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

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Financial Times

      Inflation in Zimbabwe surges to 365%
      By Tony Hawkins in Harare
      Published: July 16 2003 18:49 | Last Updated: July 16 2003 18:49

      Fresh evidence that Zimbabwe's economic crisis is running out of
control came on Wedneday as inflation surged to 365.4 per cent in June from
300 per cent in May.

      Many economists were surprised at the huge increase in the official
figures because it comes before the government had been forced to announce
sharply higher prices for food and fuel. Producer prices paid to farmers for
wheat and maize were increased in March but these rises have still to be
passed on to the consumer.

      "When that happens," said a bank economist, "we will see inflation
over 400 per cent and it could reach 750 per cent by Christmas."

      The inflation figure was disclosed as government officials admitted
that they had still not submitted a formal food aid appeal to the World Food
Programme. WFP sources say they are providing food aid to 1.5m Zimbabweans,
with the figure expected to increase to 1.8m August. But the United Nations
agency's Zimbabwe budget will be exhausted by the end of next month.

      The WFP estimates that 5.5m Zimbabweans - 47 per cent of the
population - will require food aid by January 2004.

      "But we cannot even launch an appeal to donors until we get a formal
request from the Zimbabwe government," a WFP official said.

      Lancaster Museka, Zimbabwe's secretary for social welfare, said an
official appeal would be sent to the WFP this week.

      The cabinet, which met on Tuesday, was due to agree a figure for the
appeal. But against a background of sharp disagreement among ministers over
the severity of the shortage, it remains unclear whether a figure was

      Some hardline ministers at the forefront of President Robert Mugabe's
"fast track" land resettlement programme refuse to admit that the maize crop
will be only 800,000 tonnes, 1m tonnes short of normal consumption
requirements, according to consensus forecasts.

      Zimbabwe will need to import up to 1.3m tonnes of grain over the next

      As Harare does not have the foreign currency to finance such imports,
it will have to rely heavily on the donor community. But western diplomats
warn that other countries, such as Afghanistan and Iraq, are ahead of
Zimbabwe in the queue for assistance, while donors' irritation at the
government's failure to respond until so late will not help Zimbabwe's case.

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Please send any material for publication in the Open Letter Forum to with "For Open Letter Forum" in the subject line.


Letter 1:

J.T. Taylor Esq.,
CPA Chairman,

My dear Tim,

Whilst in Kwazulu Natal recently I met a lady whose father and husband have
probably been members of the Association that you purport to lead for over
fifty years. Presently she no longer resides in this country.

Since returning home I have been advised that the lady concerned was
actually physically beaten by some illegal settlers on her farm. Her simple
but humbling remark to me was - "Surely a Union is a Union - if one member
is affected and the Union does nothing then you no longer have a Union."
Naturally, I could only agree.

You now hold the position that was held by the late Martin Olds, and it
seems that your mandate pro rata has been whittled down to about 15% of
what Martin had. Naturally you are entitled to your own personal point of
view as per the quote from Voltaire. However I feel that some of your
associates of what purports to be an Association, and those of what
purports to be a Union could possibly need a gentle reminder that they are
supposed to be elected leaders, to serve. Martin is no longer here to
speak, so perhaps I ought to ask some questions that he may well have asked
had he been here.

A searching question for your leaders at Congress will be to ask them whom
they think they represent. The 100% of the 15%? Or the 15% of the 100%? Or
the 100%? A survey asking the 100% (3291 farmers) who they felt was having
a Piggyback Ride, and who was giving it, and then who ought to pay for it
could well be a great revelation for us all. After that, you could ask them
if they were enjoying the Perceived Piggyback Ride or wanted a New Pig to
ride. The reason being that in terms of Riders - some went to market, some
stayed at home, some got roast beef but 85% got none - and can't find their
way home. Finally, should the next leader of CFU come from the 85% or the
15% in terms of being truly representative?

Yours faithfully,
J.L.R. pp Martin Olds.


Letter 2:

Zimbabwe - Plea for Our Country

I am an ordinary Zimbabwean and I feel compelled to write to my
compatriots, not tomorrow nor the next day but now !!

I came to this beautiful country in the late '70's from a farming family in
Australia to find a land of real hope, one that was happy and prosperous
despite the conditions that prevailed at the time.  It was everything I had
dreamed of and it wasn't long before I made a life long commitment. That
commitment is reinforced by events today.

What really impressed me, after I had arrived with a pack on my back,
walking over Beit Bridge, was the quality of it's people of all races,
their spirit, enterprise, work ethic, moral values and respect for their
fellow countrymen and the rule of law. It's beauty startled me, it's
sporting courage and proud tradition amazed me and I fell in love with the
country I now proudly call my home. The red ball sunsets, the cry of a fish
eagle, vistas of kopje, msasa in spring, the mopani veld all evoke emotion
every time I experience them. I am overwhelmed by what has been built in
little over a hundred years . I swell with pride when we, almost
incredibly, perform at the highest level on the world stage, be it the
Chelsea Flower Show, Cricket, Ballroom Dancing, Athletics, Tennis, Tobacco,
Football, Engineering, Textiles...I could go on forever.

I know and believe that Zimbabwe will prosper and re-establish it's
rightful position as the jewel of Africa, if not the world. It is up to us
to determine when that will happen. That is, all of us.

