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

Back to Index

Back to the Top
Back to Index

Farm Invasions And Security Report
Monday 4th February 2002

This report does not purport to cover all the incidents that are taking place in the commercial farming areas.  Communication problems and the fear of reprisals prevent owners from reporting all that happens.  Owners names, and in some cases farm names, are omitted to minimise the risk of reprisals.


- Ongoing political meetings.  Some more Section 8 Orders were handed out.  Generally quiet in the area.
– at Dulwich Farm : Nyawasha, the youth co-ordinator in Trelawney village, and Mukonore, the political commissar, approached the owner with "requests".  They wanted to take up accommodation in two of his workers houses, (empty) and he said these are reserved for his labour, and if they moved in they would have to pay rent.  They agreed and asked for the rental and the owner said he would let them know one day.  The second request was for further land preparation and the owner said it was over for this year, but it would cost them for diesel and the driver's wages in spare time, adding it was too late to do this and would be a waste of their money. The following day the main foreman reported the two settlers felt the owner was abrupt about their requests and did not consider them as people!  They threatened to round up all the cattle, drive them into the homestead fence, surround the fence with fires etc.  On reporting to the police, the owner was told to have a nice day!  The situation remains calm.  On Keiray Farm,  the owner was confronted by 200 youths at Kutama Store, when he turned on to Hendra road.  They surrounded the car, asked him to do the party slogan, which he did after some pressure.  Three trailer loads of chanting youths arrived while the owner and a visitor  were in the lands. The youths went to the farm village and some returned to the house, singing and chanting, and they allowed the visitor to leave after she had given the appropriate slogans.  After lengthy debate the owner and his wife were marched to the farm village and suffered verbal abuse for two hours.   After he left, two of the youths followed asking for food for the group, which he refused.  The following night a well organised raid was carried out, four labourers were abducted and assaulted as suspected MDC members.  One escaped and raised the alarm, saying there was no chance of seeing the others alive again as the youth involved meant business.  As a result of his escape, the youths toned down the assault, as they were afraid they were known by the escapee. Although the police reacted the youths were only told what they were doing was wrong.  On 02.02.02 the youths returned, singing and chanting, told the owner they had returned their captives and were going to the farm village.  As a result of a well-connected acquaintance, the three top police officials in Chinhoyi said those responsible for the kidnapping were to be arrested.  The acquaintance confronted the youths at the farm village and the officer in charge came to arrest them.  A 'discussion' was held with the youths’ leaders who admitted they were wrong.  Finally the officer in charge took the leader away, but brought him back later that night, with no charges preferred. It transpires the youths have been told to stay away from the Commercial Farms and concentrate their efforts in Zvimba.   On Gwarati Farm   about 50 youths marched towards the manager’s house shouting death threats for approximately 30 minutes.  Later in the week, a delegation from the farm village demanded all the labour go across to St Johns for ‘Registration’ purposes.  Because of the volatile situation, management agreed but refused the transport request.  The owner has requested police assistance as he fears disruption to farming activities.
Victory Block – on Brandon Farm, 30.01.02, the farm manager was told by ZANU\(PF) youth leader, Mr. Muchena, a meeting at the farm village on 31 January was to be held to discuss bonus payments. The manager informed Vivelkia police station and Constable Mbizi P.I.S.I. agreed to attend the meeting.  A Sgt Chimuchengu attended the meeting along with the constable, who told the ZANU (PF) youth leader the work stoppage was illegal. In response to the issue of bonus payments, Sgt. Chimuchengu said the demand was illegal and referred the labour to GAPWUZ and instructed the labour to go to work.  At 3 pm the farm clerk, accompanied by two settlers, requested the manager attend a meeting at the sheds. The settlers assured him they only wanted to discuss a few issues. The manager faced approximately 70 ZANU (PF) youth gathered, and was confronted by a delegation of 15 “war vets” who produced a list of false allegations against him and told him to "pack and go". After two more police details arrived at different times, they phoned the Assistant Inspector in Mvurwi who told the manager he was not to leave the house under any  circumstances and promised further backup. The “war vets” were joined by 60 ZANU youth, chanting Chimurenga songs outside the fence. The Assistant Inspector arrived, spoke to the” war vets” and was unable to resolve the issue.  He called the Guruve Lands Committee for advice who recommended the “war vets” were to leave immediately. Verbal abuse resulted and two policemen were assaulted. The police requested further reinforcement from Mvurwi, who negotiated for t the owner to spend the night in his house but he had to be gone by the following morning.  The owner packed most of his belongings and has left the farm.
Horseshoe – on Mazooma one cow was slaughtered and one calf died in a snare.  Both Mvurramachena and Makashwe received new Section 5's, despite the previous acquisition process contested in the Administration court and Government withdrawing the case on these properties.  Cars arriving with pets for rabies vaccinations from a visiting veterinarian at Siyalima was reported by a settler to the “ war vet” leadership in Guruve as an MDC rally.  On 02.02.02 at Naini Tal, farm buildings were commandeered by settlers for a school.  Despite a new draconian law outlawing roadblocks, one was set up at the entrance to Rungudzi.  The police cleared the block, escorting perpetrators off the farm.  On 03.02.02 the roadblock was re-instated and the perpetrators demanded the last seven labourers present on the farm should vacate.  A resolution is pending a meeting with the “war vet” leadership in Guruve.
Bindura - The situation on Bourtenvale and Butcombe Farms are still unresolved, with the owners still off their farms.
– on Logan Lee the manager was pressured to get off the farm and he finally left after three days.
Enterprise/Bromley/Ruwa - Nothing to report.
Featherstone - Political meetings were held with owners forced to attend or face eviction.  The owner of Perseverance  was told she may stay on the farm.  The owner of De La Quellerie  was told by settlers to remove 200 head of cattle and threatened with assault the following day.  The owner of Moonrock (K. Benade.) was told to remove his cattle.
Harare South – Nothing to report.
Macheke \Virginia – on Rufaro Farm the “war vets” forced the manager to open sheds to store their tobacco and have loaded new tobacco.  This is an ongoing problem, the owner has solved it once through Police, D.A. and the Matatsi “war vet” from Macheke. The perpetrators are a new group, and the owner is going the same route as before. Three barns were filled despite D.A.'s instructions.  On Fault Farm  “war vets” demanded transport for a meeting in Murewa, to hear President Mugabe speak. Richmond also had demands for transport and sent a lorry.  On Warren Farm an illegal fisherman drowned in the farm dam. A team from Harare was unable to find the body, which floated to the surface several days later. Police attended.  One dairy cow was axed and another is missing on Welcome Home Farm  Security is following this up.  Corby Farm  also had one cow slaughtered. Security is following this up. There is a training camp in full swing with. +/- 150 people training daily close to the farmer’s house on Glen Sommerset  Settlers approached the owner of  Nygadzi Farm asking for barns to cure 40 ha of tobacco., although there is only 0.2 ha planted. The situation is unresolved.  A roadblock set up by youths at Craiglea Store was reported to the police, and dismantled.  On Showers Farm “war vets” in the farm village are harassing labour. The foreman was given 24 hours to move out, as he and other workers are suspected by the “war vets” to be MDC supporters.  It was reported at Marylands Farm two labourers beaten up by youths with barbed
wire were taken to hospital. The owner later reported about 50 youths passed his barns on their way to the next farm, Blue Gums Labour on Journeys End Farm were told to stop working at 10.42 am and attend a meeting at Virginia Store.
Marondera North - A roadblock set up by youths on the North Road was dismantled by the police.  The youths relocated closer to the club.  On Nyagambi a roadblock was set up on the farm access road and although the police were informed the roadblock is still in place.
Marondera South - Nothing to report.
Wedza – on Doune the owner’s wife  was hijacked at the farm boom and her pick-up stolen. There was a quick response by the community and a car chase resulted in the recovery of the vehicle with only some money stolen.  At Rhodesdale three youths demanded two impala or a cow for food.  The office and grading shed was broken into at Igudu and a computer and 600 Tobacco clips were stolen.  On Msasa  “war vet” Madawo instructed the foreman to tell the owner to be off the farm by end of February as he has a plot on the farm.  (The farm is not listed).   On Bickleigh two cows were speared and one had to be destroyed.  At Chakadenga the cattle herders were chased away and cattle driven into the settlers’ maize. Three settlers demanded compensation. The police and Agritex would not become involved. The three were paid ZWD6 000-00. During discussions, the owner was threatened and accused of overpaying the herders so they could get drunk and allow the cattle to stray.
- on 02.02.02 there was a work stoppage on Cotswold Farm and the owner and his wife were barricaded in their home.  The situation was defused by the N.E.C. (Agriculture Agent).  In general, there are still unreasonable demands for schools at places where no viable school could exist now or in the future.
Raffingora - On Minehaha Farm suspect “valuators” are waiting to value a farm that has already been valued.
Chinhoyi - On Manyamba Farm the cattle were herded into the security fence last week.
In this region, rallies (official or unofficial) have been organized in a frenzy.
– a provincial Governor told a Norton owner he was to be resettled on the farm.  The Governor was not sympathetic when the owner told him it was his only farm and the other two had been offered to Government under ZJRI.
Chegutu/Suri-Suri - The DA wrote to farm labour on Cigaro Farm instructing them to move out of their homes, around which they have planted their maize crops.
Kadoma/Battlefields – On Inniskilling settlers still prevent any labour from coming to work, which includes the domestics and the property security guards.  The owner’s cottage was broken into and furniture and other goods were stolen.  On Hellaby Farm a settler, Mr. Ncube, moved into the house after the owner was forced to abandon his property and home.  On Georgia GMB officials arrived with settlers from Alabama Farm and seized the six tonnes of maize that the owner was keeping for his workers.  The GMB officials broke the locks securing the maize.  On Railway Farm 4 there was a work stoppage.
General – A number of new Section 8 Orders were issued.

