The ZIMBABWE Situation Our thoughts and prayers are with Zimbabwe
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Independent (UK)
Zimbawe's crisis frightens away tourists

Mugabe's state - An industry that accounted for a big slice of the economy is paralysed in the run-up to the presidential election
By a special correspondent in Harare
Zimbabwe's draconian press reporting restrictions make it a crime for unregistered foreign correspondents to report from the country. As a result, our correspondent cannot be named.
03 February 2002

The young Japanese couple strolling down the streets of Harare were the first tourists I had spotted in two days. They were the only survivors of a tour group originally numbering 40 – all the others pulled out in fear of Zimbabwe's political instability – and were well outnumbered by guards at their smart hotel.
"We wanted to see Victoria Falls," said the wife, who did not want to be named. "It was great, but we find the city dirty. We're glad we're only staying one night."
Gloriously ignorant of local politics, except that it had frightened off their fellow travellers, they were eager to return to South Africa, the base for their three-country lightning tour of southern Africa's top spots.
It is difficult to find a tourist in Zimbabwe, even though the government claims 1.4 million visited last year. "I think there's one staying here," said the manager of a hotel in the capital, "but I haven't seen him." Another operator in the collapsing industry was furious with South African colleagues, exclaiming: "They're bringing people to Victoria Falls without even admitting it's in Zimbabwe."
Such economy with the facts is understandable in the weeks before next month's presidential election. Travellers are quizzed at police roadblocks, foreign cars are monitored and visitors hit by a wildly inflated exchange rate. There are daily reports of rural lawlessness, political assaults and arrests.
Since President Robert Mugabe encouraged militants from his ruling Zanu-PF party to begin seizing white-owned farms nearly two years ago, thousands of farm workers have been made homeless and more than 100 people have died. Only nine of them, however, were white farmers. The overwhelming majority have been supporters of the opposition, the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC).
Zimbabwe's tourism industry, which at its height accounted for 15 per cent of the economy, has turned to the regional market in an attempt to stay afloat. "We only get South Africans these days," said a bed-and-breakfast owner in Harare. "We used to be packed with Dutch and Germans, and we'd get two or three big adventure groups a week. We've only had one this year."
Nor is the atmosphere likely to change before the elections on 9 and 10 March. On Friday Mr Mugabe set the tone for his campaign with an opening speech in which he lambasted the opposition, Zimbabwe's tiny white minority and Britain, the former colonial power. The day before, the legislature passed a bill which finally stamps out press freedom and threatens unaccredited correspondents like myself with two years in jail.
This leaves the field clear for newspapers like the state-owned Herald, which claimed recently that tourism was "a shining beacon", despite "incessant negative publicity by the international press". But tourists continued to arrive from Britain and Ireland, it said in another report – 131,000 in the first nine months of last year. "Nationals of the UK, which has been at the forefront of demonising the country and President Mugabe in particular, have ignored the reports of alleged 'violence and lawlessness'," it claimed.
For the bold, Zimbabwe is still a wonderful place to be, but at the Leopard Rock hotel in the Vumba mountains, there were more gardeners than players on the perfectly manicured golf course. The hotel contained only a conference group of government employees and a farming family ejected from their land.
"Please tell people to come back," said Emmerson Sharwu, a curio seller near Nyanga. "There's no one passing, and we're starving." With the European Union having set this weekend as the deadline for the imposition of sanctions and the Commonwealth also under pressure to take action, it was hard to explain to him that the tourists were unlikely to return any time soon.
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Violence and hunger stalk Zimbabwe poll

By Brian Latham in Harare and Philip Sherwell
(Filed: 03/02/2002)

MORGAN TSVANGIRAI, Zimbabwe's opposition leader, kicked off his election campaign to oust President Robert Mugabe yesterday in an impoverished rural town where government supporters last week attacked women in a food queue.
The Movement for Democratic Change is bracing itself for violent attacks as Mr Tsvangirai begins a series of rallies at flashpoints across the country. He abandoned a recent meeting in Bulawayo after his supporters were ambushed by youth militia deployed by the ruling Zanu-PF party.
He took to the election trail this weekend in Gwanda in southern Matabeleland. In the same town last week, starving local women had been waiting patiently for a maize delivery when self-styled war veterans arrived, beat them up and demanded the food for themselves.
Mr Tsvangirai moves on today to Mutare in the eastern Highlands, a town where Zanu-PF mobs have been terrorising MDC followers. Mr Mugabe, who faces the imposition of European Union sanctions this week, launched his campaign on Friday in typical fiery style, lambasting Britain and damning the MDC as white stooges.
Shops have run out of the staple diet of maize meal in recent days as the food crisis became the latest political battleground ahead of the presidential poll on March 9 and 10. Cooking oil, milk, margarine and sugar are also scarce.
The long-threatened food shortages - the result of Mr Mugabe's land-grab policy combined with drought and a currency crisis - have brought hunger to a country once known as Africa's bread basket.
Farmers maintaining stocks of maize to feed workers and livestock have been raided by the state-owned Grain Marketing Board. Protected by armed police, its officials have confiscated more than 50,000 tons from farms and warehouses.
At least 500,000 of the country's 12 million people face starvation unless maize is imported, according to regional famine forecasters.
Crowds follow maize lorries through Bulawayo, and the infrequent deliveries to supermarkets end in mini-riots. Indeed, some store owners are refusing to accept maize deliveries as they cannot control the crowds.
Mr Mugabe's aides blame the shortages on deliberate stockpiling by white farmers and economic sabotage by their enemies abroad.
The reality is starkly evident on the fertile highveld north of Harare. Fields in which the maize crop should be chest-high at this time of year are instead overgrown in grass and weeds as land seized by Mr Mugabe's regime goes untended.
