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

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Zim Online

COSATU boss wanted border closed immediately
Mon 7 February 2005
  HARARE - Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) secretary general
Zwelinzima Vavi wanted to immediately blockade Zimbabwe's lifeline
Beitbridge border post with South Africa last Friday but only stepped back
on advice from his Zimbabwean counterparts.

      Vavi wanted to order immediate action after receiving reports that
Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) leaders who were meeting with
COSATU leaders in the South African town of Musina were being tracked by
Zimbabwe government agents and could be arrested on arrival in Harare.

      The labour leaders were meeting in Musina after Vavi and other COSATU
leaders were earlier in the week deported from Zimbabwe where they had gone
to meet the ZCTU to discuss labour issues and to assess whether conditions
for a free election in March exist in the country.

      ZCTU deputy secretary general Colleen Gwiyo yesterday told ZimOnline
that the Zimbabwean delegation told COSATU not to act until regional labour
unions met and decided on measures to take against President Robert Mugabe
and his government for violating labour and human rights.

      Gwiyo said: "Because of suspicion that we were being followed (by
Harare's agents) COSATU immediately threatened to close the border and Vavi
was prepared to do it immediately but we said the Southern Africa Trade
Union Co-ordination Council (SATUCC) has to meet and make a decision (on
action against Harare)."

      SATUCC is the representative body for trade unions in the region. It
has previously threatened to mobilise workers in the region to blockade
Zimbabwe's borders to protest repression and human rights violations by the
Harare administration.

      In a joint statement after their meeting last Thursday, COSATU and
ZCTU said conditions in Zimbabwe were not conducive for a democratic
election in March and called for the postponement of the poll warning that
political tension in the country could break into civil war. - ZimOnline
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Zim Online

Jonathan Moyo courts journalists with Z$11 million donation
Mon 7 February 2005
  BULAWAYO - Out of favour information minister and government propaganda
chief, Jonathan Moyo, at the weekend donated a computer, a printer and a
television set worth about Z$11 million for use by journalists working for
both state and privately-owned media here.

      The gifts, which took many journalists by surprise, were handed over
to the journalists at the Bulawayo Press Club in the city centre.

      Ironically, at the height of his power in the last three years, Moyo
caused much untold pain to journalists. He crafted the Access to Information
and Protection of Privacy Act under which hundreds of independent
journalists have been arrested while three newspapers, including the
country's biggest and only non-government owned daily, the Daily News, were

      Several journalists at government-owned papers and the Zimbabwe
Broadcasting Holdings lost their jobs after disagreeing with Moyo.

      But the information minister appears to have mellowed since falling
out with President Robert Mugabe last year after he attempted to block the
appointment of Joyce Mujuru as ZANU PF and Zimbabwe's second vice-president.

      "Moyo is simply trying to canvass for support from the media to help
him fight for his political survival. His donation is welcome, but no one
can be as blind as to fail to read between the lines," remarked one
journalist. - ZimOnline
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Zim Online

Black, Ullyet pull out of Davis Cup tie
Mon 7 February 2005
  HARARE - Zimbabwe's bid to reclaim its position as one of Africa's
strongest tennis teams has suffered a major setback after top players, Wayne
Black and Kevin Ullyet, disclosed they will not take part in next month's
Davis Cup Euro-Africa Zone Group One tie against Serbia and Montenegro in

      To worsen the situation for Zimbabwe, non-playing captain, Greig
Rodger is also out of the crucial tie on a break from the game this year to
attend to pressing personal and business commitments. The tie in Belgrade is
scheduled for March 4-6.

      Black and Ullyet, who last week won the prestigious Australian Open in
the men's doubles competition, pulled out of the Belgrade tour as they will
be taking part in tournaments in Indiana Wells and Miami.

      Tennis Zimbabwe (TZ) Press officer, Tanyaradzwa Chinamo confirmed the
news yesterday. As a result of the withdrawal of the current top doubles
players in the world, TZ officials could not announce a team to Belgrade at
the weekend as had been scheduled.

      In the absence if its most experienced players, Zimbabwe will have to
do with junior players like Genius Chidzikwe, Gwinyai Tongoona, Zibusiso
Ncube and Gwinyai Chingoka among others. Zimbabwe Open champion, Pfungwa
Mahefu, who is currently based in the United States, might also be called up
for duty.

      The last time Black and Ullyet withdrew from the team, Zimbabwe were
thrashed 0-5 by Israel in Tel Aviv in a Euro-Africa Zone Group One tie in
2003 to expose the country's over dependency on a few individual players.

      Chinamo said: "It is going to be difficult playing away from home with
inexperienced players. But we have no option because the tie has to be
fulfilled and in any case, I think the young boys have gained enough
experience to hold their won against any opponents."

      If Zimbabwe loses in Belgrade, they will play the losers of the other
first round match between Great Britain and Israel in a relegation play
off. - ZimOnline
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Zim Online

Lack of match fitness delays return of rebel cricketers
Mon 7 February 2005
  HARARE - Zimbabwe's rebel white cricket players will not be included in
the squad to tour South Africa next month because they still lack match
fitness, ZimOnline learnt yesterday.

      It also emerged yesterday that the white cricketers and Zimbabwe
Cricket have agreed to end their dispute amicably although there were still
a "few loose ends" to be ironed out before the players could resume their
romance with the national team.