Remember, it is not our country that is to blame but simply the
situation that we have all allowed, in one way or another, to develop to
the point where we find ourselves today. Don't judge Zimbabwe unfairly !
Judge it as it should be and will be when it is healed and back to good
health (As you would your friend) providing everything that you would ever
want in terms of quality of life and expectation. Zimbabwe has served us
all so well and it is simply a Rolls Royce being driven by a bunch of
irresponsible, unlicensed thugs.

It is up to us to be winners and not losers and strive for what is ours. We
will overcome our problems and realize the true extent to which our country
will benefit us all. The prize it too great to give up. We are at the edge
now and must keep pushing and the monument to evil will topple into the
abyss below where it belongs crushed never to arise again. To stop now
would mean giving away everything that we hold dear, giving up an exciting
future to be built on solid values where hard work, honesty and fighting
spirit is rewarded. To stop now would be tantamount to stripping the honour
from those before who fought for this country in so many different ways.

It would dishonour those that have died recently in the quest to secure a
future filled with aspirations that we all share - a future that will
penalize those that do wrong and protect those who uphold the system. We
must accept the challenge to succeed in what we feel so deeply about.

Don't give up on your country now!

Don't make hasty judgements at a time of absolute abnormality. It is not
the time to make a decision about one's future when thought is clouded by
emotion and negative thinking. Don't make a mistake that you will regret.

There will be a resolution. Bring it forward by making a stand for yourself
and those less able than you are - the elderly, the uneducated and
exploited, the poor, those brutalized by lawlessness, the children who are
our future. Don't abandoned your responsibilities. We can and WILL win!!

Zimbabwe has a rich and proud heritage. We are renowned for our fighting
spirit. Don't forsake it ! We must respect those that have built our land,
some of whom remain as senior citizens dependent on the commitment of
subsequent generations.

What are needed now are people of courage and determination, people who
uphold real principles for which they are prepared to fight.

This is not an endless vision but one that is clearly set ahead of us in
the not too distant future. We must dig deep and be resolute in our
determination to win and gladly accept the prize that awaits us. The prize
that is each one of us secure in the knowledge that the country we love
will be expressing openly the values, ideals and standards we uphold in
every aspect of life. There is light at the end of the tunnel and it is up
to each and every one of us to choose whether that light will beam
strongly. We have a choice to determine if that light is there or not and
we have to believe it is if we are to win this struggle, the most critical
episode in our country's history.

Neither I, nor my family, are going anywhere. I belong and, like others,
must solve the problems that we all helped create, largely through apathy
and lack of principle when it came to standing up for what is right and
condemning what was wrong. That's history. It is the future that counts now
and it is up to us, not "the others" to do our bit. Don't relent, don't
concede, don't wilt under pressure. We will win this battle, a battle of
wills, together.

Simon Spooner


Letter 3: Ben Freeth

"Wheat Shortages Continue"

I was recently shocked to read in an IRIN (U.N.) report on the 4th July
entitled "wheat shortages continue" that the reason amounted solely to the
shortages of inputs.  A CFU economist was quoted as saying "the agricultural
sector is operating at only 30 percent of capacity because the ZESA
authority is unable to meet power demands."

Why hide the truth and the root cause of the problem?  The reason why wheat
shortages continue is because competent experienced farm owners and farm
workers have been evicted from their houses and farms by the state.


All letters published on the Open Letter Forum are the views and opinions
of the submitters, and do not represent the official viewpoint of Justice
for Agriculture.

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Tue, 15 Jul 2003
ZIMBABWE: Economic revival programme struggles to do the job
IRINnews Africa
Soaring inflation, acute food shortages and a decline in foreign investment are seen as some of the factors contributing to Zimbabwe's slip in this year's human development rankings. WFP
(Photo: WFP)

©  PlusNews

Life expectancy is now estimated at 35 years

JOHANNESBURG, - Soaring inflation, acute food shortages and a decline in foreign investment are seen as some of the factors contributing to Zimbabwe's slip in this year's human development rankings.

According to the UN Human Development Report 2003, Zimbabwe dropped to 145th position from 128th place achieved in 2002. The country was one of the worst performers among developing countries.

The human development index is a composite measure of average achievement in three basic dimensions of human development: a long and healthy life, education and a decent standard of living.

Life expectancy at birth in Zimbabwe is now estimated at 35 years for the period 2000 to 2005, as compared to 61 years in 1990. Moreover, the country has one of the highest HIV/AIDS prevalence rates (34 percent) in sub-Saharan Africa.

Observers have noted that since 1996 the country has undergone "accelerated deterioration in the socio-economic situation".

The government is struggling to cope with an inflation rate of 300 percent, while 70 percent of the labour force is unemployed.

"There has been a downward economic trend in the last 7 years, but one of the main reasons for the sharp decline in recent years is the land reform programme. Effectively, by appropriating 4,500 farms, the government closed down 4,500 big businesses that provided employment for thousands of people," independent economist John Robertson told IRIN.

To halt the deterioration in the economy, the government launched the National Economic Revival Programme (NERP) in February 2003.

But Robertson said while NERP acknowledged some of the challenges facing the government, the programme "failed to provide a solution".

"Although the programme broadened economic policy decision-making to include government, the private sector and labour, there has yet to emerge a workable answer to the myriad of problems facing Zimbabweans," Robertson said.

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      16 Jul 2003 01:26:00 GMT
      World Vision Zimbabwe maintains nutritional status of the vulnerable


World Vision International
The interventions by World Vision Zimbabwe in the form of general food aid
and child supplementary feeding programme has contributed positively to the
general maintenance of the nutritional status of communities.

Findings of a recent survey by World Vision Zimbabwe have indicated that the
Global Acute Malnutrition (GAM) rate is 3.1 down from 4.1 recorded during a
study held last year while acute severe malnutrition was at 0.5.