The silos on the outskirts of the farming town of Banket, built to hold 80,000 tons of maize, are less than a tenth full. "As farmers, we're suffering," said a white landowner whose farm has been occupied.
"But it's even worse for the black population. Many are already hungry. Soon they'll be starving."
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Mugabe's final, final warning
The Commonwealth's inability to censure Zimbabwe brings the organisation's purpose into question, argues Sunder Katwala
Sunday February 3, 2002
The Observer
The Commonwealth's latest final warning to Zimbabwe - just mustering enough unity to show President Mugabe another yellow card - will have little impact on the Harare regime's pre-election plans. But it does call into question the Commonwealth's value in international affairs, as well as the risks run by other African states in averting their eyes from a crisis which could badly damage the whole continent.
The case for suspending Zimbabwe is clear-cut. Commonwealth leaders have spoken proudly of its flagship Harare Declaration, agreed at a summit in the Zimbabwean capital in 1991. This commits Commonwealth members to democracy, respect for fundamental human rights and the rule of law.
The ministerial action group which met earlier this week is charged with policing "serious and persistent" breaches of those principles. Has President Mugabe yet to demonstrate sufficient persistence in his two-year campaign of suppressing opposition, subverting the rule of law and unleashing a wave of political violence which has left more than 100 people dead?
Mugabe has, though, been willing throughout to give a series of assurances of future good behaviour. This strategy has allowed him to approach next month's presidential elections unscathed. Yet the Commonwealth secretary-general, Don McKinnon, still wants to play the game; he argues that, had Zimbabwe been suspended previously, the Commonwealth would lack leverage today.
Speaking after Wednesday's Commonwealth communiqué expressed "deep concern" that Mugabe's actions are "contrary to the Commonwealth's fundamental political values", the South African deputy foreign minister, Aziz Pahad, argued that the question of Zimbabwe's suspension is "premature". This reflects a very Commonwealth way of doing things, in which the classic response to a crisis is to prevaricate and delay.
A Zimbabwe suspension would have broken new ground because previous Commonwealth suspensions - of Abacha's Nigeria, Sierra Leone, and those currently in place against Pakistan and Fiji - have followed military coups, to express disapproval of a regime which has already seized power.
A rigged Zimbabwean election could elicit a similar response, but it is a mistake to wait until ballot boxes have been stuffed and miscounted. Immediate suspension would have been largely symbolic, but would still have indicated concerted EU-US-Commonwealth pressure.
Suspension after a fixed election would be almost entirely futile. To protect democratic freedoms, the Commonwealth needs to act earlier.
A 1999 proposal from the ministerial action group, requesting a more explicit remit to protect central elements of the democratic process, was deferred for two years as part of the wholesale review of the Commonwealth's future role, which is due to report to the Brisbane heads of government meeting in March.
The Commonwealth has always seemed an institution in search of a role: in the initial flurry of post-cold war optimism, democracy as an animating principle offered a promising way to build on anti-apartheid campaigning. Despite many breaches in practice, democratic progress in the 1990s was marked across the Commonwealth and it was able to claim to be a pioneer among international organisations - would the United Nations or the various regional organisations throw members out on democratic grounds?
The Zimbabwe crisis threatens to derail this agenda; there is little point in the Commonwealth if it is simply a smaller but equally divided version of the United Nations.
Repairing this rift requires concerted international pressure on Zimbabwe, with African governments ready to take responsibility for the crisis. It is not a black versus white issue - though the international media has sometimes fallen into accepting President Mugabe's "black government against white farmers" narrative.
It is primarily a question of political violence against all opposition - in politics, trade unions, the media, in the cities and on the farms. African leaders have been privately livid with Zimbabwe. But they have been muted in their public criticism and actions.
South Africa can bargain with real leverage over the Zimbabwean economy and the country's electricity supply. And it is the African nations who have most to lose if they do not intervene. The impact of the crisis threatens to go far beyond Zimbabwe, not just because of the direct trading and humanitarian impacts of a collapsing Zimbabwean economy and deepening food crisis. Africa also suffers from the "CNN factor", where all the world sees is a constant cycle of war, famine and disaster.
The initial promise of an "African renaissance", made by the South African president, Thabo Mbeki, was an important one. But the claim that Africans can take the lead in developing solutions for their own continent cannot survive if Africa's post-colonial elites stick to a "no criticism of despots in public" line and rely on the behind-the-scenes diplomacy which is failing in Zimbabwe.
Nobody can confidently predict the final outcome in Zimbabwe. Optimists may hope that Mugabe can still lose an election, however unfairly fought. African states may begin to apply pressure at the eleventh hour. But Mugabe has the army's strong support. If he simply declares himself the winner, domestic protest and international isolation after the event may have little effect.
Zimbabwe's people are looking to the international community for help in protecting their democratic rights; they may find we are relying more on luck than judgement now.
· Sunder Katwala is internet editor of The Observer and author of Reinventing the Commonwealth (The Foreign Policy Centre).
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Melbourne Age
Bishop Tutu: "I don't know what went wrong" in Zimbabwe

NEW YORK, Feb 2 DPA|Published: Sunday February 3, 11:18 AM
South African Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu professed his bewilderment today about the attacks and seizures of white-owned farms in neighbouring Zimbabwe.
"(President) Robert Mugabe was one of the brightest stars in our firmament," Tutu said of the Zimbabwe leader's role in leading the revolution against formerly white-ruled Rhodesia.
Mugabe, when he took power, talked about reconciliation of the people, Tutu said at a World Economic Forum press conference in New York.
Then he added: "I don't know what went wrong there. ... It is unacceptable."
Tutu suggested that pressure might be brought to bear on Mugabe by other leaders in southern Africa.
