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

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Zim Online

Tue 25 January 2005
  JOHANNESBURG - Zimbabwe will arrest and deport Congress of South African
Trade Unions (COSATU) leaders who plan to visit that country on a
fact-finding mission next week, Labour Minister Paul Mangwana said

      Vowing not to tolerate COSATU's "big headedness", Mangwana told
ZimOnline that the union's leaders will meet with the full wrath of
Zimbabwe's laws should they proceed with what he described as a "subversive

      Asked if Harare, which last year harassed and threw out another COSATU
delegation, would do so again in February, Mangwana responded: "They can
come if they choose to defy us. This country has law enforcement agencies
that are capable of dealing with any case of intrusion and see to it that
those who come on subversive missions are dealt with.

      "COSATU should expect the same treatment if it violates our laws . . .
we will just not tolerate COSATU, big-headed as they seem right now."

      The South African labour movement's secretary general Zwelinzima Vavi
promised at the weekend to lead another fact-finding mission to Zimbabwe
next week to assess the situation in that country ahead of a key general
election in March.

      The powerful COSATU has in the past threatened to blockade Zimbabwe's
lifeline Beitbridge border post with South Africa if its officials are
mistreated by Harare. Vavi at the weekend refused to say whether  COSATU
will carry out the threat only saying the union will "cross the river when
it gets there."

      COSATU which has publicly declared that Zimbabwe's March poll will not
be free and fair because the political playing field in that country remains
uneven, plans to meet government officials, the ruling ZANU PF and
opposition Movement for Democratic Change parties and other stakeholders if
allowed into Zimbabwe. - ZimOnline
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Zim Online

MDC legislator spends night in cell littered with human waste
Tues 25 January 2005
  BULAWAYO - An opposition legislator, arrested at the weekend for meeting
with supporters without police permission, appeared in court yesterday after
spending the night in a cell littered with human waste.

      Thokozani Khupe, who is the Movement for DemocraticChange (MDC) party
Member of Parliament for Makokoba constituency, was remanded to February 10
on charges of breaching the government's Public Order and Security Act
(POSA). She was also ordered to pay Z$100 000 bail.

      Sixty MDC activists who were also arrested for attending the meeting
at Khupe's restaurant here were all released without being charged.

      Under POSA, it is illegal for Zimbabweans to meet in groups of more
than three people to discuss politics without permission from the police.

      The MDC accuses the government of using the security law to hamper its
campaign ahead of a general election in March and wants it repealed as part
of measures to level the political playing field before the opposition party
can agree to take part in the poll.

      To date, the police have used the law to cancel MDC meetings and have
never prevented meetings by President Robert Mugabe or his ruling ZANU PF

      Commenting on the conditions under which she was held, Khupe said:
"There was litter and human waste all over and toilets are blocked. The
situation is really bad and I think something should be done. That
(condition of cell) is a violation of human rights of great magnitude." -
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Anxious weekly paper waits for media watchman's next move
Tues 25 January 2005
  BULAWAYO - Top management of Zimbabwe's Weekly Times community newspaper
yesterday appeared before the government's Media and Information Commission
(MIC) to explain why the paper's licence should not be cancelled.

      A lawyer for the paper, Kucaca Phulu, told ZimOnline that he and
officials at the paper met MIC chairman Tafataona Mahoso and his officials
who he said would now decide on the fate of the embattled paper.

      "Indeed, we met the MIC officials, including Mahoso himself and we
explained our position as a mass medium. But I am afraid I am not at liberty
to say what we discussed because the MIC is yet to make a ruling," said

      Mahoso could not be reached for comment on the matter. But the MIC
chairman has threatened to close down the paper accusing it of inciting
anti-government feelings.

      The government media watchman also accuses the Weekly Times, which
largely circulates in Bulawayo and surrounding areas, of publishing
political commentaries instead of general news which he says it was licenced
to publish.

