The ZIMBABWE Situation
An extensive and up-to-date website containing news, views and links related to ZIMBABWE - a country in crisis
Return to INDEX page
Please note: You need to have 'Active content' enabled in your IE browser in order to see the index of articles on this webpage

Zimbabwean police arrest 355 people in Harare for various offences


      [February 14, 2006]

(Comtex Community Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge)HARARE, Feb 14, 2006 (Xinhua
via COMTEX) -- A total of 355 people were rounded
up in Harare on Monday for various offences, as police intensified
campaigns to thwart illegal activities in the city center.

The suspects were arrested under an operation code named "
Operation Valentine", which was recently launched by police to
curb illegal activities this week.

Police were targeting vendors who were selling foodstuffs to
people at undesignated points in the city center, in breach of
council's orders to stop such activities.

Tuesday's Herald newspaper quoted police sources as saying that
foodstuffs were likely to spread diseases such as cholera and they
were going to enforce provisions of the Health Act to stamp out
such activities.

Of the 355, 120 were arrested for vending, 148 for obstruction
on pavements or traffic lights, 50 for touting, five for street
garaging, five motorists for dangerous parking, two for conduct
likely to provoke breach of peace while 25 people were arrested
for public drinking.

Harare provincial police spokesperson Inspector Loveless Rupere
said the operation was launched after police observed that crime
had become cause for concern in the Central Business District.

Rupere said the operation was continuing until there is sanity
in the city and police would be highly visible day and night to
fight crime.

He urged the public to join in the fight against crime and
desist from the habit of buying food from undesignated places.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Meltdown looms large in Zimbabwe amid fear inflation will hit 1000%

Business Day

Dumisani Muleya

Harare Correspondent

ZIMBABWE's rampant year-on-year inflation for last month surged to 613,2%,
gaining 27,4 percentage points on the December rate of 585,8%, raising fears
it is marching towards the 1000% mark.

The Central Statistics Office said yesterday that inflation accelerated due
to rising costs of food, housing, education, water, electricity, gas and

Central bank governor Gideon Gono said recently the inflation rate would
rise to 700%-800%, breaching the 622,8% record of 2004, before decelerating.

Analysts have warned that, barring a major policy shift, inflation could hit
1000% by the end the second quarter.

Analysts said that, given the controlled prices of goods and services and
parallel market activities, inflation could already be at 800%.

The critical factor in driving inflation has been growing money supply
through massive printing of paper money to finance government expenditure
and prop up collapsing economic activities.

Broad money supply growth has been on an upward trend, from 177,6% in
January last year to 411,5% in December.

Since 2003, the central bank has dished out a record Z$46- trillion in an
attempt to arrest economic decline. But the money has largely ended up in
consumption activities.

Further inflationary pressures have been fuelled by wage and salary
adjustments, price increases and black market activities.

Following the revision of value added tax from 15% to 17,5% and introduction
of a number of new tax measures in September last year, the prices of goods
and services have escalated.

The yawning budget deficit of 8,6% is also a severe problem.

Government has been struggling to reduce its huge fiscal deficit largely
caused by government's rising wage bill from 15,5% in 2004 to 20% of gross
domestic product last year.

Zimbabwe's economy shrank 3,5% last year after a 4% decline in 2004 and a
10,5% fall in 2003.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Zim's multimillionaires live in poverty

Mail and Guardian

      Harare, Zimbabwe

      14 February 2006 08:00

            The poverty line for a family of five living in Zimbabwe is now
Z$20-million (about R1 200) a month, Harare's Herald newspaper reported on

            Its website quoted the Central Statistical Office as saying the
average five-member Zimbabwe family has to spend at least Z$7,8-million a
month on food to remain healthy.

            This average family would need to spend just more than another
Z$12-million a month for accommodation, transport to get to and from work to
earn this money, fees to educate children at the cheapest government
schools, clothes and shoes.

            There is no provision for any luxury or even a toy, the paper
said, adding than inflation is running at 600%. In South Africa, it is about

            The minimum family income, just enough to live in frugal
decency, went up by Z$3-million a month since December last year.

            Even a single person requires just more than Z$4-million a month
for food, housing and other basic expenses.