"I think we need something more forthright from his peers," he said.
But the archbishop also added some comments to put the international criticism of Mugabe into perspective, contending, "We still do in a sense live in a racist society globally ... What happens in one part of Africa reflects badly on all of Africa."
Tutu argued that, by contrast, when something bad happens in Bosnia, the world doesn't blame Britain or the United States.
But he concluded his response by saying, "If something can be done to pull him (Mugabe) back from the brink, then yes".
The pointed language used by Tutu took many forum observers aback, particularly when contrasted with the cautious and often evasive responses that President Thabo Mbeki has given to events in Zimbabwe.
At the press conference, Tutu also summarised the advances made in his own formerly apartheid-ruled country in human and ethnic rights.
He concluded his remarks by saying that if it could happen in South Africa, then "the hope is that it can and should happen in other parts of the world".
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PAC says all is well in Zimbabwe

Jimmy Seepe and Mpumelelo Mkhabela

The Pan Africanist Congress, once a strong ally of president Robert Mugabe's Zanu-PF party, yesterday came back from a fact-finding mission in Zimbabwe, giving the process in that country a thumbs-up and labelling reports of attempts by Mugabe to stifle democracy in the run-up to the elections as incorrect.
The PAC delegation of its leader Stanley Mogoba, secretary-general Thami ka Plaatjie and Maxwell Nemadzhivhanani returned to the country yesterday echoing Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister Aziz Pahad's statement that Mugabe was committed to ensuring free and fair elections.
The delegation met with Mugabe, other Zanu-PF leaders as well as the leader of the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) leader Morgan Tsvangirai.
The PAC leadership said they received a commitment from Mugabe and Tsvangirai that the March election outcome will be respected in an effort to ensure stability.
The PAC visit came shortly after Pahad had told journalists there was no reason to doubt the March elections would be free and fair in Zimbabwe.
Pahad had said Mugabe had already kept some of the promises he had made to the Southern African Development Community leaders last month, like allowing international observers to monitor next month's elections.
This comes at a time when international pressure is mounting against Mugabe following the passing of a controversial media bill which requires foreign journalists to get permission to cover elections.
Ka Plaatjie and Nemdzhivhanani said the purpose of the visit was aimed at getting a first hand account of the situation in Zimbabwe and talking with both Mugabe and Tsvangirai.
Both the MDC and Zanu-PF leaders are said to have blamed each other for the intimidation, however the two expressed confidence the situation was getting under control.
Both Plaatjie and Nemadzhivhanani said although they were told of widespread intimidation, they "did not see any sense that the situation is getting out hand and there was general instability in the country."
Mugabe is said to have repeated his concern at what he saw as growing interference by foreign countries, especially the European Union and the Commonwealth, in attempting to influence the election process in the country.
Plaatjie said during their meeting with Tsvangirai, they expressed the PAC's concern about the MDC's close links with certain parties and agencies in South Africa.
He however said Tsvangirai assured them the MDC had not sought the assistance of any South African political party or agency.
"Mugabe expressed concern that there were people either in South Africa, Britain and other European countries who are currently training MDC members to try and destabilise the country after the elections."
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Anti-Mugabe sanctions a lesson to all despots

The East African Standard (Nairobi)
February 2, 2002
Joe Kadhi

Robert Mugabe is an oddity. The octogenarian politician thinks no one else is fit to rule Zimbabwe. He is also a racist. He wants to win the next election by stirring up racial hatred by claiming that blacks are superior to whites.
Mugabe's antiquated political stand is a challenging philosophy on race relations in Africa. It is coming at a time when Africans seem disinclined to delve deeply into the divisive issues, particularly ones that might lower the generosity of donor countries.
Mugabe was a great freedom fighter. When he took over power the world witnessed a dramatic upsurge in the continuing struggle for equal rights for all Zimbabweans.
The critical fact of Zimbabwean life was basic integration. The current hostility against the whites seems to be entirely different from the hopeful comraderie black and white idealists hoped to establish in a free Zimbabwe. What Mugabe is establishing in his country is reflecting a failure in his leadership, a backward step that the world has to see as such. He is a poor nation builder. One never builds a nation by flexing political muscle and agitating for black political power and exclusive land ownership rights. Yet Mugabe is doing exactly that. Not for the sake of Zimbabweans, but for the sake of the perpetuating despotism.
As a freedom fighter he led assault against white racism, which cut off the bottom rungs of the economic ladder for millions of Africans. Then he championed the cause of the right to earn an honest living for all Zimbabweans.
Today, Mugabe seems to want none of that. All he wants is to take over "white land stolen" from blacks. And he does not want the world to be told anything about it, so he muzzles the Press.
The political challenge in Zimbabwe raises questions for journalists. If they are to hold up their end of democratic dialogue during this crucial time then they must be allowed to participate in the discourse determining the future of that country.
If Mugabe does not agree by tomorrow to grant full access for observers and media during the March 9-10 presidential elections, then he faces sanctions from the European Union. The punitive measures taken by the 15 members of the European Union should be a lesson for any other African dictator who plans to remain in power through election rigging.
Making the announcement in Brussels, the British Foreign Secretary, Jack Straw, used a no-nonsense language, which asked Mugabe to "call off the thugs and allow the media to operate freely and let the people of Zimbabwe make a democratic choice."
Mr Straw told Mugabe he and his key ministers would pay the price if they failed to do so. According to the British Guardian newspaper the sanctions will involve a travel ban on 20 top individuals, including Mugabe and his family, an assets freeze; and a ban on export from EU of arms and dual use equipment that could be used for internal repression.
Apart from that a number of international auditing firms operating in southern Africa have started investigating Robert Mugabe's assets and those of his associates.