      Mahoso, who is a former journalism trainer, has already closed three
newspapers including the country's biggest circulating daily, the Daily
News, after accusing them of breaching provisions of the government's Access
to Information and Protection of Privacy Act. - ZimOnline

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Zim Online

Spain throws spanners into jailed finance minister's probe
Tues 25 January 2005
  HARARE - Spain has refused Zimbabwean state investigators permission to
visit that country to probe claims by jailed Finance Minister, Chris
Kuruneri, that the foreign currency he is accused of siphoning out of
Zimbabwe was earned from a Madrid
      company, ZimOnline learnt last night.

      The failure by state prosecutors to travel to Spain could weaken their
case against Kuruneri.

      The finance minister, in jail since last April, is accused of
externalising more than 5.2 million rands, 34 371 pounds, 30 000 euros and
US$582 611.99 between 2002 and 2004. The state claims he used part of the
money to buy and build luxurious homes in South Africa's Cape Town city.

      Kuruneri, who is the ruling ZANU PF party's Member of Parliament for
Mazowe West constituency, denies externalising forex claiming that the money
he used to buy properties in South Africa is money he earned from
consultancy work for a Spanish-based company.

      No comment was available from the Attorney General's office on
Madrid's refusal to allow Zimbabwean investigators into Spain and how this
was going to affect the state's case against Kuruneri.

      Kuruneri's lawyer George Chikumbirike said: "I have heard about it
today that they (state investigators) were not given the permits (to travel
to Spain)."

      Apart from allegedly siphoning scarce hard cash out of the country,
Kuruneri is also accused of holding a Canadian passport in breach of the
Citizenship Act which prohibits Zimbabweans from holding passports of other

      No trial date has been set for Kuruneri as the state had indicated it
wanted more time to carry out investigations inside the country, in South
Africa and in Spain. - ZimOnline
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Zim Online

Zimbabwe Cricket officials in frantic bid to woo back rebels
Tues 25 January 2005
  HARARE - Zimbabwe Cricket officials are making frantic efforts to bring
back 15 rebel white players following the country's embarrassing Test defeat
by lowly-ranked Bangladesh, sources said last night.

      The rebel players, who stopped playing for Zimbabwe last year after
clashing with Zimbabwe Cricket over selection policy, could even be recalled
for the tour against South Africa in March, according to sources.

      "Representatives of the rebel players and Zimbabwe Cricket met last
week and came to an agreement which will see the rebel players once again
returning to the field. They are definitely needed back in the squad because
the boys who are on tour in Bangladesh at the moment cannot play at the
highest level," a Zimbabwe Cricket official said.

      The official, who did not want to be named, said fear of losing Test
status for good if Zimbabwe continued losing with even wider margins against
more powerful teams such as South Africa, Australia and New Zealand had
forced Zimbabwe Cricket to reconsider bringing back the white cricketers.

      He said: "What particularly awakened cricket officials was losing to
Bangladesh in the Test series. If they could lose by 226 runs to Bangladesh,
what would happen against Australia or New Zealand? Zimbabwe's Test status
is also under threat and that is why they had to plead with the rebel

      According to the officials, most of the white players had indicated
they wanted to return to the national side with some of them already
resuming playing club cricket to ensure they were in shape should they be
recalled for national duty.

      Former captain, Heath Streak, has always maintained that he is
prepared to return to the Zimbabwe national team as long as conditions allow
him to do so.

      Streak is one of the best all rounders in the game and his experience
is being missed in the current team made up of boys still trying to get to
grips with the rigorous demands of international cricket. - ZimOnline
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Zim Online

Suspected ZANU PF spy's trial postponed to today
Tues 25 January 2005
  HARARE - A magistrate's court yesterday postponed to today the trial of
ruling ZANU PF party deputy security director Kenny Karidza, who is accused
of espionage.

      The court postponed the matter after defence lawyers said they wanted
more time to go through court papers which they were only given yesterday.

      Karidza, who has been in police custody since December, is accused
together with three other senior ZANU PF officials of selling intelligence
information to South African agents.