The study was conducted in Bulilimamangwe and Beitbridge districts and of
World Vision's Area Development Programmes (ADP) to assess the nutritional
status of children aged 6 to 59 months.

Despite the fact that the GAM rates were below the 5 percent threshold, the
risk levels of the population in question required that targeted
supplementary interventions be put in place.

The most vulnerable category is children under the age of five since food
availability has not improved significantly because of rainfall failure this

World Vision Zimbabwe is carrying out a general food aid project and a child
supplementary feeding programme (CSFP) under its interventions.

The child supplementary feeding programming is targeting 92 638 under fives
in 14 ADPs and will run parallel to the general food aid in all areas
benefiting from the general food distribution.

The study also showed that orphaned children were more likely to become
malnourished. It was immediately recommended that during the CSFP special
focus should be given to this category.

The report also pointed out that the organisation should start long-term
programmes to alleviate nutrition problems. These programmes should include
projects encouraging the production and consumption of micronutrient rich
foods, food processing, preservation and food storage programmes related to

The survey also recommended a holistic approach in the fight against
malnutrition as food shortages continue to dog most communities as a result
of crop failure.

53.2 percent of households interviewed said they did not harvest anything at
all this season while 42 percent said they harvested less than the previous
year and the food was not going to last for more than two months.

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Africa Needs Tough Love
By George B.N. Ayittey
Wall Street Journal | July 15, 2003

Just before President Bush left for Africa, the U.N. warned that at current
rates it would take black Africa 150 years to reach the minimum development
targets. Growth rates are negative on a continent littered with collapsed

Africa needs help but that help is not measured quantitatively by the size
of aid packages or promises. When President Clinton visited Africa in 1998,
his caravan was chock-full of promises and new initiatives. By contrast, the
Bush trip offered substance and form: a $15 billion Emergency AIDS Relief
package, 20% directed at prevention, and a $5 billion Millennium Challenge
Account in aid to developing countries that demonstrate results in better
governance. President Bush correctly recognized that what Africa needs is
straight talk, tough love. Short of recolonization, there's only so much he
can do to help unless Africa's leadership is willing to get serious about
tackling its innumerable woes.

Africa's begging bowl is punched with holes. What comes in as foreign aid
and investment ultimately leaks away. Foreign aid and investment into Africa
amount to $18 billion annually. But current accounts are always in deficit
and capital flight out of Africa exceeds $15 billion a year. Wars cost $10
billion a year in weapons, damage to infrastructure and social carnage. In
1991 alone, says the U.N., $200 billion was siphoned out of Africa by ruling
gangsters and briefcase bandits. For Nigeria, the World Bank estimates that
$250 billion flowed into government coffers between 1970-2000, but much of
that leaked away. And Zimbabwe's economic collapse had caused more than $37
billion worth of damage to South Africa and neighboring countries. It defies
common sense to pour more water into a leaky bucket. But African leaders are
simply not interested in plugging the holes.

On his trip, President Bush correctly resisted calls for the insertion of
U.S. troops in Liberia. The U.S. can help with the provision of military
transport to West African forces. And Secretary of State Colin Powell has
stated clearly that southern African leaders must do more to resolve the
crisis in Zimbabwe. Such straight talk has already started producing some

Two days before Mr. Bush left Africa, the Economic Community of West African
States announced it will take the immediate leading role of sending into
Liberia a force of 1,000-1,500. What took them so long? Equally important
was Kofi Annan's statement at the African Union's summit in Mozambique: "The
U.N. and the rest of the international community can appoint envoys, urge
negotiations and spend billions of dollars on peacekeeping missions, but
none of this will solve conflicts, if the political will and capacity do not
exist here, in Africa."

However, far more was achieved by President Bush on AIDS than can be
measured in dollar terms. When the epidemic first erupted, African leaders
were in denial. Many were reluctant to talk publicly about the disease and
prevention. Only a few countries have made serious efforts to confront AIDS:
Senegal, Ghana and Uganda. Most disappointing has been the failure of South
Africa to provide leadership in the campaign against AIDS -- despite its 10%
infection rate and its first-rate health-care systems.

President Bush's straight talk on AIDS will prompt African leaders to speak
more openly about the pandemic. But just as Africa takes one step forward,
it takes three giant steps back. On July 11, a day before President Bush
left for the U.S., Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe was elected the new African
Union vice-chairman. Imagine! Now, it will take Africa more than 200 years
to attain minimum indices of development. And President Bush cannot be
blamed for that.

Mr. Ayittey, professor of economics at American University in Washington, is
the author of "Africa Unchained: the Blueprint for Development," out from
St. Martin's Press this fall.

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Chewing the Fat

Moneyweb (Johannesburg)

July 14, 2003
Posted to the web July 16, 2003

Jamie Carr

So farewell then, Chief Dubya, and a thousand salaams for dropping in.

Given the eagerness with which the presidential visit was awaited, both by
anti-American protesters and by those who have better things to do than to
fart against thunder, the reality was a little disappointing. After an
excellent start, with our esteemed Foreign Minister freezing her dreads off
on the tarmac of Waterkloof airbase, there was little of excitement to

It was all buddy buddy, slaps on the back sort of stuff, with arguments
ignored as the platitudes were rolled out. The reaction of the international
press was worth a peep, with the majority of comment focusing on the MDC's
allegations that President Mbeki had served up a whacking great pork pie on

Dubya was busy praising Mbeki's role as point man on the Zimbabwean debacle,
while Mbeki was enthralling the press corps with tales of how splendidly
dialogue between the MDC and Zanu PF was progressing.