Ed Royce, the Chairman of the African Committee of the United States House of Representatives, says top Zimbabwean politicians and army officers are sending money to safe heavens in Europe and United States. They are spending freely abroad while the country's economy is deteriorating. The national treasury is being looted. Profits from highly expensive minerals from the Democratic Republic of Congo, where Mugabe has sent an army " to keep peace", are being siphoned abroad in private and personal bank accounts of Mugabe and his friends. Britain and United States are believed to have begun a joint effort to identify the stolen money, which amounts to millions of dollars.
What Mugabe promised to end when he took over power in Zimbabwe was racial discrimination in employment, housing and other social aspects of life. Today he says that his government intends to practice racial discrimination in land ownership with the blacks as the bosses.
It may be true, as it can be verified by history, that the white people of Zimbabwe have been unfriendly, hostile and even aggressive to black people for a long time. Ian Smith organised a white political opinion that represented this hostility and expressed it through what was then known as the Unilateral Declaration of Independence.
The Ian Smith type of racism was wrong; but to practice it in reverse in which there is hate campaign against whites is also wrong. Mugabe is doing just that. Not to help the black people but to retain power.
The methods he is using to achieve his goals are unfair and the people seem to be incapable of doing anything about it. People feel without their consent, without their inside knowledge, and certainly against their will, their country is being turned into what they are cannot accept.
The social grievances, which provoke anti-Mugabe feelings, threaten to be worse before a solution is found. And Mugabe is planning a racial civil war in his country. Yet Zimbabweans know they are going to hear a lot more as the election looms. Incidents of racial violence against whites will multiply.
Two major evils seem to be systematically used to make sure Mugabe will always rule. First, land settlement has been so politicised and is used to victimise white Zimbabweans to win Mugabe black votes.
The second evil is the concentration of power in a few hands among people close to Mugabe. The power is so immense that it gives the group limitless authority to bring compulsion to bear on ordinary citizens.
The events in Zimbabwe make it especially incumbent on us in this country to penetrate beyond mere words when we talk of human rights. We have to examine the assertions made in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
The threat by EU to impose sanctions on Zimbabwe shows that the democratic world has a stake in Africa and the future relationship between Africa and the rest of the world will depend on our interpretation of democracy.
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'Mugabe Has Militarised the Election Campaign' Say Critics
February 1, 2002
Charles Cobb Jr. and Akwe Amosu
Washington, DC
A "system of semi-military command centers" has been set up at both national and provincial levels in Zimbabwe in order to ensure victory for President Robert Mugabe in forthcoming presidential elections next month, according to Mark Chavanduka, editor of the independent Zimbabwe Standard newspaper.
He says the structures group representatives from the army, the police, the Central Intelligence Organization, Zanu-PF Youth and the militias: "Basically what they are doing is mobilizing, through violence, support for Zanu-PF in the forthcoming elections."
Zimbabwean political scientist Eliphas Mukonoweshuro agrees and claims "some 18,000 soldiers in civilian clothes...are campaigning on behalf of the ruling Zanu-PF party"; he describes the system as "an official infrastructure of violence that permeates all the corners of Zimbabwe," making free and fair elections impossible.
Mukonoweshuro, a professor at the University of Zimbabwe, Harare, and Chavanduka, who was tortured and put on trial for treason in January 1999 for reporting that military officers were plotting a coup, arrived in the United States this week to press for increased governmental and non-governmental pressure on Zimbabwe's government.
President Robert Mugabe faces a challenge on March 9-10 from Morgan Tsvangirai, leader of the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) in a bitter political battle which has seen a rising tide of violence and a disastrous economic collapse. While Zanu-PF sees the battle in terms of an argument over whether agricultural land should be taken from white farmers and given to black Zimbabweans, the MDC and other critics say the land issue is being used by President Mugabe to whip up support and justify dubbing his opponents 'neo-colonialists'.
Both Chavanduka and Mukonoweshuro were sharply critical of legislation, passed by the Zimbabwe parliament Thursday, that tightens government control over media and specifically prohibits criticism of President Robert Mugabe. "There can't be a fair election where one of the candidates is immune from criticism," says Chavanduka. "How can any other candidate present his credentials without attacking what he perceives to be the shortcomings of the incumbent?"
They expressed disappointment with the response of regional governments in Southern Africa. There has been "mind-boggling solidarity" with the Mugabe government, said Mukonoweshuro. South Africa in particular has been "a major disappointment."
Asked why President Mbeki was reluctant to pressure Zimbabwe, Mukonoweshuro suggested that he might fear a "demonstration effect".
Confronted by a powerful trade union confederation in Cosatu and a former labour leader with strong grassroots support like Cyril Ramaphosa waiting in the wings, Mukonoweshuro argues, Mbeki may not want to do anything that would help the MDC, which is itself headed by a workers' leader with strong union support: "I think it is in Mbeki's interest that the alternative in the offing in Zimbabwe is not viable," Mukonoweshuro said.
The failure of Commonwealth foreign ministers meeting in London Wednesday to suspend Zimbabwe also angers the two men. "I think the Commonwealth is a toothless bulldog," says Mukonoweshuro. Commonwealth ministers have expressed the hope that there is still a chance for a valid election. But Mukonoweshuro says this is wishful thinking.
"We are seeing a militarisation of the election campaign structure," he says: "What is in place is not civilian structures but military command structures; for the opposition to penetrate the rural areas, it would have to meet those structures with similarly militarized structures. And of course you are describing a civil war if that happens."
So is the MDC preparing to respond that way?
No, he says, it is not. "They don't have the resources and they don't believe in violent confrontation of that nature. But of course, the patience of ordinary civilians on the ground is wearing thin. You know, they are beginning to organize now to resist so that their neighbourhoods are not terrorised by these state sponsored thugs."
