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

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Breaking News Update
(On behalf of Commercial Farmers’ Union)

Here is an update on the story filed earlier.

Firstly an update on events at De Rus Farm, owned by Bertie Cremer. Police
arrived on Bertie's farm successfully diffused the situation before it could
develop. Staff numbering 30 were however told to attend a “re-education
rally” on Ogden-Brown’s farm but opted to decline as according to the
workers spokesperson, “ They could face a beating weather they attended or
not and would rather face a beating under the view of their employer and
colleagues.” By 1 pm the situation remained calm although the farm was not

At another farm owned by Mr Charles Howarth of Teith and Leny Farms was
visited by a group who are conducting a “re-education rally” with farm
labour from these and two other farms in the environs. Leny Farm has been
conceded to Government under the Zimbabwe Joint Resettlement Initiative. 4
Bags (200 kgs) of maize were seized.

Update - Ogden- Browns farm.... He visited the farm mid morning to assess
the situation.  Evidence that looting had began is clear as kitchen items
have been moved, apparently Police were able to stop this. Although the
Police have maintained a presence they seem unable to evict the group who
remain in situe. Attempt to get back the keys to Ogden-Browns vehicles or
house have failed. As lunchtime drew near, the War Vets are said to have
appropriated maize. Foodstuffs, including meat in the Deepfreeze have been
taken. Most of the group were intoxicated when they arrived this morning and
have consumed all the alcohol in the bar.

The leaders of the group arrived in two vehicles, a green and red 504 sedan,
registration numbers are available. One of these vehicles was seen driving
to the District Administrators offices but after a 15 minute period retuned
to the farm. Supporters apparently from ZANU PF are being transported in an
old 3 tonne lorry.

Upon their arrival they had broken the 2000 litres Diesel tank - the tank is
now empty. They had also forced Ogden-Brown to open his safe, and contents
were noted, including Zd $ 120 000.00 in cash. Comrade Moyo had refused to
allow the safe to be locked up and had guaranteed the safety of contents.

A local tyre company has confirmed that a tyre brought in for repair had
30,06 shot gun holes. Damage caused by Mr Ogden-Brown’s Rifle fired on
neighbours by the War Veterans earlier that morning.

Just 100 kilometers northeast of Chegutu, Chivu/Featherstone area, 12
farmers were forced off their farms last 2 week. The scenario there was the
forced payment of retrenchment packages to farm workers under threat of

CFU Chairman of Mashonaland West South, Ed Gundy confirmed the incidents but
said that although Police had been helpful no arrests had been made by 3 pm


Previous info ………
JAMES  (35) and Cheryl Ogden-Brown and their 2 children were evicted off
their Chegutu farm early this morning by a mob of 20 to 30 people led by a
“Comrade Moyo”.

The group smashed locks to gain entry into the homestead at 4:30 am this
morning. They told the Ogden-Browns to leave saying, “Mr Brown of Lot 1A,
The Grove, you have 30 minutes to leave, we are taking your farm.”

The farm is 413 hectares in extent and is only under a Section 5 preliminary
notice and although pegged, there are no settlers present. The farm is
export orientated, and exports flowers and paprika.

A shaken Mr Ogden-Brown said, “We awoke to the sounds of hooting and
chanting followed by the smashing of locks on both security gates. The group
came into the yard and I spoke to them through my kitchen security door.
After telling me I had 30 minutes to leave, they started smashing windows
and poking me with sticks through the gate to force me to let them in. I let
the leader who only identified himself as ‘Comrade Moyo’ and another in.
They followed me to the bedroom and proceeded to supervise my packing. At my
request to take my weapons with me, they took these and immediately handed
the to the others outside  – there were 6 weapons, including a 9mm pistol.
One of the rifles was immediately loaded.”

Mr Ogden-Brown had managed to pack up one truck and convinced ‘Comrade Moyo’
to let him pack a T35 Truck with office records and a computer. He was
forced to hand over keys to the other vehicles immediately.

Mr Ogden-Brown had managed to alert neighbours before talking to the group
and as he loaded his vehicle they began to hoot at the gate to announce
their presence.

“The group which had been taunting me, became very excited and a few of them
rushed off in the direction of the gates. We heard at least two shots fired-
but heard later that as they approached, the farmers had driven away, two of
the vehicles had minor damage from the shots fired.”

“At this time the man with my rifle began to threaten to kill me,
fortunately he was restrained. I was able to send my wife and kids off and
made to leave in the other truck. The Police arrived as I left. A tree has
been felled to block entrance onto the farm and I fear my house and
possessions are being trashed and stolen. There was no prior incident, no
warning, they just arrived this morning.”

Reports coming in a 8 am indicate that the same group now numbering 40,
comprising War veterans and ZANU PF party supporters have surrounded Bertie
Cremer’s De Rus Farm.


22 February 2002

For more information, please contact Jenni Williams

263-11 213 885 or 263-91 300 456 or 263-91 362 668
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Daily News - Leader Page

Zanu PF thinks we are all but complete fools

2/23/02 8:21:45 AM (GMT +2)

By Chimurenga Dzimbahwe

BASELESS nationalist hate propaganda may be harmful to both the sender and
the recipient if not handled carefully.

It may bring short-term gains, but produce long-term problems in the
psychology of the people.

It can result in unnecessary psychological ailments such as fear, paranoia
and xenophobia. It is against this background that propaganda should be
treated with caution.

In Zimbabwe, today, hate propaganda has become the order of the day. A
hapless Zanu PF government is heavily engaged in a mission of mass delusion
through its media mouthpieces.

History is being manipulated and presented to the people with distortions
meant to protect the ruling party’s political aspirations.

But the truth is: Zanu PF’s perceptions of the past are not necessarily the
only and correct perception.

Failure to appreciate the many realities that confront the nation today can
only lead to disaster.

State-owned newspapers and broadcasting services are awash with images of
white people that are tantamount to incitement.

Worse still, black people who think outside the Zanu PF framework are being
presented as idiots. Zanu PF is brainwashing people to hate themselves for
thinking other than the Zanu PF way.

Hate propaganda is being used to stir the people against the opposition
Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), and white people in general.

According to the propaganda, white people are only human if they belong to
the Zanu PF camp. Otherwise, why is white-burdened Joseph Sacco of the
infamous land song so extolled by the ruling party?

Surprisingly, the ruling Zanu PF is absolved of any responsibility for the
ills currently facing Zimbabwe.

While, certainly, great nations have been built on some measure of
propaganda, the missing link in the State propaganda is that it is not based
on wholesome truth. In fact, it does not appear that the State is using
propaganda for nation-building.

Clearly, there is a desire to get quick returns on the part of the ruling
Zanu PF government.

But, now, the propaganda is turning on its head. People are killing each

The earth has turned blood-soaked red.

Sadly, the architects of both the hate propaganda and the nation’s demise
are sitting pretty cool in the depressions of imported sofas while the
country and the streets burn red with unfounded hate.

Nation-building is not based in hate propaganda. Neither can the people’s
freedoms be achieved through endless propaganda. Instead, social ills such
as poverty and HIV/Aids can only be solved through the implementation of
solid people-centred policies.

It appears Zanu PF has forgotten the people. Or, to Zanu PF, the people are
fodder that can be used and dispensed with ease.

It is utter nonsense for Zanu PF to suggest that the white man is
responsible for all our despair, and then at the same time, with a hidden
hand, go and beg for food and money from the same white man.

It is utter nonsense for President Mugabe to shout out loud about the sexual
make-up of Tony Blair’s government, while the people are dying of hunger and

The people do not want to hear who is who in the British government.

What the people want are concrete answers to the real problems that they are
confronting on a daily basis.

The State hate propaganda deliberately misses the point. Rather, it is
filled with distorted realities to mislead the people. To Zanu PF, the
people come last. To Zanu PF, the people are empty vessels that need to be
filled with nothing, but hate.

However, the process of self-discovery in nation-building is not made
possible by screening, printing and shouting taunts.

The process of self-discovery is not made possible by continuously
denigrating perceived or real obstacles.

Neither is it made possible by rehashing demeaning and distorted images of
oneself from the past. After all, the past is there to stay. No amount of
Zanu PF rhetoric will erase the past.