Masvingo East and Central
– on Lamotte Farm a heifer was lost to snaring.
Chiredzi – there are continued invasions and land clearing.  All properties now have Education Committees with teachers inspecting and commandeering farm buildings for primary and secondary schools as well as universities!  There is movement of settlers between plots due to overcrowding and instability.
Mwenezi – on Merrivale Ranch the settlers paid money to ZESA to have a transformer erected for the use of a grinding mill.  ZESA is presently erecting the transformer.  The owner has received another Section 8 for this property.
Save Conservancy - the western side of the Conservancy has seen further intimidation, but not to any great extent.  Snaring and poaching continue.
Gutu/Chatsworth – on Bath Farm the owner reported Government officials in a Government vehicle visited this property demanding a farm gate be unlocked.   As the owner’s wife did not have the keys, they cut the fence and gate lock to gain entrance.  These Government officials remained on the owner’s verandah until 11pm at night making demands for school buildings.  Eventually two CIO officials arrived and dispersed the group of six.
No report received.

No report received.

Back to the Top
Back to Index


 Zimbabwe police release UK paper reporter - lawyer

HARARE, Feb. 5 — Zimbabwean police freed on Tuesday the local correspondent
of a British newspaper who had been arrested under the country's new Public
Order and Security Act, his lawyer said.
       ''I can confirm that he's actually free now,'' Tawanda Hondora,
Basildon Peta's lawyer, told Reuters. It was not immediately clear if
charges against Peta had been dropped.
He writes for Britain's Independent newspaper.
       Peta, a Zimbabwean national, was the first correspondent for the
international media to be arrested under the act, which makes it a crime to
criticise or ridicule President Robert Mugabe, standing for re-election in
       The Independent said in a report that Peta, who is secretary-general
of the Zimbabwean Union of Journalists, had been charged on Monday with
failing to notify the authorities about a demonstration last Wednesday by
the union against a tough new media bill passed by parliament last Thursday.

Back to the Top
Back to Index

Tuesday, 5 February, 2002, 15:43 GMT
Freed Zimbabwe reporter 'unbroken'
Basildon Peta (right) and his lawyer, Tawanda Hondora
Peta (right) was held overnight in Harare central jail
Zimbabwean journalist Basildon Peta has said on his release from jail that the authorities have not succeeded in breaking his will.

I will continue as I have always done

Basildon Peta
Mr Peta, who is the local correspondent of the British newspaper, The Independent, spent the night in Harare central prison for allegedly breaching strict new security laws.

He said that even if the authorities don't resuscitate the case against him he expected more arrests of journalists in an attempt to break the media's morale.

He stressed that he would not be bowed by President Mugabe's administration.

"I will continue as I have always done," he told BBC radio.

Charges dropped

Mr Peta's detention came as British foreign secretary Jack Straw said four election observers from the European Union were already in Zimbabwe setting up a base from which to monitor next month's presidential elections.

President Robert Mugabe
It is a crime to criticise the president - even during campaigning

He said another 100 would join them shortly.

EU foreign ministers had formally warned Zimbabwe a week ago that their 15 nations would impose "targeted sanctions" on Mr Mugabe's regime unless it allowed their observers into the country.

On Monday, it announced that this threat would not be carried out for the moment because of assurances that observers would be allowed in.

The Zimbabwean Government has denied new laws were designed to stifle opposition in the run-up to the polls.

The Independent said he had faced charges of failing to notify authorities about a demonstration against a controversial new media bill, but these had been dropped, according to his lawyer, Tawanda Hondora.

Restrictive laws

Mr Peta, who is also the secretary general of the Zimbabwean Union of Journalists, is the first journalist to be detained under the Public Order and Security Act, just days after it came into effect.

If convicted, he could have been sentenced to two years in jail, the newspaper said.

The law makes it a crime to criticise or ridicule President Robert Mugabe and prescribes the death penalty for acts of "insurgency, banditry, sabotage or terrorism".

The newspaper said Mr Peta had been regularly harassed by police over articles he wrote criticising the government.

It said before his arrest, police told Mr Peta they were acting on orders from the highest levels of government.

The newspaper said last year Mr Peta's name topped a security services hit list and that he and four other journalists were to be "killed or harmed" before the election.

He is Special Projects Editor of Harare's Financial Gazette and has frequently unearthed stories of government corruption.

The opposition Movement for Democratic Change is set to mount the strongest challenge to Mr Mugabe's leadership since he came to power in 1980, in elections on 9-10 March.

Back to the Top
Back to Index

Straw rejects claims of inaction over Zimbabwe

 Jack Straw has rejected claims of government inaction over the spiralling
crisis in Zimbabwe.

The foreign secretary told the Commons on Tuesday that the EU, the US and
Commonwealth partners were watching events closely. He said action would
follow if the country's elections failed to be democratic.

Withdrawing recognition of the Mugabe government was one possible option if
the country's elections were not deemed to have been fair, Straw said.

"Our overall objective is, and continues to be, a difficult one to achieve.
That is to work as far as we can to achieve a better environment in which
fair elections are able to take place," he said. "However easy it may be to
say 'cut all relations', we should bear that objective in mind with every

Straw condemned the arrest of a leading journalist by the Mugabe government
and told MPs that the British high commission in Harare would be monitoring
events in the country.

His comments came ahead of a meeting of EU diplomats on Wednesday where the
issue of sanctions is set to top the agenda.

The shadow foreign secretary, Michael Ancram, asked why no official EU
observers had been allowed into the country.

He also demanded to know why the free access for the media would not include
the BBC or people from British national newspapers - concessions to Mugabe.

In a series of angry exchanges, Ancram accused Straw and the EU of appeasing
Mugabe by giving him the benefit of the doubt.

"When is he going to stop talking and do something before its too late for
something to be done?" he asked.

"We are not going to get into a game with Mugabe. Neither of those bodies
are accepting conditions from Mugabe," Straw answered.
   "Our overall objective is, and continues to be, a difficult one to
achieve," said Straw

American plans for a missile defence treaty and the continuing Middle East
crisis also resulted in strong exchanges between the foreign secretary and
Labour MPs.

Labour backbencher Brian White called on ministers to lobby the American

He accused America of operating double standards by calling for support in
the war against terrorism and refusing to honour the Kyoto agreement or the
anti-ballistic missile treaty.

Britain had little leverage over the issue as the treaty was a bilateral
agreement between the US and Russia, said Straw.

Glenda Jackson asked if any request had been made for US bases in Britain to
be used as part of the system.

"Would there be any debate before any such request was granted?" she asked.

As yet no request had been made, Straw said.