            The Herald said those with incomes less than the poverty datum
line are quite likely to be going hungry, living in very unhealthy housing
or be inadequately dressed. -- Sapa

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Cholera sweeps country after township 'cleanup'

The Times, UK February 14, 2006

            From Jan Raath in Epworth

            WHEN police knocked down Joram Kombonyatsera's home under
President Mugabe's notorious "Operation Sweep Out The Filth" in June, they
were so thorough that they smashed the concrete drain that he had built to
make sure that he would not return.
            They used rubble from the houses that they had destroyed to fill
in wells that served 750 families in this section of Epworth, a huge slum on
the south-eastern boundary of the capital, Harare.

            Mr Kombonyatsera did return, like many of the 700,000 people
across the nation estimated to have lost their homes in the operation. He
now lives in one broom-closet-sized room that survived the destruction. He
draws water from newly dug shallow wells and defecates in a cleft in granite
boulders close by. "Nowhere else to go," he said.

            The effect of such changes, the overloading of sewerage systems
and a chronic shortage of fuel for refuse carts is now being felt as a wave
of cholera, previously rare in Zimbabwe, sweeps the country.

            The state-controlled Daily Herald newspaper reported yesterday
that five people had died of cholera in Epworth and another twenty were
being treated in a tent encampment there. They were believed to have drunk
infected water at a wedding.

            The Health Ministry announced another eight new deaths in the
Kwekwe and Gokwe districts in central Zimbabwe. Twenty-seven people are
reported to have died of cholera across the country in just over a month -
eight of them in Harare. At least another 250 victims nationwide are being

            "The Government says it is nothing unusual, that we have seen
cholera in Harare before," said Peter Iliff, the secretary of Zimbabwe
Doctors for Human Rights. "They're wrong. It's in the heartland now. Before,
cases in Harare were traced to people who had brought the disease with them
from neighbouring countries like Mozambique and Malawi. Now it's home-grown.

            "There is transmission inside the city now. There is going to be
a lot of cholera," Dr Iliff said.

            Epworth has no water-borne sewerage system. Cylindrical pit
latrine buildings stand alongside nearly every home in what is one of
Zimbabwe's most densely populated areas. "When it rains like this, the
toilets can fill up and spill over," said Edmore Chirenje. "When it is hot,
the smell is terrible." Even where there are sewers, they are often choked
through lack of maintenance.

            The Government reacted to the outbreaks of cholera in Harare by
shutting the main township market near the city centre and relocating it to
other townships where there is no provision for lavatories or water. Police
have also banned street fish and meat vendors.

            The threatening health catastrophe posed by the swamp of human
waste in the townships is compounded by mountains of uncollected rubbish in
the city, including one outside the gates of the Roman Catholic Cathedral of
the Sacred Heart.

            HOW IT STRIKES

            .. Acute intestinal infection caused by eating food or water
contaminated with the bacterium Vibrio cholerae

            .. Source of contamination in an epidemic is usually the faeces
of an infected person

            .. Infection is largely by ingesting contaminated water or
food; person-to-person transmission is rare

            .. Often few or no symptoms. In severe cases they include
profuse watery diarrhoea, vomiting and leg cramps, which can lead to
dehydration and shock. Without treatment death can occur within hours

            .. One in twenty victims have severe symptoms

            .. Easily treated, replacing lost fluid and salt with oral
rehydration solution

            .. With quick treatment, fewer than 1 per cent die
            Sources: WHO; Centres for Disease Control and Prevention

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Resurgent Inflation, Topping 600%, Nears Zimbabwe's Record High


By Blessing Zulu
      13 February 2006

As economists and even the head of Zimbabwe's central bank had predicted,
inflation continued to rise in January to a 613% annual rate after 585% in
December, the Central Statistical Office said, citing housing and food costs
and school fees.

The latest push in consumer prices brought the 12-month rate within hailing
distance of the country's all-time high inflation rate of 623% reached in
January 2004.

Reserve Bank Governor Gideon Gono said in his recent monetary policy
statement that inflation should peak at around 800% in March before
declining again.

Elsewhere, analysts were voicing pessimism about the chance of an
agriculture-based economic recovery following the threat by State Security
Minister Didymus Mutasa to impose "criminal sanctions," on white farmers
raising crops without authorization on land that the state in effect
nationalized with a 2005 constitutional amendment.

He said white farmers working land had not applied to the government to
plant crops after the nationalization measure, though no such requirement
was announced.

