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One thousand eight hundred members march for love in Bulawayo
WOZA - Valentine's protest

WOZA - Valentine's protest: 12 February 2011, Bulawayo, Zimbabwe

Women of Zimbabwe Arise - logoAt 10am, five simultaneous protests began in different locations in downtown Bulawayo. One thousand eight hundred women and men, members of Women and Men of Zimbabwe Arise (WOZA) turned out for the ninth edition of the Valentines Day protests, the biggest protest since WOZA these protests began in 2003. The target of the peaceful protest, the offices of The Chronicle newspaper with the objective of testing if there is free media or state propaganda remains entrenched. The huge mass of singing protestors completely closed off 9th avenue for over 30 minutes.

The men and women aged from 17 to 93 years old, sang songs as they marched and handed out hundreds of red roses, specially prepared Valentine Cards and the Woza Moya (Come healing wind) Newsletter bearing the top ten point on constitutional reform and on the Inclusive Government. Although different songs were sung by the marching formations, one song was featured at The Chronicle offices – ‘Why are Zimbabweans populating other countries – why is that?’ The chorus answers was mentioning the instances of political violence in which people have died forcing people to flee to other countries for their better survival.

A police vehicle arrived on the scene and three plain clothed officers (in striped dresscode, so easily recognisable) went into the protest demanding cards and newsletters. They then started to make their way to the front of the protest making for leaders Williams and Mahlangu but fortunately it was at that point that the protest dispersal slogan was being shouted and people were turning away to go home. Williams and Mahlangu were swept along with the dispersing masses. All that was left was for the three officers to gather up the placards, cards and red roses left for them.

A police BMW vehicle attempted to disperse another protest just after they began by dangerously driving through the protest. Police Officers of the Riot squad came upon some dispersing members at Jason Moyo Avenue and jumped from their vehicle to try to quicken the dispersing activists. A vehicle full of Riot police was also seen at the bus terminus after the protest monitoring the movement of commuters.

The singing of songs was so well coordinated that several bystanders thought WOZA should form a choir. Another bystander commented ‘please can they say their message well so maybe things can change in Zimbabwe’. Many cars hooted and stopped to get their copies of cards and roses.

WOZA Statement 12 February 2011 – Constitutional Reform and the inclusive Government

Zimbabweans, its time to sweat for a Love that’s the real deal. Demand your rose; Demand a dignified constitution written with love so that it mends our broken hearts. Today we march to the theme: The RISING of the women means the RISING of the nation; No more poverty and starvation, many sweating for a few to benefit!

Valentines Day 2011 sees the passing of the second anniversary of the swearing in ceremony of the Inclusive Government, agreed to on 15 September 2008 by the three principals and witnessed by then SA President, Thabo Mbeki on behalf of the SADC guarantors. We continue to study the agreement between the ZANU PF and the two MDC formations and note the selective implementation and the focus of this is still based on their own interests and not the interest of the population at large.

Despite the promises in many of the articles, we do not see any equality; national healing; increased respect for the constitution and rule of law; we long for the freedom of assembly and association and are still desperate for free political activity. Instead of the promise of security of persons and prevention of violence, we are seeing more militia camps being set up than we saw in 2008 and once again we have hundreds of displaced people.

We were encouraged by the formation of COPAC and the beginning of implementation of the constitutional article points in article 6 (VI) and the setting up of the Select Committee of Parliament (COPAC) despite their slow and painful conducting of public outreach. We are waiting for the draft Constitution to be presented to the 2nd All Stakeholders Conference and referendum but COPAC you are living on borrowed time! If we follow the timeframes set out in the GPA, we should be having the referendum now. Anyway as you are now writing the constitution draft, we expect to see our views respected and included. We wait to see our top ten views featuring, these are:

1. National values, aspirations and founding principles of the constitution – We require a constitution that allows for: value and respect the sanctity of human life, with dignity and respect; for democratically elected leaders at all levels who consult people; separation of powers between the executive, legislature and judiciary complete with checks and balances to prevent corruption and misuse of office and right of recall;
2. The state should allow everyone born in Zimbabwe to be a citizen automatically and the constitution must disallow the arbitrary deprivation of citizenship.
3. We require and expanded Bill of Rights with rights guaranteed and fully protected (justiciable) with clear protection provisions and remedies for violations provided in the courts.
4. Special emphasis on the full enjoyment of the Political Rights free and fair and regular elections; vote in secrecy; right to form political parties and participate in political activities; right to stand for public office and to campaign freely.
5. Right to personal security and fair treatment when in lawful custody; protection from arbitrary displacement from their homes; Protection from public and domestic violence; Right to liberty, and freedom from arbitrary arrest and detention.
6. We demand full enjoyment of all Social, Economic and Cultural rights. Social rights must include, but not be limited to the right to affordable and decent basic living needs-shelter, water, food and health delivery systems. Special emphasis on the full enjoyment of and the right to free compulsory and quality primary education, affordable secondary and tertiary education.
7. We demand full enjoyment of all Women and gender rights. Women have the right to affirmative action to correct past injustices and promote women’s participation and gender in all spheres of life.
8. We demand democratic Systems of government: Devolution of power, that allow for local controls over all resources and local councils. There must be sharing of power at provincial and local levels.
9. We demand a constitution that limits executive power, which has long been abused. The Arms of state points should include an Executive President who is elected directly by all voters in the first past the post system, 2 terms of office of no more than 5years, age limit should be between 40-65year. Such a President must not be above the law-no special privileges and be able to be prosecuted, sued and recalled.
10. We require a Public finance system that includes public hearings to determine priorities and the presentation of local, provincial and national budgets for public approval. Government must be transparent and accountable and present a gendered analysis of any budget presented to parliament.