      ZC was desperate to see the rebel players led by former captain Heath
Streak return to the national team ahead of the South Africa tour after the
current squad of inexperienced juniors was trounced by minnows, Bangladesh,
in a Test series and One Day Internationals last month.

      The cricket-governing body wanted to avoid similar embarrassment at
the hands of the more polished South Africans next month.

      Zimbabwe coach Phil Simmons publicly admitted last week that he wanted
the white players back in the team telling the Press that Zimbabwe lost to
Bangladesh not because of technical incompetence but because of

      "Every coach would love to have those experienced (white) players in
the squad but unfortunately they will not have reached the level of fitness
required. We will have to do with the players we have and hopefully improve
against South Africa," Simmons said.

      The white players stopped playing for Zimbabwe after a racism-tinged
dispute with the ZC over selection policy. - ZimOnline
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Zanu(PF) Johannesburg offices attacked

February 06, 2005, 22:15

Members of Zimbabwe's Zanu(PF) were attacked by a group of opposition
supporters in their offices in Johannesburg today, the party's district
chairperson, said. Bigvai Gumede, chairperson of Zanu-PF's Johannesburg
branch said about 17 people wearing Movement for Democratic Change (MDC)
T-shirts broke into their meeting room and started throwing furniture around
and pulling down posters of Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe.

"They started beating us up. They told us why do you support the president
(Mugabe)?" Gumede said.

No one was seriously injured, and the vandals soon ran away. Amanda
Roestoff, the Johannesburg police spokesperson, said police would
investigate the incident.

Tension runs high between the two parties in the run-up to elections on
March 31, which the MDC claims will not be free and fair. The Congress of
South African Trade Unions recently challenged the country on its repressive
politics by trying to send a delegation to Zimbabwe. The delegation was
refused entry at Harare airport, and put back on the plane to
Johannesburg. - Sapa
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Zanu(PF) sacks official over spy allegations

February 06, 2005, 20:45

Robert Mugabe, the Zimbabwean president's ruling Zanu(PF) party, expelled a
top official charged with selling state secrets to foreign agents, state
radio reported today. Phillip Chiyangwa was chairperson of Mashonaland West
province, in northwest Zimbabwe, but members of his provincial executive
today unanimously passed a no-confidence vote in his leadership for
"bringing the name of the party into disrepute".

Chiyangwa, who is in custody and denies charges of selling secrets, was
charged last December alongside three others for breaching the Official
Secrets Act and could face a jail term of up to 20 years under sections of
the law. "The vote of no confidence was as a result of pending cases against
comrade Chiyangwa resulting in his failure to carry out his duties as
provincial chairperson," state radio reported.

The flamboyant businessman, who is also a Zanu(PF) legislator, was arrested
in January 2004 on charges he had interfered with a fraud probe and
threatened a policeman investigating the case. He was later cleared of the
charges, which his lawyers said were linked to feuding within the ruling
party over who should succeed Mugabe, expected to retire in 2008. Chiyangwa
was last month barred from standing in internal party elections to choose a
candidate for next month's parliamentary polls together with three ministers
as the succession row continued. - Reuters
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1 400% pay hike for Zim troops
06/02/2005 21:30  - (SA)

Harare - The government of Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe has given pay
increases of up to 1 400% to the war veteran's militia, ex-political
prisoners and to traditional chiefs, reports in the capital Harare said on

The increases are being awarded less than two months ahead of parliamentary
elections scheduled for March 31, and immediately drew accusations that
Mugabe was paying off key political groups with a critical role in the
Zanu-PF election strategy of intimidation of voters.

In the last parliamentary elections in 2000 and presidential ballot in 2002,
war veterans led a country-wide reign of terror against the opposition
Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), and are considered responsible for
most of the murders of about 300 people in the campaigns.

People 'can not be bought'

Chiefs and their hierarchy of village headmen are accused of using their
powerful influence over impoverished rural communities to force people to
vote for Mugabe's Zanu-PF.

Mugabe in the state-controlled Sunday Mail accused the MDC of soliciting
Western finance "which will then be used to buy votes".

"But we say, Zimbabwe is not for sale. Our people cannot be bought.

"Government has banned the MDC from receiving funding from abroad."

Social welfare minister Paul Mangwana confirmed the pay increase and
indicated it would rise fifteen-fold.

In 1997, Mugabe ordered the unbudgeted payment of pensions to about 60 000
members of the guerilla war veterans movement.

Economists say the massive chunk of state funds paid out set off an economic
crisis that has effectively wrecked the economy.

"The comrades will be happy with the pension increments, including burial
allowances, health care and school fees," said Andrew Ndlovu, a senior
official in the war veterans movement.

The massive increase also follows seething discontent among war veterans
after Mugabe suspended its popular leader from the party amid a purge of
dissidents among a large cross-section of the party's senior leadership.
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Cape Times

      Window on Africa - Is Mbeki 'doing a Zimbabwe' in Ivory Coast to hit
at neo-colonialism?
      February 7, 2005

      By Peter Fabricius

      Is Thabo Mbeki "doing a Zimbabwe" in the Ivory Coast? This question
seems to be exercising many minds right now. Mbeki is deeply engaged in a
complex peace process in the West African country.

      In December he persuaded the government of President Laurent Gbagbo
and his rebel foes to lay down arms and to return to the government of
national unity. It had collapsed a few months before in an outbreak of
vicious fighting which cost many lives, including those of nine French
soldiers in a force that has been keeping the Ivorian enemies apart.