Labor and Economic Development Research Institute Director Godfrey Kanyenze
told reporter Blessing Zulu that Harare has only itself to blame for its
economic woes.

Zimbabwe has been plagued for months with critical shortages of food, fuel
and other commodities as the agricultural sector, which earned a large
portion of the country's export foreign exchange earnings, has collapsed
under the shock of land reform.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

UZ Students Threaten Jambanja As They Seek Kofi Anan Intervention Over Shock Tuition Increase

Zim Daily

            Tuesday, February 14 2006 @ 12:03 AM GMT
            Contributed by: correspondent
            University of Zimbabwe student leaders have written to the
United Nations secretary general protesting the shock increase in tuition
fees at Zimbabwe's main universities. Tuition fees shot up fivefold last
week, shocking students and their families.

            Government claimed to have increased the fees in line with the
cost of education in the country. According to the new fees structure, arts
students will have to pay Z$30 million a year, up from around six million.
Medical students now have to pay Z$45 million up from nine million. But it
is some postgraduates who will face the biggest hike.

            A year's tuition would cost between $60 and $90 million, up from
around $1 million. In a letter to Anan, which was also copied to UZ
chancellor President Mugabe, his vice Levy Nyagura, the Parliamentary
Commitee on Education, Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights and the NGO Human
Rights Forum, the students said the new fees' structures were not only
unaffordable but "a direct threat to our fundamental right to education
embedded in the universal declaration of the human rights."

            "It is a clear reversal of the gains of the revolution, which
thousands of the sons and daughters of this land died to achieve," the
petition, signed by UZ Information chief Mfundo Mlilo said. " We doubt that
the Chancellor, His Excellency, the President Cde. Robert Mugabe was
consulted who at the time you made this decision was in Khartoum (Sudan)
where all presidents in Africa endorsed a plan of action developed by a team
of ministers pledging to devote sufficient resources to what they termed the
Second Decade of Education. They acknowledged the existence of parallel
initiatives in education on the continent such as Education For All, the
Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and NEPAD."

            The students said the decision to raise the fees was "sputum
aimed directly at the academic face." "It is unprocedural as it is wrong and
we doubt if the students especially of this university will accept them,"
the petition said. "We fear the pandemonium that will befall the institution
of higher learning as you make to implement this.... We are sure you know
that many students of this university come from peasant grounds and will
never afford these fees."

            The students accused Mugabe of being a hypocrite. "You are aware
Comrade Minister how your own education and that of our President Robert
Mugabe was funded," the petition said. " Remember the Catholics who funded
President Mugabe's education because Amai Bona could not afford the fees."
Government awarded the students a 90% increase in payouts and yet approved a
5000% increase in tuition fees.

            The students demanded an immediate withdrawal of the new fees
structure and to initiate negotiations with student leaders. Zimdaily
understands that opening of the new term has been delayed by two weeks
because of the fee hikes. Gift Nyandoro, the chairman of the Zimbabwe Youth
Network for Good Governance, an organisation that lobbies for student
welfare in tertiary institutions, said the hikes were "unsustainable". He
predicted "sit-ins, strikes and lecture boycotts" if the authorities went
ahead and implemented the new fees.

            "There's no way you can expect a student to foot such a bill,"
he said. "Where would a peasant son or daughter find such fees?" Students
have met the increase with howls of protest describing the hikes as
"astronomical." "The increase actually means education is going to be out of
the reach for many as the fees are astronomical," said one student.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Drug, Equipment Shortage Hits Clinics

The Herald (Harare)

February 14, 2006
Posted to the web February 13, 2006


MUNICIPAL clinics in Chitungwiza have been hit by a shortage of essential
drugs and equipment after a major supplier severed its contract with the
cash-strapped council over non-payment of a bill running into billions.

The latest development comes amid revelations that Nat-Pharm cancelled its
contract with the council in December last year after the municipality
failed to settle its bills.

Although Chitungwiza Health Services Director, Dr Mike Simoyi and the Town
Clerk, Mr Simbarashe Mudunge could not disclose the exact amount owed to
Nat-Pharm, they confirmed they were in arrears since December last year.

