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

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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:

May I join the fray on CFU bashing - or not. I shudder to think where we
would all be without the JAG team, and the lively thought provoking
contributions of Freeth and Robinson.

The calm acceptance of all the troubles by the CFU has isolated us all from
each other.  People have turned against each other, and the lack of
information breeds suspicions that can only poison.

Jean Simon has suffered immensely, and if she still believes in the CFU
then that is encouraging - possibly she knows something others have missed.
But without dissent, and debate, we would be totally lost, so I thank
Robinson and Freeth for standing up - it is really not easy.  Whether you
agree or not, you get to think again, and that can only be healthy.  There
is not much else around that is healthy. Ann Hein.


Letter 2:

I hope all your subscribers appreciate what a vital role Justice For
Agriculture is playing, both by informing those who will listen of the
truth behind Zimbabwe's "Land Reform", and by keeping the hope for a
solution alive.

As an example of the necessity for information, there was a discussion
programme on Sky TV on June 24th hosted by Richard Littlejohn on the
subject of returning Zimbabwe to legality.  Peter Oborne of the Spectator
was speaking in favour and had just made a secret film in Zimbabwe called
Five Days In May for BBC Panorama which had our cricket team playing at
Lords, interviewed Henry Olonga, cut to scenes of rioting in Harare and
showed an MDC supporter dying from torture.

So Peter Oborne could be counted on as a solid supporter, but when the
appalling George Shira, a London-based "Mugabe sympathiser", who is often
trotted out on these occasions, deflected the discussion to the "land
issue" Oborne started apologising and said that there was indeed
justification for "reform". No mention of the murderous and obscene charade
that has actually taken place.

As for sustaining hope, Colin Powell's excellent and forthright statement
was issued the same day as the SKY programme.

Regrettably George Bush did not echo his Secretary of State's determination
and caved in to Mbeki calling on him to be "pointman" and mediator on
Zimbabwe.  Zimbabwe's commercial farmers have seen their hopes dashed only
too often. At the very start I remember how we naively thought Mugabe would
clear off the farm invaders in March 2000 when he returned from Cuba, only
to realise that they were operating to his plan.  Since then so many hopes
raised followed by so many disappointments.

Justice For Agriculture is weathering the disappointments magnificently!


Letter 3:



John Tayler


Letter 4:

Re: Open Letters Forum No. 116 dated 18 July 2003

Thank you, well done.  It seems it's who you know as usual! If not illegal,
maybe the writer could advise the bank and agent to assist many people in
the same position.


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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The Herald
MDC brought current hardships - minister

Masvingo Bureau
THE formation of the MDC brought about the current economic and social
hardships bedevilling the country, the Minister of State for Information and
Publicity, Professor Jonathan Moyo, said yesterday.

Speaking at the official opening of an A-level learning centre at Gwindingwi
Secondary School in Bikita West, Prof Moyo who was the guest of honour said
the opposition party was sabotaging the economy so that people would blame
the ruling Zanu-PF.

"The MDC is determined to sabotage our economy so that people blame
President Mugabe and his Government. The MDC is a threat to economic growth
and development because they believe in economic sabotage as a manifesto.
They are saboteurs," he said.

He said it was unfortunate that some teachers and youths were moving around
saying that Government was against democracy and multi party politics when
it was the ruling party that brought democracy.

Prof Moyo said the country was facing the worst economic hardships since
2000 because the MDC was tainting the country's image in the eyes of the
international community.

"We like democracy but we hate the MDC because they are working with the
white man who is powerful and whom we are sending away from our land.

"When the MDC attend world meetings like the G8 summit, we thought they were
going there in good faith but they go there to campaign for more sanctions
against Zimbabwe and it's not only Zanu-PF that suffers but everyone," said
Prof Moyo.

He said MDC leader Mr Morgan Tsvangirai had been openly calling for
sanctions to be imposed on Zimbabwe by South Africa but was not referring to
President Thabo Mbeki but an elite of Rhodesians who control the South
African economy.

Zimbabwe's international relations were at a low ebb because of the
opposition party that was against peace and unity in the country.

