope. Many programs involve young people, determined to stop the epidemic
stealing their future.

Andile Sithole, 15, is educating his fellow students about HIV/AIDS in a
program run by Targeted AIDS Interventions in KwaZulu Natal. Andile and his
friends are challenging Zulu cultural taboos by talking about HIV/AIDS
prevention. "At home, if you talk about sex, it's like 'shhh', it's
something scary," he says. "But they must not run away from it now. Kids
feel that this thing is killing. They also think we must not discriminate
against people who are HIV-positive." Andile has high hopes for his classmat
es' future. "I think our lives will change and go back to normal," he says.
"Maybe in the future we can live a better life."

Sarah Lowe is a freelance writer and editor for Oxfam Community Aid Abroad.
She travelled to South Africa for the agency earlier this year.
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Ex-Ohio Rep. to Push Biocrops at U.N.

Friday November 29, 2002 7:40 AM

DAYTON, Ohio (AP) - Former Ohio congressman Tony Hall says his initial goals
as a United Nations ambassador will be to promote bioengineered crops as a
solution to famine, and to encourage European nations to increase food

Hall, who left his House seat in September to become the U.S. ambassador to
the United Nations for food and agriculture agencies, said concerns overseas
are unfounded that American food donations are unsafe because of pesticides
and genetic modification.

``It doesn't make sense,'' he said in an interview published Thursday in the
Dayton Daily News. ``You don't have this kind of argument (about food) when
people are starving to death. And it's only going to get worse.''

Droughts and floods in six southern African countries have left more than 14
million people on the brink of starvation, according to the United Nations.

Hall recently met with agriculture and social welfare officials in Zimbabwe,
where more than half the population is in danger of starving to death. But
tens of thousands of tons of U.S. crop donations sit undistributed in depots
because authorities believe bioengineered food is poisoned.

``I said, 'You know, with your action, you're going to kill your people. You
don't have any other food in this country,''' Hall said from his office in

Hall will travel to Brussels, Belgium, next week to share his concerns with
European Union leaders, many of whom are openly critical of American

Hall said Europeans grow mostly organic foods without pesticides or genetic

``It does taste good,'' Hall said. ``The problem is, because it's so
expensive, you can't buy enough of it and you can't grow enough of it to
feed hungry people in the world.''

The United States provides 50 percent of the world's donated food, and the
rest of the world supplies the other 50 percent, Hall said. He will ask the
European nations to increase their share.

Hall, 60, has been nominated three times for the Nobel Peace Prize for his
work against hunger, and he went 22 days without food in 1993 to protest the
loss of funding for a House committee devoted to the cause. He was the
Democratic congressman in the Dayton area's 3rd District for 24 years.
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November 29, 2002

London outpost spreading the word back to Harare

THE ICC delegation sent to Harare is today completing its inspection tour from which it will decide whether it is safe to stage part of next year’s World Cup in Zimbabwe. It is to be hoped that the delegates are not being given too one-sided a glimpse of reality, but if they are struggling to get the picture beyond the red carpet that their hosts have rolled out for them, they should tune in to Short Wave Radio Africa. This is an independent station with uncensored views. It started life in Harare and was closed down by soldiers after six days on air. So now it broadcasts from North London.

Georgina Godwin, like Tony Blair, Jack Straw and company, is now banned from the country, but she broadcasts to her nation for an hour a day, and one of her specialities is cricket. It is Godwin who informed Zimbabweans that the British media were banned from reporting on the ICC trip. It is she who tells them of the plan for cricket fans to rebel passively by boycotting the present one-day series against Pakistan.

And it was in a telephone interview with Godwin that Heath Streak, the Zimbabwe captain, first made his startling observation that “there are no problems in Zimbabwe; security is fine”. Given that, four days earlier, Streak’s father had been imprisoned for disobeying instructions to vacate his farm, this is a comment that few have forgotten.