The principals said they were signing the agreement to form the Inclusive Government in the name of the ’suffering masses of Zimbabwe’ but in reality, the IG was imposed on us by SADC. Our suffering continues and violence is increasing. It is clear from the timeframes of the constitution reform process that Zimbabwe should now be having a referendum, which would be followed by an election. As we analyse the current situation, we realize that the Inclusive government is living on borrowed time. Time borrowed from COPAC delays and the people’s good nature. Politicians are now taking advantage of our good nature and our patience is wearing thin. We demand the dismantling of militia bases and prosecution of all perpetrators of violence; that government leaders begin to put Zimbabwe first and give us a genuine chance of rebuilding and reconstructing our livelihoods. We demand the right to trade needed to end poverty and starvation; We also demand the lifting of sanctions on the people’s peaceful existence imposed by a politicized police force and their handlers in Zanu PF. We demand a real deal – a real love that can mend our broken hearts!

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GNU To Continue-Tsvangirai

12/02/2011 13:21:00

HARARE, February 12, 2011- Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai said on Friday
his power-sharing pact with President Robert Mugabe would continue as the
country's uneasy unity government passed its two-year mark.

"You may have come across or heard that it's going to expire," Tsvangirai
told visiting Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi, referring to the
power-sharing agreement.

"It has not expired. The inclusive government is still there."

Veteran leader and Zanu (PF)  leader Mugabe has been pushing for new
elections to follow the two-year anniversary of the compromise government
despite a deadlock over a new constitution that was supposed to pave the way
for the next polls.

"The inclusive government has made notable progress although it has been
affected by lack of finance," Tsvangirai said.

"We hope that the current process of constitution-making will be completed

Yang, who is visiting Zimbabwe to buttress ties between the two countries,
had earlier met Mugabe and several government officials.

Mugabe, Tsvangirai and Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara who was then
leader of the smaller MDC faction formed the power-sharing government in
2008 to mend an agro-based economy which was on the verge of total collapse.

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Zimbabwe Security Council Meets As Amnesty Condemns Mugabe's Party For Violence

Sources privy to the meeting said it was highly charged as Mr Tsvangirai
confronted the service chiefs including Police Commissioner General
Augustine Chihuri and defense Minister Emmerson Mnangangwa who have gone on
an all out attack accusing Mr.Tsvangirai’s MDC formation of being behind the
resurging violence that has caused tensions in the country

Blessing Zulu and Patience Rusere | Washington DC  11 February 2011

Zimbabwe's National Security Council met for the first time this year on
Friday to discuss escalating violence in the country, among other security

Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, Vice Presidents Joice Mujuru and John
Nkomo, Deputy Prime Ministers Arthur Mutambara and Thokozani Khupe attended
the meeting together with service chiefs and senior government officials.
Mr. Mugabe chaired the meeting.

Sources privy to the meeting said it was highly charged as Mr Tsvangirai
confronted the service chiefs including Police Commissioner General
Augustine Chihuri and Defense Minister Emmerson Mnangangwa who have gone on
an all out attack accusing  Mr.Tsvangirai’s MDC formation of being behind
the resurging violence that has caused tensions in the country.

The MDC and human rights groups accuse ZANU-PF of perpetrating the violence
and Mr. Mugabe’s party in turn points a finger at Mr. Tsvangirai’s MDC
formation. Co-Home affairs Minister Theresa Makone said the three principals
in the unity government have been asked to come up with a roadmap to curb
the violence.

Amnesty International, meanwhile, has added its voice to growing
international and local concern over the slow pace of political reforms and
continuing rights abuses in Zimbabwe.

In a statement to mark the second anniversary of the unity government,
Amnesty International said instead of bringing hope the coalition's
anniversary comes with renewed fear and instability.