The lovefest was spoiled by a manifestly peeved Morgan Tsvangirai, who
pointed out that the two sides hadn't exchanged a word for over a year, and
that Mbeki's comments were designed to buy time for the "beleaguered
illegitimate Mugabe regime." Some of the UK broadsheets were happy to accuse
Mbeki straight up of dishing a tissue of lies on the subject, and this is
not going to help our President's already blighted image back in the lair of
the former colonial oppressor.

The New York Times preferred to concentrate on the amount of cash President
Bush was promising to dish out to help with the AIDS crisis. This must
present President Mbeki with something of a conundrum, if indeed he still
believes that the disease is a figment of big pharma's dollar driven
imagination. On the one hand, he would hardly want to look ungrateful when
he's being offered a few billion Georgie Washingtons, on the other he's
probably thinking to himself that the moolah could be put to far better use
upgrading the Presidential jet to something a bit more like Airforce One.
Meanwhile Pravda ignored the issue altogether, preferring to concentrate as
usual on the plight of innocent (and decidedly photogenic) Russian girls
lured to work as masseuses in the fleshpots of Turkey.

The big question of the day was what made lunch over-run by the best part of
an hour. Given Dubya's conversion to the arcane ways of the Goddess Valvita,
it is unlikely to have been him tucking into the Presidential Chardonnay. It
also seems highly improbable that the President of the United Cricket Board
would have cracked the nod to a lunch for a rounders-playing nation, and
while sources close to the lunch suggest that the delay may have had
something to do with a misplaced pudding, I prefer to imagine something
altogether more Bacchic.

Given the state of general pottiness back at home, it's not surprising that
Bush should have chosen to whip up a posse and go off on tour. The land of
the free seems to be have become the land of the free to blame somebody else
for your problems, describe yourself as a victim and sue the well-tailored
pinstripe off the nearest big pocket you can find. The spirit of Oprah
stalks the courts, and the latest industry to feel the heat is big food.

The first attempt by a couple of gargantuan teenagers to sue McDonalds may
have been thrown out of court, but their case has been amended and refiled
and it appears to be getting some serious notice. Kraft, a food industry
giant and the maker of Oreo cookies amongst other nutritious comestibles,
announced last week that it was going to cut down the size of portions in
single serving packages, attempt to develop healthier products and stop
pushing the junk in schools.

In the land of the "eat until you explode" buffet, this may be a little
ineffectual, but the legal angle is going to offer some excellent spectator
sport. Before you know what's going on, there will be class action sharks
leering at everybody on TV ads giving it the old "Are you the size of a
Chevrolet Suburban? Dial 0800 LARD ARSE and turn those pounds into prizes."

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The Star

      $10bn for Zim only if Mugabe goes
      July 16, 2003

      Robert Mugabe will relinquish leadership of Zimbabwe's ruling party,
paving the way for his exit as president and new elections by June 2004,
Thabo Mbeki has told George Bush.

      United States President Bush has in turn pledged a reconstruction
package for Zimbabwe worth up to $10-billion (R75-billion) over an
unspecified timeframe, if Mugabe goes and a new leader takes over.

      The deal, linking the departure of Mugabe to a massive aid package for
Zimbabwe, was discussed by the two leaders during their private meeting in
Pretoria last week.

      Important differences remain: the US is anxious to make the money
conditional on the emergence of a new leader chosen by the Zimbabwe people
in an election rather than an anointed successor from the ranks of the
ruling party.

      South African President Mbeki, by contrast, is not a supporter of the
main opposition Movement for Democratic Change, and is open to a successor
emerging from the ruling party.

      But agreement that Mugabe must go is a critical breakthrough in
efforts to end Zimbabwe's political crisis.
      Mbeki's assurance to Bush is believed to be based on a personal
promise extracted from Mugabe.

      Evidence that Mugabe has promised to quit his party post in December
is emerging from within the ruling party where distinct factions are already
vying to succeed him. - Independent Foreign Service

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The Herald

Hospital operates without water

From Bulawayo Bureau
TSHOLOTSHO District Hospital, one of the biggest health centres in
Matabeleland North, has been operating without water for two weeks,
threatening the institution’s health delivery system.

According to sources at the institution, the situation was so critical that
patients were being asked to bring water in containers because the
institution was now relying on a nearby borehole.

They said water that was being fetched from the boreholes was used by
patients who have been admitted at the institution and by medical staff in
their day-to-day activities at the hospital.

"The situation is so bad and there are fears that there might be a disease
outbreak. You can imagine how it’s like operating in a health institution
without water,’’ said a nurse who spoke on condition of anonymity.

She said Tsholotsho Hospital attends to more than 200 patients a day, making
the situation even more difficult, especially in the toilets, which were now
emitting a putrid stench.

"Though patients are being asked to bring in water, not all of them do so
and the water that is being fetched from the borehole is not adequate to
cater for the whole institution.

"Tsholotsho hospital is a big institution which needs running water and if
it continues like this, we are likely to have a disease outbreak,’’ she

Matabeleland North provincial medical director, Dr Gibson Mhlanga, said the
institution was facing water problems because of the strike by Zimbabwe
National Water Authority workers.

"Ever since people from Zinwa went on strike, Tsholotsho Hospital has been
experiencing water problems.

"It’s unfortunate that there is nothing we can do because the problem is not
coming from us, but we hope that they will resume their duties so that the
problem can be rectified,’’ he said.