Zanu PF is trying to win the hearts of the people through merciless and
messy propaganda. But, even that much-talked-about blackness and black
heritage is only a matter of the heart. It does not consist of belittling
the white people. That is only a sign of weakness. Zanu PF is weak. But,
most important, people do not live on blackness alone. The affirmation of
our humanness is not merely a matter of anti-white propaganda.

Rather, it can only be achieved through a well-considered and non-chaotic
improvement of our condition.

It can only be achieved through a tactful challenge of the old order that
prepares the nation for tomorrow’s wild ride.

The riling Zanu PF government lacks both.
It is behaving like a possessed spirit. Devoid of ideas, it is seeking cover
under cheap hate propaganda.

Zanu PF is not prepared to face the future with concrete ideas that do not
depend on violence for their expression.

The Information Minister with a popcorn tongue is at it again with his
propaganda making people insane.

It is not unjust to remind Zanu PF that the best form of propaganda is found
within, but based on truthful external reality. Today’s propaganda is
discrepant. It cannot withstand any test of confidence. It does not add up.

It was never designed to add in the first place and space, because, for all
we know, Zanu PF thinks we are all but fools.

The human mind can only take so much. Zanu PF’s Armageddon will break -soon.
The new sun will rise again tomorrow.

In a word, Zimbabwe will know freedom again, and learn to love with
tenderness and care.

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Daily News

Ben-Menashe exposed

2/23/02 8:00:19 AM (GMT +2)

By Luke Tamborinyoka

AS Ari Ben-Menashe arrived in Harare yesterday, it emerged that among his
many shady international business deals, he was involved in several
multi-million dollar contracts with the Zambian government of Frederick
Chiluba in 1997 and 1998.

Sources allege that the controversial businessman, who was described by Time
magazine as a “veteran spinner of stunning if-but yarns”, was involved in
various contracts worth about US$33 million (Z$18,15 billion).

Efforts to contact government officials in Lusaka were fruitless yesterday.

But it is alleged Ben-Menashe, representing a Canadian firm called
Carlington Sales Company, was introduced to Chiluba by Rajan Mahtani, a
businessman closely linked to the Movement for Multi-Party Democracy.

The Zambian government allegedly paid US$7,8 million for the procurement of
maize, which was never delivered. The issue was swept under the carpet
because of Ben-Menashe’s close friends in the government.

An earlier maize contract worth US$24 million failed to materialise after
Carlington Sales Company withdrew a six-month line of credit to the Zambian
government following reports of the foiled army coup in 1997. In the deal,
Ben-Menashe was allegedly working with Alexander Legault, an American who
was allegedly present at the meeting with Tsvangirai in Montreal in

Legault has an outstanding warrant of arrest on fraud charges related to an
investment scheme in Florida. He has been indicted in three states in the
United States for fraud committed 18 years ago involving a US$13 million
scam which deprived over 300 pensioners of their life savings.

Carlington Sales Company was also contracted during the privatisation of
copper mines in Zambia. It was appointed to head-hunt for potential buyers,
but clashed with the Zambian government when the contract was allegedly
handled by Anglo American Corporation.

The Zambian government also contracted Ben-Menashe and his colleagues to
play down allegations of gun-running by the Angolan government in 1998.

Angola accused several senior Zambian politicians of sponsoring arms to
Unita. Chiluba’s government allegedly paid US$1 million to Ben-Menashe to
use his contacts in the US Central Intelligence Agency and the United
Nations to downplay the allegations and spruce up Zambia’s image.

A Zambian Ministry of Finance official issued a statement after the failed
deals involving Ben-Menashe.

Part of the statement, issued in July 1998, reads: “We should learn a lesson
from President Chiluba’s experiences with these characters (middle men). The
President’s use of Ari Ben-Menashe, a former Israeli Mossad officer, to
import maize failed.”

Ben-Menashe, 51, who was born of Iraqi Jew parents in Tehran, has written a
book on political dirty tricks called Profits of War.

The book contained allegations against Ronald Reagan, the former US
president, later described by a Congressional investigation as “a total

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From CBC (Canada), 14 February

The following is a transcript of the "As it happens" programme on CBC Radio

Ari Ben-Menashe on Zimbabwean assassination plot

BILL CAMERON: Hello. I'm Bill Cameron.

BARBARA BUDD: And I'm Barbara Budd. Welcome back to As It Happens, part two.
It's a story of international intrigue, presidential assassination plots,
and apparently all captured on videotape. As Zimbabwe's presidential
election campaign winds down, an incredible allegation against the man many
think has the best chance to unseat Robert Mugabe. The head of a
Montreal-based consulting firm says he was asked by Morgan Tsvangirai to
assassinate Mugabe. Ari Ben-Menashe also says he has the tape to prove it.
Ari Ben-Menashe is in Montreal.

CAMERON: Mr. Ben-Menashe, tell me about this meeting in London. How did it
come about?

ARI BEN-MENASHE: We were contacted by the MDC, and the meeting was
arranged... arranged in London.

CAMERON: For what purpose?

BEN-MENASHE: When we got to the meeting Mr. Tsvangirai told us the purpose
of the meeting. He wanted us to... to help arrange the assassination of the
president and do a coup d'état for him.

CAMERON: He's the leader of the main opposition party and he was
commissioning you to assassinate...

BEN-MENASHE: He was trying to commission us to do that, yes.

CAMERON: And you recorded this?

BEN-MENASHE: Well, the first meeting was not recorded. We don't generally
record our meetings. But once that issue was brought up, all kinds of alarm
bells and question marks went up in my head. We asked for a second meeting.
It took place in London. It was audiotaped. And the third meeting, which was
for the explicit purpose of collecting the evidence, was video- and
audiotaped. It took place in Montreal.

CAMERON: At each of these meetings Mr. Tsvangirai asked you to assassinate
Mr. Mugabe?

BEN-MENASHE: That's right.

CAMERON: How was this to be done?

BEN-MENASHE: I don't want to get into details. There's a tape that talks
about this. It's all... it's available to the public.

CAMERON: But generally, how...

BEN-MENASHE: I don't want to get into it, please. It's a long... long thing.
And we were supposed to be... carry out a plot to assassinate the president
and carry out the coup d'état with the help of the army.

CAMERON: It's been suggested that perhaps someone was saying theoretically
Mr. Tsvangirai, if Mr. Mugabe was assassinated by parties unknown, what
would you do, how would you handle situation.

BEN-MENASHE: That's right. That's right. That's correct. But he was asked
the question.

CAMERON: That's... that's different, isn't it, than Mr. Tsvangirai saying I
want him dead.

BEN-MENASHE: No, no. What has been said was OK... OK, the president is
eliminated, there's a coup d'état. Then... then what would you do? How would
you handle the situation? That was said. After he asked for the coup d'état,
and after he asked for the assassination, the question then arose what...
how would you handle the situation.

CAMERON: I've been looking through the transcript of the Australian
broadcast, and I can't find a record of Mr. Tsvangirai asking you to kill
Mr. Mugabe.

BEN-MENASHE: Well, I believe... I believe there... words used, elimination
and things. I have not seen the Australian SBS program, but I have seen the
tape that was made. It's five or six hours long. They have it. It's clear.
It's available to whomever wants to see it and hear it. It's clear that
that's what he's asking for.

CAMERON: You've been acquainted with Mr. Mugabe for quite a few years.

BEN-MENASHE: That's correct.

CAMERON: He's a friend of yours?

BEN-MENASHE: I hope he calls himself a friend.

CAMERON: You've worked for him.

BEN-MENASHE: From time to time, yes.

CAMERON: What kinds of things have you done for Mr. Mugabe?

BEN-MENASHE: Political consultancy. Political advice, foreign affairs
advice, lobbying in various places in the world.

CAMERON: What kind of lobbying?

BEN-MENASHE: Financial institutions, that type of stuff. Foreign affairs,
different countries and so on.

CAMERON: Has this been a secret?

BEN-MENASHE: It hasn't been a secret. We just don't advertize it.

CAMERON: Mr. Tsvangirai knows Mr. Mugabe pretty well, I suppose, has pretty
good information about his associates. Do you think Mr. Tsvangirai would
know that you had worked for Mr. Mugabe?

BEN-MENASHE: I don't believe that he knew that at that time there was a
relationship between us. He knew that in the past there was a relationship.

CAMERON: Why would he come to you with this...?