Africa Airector Erwin Van Der Boght of Amnesty International said fading
hope in Zimbabwe is being replaced by fear and instabilitiy amid talk of
another election in 2011.

The statement also criticises the police for being partisan, urging for the
need for concrete security sector reforms and other changes before another
election is held. Amnesty also laments the non-issuance of broadcasting
licenses to independent players since the formation of the inclusive

The rights group which criticizes the Southern African Development Community
(SADC) for not being firm with Harare, urges Presdient Mugabe, in
particular, to act against growing rights abuses. Amnesty said a panel
should be set up to investigate all abuses.

National Director Okay Machisa of the Zimbabwe Human Rights Association said
more rights violations are likely once a firm election date is announced
later in the year.

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Violence still embedded in Zimbabwe's political system

By Angus Shaw in Harare

Saturday, 12 February 2011

A leading international rights group said yesterday that Zimbabwe's
two-year-old coalition government has failed to end human rights abuses and
political violence.

Amnesty International said in a report that violence, mainly by militants of
President Robert Mugabe's party, continued with the "tacit approval" of

Its researchers witnessed a 21 January incident in which riot police watched
but did not intervene when mobs seriously injured two people in an attack on
suspected supporters of Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai.

Amnesty called for urgent reforms in police and military units traditionally
loyal to Mr Mugabe. Violence surged in January after he called for elections
later this year to bring the troubled coalition to an end.

The power-sharing government took office February 2009 after disputed
elections plagued by violence and allegations of vote rigging in 2008.

Erwin van der Borght, Amnesty International's director for Africa, said the
formation of the coalition raised hopes for an end to a decade of human
rights abuse.

But two years on, such hope is "rapidly fading away and has been replaced by
fear and instability amid talk of another election," he said.

Amnesty officials saw supporters of Mr Mugabe's Zanu-PF party "beating
members of the public in the presence of anti-riot police" during a protest
outside the offices of the Tsvangirai-led Harare City Council on 21 January.
Riot police monitoring the protest did nothing assist the victims, Mr Van
der Borght said.

He said Mugabe's supporters in recent weeks have targeted rivals suspected
of loyalty to Tsvangirai, and that police did not act to stop the violence.

"Zanu-PF supporters who use violence against members of the public or their
perceived political opponents are beyond the reach of the law," he said.

In the western Harare township suburb of Mbare, the report said, police
failed to protect victims of violence and even arrested victims who came to
report violent attacks and evictions from their homes.

"These events are just the tip of the iceberg; thousands of people in rural
areas live in fear of violence" and the official "security apparatus" that
instigated violence surrounding the last elections was still intact ahead of
polls proposed this year, Mr Van der Borght said.

Human rights activists were also arrested, including on Wednesday three
leaders of the biggest alliance of rights groups, the Zimbabwe Human Rights
Forum. They were released after interrogation on their work concerning
reforms in the justice system.

"Security sector reform is needed in Zimbabwe to end a legacy of partisan
policing and abuse of the law to achieve political goals," Mr Van der Borght

He said regional leaders headed by President Jacob Zuma of South Africa were
also to blame for failing to pressure Mr Mugabe into abiding by the terms of
the 2009 power sharing agreement.

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Robert Mugabe supporters 'beyond reach of law' as pre-poll violence surges

Published Date: 12 February 2011

Supporters of president Robert Mugabe who attack political opponents are
"beyond the reach of the law" in Zimbabwe, where thousands are living in
fear of violence ahead of elections, Amnesty International warned yesterday.
Two years after a coalition government was sworn in, police are selectively
applying the law, "turning a blind eye to violations by ZANU-PF supporters",
the rights group charged.

The warning came as justice minister Patrick Chinamasa gave the clearest
indication yet that Mugabe will defy the terms of the coalition deal and
call elections without a new constitution in place.

A surge in violence launched last month to prevent a Middle Eastern-style
uprising has displaced more than 1,000 families, the Movement for Democratic
Change (MDC) of prime minister Morgan Tsvangirai claims. Dozens have been
arrested, beaten and taken in for questioning by police making no attempt to
hide their allegiance to Mugabe, who has been in power here for the past 31

Police chief Augustine Chihuri claimed yesterday that the violence was
stage-managed by the MDC and Zimbabwe's "detractors", warning: "We will
hammer them on the back."

The MDC said the police now posed a "fresh, major threat" to freedom in the

Amnesty researchers in the capital Harare on 21 January saw police stand and
watch as ZANU-PF youths beat up a teenager for taking photographs of a
demonstration. The youths also attacked a young woman wearing an MDC
T-shirt. "Anti-riot police monitoring the protest did not intervene to
assist the victims," even though both were seriously injured, the group

"Concrete reforms of the security sector are urgently needed before the next
elections are held," said Erwin van der Borght, Amnesty International's
Director for Africa. "The security apparatus that instigated the 2008
political violence is still intact."