Zinwa employees have been on strike for almost two weeks demanding a 300
percent cost of living adjustment.
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From Business Day (SA), 16 July

Threat to kick Harare mayor out of official residence

Harare Correspondent

The row between the Zimbabwe government and the Movement for Democratic
Change (MDC) over the suspension of opposition Harare mayor Elias Mudzuri
escalated yesterday with authorities threatening to use force to evict the
mayor from his official residence. President Robert Mugabe's government
warned that Mudzuri should vacate the mayoral mansion or risk being kicked
out unceremoniously. Local government deputy minister Chief Fortune
Charumbira said, "The issue is whether he wants to leave the house
ceremoniously or not. The order given to him to leave the house was legal."
Mudzuri, popularly elected by an overwhelming majority last year, was
suspended in April on allegations of misconduct and defying government
directives. Government last week gave the mayor , who was arrested twice for
reporting to his offices, a 48-hour ultimatum to vacate the mayoral villa.
It also demanded his official vehicle back. However, Mudzuri has defied the
order. Charumbira said Mudzuri's complaints that the notice of eviction
given to him by government was too short for him to arrange alternative
accommodation was immaterial. "If he wanted more time, he could have
approached the ministry with a formal request rather than sit there and
dream," Charumbira said.

Meanwhile an opposition British MP yesterday accused Prime Minister Tony
Blair's government of "catastrophic failure" in tackling Zimbabwe's
political and economic crisis. Tory legislator for Henley Boris Johnson said
London had completely failed to resolve the crisis whose regional collateral
damage was disastrous. "The government has oscillated between apathy and the
kind of megaphone diplomacy that simply plays into Mugabe's hands," Johnson
said. However, junior Foreign Office Minister Chris Mullin said it would be
"absolute folly" for the UK to act unilaterally against Zimbabwe. London has
always insisted that it had to pursue a multilateral initiative to resolve
the crisis. Johnson said that Mugabe had been significantly weakened and was
"desperate" for a way out of power. "I don't think it is any longer good
enough for the British government to say that it is powerless and that
anything it does simply makes matters worse," he said. "It is time for us to
re-engage for the good of Zimbabwe and the suffering people of that

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Mail and Guardian

Botswana sends 26 000 Zimbabweans back home


      16 July 2003 14:26

With the economic crisis in neighboring Zimbabwe deepening, Botswana
announced Wednesday it had deported 26 717 Zimbabweans who were illegally
living in the country last year.

Tens of thousands of Zimbabweans have fled over their country's borders into
South Africa, Mozambique and Botswana over the last three years to escape
chaos in their homeland.

Zimbabwe is suffering its worst political and economic crisis ever, with an
estimated 70% unemployment, inflation of more than 300% and a simmering
hunger crisis. A black market in food and fuel, where inflation is as high
as 600%, is

The UN World Food Programme estimates food shortages will leave 5,5-million
out of about 12-million Zimbabweans in need of emergency food aid this year.

A rash of politically motivated violence has been blamed on ruling party
militants loyal to President Robert Mugabe, human rights groups say.

The illegal immigrants caught in Botswana and sent home often say they were
searching for jobs, said Chief Immigration Officer Roy Sekgororoane.

Botswana's authorities routinely conducts border patrols and holds raids
throughout the country to find the illegal Zimbabwean immigrants,
Sekgororoane said. - Sapa-AP

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The Herald

Foot and mouth hits export zone

Herald Reporter
THERE has been an outbreak of foot and mouth disease on two farms south of
Harare and the Government has launched investigations to establish the
disease’s origin and the number of farms affected, the Minister of Lands,
Agriculture and Rural Resettlement, Dr Joseph Made, said yesterday.

He said this is the first outbreak of the disease to be reported in the
export zone of Mashonaland provinces since 1989.

"A further clinical foot-and-mouth disease has been detected in a dairy herd
on Dunnie Farm and reports of infection have also been received from two
adjacent farms in Harare South, namely Gilston Farm and Boronia Farm," said
Dr Made.

It is suspected that the outbreak in Harare South is linked to previous
outbreaks in Masvingo province through illegal cattle movement.

"The affected farms are adjacent to Harare South cattle pens. Investigations
are ongoing to determine whether public auction cattle sales were involved
in any way in these outbreaks and to establish the source of the infection.

"However, investigations are in progress to establish the source. Follow-up
investigations on movements from the affected farms are also in progress,"
he said.

Dr Made said Mashonaland West, Mashonaland Central and Mashona-land East
provinces have been put under quarantine pending completion of
investigations. However, cattle would be permitted for immediate slaughter
under veterinary supervision.

An emergency meeting was held between officials from his ministry and those
from the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe to discuss the long outstanding problem of
availability of foreign currency for the procurement of vaccines from the
Botswana Vaccine Institute.

The ministry had made an urgent appeal for US$2 million (about $1,6 billion
at the official exchange rate) but the RBZ has allocated an initial amount
of US$700 000 ($576 million) that would be paid immediately. A further
US$300 000 ($247 million) would be released next week and the central bank
has undertaken to make further allocations of foreign currency in order to
ensure continuity of the vaccine supply.

Dr Made said dairy farmers, Dairibord Zimbabwe and the Department of
Veterinary Services had met to facilitate and support activities, increase
surveillance and control the disease.

The overall work in containing the outbreak would be facilitated by the
Government allocating fuel, vehicles and their maintenance and repair.
Further emphasis would be put on a constant allocation of foreign currency,
the minister said.