Back to the Top
Back to Index

'Wait and see' only show in town
Feb 05 2002 12:00:00:000AM Francis Kornegay Business Day 1st Edition
Regional players hope rift in Zimbabwe's ruling party will serve as reform
WHILE the west is building up pressure on the Zimbabwean regime by Britain's
lobbying for sanctions within the Commonwealth and the threat of European
Union sanctions, the accommodationist approach of SA and the Southern
African Development Community (SADC), for now, seems vindicated by the
internal politics.
The emergence of Eddison Zvobgo's Masvingo-based dissident faction within
Zanu (PF) supports a pre-election strategy for external actors hoping to
reverse Zimbabwe's crisis that allows latitude for the very evident
contradictions within the ruling party to be played out so as to erode
President Robert Mugabe's iron grip on the country from within his own
political base.
This holds out the possibility, perhaps slim at the moment, of transforming
Zanu (PF) and/or laying the ground for an eventual postelection government
of national unity between it and the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC).
The repressive media bill is now a fact. But Zvobgo's parliamentary showdown
with Justice Minister Chinamasa and Information Minister Jonathan Moyo
became the flash point in what could potentially become a much wider
insurgency within Zanu (PF).
This would widen the split between Zanu (PF) pragmatists, who feel
increasingly at risk in having Mugabe as their party leader, and what some
refer to as the "chaos" faction hellbent on pulling out the election for
Mugabe at all costs. The fact Zvobgo has chosen not to throw his weight
behind Mugabe and Zanu (PF) in Masvingo, the nations's most populous
province, may open the way for the MDC to have at least a fighting chance of
winning the March election in spite of Mugabe's attempt to rig it.
The question is, will the consolidation of a Masvingo-Matabeleland axis
emerge and prevail? This depends, obviously, on the extent to which Pretoria
and the SADC are able to influence the holding of an election freer and
fairer than many observers feel possible.
However, given the Zvobgo-led insurgency, the political upper hand in the
international pressure impinging on Zimbabwe tilts toward SADC opposition to
sanctions in the run-up to the March poll. It also supports the Commonwealth
deferring any decision on suspending Zimbabwe from that body until after the
March election, if it is determined the electoral outcome has been rigged.
Hence, Britain's failure at the recent Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group
meeting in winning the day for sanctions.
Of course some have read this as not strategic, but emotional whereby
African countries simply could not bring themselves to impose sanctions on a
brother. But perhaps there is some strategy to this brotherly emotion.
Applying political and economic sanctions prior to the election plays into
the hands of Mugabe and his loyalists who will be able to divert attention
from their depredations against their own citizens by playing the
imperialist intervention card of intervention in the country's internal
democratic electoral affairs.
Zvobgo, therefore, has come to SA and the SADC's rescue for now. But
post-election is another story. If Mugabe is still hanging on for dear life,
SA President Thabo Mbeki and his fellow heads of state in SADC are going to
have to go back to the drawing boards and devise a new script; one that
salvages the credibility of the New Partnership for Africa's Development
(Nepad) and SA's hosting of the inaugural African Union (AU) summit in July.
For whether Zanu (PF) wins or loses, Mugabe must go: by declaring victory
and retiring or by being forced out by a mixture of western smart sanctions
and those closer to home only SA can apply. This should be an option were it
not for our leaders' fear of imposing what might ultimately be unavoidable:
a hegemonic pax-Pretoriana. There is, though, an African precedent for such
a scenario: Burundi.
The current peace process in that country, which SA is mentoring, is the
result of sanctions applied by Burundi's east African neighbours. So, it is
not un-African to apply sanctions against another African state, especially
in the emerging age of the AU and Nepad. Better to deconstruct a Zimbabwe
hijacked by Mugabe sooner rather than later after which it can be nurtured
back to health under the AUNepad banner to the benefit of southern Africa
and the continent.
This would mean breaking up the Mugabe-inspired Luanda defence pact between
his country, Congo, Angola and Namibia, which is at the heart of the SADC's
division and weakness. It would also mean nurturing a long process of
recovery that might eventually see Zimbabwe incorporated into the Southern
African Customs Union. But the exercise of power in this process may be
unavoidable. Hence, the dilemma of unilateralism that Pretoria may face
after March 9-10.
Hopefully, this contingency is being seriously considered and quietly
conveyed to Mugabe and Zanu (PF), all the better for heightening the
contradictions in Harare. For the stakes for south and southern Africa
become even higher once the election is concluded.
Until then, though, SADC strategy, blatantly unconvincing though it may be
in terms of how it is being sold, is the only show in town.
Kornegay is the programme co- ordinator of the Centre for Africa's
International Relations, University of the Witwatersrand.
Back to the Top
Back to Index

Mbeki: Keeping regional credibility

Business Day 5 February 2002

By Duncan Guy

President Thabo Mbeki , in his approach to the Zimbabwe crisis, is desperate
to secure regional credibility that is still needed to resolve the conflicts
in countries such as Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo, according
to Jakkie Cilliers, director of the SA Institute of Security Studies in

And Mugabe's hold on the DRC provides him with much clout.

"Massive emphasis has been placed on (President Thabo) Mbeki's foreign
policy being on a multi-lateral agenda which has led to him being soft on
(Zimbabwe's) President Robert Mugabe," said Cilliers.

"Mbeki has worked very hard to ensure South Africa's regional credibility."

This, he said, had made it possible for South Africa to become involved in
resolving the Burundi crisis.

However this was all at the cost of many people - even African diplomats at
a senior level - believing below the surface that South Africa, as a country
on its own, had sold itself out in terms of what it stands for.

According to a Johannesburg businessman after the most recent of his
frequent trips to Harare, another cost to Mbeki's approach is that ordinary
Zimbabweans "might now never forgive South Africa for not helping them in
their hour of need".

Meanwhile Cilliers, commenting on Zimbabwe military generals saying they
would never accept an election result in favour of Mugabe, said he believed
the South African military's contingency plans for Zimbabwe were purely of a
reactive nature.

This meant dealing with a refugee crisis.

"There is not even a contingency plan beyond removing diplomats," he said.

Back to the Top
Back to Index

Peoples Daily

Last updated at: (Beijing Time) Tuesday, February 05, 2002
Eight Opposition Party Supporters Arrested in Zimbabwe

The Zimbabwean police have arrested eight supporters of the opposition
party, who were suspected to have taken part in destroying the ruling
party's election campaign posters over the weekend in Bulawayo in
southwestern Zimbabwe, the police said here on Monday.

 The eight supporters of the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) were
expected to appear in court soon to answer charges of breaching the Public
Order and Security Act that prohibits any action that may lead to violence,
police spokesman Tarwireyi Tirivavi said.

The police were also encouraging both civilians and political leaders to
refrain from violence, he added.

The presidential election in Zimbabwe is scheduled to be held on March 9 and
10. The ruling Zimbabwe African National Union- Patriotic and the opposition
MDC are now lunching the campaign for the election in most parts of the

Back to the Top
Back to Index

Mugabe Blaming the Messenger

New Vision (Kampala)

February 5, 2002
Posted to the web February 5, 2002

AT THE third attempt President Robert Mugabe has pushed tough legislation to
curb the media through the Zimbabwe parliament. All journalists now have to
be licenced annually. Foreign correspondents are not allowed to be based
permanently in Zimbabwe. No news organisation is allowed foreign funding.
Journalists are forbidden from reporting meetings of Cabinet or other
government bodies. Prison sentences await those who breach the new media
law's provisions.

The system of licencing journalists has failed to take off in Uganda mainly
because it is very difficult to define who is and who is not a journalist.
Would columnists like Mary Okurut and John Nagenda have to be licenced? How
would newspapers handle copy filed by news agencies like Reuters if the
story reported events in Uganda?

It is also potentially discriminatory and therefore unconstitutional to
impose different standards for 'journalists' and 'non-journalists' who write
in the newspapers. At least Uganda was motivated by wanting all journalists
to be well-trained graduates. Zimbabwe's law is motivated solely by the
desire for political thought control. The other provisions are just as bad.
Foreign correspondents who are permanently based in a country are more
likely to make objective informed reports than correspondents on a flying
visit with preconceived opinions. All newspapers can benefit from foreign
funding, especially when it is for advanced training at international

The ban on reporting Cabinet and government meetings would not be necessary
if unhappy ministers and officials were not leaking the information in the
first place.

Mugabe's media act is merely papering over the cracks of the crisis that is
tearing Zimbabwe apart.

Mugabe is making the fatal mistake of blaming the messenger for the message.

Back to the Top
Back to Index

Criminals Help "Illegals" Cross Border

UN Integrated Regional Information Networks

February 5, 2002
Posted to the web February 5, 2002

A criminal racket on both sides of the border is helping illegal Zimbabwean
immigrants cross into South Africa, a senior army officer told IRIN.

The criminals, known as "Guma-Guma", act as guides to those slipping across
the border and into South Africa's Northern Province. They charge around R50
(US $4) per person, and failure to pay can lead to a beating. They can also
provide illegal papers for a price.

According to the South African officer, involved in border patrol
operations, the Guma-Guma use cellphones to organise transport with mini-bus
drivers on the South African side of the Limpopo river. In a series of short
hops, the immigrants are transported to the border town of Messina, and from
there they travel south to South Africa's major cities looking for work.
"Only the very poor walk," the officer said.

South African army patrols net an average of 100 to 200 illegal immigrants a
day. In January, 2,600 people were arrested and handed over to the police -
a figure lower than last year - the officer said. He noted that increased
activity by the Zimbabwean police was likely to have had an impact on the
numbers crossing. The border jumpers are eventually deported back to

The South African military, through an agreement with Zimbabwe, has the
authority to intercept would-be illegal immigrants in what is technically
Zimbabwean territory, the officer said. He pointed out that a man found
wading in the Limpopo would probably be arrested before he crossed to the
South African bank of the river.

Once inside South Africa, the concern of the authorities in the frontier
regions is the damage that illegal immigrants can cause to farms and
properties. Farmers complain that snares are set and crops damaged as the
border jumpers cross their fields.

If political violence in the run-up to Zimbabwe's March presidential
election leads to a large influx of asylum seekers, "our first priority will
be to look after our own people, the farmers," the officer said. "The
Zimbabweans are likely to have been hungry for days, and if they strip the
property there is going to be conflict with the farmers."

Back to the Top
Back to Index

Adelaide Advertiser

Rallies illustrate Zimbabwe's schism

By JAN RAATH and Agencies

AS soon as she was in the stadium, Angeline Magamba reached into her bag and
pulled out a T-shirt with the open-hand symbol of the Movement for
Democratic Change and slipped it over her head. "I am afraid. If the Zanu-PF
people catch me wearing this, I am for trouble," she said. "We are not
On Saturday night, gangs of ruling party youths had been covering the
townships, telling people that if they went to the stadium in Sakubva
township in the morning there would be war.

Yesterday saw Morgan Tsvangirai's first big rally of his campaign for the
presidential elections on March 9 and 10 and, outside this eastern city,
vehicles queued for 800m at a roadblock, where police searched them
painstakingly and demanded drivers' identity cards.