      Mbeki also pulled off a considerable feat in convincing Gbagbo to
support legislation to restore the Ivorian nationality of many of his
political opponents, including Alassane Outtara who would probably beat him
in a free and fair presidential election.

      But since then things have not being going too well. Gbagbo insists
that he must submit the legislation to a national referendum. His opponents
suspect this is a ruse to sabotage the legislation.

      It is Mbeki's apparent failure to deal firmly with Gbagbo over this
evident bad faith, that has stirred doubts among some in the rebel
headquarters in Bouake, in Paris and in South Africa, that he might be
"doing a Zimbabwe" in the Ivory Coast.

      By that they mean: favouring the incumbent president Gbagbo, as he
appears to favour the incumbent president Mugabe, against his MDC political
opponents. Last month Mbeki participated in a summit of the African Union
Peace and Security Council in Gabon.

      The summit okayed Ggagbo's proposed referendum under certain
conditions. Mbeki and his peers did not simply reject the idea out of hand,
because they did not believe Gbagbo would instruct his party to support the
citizenship legislation in parliament - and then oppose it in a referendum.
That would be "illogical".

      But Ivorians who know Gbagbo well believe he is perfectly capable of
such duplicity - as indeed is Mugabe. It may well have been this apparently
rather naive trust in Gbagbo's good faith, that prompted French President
Jacques Chirac to take an oblique swipe at Mbeki's mediation in Dakar on

      Chirac suggested the mediation was foundering because Mbeki did not
understand West Africans. "West Africa is West Africa. It has its own
characteristics. You have to know it well. I very much hope that President
Mbeki, whose work we support, will now immerse himself in West Africa so as
to understand its psychology and soul," he said.

      Mbeki, the Africanist, will probably not be deeply impressed by a
French president telling him he does not understand the soul of any part of
Africa. But behind Chirac's remarks may well lurk a suspicion that France is
Mbeki's real target in Ivory Coast.

      Though the French force there saved Ggagbo's skin in 2002 when it
stopped the rebels overrunning Abidjan, the French, trying to be neutral,
also saved the rebels when Gbagbo's army attacked them last year. France
retaliated, practically wiping out his tiny airforce.

      As a result Gbagbo is now branding the rebels as a front for France's
"neo-colonial" ambitions in the country. Some SABC reports on Mbeki's
mediation have taken the same line and so, according to some media reports,
have people in Mbeki's office.

      They suggest that Mbeki's main purpose is to rid the Ivory Coast of
the French colonials and that if Gbagbo is to be the instrument, so be it.
That all sounds a lot like supporting Mugabe's fight against British

      Mbeki's spokesman Bheki Khumalo insists that is all nonsense and that
his boss fully appreciates the important role France is playing in the Ivory
Coast. But Chirac's remarks in Dakar suggest the French, at least, are not
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New Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe spies held in South Africa

By Staff Reporter
Last updated: 02/07/2005 06:44:13
SOUTH African police have questioned four Zimbabweans - three of them
members of that country's intelligence - for allegedly trying to spy on a
meeting between unionists of both countries in Musina last week.

Ronel Otto, the Limpopo police spokesperson, said she could confirm that the
four - three members of Zimbabwe's Central Intelligence Organisation and one
civilian - were allowed to go back to their country after being questioned.

"They came over the border legally, with passports. They were not arrested,
they were questioned and freed to go without any action being taken against
them," she said.

The four were apparently "arrested" while trying enter the lodge where the
meeting between the Congress of SA Trade Unions (Cosatu) and the Zimbabwean
Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) took place.

The unionists had arranged the meeting after Zimbabwe turned away a Cosatu
delegation at Harare's International Airport on Wednesday.

On Thursday, members from both unions travelled to Musina, South Africa, to
discuss the way forward.

Zwelinzima Vavi, Cosatu's general secretary, said he heard that members of
Zimbabwe's CIO were arrested while trying to spy on the meeting. But, he
said: "I cannot confirm or deny that."

Tummi Golding, the police's spokesperson on crime intelligence, said: "So
far this matter is under severe investigation. We can't comment on it."

Otto, when asked about the four and the circumstances in which they got to
be questioned, she said: "I don't know much about them."

She said she could not even confirm whether they were spying on the
Cosatu-ZCTU meeting - Reuters
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New Zimbabwe

Tutu: 'Zimbabwe a huge blot on democracy'

By Agencies
Last updated: 02/07/2005 02:13:52
ANTI-APARTHEID icon Archbishop Desmond Tutu criticised Zimbabwe for "making
a mockery" of African democracy and urged regional leaders to scold
contemporaries who fail to foster justice and freedom.

Tutu last year hit out at "kowtowing" in South Africa's ruling ANC party,
including over President's Thabo Mbeki's policy of quiet diplomacy toward
its neighbour Zimbabwe, sparking a fiery public debate between the two men.

The archbishop told South Africa's Sunday Independent newspaper that Robert
Mugabe's Zimbabwe was making a mockery of African attempts to improve
governance and defend democracy as the continent tries to secure more aid
from rich countries.

"We have a responsibility. People should see that we do really care about
things like freedom, justice ... the basic freedoms for which we have
fought," he was quoted as saying.

"We have to say, places like Zimbabwe make almost a mockery of our saying
that we are committed to these things and makes it difficult for those who
are our friends."

The diminutive cleric said Zimbabwe was a "huge blot on the record" of the
world's poorest continent. He was speaking ahead of this weekend's G7
meeting of rich nations, aimed at finding new ways of helping Africa tackle
poverty and extending billions of extra dollars in aid.