Mugabe's militias killed 200 MDC supporters after the president lost the
first round of elections in 2008. Mr Tsvangirai pulled out of the second

Months of negotiations mediated by the Southern African Development
Community (SADC) followed, culminating in the signing of a coalition deal.
The new government was eventually sworn in in February, 2009, supposed to
last for 24 months.

In that time, SADC and AU leaders "have missed every opportunity to end
human rights violations in Zimbabwe", Amnesty International said. "Despite
numerous trips to Harare by members of the mediation team headed by
President Jacob Zuma of South Africa, no meaningful progress has been made
in implementing key reforms meant to guarantee peace and security in the
country," the group said.

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ZESN wants census to fix voters roll

Written by Tavada Mafa
Saturday, 12 February 2011 12:47

HARARE – There is need to establish the number of people in Zimbabwe through
a national census before an exercise to overhaul Zimbabwe’s chaotic voters’
roll can be undertaken, the Zimbabwe Election Support Network (ZESN) has
said. (Pictured: Voters lined up to cast their ballots in the controversial
June 2008 presidential run-off election)
The ZESN spoke as the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) announced last
week that it had begun working to clean up the voters’ roll ahead of
elections expected later this year or in early 2011. ZESN director Rindai
Chipfunde Vava said such an exercise must be based on accurate figures of
the number of people and eligible voters in the country that could only be
established through a census.
Chipfunde said: “What we are saying is that delimitation is done with the
number of eligible voters and this can only be possible if there is a census
which establishes how many people live in Zimbabwe. “The number of people
who left the country over the years is not known so it is important to know
these statistics. After that there is need then to do the voter
registration …. followed by delimitation of constituencies.”
At least a third of people listed on the voters roll are either dead or left
the country many years ago and analysts say a free and fair election is
impossible without a new and accurate voters’ register.

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E.U. Starts Deliberations On Extending Sanctions Targeting Zimbabwe President Mugabe

EU Member of Parliament Geoffrey Van Orden says the sanctions will remain in
place, adding the on-going discussions are simply to decide what form the
measures will take this time and possible additions

Patience Rusere | Washington DC  11 February 2011

European Union (EU) ambassadors have started meetings to deliberate on the
so-called targeted sanctions imposed on President Robert Mugabe and members
of his inner circle.

The EU Council is expected to announce its final decision sometime next

EU Member of Parliament Geoffrey Van Orden said the sanctions will remain in
place ading that the on-going discussions are simply to decide what form the
measures will take this time and possible additions to the restrictive

The EU sanctions, which include an arms ban, target Mr. Mugabe and 200 of
his close associates who the West blames for rights abuses, vote rigging and
other undemocratic ills.

Van Orden said not much has changed on the ground in Zimbabwe, especially
regarding democratic reforms, violence and human rights despite the
formation of a unity government two yearsago.

Director Sidney Chisi of the Youth Initiative for Democracy in Zimbabwe said
with the prevailing situation in the country at the moment, the resurgence
of violence and related issues, it’s no surprise that the sanctions won’t be

The EU has been renewing the targeted sanctions since imposing them in 2002.

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British Business Executives Visiting Zimbabwe to Promote London Stock Exchange, Boost Local Bourse

British Ambassador Mark Canning said the visitors will assess the business
climate and help local companies raise the much-needed foreign capital to
ramp-up activity

Gibbs Dube | Washington  11 February 2011

A high-powered British business delegation with representatives from the
London Stock Exchange (LSE) and company executives is in Zimbabwe for
meetings on foreign investment and the need to bolster the Zimbabwe Stock
Exchange (ZSE).

British Ambassador Mark Canning said the visitors will assess the business
climate and help local companies raise the much-needed foreign capital to
ramp-up activity.

Canning said hopes are high that Zimbabwe companies might tap the London

However, economist John Robertson said Zimbabwean businesses are not yet
ready to list in London.

"I doubt that the British business executives will learn from us anything
that will be of value to them other than the deeper knowledge of what we
have done wrong in the country in recent years,” said Robertson adding “we
have done a lot of things wrong (so) we need their advice on how to fix it.”

Meanwhile, civic groups in Bulawayo have started mobilizing local people to
boycott products of companies relocating from the City to Harare.

Bulawayo Progressive Residents Association spokesman Roderick Fayayo said
his organization is assessing the relocations.

Fayayo said indications are that many factories are closing down opting to
re-open their businesses in the capital city.

He said pressure groups like Ibhetshu Likazulu, National Youth Development
Trust and several others have teamed up to boost the campaign.

Hunyani Printopak, Cotton Printers and National Foods Limited are some of
the companies closing shop in the city of Kings.