Mukonoweshuro and Chavanduka claim there is considerable dissatisfaction with Mugabe within his own party. But they believe that it is not the elected party politicians who are driving policy. "It is the non-elected [directly appointed] MPs who have been made ministers [without] any democratic credentials - the minister of information, of agriculture, of justice; those are the people now with Mugabe's ear," says Mukonoweshuro. "They do not have any other constituency except Mugabe himself and they remain in power at Mugabe's pleasure."
But if other elements in the party are not happy with the present course of events, why aren't they speaking out? Professor Mukonoweshuro believes ministers in the government are fearful about how they would fare under a new political dispensation, having enriched themselves in office. "A new government coming to power might not necessarily pursue these people but that doesn't stop civilians from seeking justice in the courts."
The army too has "benefited immensely from Mugabe's patronage," adds Chavanduka, particularly from business dealings in the Democratic Republic of Congo. But, he believes, they too realize he is a liability. All the army wants, Chavanduka says, is a guarantee that there will be no retribution against Mugabe should he lose the election.
Chavanduka and Mukonoweshuro describe the immediate future as "frightening".
"As long as Mugabe will have stolen the election and declares himself the president of Zimbabwe it will be a contested legitimacy. We are likely to see chronic instability, untold suffering, substantial departure of skilled manpower; we are likely to see the country being reduced to the level of peasant subsistence." said Mukonoweshuro.
What both men hope is that the U.S. and the international community can "find appropriate methods of engaging the Zimbabwe government to stop the catastrophe that is likely to happen in the event of a contested election." Specifically, they are backing the recently approved "smart sanctions" targeting high-level Zimbabwe officials. "It is much better than imposing blanket sanctions on Zimbabwe."
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Zimbabwe Standard
Zanu PF targets Harare’s low density suburbs
By Chengetai Zvauya
ZANU PF has booked hundreds of war veterans into Harare hotels in preparation for a blitz on the city’s low density suburbs, from tomorrow, The Standard has learnt.
Investigations by The Standard have revealed that the war veterans were last week booked into four city hotels in the avenues area.
War veterans secretary-general Andy Mhlanga confirmed that war veterans were occupying hotels where “they are holding seminars”.
“This is not the first time that war veterans are staying in hotels. We have been booked into hotels on many occasions for seminars and workshops. We are getting ready for the elections and we need to educate our members on how to campaign peacefully, we also need to give them political lessons,” said Mhlanga.
This latest move by Zanu PF is bound to alarm low density residents who were last week warned of a door to door blitz by war veterans and government-trained youth militias. Since last month, the terror campaign by Zanu PF militants has been confined to rural areas and peripheral high density suburbs, but word is that the campaign is to spread to the low density suburbs this week.
Zanu PF sources last week informed The Standard that they would start raiding the conservative low density areas from tomorrow, starting with Marlborough and Mt Pleasant.
Reports also say that Eastlea residents were last week terrorised by ruling party hooligans who also beat up anyone they found outdoor after 6.30pm.
During their blitz on the low density suburbs, as they have done elsewhere, the militia and war veterans plan to ask people to produce Zanu PF party cards and to force them to attend political rallies to be organised in the respective suburbs.
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Zimbabwe Standard
US and UK name targeted leaders
By Mark Chavunduka in Washington
PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe heads an initial list of 20 Zimbabwean leaders—three of whom have since died—whose assets the United Kingdom and the United States are seeking to identify and seize under a process of targeted sanctions, The Standard has confirmed.
Investigators in the United Kingdom, southern Africa and the United States have begun working to track down assets held by the leaders as part of plans to introduce ‘smart sanctions’ targeted at individuals and their immediate families, rather than impose blanket punitive measures which would be hurtful to ordinary Zimbabweans.
The US House of Representatives recently passed the Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic Recovery Act, which enables the sanctions to be applied specifically to targeted leaders. The punitive measures will also affect their children in colleges or schools overseas.
Topping the list of Politically Exposed Persons (PEPs) issued in the Anti Money Laundering Guidance Update, Issue 3, of the Joint Financial Crimes Unit, is Robert Gabriel Mugabe, followed by his two vice-presidents, Simon V Muzenda and Joseph Msika.
Others are John Nkomo; Patrick Chinamasa; Stan Mudenge; Simba Makoni; Sydney Sekeramayi; Swithun Mombeshora; Joseph Made; Ignatius Chombo;
Timothy Stamps; Herbert Murerwa; Samuel Mumbengegwi; Francis Nhema; Joyce Mujuru; July Moyo; Nicholas Goche; Jonathan Moyo; Grace Marufu Mugabe; and one W Chikukwa (listed as assistant defence adviser—Zimbabwe).
Conspicuous by his absence from the list is youth, gender and employment creation minister, Elliot Manyika, who is in charge of the training of the youth militias currently terrorising innocent citizens. Shuvai Mahofa, his deputy, was also not included and neither were the country’s 10 provincial governors.
Although nothing can be done about the three deceased government officials listed, the punitive measures to be taken will still affect their assets and families as they are listed as PEPs. These are former defence minister, Moven Mahachi; former youth development minister Border Gezi and Chenjerai Hunzvi—listed simply as ‘ally of President Mugabe’. The former minister of industry and international trade, Dr Nkosana Moyo, is also on the list.
Says the JFSC: “Regulated institutions in both Britain and the United States are being asked to review their files to determine whether or not they have any connection with any of the named individuals. They will then wish to satisfy themselves that they know the customers concerned, including proper knowledge of the source of funds, and have taken any appropriate action to address any reputational risks that may arise.
“Should any checks give rise to any suspicion as to the legitimacy of the funds, the institution should review its relationship with that customer and make any such suspicious transaction reports to the Joint Financial Crimes Unit as necessary.”