BEN-MENASHE: Because he... I suppose... I'm... I suppose a few things passed
his mind. I know Africa pretty well, and maybe they thought about my past. I
was working for Israeli intelligence and I wrote a book about the subject
and so on and so forth. Maybe that's what attracted their attention.

CAMERON: What is there in your record that would lead Mr. Tsvangirai to
believe that you'd be open to an invitation to commit an assassination?

BEN-MENASHE: I don't know. I suppose working for Israeli intelligence means
that to him.

CAMERON: Does it?


CAMERON: This meeting happened... this... the latest meeting happened last
year sometime.

BEN-MENASHE: On the fourth of December in Montreal, in our offices.

CAMERON: And did you tell Mr. Mugabe about it?

BEN-MENASHE: Of course.

CAMERON: But we're only getting the details now.

BEN-MENASHE: That's right.


BEN-MENASHE: They obviously have been investigating the matter.

CAMERON: But we're now in the closing weeks of an election campaign. It

BEN-MENASHE: You know, that was brought up. It's... what is a good time to
make this public? A year from the election, a year after the election? What
is a good time to do this? And also, what was brought up on the tape that
was very interesting was another assassination attempt by the MDC that was
foiled by the government in April 2001, where the government did not have
evidence to prove that... the link with the MDC. Except one problem now Mr.
Tsvangirai has. He mentioned that plot on the tape as well, and he linked it
to himself.

CAMERON: He admitted?

BEN-MENASHE: Yeah. We were talking here. He felt, you know... oh yes. Oh,
yes. The tape is about six hours long. Sorry, five or six hours, I'm not
sure. It's a very long tape. And it wasn't all broadcast by SBS but they
have the complete tape. We have no control of what was broadcast or what was
not broadcast. I suppose they cut it down. I...

CAMERON: But you have a copy of the tape.

BEN-MENASHE: Yes, we do.

CAMERON: I've seen the SBS transcript, and that's on the Internet. You can
have a look at it any time.


CAMERON: And it does not make the point that you're making, that Mr.
Tsvangirai invited you to kill Mr. Mugabe.

BEN-MENASHE: I believe it does, and from what I understand it does. And
please look at the whole program. It does. If it isn't there it's on the
tape. Anybody who wishes is invited to look at the tape. It's there.

CAMERON: OK. Let me take you up on that then. I can...

BEN-MENASHE: I will not give out copies of the tape, if you are... if you
are asking for that. We are... we do not give out copies of the tape. They
will be... you can go to the Zimbabwe government, which has a copy, or SBS.
And I believe they are there. I will not give out copies of the tape.

CAMERON: Yet you gave one to the Australian broadcasters.

BEN-MENASHE: I did not say I gave it to them.

CAMERON: You sold it to them.

BEN-MENASHE: We did not sell anything, we did not... we did not make any
money on this tape.

CAMERON: How'd they get it?

BEN-MENASHE: I have no comment about that.

CAMERON: Is there any connection in your mind between this plot and the
British government?

BEN-MENASHE: Well, if you look at the tape carefully, Mr. Tsvangirai
basically alludes... not even alludes, says... who is funding him. Mr.
Tsvangirai says that he's being funded by some British elements, some
extradition elements. He talks about white farmers giving him money. He
talks about all that, yes. And again, payments for him are made out of a
British firm...

CAMERON: By the British government.

BEN-MENASHE: No, I did not say the British government, please.

CAMERON: Mr. Mugabe has been complaining for some time that he is the victim
of British neo-colonialism, actions by the British government and

BEN-MENASHE: But... but it's... it's true. And this is why the British are
very upset about this tape. They can't refute it. They're attacking me
personally, they're saying the tape is a forgery or a thing. I say hold on a
second. Personally, OK, you want to attack me, that's fine. The tape, you're
saying it's a forgery. Look at it. Test it.

CAMERON: Have you given... have you given it to them?

BEN-MENASHE: I haven't given it to them, but the Zimbabwe government is
willing... has put it up for... I think SBS has said whoever wants to take a
look at it please come and look at it. I haven't, no.

CAMERON: You've just given the Zimbabwe government evidence that its primary
opponent is plotting the assassination of the leader of the country. What do
you expect to happen?

BEN-MENASHE: Personally, I believe that the election is going to go forward.

CAMERON: Who's going to win?

BEN-MENASHE: I don't speculate.

CAMERON: Mr. Ben-Menashe...

BEN-MENASHE: I hope the better man wins, the man that is on the correct side
of history wins. I hope that. But I don't know who's going to win.

CAMERON: And that would be?

BEN-MENASHE: President Mugabe. He has... he has liberated the country from a
very nasty apartheid regime, and now he has done land reform.

CAMERON: Is he a good fellow to work for?

BEN-MENASHE: He's a very smart, intellectual person. Meeting him is always a
great pleasure because... because he's a very educated person.

CAMERON: Do you have any idea how much money his government has paid your
firm over the years?

BEN-MENASHE: I really don't want to comment about that.

CAMERON: Mr. Ben-Menashe, thank you very much.


BUDD: Ari Ben-Menashe is the head of a Montreal-based consulting firm.

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Daily News

Ben-Menashe arrives to testify in alleged plot to assassinate Mugabe

2/23/02 7:18:44 AM (GMT +2)

By Luke Tamborinyoka

ARI Ben-Menashe, the controversial man at the centre of the alleged plot to
assassinate President Mugabe, arrived in Zimbabwe yesterday and the police
immediately whisked him away under under tight security.

Ben-Menashe is a key witness of President Mugabe’s government in the
controversial allegation of a bungled plot by MDC leader, Morgan Tsvangirai,
to eliminate Mugabe ahead of the presidential election next month.

Yesterday, Menashe arrived at the Harare International Airport aboard a
British Airways flight from Johannesburg.

He briefly spoke to journalists before he was taken away by seven officers
of the Central Intelligence Organisation and the Law and Order Section of
the police.

“I am happy to be here and yes, I will meet the police,” is all he said
before he was led away.

Among the officers providing tight security for Ben-Menashe was Boysen
Mathema, the officer-in-charge of the Law and Order section at Harare
Central Police Station.

Allegations against Tsvangirai stem from a controversial documentary shown
on Australian television, in which it is alleged that the MDC leader plotted
to eliminate Mugabe at a meeting held in December 2001.

It has since emerged that when the MDC hired Dickens and Madson to undertake
public relations work for them in North America, the consultancy firm, in
which Ben Menashe is a director, was already working for the government of

The Zimbabwe Independent yesterday reported that Dickens and Madson was
acting as a conduit in a deal in which senior Zanu PF politicians and
members of the Zimbabwe
Defence Forces were transferring funds in shady diamond deals in the
war-torn Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Tsvangirai says the MDC cancelled all dealings with the company when they
discovered it was working under the direct instruction of Nicholas Goche,
the Minister of State Security and George Charamba, the Permanent Secretary
in the Ministry of Information and Publicity.

Charamba has since denied the allegation.

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Daily News - Leader Page

No-go campaign areas: we thought they all knew

2/23/02 8:21:09 AM (GMT +2)

LAST Wednesday, the head of the South African election observer team in
Zimbabwe, Sam Motsuenyane, spoke with some most welcome passion of the Zanu
PF-inspired violence in the election campaign.

He seemed surprised and disturbed that there were no-go areas, demarcated by
Zanu PF, against opposition parties, particularly the MDC.

Whether his belated awareness of this stark reality will be too little and
too late to end the violence remains to be seen.

Whether it will rub off on to members of observer teams from the
Commonwealth, the Organisation of African Union and others, is a matter of

The least we can hope for is that it will shake them all into the
realisation that the violence that the independent Press has been reporting
on meticulously since the 2000 election campaign is not fictitious.

They ought to disabuse themselves of the false notion - obviously planted by
Zanu PF and the government - that we are all in the pay of London, Berlin,
Stockholm, or Washington and that Zanu PF is so lily-white it couldn’t hurt
a fly.

It is to be hoped that Motsuenyane will challenge both Zanu PF and the
government’s propaganda mandarins on the disgraceful events of Monday in the
centre of Harare.

Hundreds of Zanu PF supporters, some of them probably unaware of what “enemy
of the people” they were attacking, marched through the city leaving a trail
of destruction.

When people speak of the government condoning lawlessness, this is what they
refer to: people inflicting terror on the population with complete impunity,
the police not raising a finger against them.