      The other accused are ZANU PF chairman for Mashonaland West province
Philip Chiyangwa, party external affairs director Itai Marchi, Zimbabwe's
ambassador-designate to Mozambique Godfrey Dzvairo and banking executive
Tendai Matambanadzo.

      The men were severely tortured by agents of the government's Central
Intelligence Organisation with Karidza reportedly unable to walk or talk
properly for several weeks while Chiyangwa suffered a mild stroke because of

      If convicted of spying, the five men face jail terms of up to 20
years. - ZimOnline
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      Late funding to dampen Zimbabwe tobacco output

      1/24/2005 10:45:58 PM (GMT +2)

      HARARE: Late funding for small tobacco farmers is likely to hamper
Zimbabwe's tobacco crop in the 2004/05 season, with output seen far off the
bumper levels of 2000, a senior industry official said yesterday.

      Tobacco production, a mainstay of Zimbabwe's economy, which
traditionally accounts for about a third of export earnings, has plunged
from a high of 237 million kg in 2000 to 69 million kg last season.

      Zimbabwe Tobacco Association (ZTA) chief executive Rodney Ambrose said
yesterday that tobacco output this season was likely to rise at most just 30
percent from that level.

      Critics point to disruptions to agriculture linked to President Robert
Mugabe's controversial seizure of white-owned commercial farms for
redistribution to landless blacks.

      Last year the state Tobacco Industry Marketing Board said the industry
had targeted output of 230 million kg this year, citing a bigger hectarage
in plantings.

      But Ambrose said small scale farmers who benefited from the land
reforms had been affected by delays in securing money to finance the current

      "The finance came in late for the smaller guys because they have no
track record, having been in the business for only a short while and the
banks are still reluctant (to extend money to them)," Ambrose told Reuters.

      "At the most we are looking at a crop of about 85 to 90 million kg,"
he said, adding that delays in preparations meant the bulk of small scale
producers, who account for 40 percent of national tobacco output, would
produce mostly low-grade filler tobacco for which there was little global

      "A lot of merchants have written off Zimbabwe and taken their
financing to countries like Zambia and a lot of work still needs to be done
to increase not just the quantity of our crop but also the quality," Ambrose

      It would take Zimbabwe about five years to regain the ground lost over
the past few years and match the year 2000 peak, he said. (Reuters)
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Zanu PF Must Put Its House in Order

The Daily News (Harare)

January 24, 2005
Posted to the web January 24, 2005

If it is true that young school children from Rusitu secondary school in
Chimanimani were allowed to vote in the primary elections held by the ruling
Zanu PF party over the week-end, then the elections can be described as a

According to insiders, the children were coerced by one of the three
candidates for the Chimanimani constituency, Samuel Undenge.

The use of the children is one of the reasons that the losing candidates,
Munacho Mutezo and Misheck Beta have cried foul and are demanding a re-run
of the election.

The candidates are also claiming that voters at Muusha polling station did
not cast their votes and if they had done so, the results would have been
different from the final count which gave Undenge 4 139 votes against 4 074
for Mutezo and 1 631 for Beta.

More important, the two incidents in Chimanimani clearly indicate that the
primary election results might not be the correct picture of the voting
pattern of the people.

It is evident that there is corruption within the ruling party and the hope
is that this does not spill to the March election. It is cause for concern
for other parties that will take part in the national election in March.

It is also a big challenge to the election directorate to put its house in
order so that March election is not yet another farce.

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New Zimbabwe

How Moyo's revenge mission hit turbulence

By Msekiwa Makwanya
Last updated: 01/25/2005 14:05:11
WHILE it is not yet clear at this point in time as to who was actually using
who, Professor Jonathan Moyo seem to have used Zanu PF to hit back at the
independent media for embarrassing him when he failed to sell the government
sponsored draft constitution in 2000.

I remember the hilarious cartoons by the Daily News' Tony Namate of the
Professor's egg-shaped head which I think induced a serious inferiority
complex in the mad Professor. This explains his excessive self-promotion in
the government media.