Critics blame Mugabe for a political and economic crisis that has ruined the
once prosperous southern African country and say elections in 2000 and 2002
were rigged. Zimbabweans go to the polls again in March. Mugabe last year
called Tutu "an angry, evil and embittered little bishop".

South Africa is Zimbabwe's most important trading partner and has been
criticised for its "softly softly" approach toward a key regional ally. In
recent weeks South Africa stepped up emphasis on the March vote as a test
for the troubled democracy.

Long a thorn in the side of South Africa's former white regime, Tutu said
his recent caustic exchange with Mbeki -- during which the president accused
him of resorting to "empty rhetoric" -- had made him "sad for his country".

Stressing that he did not want to reopen that debate, Tutu said the ANC
could do little to "really affect me or affect those of us who were
privileged to have participated" in freeing South Africa from white rule.

Without directly pointing the finger at Mbeki or the ANC, Tutu said firmer
action was crucial on HIV/AIDS, which affects more South Africans than in
any other country and has been a source of contention due to long delays in
rolling out life-saving treatment to million infected.

"I hope we can also really get serious about AIDS and... stop what appears
to be playing games. We know we can save the lives of many people and we
know we can improve the quality of life of many people. For goodness sake,
let's!" - Reuters
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      S.Africa opposition party to visit Zimbabwe ahead of poll

      Mon February 7, 2005 8:24 AM GMT+02:00
      JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South Africa's main opposition party will
send a team to neighbouring Zimbabwe this month to investigate the minimum
conditions required to ensure a fair election there, the Democratic Alliance
said on Sunday.

      The DA said in a statement President Robert Mugabe's party had made a
fair election in March "almost impossible" because the Zimbabwe government
was using food supplies as a political weapon, intimidating voters,
persecuting the opposition, restricting the media and controlling the voting

      The traditionally white party said it would "send a delegation to
Zimbabwe in order to form a view as to whether a free and fair election,
perhaps at a later date, is likely and what minimum conditions are necessary
to make it possible".

      The announcement came after a team from the Congress of South African
Trade Unions (COSATU) last week embarked on a similar trip but were denied
entry in Harare by a defiant government who said they were visitors with a
hostile agenda.

      It was not immediately clear whether Zimbabwe would agree to the visit
and the government's spokesman was not available for comment on Sunday.

      Mugabe's government has been accused of rigging past elections and
opposition leaders say limited reforms ahead of March 31 parliamentary
polls -- seen as a crucial test of democracy there -- favour his ruling

      Political analysts say the March 31 elections are almost certain to
return Mugabe's party to power, prolonging a political and economic crisis
that has ruined the once prosperous country.

      South African President Thabo Mbeki has resisted calls for a tough
line over allegations of political repression in Zimbabwe, pursuing his
controversial approach of quiet diplomacy with the key regional ally.

      The Democratic Alliance consolidated its position as the official
opposition in elections last year but is still dwarfed by the African
National Congress, which won an overwhelming two-thirds majority.

      The team would aim to visit Harare and other parts of the country in
the next two weeks assuming all goes to plan, DA federal chairman Joe
Seremane told Reuters.

      Mugabe says the opposition is a serving the interests of former
colonial power Britain and other Western countries who want to topple him
over his seizures of white-owned farms from blacks.

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Financial Mail

Gono plays spin doctor as economic management fails

By Own correspondent

Official economic outlook is set to be reversed after the election

      The hopes of business that the Zimbabwe authorities would see sense
and devalue the country's overweight dollar were dashed last week when
Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) governor Gideon Gono left the auction rate

      However, because Gono in effect abolished the Z$824/US$ official
exchange rate - announcing that exporters would now get the auction rate
(Z$5 925/US$) for all their export earnings - exporters are marginally
better off.

      Some exporters are even in a better position. Gold miners will get an
effective gold price of US$708/oz for their exports (65% more than the world

      Tobacco exporters, however, who have also been awarded an enhanced
subsidy, say they need more. They have called for an exchange rate of around
Z$9 000/US$, compared with the Z$7 500, including the subsidy, offered by
the Reserve Bank.

      All other exporters have been left to make do with the auction rate of
Z$5 925, which, after adjustment for inflation, means they are getting about
half as much for every US dollar of exports as they got in March 2003. Small
wonder then that the parallel market exchange rate is around Z$8 500-Z$9 000
and that in last Thursday's auction the central bank managed to provide only
13% of the US$82m in foreign currency bids by the private sector.

      Platinum exporters, dominated by SA's Implats, that thought they had
negotiated a workable tax and foreign exchange regime will have to operate
four different foreign-currency accounts subject to RBZ supervision. How
Gono reconciles this official micro management of export earnings with his
call for increased foreign investment is unclear.

      Then there is the governor's call for a system of "command
agriculture", whereby new farmers who received land in President Robert
Mugabe's land reform programme will be "bound through performance contracts
to produce minimum targeted output of specific crops". More micromanagement
from the bank.

      Gono remains upbeat about inflation, predicting the average rate will
fall to 85% this year from 350% in 2004 and end 2005 at around 30%. In a
year in which global exports are forecast to increase only 1%, the governor
is predicting a 55% surge in Zimbabwe's exports, and he is confident the
economy will grow at 3,5%-5% this year, despite the mounting evidence of a
poor agricultural season. Indeed, even Gono had to back-pedal on earlier
government claims of a 165m kg tobacco crop in 2005, saying it was likely to
be 100m kg - a 50% increase on 2004.