How a free and fair election can be possible in such circumstances is
difficult to imagine. This was in the city centre of the capital. Out in the
rural areas, where, at the best of times, the police are sighted on very
rare occasions, it is not difficult to imagine what could happen.

It is even less difficult to imagine what would happen during an election,
with the so-called war veterans virtually unchallenged.

South Africa can still make a difference to the future conduct of the
election campaign.

President Thabo Mbeki spoke with statesmanlike candour a few months ago when
he warned of a civil war if the election were not held in a genuinely free
and fair atmosphere.

But somewhere along the line, with the apologists of the Mugabe regime
hauling out the British recolonisation bogey, he seemed to baulk.

Motsuenyane must inform his president that the greatest danger to Zimbabwe’s
survival as a democracy is not the British government’s alleged desire to
recolonise the country, but Zanu PF’s desire to return the country to the
one-party terror of the 1980s.

How any of the observer teams could not have detected the violent nature of
the Zanu PF election campaign is mind-boggling. Pierre Schori, the Swedish
diplomat who headed the European Union team, was here during the campaign
for the 2000 election. He had a first-hand encounter with Zanu PF’s campaign
thuggery. Apart from the violence, the opposition is denied all access to
the State media.

Instead, the opposition is vilified at every turn. This time around, with
the incredibly amateurish connivance of a dubious PR outfit, there is the
“assassination” TV footage being screened ad nauseam.

If Morgan Tsvangirai had plotted this dastardly act, wouldn’t the government
have worked patiently and with some subtlety to build up a cast-iron case
against him, instead of convicting him on TV?

We hope none of the observers have been taken in by all this crude
government propaganda. Motsuenyane has displayed a willingness to be
open-minded and to speak with the honesty of a genuinely neutral observer.

Certainly, his frankness contrasts sharply with the dubious neutrality of
one former South African observer, the hapless Tony Yengeni, who was here
for the 2000 campaign.

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Daily News

Zanu PF mob attacks SA observers

2/23/02 8:00:51 AM (GMT +2)

By Collin Chiwanza

TWO members of the South African election observer mission, deployed in the
Midlands province, were attacked by Zanu PF supporters in Kwekwe yesterday.

The observers, identified as Elizah Maahlo and Bethel Sithai, immediately
reported the matter to the police in Kwekwe. Four MDC supporters were
injured and are now in hospital. Two Zanu PF youths were arrested in
connection with the attack.

The police in Kwekwe confirmed the incident. Investigations were said to be
underway. The two observers were travelling in a Mazda B2500 Twincab
vehicle, registration number 692-766F. Its windscreen and two rear windows
were smashed.

In a statement yesterday, the head of the South African observers, Dr Sam
Motsuenyane, said: “We strongly condemn this act. This is totally
unacceptable. The observers in general and those of South Africa should be
allowed a free environment in which to continue with the noble work which is
in the best interests of the Zimbabwean people and the region as a whole.”

Motsuenyane did not identify the attackers, saying they were an unidentified
group, “who have a grudge against the MDC”.

He said the observers would not pull out of the Midlands. “On the contrary,
it will make us even more determined to intensify our observation of the
election. It also confirms our belief that there is a need for the number of
international observers to the election to be increased,” he said.

Two other vehicles belonging to the MP for Silobela, Abednigo Malinga, and
the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority were also stoned. Malinga said MDC officials
were holding a meeting at their party offices in Kwekwe when the two
observers arrived.

The observers asked for a meeting with the MDC officials to inquire about
the political situation in the Midlands province.

While the meeting was going on, a mob of nearly 200 youths, chanting Zanu PF
slogans and denouncing the MDC, arrived and started throwing stones and
other missiles at the MDC offices, trapping the observers and the MDC
officials inside the building.

When the observers realised they were under attack, they telephoned the
police who took a long time to come. By the time they arrived, the youths
had already caused extensive damaged to the vehicles parked in front of the
MDC offices.

A total of 13 observers were deployed to areas considered no-go areas for
opposition parties. The areas include Mashonaland East, Mashonaland Central,
Lupane and Gwanda.

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Daily News

Soldiers assault MDC activist for putting up posters

2/23/02 7:20:18 AM (GMT +2)

Staff Reporter

SOLDIERS of the Presidential Guard unit in Dzivaresekwa on Thursday severely
assaulted an MDC activist for putting up posters of the party’s presidential
candidate, Morgan Tsvangirai.

The soldiers said they could not tolerate the posters because Tsvangirai was
allegedly plotting to kill President Mugabe.

Obert Ranjisi, 34, sustained severe injuries on the buttocks and other parts
of the body.

The incident was reported to Dzivaresekwa Police Station, where Ranjisi was
given a medical request form and referred to Parirenyatwa Hospital for

The case number is OB1926/02.

But Ranjisi could not go to the hospital as there was no transport despite
an assurance by the police that they would arrange it.

Edwin Mushoriwa, the MP for Dzivaresekwa (MDC), came to Ranjisi’s rescue,
bought him painkillers and took him to a private doctor in the city

Ranjisi said he was with 12 other MDC supporters putting up Tsvangirai’s
posters near Sanganayi Inn, about two kilometres from the army camp, when
six soldiers driving a green Mazda B1600 truck arrived and started chasing
them away.

Ranjisi was caught but his colleagues managed to escape and the soldiers
proceeded to assault him severely. This week the police warned people not to
remove any posters of the presidential election candidates as this
constituted a criminal offence.

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Daily News

Foreign journalist arrested for entering Zimbabwe illegally

2/23/02 7:17:30 AM (GMT +2)

From Brian Mangwende in Mutare

MOSES Oguti, the editor-in-chief of a Botswana magazine, Trans-Kalahari, is
still languishing in Mutare prison a week after his arrest for allegedly
sneaking into the country through the Forbes border post.

Stanley Shamido, the head of Immigration in Manicaland, said yesterday: “We
are still holding him because we have not yet ascertained where he resides.
Oguti was very vague when we asked where he stays. We are going to lay
charges of entry by evasion against him. He will appear in court as soon as
we have finished our investigation.

“We don’t know what type of person he is. This is a straightforward case. We
’ll just prosecute and later deport him.”

Oguti, 51, is said to have tried to enter Zimbabwe through Forbes border
post from Mozambique, but immigration officials denied him entry.

An official at the border who spoke on condition of anonymity said: “He just
looked suspicious. We asked him why he was coming to Zimbabwe and he was
very evasive. We then told him to go back. Besides, his papers were not in

The official said on the following day, a Mozambican driving the same car
that Oguti had used entered the border.

“Suspecting something was wrong, we alerted the police to be on the look-out
for that car, although we had let in the Mozambican because his documents
were in order,” said the official.

Francis Mubvuta, the Manicaland police spokesman, confirmed the incident and
said while his car was being driven into the country, Oguti entered Zimbabwe
through an illegal entry point in the mountains, used mainly by unauthorised
cross-border traders.

He said the two then met and Oguti allegedly paid off the Mozambican who in
turn handed over the car.

Unfortunately for Oguti, the police were trailing the car. Mubvuta said: “We
traced the car and arrested him at a food outlet in the city centre. We are
yet to establish his reason for being in the country. Meanwhile, he is being
held at Mutare prison.”
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Bush imposes travel sanctions on Zimbabwe

George W Bush has imposed limited travel sanctions on Zimbabwe.

He cites a "continued failure" by President Robert Mugabe to maintain democratic rule in the African country.

Bush has signed a proclamation suspending US entry privileges for Mugabe, his family or senior members of Mugabe's government.

He also denied entry to those who received "significant financial benefit" from dealings with Zimbabwean officials who carried out Mugabe's policies.

The suspension is effective immediately, Mr Bush said, and would be terminated at the discretion of Secretary of State Colin Powell.

The US President says he took the action "in light of the political and humanitarian crisis in Zimbabwe, and the continued failure of President Robert Mugabe, Zimbabwean government officials and others to support the rule of law."

White House spokesman Ari Fleischer said Mr Bush acted mainly because Mugabe expelled EU election observer Pierre Schori of Sweden earlier this week, and banned foreign journalists from covering presidential elections.

Just before imposing the media ban, Mugabe decried independent media as "liars, downright liars" who are overly critical of his government. "They fabricate news, exaggerate news, they manufacture news," Mugabe said. "Why don't we arrest them?"