“He is a hero,” Godwin said, “and he’s divided people enormously.” Some still deify him, others believe he has sold out by pandering to the government line. Godwin shows me a graphic, heavily circulated on e-mail, which quotes Streak’s famous words and underneath “what a load of” and underneath that two cricket balls. “This is the joke that’s been going round Zimbabwe, Heath and his balls and the fact that he doesn’t have any,” Godwin said.

Yesterday Godwin was trying to organise an interview with a Zimbabwean human rights group based in London and she thrust down the phone to them in disappointment when informed that they were not prepared to go on record. And yet this is the problem with a news medium that does not show President Mugabe in a particularly good light: even in London, people are scared to talk. SW Radio Africa keeps its address secret, its name does not appear on the wall of its building along with the other businesses based there and it does not want to be found.

Which brings us back to Streak, the culture of fear in Zimbabwe and the invidious position in which the cricketers find themselves. While many opposed to Mugabe are desperate for the World Cup to be taken away from Zimbabwe, the cricketers want to keep it. Robert Mugabe is patron of the Zimbabwe Cricket Union, so by playing for his team, the cricketers are further endorsing his regime. If they were to say anything critical, they would be out of the team.

Far worse is Henry Olonga, who is hip, black and another icon in the team, who has brought out a song called Our Zimbabwe, the lyrics of which talk of “a land of peace”, “harmony” and “pride in our hearts”. “The night has gone,” he sings, “and with the morning come rays of hope”.

But the Zimbabwe cricketers are not completely in Mugabe’s pocket. There is a biography of one of the team that contains revealing opinions and revelations and which has been sitting in cold storage until more sane times prevail. If it came out now, the player’s future would be jeopardised.

So Godwin can understand Streak’s stance. “I think Heath had no option but to say what he said,” she said. “I don’t think he meant it. It’s very hard to tell the story of Zimbabwe because people are frightened. They generally don’t want to go on record because they’re afraid they may jeopardise their own future.

“In a way it’s very unfair to ask the cricketers to comment. It’s their job and you’re asking them to commit professional suicide. Some of them do talk off the record but publicly it’s very hard for them. The bottom line is that Mugabe is patron of the cricket union and if boycotting the cricket highlights the problem, then it must be done.”

The first day of the Harare boycott was Wednesday’s match. E-mails went out, SW Radio Africa spread the word, but the result was hardly revolutionary. The ground was one-third full, but apparently that is all they would expect on a Wednesday.

Maybe this reflects fear, maybe it reflects political apathy in the capital. It may even be that the outcome will be different in the two weekend games. But as Godwin said: “Self-preservation, ultimately, is what it’s all about. It’s easy for us to sit here in London telling people to stand up for their rights.”

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Daily News

      Government asked to reconsider

      11/29/2002 1:19:30 AM (GMT +2)

      By Colleen Gwari Business Reporter

      THE Bureau de Change Association of Zimbabwe (BDAZ) has appealed to
the government to reconsider its position on the banning of foreign exchange
bureaus by the end of this month.

      In a Press release, BDAZ said: "The association has written to
government asking for a review of the decision to close bureaux de change at
the end of this month."

      Presenting the 2003 National Budget a fortnight ago, Dr Herbert
Murerwa, the Minister of Finance and Economic Development, said abolishing
bureaux de change was part of government's efforts to alleviate the dire
foreign currency shortage that has hit the country over the past three

      However, economic analysts said the closure of the bureaus would
worsen the foreign currency shortage in the long run.

      They urged the government to work towards resuscitating the
manufacturing sector and urgently restore relations with both donors and the
international community.

      Aid to Zimbabwe has become scarce, while most countries have suspended
major capital projects, citing lawlessness and the chaotic land reform

      President Mugabe's government has insisted the reforms were meant to
correct colonial injustices.

      As the curtain comes down, most bureaux de change in and around Harare
had by Tuesday stopped operations.

      Reduced money supply, coupled with the pending closure of the bureaus,
brought panic to the market, leading to the decline of major currencies
against the Zimbabwean dollar.