      Gono's statement is riddled with contradictions, including the
estimate that money supply actually fell by 20% in December 2004 and that
this coincided with both a stock market boom - share prices have doubled
over the past eight weeks - and a fall in interest rates.

      Gono announced an ambitious plan to lend Z$10 trillion (about
US$1,6bn) to parastatals and local authorities over the next 18 months. The
amount is four times the domestic debt of Z$2,8 trillion and four times
domestic savings.

      Where will it come from? Gono says he is going to borrow it, but
economists and bankers have been quick to point out that to borrow such an
amount, he will have to print it first, which will scupper his optimistic
inflation targets.

      A further stark contradiction is between the governor's inflation
targets and those of the ministry of finance. The ministry expects inflation
of about 250% in 2005 compared with Gono's 85%. Assuming Gono is right, the
budget deficit will be more than 20% of GDP - and the governor will have to
borrow not Z$14,5 trillion as now envisaged, but double that amount.

      Because he managed to easily beat his 2004 inflation targets, Gono is
on something of a high. But last week's statement suggests he is
overreaching himself, setting targets that will be much harder to meet.
Cynics - and the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) - say
Gono's January 26 razzmatazz was all about the forthcoming elections, not
the economy. Once the poll is out of the way, they predict, the governor
will be singing from a different hymn sheet.

      Gono's statement, said the MDC, had little to do with stabilising the
economy. "Rather, it was a statement misleading the country into believing
that the economy was on the mend," the MDC said.

      The irony of all this is that, unlike the MDC, many in the business
community really believe Gono, who, at least to date, has won the propaganda
war. But his own numbers suggest this will not last.

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Daily Mirror, Zimbabwe

Clerk quizzed over Makamba release

Clemence Manyukwe Senior Reporter
issue date :2005-Feb-07

CENTRAL Intelligence Organisation (CIO) officers and the police allegedly
quizzed Justice Lawrence Kamocha's clerk over circumstances surrounding the
release from remand prison of businessman James Makamba last year, a day
after the judge ruled he be freed.
The former Zanu PF Mashonaland Central chairman was arrested on February 9
last year and released six months later (on August 24), after Kamocha
quashed five charges of foreign currency externalisation, he was facing.
Sources in the judiciary said State agents, who allegedly said Makamba
should not have been freed, quizzed the clerk at length.
Last Friday, Justice Kamocha confirmed that agents took away his clerk on
August 25 in the morning, and released him two-and-a-half hours later.
"On 25 August 2004 at about 9.00am three officers, who identified themselves
as members of CIO/CID visited my clerk, saying that they wanted to interview
him about Makamba's case. They took him to CID headquarters where they said
their superior wanted to interview him," said Kamocha.
However, the High Court judge said he could not furnish The Daily Mirror
with the contents of the interview, saying he was not the one who had been
"The officers who claimed to be CIO/CID interviewed my clerk. I never even
saw them myself, as they ended at my clerk's office - without coming to my
chambers," added Kamocha.
Kamocha's clerk said he did not want to talk to the press.
Three weeks ago, Judge President Paddington Garwe asked for questions in
writing, but had not responded by the time of going to print last night.
Last Thursday, Garwe had told The Daily Mirror he would look into the
Contacted for comment the next day, Garwe's secretary said the judge had not
yet responded.
The Minister of State Security, Nicholas Goche, said on Saturday: "Why do
you ask me about history? Don't try to come up with a funny headline.  Ask
the people who questioned him."
However, Kamocha defended his judgment that set aside a ruling by regional
magistrate Virginia Sithole, saying, "It was above aboard."
Sithole had dismissed an application for discharge by Makamba at the end of
the State case.
"The judgment of the trial court dismissing the application for a discharge
be and is hereby set aside, there be an order that the applicant (Makamba)
be discharged and that he be and is hereby found not guilty and acquitted on
all five counts," said Justice Kamocha at the time.
"It seems clear to me that at the close of the State case, there was no
evidence to show that accused committed the crimes he was charged with or
any other offences which may be competent verdicts," he added.
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Daily Mirror, Zimbabwe