Mr Fleischer said Mugabe could undo the travel suspensions if he allows the elections to proceed legitimately.

Sky News

Sanctions 'Help Mugabe'

Supporters of Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe claim US sanctions will help
the country's opposition in the coming election campaign.

President George W Bush has banned Mugabe, senior ministers and their
families from entering the US.

Also excluded are people who through their business dealings benefited from
the Zimbabwe government's policies.


Didymus Mutasa, external secretary for the ruling ZANU-PF party said he was
not suprised.

"The aim is to put us under pressure and to give an advantage to the
opposition," he said.

"But the sanctions will not work and they will not soften our resolve to
defend Zimbabwe's national sovereignty."

Visa ban

The European Union had earlier imposed a visa ban and frozen the assets of
20 top Zimbabwean officials.

It also withdrew its election observer mission from the country, saying they
would not be able to do their jobs.

Southern African election observers in the country have warned that a wave
of political violence threatens chances of a free and fair poll.

Last Updated: 12:12 UK, Saturday February 23, 2002
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Savimbi 'killed' by Angolan army
Jonas Savimbi
Jonas Savimbi: Fighting against the Luanda government since 1975
The Angolan army says it has killed Unita rebel leader Jonas Savimbi.

Mr Savimbi has led the rebel group's fight for power in Angola for more than 30 years.

State radio and the official news agency said Mr Savimbi had died during fighting with Angolan government forces.

There was no independent confirmation of the death.

The Angola government said Mr Savimbi had been killed in the eastern Angolan province of Moxico where the army has been waging war against Unita since October last year.

Unita has been fighting against the Luanda government since 1975.

Elections were held during a ceasefire in 1992, but Unita did not accept the results and fighting resumed.

A second attempt to find peace in 1994 finally broke down in 1999.

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Dear Family and Friends,
Shortly after dawn this morning I sat out on my front step and watched another day beginning. These occasions of peace and tranquillity have become moments to treasure as all our days are filled with anxiety, fear and uncertainity. Everything is unknown now, nothing is guaranteed and these last weeks before the elections are perhaps the worst of the past two years. Everywhere you go and everyone you meet is talking about the same thing - what is going to happen, how is anyone ever going to return our land to law and order. Who will deal with all these youngsters running riot, setting up road blocks? How will we grow enough food to feed our population? When will farmers be allowed to grow our food again? When will be able to walk into the supermarket and buy the most basic of commodities like milk, sugar, margerine and maize meal again? When will we again feel safe in our own homes and towns and farms? Will the violence ever stop? The uncertainity has gripped us all, not knowing has almost paralysed the country. Telephone cables are broken and stolen in many rural areas, to be repaired "after the elections"; many areas of Harare have had restricted water, pumps will be fixed "after elections"; companies are not hiring until "after the elections"; decisions about the most basic of things are not being made until "after the elections". We are a nation in limbo and all counting down these last 13 days, not knowing if we will come through them unscathed.
On a clear and star filled evening this week all semblance of peace and normalcy was shattered in a quiet residential Marondera neighbourhood. The first hint of something being amiss came from dogs barking in all directions. It was angry, excited barking and nothing could quieten the dogs - they could hear the sound of approaching terror. Some neighbours reported hearing windows being broken, others heard whistling. No one went outside their gates to see what was going on, no one does anymore as it simply is not safe to do so. A house belonging to a senior member of the political opposition had been targeted and was being looted of television and radio, videos and clothing, a bicycle and computer. There were people in the house at the time including a young child who hid under a bed and managed to escape the notice of the looters. Shortly before 9.00pm there were a series of explosions and I watched in absolute horror as a house within sight of my own burnt uncontrollably, spitting sparks into the darkness, lighting up the night with a huge orange blaze. The noise for the next two hours was terrifying as windows exploded, roof timbers collapsed, asbestos cracked and shattered. Later came the sound of two or three blasts from a hooter and whistling from all directions. I cannot tell you what else happened  because the Public Order and Security Act prohibits me from  publishing or passing on a statement which may: "undermine confidence in the Police Force, the Defence Forces or...." Suffice to say a neighourhood was powerless to help or act as a home was looted and burned. This horror is just another statistic and finding the words to tell people how awfully sorry you are for their loss and suffering is agonising. It is with deep regret that this week I have again had to update the roll of honour on my website. 113 people have now died in political violence. Names, dates and a few details can be found at Until next week, with love, cathy.
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In this update
- Police shoot at Morgan Tsvangirai
- 2 South African Observers and at least 5 MDC supporters injured in Zanu PF
- Zanu PF militia kill MDC member, attack headmistress' home
- MDC members abducted
- MDC Chinhoyi Provincial Office Attacked & MDC MP's farm raided

Friday, 20-22 February 2002
All press statements from Learnmore Jongwe, MDC Secretary for Information
and Publicity

Feb 22, 2002
Police shoot at Morgan Tsvangirai

Police today shot twice at Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) president
Morgan Tsvangirai's motorcade in Maringire village, 70 kilometres from
Masvingo town.

The incident started this morning when President Tsvangirai, who was
scheduled to address a rally at Ngundu growth point in Masvingo, stopped
briefly at Sese village. A group of about 20 MDC supporters gathered and
started to sing and cheer for him.

The group started to swell as more supporters recognised his presence in the
area. Tsvangirai's security personnel started to disperse the crowd and as
they were doing so, a defender vehicle with 10 police men shouted from a
distance that the group constituted an illegal gathering and threw tear gas
at the already dispersing crowd.

Tsvangirai then proceeded on his journey back to Masvingo. He stopped at a
lay-bye in Maringire village for refreshments, when the same police men
caught up with him, threw tear gas and shot at his motorcade twice. No one
was injured.

Tsvangirai and his entourage jumped into their vehicles and sped off with
the police in hot pursuit for almost 40 kilometres.

Despite the disturbance, Tsvangirai  will continue with his programme as

2 South African Observers and at least 5 MDC supporters injured in Zanu PF

At about 1:30pm on Friday, 22 February 2002, at least 200 Zanu PF supporters
armed with stones, iron bars and knobkerries attacked the Kwekwe provincial

This took place when the MDC leadership was briefing a South African
observer mission. The attack, which was unprovoked, resulted in the injury
of two South Africans, Elizah Maahlo and Dr Bethel Sithai. At least 5 MDC
supporters were also injured. Some of the injured were rushed to Kwekwe
hospital. The total number of injured people is yet to be established.

A vehicle belonging to the South African observer mission, a B25000 series,
registration number 692-766S was also damaged in the attack. All this has
been reported to the Kwekwe police.

This is not the first attack on the MDC offices. Only last month the offices
and a vehicle belonging to the party were burnt.

MDC president, Morgan Tsvangirai is scheduled to address a rally in Kwekwe
on Sunday afternoon, 24 February 2002.

Zanu PF militia kill MDC member, attack headmistress' home

On Tuesday this week in Rushinga, Zanu PF militia assaulted Takesure Nhitsa,
an MDC activist. Nhitsa who worked as a pump attendant in Rushinga died at
Chimhanda Hospital on Wednesday. Nhitsa was approached by a group of Zanu PF
war veterans who accused him of cutting off water supplies unnecessarily.
The group severely assaulted him and he had to be taken to Chimhanda
Hospital where he died the following day as a result of the injuries
sustained during the assault.

Zanu PF intensified their terror campaign in the rural areas where they
continue to assault opposition party supporters and burn down houses
belonging to MDC supporters.

The incident was reported to Rushinga Police Station. War veteran Babillon
Matambo and Taurai Chimutanda, a Zanu PF supporter were arrested in
connection with the fatal assault. However, Taurai has since been released.

In Goromonzi District, Wiseman Mutero, the District MDC Treasurer and the
District Youth Chairman, Parirenyatwa Chari who live in the Sow Grounds area
were attacked by Zanu PF supporters led by Godwin Nyarira and Albert
Chimanika on Tuesday.

The two sought refuge in the police station but were arrested after being
accused of having caused the attack by blowing whistles. While in police
custody they were informed that Mutero's house had been set on fire. The
Zanu PF supporters have not been arrested.