Fayayo said the majority of people sounded out so far have promised to back
the campaign set to paralyze some of the companies.

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Makumbe, Madhuku criticise Chinamasa

By John Gambanga
Saturday, 12 February 2011 15:08

HARARE - Constitution law expert Lovemore Madhuku and political scientist
John Makumbe have scoffed at the idea advanced by Justice and Legal affairs
Minister Patrick Chinamasa that Zanu PF might use the condemned Lancaster
House constitution without amendment Number 19 and conduct elections if the
constitution - making process continues to delay.

In an interview with the Daily News on Friday, Madhuku, whose National
Constitutional Assembly has for long campaigned  for a people
driven –constitution spoke strongly against Chinamasa’s proposal.

”It is totally unacceptable to use the old Lancaster House constitution  to
hold elections  in Zimbabwe.

The people must stop Zanu PF from getting its way. Any election held under
that constitution will be as good as no election.”

He said the  people  of  Zimbabwe must be ready to reject any such moves  by
Zanu PF.

Madhuku noted that should the 19th amendment fall  away, then the unity
government would cease to exist.

As far as he is concerned, there is no explicit expiry date of the Global
Political Agreement that spawned the inclusive government of the three  main
political parties in the country.

In a separate interview Makumbe, a  senior lecturer  at the University of
Zimbabwe said the country would go back to illegitimacy if elections were
conducted under such an arrangement.

“Using the Lancaster House constitution to hold elections would be
tantamount to tearing up of the Government of National Unity.

Sadc, the  AU and the people of Zimbabwe would not accept that route,” said
the tough talking Makumbe.

“We will go back to where we were in 2008. There  will  be more economic
sanctions and  the economy would collapse . It would be disastrous. There
will be no food and no medicines for diseases like cholera. In short  it
would  be back to the old dictatorship,” said Makumbe.

He said other African countries were moving away  from  dictatorship
Zimbabwe  should not be left behind.

Speaking at the Zimbabwe Staff College last week, Chinamasa said, "The ideal
position regarding the election is that if there are further delays to the
constitution making process, the coming elections will be held under the old
constitution minus Amendment Number 19.        '

The country  still has a constitution. After all, there  is  no  guarantee
that the people will embrace the new constitution.”

But  Makumbe  dismissed Chinamasa  saying his remarks do not represent
President Mugabe ‘s position or that of government.

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The MDC Today

Saturday, 12 February 2011

Manyengavana Manyengavana, the MDC Harare Province Youth Secretary together with 48 other MDC Youth Assembly members were this morning arrested in Mabvuku on illegal gathering charges. The Youth Assembly was holding congress ward elections in Mabvuku when police details took them to the police station.

Hon Thamsanqa Mahlangu, the MDC youth Assembly chairperson has condemned the arrest saying the exercise was an internal process and not a public meeting that needed no clearance from the police. He said that Zimbabweans will never surrender their quest to bring real change to Zimbabwe through the people’s Party of Excellence, the MDC.

Meanwhile, Hon. Maramwidze Edmore Hamandishe, the MP for Gutu North, was yesterday involved in a car accident along the Masvingo- Harare highway. He was on his way to Masvingo when he was involved in the accident near Chivhu. He has been admitted at Parirenyatwa Hospital in Harare.

In Matabeleland North, two artists, Mxolisi Tshabala and Blessedgay Phiri, from Plumtree were remanded out of custody on US$50 bail granted by Magistrate Mark Dzira yesterday. They are expected back in court on March 6, 2011. The pair was arrested on January 18, 2011 after being found in possession of pamphlets described by police as obscene and with intent to undermine the authority of President Mugabe. They are being charged for contravening section 33 of the criminal law, “for being in possession of publicised material undermining the authority of or insulting the president or his immediate family.”

In Mashonaland East province, in Mudzi, meetings are being held at Nyamunyaruka, Dendera, Vombozi, Nyahuku and Muzezuru business centers where youth aged 15-35 years from the constituencies in Mudzi were allegedly forced to attend the meetings. There were reports of Zanu PF organised violence in Mudzi  allegedly being led by Mudzi North MP Newton Kachepa, Mudzi West MP Acquilinah and Mudzi South MP, Eric Navaya all from Zanu PF.  Yesterday, the three allegedly held a meeting at Kotwa with Zanu PF youth and told them to mobilise all the school children aged between 15 and 18 for today’s meetings.

For more on these and other issues, visit

Together, united, winning, ready for real change

MDC Information & Publicity Department

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NRZ deficit hits US$300m

Written by Yeukai Moyo
Friday, 11 February 2011 11:11

HARARE - The government is considering opening up the railway network to
private players, says State Enterprises and Parastatals Minister Gorden Moyo

The move could put an end to the National Railway of Zimbabwe (NRZ’s)
monopoly as it is drowning in a ballooning $274 million deficit of depleted
fleet and recapitalisation costs.