      The United States dollar tumbled to Z$800 yesterday from Z$1 500,
while the pound sterling declined to Z$1 500 from Z$2 500.

      While the government had expected the public to dispose of any hard
currencies they held, the majority of the people said they would hang onto
their foreign currency for a while in the hope that rates would rise
significantly in the near future.

      Among the proposals BDAZ had presented to government was remittance by
every bureau de change of at least 25 percent of its foreign currency

      BDAZ justified its position saying: "This will contribute to foreign
currency reserves held by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe."

      The balance was to be sold by the bureaux de change in accordance with
their mandate.

      In addition, the BDAZ pledged to comply with regulations governing
their operations and the new exchange control regulations on holiday and
business allowances.

      The association proffered to work with the government in curbing the
black market
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Zim Independent

Mbeki's nemesis: Mugabe and Nepad
Dumisani Muleya

DESPITE indications South Africa is ready to offer Zimbabwe an economic
rescue package as part of its diplomatic efforts to resolve the seemingly
intractable local crisis, opinion in Pretoria remains deeply divided over
how to tackle the meltdown unfolding north of the Limpopo.

Last week the Zimbabwe Independent revealed details of an aid package
involving seeds, fertiliser, fuel and transportation.

Political analysts say there are at least four overlapping camps duelling
over Zimbabwe ahead of the ruling African National Congress's crucial
national conference at Stellenbosch next month.

Analysts say the ideological and political divisions within the ANC are
widening as South Africa finds itself sucked into the vortex of Zimbabwe's

This development, they say, explains why Pretoria's foreign policy and in
particular its "quiet diplomacy" towards Zimbabwe has been largely
incoherent and sometimes plainly contradictory.

South Africa's Institute of Security Studies director Jakkie Cilliers said
there were sharp contradictions over Zimbabwe within the ANC and its
alliance partners. These differences, he said, have become evident and more
distinct of late due to changing internal and external political dynamics.

"There are clear and sharp divisions within the ANC and government," he
said. "There are also differences between the ANC and the Congress of South
African Trade Unions (Cosatu) on the issue."

Broadly speaking, the leftists - which South African President Thabo Mbeki
and his supporters now call ultra-leftists - include leaders of the ANC
alliance partners, Cosatu and the South African Communist Party (SACP).

This camp encompasses Cosatu secretary-general, Zwelinzima Vavi and SACP
deputy secretary-general Jeremy Cronin. Vavi has consistently criticised
President Robert Mugabe's political repression and economic mismanagement,
while Cronin recently complained about "Zanufication" of the ANC.

Other gladiators who fit in this group by virtue of their political
backgrounds are Trade and Industry minister Alec Erwin, Safety and Security
minister Charles Nqakula, Local Government minister Sydney Mufamadi, State
Public Enterprises minister Jeff Radebe, Water Affairs and Forestry minister
Ronnie Kasrils, and veteran politician Pallo Jordan, among others, who are
both SACP and ANC members.

They are inclined to regard themselves as part of a historic tradition that
included ANC/SACP heavyweights such as Joe Slovo, Harry Gwala, Chris Hani,
Govan Mbeki, Oliver Thambo, Nelson Mandela, Braam Fischer, JB Marks, Moses
Kotane and Ray Simons.

Members of the leftist camp have expressed outrage at events in Zimbabwe,
something which Mbeki and his more Africanist adherents have not only
refused to do but sometimes opposed.

The leftists are not afraid of being labelled anti-African by Harare's stone
throwers because they do not subscribe to blind African revolutionary

Besides the leftists, there are also political moderates who are clear on
the issues. These include ANC barons like Defence minister and party chair,
Mosiuoa Lekota, secretary-general Kgalema Motlanthe (despite some naïve
earlier statements) and Reserve Bank governor Tito Mboweni.