A national taskforce comprising the Department of Veterinary Services,
farmers' unions, the Cold Storage Company, Colcom, Dairibord Zimbabwe
Limited, auctioneers, the police and local government officials has been set
up. It is scheduled to meet on July 24 to review progress in the control of
the disease.

"As is international practice, the principal director of veterinary services
will notify the OIE (world organisation for animal health) on this further
outbreak. Over the years, support has been sought from the international
community through Sadc, the EU, FAO (Food and Agriculture Organisation) and
the OIE and further appeals to assist us enhance our capacity to fight
foot-and-mouth disease will be made," said Dr Made.

An outbreak of the disease, which affects the hooves and mouths of cattle,
was reported in Chivi last month. The disease was last year reported in
parts of Manicaland and Masvingo following cattle-buffalo contacts in the
Save Wildlife Conservancy.

Previously, foot-and-disease outbreaks have occurred in Lupane, Nyamandhlovu
and Beitbridge districts in Matabeleland North and South provinces
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Tsvangirai must answer treason charges-prosecutors

By Stella Mapenzauswa

HARARE, July 16 — State prosecutors argued on Wednesday against calls for
the treason case against Zimbabwe opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai to be
dropped, saying he must answer charges he plotted to kill President Robert
       Tsvangirai and two senior colleagues in the Movement for Democratic
Change (MDC) could face death sentences if convicted of plotting to
assassinate Mugabe in 2001 amid Zimbabwe's worst political and economic
crisis in decades.
       All three have pleaded not guilty and their lawyers have asked the
High Court to dismiss the charges, saying the state has failed to present a
solid case.
       On Wednesday however, chief prosecutor Bharat Patel said the state
had shown sufficient evidence that the MDC defendants had discussed seeking
the support of the army for a post-Mugabe transitional government.
       ''Any act or intention contemplating... any change of a head of state
outside the provisions of the constitution is treasonous or unlawful,''
Patel said.
       ''The evidence as presented establishes more than a prima facie case
for the accused to be placed on their defence (in court)... There is no
legal basis upon which the application for a discharge can be granted,''
Patel said.
       The state's case hinges on a videotape of a meeting in Montreal
between Tsvangirai and political consultant Ari Ben-Menashe which allegedly
discussed Mugabe's ''elimination.''
       Ben-Menashe, described by the defence as unreliable, has admitted he
taped the meeting to get evidence for the government -- with which he later
signed a political lobbying contract.
       But he denies entrapping Tsvangirai, whose MDC represents the most
potent challenge to Mugabe's rule since independence from Britain in 1980.
       Tsvangirai is free on bail. He faces a second treason charge, based
on government allegations that he tried to instigate the overthrow of
Mugabe's government through mass protests staged by the MDC last month.
       The MDC and several Western countries accuse Mugabe of rigging his
re-election in 2002 and blame his government for chronic food and fuel
shortages and inflation running at 300 percent.
       Mugabe says the MDC is a stooge of Western powers and insists the
economy has been sabotaged by his opponents in retaliation for his seizure
of white-owned farms for redistribution to landless blacks.

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African Leaders Condemn Takeover in Sao Tome and Principe and Support Menzes

July 16, 2003
Posted to the web July 16, 2003

Tamela Hultman

African presidents across the continent have spoken out strongly today in
support of President Fradique de Menezes, following an army takeover in his
island nation of Sao Tome and Principe.

"We condemn such actions in the strongest terms possible," Nigerian
President Olusegan Obasanjo declared, appearing with Menezes at his side at
an international conference in the Nigerian capital Abuja. The coup attempt
"will not be tolerated," said Obasanjo, a former military ruler who won a
second term as his country's elected president in April.

The sentiment was endorsed by all of the dozen or so heads and state and
government in attendance at the meeting, a plenary of the 6th Leon Sullivan
Summit, which was opened on Saturday by President George W. Bush.

"I want to join my voice with that of President Obasanjo in condemning the
encroachment on the constitutional government," said Ghana's President John
Kufuor, who is current chairman of the Economic Community of West African
States (Ecowas). "All of Africa and its well-wishers must prevail on the
encroachers to desist," he said.

Both Kufuor and Senegalese President Abdoulaye Wade, another plenary
participant. "We cannot accept this," Wade said, ending with a warning to
the rebels to surrender and a pledge to Menezes that he would be able to
return home this week.

Earlier today, Mozambican President Joaquim Chissano, the new chairperson of
the African Union, told reporters in Maputo that he condemned to coup in Sao
Tome and demanded "quick restoration of constitutional legality". Other
leaders taking part in the Abuja meeting, including Zimbabwe's Robert Mugabe
and Blaise Compaore of Burkina Faso, expressed similar sentiments.

The Rev. Andrew Young, a former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and
Atlanta mayor who is chairing the summit, attributed the trouble to the
large petroleum deposits recently discovered in the nation's territorial
waters. "I don't know what happened in Sao Tome, but I know nothing happened
until someone announced there was plenty of oil," he said.

The speech by Menezes drew the loudest sustained ovation from the warmly
supportive crowd. He said when he got the word about the coup, he thought he
shouldn't take part in the conference. But Obasanjo prevailed on him, he
said, to personally make the case for support of democracy and rule of law.

"Africa cannot achieve prosperity with bad governments, with repressive
regimes, with corrupt officials, with failed states - and also with coup
d'etats," he said in Portuguese-accented English. It was the second time in
less than a month that the leader of one of Africa's smallest nations had
brought audiences to their feet at a high-level international meeting.