For those in the crowd of at least 12,000 people in the stadium, reaching it
had been an act of bravery. When Mr Tsvangirai, the MDC president, appeared,
the exultant roar of "chinja!" (change) that greeted him was an outpouring
of desire for an end to the dread, hunger and poverty brought by Mr Mugabe.

Mr Tsvangirai spoke of restoration of the rule of law, followed by "a new
constitution to re-establish the dignity of parliament, the judiciary and
clearly respect the separation of powers".

There were no lavish promises, but warnings against violence, especially
against Mr Mugabe's militias after the election. Almost all those present
had walked from the surrounding townships. On Friday last week, dozens of
government trucks dragooned perhaps 8000 people from the Zanu-PF heartland
to Mr Mugabe's first rally of the campaign. It was a quasi-military
operation in which every slogan and song was coerced and in which the party
and security force personnel controlling it exuded menace.

"In the last two years, Zanu-PF has died," a veteran Zimbabwean journalist
who had been present said. "They have nothing but force left."

The contrast with Sakubva was absolute. The atmosphere at the opposition's
rally was happy and relaxed, the crowd's responses spontaneous.

When Mr Mugabe speaks, it is to promise free seed and fertiliser, as much
seized white-owned land as anyone wants and higher wages. He delivers
bizarre denunciations of British plots to overthrow him and hurls clumsy
abuse against Mr Tsvangirai, calling him "Tsvangison", the "black man who
masquerades as a white".

At the weekend Mr Mugabe was at it again, threatening to punish gay groups
at a campaign rally and saying Britain was angry at him for his stance
against homosexuality.

British Prime Minister Tony Blair should "expose" his cabinet as full of
gays before criticising Zimbabwe, Mr Mugabe said at a rally in the rural
district of Wedza on Saturday.

"I have people who are married in my cabinet. He has homosexuals and they
make John marry Joseph and let Mary get married to Rosemary.

"We can form clubs, but we will never have homosexual clubs. In fact, we
will punish them," he said.
Back to the Top
Back to Index

The Independent (UK)

Basildon Peta: My ordeal as Mugabe's prisoner

As repression has tightened its grip on Zimbabwe, the Independent's Basildon
Peta has found unsought prominence as a champion of freedom. On Monday came
the reprisals he had been dreading: arrest and imprisonment. This is his
account of his terrifying exp
06 February 2002
Look, you are in a VIP cell. You don't have to worry. We will attend to you
when we are ready," the detective barked. I knew then I was in for a long
night. The tiny cell I was being dumped in was next to a stinking blocked
toilet, whose flushing system seem to have failed over a decade ago. The
suffocating stench wafted straight into the next room. The floors and the
walls of my cell were filthy. The few sticks of furniture were collapsing
with age.

For my night in Harare Central, the notorious headquarters of President
Robert Mugabe's state security agents, I was given a few broken planks of
wood on which to spend the night.

I was not surprised, however. When I first heard that armed detectives were
hunting for me on Thursday night, I could almost have predicted everything
that would play out over the next couple of days.

I knew that I would have to suffer for an imaginary crime that I did not
commit. I knew that there would be nothing imaginary about the way the
police would treat me in their filthy, dimly lit cells and offices at the
Harare Central police station. And I suspected, in my heart of hearts, that
at the 11th hour – after President Mugabe's state security agents had drawn
sadistic pleasure from their treatment of me – all charges might be dropped.
I knew also that the police would show no remorse and would not bother to
apologise for their unconstitutional and illegal treatment of me. In short,
I was aware that in any contest with President Mugabe's agents, I would
always come second.

So I did not even bother to ask why the police officials had stormed my home
at dawn on Saturday as if they were hunting for a bank robber or an armed
terrorist. I tried to co-operate all the way through, even though I knew the
crime they were purporting to investigate was a hoax. I suggested that they
stop looking for me and I promised I would surrender myself soon after
finishing the private family business that had occupied me for the previous
two days.

But that did not stop them from pretending that I was not co-operating.
Despite the fact that my lawyer had managed to arrange an appointment for
Sunday at 10am, they still saw fit to go to my house on Saturday and force
their way in without a search warrant. They ransacked the house, breaking
into cupboards, wardrobes and bathrooms, knowing full well that I was not at

I returned from Johannesburg on Monday and while the police headed to my
house I went to Harare Central Station to turn myself in. At 1.45pm they
arrested me.

For the second time in four months I walked down the stairs into the
basement of a shabby building that would not look out of place in the middle
of Kabul.

There I was dumped into the wretched cell beside that foul-smelling lavatory
and left there for what seemed like an eternity. Despite the efforts of my
lawyer, Tawanda Hondora, to prepare all the paperwork so that we could
proceed directly to the courts, the police were intent on making it a long

They went about their business as if I was not there. There was a good
reason – after the courts close they have to keep you overnight. In the
meantime my cellphone was turned off and I was out of touch with the outside

Late into the night, one of the officers called and announced my crime – I
had failed to notify the police about a demonstration by a group of
journalists last Wednesday to protest against a media law that is widely
seen as likely to eliminate independent journalism in Zimbabwe. The crime,
covered under the new Public Order and Security Act (POSA), carries a
two-year jail sentence, plus a hefty fine of Z$100 000.

I immediately contested the charge, saying that under the POSA, professional
associations are exempt from seeking police permission to demonstrate. The
Zimbabwe Union of Journalists (ZUJ), of which I am secretary general, is a
professional association and allowed to demonstrate against anything
affecting the interests of its members.

The discussion went nowhere. My interrogator suddenly changed tone and
wanted me to help him locate Andy Meldrum of the Foreign Correspondents
Association and The Guardian, so that he could also be arrested for
co-organising the demonstration. I refused to co-operate – not least because
I don't know Meldrum's home address. The officer left. My incarceration

Dawn came, and I was taken from the cell. Armed police officers hurled
themselves into the back of my car. I was told to drive them to the courts
via the attorney-general's office. Here my fate for the next two years would
be decided. Making me drive myself felt like another insult: it was as if
they would not waste the petrol on me.

At the AG's office, which also houses the British High Commission, I was
left in the vehicle under armed guard. After a long period, one of my
interrogators came down smiling and showed me some notes written by the AG's
office on my documents saying that I had no case to answer.

The demonstration was perfectly legal, and if the police thought otherwise,
they would have to prove it. I was ordered to drive my jailers back to the
police station. End of story.

Not for the police. Spokesman Wayne Bvudzijena gave the media another
version. "The Attorney General has ordered us to carry out further
investigations and we will revisit the matter once we are ready." Does this
mean another arrest at some point? I can only wonder.

Zimbabwe has certainly reached breaking point. The future looks gloomy. Mr
Mugabe is not about to concede that the country needs a fresh start without
him. He wants another six-year term, by hook or by crook. The international
community has let him off the hook.

Despite all the murders of his opponents, all the illegal arrests of
perceived opponents, the pillaging of a once promising economy and the
passing of some of the most repressive laws imaginable, the EU says: "We
will not impose smart sanctions on Robert Mugabe for now because he is doing
nothing to block the deployment of EU election observers." But is the
admission of these observers worth all the people who have lost their lives,
their property, their livelihood and all they have worked for because of the
unbridled ambitions of a power-crazed geriatric dictator? I can only wonder.

Back to the Top
Back to Index

04 February 2002
Zimbabwe On Wrong Side of History, U.S. Business Leader Says
(CCA chief comments on Mugabe, new business strategy) (680)
By Jim Fisher-Thompson
Washington File Staff Writer
Washington - The anti-business environment in Zimbabwe, created by
President Robert Mugabe's attacks on civil liberties and private
property, is not helping to buck up slackening U.S. investment on the
continent, says Corporate Council on Africa (CCA) President Steve
In a January 23 phone interview with the Washington File, Hayes said
"We're hoping for a change over there [in Zimbabwe] with free
elections but you know we have our doubts, as many other people do."
Hayes noted that except for energy imports, U.S. investment is
generally in a slump in sub-Saharan Africa, in part because of a fear
that some countries like Zimbabwe are falling back into the economic
statism and political instability that characterized much of Africa
before the fall of communism in the Soviet Union which discredited
socialism as the answer to Africa's development challenges.
The problem, Hayes said, is that Mugabe "has gone beyond socialism and
he is just being very autocratic and in that regard he is definitely
on the wrong side of history."
Commenting on the opinion by some in Washington that economic
sanctions should be levied on Mugabe in order to get him to implement
free and fair elections set for March 9 and 10, Hayes said "I'm not
ordinarily in favor of sanctions but Mugabe has gone so far down the
line that unless there are some changes there the [business] situation
there is almost hopeless."
Hayes said that many of CCA's 170-member businesses, including giants
like General Motors and Exxon/Mobil "are very, very reluctant to
invest" in Zimbabwe, which is a pity, he added, because "it could have
been one of the great places for investment [in Africa] if it had any
The association chief added, "If there was ever a case that needed it,
the African countries themselves should come out now and speak out. I
think that's beginning to happen, which is encouraging" but time is
running out with nation-wide elections scheduled for March, he said.
Asked about general business trends on the continent, Hayes said
"investment in Africa has actually dropped in the last two years and
so we are now focusing on ways to get some business successes" by
increasing interest among CCA's member firms.
This means, he explained, fewer trade missions, "which are labor
intensive, very expensive and unless deals are actually structured
beforehand" produce few results. "They are good exploratory trips but
not necessarily efficient in developing business. I think the most
efficient thing we can do now is support our members as they go about
seeking opportunities in markets that seem attractive to them."
With that in mind, having a goal of one deal or "business success per
[African] country would be quite a step forward," Hayes said. "I mean
some of these countries have not had a new U.S. investment for a year
or two or more."
Asked it he had any particular places in mind, Hayes said "we have to
look at those countries that are ready for the next step in investment
and that means, of course, the AGOA (African Growth and Opportunity
Act) countries. There are 34 of those."
Passed into law by Congress in May 2000, AGOA is a landmark trade bill
that offers duty-free entry to a range of African products, including
textiles, as a spur to their export and manufacturing sectors. A bill
that would further extend such benefits on a greater scale to eligible
African nations, known as AGOA II, is currently being debated in the
Senate. Zimbabwe was deemed ineligible for AGOA's trade benefits
because of its government's human rights record.
Hayes said "We [CCA] came in late to AGOA I but I think we made a big
difference" in getting it through the legislative process. "Right now,
we are taking a strong leadership role working with a lot of different
organizations" to get the second bill made into law, he said.
(The Washington File is a product of the Office of International
Information Programs, U.S. Department of State. Web site:
Back to the Top
Back to Index