"The MDC thrives on violence, they cannot mix with peace and if there is
peace there is no MDC. They are against unity, they do not like everything
that is national.

"That is the reason why they leave Parliament whenever the President goes
there, forgetting that he is an embodiment of national unity," said Prof

He said the MDC was being arrogant by not treating sovereignty as a
sacrosanct national value as evidenced by its association with some former
well known Rhodesians who used to kill and maim blacks.

He paid tribute to the people of Bikita West for wrestling away the
constituency from the MDC in a by-election in 2001.

"Bikita West showed us the route back and Zanu-PF has not lost any
by-election that it once won but had been taking some seats from the

"There is no way the MDC would take a seat formerly controlled by Zanu-PF
and they have been fooled by events in some urban areas. If they think
Harare is Zimbabwe that is their own problem," said Prof Moyo.

He donated three computers worth $7 million to the school and pledged to
source the software.

Over $4 million in cash and pledges towards the completion of the learning
centre at the school was raised at the ceremony.
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The Herald

President disburses $108m to history-making Warriors

By Tendai Ndemera
PRESIDENT Mugabe yesterday disbursed $108 million to the Warriors team that
led Zimbabwe to its first ever Africa Cup of Nations finals in 23 years.

The funds were disbursed according to the number of games each member of the
squad had played with coach Sunday Marimo earning the highest amount.

Speaking at a function he hosted to disburse the funds, President Mugabe
said the Government would create the correct environment for things to
happen in soccer.

"We are in this together and you know we play our own political games with
people like (British Prime Minister Tony) Blair and we don't want him to
score a goal against us.

"The Ministry of Education Sport and Culture is going to take a very active
role in sport and Zifa must be accountable so that we rely on them and they
must not be corrupt," said President Mugabe.

He said yesterday's function was important in that it was the first time he
was honouring the Warriors at State House.

"There have been calls that we should engage foreign coaches but I have
often questioned why we can't rely upon our old players who once played the
game here to coach the squad and today we are honouring our own coach.

"Thank you Sunday - zviye iMhofu ipi iyi - iShava here?

"I want to welcome you very heartily and express my gratitude and
appreciation that you have done us proud and with the leader of the group
Peter (Ndlovu), you know in the Catholic there is a belief that when you die
you go to Hell or Heaven and when you go to Heaven there is someone who
opens the door for you by the name of Peter.

"And Jesus had disciples whose leader was also called Peter," said President

He said when the Warriors were playing South Africa on Saturday, he was
enjoying the game and added that when he next meets his counterpart
President Thabo Mbeki, he would say his boys had embarrassed him again in
his backyard.

"We always joke about soccer when we meet because it is an enjoyable sport,"
said President Mugabe.

And for Zifa, which was at yesterday's function led by acting chairman
Vincent Pamire and members of the board among whom were Susan Chibizhe,
Francis Zimunya and chief executive officer Edgar Rogers accompanied by
Lazarus Mhurushomana and Ndumiso Gumede, the occasion must surely have
proved that something was coming.

President Mugabe said the country's soccer governing body Zifa should be run
by people of integrity with the ability to develop the game.

He said Zifa should be run by people with managerial skills so that those
who play soccer will have faith in the administrators.

"Why should there always be problems, njonga njonga (confusion) and
corruption in Zifa?

"Why don't we have situations like what we have seen in cricket?"

He said people at the helm of Zifa should instead develop the sport so that
the fans and players continue enjoying it.

"Once you sustain the management of the sport you are giving the players the
spirit to fight for victory but if there is constant fighting for positions
and stealing of money at Zifa we end up worried why we would have such
people to run it (the association).

"Those appointed to Zifa should serve the players needs and that's what we
want to see because when players are participating they will be doing it
nationally and not tribally or regionally," said President Mugabe.

He added that those who come into Zifa should know that they are managing
the association for the nation and not for a particular tribe or region.

He said when players failed when turning out for the national team, the
nation would always say they had let the country down since they would be
playing for the whole nation.

"But when you play for your respective sides you will be representing your
regions and the people would obviously identify you with that region.