Mrs Emilia Mandaza, the deputy head at Molife Primary School in Goromonzi
had her house stoned by a group of about 200 Zanu PF supporters who arrived
at her home in a truck at 3am on 22nd February. After attacking the house
the group beat up James Chidatiko, a security guard who was guarding the
school. The matter has been reported to the police.

Feb 21, 2002

MDC members abducted

Two MDC activists in Mashonaland West: Tobias Chimuka and Lovemore Moyo were
abducted by suspected Zanu (PF) operatives at around 19.00hrs on Wednesday
20 February 2002 at Chengaose Shopping Centre and Chikonohono Township
respectively. Two Nissan Hardboard vehicles suspected of belonging to Zanu
PF were seen at the places of abduction. A report has been made to the
Chinhoyi Police.

In a similar incident in Midlands, another MDC activist, Hlupo Donga Nkomo
was abducted on the same day at Sandawana Mine at about 17.00 hrs. A crowd
of about 100 suspected Zanu (PF) supporters descended on his house after a
Zanu PF meeting which took place in the area. A report was made to the
police immediately after the incident.

MDC Members Brutally Assaulted

In other politically motivated incidents, two MDC activists were assaulted
by Zanu (PF) militia in Mashonaland West province. Tonderai Tendaupenyu and
Mr. Kadziya were assaulted by Zanu (PF) supporters suspected to be members
of Phillip Chiyangwa_s Special Group called The Top Six which has been
linked to various other brutal activities in the province at around 19.00
hours on Wednesday 20 February 2002. The two casualties were taken to
Chinhoyi General Hospital.

At Lions_ Den, also in Mashonaland West Province, Onias Marenga was
assaulted by Zanu (PF) militia yesterday. He was taken to Chinhoyi General
Hospital. Both cases have been reported to Chinhoyi Police.

The MDC unreservedly condemns all these acts of thuggery on peace-loving
citizens of Zimbabwe. We call upon the Sadc Observer team and all the other
international monitors in the country to persuade Zanu PF even at this late
hour to abandon its violent agenda.

One of the rallying points of the liberation struggle was the call for
peaceful, free and fair elections. It is unfortunate that at this late hour
the outgoing Zanu PF government is still seeking to subvert a people_s will
by wantonly clobbering those who have different opinions from them.

We are determined that Mugabe should go through the ballot box. We ask all
Zimbabweans over the age of 18 to exercise their right to vote even if it
means we have to limp to the ballot box.

Feb 20, 2002

MDC Chinhoyi Provincial Office Attacked

Zanu PF supporters and militia today attacked the offices of the Movement
for Democratic Change (MDC) in Chinhoyi. The Chinhoyi provincial office was
attacked by members of the Zanu PF militia, who disrupted a polling agent
training programme that was being conducted there at that time.

The MDC has been training at least 40 polling agents at that office for the
past two days, although the programme has now been disrupted. The militia,
who came in two bus-loads, assaulted passers-by and stoned the office,
damaging windows, furniture and cars in the area. The magnitude of the
damage is yet to be assessed.

As if this was not enough, the militia then took MDC's vehicle, a green
Mazda B2000 truck, registration number 597 495A. Police then arrested 33 MDC
supporters although they have not been formally charged.

MDC MP's farm raided

Earlier on, at about mid-day today, Delport farm, which belongs to MDC
Member of Parliament (MP) for Chimanimani, Roy Bennet, was besieged by
members of the army and the notorious Zanu PF youth militia.

Truck loads of militia and army vehicles descended on the farm under the
guise of searching for "military weapons," needless to say they did not find
any! They then arrested the farm manager and two guards.

As a party, we are puzzled that on the one hand, Zanu PF claims to be
advocating for peaceful elections while on the other hand, it is responsible
for these unprovoked violent attacks against innocent civilians.

On its part, the MDC will continue to campaign peacefuly and focus on
issues, despite these obvious attempts by Zanu PF to derail the process of

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Vicious War to Win Hearts And Minds of Citizens

Business Day (Johannesburg)

February 22, 2002
Posted to the web February 22, 2002

Dumisani Muleya

A combative advertising campaign rages between Mugabe and Tsvangirai

AS ELECTIONEERING in the run-up to Zimbabwe's presidential election shifts
into overdrive in the midst of low-intensity civil strife, there is a fierce
negative advertising war raging between the two leading candidates.

President Robert Mugabe's campaign team and that of the opposition Movement
for Democratic Change (MDC) leader, Morgan Tsvangirai, are locked in a
vicious advertising war to win the hearts, minds and votes of Zimbabweans.

The combative campaign teams for both candidates, who are the clear
frontrunners in the critical poll, have virtually abandoned conventional
electioneering strategies for searing vitriol and character assassination in
the ferocious electoral combat.

Throughout history, politicians have used various methods, such as
whistle-stop tours, media advertising and political rallies, to win votes
and power.

However, Mugabe and Tsvangirai use crude and negative blandishments to grab

The media is awash with negative ads that are not only designed to besmirch
the rival's image, but also haul competitors over the coals to cause public
humiliation. Mugabe mainly uses the state media and Tsvangirai the
independent press.

The increasing use of negative adverts has been accentuated by intense
rivalry between Mugabe and Tsvangirai.

Mugabe is focusing on what he sees as Tsvangirai's Achilles heel his close
association with western powers. Instead of fulfilling the grand promises he
made during the 2000 parliamentary election, Mugabe has resorted to a
sustained smear campaign.

In one of his ads, Mugabe portrays Tsvangirai as a puppet held on strings by
foreign and local interests: "(UK Prime Minister) Tony Blair, the US,
European Union, (Democratic Alliance leader) Tony Leon, the World Bank,
International Monetary Fund, CFU (Commercial Farmers' Union) and racist
Rhodesians", among others. It says: "If Tsvangirai wins, God forbid, who'll
really be running Zimbabwe?"

In another ad, Zanu (PF) says: "Tsvangirai wants to ruin Zimbabwe, not run
it." He is depicted as prescribing a "bitter pill for Zimbabwe" and
apparently without any sense of irony associated with electricity cuts,
industrial collapse, massive job losses, international isolation for
Zimbabwe, goods shortages, price hikes, and unemployment.

In another ad, Mugabe juxtaposes two versions of Tsvangirai's six-point
plan. The first one includes peace, food, jobs, land, education, and health
and AIDS care. Then the second one has all the points except land. And
Mugabe says: "Why have they removed land from their six-point plan? Because
Tsvangison (Tsvangirai's derogatory nickname given to him by Mugabe who also
calls him tea boy) has already sold the land to the British and racists
Rhodesians. Don't let them short-change you, again!"

Mugabe's affinity for vituperation does not end there. He also portrays
Tsvangirai as a beggar in one of his ads using CNN pictures where the MDC
chief was caught by cameras receiving money from white farmers.

Above the pictures, which show Tsvangirai and a cheque book, the ad says:
"Don't sell your country, quit MDC and return to the people." Below the
pictures the ad notes: "This is how Judas Iscariot the traitor of traitors
sold out. Some white people, the British government and all traitors say: If
the MDC had not been formed, the land would have not been returned to the
people.' What they are saying is similar to what Judas Iscariot, the traitor
of traitors said: If I had not betrayed Jesus for 30 pieces of silver he
would not have died for you!'"

At the bottom the full-page ad concludes: "Don't be a traitor, return to the

Mugabe is presented as the exact opposite to Tsvangirai. He is portrayed as
the people's champion and a bulwark against re-colonisation.

But Tsvangirai has not been outdone. He portrays Mugabe as an angry and old
dictator associated with "violence, senility, hunger, economic ruin and
poverty". One of Tsvangirai's ads reads: "How much hungrier do we have to
get for a change of government? Stop Zanu (PF) from destroying this country.
The only thing which is as high as our inflation is Mugabe's age!"

Another one says: "Run away from Zanu (PF), run away from unemployment."

Political marketing experts say because political advertising, unlike
product advertising, must get results in a short period of time, political
practitioners use several kinds of political advertising: image, issue and
negative advertising.

Image and issue advertising have been employed at the start of a campaign to
establish a positive picture of a candidate and negative ads are then
introduced at the end of the campaign to attack the opponent. This is what
is happening in Zimbabwe at the moment.

Thanks, in the main, to the "life and death" importance of the election, the
real issues are obscured in the campaign.