Striving for personal superiority became Jonathan Moyo's major
pre-occupation and had Zanu PF not stopped him, he was already eying the big
office in the land. Psychologically unhealthy individuals strive for
personal superiority with little concern for other people. Although they may
appear to be interested in others, their basic motivation is personal
benefit and Jonathan Moyo is a good example. It is not that he loved
Tsholotsho so much, No! He needs a constituency to shake-off the "political
appointee tag" that many people in political circles continued to wave each
time he was crafting his retrogressive laws.

Being a Professor is synonymous with being intelligent and successful or
respected yet Professor Moyo had failed to convince even the rural folks
about the goodness of the constitution that he was hired to sell. The
Professor realized or felt that his appointment by President Mugabe to the
cabinet was more of saving his (Moyo's) face for risking his credibility as
a respected political scientist. Deep down in his heart Moyo knew that he
did not deserve to be rewarded for failing to sell the draft constitution
and so he became desperate to uproot everything that stood in his way to
become a recognized politician with a constituency.

Jonathan also mastered the crude Machiavellian tactics according to the book
and reduced Zimbabwe into a political science laboratory where he conducted
his political experiments, closing down The Daily news and its sister papers
and throwing diplomatic caution through the window. Professor Moyo was
involved in diplomatic gaffes with South African when the South African
press exposed his self indulgence when he was on holiday in South Africa
while the people of Zimbabwe suffered.

It is a paradox that Jonathan Moyo now says that he does not subscribed to
the "one ticket to heaven" philosophy when he closed down alternative
sources of information in Zimbabwe. During his tantrums triggered by his
exclusion from contesting as an MP in Tsholotsho Moyo made his views clear.
"In any event, Cdes Nkomo and Dabengwa should know that there is no one
ticket to heaven; there are many such tickets and that's why there are many
churches and many religions and all with tickets to heaven," said Prof Moyo.

One wonders whether Moyo understands what qualifications one needs to go to
"heaven". The MDC's Paul Themba Nyathi has some advice for Jonathan Moyo
luckily for him, "repent and campaign for democracy". Is it ever too late to
get into heaven, one wonders?

In his attack on John Nkomo, Moyo had some rare advice manifesting itself as
a genuine concern for Zanu PF. He said of John Nkomo, "Now that he wrongly
thinks the MDC has been defeated, he has the scheming political guts to go
to Tsholotsho to desperately seek to link me with the MDC in vain!.

"Where will the two thirds that the party needs to defeat Blair come from if
the Matabeleland constituencies are lost as happened in 2000?"

But is Moyo really concerned about Zanu PF or himself? It looks more like
Moyo is double-thinking and double-speaking just to confuse people.

A diagnosis of Moyo's personality shows that he may be now psychologically
unstable and his attempt to assert his superiority complex over the
independent Press has back-fired. Like in all his past failures dating back
from Mgagao in Tanzania where he deserted his comrades, to his last Waterloo
in Tsholotsho where he has been disqualified from standing as a mere MP, he
has to find someone to blame.

Poor Professor Moyo now has to go back to the drawing board knowing too well
that the very media that he destroyed is the remaining option to tell the
world that, Zanu PF Chiwororo, you have to play it carefully. The very
retrogressive media laws that he crafted will be waiting for him should he
attempt to write or express his views like he used to do prior to his
Damascus experience. Then more importantly, Professor Jonathan Moyo will
need to register with Media and Information Commissioner if he is to write
for the Zimbabwean press again at least he knows his media laws better.
Rakazvirova rikazhamba!
Msekiwa Makwanya is a Zimbabwean social commentator based in London, England
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From The Star (SA), 22 January