"We want a sporting nation, that's why in Government we have decided that we
must inject a policy . . . And we must make sure that the policy succeeds in
achieving what it is set up for," President Mugabe said.

None of the Zifa board members were invited to the high table where
President Mugabe sat flanked by Minister of Education, Sport and Culture,
Aneas Chigwedere, Warriors coach Sunday "Mhofu" Marimo, captain Peter Ndlovu
and captains of industry.

Marimo received $6 million while captain Ndlovu was the second highest
earner of the money when he got away with $5,5 million.

Team manager Rafiq Adam took home $4,85 million while the Warriors'
assistant coaches Rahman Gumbo and Brenna Msiska were handed $4,80 million

The Warriors assistant captain, Kaitano Tembo, received a cheque for $4,08
million while the other members who featured prominently for the team during
the just-ended 2004 Nations' Cup qualifiers got amounts, which varied from
$4,08 million to $1,36 million.

The other players such as Nyasha Chazika, Newton Katanha, Eddie Mashiri,
Ronald Sibanda and Walter Chuma, who featured for the Warriors in less than
two matches during the 2004 Nations' Cup qualifiers, received $680 000 each.
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The Herald

Zanu PF sails through

By Lovemore Mataire
ZANU-PF has already taken an unassailable lead in the Local Government
elections, winning the Bindura mayoral seat and 41 other wards around the
country unopposed at the close of nomination courts yesterday.

Cde Martin Danha of Zanu-PF was duly elected executive mayor of Bindura.

All the 10 wards in the town were also won by Zanu-PF after the MDC failed
to choose candidates by 4pm at the close of the nomination court.

A total of 158 wards were confirmed having received nominations yesterday
with the exception of Norton, Gwanda, Mutare urban, Ruwa and Redcliff.

Nomination courts for mayoral and council elections sat to receive
nomination papers between 8am and 4pm yesterday in various parts of the
country where council elections are due.

The Registrar-General Mr Tobaiwa Mudede said the full results of the
nominations would be ready today.

"We would be able to give the full report tomorrow (today) because at the
moment the reports are still coming," he said.

Zanu-PF won in all the 10 wards in Rusape and all the 11 wards in Chegutu
unopposed while MDC won only three wards unopposed two in Bulawayo and one
in Kariba.

In Masvingo, Zanu-PF, MDC, the National Alliance for Good Governance (NAGG)
and some independent candidates were nominated to contest in 10 wards.

Two mayoral candidates Mrs Cynthia Khumalo of Zanu-PF and Mr Tose Wesley
Sansole of MDC filed their nomination papers in Victoria Falls with one of
the 11 wards going to the ruling party unopposed. The two parties will also
be fighting it out in all the seven wards in Hwange.

In Karoi, Zanu-PF won three of the six wards unopposed.

Zanu-PF's Cde Tsitsi Muzenda will be facing an MDC candidate in the Gweru
mayoral contest while the two parties' candidates will battle it out in 17
wards in the city.

In Kwekwe, Zanu-PF's Cde Sternford Bonyongwa and Mr Henry Madzorera of MDC
are running for the mayoral position. In Chitungwiza, all the 24 wards will
be contested while five Zanu-PF councillors out of a total of 11 were
elected unopposed in Marondera. Mayoral and ward elections have been set for
August 30 and 31.

Gwanda, Gweru, Kariba, Kwekwe, Mutare, Redcliff and Victoria Falls will hold
both council and mayoral elections while Bulawayo, Chegutu, Chitungwiza,
Hwange, Kadoma, Karoi, Marondera, Masvingo, Norton, Rusape, Ruwa, Shurugwi
and Zvishavane will hold ward elections only.

In the council elections held last September, the ruling party stamped its
supremacy over MDC and other fringe parties, winning in more than 700 wards
where it was not challenged as opposition parties failed to field

There was a total of 1 400 wards at stake.
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The Herald

ZDF displays military arsenal

From Midlands Bureau
THE Zimbabwe Defence Forces showcased its military might at the weekend with
a display of what its entire military arsenal in the country is capable of
doing in case of war.