Group challenges Sikhala victory

Takunda Maodza
issue date :2005-Feb-07

BARELY a week after outspoken St Mary's legislator Job Sikhala won the
ticket to represent the MDC in the March parliamentary polls, a "rebel"
group has emerged in the volatile constituency challenging his victory in
the primary election.
The group, made up of St Mary's district chairman Boniface Manyonganise,
organising secretary Denford Muchenje, treasurer Tendai Akiti and a
councillor Masikwata, have vowed to confront party leader Morgan Tsvangirai
over Sikhala's election, claiming that the primary polls were flawed.
Manyonganise's group insisted that if Sikhala's victory is not nullified
they would quit the MDC and oppose the party during the March 31
parliamentary elections.
The group accused party secretary-general Welshman Ncube and his deputy Gift
Chimanikire, of manipulating the polls in favour of Sikhala, who defied all
odds in the primary elections when he convincingly defeated his rival,
Lovemore Mutamba, by nearly 100 votes.
Mutamba is the incumbent deputy mayor of Chitungwiza.
"We have tried to seek audience with the leadership, but they are not
willing to entertain us. We left Zanu PF for the MDC thinking it is a
democratic party but it seems they are not willing to implement that
democracy. We are now left with two options - to either resign or form
another formidable opposition party," said Manyonganise.
The disgruntled group also claimed that a number of councillors and party
supporters were threatening to ditch the MDC, alleging that Sikhala stole
the election from Mutamba.
The discontented group vowed that they would de-campaign the candid, former
student leader Sikhala, nicknamed "Wiwa", after the Ogoni civil rights
leader Ken Saro-Wiwa who was executed by late dictator General Sane Abaca
because of his militant stance.
"We cannot work for someone who was not chosen according to the
constitution. We will definitely work for his downfall," a Councillor
Masikwata said.
The rebels argued that the individuals tasked to verify the constituency's
party structures were biased.
"We are the ones that were supposed to have come out with the list of those
that were supposed to participate and we alerted Chimanikire last Sunday,
he insisted that the elections
were supposed to continue," Akiti said.
The group said they would meet tomorrow and decide on a date to see
Yesterday, Chimanikire scoffed at the threat by the rebels to de-campaign
Sikhala, saying everything concerning the St Mary's primary elections was
done above board.
He said: "There is no doubt that Sikhala is popular in that constituency and
anyone threatening to de-campaign him will face an uphill task on the
ground.  He is the people's choice.  I conducted those elections and I am
satisfied that Sikhala won."
He said the rebels' complaints came too late as the whole issue pertaining
to St Mary's has been dealt with and Sikhala was confirmed candidate for the
constituency by the national council.
Chimanikire said the disgruntlement by the group was a matter of sour grapes
as they supported Mutamba, the losing candidate, adding that Manyonganise
did not take part in the verification exercise because the party suspended
him for his unbecoming behaviour in St Mary's.
Sikhala yesterday said of his adversaries: "They are dogs and reptiles that
have gone Yankee. They are just a group of riff-ruffs and garden boys.
"I am not worried of what they say as I am focused on overthrowing the
dictatorship - they should be reminded that we formed the MDC."
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Daily Mirror, Zimbabwe

Will MDC accept defeat?

Phillip Chidavaenzi Features Editor
issue date :2005-Feb-07

IT has never been in doubt - despite all the public and self-ingratiating
posturing - that the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) would
participate in the March 31 polls, set to serve as a barometer of the
following it still commands within the discerning electorate.
Now that the party, which still insists that Zimbabwe has yet to fully
implement the Sadc guidelines and principles governing democratic elections,
has decided to be party to the elections "under protest" after what it
described as mounting pressure from its supporters, should bow out with
grace should the odds be stacked against them.
At a press conference in Harare soon after the party's national council
meeting last week, party spokesperson, Paul Themba-Nyathi, said: "The (MDC)
council noted various resolutions from our 12 provinces, hundreds of party
structures, from our supporters and friends and from our pro-democracy
partners mandating the MDC to lift the 26 August suspension, in spite of the
hostile political environment in the country today. It is with a heavy heart
that the national council has resolved that the MDC will participate in the
forthcoming elections."
Political observers argue that by virtue of agreeing to take part in the
election, the party is endorsing the electoral process and should not
backtrack later should Zanu PF emerge victorious and allege the elections
had not been free and fair.
Lovemore Madhuku, chairman of the National Constitutional Assembly (NCA) -
who believes that Zanu PF will win the election - said:  "If the MDC agrees
to participate in this election, then they should not complain because that
would be an act of foolishness."
The participation, he observed, bordered on legitimising the "flawed"
electoral process and added that that the major challenge was to overhaul
the entire constitutional framework governing elections, which he said did
not allow for a level political playing field that Sadc was trying to create
through its guidelines.
The MDC could have been left with little choice. It probably considered
which was the 'lesser evil' between participating - thereby endorsing the
process - and boycotting, which could have courted the ire of their
supporters and bankrollers.
Themba-Nyathi said: "This is a decision based primarily on the demands of
our people, the working class of Zimbabwe who wish to exercise their hard
fought and inalienable right of voting and still make a statement against
the tyranny of this criminal Sate."
He added that they had noted the "participation is therefore a strategic
decision to recognise our internal democracy and sacrosanctity of nationhood
and the right to vote. We will participate under protest."
Another political observer and UZ lecturer, Heneri Dzinotyiwei, noted that
the MDC's decision to participate would leave in a precarious position, and
they would probably cry foul and use their "participation under process" as
a defence.
He said: "They (MDC) are saying their earlier reservations about the country's
electoral system are still valid whatever the results of the election. If
they win they will say we would have won by a higher margin. If they lose
they will make more noise and start reminding the nation that they
participated under protest after all."
Although the MDC expressed disappointment at what it said was the failure by
Sadc to ensure the enforcement of the election guidelines in Zimbabwe,
political analysts said it was high time the party ceased playing to the
gallery and seek an internal engagement.
"They are embarrassing themselves. The region is there to create a
facilitatory environment for each member State to solve its own problems.
They must appreciate the little help they are receiving from the region as
it is not the role of Sadc to go into Zimbabwe and say do this or that. If
they want to receive more from Sadc then they must learn to be thankful,"
said Dzinotyiwei.
Another political analyst, Eldred Masunungure said "participating under
protest" did not mean anything.
"Its totally meaningless unless if they are saying they are going to
participate partially like what most small parties do by choosing to either
contest in the urban or rural areas. Participation is participation,"
Masunungure said.
He observed that it was "a diplomatic" attempt to justify the dilemma in
which they found themselves trapped and were "trying to mollify those that
would be disappointed by their decision."
Participation is still going to present a nightmare to the MDC - the biggest
opposition to Zanu PF monopoly on power since 1980 - as the question would
remain: why did they participate an election they knew they would never win
owing to what they described as "an uneven and unequal" electoral field?
"More than ever, the electoral playing field remains uneven and unequal.
Rule of law concerns have not been addressed.  The media remains muzzled.
Free assembly is proscribed by the Public Order and Security Act.  The
recently appointed Electoral Commission is yet to prove its independence,"
Themba-Nyathi mourned.
Since the MDC had decided to participate the election, they should be in a
position to give answers to the question: If they win the election, would
they accept the result? What if they lose?
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Daily Mirror, Zimbabwe