How SA spies on 'friendly' nations

By Michael Schmidt

Tucked into a low range of hills east of Pretoria, and bristling with radar
dishes, lies a modern complex where visitors are not allowed to take their
cellphones. Named Musanda ("lookout point"), it is the home of the most
covert and least known of South Africa's four state intelligence services -
the SA Secret Service (Sass). This service inadvertently drew the spotlight
to itself this week when it was revealed that early last month one of its
field agents was arrested in Zimbabwe for allegedly recruiting five
high-ranking Zimbabweans - including Zanu PF security director Kenneth
Karidza - to pass sensitive party information to South Africa. Siyabonga
Cwele, who chairs the Joint Standing Committee on Intelligence (JSCI), which
has parliamentary oversight of all four intelligence agencies, said
yesterday that the committee was waiting for the authorities to establish
whether the arrested agent was indeed working for Sass. "We don't get
involved in matters of [intelligence] collection unless there is an obvious
breach of the law - of international law or of human rights law," Cwele
said. "If an agent breaches the rules of diplomacy, then they get expelled,
but if they breach the [host country's] internal law, they may have to be

Despite poker-faced denials by such leaders as ANC secretary-general Kgalema
Motlanthe that diplomatic ties between the countries would not be disrupted
by the arrest of the Sass agent, political analyst Chris Maroleng of the
Institute for Security Studies said the incident had "serious implications"
for South Africa's strategy of clandestine engagement with Zanu PF
progressives to ensure a smooth succession to President Robert Mugabe. But
senior South African intelligence sources say the role played in the alleged
spy ring by the Sass agent, who is accused of having paid one suspect - Zanu
PF central committee member Philip Chiyangwa - up to US$10 000 (R60 000) for
information, amounted to normal practice in the intelligence "game". With a
budget allocation for the 2005-06 financial year of R554,5-million, Sass
fields an undisclosed number of intelligence officers across the globe. The
senior officers, usually stationed at SA diplomatic missions, are given
discreet accreditation by their host nations and assigned to liaise with
friendly governments on issues affecting mutual security. Sass collects
economic as well as political and counter-intelligence information.

But a former director-general of the agency, Mike Louw, has told this
newspaper that, while accredited officers operate with the permission of
their host nations, Sass operates a network of unaccredited clandestine
field agents - in effect, a parallel chain of command - even within
"friendly" nations whose policies could directly affect South African
interests. Zimbabwe was a case in point, Louw said. "Declared officers
stationed with embassies ... are the official line of communication between
the services ... but then you get a few agents in the field and that is
something that is never agreed on [by the a host nation]," Louw said. "To a
dyed-in-the-wool intelligence agent, there is no such thing as a friendly
nation, although there may be some you have more in common with ... I'd be
very much surprised if the CIO [Zimbabwe's Central Intelligence
Organisation, which arrested the Sass agent] does not have agents and
sources in South Africa." Professor Gavin Cawthra, director of the Centre
for Defence and Security Management at Wits University, said it was
interesting that Zimbabwe had chosen to expose the matter. "Everyone knows
this game goes on and it's done as much with regard to friendly as
unfriendly countries because a lot of it these days is trade-related,"
Cawthra said, adding that "these things are usually swept under the carpet,
with the person who is detected quietly asked to leave the country".
Maroleng said the arrests were likely to be part of the current purge of
Zanu PF progressives and that the Sass agent whose role had been exposed had
remained unnamed because he or she was not the CIO's primary target. He said
that such activities could properly be considered "espionage" only when the
intentions behind them were hostile to the host state. But this was not the
case with Zimbabwe as South Africa merely needed good inside information on
the country's internal dynamics. He said the very seniority of the Zanu PF
members supposed to have been recruited as sources indicated a Sass strategy
that was "very risky - but not stupid".

Sass was established in 1995, in tandem with the internal National
Intelligence Agency (NIA), with which it shares the Musanda complex east of
Pretoria. The two bodies amalgamated the old apartheid external espionage
service and the intelligence services of the ANC, PAC, Transkei,
Bophuthatswana and Venda. Both agencies were founded in what the first
published Sass annual report last year described as "politically turbulent"
times when "the security situation was volatile" because of resistance to
transformation among the old security Establishment. This resistance was
defeated by a mix of factors: retrenchment packages in 1995 and 1997 for the
recalcitrant old guard; a series of new acts establishing civilian oversight
of the intelligence community; and a new esprit de corps forged between
agents at the SA National Academy of Intelligence (Sanai), founded at
Mafikeng in 2003. Eventually, NIA felt bullish enough to set up its own
website and take the unprecedented step of running a television
advertisement proclaiming that South Africans had NIA to thank for "another
ordinary day" because of its role in defusing taxi violence and terrorism in
the Western Cape.