"I know we had our last consignment in November last year and there has not
been anything delivered to the town's four clinics since then," Dr Simoyi

As a result of the unavailability of equipment, including material for
expecting mothers at delivery, all clinics in Chitungwiza have been
referring all cases to the already overloaded Chitungwiza Central Hospital.

Dr Simoyi confirmed Chitungwiza Central Hospital was complementing their
efforts as and when they had problems in the ante-natal units.

"In fact, it was reported to me that Chitungwiza Central Hospital now
requires us to provide its ante-natal clinic with some beds to deal with an
overflow of expecting mothers," Dr Simoyi said.

Chitungwiza Central Hospital, whose labour ward is still to be expanded,
cannot cope with the current 30 deliveries per day while its nursing staff
in that area is not adequate.

The situation has led to the labour ward having to make some mothers deliver
on mattresses and attending late to some emergency cases.

Municipality clinic officials interviewed yesterday said they were asking
expecting mothers to bring their own cotton wool as they have not received
any supplies since November last year.

Expecting mothers need plenty of cotton wool and suture material during
delivery to curb blood loss.

Despite failure by the municipal clinics to execute any deliveries,
expecting mothers have continued paying maternity fees to clinics, which was
increased to $1,2 million this year.

Dr Simoyi said the money they charge expecting mothers was for the
ante-natal and post natal care.

"We would want the situation to improve so I will table the drug payment
issue tomorrow (today) so that we find ways of ensuring timely payments in
future," Dr Simoyi said.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Famine remains an issue in Zimbabwe - Mohadi


          February 14 2006 at 01:22AM

      Harare - Villagers are starving in southern Zimbabwe due to the acute
shortage of grain, Home Affairs Minister Kembo Mohadi said on Monday.

      Mohadi, who is also the member of parliament for the arid Beitbridge
constituency of southern Zimbabwe, told state radio that although recent
rains have increased hopes of a good harvest, there was insufficient grain
to meet people's present needs.

      "It's really terrible, there's no grain whatsoever. Our people are
actually starving," Mohadi said in a rare admission of the scale of food
shortages here.

      He said small milling companies were to blame, as they were receiving
consignments of scarce grain from the state-run Grain Marketing Board (GMB)
to the detriment of ordinary people.

      "Small millers are being given allocations to the detriment of the
people, and there's nothing left for them," he said. The GMB is the only
body authorised to buy and sell grain in the country.

      Last week a private business weekly reported that the government was
probing millers for allegedly fuelling the black market by hoarding grain
allocated to them by the GMB and then selling it above the official price.

      Dismal harvests over the past five years have reduced Zimbabwe, a
former regional breadbasket, to a country dependent on grain imports.

      This year the United Nations' World Food Programme (WFP) also plans to
supply emergency food aid to some three million Zimbabweans, or a quarter of
the population. - Sapa-dpa

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Zimbabwe, Zambia in joint action toward development

People's Daily

      Zimbabwe and Zambia are working together to develop trade,
agriculture, tourism, education and communication for the mutual benefit of
their economies.

      Zimbabwe's Foreign Affairs Minister, Simbarashe Mumbengegwi, said on
Monday that the cooperation was expected to resolve all historical
imbalances caused by colonialism.

      He was speaking during the official opening of the 14th session of the
Zambia, Zimbabwe Joint Permanent Commission of Cooperation.

      "We have engaged into a mutual action towards the development of both
countries," he said. "It is my sincere hope that Zambia and Zimbabwe will
remove any hurdles standing in the implementation of decisions that will
deepen cooperation between them."

      Ronnie Shikapwasha, Zambia's Foreign Affairs Minister, said the two
countries could benefit more from the Victoria Falls - one of the seven
wonders of the world - that they share.

      "In this regard, the two countries should collaborate in the
developments at Victoria Falls," Shikapwasha said.

      He recommended joint packaging, marketing and advertising of common
resources and joint participation in international tourism fairs and
exhibitions, trans-boundary natural resource management, and heritage
management in a bid to uplift the status of both countries.

      "To this effect, there is need to come up with an expanded program of
cooperation such as Zambia- Zimbabwe general tourism bilateral sector
agreements," Shikapwasha said.

      He noted the abundant opportunities for mutually beneficial
cooperation in the agricultural sector in such areas as fisheries, research,
control of large grain borer and migrant pests management, in order to
increase food security.

      Other outstanding areas of cooperation such as traditional medicine
development should also be pursued, urged Shikapwasha.