Demo over Budiriro MDC candidate

The Daily Mirror Reporter
issue date :2005-Feb-07

WHILE the MDC has held primaries and confirmed 90 percent of its candidates
for the watershed March 31 general polls, controversy continue to dog the
intra-party elections in Harare's Budiriro suburb. Disgruntled supporters
yesterday demonstrated against the alleged imposition by the opposition's
top leadership of incumbent MP Gilbert Shoko to represent the party in the
 College Gonye, the secretary for youths in Budiriro district, told The
Daily Mirror yesterday that the MDC leadership betrayed them when they
confirmed Shoko as the party's candidate for Budiriro.
"We had agreed with the leadership that there was going to be a rerun of
primary elections in Budiriro and we were shocked to learn from the press
that the national council had endorsed Shoko as the candidate for Budiriro,"
Gonye said.
Budiriro MDC information and publicity officer Tranos Mubaiwa, echoed Gonye's
sentiments: "We are demonstrating against the imposition of a candidate by
the leadership of the party.  We only read it in the press that Shoko had
already been confirmed as the candidate against our will. There is something
wrong with our party's top six."
A district party secretary in the area, Peter Chikwati, yesterday said they
planned to meet party president Morgan Tsvangirai over the issue this week.
"Our next step is to meet Tsvangirai early this week for a lasting solution.
The Budiriro case started on June 22 last year and was handled by different
protocols of the party.
"We never bothered to present it to the press as we felt it was an in-house
issue.  Even up to now, we still believe it's in-house but the party seem to
respond urgently to matters that would have been presented through the
press," said Chikwati.
He claimed that their case was presented to the national council but was
ignored, hence their decision to expose the shortcomings in the press.
This is not the first time MDC supporters in Budiriro have demanded a rerun
of primary elections there. A furore later degenerated into fistfights when
Shoko was initially confirmed candidate for Budiriro late last month.
The MDC Harare province spokesperson, Last Maengahama then acknowledged that
the constituency was rife with problems. He said the concerned individuals
appealed to the national council for recourse but had lost the plea.
Welshman Ncube, the MDC secretary-general on Friday said the council
rejected the appeal by party supporters in Budiriro against the candidacy of
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Daily Mirror, Zimbabwe

Chideya ready to be legislator

Constantine Chimakure Assistant News Editor
issue date :2005-Feb-07

HAVING cut her teeth in politics in the late 1970s, Florence Zano Chideya
feels she is now ready to be a legislator - fighting to reclaim Harare's
status as the sunshine city.

Chideya, who was nominated Zanu PF candidate for Harare Central for the
March 31 parliamentary polls, says her ambition to become a Member of
Parliament was borne out of the desire to contribute to the capital's
"I shall seek to play a central, catalytic role by building a sense of
community among the residents of the constituency through proactive
interaction with leaders of such interest groups as the churches, schools,
clubs, associations and tertiary institutions, among others," adds Chideya.
Apart from that Chideya - the managing director of African Adventures Travel
Agency - says she would establish relevant programmes and projects designed
to improve the lives of the people, with possible assistance from the
corporate sector.
She says she would actively encourage the promotion of wealth-creation by
spearheading the development of small- and medium-scale enterprises in a
systematic way.
But what are her chances of winning the parliamentary polls, given the
background that the MDC drew most of its support in urban areas and that
currently Harare Central constituency is in the hands of the opposition?
"My chances of winning are very good," Chideya says, confidently. "We have
got our own approach to appeal to voters. We are working very hard."
Chideya, married to former Zimbabwe ambassador to Sweden and High
Commissioner to Britain and Ireland, Ngoni Chideya, says her only worry was
voter apathy.
"The only problem might be voter apathy, but we are going to approach each
and every voter in the constituency to exercise his or her right to vote,"
explains Chideya, a mother of two.
She says she is not afraid of taking any party in the parliamentary polls
head-on and claimed that some members of opposition parties were defecting
to Zanu PF because the party "has a fabulous history".
Chideya is a British-trained state registered nurse, and holds a Bachelor of
Science Degree in Administration from the State University of New York,
Buffalo in the United States (1976) and also have a Postgraduate Diploma in
Public Administration from the University of Zimbabwe (1991).
On media reports that three aspiring Zanu PF candidates - William Nhara,
Fenias Fundira and a Musarurwa - were forced to stand down and pave way for
her nomination, the jovial Chideya declined to comment and referred all
questions to the party's provincial chairperson, Amos Midzi.
"What I know is that I followed the party procedure.  I think that question
can be answered better by my chairman," she says.
However, The Daily Mirror is reliably informed that her three rivals failed
to meet Zanu PF's election guidelines and were disqualified to run in the
party's primaries by Harare's provincial co-ordinating committee, chaired by
Midzi, leaving her to stand unopposed.
Said Chideya: "As one who lives and works in the central business district,
the heart of Harare, there are some challenges which I intend to address
when elected into Parliament, among them is the flight of businesses to
She adds that she would address the shrinking capital base resulting in
rising unemployment, particularly among the youth, uncontrolled
ever-escalating rentals and utility costs making it difficult for the new
entrepreneurs to establish themselves, the plight of street families and the
HIV and Aids scourge.
The Bulawayo-born Chideya served as the first Zanu PF secretary for the
former Mashonaland East Province, which is now Harare in 1978.  A year later
she acted as the chairperson of the province, until she joined the civil
service soon after independence in 1980.
She worked at the University of Zimbabwe's Student Health Service between
1978 and 1980, before moving to the then ministry of health and later
ministry of industry and technology between 1980 and 1991 when her husband
was appointed ambassador to Sweden.
"During our stay in Sweden and later Britain, we sourced a lot of resources
to prop up our health delivery and education system. As a result of my
background in health, I sourced health materials, while my husband as an
educationist sourced books," Chideya says with nostalgia.
Apart from being a businesswoman, Chideya is also into charity and seats on
boards of a number of charitable organisations.  Among them are: Trustee
President's Fund, chairperson of Lotto Charity Disbursement Committee, board
member of the National Arts Council of Zimbabwe, life member of the Jairos
Jiri Association, life member St Giles Rehabilitation Centre, board member
Children's Performing Arts Workshop and member, Harare chapter of the
Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce (ZNCC).
While abroad she participated in a number of organisations, including
chairperson of the diplomatic spouses' group in Sweden, president of the
Association of Wives of African Heads of Mission and member of the
International Committee of the Red Cross (UK).
"I actively sourced support for many Zimbabwean charities whilst abroad on
diplomatic assignment," she recalls confidently.
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Daily Mirror, Zimbabwe