Moyo said, “We are currently devising various strategies of recapitalizing
the railways sector. Opening up the railway network to private players has
been identified as one of the possible means to revive the sector.”

He added that a committee comprising of officials from the State Enterprises
Restructuring Agency (SERA), Ministry of Transport and the NRZ board had
been set up to formulate viable strategies to resuscitate the ailing sector.

“A committee has been set up to look into possible options of reviving the
sector,” he said, adding that the railway sector was a critical component
and the engine of the economy. Industries depend heavily on the smooth
operations of the railway sector for bulk movement of raw materials and

NRZ’s service delivery has been in decline over the past decade, from a
capacity of 18 million tons per year down to only 5.3 million tones.

The embattled parastatal is left with 33 functioning diesel and one
electronic locomotive out of more than 62 and 10 respectively.

About $750 000 and $20 000 is required to refurbish each locomotive and
wagon respectively.

Early last year, Finance Minister Tendai Biti told the media that the
railway system was on the verge of collapse as a result of mismanagement and
failure to update its systems over the past 20 years.

The World Bank once recommended that NRZ should close down two thirds of its
railway network to allow for rehabilitation because of the potential
disaster it poses.

Zimbabwe’s railway network covers over 300 kilometres and includes
signalling and telecommunications.

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Zimbabwe Mining Fees Increased as Marange Diamond Issue Remains at Standstill

Critics say the raise in fees is hefty but they are unsure how it would
impact new investment in Zimbabwe mining

Tatenda Gumbo | Washington  11 February 2011

In an effort to attract investors, Zimbabwe's mines ministry has increased
fees including those for the exploration of coal and diamonds, reports by
the state media have revealed.

The state-controlled Herald newspaper said the exploration fee for diamonds
had increased twenty-fold to US$1 million while the coal fee went up
five-fold to $100,000 from $20,000.

Critics said the raise in fees is quite hefty but they're unsure how it
would impact new investment in Zimbabwe mining.

Deputy Mines Minister Gift Chimanikire confirmed the increases saying the
revised mining charges now include fees for services such as sample testing
which was previously footed by the government.

The increase is sought to curb speculative holding of claims and push for
fully committed investors. Chimanikire said the revised fees follow the
regional trend and will not deter investors from sseeking claims.

Meanwhile, Indian diamond industry executives said the continued standstill
with Marange diamonds will devastate the Indian diamond market as Harare
remains silent on a recent amendment voted on by Kimberley Process members,
giving the country a possible greenlight to sell its controversial diamonds.

The Indian diamond industry, which is the biggest importer of Zimbabwean
diamonds, said it expected an increase in revenue for 2011 with imports of
an estimated six million carats of diamonds. But without an approval from
the Kimberley Process for Zimbabwe to market the diamonds, executives said
their figures will be much less.

The new Kimberley chairman Mathieu Yamba of the Democratic Republic of Congo
is said to be engaging Harare in a series of consultations before a final
decision is made.

Campaigner Elly Harrowell with Global Witness, a member of the Kimberley
Process, said the decision will weigh heavily for India, adding in the long
term, consumers from India would not want to purchase any diamonds not
cleared by the KP.

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ZESA subsidises Namibia power imports

Written by Vusimuzi Bhebhe
Friday, 11 February 2011 17:27

HARARE – Energy Minister Elton Mangoma (Pictured) says Zimbabwe is
subsidising Namibian power imports and wants terms of a 2008 barter deal
between the two countries reviewed in order to come up with a win-win
Mangoma said teams from the Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority (ZESA) and
Namibia’s NamPower were currently reviewing the barter deal under which the
Namibian power utility funded the rehabilitation of an ageing Zimbabwean
power station in exchange for subsidised electricity supply.
The review is meant to realign the tariffs that ZESA is charging NamPower to
market rates. “We want the tariffs to be cost-effective and the matter is
being handled at utility level. If they fail to reach an agreement, the
matter will be raised at the ministerial level,” Mangoma told the latest
edition of a weekly newsletter published by Prime Minister Morgan
He said the Zimbabwe government position was that the tariffs should at
least meet the cost of producing electricity at Hwange.
“My position is that there is no way that Zimbabwe can subsidise Namibia as
far as power is concerned. Namibia should pay the actual cost at the very
minimum for the power they are getting,” said Mangoma, a member of
Tsvangirai’s MDC-T party which was not part of the Zimbabwean government
when the deal was agreed three years ago. He did not say how much NamPower
was currently paying for the electricity and how much it costs to produce
the power.
He said Zimbabwe was still grateful for the US$40 million provided by
NamPower for the refurbishment of Hwange Power Station and would continue to
honour its electricity supply obligation to Namibia. “We continue to honour
the obligation but we want it to be fair,” he added. NamPower provided US$40
million for the refurbishment of Hwange Power Station in Zimbabwe in 2008 in
exchange for 150 megawatts of electricity generated at the Zimbabwean plant
until 2013.
This is the second time an MDC-T minister has questioned the terms of the
barter deal following a similar query by former energy minister Elias
Mudzuri two years ago.
Mudzuri even went on to threaten to cancel the transaction but later
retracted his statement following an outcry from Windhoek. Zimbabwe requires
2 000MW of power a day but the country currently produces only 1 300MW and
imports 300MW, leaving a shortfall of 400MW.