Featuring the smallest calibre weapon to the recently acquired
state-of-the-art supersonic MiG 23 jet fighter, the firepower demonstration
at the Zimbabwe National Army's Lazy Nine training ground in Shurugwi was
meant to test military hardware in the country as well as provide students
and officers with a practical training exercise.

The hardware included an armoured multiple rocket launcher capable of
hitting targets 22km away, a wire guided missile system, tanks, a Hawk
fighter plane and the Mi35 helicopter.

The entire arsenal was fired at selected targets using live fire.

The last firepower demonstration was held in 2000.

The weekend's demonstration was witnessed by the Minister of Defence, Cde
Sydney Sekeramayi, ZDF commander, General Vitalis Zvinavashe, Zimbabwe
National Army commander, Lieutenant General Constantine Chiwenga and his Air
Force of Zimbabwe counterpart, Air Marshall Perence Shiri.

The commandant of the Zimbabwe Military Academy, Colonel Thomas Moyo, who
was the director of the demonstration, said the purpose of firepower was to
showcase the magnitude of firepower available to the armed forces and its
"devastating effects".

"The essence is to remind commanders of the amount of firepower at their
disposal that can with good planning be brought to bear on opposing forces.

"The demonstration also presents a wonderful opportunity for joint training
which the two service commanders have always advocated for," he said.

The director of army training, Colonel John Chris Mupande, said the
firepower exercise had shown that the ZDF was a formidable force capable of
defending the country from its enemies.

"We are so strong that people may not understand our capabilities," he said.
An evaluation on the success of the exercise would be carried out, according
to Group Captain Beltim Chingono, director of Operation in the AFZ.
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Survey Shows Zimbabwe Experiencing 'Brain Drain'
Tendai Maphosa
21 Jul 2003, 20:36 UTC

As the economic situation worsens in Zimbabwe, more and more people are
leaving the country in search of a better life. A survey shows many of those
leaving are skilled professionals.

A draft copy of the report by a government research institute says Zimbabwe
is losing thousands of professionals to other countries every year. The
brain drain, the report says, has reached unacceptable heights.

Carried out by the Scientific and Industrial Research and Development Center
in Harare, the report says more than 479,000 Zimbabweans are working outside
the country, with most of them in four countries, Botswana, South Africa,
Britain and the United States.

The survey included professionals in various fields, among them engineers,
teachers, financiers, and medical professionals. Medical personnel made up
the largest percentage of those leaving - almost 25 percent. Those who leave
gave reasons for going into exile as economic, historic and in some cases

Media reports say more than one million Zimbabwean emigrants have left the
country in recent years, but exact figures are hard to get. A spokesman for
the Central Statistical Office says not everybody leaving Zimbabwe says they
are leaving for good. As a result, there are no clear figures distinguishing
between emigrants and those who are leaving the country temporarily.

Another reason exact statistics are hard to come by is that many Zimbabweans
simply leave the country by walking across the border into a neighboring
country, with South Africa and Botswana the most popular choices.

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Cape Times

      Cash riots feared as Zimbabwe runs out of banknotes
      July 22, 2003

      Harare: The growing shortage of banknotes in Zimbabwe has pushed the
black market price of Zimbabwe dollar notes up to as much as 30% above their
face value in Harare - and up to 100% in some rural areas.

      Business people warn of cash riots if the price of banknotes keeps
rising. The problem is that Zimbabwe no longer has enough foreign exchange
to buy foreign-made Zimbabwe dollars.

      Banknotes are now commanding a premium of between 10 and 30% in
Harare, but in some rural areas dealers are reportedly cashing cheques for
half their value, keeping the other half for themselves - a 100% markup.

      The demand for cash has risen in recent days as Zimbabwe's traditional
payday looms this week.

      "If it doesn't ease soon, I predict we'll have cash riots when
businesses fail to raise the banknotes to pay their workers," said John
Gardiner, owner of Zimbabwean food importer Interna-Trade.