      Zambia and Zimbabwe Joint Permanent Commission of Cooperation started
in 1981 with a view to face the challenges of globalization with added
strength and vigor.

      Source: Xinhua

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Zinwa Gets $5,3bn Computers

The Herald (Harare)

February 14, 2006
Posted to the web February 13, 2006


THE Zimbabwe National Water Authority (Zinwa) yesterday received
state-of-the-art hydro-geological computers worth $5,3 billion from the
United Nations Children's Education Fund (Unicef).

In a speech read on her behalf by Mr Munesu Munodawafa, principal director
in her office, Vice President Cde Joice Mujuru said Zinwa was mandated,
through the Water Act, to efficiently manage Zimbabwe's water resources,
whose effective management called for comprehensive data and records.

Cde Mujuru stressed the need to identify appropriate software that would
assist the water authority in gathering, analysing, processing and archiving
hydro geological information.

"I would like to sincerely thank Unicef for this generous donation. I am
very much aware that Unicef is heavily involved in a number of programmes
and projects in the country.

"On behalf of the Government and the people of Zimbabwe, I would like to
thank you very much for standing shoulder to shoulder with us during these
trying times," Cde Mujuru said.

She said the donation would help in providing information on water
facilities in any ward or district with respect to types of aquifers,
borehole yields, depths, diameters, functionality and water levels.

Cde Mujuru highlighted the importance of easy access to essential
information, which she said was vital in planning and budgeting for
development projects.

"I would like to take the opportunity to urge and encourage Zinwa to
effectively utilise the software for the benefit of all stakeholders,
especially those in the rural water supply sector," said Cde Mujuru.

Unicef country representative Dr Festo Kavishe said the fund continued to
strive to support programmes, in the water and sanitation sector, that
reduced child mortality, offered improvement of health and education and
contributed to poverty reduction.

He said in 2004, upon request from the Government, Unicef supported the
development of a consolidated domestic water supply and sanitation national

"As the country gathers momentum to achieve the Millennium Development
Goals, this policy will act as an excellent guide for overall national water
and sanitation development," said Dr Kavishe.

He said Unicef -- as the leading UN agency for water and sanitation -- was
co-ordinating interventions in these areas in Zimbabwe.

Dr Kavishe said the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) start with children
and could only be met and sustained when the rights of children to health,
water and sanitation, education, protection and equity were realised.

He said lack of information had created challenges in effective monitoring
and reporting on MDGs on water and sanitation.

"It is in view of this challenge that Unicef feels obliged and is proud to
support Zimbabwe in its efforts to improve monitoring of the water and
sanitation sector through information collection, management and sharing,"
he added.

He said Unicef provided aid worth US$60 million to Zimbabwe over the past
five years and would continue to help in different sectors.

Minister of State for Water Resources and Infrastructure Development,
Engineer Munacho Mutezo said the donation was timely and was bound to help
Zimbabwe achieve its goals by bringing resources and expertise together to
manage water in a holistic manner.

"We as a ministry and Zinwa cannot express our joy as one of our dream comes
true today. We are both mandated to plan, develop and manage the water
resources of the nation.

"The planning aspect of our mandate involved gathering data on all available
water resources in the country, both ground and surface water.

"We have had two databases on groundwater, one developed in the mid-80s,
which became obsolete and was replaced by another one in the late-90s, which
again rapidly became redundant in a short space of time," he said.

Eng Mutezo urged Zinwa staff to fully make use of the equipment and look
after it properly saying accurate information would assist Zimbabwe to
effectively develop and manage water resources.

Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Right of Reply

7 February 2006


The Editor

The Herald


Re: Right of Reply


Dear Sir,


Over the past six years and even beyond, Mr. Morgan Tsvangirai has watched The Herald take a special interest in him as leader of the MDC. That is understandable. Mr. Tsvangirai, as the President of the largest political party in Zimbabwe today, is holding the ball; he carries a message which resonates with millions of people at home and abroad.


Commentators rarely lose sight of the ball or leave the field of play to check on the player's family welfare or the performance of the player's children at school while the game is on. As soon as a player drops the ball, all public or spectator attention shifts to the next player in possession of that ball.


Should a commentator ignore the player's role and fixes attention on the person, then the commentary ceases to be about the game. It becomes something else.