What would be nice, though, would be a television debate on the national
broadcaster, ZBC, between candidates Mugabe and Tsvangirai.

Pity! This will not happen as Harare will not let the MDC anywhere near its
apparatus, let alone the ZBC.
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Reverend Jesse Jackson Appeals for Peace and Tolerance as Zimbabwe Prepares
to Head to the Polls

Rainbow/Push Coalition (Washington, D.C)

February 22, 2002
Posted to the web February 22, 2002

Washington, D.C

Reverend Jesse L. Jackson issued the following statement regarding the
violence in Zimbabwe as the Presidential election draws near.

As the Zimbabwe Presidential elections draws near, I called upon all the
political leadership to strongly urge their supporters to honor the
constitutional right of every Zimbabwean to participate in a free, fair, and
peaceful election. In a democracy, the consent of the governed must be
granted. The moral premise of democracy is that each person matters and that
every vote counts. It is therefore the responsibility of law enforcement
with cooperation from party leaders to ensure the safety of all Zimbabwean
to freely express their views without threats as they prepare to elect their

The issue regarding accreditation of observers and members of the press is
very vital and should be resolved harmoniously with the Zimbabwean
authorities. Observers should be seen as impartial, credible and
open-minded. The government of Zimbabwe reserves the right to invite
whomever it pleases to observe and report on the election. On the other
hand, it is the responsibility and obligation of every democratic government
to demonstrate transparency, credibility and legitimacy. This cannot be
achieve without adequate independent observers and free press.

When the World Food Program is reporting that half a million Zimbabweans are
going hungry everyday, imposing sanctions that resulted in cutting off $110
million in development aid is very troubling. The people of Zimbabwe are
already suffering and we must hot add to their hardship. The international
community should not punish Zimbabweans because of policy differences with
their government.

This presidential election is very important because it redefines Zimbabwe's
role and status in the international community. The peace loving people of
Zimbabwe deserve more respect than what is being read on newspapers and
viewed on television about their beloved country. Freedom, peace, and
justice are the principles of democracy. Not to honor this treasured
democratic ideal threatens the foundation of fairness and democracy, upon
which unity and prosperity is built.

I call upon all religious leaders in Zimbabwe to pray for peace especially
between now and election day. For it is through prayers and our faith in
God, that we are delivered from evil and lead not into temptation.


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Mugabe on Campaign Trail Under New U.S. Sanctions

February 23, 2002 04:53 AM ET

Reuters Photo
By Stella Mapenzauswa

HARARE (Reuters) - Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe returns to the
election campaign trail Saturday, under new U.S. sanctions for alleged use
of political violence and intimidation.

Mugabe will address a rally in drought-stricken Matabeleland North province
Saturday afternoon ahead of a March 9-10 poll, in which he faces the biggest
challenge of his 22-year rule from Morgan Tsvangirai, leader of the Movement
for Democratic Change (MDC).

The opposition party said Zimbabwean police shot at Tsvangirai's convoy
Friday. Two South African election observers were caught up in a separate
attack by militant supporters of Mugabe's government.

President Bush Friday ordered a ban on the entry into the United States of
Mugabe and senior members of his government and their families, and people
who through their business dealings benefited from his government's

"We are not surprised at the sanctions. The aim is to put us under pressure
and to give an advantage to the opposition," said Didymus Mutasa, external
secretary for ZANU-PF.

"But the sanctions will not work and they will not soften our resolve to
defend Zimbabwe's national sovereignty," Mutasa told Reuters.

The European Union Monday imposed a visa ban and asset freeze on 20 top
Zimbabwean officials and withdrew its election observer mission from the

The former British colony is also facing a severe food crisis because of an
economic downturn and the often violent seizure of white-owned farms,
according to U.N. officials supplying emergency food aid.


Southern African election observers in the country have warned that a wave
of political violence threatens chances of a free and fair poll.

Tsvangirai's supporters said he had stopped to greet supporters Friday in a
village about 70 km (43 miles) from Masvingo when the shooting happened.
There were no injuries and police spokesmen said they were unaware of the
convoy incident.

Tsvangirai continued on to a political rally in Masvingo, where the MDC has
a strong following. Mugabe's supporters hold sway in the countryside.

In the first incident involving foreign election observers, the two South
Africans escaped unharmed when 200 pro-government militants armed with
stones and iron bars attacked an MDC office in the central town of Kwekwe
Friday. The MDC said five of its supporters were injured in the attack.

An observer mission from South Africa and the 14-member Southern African
Development Community (SADC) remains in Zimbabwe after the European Union

"It is vital that the political situation changes in a manner that will
remove fear to enable the people to freely exercise their electoral rights,"
said Duke Lefoko, leader of the advance team of 50 parliamentary observers
from SADC.

Lefoko, speaking in Harare ahead of the expected weekend arrival of the rest
of the SADC team, said the observers would be deployed across Zimbabwe next

The MDC says more than 100 of its supporters have been killed in political
violence since February 2000, when militants loyal to Mugabe began invading
white-owned farms.

The government has denied responsibility for the violence and accuses the
opposition of fueling civil unrest.

U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan has added his voice to growing
international pressure on Zimbabwe's leaders to ensure the elections are
free and fair.

-- Additional reporting by Cris Chinaka

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Saturday, 23 February, 2002, 11:29 GMT
Zimbabwe attacks US sanctions
Mugabe supporters march
Violence has flared between rival political factions
Supporters of President Robert Mugabe have dismissed sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe by the United States as a "Western ploy".

The ban on Mr Mugabe and his ruling elite travelling to the US would fail in its attempt to hurt the government, a Zanu-PF party leader said.

The aim is to put us under pressure and to give an advantage to the opposition

Didymus Mutasa, Zanu-PF official

The US said that chances for a free and fair election in Zimbabwe next month were falling but Didymus Mutasa, external secretary for the ruling party, said the West wanted to destabilise the government.

The US sanctions also apply to officials' families and those who run businesses that benefit from dealing with the government. They follow similar measures taken by the European Union.

"We are not surprised at the sanctions. The aim is to put us under pressure and to give an advantage to the opposition," Mr Mutasa said.

"But the sanctions will not work and they will not soften our resolve to defend Zimbabwe's national sovereignty," he told the Reuters news agency.

US President George W Bush ordered the travel ban on Friday as tension and outbreaks of violence continued.

Robert Mugabe
Mr Mugabe is campaigning around the country
On Monday, the European Union on Monday imposed a visa ban and asset freeze on 20 top Zimbabwean officials and withdrew its election observer mission from the country, saying they would not be able to do their jobs.

Southern African election observers in the country have warned that a wave of political violence threatens chances of a free and fair poll.

Mr Mugabe was to address a rally in drought-stricken Matabeleland North province on Saturday afternoon.

Clear support

In the 9-10 March election he and his Zanu-PF party will be challenged by Morgan Tsvangirai and the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC).

The MDC said Zimbabwean police shot at Mr Tsvangirai's convoy on Friday and two South African election observers were caught up in a separate attack by militant government supporters.

White House spokesman Ari Fleischer said the sanctions were being imposed because "conditions for a transparent election process in Zimbabwe have eroded".