34 Days to Go.

Just back in the office after 6 days in South Africa on MDC business. Time
is slipping by with great speed and its difficult to keep up with all that
is going on. This past week saw the government continuing to shoot itself in
the head – attacks on the media, the passing of the media bill in the House
and the skirmishes with the UK, the EU and the Commonwealth.

At home the hot dry weather persisted – now a month since we had widespread
rains and all crops are wilting and suffering damage – I estimate that a
third of the national crop is now beyond recovery. The tobacco crop is doing
well – this likes a dry season and farmers look after it because it is a
high value crop and responds to good management.

Speaking to a colleague who has worked in the food business for 30 years, he
said that he felt we would be lucky this year to reap 800 000 tonnes of
maize from all sectors. Last year we reaped about 1 million tonnes (maybe
1,1 million at the upper end) but also had some opening stocks. This year we
will open the new season with zero stocks of maize.

Imports have started but when we drove down to Johannesburg on Tuesday we
saw the GMB setting up an emergency grain depot at Beitbridge. Why at
Beitbridge I do not understand as this simply means double handling? We
looked out for trucks on the road to Johannesburg – thought we saw two. When
we got back to the border on Saturday morning there might have been 6 trucks
at the border with maize on board. We were not certain but it was bags of
something. At the depot they only had a small pile in the middle of the
depot – about 1 load of 35 tonnes we guessed. When we need 5 000 tonnes a
day, that is not encouraging.

We are now really out of maize meal – I think I got my last delivery about
10 days ago. My main wholesaler said he did not want maize meal – for fear
of riots. What are people doing in the absence of maize meal? Maize meal
costs about Z$35 000 a tonne, Rice about Z$160 000 a tonne, bread about Z$68
000 a tonne. We have some stocks of wheat and as this is the next cheapest
food we can expect this to be in short supply as well shortly – in fact on
Friday bread was unobtainable after about 10.00 hrs in the morning in

I was shocked to listen to an official of the World Food Programme on SW
Radio recently when he said calmly "no, we do not expect people to starve in
Zimbabwe as there are alternatives, like cassava and yams?" He clearly had
no knowledge of Zimbabwe – we only produce tiny quantities of both those
foods, which are largely alien to the local population. Maize meal must
constitute at least 50 per cent of the bulk in people’s diets and is
virtually irreplaceable in both economic and volume terms. I am afraid that
real starvation is at the door and the local collection of goons in both
government and the GMB are incapable of solving the problem. The UNDP is
strangely silent on all of this, as is the World Bank who actually has a
clear understanding of the situation.

So the position looks like this – we must import 150 000 tonnes of maize a
month from now until July when the new crop starts to come in. Then we will
have about 5 to 6 months supply before we run out again – we will therefore
have to import about 2 million tonnes of maize grain between now and the end
of July 2003. We have enough wheat to last until May – lets assume we will
have to import 7 months supply at 30 000 tonnes a month – that’s 210 000
tonnes, we may get away with less, so assume 200 000 tonnes. The outlook
beyond then will depend on how much wheat we can get into the ground in May
this year after we take power in April – a tall order. We could grow 400 000
tonnes and be self sufficient in wheat and barley, but a target of about 250
000 tonnes is more realistic – so we will have to import 150 000 tonnes
before November 2003. The soybean crop is very much down and this means that
we will need to import up to 10 000 tonnes a month of soybeans or the
equivalent in crude oil or stock feed components. This requirement will run
through until June 2003 – 12 months at least – 120 000 tonnes.

This gives us a total import requirement to feed the nation of 2 470 000
tonnes of raw materials over a period of 18 months or about 140 000 tonnes a
month. Peak demand will come in the period April to July 2002 when we will
have to move up to 200 000 tonnes a month. The cost, about US$500 million.
That is only a small part of the cost of the "Fast Track to Disaster" that
Zanu PF has inflicted on the country in the name of the pursuit of political
power. If we fail to get the farmers back on their feet this winter, then
the food crisis will run on into 2004. How to achieve this and to reduce the
impact on the consumer is now a preoccupation of the MDC team working on the
transition to sanity.

In the rest of the economy the melt down continues – inflation is now well
above 100 per cent and rising, job losses are accelerating and export
performance continues to deteriorate. Incomes and living standards are
falling rapidly and all other indicators are negative – infant mortality is
rising sharply, aids related deaths are rising and life expectancies
continue to drop.

All Ministers, with one or two notable exceptions, are silent. The Minister
of Agriculture has not made a sound for at least a month; the Minister of
Health is also silent, as is the Minister of Finance. Mines and Tourism
Ministers are also silent. Only Chinamasa and J Moyo are vocal – the former
in defending the indefensible in the form of new forms of legislation that
violate all the fundamental principles of a democracy – freedom of speech,
association and movement; freedom and independence of the press and the
right of individuals to information. Moyo is just astonishing in his
performance – "Government without newspapers is the ideal way forward".
Coming from a Minister of Information, that statement will not be soon

The President – for certain reasons henceforth to be known as "His
Excellency, the Honorable, Robert Gabriel Mugabe", is also vocal and
maintains his stance that Zanu is a Party of the people and peace and the
only Party with the right to govern the country. To challenge that is
"treason" and anyone who does that is a "tea boy" for British interests or a
front for the "white liberal establishment". Hope I got that right Sir; hate
to misquote you in this media in any way!

Just in case you think that there is any truth in President Mugabe’s
allegations, I have been involved in the MDC from its inception. I know for
a fact that of all the western governments that have encouraged us and
helped us in many forms, the British government has been the least
supportive. Many of us in the MDC are a bit annoyed about this as we think
they should have done at least something to justify the slander they have
been getting from the Zimbabwe government in this respect. As far the "white
liberal influence" – there were about 20 of us at the first Congress, 3 in
the national executive (8 per cent) and 5 in the National Council (3 per
cent). In the membership as a whole I doubt if we have 5 000 white members
in a total membership of about 2,5 million. Since we take decision by
consensus on most issues, our effective influence is very limited and we are
treated no differently to the other black and brown members – this is one of
the things that so attracts us to the MDC.

Eddie Cross

Bulawayo, 4 February 2002.

Back to the Top
Back to Index

  Business Day

Intolerance high in Zimbabwe: Mdladlana

By Angela Quintal
Political intolerance was high in Zimbabwe, and Southern African Development
Community observers should move immediately to ensure a free and fair
presidential poll, says Labour Minister Membathisi Mdladlana.

Mdladlana - who represents South Africa on the six-member SADC ministerial
task force on Zimbabwe - said the 150-member regional team should "have been
there yesterday".

"There is too much intolerance in that country and too much polarisation...
What concerns me most is this intolerance," he said in a wide-ranging

This intolerance was across the board, and there had been an increase in
political violence since President Robert Mugabe announced the March 9 and
10 presidential election dates.

"The weak link is that they are not talking to each other. They wait for us
to come there before they talk. There is no dialogue."

Asked how a free and fair election was possible in such a climate, Mdladlana
referred to South Africa's own history of political violence in the run up
to the country's first democratic elections in 1994.

"Just two or three weeks before our own election on April 27, one thousand
people died... but South Africans said 'we shall have these elections and we
shall see that it is free and fair' and everyone is now dubbing that a

"I don't lose hope until the situation is hopeless, and we haven't reached
that stage (in Zimbabwe)."

Mdladlana said the SADC observer team had to move very quickly, and he had
already sent a message to SADC chair, President Bakili Maluzi of Malawi, to
deploy the team.

"If we don't send sharp observers then we will have a huge problem.

"They (SADC) are moving very slowly and its worrying us because it looks
like the South African delegation will be ready much earlier than the SADC

South Africa did not want to send its observers, before SADC and Nigeria had
theirs in place, he said.

Mdladlana said the racial composition of South Africa's team -- which would
cut across all sectors of South African society -- would have to be
carefully considered.

He was in favour of sending mostly black South Africans, rather than loading
the team with whites.