For this reason, Mr. Tsvangirai seeks to exercise his right of reply to the commentary published in The Herald from one Caesar Zvayi on Tuesday 7 February 2006, headlined: Tsvangirai cursed? This man is a liability, even to himself, no serious group, faction, or whatever can afford to have him and continue to claim legitimacy.  The article bases itself on a number of contested points:

      Where was Mr. Tsvangirai's father, Chibwe, quoted as having uttered the said disparaging statements, and by whom? Who was old Chibwe talking to? What has that to do with Mr. Tsvangirai (54) and his political career as an individual? And, in particular, his recent trip to Zambia?

      Zvayi states that Mr. Tsvangirai's wife, Susan, "sealed his fate when she baked him a birthday cake in the mould of State House. Morgan ate his cake and can't have it anymore." How does The Herald, a mass circulation daily newspaper, expect Mr. Tsvangirai to exercise his right of reply on statements like these? Should he pry into Zvayi's household to find an appropriate counter in the shapes or moulds of cakes Zvayi enjoys from his loved one?

      You allow St. Mary's MP, Job Sikhala to use The Herald to label Mr. Tsvangirai a moron without giving your readers any evidence from Sikhala. You further allow, Sikhala to state that Mr. Tsvangirai failed his studies in Form Two, when a casual check at Silveira Mission in Bikita could have easily dismissed that falsehood.

      You further claim, quoting Sikhala, that "the people of Zimbabwe are now tired of being fronted by a moron." Sikhala is not the people of Zimbabwe. And, more importantly, if Mr. Tsvangirai wants to defend himself against this vitriol, to whom should he direct attention: Caesar Zvayi, the person, The Herald, the newspaper, or Job Sikhala, the MP? Would you publish Mr. Tsvangirai's side, in those circumstances?

      Zvayi claims to have reached "several conclusions from Tsvangirai's deportation." In the first place, Mr. Tsvangirai and others did not meet with anyone representing a "subversive organization known to have destabilized several African countries". Further, it is untrue that "Morgan had visited Zambian President Levi Mwanawasa a few days earlier and held discussions him but did not tell him that he would be proceeding to hold meetings with fiercest rival, Anderson Mazoka."

      Mr. Tsvangirai last visited Zambia in 2004, in the company of suspended MDC treasurer Fletcher Dulini-Ncube.  His visit and discussions with Zambian officials, including President Mwanawasa were widely publicized. During his stay in Lusaka, he never met with Anderson Mazoka. While in Livingstone last week, Mr. Tsvangirai never held a meeting with Mr. Mazoka nor any of his officials.

      Mr. Tsvangirai and others were not "force-marched for 8km in the dead of night to the Zimbabwean border." We drove to the border.

      Zvayi states that "it is also quite revealing that Tsvangirai registered under a false name at Zambezi Sun International Hotel." Again this is untrue. A day after Mr. Tsvangirai arrived in Zambia, members of the secret service visited him at the same hotel, took his passport and photocopied the entire document. How was this possible if he had traveled into Zambia and registered his stay at the hotel incognito? 

      Your readers can never be misled by a sensational assertion that Mr. Tsvangirai can manage to enter a public place, a country or a hotel under a false physical identity and a false name. When he passed through Zimbabwe immigration at Victoria Falls, officials and members of the public were able to recognize him. Would it have been possible to fake his own identity when his passport stated his name and details? Mind you, Mr. Tsvangirai was in Zambia for two days before being deported on Thursday, six hours before he was scheduled to leave that country.

      Mr. Tsvangirai seeks an explanation as to why The Herald lets Zvayi get away with unsupported statements which he calls evidence to portray Mr. Tsvangirai as a man who "does not believe his infamy has spread far and wide.." 

      Mr. Tsvangirai wants to know why The Herald allows Zvayi to base his so-called analysis on erroneous facts and concludes that "the greatest tragedy here is the fact that Tsvangirai continued to show that he is an enemy of the people by conniving with organizations known to have destabilized African governments, and which have been implicated in the assassination of various African leaders in recent times.".  Can statements like these be substantiated? Which African leaders were assassinated in recent times? Who were the assassins? How is Mr. Tsvangirai conniving with the said assassins? Which foreign organisation did Mr. Tsvangirai meet in Livingstone? None. 