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Corrupt cops to face the music

Written by The Zimbabwean
Saturday, 12 February 2011 13:34
.. but can the police police themselves?

HARARE - With a uniform that is almost busting at the seams, a rotund police
officer in his mid-twenties walks across the street to the waiting kombi.
The driver instructs the conductor to go and deal with the officer.  Money
changes hands out of view of the passengers - or so the police officer
thinks. Many Zimbabweans suspect, with good reason, that money discreetly
exchanged between traffic police officers and kombi drivers goes straight
into the pockets of the young cops, who live comfortable even extravagant
lives notwithstanding the fact that they earn less than $200 a month.
Traffic police officers are envied by their colleagues in the police force
as the road is regarded as a feeding trough.
Ordinary people are jealous of the personal wealth of the police officers
who, in short periods of time, are able to acquire personal property such as
cars and residential stands. Such wealth that is far beyond the imagination
of many Zimbabweans.
Traffic police officers are festooned along the country’s major roads, and
only by their mercy do kombi drivers and even ordinary drivers survive.
Along Chitungwiza Road a kombi is bound to be stopped at several roadblocks.
Tickets are dispensed, but not always, as it is more prudent for the kombi
drivers to offer bribes than for them to pay the $20-plus fine, which is the
penalty for those on the wrong side of the law.
“We are stopped at least twice along Chitungwiza Road. We are made to pay
$20 for offences that range from overloading, which depends with the police
officers, to  speeding, which is recorded on speeding machine. The fine is
$20, which is too much considering that on an average trip we only make $19.
As a result we end paying small bribes that range from $3 to $5.
“This will guarantee our passage and also saves us from the paying the $20,”
said a driver. However, paying bribes to one “fat police officer” does not
ensure that one would pass through the same roadblock without being stopped,
as the police take turns to man the roadblocks. Police officers are milking
passengers and kombi drivers can attest to that. Their
flamboyant lifestyles are also testimony of the fact that there are using
unorthodox means to add to their small salaries.
Senior police officers have smelled the coffee and have introduced a
‘lifestyle audit’ to target police officers from the rank of constable to
assistant inspector, who will be asked to give an account of their wealth.
But the audit, to be conducted quarterly, does not include senior police
officers. Police officers who fail to explain their wealth would be forced
to appear before a disciplinary board. Police Spokesperson Assistant
Commissioner Wayne Bvudzijena told the state media that indeed the police
had launched the audit and said it was standard procedure meant to curb
“It is a procedure done throughout the police force to check if officers’
lifestyles tally with what they earn. “These are some of the mechanisms that
we have in place to curb corruption within our structures as our members
carry out their duties,” said Bvudzijena. Police officers in the country are
filthy rich. They send their children to elite schools, And when they fall
sick they go to expensive hospitals.
“The disciplinary action against those found on the wrong side of the law
will be taken according to their wealth. Others will have to be suspended or
dismissed as determined during the hearings,” said Bvudzijena. Members of
the public in the country have called upon the police chiefs to be severe,
but they are sceptical that the police can police themselves.
“I would like to see a clampdown on corruption in the force, but I am not
sure whether there is a genuine will among the chiefs, as they have also
benefited from corruption. There are aware of corruption but do nothing
about it,” said a former
police officer.
Only last year police chiefs ordered that traffic police officers around
Harare to undergo lie-detector tests in a move that was designed to weed out
corrupt elements. The results were never made official. Villagers in remote
parts of the country such as Muzarabani accuse the police of demanding
bribes in order to give livestock clearance letters. They charge $10 per
The Anti Corruption Commission is still to be given form and the government
seems to lack the political will to make it happen. The Minister of Finance
Tendai Biti recently said there was need to address corruption from the
roots. “You need to deal with the structural issues that are at the
epicentre of corruption. We need to deal with the corruption drivers,” said
Another cabinet minister, Henry Madzorera, who is in charge of the Health
Ministry said, “Corruption is everywhere among civil servants, including the
police and elsewhere.”  In its report for January 2011, Advocacy and Legal
Advice Centre (ALAC), a project for Transparency International, called upon
the government of Zimbabwe to institute tougher and stricter laws to guard
against looting of state property by civil servants.
“The government should respond to the grave results published in the
Comptroller and Auditor General’s report by establishing monitoring
mechanisms and ensuring compliance to curb the looting of state resources by
public officials,” said