Lekota and Mboweni have condemned events in Zimbabwe in compelling but
measured terms. This group appears anxious to let Mugabe know that they will
not support him if he continues clinging to his scorched-earth policies.

Also in this camp are civic activists of the 1980s who are not prepared to
indulge Mugabe's authoritarian claims. ANC business magnates such as Cyril
Ramaphosa, Tokyo Sexwale, Matthews Phosa, and Jay Naidoo are seen as aligned
to this group.

Mbeki is currently waging a war of attrition against the leftists, blaming
them for opposing his liberal economic policies. He is arguably the leader
of the Africanists on the Zimbabwe issue who see Mugabe as a respected elder
statesman who has gone off the tracks and needs helping back on. This
influential group includes Mbeki loyalists such as Foreign minister
Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma and her deputy Aziz Pahad, Minister of State in the
President's Office Essop Pahad, and Mbeki's advisors such as Professor
Wiseman Nkuhlu, Reverend Frank Chikane and Communications chief Joel

Although this group agrees - just like most ANC and alliance partners
officials - that quiet diplomacy has failed, it remains committed to

Mbeki has denounced his critics claiming they wanted his government to
invade Zimbabwe, while Finance minister Trevor Manuel has asked if people
wanted Pretoria to behave like Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon by
deploying tanks to Zimbabwe to deal with Mugabe and "kick butt".

But as John Kane-Berman of South Africa's Institute of Race Relations
recently said, Mbeki and his followers are hawking "red-herrings" to avoid
action to contain Mugabe.

Other analysts say Mbeki and his Africanist group were not just avoiding
direct action against Mugabe, but actually supported him.

Former Oxford University professor of politics, Bill Johnson, who is
familiar with the Zimbabwe situation, thinks Mbeki supports Mugabe.

"Astonishingly, Mbeki has succeeded in passing off this policy of de facto
support for Mugabe as 'quiet diplomacy'," Johnson said.

"By definition, because it is private, we are never told what Mbeki is
saying to try to curb Mugabe and we only have his word that he has made any
such effort at all," he said.

"The facts of South African support, on the other hand, are there for all to
see. In effect, Mbeki is on Mugabe's side because he is a black liberation
leader, because his enemies include whites, and because it dovetails with
Mbeki's 'two nations' approach domestically."

Analysts say Mbeki is reluctant to tackle Mugabe because he is beholden to
the African solidarity agenda. He also fears that confronting Mugabe could
give the opposition Pan Africanist Congress (PAC), which has been trying to
revive itself around a land claims campaign, a hostage to fortune. The PAC
and other political opportunists have been trying to steal a march on the
ANC on a number of issues. Mbeki is constantly having to look over his
shoulder to see what these interests are planning next to discomfit him -
with a little help from their Zimbabwean friends. He is only too aware that
a tougher line on Mugabe would play into their hands.

Western countries have not made the situation any easier for Mbeki. They
have cornered him around the New Partnership for Africa's Development
(Nepad) by tying their support for the continental recovery plan to
democracy, good governance, human rights and accountability.

G8 leaders, who in June endorsed Nepad, want Mbeki to deal with African
dictators like Mugabe through Nepad's peer review mechanism. But the
delicate balance between enforcing the political check-over system and
avoiding being seen as pandering to donor interests has not been easy for
the South African leader. Analysts say this is where Mbeki's dilemma
apparently lies.

However, Mbeki and his Africanist camp appear convinced that yelling - as
they call sharp and forthright criticism - at Mugabe would harden the
Zimbabwean ruler and diminish prospects of a negotiated settlement in the

Diplomatic sources say despite this, Mbeki's office is becoming firmer in
its approach with the aim of bringing Mugabe to the negotiating table with
the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC).

While many observers say labels can be unhelpful in so far as they fail to
note the overlapping currents at work in South African politics, including
growing international pressure on Mbeki to produce results, the fact remains
there is no single coherent policy on Zimbabwe in ruling circles and the
Stellenbosch conference is likely only to expose the differences, not
resolve them.
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