"If you do, then your just exposing our white compatriots to abuse and
insults in that country. They have this belief -- that is why South Africa
is not trusted -- that we are sending the Selous Scouts of Rhodesia.

"We don't want a diplomatic bungle because one of our white South African
compatriots are attacked in Zimbabwe. That's one thing I don't want."

If that happened, South Africa would not be able to "take it lying down".
Mdladlana said.

The presidency was looking for a suitable person to lead the South African

Among those mooted, was former ANC MP and ambassador to Saudi Arabia, Sam
Motsuenyane. There had also been talk about involving some of South Africa's

However, Methodist bishop of Southern Africa Mvume Dandala and Anglican
Archbishop Desmond Tutu, for example, had made statements which would expose
them to criticism in Zimbabwe that they were not independent, Mdladlana
said. "We don't want to expose them to that."


Back to the Top
Back to Index

Daily News

Chidyausiku furious

2/5/02 8:40:40 AM (GMT +2)

By Pedzisai Ruhanya and Sam Munyavi

CHIEF Justice Godfrey Chidyausiku was yesterday furious over the confusion
surrounding the Harare mayoral and council elections after staff from the
Registrar-General’s Office failed to turn up at the Nomination Court at Town
House yesterday to process the nomination of candidates.

Scores of mainly Zanu PF and MDC supporters waited in vain at Town House for
the Registrar-General’s staff, who were supposed to receive nominations at

Nomination of the capital city’s mayoral and council elections was later
rescheduled for 2.30pm.

Tobaiwa Mudede, the Registrar-General, last Friday announced in a legal
notice that the nominations would be held yesterday. This followed an order
by High Court judge, Justice Moses Chinhengo, on 28 January that the
elections must be held on or before 11 February as ordered by the Supreme

Despite the Supreme Court’s order, the government had set 9 and 10 March as
the dates for the council polls. These are the same dates set for the
presidential election. The dates were declared invalid by the High Court.

Mudede appealed to the Supreme Court over the 11 February deadline, but an
angry Chidyausiku yesterday the struck appeal off the register as an urgent
application after Mudede failed to properly file the appeal through the High
Court as required by the Supreme Court.

Chidyausiku sat with other Supreme Court judges, Justices Vernanda Ziyambi,
Misheck Cheda, Luke Malaba and Ahmed Ebrahim.

Their decision follows the failure by Loyce Matanda-Moyo from the Attorney
General (AG)’s Office, representing President Mugabe and Mudede, the
Registrar-General, to properly file their appeal in the court.

Last Friday, Chidyausiku ruled that the AG’s Office should first apply to
the High Court for leave to appeal against Justice Moses Chinhengo’s ruling
to have the elections held next week before they came to the Supreme Court
to oppose the order.

But there was a communication breakdown resulting in Matanda-Moyo failing to
make the application to the High Court before the matter could be heard by
the Supreme Court yesterday.

When the hearing resumed yesterday, Chidyausiku adjourned the matter to
allow Matanda-Moyo to file the application for leave to appeal before
Chinhengo, but when the case resumed at 2.30pm that had not been done.
Chidyausiku was furious.

Speaking to Matanda-Moyo, Chidyausiku said: “You are really beginning to
treat this court like a kangaroo court. What we have to do is to strike this
matter off the court roll until you put your act together.”

Advocate Edith Mushore, who represented the Harare Residents and Ratepayers‘
Association (HRRA), yesterday said: “This ruling means that temporarily the
matter is not before the court and the Nomination Court should be sitting
right now. The High Court order remains operational.”

Earlier in the day, Chidyausiku attacked the manner in which the AG’s Office
had handled the case, accusing it of being inefficient and of wasting the
court’s time.

He said: “The Supreme Court is now being inconvenienced because of the
inefficiency of your office.”
Innocent Chagonda of Atherstone and Cook, the lawyers for the HRRA, said
Mudede was definitely in contempt of court because of his failure to comply
with the notice that he placed in the Press and the court rulings.

David Samudzimu, the chairman of the HRRA, said his association had no
choice but to apply to the High Court for Mudede to be found in contempt of
Army officers sue Chiwenga

By Pedzisai Ruhanya

TWO top army officials have taken the army commander, Lieutenant-General
Constantine Chiwenga to the High Court, for unlawfully dismissing them from
the army after they were accused of supporting the opposition MDC.

According to papers filed in the High Court by their lawyers, Major Besenia
Tshuma and Major Peter Guhu, said their dismissal at the instigation of
Chiwenga last November was unlawful and should be set aside. The dates for
the hearing are yet to be set.

In his affidavit, Tshuma cited Chiwenga because the Board of Suitability wa
s held on the army commander’s instructions and because it was upon Chiwenga
’ s recommendation that, “I be discharged as a member of the Zimbabwe
National Army”.
A Lieutenant Mataruka was cited in the matter as the president of the board
of inquiry.

Tshuma said before the February 2000 Constitutional Referendum he was the
officer commanding 4.2 Infantry Battalion in Gutu. “In the run-up to the
referendum, there was much political activity throughout most of the
country, including Gutu.

The MDC was holding rallies to persuade the Zimbabwean electorate not to
accept the Constitution, which was perceived to be sponsored by Zanu PF,”
Tshuma said. He said a few days before the referendum, there was an MDC
rally in Gutu an d there was an army reaction team on standby in case of any
violence or other problems. He was the officer-in-charge of that team. He
said a Zanu PF youth handed to him an audio cassette which he said was being
circulated by the MDC in the area.

Tshuma said he took the cassette to the corporals’ club in the barracks and
played it.

He said: “Several soldiers were present when I did so. It was clear that th
e contents were of a political nature. I called members of the Central
Intelligence Organisation (CIO), who came to listen to the tape.” He said
two CIO officers from Masvingo and another from Gutu played the cassette in
their car in his presence.

“We then decided that copies of the cassette should be made. I instructed
that a copy be given to Vice-President Simon Muzenda and a separate copy to
Shuvai Mahofa so that they would be aware of what was happening in their

“Because the contents of the cassette were political in nature, I considere
d that the cassette had nothing to do with army business. For this reason, I
did not report the matter to Four Brigade headquarters in Masvingo,” said

He made this point because one of the allegations against him was that he
failed to report the matter to Four Brigade headquarters “and was therefore
an MDC activist. This line of reasoning is, of course, illogical”. “After
the CIO members had reproduced the cassette and taken a number of copies, I
was handed the original. I knew that copies had been taken.

I had no further use for the cassette. I threw it away. I mention again that
the contents had nothing to do with my army business,” Tshuma said. The
second charge is that because the cassette was played at the corporals’
club, Tshuma was campaigning for the MDC.

He said the board of inquiry which investigated him said there was
insufficient evidence and referred the matter to the Directorate of Legal
Services which deals with courts martial, which adopted a similar approach.
The second board of inquiry also said there was no case against him and
called for the lifting of his suspension. Tshuma said he was shown these
decisions by a Captain Marufu.

“Incidentally Captain Marufu was arrested and detained for having shown me
the documentation,” said Tshuma.

He said he was unfairly dismissed from the army by Chiwenga and Mataruka.
Tshuma wants the court to review the decision and set aside his dismissal,
with Chiwenga paying the costs of the application. In his affidavit, Major
Guhu said Chiwenga recommended his dismissal by the board of inquiry with
Lieutenant-Colonel Muresherwa sitting as the president of the board.

Guhu said during a seminar at the University of Zimbabwe two years ago, he
asked whether it was legal that Zimbabwean troops had been deployed in the
Democratic Republic of the Congo without prior authorisation of the United
Nations Security Council and he made reference to the UN Charter. “This
sparked a controversial debate which it was intended to do. I had bee n told
that the army considered me an MDC activist.

It became obvious that th e army wanted to prove this by holding this board
of inquiry. The plain fact of the matter is that there was no evidence to
this effect,” Guhu said. He said by October last year he had heard nothing
from the army but after the board of inquiry finished its hearings, he was
transferred to Bulawayo. He said a signal to dismiss him from the army was
issued on 29 November 2001.

“It advises that in terms of Section 10 (1)(a)(iii) of Statutory Instrument
152/88, the President of Zimbabwe had cancelled my commission and I was
discharged from the army with effect from 30 November 2001,” Guhu said. “I
had expected the result, not because I was guilty of having committed an y
offence, but because I had been targeted by Chiwenga and other members of
the army hierarchy as being an MDC activist,” he said .

Guhu said the charge by the army that he was involved in politics or that h
e uttered words to undermine the authority of President Mugabe was false. He
said Chiwenga should have advised him of the ZNA’s intention to cancel his
commission but he did not do so.

“Even if the board of inquiry found that I had committed any one or more
offences, I respectfully submit that the matter should have been referred t
o the Directorate of Legal Services for a decision as to whether or not to
proceed to court martial stage,” Guhu argued.

He asked the court to set aside the proceedings of the board of inquiry, th
e cancellation of his commission in the army and that he be reinstated in
the army with full benefits and that Chiwenga should pay the costs of the

Mutare MDC offices raided

From Brian Mangwende in Mutare

THE police in Mutare on Sunday raided the MDC provincial offices under the
pretext of searching for arms of war.