Speaking in Washington on June 27, at the U.S-African Business Summit on a
program with U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell, Menezes said he had
promised his people that his country would avoid "the curse of oil," where
resource-rich developing nations fare worse than poorer ones. "I will not
fail them," he said. "We also cannot fail the millions of other Africans
yearning for a better life for themselves and for their children. "

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Government to Set Up National Anti-Retroviral Drugs Scheme

The Herald (Harare)

July 16, 2003
Posted to the web July 16, 2003


THE Government would by the end of the year have embarked on a national
programme for anti-retroviral drugs which is expected to result in many
people living with HIV and Aids accessing treatment, the Minister of Health
and Child Welfare, Dr David Parirenyatwa, has said.

He said the Government was working on the development of training materials
for health workers.

The World Health Organisation and other partners supported the Government in
this initiative and the subsequent training of health workers, the minister

He said this in a speech read on his behalf by the ministry's permanent
secretary Dr Elizabeth Xaba at a workshop on increasing access to care and
treatment for People Living With HIV and Aids (PLWHA) in Harare last week.

Dr Parirenyatwa said he was optimistic that the decreasing costs of ARVs
would result in a lot of people benefiting from the drugs.

"The rapidly decreasing costs of ARVs will make anti-retroviral therapy
accessible to an increasing number of PLWHA.

"This combined with increasing financial support from the international
organisations and partners such as the Global Fund for HIV/Aids,
Tuberculosis and Malaria are positive moves to increasing access to care and
treatment for PLWAs," said Dr Parirenyatwa.

The cost of ARV therapy in most countries surveyed by WHO last year had
dropped to around US$300 per patient a year, down from US$10 000 about a
decade ago.

Dr Parirenyatwa said an estimated 2,3 million people were infected while
over 70 000 people were living with Aids in Zimbabwe.

Over 70 percent of all hospital admissions in the country, he said, were
occupied by patients with HIV/Aids related conditions.

"Health facilities are failing to cope with the high demand and therefore it
is important that in planning for increasing access to care and treatment
that we look at home-based care as part of the continuum of care," he said.

WHO regional director for Africa Dr Ebrahim Samba challenged east and
southern African countries to provide treatment to 1,4 million PLWHA if the
global target of 3 million PLWHAs on anti-retroviral treatment by 2005 is to
be met.

"This calls for every country in the sub region to target a minimum of 50
percent of its population with HIV/Aids who need treatment to be on ART
(anti-retroviral treatment) by 2005," he said.

Dr Samba said the scaling up of anti-retroviral treatment would call for the
strengthening of existing partnerships and the development of new ones.

This would include collaboration between governments and multilateral and
bilateral partners, the private sector, networks of PLWHAs and civil

"It will also demand an urgent call for increasing anti-retroviral
treatment, literacy of the populations, and improving knowledge and skills
of health workers and care givers," said Dr Samba.

He, however, expressed concern over the high mobility and attrition rate
among health workers that resulted in most health facilities in the region
being inadequately staffed.

"This is a trend that has to be halted as it will only be possible to
achieve these goals if there are well-trained health workers to provide the
care and treatment services needed by these patients," he said.

Sadc heads of State and governments, including President Mugabe, early this
month reaffirmed their commitment to increase access to affordable essential
medicines, including anti-retroviral treatments, and related technologies,
using funds from their national budgets.

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President Mugabe in Nigeria for Sullivan summit

17 July 2003
President Robert Mugabe is in the Nigerian capital Abuja for the 6th
African-African-American summit.

Cde Mugabe who arrived in Nigeria on Tuesday, was met at Abuja International
Airport by Zimbabwe's High Commissioner to Nigeria, Katsho Dube and senior
Nigerian government officials.

The president is accompanied by the First Lady, Cde Grace Mugabe, deputy
Foreign Affairs Minister Cde Abednigo Ncube and other senior government

The sixth African- African American summit in Abuja will focus on
sustainable development efforts in Africa including business trade and
investment, education and HIV/Aids.

The summit is now known as the Sullivan summit following the death of the
founder Leon Sullivan in April 2001.

It will be chaired by former US ambassador to the United Nations, Andrew

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Many ask quite where are we right now, where are we going if anywhere and precisely what has changed..nothing?


As we might except, events are now overtaking reality and this sense is definitely clouding our perception of where we are right now.


Add to this a good dose of negativity, shooting ourselves in the foot and the results of the immense onslaught that we are all enduring, we can understand just why we feel the way we do, weary and downtrodden. And yet, if we look from beyond the forest, we CAN see the trees!


So often when we evaluate ourselves as individuals we do not do justice to whom we are and what we have achieved. How do we measure our progress? The way to conduct this assessment is simply to look backwards and consider where we were at a certain time and remember quite what were our prospects , our views, predictions and visualization of the future.  Human beings are generally negative and it has been established that over 90% of our fears are not realised.


In 1994 South Africans were asked ten questions about their future and these were designed to be related to the statistical interpretation of where they would be by the turn of the century along with their fears and some aspirations.  The vast majority predicted doom and gloom. Those same ten questions were evaluated in year 2000 and none of those fears were realised at all and South Africa, in essence, is not the place that South Africans predicted it would be.