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Mugabe’s endgame - and his only two options

Written by EDDIE CROSS
Saturday, 12 February 2011 12:55

For President Robert Mugabe and Zanu (PF) time is passing and with it the
chances of maintaining their grip on power and the protection that goes with
it. The chaos in the north of Africa and the continuing stalemate in the
Ivory Coast do not help. There is ample evidence that Zanu (PF) is
struggling to find a solution to its immediate problems. President Jacob
Zuma and the South African and SADC governments seem determined to press for
the full implementation of the GPA and then the holding of an election under
SADC rules.
This is a nightmare scenario for Zanu (PF) as they well know they simply
could not win such an election, their support base has shrunk to the point
where a wipe out is really possible. It must have dawned on many of the Zanu
(PF) leadership, that if an election is inevitable (and they seem to have
accepted that) and if the region is really pressing for the full monty in
terms of reforms and a free and fair election, then a harmonised election
(House of Assembly, Senate and Local Government) is not the way to go.
The MDC decision to go for a presidential election is the best option - not
for the MDC but for Zanu (PF), or at least those elements in Zanu (PF) that
think they can survive and live on to fight another day. If you think this
through, an election for a new president would bring to power an MDC-led
government that could not ignore Zanu (PF). Zanu would still hold a majority
in the Upper House and a significant minority in the Lower House.
In all probability (MDC-T leader Morgan) Tsvangirai would have to
accommodate them in the new government and perhaps appoint a Zanu (PF)
leader as Vice President, at least until the next harmonised elections in
2013, or even 2015. This would then be a genuine national coalition
government under MDC leadership and could steer the state through the rocky
waters of national reconciliation and reconstruction.

The roadmap
Where I agree with Mr. Mugabe, is that the present government is a
dysfunctional arrangement that needs to come to an end as soon as possible.
We made little or no progress last year and progress is likely to be slow
and tortuous if this arrangement is perpetuated.
I also happen to think that Zuma and the ANC are also in a hurry - they want
to see the crisis in Zimbabwe resolved and the economy firmly on a path to
recovery and a substantial reduction in the presence of Zimbabwean refugees
in South Africa.
The attitude of South Africa towards Zimbabwe has changed dramatically in
recent months - we no longer pose a threat to the ANC Alliance - always a
concern when Thabo Mbeki was President, Zuma is now firmly entrenched as
President and even though the ANC are likely to get a pasting in the local
government elections, he is likely to lead the ANC into the next elections
in 2015.
How these changes manifest themselves in policy towards Zimbabwe is not
always clear but in recent weeks we have seen the South Africans intervening
to head off the attempts by Zanu (PF) to short circuit the 'road map' and to
get to an election under conditions where all the mechanisms that Zanu has
established over the years can be used to manipulate the elections and
determine their outcome.
I would expect the South Africans to deliver their version of the road map
to a free and fair election in Zimbabwe shortly; perhaps it will be
discussed on the sidelines of the AU summit in Ethiopia today. Certainly we
can expect SADC to convene the Troika in February to discuss this issue and
to make certain fundamental decisions. It is clear that this road map will
comply both with the GPA and the SADC protocols on elections.

The Kissinger plan
Many people take me to task on my views towards the region and South African
leadership on this issue. They express scepticism as to their willingness to
confront the Zanu leadership on these matters and also question that they
have the influence or power to force the issue.
I point them to the meeting in Pretoria in September 1976 when the then
President of South Africa forced acceptance of the Kissinger plan. Then the
meeting in March 2007 when Thabo Mbeki, in a short meeting with Mr. Mugabe
in a hotel in Ghana, forced him to accept the process of negotiations with
the MDC for conditions for the next elections and then forced him to shift
the date of the election from June 2010 to March 2008.
The harsh reality is that South Africa and the region have the power to
insist that the leadership of Zimbabwe follow their lead. Up to now those
elements in the region have been prepared to tolerate and even collude with
Zanu (PF) in its bid to sustain grip on power but events in Africa and the
tide of time are dictating change. Zanu has a choice, ride the tide onto the
beach or be drowned at sea.
They have lost their absolute power over the State, can no longer pillage
the State's coffers in pursuit of their own interests and are losing control
of the Chiadzwa diamonds and the instruments of repression and control over
What they need to accept is that time is running out and the beach is
looming. They need a soft landing and they should not leave it to the last
minute to put this in place.
Eddie Cross is the MDC MP for Bulawayo South. This slightly abridged
article first appeared on his website

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