Yesterday, Innocent Gonese, the MP for Mutare Central, said the incident
took place at around 2am at the MDC offices at 26B Carrington Road,

Gonese said: “The police went to our offices at around 2am, saying they had
information that we were keeping arms of war on our premises. They did not
have a search warrant. I told them they had no right to come at ungodly
hours and harass people unnecessarily.” Since the MDC had nothing to hide,
Gonese said, they allowed the police to search the premises.
“They turned the whole place upside down, but came out empty-handed,” said

Sydney Mukwecheni, the MP for Mutare South, who was present during the
search, said he received a telephone call in the early hours of the morning
that two truckloads of policemen were parked at the MDC offices. Mukwecheni
said: “They said they wanted to search the place for weapons. As an outgoing
government, they are trying to frustrate us. These are the last kicks of a
dying horse.” Meanwhile, Timothy Mabhawu, the MDC provincial chairman for
Manicaland, was on Saturday arrested at a police roadblock near Christmas
Pass Hotel in Mutare.

He was detained at Mutare Central Police Station for at least five hours
before he was released without charge.
Mabhawu, 40, said: “I was arrested this morning under unclear circumstances.
I was not charged at all. The police arrested me apparently because of the
MDC T-shirts I was carrying for distribution at the MDC rally on Sunday.”
Mabhawu said he was released after his lawyer, Arnold Tsunga, intervened.

Another hefty salary increment for police force

From Chris Gande in Bulawayo

MEMBERS of the police force, who were awarded a 100 percent salary increase
in January will get another raise at the end of this month, in a move seen
as an incentive for them to support the government.

The police, once regarded as the lowest-paid civil servants, are now among
the highest paid, earning more than some doctors.

A constable, who earned $13 519 a month before deductions in December, now
earns $30 619, while superintendents’ salaries rose from about $26 000 a
month after deductions to $69 000.

“It is now worth it to work in the police force,” said a police officer.
“Our salaries are now something to talk about.” The police have been accused
by the opposition of partisanship because they have allegedly ignored
political violence largely perpetrated by Zanu PF supporters.

In most cases of political violence, the police are now known to arrest onl
y members of the opposition.

Police sources said yesterday the officers would receive another 13 percent
increase at the end of this month.

The move to lure the police into supporting Zanu PF began last year when al
l war veterans within the force were promoted a rank higher, in what
appeared to be dubious circumstances.

In the past the percentage increases in the salaries of civil servants have
been uniform across the board. The recent increases depart from this normal

The police and the army received salary hikes of 100 percent while other
civil servants, including teachers, received only about 50 percent. The army
salary increases have met with pockets of discontent because only infantry
soldiers benefited while specialist units, such as engineers and doctors,
were left out.

Millers say delivered maize still not adequate for nation

Farming Editor

MILLERS said yesterday the country needs about 75 thirty-two-tonne
truckloads of maize delivered into the country every day for them to be able
to supply adequate maize-meal to the whole nation in the next three months.

The statement from the millers comes in the wake of an announcement by the
Grain Marketing Board (GMB) last Saturday that the first consignment of 32
tonnes or one truck-load of maize from South Africa had been delivered into
the country through Beitbridge.

Zimbabwe is facing serious food shortages because of a poor rainfall season
and political interference which affected production last year.
The 32 tonnes is, however, an insignificant amount and is only one
truckload, sources in the milling industry who declined to be named, said.

Eddie Cross, a baker who said he passed through the Beitbridge border post
on Saturday said: At the depot in Beitbridge they only had a small pile in
the middle of the depot, about one load of 35 tonnes, we guessed, when we
need 5 000 tonnes a day.

That is not encouraging. One miller said: About 27 tonnes of maize-meal is
produced from 32 tonnes of maize. It is an insufficient amount and it would
take a milling company about one-fifth of its days work to mill.

Zimbabwe needs about 120 000 and 30 000 tonnes of maize monthly and weekly
respectively for human consumption. Victoria Foods managing director, Rob
Webster said his company was still milling but maize supplies were

Most supermarkets in Harare, Masvingo and Bulawayo have no maize-meal
stocks. Quoted in the State-controlled newspaper, The Herald, Justine
Mutasa, GMB operations manager said the country had secured about 200 000
tonnes of maize from South Africa and =B3there was no need to panic that
there would be serious food shortages.

The 200 000 tonnes is enough to last the country about six weeks. Mutasa
said deliveries would continue every day. Mutasa was not available to
comment, as he was said to be in Beitbridge.

Sources close to the GMB however said while Zimbabwe had secured maize from
South Africa, it would take two weeks for most of the maize to land in
Zimbabwe because of logistical problems.

Enock Kamushinda, who is heading a Zimbabwean delegation currently in South
Africa last week secured three deals with South African companies to supply
about 160 000 tonnes of maize, most of it ex-silo.

The GMB is to organise its own transport for the 50 000 tonnes purchased
from Cargill South Africa while another 100 000 tonnes which it bought from
an unknown company, was through an agreement also based on ex-silo

This means the GMB would organise its own transport in both deals. Republic
of South Africa (RSA) Agri, which is to supply 10 000 tonnes, had agreed
with GMB that it would deliver the maize this week.
This means that only about 10 000 tonnes of maize will be delivered by the
end of the week because RSA Agri had said it would deliver the maize this
week according to reports.

Sources said the GMB should have made arrangements to allow all the
suppliers of the maize to deliver it into the country to avoid delays and
reduce costs.

Delays in delivering the maize into Zimbabwe are highly probable because of
shortages of rail wagons in South Africa. Massive starvation is imminent if
no significant quantities of maize arrive in the country by the end of this
week, sources in the milling industry said.
Back to the Top
Back to Index

Daily News - Feature

Mugabe must throw out revised media Bill

2/5/02 8:50:07 AM (GMT +2)

By William Tagwirei Bango

GOVERNMENT ministers rely on government lawyers to draft proposals for
presentation to Parliament which, if accepted, can be turned into laws.

Ordinarily, the interested ministry consults people, organisations and the
industry targeted by the intended law to garner sense in the spirit of
minimising chaos in a particular sector.

These fuzzy ideas are then taken to the Law Development Commission, through
the Ministry of Justice, for legal guidance and expertise. Parliamentary
Bills, even amendments to existing laws, are born out in this way.

The circus in Parliament over the Access to Information and Protection of
Privacy Bill suggests that no such consultative process ever took place. The
Bill was crafted with malice towards individuals and institutions assumed to
be hostile to the government.

According to Jonathan Moyo, the Minister of State for Information and
Publicity, there was some discussion with journalists from the State media
after the Bill was read for the first time in Parliament. So the views of
these journalists were taken in by Moyo, regardless of public media’s
shameless sycophancy and extreme foolishness on any matters concerning
generic freedoms.

“While empty vessels have been making the usual noise, we have been busy
making law,” Moyo told The Herald. “Fortunately, the majority of Zimbabwean
journalists and editors, most them from the so-called public media, have
quietly given us very useful submissions which we are seriously considering
with a view to taking them on board.”

Armed with these wild thoughts AD and 36 amendments AD the Bill still failed
to impress the Parliamentary Legal Committee, which found 20 of its clauses
most offending and outrightly unconstitutional.

This is a scary development. Professionals are not expected to sacrifice and
prostitute expertise which took many years to amass, just to please Moyo.

The amended Bill, we are told, contained the views of State media
journalists and those of Patrick Chinamasa, a former senior partner in a law
firm, former Attorney General, Minister of Justice and Leader of the House.
Andrew Chigovera, the Attorney General, conceded that some provisions were
wayward and dangerous. What are we supposed to make out of this?

What about the original mover of the Bill? Could Zimbabweans seriously be
hoodwinked to regard Moyo as an intelligent player, averagely intelligent,
to advise a President on national issues?

Look, it costs us, the taxpayers, millions of dollars to sustain Parliament.

Is it worth it to keep a House debating issues designed to deny us freedom?

Now that the Bill has been revised to soften the effects of such criminal
behaviour, it is only prudent that President Mugabe must not sign it into
law. It won’t assist anyone, either the journalists or Moyo.

But it must be noted that this costly exercise has exposed Moyo and cost him
any veneer of respect he may still claim in public. Zimbabwe needs
politicians, even those born out of 1999’s unsuccessful Constitutional
Commission and happen to be appointed, not elected, to Parliament to be
patriotic and display a genuine love for the nation.

What happened in the past few weeks is certainly not in the public interest
and must be avoided.

For the record, Moyo has never respected previous Zanu PF dominated
parliaments. “Our experience is that Parliament has become a bully’s pulpit
used by the Presidency to intimidate dissenting MPs and citizens, especially
the Press, to toe an imaginary line,” he said in 1993. “The continued use of
colonial rules has been made worse by the consideration that the House has
not had a Speaker with any notable independence from the Presidency.”

With the support of dilettantes he appointed to influential positions in the
State media, Moyo failed to bully Eddison Zvobgo to toe the traditional Zanu
PF line.

He described Zvobgo as a man who was fast losing his senses, simply because
he argued for sanity in Parliament. The Herald went further to state that
Zvobgo once denounced the liberation struggle, was Bishop Abel Muzorewa’s
ambassador at the United Nations. Nonsense. For the record, Zvobgo is a
founder member of Zanu PF and was a consistent frontliner. That you can’t
take away from him.