Back to Zim.  Lets go back to the new year. There were suggestions that we had run out of steam and that the long hard battle that was fought to raise the profile of our beleaguered country, had run into trouble and that the monster regime had successfully steered world opinion away from the fledgling opposition and its brave struggle. Those patriotic and unselfish Zimbos that had forwarded millions of e-mails to addresses from the US President to the House of Commons, from Amnesty Int. to friends abroad. had all contributed far more than they believed and yet had we failed. It seemed like it and RGM had sold himself and the justification for ethnic cleansing and oppression to silence the militant and terrorist opposition. Notorious legislation, reminiscent of the communist east, descend upon us to snuff out the remaining life left in the MDC and we saw our world and the ability we had to exercise our frail muscles, close around us. But our leadership said, we soldier on "evil will never triumph" etc.  Had we faith?  Some fell by the way side and others mustered their remaining courage and stamina and pressed on believing that we would prevail against all odds and that freedom was worth fighting for. Had the west and the democratic world abandoned us? We saw the regional political leadership compromise their principles at conferences and the South Africans seemed determined to turn a blind eye and even suggest support for the murderous outfit that they called a legitimate government. It so became apparent that South Africa was the key role player and yet they were showing how they ignored racist thug rule, how little they cared for human rights and everything they supposedly fought against just over a decade earlier. How could they be so hypocritical and how could they ignore the plight of fellow Africans. Rightly, we felt totally betrayed and, to make it worse, the democracies told us that it was up to South Africa! But they did ignore our pleas and said we must solve our own problems whilst they themselves asked for international help in seeking change in South Africa. Nothing seemed to be going well and personal sanctions, a weapon we were thrilled about, failed as the French sold their souls and so on.


Then came the cricket..... led by those young enough that some of us could consider them our sons, and the tide was turned.  We won the publicity battle and the true plight of Zim and its traumatised people was almost too embarrassing to notice.  But the world did! Slowly but surely we crawled our way back onto the international stage despite the looming Gulf War and so on. How could we possibly maintain our presence?  We despaired when we did not feature as a headlines on the BBC but were we being negative in a world of 220 or so countries vying for a slot on a half hour world bulletin. Was all the hard work reaping its benefit? How many out there beyond were beginning to see that this was a serious issue and the MDC had a case, as a government in waiting. It was now a serious alternative that would work with principle to right the wrongs of  irresponsible African leadership and show the rest of the world that every route to somewhere does have a corner and that the seemingly the impossible can happen. The very principles to which the democratic movement aspired, were definitely those that would form the foundation of a brand new society that would ensure that Africa can succeed after all. The Americans and the Brits, supported by the EU and the antipodeans, stood by us and the Commonwealth maintained suspension against all odds and the wishes of the suspect Mbeki who was now beginning to scare those that were keeping South Africa under the spotlight in terms of the example of the democratic African success story.


The black and white armband crusade continued and gained momentum and even carried us through the Iraq war and we steadily gained recognition as a theatre of the world that, after all, did deserve the attention of the democracies. Every news bulletin we now read or listen to refers to the"dictatorship" the "state sponsored violence" etc. We had achieved our objective and establish Zimbabwe as a nation under siege from its own government. The detentions, torture and repression was stepped up and highlighted by the worlds most respected human rights watch dogs and everything seemed now to playing right into our hands. The momentum was now with us and our campaign for justice was being sustained by external forces as well as our own and we no longer felt abandoned.  Now it was just a case of “when and how” and not “if and maybe”.  We have come so far in such a short time. We have a leadership with international creditability that can administer this country and restore it to good health and we have the support of the world's only super power who have now put their cards firmly on the table....for us! We have achieved and we have attained the goal we fought for in terms of classifying Zimbabwe as a genuine hospital case that needs urgent surgery despite being turned away bleeding and disease stricken previously.  We have now come of age when we no longer have to spend so much effort explaining what our problems are what we are up against and how we believe we can achieve peace and prosperity again.


There have been question marks over the suitability of Tsvangirai as a leader, and there have been claims that he has no experience, however he has shown the people of this country and the world at large, just how convincing he is.  Nelson Mandela said that one does not qualify for presidency until a jail sentence is served.  However, there is more to the MDC leader than meets the eye and in every theatre of participation he has won the respect of others.  He has grown in stature, and proven qualification for accepting responsibility to lead this nation out of the desert.  The president in waiting will prove his worth to his people in the not too distant future.


We have our highs and lows, and our rollercoaster of emotion and perception, and the recent stayaway, illustrated this.  However, in final analysis it proved beyond doubt who controls Zimbabwe and it met with an unbelievably successful public relations coup internationally.  This one event has further united the diverse groups of Zimbabwe, and illustrated to the rest of the world that we have the will, the courage and the conviction to justify the international community, weighing in with their support.


We are now in the home straight and the finish line is now coming into focus. The objective is no longer a question of blind faith but one of reality as we all see the writing on the wall particularly when our opponents openly concede that their fate is more than likely going to be decided by the very people from whom they have stolen, the people for whom they have made life a misery and those who have had their families broken apart through the many aspects of trauma that have prevailed and so on.  Mbeki has ineffect conceided the presidential elections were seriously flawed and RGM is on has virtually said he will step down.  Who would have thought of this six months.   This dog is to have its day after all, and they must answer for their crimes against humanity, and are now asking, what of our future, what will happen when law and order is restored, can we reconcile ourselves with our masters in waiting?  The boot is shifting to the other foot and whilst the rest of us have to cope with the dramatics of daily economics and survival, there is now an antidote and we can feel it in our veins as the balance of power shifts ever so convincingly and inexorably


The tide has turned. We have come a long, long way from our infancy as a people who dared to confront the evil that will become known as one of the most horrendous and despicable regimes of this century.  All the waiting and the pain; is it now going to be worth it? But we have to push on home now and complete the victory which will be ours.




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