A senior US government official told The Standard on Friday that although he had no personal knowledge of assets already identified, there were indications that substantial investments were held by Zimbabwean officials. Observers say proof of ownership could be difficult to establish as assets could be hidden several layers beneath ‘shell’ companies.
Independent investigations by The Standard have also revealed that several of Mugabe’s cabinet ministers have children studying overseas and who are therefore bound to be affected if smart sanctions are imposed by the US and the European Union.
Those with children overseas include: Sekeramayi—UK; Chombo—UK; Mombeshora—UK; Mudenge—UK; Mumbengegwi—UK; Edward Chind-ori-Chininga—USA; Mujuru—Switzerland and UK; Manyika—UK; Murerwa—UK; Peter Chanetsa—UK; Josaya Hungwe—UK; Shuvai Mahofa—UK; Cephas Msipa—USA and David Parirenyatwa—USA.
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Zimbabwe Standard
Discontent in army over pay hikes
By Farai Mutsaka
THERE is simmering discontent within the Zimbabwe National Army (ZNA) over government’s decision to restrict the recent 100% salary hike to infantry soldiers, The Standard has learnt.
Sources within the army told The Standard last week that members from specialist units such as engineers and doctors were demanding to know why they had not benefited from the 100% windfall.
Soldiers from specialised units say they were excluded from the huge hike because they could not be relied on to campaign for the Zanu PF candidate, President Mugabe.
“Those awarded the money are the ones who can be relied on to prowl the streets for MDC supporters and to then beat them up. We cannot do that and that’s probably why we were left out,” said a specialist in the army.
Added a medical doctor in the force: “We believe we were discriminated against because we don’t fit into the scheme of the presidential campaign. Guys in the infantry are being enticed to campaign for Zanu PF by being given these huge increments. If indeed the increments were genuine, then why were they not awarded to everyone else? We are very bitter about this discrimination.”
The increments were awarded as a result of a new salary regime called the Military Salary Concept which seeks to empower general duty soldiers ahead of specialists.
Zimbabwe Defence Forces (ZDF) spokesman, Colonel Mbonisi Gatsheni, dismissed the specialists’ complaints saying the new salary structure had been under negotiation since 1989. He said the complaints emanated from specialists who were uncomfortable with earning salaries similar to those of general duty soldiers.
The recent salary increases had resulted in unskilled soldiers being paid more than skilled workers, the specialists complained.
“Our understanding all along was that people were paid according to their brains. Now it appears people are being paid more for their ability to beat up people on the streets. That is a sad situation,” said a source.
Said Colonel Gatsheni: “It appears here, that the complaint of the so- called specialised units is not about the absence of salary increments but about the closeness of salaries now received by a general duties member and a ‘specialist’.
The ‘specialists’ still enjoy better allowances than the general duties member and as a result, still earns a more superior salary.
“The complaints raised by certain serving members in the ZDF are a result of a new salary regime which has been under negotiation since about 1989. In the interim, the ‘specialists’ have had their increments. In essence, the concept is meant to remunerate the servicemen according to their ranks and responsibilities in the forces, first and foremost. In addition, allowances are also paid in consideration of the nature of duties the incumbent undertakes,” said Gatsheni.
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Zimbabwe Standard
Army settles on Bennett’s farm
By Farai Mutsaka
THE Zimbabwe National Army has permanently stationed a group of soldiers at MDC MP for Chimanimani Roy Benne-tt’s farm to intimidate workers and supporters of the opposition in the area, The Standard has learnt.
Bennett confirmed to The Standard on Friday that his workers were now living in fear because of the soldiers who have mou-nted a terror campaign on the farm and surrounding areas.
A group of about 50 soldiers have been at the MP’s Charleswood farm since October last year. They are camped at Charleswood Primary School.
Workers and villagers living in surrounding areas told The Standard that the soldiers harassed farm workers and villagers suspected to be opposition members. The soldiers, said the villagers, gave Zanu PF supporters resettled on part of the farm a free hand to harass opposition supporters.
Despite being a rural area, Chimanimani, like most rural areas in Manicaland, is an
MDC stronghold.
“I did not invite them (the army). They are arresting my workers, beating them up and threatening them. The situation is bad. I have reported these things to the police but they have not done anything,” said Bennett.
Charleswood Farm manager, Rocky Stone, said when the soldiers arrived at the farm, they claimed they wanted to maintain peace at the farm but were fanning violence by siding with resettled farmers.
“They pitched up last year and introduced themselves to us saying they were here to keep the peace, but they have not been doing that. They are now helping themselves with the fish in our dams and are encouraging the settlers to do the same. They are harassing anyone wearing MDC t-shirts, but Zanu PF supporters are free to wear their regalia without any problems. The police are not doing anything about the situation,” said Stone.
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Zimbabwe Standard
Fireworks at London meeting
By our own Staff
LONDON—Zimbabwe’s high commissioner to Britain, Simbarashe Mum-bengegwi, has given assurances to the international community that invitees from the European Union will be allowed to freely observe the country’s March 9 and 10 presidential election.
He however said no provision had been made for monitors because in terms of the country’s constitution, that duty was the responsibility of the Electoral Supervisory Commission.
Participating in a highly explosive debate on Zimbabwe at the Royal Commonwealth Society in London on Monday night, Mumbengegwi fielded a barrage of questions from international journalists, politicians, and academics who demanded specific answers on a number of issues ranging from the issue of observers and monitors, the Zanu PF orchestrated wave of violence prevailing in the country, and human rights abuses.
The highly emotional high commissioner charged that the MDC was responsible for the political violence prevailing, while the Zanu PF government was at pains to implore its supporters not to retaliate to provocation from the opposition.