      The meetings in Livingstone were MDC meetings, to discuss MDC affairs with MDC officials. There is nothing amiss or untoward about such meetings. We have them all the time, in Zimbabwe and elsewhere. Right now, Mr. Tsvangirai concluded a series of consultative meetings with our structures in Manicaland (Friday, Saturday and Sunday). Yesterday, he was in Masvingo on a similar business before proceeding to Gweru and the Midlands. 

      The National Chairman, Mr. Isaac Matongo, party spokesman Hon. Nelson Chamisa and our transport portfolio secretary, Thoko Khupe are overseas for a series of consultative meetings with our structures and members. Other senior officials are in Malawi, Mozambique and South Africa on similar missions. Elsewhere in Zimbabwe, our executives at all levels are in constant consultation on the state of the party and the state of the struggle for democracy. There is nothing unusual about this kind of political activity.

      Zvayi says Mr. Tsvangirai "showed a willingness to continue with his puppetry even though it has brought him nothing but misery over the past six years."  This is an empty statement. Obviously, Zvayi is in a state of denial. He refuses to see the widespread national misery all around him, arising from misgovernance, corruption and the crisis of legitimacy in our midst. Zvayi must read the latest monetary policy statement from Reserve Bank governor Gideon Gono to understand the source and state of Zimbabwe's economic collapse, grinding poverty and general national malaise. He does not need to suck in Mr. Tsvangirai in a crisis whose roots, the majority can clearly see for themselves.

      Zvayi concludes by firing a broadside at everybody in the MDC for being led by Mr. Tsvangirai. That is an opinion I believe he is entitled to peddle as a known activist for a particular party or cause. But he must be reminded, even as he concludes his analysis, that it is unfair to drag old Chibwe Tsvangirai into a debate that has nothing to do with him.  Let us avoid the temptation to satisfy garish curiosity. 

      Mr. Tsvangirai believes the rights of individuals must be respected, together with the right of the public to be fully informed about events and the circumstances surrounding them. 

      He is therefore challenging The Herald to publish this letter to enable your readers to reach their own conclusions, independently of Caesar Zvayi's politically contaminated emotions and contested ideas.

T. W. Bango

Presidential spokesman.


Click here or ALT-T to return to TOP

Bread and Roses

Sent: Tuesday, February 14, 2006 6:42 AM
Subject: Bread and Roses

Valentine's Day, February 14th 2006
A Message From Zimbabwe
"Bread and Roses"
This is a special Valentine's greeting to a unique breed of women.  They might not even be Zimbabwean, but they all share a common goal.
This is to all the women who:
this very night spend their time in prison in Bulawayo for daring to express peaceful Love.  There will no doubt be more following them into the lice-infested cells tomorrow;
are "on the ground" - who spend every day simply fighting for their own survival and for those of their families;
are here supporting those in need, from orphans to AIDS victims and all in between - to all who suffer, to their neighbours and people they have never met before;
who are here and use whatever means possible to inform the outside world as to what is happening;
are not here, but still care, the women who have relatives and friends here, and help the best they can.
This is to all the women who:
are Zimbabwean and have left so that they can do something positive with outside sources;
who have been exiled for telling the truth;
who carry on the fight by whatever broadcast, internet, the face of tremendous difficulty and even ill health on their own part;
who have been on the ground and then left to report their findings to the outside world.
Women who:
May have been or NEVER been to Zimbabwe and hail from across the spectrum of society, church leaders, lawyers, activists...the list is endless;
who write prose, poetry, letters, and even more importantly, women who encourage others to do these very things...any women that take the cause to their heart and promote awareness of the Zimbabwe situation in the way that they know best;
who send "care parcels" to people they have never physically met!
This greeting is to all women who try to make a difference.  To all women across the globe who have taken Zimbabwe and it's people to their hearts.  To all women who use the Power of Love to conquer the love of power.
"This is not an expedition or a mission.
I am a child, a woman.  
I am the dying and the living. 
I have a voice.

I am made of flesh like your flesh.
I too was created from a universe of love,
born in goodwill, in the name of peace
and I deserve to speak -
I deserve to eat."
Excerpt from the poem "Free Us From The Claws of Cruelty"
By Zayra Yves
This message is also dedicated to the memory of Sheba


Back to the Top
Back to Index