      The shortage of banknotes has created huge queues, many stretching for
over a city block, outside city banks and building societies. Most banks
limit withdrawals to a maximum of Z$10 000, about R30 at the commonly used
black-market rate.

      Mavis Majongwe, a bookkeeper with an inner-city grocery store in
Harare, said in an interview; "The situation couldn't be worse. Even when I
have money in the bank, I can't get it out because the bank hasn't got any

      Supermarket chains admitted selling banknotes to their bankers for
10%, but refused to be named, fearing government intervention.

      A Harare administration manager said the demand for cash had reached
unprecedented levels.

      Meanwhile, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe last week injected Z$12
billion into a cash-dry banking sector in an attempt to ease the crisis,
said a central bank report.

      The move coincided with Finance Minister Herbert Murerwa announcing
the introduction of a Z$1 000 note, just days after Zimbabwe's official
inflation rate of 364.5% was announced.

      The country's state-controlled Herald newspaper reported that the
situation was even worse in rural areas.

      "I sold my cotton and got a check for Z$1.3 million," cotton farmer
Tinotenda Chimombe said. "When I went to the bank, they said they had no
money. I then went to a supermarket and I was told I could buy goods worth
only Z$700 000 and since I had no option, I complied," he said. - Foreign
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Business Report

      Only Africa can stop cycle of war and poverty
      July 22, 2003

      Conflict and wars in Africa have become the biggest barriers to the
economic success of the continent.

      The economic fortunes of Africa are dependent on the support of the
World Bank and its ally, the International Monetary Fund. Though these
institutions are still despised by the affluent in African society, they
remain the only source of finance immediately after any conflict.

      As other financial institutions shy away from conflict-riddled African
countries, the World Bank uses the opportunity to expand its research
networks and takes the risk.

      Until Africa solves its own conflicts decisively, it'll continue to
beg for funds from the West.

      Most of Africa's four main regions are involved in one sort of
conflict or another. Incessant civil wars have become a way of life in
Liberia. The Ivory Coast, until recently, was engaged in an unnecessary

      Burundi competes for attention in the war stakes as well. Sudan has an
ongoing conflict with rebels in the southern part of the country. Zimbabwe
adds its own form of conflict to the menu.

      Recently, as though competing for the latest in war fashion, the army
deposed the elected president in Sao Tome and Principe. Like a movie, the
army waited for the president to jet out of the country and suddenly all
radio stations were occupied by defence force personnel announcing the
takeover of the country with no regard for democracy or any respect for
human rights.

      Personal fiefdoms and aggrandisement are the chief reason for wars
      . As soon as the war or conflict is resolved or somewhat resolved,
begging queues to the World Bank lengthen.

      Since there is no certainty that another conflict won't erupt, the
price of loans increases to cover the risk. With high interest rates comes a
depreciating currency to attract foreign savings. This inevitably raises the
prices of goods and services in the country.

      Growth stagnates as a result of punishingly high interest rates.
Unemployment increases, with the potential to provoke conflict again.
Democracy vanishes as the state tries to contain potential conflict. And so
continues the cycle.

      The New Partnership for Africa's Development and the African Union
will be faced with these "permanent" phenomena for a while. African
countries have failed to learn from Botswana, one of the few states not
tainted by conflict. Nigeria is a world leader in corruption. South Africa
is among the leaders in the World Cup of crime - and violent crime for that

      While the world needs to be considerate in forgiving debt to African
states, Africa needs to take responsibility and limit borrowing and allow
common sense to reign supreme. There is just no room to extend the blame to
previous colonial masters for the conflicts in Africa. - Mandla Maleka

    .. Mandla Maleka is the chief economist at Eskom Treasury. The views
expressed are solely those of the author and do not reflect those of Eskom
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InterPress Service

Zimbabwe, a Thorn in the Side of Africa

Analysis By Badia Jacobs

JOHANNESBURG, Jul 22 (IPS) - South African President Thabo Mbeki is reported
to have told United States President, George W Bush, that Zimbabwean
President Robert Mugabe will leave office at the end of this year.

In return, Bush has pledged up to 10 billion dollars in US assistance to
rebuild Zimbabwe once Mugabe has left, or is removed, from office.