Now Sass itself has gone online, proclaiming its mandate publicly for the
first time - "to gather intelligence on foreign threats to the security and
interests of the country and its people" by "placing accredited operatives
in foreign countries". No mention was or is made of covert, unaccredited
operatives. "Sass receives reports from all over the world through a secure
communications system on a 24-hour basis," the annual report continues.
Foremost among Sass's clients are the Presidency and the Intelligence
Minister, Ronnie Kasrils, but departments such as foreign affairs and trade
and industry are also numbered among them. The service receives its
instructions from cabinet via an interdepartmental group of international
relations, peace and security specialists. That group feeds analyses to the
National Intelligence Co-ordinating Committee (Nicoc), which unites all four
intelligence services - Sass, NIA, SAPS Crime Intelligence and SANDF Defence
Intelligence - and sends "national intelligence estimates" to the Presidency
and cabinet which use them to inform their decisions. Paul Swart, the
Democratic Alliance's sole representative on the JSCI, said the
unacknowledged mess created by the arrest of the Sass agent in Zimbabwe
would probably be dealt with through diplomacy. "We expect to be briefed on
this incident two Wednesdays from now, but we are not informed on day-to-day
operational stuff and only get involved if there is a deviation [by Sass]
from its legislative mandate," Swart said. That mandate, Wits professor
Cawthra pointed out, has few statutory limitations on activities outside the
country, other than to uphold South Africa's own constitutional principles -
to the extent that the realpolitik of espionage allows.
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New Zimbabwe

Matsanga delights in Moyo's misfortunes

By Henry Makiwa
Last updated: 01/25/2005 13:40:18
PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe's British-based public relations exponent, Ugandan
David Nyekorach-Matsanga is exultant that his chief nemesis Zimbabwean
Information Minister Jonathan Moyo has finally been humbled but warns that
the beleaguered spin doctor may emerge as a Western-backed opposition

Matsanga told New that he was palliated to see Moyo wallow in
his current problems and charged that Mugabe's spin doctor was now reaping
the rewards of the "seeds of hatred" he sowed.

"Its sometimes pointless on the 'would-haves', but had Zanu PF and President
Mugabe reined in Moyo in good time, some of the crises Zimbabwe finds itself
in would have been skirted easily," Matsanga claimed.

"The point now is to glean into the future and make sure that similar
mistakes are not repeated. And I am afraid that if Moyo chooses to abort
Zanu PF and successfully win the sympathy of the West, President Mugabe will
now be up against a very strong opposition armed with information from
within his administration. It may seem like a far fetched thought but
remember that Moyo is an American-trained intellectual who went to college
with Condolezza Rice (US President George W. Bush's chosen secretary of
state)...hence some of these Stalinist-like purges going on in Zimbabwe
could yield sour fruits if they are not well managed."

In May last year, Matsanga alleged that Zimbabwe's dreaded secret service
operatives loyal to Moyo had abducted him while attempting to enter Zimbabwe
at Harare International Airport with the British SKY News journalists to
interview Mugabe. Matsanga says the security details assaulted him before
robbing him of money and an expensive watch.

"He (Moyo) abused his power, as he has done through out the past five years,
to torture me and cowardly humiliate me but I forgive him now. And now that
he is out in the world, I will truly forgive him if he returned the watch
that his people stole from me. Its an expensive heirs loon which I treasure
so much and I should have it back by any means necessary," said Matsanga who
was friends with Moyo until they clashed on ideologies to prop Mugabe's

"Moyo clearly engineered an impressive pre-election manifesto for Zanu PF
before the 2002 Presidential election in which Mugabe won. He however, ran
out of ideas to execute conventional and transparent mechanisms in the
period after winning the election hence he opted for repressive means to
black-out Zimbabwe from the rest of the world. He should have allowed
foreign journalists and the independent media to operate in the country and
accept criticism. Now he is doomed," Matsanga said.