ABC News

Mugabe Backers Defiant After New U.S. Sanctions

Feb. 23
By Stella Mapenzauswa
GWANDA, Zimbabwe (Reuters) - Supporters of President Robert Mugabe dismissed
new U.S. sanctions on Saturday as a Western maneuver to boost his rivals in
Zimbabwe's fiercely contested election campaign.
Mugabe, at an election rally, also lambasted former colonial power Britain,
which spearheaded the imposition of similar European Union sanctions against
him and close aides.
"The war that we are in is between us and the British. Their intention is to
keep their descendants on our land," the 78-year old Mugabe told supporters
in Gwanda, 50 miles southeast of Zimbabwe's second city Bulawayo.
Mugabe has accused Britain of backtracking on a promise to fund land reform
in its former colony, where he says the white minority still owns 70 percent
of the best farmland.
"The British, with the aid of the Americans, lied to us that they would give
us aid, but all they've given is just 40 million pounds ($57.24 million),"
Mugabe said. "It has been cheating and cheating the whole way through by the
On Friday, President Bush barred Mugabe and senior members of his government
and their families from entering the United States. The ban also affected
those who through business dealings benefited from Mugabe's policies.
The U.S. sanctions came five days after the EU imposed a visa ban and asset
freeze on 20 top Zimbabwean officials and withdrew its election observer
mission from the country, saying they would not be able to do their jobs.
Didymus Mutasa, external secretary for Zimbabwe's ruling ZANU-PF party,
shrugged off the U.S. move. "We are not surprised at (these) sanctions. The
aim is to put us under pressure and to give an advantage to the opposition,"
he told Reuters.
"But the sanctions will not work and they will not soften our resolve to
defend Zimbabwe's national sovereignty."
Mugabe made no reference to the U.S. sanctions.
Southern African election observers have warned that a wave of political
violence could prevent a free and fair vote on March 9-10.
The head of the Commonwealth election observer mission, former Nigerian
President General Abdulsalami Abubakar, arrived in Harare on Saturday to
join a team of 32 observers from the group made up of mainly former British
Commonwealth observer mission spokesman Mwambu Wanendeya said Abubakar went
straight into a series of meetings with his colleagues and Zimbabwean
electoral authorities, and was due to address a news conference on Sunday.
Mugabe, who faces the biggest challenge of his 22-year rule from the
opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) leader, Morgan Tsvangirai,
said his rival was a tool of the British.
"Can Tsvangirai be a candidate? Are we short of more suitable candidates? He
is just a piece of wood that refuses to burn," Mugabe told a rally of about
10,000 people, including schoolchildren and villagers bussed in from the
local area.
"They want to use some of us as opposition to the people, but the tool, we
have now proved, is a blunt one."
The MDC said Zimbabwean police shot at Tsvangirai's convoy on Friday and two
South African election observers were caught up in a separate attack by
militant supporters of Mugabe's government.
The MDC says more than 100 of its supporters have been killed in political
violence since February 2000, when militants loyal to Mugabe began invading
white-owned farms.
Thousands of Zimbabweans are braving border river crocodiles, barbed wire
and armed patrols to flee the growing crisis to neighboring South Africa,
which said on Saturday it was tightening security in anticipation of more
illegal immigrants in coming weeks.
The Zimbabwean government has denied responsibility for the violence and
accuses the opposition of stoking civil unrest.
The southern African country is also facing a severe food crisis because of
an economic downturn and the land invasions, according to U.N. officials
supplying emergency food aid.

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Commonwealth seen holding back on Zimbabwe

23 February, 2002 05:14 GMT
 By Dominic Evans

LONDON (Reuters) - The government says it does not expect to persuade the
Commonwealth to suspend Zimbabwe at a summit next month despite reports of a
violent pre-election crackdown by President Robert Mugabe's government.

But officials said they hoped the 54-nation organisation would put the
veteran leader, who has ruled his country since independence from Britain in
1980, on notice that it would act if Zimbabwe's March 9-10 elections were

Pressure is growing for punitive action against Mugabe and his ministers
after a wave of political violence against his opponents and a media
clampdown. The European Union imposed targeted sanctions on Mugabe and his
top officials on Monday after the expulsion of the chief EU election

But junior Foreign Office Minister Baroness Amos said a meeting of foreign
ministers on the eve of the March 2-5 Commonwealth summit was not expected
to act so soon before the elections were held.

"We have been entirely realistic that whilst (suspension) remains part of
our strategy there are differences among Commonwealth members in terms of
how they look at the evolving situation in Zimbabwe," Amos told reporters.

She was speaking the same day the opposition Movement for Democratic Change
said Zimbabwe police shot at the convoy of opposition leader Morgan
Tsvangirai and two South African election observers were wounded in a
separate attack by pro-government militants.

Britain and summit hosts Australia have led calls within the Commonwealth, a
grouping of mainly former British colonies, for action against Mugabe. But
they failed to win a consensus at a meeting three weeks ago of the
organisation's democracy watchdog, the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group

Suspension would be a largely symbolic action but diplomats say it would
send Zimbabwe a strong message about the need to respect the rule of law.


At the CMAG meeting in January, ministers decided to send a 40-strong team
to observe the elections. Commonwealth Secretary-General Don McKinnon
defended the absence of punitive steps, saying engagement was better than

"It is entirely possible that the members of CMAG might argue that given
that the elections are so close, given that there are Commonwealth observers
on the ground, that they would want to put in place some kind of mechanism
that would allow them to monitor and then to make a decision after the
election," Amos said.

The crisis in Zimbabwe is expected to take centre stage at the biennial
Commonwealth summit, overshadowing efforts to tackle terrorism, support
sustainable development and chart out a future role for the Commonwealth.

"I think there will be a spotlight on the way the Commonwealth tackles this
issue, but it is important we realise the Commonwealth is about more than
just Zimbabwe," Amos said.

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Zimbabweans brave crocodiles as flee to S.Africa

MESSINA, South Africa, Feb. 23 — Zimbabweans are braving crocodiles, barbed wire fences and armed patrols in a desperate bid to flee their country for South Africa ahead of presidential elections in two weeks.
Refugees said they were escaping escalating violence, intimidation and severe food shortages ahead of the March 9-10 poll, in which President Robert Mugabe hopes to extend his 22-year rule.
       ''We are suffering there. We fought for Mugabe for independence. He says he wants to help the poor guys but he never did,'' Benjamin Dube, 29, a border jumper captured on Friday by the South African army told Reuters.
       At least 100 supporters of the main opposition Movement for Democratic Change, whose leader Morgan Tsvangirai represents the biggest challenge to Mugabe's rule, have been killed in nearly two years of political violence.
       The European Union and United States have imposed sanctions on Zimbabwe. The EU has also withdrawn its election observers saying they would be unable to do their job.
       Earlier this week, a woman illegally crossed the border into South Africa after being assaulted by a group of militias from Mugabe's ruling ZANU-PF party, an army official said.
       ''About 15 young boys armed with guns set up a check-point, 10 kilometres from the border on the Zimbabwean side. They were checking for ZANU-PF membership cards,'' he said.
       The woman was later deported.
       South Africa has tightened security along its border with Zimbabwe in anticipation of trouble ahead of the elections.
       A 24-hour check-point manned by at least a dozen South African National Defence Force troops has been set up two kilometres from the Beit Bridge border point in Limpopo Province as part of special security operations.
       ''This is not normal operations. We don't have check-points on our other borders run by the army. The situation in Zimbabwe is special,'' the army official on duty told Reuters.
       ''WE'LL BE BACK''
       South Africa says many Zimbabweans never declare themselves as political refugees or ask for asylum, and so are automatically deported.
       The Home Affairs Department said it deported between 3,000 and 4,000 illegal immigrants a month. According to official estimates one million more live illegally, working on tourist visas.
       Most cross the crocodile-filled Limpopo River, which separates Zimbabwe from South Africa, looking for jobs as farm hands, or hoping to eke a living selling hand-carved souvenirs in the northern frontier town of Messina.
       The army official said they arrested up to 50 such ''border jumpers'' daily.
       But this does not appear to deter the fleeing Zimbabweans.
       On Saturday a hooded bakkie (pick-up truck) passed the border point deporting Zimbabweans back to their country. ''We'll be back,'' they shouted from the vehicle with a thumbs-up sign.
       ''It doesn't look good at all...Whether Mugabe wins or loses, there is going to be trouble in Zimbabwe,'' said the army official, who declined to be named.
       South Africa has set aside sites that were former army camps in at least three provinces, including one in Messina, that could host a total of 10,000 refugees in the event of a ''meltdown'' in Zimbabwe, home affairs officials said.
       The check-point was set up 11 days ago and will stay until after the elections.
       ''We cannot escape the fact that Zimbabwe is our neighbour. We have increased patrols along our border lines. But one hopes the situation does not deteriorate further,'' said Billy Masetlha, director general at the Department of Home Affairs.
       He said South Africa did not want to harbour illegal immigrants. ''If we don't send them back, we will be blamed for tilting the elections results,'' Masetlha added.
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SW Radio Africa : From Monday 25 February until Friday 22 March, SW Radio Africa will be broadcasting an extra hour of coverage between 1pm and 2pm Zimbabwe time. The lunchtime broadcast will be on a different frequency - 11 670 KHz in the 25 metre band. The evening broadcasts, between 6pm and 9pm Zimbabwe time, will remain at 6145 KHz in the 49m band. As before, outside the broadcast area, you can listen to SW Radio Africa over the internet at .
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