“President Mugabe has never ever said Zimbabwe does not want election observers. In 2000 we had parliamentary elections on time and on the dot.
Observers yes, monitors no, because the Electoral Supervisory Act gives powers to the Commission to monitor the elections.”
Asked about the status of 30 000 independent monitors trained by the Zimbabwe Election Support Network, Mumbengegwi said monitors organised by non-governmental organisations would not be tolerated because they were not impartial.
He said only ESC monitors, whose members were appointed by the same process as court judges, would monitor the elections—an assertion immediately challenged by prominent businessman, Sam Nkomo, who pointed out that even the ESC chairman, lawyer Sobusa Gula-Ndebele, had himself conceded that the process of monitoring was best left in the hands of independent observers.
Asked by Lord Astor of Hever what the consequences were of Zimbabwe becoming a pariah state if it was isolated by the international community, the high commissioner replied: “That situation will not arise because the election will be free and fair, and observers will come to that conclusion.”
Mumbengegwi, who repeatedly took a sharp bashing on a number of issues from the highly respected Baroness Park of Monmouth, also took an angry swipe at the evening’s guest speakers, University of Zimbabwe political scientist, Prof Elphious Mukonowe-shuro, and the editor of The Standard, Mark Chavunduka, whom he described as “MDC politicians masquerading as independent observers”.
“These are MDC politicians masquerading as something else. They are insulting the intelligence of people who come and listen when they paint a picture that MDC is free from violence. This is dishonesty. The MDC security is run by former Rhodesians Selous Scouts, and the Zanu PF leadership has been appealing for a peaceful election,” said an angry Mumb-engegwi to loud laughter.
At one point, the meeting came to a brief standstill as Mumbengegwi and Mukonoweshuro were involved in a heated exchange, following an expletive used by the UZ professor in response to an answer previously given by the high commissioner.
In his address, Mukonoweshuro said the international community was witnessing the gradual installation of a civil-military junta in Zimbabwe.
“On the eve of the presidential poll, we are now actually in the concluding phase of what is virtually a slow motion coup de tat. The erosion of the people’s supremacy and therefore civil authority has been going on for some time now. Therefore, any current speculation about whether or not there will be free and fair elections in Zimbabwe, is simply idle talk, an excuse for inaction. Sadc, the Commonwealth, the US, and the international community in general, no longer have any justifiable reason for not taking drastic action against the Harare regime.”
Chavunduka outlined the repressive laws recently passed by Zimbabwe’s Zanu PF-dominated parliament and aimed at making the work of journalists from the independent press more difficult, if not impossible.
“The independent press in Zimbabwe has for a long time operated under very difficult conditions, with a host of restrictive laws carried out from the colonial era. In the present situation, where we have new laws similar in their brutal intensity to legislation in apartheid era South Africa, there is no way that the presidential election can be free and fair,” said Chavunduka.

Zimbabwe Standard
Soldiers terrorise Sakubva residents
By Farai Mutsaka
MUTARE—Soldiers in this eastern city have embarked on a serious terror campaign targeted at MDC supporters ahead of next month’s presidential poll, The Standard has learnt.
The soldiers, manning the Mutare Aerodrome, have become a menace to residents living in Sakubva High density suburb.
Residents who spoke to The Standard last week said the soldiers demanded Zanu PF cards from residents who passed through the aerodrome and harassed those who failed to produce the cards. They are being assisted in their campaign by militias who recently graduated from the Border Gezi Training Centre and deployed to Manicaland.
Most residents from the sprawling high density area pass though the Aerodrome on their way to their maize fields which are situated in its vicinity.
“They demand to see our party cards and when we fail to produce them they beat us. They make us chant Zanu PF slogans and sing revolutionary songs,” said one resident.
The terror campaign comes at a time when the army is trying to convince the nation that it is non-partisan.
Zimbabwe Defence Forces spokesman, Colonel Mbonisi Gatsheni, said the soldiers were at the aerodrome at the invitation of the police.
“Remember, in peace time the ZDF are always deployed in support of civil authority, in this case the ZRP. In cases where the ZDF members are found to have breached the law, the commanders will always let the culprits get prosecuted according to military law or the law of the land,” said Gatsheni.

Zimbabwe Standard
Students stranded
By Monique Brogan
WITH universities due to open for 2002, a number of parents with children studying in South Africa are desperately seeking finance for the continued education of their children.
Many Zimbabwean parents say these universities afford their children the opportunity to study specialised courses, such as journalism—for which Rhodes University in Gra-hamstown is renowned.
“It is also a chance to study in a stable environment without fear of disturbances like the ones the University of Zimbabwe often experiences and with the promise of a safe and active campus life,” said the mother of one first year student.
For Zimbabwean students hoping to return to Rhodes and the University of Cape Town this year, the cost of tuition—including books—and accommodation will amount to about 40 000 rands and though this amount, when converted at the official rate of 4,8 to the rand, does not seem so steep, there is in fact no money available at this bank rate.
A teller at one commercial bank confirmed that there was no foreign currency available for those wanting to send their children back to South Africa.
This has forced parents to turn to the parallel market where exorbitant rates are charged. Currently, on this market, the exchange rate to the South African Rand is at about 38 to 1, meaning that for a full year’s fees for a student at university, the payer will most likely need in excess of a million dollars.

Zimbabwe Standard
Chenjerai Hove: Local Insight—Education is the next victim
Chenjerai Hove
When I think about the current school closures and the victimisation of teachers by Zanu PF vandals, I cannot avoid suspecting that the next victim on the line is the education system. That is if it is still there at all.
A few weeks ago, I remember the president urging urban voters to be like rural voters. He was in fact glorifying rural folk for voting for his party. At the same time he was lambasting us the urban people for voting for the opposition.