Moyo fell out of favour with Mugabe last month after organising a
clandestine meeting to scuttle the election of Joyce Mujuru as the party's
vice-president and has since been on a freefall from grace. He was a
fortnight ago barred from contesting the primaries in his home province of
Matabeleland North after the ruling party reserved the Tsholotsho seat for a
woman candidate.

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New Zimbabwe

Mugabe envoy on fire-fighting mission to SA

By Darlington Moyo
Last updated: 01/25/2005 14:35:22
ZIMBABWEAN President Robert Mugabe has dispatched his Foreign Minister Stan
Mudenge on a fire-fighting mission to South Africa as tension between the
two countries threatened to boil over following the seizure of a South
African spy in Victoria Falls.

Mudenge's trip is also being seen as a counter-diplomatic offensive to
neutralise the opposition Movement for Democratic Change's own initiative
following weekend talks between Morgan Tsvangirai and top South African
officials and trade unionists.

Although the daily early morning Air Zimbabwe and South African Airways
flights are 20 minutes apart, typical of Zanu PF's disdain for things local,
Mudenge boarded the SAA on Wednesday morning. Looking tired and spotting a
blue suit, he trudged through the State protocol lounge door on arrival at
Johannesburg International Airport at 8.50am, with a brown-suited aide de
camp in tow.

It is expected that he will meet with South African Foreign Affairs Minister
Nkosazana Dhlamini-Zuma. It is thought that the spy scandal and the
implementation of Sadc election guidelines would be high on the agenda of
the official talks.

Mudenge will seek to give a rose-tinted view of the recently appointed
Zimbabwe Elections Commission, and also request the South African government
to persuade or arm-twist the trade union federation COSATU away from sending
another fact-finding mission to Zimbabwe.

The MDC, meanwhile, has been busy ratcheting-up pressure, insisting that
Mugabe's government has refused to implement Sadc election guidelines, or
take steps to lift the climate of fear ahead of parliamentary elections in
March. The party says it plans to boycott the election.

COSATU said on Sunday it would send a fact-finding mission to Zimbabwe next
month in defiance of Mugabe's government that says the team is not welcome.

COSATU General Secretary Zwelinzima Vavi said after meeting Zimbabwe
Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) chief Wellington Chibebe the team would
highlight Zimbabwe's political problems.

"The issue is to highlight what Zimbabweans have to go through. We must ...
taste the medicine that they have to swallow almost every day," Vavi told a
news conference in Cape Town, adding he expected his team to be denied

The Zimbabwe government expelled a team from the Congress of South African
Trade Unions (COSATU) in October, bundling union leaders over the border at
night after accusing the group of unauthorised meddling in Zimbabwe's
domestic affairs.

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Financial Times

UN fears Zimbabwe food shortages
By David White
Published: January 25 2005 02:00 | Last updated: January 25 2005 02:00

A senior UN official voiced concern yesterday about the prospect of food
shortages in Zimbabwe as a result of the decision by President Robert
Mugabe's regime to refuse further food aid. James Morris, executive director
of the World Food Programme, challenged the Zimbabwe government's claims of
a bumper 2004 crop of maize, the staple food.

Following a harvest of less than 1m tonnes the year before, such a turnround
would be "staggering" if true, he said.

"If the projections are not correct, a great number of people would be very
much at risk," he said. "I don't know what the evidence is that things would
be any better [than last year]. The next 90 days are going to be critical."
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The Star

      Moyo now probed for corruption
      January 24, 2005

      Harare - Zimbabwean Information Minister Jonathan Moyo, already
accused of plotting against President Robert Mugabe, is now under
investigation for corruption as his political future crumbles.