Zvobgo’s main argument was based on the need to allow personal rights to
provide a way of ensuring that Zimbabweans enjoy some free space that cannot
be easily violated by ordinary political games.

Moyo has been allowed to get away with a streak of dangerous opportunism.

Nine years ago, he lamented the State media’s “Dear Leader” mentality in its
coverage of public affairs, only to replace it with his own “Dear Moyo
Brigade” at Zimpapers and the ZBC.

“It is a matter of public record that over the years since independence,” he
told a Press freedom seminar in Harare, “The Herald, The Chronicle and ZBC,
to name a few government mouthpieces, have never criticised Mugabe. Not even
once. The desired subliminal effect of this miscarriage of journalism is
that readers and listeners of these media mouthpieces are supposed to
believe that Mugabe is infallible. Of course, that is nonsense.”

Today, the ZBC and all the State newspapers are far worse than they were at
the time, blazing a cacophony of mind-dulling and brain-damaging junk in the
name of news under the direction of Moyo. A peaceful demonstration by
journalists against the Bill resulted in the arrest of reporters Rhodah
Mashavave and Foster Dongozi of The Daily News and news editor Cornelius
Nduna of The Standard.

Moyo predicted such a scenario in 1993 when young Mashavave was 12 years
old. He said: “Empirical evidence from throughout the world shows that when
ruling politicians become nervous about the security of their political
position, they target the Press with reckless abandon. They do this by
making preposterous claims about threats to national security.”

Please read the Public Order and Security Act and Moyo’s rejected draft to
understand what he meant. The two are littered with meaningless references
on the need to preserve Zimbabwe’s national security.

The inclusion of a clause requiring accreditation takes Zimbabwe many years

The trend in the Southern African Development Community and internationally
is to do away with such forms of licensing. Journalists have company
identity cards and, if they are freelancers, letters of introduction from
their editors. That is sufficient.

Journalists, unless they are spineless, must refuse to be dehumanised and
abused through such callous cruelty and serial sadism.
Back to the Top
Back to Index

Daily News - Leader Page
Political violence will not swing the Bulawayo vote in presidential election
2/5/02 8:47:12 AM (GMT +2)

By Marko Phiri
THE political violence that hit Bulawayo during a Movement for Democratic
Change (MDC) rally sought to stretch the resolve of the people of Bulawayo
to voice their demand for change through the only means they know how AD the
secrecy of the ballot.
And by way of some perverse logic, the people who disturbed that gathering
imagine this will in fact cow the residents into re-electing President
Mugabe in the 9 and 10 March poll!
By there is no other sure way to have the masses voting for any other party
other than the ruling party. Who is the chief ignoramus here?
Long gone is the very poor strategy that if nothing else will win this
election for Zanu PF, then violence will. That is, however, if the poll is
not rigged altogether.
Are those public exhortations by senior ruling party officials for the party
’s supporters to desist from beating up people and campaign peacefully to be
taken seriously given what is going on around us?
The Bulawayo disturbances sought to show us really that no one in this
country can claim immunity from Zanu PF-sanctioned violence.
The city already is an MDC stronghold and has an MDC mayor to prove it. Yet
what is of interest is that there seems to be a piercing dearth in the
ruling party “art of wooing” manual of what form of persuasion will convince
the people there to suddenly shift their loyalty and vote for a party that
still chants slogans about being “born of blood”.
The residents of the City of Kings are better advised that since they have
already gone this far, now certainly is not the time to be cowed into acting
against their consciences.
What the whole country needs to find out is what the future holds outside
the men and women who were part of the efforts that brought independence to
this country. Surely there is more to a country than one party seeking to
rule for eternity?
President Mugabe was in Bulawayo to address a rally in a stadium in the city
during the campaigning for the June 2000 parliamentary election.
The war veterans were busy bussing the people into White City Stadium.
While some went under duress, they still voted for the MDC when voting time
But the interesting thing that happened in Nkulumane where the war veterans
were forcing people into buses was when the people launched their own
uprising and turned the heat on the “comrades”.
The aging fellows were sent running for cover when the brave residents
ganged up on them.
It was a victory for the people of that constituency, yet the recent
incident that had Zanu PF supporters breaking up the MDC rally seeks also to
turn that usually quiet part of the country into a war zone AD thanks to the
efforts of war veterans and other types who have made themselves part of
this mayhem, and proudly wear their badges!
It seeks to push the residents into a state where they are ready to fight
anybody who threatens the peace they have always enjoyed since the Entumbane
disturbances back in the early 1980s.
It manifests the insincerity of the government, or ruling party, in all it
has said about its willingness to quell the violence as part of the Abuja
accord, or all the assurances it has made to the Southern African
Development Community and the world community that it is committed to a
violence-free poll.
But then we have always known that whatever the ruling party says, is not to
be believed by anyone whose mental faculties are still in order.
And it’s interesting then when Archbishop Pius Ncube speaks out against
these issues he is accused of being part of the opposition MDC!
Furthermore, why is he not being accused of supporting the other parties in
Bulawayo, but the MDC?
There are a couple of them there which he can easily be accused of
supporting. After all, if the idea of “nationalism” as preached to us by the
ruling party is to be evoked, the archbishop must be seen supporting local
politicians! But we know that at no time has Ncube championed anybody’s
cause, but that of the ordinary Bulawayo resident in particular and the
native of this country in general.
So because his castigation of the Zanu PF-engineered violence has coincided
with the routing of ruling party parliamentary seats by the MDC, the Zanu PF
syllogism then concludes that Ncube fits their cap!
These accusations levelled against Ncube remind one of the traits that are
so vividly made manifest in cultic devotion. What a member of a cult will do
is that he will readily identify you with the dark forces simply because you
do not want to enlist in his soul-destroying devotions.
But then the MDC is neither an agent of the dark forces nor is the
archbishop in dire need of salvation, at least as preached by the cult!
The Zanu PF cult has, in fact, made it a crime for anybody in this country
to hold political views that are at variance with their gospel of hate. That
is what a cult does. It destroys all intellectual and independent thinking.
For many residents of Bulawayo who are presently residing out of town but
who may want to go “home” to vote in March, I foresee more breaking of bones
as the Zanu PF brigade “strikes fear into their hearts”.
Back to the Top
Back to Index

 Ananova :   
Straw accused of appeasing 'dictator' Mugabe
Foreign Secretary Jack Straw has been accused of "appeasement" of Zimbabwe's Robert Mugabe.
The comments came as the first international election observers arrived in the southern African state.
Mr Straw should have insisted on EU sanctions being imposed when Mugabe missed Sunday's deadline to allow the observers in, said shadow foreign secretary Michael Ancram, who branded the Zimbabwean president a "fascist".
Mr Ancram cast scorn on Tony Blair's planned trip to Africa, which he said failed to live up to the Prime Minister's rhetoric at last year's Labour conference, when he spoke of the continent as "a scar on the conscience of the world".
He wrote to Mr Blair, questioning his decision to devote his trip to the west African states of Senegal, Ghana, Nigeria and Sierra Leone, instead of Zimbabwe and neighbouring countries which might exert pressure on Mugabe.
"Surely the real issues of peace, regional stability, democracy and human rights to which you alluded are currently most pressing in southern Africa?" asked Mr Ancram.
The first four of an expected 100 EU observers have arrived in the Zimbabwean capital Harare, along with a small team of Commonwealth officials who will pave the way for the organisation's own monitors of the presidential polls in March.
Back to the Top
Back to Index

 ITV News
Commonwealth officials visit Zimbabwe
18.50PM GMT, 5 Feb 2002
A group of Commonwealth officials have arrived in Zimbabwe to prepare for the arrival of election observers from the 54-nation grouping of Britain and its former colonies.
The first Commonwealth observers are scheduled to arrive later this week to watch the run up to the March 9-10 presidential election - the most contested vote in the country's history.
European Union officials were also expected to arrive later in the week as part of an advance team for their delegation of 150 observers, officials said in Brussels.
The increasingly unpopular President Robert Mugabe, 77, is fighting for his political survival in the election against the leader of the main opposition party, Morgan Tsvangirai.
Political violence has cast the southern African country into turmoil and initially Mugabe said he would not let international observers into Zimbabwe for the election period.
After strong international pressure, Mugabe, who has ruled the country for almost 22 years, decided to permit the presence of foreign observers from the Commonwealth and the European Union.
But British representatives would not be admitted, Mugabe said. He has accused Britain, the former colonial power, of supporting the opposition Movement for Democratic Change.
The opposition has called for the urgent deployment of foreign observers to deter continuing political violence it blames on ruling party supporters.
Welshman Ncube, an opposition official, said two party leaders escaped an assassination attempt near Harare on Monday and three of its activists had been killed in political violence in the past week.
Police released no information on the attacks.
Ncube said gunshots were fired towards the car of two provincial officials near the town of Murewa, 60 miles northeast of Harare.
One shot passed through the rear window and shattered the front windshield but missed the two occupants.
Ncube said the shots may have been fired by agents of the Central Intelligence Organisation following them.
After stopping at a roadside trading centre for shelter, the two officials were searched and their car torched, he said.
Back to the Top
Back to Index