The ruling party, and indeed the president, do not have to hire a sociologist to advise them on why we have the voting pattern we have now. The matter is simple: rural people suffer the heaviest levels of illiteracy, and so have no access to current alternative information except through the government propaganda machinery. And the rural people are easy to intimidate since their world is usually limited by their isolation in the village. If the vandals arrive, they can terrorise each homestead without much intervention from the other distant villages.
Interestingly, the Zimbabwean government is one of the few in southern Africa which never ran a serious literacy campaign. The campaign I know of was run on a voluntary basis by the Zimbabwe Adult Literacy Organisation, and it is still the case.
My impression is that it was a deliberate plan to ensure that the villagers continue to be illiterate so the Zanu PF politicians could tell them lies without risking serious opposition. For example, years back I found some small political official telling my mother that the drought relief the villagers were receiving was courtesy of the ruling party. I stopped the man and told my mother that the maize she was receiving came from her hard-working children in the city because they were paying drought levy. The official later accused me of fanning protest in the village.
The ruling party knows that illiteracy in the rural areas is a sure way of ensuring that the villagers and peasants are excluded from participating in the political life of the country in a serious and critical way.
Not so with the urban people. There are so many sources of information in the cities, and the people will have it even if all the newspapers are banned.
Right now, when teachers become refugees in their own country because of ruling party thugs, all the efforts of the parents to build their own schools will come to nothing. The roofing, doors, windows, desks and chairs will end up in some thug’s house.
So, all the basic infrastructure of schools will be gone. That means later on parents would have to deal with starting all over again, and at the same time be stuck with children who have lost so many years of education.
Zimbabwe was lucky to inherit a sound education system created mainly by missionaries. It took decades upon decades to put that system together. But now it is taking a few months to destroy it without ever thinking what it takes to put it back in place.
As the buildings collapse and education officials and teachers are rendered useless for the purpose of political power, teachers will once again start flooding neighbouring countries like South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho and even Mozambique which is introducing English in schools.
A few years after independence, we discovered that the ruling party hated educated people. I recall that even the president himself, as chancellor of the University of Zimbabwe, never had a meeting with student leaders whenever there were problems. All he did was, I remember, to tell them that he had several degrees in violence.
The ruling party does not like educated people because it hates people who think critically about their society and their social and political conditions. But the leaders’ selective memory is short. Many of them were student political activists at the university, and some got their fame from there.
Instead of listening to the students and their problems, the government went on a systematic path of destroying university education. I wonder whether some of our academic degrees are still recognised in some important parts of the world. What a shame when every ‘A’ student hopes to go and study outside the country.
I fear that there is very little the ruling, or ruining, party has not left untouched in its warpath against the people of Zimbabwe. The past has been destroyed through a history of lies, and the present is being destroyed by the use of thugs trained to kill and destroy their own families and social systems.
The future is also gone for those young men and women who will be forced to live with a guilty conscience for a long time to come. Some of them have already started getting mad because of their horrendous psychological torture they are put through in the name of training for community service.
Zimbabwean citizens all over the country are made to feel as if they were strangers by being forced to buy Zanu PF cards, as if to say to them they are children who do not know what is good for them. Elliot Manyika (by the way I went to school with him) should know that the most important political party card is the conscience of the voter.
Now that Zanu PF has vandalised education and is keen to vandalise the independent media, I shudder to think what is on line next. All I know is that by vandalising everyone and anything which works, the ruling party is actually vandalising itself.
• Chenjerai Hove is a renowned Zimbabwean writer

Zimbabwe Standard
We want more than just land—youths
By Selina Zigomo and Fungayi Kanyuchi
“It’s our land, our destiny, our pride,” so go the lyrics to an advert on the controversial land redistribution programme. The advert is screened on ZTV on a daily basis ad nauseum, and features a group of teenagers celebrating the acquisition of land.
Emitted from Jonathan Moyo’s propaganda office, this advert appears aimed at capturing the support of the younger generation which Zanu PF had all along ignored, ahead of the crucial 9-10 March presidential election. Whether or not it will work remains to be seen.
Standard Plus recently spoke to a cross section of young Zimbabweans to find out their opinion on the advert and the land issue in general. It would appear that the youths have become a favourite target of the ruling party, what with the opening of the national service training centres, whose products have unleashed terror on innocent civilians.
Pamela Mawoza, a student at Christian College of Southern Africa had this to say about the land commercial: “My brother is more interested in the clothes the young people in the videos are wearing and how they are rapping (singing) but the content is lost on us. We only identify with the music as it is the type we listen to.”
Another student who refused to give his name said: “The first time my father watched the advert he asked: ‘Can those children till the land ? If we put them in the fields will they know what to do?’”
Anna from the Hara-re Polytechnic says: “It’s just propaganda, the adverts are trying to get us to be patriotic but that will be difficult as the land issue is not the only problem with this country.”
Nelson Chamisa, the national youth secretary for the MDC, says that the campaigns are an indication that the product they are trying to sell is not really selling and they are targeting the youth. He described the attempt as “too little too late”.
“The government has had a clear record of abusing the young people and those adverts are part of the abuse. They are trying to instill a sense of partisan loyalty by saying that Zanu PF are the custodians of liberation, when in actual fact the people are. They have tried other ploys such as the National Youth Service, banking services for youths and even Christianity, but to no avail.
“Young people are very clear about what they want. They want to save their country, not to be partners with the government in a land reform which is characterised by violence, lawlessness and corruption,” he said.
He added that young people were very clear about what they wanted and it was not land.
“They want jobs also. Imagine the many college graduates sitting at home. Most of these would rather have a job than land.”
Yet another student said: “As for me, I don’t have the capital and nowadays there are so many choices. I should not be forced to be attached to the land.”