      The independent weekly Standard yesterday quoted from official
documents claiming that Moyo was given free government labour, electricity,
water supplies and farm equipment on a former white-owned farm occupied by
his mother.

      Another probe established that Moyo's wife illegally leased an elite
hunting lodge, seized by ruling-party militants, to a state-owned hotel

      Moyo - nicknamed "Zimbabwe's Goebbels", a reference to Hitler's
propaganda minister Josef Goebbels - was regarded as exercising considerable
influence over Mugabe until November, when he was barred from contesting
elections and threatened with expulsion from Zanu-PF.
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Pretoria News

      ANC gives okay to Cosatu's Zim trip
      January 25, 2005

      By Karima Brown

      The ANC yesterday gave Cosatu's planned visit to Zimbabwe a cautious
thumbs up, suggesting a greater convergence of views within the tripartite
alliance about that country's crisis.

      "We, as the ANC, have no objection to Cosatu going to Zimbabwe to meet
the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU)," said ANC spokesman Smuts

      "Cosatu will have to consult with the ANC on the details of the trip,
so that we can develop a common programme of action," he said.

      Cosatu had the right to network with any organisation,including the

      But Cosatu's visit should not "exacerbate tensions" in Zimbabwe,
Ngonyama said.

      "If Cosatu's visit is to promote peace then of course we support that.
However, the visit has to happen within the confines of the law and with
respect for the Zimbabwean government."

      Ngonyama stressed the need for Zimbabweans to be at the centre of
finding a solution to the country's political woes.

      Cosatu's last visit to Zimbabwe in October last year resulted in a
public war of words with the ANC who accused union leaders of playing to the
gallery. Cosatu's members were expelled from Zimbabwe in a blaze of

      Some ANC leaders, notably from the Youth League, even suggested that
Cosatu's visit amounted to support for colonialism and the agenda of
imperialist forces.

      Cosatu decided to make a second visit to Zimbabwe, but that it would
only meet trade unionists and other civil society organisations.

      It would not seek a meeting with senior government ministers.

      While Cosatu believes it may again be refused entry, it says it will
cross that hurdle when it reaches it.

      The federation also plans to continue its picketing of the Zimbabwe
High Commission in Pretoria.

      Speaking after talks with his Zimbabwean counterpart Wellington
Chibebe, Vavi said Cosatu's decision to press ahead on the mater was fuelled
by concerns that the playing field was far from level ahead of the March
election in that country.

      Vavi echoed the concerns expressed by ANC secretary general Kgalema
Motlanthe last week when he called on the ruling Zanu-PF to allow the
opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) to campaign freely and

      The call on Zanu-PF to allow free political activity has been growing
louder and has now gained ground within all sections of the tripartite

      Ngonyama confirmed yesterday that Zimbabwe would feature high on the
agenda of this week's tripartite alliance secretariat meeting.
      It is expected that the ANC and its allies will emerge more united
over the issue of Zimbabwe.

      Meanwhile, the South African Communist Party (SACP) yesterday welcomed
the "greater convergence" within the alliance over the issue.

      The SACP held talks with key MDC leaders including Morgan Tsvangirai
and Welshman Ncube.

      SACP deputy secretary-general Jeremy Cronin said the MDC leaders were
in the country at the invitation of a policy think tank to explore "policy
challenges" on Zimbabwe's political situation. Cronin, who remained
tight-lipped over the nature of the discussions with the MDC, said the SACP
believed the March election should not be viewed in isolation to Zimbabwe's
overall democratisation process .

      "The priority of such contact is to create multilateral connections,
for example, within the alliance and the South African government we all
bring different strengths and play different roles in this process."

      "However, Zimbabweans themselves must lead the dialogue on
      democratisation," Cronin said.

      Cronin said the elections should be the start of a longer term process
involving all "patriotic forces" to help create the conditions for political
change and long-term democracy.

      "A narrow electionist position can end up in a cul-de-sac, which would
spell disaster and solve nothing," he said. - Political Bureau.
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