Mbeki, who is at the cutting edge of Africa's Marshall Plan to pull Africa
up by its bootstraps, needs the money. Together with Senegalese President,
Abdoulaye Wade, he is the chief architect of the New Partnership for
Africa's Development (Nepad), which will cost an estimated 60 billion
dollars to roll out.

Mbeki has, up till now, pursued a policy of gentle persuasion and ”quiet
diplomacy” on Zimbabwe. His emissary, Nkosazana Zuma, the former wife of
South African deputy president Jacob Zuma, and left-wing maverick ANC member
of parliament Pallo Jordan (once a vocal critic of the Mugabe regime), who
is also the chairman of the South African foreign affairs portfolio
committee, have consistently repeated the mantra that respect for
sovereignty is a fundamental pillar of South Africa's foreign policy.

Moreover, they assert, ”the Zimbabwe crisis has to be resolved by
Zimbabweans themselves”.

Analysts, former liberation organisations and commentators are divided about
Mugabe. Steven Chan, a former adviser to the Mugabe government and
ex-diplomat at the Commonwealth Secretariat that facilitated the negotiated
settlement at Lancaster House in the United Kingdom which eventually led to
the Mugabe leadership of the country, says that the Zimbabwean president ”
has ultimately been bad for Zimbabwe”.

But it is the economy that has been catapulted into the limelight. Goodson
Nguni, a banker in Harare, refers to the present crisis as ”
hyperinflationary”. Zimbabwe's Reserve Bank has recently decided to release
billions of Zimbabwean dollars into the money market this week. Increasing
the money supply is a pointless exercise, economists say, because there is ”
too much money chasing too few goods”.

And in a twist to the tale of white capital in Zimbabwe, a group of white
sugar farmers has just taken a subsidiary of Anglo American Corporation to
court for participating in ”theft and plunder” of their assets by Mugabe's
supporters. They allege that black farmers are ”looting” their cane crop and
selling to Anglo's unit, the Hippo Valley Estates.

Mugabe's back is against the wall. Even the former South African liberation
organisation, the Pan Africanist Congress of Azania, has been tellingly
silent over the Mugabe issue. But it is the ruling African National Congress
(ANC) that will continue to call the shots on Zimbabwe. For the moment, it
is resolute that Mugabe has to go willingly. If he does not, and instead is
removed from power, the Zimbabwean Defence Force is likely to assert its
authority and continue the trail that Mubage has blazed. The generals, all
Mugabe appointees, will likely remain loyal to their leader.

At the same time, the ANC is not convinced that Morgan Tsvangirai - leader
of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) - is a credible
alternative to Mugabe. Despite Tsvangirai's former trade-union involvement,
his ”liberation” credentials are considered thin at best.

South Africa's Mbeki seems committed to a gradual resolution to the Zimbabwe
crisis. But he needs international support to get Nepad up and running. His
Nigerian counterpart, Olusegun Obasanjo, has thrown his weight behind him
and will stay on course if the international community continues to throw
money at the African partnerships envisaged in Nepad.

While Mbeki needs Bush, preferably at a distance, the southern African
neighbourhood seems set to go down if Mbeki does not facilitate a speedy
resolution to the Mugabe question.

A regime change seems unlikely in the near future. Mbeki's strategy of
creating conditions for a reform of the Zimbabwean state and its power
arrangements could well founder if he continues to leave the economic and
financial decision-making exclusively to the dictates of a leader who has
been in power for 23 years, and who has lost the plot.

Mugabe may well have embraced socialist ideals in the 1970s and the first
half of the 1980s, but the considerable distance that he has travelled from
human empathy, solidarity and human rights makes a mockery of his previous

Mbeki may well have to face, sooner rather than later, the choice of either
dumping his touchy-touchy disposition to Mugabe, or prepare South Africans,
Mozambicans, Angolans, Namibians, Zambians and Botswanans, for the
eventuality of absorbing the spillover into their countries of refugees and
the possibility of a gruesome civil war that is smouldering in Zimbabwe.
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