RBZ attacks Law Society

The Daily Mirror Reporter
issue date :2005-Feb-07

THE Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) and the Ministry of Finance and Economic
Development have attacked the Law Society of Zimbabwe for a constitutional
challenge it mounted against the Bank Use Promotion and Suppression of Money
Laundering Act.
 Under the Act, lawyers are compelled to report on their client's
"suspicious information," especially on large cash transactions, collect
information from them and other sources and pass it onto the government even
without their knowledge or approval. Last month, the legal practitioners'
body lodged the constitutional application with Supreme Court opposing the
act on grounds that it turns them into " state agents" and " whistleblowers".
"The recording, reporting and disclosure requirements conscript legal
practitioners to act as state agents, contrary to their client's interests.
They do so by requiring lawyers to collect information that may not be
required for the representation of the is not necessary to turn
lawyers into whistle blowers," read part of their affidavit.
However, in separate notices of opposition filed by the RBZ and the finance
ministry, the former said the society application was " confounding", while
the later said the LSZ "was shooting itself in the foot."
In his opposing affidavit, Jean Maguranyanga the central bank's company
secretary said: " It is my humble submission that it is nothing short of
confounding that an august body such as the applicant should declare that
there is no money laundering in this country when it is so flagrant that it
would slap one in the face. Availing more money to law enforcement agents as
the applicant suggests would be trying to cure and not to prevent the
He added that although section 11 of the Zimbabwe Constitution grants
fundamental rights to individuals, these rights have certain checks and
balances. On the other side, Willard Manungo, the permanent secretary in the
ministry of finance said: " By alleging that the Act tends to make legal
practitioners whistle blowers the Law Society is literally shooting itself
in the foot. Requiring someone to be a whistleblower does not infringe that
person's right to a fair trial." He added that the argument given by the
lawyers that lawyer-client privilege and confidentiality would be violated
was not true.
"For instant bankers are bound under the common law to maintain customer
confidentiality pertaining to any transaction going through the customer's
account, or the state of the account, can they also not argue that they
should be spared from their obligations under this act? This may render the
whole Act useless," added Manungo. The Supreme Court is yet to set the date
to hear the case.
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Daily Mirror, Zimbabwe

Cattle rustlers on the rampage in Murehwa

The Daily Mirror Reporter
issue date :2005-Feb-07

Cattle rustlers have become daring in Murehwa District in Mashonaland East
Province, stealing a total of more than 18 beasts last month.
Most of the cattle were stolen from Marowa village and reportedly taken to
Shamva where it is suspected that there could be a ready market for the
Assistant Inspector Whisper Bondai said the police were working tirelessly
throughout the country to make sure that all culprits are brought to book.
"The problem of cattle rustling is all over in the country, but the police
are making efforts to make sure that all the culprits are brought to book,"
Bondai said.
Cases of cattle rustling were also rampant in Chipinge district.
Police in Chipinge said most of the stolen cattle were driven into
Mozambique where they were sold.
Police deputy officer commanding Chipinge district, Superintendent Isaac
Muchaonyerwa said villages along the border now have anti-stock theft groups
that patrol along the Zimbabwe-Mozambique border.
"The police will make sure that the rustlers are dealt with accordingly,"
Muchaonyerwa said.
Cases of cattle rustling have increased throughout the country, with
statistics showing that 13 000 beasts were stolen in 2004.
Police has since launched several initiatives to curb stock theft, leading
to the recovery of about 1 000 beasts last December.
The operations were targeting butcheries and abattoirs, which provide a
ready market for stolen cattle.
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